The technology behind Samsung's new 19-inch SyncMaster 971P LCD monitor is "magic." At least that's what the company said when it announced the product on Wednesday. And if "magic" to Samsung means enhanced features housed in a unique and efficient design for a suggested retail price of $379, we agree.
The 971P, which was first announced at the CeBit 2006 trade show in Germany, features horizontal and vertical viewing angles of 178 degrees, a 1500:1 contrast ratio and a 6ms response time. The glossy black or white body sits atop an S-shaped swivel stand with a blue LED power button. The dual and triple-hinge stand designs allow the monitors to fold, pivot, tilt, swivel, raise and lower.Credit: Samsung
The monitor has base-mounted USB 2.0 ports, giving consumers easier access when connecting digital cameras and camcorders. MagicTune technology provides an on-screen interface that enables users to control picture adjustments via a mouse.
The closest it gets to magic, however, is probably in its ability to rotate the screen image to match the monitor's position. That way, whether catching the morning news while getting dressed, viewing photos with friends or curling up on the floor with your favorite late-night program, it's easy to get the full picture.
So IBM finally decided to kill off OS/2. What a surprise! As a colleague put it to me, it's like your mother-in-law dying and you decide to leave the body in the recliner for 10 years instead of dealing with the cadaver.
Oddly enough, OS/2 was a better product than Windows when it first came off the line. For a time IBM even had Microsoft's development cooperation. But Microsoft's attentions soon shifted to Windows as the product's popularity climbed. Microsoft eventually unleashed its full marketing fury against OS/2 in what came to be known as the operating system wars.
This was during the pre-Gerstner era, mind you, and Big Blue had no idea how to battle back. By the middle of the 1990s, the struggle was over in all but name with OS/2 reduced to the status of expensive albatross.
Would the outcome have been any different had Lou Gerstner been running the show instead of John Akers? My guess is that Big Lou would never have made the investment. IBM was inviting a collision with Microsoft on what basically was Microsoft's home turf. You won't see that ever again. It was an expensive lesson -- but a lesson learned nonetheless.Charles is an executive editor with CNET News. He has covered technology and business for more than 25 years. A graduate of Queens College and Columbia University, Cooper began his career in journalism at the Associated Press before moving to technology coverage. Before joining CNET News, he worked at Computer & Software News , Computer Shopper , PC Week , and ZDNet. He received the Excellence in Journalism award from the Northern California branch of the Society for Professional Journalists for column writing. In addition to his blogging and podcast appearances, he is a co-host of the CNET News Daily Debrief. E-mail Charlie .
At the Wall Street Journal's D: All Things Digital Conference in Carlsbad, Calif., Nicholas Negroponte showed off the latest prototypes of the fabled $100 PC for developing nations. It's no longer a $100 PC, however.
The ruggedized, 2-pound Linux desktop system with mesh networking will sell for about $130 to $140 to governments starting in April 2007. As he has previously stated , Negroponte expects to reach the $100 price point by the end of 2008. The colorful system can turn into a tablet, and Negroponte said it "will run like a bat out of hell."
Pricing depends on the amount of RAM, but the key is the display, he added. "It has to be sunlight-readable. That won't be done until August/September." Then there will be a beauty contest among three systems and the machine will go into manufacturing for shipping, he said. Currently, seven countries are evaluating the system. The most enthusiastic are Nigeria, Brazil, Thailand and Argentina. In addition, China, India and Egypt have shown interest, as well as Russia, Mexico and Indonesia. Negroponte said that manufacturing has to reach 5 to 6 million to get scale pricing.
Want to try out Xobni , which I reviewed live from the TechCrunch 40 conference? The company has opened up 25 invitation slots for Webware readers. Go to the beta sign-up page and enter the invitation code, "Webware." Act fast if you want the bits.
Fair warning, though: I have uninstalled the Xobni add-on from my system. I found that it slowed down my Outlook performance so much that it became unusable. The company knows that the current beta code has performance issues for people with big e-mail stores . I will revisit the product when the team says it's fixed the issues.
In the meantime, I may try Clear Context , which a few readers recommended to me .
CNET News.com's Caroline McCarthy interviews two NYTimes.com software engineers for a video in collaboration with Beet.tv. Note: The spelling of Derek Gottfrid has been corrected.
The New York Times has added a new feature to its Web site that takes a few cues from Facebook and Digg: TimesPeople , now in beta.
TimesPeople users can build up friends lists and can see a "news feed" of which stories their friends are recommending, sharing, and commenting on. Times online readers have been able to comment on stories, as well as rate reviewed restaurants and movies, for some time now, but recommending is new.The TimesPeople drop-down menu, with a news feed and people search.
TimesPeople is currently available only as a Firefox browser plug-in, but software engineers told CNET News.com that it would eventually be more widely available and without a download required. New features will be added too, but don't expect the venerable newspaper to try to compete with Mark Zuckerberg: Engineers stressed that the Times will always be an information source, not a social network. That's why the TimesPeople application is extremely light and minimal--profiles are limited to locations and user icons, and content from the social feature is limited to a "news feed" page and a drop-down menu. However, at some point, a "Most Recommended" tab may join the popular "Most E-mailed" story list that the Times ' site displays.The TimesPeople iPhone interface.
Outside NYTimes.com, you can subscribe to a feed of an individual's activity using RSS, or browse your friends' updates with a specialized iPhone interface; TimesPeople members can also push their updates to their Facebook profiles by syncing the two. And if you'd rather just be an observer, you can subscribe to friends' updates on NYTimes.com while leaving your own feed updates turned off.
Many print publications have been working on social-news projects, primarily by partnering with existing sites like Digg . Conde Nast's Wired Digital went ahead and acquired Reddit . Critics might say that by building a social-news technology in-house, the Times is hurting itself by not tapping into the user base of an existing site.
But here's the catch: while NYTimes.com content is free, it requires a log-in to read more than a story or two at a time. The Times , consequently, has millions of user accounts already on file.
This story was researched and reported in collaboration with Andy Plesser of Beet.tv , who produced the video.
Video fanatics will have to wait a few extra weeks before they can buy a Blu-ray player from Sony. The company's web site says the targeted release date of the BDP-S1 is now August 15.
In March, Sony said it would come out sometime in July. It will cost about $1,000.
The Japanese electronics manufacturer, which is trying to mount a comeback, will also put Blu-ray drives, which hold more than standard DVDs and play high definition movies, in notebooks, desktops and its PlayStation 3 game console. The notebooks and desktops are expected to come out in early summer, which is now. The RC 300 desktop, which will contain a Blu-ray drive, is not available yet, according to Sony's web site. It is not clear if these products will also be pushed back.
The PlayStation 3 console won't come out until November.
Toshiba already sells HD players based on the HD DVD format for just under $500.Topics: Media Bookmark: Digg Del.icio.us Reddit cnet_news406:http://news.cnet.com/8301-10784_3-6082831-7.html