Saturday, December 30, 2006

Typo, Takes A German Tourist 13,000 km Out

A 21-year-old German tourist who wanted to visit his girlfriend in the Australian metropolis Sydney landed 13,000 kilometers (8,077 miles) away near Sidney, Montana, after mistyping his destination on a flight booking Web site. Instead of arriving "down under", Gutt found himself on a different continent and bound for the chilly state of Montana.

The hapless tourist, who had only a thin jacket to keep out the winter cold, spent three days in Billings airport before he was able to buy a new ticket to Australia with 600 euros in cash that his parents and friends sent over from Germany.

[via CNN]

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Tokyo's Ginza Famous Shopping Area Tagged Using RFID

The Tokyo Ubiquitous Network Project seeks to install RFID, infrared and wireless transmitters throughout Tokyo's Ginza area, which is the most famous shopping area in the capital. The tags and transmitters will provide location-related information to people carrying prototype readers developed for the trial, said Ken Sakamura, a professor at The University of Tokyo and the leader of the project.

The system works by matching a unique code sent out by each beacon with data stored on a server on the Internet. The data is obtained automatically by the terminal, which communicates back to the server via a wireless LAN connection and requests the data relevant to the beacon that is being picked up.

Sakamura envisages the system will be able to provide users with basic navigation and information about the shops and stores in the area in at least four languages: Japanese, English, Chinese and Korean.


Play Playstation in Your Windows Mobile

Engadget reported that hackers have figured out a way to make the Playstation emulator for PSPs more useful. Now you can play pretty much any Playstation ISO on a PSP, and not just the titles you can download from Sony's online store.

In other news, FPSCE, a Playstation emulator for Windows Mobile devices has been updated to include support for Windows Mobile 5.0. The latest version is also optimized to take advantage of the Intel 2700g graphics accelerator in Dell Axim X50v and X51v models.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Flaws Found in Windows Vista

Microsoft is facing an early crisis of confidence in the quality of its Windows Vista operating system as computer security researchers and hackers have begun to find potentially serious flaws in the system that was released to corporate customers late last month.

Computer security researchers and hackers have found more flaws in Windows Vista, the long-awaited update to the Windows operating system, according to CNN Monday.

One programmer said it was possible to increase a user's privileges on all of the company's recent operating systems, including Vista, while a computer security firm said that it found five other vulnerabilities, including one error in the software code underlying the company's new Internet Explorer 7 browser.

On Saturday, Nicole Miller, a Microsoft spokeswoman, said the company was investigating the reported browser flaw and that it was not aware of any attacks attempting to use the vulnerability. Microsoft officials were not immediately available for comment on Monday.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Vending Machine for Books?

CNN writes about a $50,000 machine that can print books on demand. It can print up to 550 pages and put a binding on the book in seven minutes. It will be debuting in a select number of U.S. libraries in 2007.

The machine is the 'output' end of a service called On Demand Books, which is also just debuting. Initially, some 2.5 million books are now available - about one million in English and no longer under copyright protection. On Demand accesses the volumes through Google and the Open Content Alliance, among other sources.

Xbox Live Video Beats iTunes Store

Microsoft has finally announced their online video entertainment strategy for the Xbox 360. Xbox 360 owners will be able to buy and rent over 1,000 hours of programming using the new Xbox Live Video Marketplace. The Marketplace will see Microsoft selling programming from CBS, MTV Networks, Paramount Pictures, Turner Broadcasting, Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and Warner Bros.

Microsoft's plan to combat Apple's offering rests in the added value of the complete Xbox 360 package. iTV's features are not yet known, but a premium Xbox 360 with an additional wireless network adapter is $480, $180 more than iTV, but considerably more capable.

Microsoft has also said that users will be able to re-download content for free, in the event that users delete content to make space for new purchases, or even if users want to sign in to Xbox Live and download the show on another console. Shows will be attached to a user's Xbox Live gamertag.

[via arstechnica]

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Where is the Fox?

Referring the Mozilla Firefox 3.0 Gran Paradiso website, the Firefox logo doesn't have fox in there. So where is the fox?

Firefox 3.0 Hit Alpha, Ready for the Next Battle

Not long after Firefox 2.0 released, Firefox 3.0 with codename Gran Paradiso hits the alpha milestone. Several enhancements are in development for the successor to Firefox 2. One new feature planned to be in the new browser is called "places", which takes a new approach to bookmarks and page history. Reportedly, these items will be transitioned to the left side of the browser, sort of like Internet Explorer 7.

Also, some of the new features include the use of Cairo as the graphics library, Cocoa Widgets on Mac OS X, and improved SVG specification compliance.

Firefox Shows Its Star in Europe

According to a research by French firm Xiti Monitor, Firefox browser continues to grow in Europe with 23.2% of European web surfers, compare to 19.4% in April. However, there is quite some variation within the continent. Slovenian and Finland have the largest Firefox based for about 40%. On the other hand, Brits along with the Spanish and the Dutch are the least Firefox friendly Europeans as the map shows. Meanwhile, one third of the web surfers in Germany, Poland, Hungary, and Slovakia are using Firefox.

Another stats show that the use of Firefox generally goes up at the weekend, suggesting that people have the browser on their home PCs and may get what they're given at work.

[via TheInquirer]

Monday, December 04, 2006

HP Crossfire is An iMac Killer?

HP and AMD is teamed up for readying Windows Vista launching in January 2007. The HP IQ770 Crossfire, the first mass market touchscreen desktop PC, surely good for taking advantage of Vista's integrated tablet functionality.

The features are as follow:
  • 19-inch touchscreen,
  • AMD Turion 64 X2 dual core TL-52 processor,
  • 2GB SDRAM,
  • 320GB drive,
  • NVIDIA GeForce Go 7600,
  • WiFi, Bluetooth,
  • integrated 1.3 megapixel camera,
  • integrated FM and ATSC HDTV tuners,
  • a DVD±RW / DVD-RAM burner with LightScribe,
  • Pocket Media Drive bay,
  • wireless keyboard,
  • mouse,
  • stylus,
  • front media reader,
  • Ethernet,
  • two FireWire,
  • six USB 2.0,
  • one with HP printer power Y-cable connector,
  • 5.1 + digital audio out,
  • IR out,
  • mini-VGA, and
  • inputs: FM coax, TV coax, ATSC, and two S-Video.
It also features some new widget-like dashboard interface, featuring HP new SmartCalendar, which serves as a central point for virtual fridge notes and shared family calendars; as well as Photosmart Touch, a new image editing and printing interface.

The price? Expect $1799 - $1899.

[via Engadget]