Saturday, October 25, 2008

Golden Porsche 911: The Gold Standard

People usually paint their cars in fancy colors, but this particular car fanatic from Russia coated his car with gold, real gold!

This Porsche is covered with 18 kg (or 40 lbs) of gold, well pretty much want to set the “gold” standard among sports cars.

Try to imagine a Ferrari in gold…

Dell Vostro A90

Dell has apparently dressed up the Inspiron Mini 9 netbook with a coat of black paint and redubbed it the Dell Vostro A90. While the Inspiron Min is clearly aimed at consumers and perhaps educational markets, the Vostro line of laptop computers is typically targeted at business users. And the black paint certainly makes the Vostro A90 look a little bit more uptight businessy than its Inspiron cousins.

On the inside, the Vostro A90 appears to be identical to the Inspiron Mini 9 series. It has a 1.6GHz Intel Atom CPU, an 8.9 inch, 1024 x 600 pixel display, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of flash memory, Bluetooth, and a 4 cell battery. It’s only available with Windows XP, not Ubuntu Linux.

So how much does that coat of black paint cost? Well, let’s put it this way. Dell is charging ¥92,830 or about $998 US for the Vostro A90 in Japan. The company charges ¥57,079 or about $614 US for the Inspiron Mini in Japan. I can only assume that the black paint is bullet proof.

We’re starting to see a disturbing trend of netbook makers giving machines a cosmetic facelift and charging a premium price for essentially the same machine. I can’t say I’m surprised. Netbooks are cheap laptops with low profit margins for computer manufacturers. The price wars that have brought down the prices even further over the last few months have been good for consumers, but companies like Dell are probably looking for ways to help bring the profits up while still continuing to pump out the low cost netboks that consumers appear to be clamoring for.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

OLO iPhone-powered netbook isn’t real, might never be

A few weeks ago a concept design for an iPhone-powered netbook started making the rounds. The OLO Computer concept would basically turn an iPhone into a netbook by allowing you to dock the phone in a larger chassis and use the phone as a touchpad while using a full sized keyboard and a larger screen.

The screen clearly shows a full version of OS X, while the iPhone only runs a stripped down version of the operating system. And that left some people scratching their heads wondering how this thing is supposed to work. The answer is simple. OLO doesn’t know either. This design is just a concept, and the company doesn’t build computers. Rather, it’s looking for partners who might be able to turn the mockup into reality.

In other words, it might never happen.

So while Steve Jobs may consider the iPhone Apple’s entry into the netbook space, it doesn’t looke like the OLO Computer will be dressing the iPhone in more traditional garb anytime soon.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Sun SPARC Enterprise T5440

Sun Microsystems recently launched the Sun SPARC Enterprise T5440 4-socket server, based on the UltraSPARC T2 Plus processor. The Sun SPARC Enterprise T5440 extends the price and performance efficiency of Sun's chip multi-threading (CMT) architecture to midrange computing.

The Sun SPARC Enterprise T5440 Server, the industry's first quad socket CMT system, packs a massively scalable 256 threads, ½ TB memory design into just a 4RU form factor. For the first time, you get the scalability and reliability of traditional midrange systems, while enjoying the breakthrough performance, eco efficiency and cost effectiveness of Sun's proven open-source CMT architecture. Sun's new massively scalable midrange system can virtualize applications and consolidate existing workloads into a single server and also provide ample headroom to handle future computing requirements as customers' needs grow.

In numerous benchmarks, the Sun SPARC Enterprise T5440 outperforms competitors' products, and can deliver up to 4 times the performance, at 1/5 the price of competitive systems and uses a fraction of the energy of servers with conventional designs.

With the introduction of the Sun SPARC Enterprise T5440, the next generation of midrange computing is here!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Asus throws obnoxious 3G launch event with Hummer

Exactly a year after launching the first Eee PC 701 4G in Taiwan, Asus is showing off how far the market has come with launch events for the super-thin (and kinda pricy) Eee PC S101 and the super-mobile, 3G-enabled Eee PC 901 Go.

For the Italian launch of the Eee PC 901 Go, Asus picked one of the most ostentaious and obnoxious ways I can think of to demonstrate the computer’s abililty to connect to 3G wireless networks: they took the press out for a drive in a big ole Hummer limo. Notebook Italia was on hand to document the affair.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Acer's F-22bid LCD sounds like a jet, looks like a Ferrari

We've seen Ferrari's logo and lacquer applied to everything from GPS nav systems to overpriced clock radios, each product diluting the brand that Enzo built bit by bit. Acer is the most common enabler, and its latest prancing horse-decal'd product is the F-22bid, a 22-inch LCD sporting a 1680 x 1050 resolution and a racy (sorry) 2ms gray-to-gray response rate. Brightness is the standard 300cd/m2, though a contrast ratio of 20,000:1 impresses, and VGA, DVI, and HDMI inputs mean it should easily connect to just about all of your headless video outputting devices -- but at what cost? Acer isn't telling, and with only 500 of these being built, we're not expecting affordability here.