For a number of years Roxio and Nero seem to have been playing leapfrog as their burning/media creating software has fought for supremacy. I recently took a look at the latest Nero 9 product and now it is the turn of Roxio Creator 2009.
Released just before but arriving on my desktop just after Nero 9, Creator 2009 is the twelfth version of a product that used to be known as Easy Media Creator. This review is based on the Ultimate Edition of the software which adds a High-Def/Blu-ray Disc plug-in plus tools for audio and backup that are added to the basic package.
Another rather nice small PC from Asus marketed under the Eee brand. The main difference that will encourage you to look at this unit is that it has a claimed ‘working day’ of battery life, this is stated to be 9.5 hours. With the average battery life of most notebooks around 3 hours this is huge.
The Asus Eee PC 1000HE measures 26x19x4cm and weights 1.4kilos. The battery does not protrude but is slightly thicker than the rest causing a very slight forward slant but this just aids typing. The screen dimensions are 22x13cm giving the notional diagonal measurement of 10.1inches. The display size 1024x600 and the screen (hurrah) is not that reflective meaning in bright light you do not get that much reflection. Finally on the screen surround there is a 1.3MP webcam built in.
These two objects give you a sample of what can be purchased using USB. First a speaker shaped light a bulls head to give a decent volume from an iPod or MP3 player. Second an SD Card reader that comes in standard and micro sizes.
While you may not be able to call on the resources of a Spielberg or Lucas, your computer and appropriate software will give you the opportunity to wear a Director’s hat.
A couple of weeks ago I told you about some very neat (even secret) cameras and excellent software from Logitech, it was however rather expensive. Here a far simpler Ethernet solution that may well fit the job and even the pocket.
While D-Link do a wireless version I am looking here at the wired version of there security camera, the DCS-910. It is 11x7.5x4cm. The Ethernet cable and the A/C power go into the bottom of the unit but do not protrude beyond the casing. There is a screw fitting in back to allow mounting. Doing installation you are asked to note the MAC code on the rear of the camera this you then select from a list (not so important if you only have one) given later in the setup.
While the telephone can be a life-line for the elderly, they might have a problem hearing the phone when it rings if their hearing is impaired
As we grow older so the wear and tear of life can affect out faculties without any outward evidence. It is not until we struggle focusing on small text or mis-hear a comment from others that the penny drops (of course we probably would not hear it but that’s not the point). Fortunately technology (along with a visit to an optician or optometrist) can help overcome some frailties.
Starting in Victorian London of 1889, The Clockwork Man is a hidden object game which has been developed by Total Eclipse and is published by GameHouse.
As is becoming increasingly standard with games of this genre, The Clockwork Man has a storyline of sorts and has a number of mini-games which take the form of puzzles that need to be solved in order to make progress. In some cases the mini-games rely on finding certain objects so that the task can be completed. You are cast in the role of Miranda Calomy, a young lady whose appearance and attitude is completely at odds with what you might expect from a Victorian lady.
At last a Kodak printer that seems to resist the temptation to jam at the drop of a hat, however this is a far more sturdy machine and is actually a multi function unit (as it has fax) and not an All In One as Kodak call it.
The Kodak ESP9 is very black and measures 43x39x25cm, as the paper cassette pokes out behind the main body this covers any extension caused by the cables. Software installation is very straightforward and you come to a point where you have the choice of Ethernet, Wireless, USB or None. The latter can be useful if you are using a switch or print server and the hardware is not yet available. I connected by USB.
An iPod can keep you entertained during the day and help you awake from a restful night’s sleep.
The success of a product can sometimes be judged by the state of the add-on industry that it creates. An obvious example of this is the third-party products that have been developed to add functionality to the ubiquitous iPod device in all its incarnations. Numerous companies have taken advantage of this Apple phenomena to rack up sales for the various peripheral devices designed to enhance the user’s experience whether in-car, in-home or where ever they might be located.
A few weeks ago I told you about Clickfree a painless backup solution, that used its own external hard disk. This option allows you to use any USB drive you might already own it consists of a dongle with the Clickfree software on it.
The Clickfree Transformer comes in a 23x4x2cm box with the lead ending in the dongle in it, there is a tiny lable attached with the three connection steps attached that’s all. The back of the box repeats these three steps and adds the system requirements of a Windows Vista, XP or 2000 computer with USB port and 100MB of free hard disc space. I had a small 20GB USB drive doing nothing so this was formatted and called into use.
This may seems like a strange mix but such is life. The first a clock that runs on water. The second maybe suitable for anyone with back problems special ribbed socks, while running is not on my agenda if you were fitter you may be able to.
A pent house suite in Mayfair and an establishment in the heart of Soho were the locations for a couple of press briefings that dealt with initiatives designed to entice users to expand their mobile experience. Dragging my weary bones through the thoroughfares of London, as it basked in an unseasonably warm spell, I attended both events.
It should come as no surprise, with the wide spread influence of mobile communications, that two separate companies made announcements regarding their services within a twenty-four hour period. What is slightly more surprising is that both these announcements relate to partnership deals with established hardware or software service providers.
A lot of notebooks – especially smaller ones – have limited ports, some manufacturers provide expansion docks but at a price. So any universal dock is certainly worth a good look, here one requiring a single USB port from Kensington.
The Kensington VGA notebook expansion dock measures 25x7x4cm and weights 270grams. Ideal for those who use a notebook out and about and at a desk. Leave the peripherals attached to the expansion dock when you are out and about and when you return to your desk you just need to connect the USB cable supplied to your notebook and everything should be ready to use. Looking at the notebook expansion dock you have a set of connections.
Once known as the Mouse Company, Logitech has not forgotten its roots and regularly updates its collection of pointing devices as can be seen with this offering.
Better known for its puzzle centric titles, Enkord has come up with a new game that sets you the challenge of bringing peace to a series of islands.
This Netbook sized notebook/tablet PC uses a low power Intel Centrino processor (all other netbooks seem to use the Atom processor that is not really powerful enough for Vista) so what has this HP offering got to get you buying it?
The HP EliteBook 2730p looks superb with the unit –apart from the base – being brushed aluminium. It is 29x21x3cm and it weights 1.72 kilos. You can shut the lid without turning it off or putting it into standby. However the weight gives the first problem walking around with 1.72 kilos in your hand all day soon becomes tiring. The 2GB of RAM and the dual core processor just about make Vista usable.
sometimes wonder whether you need to have had at least “one dead battery” episode for a mobile device before you really qualify for being a road warrior.
A favourite ploy used by script writers to create a situation ripe for all eventualities (horror, comedy, drama, romcom etc) is a dead battery for a mobile device. I’m sure you can remember at least one story, whether portrayed on film or television, that has made use of this particular gambit.
Another item requested a long while ago; here the cameras can be external, internal or hidden. They all work using the same software that apart from the front end locally the recordings can also be viewed on any remote PC.
As always dimensions first, The External Cameras are 20x12x5cm, Internal Camera are 12x8.5x4cm and the hidden (clock) cameras are 15.5x10.5x6cm. All these dimensions are for the cameras in the housing and do not include any mountings or protrusions by cables as these are variable. Let’s start with the Clock Camera this is a rather nice mains powered digital clock.
Perhaps what Ravensberger are best known for in the toy and games market is Jigsaws and here I am looking at two such offerings. To me two things matter the quality of the image and the quality of the pieces, both are excellent.
This has an idea new to me two 500 piece jigsaws in the same box. Don’t worry they are packed separately as otherwise even the real puzzle experts would be pulling their hair out. This box (ref 14093) has two different Riverside Cottage pictures and while 500 pieces is probably the level for a bright child they can be fun for older people two. Ravensburger have been making puzzles for very nearly 120 years and unlike some they make sure no two pieces are alike.
When opting to display your digital images, you are almost spoilt for choice. Yet another digital picture frame demands by attention.
XSU-00850B is hardly the most memorable or descriptive title for a product. In fact it gives nothing away at all about the purpose of this particular piece of kit from Polaroid. To clear up the mystery, this is an 8-inch digital picture frame with Alarm Clock/Calendar functionality.