Sometimes the thought of carrying a mid-size tower to a LAN event will send the mind reeling with images of dinged up cases, broken PC components, and dropped hard drives. That’s why I appreciate portable small form factor cases like this one. If the cylindrical shape of the Piston SFF didn’t already catch your eye, the spiffy color might do the trick; plus it also houses a built in subwoofer. On the back, there are four USB ports, S-Video, SP/DIF out, Ethernet and audio. Two more USB ports, and an additional FireWire and SP/DIF port are located on the side, along with a headphone and microphone port. It supports Intel P4 Prescott processors up to 3.8 GHz, and either an embedded graphics solution, or a PCIe x16 graphics card. The Piston SFF can be yours for $400.
Read More | Extreme Tech
If you are looking for a way to get movies for 99 cents a pop, look no further than Peerflix. Peerflix is an online trading post where members can create a list of DVD “haves” and “wants”, and match up their lists to other users on the service. If they find a match, they contact the other party, and set up the swap. The transaction costs 99 cents, and both parties walk away from the deal with a DVD they wanted to see in return for a DVD they no longer wanted. No late fees or due dates here, plus there is no monthly membership fee. Of course, there is an honor system here, which the site monitors closely. For the deal to be successful, both members must mail the requested DVD to the other person - and with that being the case, there are bound to be some snafus along the way. Still, it is a good way to trade DVD’s on a 1:1 ratio, rather than going to your local DVD shop and having to trade in 3 or 4 movies in exchange for the latest blockbuster.
Read More | Peerflix
Instant messaging services aren’t necessarily new to the Blackberry. in fact, there are already a few third party solutions available. The news here is that it’s going to be bundled in now. Research In Motion just signed up a deal to offer instant messaging services from both Yahoo and AOL right out of the box on future Blackberry models. Current owners will also be able to download this feature for use on their existing handsets. Great news for those who want to stay in constant touch without the hassle of being near a PC at all times.
Read More | Tech Tree
I can think of only a couple things that might taste worse than room-temperature coffee. But you can avoid the trauma altogether by getting one of these warming pads that connect to your PC (or laptop!) via USB. Simply plug it in, pop your mug on top, and try not to touch the pad with your bare fingers. $18 at ThinkGeek.
Read More | Think Geek
I’ve seen many tattoos in my time, both good and bad, but I had not seen any quite like these before. BMEzine has a nice collection of images of geek tattoos. The art ranges from Math symbols and binary code, to video game characters such as the lovable Mario or the Covenant Sword from Halo 2. Nothing expresses your love for computers as much as permanently branding yourself with one of these.
View More | BMEzine
Sony has unveiled their newest 5.1MP digital camera – the T7. The T7 is an updated version of the very popular T1 model. Some of the updated features include the relocation of menu buttons to the left side, zoom controls moved to the top, and the body has been truncated to one-third of an inch thin. The miniature camera not only looks sexy, but has a 3x optical zoom and the ability to capture and playback high-resolution video at 640x480 pixel resolution. You can get your hands on one in May, retailing for $500 USD.
Read More | GearCritech
Apparently, some iPod shuffle accessories can be used to protect more than just your Apple MP3 player. Case in point: the iSmoke shuffle. Big enough to hold three cigarettes perfectly around your neck, and cool enough to wear with your earbuds.
Read More | Malevolent Design
We have a schizophrenic Playlist this time, with rappers and beach bums, with soul singers and pop bands. 50 Cent is back, as is Jack Johnson, both trying to improve over their last successful releases. Sage Francis furthers the cause of underground hip-hop, and Sam Cooke is our collection essential, putting a little soul in this dreary winter. Enjoy the Playlist, and let me know what you think in our forums or by emailing me.
At the moment when people were still taking in some of the newest Bluetooth cameraphones, the newest Bluetooth network, comprised of a herd of cattle, is now the latest on the Bluetooth front. Danish vendor Blip Systems has developed a system where you can put a Bluetooth device onto members of a herd, and monitor the location of each cow remotely. In addition, you can even keep track of the cows health. The technology was developed in conjunction with the Danish Cattle Research Centre and the Danish Institute of Agricultural Sciences. Blip says the technology would be profitable for those with 100 or more cattle, and plan to sell the mesh networks for under 100 euros.
Read More | PersonalTechPipeline
At a time when privacy on the Internet is of the utmost importance to many people, AOL has added a new provision to their AIM Terms of Service contract. Of course, there is rarely a person that ever even reads these things, so here is the text:
...by posting Content on an AIM Product, you grant AOL, its parent, affiliates, subsidiaries, assigns, agents and licensees the irrevocable, perpetual, worldwide right to reproduce, display, perform, distribute, adapt and promote this Content in any medium. You waive any right to privacy.
That is straight from AOL themselves, my friends. You waive any right to privacy. That is as clear as day. I recommend anyone using AIM to switch to something a bit more sensible, and a lot more user friendly - like Skype - available in both Windows and Mac/Linux flavors.
Read More | Houston Chronicle