Rabu, 30 Juli 2008

The Dell XPS M1330: What’s Hot, What’s Not

config314_xps1330_blk.jpgI’ve been using the Dell XPS M1330 for at least a week now. So far, so good, save for a few irritations.

What’s Hot

  • Lightweight

  • Looks good

  • Powerful

  • Great extras: bundled sleeve, earphones, and remote

  • High-contrast led-backlit display

  • Aluminum wrist rests resistant to discoloration

  • SD, MMC, xD card reader great for camera users

Read More

The Address Book Picture Experiment: Update 1

edit-image.jpgSo here’s my first update on what’s happened with my Address Book Picture Experiment. So far I’ve had 5 people agree to have their picture taken for my cell phone’s address book, 2 refusals, and 1 outright no.

A little clarification regarding the 2 refusals. Both of them really didn’t see the point of posing for a picture, especially since they already had headshots available on their respective websites. In other words, their reason for refusal was because it was a slight inconvenience for them. The sole outright no refused out of privacy concerns. Out of the 5 yeses, 2 were women. One refusal was male, and so was the one no. 3 contacts were new, meaning that I didn’t have their contact info before, and they were all under yes.

It’s a bit too early to interpret anything from 8 resulsts, but you’re welcome to try by leaving a comment below.

Long-Time Apple Fan Bashes iPhone Service

walt-mossberg.jpgHas hell froze over? Mr. Walt Mossberg, who we can count as a pro Apple fanboy along with Applemodo, is actually criticizing an Apple product!

iPhone 24 x 7 has the scoop:

Walt Mossberg, technology expert for the Wall Street Journal, recently delivered a negative review for Apple’s new push service, MobileMe, due to its several failures…

I know Apple’s doing its best to fix it, but it really is significant when your most popular fan gives you a bad review.

Well said JT. Next up: Walt Mossberg revisits two-year lock-ins, and finally squarely blames Apple for depriving lots of its customers of the iPhone experience.

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Femisapien is One Giant Leap for Mankind, Literally

femisapien-solo-sml.jpgTo be sure, nothing about the Femisapien is even remotely, er arousing? Yep, it has a busom and a slim waist, but it’s unimaginable anyone mistaking this for the real deal. Still, in man’s quest to create an artificial companion for their companionship and intimate needs, the Femisapien is perhaps a step towards realistic artificiality. Read More

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Senin, 28 Juli 2008

“Turtle” Airships Hope to Mix Novelty With Philantrophy

The idea is simple apparently: use an airship, take advantage of its spaciousness (compared with aircraft) and turn it into a pretty well-stocked humanitarian platform.

Instead of flying to a major airport at a large city where supplies would have to be loaded onto trucks or helicopters to carry disaster relief, airship can fly directly to any location on earth and deliver humanitarian aid quickly to the exact place it is needed. Airships can deliver help to the most remote locations, even if roads are destroyed as in an earthquake, or flooding.

Read More

“Turtle” Airships Hope to Mix Novelty With Philantrophy

The idea is simple apparently: use an airship, take advantage of its spaciousness (compared with aircraft) and turn it into a pretty well-stocked humanitarian platform.

Instead of flying to a major airport at a large city where supplies would have to be loaded onto trucks or helicopters to carry disaster relief, airship can fly directly to any location on earth and deliver humanitarian aid quickly to the exact place it is needed. Airships can deliver help to the most remote locations, even if roads are destroyed as in an earthquake, or flooding.

Read More

Soaripod Provides Snaking Support for iPhones

The production values of soaripod.com are a bit suspect, but the product feature there is still intriguing. The Soaripod is basically a flexible holder for the iPhone and iPod Touch (no models for the iPhone 3G are apparently available yet) that features a clip on the other end. This makes it possible to prop up the Apple gadget in a variety of locations, at viewer-friendly angles.

Thanks to reader Joseph for the tip.

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The Mandatory Fourth of July 2008 Post

the-iphone-is-american.jpgCelebrate your 232nd year of independence you Americans you! It’s clear that in terms of gadgets, the US is king.

It’s all about American Gadgets, Folks

Everyone talks about American gadgets like the iPhone (notable exceptions include Nokia and Korean manufacturers like Samsung, and you can see them try their best to appeal to the American market). The top 5 trafficked websites according to Alexa (Google, Windows Live, Facebook, Wikipedia, and Gmail) were all created by Americans (and some would say for Americans). A similarity among high-profile gadget celebrities, such as Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, and even Walt Mossberg, is their American blood.

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Panasonic SDR-SW20 is a Genuinely Useful Waterproof Gadget

panasonic-sdr-sw20.jpgRemember our complaints about waterproof gadgets? Turns out they may have their uses after all.

Case in point: the Panasonic SDR-SW20. As the Gadget Grid reports:

Panasonic’s SDR-SW20 compact SD camcorder allows you to shoot in places never before possible (without spending a fortune). Rain, snow, pool or ocean (up to 5 feet deep), the Panasonic Waterproof Flash Memory Camcorder will get you the shots you want without worry of destroying the gadget. It’s also shockproof (up to 4 feet) and sand proof. Take it to the beach or sports field without worrying about sand. The SW20 SD camcorder is also quick on the draw. In Quick Start mode, recording begins in just 0.6 seconds from the time the LCD is opened.

The price seems reasonable too, at least according to Google Product Search. Although of course, “waterproof” is a relative term here; you can’t go deep sea diving with this baby.

Negotiations to Bring iPhone to China Reveal Apple’s New Stance on Revenue

iphone-china.jpgThe drama to bring the iPhone to China is quite revealing. Reuters reports that “Apple is no longer insisting on a revenue-sharing policy”. But according to a spokesperson for China Mobile, “there are practical issues still to be resolved”.

In any case, bringing the iPhone to China would be a good move to Apple. There are lots of customers to be had, and those Chinese clones definitely don’t beat the original.

Most importantly, does this development indicate that Apple had a hard time entering new countries because of its revenue-sharing agreement? And now that they’ve apparently dropped their revenue-sharing policy, will AT&T try to modify its current arrangement with the Cupertino-based company?

iTunes Store May Not be Profitable Enough—Location, Location, Location

iphone-map-washington-simple.jpgForbes reports that some developers, or at least the company Networks in Motion, are “wary” of developing applications for the iPhone.

The three reasons cited were:

  • The apparent ability to pay for an app on the iTunes store only once, and use it on more than one iPhone

  • The current inability for developers to charge a regular fee for continued usage of their apps

  • The potential for supporting a company (Apple) that’s reportedly working on their own versions of the developer’s software

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What’s the Point of Water-Proof Gadgets?

Ok, I understand some people need to take cameras underwater, and I’m pretty sure waterproof flashlights would be really useful. But then again, why would you need a waterproof flash drive (it can be securely wrapped in plastic for a trip), waterproof speakers, and a waterproof monitor?

I really don’t see any practical use for some of the gadgets recently featured by PC Magazine as “Water-Friendly.” Sure, it’s probably pretty novel to look at pictures while under the water, but would it really be useful? Would any of us be able to maximize using gadgets in wet or submerged environments?

PC Magazine: 10 Water-Friendly Gadgets

It’s Time to Upgrade Your Gaming Rig

Current games like Age of Conan and Mass Effect already give high-end PCs a tough time, and it looks like upcoming games like Diablo 3 and Red Alert 3 will be even more demanding. The screenshots are probably making my current gaming rig pee in its pants.

For some reason, I’m thinking now is the perfect time for avid gamers to upgrade their PCs—or even invest in a new one. The second option is more affordable than it sounds, thanks to great resources like Tom’s Hardware.

Read More

Black Parade, Gadgets Edition

So, who can list all of the black gadgets pictured above?

NOKIA Mobile Phone : That Nokia N78 Looks Damn Interesting

nokia-n78.jpgAs we’ve learned more about the Nokia N78, we’ve dreamt even more about it. Think of this phone as an improved N82, with the same:

  • quadband GSM- and HSDPA-capability

  • built-in camera with flash

  • standard 3.5mm audio jack

  • WiFi and Bluetooth

  • TV-out, and FM radio

The N78 is also the first phone we’ve heard about that can actually transmit FM signals, meaning it’s possible to share music with nearby radio phone owners. But best of all, based on the pricing info we’ve uncovered, the N78 is cheaper than the N82! Read More

LG KF750 Secret: What’s Hot, What’s Not

p1000370.JPGWe’ve used the LG KF750 Secret, the third model in LG Mobile’s “Black Label” series, has been used for a couple of weeks. Enough to determine what’s hot, and what’s not.

What’s Hot

  • Good looks

  • Compact size goes well with sleek suits and petite handbags

  • Deep feature set

  • The display really is scratch-proof

  • HSDPA-capable

  • Did we say it looks good?

  • Responsive

Read More

HANNspree’s Sports-Themed-Monitors

baseball_1.jpg basketball_1.jpg soccer_1.jpg

Without really consdering the picture quality, HANNspree’s new line of sports-themed displays are sure to appeal to some sports fans out there. The genuine leather material promised by the manufacturer is strangely appealing to us at least. But boo to the non-widescreen format (1280 x 1024 SXGA+, 19″ display size).

We have some questions for you, dear readers:

  • Are you willing to spend $280 for a monitor shaped like a big ball?

  • Should HANNspree come out with sports-themed CPUs to match their new monitors?

  • Who came up with the name HANNspree again?

Whatever you think, check out the following product pages for more info:

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DirectVoxx Muso Promises Voice Control for the 3G iPod Nano by Dec 2008/Jan 2009

directvoxx-muso.jpgAccording to DirectVoxx’s marketing folks, by next year you’ll be able to control your iPod by talking to it. Apparently, the Muso will understand natural-language commands by looking at your iTunes library. They promise phrases like “Play me some Led Zeppelin” or “Gimme jazz” won’t cause any confusion, all for $159.

The present state of voice-recognition technology aside, we really wonder what kind of gadget magic DirectVoxx has programmed into the Muso to make such a sci-fi pipe dream a practical possibility. We’ll keep tabs on this folks, so be sure to check back for more info on whether DirectVoxx is on-the-level, or the latest user of hype marketing to push a planned product.

It might take a while though. DirectVoxx has set the Muso’s availability on Amazon.com by December 2008, January 2009 in nearest Best Buy. Only the current-generation iPod nano will enjoy support initially.


Gadget Geeks Need to Save on Fuel?

oil.jpgThe only reason why anyone should save fuel is the need to have more funds for gadgets. That’s a (half-meant) joke of course, but that still doesn’t make the problem of increasingly-expensive fuel go away. So, we have to get more out of every drop, discount myths, and even start using our cherished autos less. At least we all know that all those gadgets meant to increase fuel-efficiency, as tested by the US federal government, aren’t really worth the money to buy and time to install (worse, they may even damage your vehicle!).

How have high fuel prices affected your gadget-laden lifestyle? Have gadgets made up for your growing inability to move around (e.g., working at home), or has your growing inability to move around curbed your enthusiasm for gadgets (e.g., I drive to the local gadget shop less)?

Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin iPod Speakers Really Looks Like Namesake


The biggest temptation the Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin iPod Speakers brings is very childish. It makes you want to take out the portable media player (supports any iPod that fits into a 30-pin connector and any player with a 3.5 mm audio jack), carry it up and make propeller sounds, imagining your on the Hindenburg’s maiden voyage perhaps? But then again, that would look really weird to whoever you wanted to share your portable audio with, and a total waste of the $600 price tag.

The B&W Zeppelin features DSP, and over 100W of power divided equally between the bass and treble. Pretty powerful, but it’s reliance on the wall socket (i.e., no battery-power option) means that the Zeppelin fantasy is totally impractical. It’s currently available at the Apple Store and Amazon. [insert propeller sound here]

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NOKIA Mobile Phone : Nokia’s Marketing Bait-and-Switch on The Dark Knight


By now you’ve probably heard about the Nokia 6205, The Dark Knight Edition (pictured above). The phone made the blog rounds, gaining some cliched features such as “perfect for Bruce Wayne wannabes”.

In any case though, it’s probably good that the cell phone maker kept quiet about another Nokia phone that actually enjoyed some significant screen time. HowardForums reveals it as the Nokia Tube. Read More

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Features on Batman’s Gadgets

pitongun.jpgLooks like The History Channel is jumping on the Batman bandwagon, coming out with a feature on batman’s gadgets tonight (July 21) at 9:00 pm. Replay available a few hours later, July 22 at 1:00 am. Mark your bat-calenders, fellow bat-lovers, and get ready with your bat-criticisms or -praises if the THC gets things wrong/right.

In the meantime, feel free to check out The Great Batman Equipment Archive. Definitely a labor of love. Or the less-than-average rundown of PC World.

Alcatel OT-V770: Low-Budget Versatility

p1000839.JPGThe folks of Philippine affiliate Technograph recently got their hands on an Alcatel OT-V770. The phone is part of Alcatel’s apparent strategy to concentrate on the low-end market through a mix of low prices and versatile features.

Future owners will be able to use this phone’s color display, 1.3 megapixel, Bluetooth, music player, and a microSD slot. Users may appreciate Alcatel’s use of the standard 4-pin USB port, which is used for the charger, data cable, and headset respectively. We’ve heard that some units come bundled with a 1GB microSD card, a headset, and even some cell phone insurance. Continue to see more pics of this budget gadget. Read More

Do Box Office Hits Prove that Piracy Doesn’t Hurt Hollywood’s Bottom Line?

Lots of our gadgets do multimedia, and lots of multimedia is pirated. So consider this:

Studio execs argue that piracy will kill the movie business. So how do they justify the raging success of The Dark Knight [and I am Legend]?

“It looks like another indicator that although piracy does hurt business, on a title-by-title level, it’s a more complicated effect,” says Eric Garland, CEO of BigChampagne, “Many top-selling titles are among the most-pirated, but they don’t necessarily underperform in the marketplace just because they’re the most pirated.”

Check out the whole article here.

LG Chocolate 3

lg_chocolate_3.jpgThe 3rd version of the relatively popular LG Chocolate series seems almost lost among the hoopla over the Secret. It looks like LG took a lower-end approach to this variant, since they have higher-end models to take care of the big spenders anyway.

In the US, the Chocolate 3 is available from Verizon for $179 (with an eventual $50 rebate) and a two-year lock-in. Unlocked units go for $299. A very decent price for 1GB of memory, microSDHC slot (up to 8GB cards supported), a 1.76″ 176×220 pixel external display and 2.2″ internal QVGA display, 3.5mm headset jack (which works with standard earphones and headphones), two megapixels of camera capturing capability, “Stereo” speakers, Bluetooth 2.1, and an FM transmitter to send onboard music to the nearest radio.

Why the HP w2207h Rocks


It’s not exactly the newest monitor on the market. But the HP w2207h, a 22″ LCD monitor with a native resolution of 1680 x 1050 pixels, has won its fair share of kudos. It’s not exactly the cheapest 22-incher out there (expect to pay an average of $340 for it), but this display features HDMI in, a USB hub, and even stereo speakers. So it works with HDMI-capable laptops, boosts your USB port capacity, and doesn’t require earphones for full enjoyment.

But perhaps the biggest attraction of this HP LCD is how it can swivel between landscape and portrait modes. Never has looking at upright pictures of women reading documents been so easy! Thanks to mindless for letting us experience his dream setup.

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MacBook Air Now Available for the Poor


The MacBook Air experience: take away the design, and you’re left with the portability and Mac OS X. That’s what the katexter has, thanks to his Hackintosh conversion of his MSI Wind. He (or she) claims it starts Word faster than a 2.4Ghz iMac, and more or less complete functionality:

What works: 1024×600 screen, Ethernet, USB ports, Keyboard, Trackpad, Webcam, Sleep, Bluetooth, Speakers, Audio controls

What doesn’t work: Audio Jacks, WiFi

Workarounds: USB Wifi and USB Audio dongles work.

Check out all the pics here.

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USBee Features Wordplay and Flexibility in a Small Package


The chances of damaging a thumb drive seem pretty small. But not for Damjan Stankovic! His new design, currently a figment of his imagination and not in production, solves the apparently common problem of bending flash drives by granting the classic form factor some flexibility. Stankovic has done away with all that long and stiff plastic, visualizing a design where the components fit into a shape reminiscent of a bee’s thorax (hence the name?). All your data is stored at one end, while the USB connector at the other is free to twist and bend all over, thanks to the USBee’s thin neck.

As mentioned above, the USBee isn’t currently available. But will any manufacturer be game enough to make Stankovic’s dream a reality? Is this even worth making? (gizmosforgeeks.com)

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A Truly Unlocked iPhone 3G Will Break the Bank

Reports are coming in: those who want an unlocked iPhone 3G but aren’t willing to sign up for any two-year AT&T plan will have to pay for the plan’s value up front. Assuming this is true, this represents an additional “fee” of up to $1,900 in the US. Read More

The Barriers to iPhone 3G Business Adoption, Straight from the Horses’ Mouths

enterprise_mobile_email20080609.jpgAs the second-generation iPhone 3G is being marketed as the best phone for enterprise use, you can expect people to take note to Apple’s apparently new business-friendly stance. Some may like the company’s lip-service to providing what corporations need, while others see Apple as a company jumping on an old bandwagon in an effort to make more money. In any case, ZDNet went through all the trouble of interviewing senior IT peeps, getting their opinions on the iPhone as a business tool.

The general consensus is that while the iPhone 3G represents the incorporation of many business-oriented features, there are still some issues that need resolving before companies start seriously considering Apple’s smartphone as a viable alternative to all them Blackberries and WinMo devices. Especially when you consider the limitations imposed by network partners (news.zdnet.com).

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Idealist: Android and Symbian to Merge

As The Site Guy said in an IM conversation: “The MacBook Air was spec’ed to match Sony’s TZ Series”. While some people will definitely find that doubtful, let’s go out on a limb and say that the new VAIO FW Series really looks good, shall we?


Read on to see another image and a max spec summary. Read More

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Mobiles Maybe Good For Concentration, Study Suggests

It’s a relatively age-old question: do cell phones cause brain cancer and other bad things? Well, it seems no conclusive link has been found. But some white coats did find that EEG patterns in the gray matter slow down during cell phone usage:

Although no studies have shown a correlation between cell phone use and brain damage, the International Journal of Neuroscience published a study that found a slower EEG brain wave pattern during cell phone use. This difference in brain activity was subtle - within the normal range - but may reflect a different state of awareness. In fact, they also discovered that frequent cell phone users performed better in selective attention tasks. It’s possible that talking on the phone in the midst of the bustling world’s distractions requires a level of concentration that effectively works as cognitive training of attention.

Hmmm… if mobiles require a bit more concentration, then isn’t it possible that hands-free devices may actually be useless, at least in terms of keeping a driver’s attention squarely on the road? In any case, the most reasonable advice available now is to minimize your contact with mobiles. For instance, instead of keeping the phone to you ear while it connects, it’s always possible to wait for the screen to indicate that the call has gone through before sticking your head to the ear piece.

A 2.5″ Hard Disk to Please Any Woman

It’s not on the market yet, but everyone’s buzzing about this concept “Costume” Samsung hard disk by Joongoo Lee:


A 2.5″ hard disk that’s more at home among women’s cosmetics than in a gadget guy’s bag (Especially since it was apparently inspired by those makeup compacts). Continue to see more pics. Read More

NOKIA Mobile Phone : Nokia Tube Gets a Name (5800) and a Dose of Product Branding (XpressMusic)


Looks like the Nokia 5800 will be part of the XpressMusic line of phones, which include luminaries like the 5310. At least according to the leak by the Chinese peeps, though why the new moniker “XpressMedia” wasn’t used will be a question.

According to the source, The upcoming Nokia 5800 XpressMusic phone feature:

  • A 640 x 360 (16:9) 3.2″ 16-million color display

  • the Symbian S60 “5th Edition” OS

  • An accelerometer for auto screen rotation

  • A 3 megapixel camera with Carl-Zeiss lens dual LED flash

  • some GPS, WiFi (b/g), and Bluetooth 2.0

  • a 3.5mm jack for audio and video output (includes TV-out!)

  • 140MB of internal memory

  • a microSD that accepts up to 8GB (SDHC)

  • 1320mAh of battery power via the Nokia BL-5J. W00t!

  • a length of 115mm, width of 52mm, thickness of 14.55mm, and a weight of 104 grams

Continue to see more pics and a bit of trivia. Read More

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It’s Time to Upgrade Your Gaming Rig

Current games like Age of Conan and Mass Effect already give high-end PCs a tough time, and it looks like upcoming games like Diablo 3 and Red Alert 3 will be even more demanding. The screenshots are probably making my current gaming rig pee in its pants.

For some reason, I’m thinking now is the perfect time for avid gamers to upgrade their PCs—or even invest in a new one. The second option is more affordable than it sounds, thanks to great resources like Tom’s Hardware.

Read More