Archive for Grudzień, 2010

Techie gift guide for him and her

By admin, 10 grudnia, 2010, No Comment

Wondering what to give your loved one this festive season? Check out the latest Toshiba products below that are ideal presents for loved ones. Toshiba offers a wide range of products from laptops, digital life products and PC accessories that boast of design, performance, quality and features.

Holiday gift ideas

A perfect gift that they will surely appreciate is the latest external hard disk drive (HDD) series from Toshiba, the STOR.E ART3. This HDD has a capacity of up to 1 terabyte and is ideal for mobile users with a huge amount of data stored on their computers, who are looking for an easy-to-use backup solution. The STOR.E ART 3’s full version backup software allows even a full system backup for disaster recovery as well as data encryption to protect and save content. This highly portable HDD also has a shock resistance for maximum protection, and comes with exceptional five year warranty period after registration.

Excite them with the latest 3D technology with the Toshiba Satellite A665 3D. The multimedia and gaming machine is ready to playback videos stored on a Blu-ray 3D Disc[1] on the internal display and via HDMI on an external HDTV. Bundled with NVIDIA® 3D Vision™[2], the Satellite A665 comes with a pair of 3D Vision™ active-shutter glasses coupled with a wide-range USB infra-red emitter to deliver stereoscopic images with clarity, brightness and outstanding depth-of-field. This ultimate gift comes with Harman Kardon® stereo speakers and Dolby® Advanced Audio to complement the extraordinary optical experience with a voluminous, vibrant sound.

Surprise them this holiday season with a Toshiba STOR.E TV+ multimedia player that offers a capacity of up to 2 terabytes and plays all kind of multimedia files supporting various video, audio and picture formats including H.264 Full HD video codec.  The STOR.E TV+ allows accessing and streaming from any PC or Network Attached Storage (NAS) in the home network and performs as normal USB HDD or NAS device for back up purposes.

The Qosmio F60 features all guys look for in a multimedia laptop: an impressive 15.6” (39.6 cm) TruBrite® HD display with LED backlighting powered by a high performing graphics processing unit; a Blu-ray rewritable drive that also supports DVD media or a DVD-SuperMulti (DL) respectively[3]; the Toshiba upconversion software Resolution+; an integrated analogue and digital (DVB-T) Hybrid TV Tuner supporting the most popular TV broadcasting formats; an HD web camera, and high end Harman Kardon® stereo speakers providing vibrant audio.

Gadgets the gift of choice this festive season

By admin, 10 grudnia, 2010, No Comment

Forget about ties, bubble bath or soap on a rope – gadgets and cool tech products can be expected to be at the top of Christmas wish lists this year, according to eBucks, FNB’s hugely popular rewards programme.

“Christmas is a time to spoil your loved ones with that special gift you know they have been waiting for the whole year.  eBucks has consistently found gadgets to be very popular gifts during the festive season, and we suspect the same will apply this year,” says Adrienne Bewsher, Operations Executive at eBucks.

“The wide range of ‘cool tech products’ recently released in South Africa and available through the eBucks shop, will more than likely make an appearance on one of your loved ones ’ Christmas wish lists,” she believes.

According to eBucks, the most popular items this festive season will include:

64GB Apple iPad (WiFi +3G)

The top of the range Apple iPad has 64GB of memory, can connect to the Internet via 3G or WiFi, and with millions of apps to download off the Apple AppStore, there’s so much you can do with this device.  Read eBooks, comics, watch movies in high resolution, check your email, surf the web, play games…if technology and gadgets are your thing, the iPad will blow you away.

Sony PlayStation Move

Motion gaming – that is, using your body as the game controller – is quickly becoming the newest and most exciting way to enjoy your video games, particularly if you’re a family.  With the Sony PlayStation Move, you swop your traditional controller for two smaller paddles that you hold in each hand.  Motion capture technology picks up your hand and arm movements and, combined with accelerometers built into the controllers, you have one of the most accurate and pulse-racing game play experiences of your life – because you become the controller.  Now who said that playing video games wasn’t good for you?

32GB Apple iPod Touch

If music is your life, an iPod is the best companion you can have.  But the iPod isn’t just a music player anymore – there’s so much more to it nowadays.  With two built-in cameras, the iPod Touch allows you to make FaceTime video calls over a WiFi network.  What’s more, with HD video recording capabilities, an HD Retina touch screen display, and the ability to run applications, the iPod Touch is a pocket computer on steroids.

Amazon Kindle 3

Books are cool, but eBooks are cooler.  Imagine having Amazon’s entire book catalogue available for download at really good prices?  Imagine being able to take thousands of books along on holiday with you without the worry of space.  With the new Kindle 3, all of this is possible and so much more.  The Kindle 3 eBook reader is smaller, lighter and better on battery life (up to 1 month) than previous models, with a 50% better screen contrast for easier reading and built-in twitter and Facebook integration.  If you’re a book worm, or you’re planning to give books as gifts this festive season, consider a Kindle 3 instead.  You won’t be sorry.

eBucks is offering its members the opportunity to purchase the above gadgets, through the eBucks shop, at great prices.

“As the rewards programme of choice, eBucks offers real value to our members by truly helping them  stretch their wallets; while at the same time providing the widest range of spend choices and channels. eBucks also help members to give their loved ones great gifts with less of the financial pressure usually associated with this time of year,” concludes Bewsher.

IBM breaking ground in chip technology

By admin, 9 grudnia, 2010, No Comment

IBM Silicon Nanophotonics uses optical signals to connect chips together faster and with lower power

IBM scientists unveiled a new chip technology that integrates electrical and optical devices on the same piece of silicon, enabling computer chips to communicate using pulses of light (instead of electrical signals), resulting in smaller, faster and more power-efficient chips than is possible with conventional technologies.

The new technology, called CMOS Integrated Silicon Nanophotonics, is the result of a decade of development at IBM’s global Research laboratories. The patented technology will change and improve the way computer chips communicate – by integrating optical devices and functions directly onto a silicon chip, enabling over 10X improvement in integration density than is feasible with current manufacturing techniques.

IBM anticipates that Silicon Nanophotonics will dramatically increase the speed and performance between chips, and further the company’s ambitious Exascale computing program, which is aimed at developing a supercomputer that can perform one million trillion calculations—or an Exaflop—in a single second. An Exascale supercomputer will be approximately one thousand times faster than the fastest machine today.

“The development of the Silicon Nanophotonics technology brings the vision of on-chip optical interconnections much closer to reality,” said Dr. T.C. Chen, vice president, Science and Technology, IBM Research. “With optical communications embedded into the processor chips, the prospect of building power-efficient computer systems with performance at the Exaflop level is one step closer to reality.”

In addition to combining electrical and optical devices on a single chip, the new IBM technology can be produced on the front-end of a standard CMOS manufacturing line and requires no new or special tooling. With this approach, silicon transistors can share the same silicon layer with silicon nanophotonics devices. To make this approach possible, IBM researchers have developed a suite of integrated ultra-compact active and passive silicon nanophotonics devices that are all scaled down to the diffraction limit – the smallest size that dielectric optics can afford.

“Our CMOS Integrated Nanophotonics breakthrough promises unprecedented increases in silicon chip function and performance via ubiquitous low-power optical communications between racks, modules, chips or even within a single chip itself,” said Dr. Yurii A. Vlasov, Manager of the Silicon Nanophotonics Department at IBM Research. “The next step in this advancement is to establishing manufacturability of this process in a commercial foundry using IBM deeply scaled CMOS processes.”

By adding just a few more processing modules to a standard CMOS fabrication flow, the technology enables a variety of silicon nanophotonics components, such as: modulators, germanium photodetectors and ultra-compact wavelength-division multiplexers to be integrated with high-performance analog and digital CMOS circuitry.  As a result, single-chip optical communications transceivers can now be manufactured in a standard CMOS foundry, rather than assembled from multiple parts made with expensive compound semiconductor technology.

The density of optical and electrical integration demonstrated by IBM’s new technology is unprecedented – a single transceiver channel with all accompanying optical and electrical circuitry occupies only 0.5mm2 – 10 times smaller than previously announced by others. The technology is amenable for building single-chip transceivers with area as small as 4x4mm2 that can receive and transmit over Terabits per second that is over a trillion bits per second.

Samsung’s bada Developer Challenge winners

By admin, 9 grudnia, 2010, No Comment

Samsung today announced the winners of ‘bada Developer Challenge,’ an application development contest for the bada platform which took place between May and December in 2010. Entrants participated in the contest online through Samsung’s bada developer site.

The bada Developer Challenge attracted 2,077 teams from 54 countries. Samsung selected 34 winning applications, with the winners receiving US $2.7 million between them – as well as gaining marketing support to promote their applications on the Samsung Apps site.

“Samsung is excited to see such a great response from developers who entered applications to the bada Developer Challenge,” said JK Shin, President and Head of Mobile Communications Business at Samsung Electronics, “We will roll out additional bada-based smart phones and continue to support bada developers in making and marketing high-quality applications.”-

The grand prize winner, who won US$300,000, was Mooncoder in Poland. The winner’s application “Little Sailor” is a 3D yacht racing game that allows users to experience a realistic sailing simulation – with the help of intricate controls and colorful graphics. The LittleSailor application scored highest in the creativity, commercial potential, functionality, and user-friendliness categories.

“We are extremely happy to receive the top prize in the contest organized by Samsung Electronics, a leading global company that is making inroads in software and applications,” said Maciej Komosinski and Szymon Ulatowski, of Mooncoder which developed Little Sailor. “We believe bada will evolve into a platform that offers great opportunities to developers through Samsung’s strength in the mobile arena. We will continue to join developer initiatives organized by Samsung in order to create more interesting and useful applications.”

Eight other winners also received US $100,000 apiece, including badaSports, Doogie, Bang, WAMO_Camera, TouchRetouch, Bling-Bling Reader and Parking.

The award ceremony was held at the bada Developer Day in Seoul on December 8, which marked bada’s first-year anniversary. At the bada Developer Day, Samsung provided a guide to developing applications for bada; including technical support regarding the platform as well as more information about the certification and registration process of Samsung Apps, the application marketplace for bada.

In addition to the Samsung Wave – the first bada smart phone- launched in June, Samsung has launched additional models such as the Wave II, Wave525, Wave533, Wave575 and Wave723. Sales of bada handsets are expected to reach 5 million units before the end of 2010.

Samsung Apps, Samsung’s application store, has grown with the success of the Wave series; the total number of application downloads worldwide is expected to surpass 50 million by December, demonstrating the rising popularity of bada apps among smart phone users. Launched in France, Italy and the UK in September 2009, Samsung Apps is now available in 118 countries.

Samsung has been supporting developers in a number of ways; mainly through its online bada Developer site and also through offline local Developer Day events held regularly around the world. To build a better mobile eco-system, Samsung plans to introduce additional developer support programs, which include online and offline education courses for bada programming, online Q&A’s via the bada Developer site and support for the publication of bada technical books.

Lenovo ThinkPad helping SMBs

By admin, 9 grudnia, 2010, No Comment

Lenovo is focusing 18 years of innovation of its ThinkPad notebook range on providing exceptional ease of information technology (IT) use for small and medium businesses (SMBs).

Since its inception in 1992, ThinkPad’s evolution has been marked by more than 1 000 industry awards acknowledging its pioneering role in on the move computing. ThinkPad was the first notebook to have a thin film transistor (tft) flat screen, to have a DVD ROM, a fingerprint reader, a security sub-system, and, this year, a dual screen workstation.

By October 2010, 60 million units had been sold worldwide.

“Innovation is the hallmark of the ThinkPad, but not for innovation’s sake,” says Lenovo director, Worldwide ThinkPad Product Marketing, Jerry Paradise, who visited South Africa at the end of November 2010. “We research our target markets very closely and our objective is to make using computers easier, more intuitive, and more productive for them.

“With ThinkPad, we’ve honed that objective into a particular focus on small businesses– companies with as few as 10 and as many as 100 users. We use all the combined benefits of the innovation that has gone into the ThinkPad to address the technology needs that are specific to these customers”.

Because SMBs rarely have in-house IT managers or full-time IT staff, they struggle to standardise on IT policies or execute crucial housekeeping disciplines such as back-up and software patches. The sophistication of users also varies hugely from one SMB to another.

“All of which creates business performance as well as security and disaster recovery challenges for the business,” Paradise says. “However, a great many of the best practice IT management issues can be addressed by building the required capabilities into the computers themselves. So, we’ve embedded into ThinkPad intelligence that automates most of the basic tasks – such as backups, updates, and remote data disablement – that are needed to maintain and manage the machines in relation to the data and systems with which they work.

“The ThinkPad also automates connectivity at work, at home, and in places like airports. And, the keyboard has been streamlined, eliminating all the keys that are used infrequently or not at all.

“So, an SMB can focus on running the business rather than its computers.”

As an SMB’s primary business tool, the ThinkPad spends a lot of time on the road and in challenging physical conditions. “For that reason, the notebook is designed to be robust and reliable as well as intelligent,” Paradise says. “Independence from maintenance and management staff also means physical independence in terms of the ability of the machine to withstand rough handling and not need much repair and support from hardware engineers. So, we test the ThinkPad with the same rigour as we apply to our much bigger machines – and we keep it simple and streamlined, in order to expose as little surface area as possible to mishaps.”

Paradise says that innovating with the ThinkPad will continue.

Within the emerging markets, SMBs represent a hypergrowth segment. According to IDC, the growth of PC sales in emerging markets over the next 4-5 years will be twice that of mature markets, with the emerging markets accounting for 70 percent of worldwide sales.

“In other words, as the influence of SMBs on the economy increases, so business models and SMB requirements of technology will change. Lenovo plans to be the facilitator of that progress,” says Paradise.

Get Smart Now with your cellphone spending this festive season

By admin, 6 grudnia, 2010, No Comment

Your cellphone bill can quickly spin out of control during the festive season, when you may be travelling overseas, spending hours on the phone to wish friends and family well, or sending out dozens of text messages with season’s greetings.

Here’s a few ways that you can save money on your cellphone bill, courtesy of Nashua Mobile:

Get the right phone for your needs – Think about what you really want your phone to do – messaging, media, GPS and so on – and look for one that meets your needs and budget. There are some great-looking, feature-rich entry level smartphones for people who want some basic data services and standard texting and voice – they might do nicely if you’re not a fashionista.

Instant messaging means instant savings – Depending on your data bundle, you might be able to enjoy significant savings if you use an instant messaging application on your phone rather than sending a string of SMSes to your friends while organising your plans for New Year’s Eve.

Try to use services like the BlackBerry Messenger. If you own a BlackBerry smartphone and sign up for the BlackBerry Internet Service (BIS), you can send as many text, voice note and picture messages as you want included in the monthly BlackBerry Internet Service fee of about R60 a month.

Be aware of international roaming costs – If you’re spending December abroad, be aware of the costs of using voice and data services while you roam. Look for the details on your service provider’s Website. Selected Nashua Mobile outlets will supply you with WorldSIM, an international prepaid mobile phone solution that is perfect for customers planning to travel with their cellphones this festive season. With WorldSIM you can make cost effective mobile phone calls in more than 150 countries around the world as well as receive calls for free in more than 60 countries. You can buy the WorldSIM from participating Nashua Mobile outlets (Sandton City, Canal Walk in Cape Town, and Brooklyn Design Quarter) and then simply top up airtime at your convenience by buying a voucher or by purchasing airtime online at www.worldsim.com with your credit card.

Be aware that international roaming data costs – even for sending a few emails – can be eye-wateringly expensive. Rather use a Wi-Fi service to browse the Internet, update social networking and send emails.

So Get smart with Nashua Mobile this summer and find the perfect phone that suits your needs by visiting www.nashuamobile.com and taking advantage of the Get Smart advice and specials we are offering this festive season.

Drive-by downloads and fake archives top malware list

By admin, 6 grudnia, 2010, No Comment

Kaspersky Lab experts provide insight into Malware for November 2010

By far the biggest threat to users in November was drive-by downloads, attacks that result in malware being downloaded to users’ computers when they visit infected sites.

Below is a brief overview of how these attacks infect computers. First of all, a user visits an infected site that contains a redirect script. The redirect leads to a script downloader which in turn is used to launch exploits. These breaches allow malicious executable files to penetrate the computer. They are primarily backdoors and Trojans that, if successfully launched, give cybercriminals full control over the infected system. In most cases, users will not be aware of the danger, as all drive-by attacks happen without their knowledge.

Redirects are not restricted to sites belonging to cybercriminals but also appear on legitimate sites that have been compromised. This means that regularly installing patches and updates for operating systems and software is the only guarantee of avoiding infection.

The Top 20 malicious programs detected on the Internet in November included a total of nine exploits, three redirects and one script downloader that were used for carrying out drive-by downloads.

Another significant threat in November was the spread of fake archives, an online scam that remains as popular as ever. A user is asked to send premium-rate SMSs so they can access the contents of an archive. Instead of receiving the information they wanted, users normally find that the archive is empty, “corrupt” or, worse, contains a malicious program.

The method for spreading fake archives is highly effective – when users look for something via a search engine, a page is automatically generated with a banner offering the desired information.

ProScan Acquires RangeGate

By admin, 6 grudnia, 2010, No Comment

ProScan Mobility, leader in total mobile solutions for enterprises and part of the ProScan Group, announced the acquisition of the RangeGate business unit from AL Indigo effective on the 1st December 2010.

This follows ProScan’s rapid growth to a leadership position in the mobile computing and automated identification industry, reflecting global trends of the adoption of mobile technology in the work place.

RangeGate provides turnkey mobility solutions for the supply chain – including software, hardware and services, which enable companies to streamline supply chain management from the factory and warehouse floor to the point of delivery, helping organisations to improve operational visibility and control, optimise business processes and enhance agility.

Andrew Fosbrook, ProScan’s group managing director comments, “The acquisition brings innumerable benefits not only to both companies, but to their joint customer bases across southern Africa.”

RangeGate has more than 45 collective years of mobility related experience and is one of the largest specialist teams in the supply chain mobility environment. They have been instrumental in assisting some of the large and well-known brands in South Africa mobilise their supply chain.  RangeGate’s core product, the MobileEdge software suite, is designed for companies that want to mobilise and automate supply chain tasks with a focus on streamlining processes in the warehouse.

“The joint ProScan – RangeGate offering bodes well for all stakeholders”, said Fosbrook. “For ProScan, it means an increased customer base, an expanded range of solutions for existing customers, and extensive knowledge in solution definition and deployment.  In addition, it adds a strong Eastern Cape presence to ProScan’s national footprint, along with a multi-vendor offering.

“With industry forecasts predicting  200 million mobile workers globally by the end of 2013 and over seven in ten organisations equipping mobile workers with mobile computing and communication devices, South Africa’s uptake of mobility in enterprises reflects this trend,” added Fosbrook.

Rob Kimmings of AL Indigo added, “AL Indigo has spent much of 2010 consolidating its business, devising a new strategy and implementing it. The sale of RangeGate to ProScan Mobility is part of that strategy and allows us to take the next step in focussing on our core business. We believe that RangeGate customers will continue to enjoy an increased range of hardware options, deployment and support capabilities.”

Moving forward, RangeGate’s professional  team will join ProScan Mobility and relocate to their offices in the respective  centres, namely, Bedfordview in Johannesburg; Musgrave Road in Durban and remain in their current location in Port Elizabeth.

Cisco New Regional Leadership in Africa

By admin, 6 grudnia, 2010, No Comment

Pim Versteeg joins Cisco as Vice President for Cisco’s Africa Levant Region

Cisco today announced executive changes in the Africa Levant region in support of the company’s growth strategy. Yvon Le Roux, previously Vice President covering Cisco’s Africa Levant Region for the past two and a half years is taking on a new role as Global Vice President for Cisco’s Smart and Connected Communities. Pim Versteeg joins Cisco from Juniper to assume the role of the new Vice President, for Cisco’s Africa Levant region, with a mandate to drive the regions next phase of growth and expansion.

During his time as leader of Cisco’s Africa and Levant regions, Yvon Le Roux built a solid foundation. He was instrumental in attaining growth, revamping the management team and developing a strategy for the future of the region.  As the new Vice President for the region, Versteeg inherits responsibility for  developing as well as executing the strategies that will help countries in this region to further successfully implement technology  to  help improve the lives of their citizens in terms of better healthcare provision, education, infrastructure and economic development.

Highlights / Key Facts:
•    Prior to joining Cisco Versteeg was Vice President and Managing Director EMEA Emerging Markets of Juniper Networks. The role included overall responsibility for running a business unit of more than 200 people delivering annual revenues in excess of US $400m.
•    During his tenure at Juniper, which started in 2004, Versteeg demonstrated an innovative strategic approach that enabled the firm to consistently capture critical market-share. This legacy of consistent high growth and leadership led to Versteeg’s role being rapidly expanded from his original remit of leading the Northern Europe and Benelux region where the team achieved a ten-fold increase in sales revenue with him at the helm.
•    Pim has over 25 years of management experience, 12 years of which have been spent in the IT industry. This covered a range of technological and commercial positions, working with organisations such as Nortel Networks and Carrier 1 International. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Computer Science and a degree in Business Administration.
•    Pim will be based out of his native city of Amsterdam, yet will have a significant presence in the vast and opportunity-rich countries that constitute our Central Region.

Cellphone for the hard of hearing

By admin, 4 grudnia, 2010, No Comment

Vodacom launches the Bellen A100 handset, an innovative solution for ‘hard of hearing’ mobile users

Today Vodacom launched the Bellen A100 handset which is aimed at improving hearing ability for mobile users who cannot hear clearly.

This device is designed for people who are ‘hard of hearing,’ which means people who have hearing difficulties.  The A100 also makes clear communication possible for people who work in noisy environments.

Created with cutting-edge technology, the Bellen A100 provides users who are hard of hearing with the ability to make and take calls using bone conductor technology.  When placed on facial bones close to the ear, the bone conduction feature sends sound waves through the facial bones to the inner ear in a safe and efficient manner enabling crystal clear communication.  The Bellen A100 also boasts “T”-function compatibility for people with hearing aids.

Slim and stylish, yet technically complete, the A100 with its clear colour screen display, as well as the bone conduction function, SOS button, desktop charger and flashlight makes it a unique mobile phone for this market segment. The Bellen A100 easily integrates with any hearing aid which supports telecoil function, sending the sound directly from their phone to the hearing aid. This device is also suitable for the elderly and people who find it difficult to use standard cellphones with small buttons.

“Today we celebrate the International Day of People with Disabilities, a day which aims to promote an understanding of disability issues and in which support is mobilised for the dignity, rights and well-being of people with disabilities. Some of these rights include basic access to communication. We are pleased that we are currently playing a leading role in the delivery of telecommunications solutions for people with specific needs. In addition to the range of speaking phones for the blind, we recently launched the Zooms phone for the partially sighted and now we are launching the Bellen A100 for the hard of hearing. We’re looking forward to launching more solutions to address other categories of people with specific needs,” said Shameel Joosub, Managing Director of Vodacom South Africa.

“The launch of the Bellen A100 is in line with our commitment to being a caring company. Not only are we committed to launching products and services that are aimed at improving the lives of people with specific needs, we also invest in improving their lives through investments in the Vodacom Foundation. Since the launch of the Vodacom Foundation in 1999, the company has invested more than R500-million in sustainable projects that help alleviate social deprivation. In particular, our support has resulted in more than 8 000 cataract operations being performed on elderly people since 2004,” Joosub concluded.

The handset is available nationwide from Vodashops, Vodacom4U stores and Vodacom Direct as of 3 December 2010.

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