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I know structured wiring and home automation aren’t exactly at the tip of your tongue. All I can say is that it will be. If you want to be able to integrate all of your high tech audio and video toys with your home entertainment systems, and build them into multi room designs, you will need both home automation and structured wiring. The reason I mention this is that Leviton has announced that it is releasing the LE&AP, a multimedia hard drive distribution unit for its structured wiring enclosures. With a Linux based operating system, the LE&AP allows you to distribute your digital music and videos across multiple platforms. Send your MP3’s to your stereo and your digital videos and digital camera images to the televisions. The distribution unit will also share out your broadband connection. I’m an MCSE and I’m going to be looking at this way before I look at mounting a computer with windows media system loaded on it.

This is an 8-zone commercial grade gateway and firewall, with 4 USB expansion ports, and a 120 GB internal drive. It can be upgraded to larger storage capacity as well as software upgrades. From the looks of the system eventually it will integrate with your security and home control devices as well.

With basic audio and video connections as well as advanced digital connections, the unit connects to your TV or stereo and uses your home network for communications. With the remote and some easy to use menus on the TV homeowners can browse and select all of their audio, video and photo storage.

Read More | Leviton


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XboxMicrosoft has issued a recall notice on the power cord of Xbox consoles made before Jan. 13, 2004 in Continental Europe, and units made for the rest of the world before Oct. 23, 2003 - Xbox’s built after those days were built in such a way that the failure does not occur. The recall is due to a defect on some boxes that lead to minor singe burns and scorched carpets or entertainment centers. According to reports to Microsoft’s customer service and warranty repair data, the failure rate is about 1 in 10,000 units. That may seem like a small percentage, but why take the chance? Xbox owners may order a replacement through the Xbox website or by calling the toll free number for their respective country.

Read More | Reuters


DescriptionYou know we gotta keep you in the loop as it pertains to the Apple rumor mill. While it isn’t yet official, it appears that the ship date for Apple OS X 10.4 (a.k.a. Tiger) will be June 30th 2005. Now, that works…except for the fact that ThinkSecret reported that Apple is “working hard on Final Cut Pro 5 and will use the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) conference in mid-April to debut the software.” The report also states that “Final Cut Pro 5 will require Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger and will take advantage of the new Core Video technology, which functions as a bridge between QuickTime and a supported video card to deliver hardware-accelerated video processing.” This seems to imply that if Final Cut Pro 5 is going to debut in April, and will require OS X Tiger to run, that Tiger should also be available in mid-April. It’s tough being a super sleuth.

Oh, and the image to the right is what is believed to be the final packaging box.

Read More | MacRumors
Read More | ThinkSecret


bbBuddyWe all spend a lot of time writing textual content on the net. This content comes in many forms such as movie reviews at Yahoo, posts on a message board, and even comments on a blog. For some sites such as Slashdot, its user submitted comments are the sites main attraction. But who owns this content - the original author or the site that displays the content? Forget about what the law officially states, for all intents and purposes, it is the site that controls the content. They control the user submitted content, and if the site disappears so will the said content. There have been documented cases of sites shutting down and people no longer having access to their work. Even most message boards do not retain every post. Its amazing that more people don’t store their posts in some fashion. Literally hours ago a new web application launched that allows its members to store, organize and download all of their textual content. It also allows members to add del.icio.us-like labels to their posts. These labels are aggregated at the single member and community levels, so you can view all of your posts labeled “NFL” and you can also view all of the community’s posts labeled “NFL”. The main benefit of course is that it gives the author control of their textual content. Try it http://www.bbBuddy.com.


Description
DJ’s have converted from vinyl to CDs, and Pioneer aims to make their jobs even easier. The original CDJ-100 played CDR/RWs and had excellent jog wheel control. The new CDJ-200 adds many welcome features. With cue/loop memory, MP3 support, digital outputs and new loop editing features, this player has become its own mobile club. I think this should make for some interesting changes in the local club music scene as well as future re-mixes.

Read More | Pioneer


Mozilla FirefoxOne thing that gives Firefox its mass appeal is it’s solid pop-up blocker.  Now Mozilla’s pop-up blocker is being challenged.  There are some websites that have found a way around the blocker after its first pop-up is blocked.  One such website is Ngemu.com; Firefox and Mozilla will both block the first pop-up, however after the user clicks on a link such as “XBOX”, a pop up appears.  Bugzilla’s website contains a bug report of the problem including the source code for the work around.

Read More | Bugzilla


XBOX 360There are two new rumors floating around about Microsoft’s next generation gaming console. According to The Inquirer, the XBOX 360 will come standard with wireless controllers. Hopefully the battery life will be improved as well.  We can probably expect Sony to follow in the same path.  The next rumor involves the XBOX 360’s GPU. Of course this information, just like the rest, is not yet confirmed, but here are the specs:

  • 24 Pipelines
  • 32 Texture Units
  • 96 Arithmetic Logic Units (ALU)
  • 192 Shader Operations per Cycle
  • 700MHz Core
  • 134.4 Billion Shader Operations per Second (at 700MHz)
  • 256-bit 512MB 1.8GHz GDDR3 Memory
  • 57.6 GB/sec Bandwidth (at 1.8GHz)
  • 300-350 Million Transistors
  • 90nm Manufacturing
  • Shader Model 3.0
  • ATI HyperMemory
  • ATI Multi Rendering Technology (AMR)
  • Launch: Q2 2005
  • 16x stochastic FSAA
  • FP32 blending, texturing
  • Programmable Primitive Processor/Tesselator

As you can see, the next XBOX will have a very powerfull GPU.  With performance higher than a Radeon X800, we can assume the XBOX 360 to put a very big dent on our wallets - that is, of course, if the source that reported this information is correct.

Read More | Joystiq

Read More | The Inquirer


GBA Tuner  Finally someone has invented a way for us to continue using our GBA, in light of the DS and the upcoming PSP. It’s called the DTEC, by TurboXS. The DTEC plugs into your handheld and comes preloaded with software that lets you use your Gameboy to gauge exhaust gas temperature, air temperature, and vehicle boost, among other things. You can also purchase additional sensors and hardware to monitor other systems, like knock indication and vehicle acceleration (ie. G-Force). But check out the DTEC hardware that actually needs to plug into your GBA. Talk about unwieldly. Coming in October to an obsolete GBA near you.

Read More | TurboXS.com


Verizon Wireless Mobile Web HackCheck it out, you can now use Mobile Web on your Verizon Wireless phone, and not pay the $4.99 per month charge to Verizon to do so. In fact, this is a perfectly legal alternative, because you are simply using a different server than the one Verizon Wireless provides. This hack works for any Verizon Wireless phone that supports Mobile Web 1.0 - 2.0. All you need to do is go into the setup menu and make a couple of changes.

Read More | MobileWEB4U

EDIT: I should have been more clear. Use MobileWEB4U to find out how to access the appropriate menu on your phone where you change servers. Once you find the menu, enter a proxy server. You can find one at http://www.publicproxyservers.com.

You must also enter both the proxy server address as well as the port it uses. If you don’t have both, it won’t work.


iPod Mini Pink  CNET News has put up some interesting facts regarding MP3 player purchases in America.  According to a study carried out by the non-profit Pew Internet & American Life Project, those who are younger, wealthier and use the Internet are more likely to own such gadgets.  It also helps to if you’re a guy.  Here are the findings:  While one in five people under the age of 30 have an iPod or other MP3 player, the number drops to one in seven in the 30-to-48 age group.  Similarly, about 25% of people with household incomes of $75,000 or more owned such gadgets.  That figure dropped to 10% for those in the $30,000 to $74,999 range and to 6 percent among those earning less than $30,000.  The study also found that those who use the Internet are four times as likely as non-Internet users to have MP3 players.  Finally, men have a 50 percent greater chance than women of owning a digital media player.

Read More | CNET


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