Wednesday, September 30, 2009

go palm!

In just 5 months the palm pre has managed to snag 4% of mobile web use. A particularly great number seeing as it is a single device and the entire set of all andriod phones grew by only the same amount in that time. Nokias line of phones and devices droped 10% of mobile web usage also.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

More ragging on apple.

Qouting other sites makes me less biase looking, right?

The Onion takes a jab at apple... customers. Remember that story about the emporors new clothes?

I think it is absolutely impossible for apple to lose touch with reality.

They lack a necessary state (click here for read link).

My favorite:
Let me get this straight… Keeping it ILLEGAL to jailbreak phones will dissuade terrorists and drug dealers from doing these horrible things that Apple claims could be done with their phones?

Really? So a terrorist who would bring down the Cell Phone towers, or a drug dealer who would sell heroin to children, is going to go, “Woah, dude… wait a minute… I’m not going to risk violating the DMCA!”

Apple Legal Team Fail.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Left 4 dead whats.... not really new.

None of these are new game making, its a pretty expansion pack valve.

http://www.gametrailers.com/video/sdcc-09-left-4-dead/53359

Monday, July 20, 2009

For clarity's sake.

I thought I should provide a little guide to not-watching things, just in case any of you were confused. There are many many techniques for not-watching, this is just a personal favorite of mine.

1.) Find something that is watchable, that is the only requirement, you don't have to worry about it being any good (it's actually easier if it isn't)
2.) set it up, as if in the sound belief that you will watch it, plump a nice pillow, adjust the volume, get comfortable....
3.) Attempt to synchronize your personal passage into sleep with the end of the intro credits.

There are many variations on this. two of my other favorites are identical up to step 3. simply replace that step with either "realize, if possible, suddenly, that you are late for the evining shift at work, leave." or "allow the forces of the universe to cause an emergency in the next room, a minor indoor flood or fire works well, proceed to act reasonable for such a situation."

with practice you can become an expert not-watcher like me.

"Of course it cannot be changed, else I will be known as the son of a tortoise"

I have been not-watching things alot this summer. While I was looking for a show to not watch, i ran across this:

It is now my favorite show to not-watch. I think there is a lot of not-watching potential in all K-drama.

so true

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

The dig

I just want to point out that steam has the classic Lucas Arts title "the dig" for $5. If you have never played this, and are currently in possession of a soul, you should definitely go buy it now. With a story written by Orson Scott Card (yes, Scott Card, one of the best selling fiction writers of all time, the only man to ever with both the hugo and the nebula award two years in a row...) and produced by steven speilberg (yah... no introduction for him.) Nice (albeit aging) hand drawn art. and Myst like adventure mystery gameplay.... its worth it. Very much worth it.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Sunday, July 05, 2009

TF2 ripoff

This not yet released korean made title HAVE is an amusingly faithful clone of team fortress 2. The sad thing is, all else being held equal I would prefer this more justifiably cartoony premise and the more open (and therefore less team dependant) level design to TF2.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Anybody wanna hear how stupid Intel is?

So I was sitting and wondering to myself why a 4 watt processor (intel atom) needs a large (ok, medium by normal standards, but you would think something with a 4 watt draw could run on a cell phone battery) LI-Ion battery to get the spiffy 8+ hour runtime that the best netbooks keep bragging about. There is one very simple reason. Intel stubbornly refuses to let anybody else make a GPU pairing with their processor (even though Nvidia is doing this, Intel has been attempting to stop them in court for months). Why is this relevant you ask? because Intels 945 chipset, the one that is univerally packaged with the Atom, has a power envelope of 22 watts, over 5 times the draw of the CPU. With all that extra power, Intel's integrated graphics are still the absolute worse graphics solution ever made. Generally they can be outperformed by ABSOLUTELY ANY DROP IN EXPANSION CARD DESIGNED FOR PCI-E. Stupidity.

LOL

From engadgets forums:

"Kamil @ Jun 26th 2009 1:57AM

1) under $1500
2) GAMEing....

Mac fans feel threatened by these terms..."


The mac fans are coming! the mac fans are coming! run!!!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Track record

While I was writing the augmented reality tidbit below I thought to myself: "how likely am I to be right about this?" (that augmented reality, including personal projectors and personal display units (probably heads up) will be commonplace in the future.

Well, two thoughts come to mind. One is an afternoon where Lucas and I (both fairly early palm pilot adopters) sat with our friend Jeremy in our highschool demonstrating the utility of a hand held device with video playback, document browsing, email, calander, and other PIM applications, and a good screen. I remember (and I'm sure they both remember as well (back me up in the comments guys) saying (though I was possibly a more avid apple hater then than now) that inevitably this would be a technology that apple (with there then shiny new expensive and bulky white ipods)would get into, and probably make trendy. 5 years later. Enter the iphone. (of course after such devices where readily available for 5 YEARS apple ended up not making a single real innovation, they made it shiny and the PUBLICIZED [and therefore took all credit] it, but did nothing new.... very annoying...)

Second example:
That could be all I say. But for those of you who have no idea what I'm talking about. The picture is of the NEC mobile pro. Basically a netop that existed over 10 years ago. I bought one the summer of my junior year of highschool (for 79$ I must add) and ranted for a month about how everybody would want a small computer with a long battery life to carry around with them for all those little computer tasks we are so used too. If you somehow missed it, the netop market is the fastest growing sector of computer hardware for the last year.

So yes, I'm bragging. But my point is that I think augmented reality will be big, and I seem to have a decent track record.

more augmented reality

Even people who have no interest in video games should look at this:



http://www.pcauthority.com.au/News/148251,altered-vision-researchers-making-augmented-reality-more-than-science-fiction.aspx

I'm confident everybody who reads my blog will use some form of augmented reality within the next ten years.

That and vuzix, (previously icuiti) the company i have been ranting about for years has just released the first information about their own augmented reality hardware (which is of course, awesome) http://www.vuzix.com/iwear/products_camar.html

Together those two products give you a true 3d (stereoscopic) heads up display with 6 degree head motion tracking and highres augmented reality oriented video. spiffy.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Cyborg Update


Ok, just a quick one. Peregrine is actually releasing the glove I highlighted a year ago. http://www.engadget.com/2009/06/04/peregrine-wires-you-into-a-keyboard-we-go-hands-in/

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Valve begins tradition of boring sequels

Keep this in mind. Valve is without a doubt my favourite game company of all time.My freshman year of high school could be accurately described as this: Go to school, get together with Lucas, do homework, play half life, sleep, rinse, repeat. They just make good games. They made a great distribution system. They do something innovative every time. Actually.... No, they don't.

That's the sad thing. Starting with opposing forces and condition zero, through episode 2, and without doubt including what I have seen of the new Left 4 Dead. Valve has started a tradition of making really boring sequels. Obviously, I'm not speaking here of half life 2 (or for those of you who like it, team fortress 2.) However, there is nothing new in episode 1 and 2, people like the story, or they say that Alex is new and improved, but come on, it's the price of a new game! I expect new weapons, an improvement to the movement system, Something NEW.

Let me make my case with what I've seen of L4D2. From the videos released thus far. It may as well be called Left 4 Dead Racial edition. Other than adding a very lot of pigment to the characters skin however, it looks like they have added 3 melee weapons (which don't really do anything new at all....) a slight graphical facelift and flaming shotgun shells (which look like they defeat the purpose of a shotgun, at least in that video they have no stopping power and leave zombies free to run up and light you on fire.) That's it. The rest is level design (which valve has previously let the community augment for free.) I'm simply not paying for new maps. Not happening. Here is what I want to see in L4D2:

1.) Sprint
2.) Flares which attract zombies (especially witches) and give a large light radius.
3.) Level specific special zombies (like a hanging zombie, a hard to see (read, cloaking, or dark) zombie, an impersonating zombie, and a tiny (head-crab-esq) zombie.)
4.) NEW weapons, not remixes, not crowbars with axe and frypan skins. Where is the flame-thrower (gasoline + super soaker + lighter = zombie toaster). The one shot rocket launcher. The tesla coil. a high powered pistol. a crossbow. a chain?
5.) Drivable vehicles.
6.) The ability to shake off zombies (I know, I know, it's all in the name of team-play, but being stuck on the ground INDEFINITELY until people come and help you is implausible and LAME)
7.) Levels that require you to split into 2 groups of 2.


This list of features would take a team of decent amateurs (read, mod creators) less than a month of part time work to put together.

I'll give Valve one thing from the Video, I'm glad to see daytime levels.


EDIT: So I'm not the only one angry.
Apparently upwards of 5000 Valve fans took the time to verbalize there annoyance. They have the right idea, the additions we are seeing in L4D2 deserve to fall into the "content" update or "expansion pack" category. They simply aren't new-game-worthy.

EDIT2: If you're annoyed, join the L4D2 boycott group on steam (link in the article above).

Thursday, May 21, 2009

giving the truth some facetime

Ars technica has been letting cox and other ISPs use their site as a sortof forum. I dissaprove, so I want to do my meagre part to let DSLreports get some cross web coverage.

"Like every other cable executive, McSlarrow doesn't provide, and Ars doesn't press for, hard data justifying why a move away from the flat-rate billing model is even necessary in the first place -- given the costs to provide broadband are dropping, growth rates are easily manageable, and DOCSIS 3.0 upgrades are relatively inexpensive. We've repeatedly debunked the "Exaflood" as a public relations stunt by broadband carriers and their PR tendrils, yet Mcslarrow quickly trots it out as example number one as to why such "experiments" were necessary."


Take that cable. Now everybody go read the article. Because this will affect you within the year, and you will be lied too about it if you don't educate yourself.
http://www.dslreports.com/shownews/Cable-Let-Us-Experiment-With-Pricing-Or-The-Internet-Explodes-102532

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

naughty intel

The European Union fined Intel $1.44 billion today (well, technically they fined them in ”Europe money” but that means nothing to me.) for anti-trust violations. The violations cited are:

“[The Commission] said Intel gave rebates to computer manufacturers Acer, Dell, HP, Lenovo and NEC for buying all or almost all their x86 [processors] from Intel and paid them to stop or delay the launch of computers based on chips from AMD . . . Regulators said [Intel] also paid Germany's biggest electronics retailer, Media Saturn Holding — which owns the MediaMarkt superstores — from 2002 to 2007 to only stock Intel-based computers.
This meant workers at AMD's biggest European plant in Dresden, Germany, could not buy AMD-based personal computers at their city's main PC store.”

And
“AMD offered 1 million free chips to one manufacturer — which could not accept because that would lose it a rebate on many millions of other chips. It only took 160,000 free chips in the end, regulators said. . . . Intel's payments to manufacturers ordered the company to delay the European launch of AMD's first business desktop by six months. They were also paid to only sell the AMD line to small and medium companies and to only offer them directly to customers instead of to retailers.
Other manufacturers were paid to postpone the launch of AMD-based notebooks by several months, from September 2003 to January 2004 and from September 2006 to the end of 2006 — missing the key Christmas market.”

Intel is reported as having said: Company CEO Paul Otellini calls it "wrong" and says "there has been absolutely zero harm to consumers."

All taken from: http://www.techreport.com/discussions.x/16909

I’m not really sure how you can say that selling your products at a certain price if your retailers agree to not sell any competition is not wrong…

There is an identical investigation going on in the United states:


“Well, there is an investigation . . . at the [U.S. Federal Trade Commission]; there's also one in the United States by the New York Attorney General's office. Intel is fully cooperating with both of those . . . we're producing evidence, we produce testimonies, depositions, and so forth. The FTC has had a position on anti-trust which is very much comparable, I think, to the EU's, so we're actually being looked at under the same lens today by both parties.” Quoted at http://www.techreport.com/discussions.x/16912

Korea has already fined Intel $25 million in an antitrust case.

I wonder if they will get another round of slaps for their chipset bundling practices against Nvidia (who makes the ion platform for

Friday, May 08, 2009

Apple takes on the ultimate censorship role.

"Apple's just reached a whole new level of stupidity in App Store approval shenanigans: the Tweetie 1.3 update was just rejected for displaying "offensive language" in its Twitter trend search view. Right, not for offensive language in the app itself, but for offensive language on Twitter -- an insanely strict new standard that could conceivably be used to reject each and every iPhone Twitter client out there. (And if you haven't noticed, there are quite a few iPhone Twitter clients.) Hell, Apple might as well reject the next versions of Safari and Mail, since they can display dirty words too -- and let's not forget the awful things people are doing with Notes and the camera. Better lock it down."

I'm not going to say anything more...

http://www.engadget.com/2009/03/10/apple-stupidly-rejects-tweetie-1-3-for-foul-language-in-twitter/

Friday, April 17, 2009

9.04 NEWBUNTU!

If you don't know what ubuntu is... nothing to see here, move along folks...

Thursday, March 19, 2009

there is no bluetooth.... because we broke it on purpose

from dailytech http://www.dailytech.com/Apple+Reveals+It+Intentionally+Crippled+Bluetooth+in+iPod+touch+2G/article14611.htm

" Apple insisted at the time that Bluetooth was not on the iPod touch and that Nike+ didn't use Bluetooth.

Teardowns late last year, though, told a different story. The teardown revealed a Broadcom Bluetooth chipset with support for 2.1+EDR. The chipset, not listed on Apple's spec sheet, was apparently being used to implement Nike+. Some argued that there must be some hardware difference; Apple wouldn't just lock out working functionality.

Well, they were wrong -- during a Q&A session at the iPhone/iPod touch OS v3.0 press event this week, Apple let slip that Bluetooth is indeed on the iPod touch and that it intentionally crippled it.

Some are accusing Apple of intentionally crippling this key piece of iPod touch hardware as a ploy to sell its new OS. Apple is charging iPod touch customers $9.99 to upgrade and receive the complementary Bluetooth unlock.
"

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

AMD gets a little review love.

It's been a couple of months since a major review site let slip a generally positive comment about an entire lineup from AMD but on Techreport.com:

"Generally speaking, AMD's Phenom II X4 processors appear to be slightly better deals than the Intel Core 2 Quad equivalents. Not only are they great performers for the money, but the Socket AM2+ and AM3 platform has a better upgrade path than Intel's soon-to-be-retired LGA775 platform. The Phenom II X3 720 is more of a mixed bag, since it's the top performer neither in single-threaded tasks nor in heavily multithreaded ones. However, the 720 is still a good middle ground between cheap quad-cores and high-end dual-core CPUs."

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

200th post, Natural Language Engine

Don't know what a natural language engine is? Natural language means nothing more than the way we speak to one another. When you ask a person what there maiden name was. That person parses that question into its ideas: I the subject's, last name prior to name changes associated with marriage. It sounds simple but its a hard thing for computers to do.

"Wolfram Alpha actually computes the answers to a wide range of questions -- like questions that have factual answers such as "What is the location of Timbuktu?" or "How many protons are in a hydrogen atom?," "What was the average rainfall in Boston last year?," "What is the 307th digit of Pi?," "where is the ISS?" or "When was GOOG worth more than $300?"

Think about that for a minute. It computes the answers. Wolfram Alpha doesn't simply contain huge amounts of manually entered pairs of questions and answers, nor does it search for answers in a database of facts. Instead, it understands and then computes answers to certain kinds of questions."


see: http://www.techreport.com/discussions.x/16550 for more.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Intelligent computing

Its all about the interface O_o
LINK ( http://www.engadget.com/2009/02/26/intelligent-siftables-blocks-get-even-more-face-time/#continued )


Siftables Music Sequencer from Jeevan Kalanithi on Vimeo.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Just because I hate Apple inc.

This from Daily Tech: LINK

Now another significant landmark has been passed by Apple,... In January, for the first time in almost a year, total Windows PC sales growth surpassed that of Apple. Apple sales and revenue dropped 6 percent and 11 percent respectively during the month of January compared to December.

Windows PCs, on the other hand, saw sales increase by 13 percent.


Lets see them keep singing to the tune of "We don't know how to make a $500 computer that's not a piece of junk." It's too bad that it seems everybody else does Apple...

Also, if you think apple will live up to their threats on palms pre interface think again. Engadget.com did a nice little comparison of pattent infringments between the two devices (remember, between their many devices since 1992 palm has made something with pretty much every feature the Iphone has...)

If you're going to say that the Pre crosses the boundaries of Apple's spring-back edge scrolling patent, you're really not in a position to say that the iPhone doesn't similarly ape Palm's call-management patent -- or the brightness patent, or the contacts patent, or the dim-during-sync patent, or... you get the idea. Apple might be the more infamous IP juggernaut, but Palm has literally hundreds of patents of its own, and we managed to dig up four that seem to directly implicate the iPhone in just a few hours of searching. Imagine what Palm's lawyers could do, armed with their actual knowledge of what Palm owns and the motivation of some serious hourly fees.

Speaking of tidy sums, we haven't even begun to talk about the money involved here, and it's a lot -- enough to seriously tip the scales. Let's say Palm were to win: not only might Apple lose its patents, the court would at the very least award Palm royalties for the patents the iPhone infringes, and at over 16m iPhones sold so far, even a few percentage points adds up fast -- we're talking hundreds of millions of dollars. If Apple wins? Well, Palm hasn't sold any Pres yet, so its exposure to royalty payments is much lower -- and potentially losing some older patents it may or may not even be using doesn't seem like a terrible punishment.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Augmented Reality

This is a direct continuation of my emphatuation with Personal Video Displays:
http://www.hitl.washington.edu/artoolkit/

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Possible best single download ever

http://www.technibble.com/computer-repair-utility-kit/

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Some software CAN'T BE PATENTED

"With the US Patent Office and courts cracking down on software patents, Ars takes a close look at the Supreme Court's software patent decisions. Yes, the highest court in the land really did say that algorithms can't be patented. And in spite of the fact that their rulings have been functionally ignored for almost two decades, the tide may be about to turn."
Full Story

Monday, January 12, 2009

A definite addition to my "I want to be a cyborg" list

Throat mic
Throat mics use the vibrations directly from your voicebox (or rather the skin around it) to pick up your speaking, as a result they get almost zero background noise and can pick up a whisper. $30 is unheard of in the past for these things, i dont know if this is a good one though.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

On that note



SanDisk -- the leader of flash memory's public image for years and years -- is toting new SSDs*
Click here for the full article.
Though I know most of you wont read/understand/care about that article so here are the highlights.
1.) They are using Toshiba developed 43-nanometer Multi-Level Cell (MLC) flash memory. Which is a good thing.
2.) They are priced to compete with normal hard drives (current SSDs in this class cost $700-$1500) "For example, the 32GB modular SSD is priced at parity with 2.5” HDDs in OEM quantities." (from the above article)
3.) VIA likes them, and I think VIA has always has had a good grasp of the mobile market. “SanDisk’s Gen 2 pSSD drives have the best combination of capacity, performance, weight, pricing and power advantages to really excite designers, manufacturers and users of netbooks,” said Richard Brown, VP of Marketing, VIA Technologies, Inc"

* SSDs solid state disks are a really exciting technology posed to replace HDDs (Hard disk drives) though technically solid state is a sub-species of hard drive. They are solid because they have no moving parts. They are also generally lighter, smaller (though some are put in casings the size of a hard drive to make them compatible with existing devices) and in many cases more power efficient, they are MUCH MUCH faster (and this is the kind of faster that makes windows boot faster, Firefox open fast, and word not take 12 minutes to save that 2000 page action report with all the cool tables and graphs I know your writing. As apposed to when we say a processor is faster, which for the most part means video, games, rendering and a little of the above load times are faster

Net books


You will probably all see a rash of pro netbook touting from me in the next few weeks. Those of you who have lived with me, and realize I'm more likely to carry my desktop to a friends house than buy a netbook right now are probably thinking "hypocrite".
First, this isn't actually true, I bought one of the worlds first netbooks, the NEC mobile pro 770, which was made in 1999 (Although the price point of $1200 -- read $1480.50 adjusted for inflation -- prevented me from buying one until 2005, when they dropped to just $99).
The real reason I won't be buying a netbook right now is usage. Netbooks are targeted at people who need a computer they can take with them easily everyday from when they leave the house. Primarily they are targeted at light file toting, web browsing, word processing, and limited media playback. They emphasize small size, light weight, and a long lasting battery. The reason I think they are great is that this specification envelope is perfect for 80% of Americans and they are CHEAP compared to a full blown laptop of similar quality, which they will probably outperform in most of the above listed tasks (especially battery life.)I simply wont be buying one because about 300 days of the year I am either on my college campus, within 500 feet of my dorm room, office, or the library, and 20 feet of a power outlet 99% of the time, or home, working 7 minutes from my house. With that kind of mobility, I classify devices into two categories, those that fit in my pocket, and those that don't.
So I'm not being hypocritical if I spend the next month or so trying to convince everybody who doesn't already have a recent laptop that they need a netbook.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

yAyMD

AMD might be getting ready to kick butt in the ultra portable market. check out this http://news.cnet.com/8301-13924_3-10132097-64.html if your thinking of getting a netbook and want performance capable of more than just web browsing.