This week brings us the debut of Bomberman on WiiWare, along with a sci-fi shoot-'em-up from the Super Nintendo era.WiiWare Art Style: Orbient (Nintendo, 600 Wii points): Art Style: Orbient has you testing gravity and anti-gravity through 50 stages of galaxy exploration fun. Merge with existing stars and watch out for black holes. Bomberman Blast (Hudson Entertainment, 1,000 Wii points): Bomberman Blast is a brand new game in the franchise that allows for up to eight players at once. Also compete online over Nintendo Wi-Fi and post your top scores to worldwide ranking board. Virtual Console Super … Read more
Sigma has announced the DP2, a high-end 14-megapixel compact camera and a follow-up to the DP1. It's almost identical to the DP1, in fact, except with a 41mm f2.8 fixed lens, compared with the DP1's 28mm f4.0 lens. It also incorporates Sigma's new True II image-processing engine for a performance boost over the DP1. It should be available in the spring of 2009. No pricing is yet available, but for reference, the DP1 can be had for around $699.
And so it starts.
Earlier Friday, analysts lowered estimates on Amazon.com and Yahoo, setting off renewed worries about the earnings outlook for Internet companies. The Nasdaq finished Friday in the red, even as the Dow Jones climbed back from an early morning sell-off with a triple-digit gain, ostensibly, on hopes that Congress would come up with a financial bailout plan.
What to make of all this? Up until lately, most of the people involved in Internet companies (and particularly, Web 2.0 types) shrugged off the gyrations in the financial markets as Wall Street's problem. The standard refrain … Read more
Another one bites the dust: Uber.com, a fledgling blog platform that was backed by Discovery Communications and Universal Music Group, shut its doors Friday. The reason? The investors pulled out.
"We have some bad news," a message on the Los Angeles-based company's home page read. "The crisis in the economy has claimed Uber as its latest victim. Our investors have decided to stop supporting Uber and we have closed the doors."
Uber had been co-founded by former Friendster CEO and NBC Entertainment president Scott Sassa, and had completed a $7.6 million series B venture round this spring … Read more
Recently, I asked iPhone 3G owners to tell me if the 2.1 software update had fixed the widespread issues with dropped calls, short battery life, and faulty 3G connectivity. Now, just over a week later, I've wrapped up your comments.
At the time of this writing, we received 56 comments (I had to discount a few because they weren't on topic). While this is an entirely unscientific survey, almost half (48 percent) reported significant improvements in all areas, 20 percent reported no positive changes, and 32 percent said that it fixed only a few issues while leaving other problems unchanged. I've included a sampling of comments after the break.
As for me, I have to fall in the neutral camp. On the upside, backups on our iPhone 3G review model are quicker, contacts load faster and application crashes are nonexistent. I never had many dropped calls, so I didn't see a change there, but the keyboard lag has improved as well.
On the downside, however, I haven't seen much a battery life improvement at all. Still I can only get a day's worth of battery, even if I leave it resting on my desk for a few hours. Though one satisfied reader said he was happy that his iPhone 3G now lasted a full day rather than a few hours, I still think that's unsatisfactory.
What's more, I'm still wondering exactly how the update changed the 3G feature. In its release notes Apple promised that 2.1 would bring "improved accuracy of the 3G signal strength display." So what exactly does that mean? Like my colleague Dong Ngo, I've seen a few more bars on my display but the 3G reception seems to be about the same.
Finally, some readers said that after the 2.1 update their iPhone started fetching e-mail far less frequently. I've haven't seen a change in that area so please tell me if you have.… Read more
Two weeks after releasing the largest capacity 1.8-inch hard drive, Toshiba announced on Thursday its MKxx29GSG series of this small form factor storage device that's finally catching up with the regular 2.5-inch laptop hard drives in terms of speed and storage space.
For a long time, 1.8-inch hard drives' performance was limited to 4,200rpm and the old-school ATA interface, making them significantly slower than the currently popular 2.5-inch hard drives that spin at 5,400rpm (or even faster at 7,200rpm) and use the SATA standard. That discrimination has ended now with Toshiba's … Read more
When you start out by setting the bar low, you don't need high expectations. We kick off the show with a discussion of Pirates 2, sequel to the highest budget adult film of all time. In other news, MySpace finally enters the music biz, plastic surgeons ban unfeasibly large breasts, and Justin is an albatross.
Dan the Mantern here. Somehow today's banter turned to the topic of haggard Chinese dudes who play supporting roles in action movies. Despite their recognizable faces and remarkable performances, too often these evil henchman and characters used to advance a plot line are stripped of the accolades they so deserve. I'd like to take this opportunity to initiate a new tradition at The 404: The Supporting Actor Hall of Fame.
For the first installment, we'll remember the career of the late Victor Wong. Known for his quirky haircut and lazy eye, Wong's breakthrough role as Egg Shen in Big Trouble in Little China had us reeling. Wong went on to portray The Old Man in Eddie Murphy's The Golden Child, Fighter in Bloodsport, and Grandpa Mori Shintaro in 3 Ninjas, 3 Ninjas Kick Back, 3 Ninjas Knuckle Up, and 3 Ninjas: High Noon at Mega Mountain. Unfortunately, we lost this timeless actor in late 2001. Rest in peace, Victor Wong, we miss ya buddy.EPISODE 192 Download today's podcast … Read more
Scanbuy, the developer of the 2D EZcode bar codes, announced on Wednesday that it has secured a global agreement with Samsung to preload the ScanLife mobile 2D bar code reader application on Samsung's camera phones.
The deal comes into effect as early as next month when Samsung starts selling these phones in Spain, Italy, and Denmark. With this move, Scanbuy hopes to quickly expand the use of EZcodes in other major markets, including Mexico and the United States.
EZcodes allows for instantaneously executing an action that the code is associated with, such as launching a Web site without you … Read more
Leica has announced a new medium-format DSLR camera and lens system, the Leica S2. The S2 uses Kodak's 37.5MP CCD sensor with a 3:2 aspect ratio. The sensor measures 30x45mm--56 percent larger than a 35mm full-frame sensor, which measures 27x36mm, and smaller than the 36x48mm sensor found in some other medium-format digital backs.
The S2's body is dust and moisture sealed, with Leica's new S-system bayonet lens mount, for the new line of S series lenses. The new line of lenses will feature metal construction and weatherproofing. The S2 body will have a focal-plane shutter … Read more