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CES 2009: Ten Ultra-cool Gadgets Coming Your Way in 2009

50°
289w ago - We trawl through the CES 2009 mayhem so you don't have to, and below are ten of the coolest gadgets we ran across as follows:

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The Palm Pre has been the undisputed champion of CES this year. Just when everyone thought that CES was shaping up to be a bit of a damp squib, Palm shocked us all with the Pre.

It looks like it could be the best challenger to the Apple iPhone yet - and everyone who's had a play with it thus far has been smitten by its awesomeness.

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Mini projectors can now be made so small that you can fit them inside mobile devices like phones and MP3 players. It's another example of the old cliché: ten years ago this would have been science fiction. Today it's very much a reality. The Logic Bolt Projector Phone does exactly what it says on the tin - it's a phone, with a mini projector built in.

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Until now, the MacBook Air has ruled the roost in...
 

CES 2009: Why Your PS3 Doesn't Have Backwards Compatibility

300°
289w ago - I can't help it; whenever I look over at my giant shelf full of fantastic PS2 titles, or read about a great title like Persona 4 coming out for the lingering system, I look under my television at the shiny PS3 that won't play any of them, and it makes me grumble.

We all know, of course, that in trying to keep the PS3 cost-effective, backwards compatibility was a feature that Sony felt they needed to abandon.

Still, as a gamer who still cares about these things, I found it interesting when I was shown, at CES, just how this had been achieved. While exploring the Digital Experience! event at the Mirage, I visited the Rambus booth, where a pair of PS3 motherboards were on display.

As the helpful Rambus representatives explained to me, their business is the design and implementation of integrated memory and chips in various consumer electronics, including a particular Sony videogame console. They had helped Sony to create the original hardware for the PS3 launch hardware, and later, had also helped refine the PS3 motherboard into a more efficient and streamlined system.

In this photo, the Rambus rep is pointing to a launch-era PS3 motherboard; that particular area on the left is essentially a PS2, contained within the PS3 architecture – the fabled "Emotion Engine." The board...
 

British Police Now Allowed to Hack Into Your Private Computer

200°
289w ago - The power of anti-piracy organizations is constantly growing and latest news from Great Britain sounds somehow scary: The Home Office has adopted a new policy that will allow police to hack into British people's computer systems without a warrant.

The hacking known as 'remote searching' allows officers to covertly examine the hard drive of people's PC's anywhere. E-mails, Web browsing habits and messaging conversations can all be gathered.

To quote: The Home Office has quietly adopted a new plan to allow police across Britain routinely to hack into people's personal computers without a warrant.

The move, which follows a decision by the European Union's council of ministers in Brussels, has angered civil liberties groups and opposition MPs. They described it as a sinister extension of the surveillance state which drives "a coach and horses" through privacy laws. The hacking is known as "remote searching".

It allows police or MI5 officers who may be hundreds of miles away to examine covertly the hard drive of someone's PC at his home, office or hotel room. Material gathered in this way includes the content of all e-mails, web-browsing habits and instant messaging.

Under the Brussels edict, police across the EU have been given the green light to expand...
 

Downloading Your Games? Get Ready for Extra Fees

100°
290w ago - The business of selling games has rapidly changed over the past few years, mainly because online services have allowed developers to bypass the middleman that is retail stores.

There are major advantages to purchasing a game via digital distribution: it's insanely more convenient than driving to a store, customers avoid pushy salespeople, the titles themselves are often cheaper than physical copies, and no one has to keep track of the game disc.

As it turns out, though, that last aspect might not be entirely true, because one of the biggest digital distributors requires customers to buy the option to re-download programs for more than a limited amount of time.

When Spore first came out, I was too preoccupied with other titles to pick it up, but I've found myself intrigued recently when I watched my brother play it over the holidays. Since I'm currently in Tahoe, where there isn't a video game shop or a Best Buy within a 45-minute drive, I checked out EA's online store; downloading the game for $40 sounded more appealing than driving to Reno and spending $50 for a physical copy.

However, that option quickly became less appealing when I saw something extra sitting in my shopping cart: the "[Register or Login to view links]
 

MLB 09 The Show - Hear Yourself Cheer In-Game on PlayStation 3

200°
292w ago - Today Public Relations Manager Alex Armour announced the following news:

MLB 09 The Show is officially announced today, ready to arrive this coming Spring on the PS3, PSP, and PS2. As the market leader in the baseball category, the team did not want to rest on their laurels and churn out a lackluster effort.

For this year, the team is including a number of new features and visual detail to once again bring the best and most realistic sports gaming experience available.

Last year we allowed players to import their own music from the PS3 hard drive so they could listen in game. Now, the team has gone a step further by creating the "My MLB Music" feature. This will allow players to use the in-game music editor to create snipits of music that can be saved and used as customized walk up music for their favorite players.

Additionally, have you ever screamed at your TV at a bad (or good) play when engaged in a sports game? Well now your voice can be heard IN THE GAME by allowing users to record their own fan chants and yells and integrate them seamlessly into the ambient crowd noise. It'll sound like you're really there.

Of course the team is all over the details and as the leading baseball game simulator out there, how could they not? Transitional lighting...
 
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