Thursday, October 14, 2010

future tech

A rumor passed through Twitter from, of all people, an accessories manufacturer points to the possibility of a November 11 launch of the Nintendo 3DS. The manufacturer essentially said that he was making a few accessories – eleven to be exact – and that they would be launched on the same day as the 3DS.

Far fetched even by Internet standards, I guess it’s nice to dream.
via Eng

Nokia’s Smartphone Champion Resigns One Day Before Nokia World
Imagine if Jonathan Ives, the designer of the Mac and the iPhone, walked out of Apple one day before its world developer's conference? Well that's the kind of impact of the resignation today of Anssi Vanjoki, who has announced his departure one day before Nokia World, the company's major annual event. Vanjoki was widely seen as being the potential 'Steve Jobs" of Nokia - a product obsessive who could get things done. There's no sign he's left for another job and the short press release contains no words of thanks from colleagues. Wow. Vanjoki only recently (as in, July July) became the company's Mobile Solutions leader - the one guy that was poised to knock heads together and turn Nokia back into a major smartphone player against the iPhone and Android. But no more.

NEC Shows Another Three 3D Desktop PCs
Among Japan’s PC makers, NEC seems to be betting especially high on 3D. Following the 3D PC the company introduced in Japan earlier this summer, NEC today announced [JP] another three 3D desktop PCs for the Japanese market. Here are all the details.
All of these Windows 7 machines will hit Japanese stores within this month.
NEC Valuestar VW970/CS
Pictured on top of this post, this PC comes with Core i5-460M (2.53GHz) CPU, 4GB RAM, a 1.5TB HDD 1.5TB, GeForce GT 330M, a 3D Blu-ray Disc drive, a 23-inch 3D full HD screen, two TV tuners, a pair of 3D glasses, and an HDMI port.
The VW970/CS will cost $3,100.

NEC Valuestar VN790/CS
This model has the following features: Core i5-460M CPU (same as in the model above), 4GB RAM, a 1TB HDD 1TB, a non-3D Blu-ray drive, a 20-inch 3D screen with 1,600×900 resolution, a pair of 3D glasses, and one TV tuner.
The VN790/CS will cost $2,600.

NEC Valuestar VL750/CS
The VL750/CS is equipped with a Core i7-870 (2.93GHz) CPU, 8GB RAM, a 1TB HDD 1TB, a GeForce GT 330 video card, a non-3D Blu-ray Disc drive, a 23-inch full HD 120Hz 3D screen, an HDMI port, three USB 3.0 ports, and eight USB 2.0 ports.
It will cost $3,400.

AG-AF100: Panasonic’s Micro Four-Thirds Pro Camcorder Gets Priced And Dated (In Japan)
Back in April, Panasonic caused quite a big splash by teasing the AG-AF100, an interchangeable-lens camcorder for “professional users”. The Micro Four-Thirds device is the first of its kind, offering 1080/60i or 1080/30p AVCHD video recording and the ability to use a bunch of different lenses, adapters and filters with it (Micro Four-Thirds lens mount).
The AVCCAM also features SD/SDHC/SDXC compatibility, two-channel Audio XLR inputs, an HDMI interface, a USB 2.0, and HD/SD SDI output.

Panasonic Global just updated its English product page for the AF100 (click here) but hasn’t posted a press release as of this writing.
In Japan, Panasonic priced and dated the AF-100 (slightly renamed to AF-105) earlier today [JP]. It will be go on sale in December in this country, carrying a $9,980 price tag.

Acer Dual-Screen Laptop Leaked
This is a pretty insane-looking machine. Of course, they’re not the first to try it; Toshiba’s Libretto W100 is already out there, but dual 7-inch displays aren’t the same as a full-size laptop like this. Can this design possibly work at this form factor? I thought the Courieridea worked mainly because it was small enough that using it like a laptop wasn’t possible. But we’re looking at two 15″ displays on this Acer beast, bizarrely with trackpad emulated as well.
[via Electronista]

Best Back-to-School Laptops
Posted: 12 Sep 2010 10:25 AM PDT
Buying a laptop for school requires us to take into consideration a few simple facts. They are:
  • Your laptop will be with you for two to four years.
  • You will tote your laptop around like one of Paris Hilton’s hairless dogs.
  • Your laptop will get beaten up a bit more than those selfsame dogs.
With these things in mind, we now have to find a laptop that is low-priced yet high in quality. This rules out a number of very cheap models and every expensive, bulky models. In short, students need a laptop that will still look good after two years and will still work after six months. A tall order indeed.
But never fear: I’ve been looking at laptops for almost a decade now and there are a few I’ve seen that particularly catch my eye. These are laptops I’d buy my own kids.


ASUS Eee PC 1215N – about $500 – This, the latest in the ASUS Eee line, has Optimus graphics and a high-powered Atom processor. This 3.2-pound notebook is thin enough to slip into a backpack but lacks an optical drive – a minor concern for some students. Yes, it’s a netbook, but ASUS built their recently fortune on netbooks so I’m willing to give this a pass. It’s definitely not for games or video editing, but it will work just fine as a text editing, web surfing, IMing machine. It also has HD video playback on the 12.1-inch screen. [Product Page]

Samsung N150 – About $350 – If you’re a literature major eating Ramen or you want a little notebook to use in class, the N150 is a safe bet. The 10.5-inch laptop runs Windows 7 Starter (you’re probably going to want to upgrade) and it will run most office applications without any problems. Just don’t plan on doing any high-resolution image editing and you’ll be fine. [Product Page]

Dell XPS 16 – $949 – If there’s a laptop line suited for students it’s the Dell’s Studio brand. These small laptops are designed for a few simple purposes – multimedia, video, etc. – but the XPS 16 is the only one designed for (ssssshhhhh) gaming. The 15.6-inch screen displays full HD graphics powered by an ATI Mobility Radeon HD 565v graphics chip. Whether you’re going to be dropping heavy duty science in Chemistry class or dropping rockets in Modern Warfare, this is the laptop for you. [Product Page]

MacBook – $999 – Call us fanbois all you want but a MacBook is the perfect laptop for most students. Thanks to lots of battery life, plenty of power, and compatibility with almost anything you can throw at it, a standard MacBook is fast becoming the de facto notebook on many campuses. While Windows 7 is a great OS, I suspect the average computer user will have very little trouble switching and as long as you maintain regular back ups there is little that you can do to this thing that will fold, mutilate, or spindle your data. [Product Page]

Alienware M11x – $1150 – A few years ago, Alienware laptops were so expensive – and so large – that it was ludicrous to consider them as viable school computers. However, with the advent of cheaper chip technologies and a number of improvements to portability, I’m pleased to report the M11x is a great smaller notebook with lots of staying power. Devin reviewed this laptop in April so check out his comments. This is a “heavy hitter” with lots of processor power but it’s a bit on the heavier side. We’re big fans, but check it out in the store before committing to a purchase. [Product Page]