Monday, July 31, 2006

Nokia's N73 Cellphone With 3.2-megapixel Camera Available Now in Europe


The Nokia N73, complete with 3.2-megapixel camera, is available now in Europe for around $700. The N73, which was announced in April, features a number of options that make it an attractive option for photography buffs (well, insofar as photography buffs don't mind using a cellphone for taking photos), such as integrated flickr support and a 2.4-inch QVGA display. There's also the assorted bonuses now commonly found on mid to high-end cellphones, such as MP3 (and WMA) support, a miniSD expansion slot and synchronization with Bluetooth or USB. It's a GSM cellphone, but also supports the new kid on the block, EDGE.
Nokia claims that the N73 will provide sufficient battery life for up to four hours of talk time and up to 14.5 days while on standby. While now available in Europe, it's unclear when it'll reach these shores.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Motorola Announces Five New Products


Motorola have introduced the new MOTOKRZR and MOTORIZR handsets, along with their complementary Bluetooth headsets, the H601 and H800. Embodying Motorola’s design philosophy, the products are impressively narrow, contain a sliding form factor and integrate new advances in color, material and finish.

The MOTOKRZR meets and surpasses the MOTORAZR standard for slimness, with more than a centimeter shaved off its width. Showcasing a multi-dimensional, metallic gloss finish for visual depth, the MOTOKRZR exhibits subtle elegance through magnesium, polished chrome and hardened glass. The solid piece of glass on the front of the phone – a technological first for a large volume mobile – results in a high-gloss lustre balancing the velvet-like soft touch finish on the back.

Matching the sleek silhouette of MOTOKRZR, Motorola’s first GSM slider, the MOTORIZR handset diversifies the company’s product line-up – giving consumers the ability to slide rather than flip. Although the product showcases a new form, it remains true to Motorola’s design ethos with tactile, metallic and soft-touch finishes, a chemically-etched spun metal keypad and optional tattoo graphics.

Ron Garriques, President Mobile Devices at Motorola, says, “As we set one industry milestone, we’re instantly focused on delivering the next. With MOTOKRZR and MOTORIZR we’ve achieved a new combination of thin and rich – honoring our commitment to design while adding new form factors and additional features.”

Motorola MOTOKRZR
Available in both GSM and CDMA, the MOTOKRZR will be available globally during the second half of 2006, regardless of their network preference. The GSM MOTOKRZR features a high resolution 2.0 megapixel camera, stereo Bluetooth audio, an updated phone directory and new messaging applications. While both versions offer integrated music players and expandable memory up to 1GB, the CDMA MOTOKRZR beats to a slightly different drum boasting touch-sensitive music controls, advanced EVDO data services* and location-based services capabilities.

Motorola MOTORIZR
Merging an innovative slider design with an impressive feature set which is accessible either opened or closed, the MOTORIZR offers intuitive functionality. This slider optimizes on-the-go imaging with its expansive landscape display, 2.0 megapixel camera and programmed point-and-shoot keys. The built-in music player supports a variety of formats and its video capabilities complete this dynamic package.

Motorola H601 and H800
Reflecting the new handsets look and feel, the Motorola H601 and H800 Bluetooth headsets bring advancements in talk time, sound clarity, upgraded finishes and laser-etched graphics. Influenced by MOTOKRZR, the Motorola H601 is sleek and functional, offering optimal comfort. The Motorola H800 debuts with a unique sliding mechanism replicating the MOTORIZR. Both offerings exemplify how Motorola extends its design philosophy across its entire portfolio.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Women 'use mobiles to deter men's approaches'

OK, it's a survey conducted in the UK, so the phone theft will be a litle higher. I would risk saying that EVERY South African cell phone owner has had one stolen....

he mobile phone is changing how we interact with each other, according to a study - with some women using theirs to keep predatory men at bay.

More than 16,500 people were surveyed for the Mobile Life Report which reveals insights into how we live. In the past, women may have used a newspaper as a barrier to deter people from approaching them but that has changed; KAZINFORM is citing The Independent.

The study, which was published by The Carphone Warehouse and the London School of Economics, showed that 54 per cent of women under 25 admitted using their mobile in public situations to deter people from approaching them.

The report revealed that, on average, people sent 3.6 text messages a day compared with 2.8 voice calls a day, and that around one in 10 people have had a mobile stolen. Women aged between 18 and 24 were most at risk.

The research also showed that a quarter of people paused to turn off their phones or switched them to silent mode before sex.

HP Handheld ”Pushes” Mobile Connectivity to the Next Level

HP has announced the HP iPAQ hw6900 series Mobile Messenger, a smart device giving customers the ability to instantly receive email wirelessly using new push-email functionality featured in the Messaging and Security Feature Pack for Windows Mobile 5.0. HP iPAQ hw6900 customers can now access and manage business and personal information without the need for additional email middleware software or expenses.

The sleek HP iPAQ hw6900 series gives customers the freedom to choose how they connect by featuring a variety of wireless technologies including wireless voice, high-speed GPRS/EDGE data networking, Wi-Fi, GPS technology and Bluetooth. With both integrated Wi-Fi and GPRS/EDGE technology, the HP iPAQ hw6900 provides users with affordable connectivity, whether in a Wi-Fi hot zone or over a cellular network.

“Busy professionals no longer need to sacrifice connectivity when away from their desk. They can now expand their workspace while on the move with the powerful HP iPAQ Mobile Messenger,” said Nadia Hufkie, iPAQ product manager, HP Personal Systems Group. “With real time, wireless email, voice and fast data access, our customers can get more done and be more mobile with fewer devices to carry.”

Always in the know when on the go

Using new Direct Push Technology in Windows Mobile 5.0, HP iPAQ hw6900 series devices are automatically sent new email, calendar items, tasks or contacts wirelessly.

The Windows Mobile 5.0 operating system creates an improved Outlook Mobile experience, enhanced device and data protection – including the ability to remotely wipe all device data – all without the need for businesses to deploy costly middleware servers and software.

Enhanced device and data protection ensure end-to-end secure, cost-effective mobile messaging solution deployment. With the new Messaging and Security Feature Pack for Windows Mobile 5.0, customers do not need third-party middleware additions and can use their existing Exchange servers for an easily manageable and scalable mobile email solution.

Ideal travel companion with built in navigation

Built-in GPS Navigation provides customers directions at their fingertips – whether they are in the car or on foot. Integrated turn-by-turn navigation to nearby restaurants, hotels, airports, cinemas, petrol stations, museums and many other points of interest make the iPAQ hw6900 the ideal travel companion.

Versatility for both work and play

The HP iPAQ hw6900 delivers a unique combination of wireless technologies and rich productivity and multimedia tools. For customers desiring one single and secure device for all of their business and personal communication needs, the HP iPAQ hw6900 offers the freedom to become more mobile. Key features include:

· Quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE (Enhanced Data rates for Global Evolution) technology allows for voice and data communication around the world

· Wi-Fi (802.11b) enabling high-speed data rates

· True push email capability: Windows Mobile 5.0 with the Messaging and Security Feature Pack enables HP iPAQ to integrate directly with Microsoft Exchange Server and Small Business Server for a cost-effective messaging solution for businesses both large and small

· Built-in GPS receiver and optional navigation applications and maps for precise driving directions

· Bluetooth technology – communicate with Bluetooth-enabled devices such as headsets and printers and synchronize wirelessly with a PC

· Microsoft Windows Mobile 5.0 operating system: persistent storage feature to prevent the loss of data even if the battery is removed or drained; easy multimedia synchronisation such as music, video and photos from a PC to iPAQ handheld; and enhanced Microsoft Outlook Mobile software for calendar, contacts, tasks and email features that improve the mobile experience

· Stronger device and data protection: Microsoft Messaging and Security Feature Pack provides remote management and enforcement of IT policies over-the-air; increased access security to Microsoft Exchange using certificate-based authentication to the server that eliminates the need to store corporate login credentials on device; email content protected with support for signing and encrypting with digital certificates

· Integrated keyboard for fast and easy email/message composition

· Built-in1.3 mega-pixel HP Photosmart camera provides high-quality 4”x6” photos and allows for easy sharing

Friday, July 21, 2006

Blogs aren't as popular as you think!

Bloggers who say their writings are a form of journalism are in the minority, despite the hype, two surveys reveal.
A study by social networking site MSN Spaces found that nearly 60% of people in the UK use blogs as an online diary.
"Citizen journalists" are increasingly dominating the headlines for reporting events using online tools like blogs.
A second survey by the Pew Internet and American Life Project found that 65% of people in the US who write a blog also do not consider their work journalism.

Not trusted

The Pew project interviewed 233 active bloggers. Most cited "my life and experiences" as a primary topic of their blog.
This was followed by politics and government issues and entertainment-related topics.
"Blogs are as individual as the people who keep them, but this survey shows that most bloggers are primarily interested in creative, personal expression," said Amanda Lenhart, a senior research specialist at the project.
The survey of 750 internet users by MSN Space showed UK bloggers had similar interests.

Results are indicative and may not reflect public opinion

The research found that 28% of UK bloggers write about a hobby compared to 12% who write about world events.
A quarter of internet users in the UK now write a blog, according to MSN Space.
A fifth said they wrote entries to make their voice heard.

The MSN study also asked why people read blogs.

More than a third of respondents said that they read them for the latest technology news. A further 30% said they read them to find out about new music, and 28% about general news.
However, readers did not trust the information. Only 4% saw blog entries as a "totally impartial form, of information" and nearly two-thirds said they took what they read "with a pinch of salt".
Of the people surveyed, 78% said they trusted more traditional forms of media to provide them with accurate information.
Over half of the respondents in the Pew survey said that they tried to verify facts in their posts "sometimes" or "often".

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Censorship


I am seeing a very worrying trend in South Africa. I am not sure when it started but I think that it needs to end soon or we will be a very sad little country on the southern tip of Africa.

If someone wants to say something that he feels is the truth, then who are we to stop that person from doing it? As long as that view does not incite violence or hatred towards other people, then he HAS to be able to say it.

There has been a website launched lately that brought awareness to the internet world about all of the crime in South Africa. Today, that site no longer exists. Was it pulled by the owner? Was it forced off by the ISP? Were the death threats that the author received the reason?

The author isn't answering his phone, so it seems as if we won't know the answer too soon, which is also a worry.

Let's step back a bit though. Here is someone saying and publishing things that he feels are important. You might not agree. In fact, I hope that you don't agree with him. If we all agreed with each other, why carry on living at all? Argue, debate and talk. Learn. People have threatened the author of the site with violence if he carried on with the site. Who is more in the wrong here? The author or the death threat?

If someone speaks out against anything in South Africa these days, you are branded unpatriotic or racist. Tony Leon of the DA get's it, Patricia de Lille gets it and other people who stand up to raise issues get it. We MUST stand up and stop this. If I wish to make my voice heard I can and MUST do it. It should be expected in a free country. If it doesn't happen, then we aren't truely free.

What do we do about it? We must kep our blogs interesting and exciting so that people on the Information Super Highway know that there are still free thinking liberals in South Africa. Not all of us are pro-death penalty. Not all of us are for a one party state. Not all of us want to leave at the drop of a hat just because things are going badly for a while.

We must be careful not to believe everything we see on the news and on the radio. Remember that these media want us to be one way. Fight against the machine, stand up and be counted.

Please let me know what you think.
J

Iomega sets new standards by doubling REV technology capacity

omega Corporation, a global leader in data pr otection, today announced the latest breakthrough in high-capacity removable storage for the backup and archive needs of small and medium-sized businesses: the new Iomega REV 70 GB Backup Drive, a second generation REV drive that delivers 70 Gigabytes per removable disk for enterpr ise-level performance at small business prices.

Now available worldwide in external USB 2.0 and internal ATAPI models, the new Iomega REV 70 GB Backup Drive utilises tough, removable 2.5 inch 70 GB REV disks that double the capacity of first-generation REV 35 GB pr oducts, delivering the same pr oven reliability and unbeatable pr ice-performance for small and medium-sized businesses. In support of its existing REV customers, Iomega REV 70 GB Backup Drives offer backward read and write compatibility with first-generation REV 35 GB disks.

"Compared to a DAT 72 format tape drive, we offer almost twice the native capacity (36GB vs. 70GB for REV), instantaneous random access to your files, faster backups and restores, ruggedised cartridges, and our drive costs significantly less," says Kennedy. "In true Iomega tradition, we have delivered a safer, smarter and better removable backup solution and the de facto alternative to tape backup pr oducts for small businesses."

With the introduction of the REV 70 Backup Drive, Iomega's REV platform now features two capacity points: REV 35 GB drive and disks, ideal for desktop backup and archive needs; and REV 70 GB drive and disks, delivering increased capacity for server backup applications. The REV pr oduct family also includes automation solutions like the REV Loader 280, which manages eight REV 35 GB disks in an innovative desktop enclosure.

Iomega's REV 70 GB disks can store as much as 140 GB of data with compr ession using standard backup software. EMC award-winning Retrospect Expr ess software ships with all desktop REV drives for automatic backup and disaster recovery; REV server solutions come with CA's BrightStor ArcServe Backup software.

Iomega's new REV 70 GB Backup Drives feature impr oved transfer rates of 30 MB/sec. (max), versus 25 MB/sec for first-generation REV 35 GB pr oducts. Both generations of REV pr oducts boast extensive third-party software support, estimated 30 year archival life, and an estimated one million rewrite durability – the kind of performance tape pr oducts such as DAT 72 can never match. And while tape pr oducts require frequent head cleaning and an expensive tape replacement regime, REV drives and disks are designed for continuous reliable use with zero maintenance.

These advantages translate into the lowest total cost of ownership (TCO) of all major backup solutions. Savings include reduced labour, hardware costs, and system downtime. Higher capacity REV 70 GB disks also reduce time spent changing media and pr ovide greater consolidation of data.

Pricing
The Iomega® REV® 70 GB USB 2.0 Backup Drive retails for R4999 (ex VAT), including one REV 70 GB disk. The Iomega® REV® 70 GB ATAPI Backup Drive retails for R4999 (ex VAT), including one REV 70 GB disk. Iomega REV 70 GB disks are available for R649 each (ex VAT) or in five-packs for R2899

i-mate® does sexy!


i-mate® has added chic, sleek and sexy to the already astounding range of features in its Smartphone range with the new i-mate® Smartflip. The Smartflip is the perfect balance between business functionality and lifestyle applications - a feature-rich Smartphone with a unique combination of striking good looks and remarkable functionality.

The Smartflip is a super-slim marvel of mobile engineering. At just 16mm thick it slips into a pocket or purse, but its svelte design by no means compromises the phone’s functionality. Full colour dual screens and etched metallic look flat keypad with luminescent back light allows for fast and simple navigation. Business users get Microsoft® Pocket Outlook for Contacts, Calendar, Messaging, Tasks & Voice Notes, with the superb seamless synchronisation of ActiveSync, and the ClearVue viewers for Word, Excel, PowerPoint and PDF documents. GPRS and EDGE support make for speedy data connections, and the phone can act as a GSM data modem, with both Bluetooth and USB connectivity.

Dual screens provide the usual i-mate brilliant display at 240x320 pixels inside and a 128x128 outside screen for caller information, clock, status, and self-portrait viewfinder. The 1.3 Megapixel camera does stills and video, and audio functions includes support for all major formats with great stereo sound and a hands-free phone function.

For music lovers, audio playback can be controlled using external buttons without opening the phone, and a MicroSD card slot provides additional storage for music and images.

The flat keyboard is comfortably sized for ease of use, with a five-way navigation button and two soft keys. Side buttons control volume, camera, voice memo and voice dialling.

The Smartflip is powered by Windows Mobile 5, and comes pre-loaded with three games.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

The newest, naughtiest, multi-player game you'll find on the internude... uh... internet

Note from Roy Blumenthal: This story is copied without a word of alteration from SMITH NEWS.

Wank and File



By john
on Blog


naughty america cap


I’m guessing that the guy in the RL-looking inset top right is the
Naughty America member (”member” — heh, heh, get it?) piloting the
avatar pictured at top left and in-scene shirtless in gray trousers.
And I’m also guessing that the avatar pictured top left is pictured
there so that the Naughty America member can keep an eye on the face
he’s presenting to the redhaired avatar batting those heart-shaped
balloons of love toward him. Aw.


This, of course, is from Naughty America: The Game,
whose producers are threatening to launch this summer. “Get ready for
the first multiplayer experience,” they say, “to boldly go where no
game has gone before — to bed!”


Second Life, but with active genitals. To quote Paris Hilton (with some irony, of course), “That’s hot.”


Oh, and if you click on that link to the NA site? You might want to turn your sound off.


MobileTune FM Transmitter for iPod


I thought that Roy can't take all of the glory for showing you some really cool iPod additions. With all of the other MP3 players out there, I feel that with all of the additions to the iPod has made that the player of choice. Why buy the N91 from Nokia if you don't get all of the cool things like speakers, FM transmitters etc?

Here is one of them....

Elegantly integrating an iPod into the car is fairly hard to do. There's a whole host of methods to accomplish the task, from line-in inputs in after-market radios, tape adapters and FM transmitters, provided you don't live in an FM radio-saturated market. Speck Products has an FM transmitter that promises to both work well and actually look attractive in the process. The MobileTune plugs into your car's 12V power socket and the iPod's dock connector; the cord functions as an antenna, so you're less likely to hear static on the road. The knob is actually the interface for changing the tuned-in station. I bet not even the Batmobile had one of these.

Speck Products touts a number of features that set this FM transmitter against the others, such as the fact that it supposedly charges the iPod faster than other transmitters and sounds better thanks to the cord/antenna. This perhaps comes at a price, since the MobileTune is only compatible with iPods newer than 3G models. Death to dinosaurs, apparently.

It's $59.95 and is available now

Monday, July 17, 2006

MWEB Business enters wireless broadband market

In line with the growth of the local high speed Internet access market, MWEB Business today announced that it will be offering wireless broadband connectivity to small and medium businesses.

Initially a reseller of Vodacom’s 3G/3G HSDPA offering, MWEB Business plans to expand its range of broadband offerings by the end of 2006.

“Our research has revealed that there is still a great degree of uncertainty about broadband – among both small businesses and consumers. We will take into account a business’s particular broadband needs and propose the most suited solution. No jargon, small print, hassle, complication or hidden costs,” says Gary Hart, General Manager: Marketing and Products, MWEB Business.

Local research house BMI-TechKnowledge recently revealed findings related to the local broadband market, and projected that the current base of broadband subscribers will grow to 870,000 by 2009. Of this figure, 56% of subscribers will use wireless broadband services.

“MWEB Business’s strategy is to demystify and simplify the process of upgrading to either fixed or wireless broadband. Broadband is far more affordable than businesses tend to think, and we believe that it is the simplicity of having a single service provider that will appeal to users,” adds Hart.

3G/3G HSDPA from MWEB Business is provided with the following bundled value-added services:
- 1GB mweb.co.za mailbox
- 24 hour technical support
- 300 free Wi-Fi minutes per month (provided that the user is in an MWEB joint-venture hotspot)
- Monitoring and alerts (related to data caps and limits)
- Single point of contact for all technical, hardware, Internet and billing queries

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Shooting War: a free graphic novel in weekly instalments

Chapter 1: “Boom”


Hokay. Don't miss this one. Click now and be prepared to spend a fair amount of time rivetted to your screen. Cos this is THE new graphic novel.

Several great things about it.

(1) It's set in 2011, in a 'future' VERY similar to the one George W. Bush seems intent on creating for us right now.

(2) There's a hardbitten realism to this that suggests that the writer and artist have done a ton of research into what's ACTUALLY going on in the Middle East today.

(3) The world they posit is technologically probable. The hero of the piece is a video blogger who happens to be in the right place at the right time. He becomes a media hit when he accidentally videos a bombing on his cellphone. This is really where we're headed.

(4) The artwork is nothing short of stupendous. They're marrying hyper-saturated photography with dirty, super-duper illustration. You're IN this world with these characters.

(5) Throw in the fact that it's being released chapter by chapter every week, with a possible love-story in-the-making, and that the whole thing is free... what more could ya ask for?

Stop reading my review. And go and treat yourself to a thought-provoking look at the politics of violence in Shooting War, written by Anthony LappĂ© and  illustrated by Dan Goldman.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

EA Release a new Ring


Electronic Arts announced today the development of The Lord of the Rings, The White Council, an all-new role playing game (RPG) for the Xbox 360 video game and entertainment system, PlayStation3 computer entertainment system, and PC. The game, inspired by the New Line Cinema feature film trilogy that grossed more than $3 billion, will feature an original storyline derived from J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings novels under an agreement with EA. The game is scheduled to ship in late 2007.

“Our extremely talented and dedicated team is committed to creating an incredible new experience for fans of The Lord of the Rings and role playing gamers,” said Steve Gray, executive producer, The Lord of the Rings, The White Council. “With its next generation gameplay and epic new storyline, we think The Lord of the Rings, The White Council will be a huge success.”

Players have the freedom to explore the open world of Tolkien’s Middle-earth™ in The Lord of the Rings, The White Council. Players can choose their role as a man, an elf, a dwarf, or a hobbit. Each role’s destiny is to become a hero allied with the White Council, whose members include the famed characters Gandalf, Saruman, Galadriel, and Elrond.

A combination of stunning graphics and expansive environments, along with the freedom of movement demonstrates the innovation and quality of the next-generation RPG, where players can create their own adventures.

For more information about the game, please visit: www.whitecouncil.ea.com.

Breathalyser phone stops drinkers making embarrassing calls

Who needs a TV on thier phone when you can have one of these????

THE first mobile phone aimed at drinkers is about to go on sale in Britain, complete with a breathalyser that tests users’ fitness to drive and a “sobriety lock-out” to stop drunken late-night phone calls.

The Samsung LP4100 is targeted at hard-living, hard-drinking young people, promising to help them avoid drink-driving and drunk dialling.

If the user has exceeded the drink-drive limit when blowing into the phone, it gives a warning and displays an animation of a car swerving on a road and crashing into traffic cones, a hint that they should take a taxi.

The phone can also be programmed to block selected numbers in the address book such as former girlfriends or boyfriends, bosses, parents and kebab houses.

Samsung believes that the phone, which has a shape similar to a sports car, will find a market among young clubbers, stopping their slurred speech before they leave a regrettable voicemail message, let alone try to climb behind the wheel.


Read more about this FANTASTIC idea from The UK Times Online.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Two of the world’s great consumer products have converged


This is the official press release from Multichoice that I got today. Please read my review of the phone and the technology here....


Mobile television has come a long way in the past two decades since Sony first introduced the “Watchman”. The rather cumbersome portable television device never took off the way their “Walkman” did. Now, some 20 years later, MultiChoice and M-Net are offering South Africa trialists DStv on mobile phones.


While 3G mobile television has been available in this country for several months, DVB-H (Digital Video Broadcast – Handheld) mobile TV is new – so new that only one country, Italy, has launched a commercial service. South Africa could be the second in the world - there are already around 2000 people on the pilot.


DVB-H differs from the mobile technology currently on offer in very fundamental ways: 3G, or Third Generation, accessible through mobile operator portals, utilises a cellular telephony network infrastructure and frequencies. It is what is referred to as a one-to-one, or point-to-point transmission. 3G has bandwidth restrictions, which means that if too many users try to tune in simultaneously the network could become overloaded, and video and audio quality compromised.

DVB-H is true mobile broadcast spectrum TV, a point-to-multipoint transmission that delivers terrestrial digital picture and sound to numerous handsets concurrently without any loss of quality.


DVB-H and 3G are, however, complementary technologies, and mobile phones in the future will be both 3G and DVB-H enabled. A consumer could watch a live soccer match via DVB-H for instance, and download a profile of a player, or request statistics about the team via 3G. Experts predict that this will be the “killer app” of the future.


A new division has been set up at MultiChoice to handle the logistics of the DVB-H trial. Linda Vermaas, CEO of M-Mobile, explains that DVB-H masts have been erected in the areas trialling the technology. “Two of the world’s greatest consumer products – the telephone and the television – have converged, and will probably change the way we consume TV, just as the mobile phone transformed telecommunications.”

Google Earth Update

It's official, most of Johannesburg has been updated on Google Earth. My house out on the West Rand was just a blob of colours but now I can see my car pareked outside. Well worth looking at if you want some time to kill.

End of support for Windows 98, Windows Me, and Windows XP Service Pack 1

Microsoft made this announcement yesterday in their Security Newsletter for Home Users. Interesting the email headline they used, since the web site actually says Win XP SP1 support is supposed to stop on October 10th. Support for Win 98 and ME were set to end today. At any rate, if you're running Windows 98 or ME, it's well past time to pack it in:

End of support for Windows 98, Windows Me, and Windows XP Service Pack 1
Effective today, Microsoft no longer provides support for Windows 98, Windows Millennium Edition (Windows Me), and Windows XP Service Pack 1. Customers can access existing support documents through the Microsoft Support Product Solution Center, but telephone and e-mail support and security updates are not available.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Nike+iPod Sport Kit


Moving on to all thing bright and musical- the iPod range just got a boost from strange corner- Nike. The two companies worked together to develop the Nike+iPod Sport Kit, which promises to make your jogging experience more enjoyable (but just as sweaty). The latest Nike+Air Zoom Moire has a built-in sensor that connects to a receiver on the iPod nano to provide details such as distance, pace and time. It will even tell you how much calories you’ve burned. All this is displayed on the iPod’s screen but also transmitted through the earphones. When you’re done the data from your jog can be downloaded to computer to keep record of your training. Apple even went so far to include a Nike Sport Music section on the iTunes music store, while some Nike apparel, such as jackets and shorts, will include waterproof pockets in which your nano can be stored.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Philips Digital Photo Display


This innovative and simple to use digital photo gallery combines technology, portability and quality to allow you to show off your photos to their very best. With its stylish and elegant table top design, the Digital Photo Display will fit perfectly with your home decor or on your desk at work. Storing more than 50 our more high-quality photos, you don’t even need to be connected to a PC to access your photos – simply insert your digital camera’s memory card and browse your pictures on a full colour, high definition LCD screen or you can save them on the Digital Photo Display to look at when ever you feel like it. Visit www.philips.com for more information

BEN'S GLAMOUR FROM CRUMPLER


It’s time to grab attention, time to be the mirror ball, time to snap your way out of the monochrome mould with the new Ben’s Glamour from Crumpler. This bag is the lip-gloss coated, booty assed, fully optioned digi-photobag. And without Ben – your bum will look big. You see Ben’s put’s out the glamour and you get all the glitz, and with all these touch-me colours its no wonder Ben’s the bag for snapping handbag house. Ben’s made of flexy lusious material, has easy adjusting compartments, waterproof ripstop lining, a mesh lined accessory pocket and a big adjustable strap. Ben’s Glamour is guaranteed not to crack up even under the brightest lights. www.crumpler.co.za.
Priced from R250 – R495.

SANDISK AND SKYPE ANNOUNCE POCKET-SIZE INTERNET

SanDisk Corporation and Skype have announced that Skype users can now make free calls and chat on almost any PC without having to download software. The Skype software will now come pre-loaded on SanDisk's newest Cruzer Micro and Cruzer Titanium lines of Skype-certified U3 enabled smart drives. This will allow consumers to make free PC-to-PC audio and video calls to Skype users in most major markets.

SanDisk's Cruzer Micro and Cruzer Titanium with U3 gives users a portable way to carry files and programs without leaving any personal information behind on a computer. This means Skype users can take their Skype account complete with their contacts, settings and preferences on a device that is smaller than a pack of chewing gum and make calls, with video as an option, from any PC such as those in Internet cafes and hotels. This compact Skype is particularly useful for business travelers, leisure travelers, students and anyone who uses multiple computers.

The new drives will display the Skype logo on the packaging and will feature one free month of Skype voicemail for the mobile user to get messages from their Skype calls even when on the go.
Skype is available locally on the Cruzer Micro U3 enabled and the Titanium U3.
Suggested retail prices:
Cruzer Micro 512 MB is R299
Cruzer Micro 1 GB is R529
Cruzer Micro 2 GB is R1029
Cruzer Micro 4 GB is 1999
and
Cruzer Titanium 1 GB is R699
Cruzer Titanium 2 GB is R1249
Available from Tudor Photographic. Their numbers is (021) 423 4150

SARL RADIO TECHNOLOGY IN ACTION COMES TO KWAZULU-NATAL

The South African Radio League is taking its Technology in Action programme on a road show and will present the day at the Department of Electrical, Electronic and Computer Engineering at the University of KwaZulu-Natal on Saturday 15 July 2006

The aim of the programme is to highlight the new technologies available to radio amateurs and to members of the public who are interested in electronics and communication as a leisure time activity. The two tear programme is varied and will be of interest to newcomers to radio and electronics as a past time activity.

One of the most exciting lectures on the programme is entitled the Miraculous Bell at the Villa Griffon by Tony Voorvelt of the University of the Witwatersrand. This lecture demonstration encompasses the early years of Guglielmo Marconi's experiments in radio communication. The lecture makes use of replicas of the early equipment used by Marconi. During the lecture Tony will attempt to enact the transmissions as Marconi performed them from his home, the Villa Griffon near Bologna, Italy.

On the technology side, there will be a lecture on surge and lightning protection for radio and electronic equipment by Warren Botton of ClearLine. With expensive computer and home theatre equipment around, this lecture will show owners how to protect their investment.

Software Defined Radio, turning your PC into a shortwave radio is another interesting lecture presented by Dr Gert-Jan van Rooyen of the University of Stellenbosch.

Other subjects covered during the day include: Powerline Communication – could it be the death of HF communication?; South Africa’s second satellite and Amateur Radio in space, Working the HF bands, Turbulent Space and its effects on satellites and propagation, Batteries in Amateur radio, All about PICS and Pickaxes, QRP works well, Setting deviation on a FM radio, What will rejuvenate contesting, and Portable operation in Emergencies

The day starts at 08:30 with registration. The cost is R20 per person payable at the door which includes entry into the attendance prize draw which will take place at the end of the day. The event will be held at Department of Electrical, Electronic and Computer Engineering Lecture Rooms G01 and G02 on the Howard College Campus. Refreshments and light luncheons will be available

For a full programme and times visit www.sarl.org.za.

Friday, July 07, 2006

F1 2006 for PSP and Ps2

Sony Computer Entertainment Europe is pleased to announce the Summer 06 launch of FORMULA ONE 06™ exclusively to PlayStation2 and PSP.

FORMULA ONE 06 is the only official interactive game of the 2006 FIA FORMULA ONE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP and is loaded with new features and all the official 2006 drivers, cars, teams, circuits and rules.

FORMULA ONE 06 is all about speed, competition and fast-paced action. If you’re a novice, switch on the brand new driver and racing aids to race for fun; or turn them off for a full length GRAND PRIX experience if you’re a FORMULA ONE professional.

FORMULA ONE 06 features the ability to Network Play between PlayStation 2 and PSP. This means players can now compete online across platforms to see who the fastest FORMULA ONE 06 racer is. In other words, if you own the PlayStation 2 version of the game and your friend owns the PSP version, you can still compete on the same circuit!

For the first time, the experienced Studio Liverpool development team has been hard at work on both titles, to ensure the 2006 games remain innovative and fresh. Brand new features include:

* Accessibility: Thanks to new racing aids, any gamer can pick-up and play FORMULA ONE 06 and enjoy the exhilaration of driving a FORMULA ONE car. Equally, if you’re a confirmed FORMULA ONE driver, you can scale the gameplay to make it more simulation oriented. Either way, you will have access to a Tips and Learning Centre to constantly improve your racing skills.
* Online Play: You can now race online in a complete 18-race season! Relive the excitement and the competition of a full championship season. Winning it will make it even more satisfying!
* Cross Platform: Race online between PlayStation 2 and PSP!
* Realism: Race in this year’s championship with all the 2006 drivers, cars, teams, circuits and rules!

Getting even closer to the world’s most glamorous sport, both titles give players the real FORMULA ONE experience via new additional features including:
* Classic Cars: Unlock and take the wheel of classic FORMULA ONE cars
* Extensive Career Mode: Chief Engineer – A new way of playing career mode
* Live Action Racing: Pressure system, AI mistakes and collisions, race incidents, new physics
* Race Car Evolution: Tune and set up your car without going through complicated menu screens

The PSP version will also include Wireless multiplayer features via Ad Hoc Mode and will take advantage of Infrastructure Mode allowing you to race online, a first for the FORMULA ONE franchise on PSP.

So… take a seat, put on your racing gloves and get ready to experience the action-packed racing fun that is FORMULA ONE 06 on PSP and PlayStation 2.

Screenshots of both the PSP and the PS2 are available here.....

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Wednesday, July 05, 2006

IBM and Sport

As I am sure you know by now, I run this site and a sport site with news, views and interviews around everything to do with sport. Check it out while you have some time.
This was sent to me from IBM, it's a good story because it is rechnology being used in a real world environment...

IBM, the provider of technology and consultancy to The All England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC), is once again supporting the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in 2006.

“Tennis is often seen as a very traditional sport, lacking the innovation of other sports. But IBM has pushed us to be more innovative by applying cutting-edge technology and first-class business consultancy to the tournament. Innovation is integral to the ongoing transformation of the Wimbledon experience for players, fans, press and club members alike,” says Ian Ritchie, chief executive officer, The All England Lawn Tennis Club.

IBM has brought a number of technology innovations to the 2006 Championships, including:

Training

IBM has streamlined the ball boys and girls’ pre-tournament training process. Before they take up their positions court-side, the 180 AELTC ball boys and girls undertake an online training programme developed by IBM. Basic match rules, physical training routines and Wimbledon etiquette are key parts of the training. To access a live demonstration of the online training portal visit: http://testapp.wimbledon.org/BBG

Bluetooth Hotspots

From the moment the tournament began on 26 June, tennis fans were able to tap into the magic of Wimbledon on their mobile phones via a number of Bluetooth hotspots across London.

Real-Time Identification (RTID)

This year IBM introduced a cutting-edge RTID (Real-Time Identification) badge-scanning technology, which enabled the AELTC to set a new security benchmark. IBM’s RTID tracking system, based on an extensive wireless network, will allow all players, VIPs, tournament officials, press and employees (including about 5,000 temporary staff) access to the site through gates linked to a real-time time/security accreditation.

Track Me Down!

Once inside the grounds, officials have access to voice-controlled tracking devices from IBM business partner Vocera Communications which will allow them to communicate with one another and locate each other in an instant using simple voice commands. The Vocera Communications Badge is a wearable device that weighs less than two ounces and can easily be clipped to a shirt pocket or worn on a strap lanyard. It enables instant two-way voice conversation without the need to remember a phone number or manipulate a handset.

Players Performance Report

Players competing on Centre and Number 1 courts are provided with a detailed analysis of their performance. Data captured during the game from scoring, ball tracking and other information systems is collated into a report that players can use with their coaches to quickly identify strengths and weaknesses to improve their game before the next match.

Virtualise It!

Virtualisation technology from IBM makes it simpler and less expensive for the club to optimise and integrate hardware, software, storage, networks and computer systems in open and heterogeneous environments. Virtualisation decreases costs, simplifies IT management and increases IT utilisation.

It is this virtualisation capability that powers Wimbledon Online. The AELTC needs a scalable web infrastructure to accommodate the peaks and troughs of data streamed to the site. Downtime is simply not an option when the demands of the world's top sporting players, media, onsite spectators and fans across the world must be met.

Last year, www.wimbledon.org was accessed by 4.6 million unique visitors who visited the site 29.9 million times in the space of the tournament fortnight alone. The site, which runs on an IBM POWER p550, remained failsafe throughout the Championships, meaning that live match data was constantlavailable on the downloadable real-time scoreboard.

New Keyboard


I don't normally get excited about Computer add-ons. Let's face it, a mouse is a mouse and keyboard is a thing that you bash all day. I have to say, though, that this got me a little warm around the ears this morning!!! Looks as if Microsoft have hit on a good thing.

The first wireless rechargeable, backlit desktop is coming soon.

Microsoft Hardware is pushing the innovation envelope and introducing industry firsts to help you move from work to play with cutting-edge performance and total style.

Can a keyboard create its own mood lighting? Respond to you? Enlighten you? Move with you? The ultimate desktop can with ambient backlighting, proximity sensing and 10 metre of range.

When will it be here and how much is it going to cost? I have no idea. I have been told that more info will follow. Stay close.