Max Payne 3 for PC, PS3, 360  

Posted by Mohammad Talha in , , , ,

For fans of Max Payne, it has been a long wait since 2003 when the last game in the franchise was released to critical acclaim. Talk of a sequel came in 2004, when Take-Two hinted that a follow-up would eventually arrive. Fast-forward to 2008, and Take-Two chairman Strauss Zelnick once again mentioned the franchise, teasing that another installment may be in the works but again providing no firm details.

Today, Take-Two and its Rockstar Games subsidiary have announced that Max Payne 3 is indeed in development and is penned for a winter 2009 release on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC. The game is being developed by Rockstar Vancouver, the same outfit behind the controversial sandbox action adventure Bully. Finnish outfit Remedy, which developed the first two Max Payne titles, is currently developing Alan Wake, which will be published by Microsoft.

Rockstar Vancouver will apparently not be straying far from Remedy's original formula, however, as Max Payne 3 again sees the titular retired NYPD veteran battling internal demons as well as those that plague the city's streets.

Max Payne 3Max Payne 3Max Payne 3

Max Payne 3Max Payne 3Max Payne 3

(click to Large Size)

"We're starting a new chapter of Max's life with this game," commented Rockstar cofounder Sam Houser in a statement. "This is Max as we've never seen him before, a few years older, more world-weary and cynical than ever. We experience the downward spiral of his life after the events of Max Payne 2 and witness his last chance for salvation."

Rockstar did not delve into specific gameplay details, and did not mention the series' genre-defining "bullet time" slow-motion technique. The publisher merely noted that "the latest installment delivers more of the classic elements and hyperintense action that fans have come to love." (story Link)

This is not a Video Display Card/Board

The NVIDIA Tesla C1060 transforms a workstation into a high-performance computer that can dramatically outperform a small cluster. This gives technical professionals a dedicated computing resource at their desk-side that is much faster and more energy-efficient than a shared cluster in the data center. The Tesla C1060 is based on the massively parallel, many-core Tesla processor, which is coupled with the standard CUDA C programming environment to simplify many-core programming. The Tesla C1060 allows you to keep pace with the increasing demands of the toughest computing challenges including drug research, oil and gas exploration, and computational finance and its many-core architecture meets the computational demands of applications whose complexity has outstripped the CPU’s ability to solve them. This NVIDIA HPC Computing Processor uses the only C language environment that unlocks the many-core processing power of GPUs to solve the world’s most computationally-intensive challenges. Capable of 933 GFLOPs/s of processing performance puts it near the performance of small supercomputers and 4 GB of GDDR3 memory onboard gives you a total bandwidth of 102 GB/s.

Specifications

GPU/VPU: NVIDIA Tesla C1060
Additional Features: Nvidia CUDA Technology
Video Memory: 4 GB
Memory Type: GDDR3
Memory Interface: 512-bit
Core Clock: 1296 MHz
Memory Clock: 800 MHz
Stream Processors: 240
Memory Bandwidth: 102.0 GB/sec.
Interface Type: PCI Express 2.0
Interface Speed: x16

Price US$ 1699-1799 Tigerdirect.com

Toshiba brings 1GHz WinMo Smartphone  

Posted by Mohammad Talha in , , , , ,

Toshiba T-01A smartphone runs Windows Mobile on 1GHz Snapdragon chipset.

Toshiba had showed Qualcomm's Snapdragon chipset pepped TG01 smartphone at the Windows Mobile 6.1 launch in London in February. Now, the same 9.9mm slim Toshiba TG01 smartphone has been launched as DoCoMo T-01A for the Japanese market. No word on its pricing is available as yet.Toshiba brings 1GHz WinMo Smartphone

NTT DoCoMo's T-01A is the first commercially available product based on Qualcomm's Snapdragon System-on-Chip chipset. It's the same chipset that Qualcomm boasted of running at 1GHz at low power and offered instant switch-on. DoCoMo's T-01A is 9.9 mm slim and has 4.1-inch (800x480) resistive touchscreen display.
Toshiba's custom built graphical user interface will be masking Microsoft's Windows Mobile 6.1 Professional operating system. For network connectivity options, T-01A supports 3G HSPA 7.2Mbps along with support for Wi-Fi, GPS and Assisted-GPS.
This 1GHz CPU running smartphone will compete with Samsung's recently updated Omnia lineup and Apple's new baby - the iPhone 3G S.
This smartphone is slated to be available in Europe later this year. Let's hope that this slim 1GHz T-01A smartphone is available in India through "www.tatadocomo.com/" Tata DoCoMo tie-up.

Asus W90Vp : World’s Most Powerful Gaming Laptop  

Posted by Mohammad Talha in , , , , , , ,

Asus W90Vp is a desktop replacement notebook that offers record-breaking performance in a stylish, aggressively-designed chassis inspired by high-performance luxury vehicles.

asus-w90vBased on an ASUS motherboard using an Intel X38 desktop chipset, the W90Vp boasts a Discrete Graphics Engine (DGE) using a pair of ATI Radeon 4870 videocards with 1GB of video memory in CrossfireX, 6GB of system memory, and an overclockable Intel Core 2 Quad-core processor for class-leading performance. The DGE with its dual Radeon cards offers mind-blowing performance, allowing it to reach over 15,000 3Dmarks in 3DMark06 in overclocked mode – a score that puts all notebooks, and some desktops, to shame.

The W90Vp is a portable movie theater with its Blu-ray drive, glorious 18.4” LCD running at full 16:9 HD 1920x1080 resolution, and an amazing Dolby-certified sound system. The sharp display features an edgeless cover for a true home theater experience that is complimented by booming audio from the integrated 5.1 Altec Lansing speaker system with a built-in subwoofer.

Seven Second Boot with Express Gate
With the W90Vp you can quickly and easily access the web, instant messages, look at photos and more with its Express Gate quick-boot environment. Just press the W90Vp’s Express Gate button and in seconds you’ll be in a fully-functional Linux environment – perfect for quickly checking your email, listening to music, or making a Skype call.

Specifications

Processor and Cache Memory
Intel® Core™2 Duo processor T9600/T9400/P8600/P8400
Intel® X38 + ICH10R Chipset, FSB=1066 MHz

Operating System
Microsoft® Vista 64 bit SP1 Premium

Main Memory
DDR2 800MHz, up to 6GB, 3xSO-DIMM slots support

Display
* 18.4” widescreen HD ultra-bright LCD display (W90Vp/W90Vn)
* 17” widescreen WUXGA ultra-bright LCD display (W90V)

Graphics Card
* ATI CrossFireX™ technology with ATI Mobility Radeon™ HD 4870 graphics, GDDR3 1024MB VRAM (W90Vp)
* NVIDIA GeForce 9800M GS, GDDR3 1024MB VRAM (W90Vn)
* ATI CrossFireX™ technology with ATI Mobility Radeon™ HD 3850 graphics, GDDR3 1024MB VRAM (W90V)

Hard Disk Drive
320 + 320GB / 250 + 250GB / 500 + 500GB (5400rpm)

Optical Drive
Blu-ray Combo/ DVD Super Multi DL

Video Camera
2.0M Pixels Auto Focus Webcam

Communication
* 802.11 Draft N wireless connection
* BlueTooth 2.1+EDR
* 10/100/1000 Mbps Ethernet
* 56k Modem

Audio
* 5.1 channel Altec Lancing speaker (w/ subwoofer),
* 2nd Generation Dolby™ Home Theater

Interface
* 1 x HDMI
* 1 x E-SATA
* 4 x USB 2.0
* IEEE 1394
* VGA-out (D-Sub)
* Headphone (SPIDIF)
* Mic-in
* 8 in 1 Card Reader
* 1 x Express Card
* 1 x CIR
* RF-in (w/ TV SKU)
* 1 x Modem jack (RJ11)
* 1 x LAN port (RJ45)

The W90Vp-A1 features an introductory MSRP of $2,499 USD and is available immediately at leading online e-tailers. (story Link)

Asus EEE Top : All in One TouchScreen Desktop Computer  

Posted by Mohammad Talha in , , ,

Evolving the ASUS EEE PC line up, ASUS have released the ASUS EEE Top. A desktop version of the ASUS EEE PC, with a difference; that difference being the EEE Top has a touch screen.

ASUS Eee Top, all-in-one touchscreen computer, is equipped with 15.6” LCD screen for easy and convenient manipulation. Simplicity of use; Eee Memo enables users to write messages for their family members on desktop ‘stickies’ with just their fingers. SoftStylus allows them to input text without requiring a physical keyboard. Surfing the Internet is also possible without a mouse, thanks to Opera Touch, a rich-featured web browser enhanced for touchscreen use that supports drag-and-drop functions.

“ASUS Eee Top” features with Windows® XP, Wi-Fi 802.11n connectivity for speedy and reliable Internet access, the integrated Hi-Fi speakers & SRS TruSurround HD™ technology, the integrated 1.3 megapixel web camera, and microphone array for convenient web conferencing.

Main Specifications:
  • ScreenSize: 15.6" (16:10 Wide Panel)
  • Touch Screen: Single Touch Panel
  • OS: Windows XP Home (SP3)
  • CPU: Intel ATOM (1.6GHz/533MHz FSB/512K Cache)
  • Chipset: Intel 945GSE + ICH7M
  • Memory: 1GB (DDR2 667)
  • Storage: 160GB, SATAII 5400rpm
  • Graphics: Shared Graphics (128MB)
  • Webcam: 1.3 Mega Pixel
  • Communication: 10/100/1000 Mbps Ethernet
  • WLAN: WiFi 802.11b/g/n
  • AC Power: 19Vdc, 4.74A, 65W power adaptor
  • Net Weight:4.3Kg Price Range £399.99 - £449.99 Play.com

Nvidia announced today that Dell has begun shipping workstations with their Nvidia Tesla C1060 supercomputer card. Dell Precision R5400, T7500 and T5500 all offer Tesla GPU compute cards, which, according to Greg Weir, Senior Manager at Dell, “put the power of supercomputing on the desktop”.

Dell’s R5400 is a rack-mountable workstation computer designed for cluster operations. The T5500 and T7500 are tower-model workstations which sell for around $1800 base, plus the add-ons, which now include the C1060 which has an MSRP base price of around $1599.

The Tesla C1060 GPU provides raw computing power which is roughly equal to a small- to mid-range traditional CPU supercomputer cluster, though in a traditional dual-slot graphics card-sized configuration. The workloads it can operate on are not always the same as full-blown supercomputers, which can handle anything. Therefore, the C1060 does have real limitations (as do all graphics-based compute engines).

While the Tesla C1060 looks like a graphics card in appearance card, and even appears to software that way, it has no graphics port outputs. The Tesla is designed exclusively to be a compute engine which operates inside your PC.

Nvidia introduced double-precision (64-bit) floating point compute abilities with Tesla. The card itself is similar to high-end graphics cards offered by Nvidia, capable of nearly a Teraflop of dedicated single-precision compute performance (933 GFlops), with something around 80 Gigaflops in double-precision, though it is fully IEEE-754 compliant. It consumes up to 188 watts, has a memory bandwidth of 102 GB/s on a 512-bit interface 800 MHz clock, with a 1.3 GHz core clock with 240 stream processors. Each card comes with 4 GB of GDDR3 memory. Even though the Tesla C1060 card itself consumes up to 188 watts each, the reality is its compute abilities far exceed a traditional CPU-based supercomputer cluster, and for a fraction of the power and, according to Nvidia, for 1/100th the price.

The card’s dedicated compute is typically targeted at the oil and gas industries, computational finance, fluid dynamics, medical research and weather modeling — jobs which are traditionally sifting through volumes of data, computing with common operations like add, sub, multiply and divide.

It operates with Nvidia’s CUDA programming language, which exposes the compute abilities of the card through a C-like software interface.

See Nvidia’s press release, and information page about the Tesla C1060 released earlier this year in January. Nvidia also has a Tesla Personal Supercomputer Store, which shows several dedicated clusters which contain a series of Tesla cards inside, and are sold as true personal supercomputers. TigerDirect also published a YouTube video on Nvidia’s Tesla cards.

Rick’s Opinion

Nvidia’s second-generation Tesla C1060 was introduced nearly a year ago. That card is not up to today’s levels of performance and even greater performance can be obtained today through Nvidia or ATI’s highest-end graphics cards.

In fact, the Tesla is an expensive parallel compute engine, and one not required for massively parallel compute abilities thanks to the advancements in CUDA and BrookGPU libraries for Nvidia and ATI graphics cards.

Buying two or more high-end Nvidia’s GTX 2xx or ATI Radeon HD 4xxx series cards might be a wiser decision, as these cards yield well over 1 Teraflop of performance today on less power, while also providing usable graphics abilities for the workstation. And with Nvidia’s SLI and ATI’s CrossFire, the cards can be joined together for a single-instance compute appearance with even greater resources and power. (story Link)

Yahoo!'s Dangerous Newspaper Deal?  

Posted by Mohammad Talha in ,

Desperate for digital revenue, newspapers are sharing their advertisers with Yahoo!.

As newspapers around the country struggle to develop strategies for growing revenues online, more and more of them are turning to an unlikely ally for salvation: Yahoo!.

Last week, five struggling newspapers including the San Diego Union-Tribune and the Orange County Register joined the Yahoo! Newspaper Consortium, an online advertising partnership between the Web publisher and the print publishers. The group, launched in 2006, now counts 814 papers as members, or 51% of the entire U.S. newspaper market as measured by Sunday circulation.

At first glance, linking up with Yahoo! ( YHOO - news - people ) seems a no-brainer. By joining the consortium, the papers will be able to supplement the advertising they sell to local clients--mostly display ads in the papers and on their Web sites--with expensive ads targeted by geography and user behavior on Yahoo!'s collection of heavily-trafficked Web sites.

In exchange for access to Yahoo!'s ad inventory, papers turn over half of the revenue from ads they sell on the portal. Since joining the consortium, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution expanded its local reach, the proportion of the regional population who hit its Web site in a month, from 15% to 85%, Yahoo! says. The Evansville Courier Press, an Indiana daily with a circulation of 60,000, sold $1.1 million in Yahoo! ads in a week-long "sales blitz." Yahoo! won't discuss the specifics of the revenue-sharing agreement, but newspaper partners confirmed the 50-50 arrangement.

But the partnership could have an even bigger cost for newspapers. In the offline world, newspapers have traditionally dominated advertising sales to local businesses like retailers, car dealerships and supermarkets. By introducing their local advertisers to Yahoo!, newspapers run the risk of turning over their best customers to a digital powerhouse as they try to rebuild their own businesses online. (story Link)


Get your own SuperComputer. Experience cluster level computing performance-up to 250 times faster than standard PCs and workstations- right on your desk. The NVIDIA® Tesla™ Personal Supercomputer is powered by up to 960 parallel processing cores and 16 GB of dedicated compute memory to solve large datasets. Based on the revolutionary NVIDIA® CUDA™ parallel computing architecture, the Tesla Personal Supercomputer puts nearly 4 teraflops of computing muscle at your fingertips.

Connoi Model : NTPSC-5400
* 4 x Tesla C1060 Computing Processor (With 4GB each Onboard Memory)
* Core 2 Quad Processor Q6600 2.40GHz, 8MB L2 Cache, 1066MHZ FSB
* Intel® 5400 Express Chipset
* 16GB FBDIMM Quad Channel RAM
* 500GB SATA Hard Disk Drive with 32MB Buffer Cache
* NVIDIA QUADRO FX570 Card
* 4 PCI Express* 1.0 x16 (electrical x16)
* 10 Hi-Speed USB 2.0, 6 back ports / 4 ports via 2 internal headers
* Up to 2 IEEE 1394a ports (1 back port, 1 via internal header)
* 6-port SATA (3.0 Gb/s) and 2-port eSATA
* Intel® Matrix Storage Technology (RAID 0, 1, 5, 10, with Intel® Rapid
* Recover Technology)
* Intel® PRO 10/100/1000 Network Connection
* Logitech Keyboard & Mouse
* ATX Chassis with 1000Watts Cooler Master Power supply
* DVD Writer

Price INR 4,79,500+  Connoiseur.com

Connoi Model : NTSP-780i
* 2 x Tesla C1060 Computing Processor (With 4GB each Onboard Memory)
* Core 2 Duo Processor E8400 3.00GHz, 6MB L2 Cache, 1333MHZ FSB
* NVIDIA nForce 780i SLI Chipset
* 8.0GB DDR2 Dual Channel RAM
* 500GB SATA Hard Disk Drive with 32MB Buffer Cache
* NVIDIA QUADRO FX570 Card
* 1 x UltraDMA133
* 7.1 Channel, Azalia (HDA)
* 2 x 10/100/1000Mbit LAN
* 1 x PS2 Keyboard
* 1 x PS2 Mouse
* 1 x Serial Ports
* 10 x USB2.0 ports (6 external + 4 internal headers)
* 2 x IEEE1394a (1 external + 1 internal header)
* Logitech Keyboard & Mouse
* ATX Chassis with 850Watts Cooler Master Power supply
* DVD Writer Price INR 2,58,500+

AMD's 45nm Phenoms Ride 'Dragon'  

Posted by Mohammad Talha in , , ,

AMD has unveiled a new gaming PC platform designed to provide "elite-level computing performance for under $900."

Dubbed "Dragon," AMD's chip-chipset-graphics combo is anchored by the struggling outfit's first 45nm desktop processor: the quad-core Phenom II X4. Both the chip and the Dragon made their official debut this morning at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

The Phenom II comes in two flavors: the 3GHz AMD Phenom II X4 940 Black Edition and the 2.8GHz AMD Phenom II X4 920. The Black Edition sells for $275, the un-Black Edition for $235. Both include 6MB of L3 cache, 2MB of L2 cache, and a memory controller that plays nicely with DDR2 and DDR3 memory.

In addition to the new 45nm chip, Dragon includes ATI Radeon HD 4800 graphics card and an AMD 7 series chipset. According to the company, HP, Dell, and Alienware will animate Dragon machines in the first quarter of 2009. Dell's Dragon-based XPS 625 desktop is already on sale for $1500 (without monitor).

AMD boasts that a Dragon consisting of a 2.8GHz Phenom II X4, an ATI Radeon HD 4870 with a GB of graphics memory, an AMD 790GX motherboard, and 4GB of DDR2-1066 memory can be had for under $900 - $1200 less than an Intel-based platform delivering comparable performance on a single benchmark test carefully chosen by AMD.

Dragon also includes several AMD-built software packages, including a handful of tools for optimizing performance and a media browser for juggling music, photos, movies, TV, and something called social media. In other words, this browser includes a built-in button that lets you upload photos directly to Facebook. ®

Acer’s engineering approach has fairly assisted to innovate, highly advanced notebooks, which have tremendously attracted the notebook users, towards the Acer Brand. It is really true in the case of, Acer Aspire Timeline  4810T Notebook – a smart combo of creativity and truly the breaking news to the notebook zealots.

http://www.reviewsbuzz.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/05/acer-aspire-4810t-7.jpgThis latest model notebook operates on two types of systems, either on Intel® Centrino® 2 or Intel® CoreIM2 Duo SU9400 ultra low voltage processor.  It is also operating on Intel® CoreIM2 Solo SU3500 highly low energy consumption processor.

Out of many features, motherboard flexibility gives users far more alternatives to select either they intend to use it for web surfing or business scheduling.   This new model has a fitted-in dual-channel DDR3 SDRAM slot for memory enhancement that can assist up to 4GB 1066MHz memory.  The memory capacity can be upgraded to 8GB, you may have rarely thought for before. (story Link)

Intel Core i7 : No Speed Limit Processor  

Posted by Mohammad Talha in , , , , , ,

The best desktop processors on the planet

Intel Core i7 Processor Brilliantly fast

With faster, intelligent, multi-core technology that applies processing power where it's needed most, new Intel® Core™ i7 processors deliver an incredible breakthrough in PC performance. They are the best desktop processors on the planet.

You'll multitask applications faster and unleash incredible digital media creation. And you'll experience maximum performance for everything you do, thanks to the combination of Intel® Turbo Boost technology and Intel® Hyper-Threading technology (Intel® HT technology), which maximizes performance to match your workload.

Product information

* 2.93 GHz and 2.66 GHz core speed
* 8 processing threads with Intel® HT technology
* 8 MB of Intel® Smart Cache
* 3 Channels of DDR3 1066 MHz memory

Features and benefits
Go to the next level of multi-core performance.

Intel Core i7 processors deliver an incredible breakthrough in quad-core performance and feature the latest innovations in processor technologies:

Intel® Turbo Boost technology maximizes speed for demanding applications, dynamically accelerating performance to match your workload—more performance when you need it the most.

Intel® Hyper-Threading technology enables highly threaded applications to get more work done in parallel. With 8 threads available to the operating system, multi-tasking becomes even easier.

Intel® Smart Cache provides a higher-performance, more efficient cache subsystem. Optimized for industry leading multi-threaded games.

Intel® QuickPath Interconnect is designed for increased bandwidth and low latency. It can achieve data transfer speeds as high as 25.6 GB/sec with the Extreme Edition processor.

Integrated memory controller enables three channels of DDR3 1066 MHz memory, resulting in up to 25.6 GB/sec memory bandwidth. This memory controller's lower latency and higher memory bandwidth delivers amazing performance for data-intensive applications.

Intel® HD Boost significantly improves a broad range of multimedia and compute-intensive applications. The 128-bit SSE instructions are issued at a throughput rate of one per clock cycle, allowing a new level of processing efficiency with SSE4 optimized applications.

Intel® Core™ i7-920 Processor (2.66 GHz) Model: BX8Ø6Ø192Ø (Price $319.99 newegg.com)

Intel® Core™ i7-940 Processor (2.93 GHz) Model: BX8Ø6Ø194Ø   (Price $599.99 newegg.com )

Intel Core i7 Extreme Edition 965 3.2GHz 4 x 256KB L2 Cache 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1366 Quad-Core Processor- BX80601965 (Price $1069.99 newegg.com)

Customizing Windows 7 Using The Windows Registry  

Posted by Mohammad Talha in , , ,

According to the Engineering Windows 7 blog:

Only 15% of the beta users kept the default theme. 77% of the beta users created a custom theme by changing one or more elements of the inbox themes.

This means that the majority of people want to customize their computers to suite them… (Nothing new!)

This guide shows some ways to customize Windows 7 using the Windows Registry Editor by modifying settings that can’t be changed from the “Personalization” window. Since these tweaks modify the Windows Registry, it is advisable to perform a backup of your registry using ERUNT (or any other means you use).

To open the Windows Registry Editor:

  • Click on the Start
  • Type “regedit” in the search bar
  • Choose “Yes” if a “User Account Control┝ message appears

To go to a specific key in the windows registry:

  • Click on the arrow sign next to the key’s name to expand it.
  • For example if you want to open “HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software”: Click on the arrow next to “HKEY_CURRENT_USER” then click on “Software”

To create a new value:

  • Right-click anywhere on the right side in the Registry Editor
  • Choose “New”
  • Click on the type of value that you want to insert

To modify a value:

  • Right-click the value
  • Choose “Modify…”

The following tables contain information about the values that need to be added/modified to apply the tweaks:

Windows 7 Task Switcher

The task switcher allows users to switch between open windows using the keyboard shortcut: ALT+Tab

Cool Switch (32-bit)

Cool Switch (32-bit)

 

Go to : HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop

Value Type What it does affects Data
CoolSwitchColumns
String Sets the number of columns of the cool switch NUMBER
Default= 7
CoolSwitchRows String Sets the maximum number of rows in the cool switch

NUMBER

Default = 3

Windows 7 Desktop Slideshow (64-bit)

The desktop slideshow automatically changes the wallpaper after a set time interval. The user selects the images he/she wants to use in the slide show, the time interval and whether or not to shuffle their order. All this can be modified through the “Desktop Background” window, however the following can’t:

AnimationDuration – In 64-bit versions of Windows 7, there is a ‘fade’ animation that occurs as a transition between the images. This animation takes about 1 second.

Go to: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Personalization\Desktop Slideshow

Value Type
What it does affects Data
AnimationDuration DWORD (32-bit)
Sets the time taken by the animation in milliseconds
NUMBERRemember: 1000 gives 1 second

There’s another DWORD (32-bit) value called “Interval” that sets the time at which the images change, however it seems to only work when data entered is the same as those available in the “Personalization” window. If a value given is “1000″ for example, which means the desktop background has to change every second (crazy! I know), it still takes 10s to change. I think this is deliberately done by Microsoft, because if people were able to set the time interval to a very short period of time (below 10 seconds), it would overload the computer’s memory. (full Story)

Apple iPhone 3G S - 16GB - Black  

Posted by Mohammad Talha in , , , ,

The good: The iPhone 3G S finally adds common cell phone features like multimedia messaging, video recording, and voice dialing. It runs faster; its promised battery life is longer; and the multimedia quality continues to shine.

The bad: The iPhone 3G S' call quality shows no improvements and the 3G signal reception remains uneven. We still don't get Flash Lite, USB transfer and storage, or multitasking.

The bottom line: The iPhone 3G S doesn't make the same grand leap that the iPhone 3G made from the first-generation model, but the latest Apple handset is still a compelling upgrade for some users. The iPhone 3G S is faster and we appreciate the new features and extended battery life, but call quality and 3G reception still need improvement.

Specifications: OS provided: Apple Mac OS X 10.4.11 ; Talk time: Up to 600 min (watch video)

'Golden Cash' network - rent a botnet  

Posted by Mohammad Talha in ,

Researchers at security firm Finjan said on Wednesday that they have uncovered an underground botnet-leasing network where cyber criminals can pay $5 to $100 to install malware on 1,000 PCs for things like stealing data and sending spam.

The Golden Cash network, dubbed "Your money-making machine" on its home page, sells access to botnets comprised of thousands of compromised PCs to cyber criminals for custom malware spreading jobs, according to issue 2 of the Cybercrime Intelligence Report for 2009.

Here's how it works: a cyber criminal creates a botnet by hiding malicious code in a legitimate Web site that is used to turn Web surfing PCs into zombies. The code, typically an iFrame, points the PCs to a separate Web site where they are then infected with a Trojan backdoor that reports back to the Golden Cash command and control server.

In order to increase the number of botnets, the Golden Cash server installs an FTP (file transfer protocol) grabber on new zombies to steal credentials used by the computers to run Web sites, giving the server control over additional legitimate Web sites. Approximately 100,000 domains, including corporate domains from around the world, were identified among the stolen FTP credentials under Golden Cash's control, according to the report.

Customers pay for the ability to install different types of malware on the Golden Cash bots, which are recycled for new jobs and new customers afterward. Prices are higher for compromised PCs in western countries, the report said.

"This advanced trading platform marks a new milestone in the cybercrime evolution," Finjan said in a statement.

More technical analysis is available on Finjan's Malicious Code Research Center blog, including the fact that the command and control server is hosted in Texas, the registrant country is China and the "proxy" Web site that tunnels traffic to the command and control server is hosted in Krasnodar, Russia.  (This article was originally posted on CNET News.)

Now that we know the iPhone 3G S and the Palm Pre share extremely similar 65nm ARM Cortex A8-based internals, it's time to break out the stopwatches and see how these blood brothers stack up. Anandtech has the first head-to-head tests we've seen, and it seems like the 3G S has the slight edge, loading a series of web pages 11 percent faster and a whopping 54 percent faster than the iPhone 3G. Not too shabby, but not exactly a thorough drubbing either -- especially when you consider webOS is still 1.0 and there's likely some optimizations to come. Full results at the read link.

Update:
Anandtech had some uncharacteristically bad math going on -- the 3G S is actually 21 percent faster than the Pre, which is quite notable considering the similar hardware and WebKit-based browsers. (story Link)

playing Xbox 360 on a Big.  

Posted by Mohammad Talha in , ,

The  72 x 160-foot LED wall at the center of the new Cowboys Stadium is certainly impressive enough when it's showing game highlights or concert footage, but no giant screen ever truly earns its credentials until it's been put to some real use: playing video games. Thankfully, Jonas Brothers video director Steve Fatone somehow pulled himself away from concert preparations to do just that earlier this week, and apparently became the first person to ever play Xbox 360 on the display in the process. As you can see above and in the gallery below, the two certainly seem to be made for each other, although it looks like the controller can get a tad touchy if you stray too far while trying to play it. (story Link)

TiVo Wants to Be the Google of Television. How?  

Posted by Mohammad Talha in ,

It's a familiar story. Upstart popularizes technology that threatens to disrupt an industry. Larger rivals enter picture and try to squeeze out little guy. TiVo (TIVO), whose set-top boxes made it routine for viewers to save TV shows on a hard drive so they could watch them later (and fast-forward through the ads), has followed this very trajectory. The cable companies began rolling out their own digital videorecorders a few years ago, and TiVo has been hemorrhaging subscribers ever since.

The TiVo story doesn't end there, however. By leveraging its still potent brand name and cache of more than 140 patents, the Alviso (Calif.) company is trying to remake itself as the Google (GOOG) of television—helping viewers navigate the increasing crush of entertainment choices and selling ads to boot. "Like Google," says CEO Thomas S. Rogers, "TiVo will bring that ease of use to TV sets." A laudable goal, but this is a crowded field.

Remaking a company is never easy, especially when the bottom is falling out of your primary business. This year, TiVo's revenues will shrink by 10%, to $225 million, according to Standard & Poor's (MHP) analyst Tuna N. Amobi, who expects TiVo to shed about 400,000 subscribers. That would leave it with 2.8 million, down from a high of 4.4 million in 2006. But Rogers has an ace in the hole. In 2006 a jury found that EchoStar (SATS), which then owned the Dish Network (DISH) satellite TV service, violated a TiVo patent; TiVo collected $104.6 million. The money let Rogers wipe out the company's debt and bought time to regroup. (On June 2, TiVo was awarded $103 million more after Dish still was found to be in violation of the patent. Dish won a temporary stay and is appealing.)

TiVo remains the standard in program guides. Where cable's technology can be hard to use, TiVo's interface makes finding shows easy. This expertise helps explain why Netflix (NFLX) and Blockbuster (BBI) have signed on to use TiVo technology for their online video services, which stream shows and movies to PCs and TVs. "When consumers want to use their TV to order a program, what better name is there than TiVo?" says Blockbuster digital czar Kevin Lewis. TiVo will get a piece of each transaction, and Netflix and Blockbuster will offer promotions to help sell the box. (full Story)

Facebook, Google Go Persian, Aiding Iran’s Activists  

Posted by Mohammad Talha in

Some of the Web’s leading firms are rolling out new features, to accommodate worldwide interest in the protests in Iran — and to not-so-subtly help out the pro-democracy movement inside the country.http://www.wired.com/images_blogs/dangerroom/2009/06/mousavi.jpg

Iran’s activists have been relying on blogs, Tweets, text messages, Facebook groups, and uploaded YouTube videos to share information with one another, and with the outside world. Late Thursday night, both Facebook and Google’s translation service added Persian language support, which should make it even easier for the Iranian opposition and its growing global network of supporters to connect.

“We feel that launching Persian is particularly important now, given ongoing events in Iran. Like YouTube and other services, Google Translate is one more tool that Persian speakers can use to communicate directly to the world, and vice versa — increasing everyone’s access to information,” Google principal scientist Franz Och noted in a Thursday night blog post.

Almost immediately, supporters of Iranian opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi used the new feature to begin translating his official site into English.

In the past few days, Google’s YouTube video-sharing site recently changed its policy on violent footage, to allow videos from Iran’s protests to stay posted to the site. Twitter rescheduled maintenance, to accommodate Iranian activists. (full Story)

Nokia Siemens to buy Nortel's wireless unit  

Posted by Mohammad Talha in , ,

LOS ANGELES, USA: Telecom equipment maker Nortel Networks said that it will sell its advanced wireless technology business to Nokia Siemens Networks  for $650 million and that it was making progress in talks to sell its other businesses.
Nortel, once the largest North American maker of telecommunications gear, collapsed into bankruptcy in January, blaming the economic crisis for derailing a turnaround effort that began in 2005.
Nokia Siemens, a joint venture of Nokia and Siemens, had made an unsolicited offer for parts of Nortel's carrier network group, but the price and scope of a deal had been unclear.
The telecom equipment industry is consolidating and leaving only a few global players -- market leader Ericsson, Huawei, Nokia Siemens and Alcatel-Lucent.
The deal will allow Nokia Siemens to expand its presence in North America and make it a leading supplier of wireless infrastructure products in the region, it said in a separate statement announcing the deal.
The transaction includes Nortel's CDMA business and LTE assets. CDMA is the technology that lost the battle for global dominance but still has a strong position in some markets, including North America. Nortel has a roughly 30 percent share of the global CDMA market.
LTE is a new high-speed wireless technology that is intended to replace current mobile networks. LTE networks are slated to be deployed in the coming years by large wireless carriers including Vodafone Group Plc and Verizon Communications Inc.
"This agreement provides an important strategic opportunity for Nokia Siemens Networks to strengthen its position in two key areas, North America and LTE, at a price that makes good economic sense," NSN Chief Executive Simon Beresford-Wylie said in the statement.
Nokia Siemens is now the "stalking horse" bidder, which means its offer sets a floor under other possible offers in the bankruptcy process.
Under the terms of the deal, at least 2,500 Nortel employees in Canada, the United States, Mexico and China have the opportunity to keep their jobs under NSN ownership. A Nortel spokesman said this represented "a majority" of the employees associated with the assets, but would not give a specific percentage.
Nortel once employed more than 90,000 people, but now has about 30,000 staff. Nortel also said it was advancing discussions to sell its other businesses. (story Link)

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