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November 2008
Geek Recipes (0 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 30-November-2008  22:09:31 (GMT +10) - by Agg

More yummy stuff from the Geek Recipes forum:

Seared Duck Breast
by username_taken

Balcon and Balsamic Roasted
Baby Snapper from mrs_dan77

Azrael's Spanish Chorizo
and Broccolini Salad

champagne chicken
from TehCamel

Creamy Chicken Curry
by Meowrrr

cheesy nacho wedges
from 1shot1kill

Sunday Afternoon (10 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 30-November-2008  15:29:00 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Secondary students are one step closer to their new laptops. Every senior NSW public school student will get to keep a mini laptop after a new funding deal was thrashed out at yesterday's Commonwealth-state funding talks in Canberra. Some will receive their custom-built computers, powered by a wireless broadband network, by the end of term two next year, with the State Government planning to seek expressions of interest from manufacturers as early as Wednesday.

Criticism has popped up regarding the new widescreen Youtube player. Yet every time something moves forward, there seems to be an outcry. That's what's happened with YouTube. The site has introduced widescreen, high-definition (HD) video playback. [S]ome YouTube users have reacted angrily to the change and have been complaining on the site's blog page.

Anyone in the USA with an AGP graphics card made by BFG will be pleased by this news. "Now, for a limited time, if you send us your BFG AGP card in good, working condition, we'll send you the PCI Express equivalent at no cost to you," BFG wrote on its AGP-to-PCI-E promotional page. "If you want to upgrade to an even better performing card, there is a nominal fee to do so. Offer good for U.S. customers only."

Google Chrome is rapidly increasing its market share. So I persuaded CNET's tech guys to give a window on what's going on here at CNET News. The result surprised me: 3.6 percent of those visiting the site in October used Chrome, up from 1 percent in September, when Google launched Chrome.

Microsoft is in the top 5 worst spam providers. According to Spamhaus, spammers are "abusing Microsoft's live.com and livefilestore.com properties to redirect visitors to sites that peddle fake pharmacy products, porn and Nigerian 419 scams." Richard Cox, the watchdog firm's Chief Information Officer, says spammers use Windows Live services because "they know anti-spam groups are unlikely to block Microsoft properties outright."

65nm Xboxs, codenamed Jasper, are starting to appear in the wild. As we originally predicted back in early October, the first Jaspers were identified by being labeled 12.1A on the 12V rail. Somewhat surprisingly, the first ones discovered also came with a 150W PSU. We of course knew this would happen eventually, but many believed that early Jaspers would use left over 175W PSUs. It's still possible there are some Jaspers floating around labeled as 14.2A and including a 175W PSU that were simply never recognized for what they were.

Bit-tech.net have a hands on preview of Empire: Total War. If somehow you’ve not yet heard of the Total War games, you couldn’t be coming in at a better time. The time in question is the 18th Century, which sees the Industrial Revolution, George Washington’s American War of Independence and the French Revolution; it’s the time of Napoleon’s European conquest and the rise of Arthur Wellesley, the first Duke of Wellington. We’re talking about tall ships laden with cannon fighting for naval supremacy, fields fogged with the smoke of thousands of muskets, and the fanatical endeavour to forge a global empire.

What would happen to wireless communications during an apocalypse? Characters in the recent BBC remake of Survivors seem curiously ill-informed about how the UK's communications infrastructure would deal with the collapse of civilisation, so in an attempt to ensure Reg readers are better-equipped we present a wireless guide to the apocalypse

Saturday Afternoon (9 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 29-November-2008  17:42:33 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Linux is now available on the iPhone. A member of the DevTeam, planetbeing, has successfully managed to port Linux over to the iPhone and iPod Touch. Right now iPhone Linux is still in development stages and is missing a lot of features like wireless, touchscreen, sound, accelerometer, and baseband support, so it's not ready for novice users yet.

Steam is set to debut on Linux. In Valve's most recent title, Left 4 Dead, there are shared Linux libraries shipping alongside this Windows game client. We were tipped off this morning by an attentive Phoronix reader that in the demo copy of Left 4 Dead there were several Linux library files worth investigating. In particular, one of these files was even named steamclient_linux.so. This is in the Windows demo client -- we're not referring to the Linux dedicated server-only version.

With Movember nearly over, here's a wrap-up of the greatest video game moustaches. With Movember coming to an end, it is time to pull out those razors and come back to the real world. But before that we have the Mo-riffic Awards to hand out to some of the best mustaches in video games. This competition is closer than a barber's shave. With some great characters sporting some great 'tashes - who will get the hairy award? Have to come on in to find out!

Here is an interesting website dedicated to building a quiet PC. We all know the feeling - you just put together, or purchased an awesome PC from the store. It's equipped with the latest and fastest video card, CPU, and hard drive. The sound card rocks, the speakers are LOUD, and it's got a ton of RAM. Sitting there, enjoying your sweet new PC, you can't help but notice how incredibly LOUD this PC is.

TK Arena have an overview of the humble RAM module. If you’ve been around computers for a while, you have probably had someone ask what the memory in the computer does – exactly. Maybe you artfully spoke of the RAM’s ability to access memory randomly, hence its name, Random Access Memory. Maybe you twisted in your chair and regaled the heroics of RAM inside the computer’s framework, describing in detail how it receives orders from the CPU, finds data based on rows and columns, and returns that information much faster than many other types of memory. Maybe you spoke of RAM’s volatile nature – in other words, how it doesn’t store anything with the power off. Maybe you spoke of pushing the computer’s power button to start the computer’s RAM from a clean slate.

Apparently most anti-viruses are unable to deal with botnets. According to FireEye chief scientist Stuart Staniford, detection rates are so poor that, on average, only around 40 percent of security software can detect binaries during the period of greatest infectivity and danger, namely the first few days after a particular variant starts being used by botnet builders. Roughly half of the binaries picked up by FireEye were unknown to VirusTotal, a result indicative of the core problem of detecting botnet malware -- speed.

With December almost upon us, its time to look at another gift guide. It's Christmas soon, so we need to make a list and send it to Lapland. Santa needs to know what we want if we're to have any hope of being happy on Christmas morning. I know what I want, as does the rest of the team, so here's hoping. Oh and, be sure to let us know what's top of your Christmas list in the comments too!

All good things must come in pairs. By day, I’m a student, programmer, and DailyTech writer. By night, I’m a gamer and budding drum-and-bass musician/DJ/turntablist. Yours truly is a discerning consumer. I don’t buy – nor want – a lot in the way of electronics, but the things I do want had better give me the flexibility that my ADD personality craves.

Today's timewaster is Retardo and the Iron Golem. Retardo has been sent on a mission by the King of Moronia to destroy the Iron Golem and in return receive the hand of the Princess of Moronia. Help Retardo defeat the Iron Golem in this point and click adventure!

Photography Gallery (6 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 29-November-2008  09:56:03 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Here's a few shots from the Photography Gallery:

Saturday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 29-November-2008  08:45:27 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Gigabyte EX58-UD5 on Techgage
Asus P6T Deluxe on Overclockers Club
Asus P5Q3 on Overclockers Club
Sapphire 770 PURE CrossFireX on tBreak

Cooler Master UCP Ultimate 900W PSU on bit-tech.net
No-name brand PSUs vs Known Brands on Mad Shrimps
Tsunami Power On 585W PSU on CPU3D
Thermaltake Toughpower QFan 650W PSU on Big Bruin

GFX Card
PowerColor LCS HD4870 on Driver Heaven
Gigabyte Radeon HD 4850 1GB on bit-tech.net
ASUS EAH4830 on Benchmark Reviews
Sapphire HD 4830 on Modders-Inc

Prince of Persia (X360 & PS3) on Driver Heaven
Tomb Raider: Underworld on bit-tech.net
WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2009 on Games.on.net

Coolermaster ATCS 840 Chassis on Driver Heaven
GlacialTech Altair A380 HTPC Chassis on PC Stats

Samsung LN55A950 LCD TV on Overclockers Online
Samsung PN50A650 50" 1080P Plasma TV on Tweak News

Koolance HD4870X2 Full Water Block on Bjorn3D
Thermalright T-Rad 2 on Bjorn3D
NorthQ FlexQ Combo Cooler on Driver Heaven

Nokia 6600 Slide on Trusted Reviews
Samsung X360 13.3" Notebook on Trusted Reviews
Kingston 32GB SDHC Memory Card on Think Computers
Samsung BD-P1500 Blu-ray Player on Tweak News
Sony Ericsson W980 Walkman on ITReviewed
HP Compaq 6735s on InsideHW
KeyScan KS810 Keyboard-Scanner on Hardware Secrets
Firehawk WebSuite 1.0 on NGOHQ
Nova Slider X600 on XSReviews

Friday Evening (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 28-November-2008  19:26:02 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Google's new iPhone voice powered search violates Apple's terms and conditions. Apple is known for ruling its electronics kingdom with an iron fist. From killing Mac clones to trying to "brick" unlocked iPhones, the company has not been afraid to resort to extreme measures to maintain complete control and exclusivity over its products. However, when it comes to the App store and iPhone/iPod Touch developer community, Apple is presented with the unique and almost impossible challenge of trying to control is fiefdom against not one method of unlocking, but a myriad of different complex challenges to Apple's authority.

Meanwhile, an Apple advert has been banned in Britain. The advert boasted the new 3G model was "really fast" and showed it loading internet pages in under a second. The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) upheld complaints by 17 people who said the TV advert had misled them as to its speed. Apple UK said it was comparing the 3G model with its 2G predecessor and its claims were "relative not absolute".

Hardware Zone have posted their complete Sitex coverage. Amidst all the doom and gloom that are dominating our headlines recently, it could be therapeutic to embark on some shopping to clear the dark mood. It's the holiday season after all. And what better way to do that then to indulge in some new gadgets for the family. Yes, it's that time again, the last IT show of the year, Sitex 2008 has now opened its doors at the Singapore Expo.

Dan has an interesting guide to setting up a home server. If you need serious file-server performance, then you could end up spending a lot of money for this sort of system. But for home and small-business applications this won't be an issue (if you're using Gigabit Ethernet, you shouldn't expect to move more than about 30 megabytes of user data per second), and OpenSolaris itself has puny system requirements, by modern standards. Even if you plan to use a load of software RAID, you shouldn't have any trouble getting decent data throughput to the network-speed bottleneck from a bunch of ordinary ATA drives running from motherboard and/or add-on PCI or PCIe x1 controller cards.

Here's an article extolling the virtues of older hardware. One of my hobbies is video gaming. PC classics, newer console games, I love ‘em all. I’m planning on using this long Thanksgiving weekend to get in some quality game time. Wrapping up my email before the holiday, though, a newsletter from one of the gaming websites I follow caught my eye.

Guru3D have announced their Rig of the Month. Each month here at Guru3D.com we feature one of you guys, your PC, your DIY project. It is quite honestly amazing how much detail and dedication you put into an PC, and every now and then it really shows. Today a Guru3D forums old-timer, MikeMK.

What would a news post be without a Christmas gift guide? What to give? What to get? Well, if it were us, we'd...wait a minute. Just read on for our idea of a perfect Wired holiday

Or maybe you'd rather buy a game or two? There really isn’t anything per say recently I want to address, other than this one question. HOW F**KING GOOD WAS IT TO BE A GAMER THIS MONTH? The Holliday season is in full force with a gazillion titles coming out. You can expect the writers at [OC]ModShop to be attempting reviews on every single one. Today I don’t want to discuss news, rather, I just figured I’d bring up a few games fresh in my mind. And yes, most of these are RPGs, I realized that when I finished this article.

Misc Pics (9 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 28-November-2008  13:44:02 (GMT +10) - by Agg

I've given up on being surprised by Friday - even December sneaking up on us has lost its thrill. But the fact that it's nearly 2009 is taking some getting used to. Thanks to Clay and others for these.



Friday Midday (4 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 28-November-2008  12:21:51 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Queenslanders might be interested in checking out Game On at the State Library in Brisbane. Get ready to play your way through the history of videogames at the international blockbuster exhibition Game On. This action-packed celebration of videogames culture has thrilled more than one million players of all ages around the world. Discussion here.

The Great Melbourne Telescope, which was at Mt Stromlo Observatory when it was destroyed in the Canberra fires in 2003, is being repaired. Now, on the 400th anniversary of the invention of the telescope by Dutch opticians, Museum Victoria has teamed up with the Astronomical Society of Victoria to restore the instrument to its original glory.

HP continued to break excess packaging records, according to TheRegister. Those of you who don't like trees very much will appreciate HP's continuing efforts to deforest the planet by using the maximum cardboard possible when dispatching items to expectant customers.

They also report on a recent ruling in Italy which seems to pretty much make the Internet illegal. Italian bloggers are up in arms at a court ruling early this year that suggests almost all Italian blogs are illegal. This month, a senior Italian politician went one step further, warning that most web activity is likely to be against the law.

XbitLabs compared some thermal compounds. Do you choose thermal interface as carefully as you do the CPU or graphics card cooler? Today we are going to talk about 16 contemporary thermal compounds and their efficiency tested on an overclocked CPU and a graphics processor.

They also checked out game graphics performance. To make this review comprehensive we benchmarked 12 graphics hardware solutions in seven popular games of different genres. We hope this test session will help make you an informed shopping choice.

Friday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 28-November-2008  09:46:56 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Gigabyte GA-EP45-UD3P Ultra Durable 3 on Hot Hardware
Foxconn A7DA-S on iXBT Labs
GIGABYTE GA-EP45-DS5 Energy Saver on FutureLooks
ASRock G43Twins-FullHD on CPU3D
Gigabyte GA-E7AUM-DS2H on Trusted Reviews
OCZ DDR3 PC3-12800 Gold Low-Voltage 6GB kit on Guru3D

IN WIN Commander Series 1200W Modular PSU on Tweaktown
Bgears b-Tarantula 650W PSU on Think Computers
Tuniq Potency 550W on Proclockers
Zalman ZM750-HP PSU on Hardware Secrets

GFX Card
Palit & Powercolor Radeon HD 4850 & 4870 on iXBT Labs
Sapphire 780G Hybrid CrossFire on TBreak
Sapphire 4550 & 4650 on Driver Heaven

Western Digital Caviar Green 1TB SATA HDD on Techware Labs
WD 300GB VelociRaptor SATA HDD on Tech ARP
Corsair Flash Voyager 64GB on Legion Hardware
Tsunami e-DATA 3500 NAS BT Enclosure on CPU3D

NZXT Whisper Full-Tower on Techgage
Antec Skeleton(translation) on Cow Cot Land
Cooler Master ATCS 840 Aluminium Case on Overclock3D
Silverstone Fortress FT01 Mid-Tower Chassis on JonnyGuru
Antec Fusion Remote Black on Bjorn3D
Aerocool AeroRacer Pro Chassis on Virtual Hideout

RAZER Moray Noise Isolating Earphones on FutureLooks
Future Sonics Atrio Earphones on TechPowerUp

LocoRoco 2 on IGN
Mortal Kombat & DC Universe (PS3 & X360) on Gaming Heaven
Need for Speed Undercover on Bit-tech.net
Far Cry 2 on OC Mod Shop
Mortal Kombat & DC Universe on Gaming Nexus
Left 4 Dead on YouGamers

Samsung NC10 on Bit-tech.net
Gateway P-7801u FX Edition on Digital Trends
CyberPower Gamer Infinity GTX System on Legit Reviews

O2 Xda Zest Smartphone on Trusted Reviews
Ace Mouse MLUC100 Laser 1600D on Red & Blackness
Nokia N79 on Hardware Zone

Thermalright True Copper on Legion Hardware
Sony Bravia KDL-46Z4500 46in LCD TV on Trusted Reviews
Easy Thumbnails 3.0 on tkArena
Free iPhone Ringtones on tkArena

Friday Morning (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 28-November-2008  08:17:36 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Intel is planning to axe the Q6600 next year. For a long while, Intel's Core 2 Quad Q6600 processor remained a popular choice in the DIY community. The 2.4GHz chip, helped in part by an aggressive round of price-cuts, brought quad-core computing to the mainstream. It became even more popular when Intel released the G0 stepping, which ushered in lower temps and higher overclocking potential.

Cnet is taking a look inside the grandfather of the smartphone - the Apple Newton. The Newton was the first successful PDA. Introduced in 1993, it paved the way for such things as the Palm PDA, Pocket PC, and even devices like the iPhone. Ridiculed for poor performance, it didn't last long in the marketplace, but its influence lingers on today. We got a hold of one and discovered what's inside. Our unit is an Apple Newton H1000, also known as an OMP (Original Message Pad). This was the first Newton on the market. It debuted in 1993.

Hardware secrets have an article on all you need to know about digital camera sensors. The sensor is the part of the digital camera that captures light to create an image. It is analogous to the film in non-digital cameras. Similar to the coating of light-sensitive material on photographic film, the sensor of a digital camera has light-sensitive cells. In this tutorial we will teach you everything you need to know about this important component.

Continuing on the gift guide series, Anandtech have a digital camera guide. 2007 turned out to be the year of the Digital SLR, just as many predicted. Industry shipments confirm the huge growth in Digital SLR sales in 2007, and that growth continued through most of 2008. Many believed the slowing economy would have no impact at all on the growth of DSLR sales; however, the last couple of months have seen lower growth than expected. That news means there will be many bargains in current Digital Camera models over this holiday season. Year-end is always a time of bargains, but they are usually last year's models. This year you will likely see sale prices on the latest and greatest. That's good news if you're in the market for a new digital camera this year.

DailyTech also have a gift guide. The holiday season is here and it's time to start picking the wish list of gadgets and gizmos that we hope to get over the holiday season. I'm sure you have lots of cool gadgets on your wish list, as do I. This year we are running down some of the top products that DailyTech staffers hope to find under the Christmas tree (or that candle thingy if you are Jewish).

To round out the trilogy, here's I4U's jumbo sized gift guide. On August 19th we set out to start our Top 100 Holiday Gift Guide with one Tech Gift Idea per day. Now 100 days later we have arrived and the Top 100 Gift Guide is completed in time for the biggest sales of the year. Find out what the hottest gifts for this Holiday shopping season are across 10 categories. Find out for instance which smartphone is ideal for whom and why or what we think the best HDTVs and robots are. Of course we also feature video games, cameras and portable gadgets in our huge gift guide. It is all here in our biggest Holiday Gift guide we ever featured.

If you thought demolition derby was silly, check it out filmed with tilt-shift photography. A demolition derby—full of monster trucks, scrap cars, and even a giant Godzilla—filmed with tilt-shift photography, then put together in a time-lapse video. The final effect is extraordinary. If you wonder how something so gigantic and destructive could look so tiny and harmless, the answer is a combination of techniques. One is the use of time-lapse, which makes you lose frames and gives motion a jerking quality that helps fooling the brain into thinking that you are watching miniatures. Another one is the angle, which makes you think that you are seeing something from above, like you would see a model on a table. Increasing the contrast, to obtain harder shadows, also helps in the deception.

Today's massive screw up comes from a Japanese Zoo. A northern Japanese zoo's polar bear breeding plan was somewhat delayed when staff noticed the male brought in to make the beast with two backs with their resident female was himself herself a girl. According to Reuters, four-year-old Tsuyoshi had been "living in harmony" with the unnamed female at Kushiro Municipal Zoo since the two were introduced back in June. Zookeeper Masako Inoue explained: "We thought he was a male, so we never had any doubts as we took care of him.

Silicon Power 64GB 2.5" SATA SSD (28 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 27-November-2008  19:34:30 (GMT +10) - by Agg

It's been a while, but I've reviewed this 64GB 2.5" SATA Solid State Disk from Silicon Power. As this is the first SSD I've played with, I've compared it to some desktop hard drives and tried to establish a general picture of what to expect from SSD's. Enjoy!

Click for the review!

Windwithme at Intel i7 Launch (1 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 27-November-2008  15:39:32 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Windwithme went along to the Intel Core i7 launch. Check the thread for lots of photos of motherboards.. among other things. :)

click for the thread!

Thursday Midday (1 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 27-November-2008  12:46:50 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

HP is using the memristor to reduce the size of chips. The goal of chipmakers has always been to push Moore's Law, squeezing more and more transistors into a smaller space. But what if you could do more with fewer transistors? That's the intriguing potential of HP's memristor, which joins the standard resistor, the capacitor, and the inductors as a fabled fourth integral circuit component.

Spam levels are on the increase with a massive botnet back online. The "Srizbi" botnet returned from the dead late Tuesday, said Fengmin Gong, chief security content officer at FireEye Inc., when the infected PCs were able to successfully reconnect with new command-and-control servers, which are now based in Estonia. Srizbi was knocked out more than two weeks ago when McColo Corp., a hosting company that had been accused of harboring a wide range of criminal activities, was yanked off the Internet by its upstream service providers.

Google Chrome is set to get extensions. Wouldn't it be groovy if you could install an extension and have it work right away without a reboot? That's one of the goals. So too is being able to tell what amount of resources each extension is taking up. These aren't just empty promises, either. Google has put together a design document for Chromium, the open-source implementation of Chrome, listing out specific goals, what types of specific extensions it would like to support (think AdBlock, Stumbleupon, FoxyTunes, and other popular extensions), package and distribution goals, how installation should take place, and much more.

David Paterson has warned the tech industry about the dangers of Moore's Law. If you don't know who Patterson is, you know some of his work. At the University of California at Berkeley, where Patterson has been a member of the computer science faculty since 1977, he lead the design and implementation of the RISC I, what some have called the very first VLSI RISC computers and the foundation of what would eventually become Sun Microsystems' Sparc processor. Patterson was also the leader on another storage product called the Redundant Arrays of Inexpensive Disks (RAID) project, which made cheap PC-style disks look like more reliable mainframe-class disks in terms of reliability and capacity.

F.E.A.R 2 has been refused classification in Australia. We all expected F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin to be shocking - as the sequel to one of the more terrifying games of the past five years it had a lot to live up to. That said, we didn't really expect the shock to come from the Australian Classification Board, which has considered the game to be unsuitable for Australian gamers, refusing it classification in this country. While we have a copy of the RC statement, we're currently waiting to hear back from the Board about the details behind their decisions - as well as comments from publishers Warner Bros about what their plans are now. Did Alma get a little too bloodthirsty for Australian audiences?

A paper from an American university has put forward a proposal for collective fibre ownership. Individuals and families own their condos severally, but collectively own and manage common spaces and contract for shared services through condo associations. Similarly, homeowners could invest in fiber connectivity as a kind of annex to their homes, combining with their neighbors to own and manage in tandem the trunk line linking a group of households to a local point of presence.

Robots continue to add to their job lists, with robotic actors premiering in Japan. First there were dancing robots, then house-sitting robots and now a new breed of acting robots is making its big debut on the Japanese stage. The play, which had its premiere at Osaka University, is one of Japan's first robot-human theatre productions. The machines were specially programmed to speak lines with human actors and move around the stage with them.

If you are trying to save every cent, then check out this guide on hypermiling. In general, hypermiling can be a fun sport to some, achieving maximum fuel economy 'just because you can'. And you can save some money. In this article, I will outline methods that are safe and legal, easy to execute for anyone, and does not go extreme measures or compromises others by any means. Mainly, it will be about trying to maximize fuel economy out of your current vehicle, but we will separate only one category into buying a fuel efficient car. The following are my methods, separated into various categories.

There is another sequel in the Christmas guide series: this time from TechSpot. Only a few weeks now stand between you and that fateful morning of December 25th, but there's still plenty of time to purchase and wrap your list of gifts. But perhaps you don't even have a list yet! Well, if that's the case and you have a family of tech-fiends, our buying guide might just be your savior. The TechSpot holiday gift guide is not your standard catalog-esque gift guide but one directed toward those special silicon lovers. Perhaps it will pay off this Christmas and you won't be disappointed by that lovely pair of handwoven socks from your aunt.

Thursday Morning (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 27-November-2008  00:18:49 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

A Canadian citizen was hit with an $873m dollar fine for sending approximately 4 million spam e-mail messages to Facebook users – the largest judgment ever handed down for a violation of the federal CAN-SPAM Act. Judge Jeremy Fogel did not elaborate on how he reached the $873 million total, which includes about $437 million for statutory damages and $437 million for aggravated statutory damages, but the CAN-SPAM Act allows for damages of up to $11,000 per violation.

According to Terria chairman Michael Egan, Telstra is out of the running for the $4.7 billion National Broadband Network. Telstra's apparent non-compliant bid has ruled the telco out of the running for the $4.7 billion National Broadband Network, Terria chairman Michael Egan claimed this afternoon.

Meanwhile the federal government could land itself in "legal hot water" should it decided to negotiate with Telstra after the telco allegedly put in a non-compliant bid for the National Broadband Network project, says Shadow Communications Minister Nick Minchin. "I think there's a very significant legal issue here," Minchin told ZDNet.com.au this afternoon, following the expiring of the deadline for NBN bids at 12 midday. "The government needs to seek its own legal advice whether or not the request for proposals document does or does not allow the government to negotiate."

World economic and financial crisis have affected many, from individuals to corporate sector and entire nations, however, according to Symantec underground cybercrime economy is booming. The underground cybercrime economy is a self-sustaining market that is thriving despite the current economic downturn, according to security company Symantec. The company published an extensive 99-page whitepaper on its findings yesterday; it discusses activity on underground economy servers between July of 2007 and the end of June 2008. Symantec estimates that the total value of advertised goods in this economy added up to $276 million over the 12-month period.

Sony has again come out and hosed down speculations about a price cut on the Playstation 3 before Christmas and next march. Surprise, surprise; another day and another release from Sony dismissing rumours of PlayStation 3 price cuts. Sony has once more trashed rumours of a price cut before Christmas, this time saying that it will not be lowering prices in March 2009 either, as had previously been rumoured.

Panasonic has put forth a proposal to the Blu-ray Disc Association for a Blu-ray standard for 3D imagery and for an HDMI standard for carrying 3D signals. Panasonic is trying to get in early with this proposal because, according to Panasonic's Masayuki Kozuka, "Standards wars, patent monopolies and the like would seriously interfere with the widespread adoption of any 3D image standard." Certainly no-one wants a repeat of the HD format war.

According to Microsoft, the Xbox 360 is dominating the Sony PlayStation 3 in sales in Europe and the US. "We are winning in Europe, outselling PS3 in the region and currently experiencing the strongest sales we have ever seen in Europe, and since our price drop... Xbox 360 sales have increased by five times, showing that European consumers are flocking to Xbox 360.

And speaking of gaming consoles, have a look at these whacky PlayStation 3 concepts that never made it.

Interesting Forum Threads (1 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 26-November-2008  21:19:24 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Lots going on, as usual!

nVidia 180.48 WHQL are out! in Video Cards.
How fast do you run 8GB of ram? in Memory.
i7 owners thread - please show us your rig in Intel Hardware.
I'm after a rugged external HDD in Storage & Backup.
Ubuntu vs OpenSolaris vs FreeBSD benchmarks in Other Operating Systems.
Advice on 64 GB RAM Workstation Build in Business & Enterprise Computing.
ew DIY template for universal hold down w/ LGA1366 Support in Extreme Cooling.
QWOP in Games.
How fast can you type your ABC's flash game in Games.
iiNet To Launch IPTV Service in 2009 in Networking & Internet.
itsmydamnations CCIE study journal in Other Operating Systems.
Where's the DivX love? in General Software.
Tech Talk at Google: The Liquid-Fluoride Thorium Reactor in Science.
U.S. teen lives 118 days without heart in Science.
Is the Brain the Ultimate Computer Interface? in Science.
15kW Laser weapon in Science.
Mark Webber injured in charity event crash in Motoring.
Petrol price change as I fill up in Motoring.
OCAU MEET 21.11.08 PHOTOS in Photography.
Pointless knowledge / random facts in The Pub.

Wednesday Evening (3 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 26-November-2008  20:13:41 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Cinemas are now being patrolled with night vision to crack down on pirates. In response to an increase in pirated movie recordings coming out of Australia, the copyright police are patrolling cinemas with night vision devices - and it's not just commercial pirates they're after. Movie studios are providing the scopes to cinema ushers across the country and training them in how to spot people illegally taping films using camcorders and even mobile phones. After Village Roadshow successfully implemented the technology to prevent pirated copies of The Dark Knight making their way on to the internet, 20th Century Fox has adopted it for Baz Luhrmann's Australia, which opens today.

Youtube has moved to a wide screen movie player. We’re expanding the width of the page to 960 pixels to better reflect the quality of the videos you create and the screens that you use to watch them. This new, wider player is in a widescreen aspect ratio which we hope will provide you with a cleaner, more powerful viewing experience. And don’t worry, your 4:3 aspect ratio videos will play just fine in this new player.

Lenovo has added a kill switch to its laptops triggered by an SMS. It's no fun having something that belongs to you stolen. When it's your notebook computer, things can be even worse if you have confidential personal or business information stored on the notebook. Criminals can gain access to things like tax returns and have all the information they need to steal your identity.

cnet have taken a Tesla Roadster for a spin. So much has been written about Tesla Motors and its Roadster electric sports car that I fully expected a letdown. Tell you the truth, if I were personally shelling out $109,000 for one of these babies, I might be pickier about leg room or noise levels or any of the other myriad questions that go through a potential car buyer's mind before signing on the line which is dotted.

Google has denied the existence of a supposed gmail security flaw. Google security pros have taken exception to recent reports of a Gmail vulnerability that led to a rash of domain hijackings. They were the result of a plain-vanilla phishing campaign, they say. But in a blog post published Tuesday, Google security researcher Chris Evans effectively said Big Foot doesn't exist. Or at least the evidence some claimed proved Big Foot's existed wasn't accurate.

The Pirate Bay is turning five. In the fall of 2003, a group of friends from Sweden decided to launch a BitTorrent tracker named ‘The Pirate Bay’. Today, roughly 5 years after this historic day, the founders of the site are celebrities in Sweden, and rockstars on the Internet. The Pirate Bay its roots lead us back to Piratbyrån (The Bureau of Piracy), a pro-piracy organization which was founded in August 2003. Since there was no filesharing network in Sweden at the time, Piratbyrån decided to launch one, using the relatively new BitTorrent protocol.

John Carmack continues his agenda of hate against consoles. id Software boss and brain-god John Carmack may have softened his stance on consoles as of late, but don't get him wrong; his heart still has a hard-on for the PC, and he's not afraid to show it. “The keyboard/mouse interface is definitely still the superior interface for a competitive first-person shooter experience, much better than an analog joypad,” he told PC Gamer. But why stop with games? Clearly, the PC can do at least two other things.

Finally, The Tech Report have a guide on building the ultimate enthusiast PC. We've put together two Core i7 configurations for this guide. The Crushinator is our $1,700 entry ticket, and it should deliver a balanced mix of CPU, graphics, and storage goodness. If you have (a lot) more cash kicking around, the reborn Double-Stuff Workstation is our fastest configuration ever at just over $3,700. For those who don't want to pay the cost of entry to the Core i7 party, our $500 Econobox, $800 Utility Player, and $1,200 Sweeter Spot systems have returned, as well. Read on for our picks for the best enthusiast hardware on the market.

Wednesday Afternoon (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 26-November-2008  18:09:55 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

An Australian man has built a technology museum in his house. Max Burnet worked with computers for his whole life, and he hasn't strayed far in retirement: he's collected a massive amount of vintage computer hardware in his house, creating the what is claimed to be the largest collection of its kind in Australia, and one of the most extensive in the world. He's got everything from a 20s era electro-mechanical tote board to punch card mainframes to the Apple Lisa in his huge stockpile.

LG and Fujitsu have entered the netbook market. Taking a different approach this time was Fujitsu's launch of two new LifeBook A series notebooks together with their first foray into the netbook market with the Fujitsu M1010. Going for style and glitz was LG's launch held at Chjimes Hall last Friday and it was obvious LG spared no effort to dazzle the audience with magic tricks and pretty models. Normally, when you go all out in style like this, you would expect a slew of products, but we found ourselves just faced with one - the LG X110 Netbook.

Digital Trends have the top 10 black Friday deals for Americans. It takes some pretty spectacular deals to pry Americans out of their recliners late every Turkey Day and send them out into blistering cold parking lots to camp for hours, but retailers have it figured it out with Black Friday. And if you’re looking to score a big-screen TV for half of what it normally runs for, get a printer bundled with your camera for free, or pick up an MP3 player for the cost of a cup of coffee, you’ll be out there too. With the economy forcing consumers to pinch their pennies even more this year, and retailers trying even harder to open those cautiously held wallets, the deals are ripe for the picking.

Tweaktown have 10 ways to improve the Blu-ray format. As I write this, the Blu-ray market is starting to get some serious traction. Some really top tier releases are now coming out, which shows increased enthusiasm on the part of the studios. In addition, hardware makers have finally leapt over the Blu-ray specification grace period and we are seeing some extremely powerful software and very good prices. Blu-ray upgrades, including picture-in-picture enabled ‘profile 2’ have become standard, as has BD Live, Ethernet cable enabled players and finally bitstream and decoding of Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD Master Audio.

OCZ have released a new line of power supplies. OCZ Technology Group, Inc., a worldwide leader in innovative, ultra high performance and high reliability memory and components, today revealed the first power supply models under the Fatal1ty series, offering gamers stable and efficient power for their mainstream or high-end rigs. OCZ is dedicated to delivering premium power solutions, and the Fatal1ty series options are the first step to creating an exceptional gaming system for the unique power and cabling requirements of today’s gamer.

Are you looking for a laptop this Christmas season? As I'm sure you've noticed from the Christmas lights going up and the endless repetition of "Jingle Bell Rock" and "Santa Baby," the holiday season is upon us. While America faces a nasty economic downturn that is spiraling out into layoffs all over the country, we must now more than ever remember the true meaning of Christmas: to put ourselves blindly into debt buying gifts for others and ourselves. This guide is for the selfish jerks like myself who might seize the opportunity to upgrade their own laptops at holiday prices.

In our gift guide series, here is TrustedReview's product roundup. Once again it's time to roundup the best products of the year, and this year it was even tougher to decide on the winners. It seems that with every year that passes, the general quality of technology products seems to improve, making it all the more difficult for us to decide what wins top honours in our annual awards. This year we've expanded the categories making it even easier for each and every buyer to decide what product best suits them, no matter what their needs or budget. Whether you're looking for a new TV, a digital camera or a notebook, we've rounded up the best of the best to make your buying decision as easy as possible.

Today's timewaster is from slipkord and is a flash version of Doom. The first episode of the legendary first person shooter -- now playable in your browser! THIS GAME REQUIRES FLASH PLAYER 10. If the game doesn't display, update your Flash Player

Wednesday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 26-November-2008  17:01:12 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

OCZ Reaper DDR2 Memory Kit on Benchmark Reviews
Biostar TA790GX A2+ on iXBT Labs
SilverStone Decathlon 700W on Hardware Secrets

GFX Card
Forceware 180.780 on Legion Hardware
HIS 4850 IceQ 4 & Club3d 4850 OC on Driver Heaven
Watercooled GeForce GTX 280 Showdown on bit-tech.net
Sapphire Radeon HD 4850 X2 on InsideHW

Noctua NH-C12P CPU Cooler on Bjorn3d
Antec Notebook Cooler 200 on Overclockers Club
Thermaltake BigWater 780e on Pure Overclock

SilverStone FT01 Midtower on Overclock Intelligence Agency
Thermaltake Armor+ LCS on Techware Labs

Blackberry Storm on Digital Trends
Impact7 Digital Photo Frame on I4U
Linksys PLK300 Powerline Networking Kit on PC Perspective
Netbooks on Techware Labs
AXP 2.5/3.5 HDD Docks on XSReviews

Very Cold Wind (1 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 26-November-2008  11:56:29 (GMT +10) - by Agg

What happens when youngpro gets his hands on an MSI Wind mini-notebook? And.. he happens to have some liquid nitrogen lying around..? :)

click for the thread!

Tuesday Evening Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 25-November-2008  20:16:34 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Intel E5200 on iXBT labs
AMD 790GX (translation) on TweakPC
MSI X58 Eclipse on Neoseeker
ECS G45T-M2 on Hardware Logic

Patriot Extreme Performance 2x1GB on Aph Networks
In-Win Commander 1200W PSU on CPU3D
Thermaltake Toughpower Power Express 450W & 650W on JonnyGuru

GFX cards
LeadTek WinFast GTX 260 Extreme+ on Bjorn3D
Palit Revolution 700 Deluxe 4870 X2 on Guru3D
ATI HD 4870 1GB vs. NVIDIA GTX 260/216 896MB on Techgage
Sapphire Radeon HD 4850 X2 2GB on PC Perspective
MSI R4670 512MB on ViperLair

NZXT Whisper Classic Series on Overclockers Club
Tagan A+ Curbic on Overclockers Club
Tagan A+ Curbic on Legit Reviews
SunbeamTech Acrylic HTPC on Case Critics
SilverStone FT01 on Overclock Intelligence Agency

Red Alert 3 on Gamepyre
Kirby Super Star Ultra on IGN
Far Cry 2 on Gaming Nexus
Madagascar 2 on Gaming Nexus

Qstarz BT-Q1300 Nano GPS Travel Recorder on Future Looks
Vantec LapCool Pro on Virtual Hideout
Playstation Home Beta on Overclock3D
Ubuntu, OpenSolaris & FreeBSD on Phoronix
OCZ Gladiator Max CPU Cooler on Overclockers Online
HP TS-22W7H 22" LCD on Think Computers
Nexus Beamair on Techware Labs
QNAP TS-409U Turbo NAS on Techware Labs

Time Warp (Again) (7 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 25-November-2008  13:14:25 (GMT +10) - by Agg

This forum thread reminded me of the Time Warp Computer Pricing article we did four years ago. It's definitely worth digging out of the archives for another look:

Click for the article!

It got me wondering, has there really been that much change in the pricing side of things since we put that article up? Hard drives are probably the first thing that springs to mind in terms of being crazy cheap now. Anyway, if you've got an interesting scan or link about pricing from the last 4 years or so, let me know or leave a comment on this thread.

Tuesday Midday (5 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 25-November-2008  12:38:49 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

The Register have posted the second part of their Mac Report Card. In August 1983, Steve Capps of Apple's original Macintosh Division famously hoisted a pirate flag over his team's Cupertino building to embody Steve Jobs's dictum that "It's better to be a pirate than join the navy." From that day forward, members of the Mac community have been a little feistier, a little more insular, a little more picky, and a little more self-righteous than other computer users.

TechARP have the latest details on Windows Vista SP2. Just one day after our confidential source revealed the rough dates for the release of Service Pack 2 for Windows Vista, we have details of what's really part of the new Service Pack 2 and how it will be released. Let's take a look! Service Pack 2 is a single service pack which will update both Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008 products. In addition to previously released updates, it will include support for new types of hardware and several emerging standards.

Will Windows Live search be renamed? Ask three people what "Windows Live" is - and you might get more than three answers: "It's a social network" (Windows Live Spaces); "a photo organizing service" (Windows Live Photo Gallery); "an email client" (Windows Live Hotmail)...but no matter how many answers you get, you probably won't hear "a major search provider". Yes, despite Microsoft's lavishing of money, time, attention, and even offering cash back for searches, Windows Live Search is not a major contender in the search space currently dominated by Google and Yahoo.

The failing economy might cause Apple to launch a netbook. Apple Inc. will roll out a lower-priced and lighter-weight laptop in the first half of 2009 to compete in the growing "netbook" category, an analyst said today. The slipping economy will force Apple to address a glaring omission in its lineup: the lack of a lower-priced laptop, said Ezra Gottheil, an analyst at Technology Business Research Inc. "Apple is facing the possibility that as the economic news gets worse, that they're increasingly pricing themselves out of an important market," said Gottheil

Does i7 really need triple channel memory? Core i7 has come out and it’s a hard hitting product. Not only is it a new platform based around the Core micro architecture, its native quad core design really packs a punch, too. With this, Intel has finally moved away from the slow Northbridge based memory controller and followed suit with AMD in placing an integrated Northbridge chip on the CPU. This houses the memory controller, allowing for a much faster access path to the memory. Intel has also increased the amount of memory and data paths that the Core i7 can access.

Scientists have found a new way to fight cancers...using lightsabers. You could say the force is strong in physics professor Kishan Dholakia and Dr Frank Gunn-Moore of the University of St Andrews in Scotland. With a deluge of nanotech cancer treatments being developed, the pair have developed a superior way perhaps to fight cancer -- with "lightsabers". The miniature device, just a few millimeters long extends a "lightsaber" laser beam. The beam is so accurate it can target a single cell.

Scientists have also created water-resistant clothing. If you were to soak even your best raincoat underwater for two months it would be wet though at the end of the experience. But a new waterproof material developed by Swiss chemists would be as dry as the day it went in. Drops of water stay as spherical balls on top of the fabric and a sheet of the material need only be tilted by 2 degrees from horizontal for them to roll off like marbles. A jet of water bounces off the fabric without leaving a trace.

Here's one from IRC - a set of creepy ads. Sometimes it's really scary what human mind can conceive for advertising.

Tuesday Morning (7 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 25-November-2008  00:06:19 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

Australian legal experts have warned that internet users could face "substantial hardship" should iiNet lose the landmark legal battle against Village Roadshow, Universal Pictures, Warner Bros Entertainment, Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, Disney Enterprises and the Seven Network, who are suing iiNet for not taking action against their customers who, according to the above named companies, engage in film and TV piracy. "To shift the burden of proof and require that ISPs terminate access to users upon mere allegations of infringement would be incredibly harmful to individual internet users in Australia," the online users lobby group Electronic Frontiers Australia said. "Every citizen has a right of due process under the law and, when faced with having their internet service terminated, every citizen has the right to ask that the case against them be proven first."

Communications Minister Stephen Conroy has rejected broadband criticism. Asked if the government would fulfil its pledge to have the network built within five years, Senator Conroy said: "We said it was a five-year build, we said it would reach 98 per cent of Australians, and that is of course absolutely clearly stated in the request for proposals."

The US Army is set to invest $50 million USD in videogames by 2010 as it launched new game training centres in the US. Using the new dedicated technology, which will not be made available publicly, participating soldiers will be able to drive vehicles, fire virtual weapons and command unmanned vehicles in a massive virtual battlefield, promised Project Director Leslie Duvow.

Microsoft Corp. has asked a federal judge to end the class-action lawsuit against them. Microsoft Corp. asked a federal judge yesterday to end the class-action lawsuit that has been the source of a treasure trove of embarrassing insider e-mails that have showed the company bent to pressure from Intel Corp. and infuriated long time partner Hewlett-Packard Co.

Apple has recently filed a patent into the United States Patent and Trademark Office and credited to Apple engineer Michael Rosenblatt describes a method whereby a second backlight (likely a low-power LED) would be able to pass through the primary backlight, and offer visibility for simple icons on the screen at all times.

It never ceases to amaze me at the amount of different cooling technologies that companies keep designing and the EVO Cyclone Ram cooler is no exception. The EVO Cyclone features an adjustable mounting system to suit pretty much any height of memory module, a 50mm fan in the middle, heat sink fins on either side of the fan and air ducts underneath. The idea is that cold air is pushed over the memory by the fan, and the hot air is then dispersed through the sides of the heatsink.

And speaking of Ram, Hynix has unveiled the fastest GDDR5 memory on the market, with data speeds of up to 7Gbps. How much of an impact this will have for AMD, as so far Nvidia has yet to launch a GDDR5 based graphics card, is hard to say, but the extra bandwidth should allow for faster cards based on the current architecture.

And while everyone is in the mood for unveiling new hardware, A-Data has jumped on this bandwagon and introduced their new XPG series of solid state drives. Equipped with a tough but lightweight case, high reliability, low power consumption and incredible shock resistance, A-DATA XPG SSDs delivering exceptional read/write speeds of up to 170MB / 100MB per second to guarantee fast transfer rates.

It seems that there is no hiding from the RRoD that has plagued the Microsoft Xbox360 gaming console, with the latest reports suggesting that some users have experienced the RRoD "either before or after the NXE update was applied to their system". We have had several sources telling us that they have experienced a red ring of death error condition on their Xbox 360 either after or during the New Xbox Experience update that Microsoft is pushing out.

And to finish this news post, here's another 2008 holiday buyers guide from ArsTechnica. Christmas catalogs were always great fun back when the Ars staffers were young, carefree, and didn't commute to an orbiting space station for work. We spent hours pouring over the pictures of LEGO sets, plastic light sabers, and Easy-Bake ovens. And then—the waiting!

Monday Night Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 24-November-2008  21:18:47 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Muskin DDR3 1600 on Bjorn3D
Crucial Ballistix Tracer 4GB DDR3-1333 on Virtual Hideout
Crucial Ballistix Tracer 4GB DDR3-1333 on Legion Hardware
Corsair TX750W PSU on Overclockers Club

DFI LANParty JR P45 T2RS on Bit-tech.net
Asus P5Q Pro on Overclockers Club
ECS A790GXM-A Black on Motherboards.org
Asus P6T Deluxe on Techspot

GFX Card
MSI ATI Radeon HD 4870 1GB on Game Pyre
Foxconn Digitalife A79A-S on Overclock3D
HIS Radeon HD 4830 on OCWorkbench

Tomb Raider: Underworld on Gaming Heaven
Shaun White Snowboarding on Bit-tech.net
Tom Clancy's Endwar on Bit-tech.net

Intel X25-M 80GB 2.5" SSD on Tweaktown
Intel X25-E Extreme SSD on Tech Report
SilverStone Fortress SST-FT01B-W on Benchmark Reviews
Lian Li PC-9 on Red & Blackness

Party Mix
Logitech Desktop Wave Pro on T-break
Enzotech Ultra-X CPU Cooler on Overclocker Cafe
Adobe Photoshop CS4 on InsideHW
SanDisk Extreme Cruzer Contour 8GB Flash Drive on Overclock3D
QNAP TS-509 Pro Turbo NAS on Overclockers Online
HTC Touch HD Smartphone on Trusted Reviews
Toshiba 26AV505DB 26in LCD TV on Trusted Reviews
Silverstone NT06 CPU Cooler on Tweak News

7:30 Report on Australian Internet Filtering (19 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 24-November-2008  19:27:42 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Remember that OCAU admin Manaz, in his role with the System Administrators Guild of Australia, will be on the 7:30 Report TV show in a few minutes (Sydney time) on ABC. If you miss it, you should be able to get it on their vodcast page later. The topic under discussion is the Australian Internet Filtering proposal, and there's a thread in our forums here about the show.

Forum Articles (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 24-November-2008  13:07:25 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Some interesting things from the forums:

Tex Zero has a scratch-built
5.25" bay fan module

archibaw is working on a
wooden PC project

mnpctech has a video review
of the "Reactor" oil-cooled PC

Dr Jon reviewed the LiTe DAC
and Dussun DS99 Amp

while youngpro checked out the
Biostar TForce TA790GX3 AM2+

and VenomX-87 has a
cool new desk project

eva2000 played with the DFI
DK X48-T2RSB Plus @ 5.1 GHz

while Aborted made some
cool blue grills

and missingo95 has a monster
dual cube tower case project

Monday Morning (3 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 24-November-2008  07:43:26 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

A quick reminder that Manaz is going head to head against Stephen Conroy tonight on the 7:30 report. There will be name calling, baseless accusations, undeniable facts and possibly an M rated love scene. Check it out on the ABC at 7:30pm

Its been one year since Kevin Rudd came to power. Was his first year a major success, a miserable failure or more of the same? Share your opinion in this thread here.

Youtube has hosted the first official gathering of video stars. Much as popular amateur videos play on YouTube alongside professionally created ones, YouTube Live featured a melange of Internet sensations. Besides Akon and Will.i.am (whose Yes We Can video has been watched by more than 20 million people on the site), Soulja Boy Tell 'em, Katy Perry and Discovery Channel's MythBusters were also be on hand. Among the purely YouTube-bred stars were Canon Rock guitar virtuoso Funtwo and the Vlog Squad, a group of prominent YouTube community leaders including LisaNova and Tay Zonday (famous for his Chocolate Rain video).

The new version of iPhone software has been jailbroken. The team on Saturday posted to its blog QuickPwn for 2.2 and Pwnage for 2.2 for Windows and Macintosh machines along with instructions on how to jailbreak iPhone 3G phones on 2.2.The blog also includes a word of caution about baseband, the chip that controls the connection between the phone and the mobile phone network.

Western Digital is planning to enter the SSD market...just not at this moment. Western Digital enters markets that exist, announces products when they are available, and runs a tight model with opportunities greater than resources such that we take a controlled, methodical, sequential, incremental approach to product portfolio expansion. We do not currently supply to either several platform categories or product categories. This said, we know [and] understand each of these segments and are open to enter any [or] all of them when they present appropriate opportunity.

Tech ARP have revised their desktop CPU comparison guide. There are so many CPU models that it has become quite impossible to keep up with the different models or even remember their specifications! Therefore, we decided to compile this guide to provide an easy reference for those who are interested in comparing the specifications of the various desktop CPUs in the market, as well as those already obsolescent or obsolete. Currently covering 677 desktop CPUs, this comprehensive comparison will allow you to easily compare 18 different specifications for each and every CPU. We hope it will prove to be a useful reference. We will keep this guide updated regularly so do check back for the latest updates!

Continuing our Christmas shopping guides, here's 17 gifts for the younger geek. Well it turns out that little people get the biggest thrill out of getting geeky gifts - particularly gifts you do stuff with. So, if you're stuck on what to get your niece, nephew, friend, or even your own little person, take a look at our gift suggestions below. We have organized them from the least to the most expensive, and give you 17 gift ideas for tweens and teens.

Geek Recipes (0 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 23-November-2008  22:21:02 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Some yummy recent threads from the Geek Recipes forum:

username_taken is baking
no knead bread

and some chocolate
toffee cookies

while zfind made Korvapuistit
which are Finnish pastries

sormuijai followed Bambi_1319's
recipe for chocolate ripple cake

while Adro85 made
beer-can chicken

LordMentat finished off with a
quick stuffed chicken breast

Sunday Night (6 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 23-November-2008  19:57:13 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

These haven't been mentioned in a while - OCAU QuickLinks are a quick way to get around OCAU, using the ocau.com domain. They're a quicker way to get around the site when you're on someone else's PC or on a slow connection.

Wayne would also like to let us know about another way to speed up browsing in Firefox. Simply bookmark whatever page/forum/profile or whatever then go to the properties of the bookmark and add some sort of descriptive but short keyword. For example I have "ocau" for the home page, "ocauf" for the forums, "ocaun" for the news forum, "ocaus" for subscriptions. Now you can just type in that keyword in the address bar and you will go to that site. It works even better if you use CTRL-L to bring up the address bar ready to type. BFM also sends work that there is also a Firefox menu extension.

VIA have partnered with OpenChrome to provide graphics drivers. They have made a few small steps over the past few months, but today they have made their largest open-source contribution yet by releasing four programming documentation guides that cover the video, 2D, and 3D programming for their Chrome 9 graphics processor. In addition, they are now partnering with the community-spawned OpenChrome developers.

Tech ARP have a Windows 7 roadmap as well as a Vista SP2 release schedule. We have news of the upcoming Service Pack 2 for Windows Vista! Microsoft is doing their best to rush out Service Pack 2 for Windows Vista so there will be additional incentive for folks to upgrade to Window Vista now, instead of waiting for Windows 7. So the latest schedule should come as no surprise. A confidential source has revealed that Microsoft will deliver a Release Candidate in February, 2009 with the final SP2 binary scheduled for RTM (Release To Manufacturing) in April, 2009.

Apparently there are issues with the news iPhone firmware. Users who have updated to iPhone OS 2.2 are facing some significant issues, including problems with third-party apps, Internet connection issues, problems deleting email and more.

Hardware Zone have a SiteX preview. As we approach the end of another year filled with ups and downs, you'll probably be expecting a little year-end bonus coming your way. With the economy fluctuating, some of us might find it prudent to keep a tighter leash on the cash. But still, you do need to reward yourself a little with a year's worth of hard work, so pamper yourself a bit when the year's final IT fair, SITEX 2008, opens its door from the 27th to the of 30th November at the Singapore Expo. As usual, we'll be providing you with a little snippet of what's to come.

Today's timewaster is Phage Wars. Spread your parasites in this fast pace, strategy game. The goal is to overtake all other parasites and become the "Dominant Species". Learn to master each parasite effectively and infect all forms of cellular life.

Modding Worklogs (2 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 23-November-2008  08:42:43 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Here are a few highlights from our Modding Worklogs Forum:

Sunday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 23-November-2008  08:32:26 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Socket 775 Mobo Roundup on Driver Heaven
Gigabyte GA-EP45-UD3R on Bittech.net
4GB DDR3 Memory Roundup on Bittech.net
Gigabyte EX58-Extreme on CPU3D

Cooler Master V4, Scythe Shuriken, Zalman CNPS8700 NT CPU coolers on iXBT Labs
Arctic Cooling Freezer Xtreme CPU cooler on Guru 3D
Thermalright TRad2 VGA Coolers on Virtual Hideout
Top CPU coolers on FrostyTech
Thermaltake RamOrb Memory Cooler on Overclock Intelligence Agency
Seventeam ST-550P-AG PSU on Hardware Secrets

Cooler Master ATCS 840 on Bjorn3D
Antec Skeleton on Overclockers Club
Coolermaster ATCS840 on Overclockers Club
Thermaltake V9 on Red & Blackness

XFX GeForce GTX 260/216 Black Edition on Motherboards
ASUS GeForce EN9800GT Matrix on Techgage
Pioneer Kuro 60in Plasma TV on Trusted Reviews
Pioneer Elite Kuro Pro-111FD on Digital Trends
Acer F-22 on InsideHW

HDD enclosures
IN WIN Na HDD Enclosure on Tweaktown
IcyDock MB674SPF Multi-bay Backplane Module on Think Computers
iStarUSA T5F-SS Hard Drive Mobile Rack on Circuit Remix

Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia on Future Looks
NHL09 on Gaming Nexus
TrackMania DS on IGN
Wolfking Warrior Xxtreme Gaming Keyboard on Tweak News
Logitech G15 Keyboard on Phoronix

Mystery Mix
Music Subscription Service Round-Up on Trusted Reviews
Samsung Pixon on Trusted Reviews
Bluetrek Metal Bluetooth Headset on Hardware Zone

Sunday Morning (4 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 23-November-2008  00:19:20 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

By now most of us are aware that several movie studios and Channel 7 are suing iiNet for piracy related activities alleged to occur on their network. Yesterday iiNet's managing director Michael Malone said that his company would "vigorously" defend the federal court action, however, according to an article posted today on APC--, iiNet will probably lose the piracy lawsuit. A look at the Copyright Act suggests the movie and TV industry have an unfortunately strong case against iiNet.

Apparently Telstra has yet to decide whether or not it will submit a bid for the national broadband network. "The board has not made a final decision on whether the company will lodge a bid for the NBN by the due date of 26 November 2008," he said. "Make no mistake, we are giving this decision extraordinary consideration - and are doing so with the greatest rigour and a mountain of relevant information.

Another WoW expansion and another record broken. Activision-Blizzard has sold 2.8 million copies within the first 24 hours of sales of Wrath of the Lich King. The record was previously held by another World of Warcraft expansion, The Burning Crusade, which sold 2.4 million copies at release back in January of 2007.

Midway Games is struggling to stay afloat, with some employees blaming the company’s financial woes on the use of Epic Games Unreal Engine 3 . What ultimately pulled Midway deep into pools of red was the company’s insistence to modify the engine, thus making development time longer than it should.

David Stellmack of Fudzilla says that the new Xbox NXE HD install option is not an improvement. In many cases the fact that the Xbox 360 title was designed to use the DVD drive makes installing it to the hard drive actually reduce performance.

According to a US congressional advisory panel, China has stepped up computer espionage attacks on America. A US congressional advisory panel says China has stepped up computer espionage attacks on the American government, defence contractors and businesses. "China is stealing vast amounts of sensitive information from US computer networks," said Larry Wortzel, chairman of the commission set up by Congress in 2000 to advise, investigate and report on US-China issues.

Intel says that Larrabee is still expected in 2009 or 2010. Larrabee, Intel’s daring attempt of a discrete GPU, still seems to be on track for a potential release to market this time next year, as recent reports claim.

Sony says that high definition Blu-ray disc player sales will fall short of expectations due to current world economic mess. The holiday shopping season is expected to be tough for the entire consumer electronics sector, with shoppers perhaps unwilling to spend after watching the turmoil in the banking, retail and automotive sectors.

If you have an iPod and use iTunes but would rather find an alternative piece of software to handle you music library then here are some alternative solutions for you. If you love your iPod, but can't stand being tied to iTunes, there are some compelling and capable Mac and PC iTunes alternatives that can sync with your iPod.

Cnet is wondering if dual band routers are must-haves. It's been about a year since the debut of dual-band routers, those that support both the ever-popularly used 2.4Ghz and the newer, less busy 5Ghz frequencies. This was very exciting news at first, but after having worked with a few of them, I wonder if they are really worth it.

I'm not sure if this model will make it on to our shores here down under but in the US, ASUS has introduced yet another "revised" model of their popular Eee series of netbooks, Eee PC 1002HA. The new netbook will carry premium design elements from the S101 further down the price spectrum, creating a classier machine that still hits budget territory.

Google is exploring its distribution options for their new internet browser, Chrome and examining the various ways it might improve its market share. "We will probably do distribution deals,” Pinchai told The Times. "We could work with an OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) and have them ship computers with Chrome preinstalled."

S3 Graphics is back in town with their new S3 Chrome 530 GT. Fremont, California, 20 November 2008 - S3 Graphics today announced its next generation Chrome 500 graphics processors, building upon the success of a product family based on the most power-efficient GPU architecture on the market. Today's users will now be able to enjoy the latest Blu-ray™ playback, streaming HD video, DirectX® 10.1, and OpenGL 3.0 applications on Microsoft® Windows® and Linux platforms.

And while we're on the subject of graphics cards, ATI Catalyst driver 8.12 should be available on December 10th. ATi, after getting beat up by driver optimizations (for 5 nVidia picked games) for the GTX 260 (216 cores), is hard at work developing its own optimizations for their 4xxx series of GPUs.

Saturday Evening (3 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 22-November-2008  18:37:59 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

The U.S army is in hot water over a photoshopped image. A spokes woman from the DoD insists that the altered photo does not violate any U.S. army polices which stipulate that photos will not be altered to misrepresent the facts or change the circumstances of an event. Colonel Cathy Abbott, chief of the U.S. Army's media relations department said that she did not know who had changed the photo or which office had released it. Abbot continued saying, "We're not misrepresenting her. The image is still clearly Gen Dunwoody."

ClutterMe is selling itself on eBay. Now, ClutterMe.com is hoping to duplicate this gimick. Unlike the 2006 Kiko, the instantly-build-your-own-website website is actually profitable. According to founder Mark Molckovsky, the company is pulling in about $4,000 a month selling dedicated domain names to on-the-fly web designers. But Kiko didn't attempt to eBay itself while a melting world economy threatened to destroy Web 2.0 as we know it.

DirectX 11 is set to debut with Windows 7. So, what's new in DirectX 11? As we reported this summer, DX 11 will include compute shader technology, enabling the GPU to perform operations other than 3D graphics; better multi-core resource handling; more efficient utilization of the processing pipeline; hardware tesselation support for more detailed 3D models.

Here is a Windows Vista optimisation guide. Warning: bad translation ahead! An operating system can "tune always something, or say we optimize. That was already in Windows XP, and so it behaves when Windows Vista is not different. The reason is simply that it's out of the house for a variety of users "default" is. Whether bloody layman or expert users - everyone gets initially virtually the same installation where certain things are switched from the outset.

X-bit labs have a showdown between the ATI Radeon HD 4870 and the Nvidia GeForce GTX 260. What will have greater effect on graphics cards’ performance – twice the amount of video memory or a more powerful GPU? Find out from our new review featuring Palit Radeon HD 4870 Sonic Dual Edition 1024MB and Leadtek WinFast GeForce GTX 260 Extreme+ 896MB!

OCZ have announced it will release its triple channel memory series. This latest memory solution implements a high-performance specification optimized and predefined for the Intel X58 chipset. The new 3GB and 6GB kits are rated at DDR3-1333 and feature the all-new Intel branded black XTC heatspreader. With a long history of providing the most innovative products to the enthusiast community, OCZ is excited to take advantage of Intel’s latest development of latest platforms with this new memory series.

Here is another gift guide for the silly season. The holidays can be stressful even in the best of times, but this year's dismal economic climate is bringing new headaches. Not only do we have to grapple with the usual questions about what to buy for whom ("Should I get an iPod case for Aunt Mabel? Wait, no, I got her one last year..."), we also have to look for ways to cut expenses.

But maybe it is more important to not get the wrong gift. The majority of folks – you know, normal tech-semi-literate people, those who can set up a VCR but don't necessarily care why Blu-Ray is better than DVD - really don't like technology that doesn't work. If opening the User Manual and flipping to paragraph 5 on page 2-34 can be avoided, then all the better! Within this group is a small sect of people who co-exist with computers in an uneasy balance. Their computers take exactly ten minutes to boot up, are decked out in custom cursor themes, and feature a surprisingly broad history of AOL desktop search popups which have accumulated since their HP Multimedia desktop was first flicked ON in 2001.

What kind of hardware is need to run the world's largest LED sign? In a dusty supply closet at 1 Times Square, a computer terminal hooked up to hordes of ethernet servers, RAID arrays and monitors humbly runs the largest LED sign in the world. The sign, a 3-sided, 17,000-square-foot Goliath, debuted last night at the opening of a Walgreens in New York City. Today, I got to see what makes it tick.

Saturday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 22-November-2008  16:19:13 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Thermaltake TR2 QFan Series on Anandtech
ASUS Rampage II Extreme X58 on Tweaktown
EVGA X58 SLI on Anandtech
Antec Signature 650 on Hardware Secrets

Antec Fusion Remote Max HTPC on Silent PC Review
D-Link 10 Inch Photo Frame on Future Looks
The HP Mini 1000 on Hardware Zone

Sennheiser HD 595 on The Tech Lounge
Sleek-Audio Custom Earphones on Tech Power Up

M. Beckett & The Time Paradox on ITReviewed
Gene Simmons AXE Guitar Game Controller on I4U
Logitech MX Air on Hardware Logic
Cyber Snipa PC Game Pad 2 on Overclockers Online
ViewSonic VX2260wm 22in Monitor on Trusted Reviews
Xilence Xilent Blade Pro CPU Cooler on Think Computers

Maldark's Guide to Wide-Gamut Displays (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 22-November-2008  13:49:45 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Here's an interesting forum article I only just noticed. I was disappointed with the oversaturated colours on my desktop, in my internet browser, in movies and games and have rigorously scoured the internet looking for solutions. Now you lucky folks get to bear the fruits of my labour. I present a guide to wide-gamut displays.

click for the thread

Saturday Midday and Photography Gallery (4 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 22-November-2008  11:14:57 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Monday night on the 7:30 report forum member Manaz is going head to head with Senator Stephen Conroy. There will be blood, sweat, tears and probably a very interesting debate. Check it out on ABC at 7:30pm on monday. There's a thread about it here.

Einstein has finally been proven correct. It's taken more than a century, but Einstein's celebrated formula e=mc2 has finally been corroborated, thanks to a heroic computational effort by French, German and Hungarian physicists. A brainpower consortium led by Laurent Lellouch of France's Centre for Theoretical Physics, using some of the world's mightiest supercomputers, have set down the calculations for estimating the mass of protons and neutrons, the particles at the nucleus of atoms.

A teenager has committed suicide live on webcam. 19-year-old Florida resident Abraham K. Biggs, who went by the screen names "CandyJunkie" and “Mr Biggs”, told users on a bodybuilding forum he would be committing suicide that night and invited them to watch the live video. The forum moderators allegedly ignored the post – assuming it was a prank – while other users posted insults and even egged him on. The teen used the "lifecasting" website Justin.tv – designed to let users share the minutiae of their everyday lives – to stream footage from his bedroom. Discussion here.

IBM is leading the way in creating neural networks. Part of a field called "cognitive computing", the research will bring together neurobiologists, computer and materials scientists and psychologists. As a first step in its research the project has been granted $4.9m (£3.27m) from US defence agency Darpa. The resulting technology could be used for large-scale data analysis, decision making or even image recognition.

Do you wonder if your AV is actually working? Are you concerned about effectiveness of your anti virus and you want to check if it is actually effective or not. Then try this simple way to check the effectiveness of your antivirus. This is very simple trick to check the effectiveness of your anti-virus. If your anti virus detect it as a virus then that means its working else its time to switch your anti-virus.

Christmas is coming, which means its time to start looking for gifts. What good is it to have the best line-up of product bloggers around if they can’t help you pick out holiday presents? With that in mind, we tapped our crack crew to help us help you find the year’s best tech gift ideas. We’ll run the gamut from those of you who actually have some money to spend this year (see Adrian Kingsley-Hughes’ best high-end hardware) to those of you feeling a tad more frugal (see Matthew Miller’s best free cell phones), and everyone in between.

Jurassic Park is a step closer with Mammoth DNA almost mapped. Scientists speculate that with a complete genome of the species, efforts to clone it may be possible. After all, scientists have already injected genes from extinct species into living ones successfully. Stephan Schuster, a Penn State University biochemistry professor and co-author of the research states of the historic work, "This really is the first time that we have been able to study an extinct animal in the same detail as the ones living in our own time."

The world is now safe, thanks to Reddit. Do you remember that photo of the Large Hadron Collider that showed an employee looking suspiciously like Half Life's Gordon Freeman? The clowns over at Reddit sent him a crowbar, a headcrab and a book, allowing him to go to town on the alien infestation. The very happy alien infestation, by the looks of that photo.

Finally, here's a few photos from the gallery that should have got a mention yesterday:

Saturday Morning (2 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 22-November-2008  03:37:29 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

As reported on Thursday, Village Roadshow, Universal Pictures, Warner Bros Entertainment, Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, Disney Enterprises and the Seven Network are suing iiNET for allegedly letting its users download pirated movies and television series. iiNet's managing director Michael Malone said that his company would "vigorously" defend the federal court action saying that "iiNet cannot disconnect a customer's phone line based on an allegation. The alleged offence needs to be pursued by the police and proven in the courts."

Meanwhile Exetel CEO John Linton said on Friday that iiNet brought the federal court action upon itself by not forwarding Australian Federation Against Copyright Theft (AFACT) complaints to its customers. "An action such as the one now being taken against iiNet was inevitable and it was going to be costly. What also should have been clear to anyone with half a brain was that the 'head in the sand' attitude adopted by iiNet, among others, just courted the exact result that has now transpired," Linton said.

And in more legal news, Sony has lost its court case and now must cough up $18.5 million to Agere Systems as a penalty for patent infringement. When Agere sued Sony for patent infringement in March of 2006, it alleged that the larger company had violated eight of its patents, and demanded compensation for all of them.

If you're an XBOX user then the following article, Xbox 360 Red Ring Of Death: Consumers Need To Be Upset is for you. Microsoft doesn't care, and that's because they clearly have nothing to worry about. And they won't have anything to worry about unless consumers smarten up and execute their right to say, "ah, no, I don't want to be stolen from." The 360 is a fine gaming machine, and I'm not going to deny that. But someone somewhere needs to force Microsoft to fix this.

It seems that former Microsoft Executive was furious over Vista changes. Internal Microsoft emails are detailing a former co-president’s anger over Vista changes. The emails between then co-president Jim Allchin and CEO Steve Ballmer were made public as part of a class action lawsuit against Microsoft. Allchin calls the change in Vista labeling requirements “a mess” and he added that it was wrong for consumers.

And staying with Microsoft, apparently DirectX 11 will ship with Windows 7 as well as made available for Vista. In a reversal of an earlier statement made to PCGamesHardware Ben Basaric, Product Marketing Manager Windows (Germany) has stated that DirectX 11 will ship with Windows Seven. He also goes on to state that there will be a DX11 for Vista but would not say if it would be in the upcoming SP2 release.

Photography Gallery (4 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 21-November-2008  18:42:41 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Some recent photos from our Photography Gallery forum:

Friday Afternoon (5 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 21-November-2008  18:42:15 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Google is now letting users customise search results. If Google delivers useless search results, just erase them and you won't see them again. That's possible under a new system Google unveiled on Thursday. Hoping to give its search engine a more personal touch, Google now lets users reshuffle results so their favourite websites get top billing and disliked destinations get discarded the next time they enter the same request. It marks the first time that the internet's most popular search engine has allowed its audience to alter the order of search results.

The US army has declared war on a computer worm. Under sustained attack from what is described as a rapidly spreading network worm, the U.S. army has banned the use of USB sticks, CDs, flash media cards, and all other removable data storage devices, according to internal e-mail messages seen by Wired’s Noah Shachtman. The USB device ban was handed down by the commander of U.S. Strategic Command and includes everything from external hard drives to “floppy disks. It takes effect immediately.

Microsoft is cutting the price of the Zune. This holiday season, Microsoft is taking aim at arch-rival Apple's iPod - and its companion iTunes software. This week, Microsoft cut the retail prices on 4GB, 8GB, and 16GB Zunes as well as on the Car Pack, Home/AV Pack, and Dock Pack. With the 8GB Zune now selling for $139 (was $149) and the 16GB model now selling for $179 (was $199), Microsoft is undercutting the price of comparable Nanos by $10 (8GB) and by $20 (16GB). The 4GB Zune anchors the lineup at $99, down $30 from its old price.

CES coverage is likely to be down this year, with many manufacturers not attending. "This was to have been Cisco's first time as a formal exhibitor," said spokesman Jim Brady. "Given (Cisco's) focus on reducing costs, the company has decided to scale down its participation in CES in Las Vegas in January 2009." Cisco isn't the only one to scale back. Also on the list are Yahoo, Seagate, Logitech, and Belkin, company representatives confirmed. Philips won't have a space on the CES show floor, either, though Funai, which has taken over manufacturing and selling TVs under the Philips brand in the United States, will pick up some of the slack.

The internet can be a positive influence on teenagers a study has found. "It might surprise parents to learn that it is not a waste of time for their teens to hang out online," said Mizuko Ito, lead author of the study by the private, grantmaking MacArthur Foundation. "There are myths about kids spending time online -- that it is dangerous or making them lazy," said Ito, a researcher at the University of California, Irvine. "But we found that spending time online is essential for young people to pick up the social and technical skills they need to be competent citizens in the digital age," she said.

Do you want to grab more from your laptop's battery? It’s happened to many a traveler: You’re onboard a flight from, say, New York to Los Angeles, with plans to finish a stack of work along the way. After all, an airplane is often a great place to be productive, thanks to the absence of nagging colleagues, email and ringing phones. Except you’re barely over Minnesota and your computer warns you it’s about to “hibernate” as your battery power is hovering somewhere around just five percent.

If you are really lazy, then this is the chair for you. The Home Chare—yes, that's chare, not chair—is a combination wheelchair for the disabled and for Jabba the Hutts. This device not only can be adjusted into a bed and standing aid, but also can double as a toilet via a replaceable seatless cushion. We can't see how this toilet design is convenient though, unless, of course, you rode around in this wheelchair pantless or in a pair of asschaps.

Today's second timewaster is from Michael. Match the planets and collect the crystals.

Misc Pics (10 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 21-November-2008  14:22:23 (GMT +10) - by Agg

It's that time again.. :)



AMD Tech Day Info (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 21-November-2008  12:51:10 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Josh from TheOverclocker has returned from AMD's Tech Day in Austin Texas with some overclocking info on their upcoming CPUs. This follows up nicely to our recent interview with AMD Australia about the new platform.

Read the full details here!

Friday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 21-November-2008  08:20:39 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Intel Core i7-920 on Benchmark Reviews
MSI K9A2 Platinum on PCStats
Kingston HyperX DDR3 3x1GB Kit on Legit Reviews
Crucial Ballistix Tracer 2x2GB DDR3 on Overclockers Club

Lian Li Maxima Force 750W PSU on Modders-Inc
Silverstone Decathlon 1000W Power Supply on Bjorn3D
Coolermaster UCP Ultimate 700W on ProClockers

Cases and Cooling
NZXT Tempest Airflow King on MadShrimps
NorthQ Siberian Tiger II Water Cooler on JonnyGuru

GFX Cards
ASUS EN9800GT Matrix 512MB on PC Perspective
HIS ICEQ4 Radeon HD 4850 TurboX on CPU3D
XFX GeForce GTX 260 Black Edition on Legit Reviews

External HDD
Thermaltake BlacX SE Hard Drive Dock on Big Bruin
Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 1.5Tb on Overclockers Club
Seagate Free Agent Go 320GB on Big Bruin
Synology Disk Station DS209+ on ITReviewed

Left 4 Dead on bit-tech.net
Disgaea DS on Gaming Nexus
Mirror's Edge on Gaming Nexus
Big Fish Games Treasure Seekers: VoG on ITReviewed

Lucky Dip
Alienware Area-51 m15x Gaming Notebook on I4U
ASUS Eee PC S101 on ITReviewed
Silverstone FP35 Bay Card Reader on NinjaLane
Logitech QuickCam Pro 9000 on Hardware Secrets
LG 19LG3000 19in LCD TV on Trusted Reviews
Microsoft Wireless Entertainment Desktop 8000 on Hi-Tech Reviews

Friday Morning (2 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 21-November-2008  07:51:57 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Tech ARP has revised their Definitive BIOS Optimisation Guide. Emphasis on definitive.

You may soon be able to buy DRM free music through iTunes. The talks are still preliminary and no deals have been finalized, but one source said one of the major labels is close to a final agreement. Rumors have been swirling on the Internet for a week that Sony would soon be offering music without the controversial digital rights management software. My sources could not confirm this. Spokespeople for Apple and the major labels declined to comment.

Vista is causing more troubles, with employees suing for lost hours. Thierman said the Windows Vista problem particularly affects workers paid by the hour, in places like call centers or in retail. The crux of the issue is the fact that some companies have connected time-keeping systems to their PCs. These systems are not activated until the user logs in, which is taking up to 15 minutes after the machine running Windows Vista has been turned on thanks to the long boot cycle. This means staff are in the office or shop but not officially working until they've logged in

Mozilla apparently make 88% of its income from Google. According to the audited financial statement Mozilla released today, the company's revenue for 2007 totaled $75.1 million, up 13% from 2006's $66.8 million, with the bulk of the year's income coming from Mozilla's search deal with Google. Search royalty payments accounted for $68.2 million, or 91% of 2007's revenue, said Mozilla's financial statement; that percentage was down slightly from the 92% of 2006's income attributed to search.

AMD have reached 6Ghz with their new Phenom II processors. The slowest system—cooled with a heatsink and fan—managed to reach just under 4GHz with a 1.55V core voltage. With liquid cooling, AMD successfully pushed a 45nm Phenom II in another machine just over the 4GHz mark. That required kicking up the CPU voltage to 1.6V, however. For the other two systems, AMD took out the big guns. One was strapped to a phase-change cooler and reached the mid-4GHz range at 1.7V, while the fastest system managed to break the 6GHz barrier using liquid nitrogen .

British accents confuse Google's iPhone software. The free application, which allows iPhone owners to use the Google search engine with their voice, mistook the word Iphone variously for sex, Einstein and kitchen sink, said the Daily Telegraph. Comments left by users on the application's website seemed to confirm the problem. "Awesome job google. Only problem is every time I say the word 'fish' it registers as 'sex',” wrote one, identified as Kevin. A video demonstration of the Google Mobile Application on the online giant's website shows an American engineer successfully asking for pictures of the Golden Gate as well as cinema timetables and temperature conversions. The website also includes a link to a video showing people with Irish, British and Chinese accents asking for relatively complicated searches, with apparent success.

Are you confused about video formats? Once upon time, video codecs and formats were really only the concern of AV nerds, anime freaks and hardcore not-so-legal movie downloaders. Now, even the most part-time of geeks has to deal with them, whether they're trying to stream a flick across their house with an Apple TV, dump some video onto their phone or just trying to grab last night's episode of Dexter because they, uh, forgot to renew their Showtime subscription that'll work in their media player. It's messy and annoying, but we're here to clean it up. Take a deep breath. EDIT: BFM wants us to have a look at Xvid4PSP

Today's timewaster is the irRegular Game Of Life. An unusual puzzle game based on Conway's famous "game of life". Be amazed by the fascinating grid patterns that evolve from 4 simple cell rules. Puzzle your way through 42 levels, use the Sandbox to load level solutions or share your own cool patterns.

Thursday Night (2 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 20-November-2008  22:23:42 (GMT +10) - by Rezin

DARPA has awarded a contract to IBM and five university partners to work on the first phase of a cognitive computing project. According to Dharmendra Modha, the manager of IBM's cognitive computing initiative, the idea is for him and his team to try to re-create the brain's perception, cognitive, sensation, interaction, and action abilities, while also simulating its efficient size and low-power consumption.

Seven out of ten Australians are willing to supply the government, banks and other trusted organisations with a scan of their fingerprints to protect themselves against identity theft and financial fraud. "These are sobering statistics, especially in the lead up to the holiday season when the sheer number of transactions taking place means that the risk of identity theft and financial fraud is elevated," said Barkla.

Some owners of Apple's older external displays that are not compatible with HDCP are annoyed that they won't be able to watch high definition movies purchased from iTunes. Andy Foster sums the situation up on his Computer Blog: "In other words, the only way any of us can guarantee we can play the stuff we buy that is HD is to ensure we have the newest in hardware."

US residents using the Xbox 360's Netflix streaming service will not be able to watch movies distributed by Sony Pictures Entertainment due to a temporary licensing issue. When asked if the license just coincidentally expired as Microsoft was adding Netflix support or Sony Pictures Entertainment specifically requested Xbox 360 streaming to be disabled, Swasey wouldn’t say.

Mozilla will be ending support for Firefox 2 in mid-December. Support will also cease for the Gecko 1.8 layout engine that underlies both Firefox 2 and the Thunderbird 2 email client. The move will affect a range of third-party Gecko-based browsers, such as SeaMonkey, the Mac-only Camino and the Unix/Linux browser Galeon.

Several companies have demonstrated prototypes of USB 3.0 technology at the recent SuperSpeed USB Developers Conference. Synopsys Inc prototyped an HDTV video transmission system based on USB 3.0 and demonstrated a transmission of non-compressed 1080p 30fps HDTV video via USB 3.0. Its effective data transfer rate surpasses 450 Mbytes per second, the company said.

Thursday Evening (2 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 20-November-2008  20:47:24 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Bern spotted that Monty Python have an official YouTube channel now. And what's even more, we're letting you see absolutely everything for free. So there! Hooray for the internet!

At the other end of the coolness spectrum, the Australian film and TV industry is suing iiNet 'for allowing piracy'. The action against iiNet was filed in the Federal Court today by Village Roadshow, Universal Pictures, Warner Bros, Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures Entertainment, 20th Century Fox, Disney and the Seven Network. Discussion here.

The game Half-Life is apparently only 98c (USD) on Steam for the next 24 hours (or less, now). More info here.

NASA is testing deep space internet. "This is the first step in creating a totally new space communications capability, an interplanetary Internet," Adrian Hooke, NASA's manager of space-networking architecture, technology and standards, said in a statement. Just the thing for browsing MySpace. Or Spacebook.

Meanwhile there's a crazy mutant space spider attacking the International Space Station. Or at least, there will be, if they don't find the one they lost recently. The spider was one of two orb-weavers taken into space for a three-month research mission.

Youngpro and Nehalem (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 20-November-2008  16:25:44 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Not to be outdone, youngpro has some Core i7 overclocking results as well. This time it's using the stock aircooler, but the results are impressive:

click for the thread!

T_M and Nehalem (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 20-November-2008  15:30:38 (GMT +10) - by Agg

It seems T_M has been quite busy playing with Core i7 CPUs lately, overclocking with LN2 etc. How busy? Well..

click for the thread!

Thursday Afternoon (5 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 20-November-2008  13:34:44 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Another big one from Matt:

Microsoft will offer free anti-malware in 2009. News just in from Microsoft - the company is to offer no-cost anti-malware to Windows users and phase-out sales of Windows Live OneCare subscription. Code-named “Morro,” the product, which is scheduled for release during the second half of 2009, will offer protection against viruses, spyware, rootkits and Trojans.

Police in Ontario are using games to warn about the effects of drink driving. Yesterday GamePolitics reported that police in Australia and Winnipeg engaged in a bit of game bashing by relating stolen cars and reckless road behavior to driving games. Today, the Peterborough Examiner reports that cops in Ontario are using a driving game in a positive way to help educate high school students about the dangers of drunk driving.

Mininova is testing a new technology to allow ads within downloaded movies. The new advertising technology, Hyper MP, inserts small clickable ads into the corner of the screen. Aside from the ads, there are no limitations to the video content. Hyper MP is currently being tested on an amateur feature length comedy titled “Battle Therapy”.

Kanguru have released a flash drive that uses eSATA as well as USB. Kanguru has developed a new breed of flash drive eliciting one of those 'Why hasn't someone thought of this before?' moments. "We’ve combined the fastest connectivity with the most universal connection for the best of both worlds,” said Nate Cote, VP of Product Management at Kanguru Solutions. “The ultra-fast transfer speed, high capacity and small size combine to make it a great portable solution for users that want the next generation of unbelievable performance."

Apple has prevailed over Psystar, with a court dismissing all claims. This legal saga began last July when Apple first sued Psystar for illegally selling copies of Leopard installed on their own hardware. In response, Psystar initiated a counterclaim where it accused Apple of having a monopoly in the OS X market and running afoul of anti-trust laws. Essentially, Psystar’s defense was hinged entirely on its anti-trust allegations, and now that that has been thrown out of court, don’t expect Psystar to be in business too much longer.

The new Macbook might be faster, but it still cannot play Crysis. Finally, someone with more money that I have (I want a new MacBook Pro, but haven't yet convinced myself to shell out the dough to replace my old yet trusty G4 12" Powerbook) has put the new MBP and those shiny graphics chips to the test, and drummed up some real benchmarking numbers in Boot Camp. It turns out to be PC World, strangely enough. And the verdict? Well, it's not quite so great. The good news is that the MacBook Pro is faster than ever, and graphics have significantly improved. And trust us, any improvement over the old chips is a step in the right direction.

Here is an insight into how NASA get their climate data, and how they modify it. The next day the data was adjusted yet again. The Hudson Bay data is removed (but NW Canada was "re-heated" to its original level). The Siberian hot spot was reduced, and the global anomaly stands - for now - at a whopping 0.25°C lower than their original announcement. NASA acknowledges the changes, but other than that provides no details nor any explanation whatever. The older versions of the maps are removed from their site.

NASA have inadvertently sent something else into its own little orbit. Astronaut Heidemarie Stefanyshyn-Piper suffered an astronaut blunder after she mistakenly let go of her tool bag in space after a grease gun inside of her backpack-sized bag exploded. "Uh, we have a lost tool," Stefanyshyn-Piper said as she watched the bag float away. NASA astronauts will now track the bag for the next few days, watching to make sure it doesn't impact the ISS.

There's something else floating around out there-packets! The EPOXI spacecraft, which carried the Deep Impact probe to Comet Talent 1 in 2005, had its software reconfigured after delivering the payload to work as a test bed for NASA's new Disruption-Tolerant Networking protocol. As the craft dropped back toward Earth for one of the gravity assists that will ultimately sling it back toward the comet in 2010, it transmitted simulated images of the Martian moon Phobos using the new protocol. The trial turned EPOXI into one of 10 nodes in a test network (the other nine were on Earth), to verify the reliability and robustness of the new networking architecture.

Twitter has harpooned the fail whale in favour of a caterpillar and an ice cream cone. Meanwhile, some users bemoaned the apparent demise of the Fail Whale that surfaces when too many people use the service at one time, although Twitter co-founder Biz Stone said the whale isn't quite dead yet. "The whale was related to over-capacity performance issues," Stone said in an e-mail to Wired.com. "Twitter has successfully moved to a more reliable state and the so-called Fail Whale has become an endangered species."

Nanotechnology has been used to create the worlds thinnest speaker. The new carbon material, which is 1/1000th the width of a human hair can produce sound with the "same quality of conventional speakers" but does not require magnetic drivers or any moving parts at all. This means that it can fit almost anywhere.

Do you want a cool and tasty lamp? There was once a television series called Land of the Giants. The plot is the epitome of what old-timey daytime television was all about: “A space flight crashes on earth, but it is not the same earth the ship was from. They have arrived to a land of giants.” Apparently the designers at Jellio would like one to believe that it is okay to be perpetually stuck in a kiddie version of that make believe world.

In a nice dose of building porn, here's a sizeable erection. The Burj Dubai, the tallest building in the world, is at 160 stories and counting, with the tower due to be complete next September. But it's not the only tower under construction in Dubai, not by a longshot. No, the city appears to be sprouting up from the ground like a bunch of weeds, with as many cranes as buildings. And now, The Big Picture has nearly 30 amazing shots of the city in transition. Hit the jump for another of my favorites and then head over to The Big Picture for the rest.

Thursday Morning (4 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 20-November-2008  09:14:08 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

Aaron Heibert from Tom's Hardware has compiled a report based on Corsair's recent research in to the performance benefits of using 6GB of DDR3 as opposed to 3GB of DDR3 and Microsoft Windows Vista (x64). Results indicate that it is essential for enthusiasts to opt for 6 GB, rather than 3 GB, if they are looking for the best possible experience, and of course, to move to a 64-bit operating system to support the large memory configuration.

I'm sure many, if not most of us, have seen the movie Minority Report and the futuristic computer system interface used in that movie.... Futuristic no more as one of the science advisors from the Steven Spielberg film -- along with a team of other zany visionaries have created a real world implementation of the computer systems seen in the movie. Dubbed g-speak, the mind bending OS combines "gestural i/o, recombinant networking, and real-world pixels," to deliver what the creators call "the first major step in [a] computer interface since 1984."

Sony has just unveiled a 12.25 megapixel CMOS camera sensor. You're probably wondering what is so special about this news given that such megapixels have been around for some time now in digital cameras. Well.....that is true, however, this particular CMOS sensor is for mobile phone cameras. Tokyo, Japan –Sony Corporation today announced the commercialization of "IMX060PQ", a new type 1/2.5 CMOS image sensor "Exmor™" for use in camera enabled mobile phones that leverages Sony's proprietary formation technology to realize the industry's smallest unit cell size (1.4µm), and the industry's highest pixel count*1 (12.25 effective megapixel resolution).

It seems that some Australian ISP's want to become media companies. Executives from several of Australia's largest internet service providers have over the past few months expressed their desire to become media companies in their own right.

World of Warcraft expansion, Wrath of the Lich King is barely one week old but that didn't stop Blizzard CEO Mike Morhaime from saying that "Blizzard is already thinking about what to include in the massively popular MMO's next expansion". Obviously it's far too early to go into any specifics as to what the contents might be. He did, however, say, "[W]e will continue making expansions as long as we have players that want to play World of Warcraft -- we want to keep them entertained."

And speaking of WoW, a 15-year old Swedish boy has collapsed after a marathon World of Warcraft gaming session. The boy, along with six of his friends, had just purchased the newest WoW expansion, Wrath of the Lich King and began playing the game Saturday afternoon. According to the Times Online, the boy eventually collapsed because of the lack of sleep and food.

Thermaltake has launched a new series of psu's called Thermaltake TR2 QFan. The TR2 QFan series' claim to fame is limited to one area, and it's not even really a feature. What's so special? The series starts with a modest 300W unit, and ranges up to 500W in 50W increments.

Wednesday Evening (2 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 19-November-2008  20:47:03 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Everying old is new again, with Fujifilm releasing a new polaroid camera. Fujifilm announced today that it will be releasing its Instax 200 instant film camera (and the instant color film, of course) to the U.S. market in late December. The camera, which has been available in Asia and Europe for several years, produces 3.9×2.44-inch instant photos and will sell for $69.99. The Polaroid-esque film is the kind that develops before your eyes (not the peel-apart kind) and will sell for $28.99 a 20-pack.

Australia is in the grip of an e-waste epidemic. Environmentalists and the Federal Opposition have accused the Federal Government of dragging its feet on a national response to Australia's e-waste epidemic, following the opening of the southern hemisphere's first automated e-waste recycling plant in Sydney today.

Technology is now being used to combat 'classic' piracy. The hijacking of giant Saudi oil tanker Sirius Star has focused the world's attention on piracy. In the past five years, the number of piracy attacks around the world has fallen from 452 incidents in 2003 to 282 in 2007. But it is a different story off the coast of Somalia; pirate attacks have increased by 100% in the past year. The Sirius Star is the biggest tanker ever to be hijacked, with a cargo of 2m barrels of oil worth more than $100m.

Good Old Games is now offering Unreal Tournament DRM free. With the phrase now appended to read, "I'd rather get a root canal while playing a DRM'ed game [than date/know/look at you]," the time is right to take a stand against DRM -- and also brush the dust off a few classic games in the process. So, if you haven't already, definitely point your web browser in Good Old Games' direction. Especially now that the totally DRM-free service has added Epic's Unreal series to its ranks.

Yet another controversial flash game has appeared on the internet. Online casual gaming is once again in the spotlight this week with UK newspapers expressing outrage at online title Billy Suicide which, as the name suggests, sees players attempt to prevent the game’s protagonist ending his life. The storm follows hot on the heels of recent controversial titles such as Kaboom: The Suicide Bombing Game and Little Hooliganz.

You won't be able to play it on an iPhone though. The best selling phone in America, Apple's iPhone, could be the last of the smartphones to get Flash. At a slew of press events over the last few days, Adobe unveiled a new version of mobile version of Flash -- a leaner, faster, smart phone-aimed version of Flash 10. The new version is optimized for ARM processors like the one used in the iPhone.

Microsoft feared Mac OS X and Vista comparisons even back in 2005. "You won't have to worry about Vista if you buy one of Apple Computer's Macintosh computers, which don't run Windows," Mossberg had written. "Every mainstream consumer doing typical tasks should consider the Mac. Its operating system, called Tiger, is better and more secure than Windows XP, and already contains most of the key features promised for Vista."

Snow Leopard, Apple's new OS, is rumoured to be out as soon as Q1 2009. Apple's Director of Engineering of Unix Technologies Jordan Hubbard spoke at LISA '08 last week. LISA (or Large Installation System Administration Conference) is a technical conference targeted at engineers and system administrators. This year's conference invited Apple's Jordan Hubbard to speak about the evolution of Mac OS X from large servers to embedded platforms. While technical readers may find the content of Hubbard's presentation slides (PDF) quite interesting, the most surprising revelation is a more specific target date for Apple's Mac OS X 10.6 (Snow Leopard): 1st Quarter 2009.

Interesting Forum Threads (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 19-November-2008  12:49:40 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Here's a quick snapshot of what people are up to in the forums:

AMD Deneb Overclocking Results in AMD Hardware.
Upcoming Intel Mainstream LGA775 Product Line-up Refresh Leaked in Intel Hardware.
Intel dealing behind Vista launch detailed in Intel Hardware.
Intel Cuts $1 Billion From Sales Forecast Amid Slump in Intel Hardware.
AMD to enable ATI Stream for Radeon HD 4000s and take on CUDA in Video Cards.
TerminalVeloCD Presents: The Pioneer DVR-216 Review in Storage & Backup.
Make your own SSD? in Storage & Backup.
Sandisk announces new SSD filesystem in Storage & Backup.
World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King in Games.
Calling all Trolls in Games.
Left 4 Dead in Games.
Core i7 and Games, Memory Testing 6GB vs 3GB in Memory.
Who else is "looking forward" to Linux powered laptops in NSW Schools? in Business and Enterprise.
This morning's brain teaser in Graphics and Programming.
Sega Mega Drive turns 20 in Game Consoles.
NSW to get fairer motoring penalties in Motoring.
Australia named the world's #1 country-brand in Career, Education and Finance.
Pirates hijack Saudi oil tanker in Current Events.
Race on to build world's first space elevator in Current Events.
Australians 'will accept nuclear power' in Current Events.
Fridge-sized tape recorder could crack lunar mysteries in Science.
Bailing on civilisation in The Pub.
Good Samaritans in The Pub.

Wednesday Midday (7 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 19-November-2008  12:46:24 (GMT +10) - by Agg

This one's from Matt..

Experts are warning that next Monday (24th) will see a peak in malware levels. Security researchers have deemed November 24 "black Monday" following predictions it will herald this year's peak in the spread of information-stealing malware. PC Tools said its internal monitoring systems registered a dramatic spike in viruses around November 19 last year, three days before the American Thanksgiving holiday and about the time when many people were shopping online for Christmas presents. Based on this data, Kurt Baumgartner, the company's chief threat analyst, has predicted November 24 will be the worst day of the year for computer attacks.

The world is getting safer for soldiers, with the development of a new camera. Dubbed the I-Ball the wireless device is robust enough to survive being thrown onto a battlefield. The I-Ball's internal camera gives a 360 degree view, with images being sent from the instant it is launched. It is thought the new technology would enable soldiers to see into potential danger spots without putting themselves at risk of ambush.

USB 3.0 is a step closer with complete specifications being released. It seems like everything uses USB today from cell phone chargers to keyboards, mice, printers, and cameras. What many really want are faster USB connections. The USB 3.0 Promoters Group announced yesterday that the USB 3.0 specification was finally complete. The specification is a sort of roadmap that allows manufacturers to build controllers and products utilizing the USB 3.0 standard. The specification has now been turned over to the USB Implementers Forum, the managing body for USB specifications.

For Mac users there's a new trojan making the rounds. When visiting certain sites, the user is alerted that there is a "Video ActiveX Object Error" and is told that their "Browser cannot play this video file." The alert instructs the user to download the "missing Video ActiveX Object." If the user clicks OK, a disk image called "cleanlive.dmg" downloads (which may change in the future). Depending on the user's browser settings, this disk image may mount and installation may automatically start.

Dell has outfitted several of its computers with the new i7 chip. A baseline configured Studio XPS desktop starts out at $950 and comes equipped with Intel's Core i7 920 clocked at 2.66GHz. The sub-$1000 configuration also includes a 3GB triple-channel DDR3-1066 memory kit and a 500GB hard drive. A 256MB ATI Radeon HD 3450 provides casual gaming chores, with the option to upgrade to a 512MB HD 4850 for $200 more.A 16X DVD burner and the standard assortment of ports complete the feature-set. For those with a little more jingle in their pocket, up to 1.28TB of storage can be configured in a RAID 0 array, along with a speedier CPU in the Core i7 940 clocked at 2.93GHz.

If you own an iPhone, check out Zooz Control. So the dudes over at ZoozMobile decided to help the PC achieve a similar control system by linking your games to the iPhone's touchscreen and accelerometer. By downloading the free PC host software, and the (currently free) Zooz Control Lite app for your iPhone, you can use your handset as a very expensive, yet highly intuitive controller for your PC games.

Anti-piracy lawyers are now suing people for sharing gay porn. After going after thousands accused of sharing video games in the UK, lawyers Davenport Lyons are now branching out into other areas. This week sees them start going after those it accuses of sharing the movie “Army F**kers”, hardcore gay porn featuring ‘farm boys’ and Gestapo officers. Accusing the wrong people this time could prove very costly indeed.

Two years ago Microsoft and Novel signed a patent pact. Was it worth it? In exchange for Microsoft distributing to its customers certificates for Novell’s SuSE Linux, Novell basically conceded that its implementation of Linux violated Microsoft patents and agreed its customers needed patent-enforcement protection. (That’s not how Novell or Microsoft likes to portray the arrangement, but that’s what it boiled down to, in essence.) Since the agreement was forged, a lot has happened.

There is a Tron sequel in the works. Tron - quite possibly the best example of a movie that could benefit from a legitimate sequel - is finally getting one. And who knew? A few dedicated - and better informed - film buffs maybe. But for the rest of us sci-fi supporters, certainly on this side of the Pond, it remained a secret. It is being directed by Joseph Kosinski, a little known director currently working on a remake of Logan's Run. He replaced Steve Lisberger, director of the original, but Lisberger is staying on as a co-writer for the sequel.

What exactly did the Phoenix Rover discover on Mars? For this week's Photoshop contest, I asked you guys to show us what the Mars Phoenix really discovered that government didn't want us to know about. Well, apparently Mars is a popular destination for politicians, terrorists, Bigfoot and assorted other bizarre life forms. If most of this stuff did exist on Mars, the Men in Black would break down crying because their lives are meaningless and the government would shut down NASA immediately and return the money to taxpayers. Hit the jump for the top three, the Gallery of Champions and... the truth.

Wednesday Morning #2 (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 19-November-2008  09:21:56 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

It seems that Nvidia's plans of blowing Radeon HD4870x2 performance crown out of the water will have to be put on hold until January, 2009. The dual GT200 55nm card is likely to end up faster than the fastest ATI and Nvidia will also bet on its better SLI optimisation, all in order to return the performance crown that it needs back so badly, says Fuad Abazovic of Fudzilla.

Meanwhile Nvidia is keen for the likes of Dell, Asus and Lenovo to start designing a desktop supercomputer based around Nvidia's four Tesla C1060 cards along with a quad core processor and 16 GB of memory. Depending on the application performed, Nvidia claims that a Tesla PC will be about 250 times faster than a regular desktop PC. However, we need to be fair and mention that this number also depends on the system the PC is compared to. For example, a PC equipped with an Nvidia SLI system or two of ATI’s Radeon HD 4870 X2 cards can compete with a Tesla PC in the Teraflops department.

Sometime ago we read that a company by the name of Danamics, out of Nørresundby, Denmark was working on a liquid metal based CPU cooler. Today they have finally released the world's first commercially available Danamics LM10 liquid metal based CPU cooler. The pricey cooling solution uses a electromagnetic pump and liquid metal to provide thermal performance that Danamics tells us "exceeds most watercoolers in a single device".

According to an article on Ars Technica the USB 3.0 specification have been finalized. The new standard isn't expected to start headlining on motherboards until the latter half of 2009 (at the earliest), with compliant devices hopefully appearing sometime in 2010.

Word from Intel is that more efficient Core 2 Quads are on their way to a store near you. For a bit there it was looking like AMD would be the first to introduce a quad core processor to market with a TDP of just 65W. However, just when AMD thought they were onto a good thing with this chip, Intel are said to be striking back with not one, but three upcoming Core 2 Quad processors which also have a TDP of 65W.

Today Dell has unveiled their new line of XPS systems based on the Core i7 platform. Adding to its successful XPS line of gaming desktops, Dell introduces its new XPS 730x gaming system to the line-up. The new ‘x’ denotes the cross over from Core 2 to Intel’s new Core i7 platform along with Intel’s new X58 chipset.

Silicon Graphics Inc. have showed off their Molecule concept computer based on Intel's Atom microprocessor. If someday brought to market, a single-rack system based on the Silicon Graphics Molecule concept computer would offer the computing power and memory bandwidth of more than 750 high-end PCs, SGI said, yet it would consume less than half the power and less than 1.4 percent of the physical space.

On Monday, Mushkin Inc. have released 16 triple-channel memory kits designed specifically for the new Intel Core i7 platform. The flagship offering of the new memory kits is the XP3-12800 7-8-7, allowing end users to extract higher performance at 1600MT/s than competitors’ products while staying within safe operating voltages.

Wednesday Morning (1 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 19-November-2008  03:49:09 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Catching up on some news snippets..

A woman who met and married her husband in Second Life found him cheating in Second Life and has now met someone else in World of Warcraft. Using the virtual world's own special currency, she hired an online private detective to investigate his adultery. The mind boggles.

Chinese pirates have taken on the Blu-Ray craze. The pirates are apparently ripping high-def movies (cracking Blu-ray's AACS and BD+ encryption in the process) and re-encoding them using AVCHD, which offers a 720p picture. Because of the reduction in resolution, file sizes are smaller and can be burned to regular DVDs instead of the more costly Blu-ray discs, netting a tidy profit.

Digit-Life looked at single-core performance from Intel and AMD. For this purpose we'll use two LGA775 and Socket AM2+ motherboards -- Biostar TPower I45 (IP45A-A7P) and ASUS M3A32-MVP Deluxe/WiFi-AP -- that allow disabling all CPU cores but one in BIOS.

Dramas continue for Qantas, managing to crash planes when not even flying them. The planes were being towed at the carrier’s Australian heavy maintenance base at Avalon Airport when they crashed into each other about 9.30am today (AEDT), the Herald Sun reported.

Check out this amazing datacentre. This underground data center has greenhouses, waterfalls, German submarine engines, simulated daylight and can withstand a hit from a hydrogen bomb. It looks like the secret HQ of a James Bond villain. And it is real. Discussion here.

LegionHW have some Core i7 overclocking. Today we are doing a little Intel Core i7 overclocking with the new ASUS P6T Deluxe motherboard. The results were impressive, and achieving them could not have been much easier. Those considering the new Core i7 920 processor will no doubt be very interested in our findings.

Scott sends word of a 64-bit Flash player for Linux from Adobe. Well, YouTube, Homestar Runner, and badgerbadgerbadger all work, so there's 90% of it. Discussion here.

Here's some funny videos.. Windows Matrix and a cool acapella Star Wars theme.

NASA is celebrating the International Space Station's 10th Birthday. Now the largest spacecraft ever built, the orbital assembly of the space station began with the launch from Kazakhstan of its first bus-sized component, Zarya, on Nov. 20, 1998. They've also been restoring lunar images thanks to digital technology.

I suppose today's timewaster better be The World's Hardest Game, which is being discussed here. Failing that, try Australian Album Covers.

tkdwarrior (4 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 19-November-2008  02:39:17 (GMT +10) - by Agg

I'm sorry to have to report the death of an OCAU member, tkdwarrior, who drowned in the severe storms in Brisbane on the weekend. I'd spoken to him a few times about fishkeeping, he seemed like a nice guy. At 20 years old, much too young. People are expressing their condolences in this thread. RIP.

Tuesday Night Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 18-November-2008  20:58:24 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

ASUS P6T Deluxe OC Palm Edition on Techgage
Gigabyte EP45-UD3P on Overclock3D
G.Skill DDR3 1600 Triple Channel on Bjorn3d
Asus M3A79-T Deluxe on tbreak
ECS A790GXM-A on Overclockers Club
DFI X48-T3RS on Madshrimps
Patriot Viper PC3-16000 4GB Memory Kit on Hardware Logic

Video Cards:
Sapphire Radeon HD4650 OC Edition on Modders-Inc
MSI R4830 512MB Overclock Edition on Overclockers Club
MSI R4850 Review on NeoSeeker
Sapphire HD 4830 512MB on XSReviews
Sapphire HD4870 Toxic on Bjorn3d

Xigmatek Dark Knight S1283 Heatsinkon FrostyTech
OCZ HydroFlow HF-MK1 CPU Waterblock on OCIA
ASUS Lion Square and Triton 85 CPU Coolers on Digit-Life
Scythe Musashi GPU Cooler on Pro-Clockers

Power Supply:
Asus U-75HA 750W on CPU3D
Chill Innovation CP-700M on Driverheaven

Mixed Bag:
MotorStorm Pacific Rift (PS3) on I4U
Blackberry Pearl Flip 8220 on Digital Trends
Seagate FreeAgent Desk 1TB on ThinkComputers
Evercool Booster Cool Wrist Pad on RBMODS
Asus EEE PC 1000H (160GB HD) on DriverHeaven
OCZ Neural Impulse Actuator on Hardware Secrets
NZXT Sentry LX Fan Controller on PC Perspective
Oakley O ROKR Pro Bluetooth Sunglasses on Legit Reviews
Samsung NC10 - 10.2in Netbook on Trusted Reviews

Tuesday Afternoon (3 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 18-November-2008  15:39:04 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Dell is refusing to honour sales of a half-price computer. Bargain hunter websites, such as OzBargain, and PC user forums, including Whirlpool and Overclockers Australia, lit up on Friday with word that Dell was offering a $799 Vostro 220ST computer on its website for $240. The desktop computer included an Intel dual-core processor, 2GB of internal memory, 160GB of hard-drive space and a 20-inch LCD monitor. The same computer was offered days earlier, on Monday, for $350 as part of another deal, which Dell also pulled out of.

Online rental company Netflix is phasing out HD-DVDs. Netflix consumers will have one month before the rental service stops renting HD DVDs. Online movie rental company Netflix sent an e-mail to its subscribers informing them they would no longer be able to rent HD DVDs. "Effective December 15, 2008, we will no longer carry HD DVDs," a message to subscribers said. "At that time, we will automatically replace any HD DVD titles in your queue with standard DVDs when available. You don't have to do anything."

Yet another country is censoring Google. Dozens of fashion models and public figures, such as sports star Diego Maradona, are currently at war with Google over how search results are handed out. While the question as to whether or not certain search results should be censored if they contain a person’s name is answered, Argentine Judges have handed down orders to temporarily abbreviate search results. These restraints mean that Google has to censor searches from Argentinean sites that contain the plaintiff’s names.

The co-founder of Yahoo and CEO Jerry Yang is standing down. His departure follows lengthy criticism of his stewardship of the company, which has seen its share price collapse to about $10. Earlier in the year he fought off a hostile takeover bid from Microsoft which offered $33 a share. The BBC was told that Mr Yang made the decision to leave as chief executive officer last month. No names were given as to who will succeed him.

The computer giant Apple is almost 25 years old. To mark the awesome inevitability of January 24, 2009 following January 24, 1984 after exactly one quarter-century, tech pundits will bloviate, Apple-bashers will execrate, and Jobsian fanboyz will venerate the munificence that flows unabated from The Great Steve. The din will be deafening.

With all that experience, you think they'd be able to get it right the first time. If you are one of the early adopters who rushed out to purchase a MacBook/MacBook Pro, only to realize that the new Trackpad was a bit buggy, then you may be in for a treat. That's because Apple just released the much anticipated Trackpad fix for unrecognized clicks.

Jef Raskin, an early Apple entrepreneur, has a vision about future OSs. Imagine you are flying high above a wide plain. Far below, vague rectangular shapes cover the ground in every direction. Swooping down, you find that these are not fields or even city blocks, but words and images. Bold labels are stamped on the ground and flying lower you can make out activity beside each one. Off to your left flow the pages of a report you've been writing, while to your right a newly arrived email is springing up.

And in another look at our crazy world, here are 10 gadgets that have no business using a jet engine. Ever since we started putting high-powered engines into jets, there has been a long line of skilled but misguided lunatics eager to rip them out to use in their stupid and dangerous contraptions. Simply put, we are fascinated by speed—whether it is the latest military super aircraft or a flaming toilet blazing down the road at 110kph. A jet engine attached to anything is sure-fire entertainment—as the following ten gadgets will demonstrate.

Three Reviews from Windwithme (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 18-November-2008  13:02:12 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Three reviews from windwithme recently, packed full of photos and overclocking info etc as usual. check 'em out:

and 4870 Crossfire, for MicroATX

MSI DKA790GX Platinum
Overclocking Experience

with Intel I7 EXTREME 965 CPU

Tuesday Morning #2 (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 18-November-2008  09:14:55 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

How easy is it to remove parts of your digital past? A whole industry -- known as online reputation management -- has grown up around helping individual clients and corporate clients suppress negative information online by creating more positive and search-engine-friendly postings. But what if you don't just want something massaged, manipulated or suppressed? What if you want it gone? Is it possible for an ordinary person to get some damaging tidbit entirely erased from the Web?

But if you want a new identity, you only need to pay £80. The details packaged and sold online include names, addresses, passport numbers and confidential financial data such as credit card numbers. With six out of 10 people now managing finances online, experts say the public needs to do more to prevent e-crime.

And it could happen to anyone, with privacy breaches occurring once a week. [H]undreds of credit card receipts from a Bondi Junction chemist are strewn across Mascot Oval; names and dates of birth for 3500 customers of a Sydney restaurant are inadvertently attached to a mass email; detailed financial records for Aussie Home Loans customers are dumped in an unsecured bin; and, most worrying, a Tax Office CD of documents about 3122 taxpayers vanishes after reaching a courier. And those losses of personal information, all from last month, were the ones made public.

Google had an embarrassing slip up when it linked to a known malware site. Search giant Google is known for its "do no evil" approach. It goes to great lengths to protect the environment and it blocks sites on lists of known malware sites from being searched. However, security researchers made an alarming discovery of a major slip-up for Google. The site had allowed a known malware site to buy text ads and was placing these ads on its partner pages through its Google AdWords service.

IT policy could spur economic growth, according to analysts. As staffers on Capitol Hill know all too well, the growth of technology has created an economy increasingly reliant on energy consumption, as BlackBerrys, laptops, and other devices become everyday necessities. The right policies, however, can make IT growth a part of the energy solution rather than the problem, IT representatives said Monday at a forum, in a congressional office, hosted by the Information Technology & Innovation Foundation.

But Blizzard doesn't seem to care, as they are immune to the falling economy. Speaking to VideoGamer.com hours before the midnight launch of expansion Wrath of the Lich King at HMV Oxford Street last week, Blizzard executive Paul Sams said the MMO genre has the "opportunity to be touched less" than rival entertainment, like film, as long as the product is "priced fairly".

The Dark Knight is set to become the most pirated film this year. This week, in another round of leaks, DVD-rips of ‘The Dark Knight’ found their way to BitTorrent. Unsurprisingly, given the commercial success of the movie, these were downloaded well over a million times in just a few days. From the looks of it, Batman will crush Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk and Transformers, as it will easily become this year’s most pirated movie.

Left 4 Dead is debuting tomorrow in America. he second Left 4 Dead television commercial starts its run on network and cable television tomorrow - Tuesday, November 18- the same day Valve's zombie thriller launches on the Xbox 360 and PC at retail outlets in North America. The title will be available at retail outlets in the rest of the world this coming Friday, November 21.

There's also a new game for the iPhone: My Little Tank. You have your choice of seven tank colors (that whirring sound you hear is General George Patton spinning in his grave when you choose the pink tank). You can control My Little Tank with an onscreen virtual d-pad, by swiping the screen with your finger to move the tank, and accelerometer-based directional tilt. You can listen to the built-in soundtrack, or pick your own music to enjoy while playing.

Here are some free applications to help boost productivity. You're busy. We're busy. Everybody's busy. Thankfully, busy people are also creative software developers. And we've tapped into their treasures to find you five awesome, "keep your life together" applications. Forever say goodbye to the yellow sticky notes adorning your computer display. These free programs will ensure that you never miss a critical appointment, important task, or billing date.

If you've ever gone wardriving, then this scooter is for you. Geek Wheels boasts just about everything you’d need for a long- or short-haul journey. Underneath the seat rests the scooter’s processing “brain”, which consists of a 1.2GHz VIA CPU and 1GB of memory. It also has a 2GB SSD for the OS and other software. Just next to the wing mirror is an 8in LCD touchscreen which will display TV picked up by the scooter’s on-board “stealth” TV antenna. Since you mustn’t watch and drive, the scooter’s been fitted with a DVR.

A Google Android phone has been hacked to act as a garage door remote. Brad Fitzpatrick has hacked his HTC G1 Android smartphone to use it as a secure remote which can open his home's garage door as he gets close to it. Using Wi-Fi, the mobile phone automatically fires up an HTTP request to his home server as soon as it's near enough, which triggers the opening as well as other functions in the house.

Tuesday Morning News (1 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 18-November-2008  00:53:12 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

It seems that US President elect Barack Obama might have to give up his BlackBerry. For years, like legions of other on-the-move professionals, Mr Obama has been all but addicted to his BlackBerry - or CrackBerrys as they are sometimes called for exactly that reason..But before he arrives at the White House, he will probably be forced to sign off.

According to this report on TorrentFreak, French record labels have received the green light to sue four US-based companies that develop P2P applications, including the BitTorrent client Vuze, Limewire and Morpheus.

AppleInsider is reporting that Apple is facing a lawsuit for hairline cracks in the iPhone 3G casings. The 23-page suit, filed in a New York district court by Nassau County resident Avi Koschitzki, joins a chorus of complaints filed earlier this year, each of which charge the iPhone maker and its exclusive US wireless carrier AT&T with misrepresenting the performance of the new touchscreen handset by advertising it as "twice as fast" as its predecessor.

Meanwhile businesses are warming up to the iPhone. iPhone is making a guerrilla attack on the business world, brought into the corporate world by influential executives, CIOs rethinking their approach to deploying technology, and younger workers who move seamlessly between their personal and business lives.

Intel is looking at extending the life-cycle of its socket 775 based processors to 2011 and is expected to let these CPUs cover the entry-level segment, according to sources at motherboard makers.

Fuad Abazovic from Fudzilla says that Deneb can reach 4GHz on air. We've learned that Deneb, 45nm K10.5 can reach 4GHz on air and that if you use liquid cooling you should see even better scores. This is definitely a good sign, and we know that at least the top Deneb will come with an unlocked multiplier and ready to overclock.

Apparently Asus have launched the fastest Smartphone to date, featuring an 800MHz Marvell PXA 900 series CPU. The handset as a by today's standards fairly average display at 2.8-inches, although Asus has gone for what appears to be a flush fit screen with 640x480 resolution, which makes up for the somewhat smaller size. The P565 has 128MB of RAM and 256MB of ROM, and the storage can be expanded via a microSD card slot.

Fancy taking up a position of chief information officer, which comes with a $170,000 remuneration package plus bonuses? If you do then Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) wants to hear from you. The ACCC has created a new chief information officer position in light of rapid growth, and is seeking a candidate to take up the role.

EFTel expands network with Nextep. Internet service provider Eftel has signed an agreement with NEC-owned Nextep Broadband, giving it sole access to certain equipment in telephone exchanges which will increase its new broadband network by around twice its current size.

NASA and the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, with the use of the Gemini North and Keck telescopes on the Mauna Kea mountaintop in Hawaii have captured amazing, never before seen photos of extrasolar planets. British and American researchers snapped the first ever visible-light pictures of three extrasolar planets orbiting the star HR8799. HR8799 is about 1.5 times the size of the sun, located 130 light-years away in the Pegasus constellation.

And now on to some gaming news and we begin with a study conducted by the Swedish Research Council which shows that video games increase heart rate. The effects of violent video games on teens has found that playing violent games affected subject heart rate variability not only during gameplay (no surprise there) but also when they were sleeping that night.

Rumour has it that Sony is secretly working on a PSP version of the Little Big Planet. The rumour, which this time comes from Electronic Gaming Monthly in the US, doesn't offer any true details on the game or how it might work, but it's still a mighty enticing offer.

Gaming Front managed to get their hands on some leaked scans from a gaming mag which are showing off new info on Halo 3 Recon and the upcoming Halo 3 Mythic Map pack.

Monday Evening (3 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 17-November-2008  19:53:09 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Another slow news day. But lets not let that stop us!

Ubuntu is set to debut on smartphones. Mobile phone chip designer Arm has announced an alliance with the makers of the Ubuntu open source software. The deal will produce a version of the operating system for small net-browsing computers known as netbooks.

Meanwhile, Apple is winning over businesses with the iPhone. Apple has shown terrific growth over the past decade after virtually collapsing in the early 90s. However, one segment that it has never really been able to win back is the business sector. However, Apple's hottest gadget, the iPhone is finally starting to win Apple a following in the business community.

Digital pen manufacture Livescribe has announced it is releasing Mac software. That said, there are some limitations with each of these new features. The Mac software is still in beta, the handwriting recognition software comes from a third-party and costs $29, while the print-your-own-paper option requires a color PostScript laser printer. The handwriting recognition software and print-your-own paper options are Windows only for now, with plans to add them to the Mac version in the first quarter of next year, when the Mac product goes final.

A San Francisco artist wants to replace their eye with a webcam. Tanya Vlach, who lost one eye in a car accident, asked engineers through her blog to build her a miniature webcam that could adjust to different lighting and focus as she wished. She's also requested the bionic eye be Bluetooth capable, have a 3X optical zoom, have a slot for a 4GB SD card, and be able to take still photos. Vlach told the New York Daily News the eyecam would let her record her entire life or shoot a reality TV show from her perspective.

Here's an interesting trip through time. Just as a nation's flag expresses the distinct identity of a country, so, too, a logotype — typically a symbol or letters — helps to establish the name and define the character of a corporation. Effective logos become synonymous with the organizations they portray. They are instantly recognized by millions of people, and help to identify their companies and convey a message about the brands for which they stand.

If you're like Tim the tool man and need "More power!", check out these adjustments to your right click menu. Who doesn’t love a shortcut? Thanks to the guy who programmed in the right click menu, we get to take some of them while working or browsing on the computer. Here at MakeUseOf we have looked at some of the ways to add more power to the right click menu.

AMD Interview (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 17-November-2008  14:47:01 (GMT +10) - by Agg

OCAU member dirtyd recently interviewed Garrath Johnson, Technical Manager from AMD Australia, about AMD’s upcoming 45nm desktop CPU’s. The key things are 45 nanometres and the cache enlargement. Q1 next year we’ll have a spot for DDR3. I’m sure you already know that we’re bringing in two models for AM2+. The great thing about Deneb is that all the models will be backward compatible to AM2+.

You can read the interview here. Discussion here.

Scorptec PC Build Off Winner (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 17-November-2008  13:23:09 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Congrats (again) to Michael Lam who retained his title by winning the Scorptec PC Build Off competition for the second year in a row. Truth be told, he was not the first one to raise his hand to say he's completed it, infact there were two contestants who raised their hands first and could have easily beaten him, if only they did not miss the basic fundamentals of PC Building. A power cable to the motherboard and a motherboard mounting screws!

There's photos on Scorptec's flickr page here.

Monday Morning News (4 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 17-November-2008  09:39:43 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

It's a slow morning in the newsroom but here are a few stories to get the new week rolling.

If you haven't already heard, Memtest86+ V2.10 has been released. In this new version, a lot of new CPUs and chipsets are now detected and supported, including the upcoming Core i7 from Intel.

Tech ARP has posted an Intel Core i7 Installation Guide. New users migrating from the AMD platforms, on the other hand, may find the new socket both foreign and even a little scary. Hence, we decided to come up with a pictorial guide to show you just how easy it is to install an LGA1366 processor and its cooler.

And after they're done with the installation, it's time to see what the Intel Core i7-965 Extreme Edition can do. But how fast is it really? After all, this is a high-end enthusiast-grade processor with a very, very hefty price tag. It had better be a couple of Mach numbers faster than the Core 2 processors! Well, this is what we will be looking into this review. Not only will we examine its performance in games, we will also take a look at its performance in 3D rendering and video encoding.

Bjorn3d has a set of Kingston HyperX Triple Channel DDR3 2000 in their lab. Kingston technologies fielded the first kit of Triple Channel DDR3 capable of hitting 2000MHz within the allowed 1.65v RAM memory voltage limit on Core i7. Nay sayers said it couldn't be done. We're here to tell you it has been done.

Intel Core i7: live in Tokyo. Computerworld reported that "several hundred people crowded stores" that opened around 10 p.m. Saturday. The top-of-the-line 965 chip sold out, according to one retailer.

Ars Technica is Crunching NPD's numbers. Sales numbers are hard to come by when it comes to the gaming industry; there is no public source of information for what games and consoles are selling. The closest thing that the press has is the monthly sales report from the NPD Group. These numbers are important, and every game blog on every corner of the Internet publishes its take on what the numbers mean.

Chris has sent in a timewaster called 99 Bricks which is a "pretty cool spin on Tetris". Thanks Chris

Photography Gallery (0 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 16-November-2008  18:50:58 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Some recent photos from our Photography Gallery forum:

Sunday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 16-November-2008  17:46:26 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

OCZ EliteXStream 1000 on Hardware Secrets
Lian Li Silent Force 850W on Bit-tech
Antec NeoPower Blue 650W on JonnyGURU
ABS Tagan BZ1300 on Tweak Town
GlacialTech GP-AL 650A on RBMODS
Antec TruePower Quattro 1000W on HardwareZone
Corsair HX1000W on Overclockers Club

Call of Duty: World at War on Trusted Reviews
Mirrors Edge (X360 and PS3) on GamingHeaven
Call of Duty: World at War on Bit-tech
Space Siege on Gaming Nexus
Nero AG Nero 9.0 Disc Burning Suite on ITREVIEWED
CyberLink PowerDVD 8 Ultra on ITREVIEWED
007 Quantum of Solace on Bit-tech
CyberLink MediaShow 4 on tkArena
FIFA 09 - PC on Gamepyre

Lian Li PC-V2010 Full Tower on Bjorn3d
Antec Mini P180 on HardwareLogic
Antec Skeleton on Bit-tech
Coolermster ATCS 840 on CPU3D
Akasa Vortexx Neo on techPowerUp
Thermaltake Xaser VI on Motherboards
Hiper Osiris HTC-1K514 on Overclockers Club
Silverstone La Scala SST LC02B on ocinside
Lian Li PC-A77B full tower on Bigbruin
Antec Skeleton on Overclock3D
Cooler Master HAF 932 on techPowerUp

Gigabyte GA-EP45-UD3P on Bjorn3d
G.Skill F2-6400CL4D-4GPI-B DDR2 on Virtual-Hideout
Crucial PC3-8500 3GB on Trusted Reviews
Patriot & Super Talent DDR3-1800 on DriverHeaven
Corsair Dominator Tri-Channel DDR3-1600 6Gb Kit on CPU3D
ASUS Rampage II Extreme X58 on PC Perspective
ASRock P43DE Intel P43 ICH10on OCWorkbench

Samsung YP-Q1 Diamond on Trusted Reviews
HTC Touch 3G on HardwareZone
Lenovo IdeaPad S10 on ThinkComputers
ASUS EEE PC 1000HA on LegitReviews
Corsair Flash Voyager mini 8GB on Overclockers Online
NorthQ NQ-3360 on OCIA
Intel Stock Core 2 Duo E4xxx Heatsink on FrostyTech
Alienware M17 - Hands-On on Trusted Reviews
Antec Veris Multimedia Station Premier on Overclockers Club
Canon EOS 50D on Digital Trends
Lian-Li TR-5 Multi-Fan Controller on ITREVIEWED
Sapphire Radeon HD 4550 on Modders-Inc
ViewSonic 22" Widescreen LED Backlit LCD on ThinkComputers

Sunday Midday (3 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 16-November-2008  11:46:16 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Facebook has removed several neo-Nazi pages after public outcry. Seven different group pages, all based in Italy, had been created on the site with titles that incited violence against gypsies, according to a Reuters report. The European Parliament filed a complaint with Facebook, and the pages were promptly removed. Facebook told Reuters that the pages violated its terms of use.

It turns out the impossible is possible with refunds being given for the Apple App Store. A few weeks ago I bought the WunderRadio app for the iPhone because it did something most other Internet radio apps couldn’t: play local stations via MMS streams. I flipped through the screenshots and read through the reviews to see if it could play Clear Channel stations (namely KISS FM), and there was plenty of confirmation that the program did.

Meanwhile, an iPod has been spotted on the space shuttle Endeavour. Eagle-eyed reader Walker was perusing hi-res photos of the Space Shuttle Endeavour (which is circling the planet at this moment, docked to the International Space Station in low-earth orbit) when he spotted an iPod through the crew cabin window. It's a massively cool find and we thought you'd like to know it's not the first time an iPod has braved the 3G hurtle into space.

Do you want to switch to Gmail but can't get rid of your old email address? Times have changed, and that old address is a black hole for spam. You never check it, and you don't want to. But your stupid ISP, your stubborn family members and high school buddies insist on sending you important things there. You can't give it up because thousands of your close personal friends only know you as ClassOf92@aol.com or ILoveNKOTB@hotmail.com. A blind switch to a new e-mail address is out of the question -- you probably don't even know everyone who has the old one, and grandma wouldn't understand anyway.

Even then, you still might want to encrypt your email. Jon Callas, CTO of encryption software provider PGP, likens encrypting email to wearing a seatbelt, which a few decades ago was so unpopular that many people only did when they were required by law to do so. "You only need to wear a seatbelt on the day you get in a crash and you only need to encrypt the one email that's going to get lost," he says. "The way that you make sure you encrypt that one mail that needs to be encrypted is the same way you make sure you wear your seatbelt on the one day you get in a crash and that is you do it all the time."

A group of artists are using LEDs to visualise wind patterns. The designers aim to show how renewable energy can be used to power sustainable art and design. As wind blows over the tower, swirling patterns of light reveal the strength and direction of the breeze. "We want to visualize the invisible, making people realize that there's a lot of energy out there that we're not using," said Zena Bruges from Jason Bruges Studio, which designed the tower.

The worlds first solid state battlefield laser is now available for order. Get ready for some real pew pew, because Northrop Grumman has just announced that the first ever high-energy, solid-state lethal laser for actual war applications is now available for ordering. This means that you can pay now a few millions and get yours for Xmas. The new Firestrike units offer 15 kilowatts of power, but can be combined to offer 100 kilowatts of technological terror, capable of actually destroying the enemy. According to the company, this new laser "changes the game" of military engagement. Nobody would say by judging the neutral looks of it.

The new James Bond movie was released recently, so its time for a look at the most ridiculous gadgets ever featured. Even though we love gadgets, we like the new approach. In fact, it got the Bond fans here at DVICE to look back on the franchise and remember that sometimes the spy tools Agent 007 pulled out were pretty nuts. More than a few crossed the line from borderline plausible to completely ridiculous. We scoured all the films in the series to find the most absurd James Bond gadgets — the ones that battered our belief systems beyond all recognition.

Saturday Night (5 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 15-November-2008  20:31:59 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

AMD have released their processor roadmap. AMD is working hard to regain the market share it lost to Intel -- many analysts say that if AMD wants to mount an effective comeback it needs to launch products that will compete well in the marketplace. InformationWeek reports that AMD has laid out its plans at an analyst's day for future processors and chipsets. AMD talked up its coming Intel Atom competitor codenamed Yukon.

Europeans will soon be able to buy their own OLPC. The machines will be sold under the Give One, Get One scheme that the OLPC organisation has already run in the US. Under that scheme, buyers get one machine for themselves and the other is donated to a school child in a developing nation.

Apple has fixed 12 security flaws in its web browser, Safari. The update, available for Windows XP, Windows Vista and Mac OS X (Tiger and Leopard), address vulnerabilities that could be exploited to take full control of a compromised machine.

AVG continues its less than impressive run of mishaps by labelling Adobe Flash a trojan. Users on AVG forums complained on Friday that Adobe Flash was detected by AVG's scanner as malicious, following a recent update. False alarms by anti-virus scanners are a well-known Achilles heel. Everybody who's anybody has problems with false alarms from time to time but to have three such problems in less than a month is difficult to defend.

Do you know how much your computer is costing you to run? What does it cost to play games, surf the Internet, or download files? It all costs money -- money that you, your parents, or whoever is in charge of the monthly electricity will have to pay. Those of you in charge of paying this bill will surely be interested in keeping costs down, which is why you might want to pay a little more attention to what sort of hardware you are using in your computer.

With the global economy in meltdown, it would be good to know which computer manufacturer will fare it best. Intel's warning this week that the company sees "significantly" lower demand for its chips signaled that the worst is still to come for PC makers as they navigate the current economic storm. So how will the five biggest producers of PCs, which account for about 54 percent of all PCs sold, fare as demand wanes and prices drop?

Sun has cut over 15 percent of its workforce. Sun is a company mired in what seems like a never-ending transition. The bulk of its revenue comes from hardware sales–an increasingly tough market–yet it sees its future in open source software like MySQL and services it can package around those applications. The rub: Those growth markets have much smaller revenue bases.

Today's 10 crazy things are watches. There are a lot of watches on the market and indicating the hour has not been their main goal for a long time. Nowadays watches are build to be fashionable and are worn as an accessory, so most important is the design. We’ve made a list of 10 cool, weird and amazing watches that would make anyone say “wow”.

Left 4 Dead Game Preview (2 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 15-November-2008  14:03:19 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Another game preview from Darkness - this time, it's the Left 4 Dead demo which is out now on Steam, with the full version available in a few days. Be warned, this is a gory screaming zombie splatterfest, so if you're easily spooked, stay away!





Here's some videos. Again, be warned, gory etc. One neat thing is that you always play in a team of 4. In single-player mode the other 3 team-members have fairly intelligent AI, and in online mode, other players drop in and out of the game, taking over from a bot on the fly.

Cabey vs Horde (13MB)

Pipebomb (14MB)

Shotgun (12MB)

Street Fight (11MB)

There's a thread about L4D here in the Games forum.

Saturday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 15-November-2008  13:37:03 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Input Etc:
Vidabox Wireless Media Keyboard on Pro-Clockers.
Microsoft Arc Mouse on HWZone.
Sapphire HD 4550 512MB on XSReviews.
Roccat Kone Gaming Mouse on PlayIT3D.
Microsoft Arc Mouse on I4U.
Microsoft Explorer Mini Mouse on EverythingUSB.
QPAD XT-R Gaming Surface on DriverHeaven.

Video Cards:
Call of Duty World at War 16 card VGA performance test on Guru3D.
Sapphire Radeon HD 4830 512MB on Phoronix.
Leadtek WinFast GTX 260 Extreme+ on HWZone.
Diamond HD 3650 PE 512 Radeon HD 3650 on PCStats.
Sapphire Radeon 4870 X2 on PureOC.
MSI R4870 T21G ATI Radeon HD 4870 1GB on Motherboards.org.
Palit 9800GTX+ on OCClub.
ASUS EAH3870 X2 Top/G/3DHTI/1G/A Radeon HD 3870 X2 on PCStats.

Audio / Visual:
JVC NX-BD3 Blu-ray System on TrustedReviews.
Sony Walkman NWZ-S639F 16GB on TrustedReviews.
Etymotic ER-4 microPro Sound Isolating Earphones on TheTechLounge.
JVC LT-47DV8BJ 47in LCD TV on TrustedReviews.
Canon Digital IXUS 980 IS camera on ITReviewed.
Altec Lansing Portable Speakers on InsideHW.
Panasonic TH-65PZ800 65in Plasma TV TrustedReviews.
Sitecom Wireless Audio Transmitter (WL-060) on ITReviewed.
NEC MultiSync LCD24WMGX3 24in Monitor on TrustedReviews.
Samsung DVD-F1080 DVD Player on TrustedReviews.
Altec Lansing VS3251 5.1 Surround Speaker System on Tweaktown.
Honeywell Altura MLX 42-inch 1080p 10-bit HDTV on BenchmarkReviews.
Viewsonic VLED221wm 22" widescreen LCD monitor on Bit-Tech.
Logitech X-240 2.1 Speakers on Moditory.

Motherboard and CPU:
ASUS P6T Deluxe OC Palm Edition X58 LGA1366 board on TweakTown.
Intel Core i7 965EE, i7 940, i7 920 LGA1377 CPUs on Motherboards.org.
Gigabyte GA-EP45-UD3P (Intel P45) LGA775 board on HWZone.
Foxconn Destroyer nForce 780a AM2 board on OCClub.
Asus M3A79-T Deluxe AM2 board on NeoSeeker.
ECS X58B-A X58 LGA1366 board on Guru3D.

Adaptec RAID 2405 SAS / SATA Controller on OC3D.
PNY Vintage Attaché 8GB Flash Drive on ITReviewed.
Thermaltake VI-ON External USB Drive Enclosure on OCIA.
Corsair Flash Voyager 8GB on JonnyGuru.
Sans Digital MobileNas MN4L+(B) Four Bay NAS on Tweaknews.
Vox BlackBox NAS on HWZone.

Saturday Midday (1 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 15-November-2008  12:32:13 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Apple vs. IBM is getting even messier with Papermaster filing a countersuit. But in a 16-page countersuit [PDF] filed by Papermaster on Thursday, the exec argues that Apple and IBM are not significant or major competitors. "IBM primarily provides business enterprise services, while Apple’s primary business is the design, manufacturing and marketing of consumer electronic products," he said.

Apple is facing yet another lawsuit, this time over performance issues with the iPhone 3G. Apparently, because the 3G network is so overloaded, it’s common for iPhone users to get knocked down to the slower EDGE network after only a few minutes of 3G bliss - regardless one is in a geographical area saturated with 3G network coverage.

Intel apparently pressured Microsoft to reduce hardware requirements for Vista. [A] move that let the chip maker sell older graphics chip sets that were incapable of meeting the original requirements, internal e-mails show. The move angered some Microsoft executives, including the then-head of Windows development, who said it would mislead customers. In a motion unsealed Thursday in the ongoing "Windows Vista Capable" class-action lawsuit, the plaintiffs used an exchange of messages between Microsoft and Intel to back their claim that the former deceived customers who later bought machines equipped with the latter's older chip sets.

You may soon be unable to buy a Windows CD. Microsoft appears to be following in the footprint of Valve and others and transitioning its sales online. Many software developers have found great success moving their products online. One shining success store is Valve's Steam engine, which has cranked up the company's profits and has been so successful that it now distributes games from other companies, like Take Two, for a fee.

The Dead Parrot Sketch is a lot older than you think. A classic scholar has proved the point, by unearthing a Greek version of the world-famous piece that is some 1,600 years old. A comedy duo called Hierocles and Philagrius told the original version, only rather than a parrot they used a slave. It concerns a man who complains to his friend that he was sold a slave who dies in his service.

There was a space shuttle launch earlier today. Veteran space flier Navy Capt. Christopher J. Ferguson will command the STS-126 mission aboard Endeavour to deliver equipment to the International Space Station that will enable larger crews to reside aboard the complex. Air Force Lt. Col. Eric A. Boe will serve as the pilot. The mission specialists are Navy Capt. Stephen G. Bowen, Army Lt. Col. Robert S. Kimbrough, Navy Capt. Heidemarie M. Stefanyshyn-Piper and NASA astronauts Donald R. Pettit and Sandra H. Magnus. More information in this thread.

The first pictures of planets outside our solar system have been taken. Visible and infrared images have been snapped of a planet orbiting a star 25 light-years away. The planet is believed to be the coolest, lowest-mass object ever seen outside our own solar neighbourhood. In a separate study, an exoplanetary system, comprising three planets, has been directly imaged, circling a star in the constellation Pegasus.

Chandrayaan-1, the Indian probe, has touched down on the moon. The Moon Impactor Probe detached itself from Chandrayaan-1 (moon vehicle) about 100 km from the moon's surface and crash-landed on the south pole of the moon at 10:01 a.m. EST, officials said in Bangalore. "It was a flawless operation," said SK Shivakumar, director of ISRO Telemetry's tracking and command network.

Why go to outer space to build a secret base when you have a perfectly good tree in your backyard? It's not easy to build a substantive house around a tree (or trees). If you do your job right, the trees will continue to grow, but you won't have to re-build your treehouse every year. Some of the world's best treehouse designers opened up to PM about how they do their jobs—and shared pictures of their favorite designs.

Saturday Morning #2 (2 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 15-November-2008  03:58:10 (GMT +10) - by Agg

This one from Matt:

A computer crash at ANZ left retailers unable to use credit cards. Retailers across the country were demanding cash-only sales for three hours today after a computer crash at ANZ rendered them unable to accept credit or debit cards. Franklins supermarkets across NSW were unable to process the cards from around 1pm today, financial director Roni Perlov said.

The US is in the top 5 countries when it comes to IPv6 use...thanks to Apple. It turns out that no less than 52 percent of all IPv6 users have a Mac and use 6to4. Apparently, those users have an Airport Extreme Wi-Fi base station / home router, which has the 6to4 tunneling mechanism enabled. (6to4 creates IPv6 addresses from an IPv4 address and "tunnels" IPv6 packets in IPv4 packets.) In fact, no less than 2.44 percent of Mac OS users are IPv6-capable, compared to 0.93 percent for Linux and 0.32 percent for Vista.

If your email account seems empty that's because a major spam ring was shut down in America. Two US internet service providers have pulled the plug on the firm McColo following an investigation by the Washington Post newspaper. Anti-spam firm Ironport has seen junk mail levels drop by 70% since McColo was taken offline on 11 November. But, it warned, it will be a temporary respite from the menace of spam.

The annual meteor shower Perseids surprised NASA this year. Typically, the event isn’t particularly spectacular with few bright fireballs for stargazers to view. Bill Cooke, a meteor expert from NASA says that this year the meteor shower was surprisingly dramatic. Cooke operates the Sentinel camera system that studies the sky for signs of meteors.

But they were more surprised by the Mars Rover. NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover Spirit communicated via the Mars Odyssey orbiter today right at the time when ground controllers had told it to, prompting shouts of “She’s talking!” among the rover team at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. “This means Spirit has not gone into a fault condition and is still being controlled by sequences we send from the ground,” said John Callas of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., project manager for Spirit and its twin, Opportunity.

The digital arms race in Australia took its first casualty when Kevin Rudd's Twitter page crashed. A spokeswoman for Mr Rudd said the Prime Minister had 670 Twitter followers late last night, but he lost most of them when the page crashed due to high demand. Mr Rudd effectively used internet profiles on MySpace and Facebook and his slick Kevin07 website during last year's federal election but, since becoming Prime Minister, he hasn't had much time for the web.

Verizon has announced the Blackberry Storm. In case you haven’t been paying attention, the touchscreen-based Storm is shaping up to be the first serious competitor to the iPhone, which is probably not particularly helpful to RIM. While yes, both are touchscreen devices, but the iPhone’s software is what helps set it apart from every other smart phone on the market, and frankly, I’m a bit skeptical that RIM will be able to pull off that kind of sophistication.

Google is updating its search software for the iPhone. The new version works much like the old one, letting users query Google outside of the mobile Safari Web browser, as well as search through contacts and narrow down results by their current location. The big change is the addition of search-by-voice, which lets you skip the keyboard entirely.

Saturday Morning News (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 15-November-2008  00:30:04 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

Intel is the latest company to be hit by the economic downturn which has crippled world's economic markets in recent times and as a result Intel had to cut its Q4 outlook due to falling PC demand. Intel's fourth quarter sales are expected to be around $9 billion, while company executives originally aimed for $10.1 billion to $10.9 billion. Analysts predicted $10.3 billion in sales.

Samsung has unveiled five new LCD monitors in Samsung 633NW, a 15.6" screen with a 1360 by 768 resolution @ 8ms, 933SN, a 18.5" screen with a 1360 by 768 resolution @ 5ms, 2033SW, a 20" screen with a 1600 by 900 resolution @ 5ms, 2233SW, a 21.5" screen with a 1920 by 1080 resolution @ 5ms and 2333SW, a 23" screen with a 1920 by 1080 resolution @ 5ms.

And speaking of LCD's, the US Department of Justice has imposed a fine of US$585 million (AU$886 million) dollars on LG Display, Sharp, and Chunghwa Picture Tubes for price fixing. Of the three companies, LG will pay the lion's share of the fine—$400 million for its participation in a price-fixing scheme that operated from September, 2001 through June, 2006. Sharp will cough up $120 million for fixing the prices of the LCDs it sold to Dell, Motorola, and Apple, and Chunghwa picks up that last $65 million.

AMD has officially announced that it will launch its Phenom II microprocessor at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas next January. Specifically, AMD will launch the Phenom II X4 processor, part of its "Dragon" enthusiast platform, said Bob Grim, the senior manager of product marketing for AMD's desktop group.

This December, users of AMD's ATI range of graphics cards will be able to download a free ATI Catalyst driver update which will instantly unlock new ATI Stream acceleration capabilities which are already built into millions of ATI Radeon graphics cards. ATI Stream is a set of advanced hardware and software technologies that enable AMD graphics processors (GPU), working in concert with the system’s central processor (CPU), to accelerate applications beyond just graphics.

DailyTech posted an article about the Ugly Side of Product Activation. Software piracy is a big issue nowadays, and as a result we are now in age where DRM techniques like product activation are a reality.

It looks like Microsoft is pulling the plug on users with modified Xbox 360's. Microsoft seems to have been searching its Xbox Live subscribers to find those who have dared to improve their Xbox 360 consoles and is pulling the plug on them.

And speaking of Xbox, Trusted Reviews have posted an article looking at which of the main 3 gaming consoles you should be looking to get for Christmas 2008. Once again we find ourselves in the midst of the games industry's biggest season. The Triple A titles are flowing like free booze at the office Christmas party, and the major hardware players are building their bundles and hoping for a bonanza.

Misc Pics (17 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 14-November-2008  15:18:37 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Friday again! Remember to send any funny pics you take or find to me at agg@overclockers.com.au. :)



Friday Morning (4 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 14-November-2008  09:11:28 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

The World of Warcraft expansion Wrath Of The Litch King was released last night. More than 2,000 people waited outside an Oxford Street store in central London, in advance of a special midnight opening. Similar launch events are being held in North America, Taiwan, and South Korea. The Wrath of the Lich King includes a bonus continent for high-level players, a plethora of new enemies, extra equipment, spells, and new professions. You can discuss it in our games forum.

Despite showing feature length films, YouTube is unlikely to compete with the iTunes store. But while long-form movies are unprecedented for YouTube, MGM has plans to offer only a handful of older titles, such as Bulletproof Monk and The Magnificent Seven. Some of the studios are easing their way into YouTube and Hulu, the video portal formed by NBC Universal and News Corp., because of doubts about whether ad-supported business models will ever generate the kind of returns the studios see from pay-TV channels, DVD sales, and iTunes, which charges for movie downloads.

Australian shoppers are being duped when it comes to video cables. HDMI cables are commonly sold as an add-on to flatscreen television sets at all major electronic outlets, where salespeople generally link a higher price tag to superior visual performance. However some technical experts argue that there is very little to distinguish a cable priced at hundreds of dollars from one that costs $20, and urge buyers to be on their guard against slick sales pitches that claim otherwise.

It's no wonder that there are problems when Microsoft takes over seven years to release a patch. In a blog posting, Microsoft acknowledged that "Public tools, including a Metasploit module, are available to perform this attack." Metasploit is an open-source tool kit used by hackers and security professionals to build attack code. According to Metasploit, the flaw goes back to March 2001, when a hacker named Josh Buchbinder (a.k.a. Sir Dystic) published code showing how the attack worked.

However, Microsoft have explained why it's taken so long. "When this issue was first raised back in 2001, we said that we could not make changes to address this issue without negatively impacting network-based applications," wrote Budd. "And, to be clear, the impact would have been to render many (or nearly all) customers' network-based applications then inoperable." Budd explained that, while Microsoft in 2001 advised customers to use SMB signing, it knew then that the mitigation might not be a usable solution for some.

Dell continues to enhance its green credentials by providing LED backlit laptops. Following up on the eco-friendliness after going carbon neutral, one of the greenest tech companies around has announced that beginning in December, it will start offering LED-lit displays on their laptops instead of the mercury based cold cathode fluorescent backlighting. The LED backlighting apart from saving power (estimated to cumulate upto 220 million kilowatt-hours by 2010), will also offer a better lighting and contrast, even when light is falling on the screen. These new screens perform much better in daylight conditions than the traditional screens.

If you think LED lighting is cool, check out these cutting edge designs. From holes in rooftops to flickering torches to glowing light bulbs — the world of household lighting has come a long way. Nowadays artists and designers alike are stretching the boundaries of form and function when it comes to how we light our homes.

Today's timewaster is Oiligarchy. Delicious, profitable, stinky oil! Let's get stupid rich, huh? Trash the environment, bribe the politicians and squish the little peoples. Don't feel rich enough? Then Drill, Baby, Drill!

Thursday Night (12 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 13-November-2008  21:32:01 (GMT +10) - by Agg

This one's from Matt:

There are a lot of rumours flying around about Windows 7 and netbooks, so its good to separate fact from fiction. Even though Microsoft is trying to stir up excitement for Windows 7’s prospects on new (and most likely more expensive) multi-touch-enabled PCs, there is more interest among users and industry watchers around the next release of Windows running on netbooks. Microsoft officials demonstrated a full-fledged version (we don’t know which pre-beta build number) of Windows 7 running onan Asus Eee with 1 GB of RAM.

Google has optimised its search page for the iPhone. Results are now formatted in a similar manner to other Google services, with a blue navigation bar, and vertically-aligned text or imagery that eliminates the need to scroll horizontally. Where appropriate, results will automatically bring up maps, as well as larger and more obvious direction and phone call buttons. In the case of multiple listings a Show Map link brings up the new view.

Google's web browser, Chrome, offers a 300% boost to cloud based websites. Avature, a provider of Enterprise 2.0 Human Capital Management solutions, announced the release of a new Chrome-optimized version of its Recruiting CRM software-as-a-service (SaaS) solution, which recently made it into Human Resource Executive magazine's top ten human resources applications. What is interesting in this new version is an optimized “Rules Engine” that delivers a 300% increase in the processing of complex Javascript programs in the Chrome browser, in addition to an improved user interface and better performance on IE7 and Firefox browsers.

Google have also added a new feature into Google Earth, allowing people to visit ancient Rome. Google has reconstructed the sprawling city - inhabited by more than one million people as long ago as AD320. Users can zoom around the map to visit the Forum of Julius Caesar, stand in the centre of the Colosseum or swoop over the Basilica.

In today's rant, why does software need a save button? What I mean is, why is it an option? "Do you want to save the changes you made to MyLifeStory.doc?" Are you insane? Why are you even asking me this? Of course I want to save. My CPU doesn't ask me if I want to spin the cooling fan does it? My firewall doesn't ask me if I want to block hackers. These things are just assumed.

eGames Expo and PC Buildoff Competition (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 13-November-2008  15:14:57 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Scorptec's PC Buildoff Competition is on this weekend in Melbourne, as part of the eGames Expo that begins tomorrow. Featuring leading game publishers and developers, along with major brands demonstrating the latest products and technologies, eGames provides a 'hands-on' experience for gamers of all ages. More info on the buildoff comp here.

Thursday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 13-November-2008  14:59:14 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Power Supply:
Corsair HX1000W on HWSecrets.
Antec TruePower Quattro TPQ 850W on Tech-Reviews.
Be Quiet Dark Power Pro 850w on XSReviews.
BFG LS-680W on HWLogic.

Thermaltake BigTyp 14Pro on XbitLabs.
Titan Cool Idol TTC-NK75TZ Heatsink on FrostyTech.
Thermaltake SpinQ CPU cooler on LegionHW.
Xilence Icebox Passive Hard Disk Cooler on TechWareLabs.
Thermalright T-Rad2 GPU Cooler on Pro-Clockers.
Arctic Cooling Accelero Twin Turbo VGA cooler on Bjorn3D.
Cooler Master NotePal X1 laptop cooler on InsideHW.
Thermaltake RamOrb Active Memory Cooler on ThinkComputers.

ASUS X80L Notebook: Good Tool on a Budget on XbitLabs.
Samsung R560 15.4 inch Notebook on TrustedReviews.
Asus Eee PC 1000HA Netbook on FutureLooks.
Lenovo ThinkPad SL300 on ITReviewed.
ASUS G50V gaming notebook on TechReport.
Apple MacBook 13in - Aluminium 2008 Edition on TrustedReviews.
ASUS Eee Top ET1602 on ITReviewed.
Apple's Aluminium Notebook on TechReport.

Australian Internet Filtering Wiki Page (2 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 13-November-2008  12:51:49 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Just a reminder that Jay, Oztrailrider and others have been hard at work keeping this OCAU Wiki page updated with info about the ongoing mandatory internet filtering issue. It's a good way to keep on top of news stories, and to find out how to get involved.

Thursday Midday Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 13-November-2008  12:32:27 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Cooler Master HAF-932 on Bjorn3D.
Antec MicroFusion Remote 350 Mini HTPC Enclosure on BenchmarkReviews.
RaidMax Iceberg Elite Series on ViperLair.
Antec Fusion Micro on XSReviews.
NZXT Whisper on Bjorn3D.
Cooler Master HAF 932 Full-Tower on Tweaknews.

Silicon Power 32GB SLC SATA-II SSD on BenchmarkReviews.
G.Skill FM-25S2-128GB 2.5-inch Solid State Disk on Tweaktown.

Video Cards:
HIS Radeon HD 4670 IceQ Turbo on LegionHW.
XFX 9800GT on OCClub.
Overclocked Radeon HD 4870 X2 Shoot-Out: ASUS, MSI on HotHardware.
Palit Revolution 700 Deluxe - HD 4870 X2 2048 MB on TechPowerUp.
Sparkle GeForce 9500GT 1GB on Phoronix.

Crucial Ballistix Tracer 4GB DDR3-1333 Memory Kit on BigBruin.
Adata XPG DDR3-1600 Tri-Channel 3Gb Kit on CPU3D.

Thursday Morning #2 (3 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 13-November-2008  09:04:37 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

YouTube is allowing people to bid on tags for their videos. According to YouTube, here's how it works: First, YouTube users, whether individuals or corporations, decide which videos they want to promote. Then they decide which keywords they want to target. Google, YouTube's parent company, has created automated tools that help users place bids for the keywords in an automated online auction, as well as set spending budgets. When people use keywords in search terms for videos, YouTube will display relevant videos alongside the search results.

China has recognised internet addiction as a medical illness. China is expected to become the first country in the world to officially classify internet addiction as a mental disorder. Chinese government officials would be required to register the term with the World Health Organization, which has seen an increased interest in internet- and game-related addiction.

Google Chrome is now able to work on Linux. "Dude, Gmail works in the test shell on Linux!" said programmer Dan Kegel in a note to the Chromium developers mailing list on Tuesday. It's pretty crude, though: the "enter" key doesn't work, for example. Chromium is the name of the open-source project behind Chrome. But what's a "test shell"?

Obama could be the next Mario. A new online video game has been developed in honour of US President-elect, Barack Obama. Super Obama World has Obama running round a world modelled on Nintendo's Super Mario World. The game takes a satirical look at US politics, with Obama collecting flags and dodging lipstick-wearing pit bulls, lobbyists and Sarah Palin.

There's a new supercomputer in town. How fast is the new supercomputer at Oak Ridge National Laboratory? If everyone in the world performed one mathematical calculation per second, it would take 650 years to do what this machine can do in one day. That makes the $US100 million computer, nicknamed "Jaguar" by scientists, the fastest in the world for unclassified scientific research. At more than 1 quadrillion mathematical calculations per second, it is about 55,000 times faster than your typical PC.

USB 3.0 specifications will be released on the 17th, but here's a sneak peak. The USB 3.0 specification guarantees an increased performance of 10 times compared to the capabilities of the current USB 2.0, providing a bandwidth of 600 MB/s second. Devices employing USB 3.0 specifications are planned to be available to consumers in 2009 or 2010 and would be backwards compatible with USB 2.0 and USB 1.1.

If you're looking for a new way to smuggle items, look no further. Ever need to hide or smuggle gigabytes of notes? No? Well, that is pretty cool anyway. A company that specializes in hollow spy coins — actual currency machine-hollowed to create a secret compartment inside — points out that MICRO SD CARDS FIT INSIDE THEIR SPY COINS, including nickles, pennies and quarters. Just don’t spend it.

Mexican scientists have found how to make diamonds...from tequila. The tequila diamonds could be used to "detect radiation, coat cutting tools or, above all, as a substitute for silicon in the computer chips of the future," said Miguel Apatiga, one of three researchers from the National Autonomous University of Mexico who made the discovery. The scientists found that heated vapour from tequila blanco, when deposited on a stainless steel base, can form diamond films. Discussion in our science forum.

Thursday Morning (8 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 13-November-2008  01:25:26 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

As if MacBook Air wasn't light enough, a story on Apple Insider says that Apple wants to make it even lighter by constructing the body out of carbon fibre. The move would reportedly raise production costs but shave upwards of a 100 grams off the notebook, dropping its weight from a hair over 3 pounds (or 1363 grams) to 2.78 pounds (or 1263 grams).

According to a source close to Intel, USB 3.0 is going to be officially unveiled next week. Almost 14 months after Intel announced USB 3.0, the final protocol specification will be formally announced next Monday at the first SuperSpeed USB Developer Conference in San Jose, CA.

It seems that Microsoft is.....for lack of a better word, up s*** creek , in China. China E-commerce Info Tech Company has sued Microsoft (MSFT) for patent infringement because of the use of RSS within its Vista operating system. Microsoft reportedly responded to the issue last Friday, saying it has never violated the intellectual property rights of China E-commerce.

Staying with Microsoft, over the past few weeks we have heard allot of good things about Microsoft’s Windows 7, due for release sometime next year. However, things are not all peaches 'n' cream for the OS giant with benchmarks showing Windows 7 pre-beta to be bloated and with compatibility issues. unfortunately, it seems the rosy picture painted by the development team at the WinHEC and PDC conferences might have been a bit overly optimistic. InfoWorld has done some extensive early testing on the pre-beta of Windows 7 and the results aren't very impressive in terms of improvement over Vista.

However, it's not all gloom and doom for Windows 7 with reports suggesting that Windows 7 can extend notebook battery life. According to jkOnTheRun, notebooks running on a pre-beta version of Windows 7 use less power compared to systems on Windows Vista.

And speaking of peaches 'n' cream, Eurogamer says that the new Xbox Experience update to the Xbox360, will offer users many new features, one of which is the ability to install the games on the HDD for increased performance. However, this may not always be the case. Unfortunately though comparisons from Eurogamer reveal that the load times for most games aren't massively improved. While some titles like Valve's Orange Box have load times that are substantially increased, the bulk of other games show little to no improvement - including titles like Halo 3.

HEXUS has posted an article in which they look at the performance differences between a Core 2 system with 3 GTX280's in SLI and a Core i7 system with the same graphics card setup. The result, we're told, is an Intel processor that can finally justify the sheer power of multiple GPUs.

Meanwhile, CPU3D puts Adata XPG DDR3-1600 Tri-Channel 3Gb Kit to the test. In this review, we'll be taking a look at the Adata XPG Tri-Channel DDR3-1600 PC3-12800 3Gb kits. The package contains 3 x 1Gb modules, all rated to run at 800Mhz (DDR3-1600 spec) with low memory timings of 8-8-8-24. They also come with that distinctive "RED" heat spreader from Adata, which should be enough to help cool these modules.

Word on the street is that AMD apparently might be about to release a stopgap RV790 GPU in order to compete with NVIDIA's 55nm GT200 refresh. Whilst it was suggested that the Sunnyvale, CA based company planned to unleash its next-generation RV870 solution in Q1 2009, it is now claimed that a refresh of the RV770 GPU shall fill the void and, at the same time, carry AMD's torch against NVIDIA's GT206.

And speaking of which, NVIDIA GT206 55nm GPU was caught on camera. A covert shot of NVIDIA's upcoming 55nm GT206 GPU, has shown up on HARDSPELL, courtesy of INPAI.COM.CN.

If you have had enough of the Nvidia vs ATI debates then why not check out Toshiba's SpursEngine graphics co-processor, for PC's to be launched by Leadtek in the form of WinFast PxVC1100. The SpursEngine is based on the same architecture as the Cell Broadband Engine microprocessor that powers the PlayStation 3 console and was partly developed by Toshiba. While the Cell contains a Power PC core and eight "Synergistic Processing Elements" cores, the SpursEngine contains only four of the SPE cores.

With Activision Blizzard busy preparing to pump out some of the company’s biggest titles before Christmas, it’s good to see that worlds biggest game publisher took the time to suspended 350,000 Battle.net accounts. Blizzard have suspended an impressive 350,000 Battle.net accounts identified as using "third-party hacks" in both StarCraft and Diablo II. According to folks at Blizzard, this is on top of an additional 7,700 Warcraft III accounts getting the same treatment.

Interesting Forum Threads (3 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 12-November-2008  21:42:22 (GMT +10) - by Agg

How do I find these threads? Well, I check out Who's Online, and the Forum Live View... and I just take note of interesting things as I wander around the forums. With around 6000 new posts every day I miss quite a lot, I bet. :)

Pimp my rack in Business & Enterprise Computing.
Why I use Linux in Other Operating Systems.
So a copper tube in my rad had a hole in it in Extreme Cooling.
Little Big Planet - Discussion Thread in Sony Consoles.
New Xbox Experience Coming Nov. 19 in Microsoft Consoles.
Smile Detection in Photography.
Have some consideration for the A people in Mobile Phones.
Russia continues to respond to US Missile Shield in Current Events.
Cheating husbands to pay mistresses in Current Events.
I'm not this kid's dad, so where's my money? in Current Events.
The road to a low pollution future: rail in Current Events.
GM & Ford: Bankruptcy approaching? in Motoring.
Are these the new speed cameras? in Motoring.
FG F6 - My review in Motoring.
GM share value approaching "zero" in Career, Education and Finance.
New World Monetary/Financial Order in Career, Education and Finance.
Brands/Products not made in China in The Pub.
Why dont they put parachutes in commercial airplanes? in The Pub.
This Week's Debate: What is causing Global Warming? in The Pub.

Oh, and I keep forgetting to mention we recently passed 100,000 members! Depending on how you count it's either Ghost64 or Markwen, but either way, it's cool. :)

Wednesday Evening (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 12-November-2008  19:21:00 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

LittleBigPlanet is suffering due to overzealous moderation. Some have spent days crafting their ideal custom worlds, including tributes to classic games and characters such as Final Fantasy, Pac-Man, Batman, Sonic The Hedgehog, God Of War, Super Mario Bros and Indiana Jones. Over the past few days, many have found their levels summarily blocked by Sony and LittleBigPlanet's developers, Media Molecule, because they allegedly breach someone else's intellectual property.

Commercial TV networks want digital TV to be delayed. A group representing commercial broadcasters says the switch-over to digital television should be delayed in areas where its take-up is lagging. The Federal Government is still finalising the timetable for the switch-over, but says it will begin in 2010 and finish by 2013.

First veins, now people's body odour could be used to identify them. Every person has a unique body odour, like their fingerprints, that could be used as an 'odourprint' to identify them, a new study has found. Scientists revealed an individual's odour signature remains detectable even when their diet is changed to include strong smelling foods such as garlic and spices.

Have you every wondered how technology products get their names? Coming up with a great technology product or service is only half the battle these days. Creating a name for said product that is at once cool but not too cool or exclusionary, marketable to both early adopters and a broader audience, and, of course, isn't already in use and protected by various trademarks and copyright laws is difficult—to say the least

AMD are making gains on nVidia. "AMD has by all accounts exceeded expectations with its Radeon HD 4000 series," according to report issued by market researcher Jon Peddie Research (JPR). Aggressive pricing by AMD's ATI graphics unit made the difference, bringing down prices on add-in graphics boards. "Priced aggressively yet delivering solid performance, AMD's new line not only took back some market share--jumping up to 40 percent from 35 percent the quarter prior--it forced Nvidia (and partners) to cut prices on its recently released GTX 200 series product," JPR said.

Microsoft are denying they paid a contractor to replace open source software with Microsoft software. Media reports alleged that Microsoft had proposed paying the sum to a government contractor under a joint marketing agreement last year in order to persuade the contractor to replace Linux OS with Windows OS on thousands of school laptops.

How do you breathalyse a whale? [S]cientists have come up with an ingenious method that involves flying a toy helicopter over the animal just as it releases air through its blowhole. Petri dishes slung beneath the chopper capture the exhaled gases and mucus.

If you want to do your bit for the planet, check out these relatively unknown green gadgets. Take one look at our cool gadgets, from our tiny matchbox-sized boxes that contain 100 albums worth of music, to a deck-of-cards sized device that serves as a phone, email retrieval device, GPS, and podcast player, and you know that we are definitely living in the future.

Have you ever wanted a HUD in real life? This week's Photoshop Contest asked you to design your own personal Heads-Up Display, and we got some really awesome results. Unlike many contests, nearly every single entry was unique and there aren't a lot of the same gags over and over again. And I can personally say that I would kill to have almost all of these in my day-to-day life. Nice work, guys. Hit the jump for your top three winners and then check out the rest of the best in our Gallery of Champions

In today's interesting yet scary article, read about how the U.S. lost a nuclear device. The United States abandoned a nuclear weapon beneath the ice in northern Greenland following a crash in 1968, a BBC investigation has found. Its unique vantage point - perched at the top of the world - has meant that Thule Air Base has been of immense strategic importance to the US since it was built in the early 1950s, allowing a radar to scan the skies for missiles coming over the North Pole.

Sponsor Specials (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 12-November-2008  16:32:23 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Remember to keep an eye on our Sponsor Specials Forum if you're shopping around. In there our many sponsors have discounts and specials on speakers, CPUs, data recovery, headphones, web hosting, netbooks, cases, cooling and a range of other components.

Wednesday Afternoon (1 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 12-November-2008  15:47:19 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Dan has more letters. The clean feed, lightbulbs, bus tickets, keyboards, air conditioners and green cars.

A blogger has found errors in NASA's climate data. GISS’ most recent data release originally reported last October as being extraordinarily warm-- a full 0.78C above normal. This would have made it the warmest October on record; a huge increase over the previous month's data.

What effect will the economic downturn have on Web 2.0? The economic downturn will not sound the death knell for Web 2.0 firms say analysts and experts.But, they warn, tough times are ahead and to weather the downturn Web 2.0 must grow up focus on real problems.

But Facebook isn't having any trouble with numbers. Facebook announced last night that the company has seen users of its mobile site, m.facebook.com, jump from 5 million to 15 million this year. The most recent change made to the site, allowing comments to be posted on status messages from your phone, resulted in more than 1 million mobile posts in the first 24 hours.

Is Google being too quiet with Android vulnerabilities? When it comes to telling customers about security weaknesses, there's a fine line between alerting customers and inviting attacks. With T-Mobile G1, the first phone to run Google's Android operating system, I think the companies are erring on the side of inadequate disclosure.

However, Google is now able to predict viruses of a different kind using search history. We've found that certain search terms are good indicators of flu activity. Google Flu Trends uses aggregated Google search data to estimate flu activity in your state up to two weeks faster than traditional systems.

Veins are set to replace fingerprints and retinas for security purposes. Finger vein authentication, introduced widely by Japanese banks in the last two years, is claimed to be the fastest and most secure biometric method. Developed by Hitachi, it verifies a person's identity based on the lattice work of minute blood vessels under the skin.

Are you fed up with rickrolls? To help with this problem, we use advanced algorithms to intelligently identify the most interesting scenes in each video and we use that information to create a nice visual summary that shows you what a video is all about with just a glance.

Or just annoyed with large websites and their annoying habits? The big guys think that just because they entered in the game early, or because they have some popular print publication backing them up, they can get away with whatever they want. Screw that! They better start changing and listening more to the users, else I am sure their traffic will go down hill. Here are 5 habits from mainstream websites that make me sick.

Obama is being put under the microscope. It took approximately 150 million carbon nanotubes, each measuring tens of thousands of times smaller than a human hair, to build John Hart's unique homage to Barack Obama.Even then, the finished product is only half a millimetre in diameter and almost indistinguishable from any other garden variety micro dot - unless you happen to be looking at it through a microscope.

Wednesday Midday (13 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 12-November-2008  12:32:33 (GMT +10) - by Agg

I know AVG's free antivirus is quite popular among you guys, so be aware that it can kill your system under certain circumstances at the moment. More info here. Update: Shredder spotted this statement from AVG about the problem.

Australia's Communications Minister is copping a flogging from iiNet's managing director, who says they will be part of the mandatory internet filtering trial. "Every time a kid manages to get through this filter, we'll be publicising it and every time it blocks legitimate content, we'll be publicising it." Malone concluded: "This is the worst Communications Minister we've had in the 15 years since the [internet] industry has existed." Senator Ludlam from The Greens has also questioned Minister Conroy, as can be seen in this video.

Unsurprisingly, Rick Astley won the Best Act Ever award at the EMA's recently. This is of course on the back of a huge internet rickroll campaign, but it's nice to see the organisers took it in good humour and didn't remove the (presumably) billions of duplicate votes. :)

Evangel pointed out this site which is tracking class action lawsuits against EA related to their SecuROM copyright protection. Mark Punzalan — one of their lawyers — stated that they are investigating into 'Spore, Mass Effect, The Sims 2, BioShock, Need for Speed, Medal of Honor, Armed Assault, Neverwinter Nights 2, Overlord, World in Conflict, Supreme Commander, Command & Conquer 3, and STALKER'.

XbitLabs have a 750GB HDD roundup. This roundup includes solutions from all companies making 750GB hard disk drives these days: Hitachi, Samsung, Seagate and Western Digital. We will discuss features and performance of 10 hard drives with 750GB storage capacity.

GoN have an interview and preview of the James Bond Quantum of Solace game. As part of our trip to the US, we dropped in on Treyarch to see their new baby, the soon-to-be released in Australia James Bond tie-in, Quantum of Solace. We took along our video camera and chatted with two of the co-designer/directors, Jeremy Luytes and Adam Gascoigne, all about the game and what we can expect.

Google Mail now has a video chat function, thanks Matt. Unlike many current video chat products, Gmail Video and Voice uses a proprietary plug-in, not Flash. The small (2MB) download supports Firefox, IE, and Chrome on the PC, and Firefox on the Mac.

Wednesday Morning (5 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 12-November-2008  00:52:48 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

According to EETimes.com AMD has officially announced that by late 2009 it will be moving to the 32nm manufacturing process. MUNICH, Germany — Backed by a strong investor, AMD has plans to expand its production lines — and future foundry service providers — fab 36 and fab 38 in Dresden. During a congress in Munich, Udo Nothelfer, Vice President Manufacturing and Technology for AMD's Fab 36, provided details on the company's strategy and roadmap.

Nvidia is set to begin shipping the new Tegra system-on-a-chip for mobile devices sometimes by the middle of 2009. Tegra is expected to be officially launched in the spring of next year, Jen-Hsun Huang, NVIDIA's president and CEO, has revealed during a conference call on the company's financial results.

Kaspersky has issued a Security Alert following widespread attacks by hackers who compromised up to 10,000 web servers, mainly located in Western Europe and the US. The cyber criminals are adding a line of JavaScript code onto the sites that redirects hacked site visitors to one of six servers.

Intel Launches Health Gadget to Monitor Illnesses. A small device about the size of a small-form-factor PC, the Health Guide PHS6000 is a small white box with a flip-up 10.4-inch LCD touchscreen, a webcam with privacy shield, and a touchscreen. Inside it is an undisclosed Intel processor and motherboard, together with Bluetooth and four USB ports.

Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Stephen Conroy, yesterday called for expressions of interest from internet service providers to conduct a live pilot of the controversial internet content filtering. If recent reactions to mandatory ISP filtering by the heads of Internode, Telstra's BigPond and iiNet are anything to go by, the government is likely to have difficulties finding ISPs willing to partake in the pilot.

It looks like miniature nuclear reactors will be going on sale within 5 years. Using technology licensed from the U.S. government, an Arizona-based company is planning to bring a new generation of miniature nuclear reactors to market.

Bit-tech has just posted an article called Winter 2008 Graphics Performance Update in which they compare the performance of graphics cards ranging from Nvidia 9800 GTX+ to ATI HD4870X2 and the latest drivers. There have been quite a few changes in the market over the last few weeks, as both AMD and Nvidia have released new drivers that promise some significant performance gains.

Seagate has today announced that it has started shipping Momentus series 2.5-inch self-encrypting HDDs. These drives comprise both 5400 and 7200RPM models, both in capacities of 160 and 320GB. The 5400RPM drives have 8MB of cache whilst the 7200RPM drives have 16.

It's official! Microsoft has announced new Australian Xbox 360 Price cuts. Microsoft is bringing out the big guns against Sony and Nintendo this holiday season by aggressively lowering the prices of its Xbox 360 SKUs on shelves around Australia. We have a forum thread on this topic.

Need for Speed Undercover has gone gold! Need for Speed Undercover has players racing through speedways, dodging cops and chasing rivals as they go deep undercover to take down an International crime syndicate.

EA Announces Dead Space Premium Upgrade Packs. Winner of over 23 critic awards and boasting a score of 89 on Metacritic.com, Dead Space delivers the ultimate in psychological thrills and gruesome action.

Apparently some eagle-eyed kicky-punchers have uncovered what looks like a complete Street Fighter IV character roster.

Another one bites the dust as Ubisoft Acquires Massive Entertainment. Publisher Ubisoft has acquired Massive Entertainment, the Malm?, Sweden-based studio behind real-time strategy games Ground Control and World in Conflict.

Tuesday Night Reviews (1 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 11-November-2008  21:17:47 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

Audio / Visual:
BenQ E2200HD and E2400HD - 1080P FullHD LCDs on Anandtech
Sanyo PLV-Z5 LCD Projector on Trusted Reviews
Asus Xonar D1 on Overclockers Club

Xigmatek Battle-Axe on techPowerUp
Vantec AeroFlow FX 92 on Techware Labs

Video Cards:
Sapphire Radeon HD4550 512MB on Overclockers Online
Palit Radeon 4870 SDE CrossfireX on Techware Labs
HIS Radeon 4670, 4830 & 4850 on Overclock3D

Motherboard / CPU / RAM:
Abit AN78GS on Overclockers Club
Mushkin HP3 10666 2x2GB on Overclockers Club
MSI X48 Platinum Intel X48 Express on PCSTATS
ASUS P6T Deluxe X58 Motherboard on PC Perspective
Asus P6T Deluxe (X58) on CPU3D

Ikonik Zaria Mid-Tower Case on High Tech Reviews
Ikonik Zaria A20 on NordicHardware
NZXT Guardian 921 on Bjorn3d

Gaming Peripherals:
Logitech G9 Laser on tBreak
Razer Moray Gaming Earbuds on Bjorn3d
OCZ Behemoth Regulator Mousepad on techPowerUp

Power Supplies:
Tagan BZ 700 on PureOC
Coolmax CUG-950B 950W Power Supply on Rbmods
Be Quiet Dark Power Pro 850w on XSReviews
Antec Signature 850W on DriverHeaven

Software / Games:
Gears of War 2 on Bit-tech
Photoscape – Basic Image Editing Software on tkArena
Fallout 3 on Trusted Reviews
LittleBigPlanet on Gaming Nexus

Storage / Network:
Silicon Power 32GB SLC SATA-II SSD on Benchmark Reviews
QNAP TS-209 Pro II NAS on Modders-Inc
G.Skill 128GB SSD on Tweak Town

MotoGP 08 Game Preview (7 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 11-November-2008  14:41:47 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Darkness sent over some pics and in-game videos from MotoGP08, the new motorcycle racing game that was launched recently.





Here's the videos:

General Highlights (20MB)

Wheelies & Slides (29MB)

Vermeulen Hot Lap (24MB)

Battle with Stoner (24MB)

Tuesday Morning #2 (7 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 11-November-2008  07:39:33 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

It's Rememberance Day today. Did you observe a minute's silence at 11am? Discussion here.

MGM has announced it will post feature length films to Youtube. CNET News reported on Thursday that YouTube was preparing to launch a feature-film service after spending months smoothing over fractured relationships in Hollywood. MGM will likely not be the last studio to post full-length feature films on YouTube, according to an industry source. Last summer, Lionsgate announced a partnership with YouTube, but that deal calls for the studio to offer only short clips from films and TV shows. MGM will also post TV shows on YouTube, according to multiple reports published on Sunday.

Kim Jong-il's health has been called into question after several recent photos were discovered to have been photoshopped. Digital sleuths are coming closer to uncovering the mystery surrounding North Korea's secretive leader, Kim Jong-il, who has dropped from public view and is widely rumoured to be gravely ill or worse. Pyongyang has released several "recent" photos of Kim, 66, in an effort to prove his good health, but digital analysis by keen-eyed online investigators has fingered them as being either dated or doctored using tools such as Photoshop.

How many responses do spam emails get? Spammers are turning a profit despite only getting one response for every 12.5m e-mails they send, finds a study. By hijacking a working spam network, US researchers have uncovered some of the economics of being a junk mailer.

Here are 30 crazy case mods. Extreme computer "case modding" community has some truly talented designers, who are as passionate about their PC cases, as MI6 wizards were about James Bond killer gadgets. In some cases (pun intended), the end product has truly radical looks and some wicked innards ready to unleash a gamer's fury upon the world... You can also check out the PCDB or the modding forum.

Do you have a noisy hard drive and want some peace and quiet? This guide shows how a hard drive can be effectively silenced using some household items and an aluminium enclosure. I performed this modification a while back on a passively cooled pc. The hard drive used was an IDE drive. Even in an open case, with no other fan noise, this device reduced almost all hard drive noise to complete silence. EDIT: not the best idea if you want the drive to live for a long time

Sun and Google are experiencing a break-up. Which came first — Google dropping StarOffice from its Google Pack or Sun agreeing to distribute Microsoft’s Live-Search-powered MSN toolbar with the Java runtime?We’ll probably never know (at least until Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz blogs about it). But the new deal, announced on November 10, between Sun and Microsoft is ironic, if nothing else, given the twisted history between the two over Java.

nVidia have released the 4gb Quadro FX 5800. The Quadro FX 5800, already seen in NVIDIA's Quadro Plex D data cruncher, replaces the 5600 at the top of the NVIDIA heap with 240 CUDA-programmable parallel cores and the industry's first card with 4GB of graphics memory. MSRP? Just $3,499 for you big spender.

The Phoenix lander on Mars has gone dead. Phoenix, which landed on the planet's northern plains in May, had been struggling in the increasing cold and dark of an advancing winter. The US space agency says it will continue to try to contact the craft but does not expect to hear from it. I wonder if they're tried turning it off and on again?

Shifting our digital world into the third dimension is not always easy. But thanks to this printer and this monitor, the future is one step closer.

Today's timewaster is storm the house 3. The sequel to your favorite game, storm the house 2. Which of courese was the sequel to your second favourite game, storm the house.

Tuesday Morning News (16 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 11-November-2008  01:12:13 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

If you happen to have a pacemaker or know someone that does, then you might be interested in this story. RESEARCHERS reported Sunday that the headphones used with popular MP3 players, like Apple's Ipod and others, can interfere with implanted heart pacemakers and defibrillators.

It seems that those pesky Nigerian scammers and other cyber criminals are up to their old tricks, this time targeting Facebook users. Now that even non-tech savvy internet users know not to respond to, or click on links in, emails from strangers, online thieves have turned to social networks and are finding it is easier to trick people when posing as their friends.

I haven't heard this before but apparently there were rumours going around that Telstra was in the market to buy some media companies as prices came down, however, chief executive Sol Trujillo has ruled Telstra out as a buyer of traditional media assets. The comments came amid speculation Telstra might be a wild-card bidder for media companies as prices came down, seeking to add more content to its businesses, which include the Sensis classifieds unit, BigPond internet access and a half stake in the pay TV provider Foxtel.

NetRegistry chief executive Larry Bloch has weighed in on the internet filtering debate saying the government had gone too far. Australia's biggest domain name seller NetRegistry has slammed the government's proposed internet content filtering scheme, claiming that the proposal would hurt small business.

A US National Cyber Investigative Joint Task Force says that cyber attacks on the White House in recent months have originated in China. The unnamed official quoted within the report speculated that the cyberattacks might follow the "grain of sands" approach allegedly used by Chinese intelligence. That involves parsing through often low-level information to find a few nuggets.

Microsoft CEO, Steve Ballmer says that Windows Mobile 6 is real and it's coming soon. Clearly, Steve Ballmer is determined to dominate this morning's news. After smugly rejecting Jerry Lang's 180 Yahoo takeover plea, the outspoken CEO has today let slip a biggie for lovers of smartphones everywhere: Windows Mobile 6 is real and it's coming soon.

It seems that Electronic Arts just can't keep themselves out of the spot light in recent week, most of which is for all the wrong reasons. Apparently EA is facing a pair of new class-action lawsuits which were lodged against EA last month. Both suits were filed with the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California and both target EA's use of the controversial SecuROM digital rights management (DRM) software on the company's PC games.

2008 proved to be a very good year for Nintedo in Europe. According to financial results report released by Nintendo, sales of Wii in Europe have reached 10.4 million units. Sony's PlayStation 3 was second and Microsoft's Xbox 360 came in third. The Wii hit its peak in April with nearly 180,000 units sold, compared to its rivals sales of around 90,000 each. However, the data did suggest that the recent price cut on the Xbox 360 improved sales, with Microsoft selling over 60,000 units in October, topping the PS3.

If you're in the market for some new DDR3 memory for you Core i7 rig, then you might want to have a read of this article on Techage. Can't decide on the right memory kit to pick up with your brand-new Core i7 PC upon release? This article was designed for you. We aren't comparing brands here, but are rather comparing densities and frequencies against each other to see if there's any point at all in purchasing a higher-end kit. You might just be surprised at our results.

If you're not planning on jumping on the Nehalem bandwagon just yet and are in the market for a good overclockers friendly motherboard then check out Foxconn's special P45 Quantum Force motherboard. Expreview has gotten hold of some photos and details of another Quantum Force series motherboard almost ready to be unleashed from Foxconn. As it's based off Intel's P45 chipset for Core 2, it's a bit of a shame Foxconn couldn't get this particular board to market much sooner, what with Nehalem now stealing much of the enthusiast light.

Ars Technica is looking in to Getting hydrogen from water without precious metals. One of the most hotly pursued areas of green energy technology is the search for an economical and practical method of splitting water into oxygen and hydrogen. The main target product, hydrogen, is a clean and energy-rich fuel that could substitute for fossil fuels in many contexts. Water is an obvious source of hydrogen, and it may be possible to produce hydrogen using light energy in a renewable and sustainable fashion.

Ever wondered what gaming on the iPhone would be like? TrustedReviews attempts to answer this question in detail. One year ago, Apple and gaming weren't often found in the same sentence. While a few die-hards liked to pretend that the Mac was a viable games platform and not just a vehicle for World of Warcraft and a handful of PC hand-me-downs, anyone with a real interest in games knew better. The iPhone and iPod touch have changed all that. Over 13 million of us have now bought an iPhone or touch, and it turns out that one of the things we like doing with these device is play games.

And as always, time for some gaming news and we start of with Eurogamer’s review of Football Manager 2009 which is due for release this Thursday. The Football Manager series enters yet another season, and this year, expectations are higher than ever. Strength in depth has been added with around 80 new features, hype has been spread in a promising pre-season and a new superstar performer - a 3D match engine - has transformed the look of the series.

If you're a fan of EVE Online then I'm sure you already know about the planned new update for this space-based MMO. However if you haven't heard of it then have read of this preview. US, November 7, 2008 - CCP Games invited us over to Iceland to attend its world famous Fan Fest going on this week, and the company showed off the upcoming Walking in Stations update to EVE Online, the space-based MMO. This will finally let you get out of your spacecraft and let you walk around space stations with an avatar not unlike those in other MMOs.

If you feel the need.......the Need for Speed then you will have to go deep deep deep undercover with this hands-on preview. Recently, though, we've spent some time with the first several hours of Need for Speed Undercover to explore some of the things you can do once you go undercover in the Tri-City Bay with little more than a police badge and some sweet driving skills to your name.

Fans of Sony's Playstation 3 have an exclusive game coming their way in the form of Quantum Theory. For some nice screenshots click here.

Last week it was reported that all 3 major console manufactures, Sony, Nintendo and Microsoft, have announced that no there are no plans for price cuts this year, however, it seems that Microsoft has had a change of heart and if this report has any substance then as of tomorrow you might be able to pick up a good deal on the Xbox360.

And to conclude this busy morning in the news room, here is an Idiot's Guide to Being a PS3 Fanboy. Xbox360 fans haven't been forgotten either in their own version of Idiot's Guide to Being an Xbox 360 Fanboy.

Have a great day everyone!

Misc Pics (24 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 10-November-2008  12:15:09 (GMT +10) - by Agg

I was distracted by relatives and server issues on Friday, so no Misc Pics.. here's a few to make up for it! Thanks to Fatman and others for these:



Monday Morning (2 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 10-November-2008  11:11:47 (GMT +10) - by Agg

This big one's from Matt:

Guitar Hero is set to take on Rock Band with the new version including a drum kit and microphone. Using one of the instruments, players accompany a music track trying to match the performance and prowess of an on-screen character. The game features more than 80 licensed tracks from a diverse set of artists, ranging from Korn to Fleetwood Mac. The series differs from most other games in that it uses a customised controller, rather than the systems gamepad.

The internet could save the world according to Al Gore. The one-time presidential contender turned environmental champion told Web 2.0 Summit goers in San Francisco Friday that technology has provided tools to save the planet while creating jobs and stimulating the crippled economy. "The young people who have been inspired by Barack Obama's campaign and the movement that powered Barack Obama's campaign want a purpose," Gore said. "One of the reasons we were all thrilled Tuesday night is it was pretty obvious this was a collectively intelligent decision."

Youtube is set to offer feature films if a deal goes through. For months, Google, YouTube's parent company, has been talking to the major film companies about launching an ad-supported, streaming movie service, two execs with knowledge of the negotiations told CNET News. "It's not imminent," said one of the executives. "But it's going to happen. I would say you can expect to see it, if all goes well, sometime within the next 30 to 90 days."

More news from Apple and IBM with a judge ordering Papermaster to cease working for Apple. Papermaster's argument is that Apple actually doesn't compete with IBM, since "IBM focuses on high-performance business systems such as information technology infrastructure, servers and information storage products, and operating systems software," while "Apple, on the other hand, is in the business of designing, manufacturing and marketing consumer-oriented hardware and related products." More to the point, he says that "I do not recall a single instance of Apple being described as a competitor of IBM during my entire tenure at IBM."

There is a new music player in town on the Mac. Many have oft-complained about Microsoft’s hold on users with its monopoly on installed system components such as Internet Explorer and Microsoft Media Player. Even though the OS X counterparts to those programs are engineered better, the truth is that Apple really does engage in the same practices Microsoft does and it is only their small market-share that keeps the official complaints from filing in.

What’s the most downloaded catalog track in iTunes history? Before you jump out your seat and guess ‘Jack Johnson’, keep in mind that a catalog track refers to a song released in the pre-digital era, but later re-released as a digital download. So any guesses? Here’s a hint: think Power Ballads.

A quick reminder about Patch Tuesday. Microsoft is planning a small Patch Tuesday this month — just two bulletins affecting Windows and Office users. According to the company’s advance notice mechanism, one of the two bulletins will be rated “critical” and will address flaws that could lead to remote code execution attacks. The second update, rated “important,” applies to all versions of Windows, including Vista.

In today's exploration of the crazy world we live in, I present you with this wall. Rube Goldberg, eat your heart out. Or you could impress visitors with a one-of-a-kind chandelier.

Obama's victory speech is doing well on bittorrent. The 2008 presidential campaign in the United States has been without doubt one of the most memorable in history. Already, Obama’s victory speech has become a collectors item. A day after he was elected president, his acceptance speech has been downloaded well over 100,000 times from various BitTorrent sites.

Fujitsu are developing an anti-drowsiness system for cars. Put simply, the system would detect specific changes in the motorist's heart rate via the steering wheel, and once it determined that you weren't exactly "with it" any longer, the car could then roll its own windows down, blast the stereo or jolt the wheel in order to get your attention. In our minds, the biggest issue here is to not cause an accident by spooking a sleepy driver out of their slumber, and we presume that's exactly what the company is working on in its R&D labs.

Apple has patented a head mounted display that reacts to movements. The wearer of the device can pick a seat in the fake theater and then manipulate the image, zoom in and out, and look around thanks to an accelerometer and gyroscope built into the goggles. Few of these patents make it to market, but if you're eager to throw social acceptability out the window, there are already iPod and iPhone-compatible head-mounted displays on the market -- you'll just have to do without the positioning gimmick until Apple is crazy enough to actually sell this thing.

Do you want to replace Windows XP with Ubuntu? This tutorial shows how you can set up an Ubuntu 8.10 (Intrepid Ibex) desktop that is a full-fledged replacement for a Windows desktop, i.e. that has all the software that people need to do the things they do on their Windows desktops. The advantages are clear: you get a secure system without DRM restrictions that works even on old hardware, and the best thing is: all software comes free of charge.

A pilot managed to land his plane despite suddenly becoming blind. A plane was scrambled from the RAF base at Linton-on-Ouse in North Yorkshire to help stricken pilot Jim O'Neill, 65. He was flying a two-seater Cessna aircraft from Glasgow Prestwick Airport to Colchester, Essex, when he suffered a stroke and lost his sight.

Some of these have featured before, but here's 10 great flash games and animations. Many people think that Flash animation is evil per se, but what happens when it falls in to the "wrong" hands? Here are a variety of online nastimations - use and disseminate carefully! While doing so you can ponder this thought - is Flash really evil or is it just drawn that way?

Today's timewaster is Robokill. Free a space station from evil robot control!

Photography Gallery (2 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 9-November-2008  18:36:44 (GMT +10) - by DiGiTaL MoNkEY

Some recent photos from our Photography Gallery forum:

Sunday Afternoon (12 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 9-November-2008  13:43:03 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

Busy day in the news room so let's begin....

Corsair has just been voted the Best Power Supply Manufacturer of 2008. Corsair, a worldwide leader in high-performance computer and flash memory products, today announced that it has been voted “Best Power Supply Manufacturer” by the readers of Custom PC Magazine for the second year running.

Yesterday we heard that Palit has built a custom designed ATI HD 4870 X2 which it claims to be the most powerful video card. Today we hear that Gainward is getting ready to unleash their new beast which they call it; Rampage 700 Golden Sample 'Goes Like Hell' Edition.

Meanwhile, AMD's much anticipated follow up to its RV7xx GPU, 40nm chip known as the RV870, will not be a multi-chip module. Whilst there has been a great deal of speculation about whether or not the Sunnyvale, CA based company would make its RV870 GPU, a multi chip module, it is claimed that the company will go down the path of making it a single chip instead.

PowerColor has added a new card to its line up, PowerColor LCS HD4870 Water cooled Card. TUL Corporation, a leading manufacturer of AMD graphics cards, announces a brand new graphics card for overclockers – PowerColor Liquid Cooling Solution, LCS HD4870. With EK Water Blocks cooling solution, PowerColor LCS HD4870 provides an extraordinary thermal performance in a single slot design, enhances overclocking ability to its optimum stability and delivers an extreme gaming performance.

Apparently the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) was the subject of a DDoS attack the other night. In a statement to the INQ, the BBC said the attack originated in a number of different countries but didn't specify which. When the Beeb's techies blocked international access to a limited subset of servers, it resulted in a marked improvement of the serving of bbc.co.uk.

If people think that Rudd Government's proposed internet filtering plans are "over the top", then spare a thought for our friends in the UK where the British Government plans on installing black boxes at ISPs around the country for the purpose of logging every email and web site visited by its citizens. Shady Home Office officials have had talks with representatives from British based ISPs including BT, AOL Europe, O2 and BSkyB and told them of possible plans to implement the "black box" technology for storing all raw data being transmitted over the Web. It would all be funnelled into a giant central database controlled by the Government.

Tim Smalley from Bit-tech is off to Taipei, Taiwan for MSI’s Master Overclocking Arena competition. MSI says that it has gathered the world’s best overclockers for the competition, and they will be using MSI’s P45D3 Platinum motherboard at the heart of a platform sponsored by Intel, Nvidia, OCZ Technology, Western Digital, Enermax and Genius.

So you think you have a pretty awesome Home Theatre setup, aye? Does it include 40,000 LPs; 20,000 CDs; 15,000 DVDs; 12,000 laserdiscs; and more than 5,000 high-definition possibilities!? What about 30 McIntosh Tube Amplifiers, Sony SRX-R110 - a 4K Cine Alta professional projector with 8.89 megapixels, Sony PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Nintendo Wii, Apple iPhone, Twin General Electric No. 868 high voltage transformers (13,800 volts to 240 volts/800 amperes each), 8.8 octagonal KSS sound system, 8-foot-by-10-foot Stewart Snowmatte film screen? Chances are that those specs alone have already surpassed your own setup but if you had some serious dollars than this Mother of all Home Theatres might just be within your reach.

Here’s a scary thought. According to a report on ComputerWeekly, 280m people worldwide have lost personal details over the last three years, with almost a fifth (19%) of data loss incidents linked to government organisations. The consultant said that overall, 25% of data losses were through PC thefts.

TechARP has just posted the latest Microsoft Windows 7 Road Map.

HardwareZone have a head to head duel between Eee PC S101 and Eee PC 1000H. Although the netbook market is still in its infancy (though growing really fast), the Eee PC branding has gone from cool to overly confusing in that short span of time. With the shenanigans that ASUS has been pulling lately with the sheer number of new models being released, we had the nasty feeling that they were trying to turn the Eee branding for all their products (which luckily wasn't so).

Now for some gaming news and we start with Bit-tech who posted their first impressions of Valve's Left4Dead demo. While IGN takes a look at the soon to be released new COD game in a hands on preview called Call of Duty: World at War Blowtorch & Corkscrew.

And staying with COD, there seems to be some very nasty words coming from Infinity Ward's Community Manager Robert Bowling, who took a very angry swipe on his personal blog at Treyarch's Call of Duty: World at War producer, denouncing him as "Senior Super Douche Noah Heller" who "doesn't know what the f*** he's talking about". If I see one more Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare google alert come through my inbox, that ends up being a COD:WaW article that is only showing up because YOU referenced Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare more times than you mention World At War….Especially when you’re pulling s*** out of your ass..... It's safe to assume that Robert doesn't like Noah.

Saturday Afternoon (8 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 8-November-2008  17:14:36 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

If you're waiting for Windows 7, it'll be out by Christmas...next year. LOS ANGELES--In a technical session on Thursday afternoon, Microsoft provided the clearest public indication that it is planning on getting Windows 7 completed in time to run on PCs that ship for next year's holiday buying season. In a presentation on its somewhat secretive Velocity program to improve PC quality, Microsoft director Doug Howe showed a slide saying that the Vista Velocity program would continue through next spring as Microsoft worked to improve Vista machines that ship in next year's back-to-school time frame. He went on to say that Microsoft would continue the Velocity effort with Windows 7.

So this year why not buy one of the worlds most expensive keyboards? I’m sure most of you may think you already have good keyboards, but I found some that are actually quite amazing and out of the ordinary. You may never be able to afford some of them, but they are fun to look at! Some are programmable, some you can twist and bend and one you can see in total darkness.

But what font should you use while typing? You’ve probably seen the term serif before and you might even know what it means: A serif is the small detail, or tail, that extends from the end of the core strokes that comprise alpha characters. A sans serif font doesn’t have these details.

Maybe you need some free vector images to go with your text? There's plenty of free vector art out there, but most of it shouldn't be seen in public, let alone on your latest digital art masterpiece. Here are 60 completely free vector graphics that even the professionals use. They really should cost money, but we're not complaining!

IF your looking at images of a different kind, then you'll be glad Firefox finally has porn mode. To see the new features, you’ll need to download a nightly build, which is not something we recommend for most people, but if you’ve just got to try it, you can grab a copy from the developer site. To enable private browsing mode, head to the tools menu and select the new Private Browsing option. Once you do, Firefox will stash away all your current windows and tabs and offer a new window that displays this message (Minefield is the code name for pre-release builds)

If you somehow manage to get a virus, here's how to re enable Add/Remove Programs. Today, I will share a tip with you, on how to troubleshoot Add/Remove programs, when disabled by a Virus. There are times when you get an error while opening Add/Remove feature from your Control panel. The system gives an error by saying that it has been disabled by the administrator. Are you facing such type of problems? Recently, I had the same problem in my system. Surprisingly, it has a very simple and easy solution, any newbie can do this easily, by following the steps mentioned below.

Maybe you should value security a bit more. Do we value better security? That's a fair question. I know my readers do, but I'm talking about the population in general. Computer malware has been around almost as long as computers have been. Even in the earliest days, the biggest "iron" that completely filled large rooms, with only dummy terminals attached, had to worry about computer worms and viruses.

And don't leave your keys lying around in plain sight. Few of us would care if our house keys appeared in a photograph of the family picnic posted on the internet. But we should be concerned because advances in digital imaging and optics meant any photograph of a key posed a potential security threat, Stefan Savage, a computer science professor at the University of California, warns. Professor Savage and two of his PhD students have developed a software program called Sneakey that can clone a key in "two to three minutes" after analysing a digital photograph.

What do chickens, environmentalists, and a pirate have in common? But like always, the Linux community is a vast store of fascinating information and ideas. I’ve worked with a Japanese company called Plat’Home, maker of small, tough, eco-friendly servers, for the past nine months or so. They ran a contest this summer about ideas. They called it the “Will Linux Work? Contest.” They collected ideas from Linux lovers on how they would use Linux in interesting and sometimes challenging ways.

What is better-Ubuntu or Mac OS X? Last week we published Ubuntu 7.04 to 8.10 benchmarks from a Lenovo ThinkPad T60 and had found Ubuntu's performance degraded peculiarly over the past year and a half. We then published Fedora 7 to 10 benchmarks covering the same time-frame and from the same exact Intel notebook computer, but the newer releases of Fedora were only marginally slower in a few tests. In our performance exploration of Ubuntu we now have additional tests to publish this morning. This time around we're switching out the hardware we're testing on to Intel's newer Core 2 series and we're comparing the performance of the x86 and x86_64 editions of Ubuntu 8.10 against Apple's Mac OS X 10.5.5 operating system.

Do you want to help combat vampires? Are you too lazy to go around unplugging appliances when you’re done with them? Do you still consider yourself environmentally aware? Then maybe it’s time to look into purchasing the Harriet Carter Outlet Switch. The device— not to be confused with a power strip— is a current cutter that allows you to turn off electricity flow while appliances are still plugged in.

BitTorrent Inc. is going through a rough patch, with co-founder Ashwin Navin leaving and half the staff, including the CEO, being laid off. As an open-source technology protocol, the file-sharing system BitTorrent is going strong, representing about half the world’s Internet traffic by some measures. But the San Francisco company, BitTorrent, is showing signs of serious trouble while it tries to commercialize the technology.

Its not just the first world under attack by anti-piracy groups. Although many stories about anti-piracy activity seem to come out of the United States, Europe, Canada and Australia, operations are certainly not limited to these countries. Today, news is filtering through that South Africa’s biggest BitTorrent and Usenet NZB sites have been taken down by the recording industry.

The ultimate toaster. 'nuff said. Do you like your toast dark? How about the Dark Side of the force? If the path of a Dark Jedi is your calling, you may want to remind yourself by branding all of your toast with the dark lord himself. This Darth Vader toaster will brand a semblance of Vaders helmet on to your toast every morning.

Saturday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 8-November-2008  12:27:48 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

Audio / Visual:
Asus P2-M3A3200 HTPC on Overclockers Club
Decco Integrated Amp & Era Design-4 speakers on Madshrimps
Canon HG20 on TrustedReviews
Samsung VP-HMX20 on TrustedReviews

Thermaltake MaxOrb EX CPU Cooler on OCIA
Gelid Solutions Silent Spirit on TechPowerUp
Nexus BeamAir 120mm airflow straightener on Frosty Tech

Video Cards:
Palit Radeon HD 4870 Sonic 1GB on TweakTown
AMD HD4550 versus GeForce 9400GT on Bjorn3d
Sapphire Radeon HD 4850x2 on CPU3D
Sapphire Radeon HD4850 X2 on Bigbruin
Palit 9800GTX+ on ProClockers
ATI Radeon 4670 Roundup: MSI vs. Palit on HardwareZone

Motherboard / CPU / RAM:
ECS P45T-AD3 Black on Bjorn3d
Elixir DDR3-1333 PC3-10600 4Gb Kit on CPU3D

Lian Li Tyr PC-X500 on TechPowerUp
NZXT Whisper on Bit-tech
Zalman GS1000 Professional Full-Tower Enclosure on PC Perspective

Gaming Peripherals:
Fanatec Porsche 911 Racing Wheel on Techware Labs
Razer Moray Headphones on I4U

MSI Wind U90 on InsideHW
Lenovo Ideapad S10 Netbook on HotHardware
Smooth Creations Smoothbook DR on Tweak Town
Corsair & Super Talent 8GB USB Drives on DriverHeaven
Samsung T10 on Overclockers Online

Power Supplies:
Enermax Revolution 85+ High Efficiency PSU on AnandTech

Software / Games:
Far Cry 2 - A Far Cry From The Original? on Overclock3D
Google Chrome Web Browser on ITreviewed
Fallout 3 on YouGamers
Mac OS X 10.5 vs. Ubuntu 8.10 on Phoronix
Fallout 3 graphics performance in-depth on TechSpot
TechSmith Camtasia Studio 6 on ITreviewed
BioShock (PS3) on Gaming Nexus
Spiderman Web of Shadows on OCModshop

Storage / Network:
QNAP TS-509 Pro Gigabit 5-Bay SATA NAS Server on Benchmark Reviews
Linksys WRT150N-RM Wireless-N Router on ThinkComputers
Thecus N5200B PRO Five-Bay NAS Server on Futurelooks

Casio G'zOne Boulder on Digital Trends
Nikon CoolPix P6000 on TrustedReviews
Plustek OpticBook 4600 Book Scanner on ITreviewed
CrazyPC Red EL Neon Wire Kit on Modders-Inc
Sennheiser VMX 100 Bluetooth Headset on HardwareLogic
Samsung Bluetooth Stereo Headset (YA-BH270) on PCSTATS

Saturday Morning (4 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 8-November-2008  01:50:21 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

Palit claims to have built the World’s Most Powerful Graphics Card. The new Revolution 700 Deluxe effectively puts Palit in the kings throne of fast graphics – advertising it as the World’s Most Powerful Graphics Card, it is the first custom designed video card based on AMD/ATI’s HD 4870 X2.

Sparkle on the other hand will bundle a custom designed control tool called Spa Tune with all their graphics cards. GRAPHICS CARD Maker Sparkle has announced that all new hardware from the Taiwanese company will be bundled with Spa Tune, a custom-designed control tool which will allow users to fine tune graphics performance and power consumption.

Meanwhile sources close to Nvidia claim that the gpu manufacturing giant is close to releasing the GeForce Stereoscopic 3D glasses. According to sources in Taiwan's graphics card industry, Nvidia has outsourced the manufacturing of its GeForce 3D stereo glasses to EMS provider Flextronics, and the product has passed design validation tests (DVT) in October and is ready to be shipped before the end of 2008.

Yahoo CEO Jerry Yang reportedly said yesterday that he wants Microsoft to buy Yahoo, however, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer today said that Microsoft was "not interested" in making a new offer for Yahoo. Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer today said that Microsoft was "not interested" in making a new offer for internet company Yahoo, despite Yahoo's share price currently sitting at less than half what Microsoft initially offered.

iiNet's managing director Michael Malone said that Rudd Government's $4.7 billion national broadband network was "doomed to be a monumental failure". Malone said that the government's good intentions had become lost. "They have misunderstood the need for regulatory policy reform and mishandled the process so badly that it is doomed to failure before it's even begun," he said.

Creative Labs have finally put a smile on Linux users faces with the official release of Sound Blaster X-Fi Linux driver under the General Public License. Creative's X-Fi on Linux has been far from a pleasant experience, but today that may begin to change. As a move that could be interpreted as either Creative Labs throwing in the towel or them simply acknowledging they want to play with the Linux and open-source communities nicely, they have announced the release of the source-code to their binary driver. We have a discussion thread on our forums.

According to cryptographic experts Erik Tews and Martin Beck, Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA) encryption protocol can be cracked in fifteen minutes.Cryptographic expert Erik Tews will appear at PacSec security conference in Tokyo next week with his presentation, "Gone in 900 seconds: Some Crypto issues with WPA." There, Tews is expected to show off his discoveries in TKIP (Temporal Key Integrity Protocol) cracking, that allow WPA to be broken in a brief 12-15 minute window.

Eight days ago it was reported that Michael Atkinson, the South Australian Attorney-General, strongly opposed to any change in legislation regarding video game classification. However, it appears that Mr Atkinson has had a change of heart. While originally refusing to reveal just what he objected to in the original paper, Mr. Atkinson has now made the allegation that the submitted paper was "biased", and "did not adequately represent both sides of the argument.

Friday Afternoon #2 (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 7-November-2008  14:20:34 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

A judge has blocked the construction of a solar farm in the Californian desert. The desert project was a joint initiative by San Diego Gas & Electric and Phoenix-based Stirling Energy Systems signed in 2005. It aimed to install 900 MW of Stirling solar power in uninhabited Southern Californian desert wasteland. Stirling power is a method of concentrating sunlight with mirrors onto water fueling a Stirling engine, and is thought to possibly yield higher efficiencies than photovoltaic cells. The plant would feature 34,000 dishes, each generating 25 kW.

But maybe small is the next big, as far as solar cells are concerned. The solar cells, about the size of a 12-point font letter ‘o,’ are being tested to eventually power microscopic machines, such as those used to test chemical leaks in the air. The researchers at the University of South Florida say these are some of the smallest solar cells ever, with twenty aligning to form one panel at just one inch. Typical single cells are around two inches across on their own, and then form the large silicon panels we see on rooftops.

Tiny solar cells didn't feature in Time Magazine's top 50 inventions of 2008 though. From a genetic testing service to an invisibility cloak to an ingenious public bike system to the world's first moving skyscraper — here are TIME's picks for the top innovations of 2008

What about 10 spy gadgets that should be illegal? Hey there, secret agent man. Do you have a reckless disregard for the law? Have you ever wanted to be in a heist? Thomas Crown, James Bond, and Max Smart got you itching for a gadgetized suit? Any villains in your life? Then this list if for you! Here are 10 spy gadgets that are so awesome they should be illegal.

Global broadband prices are down 20% in 2008. The biggest price drop is for DSL broadband over phone lines, with the average monthly price falling from nearly $67 in the first quarter to $53 in the third, according to the analyst firm, Point Topic. However, little of the decrease has happened in the U.S., where prices have been largely stable and are already lower than the global average. Americans are paying $16 per megabit per second of download speed, far lower than the $46 average in the Middle East and Africa.

Obama has big plans for American tech. President-elect Barack Obama has an ambitious and comprehensive national agenda that seeks to put into effect many initiatives and changes. To assist him in implementing this vision, he is recruiting top leaders to his transition team, which will prepare his plans and flesh out his plans, and ready them for proposal to the new House and Senate.

However, he is still looking for a Chief Technology Officer. The person in this new position--and possibly a new White House technology office staff--could be given the directive to create new levels of transparency and access to government agencies, or to guide policies that spur innovation and growth. Technology experts within the Beltway warn, however, that a CTO would have to avoid potential pitfalls such as creating new spending for ineffectual projects, running into conflict with other agencies, or simply becoming nothing more than a symbolic office.

Delicious is 5 years old today. Delicious, the social bookmarking site that was largely responsible for making ‘tagging’ one of the defining elements in today’s web, has turned 5. The site launched back in 2003 and was one of the first companies to be profiled on TechCrunch. In December 2005 the site had its big payday when it was acquired by Yahoo, and has racked up 5.3 million users since launch.

Friday Afternoon (8 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 7-November-2008  13:08:21 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Motorcyclists can park for free in Sydney for a 12-month trial. During the trial, motorcyclists and scooter riders will no longer need to buy or display a ticket in parking meter zones within the City of Sydney local government area, which includes the CBD, Pyrmont, Redfern, Ultimo, Darlinghurst, Paddington and Kings Cross.

One interesting thing from the US election was CNN using holographic reporters. Underneath - for what CNN said was the first time in television history - the screen announced: "Jessica Yellin via hologram from Chicago. Live." Update: apparently it was faked, boo.

The UK Govt continue their data security nightmare by leaving a memory stick in a carpark. The stick contained the usernames and passwords of a "handful" of members of the public, although their details were encrypted, she said.

Here's an interesting weekend project.. a guy has built his own F-35 fighter jet (kinda). Sure, it is a scaled version and it doesn't come with a demonic helmet, but you can actually drive the thing like a car and the level of detail is absolutely amazing. Also on the plane front, there's an electronic warfare variant of the Super Hornet now. Now finishing its testing phase as it gets ready to enter action next (year), the EA-18G will replace the current and aging EA-6B Prowler.

Embedding a GPS display in a rear-view mirror is a fairly neat idea. By integrating the car’s rear-view mirror with an a fully functioning GPS and camera mode, drivers will have everything they need in map data, Bluetooth and car cameras in one single easy-to-view area of the vehicle.

After our Nehalem review a few people wondered about Folding@Home performance on i7. Chainbolt is checking that out in this thread.

Andrew357's Gongride (6 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 7-November-2008  11:46:01 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Andrew357 entered the "Gongride" from Sydney to Wollongong to raise money for MS last weekend. He raised over $4000 so as agreed wore OCAU logos for the ride:

click to enlarge

Congrats, Andrew! More info and discussion here.

Friday Morning (3 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 7-November-2008  09:08:11 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

SanDisk has developed a new file system technology for solid state drives (SSD), which it claims has the ability to make an SSD up to 100x faster than existing systems. "Besides the advantage of being much more reliable and durable, solid state drives (SSD) also have the advantage of being quicker to deliver data. SanDisk detailed today a new technology that it hopes to cement SSD as the performance choice, coupling it with new metrics."

And while we're on the subject of solid state drives, OCZ today has launched its new Solid Series of solid state drives aimed at notebooks users. "The new OCZ Solid Series of SSDs are available in capacities of 30 GB, 60 GB and 120 GB, with read and write speeds hitting up to 155 MB/s and 90 MB/s, respectively. Designed and optimized for modern notebooks, the Solid Series of SSDs are available in a 2.5-inch form factor and are not recommended for use in laptops purchased prior to 2007."

Today at WinHEC 2008, Microsoft has introduced their latest OS in the making to their hardware partners and has encouraged the engineers to begin developing for the platform by distributing the application programming interface (API). "We’ve done a great deal of work in Windows 7 to enable new scenarios with our hardware partners, and we are excited by the partner innovation we have shown today," said DeVaan, senior vice president of the Windows Core Operating System Division at Microsoft"

Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer was in Sydney yesterday for Telstra's investor day and it didn't take him long to start cracking Telstra jokes. However, Telstra's chief executive Sol Trujillo wasn't in the mood for jokes as he told the shareholders to "shoot the telco's management" if it ever agrees to structural separation in order to build the national broadband network. So it seems that Sol is still keen on building the national broadband network but I'd love to know how he plans on doing that since he already cut 8,784 jobs since 2005 and plans to cut a further 3,216 jobs by 2010. One person who seems to have survived the cut is John McInerney, who today was promoted to the CIO and group managing director of IT.

Microsoft should buy us, says Yahoo boss Jerry Yang. "Speaking at the Web 2.0 conference in San Francisco yesterday, Yang said:"To this day, I'd say the best thing for Microsoft to do is buy Yahoo." He added, "Did we want to do the deal? Yes." It is not clear whether Yang's comments were prompted by the collapse of the agreement between his firm and the mighty Gurgle."

Ars Technica is reporting that The Pirate Bay, a bit torrent P2P website has set a new record of 22 million active peers this week. "Pirate pride is alive and well in Sweden, where notorious file-sharing search hub The Pirate Bay is moored. The site announced today that it set a new record of 22 million active peers this week, up from only 12 million in April of this year. If P2P growth has slowed, the most prominent public tracker in the world certainly isn't feeling the squeeze. "

The launch of Intel's Core i7 platform has been well documented this week, with a massive number of in-depth reviews posted on various hardware review websites. Today however, bit-tech goes a step further by Overclocking Intel's Core i7 920. " With an RRP of $284 it’s not exactly a Core 2 Quad Q6600 G0 territory bargain, but it's the cheapest of the new Core i7 CPUs by a large margin. What potential does $284 buy you though? The Q6600s clocked to between 3.0 and 3.6GHz usually, although inevitably there are some people out there with some serious skills having eked out over 4GHz."

As if invading Iraq and Afghanistan wasn't enough, the US Army now wants to invade Azeroth in the World of Warcraft. "The US Army has announced that it is to start testing a new type of artificial intelligence in public through the servers for Blizzard's World of Warcraft.

Thursday Night Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 6-November-2008  21:58:23 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

Audio / Visual:
Pioneer BDP-LX71 Blu-ray Player on TrustedReviews
Philips Aurea 42PFL9903H 42in LCD TV on TrustedReviews

Thermalright T-Rad2 on LegitReviews

Cooler Master CM 690 NVIDIA Edition on Benchmark Reviews
Lian Li PC-7FW on PureOverclock
Cooler Master Stacker 830 SE on PC Stats
Gigabyte 3D Aurora on Overclock3D

Video Cards:
Palit Radeon HD 4870 Sonic Dual Edition on OCIA
XFX GTX 260 (216) Black Edition on NeoSeeker
MSI R4850-T2D512 512MB on Viperlair
Sapphire Radeon HD 4850 X2 In CrossfireX on Tweak Town
Leadtek GeForce GTX 260 Extreme+ 216 on TechPowerUp
Zotac 9400GT 512MB on XSReviews
HIS Radeon HD 4850 IceQ 4 Turbo on Legion Hardware

Motherboard / CPU:
Asus Rampage II Extreme on TrustedReviews
ASUS P6T Deluxe OC Palm Edition on Hardware Secrets
AMD 790GX Chipset on Digit-Life
ASUS M3A79-T Deluxe on Motherboards.org

Sony VAIO AW-17GU on HardwareZone
Asus N10 Netbook on Techware Labs

Intel X25-M 80GD SSD Drive on t-break

OCZ Dominatrix Laser Gaming Mouse on ThinkComputers
Samsung TL34HD on Digital Trends
Kodak EasyShare V1253 12MP Digital Camera on ThinkComputers
Lian-Li Silent Force Power Supply on ITreviewed

Thursday Afternoon (7 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 6-November-2008  16:50:01 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

For everyone out there living underneath a rock, the Democratic candidate Barack Obama yesterday became the first African American President of the United States. (Agg edit: that's president elect. :) )

But what does an Obama presidency mean for green tech? Obama's energy plan, detailed fully earlier this year, is ambitious. It calls for a $150 billion investment in clean technologies over 10 years, aggressive targets for greenhouse emission reductions, and programs to promote energy efficiency, low-carbon biofuels, and renewable energies.

But far more important news is coming out of the election: Ted Stevens may retain his seat. In Alaska US Senator Ted Stevens has been around seemingly forever but a conviction, as a nice October Surprise would change all of that - right? In the lower forty-eight we await the Alaska Senate race results and the big question on everyone's minds, "Did Ted Stevens Win Election?" If you're wondering who Ted Stevens is, this video should clear it up.

CNN incorporated holograms into its election coverage...except they didn't. The CNN anchors were not really speaking to three-dimensional projected images, but rather empty space, Kreuzer said. The images were simply added to what viewers saw on their screens at home, in much the same way computer-generated special effects are added to movies. Kreuzer said the images were tomograms, which are images that are captured from all sides, reconstructed by computers, then displayed on screen. Holograms, on the other hand, are projected into space. CNN officials could not be reached for comment.

Also, yesterday's election allowed for Twitter, Digg and Youtube to obliterate several records. It was a high-voltage day for the Internet. I only have stats for a few sites, but rest assured that records were broken all over the place. Personally, I can't remember more than a few minutes (when I went to vote, e.g.) when I didn't have my laptop open, the better to surf around furiously with.

Digg also have a dialogg with the former next president of the United States and environmental activist Al Gore. Digg founder Kevin Rose is interviewing former Vice President & Nobel Peace Prize winner Al Gore! From now until 9:00am PST / 12:00pm EST Nov. 6th, you can submit and Digg up questions to decide which questions will be asked. The Digg Dialogg will premiere on Friday, Nov. 7th at 7:00pm PST / 10:00pm EST on Current TV and be posted here at 8:00pm PST / 11:00pm EST.

On the environment, the entire face of the renewable energy industry is about to be changed. Solar breakthroughs are relatively commonplace. However, typically they are iterative -- small increases by a percent or two in efficiency. Researchers at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have invented a new solar cell that is anything but iterative as it blows away past offerings by a large margin; something RPI calls a "game-changer" for the solar business.

If you thought people were getting annoyed over the election, you ain't seen nothing yet. Now that the elections are finally over, let's focus on something even more contentious: the holy war over operating systems. I've gotten a lot of responses regarding my Halloween post on Microsoft's "I'm a PC" marketing campaign and Windows 7. Some good, some bad, and some plug-ugly.

Today also marks the end of an era. Microsoft operating systems almost never actually die, preferring instead to fade away into the mists of antiquity, but as of November 1, Windows for Workgroups 3.11 is finally, officially, totally dead at the age of 15 (though we can bump that backwards if you prefer to count from the original Windows 3.0).

Thursday Morning (7 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 6-November-2008  02:24:12 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

Things are not looking good at Nvidia if this report is anything to go by. Apparently the planned roll out of Nvidia's GTX270 and GTX290 has been delayed until February, 2009. And to make matters worse the GX2 appears to be dead. "IT LOOKS LIKE Nvidia's run of bad luck is continuing. The latest word is that the GT200b is in for another respin, that would be the third. This means the 270 and 290 are effectively delayed until February, and the GX2 part is quite dead.

First it was Sony, who announced that it has no plans of dropping the price of its PlayStation 3 in the foreseeable future. Following day Microsoft has jumped on the bandwagon and it too announced that there are no plans of a price cut to the Xbox360 this year. Today we hear that Nintendo is joining the party by announcing that it's gaming console, Wii, will not see a price cut. "This is my personal thinking, but when the model's price-tag drops over time, manufacturers are telling consumers it's better to wait, and I've always thought that was a mistake," Iwata said. This seems to be an opinion one has the luxury of holding when their console is entering its third holiday season, and they still can't meet demand."

Core Security Technologies have identified a vulnerability in Adobe Reader version 8.1.2. "Damian Frizza, a CoreLabs researcher, discovered the vulnerability in May while he was investigating a similar vulnerability in a different PDF viewer application called Foxit Reader. Core Security immediately reported the new hole to Adobe.

Ars Technica has an interesting article about Carbon nanotubes (CNTs). "As we continue to push more data around the world faster and faster, an efficient telecommunications infrastructure is a must. Optical computing will also need small, cheap components that don’t skimp on performance as well. Although CNTs look promising for both applications, much of this hinges on the economics of scaling up CNT production to meet the demands of all the new and exciting devices we’re seeing roll out of the laboratories around the world.

Water cooling is nothing new in the world of overclockers, however, for one reason or another some people still feel iffy about running a water cooling setup in their system. If you're one of those people then you should take a look at TweakTown’s Guide to Water Cooling Made Easy. "I've always wanted to move to water cooling in my main rig as long as I’ve had a computer. And with the nagging engineer in the back of my head telling me never to mix water and electronics, I took the plunge anyway.

With Command and Conquer: Red Alert 3 just being released you might want to take a look at Bit-tech's review of the game and see what the Russians are getting up to. "Things have changed with the Command and Conquer franchise over the past few years and it seems that ever since developer Westwood was first devoured by Electronic Arts the series has had a turbulent time."

If you happen to own a copy of FarCry 2 and you plan on treating yourself to a system upgrade, more specifically, a Core I7 965 Extreme, X58 and DDR3 system upgrade then you might be interested in this review. "We decided to miss the initial rush of hurried reviews on FarCry 2 and SLI and opt for FarCry 2 on Core I7, specifically the "Big Dog", the Core I7 965 Extreme. By waiting for the NDA to lift on Core I7 and the Intel X58 chipset, we're able to bring you a fresh look at FarCry 2, SLI, CrossFire, the X58 chipset, and Core I7 all rolled into one."

Wednesday Night Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 5-November-2008  22:13:56 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

Motherboard and CPU:
Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD5 on OCWorkbench
Intel X58 Extreme DX58SO on guru3d
Gigabyte EP45-EXTREME on Overclock3D
ASRock G43Twins-FullHD on Phoronix
Asus M3A79-T Deluxe on InsideHW

Video Cards:
ATI Radeon HD 4830 (512Mb DDR3) Sapphire vs HIS on CPU3D
GeForce GTX 260 with 216 Stream Processors on Digital-Life
XFX GTX260 Black Edition on OverclockersClub
Sapphire Radeon HD 4850 X2 2GB on Elite Bastards

Audio / Visual:
Samsung LE46A756 46in LCD TV on TrustedReviews

Antec Skeleton on High Tech Reviews
Antec Skeleton Open-Air Chassis on ITReviewed
GMC R3 Corona on XSReviews

Power Supplies:
Antec Signature 650W Power Supply on OverclockersOnline
Silver Power SP-600A2C on Bjorn3d
OCZ ModXStream-Pro 600w on Virtual-Hideout

NZXT Cryo LX Notebook Cooler on Modders-Inc.com
OCZ Gladiator Max HDT CPU Cooler on Legit Reviews
Gelid Silent Spirit CPU Cooler on OverClock Intelligence Agency
Titan Cool Idol NK75TZ CPU Cooler on Driverheaven

Software & Games:
Guitar Hero World Tour (X360) on Gamingheaven
Prince of Persia Hands-On Preview on Bit-tech
LittleBigPlanet on TrustedReviews
Adobe Photoshop Elements 7 on ITReviewed
Age of Booty on Gaming Nexus
Tom Clancy's EndWar on Gaming Nexus

iPod Nano Mono-Chromatic on Hardware Secrets
3M Micro Professional Projector MPro110 on HardwareZone
ASUS Eee PC 1000H 160GB Netbook on Benchmark Reviews

Thermaltake VI-ON 2.5-inch USB HDD Enclosure on TweakTown

Mio Moov 310 on DigitalTrends

Wednesday Night (3 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 5-November-2008  20:34:21 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

The future of lightbulbs has never been so green...or so weird. Within the next several months, several of the world’s biggest lighting companies, including Osram Sylvania and Philips, will introduce LED replacement bulbs to various world markets, including the United States. While the bulbs will be praised for their energy-saving characteristics and long lives, most consumers will immediately think, “These things look weird.”

If you thought those were weird, wait until you see these flash drives. Bacon - the smoky, fatty, traditional pork-based breakfast favorite has emerged as one of the Internet's most memorable memes. If it's bacon, it can't be bad - and the more bizarre it be, the better. No matter that 99 percent of those who enjoy "bacon-wrapped (insert disturbingly incongruous food here)" on their screens will never touch, taste or smell the object of their affection... just thinking of bacon is more than good enough.

And you can enjoy as much bacon as you want, as scientists have found a drug that tricks the body into losing weight. The University of Louis Pasteur team found the drug protected mice against weight gain and insulin resistance. The drug SRT1720 - a chemical cousin of red wine extract resveratrol - targets the protein SIRT1, which is thought to combat ageing, Cell Metabolism reports.

But maybe drinking this beer could have the same effect? Since headlines began trumpeting the antiaging effects of red wine a couple of years ago, the traditional toast to good health has become more meaningful. But students at Rice University, in Texas, think that beer drinkers shouldn't be left out. They're trying to engineer a yeast that produces the antiaging chemical found in red wine--resveratrol--and use it to brew "BioBeer" with a health boost.

But if that's not crazy enough for you, what about these 50 photoshopped images? The 50 highest scoring entries in the PST photoshop contests during the month October (2008)… For entries made for contests with a source image, you can compare the result with the original.

Or maybe you would prefer the relaxing tones of new Windows 7 desktop backgrounds? Recently, a lot of buzz has been created by Microsofts upcoming Operating System, formerly known to the world as Blackcomb, then Vienna and now Windows 7. Users from all over the Globe are dying to get every single detail that they can lay their hands on. Many new features are expected in Window 7, such as improved system tray, thicker sidebar, to name a few. Also included are a range of new wallpapers (as below) for Windows users to select for their desktop backgrounds.

With all those images, why not put each one on a different desktop in Windows XP? If you’ve ever used Linux then you know how effective having multiple desktops is can be. Not only does it aid in keeping down desktop clutter, it allows you to organize your desktop into various work environments (such as networking desktop, writing desktop, graphics desktop, programming desktop, etc). I have always been a big fan of this metaphor and have taken full advantage of its usage.

You may need some exceedingly fast RAM before you run them though. One of the biggest changes Intel has made with Core i7 is, of course, the integration of the memory controller onto the chip die. For its high end chips, it's also switched from dual to triple channel controllers. Given that changes in memory speed should have a far larger impact on Core i7 than they did on the Core 2 series – where the FSB was more likely to be a bottleneck – putting the fastest possible memory into a Nehalem machine will be key to unlocking its true performance.

Of course, its far better to use high speed RAM for gaming, especially considering sales of games are outstripping videos and music. UK sales of games will outstrip music and video for the first time in 2008, says a report from Verdict Research. A huge shift in consumer attitudes has turned video games into the UK's most popular form of entertainment, say the retail analysts.

Interesting Forum Threads (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 5-November-2008  12:59:45 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Voting in the USA Presidential Election is well underway - you can keep on top of things in this thread in our Current Events forum. Otherwise, check out these interesting threads:

Core i7 (LGA1366) compatible heatsinks in Intel Hardware.
AMD 45nm Cpus in November in AMD Hardware.
[REVIEW] - Thermaltake Spedo Case in Overclocking & Hardware.
Temperature triggered cooling fans in Electronics.
Dry ice run in Extreme Cooling.
How long until you replace hard disks? in Storage & Backup.
Crysis @ NASA in Games.
New Gmail features in General Software.
EA recommends users guess their serial numbers in Games.
Building a Fender 72 Reissue Telecaster Deluxe (with pics) in Musicians.
Tennant quits Doctor Who in Entertainment.
MTV Launches: MTV Music, Posts Almost Every Music Video Ever in Entertainment.
21 Movie, Variable Change Probability in Science.
Bachelor of Arts (Security, Terrorism and Counter-terrorism) in Career, Education and Finance.
Tool to help fight child porn in Current Events.
SA AG Michael Atkinson blocks games ratings debate in Current Events.
48 hours to capture victoria, what would you shoot? in Photography.
Which type of monitor do YOU use for photo editing? in Photography.
2008 Brazilian F1 Grand Prix - Season Finale in Motoring.
The Voynich Manuscript, cryptography, and communication theory in Science.

Corsair HX1000W Modular PSU (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 5-November-2008  12:25:41 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Windwithme has turned his attention to Corsair's HX1000W modular PSU. Loads of pics and info as usual:

click for the review!

AMD ATI Radeon HD 4850x2 (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 5-November-2008  12:12:37 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Reviews of AMD's Radeon HD 4850x2 are hitting the net. This is basically two 4850's sandwiched together in Crossfire mode, with 2GB of memory. It's aimed squarely at nVIDIA's GTX 280 in the high-end performance market.

Coverage on BenchmarkReviews, Hexus, DriverHeaven, EliteBastards, HWSecrets, OCClub, Pro-Clockers, TechPowerUp and ThinkComputers.

Discussion here.

Wednesday Morning #2 (2 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 5-November-2008  09:02:17 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

The internet is becoming an angry angry place. Ever seen a long raving profanity-laden tirade on a website? Well, if you're not new to the internet the answer is surely, yes. Virtually every website that accepts unfiltered comments has seen some of these posts. And they aren't just people casually casting about expletives. These people are angry, and ready to vent.

Maybe they're just annoyed at Windows Update? But sometimes Windows XP gets stuck in update mode. It will continue to show the flashing yellow shield in the System Tray suggesting you need to download and install important security patches. Windows may even display a chat bubble reminding you there is a system patch available. This may appear even after you have already applied all the patches — Windows just doesn’t recognize its current status.

i7 this, Nehalem that, but what motherboard should you get to go with your new processor? By now you've no doubt read all about Intel's new Core i7 processor. You know that the CPU otherwise known as Nehalem is based on an all-new architecture, complete with four cores (or eight, if you count Hyper-Threading), three levels of cache, an integrated memory controller, and a QuickPath Interconnect replacement for the front-side bus. You know that the Core i7 is unequivocally the fastest desktop processor around, and that in some cases, it's a fair bit quicker, clock-for-clock, than Intel's already impressive Penryn designs. Naturally, you want one. Badly.

But if you have Windows Vista, forget getting the full power out of Nehalem. At first glance, the combination of HyperThreading and Turbo Mode on the Core i7 processor looks like a winner. One ups the chip's multi-threading ante to frankly ludicrous levels, the other gives a helping hand to clunky old apps that haven't been coded to take advantage of modern multi-core CPUs.

Google Chrome has been labelled a trojan horse. Why does Google log the details of search queries for so long? What does it do with the information? Does it combine data from the search engine with information it collects through other avenues - such as its recently released web browser, Chrome? Data gathered through most of the company's services "disappears into a black hole once it hits the Googleplex," said Simon Davies, director of London-based Privacy International, referring to Google's headquarters. "It's impossible to track that information."

Here's a novel approach to generating power on a bike. Industrial designer Deco Goodman takes advantage of our crumbling infrastructure and pothole-filled roads by installing a piezo-electric generator in a shock absorber built into the seat post. Every tooth-jarring bump now is a little bit softer as the energy is converted to electricity and stored in the battery.

Apple is putting a former IBM executive in charge of engineering iPods. "Tony Fadell, Apple’s senior vice president of the iPod Division, and his wife Danielle Lambert, vice president of Human Resources, are reducing their roles within the company as they devote more time to their young family," the company said in a statement. Mark Papermaster, a former vice president at IBM with 25 years of product and technology experience, will take over for Fadell as senior vice president of Devices Hardware Engineering, reporting directly to Jobs. He'll be tasked with leading both iPod and iPhone hardware engineering teams.

While we're with Apple, apparently the iPod Touch and iPhone are become a force in handheld gaming. In a unique perspective on the issue, BusinessWeek’s Arik Hesseldahl writes that Apple’s come a long way in the three months or so since the iTunes App Store opened for business: “It’s already home to some 1,500 games, compared with fewer than 300 titles for Sony’s PlayStation Portable and about 600 for Nintendo’s handheld console, the DS.”

Nanotechnology is now making printable inorganic circuits. Organic electronics are being lauded for their flexibility and ability to be printed on a variety of form factors. However, inorganic electronics still hold large leads in most important component parameters for digital circuits, over mass-producible organic electronics. Unfortunately, they couldn't be printed. Well chalk up another victory to nanotechnology -- printable inorganic semiconductor circuits may soon be on their way thanks to a new high-tech ink which uses nanoclusters.

There's a new mp3 logo on the block, and its gaining support in Britain. Seven of Britain's largest music download sites have got together to promote a new "MP3 compatible" logo. It aims to raise the profile of the open MP3 music format and show people what they can do with their downloads. The trade body behind the initiative said it should also help consumers identify legal sites. The Entertainment Retailers Association devised the logo, which emphasises the fact that MP3 files can be played on any digital player.

Wednesday Morning News (1 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 5-November-2008  02:27:32 (GMT +10) - by Agg

More from Matt!

Electronic Arts has taken over Trafalgar Square as part of the London Games Festival. Members of the public got a chance to play EA's latest titles including Fifa 09, and Red Alert 3. There were also performances on stage from acts such as McFly, Natasha Bedingfield, and The Automatic. It is estimated more than 70,000 people attended the event which ran from the 30 Oct - 2 November.

However, EA is struggling financially. Electronic Arts announced in a press release it has suffered a net loss of $310 million for the fiscal second quarter resulting in a diluted loss per share of $0.97. The losses occurred despite net revenue of $894 million which is an increase of $254 million when compared to the previous year. In response to the negative financial news, Electronic Arts shares fell 17.1 % on Friday falling to $22.99.

Here's a guide on synchronising Google Docs with Microsoft Office. Do you want to download and create a backup of all Google Docs documents to a local folder on the hard drive; edit your Google Docs offline using Microsoft Word and then automatically sync changes when you are online; or Are you looking for an alternative to Docsyncer?

Firefox has reached a record market share. Firefox has been playing with the 20% market share mark for some time now. Back in July we reported that the browser has begun jumping over 20% on several days and this trend has solidified since then. In October, Firefox’ average market share as measured by Net Applications was 19.97%, up 0.51 points from 19.46% in September.

Common sense is prevailing on Myspace when it comes to pirated clips. MySpace and Auditude have rolled out an innovative solution to the problem of people posting pirated television show snippets on the internet. Auditude technology automatically identifies user-posted segments of shows, then weaves in advertising for copyright owners and tells viewers whose program they are watching. Instead of copyright holders chasing down television show video posted on MySpace pages and then demanding clips be removed in accordance with US law, they can let internet users be delivery channels complete with advertising.

Apple is cutting production of the iPhone. FBR Capital Markets analyst Craig Berger attracted attention today with a research note stating that Apple may be cutting iPhone production much more dramatically than initially expected.

Here's an interesting article on why your next computer could be running Linux. It's the perfect storm. Computer manufacturers have figured out how to produce lightweight, low-end machines that cost very little just as the economy takes a big tumble. Meanwhile, software applications that once needed robust hardware to run are now moving to the cloud. The result? An explosion of netbooks, the "sub-compact" car of notebook computers, most of which don't cost too much more than the average smartphone.

While your contemplating a tiny laptop, why not get a tiny projector to go with it? here's a new mini-projector in town, and it's totally different in size from any other. Yes, it's smaller than the smallest conventional projectors, but fatter than the other cell phone-sized "pico" projectors. It's much easier to lug than most projectors, but, sadly, won't fit comfortably in your pocket.

What about the 5 useless gadgets we all should throw away? Your house is full of crap, and you know it. Along with that old suit you'll "fit into again one day" and the cupboard full of juicers and lemon squeezers, it's likely you have a lot of computer hardware you'll never use again. That's normal though, right? Everyone has a collection of USB card readers, cables and battery chargers in the bottom drawer, after all. No too sure I agree with some of these.

Here's a story of a man who literally handed his ps3 to a scammer. Herman's tale of eBay/Paypal buyer fraud is unusual because he not only met the scammer in person, he placed his item right in the guy's hands. Here's what happened

Want to put some spice back into your life? Wherever you hang your hat (or coat), that’s your home. No modern dream home is complete without a dazzling, eye-catching coat rack - and there is plenty of options to choose from. Here are 18 coat racks that are unafraid to hang up traditional designs and do something a little more creative and unexpected.

Penultimately, here's some things mentioned in the IRC channel: A world record in the field of firecrackers and an iPod dock from a record turntable.

Today's timewaster is this tower defence game. Pick a difficulty level and a map to play to begin the game. Build turrets to defend your base from the oncoming attackers who will approach down the road. You cannot build on the road or your base. If an attacker reaches your base, you lose one of your ten lives. You can discuss it here.

Tuesday Night (2 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 4-November-2008  22:18:07 (GMT +10) - by BlaYde

Everyone by now should have read at least 1 review about Intel's new Core i7 platform, which was launched on Monday. Question now is; "Are you going to upgrade"? Core i7 is set to hit retail shelves here in Australia by November 12 and it won't be cheap. "Online technology retailers are offering the 920 from anywhere between $600 and $1100, the 940 at between $1100-$1250 and the 965 at around $2500-$2900. Intel's new family of processors will be an expensive upgrade however, as they are not compatible with older motherboards. City Software is selling the 920, 940 and 965 processors with MSI's DX58 Platinum Motherboard for $1350, $1870 and $3700 respectively".

Yesterday Valve announced the launch of Steam Cloud. Steam Cloud is a system which will allow users to store game data as well as hardware configurations such as keyboard and mouse, indefinitely. "The Steam Cloud will "just work," meaning any user changes to their game options will propagate to the Cloud by default. Upon logging into Steam from another PC, these settings will be brought down from the Cloud and automatically leveraged by the game. Any configuration changes on this second machine are then synced to the Cloud for future sessions."

Engineers from Comcast have released the first ever real world data on Proactive network Provider Participation for P2P (P4P) technology. "While only a trial, the results do show that P4P's iTracker technology can increase P2P download speeds by 80 percent on ISP networks without materially increasing the network load."

AustralianIT, a News Limited publication is reporting that Telstra managed to dodge a broadband debate at a national broadband conference which began today in Sydney. Apparently Telstra's wholesale group managing director Kate McKenzie pulled out of this conference because the organisers failed to drop two speakers from the event, one being David Forman, executive chairman of the Competitive Carriers Coalition (CCC) and telecommunications analyst Paul Budde. "TELSTRA has been accused of attacking free speech after it attempted to silence voices in the debate over the federal Government's $4.7 billion national broadband network."

For a very long time, the Gaming peripherals market has been dominated by 2 major players, Razor and Logitech. However, this might change soon with the appearance of a new kid on the block, Roccat Kone. "over the last year of delays, a lot of buzz has been building over a company called Roccat, suffused with a ridiculously over the top viral marketing campaign, they have finally released the Roccat Kone. It's a right handed, ergonomic gaming mouse with sexy lighting and impressive features."

Here's an interesting product. Can you see yourself playing an FPS game using one of these?

AMD has released more info on their 45nm CPU lineup. "AMD is planning to launch two 45nm quad-core desktop CPUs (Deneb) – the Phenom X4 20550 and 20350 for socket AM2+ systems with core frequencies of 3GHz and 2.8GHz, respectively in November this year, according to sources at motherboard makers."

2009 is set to spring many surprise titles for Xbox 360 owners. "Speaking to VideoGamer.com in an interview to be published later this week, Microsoft's UK head of gaming and entertainment Stephen McGill said that there was "lots of great stuff" coming in 2009 that people "don't know about".

Tuesday Morning Reviews #2 (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 4-November-2008  11:43:59 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Motherboard and CPU:
Intel DX58SO “Smackover” LGA1366 board, as seen in our Nehalem i7 Review.
Intel Core i7 on HWZone.
Intel Core i7 Performance Analysis on TrustedReviews.
Asus and Intel Core i7 boards compared on TechReport.
GeForce 9300 mGPU vs. Intel G45 mobile chipsets on HWZone.
Gigabyte EP45-UD3P LGA775 board on Motherboards.org.

250GB and 300GB 2.5" External Hard Disk Drives roundup on XbitLabs.
Thermaltake VI-ON HDD enclosure on ExtremeMHz.

Portable & Mini:
Asus 901 Eee PC netbook on RBMods.
iBuyPower Australia FragBox SFF PC on Tweaktown.
Dell Studio Hybrid SFF Desktop on HotHardware.

Power Supplies:
Sunbeamtech Tuniq Potency 550W on OCIA.
325W Ultra Power Partner and 300W FSP Booster X3 VGA PSUs on JonnyGuru.

Input Etc:
Roccat Kone gaming mouse on XSReviews.
Vidabox Premium Wireless HTPC Keyboard with Laser Trackball on ThinkComputers.

Tuesday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 4-November-2008  11:05:26 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Video Cards:
Sapphire Radeon HD 4870 512MB TOXIC on TheTechLounge.
ASUS ENGTX280 TOP GeForce GTX 280 on TechARP.
Sapphire HD 4650 OC Edition 512 MB on TechPowerUp.
Sapphire Radeon HD 4550 512MB Low Profile on ThinkComputers.
Palit GeForce 9800GTX+ on PureOC.

VGA coolers from Titan, Scythe and Arctic Cooling on XbitLabs.
Swiftech Apogee GTZ waterblock on Bjorn3D.
Cooler Master V8 CPU cooler on FutureLooks.

Arctic Cooling Silentium T2 on Tweaknews.
NZXT Whisper on Virtual-Hideout.
Sunbeam Automaton on OCrCafe.
Thermaltake Spedo (no budgies included) on ThinkComputers.
Thermaltake Spedo on HWSecrets.
Lian-Li PC-C32 Desktop/Rack Chassis on ITReviewed.
Cooler Master ACTS 840 on Bit-Tech.
Antec Skeleton workbench case on Metku.

Tuesday Morning #2 (11 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 4-November-2008  10:33:31 (GMT +10) - by Agg

This also from BlaYde:

I hope everyone is slowly recovering after "Mad Monday" which saw the release of Intel's new platform, the Core i7. To help you take your mind of that let's catch up on other news...

Let's start with an exclusive preview by CPU3D of Sapphire Radeon HD 4850x2. Due for release in late September, this GPU has been delayed by AMD, however, it now looks as if the release is imminent. "CPU3D is proud to bring you an exclusive first look at the Sapphire Radeon HD 4850x2 (2Gb DDR3). It features 2 x RV770 GPUs on a single PCB and has a massive 2Gb of DDR3 ram onboard."

After doing more research on the HD4850X2, I found that VR-Zone has also posted a preview of the Sapphire Radeon HD 4850x2, 2 days prior to the CPU3D preview so I'm not entirely sure how CPU3D's preview is an "exclusive". Anyway, it's worth checking out both previews as they contain early benchmark results, however, VR-Zone has tested this card on Intel's new Core i7 platform as opposed to CPU3D's Core 2 based results.

Microsoft Security Intelligence Report "provides an in-depth perspective on the changing threat landscape including software vulnerability disclosures and exploits, malicious software (malware), and potentially unwanted software". Elinor Mills of Cnet has posted an article analysing Microsoft's SIR report in detail. "Industry wide, we've seen a decrease in the last 12 months in vulnerabilities across products," down nearly 20 percent from the year-ago period, George Stathakopoulos, general manager of Microsoft's Trustworthy Computing Group".

According to this report, Panasonic has agreed, in principle, to buy Sanyo which means that this deal will create Japan's largest electronics company. "Panasonic plans to purchase a majority stake in Sanyo and convert it into a subsidiary by next April under an agreement reached by Panasonic President Fumio Ohtsubo and Sanyo President, Seiichiro Sano."

Whilst everything is looking rosy at Panasonic, the same can't be said about world’s 2nd largest game publisher, Electronic Arts, which has reported a massive $310 million deficit for the fiscal second quarter. "In response to its financial struggles Electronic Arts has decided to implement a “Cost Reduction Plan” by axing 6% of its work force, which amounts to about 600 jobs. The Company estimates its cost reduction plan will result in annual pre-tax cost savings of approximately $50 million."

Now for some gaming news....This week sees the release of arguably the biggest title to ever hit an XBox360, Gears of War 2. On the same day fans can expect to see 2 other big titles to be released, namely Little Big Planet (PS3) and Rock Band (360, PS3, PS2, Wii). All 3 titles are expected in stores on November 7th, 2008.

Over on the PC things have calmed down a little bit, following a mad week where we have seen 2 heavy weights of PC gaming being released in FarCry 2 and Fallout 3. This week will see the release of an all time classic, Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3. Expect those Ruskies to come on November 6th. However, you will have deal quickly with those Ruskies as new intel suggests new trouble is brewing in the Pacific and on the 12th November you might have to switch your focus and fight the Japs in Call of Duty: World at War. Fans (11 million plus) of WoW haven't been forgotten and on the 14th November will see another expansion arrive in the form of World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King. And on November 20th, fans of the Need for Speed series will get their chance to burn some serious rubber in EA's new Need for Speed Undercover.

And news just in, Relic, the makers of Company of Heroes have announced the plans for an expansion pack dubbed Tales of Valor. "the new expansion will bring with it three new single-player campaigns and some additional multiplayer content. As with the last expansion Opposing Fronts, Tales of Valor will be released as a standalone product that doesn't require the original to play, though the suite of software does work together as one for those who have the whole package."

Zillions of Core i7 Nehalem Reviews (2 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 4-November-2008  03:18:11 (GMT +10) - by Agg

This one's from BlaYde:

I'm sure most people by now would have heard that Intel has launched the much anticipated next generation CPU today, the Core i7. As reported earlier, our very own Intel guru, chainbolt, has posted a 7 page review of the new architecture so make sure you have a read and see what Core i7 has to offer. "In 2006 Intel surprised us all with a new microarchitecture called “Core”. It offered such a massive improvement over the dour Pentium 4 that some observers initially doubted Intel’s claim of up to 40% better performance. At the same time Intel announced their intention to accelerate processor development. They promised to go every year one major step forward, either by reducing transistor size or by improving the microarchitecture.

Thanks to chainbolt for his review, however, if you crave more Nehalem launch coverage then head over to the following websites; LegitReviews, OC3D, Tech Report, Legion Hardware, Tweak Town (and cooling here), MadShrimps, DriverHeaven, Tom's Hardware, ExtremeTech, [H]ard|OCP (and here), Guru3D (and here), Bit-tech here (and here), Techgage, HotHardware (and here), LostCircuits, NeoSeeker, BenchmarkReviews, Bjorn3D (and here and here), CPU3D, PC Perspective, OCClub, TrustedReviews, TBreak, HEXUS, TechSpot as well as AnandTech here and here.

There's a huge discussion thread here in our Intel Hardware forum.

Tuesday Morning (9 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 4-November-2008  02:51:24 (GMT +10) - by Agg

This gargantuan post is from Matt!

Do you remember when philquad needed to get his wheelchair from Melbourne to Newcastle? A true example of community spirit, and philquad once again wants to extend his thanks to all those involved in the mammoth task.

Ubuntu has 1-upped Windows Vista, accord to system benchmarks anyway. Well, I think nowadays even Windows Mobile is better than Windows Vista, and Ubuntu 8.10 it’s also better than Vista, after its release a few days ago, Ubuntu 8.10 was benchmarked along with Vista in a computer with the same specs: Intel Core 2 Duo E7200 CPU at 2.53 GHz, an Elitegroup Computer Systems G31T-M motherboard with integrated Intel graphics and 2 GB of SDRAM.

AMD is 1-upping Intel with its 22nm fabrication technology. Representatives from the chip giant will be presenting a paper at the IEEE International Electron Devices Meeting (IEDM), which kicks off in San Francisco on 15 December. They will discuss how they produced a 291Mb SRam memory array to test the process, which uses high-k and metal gate technologies. It has a density of 0.171µm², EE Times reports.

The Large Hadron Collider might have been 1-upped by older particle accelerators. A scientist says one of the most sought after particles in physics - the Higgs boson - may have been found, but the evidence is still relatively weak. Peter Renton, of the University of Oxford, says the particle may have been detected by researchers at an atom-smashing facility in Switzerland.

Sensis has conceded that it has been 1-upped by Google. Telstra's Sensis has given up on competing with Google in online search and mapping, announcing today it would provide its Yellow business listings to Google Maps and abandon its own search engine for one powered by Google. From the first quarter of next year, all of Yellow's business listings - the most comprehensive directory in Australia - will be stored in Google Maps. As well, Google's search engine will power the search feature and text advertising on Sensis.com.au.

TV has been 1-upped by a combination of Boxee, Apple TV and Hulu. People want to do much more with their iPhone then Steve Job allows. So they jailbreak it. The same goes for the Apple TV. While it is a great and relatively cheap media center, it has restrictions, just like the iPhone. Wouldn’t it be nice to play xvid videos, stream shows from Hulu, listen to LastFm, Twitter the name of the movie you are currently watching or see what music your friends are listening to on your big screen TV connected to an Apple TV? Well, you can do that with Boxee!

Here's an invention that stops table saws 1-upping people's fingers. The blade carries a small electrical charge. This charge is continuously monitored by a digital signal processor. When contact is made, the human body absorbs some of the charge, causing the voltage to drop. The drop in voltage triggers a quick release aluminum brake. A heavy duty spring forces the brake into the teeth of the spinning blade. The teeth dig into the aluminum, stopping the blade cold. The blade’s momentum forces it to retract below the table, and the motor is automatically shut off.

Is PC gaming being 1-upped by consoles? Nowadays, all we seem to hear about in the gaming world are consoles. It’s all about which is better, what exclusive games are coming out or even when we can expect new ones. But the PC has a place in the gaming world too, doesn’t it? Maybe not. In a recent interview with VideoGamer.com, developer Peter Molyneux said that he believes the PC gaming market is in “tatters.” And coming from him (a legend amongst PC gaming developers… who has now switched to the Xbox 360 for Fable II), the comment should be taken seriously. Is the PC gaming market declining?

Acer is set to 1-up the Eee PC with shipments of its Aspire One. Asus has set a target for Eee PC shipments this year of 5 million, which would be a million shy of the lead if Acer meets its target. The defeat may not be easy for Asus to accept since the company has largely been responsible for popularizing the netbook idea commercially with the Eee PC. Asus launched the Eee PC late last year to great fanfare at its small size and price. The least expensive Eee PC at the time came with a 7-inch screen and an NT$7999 (US$240) price tag.

Ever wanted to create a panorama but couldn't be bothered? You’ve never done it cause you’ve never found the good software into Ubuntu or it was too complicated to set up? Me too. Until recently and the discovery of Hugin. Let see how to achieve this. First of all you obviously need of Hugin itself. Fortunately it is part of (K)Ubuntu 7.10 repository!

Religion meets video games in an ugly brawl. The Australian Muslim community has accused the Federal Government and police of double standards over their treatment of a free online game in which the aim is to kill as many Muslims as possible. Keysar Trad, president of the Islamic Friendship Association, wrote to the Attorney-General, Robert McClelland, expressing outrage over the game, Muslim Massacre, saying it teaches young people to "further hate Muslims" and encourages them to carry out "acts of discrimination, vilification or outright violence against Australian Muslims".

New Scientist have the seven greatest scientific hoaxes of all time. For this week's issue of New Scientist I edited a review of The Sun and the Moon by Matthew Goodman, which tells the story of the great moon hoax of 1835. Read the review here. This got me thinking about other great scientific hoaxes in the past. After doing a bit of digging, I was amazed by how many there were – and at the variety and creativity of the hoaxes. Here are a few of the best. Of course, there are serious cases of scientific fraud, such as the stem cell researchers recently found guilty of falsifying data and the South Korean cloning fraud. The following stories, however, are not so serious.

Gigabyte has revealed its latest x58 motherboards, which are capable of supporting Intel's new i7 chips. GIGABYTE, a leading manufacturer of motherboards and graphics cards today is pleased to announce their latest high performance X58 Series motherboards, the GA-EX58-EXTREME and GA-EX58-UD5 designed from the ground up to unleash the awesome power of Intel’s new Core i7 processors. Equipped with a host of new features including the new QPI interface, 3 channel DDR3 support, 3 Way SLI™ and CrossFireX™ support, Ultra Durable 3 technology and the industry’s most extensive range of overclocking features, the GIGABYTE X58 Series is bringing excitement back into the high performance motherboard industry.

Live Mesh has been released for Macs and Windows Mobile. Microsoft's Live Mesh file sync technology, previously available only via Windows PCs, has now been extended to Windows Mobile, allowing you to access files via your phone (and potentially leave the PC itself at home), and to Mac OS X, useful if you work across both Windows and Max platforms.

Today's timewaster is Super Mario Flash. Relive the entire mario experience, right down to the 1-up mushrooms.

Intel's Core i7: Nehalem Arrives! (14 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 3-November-2008  15:22:07 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Intel today unveiled their next generation CPU family, Core i7. Chainbolt has once again got the scoop with a fantastic 7-page detailed examination:

click for the review!

Geek Recipes (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 3-November-2008  12:21:52 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Fed up with stale pizza for dinner? Why not check out some of the threads from our Geek Recipes forum:

vec is making a
simple beef chow mein

username_taken is preparing some
Wagyu Scotch Fillets

and some Vietnemese
beef noodle soup

Amfibius is perfecting his
slow roasted ribeye

Dr Jon is baking
some banana bread

while twinhardballers is
cooking a birthday dinner

TRAG!C has wrangled
some pepper steak

scon is rustling up
some mushroom risotto

and some
tomato sauce

Monday Midday (2 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 3-November-2008  11:36:37 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Just a quick reminder that the Iron Photographer top ten voting is open until Friday. So check out the entries thread and vote for your favourites!

If your one of those people who worry about identity theft, here is a fool proof method of hard drive disposal. We started with two hard drives that had failed for various reasons. The data on the disks was sensitive, like most personal data you will find on any random hard drive. We had considered various methods of destroying the data. These methods of destruction included: detonation, shooting with high calibre bullets, bulk magnetic eraser, grinding the platters, smashing the platters with a hammer. These methods would all thwart a novice data recovery party, but wouldn't be 100% effective due to scanning tunneling microscope recovery techniques.

The ASUS eeePC is set to become even cheaper. The company has adjusted the pricing and market positions of its entry-level and mid-range Eee PC offerings and expects, to reach the (USD) $200 milestone in 2009. As widely expected, the company has also confirmed that it will phase out its 7 and 8.9" Eee PC offerings, replacing them with 10" iterations instead.

Bombproof hi-tech superbins are set to appear on the streets of London. The absence of appropriate receptacles in which to dump detritus has been a daily source of frustration for city pedestrians. However, the security concerns that resulted in the removal of rubbish bins from busy public areas have abated with the development of the bomb-proof bin.

Both Apple's and Linux's market share has decreased slightly. Whence we last looked at online market share data, Mac users accounted for 8.23% of those measured. Net Applications numbers for October show a small retreat to 8.21%, but the data regularly see-saws from month to month. Still, if we add in iPhone users (0.33), then OS X-powered devices account for more than 8.5% of online traffic, which is about where things were last month. However, the percentage of traffic attributable to Linux users has fallen for a second month in a row to 0.71% in October from a high in August of 0.93%.

For all you media junkies out there, here's a round up of media players. In today’s fast paced world it seems unlikely that anyone really cares which media player they use. All your average Joe cares about is his tunes and tracks. As long as he can hear them, he doesn’t care. Stop being a party spoiler Joe, and listen up. With all those media players like Windows Media Player, Winamp, Media Player Classic, iTunes, QuickTime, VLC, GOM Player, Real Player and so on, and on … it becomes hard to tell which is best.

Continuing on today's exercise theme, here are 10 nifty exercise gadgets. It is quite rare to see an article about excersize gadgets because a lot of techies aren’t so keen on keeping fit. Well whether you work out every blue moon, or every day we have something for you. We have put together a list of cool gadgets which are great for when your getting your exercise, as rarely or as often as that may be.

Monday Morning (2 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 3-November-2008  09:08:32 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

The French Senate has voted in favour with a new law dealing with internet piracy. The French Senate has overwhelmingly voted in favour of a law that would cut off access to the internet to web surfers who repeatedly download copyrighted music, films or video games without paying. Under the so-called three strikes or "graduated response" legislation - which still needs approval by the lower house before it becomes French law - illegal downloaders are first sent an email warning them of their infraction. They are subsequently sent a warning letter in the post.

Meanwhile over the channel, the British ISP Karoo is disconnecting users with open WiFi networks. In copyright infringement cases, having an unsecured wireless router creates plausible deniability. In recent months, we have seen several cases where accused filesharers have successfully argued that someone else may have used their WiFi to share copyrighted material. Because anyone could have accessed the network, it is impossible to prove that the defendant was the one who shared files illegally.

According to Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales, internet collaboration is still in its infancy. The 42-year-old web guru, in an effort to show Wikipedia's impact thus far, referenced a recent trip to a slum in India where he "met this young man on the street who told me that he had used Wikipedia to pass his 11th grade exams." "Wow, that's really cool, right? We've had some impact, even in such a place where I'm talking to this guy, and there's mud streets, and cows, and it's really quite a different environment from London." Wales's popular online encyclopedia allows anyone with an Internet connection to make entries and edit content. Speaking on the sidelines of an awards ceremony in London, Wales said: "We're really just at the beginning, still, of collaborative efforts."

Scientists have tracked down memory to a single molecular motor. How does the brain record a memory? Somehow our experiences and interactions can be imprinted in the mind, but exactly how neurons alter their connections to enable memory has been murky. Now scientists say they have identified the molecular machinery that links experience with learning--and it all comes down to one microscopic motor. You can discuss this in our Science Forum.

Here's seven important fitness tips for IT workers. Web working and fitness usually don't go hand in hand. In fact, fitness is probably the last thing on a web worker's mind. In front of a computer all day and constantly working on new projects, a web worker doesn't have the time to keep fit. As a result, their weight increases, mental stress levels increase, and frankly, overall health goes down the tubes. This is the problem; without good health, productivity declines. When a web worker's productivity declines, output declines. Guess what's next? That's right, when output declines, income declines.

Of course, you could ignore that advice and just buy yourself one of these. If you're trying to get yourself to exercise more, you need the proper motivation. Sure, losing weight and living a healthier lifestyle are OK motivations I guess, but I prefer a more tangible incentive: beer. Frosty, cold beer.

Early Monday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 3-November-2008  00:37:42 (GMT +10) - by Rezin

Graphics Cards:
Palit Radeon HD 4870X2 on Bjorn 3D.
ATI HD 4830 Graphics Cards on t-break.
XFX GTX260 896MB 'Black Edition' on Overclock3D.

ViewSonic VX1962wm 19" LCD monitor on TrustedReviews.
Philips Cineos 47PFL9603D 47" LCD TV on TrustedReviews.
Iiyama ProLite E2207WS 22in LCD monitor on TrustedReviews.

Vantec NexStar 3i HDD enclosure on techPowerUp.
Eagle Tech ET-CS2LSU2-BK (2.5" SATA to USB enclosure) on Bjorn 3D.

NZXT Cryo LX notebook cooler on Red&Blackness Mods.
Scythe MUSASHI twin-fan VGA cooler on High Tech Reviews.
Thermaltake ProWater 850i water cooling kit on HardwareLogic.

Sprint HTC Touch Diamond on HotHardware.
Garmin Nuvi 755T GPS on TechReviewSource.
Palm Treo Pro smartphone on Hardware Zone.
Apple MacBook 2008 (video review) on Digital Trends.
Medion Akoya S5610 15.4" notebook on TrustedReviews.
Prestigio Power Bank 501 external battery on InsideHW.
Samsung Highnote (SPH-M630) mobile phone on Digital Trends.

Keelog USB Keylogger on XSReviews.
Gunnar Optiks Shredder computer glasses on I4U News.
Sumo Lounge SumoSac Sultan Beanbag Chair on Big Bruin.
Genius Remote 815 - Universal Remote Control on TrustedReviews.

Photo Gallery (3 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 2-November-2008  20:11:45 (GMT +10) - by Agg

This is from Matt also, and was posted earlier today, but due to a tear in the space-time continuum it appeared way down the page. So here it is again in the proper spot. Some recent photos from our Photography Gallery forum:

Sunday Afternoon #2 (5 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 2-November-2008  14:43:27 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Continuing on with another top 10, here's the top 10 online freebies and deals. Unless you're a financial Jedi Knight or economic Sith Lord, you probably don't have a ton of control over our turbulent economy. What you can reign over is your spending and saving—and when you know where they are, you can take advantage of deep discounts and general freebies across the web. Even you're not much for coupons and you're occasionally unable to resist splurging on a new tech toy, you can save some serious cash on many purchases, or avoid them entirely, by spending a few minutes online.

Here's an interesting trick to hide information within a normal text file. It is a pretty unknown trick to create hidden text files using nothing but Notepad, you can use this simple trick to hide plain text data without using any third-party utility.The text files created using the method below won't show anywhere in DOS or Windows irrespective of the hidden and system display file-settings, the files created using this can only be accessed if you know the correct file-name used while creating the file.

Some TV manufactures are now making three dimensional panels. Tucked away in the Sound and Vision department of Harrods is a 42in LCD television set. As a not-for-sale display model, it draws only the occasional glance from the tourists and Christmas shoppers packing the store. Despite its unexceptional looks, though, this item of hardware may offer the answer to that great unsolved problem of technology: three-dimensional television.

Ever wanted to be able to access google calendar or documents from within gmail? Almost anyone and everyone who is on the internet, uses email these days. One of the best if not the best email service is Gmail. If you or your business is internet savvy then again you spend much of your time in email. Keeping this in mind Gmail has some new lab features that allow you to keep a close watch on other Google services. One of the most recent ones and the subject of this article are the Google Docs and Google Calendar gadgets, as well as the ability to add iGoogle gadgets to your Gmail account

What about 28 cool firefox about:config hacks? You may have installed countless add-on in Firefox to enhance your using experience, but if you want to get the most out of Firefox, you really have to hack your way into the about:config. The about:config page contains most (if not, all) of Firefox configuration options. It is so far the most effective, and the most powerful way to tweak and enhance your Firefox performance. Here are 28 of the popular tweaks.

In a break from the usual graphics tutorials, here's a nice list for Adobe Illustrator. Illustrator is a great program. It offers so much versatility in creating vector images. Hence why it is the top vector program out there.

If you have a blog, then you might want to try to stop people plagiarising your content. I recommend the death penalty for plagiarism. Until that happy day arrives, I'll share a technique that at least makes life harder for thieving scumbags.

Sunday Afternoon (0 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 2-November-2008  14:14:10 (GMT +10) - by Rezin

At this year's Professional Developer Conference, Microsoft has announced that it plans to make their Office suite available for use online. Computer Weekly has some details on how the licensing will work. "The hosted product only requires an internet connection and a web browser to run. Microsoft is expected to offer a free version, sponsored by online advertising alongside an advert-free premium edition."

ZDNet is reporting that the recently announced Windows 7, has found its way on to Bittorrent in the form of the pre-beta package which was available at this year's Professional Developer Conference. "The pre-beta version of Microsoft's Windows 7 operating system released to developers at the Professional Developer Conference has already made it onto prominent BitTorrent sites, where thousands of enthusiasts around the world are currently downloading it.

And staying with Windows 7 news, apparently the new OS is smaller than Windows Vista. In fact it is so small that Joanna Stern from Laptop Mag managed to install the pre-beta Windows 7 on an Asus EEEPC 1000H. "This morning we loaded Windows 7 Ultimate (Pre-Beta) on an ASUS Eee PC 1000H. And just as Microsoft said: it works. The Eee PC running a 1.6 GHz Intel Atom processor and 1GB of RAM handles the new operating system pretty well." For more details on Windows 7 and what happened at this year's Professional Developer Conference, checkout Ars Technica for a comprehensive summary.

Digital Trends is continuing their Buying guide series, with this one concentrating on HDTV. "Enter the hottest HDTVs around for hardcore gamers, movie buffs and people who can't tear themselves away from Mad Men or the latest Giants game alike."

Once you're done with the buyers guide, why not checkout what they think are the Top 10 Most Overhyped Tech Products. "Blogs gush about them. PR campaigns blow millions on them. News anchors announce their arrival like they're members of state. And the rest of us suffer when they utterly fail to deliver."

There is some bad news and some good news for fans of Rockstar's Grand Theft Auto. Bad news is that the publisher has confirmed that the upcoming GTA 4 for PC will be delayed. "Rockstar has confirmed the rumoured delay of GTA IV PC that puts the release of the game all the way back until December 2nd. The announcement confirms the change in retailer dates that were first spotted on retailers websites." The good news is that they have released the official minimum and recommended system requirements for the game. And while you wait for the release why not have a read of this Grand Theft Auto IV Hands-on preview?

Sunday Midday (2 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 2-November-2008  12:02:33 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

More news from IBM and Apple, with IBM offering one of its executives a years pay to keep him away from Apple. Mixed in with IBM's arguments for preventing Papermaster from working at Apple, the lawsuit details just how badly IBM wanted him to stay. While Big Blue didn't go so far as to write a love ballad, it did offer Papermaster a raise and, more interestingly, even a full year's salary to essentially do nothing—as long as he stayed away from Cupertino.

The Pirate Bay has reach another milestone with over 20 million peers. By November 2007, The Pirate Bay was tracking around 6 million peers, up from ‘just’ 3 million the year before. The growth has been amazing, and it doesn’t seem that it is going to slow down anytime soon. One of the reasons it was possible for the site to handle this record number of peers are the constant improvements on the software and hardware side. New servers are added regularly, budget permitting, and UDP trackers were added to all the torrents on the site, which are less resource consuming than TCP trackers.

Intel's market share continues to grow according to third quarter data. ISuppli figures for Q3 2008 are now available according to InformationWeek. Intel is the big winner in the CPU market now holding a massive 80.4% share of the global revenue in the CPU industry. Intel's market share is up 1.7% from the same quarter in 2007. AMD isn’t faring as well as Intel in the market and iSuppli reports that AMD's market share declined by 1.8% for the quarter to 12.1%.

Digital advertising is becoming more intrusive by filming peoples reactions. Think of them as billboards 2.0. Where traditional hoardings – flapping paper promoting outdated products – once stood, digital adverts are now watching you watching them. Think you can ignore them? Think again. The latest ads use smells and 3-D visuals to catch your attention, even beaming sound messages to cut through the clamour of a busy street.

There is nothing special about taking photos of Jupiter's moons, but one iPhone owner has done just that with the inbuilt camera. It was aimed through a telescope to create a 267x magnification. He then cleaned it up in aperture on a Mac and posted it to Mac Observer. Before you rush out and try to duplicate the image, you should know that you've got to have perfect conditions and fairly expensive gear. Still, it's incredible that a 2-megapixel, fixed-focus camera can see more than 500 million miles.

For your daily does of laughs, why not check out these 30 awesome Tux logos? Tux is the world famous and endearing symbol of Linux. I don’t know any other software mascot that is so loved and venerated other than Tux. There are plenty of reasons for this phenomenon, but I won’t try to enumerate it here. Perhaps seeing my collection of "30 Coolest and Funniest Tux Icons" can somehow help explain why Tux is so adored.

Sunday Morning #2 (0 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 2-November-2008  07:59:30 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Windows 7 pre-beta has been released to developers, and ZDnet have posted their impressions. Is it a major release or just a revamped Windows Vista? That’s the big question surrounding Windows 7, which made its public debut in a keynote address by Steven Sinofsky today at the Microsoft Professional Developers Conference in Los Angeles. Microsoft executives showed off the new Windows upgrade in a day-long series of demos on Sunday, doing their level best to impress a room full of journalists with a long list of new and improved features. At the end of the day, they loaned me a sleek new Lenovo X300 notebook running a recent build of the OS so that I could test Windows 7 for myself.

Here's a few more Intrepid Ibex articles. Reviews here and here, while elsewhere there are guides on installing ubuntu on a mac, creating the perfect server and the 10 things you should do after installing ubuntu.

Valve released the Left 4 Dead introduction on Halloween. The over four-minute, entirely in-engine movie was created by the same internal Valve team that produced the acclaimed Team Fortress 2 "Meet the" videos. Not quite in time for Halloween, Left 4 Dead will hit Xbox 360 and PC on November 18. The demo will be released on November 11, or November 6 for pre-order customers.

The PC version of Grand Theft Auto 4 has been postponed. With all the exciting new games storming PCs and consoles lately—Fable 2, Fallout 3, Far Cry 2, Left 4 Dead, and Mirror's Edge, to name a few—a console port getting postponed isn't exactly the end of the world. Nonetheless, IGN reports that the PC version of Grand Theft Auto IV now won't make it to stores until December 2. As we reported in August, Rockstar originally planned to have the PC port out on November 18 in North America.

Today's timewaster is The Great Basement Escape. Time once again to plan your escape. This time from the basement. Bwahahah. Good Luck!

Sunday Morning (0 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 2-November-2008  02:02:28 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Thanks to Matt for this one.. busy lad, he is. :)

Dan has more letters! Music routing, quad core, UPSs and killer NICs

The Tech Report have checked out the 1.5TB Seagate Barracuda. One-point-five terabytes is the new hotness these days—the next step up the capacity scale. This time it was Seagate who struck first with a version of its Barracuda 7200.11 rippling with four 375GB platters. In addition to raising the bar on the capacity front, the higher areal density of these platters promises to improve performance dramatically. In fact, Seagate says its latest 'cuda can sustain transfer rates up to 120MB/s, which would put the drive squarely in VelociRaptor territory.

Rick Rashid, Microsoft's head of research, is claiming that he invented Apple. If you use a Macintosh or an iPhone, which honestly, I would not recommend, you would be using code that I wrote more than 25 years ago. If you'd asked me 25 years ago if I thought code I was [writing would be] running today on a cellphone, my reaction would have been, 'What's a cellphone?' It just shows you things really do survive and get used in interesting ways.

TechRepublic have opened an old Apple CRT monitor. CRTs aren’t the type of things you want to just crack open and look around inside. There are usually high voltage capacitors that don’t discharge for a long time. It’s easy to get zapped if you’re not careful. When we got our Apple IIc for the Apple IIc Cracking Open Gallery, it came to us complete with an Apple IIc monitor. Both of them were damaged in transit. The monitor’s case was cracked enough that it would have been unsafe to operate. What better opportunity to see what was inside of a CRT.

Call Of Duty 4 has cleaned up at the golden joystick awards. The game scooped "Ultimate Game of the Year", "Online Game of the Year" and "PC Game of the Year" awards. The awards, now in their twenty-sixth year, are awarded in 16 categories, and are voted for by UK gamers. Other winners included Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock, Grand Theft Auto IV, and Super Smash Bros.

Here's a two part guide on how to use your Linux machine as a media center. If you are a Windows or Mac user, you will be familiar with Windows Media Center or Front Row that both have the ability to turn your computer into a Media Center PC. Linux users don’t have such luck as most distros do not come with a media center application pre-installed. If you are like me who is a Linux user and owns a huge collection of music, videos and pictures, the world is not over for you yet. There are many open-source applications that you can use to turn your Linux machine into a lean, mean media center.

It is the 20th birthday of the first internet worm. On November 2nd, 1988, Robert Tappan Morris launched an application ostensibly designed to count the number of systems on the Internet. It was designed to propagate across Unix systems by exploiting several vulnerabilities, including a conceptual flaw in how r-services (rlogin, rsh, and rexec) authenticate connections, the archaic remote debug feature in Sendmail, and a buffer overflow in the finger daemon.

Saturday Night News and Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 1-November-2008  21:48:53 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Here's a nice round-up of 10 indie games released in October. Game Tunnel is proud to publish the October Independent Video Game round-up, the latest in our long-running Famitsu-styled panels that review all the latest Indie PC games. The 10 games reviewed for October include Introversion's Multiwinia, Archibald's Adventure from Rake in Grass and Zatikon from Chronic Logic. Read reviews from each of the panelists on all 10 games in the October Indie game round-up.

What about the 10 dumb things IT pros do that screw up networks? One of the most popular pastimes of IT professionals is complaining about the dumb things users do. We all get a laugh from articles like TechRepublic’s ultimate collection of dumb user stories. But if we’re honest, we have to admit that computer novices aren’t the only ones who make mistakes. Most network administrators could (but probably won’t) tell you about their “most embarrassing moment.” That’s the one where you discover you accidentally misconfigured the firewall to shut down the boss’s Internet connection or that the backup you’ve been making every day has been copying the wrong files. Oops.

Google has added SMS functionality into Google chat. So, how does it work? Well, first of all it's a Google Labs feature. Unlike Mail Goggles, we like this one. Go into your Gmail Settings, then Labs, and enable the functionality (most will not see this feature yet, at the time of this writing). Go into chat, type in a phone number, and you'll see an SMS option. Once you send an SMS message, you will have a 406 area code number permanently associated with your Gmail account.

CDs are heading the way of the vinyl record. NOT too long ago, you could walk south from the mall along Pitt Street in the Sydney CBD and pick up new CDs for $10 or less each and find plum bargains at several second-hand CD shops stretching all the way to Chinatown. Things have changed. The second-hand shops are disappearing and the discount options are narrowing. Today, the final NSW franchise of Dirt Cheap CDs on Pitt Street is the latest to shut down. At its peak, the six-year-old chain, known for $10 CDs, had five shops in Sydney.

Now, onto a nice healthy dose of random reviews:
Guitar Hero World Tour on AnandTech
Samsung ML-1630W Mono Laser Style Printer on Trusted Reviews
CPU Cooler Roundup on Benchmark Reviews
Sprint HTC Touch Diamond on HotHardware
Patriot Warp V2 128GB 2.5” Solid State Drive on TweakTown

Saturday Evening (2 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 1-November-2008  18:10:35 (GMT +10) - by Rezin

World economic crisis seems to have claimed another victim, with Sun Microsystems reporting a $1.67 billion loss in the last quarter. "Sun will be feeling the heat after the Santa Clara based firm posted just $2.99 billion in total sales in this last quarter, down by 7.1 per cent from the same time last year."

I personally can't say that I have even seen one electric or hybrid car on the streets (maybe I should get out more) but according to a story on Cnet, the increase in production of such cars, which use lithium batteries, may put a strain on lithium battery supply. "That swelling demand has some industry observers concerned that there will be a shortage of the metal lithium, the material used to make the batteries."

Looking at buying a new digital camera or a camcorder? Digital Trends posted a short Digital Camera and Camcorder Buying Guide. " Fancy yourself ready to start preserving all those heart warming fireside chats and festive dinners for future generations to come? Snap those shutter buttons or hit record and let these great gadgets do the rest."

If you're in the market for an iPod dock station then why not take a look at Jean Michel Jarre's Aerosystem? "The futuristic audio system literally puts the iPod on a pedestal by building its speakers into a tower of glass tubing, upon which Jobs' jewel sits perched like a museum piece."

The new Nintendo DSi handheld gaming system goes on sale today in Japan but what about the rest of the world? According to Nintendo president Satoru Iwata, Nintendo DSi will be launching overseas in mid-2009. "The Nintendo DS handheld has been a very strong seller for the company over the years, dominating the handheld gaming market since its launch.

For some time now there have been rumours floating around the net about a new "break-apart" PS controller and now thanks to a patent application filed by Sony, which shows what appears to be the much rumoured about break-apart controller, the rumour mill is going into overdrive. "Through images included in a patent application, Sony has provided us with the first look at what they could be planning for their much rumoured break-apart control that keeps getting mentioned every few months."

Yesterday we posted a link to a story where EA apparently had plans to ban misbehaving users on their forums as well as lock them out of EA's online games, however, this has now been denied by EA's representative who says; "Players who have been banned from EA Forums are not automatically banned from online access to their other EA games," the rep stated. "Posting in EA Forums is enabled by an EA Nucleus account—but access to the forums and access to the games are separate."

From reading our games forum you will know that there is a large number of people who just shiver at the thought of DRM. Some even go as far as refusing to buy a game if they believe that a particular publisher has installed draconian DRM measures. Having said that, DRM seems to be here to stay and the latest PC release to have DRM included is none other than Fallout 3. However, Fallout's 3 producers, Bethesda Studios wants you to know that their DRM technology is less draconian than that of BioShock, Mass Effect and Far Cry 2.

Now this is surely going to get the hardcore fans of Star Craft 2 hot under the collar with the news that Blizzard's Star Craft 2 producer Chris Sigaty is "trying to make "Star Craft II" playable for his mom." "It's definitely a very challenging tight rope walk," he said of trying to make the game for both e-sports players and a broader audience. "We've trying to make sure that it's perfectly balanced for e-sport, but look — I'm going to try to get my mom to play this game.

Saturday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 1-November-2008  15:45:20 (GMT +10) - by Rezin

Graphics Cards:
ATI All-In-Wonder HD on Legit Reviews.
Sapphire HD 4830 on Hardware Secrets.
Sapphire HD 4650 Overclocked on Pro-Clockers.
XFX GeForce GTX 260 Black Edition on Techgage.
Sapphire Radeon HD 4670 512MB on TheTechLounge.
ATI Radeon HD 4830 (Sapphire, Powercolor and HIS) on DriverHeaven.

Power Supplies:
Corsair TX750 PSU on DriverHeaven.
Antec Signature 650 PSU on Silent PC Review.
Cooler Master UCP 900W & 1100W on InsideHW.

Crucial Ballistix Tracer DDR3 1333MHz on Pro-Clockers.
Crucial Ballistix Tracer DDR3 PC3-10600 2Gb Kit on CPU3D.
Patriot Extreme Performance Viper Series PC2-8500 4GB on Modders-Inc.

Asus G50VT on Digital Trends.
Dell Studio 1735 on InsideHW.
Apple October '08 Macbook Refresh Hands-On on TheTechLounge.
Sony VAIO VGN-Z11WN/B 13.1in Notebook on Trusted Reviews.

Saturday Afternoon (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 1-November-2008  11:48:26 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

An email error has ended up on a road sign in Wales. When officials asked for the Welsh translation of a road sign, they thought the reply was what they needed. Unfortunately, the e-mail response to Swansea council said in Welsh: "I am not in the office at the moment. Please send any work to be translated".

TechRepublic and its sister site ZDnet have a Q&A regarding Windows 7. This week at the Professional Developer Conference in Los Angeles, Microsoft gave software developers and programmers a look at Windows 7 and provided a lot more information about what to expect. Ed Bott and Mary Jo Foley from ZDNet (TechRepublic’s sister site) have written up some excellent coverage from the event.

Meanwhile, The Tech Report have had a tour of one of Gigabyte's factories in Taipei. Large electronics companies use some of the most advanced manufacturing techniques in the world in their factories, and Gigabyte is certainly no exception. For over 20 years, it has been a staple provider of leading enthusiast-class motherboards not only for hardware junkies like you and me, but also for boutique PC vendors like Falcon Northwest and Alienware. Gigabyte makes graphics cards, cases, and cooling components, too, and is even active in the handheld devices segment—especially in Asian markets—where it offers cell phones, PDAs, and laptops.

French scientists have developed a fully artificial heart. For all the bad news in medicine today -- studies that cell phones might cause cancer, or that widely used flame retardants could have dire effects -- there's also a lot of good news. Recent studies have moved us closer to curing paralysis with nerve bypasses wired directly into the brain. And there have been a broad variety of new treatments for cancer devised; many involving nanoparticles. Now the world's first autonomous artificial heart can be added to that list.

The latest Google Chrome beta is slightly faster than the last version. Using Google's JavaScript benchmark I pitted the newest Chrome beta, version, against both the initial beta from September and the more raw developer release from mid-October.

Intel and the Tiawan government are partening to lauch an open source research center. Building on Taiwan’s undisputed role as a leading center for creating connected consumer devices, CEO Paul Otellini indicated that Intel had signed an agreement with the Taiwan Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA). MOEA and Intel will establish a center for enabling Moblin and other OSS optimized for devices based on the Intel Atom. At the same time, Intel Capital will invest NT$386M (US$11.5M) in Taiwanese carrier VMAX to support deployment of Taiwan’s first mobile WiMax network in the first half of 2009.

Time for the post Halloween rap-up with a collection of themed logos. It’s that time of the year again - a slow news Friday turns into a Halloween logo design contest. All the web companies will try to show off how cool, funny, and unbusinesslike they are by adorning their logos with cute little pumpkins and ghosts.

Saturday Morning #2 (3 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 1-November-2008  06:36:37 (GMT +10) - by matthudson

Ubuntu 8.10 (Intrepid Ibex) is officially out as of yesterday. You can discuss Intrepid Ibex in our forums.

Of course, what kind of news post would this be without a review or two of Intrepid Ibex? I'll breakdown some of the key new features and talk about them. I'll start with what I think might be the most significant work my way down. I'll try and give each new major feature a grade, that will reflect its usefulness, and functionality.

Microsoft are apparently releasing Windows Azure free to developers. Microsoft and free aren't words that you expect together in a sentence. While the prolific operating system maker has been generous in offering discounted licenses to students and to developing nations, it has always made sure it got its fair slice.

Whist in the world of Windows, Cnet have another set of screenshots - this time from Windows 7. Microsoft's upcoming operating system, Windows 7, seems to be geared more for the consumer, with a lot more user interface enhancements that build on the internals of Windows Vista. You can also discuss Windows 7 in our forums.

Video conferences distort reality, according to a new study. Videoconferencing is often heralded as the next best thing to being somewhere - a cheaper, simpler alternative to traveling in person to attend a meeting. Yet a small study raises questions about whether videoconferencing distorts interactions in a subtle but important way.

Mozilla is planning to stop supporting Firefox 2 by the end of the year. "We're starting to consult the [development] community for feedback," said Mike Beltzner, the director of Firefox, prior to setting a final 'end-of-life' date. If all goes according to plan, the last update for the older browser will be Firefox The current build of Firefox 2.0 is, which was released last month to patch 14 vulnerabilities.

Even during Halloween, the google team can still find some humour. Google, whose servers constantly crawl the Web, doesn't have anything against spiders. But zombies, well, that's another matter.

Micosoft are set to release an update for Live Mesh today.Among these updates are more granular permissions for sharing folders, better support for large monitors during remote connections, and support for drag and drop between the online desktop and local devices. Live Mesh is now also available for Mac OS X (10.5.1 or later) and Windows Mobile devices. Microsoft also announced the worldwide availability of Live Mesh.

Gizmodo have a timeline of all the lego mini figurines.We have worked with Lego to painstakingly collect and catalog almost every minifig ever produced into a photographic timeline. You will be able to see the evolution of the iconic figure, from the very first sets in the 70s that you saw in our exclusive tour of the secret historic Lego vault to the latest and greatest ones in 2008. Sensory overload ahead.

Drupal has won the best open source CMS award for the second year running.The Packt Publishing awards highlight the growing impact the open source Drupal social publishing system is having on the content management system (CMS) market, specifically with a growing number of case studies in vertical industries such as media and entertainment companies, educational institutions, and non-profit organizations. Drupal usage has grown exponentially in recent years with more than 2 million downloads and an estimated 250,000 Drupal websites worldwide.

Apparently, the DVD of the latest Futurama movie contains a humorous warning against piracy. Anyone who watched The Simpsons Movie will have noticed Bart in the intro chalking his famous blackboard with the words “I will not illegally download this movie”. Matt Groening seems to appreciate the comedy anti-piracy message as his latest movie, ‘Futurama: Bender’s Game‘, also includes some mockery of file-sharers or, on closer inspection, possibly some encouragement. Whatever the intention, it is pretty funny.

Today's timewaster is chargeball. Bounce from paddle to paddle collecting balls. Very addictive!

Saturday Morning (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 1-November-2008  03:11:48 (GMT +10) - by Rezin

Thanks to Matt for this news update!

Sony is at it again with new reports of exploding batteries. Computer makers are recalling 100,000 laptop battery packs made by Sony after 40 reports of overheating, according to a U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission notice. Some incidents involved smoke or flames, according to Sony. Twenty-one of the reports claimed minor property damage, and small burns were reported in four cases.

A BBC reporter set out to find how much privacy exists in modern Britain. When I closed my front door at night and relaxed it was in the belief that my private life was just that, private. I soon started to learn otherwise.

AnandTech have a showdown between two all in one systems: the Dell XPS One 24 and the Apple iMac. The PC industry loves to repeat history. Today's cloud computing trends are nothing more than a rehash of the mainframe architecture of the 1960s 70s right? The use of GPUs as compute accelerators pays homage to a time when general purpose microprocessors were accompanied by additional, off-chip hardware depending on the applications you wanted to run. At many points during the evolution of the PC we've had what's called the all-in-one, basically a PC with an integrated monitor.

A lingerie maker in Brazil is marketing a new 'outfit' which contains a GPS locator. The lingerie combo consists of lace bodice, bikini bottom and faux pearl collar, with the GPS device visibly nestled in the see-through part of the bodice next to the waist. "This collection ... is a wink to women and a challenge to men because, even if she gives him the password to her GPS, she can always turn it off," Iorio told AFP.

Apple have made another high profile hiring with one of IBM's top chip designers, but IBM are not giving up without a fight. Mark Papermaster, until recently IBM's vice president of microprocessor technology development, plans in to join Apple early November in a position that will see him working closely with Apple CEO Steve Jobs in what IBM believes is an attempt to expand Apple's presence in the markets for servers and chips for handheld devices, according to the copy of a lawsuit filed by IBM against Papermaster. IBM is suing Papermaster to prevent him from joining Apple and divulging trade secrets related to IBM's Power chips and server products, according to the complaint filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

As far as video games go, the subject of religion is still taboo. Sony's decision this month to delay one of the most anticipated games in the history of PlayStation, LittleBigPlanet, to avoid offending Muslims, is the latest sign that videogame-makers are playing prudence when it comes to religion. But the incident was not the first.


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