Computer Hardware reviews and tips

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Lower the noise of your hard drives with SilentDrive

Hard Drives can be terribly noise makers in computers. This is especially true when you are one of those users who buys silent pc hardware and uses fan regulators to lower the noise of system fans. When the noise of those fans is lowered other noises can probably be heard that you did not recognize before.

Custom Paper Keyboards

Flippress is a German startup that is currently in the process of creating a website that will allow everyone to create their own customized paper keyboards which can be used as any normal keyboard on the market with the difference that it is completely made of paper.

New Trend? Hardware embedded Software

Does it make sense to embed a web browser like Firefox or a Voice over IP client like Skype into a motherboard ? It surely has some advantages like fast boot times and increased security because everything done using those softwares is stored inside the RAM and not on the hard drive.

Star Wars Home Theater

In a place far away from reality - which happens to be somewhere near Seattle - two Star Wars geeks decided to create the ultimate home theater: A Star Wars Death Star Home Theater. It took them 36 months to complete the project which in my opinion resembles the interior of an Imperial Star Destroyer and not the Death Star.

USB Flash Drive with Capacity Meter

Many users think that usb flash drives are all the same. They look boring and can only be used to plug them into a usb port. The Lexar usb flash drive Jumpdrive Mercury adds one useful function to the usb drive.

Is that the future? Waiter free Restaurants

Companies try everything to reduce labor costs to a minimum by automating, which simply means replacing humans by computers, and outsourcing, which means producing in countries with lower labor costs, processes. The ideal world for them is a world without labor costs at all to maximize profits and please the shareholders.

Flash Memory with Iris identification

Everyone is able to access data on normal usb sticks unless the data on the stick is encrypted with softwares like True Crypt for instance. Software based encryptions however require that the software to decrypt the data is actually installed on the system. It would not be possible to decrypt the data. The user also needs to know the password to decrypt the data, if the password is lost the data is lost unless a weak password was chosen during the encryption process.

Declutter your desk

P5chin who is a regular reader of my blog send me a tip which I immediately had to write about. I don't know a single computer user who is not unhappy with all the cables, power sources and external devices cluttering the place on and beneath the desk.

Off-Topic: Antigravity engines becoming reality?

Yes, this article is a little out of the box but I'm pretty sure that most of tech geeks (and sci-fi fans ;) would be interested in this matter, that's why I wanted to share the info. Additionally, IF true, this project would in my honest opinion become a revolution easily comparable to the birth of the internet. Some time ago I've read about a brand new concept of a microwave engine designed especially for spacecraft propulsion. A bunch of smart heads from the UK lead by R.Shawyer invented a simply looking yet very complicated (from the view of mathematical and physical theories) prototype of a propeller that uses microwaves to generate thrust and by doing so compensate the power of gravity...

Why 2 is better than 1

In case you are wondering; I'm talking about computer RAM. I noticed a few days ago that one of the 512 Megabyte bars of RAM that I had installed on my computer was faulty and decided to order two 1 Gigabyte bars to replace both old bars. I had the hopes that the increase would also speed up some resource intensive applications.

How to test your RAM for errors

It you purchase new ram, a new or used computer or experience crashes and bluescreens you should definitely test the memory installed on your computer to make sure that it is running without errors. Faulty memory is one of the main reasons for instability. The first task should be to make sure that the memory is correctly inserted into the memory banks. Make sure you count the number of bars and check if you are running dual channel mode or not.

The definitive guide to Firmware updates

Did you know that it is possible to patch the firmware of many devices with an unofficial version that could increase the speed of a device or increase it's functionality ? Most firmwares are created for one of the following five device types: Motherboards. Dvd Recorders. Digital Cameras. Graphic Cards and Routers.

Free your mind hand

I'd like to share my experience with an uncommon navigation device I bought few weeks ago. There were two reasons why I started to consider buying a tablet. At first, I wanted to try something different than the old-style mouse. I also needed it to be more precise than the mouse so that I could use it for some web graphics and drawing (I assume you have tried to draw something with mouse and know what I mean).

So, who is winning the HD war ?

I'm not that interested in the HD format war because I do not have a television that is HD Ready and do not plan to buy one in the near future. Maybe that is one of the reasons why I feel a little bit lost about the success or failure of HD-DVD and Blue-Ray players and movies.

I thought that I'm going to discuss it with each of you. What are your thoughts about both formats ? Do you think that Blue-Ray is in the lead, maybe because of the boost after the release of the Playstation 3 by Sony ? Or is it the HD-DVD format that you think will win this war.

Random Time Wall Clock

If you are looking for a rather unique clock you should take a look at the so called Rnd_Time Infinite Wall Clock. The Rnd_Time stands of course for Random Time but it is not the time that is shown randomly but the placement of the hours on the walls. The hours can be placed randomly on the wall while the clock is still displaying the correct time. It could be hard to tell the time but it sure looks unique. You do get 12 blocks that display the hours from 1 to 12 and another block for the clock hands.

Top 10 Future Display Technologies

If you thought that you would be starring at those boring LCD or Plasma displays for the next ten years you will now be proven wrong. Some displays look incredible cool. I personally would love to lay my hands on the Samsung 12mm thick LCD display, the Toshiba Interactive 3D Display and the Touchless Touchscreen. I decided to only include my favorites from the ten future display technologies and suggest that you head out to the original website who posted the list to see the others.

dell linux

Dell to finally ship PCs with Linux

First Dell PCs with AMD chips and now Dell PCs with Linux preinstalled. It seems that Dell finally managed to see that giving its customers a choice is the way to go in this matter. Linux has some advantages over PCs that ship with Windows Vista or Microsoft Windows XP. The first and most prominent one is of course the price tag. Dell can reduce the costs that customers have to pay for a PC even further and advertise this properly.

Adobe Multi-touch Interface Presentation

If you thought that the last Multi-touch technology videos that I have been showing here at Ghacks have been cool then you should see this one. This one is a presentation by Jeff Han who is a research scientist for NYU's Media Research Lab during TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) 2006. Jeff Han describes his technique the following way: "Our technique is force-sensitive, and provides unprecedented resolution and scalability, allowing us to create sophisticated multi-point widgets for applications large enough to accommodate both hands and multiple users."