Archive for December, 2009

JoliCloud enters pre-Beta

JoliCloud enters pre-Beta

JoliCloud, an optimized Linux based OS aimed directly at netbooks has just entered public pre-beta. This change comes bundled as two updates. Immediate differences include a new welcome screen and, most notably, the newly added ability to be installed directly from your Windows 7 or Windows XP machine. Additionally there will be added support for the GMA 500 chipsets. With these new additions 98% of all netbooks on the market are currently supported. There are currently plans to support the NVIDIA ION chip set however so far that update has yet to be released.

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Omnitread Robot: Awesome!

Omnitread Robot: Awesome!

I'm not sure if you have ever woken up in the morning at thought to yourself "I'm going to make a robot that looks like a tapeworm", I know I sure haven't.  Just because we haven't had these visions doesn't mean someone else hasn't, and in fact they have: researchers at Michigan State University have developed a robotic caterpillar called OmniTread, which can climb, slither and squeeze through almost any obstacle. Just like the humming bird robot we covered earlier this week, this bot also has search and rescue in mind.

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Wavebox portable microwave

Wavebox portable microwave

Really, who wants to go out into the wilderness and track down dinner? Sure, the idea seems fun and adventurous but  for people like myself it would result in nothing more than being swarmed by hornets and falling in a creek. And ultimately going home hungry.  Of course you could always take a bag lunch but really come on what is this 2008? The other option out for the tach savvy hunter gatherer is picking up the Wavebox portable microwave.

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Acer Aspire One AO532h $300 netbook gets Atom N450

Acer Aspire One AO532h $300 netbook gets Atom N450

Acer have announced their latest netbook, the Aspire One AO532h, and as you'd expect it's based on Intel's new Pine Trail processor.  The AO532h has a 1.66GHz Atom N450 CPU, 10.1-inch WSVGA display and 1GB of RAM, along with a 160GB hard-drive and WiFi b/g/n.  According to Acer, it can run for up to 10 hours on the high-density 5,600mAh 6-cell battery (or 8 hours on the regular, 4,400mAh pack).

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Apple iSlate tablet: involved teams in “cone of silence”?

Apple iSlate tablet: involved teams in “cone of silence”?

We're still hearing rumors of a January 26th launch for the much-discussed Apple Tablet, and according to the latest from oft-insider Josh Gruber of Daring Fireball, all the signs are coming together for just such an unveil.  Gruber highlights the fact that "everyone working on it has dropped off the map", something which last happened in the run up to the original iPhone's announcement back in early 2007; in fact, many of the people who have now gone into stealth mode are the same engineers and software teams responsible for the iPhone Mail, Calendar, and Safari apps.

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Avi Greengart’s Products of 2009

Avi Greengart’s Products of 2009

As 2009 comes to a close it’s time to acknowledge some of my favorite tech products of the year.

The first “product” on the list works across the iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, and iPod touch: Apple’s App Store. The hardware upgrades to the iPhone and iPod touch in 2009 were less impressive than the price drop on the iPhone 3G and the greatly expanded capabilities that application developers were given for writing for the iPlatform. The developer community responded with tens of thousands of new apps that turn an iPhone or iPod touch into a portable game console, heart monitor, prayer book, GPS navigator, eBook reader, and myriad other possibilities. Other platforms also rolled out app stores this year, but Apple retains an enormous lead in both the number and quality of options.

HTC Android Tablet appearing privately at CES 2010; Chrome OS version in prototype form?

HTC Android Tablet appearing privately at CES 2010; Chrome OS version in prototype form?

HTC's potential tablet plans have always been played down by the company - CEO Peter Chou edged around speculation a few months back, before speculating that his engineers were "carefully looking" at netbook possibilities later on - but that hasn't stopped the rumors.  According to Smarthouse HTC are preparing "several working models of a touch tablet", including at least one running Google Chrome OS; their sources reckon HTC will be giving private demos of an Android version at CES 2010 next week.

Dell Mini 10 netbook mod creates huge Mini 3i Android phone [Video]

Dell Mini 10 netbook mod creates huge Mini 3i Android phone [Video]

It looks like Dell's Mini 3i smartphone is prompting just as much interest in Android over in China as it does in the US and Europe, as one modder has created their own huge version of the touchscreen handset.  According to Shanzai, the project started off as a Dell Mini 10 netbook - which means this replica Mini 3i has a 10-inch display - which was then reshaped into the smartphone form-factor.  You can see a timelapse video of the conversion after the cut.

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ASUS Eee Stick and LCD teams facing axe?

ASUS Eee Stick and LCD teams facing axe?

ASUS' approach with their entry-level Eee-brand devices has always been to throw as much as possible at the market and see what sticks, and ironically the Eee Stick is one of those devices that has proved less than compelling.  According to a DigiTimes report - denied by ASUS, incidentally - industry insiders are saying the company is preparing to axe its Eee Stick team, as well as the projects responsible for its LCD TV and monitor ranges.

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