Thursday, January 05, 2006

Intel Shows Its Cards

Word to the wise: never kill your firewall software before you scan your system. It had a memory leak and when I killed it, my system was bombarded and it took me a good hour to fix things up. Spybot is what ended up helping the most. So except for the new Porsche, the only worthwhile stuff today in technology comes from CES 2006. What really knocked me off my socks was Intel's presentation of their new line of microprocessors. To complement already well-known logo change, they officially announced that the Core Solo (one core) and the Core Duo (dual core) will be their first new brand since the Pentium and at the size of a dime will blow it away. Since this is the lowest power dual-core processor yet, how much do you want to bet this is what they told Apple about early last year? They only had an iBook with the logo on the screen on stage, but that's all you need to provoke excitement as to how powerful the next PowerBook can really be. Finally, a creative logo from IntelWhat's also a big deal is the Viiv (rhymes with "live"), which actually has a neat logo. This processor is designed to deliver home media content (i.e. shows and music and videos) fast enough to allow HD at high resolutions (i.e. a big screen LCD), and they rounded up a bunch of celebrities to announce ClickStar. This service will allow you to watch movies over the Internet a few weeks after they're released! Yes, it would appear that Intel has gotten its groove back, and I'm excited to see more from these technologies later this year (you know you are, too).

I'm sure that Microsoft is working hard to incorporate the Viiv with its Media Center software, and they're definitely keeping their eye on Apple's Front Row. I think that with Viiv and some more bug fixes, Microsoft can definitely leap ahead at this point. If you don't get the big picture: imagine your VCR/DVD rig replaced by a machine that can record media directly to a hard drive, in HD no less, and even easier to access than a DVR, plus integration with all your other crap. Integration was a big theme at Bill Gates's keynote speech, where he started out with his vision (which I've heard for two years now) that all your electronics can be centrally controlled. He managed to officially unveil Urge, which my readers should know is M$'s partnership with MTV to deliver a more interactive radio experience. He's also partnering with DirecTV for more Media Center content, and it wouldn't be complete without a demo of Windows Vista. The Xbox 360 stuff was rather lackluster, but at least they showed up! Sony didn't bring anything PS3-related with them. Google will have its big day on Friday, where they're expected to announce the ability for consumers to purchase video content on Google Video among other things. However, don't expect them to entertain speculation of a Google PC, which I had already figured to be way too early to think about, as they have denied all claims.

A day at CES is just too big to fit in two paragraphs, and I still have just a couple more highlights to get to. Most people were unimpressed with the Rokr E1, but now there's the E2, which in addition to using Windows Media Player has removed the song cap, incorporated USB 2.0, and is using better memory card technology. It's a huge step up, but how much will it cost? USRobotics showed off a USB Internet Speakerphone, which is neat because it reflects everyone jumping on the VoIP bandwagon with an affordable device. I'm listening to the good podcasts and will keep you updated as I hear more stuff than I can find on Engadget, and I'd like to plug yesterday's Rocketboom video podcast for showing off pulse points, which are basically self-contained intranets to give extremely fast, relevant content to the people in the area. I can definitely see this growing, so it's worth a look (though Amanda Congdon usually looks better).

The biggest movie news today would probably have to be the SAG award nominations. I haven't seen enough movies this year to make my picks, but if you have maybe you should make some of your own. Speaking of award shows though, we now know that Jon Stewart will be hosting this year's Oscars because not only is he hilarious, but a lot of the big movies last year were rather political and that just happens to be his area of expertise. CES bore witness to the unveiling of several Blu-ray and HD-DVD players that I felt were unnecessary to really talk much about, though the the latter ones are cheaper, but I though you all might want to see Sony's initial line-up of Blu-ray releases, only a few of which are actually good. I don't think that the included Java games will be enough to boost Blu-ray sales for Stealth though. Yahoo Movies has a decent trailer for the upcoming teen flick She's the Man, which may actually be fun, but it may cause you to ponder how trailers are made. Well now one such editor tells all about the process and it's extremely informative, and a little scary. I have some pictures to leave you with. A couple are from Sunshine, the thriller with a slightly impressive cast (including Cillian Murphy). The other two are from Superman Returns, and since I'm so hyped up for it I might as well just post the one with Lex:

Click to enlarge

I'm going to do the Thursday Threesome this week since it had a Texas theme:

Onesome: Hook-- Just to get us back in the swing of things after the holidays: when you're at home, where do your keys hang out, on a hook by the door? ...or do they have a special place? ...or do you find them wherever they landed the last time you walked in ?
I just toss them in my dresser drawer with my watch and wallet. I think a hook might be a little too obvious, and it's unnecessary for me.

Twosome: 'em-- Do you use contractions like " 'em " in your daily conversations? ...or do people use a contraction or phrase that particularly bugs you past the point of rationality?
Actually, I do. I guess it's the little Texan inside of me, but I do it completely unknowingly. I can't really think of a particular contraction that I hate.

Threesome: Horns-- On the Horns of a dilemma: if you had only one movie you could nominate for the Academy Awards for 2005, which would it be? ...and why? The screenplay? ...the lead player(s)? ...the setting?
That's unfair for me to answer since I haven't seen enough movies this year. I want to say Batman Begins just because it showed us that comic book movies aren't just for comic book geeks. They can be very real and extremely well-made.


Ookami Snow said...

'em is a needed part of the English language... if you didn't have it how would you say "Up and at 'em!"?

..."Up and at them?" ...Lame

Pieces of Me said...

Hey thanks for stopping by my site...I can think of better movies from this year but batman was pretty good...I had never seen a batman movie before and so being my first one I was very pleased!! Anyways glad UT won!! TTYL

[Mat] said...

Batman was nice.

Damn, best of 2005? that's hard... No movie marked me that year. The potter one was good, but not the better one. Star wars 3 was good too, but not that good.
Cinderella Man, I guess. It's just plain good. It kept me on the edge of my seat all along. Plus, everyone loves and underdog.

Intel's on fire, it seems. We'll see on that all ends up. ;)

Superman seems better and better.

Well, see you on monday :)

Anality said...

I am a Texan and I wasn't really rooting for USC. Actually, I wasn't rooting for either team. . .just trying to annoy Jennyfer.

and hello.