Archive for August, 2009

How do you decide between two different technology choices ? It’s fascinating to watch laptops getting smaller and turning into “netbooks” while phones are getting bigger to accommodate full keyboards and better Web browsing and application support. So which should you buy when you upgrade your mobile equipment? Well I would say it all depends on whether you create or peruse.

Here is a great idea, and one you may have had: the shape-shifting computer. It’s a little box, the size of a pack of cigarettes, or maybe it looks just like an iPhone. Maybe it is an iPhone. Pop it into a big screen and keyboard, and pow, you have a netbook. Slide it out, and you’ve got a smartphone. Attach a slim, stylish handset with Bluetooth, and you have a fashion-oriented voice phone. hmm, isn’t that cool..

Netbooks have hit a sweet spot for both consumer and business users. Their low price, full QWERTY keyboards that approach (if not quite match) standard laptop arrangements, and built-in applications mean that many people can leave a heavier notebook behind. Netbooks are tempting devices, but if you already have a smartphone, do you really need one ?

Smartphones, on the other hand, have offered much of the same promise of netbooks for years now, including tasks such as mobile document editing, e-mail, and Web browsing. But in many ways, smartphones haven’t fully reached their potential either—and many users will never get past the tiny screens and keyboards.

Here’s what you should consider when deciding whether you should go for a netbook, or simply stick with your smartphone:

Boot-up time: The average smartphone boots up in about 15 seconds, whereas netbooks typically take significantly longer. But that’s not the whole story: at any given moment, your smartphone is already on and ready to roll, since it lasts for days at a time in standby mode. The average netbook battery, however, lasts just 3 hours, and not much longer even if you put the system to sleep. For being ready to go at all times, nothing beats a smartphone.

Keyboard/screen comfort: The winner is pretty clear here: netbooks are considerably more comfortable to use than smartphones. The biggest appeal for netbooks is their small size and weight—often a perfect compromise between a PDA and a standard-size laptop. Some are still too cramped for marathon typing sessions, however. No matter how powerful a netbook is, if it’s not comfortable to type on, or leaves you squinting, you’ll leave it home.

Document editing: Many of today’s smartphones can already view Microsoft Office documents. Some of models (Windows Mobile and Palm OS devices, as well as the latest BlackBerry OS 4.5 revision) can edit them right out of the box. Others require third-party software for this purpose. Either way, it’s only good in a pinch. If you’re doing any more than casual writing or limited spreadsheet work on the go, you’ll want a netbook or real notebook—period.

E-mail: A smartphone with a QWERTY keyboard is sufficient for sending and receiving e-mail, unless you plan on regularly typing out long missives on the road.

Instant messaging: A couple of quick chats are probably fine on a smartphone. Anything longer and you’ll wish you had a netbook or laptop keyboard.

All-day computing: Even a netbook isn’t enough here. I’d say skip both smartphones and netbooks and head straight for a laptop; at least a lightweight ultraportable model. Netbooks feel cramped when used for hours on end (with the possible exception of the latest 10-inch models like the HP Mini 1000 that sport bigger keyboards).

Web browsing: Let’s face it—even the iPhone’s luxurious 3.5-inch screen can feel tiny after 30 minutes of pinch zooming, flicking, and scrolling. Netbooks run full-blown desktop versions of Firefox (in both Linux and Windows XP varieties), so they’re perfect for this purpose.

Media playback: This is another area where netbooks excel. Even the smallest 7-inch Asus models match the widescreen of the largest Archos portable media player, and all of them well exceed the screens you’ll find on smartphones. However, netbooks are overkill as MP3 players—unless, of course, you have really big pockets.

“So it’s your choice of technology”. Hope you enjoyed this week blog, feel free if you have thought to share.. Happy Blogging..

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Back to most loved interest, off course gaming, as we all know the vast majority of games wither quickly on the store shelves, long forgotten only months or even weeks after their release. Such is the fickle cycle of offering games to the shopping public. Other games, however—the rare, few, proud titles that become classics—enjoy life long after they seemingly should have disappeared from the public consciousness.

The list of such titles is too large to present here, but includes gems like Falcon 4.0, Freelancer, Baldur’s Gate, WarCraft III, Counter-Strike, Allegiance and many, many others. What makes games like these stand the test of time? They generate massive amounts of user loyalty via a number of routes: Excellent gameplay, ease of modding, support from the developer or publisher, and probably a host of other factors.

So lets look at 10 such games: Games that just won’t die. These are titles from times long past, especially in terms of the digital realm.

1. Diablo II
Developer: Blizzard Entertainment
Publisher: Blizzard Entertainment

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Widely hailed as the greatest action RPG of all time, Diablo II has legions of clones and followers, but none have come close to gripping the enthusiasts as much as Blizzard’s powerhouse. You can get both Diablo II and its expansion, Lord of Destruction, plus strategy guides, event today..

2. WarCraft III
Developer: Blizzard Interactive
Publisher: Blizzard Interactive

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It’s not pretty, with its pinkish background, but Planet Warcraft’s WarCraft III: Reign of Chaos area is full of information on Blizzard’s long-living real-time strategy. WarCraft, of course, was one of the most appealing RTS titles in the era of the original Command and Conquer and Red Alert titles. Eschewing tanks, soldiers and machineguns for orcs, axes and arrows, it mixed clever humor into the RTS world and saw instant success.

3. Battlefield 1942
Developer: Digital Illusions (better known as DICE)
Publisher: Electronic Arts

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When you think of DICE’s amazing Battlefield games, often one concept comes to mind:
Desert Combat. Widely considered the greatest mod for any of the Battlefield games (which include Battlefield 1942, Battlefield 2, Battlefield 2142, and expansion packs), this BF1942 mod is stunning to play.

4. MechWarrior 4: Mercenaries
Developer: FASA Studio
Publisher: Microsoft Game Studios

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Mech games haven’t been the same since MechWarrior 4: Mercenaries. The BattleTech franchise fizzled after its release, though it should be noted that Smith and Tinker, a company founded by FASA pioneer Jordan Weisman, bought up all of the rights to FASA IPs from Microsoft. The latter’s MekPak 3 features more than a score of new mechs, new weapons, new maps, and lots of other goodies to keep the dream alive.

5. People’s General
Developer: SSI
Publisher: SSI

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The news page of the People’s General site hasn’t been updated since 2002. You can, however, still get the game and a number of mods at the link above. Note that most of the links at the site linked above are dead, but the downloadable are still available yup for free… Each of the downloadables you’ll find contain links to a number of scenarios and campaigns from the US Civil War to World War II and more—just jump in and start playing

6. StarCraft
Developer: Blizzard Entertainment
Publisher: Blizzard Entertainment

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It’s StarCraft; what more is there to say about it? Blizzard overhauled the languishing RTS genre with this amazing sci-fi magnum opus. Instead of featuring two or three mostly-similar races, it went way out on a limb and made the factions extremely different: the Terrans, Protoss and Zerg require unique thinking to master. Some observers, however, have noted the curious resemblance to some of the races from Games Workshop’s Warhammer 40,000 universe.

7. Fallout
Developer: Interplay Productions
Publisher: Black Isle Studios

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Fallout isn’t Fallout 3. The original is a top-down RPG with very few action elements. While the two share the same funky, post-apocalyptic spirit, the original still has a number of loyal followers. We tracked one down and chatted via IRC to find out why, oh why, would you still play the old, graphically inferior original when Bethesda’s masterpiece is so popular?

8. Baldur’s Gate (and BG2)
Developer: BioWare
Publisher: Interplay

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The Infinity Engine, a top down RPG engine that was the basis for many a game in years past, remains hugely popular. Forget Neverwinter Nights 2; some players still feel the Baldur’s Gate series is the pinnacle of role playing on the PC, period. If you’re still into BG or its sequel, Baldur’s Gate 2, or any of the expansions, or Icewind Dale, or what have you, you owe it to yourself to visit the Pocket Plane Group, a site dedicated to keeping the Infinity Engine alive with mods galore.

9. Freelancer
Developer: Digital Anvil / Microsoft
Publisher: Microsoft

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Freelancer started life as an ambitious, spiritual sequel to the seminal space shooter Privateer. An oddball combination of space action game, trading and exploration, with a nod towards roleplaying. The game featured a mouse interface for flying and combat, unlike previous similar games, which usually required a joystick to be successful.

10. Mario
Developer: Nintendo EAD
Publisher: Nintendo

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Well I am think do I need an explanation for this game, The Mario series is a series of highly popular and acclaimed video games by Nintendo, featuring Nintendo’s mascot Mario and, in many games, his brother Luigi. Gameplay in the series often centers around jumping and defeating enemies. The games usually feature simple plots; the most common theme is that of Bowser, the main antagonist, kidnapping Princess Peach, whom Mario saves and this will be a game our great grand children will continue to play…