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24.com Messenger July 7, 2006

Posted by cbeech in Adobe - Flash, Fun Stuff, News, News - Tech, Tech.

Finally done!! About time too! This is the official release of the instant messenger we’ve been working on for the past 6 months.
Please download guys and girls and let me know what u think!

Avaliable via: http://www.messenger.24.com
Will post more on my involvement in the project soon, so stay tuned 🙂

You can add me: chrisbeech@24.com


IBM, GIT overclock CPU to 500GHz June 20, 2006

Posted by cbeech in News - Tech, Tech.
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If you were wowwed by those Japanese modders who overclocked their stock CPU to 7GHz, wait till you hear about IBM’s latest foray into the world of ultra-fast computing: together with researchers from the digital camera-hating Georgia Institute of Technology, Big Blue has managed to overclock a chip to an unheard of 500GHz.

Granted, the model they used already had a blistering native clock speed of 350GHz to begin with, but we’re still floored that you could actually coax a small silicon wafer into operating at an incredible half-terahertz. As you probably suspected, there’s no way to achieve speeds like this at room temperature, so the team froze their high-performance silicon-germanium chip to a super-chilly negative 451-degrees Fahrenheit, which is just eight degrees above absolute zero.

Unfortunately, after learning about this breakthrough, electronics giant Sony apparently felt that consumers would no longer be impressed with their much-hyped Cell processor, so they’ve once again delayed the PS3

until IBM can make the liquid helium-cooled CPU suitable for mass production . Expect the 500GHz PS3 to hit stores sometime in 2011.


MySpace, The 27.4 Billion Pound Gorilla June 15, 2006

Posted by cbeech in News - Tech.
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It’s worth noting the massive increase in users and traffic at MySpace over the last few months. Paul Kedrosky summarized the key October 2005 MySpace metrics from a BusinessWeek article late last year. Those stats, along with more recent April Comscore and internal Myspace data, are summarized below.

MySpace has 75 million users (see somewhat dated comparison stats here), 15 million daily unique logins, is growing by a massive 240,000 new users per day, and is generating nearly 30 billion monthly page views (that’s 10,593 page views per second). The number of page views generated by each unique visitor is stunning – clearly these users are very, very passionate about the site, and it’s unclear if they do much else on the web besides hang out on MySpace.


Top 10 Strangest Gadgets of the Future June 15, 2006

Posted by cbeech in News - Tech, Science, Tech.

Some very cool and very strange gadgets!


ADSL Price Reduction from Telkom June 15, 2006

Posted by cbeech in News - Tech.

Telkom has filed for price reductions with ICASA (the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa) with the main beneficiaries being the ‘line rental’ charge of their ADSL service.

An average reduction of 24% across all ADSL access charges are expected, with a maximum reduction of around 32%. These changes are expected to become effective as of 1 August 2006.

Furthermore the monthly rental for residential ISDN services will drop by up to 20% and there will be a decrease of up to 39% in the rates for IPLC’s (International Private Leased Circuits).

Long distance and international call charges will drop. Long distance calls will drop by 10% costing 72c per minute during Standard Time and 36c per minute during Callmore Time.


International calls will drop by 9.9% in the average price per minute with calls to the US costing 99c per minute during Global Off-peak Time and R1.20 in peak hours. Calls to the UK are slightly more expensive at R1.30 in off-peak and R1.40 in peak hours.

The fact that only long-distance and international call rates are dropping may be testimony to the impact that VOIP (Voice over IP) is having on the voice market. Many South Africans with adequate Internet connections, generally an ADSL service, are now using SkypeOut which is free if used from PC to PC and from a PC to a telephone can cost as little as 13c per minute.

Telkom has also recently come under fire at the ICASA ADSL pricing hearings for their high tariffs for ADSL services. One of the factors pushing up the price is the high charge for line rental which only Telkom receives. This is currently the R477 for the 512 DSL service or the R680 for the 1024 DSL offering.

The proposed DSL 192 and 384 monthly rental is R245 from 1st August 2006 – a price decrease of R25 (9.3%) on the former and R114 (31.8%) on the latter.

“We are combining our DSL 192 and DSL 384 services, and DSL 192 customers will automatically be upgraded in due course to an up-to 384kbit/s service, depending on network infrastructure. In future, business customers will also be able to subscribe to the DSL 384 service,” explained Steven Hayward, Telkom’s Managing Executive for Retail Marketing.

Reductions in line rental for their flagship service, the 1024 DSL offering, will fall by 24.1% (R164 per month) costing R516. The 512 DSL service will also drop from the current price of R477 to R362 per month (also a 24.1% reduction).

The news for consumers is all round good with the end user set to benefit from Telkom’s proposed reductions. In the long run it could turn out to boost Telkom’s revenue with more users able to hop on board.

Telkom customers are set to benefit from overall price reductions from August this year if price changes filed by the telecommunications giant are approved by the Independent Communication Authority of South Africa (ICASA).

Telkom filed an overall price decrease of 2.1% with ICASA this morning. If accepted, the proposed price changes will become effective from 1st August 2006.

“Telkom is committed to its customer centricity drive and we are certain that the proposed price changes made to ICASA will result in significant savings for all our customers,” said Hayward.

Reductions in the price of Telkom’s voice and data services have been on the cards for a long time and since the new CEO’s arrival consumers have been waiting for evidence of his new consumer-centric approach.

This is the first measurable sign that Papi Molotsane has made towards giving customers what they really want – lower prices.

It is however disappointing that customers had to wait since August last year for the next price reduction, and that it will effectively be a year since the previous ADSL reductions before consumers benefit from this announcement.

How to Take Back 20% of Your Bandwidth From Windows XP June 15, 2006

Posted by cbeech in News - Tech, Software, Tech.
1 comment so far

Microsoft reserves 20% of your available bandwidth for its own
purposes (suspect for updates and interrogating your machine etc..)
Here’s how to get it back:

Click Start–>Run–>type “gpedit.msc” without the “

This opens the group policy editor. Then go to:

Computer Policy–>Computer Configuration–>Administrative
Templates–>Network–>QOS Packet Scheduler–>Limit Reservable

Double click on Limit Reservable bandwidth. It will say it is not configured, but the truth is under the ‘Explain’ tab :

default, the Packet Scheduler limits the system to 20 percent of the
bandwidth of a connection, but you can use this setting to override the


New Samsung Notebook Replaces Hard Drive With Flash June 15, 2006

Posted by cbeech in News - Tech.
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Is the hard drive history?

Samsung Electronics said Tuesday that it will launch two mobile computers in early June that will do away with hard drives altogether, replacing them with 32 gigabytes of NAND flash memory. The notebooks will be the first to use flash memory as the main storage device.

The Samsung Q1, described as an “ultra-computing device,” will be complemented by the Q30, a 12.1-inch notebook PC. The retail price for the Q1-SSD will be 2.3 million Korean won, (about $2,430), while the Q30-SSD will sell for 3.5 million won (about $3,700). Unfortunately for U.S. consumers, both will be sold in Korea only.

Magnetic rotating hard drives have typically been used inside notebooks and PCs simply because they can be manufactured more cheaply than flash memory, although the need to rotate the disc consumes more power than the solid-state flash chips. Samsung’s components division, however, is the largest manufacturer of flash memory in the world, and is already the chief supplier of the NAND flash found within the Apple iPod nano MP3 player.

Solid-state disks have also been used in specialized enterprise applications. Samsung had said previously that it planned to develop a hybrid hard drive, using both magnetic storage and a “cache” of flash memory to decrease boot times.

The use of flash memory will allow the computers to enjoy several advantages, according to Samsung. Perhaps the most significant, according to the company, is that the Q30-SSD will operate in complete silence, lacking the quiet chatter of the hard drive or even a processor fan. The Q30 will include a 1.2-GHz Intel Celeron M 753, which will likely be passively cooled.

In addition, the two devices will boot approximately 25 percent to 50 percent faster, reading and writing data at 53 Mbytes/s and 23 Mbytes/s, respectively, significantly faster than a typical 4,200-RPM hard drive. But faster magnetic hard drives, such as Seagate’s 5,400-RPM Momentus drive, offer burst transfer rates of 57.6 Mbytes/s.

The NT-Q30-SSD will include the Celeron 753, a 12.1-inch WXGA (1280×768) display, 512 Mbytes of RAM, an Intel GMA 900 integrated chipset, an ultraslim optical drive, 56K modem, IEEE 802.11g Wi-Fi, internal sound, a DMB digital TV tuner, and either a 3-cell or a 6-cell battery, all in a 1.14-kg (2.51 pounds) chassis. The notebook will measure 287.7 x 197.5 x 18.0 to 23.8 mm.

The NT-Q1-SSD, meanwhile, will weigh just 751 grams. Inside the case the ultraportable will house a 900-MHz Celeron M 353 microprocessor, a a 7-inch 800 x 480 TFT-LCD, 512 Mbytes of RAM, a GMA 900 integrated chipset, a 10/100 Fast Ethernet connection as well as IEEE 802.11b/g wireless LAN, internal sound, a DMB TV tuner, and either the 3-cell or 6-cell battery. The NT-Q1-SSD will measure 227.5 x 139.5 x 24.5 to 26.5 mm, Samsung said.

Magnetic tape prototype makes data leap June 15, 2006

Posted by cbeech in News, News - Tech.
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Magnetic tape isn’t dead, IBM and Fuji Photo would like you to know.

Researchers at IBM’s Almaden Research Center and at Fuji Photo have devised a prototype storage system utilizing a dual-layer magnetic tape that can hold 6.67 billion bits of data per square inch. That’s 15 times greater than most popular types of magnetic tape on the market today.

The achievement helps bolster the argument that tape will continue to remain an economical means of archival storage for years to come. The low costs and relatively small size of tape are tough to beat. A linear tape open (LTO) cartridge–an industrial tape storage cassette about half the size of a VHS tape– equipped with the new tape could hold the equivalent of about 8 million books, according to IBM. Housing that many books in a library would take 57 miles of shelves.

Storing data in massive tape libraries also consumes very little energy, especially when compared with hard drives. The tape market accounted for around $4.82 billion in revenue in 2005, according to statistics from IDC.

Storage systems equipped with this new type of tape could hit the market in about five years, according to IBM.

The tape, created by Fuji, consists of a thin layer of barium ferrite crystals dispersed uniformly. Barium ferrite does not corrode or change chemically over time, making it a good choice for long-term storage. Fuji has produced storage tape with barium ferrite crystals for several years but has continued to refine the formula and deposition process. This experimentation has led to the current results.


Google’s Goal: A Worldwide Web of Books May 30, 2006

Posted by cbeech in News - Google, News - Tech.
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It’s odd to hear Vinton Cerf, regarded as one of the founding fathers of the Internet, to gush over ink-on-paper books.

The electronic pioneer and computer scientist, who now works as Google’s chief Internet evangelist, is also a bibliophile who has a collection of about 10,000 hard-copy volumes lining shelves at his home in McLean.

Google has vowed to create a full-text index of seven-million books in the University of Michigan library, along with millions more in the university libraries at Harvard, Stanford and Oxford, as well as the New York Public Library. The idea is similar to Amazon.com‘s “search inside the book” feature, eventually allowing anyone using Google’s free book search ( http://books.google.com/ ) not only to see sample pages from books but also search their contents and find excerpts matching search terms.

Google is not alone in trying to digitize library books. Yahoo, Microsoft and other Internet players have joined a collaborative effort called the Open Content Alliance, which is planning to digitize not only library books but other types of multimedia, as well, making them all accessible on the Web.


Apple Store – Fifth Avenue May 29, 2006

Posted by cbeech in News - Tech.
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A Flickr slideshow of the new Apple Store… Wow!!