I use:

Friday, December 21, 2007

Coolness under the tree...

Being a Developer and truly appreciating the real-estate of a high-resolution screen which is the only drawback to this particular system. That said, if you have an external LCD this is an excellent choice for this season. If anyone put this under my tree...

HP Pavilion DV9608CA 17" AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual-Core TK-55 1.8GHz Laptop

$799 this week at BestBuy Canada!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

The Knol. A source of eTextbook Materials?

Google discussed in it's blog this week a new product called Knol. The idea is that a contributor can create, with authority, a detailed and factual unit of knowledge on a particular topic. Now, the product is not available for public consumption as yet, but the example suggests that this may be a good eText foundation.
Official Google Blog: Encouraging people to contribute knowledge: "The web contains an enormous amount of information, and Google has helped to make that information more easily accessible by providing pretty good search facilities. But not everything is written nor is everything well organized to make it easily discoverable. There are millions of people who possess useful knowledge that they would love to share, and there are billions of people who can benefit from it. We believe that many do not share that knowledge today simply because it is not easy enough to do that. The challenge posed to us by Larry, Sergey and Eric was to find a way to help people share their knowledge. This is our main goal."
Consider, if you will, that a course for a particular curriculum could be built featuring authoritative sources rather than pages in a physical text book. In fact the eText, or eCourse, may not even include the articles, but merely references to the information on Google's Knol. Frankly, it could include reference links to Wikipedia but the challenge with Wikipedia, and possibly with Knol over time, is the question of authentic authority.

Hey Google! Suggestion eCourses: Collections of Knols matched or configurable to suit any school system's curriculum?

NCIX.com - ASUS Eee PC 8G Pearl White Intel Mobile 7IN 800X480 WLAN LAN 1GB 8GB LAN Linux Camera Notebook in Canada

NCIX.com - ASUS Eee PC 8G (Pearl White)

How can I say this clearly enough? This is what I consider to be the ultimate PDA. Okay, it's closer to a UMPC without the touch-screen, but the unit is simply wonderful for concept and I absolutely need one of these.

Admittedly the 8G may be a little excessive based on my projected budget for such a device, the 4G being a little more affordable and available in black (preferred) may be cause to pass on the higher model, but the allure to such a device is the size and flexibility.

While there have been sightings of Windows XP and now Vista on this little monster, the native Linux OS is just fine with me. The ASUS site is fairly non-technical in it's presentation of this little wonder, but I know this is on my 2008 buy list. (I'd show you, but their site was unreachable at the time I wrote this)

UPDATE: I've seen one of the 2G Surf models up-close. Perfection. I recommend for anyone why must stay connected to people while mobile or simply to have an enhanced PDA. I may even scale down my intended model to a 4G and upgrade the RAM (you cant upgrade the RAM on the Surf models, but they are capable). I'm waiting until May for my own. Priorities.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

The Ultimate Gamer Chair...

I need to try one of these, frankly I do need a new chair for my living room, but...


I wonder if I could be so lucky to be given one of these. Doubtful.

Monday, December 10, 2007

VIA's ARTIGO Pico-ITX ultra-compact barebones - Engadget

VIA's ARTIGO Pico-ITX ultra-compact barebones - Engadget: "ARTIGO Pico-ITX builder kit, a complete VIA-based system that you can snap together in the privacy of your own home. The bundle includes a Pico-ITX motherboard with a VIA C7 1GHz CPU, support for up to 1GB of RAM, IDE and eSATA connectors, VGA output, four USB ports, audio line in / out jacks, and 10/100 ethernet. The package includes everything but a hard drive and memory, and is available right now for around $300."
This, I think, may be a very interesting investment for some remote sensing and control ideas I've been bouncing around.

Hmmm...

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

OpenDNS | The Gift of Safe

OpenDNS | The Gift of Safe: "Give your friends and family the gift of a safer Internet: OpenDNS. It's free and requires nothing to download or install."

I have experienced this sort of conversation, not with my father, but... just the same, enjoy the video and get OpenDNS.

Go to OpenDNS.com to help yourself (or a family member) have a save Christmas (and future) on the 'Net.

BTW: Chris's Live show can be found here.

Sanity, er, Conspiracy Theories

Michael Bay's format war conspiracy theory: it's a Microsoft fix - Engadget: "'Microsoft wants both formats to fail so they can be heroes and make the world move to digital downloads.' He goes on to claim that Redmond has only been financially backing HD DVD over 'superior Blu-ray' to create 'confusion in the market' until such time as high def digital downloading goes prime time."

You know, I hear about big bad Microsoft and just laugh. It was Big (bad) Blue before that and it seems that any larger than (my) life company seems to be the logical target when assuming the worst. This theory is just that a paranoid theory of conspiracy. C'mon. The reason that Microsoft backs HD DVD is because their competitor is Sony, who makes the Blu Ray DVD format. How smart would it have been for Microsoft to try to license Blu Ray from a competitor?

I haven't bitten the HD/Blu-Ray bullet. I do have an XBOX 360 and I'm anxiously awaiting digital downloads, but Michael Bay's fears are, in my humble option, simply irrational fears (paranoia). Michael, I love your movie (Transformers in particular) but I don't like Sony and while The new Betamax (Blu-Ray) might be better I'll not be settling that argument for a while. If I were given the need to buy a High-Definition DVD Player, I would get the XBOX add-on (HD DVD), but I'm not a videophile.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Kudos for XBOX360 Replacement Process

Aside from my other frustrations with XBOX Technical Support, there is something to be said for the expediance of thier handling of the Red Ring of Death (RRoD) issue I experienced. Their turn-around time was incredible and flawless in execution.

I experienced the RoD on November 20th. I spent the remainder of the evening troubleshooting and called XBOX Support the next morning. They agreed that this was the infamous RoD issue and sent out the shipping box (the so-called coffin). Purolator attempted delivery on November 26th, I picked it up on November 27th at lunch, packed the XBOX up when I got home and returned it to the Purolator depot that evening. I expected a wait of a month or so.

November 28th it was shipped back to me! Yes... The very same day they received it!

It was attempted delivery on November 29th, and I picked it up Friday night!

That is REMARKABLE! They even through in a 1-month card for XBOX Live.

GOOD GOING MICROSOFT! Thank-you.

BTW...

For Sale:
  • 1 XBOX 360, 20Gb HDD,
  • Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter (1),
  • 1 wireless controller including batteries and (new) headset.
  • Component/Composite TV/HDTV Cable
  • XBOX Ethernet Cable
(I bought an XBOX360 Elite, I'm waiting on the HDD transfer cable from Microsoft, then the old system is ready to roll to the highest bidder. I wonder when that cable will get here?)

UPDATE: The Transfer Cable/Kit got here Tuesday, December 11th. All went well.