Archive for March, 2011

Do Batteries last

Thursday, March 31st, 2011

So do batteries last? anyone that has owned a mobile phone in the last while, will say that they don’t. Although my relationship with my current E71 battery is still a long lasting one, I can still get 2 days out if it after almost 2 years. But it looks like the Toyota Priuses 10 year old batteries are still good according to AOL autos so we could be on to something here with the electric cars. With Ford’s 100 mile electric range car looking to launch soon, maybe it could be worth thinking about changing from a oil burner to a electric car, for regular commutes. And before some one says “it won’t go from Cork to Dublin on a charge” well I think that these are going to be second cars not the big car.

Skype Booths

Wednesday, March 30th, 2011

Skype are looking like they are turning into a telecoms provider more and more, they have now created a Skype booth, its being previewed in Estonia in the Airport in Tallinn. It seems a pretty good idea in my book. But I wonder about the back end, as the Peer to Peer tech that they use, can have interruptions. So I wonder what happens if you put your money in, an Skype’s call could possibly drop. Do you get a refund, or what? I’m sure all these questions will be answered.


there is a better link here about the skype booth

Nintendo 3DS “Black Screen of Death,”

Monday, March 28th, 2011

Reports are filling the blog world that allegedly there is a “Black Screen of Death,” occurring on the 3DS where the system has to be rebooted to get over the issue. I don’t own one of these, but in case anyone has hit it, here’s some links, That might be of use.

Nothing is on the Nintendo site regarding this issue, so it may not be correct and it could be user error but if your looking to update your system, Nintendo gives the following link.



Fast charging batteries

Friday, March 25th, 2011

New batteries developed at the University of Illinois, appear to have solved the issue with charging batteries, instead of taking hours, they seem to have got it down to minutes. Again this is all early testing, so it may never go in to production, But it could give electric cars the recharging boost that they need, and take us away from Oil. More from Elektor Electronics magizine.



lending an ebook versus a book

Wednesday, March 23rd, 2011

Well amazon, may have tried to put the kibosh on lending ebooks, they have revoked Lendle‘s access to the API, but have reinstated it. So we can all go back to sharing ebooks. I haven’t used this service myself, but it seems to be limited to 14 days and you can only lend once, unlike a traditional book which you can lend continually! I think its a nice idea, but I not sure if it will get off the ground, if there is a prospect of the main book sellers loosing money off it.

in some US liabarys HarperCollins Publishers has apparently set its e-books to expire after 26 rentals — effectively giving them around a one-year shelf life, 2 weeks * 26 giving you a year, but with a standard book, I lasts longer than 1 year normally, Why is data different, or maybe some one is trying to make money out of this!

I think the e-book story has a long way to go… My two cents anyway.

Firefox 4 just released

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011

Mozilla has just released FireFox 4, its all new and improved, but I’m waiting to 4.01 to see how works. I am curious about how it controls memory management, as FireFox 3 used have a lot of memory leaks, which was painful, if you were on a low powered machine, Even if you had all the plug-ins removed.

For the early adopters out there, heres the link for it.

don’t believe me about the memory usage FireFox 3 then have a look here:



E-book sales double

Monday, March 21st, 2011

Spotted this interesting tippet in engadget ebooks seem to be hurting the market, so is it worth buying one of these ebook readers, well I’m in the holding off bracket at the moment… Why?

Well, I like pictures, and there doesn’t seem to be any color in these devices, we are at the stage where black and white TV’s were 40 years ago, and we don’t see any black and white TV’s any more, cause Color trumps Black and white.

So I’m waiting? I hear you say! and then I hear you say… “you’re going to be waiting for ages”, well we do have colour e-paper devloped so I’m putting my money on Amazon releasing the colour version of the kindle some time just before xmas this year. They just have to make sure that they can get the price point down to the right levels, probably about €200 to get it to fly off the shelves.

, paper books suffer double-digit losses

We doubt the world will ever get to a stage where it’ll completely ditch ye olde paper books, but the US consumer market seems to clearly have its heart set on the electronic kind right now. Net ebook sales in January were this week reported to have accumulated $69.9 million in revenue for their publishers, which amounts to a 116 percent jump from last year’s total for the month. During the same period, adult hardcovers were down 11.3 percent to $49.1 million and paperbacks faced a similar reduction in demand and fell to $83.6 million, a precipitous drop of 19.7 percent year-on-year. Educational and children’s books weren’t spared from this cull of the physical tome, either — skip past the break to see the full statistical breakdown.


Samsung Galaxy S II Mini leaks out for Three, plus Nokia X7, Flyer and PlayBook release dates in UK

No, not the Galaxy Mini, that low-end Android sprout — this looks like Samsung’s smaller alternative to the upcoming Galaxy S II superphone. We just got handed UK carrier Three’s entire spring-summer lineup, and the Android 2.3 handset certainly stands out, pretending to be miniature in spite of a 3.7-inch screen (think Droid), a 1.4GHz processor (think Pre 3) and 21Mbps HSPA+ connectivity. But that’s the tip of the iceberg compared to what’s in store for Three — it looks like the Nokia X7 is alive, well, and tracking for a June release (not to mention the LG Optimus 3D), and tablets will drop too, with May bringing the HTC Flyer and the WiFi-only BlackBerry PlayBook launching in June. See specs and slated launch windows in our gallery below, and join us in hoping these documents portend a rapid US release.

[Thanks, Anonymous]

AT&T agrees to buy T-Mobile USA from Deutsche Telekom for $39 billion (update)

Wowzers! AT&T and Deutsche Telekom have entered into a definitive agreement for the sale of T-Mobile USA for $39 billion in cash and stocks. The combined customer base of this upcoming behemoth will be 130 million humans, though the agreed deal will have to pass the usual regulatory and closing hurdles before becoming complete. The two companies estimate it’ll take them 12 months to get through all the bureaucracy — if they get through, the proposed network merger will create a de facto GSM monopoly within the United States — but we don’t have to wait that long to start discussing life with only three major US carriers. AT&T envisions it as a rosy garden of “straightforward synergies” thanks to a set of “complementary network technologies, spectrum positions and operations.”

One of the other big benefits AT&T is claiming here is a significantly expanded LTE footprint — 95 percent of Americans, or 294 million pops — which works out to 46.5 million more than AT&T was claiming had it gone LTE alone. Of course, T-Mobile has never put forth a clear strategy for migrating to LTE, suggesting that AT&T plans on using the company’s AWS spectrum to complement its own 700MHz licenses as it moves to 4G. You might be groaning at the thought of yet another LTE band, but it’s not as bad as you might think: MetroPCS already has a live LTE network functioning on AWS, so there’s precedent for it. For further details, hit up the gallery below, the Mobilize Everything site, or the official press release after the break.

In the event of the deal failing to receive regulatory approval, AT&T will be on the hook for $3 billion to T-Mobile — a breakup fee, they call it — along with transferring over some AWS spectrum it doesn’t need for its LTE rollout, and granting T-Mo a roaming agreement at a value agreeable to both parties.

Update: TmoNews obtained a copy of Deutsche Telekom’s press release regarding the deal — it looks like the German company will be getting $25 billion in cash and $14 billion in stock, giving it an 8 percent stake in AT&T when all is said and done. Read the full document after the break.


HTC Arrive now available for $200 from Sprint (update: $50 at Amazon)

It’s March 20th and, right on schedule, Sprint has started taking orders for its first Windows Phone 7 handset. The HTC 7 Pro, renamed the Arrive on the Now Network, can now be had for $200 after rebate when bought with the customary two-year contract. Amazon’s doing its usual thing of undercutting carriers’ own pricing by offering it up for 50 greenbacks less at $150, and we suspect other online retailers will follow suit. So affordability shouldn’t be a problem, but if you’re still wondering if the investment will be worth it, we’ll have our review of this handset early next week — just before Sprint makes it irrelevant by blowing the doors off CTIA.

[Thanks, Justin]

Update: That was quick, Amazon’s dropped its price to just $50.

Intel promises next-gen Atom chips at IDF Beijing

We’ve yet to get more than a whiff of Intel’s Oak Trail chips, but the Cedar Trail CPUs are nearly here — in fact, it’s looking like Chipzilla intends to introduce its latest Atom processor at IDF Bejing this year. UMPC Portal noticed that Intel’s got a session titled “Designing a New Generation of Netbooks with the Intel Atom Processor Based Platform” at the April event, which promises to give attendees a glimpse at the “next generation Intel Atom processor based platform.” Details are scarce, but there are a couple of bullet points that might grab your attention. First, Intel will be talking about “WiFi solutions that deliver new netbook usage models,” which sounds kind of like WiDi, and second, the company will be talking up “fanless netbook designs.” Our overactive imaginations are already at work — we’re on a comfy couch, surfing the internet on a big-screen TV, without a hot, bulky laptop to weight us down and nary a tether to worry about. Or, maybe a boat.

Mini E field trial ends, for the 40 testers a search for a new car begins

Mini E field trial ends, for the 40 testers a search for a new car begins

People who love a given car tend to keep that car for awhile, longer than they should sometimes, but that isn’t always an option. Sometimes you have to give it back, and such is the case for the 40 “pioneers” who were among the first to get their mitts on and bums in the electric prototype Mini E in the UK. That fleet of test vehicles has been summoned back home, but thankfully not to suffer the same fate of the recalled GM EV1 — most of which were crushed in the ’90s. Instead, most of these Minis will find new homes among corporate vehicle fleets, though the testing program itself is largely over. From that program BMW learned that most drivers got along just fine, despite a complete lack of public charging stations, though some said cold temps put a crimp on the driving habits — a possible counterpoint to one EV Mini tester on this side of the pond found. All that data is being used to tailor the upcoming BMW i3, which we’ve already seen hooning around in some rather frigid weather but won’t be seen hooning on public streets until 2013 or so.

Gates, Bosch, and NuVinci combine to make pedal-assist e-bike concept, not Voltron

There’s those who want electric bikes that’ll hurtle you down the road at 40mph at the twist of the throttle, and there’s those who believe pedaling to be enjoyable enough, but would like a less strenuous bicycling experience. If you find yourself a member of column B, listen up, because Gates, NuVinci, and Bosch have created an e-bike concept that’ll satisfy your two-wheeled transportation needs. Gates supplied its Carbon electric belt drive, NuVinci brought its N360 infinitely variable planetary hub, and Bosch threw in a battery and control system to make a bicycle beauty. The power train is set up to give riders pedal-assist with four settings that go from Lance to lazy, depending on your mood. At an estimated cost of €2,600 – €3,200 ($3,680 – $4,530), you’ll need a bank account comparable to the seven-time champion of Le Tour should an OEM pick up the design.

Sneak peek at Archos Gen 9 tablets: 1.6 GHz dual-core A9 processor, 250GB HDD for €400 in June

Word on the street was Archos planned to give us a couple of new tablets at IFA this year, but it turns out the upscale Gen 9 hardware is coming a couple months prior to the September trade show. The new Honeycomb slates are set for a June 2011 release and pack a 1.6GHz ARM A9 dual-core chip (the prospect of which should get you spec-heads drooling), up to a 250GB HDD / 32GB SSD, and a patent-pending “disruptive 3G modem” — all for €400 (about $566). Archos’ fiendish plan is to steal some of the iPad 2’s thunder with its speedy processor and competitive price, but history tells us it’ll need more than “competitive” to truly yank any marketshare. Too bad the post-PC world can’t be bothered to care, right Steve?

INQ Cloud Touch gets priced in the UK, still MIA in the USA

We’ve had an affinity for INQ’s Cloud Touch since we Poked and prodded the little device back in February, and now thanks to Carphone Warehouse we’ve got the all important pricetag to accompany the specs. Starting April 6, you’ll be able to pick up the Facebook-ified device in the UK completely SIM-free for £300, or about $486. Not a bad deal for a 3.5-inch Android 2.2 handset with a 5-megapixel shooter and a custom Facebook homescreen. Of course, it lacks the Facebook Buttons of HTC’s offerings, but if you simply can’t wait to be the first person on the block with a Facebook phone you should definitely give the Cloud Touch a peek.

Microsoft and ASUS show off all the stylish stylus action you can have on an Eee Slate (video)

It’s the year 2011, but it might as well be 2001. The company that Bill built is still going strong in the pursuit of its founding father’s dream: a pen-based tablet computer. The latest, and perhaps best, exhibitor of this ideal is ASUS’ Eee Slate, a 12.1-inch, Core i5-equipped Windows 7 tablet that comes with a Wacom digitizer and a dedicated silo in its side for accommodating that snow-white stylus. A Bluetooth keyboard also comes in the box, leading Microsoft to describe it as a device that’s simultaneously “very PC” and “not very PC.” To understand what the Redmond brainboxes mean by this apparent case of doublethink, make your way past the break and soak up all the video action.




Engadget’s latest hardware and software reviews
HTC Thunderbolt 

Mar 18th 2011
ThinkPad X220 

Mar 18th 2011
FastMac U-Socket 

Mar 17th 2011
Samsung Galaxy S 4G 

Mar 10th 2011
Apple iPad 2 

Mar 9th 2011
AKG K840 KL 

Mar 9th 2011
AKG K830 BT 

Mar 9th 2011

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“Real simple: what’s the best Core i5 or Core i7 13-inch laptop (with discrete graphics) for running both Windows 7 and Mac OS X? I’m a video and photo guy who does marketing work for a university, and while I’ve been using a Dell M1330 to operate on both sides of the fence, I’m in dire need of a hardware upgrade. I’m not fussed by the Windows vs. Mac debate and use both on a daily basis, but I need as much power as possible in an ultraportable form factor in order to handle both of these operating systems (sorry, 13-inch MacBook Pro, but you aren’t cutting it). Here’s hoping your readers can help out!”
Internet Explorer

Browser share as reported in Jan, 2009.

Microsoft’s Internet Explorer slipped a bit, but still holds almost 63% of browser share, with Firefox claiming 25%, Chrome 4.63% and Safari nabbing 4.46%.

Microsoft’s latest foray into mobile phones.

Can’t get boradband

Wednesday, March 16th, 2011

Well if you live in a rural area, you know how hard it is to get Broadband, and what worse is that you are stuck with only one provider, so Avanti Communications has put up a satellite that will allow people in the most rural of areas to get broadband. So how does it work Avanti Communications sells satellite broadband services to telecoms companies which use them to supply residential, enterprise and institutional users. Who does it sell to in Ireland, well micromagic is listed for selling satellite broadband in Ireland, and they are a partner of Avanti.

One thing to note is Signal latency, it takes time for the signal to go up and down from earth to space, in case your are investing for a VPN or a Real-time web app.





Windows 7 Service pack is causing problems

Tuesday, March 15th, 2011

Windows 7 Service pack is causing problems, people are having issues with service pack 1 where it is pushed out from a WSUS server. Apparently you get a “C00000034 fatal error” which then means a reinstall of the operating system. I feel its always wise not to jump into new OS’s even though the urge is there to be up with the latest and greatest. The reg is reporting this

Microsoft have a KB released about this issue.


To stop updates, Do the following:

  1. Open Start menu,
  2. right-click on Computer and click Properties.
  3. This gives you the System dialog box that will show basic information about your computer.
  4. On the left sidebar, under See also heading, you will find Windows Update.
  5. Click on the Windows Update.
  6. This will bring you to the Windows Update dialog box.
  7. On the left sidebar click on Change Settings.
  8. Select Never check for updates.

Job done

Remember put a reminder in your phone or OS to make sure that you turn them on again, so that your will get your updates once this problem gets sourted out.



Earthquake affects RAM prices

Monday, March 14th, 2011

Well it looks like the earthquake could impact on RAM supplies as spot prices for most types of DRAM shot up today, from 5.27 per cent for DDR 512MB parts, with a session average of $1.44. So get your RAM now before it gets dearer, as the Supply chain will be upping their prices. There is even an exchange for Dram called imagnitivley DRAM exchange so if your into your market trading, this is where you go.

China, Korea and Taiwan also supply RAM so this may be short term, but the quake is having its impact. Check out the reg for more info