This update, StartEase 2, offers many enhancements to the original program. These enhancements include:
This is on top of all the great features found in the original StartEase:
StartEase 2: Find and Launch Programs Effortlessly
by Tim Smith
This is on top of all the great features found in the original StartEase:
BOSTON (Reuters) - Apple Inc is the target of a lawsuit that claims a technology the iPhone uses to surf the Web infringes on a patent filed by Los Angeles real estate developer Elliot Gottfurcht and two co-inventors.
The lawsuit was filed by EMG Technology LLC on Monday in the U.S. District Court in Tyler, Texas. EMG was founded by Gottfurcht, is based in Los Angeles with an office in Tyler, and has just one employee.
The suit alleges that the technology the iPhone uses to navigate and display some websites designed for small phone screens infringes on a patent obtained last month by Gottfurcht and his co-inventors and assigned to EMG.
Apple spokeswoman Susan Lundgren declined to comment on the lawsuit, saying that the Cupertino, California-based company does not discuss pending litigation.
EMG has not considered suing companies such as HTC Corp, maker of the G1 Google phone, and Research in Motion Ltd, maker of the BlackBerry, which also produce devices that can display mobile websites, according to Gottfurcht's lawyer Stanley Gibson, a partner with the Los Angeles law firm Jeffer, Mangels, Butler & Marmaro.
Mobile websites are essentially reformatted versions of ordinary websites, with their content manipulated to be easily viewed on tiny screens.
"We haven't looked at anything other than the iPhone," Gibson told Reuters. "That was the device that we looked at. Obviously it's very popular." (full Story)
by Lance Ulanoff
Powerful financial waves are buffeting the USS Economy in extraordinary and dangerous ways, making it clear that this will be a holiday buying season unlike any other. But if you think recession (some say depression) concerns are going to keep me from producing my fourth annual guidance report on what to buy, consider, and just plain avoid, you're sorely mistaken, my friends. Sure, the financial climate has me feeling crankier, but that only makes it easier to dismiss the bad and pointless products of the past 11 months. So let's get started with my latest attempt to help save you from yourself this holiday season.
Don't Buy: Expensive Blu-ray Player
Sorry folks, but I still think $250 is way too much to pay for a DVD player. I'll reconsider my position only if manufacturers come to their senses over the next two months and start selling Blu-ray players for $149 or less.
Maybe Buy: Toshiba XDE DVD Player
I know standard DVDs are yesterday's technology. But if you have a vast library of DVDs and your current player is seizing up, this upscaling, image-crisping DVD player can be had for a lot less than competing Blu-ray devices. And it'll make your current and vast libraries of DVDs look pretty darn good on your new HDTV.
Do Buy: Roku Netflix Player
This $99 set-top box will open up your living room to a whole library of video content and is way cheaper than a new Blu-ray player. The current Netflix on-demand selections are, admittedly, limited, but there are many great movies, with a decent number of newish ones in the mix. Plus, I expect that Netflix will eventually open up first-run films to this service.
Caveat: If you already own an Xbox 360, you'll be able to access the very same library of Netflix movies on demand. (One can only hope Sony will get around to adding Netflix functionality to the PS3.) In that case, maybe you just give yourself the gift of a Netflix account.
Video CamerasDon't Buy: HD Camcorders
I've come to the difficult realization that most people are not videographers, and HD camcorders, with all their bells and whistles (and $500-plus price tags), are overkill for average consumers.
Maybe Buy: Digital Camera with HD Video-Capture Abilities
My wife never shot video until she got a digital camera with built-in video-capture abilities. Obviously, the transition to shooting in HD, when it's simply part of the camera you already own, is perfectly natural. The Samsung NV24HD, for example, is a decent 10-megapixel camera with built-in HD capabilities. Sure, it's only 720p, but for most people, that's probably high-def enough.
Do Buy: A YouTube Camcorder (aka Pocket Camcorder)
Digital cameras that shoot video are great, but to get that video off the camera, you'll likely have to remove the card and put it in your PC. Then you have to know what to do next. Or you can buy a Creative Vado, Flip Mino, or Kodak Zi6. For anywhere from $99 to $179, you can get an all-in-one device that lets you capture standard and high-def video and pretty much everything in between, depending on the model. Plus, you can effortlessly transfer the video from the device to a PC and then online to share with friends. I, for one, carry Creative's Vado. It's thinner and smaller than an iPod classic and, like most of these pocket video cams, comes equipped with a built-in USB dongle and software that can automatically upload your video to YouTube. No muss, no fuss, and you're capturing moments and sharing them with friends, family, and, if you choose, the world.
Don't Buy: Palm Centro
Look, I loved my Palm Treo 700p when I got it in 2007, and I know Palm has sold a million Centros (basically, a stripped-down, value-priced Treo), but we have no idea where the Palm platform is going. Will there be an open-source version next year? Maybe, but I wouldn't hold my breath. Do you really want to be married to what could very well be a dying platform? (full story Link)
BEWARE OF BUYING iPhone 3G
Google has launched a one-two combo of Picasa 3.0 (beta), the next generation of its free photo-editing software, along with a major technology upgrade to its free online photo-sharing site, Picasa Web Albums.
Picasa Web Albums now helps users automatically sort and share their online photos based on who is in each picture. Instead of requiring users to label their photos one-by-one, the ‘name tags’ feature in Picasa Web Albums uses advanced clustering technology to quickly group together pictures of the same person.
It also features a remodeled user interface, and uses new technology to help users organize and share photos.
Users can share full-resolution albums for free with friends and family and the web albums are viewable as full-window slideshows that load in the background so users can flip quickly from one photo to the next.
A new ‘Explore’ section gives users a way to enjoy photos published by other Google Photos users around the world, including a ‘Where in the World’ game in which you guess the mystery locales of geo-tagged photos.
New features in Picasa 3 make getting photos online easier, with a one-click ‘web sync’ that uploads an album and keeps it updated on the web when changes are made on the PC.
New tools also include a drag-and-drop photo-collage tool ; a retouching brush to wipe out scratches and blemishes, and repair old photos; a slideshow movie maker that uploads to YouTube with a click; Auto red-eye removal; Smart auto-cropping and a fast-launching Photo Viewer to inspect and manipulate images while in the Windows filesystem. (story Link)
It seems both Sony and Microsoft never grow tired of re-bundling their beloved consoles!
Less than a year ago I reviewed several great USB Flash drives, all nice and fast and around 4 gigabytes in capacity. One I liked a lot was the Kingston DataTraveler HyperX, but at the time the $131 list price put it at $60 bucks more than the average. Even the 8GB version at the time was $266.
How does Kingston make the drives so capacious and so cheap? EverythingUSB believes Kingston is using MLC (multi-level cell) Flash memory, which is less expensive than SLC (single-level cell). It's also slower.
The DataTraveler 150 is apparently running around 28 to 30 megabytes per second (MBps) read speeds and 8-MBps writes. That first number is pretty good, but the second number is about half of what I got when testing the HyperX a few months ago. In fact, it's so slow that the 150s do not support Windows ReadyBoost when used with Vista. (Full story Link)
Posted by Mohammad Talha in Mobile
On Monday, I asked Gearlog readers to ask me everything they wanted to know about the new BlackBerry Storm 9530 for Verizon Wireless. Now I have the answers. Here's the original thread on Gearlog.com.
I re-ordered the questions by theme, and eliminated a few duplicates and a few that I still can't answer. (Battery life tests can take days.) Hopefully, this will answer some of your questions, too.
1.) How much does it cost to use this phone?
The phone itself costs $249.99 with a new, two-year contract. You'll receive a voucher for a $50 mail-in rebate with that, making the effective price $199.99. Verizon also sells all of their phones with one year contracts ($349.99) and month-to-month ($399.99).
You must buy this phone with an applicable data plan. The minimum plan for this phone is $49.99 for data only, no voice. For both voice and data, you'll pay at least $69.99 total; $29.99 for the personal data plan and $39.99 for a 450-minute voice plan. That includes e-mail and Web browsing, but it doesn't include SMS text messaging. SMS messaging packages range from $5 to $20/month depending on how many messages they include.
If you use the BlackBerry with a corporate server, add another $15. If you want to use it as a modem for your PC, add another $15. If you want to use it in foreign countries, add $10 or $20 depending on your existing plan.
2.) Is there anyway to get Wi-Fi and not have to pay for a data plan?
3.) I'd like to know the quality of the actual phone: listening quality, talking quality, messaging, etc.
Pretty decent. See my review.
4.) How is the RF reception? I've seen better, I've seen worse. It won't make or break your buying choice here.
5.) I'm confused about the pre-installed sim card... Does that mean it's not removable? If it is not removable, and I go overseas, am I restricted to using Verizon? If so, how much will that cost me? (I will be traveling to London and Mauritius.)
The SIM is removable. Once you have had the Storm for 60 days, Verizon will unlock the SIM card slot to let you use any SIM you want. Remember, to get BlackBerry features, you'll need BlackBerry service on your GSM account; otherwise you're stuck with voice and text.
6.) Some time back I thought I read that you could sign up for a month-to-month contract with Verizon in order to buy the Storm, then have Verizon unlock the device to make it usable on the TMobile network. Is this true?
In theory that could happen; Verizon will unlock the phone after 60 days and you can force it onto GSM.
7.) Internal storage capacity: does it have a card slot? Is there an easy way to back up and restore the contents of the phone (the phone book, contacts, etc.) if it breaks and I have to replace it?
Yes. It comes with an 8 –Gbyte card and supports 16-GB cards. (full story)
Since then, Intel has shipped incremental updates to the product line.
Quad-core Core 2 CPUs arrived in November 2006, in the form of the QX6700. AMD was quick to point out that Intel's quad-core solutions weren't "true" quad-core processors, but consisted of two Core 2 Duo dies in a single package. Despite that purist objection, Intel's quad-core solutions proved highly successful in the market.
The original Core 2 line was built on a 65nm manufacturing process. In late 2007, Intel began shipping 45nm CPUs, code-named Penryn. Intel's 45nm processors offered a few incremental feature updates, but were basically continuations of the Core 2 line.
In the past year, details about Nehalem began dribbling out, culminating with full disclosure of the Core i7 architecture at the August, 2008 Intel Developer Forum. If you want more details about Nehalem's architecture, that article is well worth a read. However, we'll touch on a few highlights now.
|Core i7 965 Extreme||Core i7 940||Core i7 920|
|QPI Data Rate||6.4 GT/sec*||4.8 GT/sec||4.8GT/sec|
|Max. Non-Turbo Ratio||NA||NA||20|
|Thermal Design Power||130W||130W||130W|
|Price||$999 (qty. 1,000)||$562 (qty. 1,000)||$285 (qty. 1,000)|
Cache and Memory
The initial Core i7 CPUs will offer a three-tiered cache structure. Each individual core contains two caches: a 64K L1 cache (split into a 32K instruction cache and a 32K data cache), plus a 256K unified L2 cache. An 8MB L3 cache is shared among the four cores. That 256K L2 cache is interesting, because it's built with an 8-T (eight transistors per cell) SRAM structure. This facilitates running at lower voltages, but also takes up more die space. That's one reason the core-specific L2 cache is smaller than you might otherwise expect.
Like AMD's current CPU line, Nehalem uses an integrated, on-die memory controller. Intel has finally moved the memory controller out of the north bridge. The current memory controller supports only DDR3 memory. The new controller also supports three channels of DDR3 per socket, with up to three DIMMs per channel supported. Earlier, MCH-style memory controllers only supported two channels of DRAM.
The use of triple-channel memory mitigates the relatively low, officially supported DDR3 clock rate of 1066MHz (effective.) In conversations with various Intel representatives, they were quick to point out that three channels of DDR3-1066 equates to 30GB/sec of memory bandwidth
The integrated memory controller also clocks higher than one built into a north bridge chip, although not necessarily at the full processor clock speed. This higher clock, plus the lack of having to communicate over a north bridge link, substantially improves memory latency.
To facilitate the integrated memory controller, Intel developed a new, point-to-point system connect, similar in concept to AMD's HyperTransport. Known as QuickPath Interconnect or QPI for short, the new interconnect can move data at peak rates of 25GB/sec (at a 6.4 gigatranfers per second base). Note that not all Nehalem processors will support the full theoretical bandwidth. The Core i7 940 and 920 CPUs support the 4.8 gigatransfer per second base rate, with a maximum throughput of 19.2GB/sec per channel. That's still more than enough bandwidth for three DDR3-1066 memory channels.
Improvements to the Base Core ArchitectureCore i7 boasts a substantial set of enhancements over the original Core 2 architecture, some of which are more subtle than others.
That's a quick rundown of the key Nehalem architectural features. But do these additional features come together to enable better performance? Is Nehalem really more efficient than the Core 2 processors? We ran a ton of performance tests to find out. Before we dive into those tests, let's take a look at the test system. (story from)
Nehalem is here.