Categories
Apple Application Gaming iPhone iPod Video

Kroll Is Released In App Store

Digital Legend’s Kroll has finally been released to the App Store. The developer provides this feature list:

  • KROLL will immerse gamers in amazing 3-D action with its groundbreaking technology built explicitly for the iPhone touch screen with its full graphics capabilities.
  • Epic environments enhance the iPhone gameplay experience with hectic fighting at the mountainside, inside molten magma mines, and high above active volcano in magical floating prison. To learn the secrets behind the legend of KROLL, gamers must conquer mythic enemies and creatures.
  • Bash’n’Crush your way through nine hectic levels destroying ever increasing amount of enemy hordes and play through awesome cinematic boss battles.
  • Extend your experience through 3 difficulty level (Normal, Hard and Insane) for more and more crushing action. Scoring system keeps track of your progress.
  • iPhone and iPod touch special features: Use the accelerometer of your device to activate special attacks and the touch screen for controlling your character.

The game looks gorgeous but one of the problems I am having with it, in regards to my decision on to buy it or not, is that I haven’t seen anyone talking about gameplay. It seems everyone is spending all their time talking about how this game is the best looking game for the iPhone but I haven’t seen anyone talking about how fun it is to actually play. If this game is fun then that is one thing but I’m not going to spend $7.99 on a game thats only purpose is to show off your device.

Kroll ($7.99)
icon

Categories
Apple MacBook Pro Rumor

New MacBook Pro Design Details

There was an image going around the net a few days ago of what was claimed to be the next design of the MacBook Pro. I never posted the image here because I thought it was clearly fake. But, Jason O’Grady has heard that the new MacBook Pros will keep its boxy-look and won’t be adopting the tapered edge design that seemingly all of the new Apple designs have been getting. This does contradict previously leaked information saying that the MacBook Pro would be getting the tapered edge.

O’Grady also believes that the new MacBook Pro will be “as much as a half-inch narrower” than the existing model and will be thinner. The bezel around the screen will be smaller.

There are also indications that the new Macbook Pro will have the newer style MacBook-like keyboard and a slightly smaller trackpad.

Jason O’Grady

Categories
Uncategorized

“The Brick” – What It Isn’t, But Should Be

I’ve heard a lot of speculation of “The Brick,” which is part of a rumor talking about what may be announced in early October by Apple. Many have thought that it may have something to do with the power brick of the notebooks (and that’s what I thought at first) and others have thought that it could be a new Mac Mini replacement or a new Apple TV.

What it isn’t going to be though is a networked DVR, Apple has too much invested in the idea of users purchasing TV shows in iTunes. But, it should be a networked DVR because Apple would do it right.

I’ve talked before of my idea for a network DVR and I think Apple is the only one that would be able to do it right. If the Brick isn’t a networked DVR it should be and if Apple isn’t in development of one they need to get on the ball. The power of what this DVR could do would be amazing and would really change the way people watch TV.

I’m not going to run through my entire idea of a perfect DVR, if you want that you can read my post specifically talking about that (My Idea Of The Perfect Network DVR) but I will tell you a bit of the most important features.

  • Recording directly into iPod and Apple TV ready formats using a hardware H.264 encoder.
  • Remotely manage recordings through a web interface (or through iTunes if Apple makes it).
  • Automatically tag the recorded programs with descriptions, episode titles, show name, etc.
  • Recorded content would be shared over the network as if it was an iTunes share, so iTunes on other computers or Apple TVs could see the content easily.

The reason I think Apple should do this is because it fits into their world where media is easily transferable from device to device (as long as it is made by Apple of course) and everything works together so nicely. Apple would really only have to add an H.264 encoder and a TV tuner to the Apple TV and they would be able to have this exact functionality after just a few months of coding.

Apple, get working. And, by the way I would probably pay $400-500 for this type of box.

Categories
AMD ATI Graphics Cards

Thousands of Radeon 3800 Cards Found to be Faulty

Another graphics card company having some problems with faulty cards. Nvidia recently had some issues with many of its GPUs and now AMD is having some troubles as well.

In this case there are thousands of Radeon 3800 cards affected by this issue (around 15,000 to be little more exact). This isn’t nearly as huge as the Nvidia debacle but it is an issue in its own right.

Who is to blame isn’t exactly clear, the problem could have originated from ITC/GeCube, Diamond, Alienware, or AMD but no one really knows for sure. I’ve seen around the internet that Diamond will replace a card if it is problematic but I don’t know if that is specific to this issue or not.

I’m glad that this wasn’t a wide spread issue or the fact that no one really knows who to place blame on would have been a much bigger issue. It will surely be resolved soon and blow over much faster than the whole Nvidia thing which seemed to drag on forever.

TG Daily

Categories
Application Microsoft Office

Office 2007 Priced at $29, in China

In an effort to combat piracy, Microsoft has finally begun doing something that will actually help. Instead of putting more and more anti-piracy measures in Office they have lowered the price to the equivalent of $29.

Microsoft has tried similar tactics in the past, like when they sold Office to college students at a drastically reduced price. What’s surprising (to me at least) is that this seems to be working. retailers have stocked up on inventory for the new promotion and they have been selling incredibly well.

Many would argue that piracy is the reason for raising prices on software but with all of the figuring I’ve done it seems that if you lower the price piracy will practically go away.

But, this will hopefully show Microsoft that they can make as much, if not more money from their products if they lower the price rather than keeping it high and trying to put more and more restrictions on the software.

Categories
Notebooks Rants

What Notebook Should I Purchase?

Next June I’m planning on buying a new notebook and since I know this is going to happen I of course have been thinking about what notebook I’d like to buy. There isn’t much of a decision to make here since I already know of 4 contenders, the decision comes in when I try to decide whether I want a netbook or a full notebook.

The first (and obvious) choice for me is the MacBook Air, since I bought the iMac I haven’t really needed a lot of power in my notebook and have mostly been using it to write blog posts or casually surf the web while sitting on my couch so the MacBook Air would be great, I would get a reasonably powered notebook that is super thin, super light, and have a nice keyboard (which would be a great feature considering the typing that I do while writing blog posts). The next option would be the MacBook, which really won’t even be in the running unless Apple decides to change the material they use the make the case for the MacBook. But, with all the rumors pointing towards an aluminum MacBook it is worth the mention. Not quite as light as the MacBook Air, but slightly more powerful, just as good at battery life, display size, and keyboard usability. But, the MacBook isn’t as light and honestly, just isn’t as stylish as the MacBook Air (which could be worth it since I would be spending about $700 less on it).

The next couple of options are both netbooks and the reason I chose these two specifically is because of their features, their size, and the company building them. The first netbook option is the Dell Inspiron Mini 9, a good looking netbook at a great price ($350 and up), currently it has a 1.6GHz Intel Atom CPU, 512MB of memory, 4GB (and up) solid state drive, and a 9″ screen (most of this will change by the time I purchase it). If I was to buy the Mini 9 I would most likely get the lower $350 version and install Windows XP on it myself (I have a few licenses that aren’t being used right now). The low price and the size are the main reasons I would pick this one but that lack of OS X is what’s making me a little weary of going down that path.

The last option is the Acer Aspire One, The reason I would pick this one is it’s 9″ display, stylish design (I’d get blue), and it’s nicely priced ($399). The problems I have with this one are the same as with the Mini 9 though, it doesn’t run OS X and not having a mac as my main laptop would be a little frustrating.

So, this is obviously a very early look at what I would actually be buying, by then I’m sure I will have many more options. Currently I’m leaning towards the MacBook Air because of its weight, its comfortable keyboard, and the fact that it will run OS X. I’m not anti-Windows at all but my blog workflow works best on OS X, the software that I use, and like to use, is only available for OS X. If your curious it is Transmit mostly, I haven’t found a single FTP application for Windows that I like. And since I use the FTP client daily it needs to be the best app possible.

Hopefully I’ll make the right decision and will be happy with the decision. I’m hoping that Apple will make my decision a lot easier and they have plenty of opportunities to do so, October 14th, MacWorld, and WWDC between now and the time I will be making my purchase.

Categories
Ads Microsoft Video

Microsoft’s “I’m a PC” Ad Airs (The Ones Without Seinfeld)

The second phase of Microsoft’s new ad campaign has begun with a few new ads seemingly focused on the diversity of PC users. The ad depicted a series of people saying “I’m a PC,” very simple, but gets the point across that everyone uses PCs.

The new ads are a direct response to the Get a Mac ads starring Justin Long and John Hodgman.

The ads are also trying to break the stereotype that the Get a Mac ads are placing on PC users by truly showing the vast diversity in PC users.

I don’t really have much to say about the ads other than that I miss Jerry Seinfeld (those ads were actually entertaining).

Two more versions of the ad after the jump.

Categories
Application iPhone iPod

Summizer Brings Twitter Searching Native to the iPhone

<update> I downloaded the app and have had some time play around with it. First impressions:

  • Surprisingly speedy over the EDGE network.
  • Tweets are displayed very efficiently allowing for more tweets per page than many other Twitter apps on the iPhone (browser based and otherwise).
  • Top trends displays 10 topics which means you have to scroll to see the last one, it would have been nicer if it was only 9 topics because it would fit nicer on the screen.
  • App seems incredibly stable and I haven’t encounter any bugs or hangs when doing any of the searches I performed.
  • Top trends are updated each time you access the feature and the topics change much more frequently than I thought they would.
  • Comes with two default saved searches “summizer” and election.”

</update>

Not only did Twitter release some design changes to their website but Mustache Inc released an iPhone application that will get all of you Twitter addicts pretty darn excited.

The application is called Summizer and basically puts the power of Twitter Search on your iPhone (I know that their is already an iPhone formatted version of the web site but Summizer makes it even nicer).

Summizer uses the Twitter Search API to look through the database for tweets related to your search terms. You can also save searches that you perform routinely so you won’t have to retype them in every time you want to access the updated results.

Summizer lists the latest topics that Twitter users have been tending to talk about recently so right now you might see that Twitter users are talking about Sarah Palin and on October 14th you might be seeing them talk a lot about MacBooks.

Right now the application is only available at 1.0 but an updated version (1.1) has been submitted to the App Store that will add the ability to visit links from within the application and the introduction of automatic updates on searches.

The application costs $4.99 (which I think is a little high) but will bring a lot of relief to those who have been waiting for Twitter to bring back track. This application would fit very nicely inside of a Twitter updating app (like Twitterrific), the idea of being able to reply to tweets that you find in search results from within Summizer is a great one but for now we’ll have to settle for those two apps being seperate.

Summizer (via TechCrunch)
App Store Link
icon

Application screenshots after the jump.

Categories
Cell Phones

HTC Launches “Ice White” Touch Diamond

The HTC Touch Diamond is a pretty awesome phone but I’m sure some of you out there were a little upset over the lack of color options. Well, HTC just released an “ice white” version of the device. It’s absolutely gorgeous and happens to have the same set of impressive specs as the black version did.

  • Size: 102 x 51 x 11.33mm
  • Weight: 110 g
  • Connectivity: WCDMA / HSPA: 900/2100MHz. HSDPA 7.2 Mbps and HSUPA
  • Operating system: Windows Mobile® 6.1 Professional
  • Display: 2.8-inch VGA touch screen
  • Camera: 3.2MP, with video calling
  • Internal memory: 4 GB Internal Storage, 256 MB flash, 192 MB RAM,
  • Bluetooth: 2.0 with EDR
  • Wireless: WiFi 802.11b/g
  • GPS: GPS/AGPS
  • Interface: HTC ExtUSB™ (mini-USB and audio jack in one; USB 2.0 High-Speed)
  • Battery: 900 mAh
  • Talk time: GSM: up to 4 hours
  • Standby time: GSM: up to 300 hours/100 hours with push email
  • Chipset: Qualcomm MSM® 7201A™ 528MHz

The HTC Touch Diamond is a really impressive phone but the one thing that keeps me from wanting it is the fact that it runs Windows Mobile, and although HTC has done everything they could to make Windows Mobile a little bit more usable, it is still Windows Mobile. I really hope that Android lives up to the hype because we need some mobile operating systems that will force Microsoft to improve Windows Mobile.

Tech Radar

Categories
Apple MacBook Pro Rumor

T-Systems Displays New Design in MacBook Pro Image

T-Systems (owned by Deutsche Telekom) is selling a MacBook Pro that happens to have the same specs as current MacBook Pros, but the photo shown doesn’t depict a MacBook Pro that I’ve ever seen before.

The simple answer (and the truth) is that it is just a mock up of a Macbook Pro, or a graphic designers take on the MacBook Pro.

So we already know that this isn’t real but looking at it makes me really wish that Apple would do a nice refresh of the MacBook Pro line. I would love to see the MacBook style keyboard included and maybe even the slightly wider trackpad like on the MacBook Air.

John Gruber over at Daring Fireball has already claimed that sources are telling him that their will be a refresh of Apple notebooks on October 14th but we don’t know whether it will be design refresh or a spec refresh. Both the MacBook and the MacBook Pro are getting a little long in the tooth in regards to their design while the MacBook Air could see some spec bumps. I’m very excited to see what Apple decides to do with the notebooks when that day finally comes.

Back to the photo above for a moment though. Why would an online store have a photo of a computer that isn’t real? Wouldn’t it be more logical (and easier) for them to display an actual photo of the MacBook Pro, even if it is just one of Apple’s press shots? The whole thing seems very strange to me.

T-Systems
Daring Fireball

Categories
Apple Application iPhone iPod Media

iPhone App “FlyCast” Streams Audio In the Background

One of the biggest gripes people have with the iPhone’s third party applications is that none of them can run in the background. The most frustrating genre of applications that this affects however are music applications. Pandora would be so much better on the iPhone if it could run in the background while I’m doing other things on the phone.

Well, at least one developer has come up with a solution to this problem. FlyCast is a free internet radio application with over 1,000 stations to choose from that are easily browsable by genre or by searching. FlyCast has one interesting feature that other audio streaming applications don’t have on the iPhone. FlyCast can not only play it’s audio streams in the application itself but you can also stream those same stations through MobileSafari.

Since MobileSafari is capable of streaming audio in the background you can open up FlyCast, pick a station to listen to, open it in Safari, and go about your business.

The downside of course is that you can’t browse the internet using Safari since it is busy streaming the audio but it is one heck of a large step in the right direction.

FlyCast
icon

Categories
Notebooks Windows XP

XO Laptops Ship to Peru With Windows XP Preloaded

The government of Peru, Microsoft, and the OLPC project announced an agreement that would provide Windows XP, Office, and other educational resources on XO laptops. This will make Peru the first country in the world to receive XO laptops with Windows preloaded.

This is the beginning of a nine month pilot project to bring educational software and low-cost computing to classrooms throughout Peru.

“We are extremely excited to take part in this historic educational pilot that will benefit school children throughout Peru,” said José Antonio Chang Escobedo, Minister of Education in Peru. “Integrating technology into our school curriculum will help to advance our knowledge economy, improve access to information and will generate opportunities for our students, which, through governmental policies, aims to improve the learning process we are offering our children, as well as closing the digital divide which currently exists between schools in rural and urban areas.”

I’m not sure what I think about this, the XO laptop was built with Linux in mind and I think that Linux would be good for the world in general if it was more widely used. But, it doesn’t surprise me that many people wanted Windows XP on those laptops, since Windows is the most used OS and all. Diversity would be nice in the market but since the whole point of the OLPC program is to teach children in developing nations how to use computers it would probably be beneficial for them to learn how to use an OS that they would most likely be using when the eventually got a job using one.