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Thu May 13 2004

New: RSS2.0 Support

05:15 PM by Alexander Turcic in Miscellaneous | Announcements

I enhanced our RSS feed support. If your RSS Reader supports RSS2.0, use the following feed in future:

or, if you only want to be updated on frontpage articles, use:

New: Article content, links, images, etc. are preserved.

If you don't have a RSS Reader yet, I heartly recommend FeedDemon (MS Windows), which costs $29.95, and is the best Reader I've seen so far. If you run Mac OS, NetNewsWire is your choice!

[ 9 replies ]

Ancient Library of Alexandria discovered?

08:06 AM by Alexander Turcic in Miscellaneous | Lounge

A Polish-Egyptian team has found what it believes to be the site of the Library of Alexandria, often described as the world's first major seat of learning.

This is not just any library: Two thousand years ago, the library housed works by the greatest thinkers and writers of the ancient world.

It was at the library that Archimedes invented the screw-shaped water pump that is still in use today. At Alexandria Eratosthenes measured the diameter of the Earth, and Euclid discovered the rules of geometry. Ptolemy wrote the Almagest at Alexandria. It was the most influential scientific book about the nature of the Universe for 1,500 years.

The library was later destroyed, possibly by Julius Caesar who had it burned as part of his campaign to conquer the city.

Makes me wonder what researchers will find in 2000 years from today: a moldered computer labelled 'New York Public Library'?

[ 0 replies ]

Wed May 12 2004

Sony Vaio Pocket VGF-AP1 - the Ipod killer?

03:59 PM by Colin Dunstan in Archive | Portable Audio/Video

My second post on a new Sony gadget today. Sony deserves my respect, therefore I decide to name it the most innovative company of the day
The VGF-AP1 features a 20Gb harddrive and is capable of displaying digital photos through its 2.2 inch 320x256 color LCD display. Digital cameras may connect via USB to the player's cradle to transfer images.

With its body of features, the Sony VAIO Pocket VGF-AP1 weighs in at 195g with a USB 2.0 interface. Sony claims maximum of 20 hours of battery life.

Sony has developed a unique input button grid dubbed "G-Sense." G-Sense offers up touchpad navigation where users scroll through a list of files simply by gesturing their finger toward their selection. The selected song is played by the click of a button.

The VAIO Pocket VGF-AP1 is capable of playing MP3, WMA and WAV audio, but, alas, first converts the formats to ATRAC3.

To me the VGF-AP1 doesn't look that hot with the dark grey case, but who knows, maybe Sony will offer other designs as well.

[ 2 replies ]

Sony Vaio VGN-U70 - e-book reader for the rich?

03:04 PM by Colin Dunstan in More E-Book Readers | Legacy E-Book Devices

Just a month ago, Sony launched the Libriť 1000-EP, arguably the world's first true electronic book. Now, it unveils its second coup: a keyboardless PC which is not a Tablet PC, but the world's smallest full-function Windows PC, a pen-operated, wireless-enabled computer pitched at mobile media consumers.

According to The Register, driving the U70 is a 1GHz Ultra-low Voltage Pentium M and Intel's i855GM integrated chipset - so yes, it's a Centrino machine. And, indeed, we find the machine has an 802.11g Wi-Fi adaptor built in. It also has a 20GB hard drive and 512MB of memory. There's a USB 2.0 port, and CompactFlash and MemoryStick Pro ports for expansion. The unit is powered by a slimline Lithium Polymer battery capable of providing around two-and-a-half hours' operating time. Japanese consumers will be able to up that to 5.5 hours, courtesy of an alternative, 'extended' battery. But it added 145g to the weight.

The size of the screen is five inches, which stands somewhere between a regular PDA and a Tablet PC. Since I found my PDA always too small for reading longer texts, that sounds like a good solution to me.

Only negative: Price is targeted at 1871 USD; even the cheaper version still costs 1595 USD

[ 3 replies ]

Tue May 11 2004

Spider-Man 2 and Van Helsing free at

07:47 AM by Colin Dunstan in E-Book General | Deals and Resources (No...

This year it's Spider-Man 2 duking it out with Van Helsing. Both are sure to be huge Summer movies and these are the official movie tie-in eBooks. Receive a 100% Micropay Rebate on either title when purchasing with a credit card. The Spider-man 2 eBook is a "pre-order" that is scheduled to be delivered to your bookshelf on May 25th.

Free after a 100% MicroPay rebate.

[ 0 replies ]

Mon May 10 2004

The Open CD

06:01 PM by ignatz in Miscellaneous | Lounge

Check out this great CD. It collects some of the best open source projects for Windows (including OpenOffice, Mozilla, Blender, etc) and compiles them onto a downloadable .iso file. It has a great autoplay navigator and makes installs very easy. It's a great intro to open source for those friends of yours who aren't yet familiar with the concept. I found a couple of things that I hadn't heard of, and I thought that I was pretty familiar...

[ 0 replies ]

There is light in the tunnel...

04:26 PM by Alexander Turcic in Miscellaneous | Announcements

Months after months I've been telling you that I was working on our new site - without showing any promising results. Part of it was that I was too occupied with my real-life work. Another part was that I was unsatisfied (not to say frustrated!) a) with my own progress on the web site and b) with the designer(s) I tried to find (one even tried to screw me over, thank you very much ).

So after a break or two, I had to bite the bullet. The last few nights I spent most of my time to get as much done with the new site as possible. I am sure there are still a few tweaks here and there to be made, but overall I think the new site is pretty much ready to be released to the public.

Some of the new features that are already in place:

- A new frontpage article system which allows editors to bring interesting articles to the frontpage (I will write more about this feature tomorrow)
- RSS feeds from other excellent sources (can be selectively turned on/off)
- A Link Directory (which is written and installed, but not yet filled) - any volunteers?
- A Chat system that allows us to have schedule meetings for real-time chats
- A Games Arcade which allows you to have some bright moments at your work place and also to compete against your fellows
- A Mobile version which allows you to browse the full forum and to make new posts with your mobile device (a Avantgo-like version will be in place in the next few days)
- something else I forgot?

As always, I am open to your criticism, suggestions and other kind of comments (please just allow me to have a full night of sleep for once ).

I heartly recommend that you visit our new Community Help thread, where you can regularly find new valuable information how to make your stay here more enjoyable (I will add more FAQ items in the next days). Also, please take some minutes to introduce yourself if you haven't done so yet.

Best Regards,

[ 17 replies ]

Cybook Preview available

07:55 AM by Alexander Turcic in More E-Book Readers | Legacy E-Book Devices

Found some news on the Cybook today. According to the German e-book seller eBookMedia, a "Preview" of the Cybook will be available for 720 Euro (~850 USD). I am not sure if you are ready to pay that amount of money for a non-final product, especially if there is no upgrade possibility mentioned.

The Final would be available June 1st, 2004, according to their website.

Some specs are available in German.

The Cybook runs Windows CE 3.0.

The following formats are supported:

  • Mobipocket Reader (with DRM)
  • uBook (Microbook)
  • Boo Reader
  • PDF Reader
  • Internet Explorer
  • Pocket Word Reader
  • PTab Reader

A Compact Flash memory is supported for storing e-books.

[ 1 reply ]

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