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Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Google Calendar is now live, which probably means Google will be launching this site very soon. My hunch is Google Calendar will be revealed at When 2.0 Conference tomorrow. Another question is what format will Google Calendar be in? Plain XML or even in something like Simple Sharing Extensions for RSS and OPML. I guess we will know soon

Xbox 360 Update Posted By Microsoft

Microsoft has posted its latest Xbox 360 update last night, which makes a couple of tweaks to the console's system software, according to the brief list of fixes posted by Microsoft. The update adds improvements to Xbox Guide and to the Dutch Xbox Live network configuration. It also provides more detailed information on disk that can't be read or region errors. It also increases the accuracy of 'last time played' readouts and provides a saved-game retention option when users' profiles are removed.

The update will automatically install when users sign on to Xbox Live

Autistic Savant Daniel Tammet Explains

Daniel Tammet is an autistic savant. He can perform mind-boggling mathematical calculations at breakneck speeds. But unlike other savants, who can perform similar feats, Tammet can describe how he does it. He speaks seven languages and is even devising his own language. Now scientists are asking whether his exceptional abilities are the key to unlock the secrets of autism.

Tammet is a "savant", an individual with an astonishing, extraordinary mental ability. An estimated 10% of the autistic population - and an estimated 1% of the non-autistic population - have savant abilities, but no one knows exactly why. A number of scientists now hope that Tammet might help us to understand better. Professor Allan Snyder, from the Centre for the Mind at the Australian National University in Canberra, explains why Tammet is of particular, and international, scientific interest. "Savants can't usually tell us how they do what they do," says Snyder. "It just comes to them. Daniel can. He describes what he sees in his head. That's why he's exciting. He could be the Rosetta Stone."

Read the whole article here

Google Bookmarks

So Google came out with Google Bookmarks
What's going on with Google, the last 3 things that they came out with are all garbage?
Google Video...bad quality, not enough content
Google Pack...nothing new all the old stuff packaged into one download
Google Bookmarks...who needs this, just use
What's next Google ShareSite? Something like digg or reddit?
Google wake up and show something new/original. When is Google Calendar coming out? There are rumors about the existence of such an application
Enough said...Oh wait I forgot the Google RSS Reader..... also garbage

Monday, January 30, 2006

DB2....Free Version

So after Microsoft and Oracle IBM is also offering a free version of their RDBMS DB2
DB2 Express-C is the same database as IBM's commercial offerings but the company places limits on what kind of hardware it can run on.
It can be deployed on systems with two processor cores or up to two dual-core chips on Advanced Micro Devices- or Intel-based servers. The memory limit is 4GB but there are no limits on the size of database or number of users.

IBM said that a future version of DB2 Express-C, code-named Viper, will include hybrid relational and XML database features. Viper is due for release this year.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Joshua Schachter ( Interview

The creator of has big plans for his innovative social tagging site but has no regrets about selling it to Yahoo

Even though Joshua Schachter was rumoured to be about $30m richer, this was far from his best Christmas. Just nine days after Yahoo bought his company, Delicious (, and at a time when all eyes were on it, the power failed - leading to a service outage that meant 31-year-old Schachter had to work all hours to fix the site's technical emergencies.
Small wonder that when I got in touch, the guy who invented one of the hottest new ideas online - and just sold it for a personal fortune - couldn't have sounded more miserable. Online, the gossip was about how much he sold for, and the reach of "user tagging", the idea that Delicious introduced. But Schachter, the site's creator, mainly sounded relieved to have the $57bn corporation taking over.

Why? Because from Delicious's inception in September 2003 until the founding of the actual company last March, he did most of the work himself. At times, it was incredibly stressful. "It would crash occasionally, and it would largely stay down until I could deal with it, but often it would happen while I was trying to get on planes. So I would be sitting on a plane trying to login from my PDA."

Read the rest here

Computer Science:Quotations for Learning and Programming

I found this URL on reddit and decided to check it out. There are some great quotes in this article
Below are some go to the article to see all of them

A common mistake people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools.
- D. Adams

Precise language is not the problem. Clear language is the problem.
- R. Feynman

The inside of a computer is as dumb as hell but it goes like mad!
- R. Feynman

What I cannot create I do not understand.
- R. Feynman

Any fool can write code that a computer can understand. Good programmers write code that humans can understand.
- R. Fowler, "Refactoring: Improving the Design of Existing Code"

640K [of main memory] ought to be enough for anybody.
- W. Gates (Founder and CEO Microsoft), 1981 - disclaimed

A great lathe operator commands several times the wage of an average lathe operator, but a great writer of software code is worth 10,000 times the price of an average software writer.
- W. Gates

The best way to prepare [to be a programmer] is to write programs, and to study great programs that other people have written. In my case, I went to the garbage cans at the Computer Science Center and fished out listings of their operating systems.
- W. Gates

We flew down weekly to meet with IBM, but they thought the way to measure software was the amount of code we wrote, when really the better the software, the fewer lines of code.
- W. Gates

Kevin Rose (Digg, Diggnation and Revision3) Interview

Gadgetell has an interview with Kevin Rose from, Diggnation and Revision3 . The first time I heard about Kevin Rose was from the TWIT (This Week In Tech) podcasts. It is a very interesting article. Kevin answer question about what made digg big ( Paris Hilton cellphone incident ) , venture capital funding, how many employees they have (and yes they are still hiring ). Kevin also points out that digg is a proud LAMP site. (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP)
Click here to go to the article

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Criticize Digg/Reddit Rip-off Shoutwire And Your Posts Are Removed

I went to this site Shoutwire and decided to try it out
I put 2 posts on Shoutwire one that was a link to Google Interview Questions and the other was a link to SQL Server Tips, Tricks and Performance Tuning. My first impression of the site was that it was just a complete Digg and reddit rip-off, but I wanted to try it out and see what would happen. I did get a couple of hits here and there but nothing special.
A couple of days later I blogged about Shoutwire and Blogreporter being digg and reddit rip-offs. Then some person left a coment that I was a moron and that shoutwire just started the other day and that’s why nobody is using it yet. So anyway I checked Shouwire this morning to see what was going on and surprise…my posts are gone. First I thought maybe they remove them after 2 weeks or so but then I checked and saw posts that were 10 weeks old. Needless to say that I won’t go to that site again, first of all the site is a complete copy and second they remove posts from people who criticize them, what a losers

Friday, January 27, 2006

Giant Octopus Attack On Sub In B.C.

Salmon researchers working on the Brooks Peninsula were shocked last November when an octopus attacked their expensive and sensitive equipment.

The giant Pacific octopus weighs about 45 kilograms, powerful enough to damage Mike Wood's remote-controlled submarine.
Wood's first reaction was to panic, knowing the marine creature can exert a powerful bite.
"I go full reverse and blast him with all these seabed particles," said Wood, describing the attack shown in the video. "Finally, he lets go and disappears off into the gloom.
"It was desperation. It's a $200,000 machine, and it's not insured," said Wood, who runs SubOceanic Sciences Canada in Duncan, B.C.

Read the rest here

Google Advertising Tools : Cashing in with AdSense, AdWords, and the Google APIs

When it comes to advertising on the web, you just can't argue with the numbers. A $7 billion market today is expected to grow to $18.9 billion by 2010. Jupiter Research also estimates that search advertising will be a larger share of the market than display advertising by 2010. These phenomenal numbers are due largely to Google, which has changed the way the world publishes content - and advertises.

Google Advertising Tools from O'Reilly examines the business and technology behind making money with content and advertising on the web. This focused, easy-to-read guide shows you how to use Google's advertising services to make it happen. You'll find all the background information you need to work with Google AdSense, which automatically delivers text and image ads that are precisely targeted to your site, and Google AdWords, which lets you generate text ads that accompany specific search term results.

This book has specific and detailed sections on:
Turning your web site into a profit center with AdSense
Making sense of AdSense metrics
Driving traffic to your site
Optimizing sites for search engine placement
Working with AdWords campaigns, auctions, and reports
Managing campaigns dynamically using the AdWords APIs

Once you've read all four parts, you'll have a comprehensive picture of how advertising works on the web and how you can use the Google advertising programs to your advantage.

Get the Working with AdSense sample chapter here
Amazon link is here

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Utilize The Power Of Web 2.0 To Drive Traffic To Your Site

This is an account of how I used web2.0 sites to drive traffic to this site

This site used to get between 100 and 200 hits a day mainly because of searches and by using the blog traffic exchange sites. When I submitted the page to digg and reddit I got 4000 hits in 1 day, I would say that is a nice increase and there are a couple of blogs that are linking here now because of that. The page that I submitted is about Google interview questions. The link to that page is here

If you go to the page you will actually see that there are a bunch of people who left comments and some of these people actually went back and forth trying to prove someone else's answer is incorrect. Some people actually suggested that I broke Google's non disclosure agreement which of course is not true since I have never gone to the interview and have not signed any kind of agreement.

So let me first start by explaining how I used the traditional sites to drive traffic, Before I do that let me tell you about my other blog. My other blog is a SQL Server blog and to drive traffic to that blog I participate in SQL Server newsgroups and SQL Server forums. I will answer people's questions and have my SQL blog as part of my signature. For this blog I do not use the same method since this blog has nothing to do with SQL server and thus probably will not interest those people

Traditional web
For this blog I use the following traffic generators

Good site, once you start surfing you will see hits within a minute or two. Also a lot of free credits I have 'won' 100 credits several times

Another good blog traffic exchange site with even more free credits than blogexplosion

Not as many free credits but still a good site. You also get hits seconds after you start surfing

The problem with these 3 sites is that it's tedious and you have to browse a lot of sites to get some traffic. Another problem is that you see the same sites over and over
Another way to generate traffic is to leave comments on other blogs and people will usually check out you blog once you leave a comment
If you write something really interesting other blogs/sites will link to you and this is of course the best way to increase traffic
Enough about this and let's go to web 2.0 stuff

WEB 2.0
Below is a list of the sites that I submitted the story too and additionaly a list of other sites and readers that I got hits from

I submitted the story on digg, got about 500 hits and 9 people dugg the site. I am still getting about 10 hits a day

Reddit was the big one I got about 4000 hits and 110 people voted for the site, still getting about 10 hits a day

Fark and TotalFark
About a day after I submitted on reddit the site appeared on fark and totalfark. The total traffic from these 2 sites was about 100 hits

After submission I got only a couple of hits

With Ning it's the same story as with Simpy, after submission only a couple of hits

The 'fake' digg, same here only a couple of hits and 2 people 'shouted' the story
Then again shoutwire is not that popular

A couple of hits, blogreporter doesn't look like a high traffic site
After submission to reddit 16 people shared the link

Yahoo my web 2.0
The link was submitted by someone else and I got around 50 hits

RSS readers, Bloglines Google RSS reader
I got some hits from people who probably subscribed to the reddit RSS feeds

The big question?
Why did the story it make it to number 5 on reddit but it failed on digg? Is it the time of day that the story was submitted (1 PM on digg versus 8 PM on reddit)? I also have to point out that I submitted the page in programming instead of technology; it might have had a better change if I submitted it in technology. This of course is speculation and I will never know. Hopefully this can help you to get an idea of how to use using some of the web2.0 sites to increase traffic to your site or blog

Google interview questions links on the Web 2.0 sites
Reddit should be the first one

Some of the blogs that have linked to Google interview questions

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

The Eclipse Foundation has announced Business Intelligence and Reporting Tools (BIRT) 2.0

An open source business intelligence (BI) project has been updated for PHP developers attracting - in the process - support of Zend Technologies.
The Eclipse Foundation has announced Business Intelligence and Reporting Tools (BIRT) 2.0, which has been extended to support cascading style sheets (CSS).

Zend, which last year worked with IBM, Intel, Oracle and SAP over optimization of PHP, particularly welcomed support for CSS. Co-founder Andi Gutmans said CSS would make BIRT 2.0 "an attractive tool for broad adoption by the 2.5 million PHP developers."
PHP has seen something of a revival among developers in recent years, particularly those in business and enterprise shops, as it is deployed as part of the low-cost Linux, Apache and MySQL operating system, web and database stack. Also announcing support for BIRT were Actuate, IBM, Pentaho and Scapa Technologies.

New and Notable BIRT 2.0


New BIRT Viewer

JavaScript/Java Events And Report Debugging

Runtime Data Source Property Binding

Chart Builder and SVG Output




URL Builder

Multi-pass Aggregate, Sorting and Filtering

Improved Report Performance and PDF Fidelity

Dynamic Parameters/Cascading Parameters

Expression Builder

Importing of Style Sheets

Report XML Editor

Passing of External Object to Custom Data Sources

Stored Procedures

Microsoft Sparkle: A Flash Killer?

Microsoft Tuesday released new previews of its upcoming tools for designers. Microsoft Interactive Designer is a product for building Avalon ("Windows Presentation Foundation" or WPF) user interfaces.
These tools have been dubbed a Flash killer by some industry watchers, as it is expected to compete head-to-head with the Macromedia Flash product that was acquired by Adobe Systems last year.

Last month Microsoft released a preview of its design tool for its upcoming Windows Presentation Foundation subsystem, also known as Avalon.
Known as "Cider", Microsoft's Visual Designer for the Windows Presentation Foundation is set to be part of Visual Studio "Orcas," the next major release of Microsoft's Visual Studio tool suite, which is expected to support Windows Vista development. Orcas is slated for release in 2007.

Read the rest here

Tuesday, January 24, 2006 Ready For June Relaunch - the high profile fashion flop that blew megabucks before going titsup within months of launching - could be about to make a dotcom comeback.

A short message on's homepage claims that a new site will be launched in June and that a "new website is coming soon". Attempts to contact - which acquired the name and website in June 2000 - have so far proved unsuccessful

read the rest of the story here

Sunday, January 22, 2006

XMLHttpRequest, Make Asynchronous Requests With JavaScript And Ajax

IBM has posted their second Mastering Ajax article named: Mastering Ajax, Part 2: Make asynchronous requests with JavaScript and Ajax.
These are the parts of the article

Web 2.0 at a glance
This part explains what web 2.0 is and gives example of sites that are part of it

Introducing XMLHttpRequest
This part is a small introduction to XMLHttpRequest and shows how to use the following methods and properties
open(): Sets up a new request to a server.
send(): Sends a request to a server.
abort(): Bails out of the current request.
readyState: Provides the current HTML ready state.
responseText: The text that the server sends back to respond to a request.
It also explains how do deal with Microsoft browsers

Sending requests with XMLHttpRequest
This part deals with opening and sending requests and also how to set a callback method. There is also a teaser on asynchronicity

Handling server responses
This part is about callbacks, HTTP ready states (see below)
0: The request is uninitialized (before you've called open()).
1: The request is set up, but hasn't been sent (before you've called send()).
2: The request was sent and is being processed (you can usually get content headers from the response at this point).
3: The request is being processed; often some partial data is available from the response, but the server hasn't finished with its response.
4: The response is complete; you can get the server's response and use it.

In conclusion
Article Conclusion

A couple of links to learn, get products and technologies and discuss Ajax
If you are a developer and are using or planning to use Ajax then this is a must read

Apple Almost Moved to SPARC

Apple is using Intel processors now instead of the PowerPC chips from IBM and Freescale Semiconductor. But another processor choice came to light Wednesday when Sun Microsystems cofounder Bill Joy revealed that Sun's Sparc chips were in the running during the last Apple switch, when it was moving off Motorola's 680x0 family.

"We got very close to having Apple use Sparc. That almost happened," Joy said at a panel discussion featuring reminiscences by Sun's four cofounders at the Computer History Museum here.

Disney Buys Pixar

It appears a great deal of speculation over Disney's buyout of Pixar Animation Studios is in fact true. From the article: "[Pixar] is set to meet tomorrow to approve the company's $7bn (£3.9bn) takeover by Disney. The all-share deal will make Steve Jobs, the chief executive of Apple, around $3.5bn and the single largest shareholder in Disney. Jobs created Pixar in 1986 when he paid $10m for the computer animations division of Lucasfilm, owned by Star Wars creator George Lucas.
Despite the impending takeover of Pixar, Robert Iger, the chief executive of Disney, pledged in November that "animation is, and will remain, at the heart and soul of Disney".

Saturday, January 21, 2006

HP Attacks Sun Via Solaris

HP has gone really, really public about its support for Sun Microsystems Solaris 10 operating system by sending out an internal memo.

HP has long "officially" supported various versions of Solaris on its Xeon- and Opteron-based servers. Now, however, it's kind of ready to talk about this support. The company this week "announced" support of Sun's version of Unix in a statement to staff, according to insiders.
The Solaris embrace is being pitched as HP's answer to disgruntled Sun customers trying to make their way off SPARC systems and onto HP's x86 kit.

"As HP is recognized as the leading supplier of standards-based servers, many Sun customers are approaching HP to help them make the transition," an HP spokesman told us. "Specifically in the entry-level UNIX server space, many Sun customers are looking to transition from under-performing SPARC systems running Solaris to better price/performance of an HP x86 platform running Linux.

"However, as we know, many of these customers have a large installed base of legacy technologies. They have invested in people and processes to run, manage and support this technology. Therefore, they are seeking help from HP to smooth the transition from a proprietary Solaris platform to HP standards-based servers by enabling some legacy Solaris environments during the transition."

Read the rest here

Friday, January 20, 2006

wxPython Released

Download it here

Some of the Changes:

wxMSW: Fix for bug #1211907, popup menu indenting inconsistent with bitmaps.

wxMac: Don't send an event for wx.RadioButton deselections, just the selections. This was done to make it consistent with the other platforms.

wxMSW: Always set flat toolbar style, even under XP with themes: this is necessary or separators aren't shown at all.

Fixes for bug #1217872, pydocview.DocService not correctly initialized.

Fix for bug #1217874, Error in parameter name in DocManager.CreateView.

Added wrappers for the wx.RendererNative class.

Added the wx.lib.splitter module, which contains the MultiSplitterWindow class. This class is much like the standard wx.SplitterWindow class, except it allows more than one split, so it can manage more than two child windows.

AMD To Quintuple CPU Cache Capacity

AMD has licensed a memory chip technology that could allow it to increase its processors' cache sizes fivefold without changing the size of each chip's die.
The technology is called Z-RAM and was developed by US-Swiss start-up Innovative Silicon, EETimes reports. IS' technique strips out the capacitor components commonly integrated into on-chip memory. The upshot: more space is created for memory cells, boosting the size of the cache.

IS claims Z-RAM can deliver up to five times the storage density of embedded S-RAM, the kind of memory from which most on-chip caches are constructed. It also developed Z-RAM to be fabbed using silicon-on-insulator (SOI) technology, which AMD already uses to produce its processors, as does IBM and Freescale.

US Man Kills Himself Live On Gamers' Forum

A 20-year-old US man killed himself live on a webcam on Bulgarian gamers' forum, AFP and other agencies report. Mitchell "Mitch" Lee Stuekerjuergen, aka "Kuja105", reportedly swallowed antifreeze and pills "after complaining about family problems and a lack of money", forum administrator Boyan Georgiev told Bulgaria's BGNES news agency on Wednesday. Stuekerjuergen subesquently died on 4 January in hospital in Illinois.
A certain amount of controversy surrounds the whole sorry affair, with some claiming that other forum members "thought the man was joking, even though he rambled for six hours about the effects of the substances and disappeared from view several times", as AFP puts it.

First Impressions Extremely Important In Website Design

Web designers have as little as 50 milliseconds to capture the interest of potential customers, according a new report by researchers at Carleton University. Through the halo effect, first impressions can influence subsequent judgments of website credibility and buying decisions

Researchers led by Dr. Gitte Lindgaard at Carleton University in Ontario wanted to find out how fast people formed first impressions. They tested users by flashing web pages for 500 msec and 50 msec onto the screen, and had participants rate the pages on various scales. The results at both time intervals were consistent between participants, although the longer display produced more consistent results. Yet, in as little as 50 ms, participants formed judgments about images they glimpsed. The "halo effect" of that emotional first impression carries over to cognitive judgments of a web site's other characteristics including usability and credibility.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Microsoft: No To Xbox 360 Blu-ray Support

Microsoft may not offer an external Blu-ray Disc drive for the Xbox 360 after all. The software giant this week said it remains "fully committed" to HD DVD and has "absolutely no plans to support other optical formats".
The company's stance is detailed in an official statement made this week in response to comments earlier this month by Peter Moore, head of Microsoft's entertainment division. Moore indicated that if Microsoft could add an external HD DVD drive to the console, it could just as easily offer an external Blu-ray box.

Oracle: Fusion Strategy

Oracle has "clarified" its applications and middleware vision by dispelling "myths" surrounding, and announcing a halfway point in, its Fusion strategy while sniping at SAP.

The company crammed a press, analyst and customer event in San Francisco yesterday to announce tools and roadmaps, while assigning existing and acquired Oracle products into one of three categories branded "Fusion."

Oracle is now talking of Fusion applications, fusion middleware and the Oracle Fusion architecture. "Project Fusion" - the term that described integration between the PeopleSoft and existing Oracle applications - is dead.

Looking ahead, Oracle promised new versions of JDE, PeopleSoft and Oracle's eBusiness Suite in 2006 that support components of Fusion. These elements include the ability to migrate JDE and PeopleSoft reports from SQR to XML and BPEL-based business flows and business process maps that integrate Oracle with Siebel. Oracle re-committed to delivering the full Fusion suite in 2008.

So what is Fusion?
Fusion consists of existing products such as the eBusiness suite's data model - which is being shared by the PeoleSoft and JDE software - and the Grid architecture running on low-cost Intel hardware, spiced-up with all-ready-familiar concepts and technologies that include services oriented architectures (SOAs), workflows, business processes and programming interfaces built in Java, AJAX and BPEL.

Oracle Patch Day

Unbreakable? I don't think so
Wednesday became a busy day for database administrators after Oracle released its quarterly patch update which, this time around, tackles more than eighty vulnerabilities in different Oracle software packages and components. Various flavours of Oracle database (37 security bugs), Oracle E-Business Suite and Applications (27), Oracle Collaboration Suite (20) and Oracle Application Server (17) are most in need of update.

Useful overviews of these security problems have been put together by US CERT (here) and security notification firm Secunia (here).

Livedoor:Japanese Securities Official Dead

An executive of a Japanese securities firm involved in takeover deals by the high-profile Internet startup Livedoor has been found dead, police say.
The executive, Hideaki Noguchi, 38, was found dead on the southern island of Okinawa, according to Kyodo news agency, quoting police. Authorities said tests would be needed to confirm the cause of death.
Kyodo, quoting police in the Okinawa capital Naha, said that Noguchi apparently slit his wrist at a Naha hotel on Wednesday. He was taken to hospital but died there.

Livedoor, which is headed by high-profile entrepreneur Takafumi Horie, on Thursday released the results so far of its own internal investigation of the Money Life deal. It defended its decisions and fund-raising steps, including the use of a share swap deal rather than a cash purchase.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Microsoft Allows 'live' Use Of WinFX Beta Code

Developers beware: you're on your own if you accept Microsoft's offer of a Go Live License. Beta code released under Go Live is not supported by the company - so forget patches or fixes, especially in favorite areas such as security.

Applications additionally run the risk of being at odds with the final WinFX, WCF and WWF architectures once they are deemed code-complete by Microsoft and released.

According to Microsoft, the Go Live licenses help "drive the feedback loop between customers and Microsoft. This helps us ensure that the product we ultimately ship meets the stability, reliability and needs of our customers."

Full terms and conditions can be viewed here.

Nothing new here of course, the same thing happened with SQL Server 2005

Keyboards Dirtier Than Toiletseats

A test carried out by Pegasus Lab on account for Swedish magazine PC För alla showed that a normal PC keyboard was infected by more bacteria than a normal toilet seat. More specific it contained 33000 bacteria per square centimeter, compared to 130 on a ordinary toilet seat. The tests also showed occurrence of up to 3100 fungi per square centimeter. Wow that is disgusting, it's time to bring the windex to work or work with gloves. Another option of course is to get one of those laser keyboards ( That way you only have to keep your desk clean and that is a lot easier than cleaning those damn keys

Monday, January 16, 2006

Intel Drops Pentium Brand

Intel has made a final decision to get rid of one of its oldest and most valuable brands, sources told TG Daily: "Pentium," unveiled in 1993 for its P5 processor generation, will begin to quietly disappear in the current CPU generation such as the single-core 600 series as well as the D 800 and D 900 families.

Sources indicated that Intel will drop the Pentium name without making a major announcement, but simply transition to processor names such as "Intel D 920" or "Intel 672" without introducing a new brand. Apparently, the transition is planned to begin in the immediate future. The company declined to comment on the possibly fading Pentium brand.

Firefox For Intel Macs

Firefox developer Josh Aas claims: 'We are targeting the official release of Firefox for Intel Mac OS X in late March with the Firefox update"
While an unofficial version of the software is now available on Aas' personal Web site, until Mozilla approves it, the developer recommends those with Intel Macs use Apple's Rosetta technology to run the normal PowerPC Mac OS X version of Firefox.
Rosetta is a transcoding tool that allows programs written for PowerPC to run on Intel machines.
Similar Intel Mac OS X versions of Mozilla's Thunderbird e-mail client and the third-party Camino browser are available from the same site. Camino utilises Mozilla's Gecko Web rendering engine -- as does Firefox -- and is specifically aimed at full integration with Mac OS X, in the same way as Apple's own Safari browser.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

digg ripoffs

I have been using digg for a while now and happened to find out that there was a rip-off called shoutwire. The site is basically a complete copy. Today I stumbled on 2 more; one of them is blogreporter ( and the other one is fantacular (
Don't waste your time going to these sites I have included two images in this post so that you can see immediately that it's not worth visiting these sites. The green image is from blogreporter. The top story on blogreporter has 9 votes and fantacular has 5 votes. There are no comments anywhere to be found.
Obviously almost nobody is using these sites. This reminds me of the rip-offs of that million dollar home page ( The original works because it was the first of it's kind the copycats will all fail, if you copy something you have to add to it so that it will have some incentives for people to visit. What do blogreporter and have to offer that dig doesn't have ? Absolutely nothing, they are actually worse since their user base is much smaller.

Saturday, January 14, 2006

Apple's Market Value Bigger Than Dell's

Apple Surpasses Dell's Market Value
Nine years after Michael Dell said he'd shut down Apple and give the money to the shareholders, Apple has passed Dell in market value, at $72,132,428,843 compared to Dell's $71,970,702,760. Analysts expect Apple to continue to outperform competitors, citing 2006 as 'poised to be the year of both iPod growth and, more importantly, Mac market share gains

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Thunderbird 1.5 Ready For Download

New features included automatic updates, anti-phishing protection, inline spellchecking, saved search folders, podcasting, RSS improvements, the ability to delete attachments from messages, and a whole lot more

Full-Featured Email
Simple to use, powerful, and customizable, Thunderbird is a full-featured email application. Thunderbird supports IMAP and POP mail protocols, as well as HTML mail formatting. Easily import your existing email accounts and messages. Built-in RSS capabilities, powerful quick search, spell check as you type, global inbox, deleting attachments and advanced message filtering round out Thunderbird's modern feature set.
Junk Mail Filters
Each email you receive passes through Thunderbird's leading-edge junk mail filters. Each time you mark messages as spam, Thunderbird improves its filtering so you can spend more time reading the mail that matters. Thunderbird will also use your mail provider's spam filters to keep junk mail out of your inbox.
Anti-Phishing Protection
Thunderbird protects you from increasingly common email scams—also known as “phishing”—which try to fool you into handing over your passwords and other personal information. Thunderbird will tell you when it thinks a message might be a scam.
Advanced Security
Thunderbird provides enterprise and government grade security features including S/MIME, digital signing, message encryption, support for certificates and security devices. Attachments are never run without your express permission, protecting you from many worms and viruses.
Automatic Updates
The new Software Update feature makes it easy to get the latest security and feature updates to Thunderbird. Thunderbird automatically downloads these small updates in the background and prompts you when they are ready to be installed.
Customize Thunderbird
Select new button controls for your toolbars, install extensions to add new features, or change the look of your browser with themes—the way Thunderbird looks and works is under your control.

Download it here

Nikon Ending Production Of 35mm cameras

Nikon UK has posted a press release here indicating that they are all but ending production of their 35mm film cameras, medium- and large-format lenses and enlarging equipment. The F6 35mm SLR will remain in production and be available in Europe and America, and the all-mechanical FM10 will be available outside of Europe. A handful of manual lenses will remain in production as well. Film in general isn't going away any time soon as digital cameras cannot replace medium and large format cameras, but this is clear evidence that the resolution and popularity of the digital medium have surpassed that of the 35mm format. 35mm took another step into the grave.

CES 2006: top ten gadgets

So the delegates have gone home, the halls are emptying and, yes, Gates (and Elvis) have left the building. The gadget fest that was the Consumer Electronics Show 2006 is now history. Yet before we bury it for good, here's our list of the ten best gadgets to emerge at the show (in no particular order)...

Hannspree LCD TVs
Barking-mad collection of LCD TVs that boast odd wood finishes, built-in thermometers and much more. They are sure to cause a real splash when they debut in the UK later this year.

Toshiba HD-A1
All hail the next generation of DVD players! The HD-A1 delivers superb quality high-definition pictures, ultra-realistic surround sound and has a neat line on interactive facilities. It's likely to be pretty cheap too when it launches in the UK later in the year. It might find this makes life a little difficult, though.

Motorola O ROKR music shades
We liked the first collaboration between Motorola and Oakley in the Razrwire Bluetooth shades, which let the user make and receive mobile phone calls via an adaptor housed on the glasses. The O ROKR takes the concept to the next level by adding wireless stereo playback to the original design. They should be out in the UK fairly soon for around £200.

Read the rest here

Sun And Apple Almost Merged Three Times

Sun Microsystems tried to acquire Apple once and then almost merged with Apple on two other occasions, according to Sun co-founder Bill Joy. Beyond these deals, the two companies almost teamed on three other projects including sharing a user interface and the SPARC architecture. The moves were cheered by Apple fan Joy, while Sun's CEO Scott McNealy appeared less impressed with some of the proposals.

All of this we learned tonight at a Computer History Museum event where Sun's four co-founders held the stage for close to two hours.

At one point during the discussion, questioner John Gage, a longtime Sun staffer, asked McNealy about Sun's "three attempts" to buy Apple. McNealy dodged the question.

Moments later, Joy – a Unix god and venture capitalist on the side – dragged the conversation back to Apple, seeming to want to make a confession.

Joy voiced an affinity for Apple's CEO Steve Jobs and said it was a "personal disappointment" that the two companies were never closer.

"There were six very close encounters," Joy said.

The first came when Sun, Apple and Microsoft were set to agree on a common filing protocol. "We had an agreement, but it fell through," Joy said, noting that Sun ended up going with NFS – a Joy invention.

Sun + Apple = Snapple?
Read the rest here

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Levi Strauss Comes Out With iPod-Compatible Jeans

The Levi's brand is launching a wearable technology revolution with the introduction of new Levi's RedWire DLX Jeans, available worldwide in fall 2006. Designed for both men and women, the jeans seamlessly integrate iPod plug and play technology giving music enthusiasts the most innovative and fashionable way to enjoy music on the go. The jean is designed to be compatible with most iPod systems and features include a special joystick incorporated into the jeans' watch pocket to enable easy operation of the iPod.

"The Levi's RedWire DLX Jean is the latest extension of the Levi's brand leadership position by merging fashion and technology that provides consumers with the most innovative way to enhance their portable, digital music lifestyle," said Robert Hanson, Levi's U.S. brand president in the press release. "In designing the jeans we considered both function and fashion -- the result is a uniquely functional, yet stylish, great fitting jean."

Design features include:
• Easy Pocket Storage -- An iPod docking cradle is built into the jeans and is "invisibly" housed within a side pocket. The Levi's design team took special care to ensure the iPod unit remains neatly and securely stored in the jean, while the iPod "bump" in the pocket is virtually eliminated. The cradle is equipped with sophisticated technology housed in a red conductive ribbon that allows users to quickly and easily remove their iPod from the pocket to view its screen while staying connected. The jean is machine washable once the iPod is removed.
• "Hip" Controls -- A special joystick remote control is externally designed into the jeans' watch pocket to enable operation of the iPod. Four-way controls allow the wearer to easily play/pause, track forward, track back and adjust the volume control without ever removing the iPod from the pocket.
• Handy Wire Retractor -- A handy retractable headphone unit has been built directly into the jean to help prevent tangles and efficiently manage the iPod earphone wires.

Colin Farrell Sex Tape

CNN has a story about a Colin Farrell Sex Tape that hit the internet. So another celebrity has been 'caught'. I said it before and I will say it again when will they learn? What about their kids, take for example Pamela Anderson, You know everyone has seen that tape. When her kids get older they will face all kinds of questions and ridicule in school. I just think it’s very irresponsible

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

AMD Releases Dual-Core FX-60 Processor

AMD just released their new Dual-Core FX-60 processor which is basically two FX-55s strapped together. From the review:AMD now ships a dual-core CPU that's essentially the equal of Presler, while generating far less heat.
In terms of performance, however, this means that AMD no longer commands the same type of lead it once did when Intel only had the somewhat anemic 840 Extreme Edition. In fact, AMD is now more expensive, at $1,031, versus the 955 Extreme Edition at $999

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Apple Introduces Intel iBooks at MacWorld?

Reuters is reporting on the breathless anticipation that leads up to Macworld every year. Many analysts are hedging their bets that this year will bring a long overdue update to the Mac laptop family. From the article: 'We think the iBook, PowerBook, Mac Mini, and potentially Xserve are areas that are going to move to Intel first,' said Shaw Wu, an analyst at American Technology Research."

And, of course, expect a surprise from Jobs. For years now, Jobs will appear to conclude his keynote, only then to say, "Oh, and one more thing ...."

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Google Pack

Google announced the release of Google Pack, a 'free collection of essential software'. Any respectable user should have most of this suite installed already (excluding a few things), but it will be nice to make it all widely available to the general public. So what's included? Here is a list

Google Earth
Google Pack Screensaver
Mozilla Firefox with Google Toolbar
Norton Antivirus 2005 Special Edition
Google Desktop
Google Toolbar for Internet Explorer
Ad-Aware SE Personal
Adobe Reader 7

Friday, January 06, 2006

Google Video Store

BusinessWeek covers Larry Page's talk at CES regarding the much anticipated Google Video Store The rumours proved to be true and they're really going online with CBS to sell commercial-free episodes of their series. Deals with NBA, Sony BMG and were also announced." From the BusinessWeek article: "The video providers have the option of offering content on a download-to-own or download-to-rent basis. In a sign that content owners will likely pursue different approaches through Google Video, the National Basketball Association will sell broadcasts of its games one day after the event for $3.95. Meanwhile, public television staple Charlie Rose will post his interviews the day after a broadcast, allowing a free streaming for the first 24 hours then making it downloadable afterward for 99 cents each. Meanwhile, CBS is selling episodes of its popular 'CSI' and 'Survivor' series at the standard iTunes price of $1.99 per download

WINE Still Vulnerable To Windows WMF Exploit

All applications launched inside Wine, Cedega, or Cross-Over Office are technically still exploitable. Wine runs on most x86 platforms, including Linux and the various BSDs. The surprising part about finding this flaw in Wine is that they implemented the entire Meta File API without realizing that this could be a security issue. Exploiting a Windows application running inside Wine depends on that application calling the vulnerable function with malicious data.

Intel Launches Centrino Duo Notebooks

Intel has officially introduced their Centrino Duo platform. The new Centrino uses the Yonah processor which is now called Core Duo. AnandTech has a review of notebooks based on it and the results are pretty impressive. They tested two identical notebooks, one based on Centrino Duo and one based on Centrino. The Duo notebook lasted 30 minutes longer on battery and was faster in the benchmarks.

Revolutionary mobile performance
Intel Centrino Duo mobile technology delivers breakthrough mobile performance to run multiple demanding applications simultaneously.
Battery life
The new power-saving features of Intel Centrino Duo mobile technology enable improvements in battery life, giving you the ability to do more on the go.
Variety of form factors
A new Intel mobile dual-core processor-based laptop actually has a smaller hardware footprint than previous laptop designs to enable a wide variety of notebooks.
Expanded wireless connectivity
Intel Centrino Duo mobile technology helps you enjoy extended wireless mobility, with new features that let you connect to most available industry standards-based networks and let you determine how dynamically your laptop will roam to a new access point.

Key components
Intel® Core™ Duo Processor
Intel's first mobile dual-core processor executes multiple threads simultaneously using two cores, thereby helping to maximize performance and multitasking capabilities.
Mobile Intel® 945 Express Chipset
This mobile chipset family delivers enhanced mobile capabilities optimized for dual core thanks to its 667 MHz front side bus, enhanced integrated graphics, and higher memory bandwidth than previous generations attributed to its DDR2-667 dual channel memory.
Intel® PRO/Wireless 3945ABG Network Connection
Connect wirelessly with ease and confidence to most available industry standards-based WLAN infrastructures. The Intel® PRO/Wireless 3945ABG Network Connection provides enhanced usability and higher throughput under adverse conditions.

NVIDIA and Dell Bring Quad SLI Power to Life

Today at the Consumer Electronics Show, Dell and NVIDIA announced a new XPS system coming later this year that will sport not one, not two, but FOUR GeForce 7800 GTX 512 GPUs running in a quad-SLI configuration. There are two physical graphics cards in the system still, but each has two seperate PCBs with a GPU and 512 MB of memory on each. PC Perspective has some information including pictures of the cards and Dell system as well as specs and details on how NVIDIA handles the new SLI data configurations

Thursday, January 05, 2006

LEGO Group Unveils LEGO® MINDSTORMS™ NXT Robotics Toolset at Consumer Electronics Show

LEGO Group today announces LEGO® MINDSTORMS™ NXT, a new system that redefines the consumer robotics category the company created in 1998. Smarter, stronger and more intuitive than ever, LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT is a robotics toolset that provides endless opportunities for armchair inventors, robotics fanatics and LEGO builders ages 10 and older to build and program robots that do what they want. LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT, available in August 2006, was shown for the first time to media who attended tonight’s Digital Experience™, and will be demonstrated in the Robotics TechZone (Sands Expo #70127-C) Thursday, January 5 through Sunday, January 8 during the 2006 International Consumer Electronics Show.

Building upon the success of the globally-renowned Robotics Invention System, the next generation of LEGO MINDSTORMS makes it quicker and easier for robot creators to build and program a working robot in just 30 minutes. Simultaneously, new technologies and expanded sensor capabilities add a level of sophistication to excite and challenge more experienced robot creators.

The heart of the new system is the NXT brick, an autonomous 32-bit LEGO microprocessor that can be programmed using a PC, or for the first time in the retail offering, a Mac. After building their robots, users create a program within easy-to-use yet feature-rich software, powered by LabVIEW from National Instruments.

Read the whole article on the LEGO website

Pepper Pad

Just announced at the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES)
If you could design the perfect handheld media computer for your customers to wirelessly access the world of digital media plus their favorite broadband services, what would it look like?Portable, lightweight, splash resistant and rugged?
Able to instantly connect to all their favorite activities via Wi-Fi - Mozilla Firefox based Web browsing, e-mail, AOL IM, streaming and downloaded music and video, photo sharing, remote control and more?
How about easy-to-use, low maintenance and perfect for the family room, the kitchen counter, the bedside table, the coffee shop or just about anywhere?

The Pepper Pad is a ebook reader with seamless downloads from Amazon, Photo Library which integrates with Flickr and Yahoo and a Remote Control. This is included along with the basics IM, Browser, Video, Radio, Email etc etc.

For the people who are developers check out to access Pepper’s development resources

Oracle Raptor

Oracle is a step closer to launching its planned graphical programming environment, designed to simplify development of database tasks.
The company has published an early release of Project Raptor, which enables software developers to browse database objects, run SQL statements and SQL scripts, and edit and debut PL/SQL statements using a set of graphical tools

Unveiled last fall, Project Raptor is due for release on Windows and Linux in early 2006. A version for Mac is also in the works

HP Drops iTunes And Promotes Real's Rhapsody

HP's career as an Apple reseller has come to an end. The computer maker is expected to announce that it has dropped iTunes as the main music software on its PC and picked up the Rhapsody service from Real Networks as a replacement. This move follows HP's July decision to stop selling rebadged iPods.
Rhapsody will become the default music service on HP's vast computer line. In this position, it will enjoy an icon of its very own on the HP desktop. Customers will also be offered a one-month free trial to Rhapsody, which is a music rental service similar to that offered by the struggling Napster and Yahoo!.
Read the whole article here

HD DVD Backers Promise 200 Movies

Paramount Pictures, Universal Studios, HBO Video, New Line Entertainment and Warner Home Video stood up with Toshiba at the Computer Electronics Show in here and pledged that movies such as "Million Dollar Baby," "Harry Potter 4: The Goblet of Fire," "Blazing Saddles," "Full Metal Jacket" and "Jarhead" (not to mention box office clunkers like "Sahara" and "Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow") would come out this year on HD DVD disks.
In all, these studios above represent more than half of the movies ever made

Toshiba, the prime backer of the format, unfurled two HD DVD players--a $499 model and a deluxe $799 model--that will hit shelves in March. Toshiba also showed off a prototype Qosmio notebook with a built-in HD DVD drive. Pricing, availability and specs on the notebook will come out later this quarter.