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[H] Enthusiast Archives: April 2008Archive Listing

Wednesday April 30, 2008

Psystar Open Computer Hands-On

Engadget posted a short video with their initial impressions of the Psystar Open Computer along with a handful of benchmarks. I am interested to know what you guys think of this whole “Psystar” deal.

Okay, so we've been playing with the Psystar Open Computer for a few hours now, and we've formed some early impressions and put together a short video of it in action. We haven't really tried to stress the system yet, but based on our other experiences with OSx86 machines, we're expecting things to generally go smoothly. That said, there are some definite rough patches and issues, all mostly having to do with the fact that OS X isn't really built for this hardware.


Microsoft Develops COFEE Tool For Police

Microsoft has developed a new tool for law enforcement called COFEE that investigators can use to extract forensic data from computers that may have been used in a crime. Don’t feel bad, with all the GTA talk lately, I thought the headline said “hot coffee” tool too.

The COFEE, which stands for Computer Online Forensic Evidence Extractor, is a USB "thumb drive" that was quietly distributed to a handful of law-enforcement agencies last June. Microsoft General Counsel Brad Smith described its use to the 350 law-enforcement experts attending a company conference Monday.


Court Ruling Could End P2P Music-Download Lawsuits

U.S. District Court Judge Neil V. Wake ruled today that simply making files available to the public does not violate a copyright holder's rights. Wow, this is no doubt a serious blow to the RIAA’s ongoing efforts but I doubt they will give up so easily.

In Atlantic Records v. Howell, U.S. District Court Judge Neil V. Wake rejected the RIAA's theory that the defendants distributed music files merely by making them publicly available through the Kazaa P2P application. Contrary to the music industry's theory, "Merely making an unauthorized copy of a copyrighted work available to the public does not violate a copyright holder's exclusive right of distribution," the judge wrote.


Hi-Tech BMW M1 Concept

Aside from being huge tech-nerds, we are also big car guys too, so it is nice when you see the two come together in a concept car like this. I am not a BMW fan but I really dig this car (maybe it’s the color), what do you think? Blame Kyle for introducing me to Autoblog in the first place.

News Image News Image News Image

The BMW M1 Hommage blends a wide, aggressive stance with intentionally retro/modern twists on the key visual elements that defined Paul Bracq's original BMW Turbo concept and the Giugiaro-designed M1 homologation special that followed. It is instantly recognizable as an M1, particularly in profile, where the M1 Hommage's basic shape clearly mimics that of its forebear.


[H]ardware Round-Up II


Xigmatek HDT-SD964 Exposed Heatpipe Base HSF @ FrostyTech


Computer Speaker Roundup @ ExtremeTech

Samsung SyncMaster 245BW Widescreen LCD @ BmR


Radeon HD 3870 1GB Graphics Card @ PC Perspective

PS3 Users Experience GTA 4 Online Woes

Reports surfaced earlier today saying that PS3 owners were not able to join online matches. Since I own a 60GB launch PS3, I had a friend bring his PS3 copy by and try it out. We had little luck connecting to any game type today. My Xbox 360 copy isn’t here yet but it supposedly has no multiplayer connectivity issues. How about the rest of you PS3 owners? How’s your luck with getting online with GTA IV?

Following reports from many readers that PS3 multiplayer access was sporadic, Shacknews attempted to play online and was presented with an error message that read "Cannot connect to game provider."


Google = No Love For Sci/Tech?

Wired is taking Google’s co-founder Larry Page to task on his statements that science has a serious “marketing problem.” While what Mr. Page says is absolutely true, Google seems to be part of the problem, if you go by the company’s news service.

Google co-founder Larry Page claims that science has a serious marketing problem, and yet his own company's news service heavily emphasizes consumer products and video games rather than educational material. As I write this, the sci/tech section of Google News is loaded with the stories about iMac upgrades and Grand Theft Auto, but not a single science article is in sight.


Cheap DIY Multitouch Pad

Got a cardboard box, a webcam, tape and some glass? You can make your own homebrew multitouch pad.

When you place you fingers on the surface, shadows are created where your fingers are. The webcam sees these shadows and sends the image to the tracking software which tracks the shadows as they move around. It's really that simple!


MADD Protests GTA 4 Over Drunk Driving

It looks like MADD is jumping on the “protest GTA IV” bandwagon. While I think the MADD folks do a great job in real life, I think protesting virtual drunk driving in a mature rated video game is just silly. In the REAL world, senior citizen drivers kill thousands of people every year. No protests from MADD. Run over a few hookers in a video game after a beer with the fellas…everyone is all up in arms.

Riding the wave of controversy, Mothers Against Drunk Driving marks the latest organization to protest yesterday's release of Grand Theft Auto IV (PS3, X360). Specifically, the group takes issue with "a game module where players have to drive drunk" as "drunk driving is a choice, a violent crime...not a game."


HP Makes Memory From a Once Theoretical Circuit

HP is working on developing a four decade old theoretical circuit called a memristor that can actually “remember” what has happened to it. Amazing stuff considering this is all coming together 37 years after the idea was initially conceived.

A memristor effectively stores information because the level of its electrical resistance changes when current is applied. A typical resistor provides a stable level of resistance. By contrast, a memristor can have a high level of resistance, which can be interpreted as a computer as a "1" in data terms, and a low level can be interpreted as a "0." Thus, data can be recorded and rewritten by controlling current. In a sense, a memristor is a variable resistor that, through its resistance, reflects its own history, Williams said.


[H]ardware Round-Up


GlacialTech Igloo 5750 Silent CPU Cooler @ Legit Reviews

Thermaltake DuOrb CPU @ Legion Hardware


ASUS LS201 20" LCD Monitor @ HotHardware

Gigabyte AirCruiser GN-WI06N-RH @ @ Phoronix


OCZ Quad 2Gb Memory Kit @ MadShrimps

An iPod Arrives, With A Virus

A word of caution for those of you thinking about buying recertified iPods. Some companies use a third party company to recertify the devices instead of Apple. This has lead to incidents like this where the owner finds a nasty virus on the “recertified” iPod.

The iPod came in just a couple of days--but as soon as I unwrapped it and connected it to my Mac at home I got an ominous alert from my usually quiet antivirus software. The iPod, it informed me, contained some virus known as AdobeR.exe.