iPod Hacked into “iTop”

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Date: Tuesday, June 5th, 2007, 13:02
Category: Hack

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A picture’s worth a thousand words in this case.
Engadget has a story about an iPod that’s been essentially hacked into a handheld/mini-laptop. The story originally appeared over on Hack-A-Day in which Owen McGarry took an out of warranty iPod, installed a swivel device, a protruding hard drive and a Linux operating system.
Unfortunately, details are scarce at this time, although additional photos can be found over here via FaceBook.
Remove the glare factor and you could have a cool portable video unit for flights as well…
Let us know what you think.

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SanDisk Releases 64 Gigabyte Solid State Drives

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Date: Tuesday, June 5th, 2007, 12:28
Category: News

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On Tuesday, SanDisk announced at Computex Taipei 2007 that it had supplemented its line of solid state drive products with with addition of a 64 gigabyte unit available in 1.8″ and 2.5″ sizes. The drives operate on the SATA protocol and can be dropped in as replacements for most laptop computers.
According to DigiTimes, the new units are capable of two million hours of mean time between failures (MTBF), approximately six times the length than notebook hard drives thanks to the device using no moving parts.
Though still in the works and considered an “early adopter” technology, solid state drives are becoming popular for their durability and ability to stand up to stressors such as a sudden drop or extreme temperatures. The drives themselves are also able to start up almost immediately and provide better access speeds than those found on a conventional hard disk drive. SanDisk has stated that their solid state drives can transfer data at rates of 67 megabytes per second, readily outperforming a standard hard drive featuring moving parts.
The drives themselves consume far less power during active and idle operation than a conventional hard drive, thereby extending battery life, noted SanDisk.
SanDisk has currently released the new hard drives to manufacturers interested in incorporating them in their products. The company currently plans to offer 64 gigabyte engineering samples in the third quarter of the year with mass production planned before the end of the year.

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Apple Releases Updated, LED-Backlit MacBook Pro Units

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Date: Tuesday, June 5th, 2007, 08:30
Category: News

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Just slightly before next week’s Worldwide Developer’s Conference, Apple has released its new lineup of MacBook Pro laptops. The new units, which are based on Intel’s Santa Rosa hardware architecture, are priced at US$1,999, US$2,499 and US$2,799, feature 2.2 and 2.4 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo chips as well as 15″ and 17″ LED-backlit displays with four megabytes of Smart Cache onboard (L2 cache that can be shared between processor cores as needed) and an 800 MHz frontside bus. The laptops can hold an upgraded four gigabytes of DDR2 RAM and hard drives up to 250 gigabytes in capacity. Both the 15″ and 17″ revisions arrive with a stock two gigabytes of RAM installed with the Apple Store offering a build-to-order upgrade option of four gigabytes of RAM to be installed for an additional US$750.
A new NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GT graphics controller features 128 and 256 megabytes of VRAM depending on configuration purchased and the LED-backlit display (available on the 15″ version) is now mercury-free, offering a resolution up to 1920 x 1200 on the 17″ model.
The MacBook Pro now stands at 1″ thick with the 15″ unit weighing in at 5.4 pounds and the 17″ unit weighing in at 6.8 pounds. The units also sport an 802.11n wireless configuration while familiar features such as built-in iSight camera, Firewire 800, DVI, MagSafe power connection and Front Row remote control remain.
Apple currently claims that the new MacBook Pro laptops are up to 50% faster than the original Core Duo-equipped revision.
For full technical information, check out the specs page and if you’re able to get your hands on one in the near future, let us know about the experience.

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Apple Embedding User Information with iTunes Plus Tracks

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Date: Tuesday, June 5th, 2007, 08:30
Category: News

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According to recent reports, the new iTunes Plus tracks, which function as DRM-free, higher-quality version of songs available through the iTunes Store at a higher price, currently contain personal identifier information such as an iTunes user name in the tags. Jason O’Grady’s blog over at The Apple Core features additional information as well as a workaround guide to stripping the tags out.
A user name in the tags may or may not make all the difference in the world, the music labels having taken a step in a new direction nonetheless, but take a gander and see what you think.

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Western Digital Releases 750 GB WD Caviar SE16 Drive

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Date: Tuesday, June 5th, 2007, 08:20
Category: News

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On Monday, hard drive manufacturer debuted its 750 gigabyte WD Caviar SE16 Serial ATA drive. According to PC World, the drive incorporates the following technologies:
-SecurePark: This parks the recording heads during sping up, spin down and non-operational moments, thereby improving the drive’s long-term durability and shock resistance.
-StableTrac: This technology secures the drive’s motor shaft at both ends, thereby reducing operational vibration.
-IntelliSeek: This adjusts and controls the drive’s actuator so that the drive head can reach its target sector at the right time in order to read the next piece of information. Western Digital claims the technology reduces power consumption by more than 60% and reduces vibration as well.
The drive sports a 16 megabyte onboard cache with 3 gigabyte data transfer rate and is priced at US$249 before shipping and handling.

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