IBM, Chartered, Infineon and Samsung sample 45 nm silicon

BM, Chartered, Infineon and Samsung have developed their first 45 nm "silicon-functional circuits" and announced that the technology would be available in "design kits" for "select customers."

DDR memory gets more expensive

Users who plan to upgrade their PC with more system memory could see some steep price increases over the next few weeks.

Vizio and Maxent benefit from rising sales of 50" PDP TVs in North America

Taiwanese brands Vizio and Maxent, co-promoting their products with nationwide retail store chains in the US, continue generating growth in sales on the wave of rising demand for 50" PDP (plasma display panel) TVs in the North America market, according to market sources.

NEC starts shipping image detection chips for cars

NEC Electronics is shipping image detection chips that can tell cars to hit the brakes, before hitting a person or another car. The chips will first go into Toyota's Lexus LS460 car this fall and NEC hopes other car companies will adopt the chip. The Imapcar, short for Integrated Memory Alley Processor-Car, has 128 parallel processing units and can detect objects at 30 frames per second.

Will Google Apps truly encroach on Microsoft's domain?

This morning, Google announced it's opening up a new beta for a set of online collaboration tools, to selected participants. Google Apps for Your Domain, the company says, will enable small businesses to launch simple, effective, intranet-like collaboration at little or no cost. But here again, how much does "free" really cost? And does Microsoft, in the end, have a better idea?

Japan to open world's first robot shop

The world's first specialty robot shop will be opening in Nagoya Japan in October. The Mainichi Daily News is reporting that the "Robot Mirai Department" shop will sell 1,000 robots and robot accessories. State of the art, two-legged walking robots will also be sold at the store.

Windows Media DRM cracked

A user of the "Doom9" forums has posted software that claims to be able to remove the digital rights management scheme from Windows Media encoded music files. According to the post, "FairUse4WM" works with Windows Media 10 and Windows Media 11 and only with individualized DRAM files. The simple interface of the software allows users to load keys of licensed Windows Media files and deactivate their copy protection - I order to "enable fair-use rights to purchased media," according to the developer.

Costco selling 400 GB hard drives for $100

Just when you thought hard drive prices couldn't get any lower, certain Costco stores are selling 400 GB internal hard drives for $99.97. The Western Digital 7200 RPM drives have been available for a few weeks and the price thankfully does not include any coupon or rebate hassles.

If it's Friday, AMD and Intel dual-core prices must be falling

Sunnyvale (CA) - They did this last Friday, too: Prices for AMD dual-core processors are taking another pre-weekend dip, according to the latest data from PriceGrabber, with the Athlon 64 X2 5000+ falling the furthest since Monday: down $47 (13.1%) to $313. The trouble for AMD is, Intel prices are continuing to fall at the high end.

Microsoft confirms 32-bit Vista will not play HD discs

Culver City (CA) - Microsoft officials have confirmed an earlier TG Daily report about the HD playback features in Windows Vista. At the Tech Ed 2006 conference in Sydney, Australia, yesterday, Microsoft's senior program manager Steve Riley told an audience that the 32-bit Vista would not natively playback high-definition content on Blu-ray and HD DVD media. Riley justified Microsoft's decision with a concern that the content protection of these media was too easily bypassed with unsigned and malicious drivers.

Prices for 37" LCD TVs fall below $1000

In only one year, prices for 37" LCD TVs in North America fell below $1000, the same price level for the 32" segment an year ago, amid fast falling LCD panel prices, according LCD TV makers and industry sources.

Global PDP TV shipments rose 30% in Q2

Global PDP (plasma display panel) TV shipments rose 30% on quarter and 95% on year to 2.2 million units in the second quarter of 2006, capturing 5% of worldwide TV shipments, up from 4% in the first quarter, according to Displaysearch.

Airbus files for anti-jetlag patent

People have tried to reduce or eliminate jetlag ever since the invention of air travel. Some use special protein diets while others blast themselves with "daylight" spectrum lights. Now Airbus, the European jumbo jet maker, has filed for a patent on a jetlag reducing airplane seat.

First Look: Paraben's anti-RFID Passport StrongHold bag

Culver City (CA) - Yesterday we reported about the "StrongHold" bag that promises to block signals that aim to access data stored in RFID chips of newer U.S. passports. Paraben has since sent us a few bags for a brief test.

Military robo-surgeon prepares for battle

Life-saving operations on soldiers in combat zones could become possible thanks to a portable robotic surgeon that allows doctors to perform surgery on the battlefield without endangering themselves.

Dell drops out of MP3 player race

Dell is pulling out of the digital music player business, apparently conceding that it cannot compete with Apple a year after introducing the DJ Ditty MP3 device as an affordable alternative to the Ipod Shuffle.

Pentagon warns of Internet incursion by Chinese cyber-terrorists :GCN

From Government Computer News

ATI leads Nvidia in GPU price/performance across the board

UPDATE 24 August 2006 10:15 am ET Markham (Ontario) - In the first test results compiled using Tom's Hardware Guide tests of relative graphics card performance, and average sale prices sampled yesterday by PriceGrabber, ATI-brand graphics cards led Nvidia across the board, with a few noteworthy exceptions. In our new projected price/performance curve for GPUs, ATI takes the lead in both the value and premium segments.

New passport holder claims to block unwanted RFID signals

Culver City (CA) - An Orem Utah-based forensics company is now selling metal mesh bags that it claims will stop identity thieves from accessing the newer US E-Passports. Paraben Corporation, known for their mobile phone forensic kits, is selling a nickel, copper and silver mesh "Passport StrongHold" bag will block RFID transmissions from hitting unopened passports. Update: We have since received samples of the StrongHold bag and have briefly tested them out. Read more here...

EDGE handset shipments to reach 148 Million units in 2006

EDGE enabled handsets have never attracted the same levels of attention that "sexier" technologies such as WCDMA and HSDPA have enjoyed. In fact EDGE can best be described as the Cinderella of the cellular handset world.