Archive for November, 2007

Verizon opening up its doors to everyone

Verizon opening up its doors to everyone

Early next year VZW will publish a set of standards allowing anyone to make a device or a program to run on their network. As long as it follows the standards, and passes their tests, you are in.

That means you could literally build a phone on a breadboard, send it in, and as long as it passes the tests, they’ll activate it for you. Who would have ever thought that GSM, EDGE, CDMA, EV-DO, HSDPA, and HSUPA chips would become available to general public for purchase for use in their devices?

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Hammacher Schlemmer marketing World’s Smallest Precision Electric Guitar

Hammacher Schlemmer marketing World’s Smallest Precision Electric Guitar

So the guitar craze due to Guitar Hero and Rock Band are probably causing large numbers of guitars to go quickly out the doors at music stores around the nation, but large numbers don’t always equal large guitars. Just look at this one from Hammacher Schlemmer.

It’s a mere 26.5 inches long but still has 20 frets. Personally, I’d never want to see someone up on stage jamming out on a guitar like this, but it is small, and simple, so for a practice guitar it’d be nice, you could just stuff it in your locker, or your luggage, no problem.

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USB Rechargeable Clip Torch won’t light your fire

USB Rechargeable Clip Torch won’t light your fire

Silly people and their weird names, it’s a light, not a torch, as in flame. It charges via USB, and has a hinge allowing it to bend up to 90 degrees in one direction. It also comes with a couple of clips/holsters that will help you put the light where you want it. You could also use it as a keyboard light for your laptop, or even your desktop.

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Rumor: Pentax K20D and K200D coming soon

Rumor: Pentax K20D and K200D coming soon

In fact they are rumored to be announced on January 24th, 2008. There aren’t any pictures of either camera yet, but below is a picture of the K10D, the camera they would presumably be replacing.

The rumors claim some pretty hardcore specs, even for a DSLR. Those include a 14MP CMOS sensor, a 14-bit RAW A/D processor, 3” LCD, better In-Body shake reduction, PC Syncing, and that’s just for the K20D. the K200D would be replacing the K100D.

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Lindy Electronics puts mirrors on a couple of weird devices

Lindy Electronics puts mirrors on a couple of weird devices

Let me clarify, the devices themselves are not weird, they are just weird locations for a mirror. One is a 57-in-one card reader; the other is a 4 port USB hub.

I reckon if Pride is your cardinal sin of choice, then you might as well use your technology to make sure you are looking your best. Apparently when given the design objectives of “compact” the engineers took it the wrong way and went towards the make-up accessory; thankfully they left the powder out though.

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Nokia adding RFID to phones in the UK

Nokia adding RFID to phones in the UK

In a trial with O2, London Underground, and Nokia, they are offering up a few phones with built in RFID tags to be used with payment systems. Its not a new idea, it was just decided a while ago that it was a rather bad one.

So what makes Nokia think they can do something different enough to make it work better? Personally I don’t think they can, I am all about making the contents of my pocket fewer and fewer and simplifying the payment process, but I am also totally against RFID except for the tracking of cargo, items in a business, applications where tracking people, and attaching the tech to money are not combined because I’ve read about the extreme lack of security regarding RFID.

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On my way to Amsterdam for Mobius

On my way to Amsterdam for Mobius

I’ve waited all year for the Mobius trip to Amsterdam, and it’s finally here. Since this is my first year, I’m not sure what to expect but you can rest assure that I’ll be posting blow by blow coverage right here on SlashGear. I have a short flight to Minneapolis, then off to Amsterdam (a total travel time of 12 or 13 hours) so don’t expect to hear from me for at least 20 hours or so.

AGENDA

Wednesday 28th November

7.00pm – 9.00pm Welcome drinks
(Dining at your leisure – please see list of recommended restaurants below)

Thursday 29th November
8.30am – 5.00pm Business sessions
6.30pm – 10.30pm Drinks and dinner with Mobius – sponsored by HTC

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Samsung 64GB SSD performance benchmarks

Samsung 64GB SSD performance benchmarks

Earlier this month Samsung sent over their new 64GB solid-state drive for us to play with, and Vincent promptly slapped it into his MacBook Pro to see whether it made much of a difference in access speed.  Well, we've finally dragged it away from him, extracted the SSD and put it through some benchmark testing.

As a test machine we used Alienware's m9750 laptop running Windows Vista 32-bit (as we reviewed here), comparing the Samsung 64GB SSD with Sandisk's 32GB SSD in both single and dual-drive RAID-0 configurations.  After each hardware change we reinstalled the laptop's OS using Alienware's supplied restore disk, then ran HD-Tach and HD-Tune to test burst and transfer rates.

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Siemens Acuson P50 is a MacBook Pro pimped for medical use

Siemens Acuson P50 is a MacBook Pro pimped for medical use

Germany’s Siemens dropped a medical bomb recently with the showing of this magnificent MacBook Pro. Personally I think these notebooks are small works of art without addition, but adding an ultrasound machine is an amazing feat.

Furthermore, it doesn’t add too much girth to the laptop, well, at least not for a freaking ultrasound machine. You can still use the MBP as a regular notebook with web surfing, email, all that usual stuff, but there is the added hardware for the Ultrasound machine, and there is some added software for the same.

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Dell XPS M1530 – Thin and quite attractive

Dell XPS M1530 – Thin and quite attractive

Imagine the XPS M1330, but about 2 inches larger in the diagonal, that’s pretty much what this laptop is. It has nVidia graphics, but to 256MB video ram, and the option for a Blu-Ray drive and HDMI out. It has Bluetooth, and WiFi N.

It offers up dual core processors from Intel, a card reader, a slim remote that stows away in the ExpressCard slot, HD display choices to get the most out of your media, a 2MP web cam, a fingerprint scanner, and low-pro optical drives featuring either Blu-Ray or a DVD-burner. You get your choice of 3 colors, Crimson Red, Tuxedo Black, or Alpine White too.

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