Matrix-style screensavers have been around almost as long as the "Matrix" movies, and in many variations of the original falling-code theme. It's an iconic look that says "computers" the way Greek columns say "buildings," and is just as easily renewed. Vastimil Burian's Infected Screen Saver is a good example. It's based on the original Matrix code look, but it "infects" your screen with code when it's activated. The effect is cool, of course, like the many "original" variations, but Infected Screen Saver is different. For starters, … Read more
A recent question from a reader brought up an issue we've been discussing around the office recently -- the lack of Windows 8 laptops that include both a touch screen and a high-end GPU. Our reader's question, excerpted below:
May I ask for your advice on purchasing a gaming PC? I'm considering the Alienware M14x, but the only thing holding me back is the absence of a touch screen and I can't seem to find powerful laptops with a touch screen. Do you think touch-screen laptops will soon become the standard?
It's true that the … Read more
Incredimail is an elegant way to manage your e-mail on the iPad. You start by signing in to your e-mail accounts and Incredimail gives you a brief tutorial to show you the major features of the app. The app has full IMAP support so you can add your Gmail, Yahoo, AOL, or any other IMAP accounts. A menu button in the upper left lets you quickly switch accounts, and you can also filter by categories within an inbox to look at starred messages, drafts, sent messages, and other mail you have assigned filters.
The beauty of Incredimail is all about … Read more
For people who often change their desktop backgrounds, locating unique images can be a problem. Pimp Your Screen for Mac addresses this with its selection of unique, high-quality wallpapers, which may be worth the price for some people.
Available only as a paid app from the Mac App Store for $2.99, Pimp Your Screen for Mac has no free trial, which would have been a welcome feature. Since it is an App Store program, download and installation completed easily without any user activity. Pimp Your Screen for Mac also started up cleanly and the interface was very well designed. … Read more
If your laptop shopping list includes a touch screen, SSD storage, or even NFC, finding a new system shouldn't be hard. But if you're still tied to your optical discs and need a DVD or Blu-ray drive, that's another story. This once-ubiquitous feature is hard to find in new Windows 8 laptops, largely restricted to older models that have had Win 8 slapped onto them and to a handful of larger desktop replacements.
As laptops continue to get thinner, a charge led by ultrabooks and the MacBook Air (and the MacBook Pro with Retina Display), I suspect we'll see fewer and fewer optical drives.
Slot-loading drives are easier to fit into a small chassis than tray-loading ones, but like Ethernet ports, optical drives may become an added cost that PC makers feel most shoppers can live without, thanks to online gaming, music, and movie services, and the growth of cloud computing.
Since the launch of Windows 8, we've reviewed only a handful of laptops that include optical drives. The list below gives our favorites, and a few that weren't quite as warmly received.… Read more
Expect to see significant price cuts on Windows 8 touch-screen laptops if Microsoft's expected Windows 8 discount on licensing fees for PC makers is implemented.
Those price cuts could range between 10 percent and 20 percent, according to a report in Digitimes, which cites sources at Taiwan's retailers.
Those same sources indicated that touch-screen laptops now account for about 10 percent of sales, but this could jump to 20 percent in some cases with discounts from Microsoft.
The Sony Vaio Tap 20 introduced us to the idea of the all-in-one/tablet hybrid device. Asus has taken that concept, slathered it with Asus' particular brand of experimental enthusiasm, and brought it to life in the form of the $1,299 Transformer AIO.
The Transformer AIO, like the Sony Tap 20, shows an effort to offer consumers an intriguing new blend of all-in-one desktop and semiportable tablet. Rather than following Sony's approach of relying on Windows 8's new touch-friendly interface to achieve that mix with a single, seamless piece of hardware, the Transformer AIO essentially gives you … Read more
Giant interactive surfaces will complement the more mobile variety of today. That's how Microsoft sees the future.
Walk up to a massive interactive screen with a Surface tablet, tap it, and, voila, now you're working on the big screen. Or project your Windows phone screen onto a larger surface.
The point of "Microsoft's Future Vision: Live, Work, Play" (see below), a concept video that describes how we'll live in five to ten years, is that there is fluid interaction between touch surfaces and devices of all sizes.
The video debuted as the company opened … Read more