[H] Consumer Archives: March 2006

Archive Listing

Friday March 31, 2006

Game Industry Job Openings

The folks at Day 1 Studios (Mech Assault 1 & 2) are hiring for all positions. If you have always wanted to work in the game industry, now is your chance. Here is what Day 1 offers:

To continue our success, we need the best and brightest designers, composers, artists and technologists to share our quest to create revolutionary games. Join us in our Chicago or Hunt Valley , MD locations. Day 1 Studios offers competitive salaries and a comprehensive benefits package including: Health, Life and Long Term Disability Insurance, 401(k) Plan, Bonus Plan, and Educational Assistance.

Monarch Computers Rebate

I was talking to Steve about all of the big rebating going on in the industry and he asked me if I used my left hand or my right. eek! Anyway, Monarch Computers, a sponsor that makes all of this possible seems to think they have something that will be of interest to our readers. Check out the Monarch Rebate Countdown here. And be careful the next time Steve tries to shake your hand.

How To Reinstall Windows XP

I know most of you have reinstalled Windows XP so many times that you have your CD key memorized by now. But for every one of you there, there is ten other people (if not more) that might need a little help. Laptop Gamers written a guide to reinstalling Windows XP that is a checklist of sorts for anyone doing a complete reinstall.

For anyone that has reinstalled their operating system a few times the process seems pretty straightforward as they have found all of the gotchas the first few times. I have lost mail and contacts but not much else over the years by following (or not following) a system to reload my operating system and software. This purpose of this guide is to give you a checklist to follow so that a reloading of Windows goes smoothly the first time.

Thursday March 30, 2006

New Twist To Online Data Storage

Would you like online data storage that allows you to e-mail friends and family links to click and share photos and such without any software or registering for an account? That is exactly what this Project Fusion is supposed to be and, for the most part, it sounds pretty spiffy.

Currently code-named Project Fusion, the offering from hard drive maker Maxtor Corp. and startup Fabrik Inc. will give consumers a large-capacity hard drive appliance that acts as a personal server. It comes with software to let owners access the files on that device over the Internet. And users can create links for others to access those files.

Dell Renegade Sold Out

Legit Reviews says that they have confirmation from Dell that the company has sold out of its Renegade in less than a week. We exclusively reported to you the day of launch that sources inside Dell explained in detail that less than 30 of the units were built.

The Dell XPS 600 Renegade system came with the Dell 3007WFP 30-inch flat panel monitor and prices started at $9,930. While we saw many publications joke about the rich buying these and some stated that no one in their right mind would buy these gaming systems Legit Reviews found out that they sold out in under a week! Who is laughing now?

Dell told us they expected to be sold out by noon the day of launch.

Banks Hit With New Spoofing Attacks

It scares me that an ISP for a large bank can actually let themselves get hacked resulting in legitimate banking traffic being redirected to phishing sites.

Attackers were able to hack servers run by the Internet service provider that hosted the three banks' Web sites. They then redirected traffic from the legitimate Web sites to a bogus server, designed to resemble the banking sites. Users were then asked to enter credit card numbers, PINs, and other types of sensitive information.

Apple Provides Volume Limit Setting

Apple® today announced a software update for the iPod® nano and fifth generation iPod, allowing customers to easily set their own personal maximum volume limit. The software update also gives parents the ability to set a maximum volume limit on their child’s iPod and lock it with a combination code. “As the leading provider of digital music players, Apple continuously brings iPod customers innovative and easy to use solutions,” said Greg Joswiak, Apple’s vice president of Worldwide iPod Product Marketing. “With the increased attention in this area, we want to offer customers an easy to use option to set their own personal volume limit.”

Wednesday March 29, 2006

Microsoft Delays IE's ActiveX D-Day

According to eWeek, Microsoft is pushing ahead with its plan to permanently modify the way IE renders multimedia content on Web pages. All this has come about after MS lost a patent suit to Eolas. Because of that, MS has had to change the way the browser handles ActiveX controls. The clock is ticking.

According to information reaching eWEEK, Microsoft announced the plans for a one-time 60-day extension during a conference call with industry partners on March 28 wherein Redmond officials reiterated the need for Web pages to be completely re-authored to avoid possible disruptions. If Web sites and advertising units aren't re-authored, Microsoft warned that ActiveX Controls and Java Applets will require user activation before the user can interact with the control.

Compro VideoMate U900

[H] Consumer takes a look at a tiny, portable TV tuner that hooks up via USB 2.0. Is this product worth your hard earned dollars?

Today’s consumer electronics media are currently hyping on the digital home, talking about HTPCs and technologies that deliver entertainment to us at the touch of a button, even on the go.

But strangely enough, all these Jetsons-esque visions of life in the “we swear, it’s coming real soon now” future tend to revolve heavily around two different ideas: Portability and Television.

Totally Awesome Computers Closes Shop

Totally Awesome Computers, located in Utah, has closed shop. The hybrid e-commerce/brick-and-mortar computer retailer was headed by charismatic leader Dell Schanze. Known for his over-the-top TV commercials and personality, “slow sales and legal problems” through the year 2005 has caused the company to close its doors.

“It’s too bad that all of the media in Utah are liars and murderers,” he [Dell] said. “You just destroyed the greatest computer company of all time. We were the best in the world, the world champion. All this hatred was created by you. You’re basically angels of Satan. All I can say to the people in Utah is, please pray for all the news people.”

Disaffected customers with computers being serviced by Totally Awesome Computers should visit the Totally Awesome Computers homepage.

All EMachines To Feature PCI-Express x16

In what is certain to be a welcome change in the inexpensive retail computer market, sources inside of Gateway have told us that all new EMachines models will feature the ability to upgrade your graphics with an available full size PCI-Express x16 graphics slot. The new models will be available in the second quarter of this year and we will have their exact specifications for you in the next few days.

Mark Rein of Epic earlier voiced his concern regarding the OEM landscape when it came to available graphics horsepower in the retail channel. Certainly this is a welcome solution as consumers will no longer find themselves physically restricted from upgrading their graphics in order to play today’s most demanding games. The only limiting factor then will be the computers’ power supplies, and whether or not they will be powerful enough for today’s most demanding graphics solutions.

Editor's Note: This power supply situation is exactly why we saw Thermaltake debut their "add-on" power supply last week, that is targeted currently towards SLI configurations.

Zalman HD160 HTPC Case

This Zalman HD160 HTPC case being reviewed at HTPC News today is pretty damn nice looking but are looks alone enough to influence your buying decision? Maybe so.

While we found a few negatives, in general the case is a good value for your dollar. By starting with a great foundation (the OrigenAE x11 version 2) Zalman was able to skip many of the problems a company new to HTPC case design might encounter. When it comes down to deciding on the Zalman case versus a similar case like the OrigenAE x11, we think it'll be purely cosmetic in choice.