Category Archives: Reviews

iPhone 3GS

Speed
The “S” stands for “SPEED!” And according to Apple, it is faster launching applications or rendering Web pages.

• The iPhone 3GS has a new processor built-in. Apple claims that it is up to two times faster than the previous generation: Launching messages is 2.1 faster, load the NY Times in Safari: 2.9 times faster. It also consumes less, which has an impact on the improved battery life.

Camera
This is one of the strong points of the iPhone 3GS, according to Apple. They increased the resolution to 3 megapixels, which—judging from the shots they showed-seems much better quality under all conditions.

• 3 Megapixels sensor.
• New camera, with auto focus, auto exposure, and auto white balance.
• You can also tap to focus, changing white balance in the process. That is really neat, if you ask me.
• Special macro and low light modes.
• The camera also supports photo and video geotagging.
• Any application can access all the camera functions now.

• It supports video, 30 frames per second VGA with auto focus, auto white balance, and auto exposure.
• You can trim the video shot just using your finger, then share it via MMS, email, MobileMe and YouTube.

Connectivity
The other part of the “S” is the support for the faster 7.2 Mbps 3G standard, which in theory will deliver data faster to your iPhone.

• Three band UMTS/HSDPA.
• Four band GSM/EDGE.
• Wi-Fi 802.11b/g.
• Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR

Graphics
• The new iPhone 3GS includes new 3D graphics support in hardware. This means faster and more complicated 3D games.
• Same 3.5-inch widescreen multitouch display, but this time it has a fingerprint-resistant oleophobic coating. I wonder if it will withstand a full frontal Shake Shack burger attack.

Design

• Same design as before, including the glossy finish of the back (so much for all the rumors about the matte back.)
• Same size as the old iPhone 3G: 4.5 x 2.4 x 0.48 inches.
• The weight increases a bit: One ounce to 4.8 ounces (135 grams vs 133 grams).
• Greener materials: Arsenic-free glass, BDF-free, Mercury-free LCD.

New special features

• It has a magnetometer, which works with a Compass application, third parties, and it is integrated into the new Google maps app, showing your orientation with a small semitransparent cone.
• Voice control. You can now talk with your iPhone, Enterprise-style. You can instruct it to play similar songs to the one you are playing, or call people.
• Nike + support built in.
• Supports accessibility features, like zooming on text, inverting video, and voice over when you touch whatever text is on screen.

Battery life
• One of the more important new features is the increased battery life.
• According to Apple, you will get up to 12 hours of talk time on 2G and 5 on 3G, with a up to 300 hour standby time.
• On 3G, it will deliver 5 hours of internet use.
• On Wi-Fi, Internet goes up to 9 hours.
• Video playback is 10 hours vs 30 hours for audio.

Would be available in India in last week of August….

Ignore the Timing, AMD's News is Huge

As the Test Center’s Brian Sheinberg reports in his review, AMD is delivering to market CPUs, 3.0GHz X4 945 and the 3.2GHz Black Edition X4 955, that could spark a new round of competition in desktop pricing in ways we haven’t seen in a while.

The Black Edition X4 955 is priced at $245, a fraction of the price of PC processors in the same ballpark from Intel. While Intel has been simply dominant for the past two years in both engineering and execution, and its latest Nehalem processors for servers are the most powerful we’ve ever seen, AMD’s latest Black Edition CPU has all the earmarks of a game-changer for system builders and their customers. The AMD pricing scheme on the new chips will invite many into the world of screamingly high performance that otherwise would have had to wait a year or two until Intel pricing dropped.

Here’s how AMD does it, according to Sheinberg’s review:

With another acronym, BEMP (Black Edition Memory Profiles), AMD has worked with memory manufacturers to create a database of specifications for certain high-frequency DDR3 modules. When using a motherboard with a BIOS that supports it, OverDrive 3.0 can use BEMP to look up frequency and latency settings and automatically set the parameters within the BIOS.

Just by using BEMP, our Geekbench2 score jumped to 6,114 but, this being a Black Edition, we decided to push the CPU a little and do some overclocking. Using only stock heat sink and fan cooling, reviewers slowly increased the processor’s multiplier and voltage levels, finally reaching a surprising overall speed of 4.0GHz — almost a full GHz above its out-of-the-box frequency. At this speed, our system’s Geekbench2 score was 7,434.

Getting the most out of a PC’s hardware profile will be key to getting the most out of Windows Vista, Windows 7 when it ships, or even Linux for that matter.

Headlines today may be spread out among other stories, but keep an eye on AMD and its latest PC processors and technology during the coming weeks and months. Keep an eye on Intel, too, and how they may respond.

sourced from: http://www.crn.com/

Mac vs. PC: What you don’t get for $699

I‘m a sucker for a well-made TV ad.

Inspired by the Nike “Just Do It” and “Air Jordan” campaigns of decades past, I mentally mapped out storyboards of the spots I wanted to produce. Nowadays I laugh at clever beer and soda commercials and get mad or pump my fist in the air along with political ads.

I cheered for Apple’s 1997 “Think Different” spot that featured actor Richard Dreyfuss reading the “Here’s to the Crazy Ones” speech. The commercial resonated in a house full of Mac users at a time when Macs were widely considered an endangered species.

Apple’s more recent “Mac vs. PC” ads lampooning Microsoft strike a different chord: Macs are friendly, cool, easy to use, and they don’t have the kinds of problems usually associated with Microsoft’s Windows operating system; PC, portrayed by the hilarious John Hodgman, comes across as ridiculous – not unlike the real-world, buggy Windows Vista.

Now Microsoft is fighting back with its own advertising campaign. I’ve enjoyed some of its elements. The Seinfeld spots were weird. I was intrigued by some of the “I’m a PC” spots that aired last fall, depicting PC users engaged in a variety of jobs – teaching law, protecting endangered species, blogging for Barack Obama.

The message: You can use a Windows PC and still do cool and interesting things. Not bad. Then came the adorable little girls: Kylie, age 4, and Alexa, age 7, e-mailing pictures of fish and stitching together pictures of a fort into one. Microsoft, it seemed, had finally found its advertising voice.

Then came Lauren, the perky, red-haired twentysomething meant to represent an average American shopping for a computer. She wants a notebook with a 17-in. screen, and if she finds it for less than $1,000, she can keep it. Following her as she shops, we learn she considers the Mac too expensive – that she’s not “cool enough to be a Mac person,” she whines.

From the Apple store, it’s off to Best Buy, where she finds a PC that meets her specifications for $699. Mission accomplished, she jumps up and down clapping as though she won on The Price Is Right, ending the spot by saying “I’m a PC, and I got just what I wanted.” Aaaand Cut!

The price weapon
Microsoft used earlier ads to defend itself suitably against Apple’s nerdiness allegations. Now Microsoft is on the advertising offensive, wielding price as a weapon of choice. It’s an effective approach during a recession. But as is always the case with advertising, the full story is more nuanced.

Yes, $699 beats the $2,800 you’d pay for a Mac with a 17-in. screen. But when it comes to PCs, there’s still a great deal more to buy.

First, there’s security software. The PC in question comes with a 60-day trial Norton Internet Security 2009 from Symantec. After the trial runs out you’ll pay Symantec $50 a year to protect your PC (and up to two others in your home) from all the nasty viruses, worms, and other malware lurking on the Internet. That’s $150 over the three years Lauren is likely to hold on to her PC. No need for antivirus on the Mac.

Next, let’s say something goes wrong on the computer once the warranty expires and that it requires the intervention of a third party. Geek Squad will charge you $129 just for a diagnosis. A diagnosis from the Genius Bar in Apple’s retail stores? Free.

Then there’s iLife, the suite of multimedia tools that comes standard on the Mac. With iLife you can organise photos and home movies and turn them into watchable DVDs. Garageband helps you create your own music and another iLife element aids in Web site creation.

Extras cost extra
It’s hard to replicate that bundle if you’re a Windows user. The Hewlett-Packard machine in Lauren’s case does ship with discs for Muvee Reveal, a video-editing program that usually costs $80, and CyberLink DVD Suite, which runs $104.

But if she wants Adobe’s Photoshop Elements, including a membership in Photoshop.com Plus, she’ll need to shell out about $140. Sonic Solutions’ Roxio Creator 2009, which combines video-editing and DVD-creating tools, will cost another $100. And the closest equivalent to Garageband on Windows is Cubase Sequel and it goes for another $100.

Add it all up and it’s not hard to imagine Lauren’s $699 computer costing something closer to $1,500.

But that doesn’t include harder-to-quantify shortcomings. The HP’s battery lasts only 2.5 hours on a charge, compared with eight hours for the 17-in. MacBook Pro, which also happens to be 1.2 lb. lighter and boasts substantially better screen resolution: 1,920 pixels wide by 1,440 high, vs. 1,440 by 900 for the HP.

Even if Lauren doesn’t care about pixels and multimedia software, her machine still doesn’t measure up when it comes to overall consumer satisfaction. No less an authority than Consumer Reports rated Lauren’s computer fourth in a class of six with 17- to 18-in. displays. The MacBook Pro was tops, despite its higher price.

PC makers should focus more on quality
Usually silent on such things, Apple did give me a comment on the Microsoft ads. “A PC is no bargain when it doesn’t do what you want,” Apple spokesman Bill Evans says. “The one thing that both Apple and Microsoft can agree on is that everyone thinks the Mac is cool. With its great designs and advanced software, nothing matches it at any price.” Microsoft declined to comment.

Microsoft and its hardware partners wouldn’t have to make this case had they focused less in the past decade on driving prices down and more on quality. Forrester Research recently released results of a study of consumer experiences with computer companies, assessing their view of a machine’s usefulness, usability, and enjoyability. Apple ran the table in all three categories, well ahead of Gateway (now a unit of Acer), HP, and Dell.

PC makers in the Windows camp have done everything possible to make their products progressively worse by cutting corners to save pennies per unit and boost sales volume. There’s good reason Apple is seeing healthy profits while grabbing market share.

It refuses to budge on quality and so charges a higher price. Rather than running ads that seem clever at first but really aren’t, the Windows guys ought to take the hint and just build better computers.

Reliance Netconnect Broadband+

ADA group company Reliance Communications Limited announced the launch of its CDMA wireless broadband service, Reliance Netconnect Broadband Plus in Lucknow.


Netconect broadband service will be available in 35 cities covering 20,000 towns and 4.5 lakh villages as well as major road and rail routes across the country covering 99 per cent of India’s internet population.

Plans:


Reliance Communications Circle Head of network operations Shishir Shyam said, “Netconnect broadband plus has a peak downlink speed of up to 3.1 Mbps and a separate uplink speed of up to 1.8 Mbps, which is 30 per cent higher downlink rate as compared to any other wireless broadband offering.

I tested the connection in Relience Web world and the speed test results were

1677 Kbps download speed

255 Kbps upload speed

This is real good but the limit on the unlimited plan of 10 GB and the very high price plans will pull back the customers.

I my self am planning to get one for me. Lets see because lot more plans are to be unveiled and many more would be started form 1 May,2009.

This is what they say and now lets see what was the reality.

Residential Program vs non residential programs.

Currently there has been a trend in colleges to have classes around the clock. The classes are scheduled any time throughout the day and there are at times a gap of many hours in between. Consider for example my college. I am a student at Symbiosis Centre for Information technology which only has a residential program, which means that hostel  is compulsory for all students whether you like it or not.  This was my first time staying in a hostel and believe me I enjoyed a lot. Made so many friends and now it all seems like one big family.

It’s not that there are no issues at all between room mates but still one also has altercation in home with brothers and sisters too. Our day begins at 7 am and can go up to 12 in the night. The longest day which we had till now was from 9 in the morning to 12 midnight. Still it is good. We have a lot of time in between classes and people even go to watch movies if there is sufficient time between classes.

Comparing this with my previous experience from my previous college, I was in an Engineering college in Lucknow doing my Computer Engineering. The timing was 9 to 5 and it all felt like normal office. Mostly classes were back to back with one hour of break for lunch but something was missing. There was no feeling of this kind of bonding between the students like we have over here at SCIT.

The residential program teaches a lot. The sense of responsibility due to living on own and the fact that the roommates and the friends are the only people around when something happens creates an unknown sense of bonding among the students. In non residential program its difficult for the students to be together for a very long period to work on something while this not a restriction when you live in a hostel with all your friends.

One more thing I would like to mention over here is that mostly now days instead of professors industry people come to take classes and with a residential program where the students are there 24×7 the visiting faculty can schedule the lecture at any time along with their work.

Thousand Splendid Suns – Khalid Hosseeni

The story of two women who struggle for their life in Afganistan during the period of unrest and turmoil. They lose their loved ones, their homes and what not.

Its the story of two women Mariam and Laila both wives to the same man, Laila being the age of Mariam’s daughter. The novel is all about what the women have to face throughout their life. This is one of a kind story that i read and it made me think in a never before way about the women. I thought slightly on the same ideas but it never occured to me that a woman, a wife, a mother would go to such an extent just to make her mother, father, husband, daughter, son happy. The daughter leave their home, the home they have been living in for almost a couple of decades just because the society wants so. They leave everything behind them and land up in an unfamiliar territory. How it feels I dont know because I would not be able to experience that ever.

I would not have read this book if it had not been recommended to me by someone. But after reading it i went through a completely different experience.

“The teenage Mariam — the illegitimate daughter of a wealthy man, who is ashamed of her existence — is quickly married off to a much older shoemaker named Rasheed, a piggy brute of a man who says it embarrasses him “to see a man who’s lost control of his wife.”

Rasheed forces Mariam to wear a burqa and treats her with ill-disguised contempt, subjecting her to scorn, ridicule, insults, even “walking past her like she was nothing but a house cat.” Mariam lives in fear of “his shifting moods, his volatile temperament, his insistence on steering even mundane exchanges down a confrontational path that, on occasion, he would resolve with punches, slaps, kicks, and sometimes try to make amends for with polluted apologies and sometimes not.”

The life of the novel’s other heroine, Laila, who becomes Rasheed’s second wife, takes an even sharper trajectory toward ruin. Though she is the cherished daughter of an intellectual, who encourages her to pursue an education, Laila finds her life literally shattered when a rocket — lobbed by one of the warlord factions fighting for control of Kabul, after the Soviet Union’s departure — lands on her house and kills her parents.

Her beloved boyfriend, Tariq, has already left Kabul with his family — they have become refugees in Pakistan — and she suddenly finds that she is an orphan with no resources or friends. When she discovers that she is pregnant with Tariq’s child and learns that Tariq has supposedly died from injuries sustained in a rocket attack near the Pakistan border, she agrees to marry Rasheed, convinced that she and her baby will never survive alone on the streets of Kabul.”

Nytimes.com

How starbucks saved my life… a review

How starbucks changed my life

Michael Gates Gill

How starbucks changed my life is the story of a man who has a wonderful career and every thing in life. He was born to rich parents lived in the best part of New York in a mansion with 35 rooms and as a family tradition went to Yale for education. He didn’t have to wait for his job after education as one of his old friends helped him get a job at J. Walter Thompson advertising Company. He rises to the position of the CEO with his skills and efforts and then one fine day he is fired by a superior whom he had hired and helped to get a senior position than his.

After being fired when he looks back he realizes that all that he did for his work whether it was working long hours or staying away from family or even leaving them to get onto a project on Christmas was never enough and no one cared and as he grew old and was no use to the JWT he was fired. That brought him to the streets and all he could think was how it can happen to him. He starts his own company falls in love with another woman and has a kid with her and eventually when his former wife knows about this they separate and even his 4 children get annoyed with him. He runs his company for some time but as time passes the business gets slow and slow and eventually it dries out. This person was a coffee lover and used to visit Starbucks often to have his coffee. And it was this starbucks which offered him a job when he desperately needed one.

Though it was nowhere in comparison to his old job but still there was something in this job which was entirely different form the previous ones. No one was the boss at starbucks all were partners and every one was treated with respect whether it was the customers or employees. He was the only white guy in his store and this was the first time he saw the other side of the coin otherwise he had never known that there was a world like this right there in coexistence with him. His stay at starbucks teaches him to enjoy life and brings out his real self who is a funny guy and loves to connect with people and enjoys coffee a lot. It is these three qualities that make him the star of that store and the only person till date to get 5 stars in his review. His perspective to life changes as he gains experience in the store and he gets to learn a lot from the other who worked along with him. He feels sorry for the person he was but on the other hand is grateful for the change that happened to him and made him a better accepted person.

Love story by Erich Segal

Love story by Erich Segal is a love story as the name suggests which has been made into a block buster with the same name and is also been re made in Bollywood [Indian film industry] with the name “Kwahish”. Although the hindi movie was a flop and not at all upto the mark of the original works.

The book is a small one and once started i could not think of putting it down. I read it in just two sittings. The story is so loving and so much passionate that i even felt like crying. I just would wait till the end of my life for such love.

BEING IN LOVE MEANS NEVER HAVE TO SAY SORRY

My experiences with the book were good… I had more than 150 pages to read at 2 am in the morning and had class in morning at 10 but still i read whole of it. The end is heart breaking…. How can such things happen…. i guess even the god doesn’t know… The part i hated the most was the stubbornness of Oliver Barret Jr. and Oliver Barret Sr. They both love each other but still they just don’t want to express and neither of them is ready to say sorry… That reminds me that I also havent told my Dad explicitly that i love him… and I would be doing it ….  Over all a great read…
Probably one of the best love stories ever told, Love Story is one romantic novel that is sure to move you. Erich Segal has done a brilliant job in portraying two characters with which an entire generation could identify themselves. Given here is a short summary of the novel.

Love Story revolves around the lives of two young college lads, whose love for each other was immortal. Oliver Barrett, heir to the Barrett fortune and legacy and Jennifer Cavilleri, daughter of a poor baker who does not own a huge bank account but has lots of love. Oliver was expected to follow in his father’s huge footsteps, Jennifer, music major was to go on and study in Paris. But when they met, the sparks flew, and we get involved with them as their love grows deep and strong. Oliver turns his back on his family and fortune to marry Jenny. Jenny gives up her dreams of Paris and being a musician. They are happy with each other in their lives and the stable flow of income that is enough to sustain them. But life can be cruel and Jenny is diagnosed with leukemia. With just a few days to live, the novel speaks about the emotional pain they both go through.[source]

My PERFECT WORLD

Well ppl what to say about this game i cant think of right now. This is my first MMORPG [massively multiplayer online role playing game]. I played it for the first time when i was touring my country for my college Interviews. I am thankful to SIN who introduced me to this game. I play many characters my first being Neena which i lost i dont know how. Various others i play are harsh[EA] Mee2[EP] and McMeoW [WF]. I learned the game the hard way. Made lot of unneccesarry expenses and got messed up many times and keep doing it. I found this game very interesting more over the guilds are lot helpful. I have been into many guilds with my main player that is harsh but none i found satisfactory till i got into Entourage. Its awesome and i mean it. I wont be leaving this guild for anything. This is the best i have had of the perfect world. A recommendation though… if u play many characters place them in different guilds so u have large no of friends… at least i like many friends… I have been through tough times too in the game. The worst when my stats were messed up as an EA [harsh] then one of the friends @ANGEL@ helped me out of the blue. I now in a position that i can help new ones and i don’t leave a single chance to help others. One advice tho is that spend carefully and look for the materials lol…..

I wud be sticking to this game for long… cant tell how long but will stay around to help…

I am thankful to all in game friends and my GM’s and all others who helped me.

I’ll be there for u…. just pm me.

The source for all my knowledge about PERFECT WORLD

The Ultimate Monster database

My Guilds… For§aken2 >> McMeoW >> WF >>20

WARCRY >> Mee2 >> EP >>20

Entourage >> harsh >> EA >> 47