Microsoft releases Windows Vista RC2 to beta testers

Redmond (WA) - Microsoft today released what the company believes will be the last non-final version of the Windows Vista operating system. Vista RC2 promises more stability and more performance than RC1, which was released to a total of five million users earlier this month. See the preview of Windows Vista ...

Hitachi becomes newest victim of Sony recall

Not wanting to feel left out, Hitachi announced today that 16,000 of their notebook computers are affected by the worldwide recall of Sony laptop batteries. This adds to the massive recall from multiple PC manufacturers that have faulty batteries made by Sony.

Roadmap leak indicates ATI direction after AMD acquisition

An ATI chipset roadmap has appeared on two South American websites today. At least for now, it appears that the acquisition by AMD could accelerate the rollout of products and ATI. While battling Intel on the low-end, ATI's chipsets and graphics processors begin to align closely with AMD to offer high-end gaming solutions for FX processors.

IBM demonstrates Ajax mashup tool for the rest of us

At Ajax World, IBM is demonstrating a tool that it will soon put up on its hosted alpha services site that would enable developers to build Ajax mashups.

Intel reveals wireless connectivity roadmap

Intel has used the platform of its developer conference this week to reveal a roadmap for future wireless connectivity that will take in at least three different types of broadband connectivity for PCs.

T-Mobile lays out plan for new spectrum

T-Mobile USA laid out the plan Friday for the $4.2 billion in wireless spectrum it won in a recent federal auction, saying it expects to spend nearly $2.7 billion on a network upgrade that can deliver mobile multimedia capabilities it hasn't been able to offer like its rivals.

World of Warcraft for Linux, thanks to CodeWeavers CrossOver Linux

Codeweavers has released a beta version of their CrossOver Linux which allows Linux fans to play World of Warcraft. CrossOver Linux Standard beta 2 came out last week and can also play Half-Life 2 and Windows Flash Player 9. The beta is currently available as a free download.

AT&T drops yearly contract for DSL subscribers

DSL subscribers who hate yearly contracts and the early termination penalties that come with them will love AT&T for its recent announcement. The company has streamlined its DSL plans and no longer will require yearly contracts. Customers who still want to sign up for a yearly term will get a free month of service.

Microsoft to release eleven security updates next Tuesday

Microsoft's upcoming "Patch Tuesday" promises to be a doozy as the company will roll out a flurry of security updates. The updates affect Microsoft's operating, Office application and the .NET framework. Users are highly advised to install the updates because several of the vulnerabilities are rated critical or moderate by Microsoft.

Google extends searches to code, pie, mash

Google has unveiled a couple of new search services.

Rhapsody upgrades with 4.0 store, optimized MP3 players

Seattle (WA) - RealNetworks today announced that they have launched Rhapsody 4.0, the latest version of their music subscription and purchasing service. Complementarily, SanDisk has released the first set of MP3 players that are optimized to store and play back music in users' Rhapsody accounts. Still sort of fresh on the heels of the bevy of iPod and iTunes announcements last month, Rhapsody 4.0's launch gives the music streaming service a visual overhaul and a couple functionality tweaks.

Nvidia shares rocket on Intel takeover rumors

Nvidia shares rocketed up almost 10% in Wednesday's trading as rumors flew about a possible takeover from Intel. More than 22 million Nvidia shares traded on Wednesday with prices rising about 9.8%. So far this morning, stock prices have dipped about 2% to $30.45 a share.

Microsoft reduces feature set in pirated copies of Vista

Redmond (WA) - Windows Vista will introduce new tools that aim to make pirated versions less attractive and prompt users to activate a legally obtained copy of the operating system. Deeply integrated into the core of the software, Microsoft will reserve functionality such as the Aero Glass interface and Flash acceleration for Windows Vista versions that are validated.

Tight supply of low-end CPUs delivers uncertainty for Q4

Charles Chou, an analyst at Fubon Securities, commented that the tight supply of low-end Intel Celeron and AMD Socket AM2 Sempron CPUs became apparent in the middle of September, with the two chip vendors gearing up to accelerate each platform's transition by the fourth quarter of 2006.

AMD validates 65nm CPU production at Chartered

Industry sources noted that AMD has validated its 65 nm CPU production at Singapore-based foundry Chartered Semiconductor and volume production of AMD's 65 nm CPU lineup at Chartered is slated for the first half of 2007.

Asustek 3G strategy: Intel out, EMP in

Asustek Computer will begin shipping third-generation (3G) smartphones based on Intel's mobile platform to European telecom service providers including Vodafone and O2 in the fourth quarter of this year, but these will be the last Asustek 3G smartphones based on Intel's platform, according to industry sources.

IBM releases new lower power PowerPC processors

IBM has introduced two single-core PowerPC processors that use up to 50% less power than previous models. The PowerPC 750CL is a 32-bit processor with speeds ranging from 400MHz to 1GHz. The 970GX is a much more powerful 32 and 64-bit chip that runs from 1.2 to 2.5 GHz.

Micron introduces 1/5" camera sensor

Camera phones and webcams could get even smaller because Micron has introduced their new 1/5" wide 1.3 megapixel CMOS sensor. The MT9M019 sensor captures 1280 by 1024 pixel pictures at 30 fps or 640 by 480 pixels at 60 fps. Micron claims the low-light sensitivity of the sensor is about 1 lux which is equal to one candle.

Amazon's A9 search drops block view & yellow pages

Amazon-owned A9 never had much consumer usage but it was one of the most innovative and interesting search engines, with many distinctive features.

AOL releases free client software

Dulles (VA) - Do you want AOL, but can't stand the CDs or the monthly charges? Now, the company is offering its famous Internet service for free with its OpenRide client. Meant mainly for broadband users, OpenRide combines a browser, email and other functions into a single four pane window. The software is freely downloadable and doesn't have any monthly subscription cost.