Gadgets November 23rd, 2007 by Stephen
One Laptop per Child Extends Give One Get One Program Through December 31
CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--One Laptop per Child (OLPC), a non-profit organization dedicated to providing every child in the world access to new channels of learning, sharing and self-expression, is extending its recently launched Give One Get One program beyond the initial two-week limited time offer through December 31, 2007, in the USA and Canada. The extended period gives people more time to participate in this unique giving program and support the mission of One Laptop per Child.
On November 12, OLPC launched the Give One Get One program for individuals in the USA and Canada to support the OLPC Foundation by paying US$399 for two XO childrenâ€™s laptops â€“ the buyer gets one laptop and the other is given to a child in the developing world. The donated laptops will go to children in such countries as Afghanistan, Cambodia, Haiti, Mongolia and Rwanda.
â€œIn the past 10 days, weâ€™ve experienced an outpouring of support from the public that is truly gratifying and encouraging,â€ said Nicholas Negroponte, founder and chairman of One Laptop per Child. â€œBecause so many people have asked for more time to participate either individually or in order to organize local and national groups to which they belong, we have decided to extend Give One Get One through the end of this year. During this extended period we will solicit input and transition to a program of giving only at the beginning of 2008. We want as many people as possible to have the opportunity to act upon the giving spirit of the holiday season.â€
$200 of the Give One Get One contribution is tax deductible as a charitable donation. Give One Get One donors also get access to one year of complimentary T-Mobile HotSpot Wi-Fi access, which is available at more than 8,500 locations throughout the United States.
In addition, XO laptops can be purchased for educational purposes and in quantities of 100-999 at $299 each, 1000-9999 at $249 each, and 10,000 and up at $199 each.
To date, donations to the Give One Get One program have averaged US$2 million per day.
To learn more and participate in the Give One Get One program, go now to http://www.laptopgiving.org or call 1-877-70-LAPTOP (1-877-705-2786).
Movies November 21st, 2007 by HMTKSteve
Users are saying…
I was just taking a quick look over at Yahoo when I took this screen-cap. Users are saying
What is going on over at Yahoo? They refer to their members as Users? Is Yahoo dealing drugs or something? Are they publishing film reviews from known drug addicts?
As for the movie, I am looking forward to seeing this. Because it is a family movie I may be able to convince my daughter to go and see it with us. The last movie I saw in the theatre was Bee Movie, which I loved.
Gadgets November 20th, 2007 by Stephen
Nintendo releasing two themed DS Lites
REDMOND, Wash., Nov. 20, 2007 â€“ Starting Nov. 23, Nintendo gives the holiday season a fresh blast of color with the launch of two special-edition Nintendo DSâ„¢ bundles. Each pairs a custom-color Nintendo DS system with one of the platform's hottest titles. The new Gold edition comes with The Legend of ZeldaÂ®: Phantom Hourglass, while the Metallic Rose Nintendo DS comes with the "Best Friends" version of Nintendogsâ„¢.
"Nintendo DS remains the portable system of choice for gamers. Our new bundles will be collector's items for current gamers while offering an attractive way for people new to video games to play with style," says George Harrison, Nintendo of America's senior vice president of marketing and corporate communications.
According to information from the independent NPD Group, Nintendo DS sales in the United States:
- topped 458,000 in October.
- are nearly 4.5 million for 2007.
- exceed 13.6 million since the system launched three years ago on Nov. 21, 2004.
boasts 14 different million-unit sellers in North America, including Brain Ageâ„¢: Train Your Brain in Minutes a Day, PokÃ©monÂ® Diamond Version, PokÃ©monÂ® Pearl Version, Yoshi's Island DSâ„¢, PokÃ©monÂ® Mystery Dungeon: Blue Rescue Team, Big Brain Academyâ„¢, New Super Mario Bros.â„¢, Animal CrossingÂ®: Wild World, Mario KartÂ® DS, Super MarioÂ® 64 DS and four versions of Nintendogsâ„¢.
The glimmering Gold edition of the Nintendo DS Lite shows the world your passion for excellence and grandeur, since it comes bundled with The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass â€“ the year's biggest hand-held adventure game â€“ and is emblazoned with the series' signature Triforce logo. It's a shiny nugget that any gamer â€“ girl or guy â€“ would be proud to show off.
For those looking for a different kind of dazzling color, the new pretty-in-pink Metallic Rose edition puts a futuristic sheen on your color scheme. It's bundled with Nintendogs, the acclaimed puppy-interaction software that lets players select, train and play with their own canine companions. And the hardware comes accented with a distinctive pink puppy paw print.
I have been holding out on buying the new Zelda game on DS and this might be the crowbar that opens my wallet. I'm still using my old DS Phat but I don't play that many GBA games anymore so moving to a DS Lite will not be bothersome at all (the DS Lite has a shallower game slot for GBA games).
You can buy the Nintendo DS Lite Game System with The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass online for only $139.99 from the Shop at Home Television Network!
You can buy the Nintendo DS Lite Bundle with Zelda: Phantom Hourglass (Gold) online for only $159.99 from Buy.com.
You can buy the Nintendo DS Lite Zelda Gold Bundle online for $159.99 from newegg.com.
You can buy the from the Shop at Home Television Network for $139.99.
You can buy the Nintendo DS Lite Nintendogs Metallic Rose Bundle online from newegg.com for only $149.99.
You can buy the Nintendo DS Lite Bundle with Nintendogs: Best Friends (Metallic Rose) online from Buy.com for only $152.99.
Supplies are limited so do not be surprised if the lower priced one sells out.
General November 19th, 2007 by HMTKSteve
I sure would like a box
This subject came up in a discussion with some of my friends; why do woman always ask for things indirectly?
A bunch of married guys (and a few with starter wives) were talking about how the woman in their lives never ask for things directly but instead phrase requests indirectly. The most prominent example is the "I sure would like..." phrase used by many a woman.
"I sure would like a cup of tea."
"I sure would like a box."
"If I had a diamond ring on my finger I would be so happy."
And so on...
In contrast the guys would simply say:
"Hey honey, as long as you are up can you get me a cup of tea too?"
"See that box over there? Could you hand it to me 'cause I have a use for it."
"Diamonds? Are you serious? Those things are a racket and they wouldn't even be worth anything if not for the high profile marketing campaigns put on my big diamond miners..."
Yes, I know all about that wacky serious of books that suggests men and woman are from different planets but being from different planets should not force me to buy a universal translator to talk to them!
I think part of this language difference comes from the idea of wants vs. needs. As a man I prefer to be wanted and not needed. I feel that if someone wants you (rather than needs you) it implies a conscious choice. I need food and water to live but I want a roasted chicken and some bubbly water for dinner.
I have met too many woman in my life who desire to be needed. They feel that if a man does not need them he may grow tired of them and leave. This worries me because being a need implies you have no choice. I would not want someone to consider me a need because that means that if something were to happen to me they would be helpless.
As to my earlier topic of discussion I think woman prefer to use the indirect approach to ask for things because they feel that when they get what they are asking for it implies that the man had to do some thinking to figure out what she wanted. It also gives her a bit of deniable plausibility if something goes wrong.
"No, I didn't want that box, I was just thinking out loud."
Image boxes for the reception 3 used under Creative Commons License from flickr user cyancey.
General November 19th, 2007 by Digg
Nail Art of Leonardo da Vinci [image]
Take a famous drawing of Leonardo da Vinci and reproduce it by banging nails into a piece of wood. AMAZING!
You need to take a look at this. What we have is a guy who copied a famous sketch of Leonardo da Vinci by banging nails (varying heights) into a large piece of wood. You have to see it to believe it!
read more | digg story
Gadgets November 19th, 2007 by Stephen
AMD Introduces Worldâ€™s First Comprehensive, Cutting-Edge PC Platform
SUNNYVALE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Rewriting the rules for enthusiast computing, AMD (NYSE: AMD) today unveiled its new platform codenamed â€œSpiderâ€, with the first true quad-core processor supporting scalable graphics for The Ultimate Visual Experienceâ„¢. The AMD Spider platform combines the introduction of AMD Phenomâ„¢ quad-core processors, ATI Radeonâ„¢ HD 3800 Series graphics processors with Microsoft DirectXÂ® 10.1 support, AMD 7-Series chipsets with CrossFireXâ„¢ and AMD OverDriveâ„¢ software. The AMD Spider platform is a major milestone on the path to Accelerated Computing, AMDâ€™s vision for platform-level acceleration through co-processing.
â€œAMD is the only company committed to delivering The Ultimate Visual Experience across all the screens of your life,â€ said Dirk Meyer, president and COO, AMD. â€œThe AMD Spider platform embodies our approach to platform-level innovation and delivers a highly-advanced, feature-rich enthusiast computing experience. Our commitment to energy-efficient design and manufacturing excellence drives an unprecedented performance-per-watt at an amazing price point, putting enthusiast-class platforms in reach for more users than ever before.â€
AMDâ€™s Spider platform advances enthusiast computing by delivering the most sophisticated multi-GPU enthusiast platform ever with ATI CrossFireX technology. The combination of the energy-efficient 55nm ATI Radeon HD 3800 Series of graphics processors and the increased system bandwidth of PCI ExpressÂ® Generation 2.0 and HyperTransportâ„¢ 3.0 technology, provide optimal processing power for a scalable HD multi-GPU experience. AMD design and manufacturing innovation has enabled the AMD Spider platform to easily scale to three or four graphics processors and deliver a true gaming supercomputer.
â€œFalcon Northwest is particularly impressed with the quad ATI CrossFireX potential of the new AMD Spider platform,â€ said Kelt Reeves, president of Falcon Northwest. â€œRunning four graphics boards in one system has been a dream of gamers, but could be a nightmare for a system builder to get all those graphics cards proper airflow. The cohesive nature of the Spider platform design allows the AMD 7-Series chipset, high-performing AMD Phenom quad-core processor, and the already cool and quiet ATI Radeon HD 3800 graphics cards to all be placed for maximum airflow and cooling. AMD has made massive multi-GPU performance easy to build, and affordable.â€
HD Technology Leadership
AMD is delivering the only platform that boasts major next-generation, industry-standard technologies to provide unparalleled bandwidth and balance in the delivery of next-generation HD content. With HyperTransport 3.0 technology, AMD Phenom processors have more system bandwidth than ever before with up to 14.4 GB/second of high bandwidth I/O. When combined with the additional bandwidth of AMD PCI Express 2.0 chipsets and graphics processors, the AMD Spider platform enjoys maximum bandwidth to support smooth 1080P video playback, enhanced multi-GPU and high-speed disk and network interfaces. With the only true quad-core processor and infrastructure flexibility with AM2+ socket, AMD processors are designed to be compatible with future 65nm and 45nm AMD Phenom processors to deliver key performance gains.
Video enthusiasts can enjoy best-in-class HD entertainment on AMD Spider platforms with the addition of the powerful visual processing capabilities of the ATI Radeon HD 3800 Series. Striking image quality and power-efficient playback are made possible through the ATI Avivoâ„¢ HD video engine and the Unified Video Decoder (UVD). The addition of UVD ensures exceptional platform efficiency and image quality in HD-DVD and Blu-ray decoding for both H.264 and VC-1 specifications. Big screen gaming and entertainment is also made easy with enhanced HDMI connectivity with integrated HDCP and audio for HDMI video.
Scalable Platform Performance
AMDâ€™s Spider platform offers a new class of enthusiast platform scalability, with multiple upgrade options to increase performance and boost compatibility with configurations that can deliver an estimated two teraflops(1) of desktop processing power by harnessing four graphics processors. The multi-core design of AMD Phenom quad-core processors, based on Direct Connect Architecture, features an integrated memory controller designed to support memory speeds up to DDR2 1066(2), 128-bit floating point units and AMDâ€™s Balanced Smart Cache for rapid access to memory, with a shared L3 cache for leading-edge performance on multi-threaded software.
The AMD 7-Series chipsets introduce the world to the latest ATI CrossFireX technology, a new class of scalable multi-GPU performance, supporting three or four ATI Radeon HD 3800 Series graphics processors for unparalleled upgradeability and DirectX 10.1 performance with the industryâ€™s only tri- and quad-GPU solution for Microsoft Windows VistaÂ®. AMD 7-Series chipsets support up to four graphics processors and 42 PCI Express lanes, enabling maximum performance and upgradeability for gamers and PC enthusiasts. AMD 7-Series chipsets can deliver the ultimate in personalized enthusiast platform performance with AMD OverDrive(3) software, the industryâ€™s most powerful and intuitive Windows operating system-based performance tuning utility. Through a simple Windows operating system-based interface, AMD OverDrive software can satisfy the needs of a wide range of performance-oriented users from enthusiast overclockers to mainstream gamers(3). In addition, AMD AutoXpressâ„¢ settings can increase your system performance when combined with enthusiast memory modules, ATI Radeon graphics, as well as AMD Phenom quad-core processors.
â€œAMD has a long history of delivering compelling hardware innovations so that consumers and enthusiasts can enjoy new experiences and take full advantage of the capabilities that our products including Windows Vista deliver,â€ said John Schappert, corporate vice president of LIVE Software and Services at Microsoft. â€œThe AMD Spider platform adds a new dimension to AMDâ€™s excellence in driving platform robustness and scalability, designed to deliver the utmost in upgradeability and performance with the new tri- and quad-GPU solution for Windows Vista.â€
High-performing, energy-efficient AMD Spider platforms provide industry leading platform performance-per-watt, combining energy-efficient AMD Phenom quad-core processors for an improved computing experience, low power 65nm enthusiast AMD 7-Series chipsets, and low-power, high-performance 55nm ATI Radeon HD 3800 graphics. The AMD Spider platform also includes an unprecedented list of computing technology firsts and focus on power consumption, including: ATI PowerPlayâ„¢, Coolâ€™nâ€™Quietâ„¢ 2.0 technology, Microsoft DirectX 10.1 support, HyperTransport 3.0 technology and PCI Express 2.0.
In a new initiative to measure real-world processor power consumption, AMD surveyed consumer and commercial users to understand precise usage patterns. AMD measured power consumption for these usage patterns and has found that AMD Phenom processors with Coolâ€™nâ€™Quiet 2.0 technology rated at 95W TDP can consume an average power of 32W for consumers and 29W for commercial users (4). For more information on the power consumption of AMD processors and platforms visit www.amd.com/coolnquiet.
Enhanced features include AMD CoolCoreâ„¢ technology, support for split power plane motherboard designs and the ability to set independent core frequencies. The AMD 7-Series chipsets are designed using 65nm process technology, a first for chipsets. With a TDP of approximately 10-12 watts, the 7-Series chipset offers world-class energy efficiency, allowing users to focus resources on processing performance. With a flawless transition to 55nm process technology, the ATI Radeon HD 3800 Series can deliver more than two times the performance-per-watt over the previous generation of AMD graphics products. In addition, ATI PowerPlay for the desktop allows for automatic power state adjustments for increased GPU efficiency when under moderate load or idle. All of these features contribute to better power optimization by enabling more efficient performance, lower power consumption, and quiet operation.
â€œIn today's PC market there is escalating consumer demand for multi-core performance and enriching HD media experiences,â€ said Toni Duboise, senior analyst with Current Analysis West. â€œPlatforms with enhanced performance features and improvements in performance-per-watt and energy efficiency, such as AMD's Spider platform, are a big benefit to customers.â€
Availability and pricing
AMD Phenom processors 9600 (2.3GHz) and 9500 (2.2GHz) are now available for $283 and $251 respectively in 1,000-unit pricing. The ATI Radeon HD 3850 with 256MB of GDDR3 memory begins at US $179 MSRP and the ATI Radeon HD 3870 with 512MB GDDR4 memory from US $219 MSRP, available from AMDâ€™s selected graphics products partners. For processor pricing details, please visit www.amd.com/pricing. For press collateral pertaining to AMD Spider and its components including product specifications and availability, videos, images and partner support, please visit www.amd.com/spider/presskit.
Tech Deals November 17th, 2007 by Stephen
Get A Gameboy Advance for $19.99!
Looking for an old Gameboy Advance to play some of your games on? While not as slick as the DS Lite or even the Gameboy Advance SP you can't beat the price!
Internet November 17th, 2007 by Stephen
Google Knows Hypocrisy
Google has long claimed that the one guiding principle it lives by is "Do No Evil". Sadly the Internet giant is becoming a beacon of hypocrisy that shines brighter than the evils of cable companies that sell 'unlimited' Internet access while screwing around with traffic and sending spoofed reset packets.
In order to understand the hypocrisy of Google you must first understand one of the biggest causes Google currently supports: Network Neutrality. The idea behind Network Neutrality is that the companies who own the infrastructure of the internet should not be allowed to modify traffic that flows over their network equipment (no speeding up, slowing down or blocking of packets or web sites) nor should they be allowed to charge web site owners for access to the Internet Service Provider's customers.
Even though Google is not (currently) an ISP they drive a lot of traffic on the Internet. They currently dominate Internet search with over 67% of the search market. With such a large portion of Internet search traffic under their control you might think Google's "Do No Evil" policy and support of the principles behind Network Neutrality would extend to their Internet search business. Oh, wait a minute, NO. Between Page Rank and their search results Google plays hardball with those they do not like.
Example 1: Text Link Ads
Text Link Ads is an Internet advertising company that provides a marketplace for webmasters to sell text links on their member's sites. Link buyers are able to search the marketplace and buy links on a large number of sites with rates based on Alexa data and Google Page Rank.
Recently Google de-listed Text Link Ads from their organic search results. Strange isn't it how if you do a search on Google for "text link ads" the only link to them is in the sponsored search section? The only way to get them to show up on a search is for you to search specifically for "text-link-ads.com"
Google will not allow the company to rank for "Text Link Ads" but it is more than willing to take their money and promote their site via AdWords/AdSense! Funny how money has to change hands for a company to show up on a search page for its own name?
One of the reasons many people believe Google has put Text Link Ads on their hit list is because they feel the service is used to influence Google's SERPs and Page Rank systems. Google can quickly fix part of this issue by removing Page Rank either in full or blocking Page Rank data from being disclosed outside of Google. Google could do this but they will not, Page Rank is too important to Google as it uses it as a carrot and a stick. Do what Google likes and you get Page Rank, make them mad and they take it away.
I have read some arguments about this where the writer points out that it is Google's index and they can do whatever they want with it. This argument is flawed. Though it is Google's index they have a responsibility to their customers to provide relevant search results and removing a site from the index (except for a very specific search term) does not help its customers. Not only that but with such a large amount of the search traffic going through them you might think that they would practice "Search Neutrality" akin to what they want the ISPs to do.
Example 2: John Chow
John Chow is an internet mogul who runs a very popular blog about making money online. He does all of the things that Google hates, the least of which is selling text links. For his crimes against Google he has been de-listed much as Text Link Ads has been. Can you believe that a Google search for "John Chow" will not list his site? In fact the top result is a link to a parody site; John Cow.
As with Text Link Ads if you search Google for "johnchow.com" you will find the site, but why would you search for that?
John Chow has publicly stated that he does not need Google and his monthly revenue reports and RSS numbers prove it.
Google the Hypocrite
It is clear to me that Google has become a hypocrite. On the one hand it fights for Network Neutrality to keep ISPs from adding tolls to the Internet while it feels no such qualms about forcing companies to pay to appear on the search results page for their own name!
Google clearly has a conflict of interest in controlling such a vast amount of Internet search traffic while at the same time basing it's business model on selling advertising links via its AdWords/AdSense programs. It is in Google's short term financial interests to have companies pay for a sponsored search listing rather than allow them to achieve an organic result on the search results page. As for its long term interests, I believe Google is only hurting itself.
More and more people are waking up to the fact that Google is becoming the new evil empire. It does not offer its products and services for free because it likes you, it offers them for free because they are advertising supported and it wants to lock you in to using them. Haven't we heard that argument before about Microsoft software being on school computers?
Once you take the time to look at Google's actions based on their being an advertising company rather than a search company it all begins to make sense. Google does not want anyone selling Page Rank because they feel they own it and only they should be able to profit off of it. That is why they have recently been slapping people around with the Page Rank stick.
It also becomes obvious that Google is doing these slap downs in the hopes of making people think twice about making money via anything other than Adsense. If you sell advertising on your site via any method other than AdSense you are a competitor to Google. Monopolies hate competition and Google is well on its way to becoming the be-all-end-all of Internet advertising. Which is funny considering how they treat their AdSense publishers!
I think it is high time for Google to practice what it preaches and stop using its Internet search dominance as a club to keep its own AdWords/AdSense program on top.
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