CNet’s David Carnoy details ten good reasons to be dissappointed with HD-DVD. To be fair, most of the dissing is really directed at the Toshiba HD-A1, but some of its shortcomings are likely indicative of other “reasonably” priced units to follow (and the tech in general).
The whole HD-DVD/Blu-Ray boondoggle just fills us with piss and vinegar: too much money to be thrown at unnecessarily complicated technology (which may end up on the losing side of a standards war), all of which will do nothing more than obsolesce our existing media libraries while offering us few improvements we really care that much about in the first place. Wake us up when CyberHome, or some other low-rent Asian glass merchant, is selling [whichever tech wins out] at our local Computer Hut, for a couple of Jacksons. Till then, color us crabby.
Our Federalist compadres over at TechCrunch posted this news of a company called Eye-Fi that is coming to market with a 1GB SD Flash memory card with WiFi (802.11g) built into it. This way, if you have an existing camera with an SD slot, you’ll have the ability to send images wirelessly from your camera (or one would imagine, any other SD-equipped device) to your computer. No more futzing with cables. Allegedly, the company plans to sell the cards for not much more than a regular 1GB SD storage card would cost. No word yet on a release date.
I love some of the stuff that people are doing with processing of Flickr files. Colr Flickr groups pictures based on colorfields (pics that have one predominant color/pattern) and slaves them to a color wheel/slider. Click on the wheel or move the slider and pictures are grabbed with that color value. Click on the pics to go to that Flickr file. Nifty.
Epson continues to win friends and influence consumers with their ongoing legal maneuvers, this time, “convincing” e-tailers in Europe to stop selling third-party ink cartridges, you know, the carts that don’t cost nearly as much as the printer itself and frequently last longer than the Epson brand. This comes on the heels of the Japanese company filing a complaint with the International Trade Commission against U.S.. sellers of ink, citing I.P. violations, and their recent less-than-resonable class action settlement deal. So, stock up on fair trade, America, while you still can.
When good drives go bad, it breaks your heart, doesn’t it? Especially since few of us back up as methodically or religiously as we tell our children and coworkers to do. There is a growing repository of tech tricks and folk hacks for breathing life into a seemingly dead drive, from doing a platter transplant to giving your drive a few meaningful whacks with your hand. But freezing the ol’ 1s and 0s? That was a new one on me.
Apparently, if your drive is not spinning up, you can try putting it in a zip-loc bag, freeze it overnight, and then, reconnect it and try it again. The trick has been posted to Tech Republic and numerous techies have chimed in to verify that it does work, in more than a few cases. Cool (literally).
Amazon’s “Digital Locker” — providing you with PDFs of the manuals for the gear you buy — is nice, but has obvious drawbacks (like storing only docs for the booty you bought from them). UserManualGuide.com is set up as a central repository for PDF editions of manuals for dozens of popular models of mobile phones, cameras, TVs, DVD players, even household appliances like fridges and washing machines. The site is far from comprehensive, but if they continue to add content (and don’t run afoul of over-reaching IP police), the site should continue to get even more useful. I don’t know about you, but I for one, can be bothered to put dead tree manuals in a place when I can find them when I need them. This sounds like a job for cyberspace, don’t you think?