Get Dollars for HD-DVD
Did you plop down big dollars for a high-definition DVD player using Toshiba's HD DVD format -- which recently lost the battle with Sony's Blu-ray format?
Well, depending where you bought it, you may be eligible for a refund or a gift card to ease the disappointment.
Wal-Mart Stores is offering refunds for HD DVD players purchased on or after Nov. 1. To qualify, customers must return the players by April 30 and have a receipt in hand. Original packaging isn't required.
Meanwhile, Best Buy is giving $50 gift cards to customers who bought an HD DVD player or an HD DVD unit for a Microsoft Xbox 360 videogame system anytime before Feb. 23. Gift-card recipients can keep their HD DVD units.
Best Buy says it will mail the gift cards, which don't expire, by May 1 to customers who bought warranties or who are part of its "Reward Zone" program. Other Best Buy customers can call 1-888-BestBuy to participate. Be sure to have your receipt or credit-card information as proof of purchase.
People looking to get rid of a player altogether -- regardless of where it was purchased -- can check out Best Buy's online trade-in center.
You're not looking at great prices when trading in, but it's something. For instance, you'd get $148.50 for a Toshiba HD XA2 unit originally priced at $1,000, and $2.70 apiece for HD DVDs.
BFG GeForce 9800 GTX 512MB OCX edition review
BFG GeForce 9800 GTX 512MB OCX edition
Today Guru3D will review a card from BFG, the GeForce 9800 GTX OCX model. Pretty much, BFG took the reference GeForce 9800 GTX 512MB and made sure the card you are purchasing will function at a very hefty default overclock, while maintaining your warranty. For example, the core is clocked at 756 MHz, the shader processors at 1890 MHz and the memory just over 2300 MHz. This card screams performance.
Since BFG offer a life-time warranty in the US and 10 years in the rest of the world that is just a tremendous combo.
Full URL to review:
SiSoftware Sandra XII 2008 SP2 (14.20) download
SiSoftware Sandra XII 2008 SP2 (14.20)
SiSoftware Sandra (the System ANalyser, Diagnostic and Reporting Assistant) is an information & diagnostic utility. It should provide most of the information (including undocumented) you need to know about your hardware, software and other devices whether hardware or software.
Sandra is a (girl) name of Greek origin that means "defender", "helper of mankind". We think that's quite fitting.
It works along the lines of other Windows utilities, however it tries to go beyond them and show you more of what's really going on. Giving the user the ability to draw comparisons at both a high and low-level. You can get information about the CPU, chipset, video adapter, ports, printers, sound card, memory, network, Windows internals, AGP, PCI, PCIe, ODBC Connections, USB2, 1394/Firewire, etc.
Download - click here
EVGA releases the nForce 750i SLI FTW
The nForce 750i SLI For Teh Win edition motherboard is an mainstream board for the Intel platform and it comes with a few pluses over Nvidia's 'reference' design. Yet should be an overclocking weonder and supports 45nm Penryn processors.
- Reach extreme overclocking speeds supporting 1600MHz FSB and beyond.
- 6 phase power design for the ultimate in stability and performance.
- Solid state capacitors allowing better overclocking and stability.
- Easy troubleshooting features with on-board CMOS Reset button.
- Extreme DDR2 speeds of 1066MHz and beyond.
In addition to the 'for the win' features, the board provides 45nm CPU support, two PCI-Express 2.0 x16 slots, four SATA 3.0 Gbps connectors and integrated 7.1 channel audio.
- NVIDIA SLI certified
- Intel socket 775
- 45nm CPU ready (Yorkfield & Wolfdale)
- 6 Phase power design
- PCI Express 2.0 support
- 4 Right-angled SATA-2 ports with support for RAID 0, 1, 0+1, 5, JBOD
- On-board buttons for CMOS/Power/Reset
- HD Audio - 7.1 Channel
The nForce 750i SLI FTW can be found for 179.99 USD.
Windows 7 still slated for 2010 says Microsoft
Microsoft is backing off comments by chairman Bill Gates that the next version of Windows could be available as early as next year. So if your pants / panties were in a "bunch" upon hearing news that Windows 7 would be headed into your ever-loving arms "next year," you might just want to hold off on those party invites for a little bit.
Sure, Bill Gates just happened to mention that we'd see a new version of the OS "Sometime in the next year or so," but it's looking like that "or so" makes a world of difference. Microsoft wants to chill everyone out with the somber news that its got no plans to introduce Windows 7 any earlier than January 2010 (three years from the launch of Vista), and reassure us that crazy old Gates may have just been talkin' developer speak. "As is standard with the release of a new product, we will be releasing early builds of Windows 7 prior to its general availability as a means to gain tester feedback," a spokesman for Microsoft said, downplaying Gates' statement. Of course, this means that XP's cutoff will suddenly move even further down the line, which makes us wonder what the point of setting that June 2010 date was in the first place.
Why are you toying with us like this, Microsoft?
USB 3.0 arrives in 2009
Ravencraft commented that SuperSpeed USB is architected for a five-year lifespan, where, in the same timeframe, flash-based drives will comfortably surpass magnetic drives' transfer speeds. SuperSpeed USB, then, will primarily be best-leveraged with flash drives that can comfortably sustain transfers over 50MB/s.
Thinking about power, incumbent USB 2.0 continuously polls the host, evaluating whether there's traffic, wasting energy, he noted. SuperSpeed, however, is interrupt-driven, meaning that it only talks to the host when ready to transfer, reducing the power profile. This protocol won't change as SuperSpeed scales higher in speed.
Further, SuperSpeed uses two differential pairs to scale to 5Gbit's transfer speed, and that's available on cables up to three metres long. Initial SuperSpeed cables will feature both optical-fibre and copper wires at launch, but we suspect that due to keeping costs down, copper-based wires will be more widely used.
Quake 3 for iPod Touch / iPhone
While Quake 3 for iPod Touch / iPhone looks much more believable than the iPhone version of Mortal Kombat, it doesn't seem that the game is going to work as expected on either of the two platforms, should it see a public release. Hermitworks' Scott was able to port id Software's FPS in no time, using Apple's iTouch.
"So we've been playing around with Quake 3 and Apple's iTouch. Scott grabbed the icculus source and with a few modifications had it running pretty quick," says cam.
As a FPS player (not a hardcore gamer though) I can't help but notice the slow input response and of course the limited view angles. Players of such a simple version of Quake 3 might also find it frustrating to have to tilt their device in all directions with light bouncing off the screen and into their eyes right when an enemy appears in front of their character
Yeah, I'm getting pretty tired of seeing Doom/Quake games show up on everything from calculators to refrigerators too, but this port is a little special. It seems to support both multiplayer gaming and tilt controls. If it's not being faked, it looks like you move around by tilting your i Pod touch in different directions. Now that's pretty friggin' sweet.
Cold Boot Attack Put to the Test ...
After researchers at Princeton University showed how they could dig up the contents of a computer's memory just minutes after the machine had been turned off, it was only a matter of time before hackers began showing how this technique, called a cold boot attack, could be used in the real world.
Worlds smallest 8GB USB Drive
Super Talent today announced three new 8GB USB Flash drives, including the world
AMD of Q1 results, announces layoffs
Chipset maked maker AMD yesterday issued a press-release with their Q1 financial results ending on march 29th. Though things are picking up, $1.5 billion revenue (22% increase compared to Q1 2007), it's still down 15% compared to the Q4 2007 and this will now have it's toll on employees as the company plans to reduce its workforce by 10% before the end of Q3. This means that roughly 1,500 employees will lose their jobs. The full results of Q1 are expected on April 17.
The job cuts are a necessary move to help lift AMD from the negative spiral in terms of financial performance.
AMD (NYSE: AMD) today announced that it expects revenue for the first quarter ended March 29, 2008 to be approximately $1.5 billion, a 22 percent increase compared to the first quarter of 2007, and down 15 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2007. The decrease is due to lower than expected sales across all business segments. AMD had previously anticipated first quarter revenue to decline in line with seasonality.
In addition, AMD announced plans to adjust its cost structure by reducing its workforce by approximately 10 percent by the end of the third quarter of 2008. As a result of these reductions, AMD expects to record a restructuring charge in the second quarter of 2008. At the time of this release, AMD is unable to determine the estimated amount of the charge as the details are still being finalized.
OCZ Rally 2 Turbo 4GB and 32GB USB Flash drives
Now personally I'm getting a little tired of all the rugged flash memories, I mean .. what's the point of boiling a USB stick or driving over it? I'll opt style over rugged. And that's where the Rally seems to suit me. Incredibly handy small USB flash disks that are fast and now range up-to a 32GB file-size.
As stated we'll look at two OCZ "Rally" models today, the 4GB OCZ Rally 2 Turbo and then the colossal (in volume size) 32GB version of the Rally 2 (without the Turbo though).
72% of U.S. population plays games
According to the firm, 40% of United States residents played an online game in 2007, with that figure expected to rise 2% in 2008. A whopping 90% of those who played online in 2007 reported using a PC to do so, with NPD describing the PC as "the driving force in online gaming."Also interesting is that 3% owns two current-gen consoles and 2% even owns all three:
Though the exact reasons were not specified, the high ratio of online PC gamers is most likely due to the abundance of massively multiplayer online games and free web-based casual titles available on the platform. Shacknews attempted to confirm this with NPD, but was told that information is not available to the media.
Renowned game designer Peter Molyneux recently commented on the shifting PC market, claiming that "the PC is just reinventing itself" and is "being owned more and more by casual gamers."
Only 19% of online players stated that they played online with a console, with the Xbox 360 accounting for half of that figure. Interestingly, Xbox 360 owners were reported to spend the most time gaming online per week, respectively followed by PC and PS3 gamers.
The report noted that 3% said they own two of the three current-gen systems--PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and Wii--with only 2% owning all three. It was not specified if those figures were based on the total US population or the percentage of those that play games.
Stephen King on Violence in Video Games
So, nope - videogames are not my thing. Nor am I some kind of raving political nutcase. But when I heard about HB 1423, which happens to be a bill pending in the Massachusetts state legislature, I still hit the roof. HB 1423 would restrict or outright ban the sale of violent videogames to anyone under the age of 18. Which means, by the way, that a 17-year-old who can get in to see Hostel: Part II would be forbidden by law from buying (or renting, one supposes) the violent but less graphic Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.
According to the proposed bill, violent videogames are pornographic and have no redeeming social merit. The vid-critics claim they exist for one reason and one reason only, so kids can experience the vicarious thrill of killing. Now, what does and doesn't have social merit is always an interesting question, one I can discuss for hours. But what makes me crazy is when politicians take it upon themselves to play surrogate parents. The results of that are usually disastrous. Not to mention undemocratic.
One of HB 1423's cosponsors is Rep. Christine E. Canavan, of Brockton. ''I think this legislation is a good idea,'' she told the Boston Herald. ''I don't want this constant barrage of violence on young minds and for them to think it is all right.'' It's a good point...except that it seems to me that the games only reflect a violence that already exists in the society. Nor will I argue for the artistic value of stuff like God of War, or 50 Cent: Bulletproof, where looting the victims of gang violence is part of the game (players use the money to buy new Fiddy tunes and music videos - classy). I do, however, want to point out that videogames, like movies, have a ratings system, and ones with the big M or A on the box mean ''Not for you, baby brother.''
Mafia 2 Screenshot
Windows 7 arrives next year, says Bill Gates
Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates on Friday indicated that Windows 7, the next major version of Windows, could come within the next year, far ahead of the development schedule previously indicated by the software maker.
In response to a question about Windows Vista, Gates, speaking before the Inter-American Development Bank here, said: "Sometime in the next year or so we will have a new version." Referring to Windows 7, the code name for the next full release of Windows client software, Gates said: "I'm super-enthused about what it will do in lots of ways."
Most of Gates' speech was devoted to topics closer to home for the crowd, such as how Latin America can be more competitive.
Windows 7 and its intended feature list have been the topic of speculation since Microsoft discussed some details of the new software last summer.
At that time, Microsoft said little except that Windows 7 will ship in consumer and business versions, and in 32-bit and 64-bit versions. The company also confirmed that it is considering a subscription model to complement Windows, but did not provide specifics or a time frame.
Less than 24 hours ago, a Microsoft representative told CNET News.com that the company expects to ship the successor to Vista roughly three years from Vista's January 2007 debut.
Unclear is whether Gates was referring to early testing of Windows 7 coming within the year, as opposed to a widespread release or debut. An early test geared toward developers would be conceivable. The company has repeatedly said that it will accelerate the development of new Windows versions, largely as a response to Vista's roughly five year gestation period.
Microsoft on Thursday declined to extend a lifeline for Windows XP, saying that only a limited number of specialized machines will be sold with the operating system after June.
The company said it will continue to allow Windows XP Home edition to be sold for a class of computers it calls "ultra-low-cost PCs."
Vista, the current version of Windows, has sold well, according to Microsoft. But the operating system's debut was marred by repeated delays and shifting feature lists. Last week, Microsoft stepped up efforts to drive adoption of Vista by businesses.
Asus unveils dual HD3850 graphics card
Catering to users who want to enjoy outstanding graphical performance, Asus today unveiled the world's first on-board dual HD3850 graphics card with the Asus EAH3850X2/HTDI/1G. Equipped with two HD3850 GPUs, an astonishing 34% and 5% improvement in speeds can be achieved when compared to single-GPU solutions and two single-GPU Crossfire configured graphics cards respectively. The Asus EAH3850X2/HTDI/1G also comes specially designed with dual fansinks for both GPUs
LaCie Triple Interface Hard Disk by Neil Poulton
LaCie today announced the latest model of its Hard Disk, Design by Neil Poulton
Pizza.com sold for $2.6 million
The contract never happened, but Clark kept up the annual registration fee and sold the site Thursday for $2.6 million to an anonymous bidder.
Over the years it had made Clark and a partner a small profit as a pizza delivery directory, the Baltimore Sun reported.
But, in 2006 Clark heard the name "vodka.com" sold for $3 million and he realized he was onto something.
He advertised his site was for sale and got offers of six figures. So, he turned to Sedo, the online auction house that sold the "vodka.com" name.
On March 27, the bidding for "pizza.com" started out at $100. The final bid Thursday was for $2.6 million.
"In '94, you could have just registered everything and anything," Clark told the paper ruefully. "I think about that now, yeah," he said.