Finally off “Hiatus”

So sorry for vanishing for a few solid months. I’ve been doing the whole “applying to college” things that people my age are expected to do. The good news is that I’ll be attending Carnegie Mellon for Computer Science next year. I’m super excited and can’t wait to sink my teeth in to some juicy code and theory. (gulp)

At any rate, I should be back to my good ol’ blogging self. Expect some design changes as I’ve been learning a lot of web design in the past few months.

Twitter for Android! Download it here!

I was leaked a copy of the official Twitter app for Android. No, I can’t tell you how I got it. Well, fine, alright. An anonymous friend passed it off to me. Yes, I’ll share it. Gimme a day to play around with it first. Actually, make that an hour or so. I’ll get it up soon. You folks owe me one.

In the mean time, if you want a copy of the app, let me know. I’ll email it to you directly or something.

Edit: Here’s the app.

View this page on your android device, follow the link below, and then download/install the app.

http://www.4shared.com/file/jY6nJJFX/new_twitter_for_android.html

RockMelt Beta Invite Giveaway!

I just installed RockMelt (using it right now, actually) and I have a few beta keys to give away. Three, to be precise.

What is RockMelt?

It’s a new browser, built off Chromium, with tons of social networking features. It allows you to update your facebook and twitter statuses, share any page you’re on seamlessly, keep up to date with your various RSS feeds, chat with friends… there is a lot of stuff. It’s kinda cool, actually.

More importantly, beta giveaway!

I’m giving away three beta invites. Just share this page somehow and post a comment with a link to where you shared it. StumbleUpon, Twitter, Facebook… they all work just fine (if you share it on facebook, make sure you set the visibility of the post to “Everyone” so we can see it). I’m cutting off submissions on February 15th (or sooner if there isn’t a whole lot of interest (psh, like that will happen)).

Test drive a Google Chrome OS netbook!

Do you use Google Chrome? Then you might have noticed a neat little message when you opened a new tab:

Chrome OS Pilot Program is now live!

That’s right.

Apparently, Google is looking for beta testers to pilot their new Chrome-OS-powered netbook, the Cr-48. It’s just like all those “Click here to try out the NEW iPHONE 5!” advertisements you see all over the internet, except its real. I hope.

At any rate, to apply, open Google Chrome and run a new tab. Or just click here. You’ll need to supply your name, address, phone number, and email address.

CR-48 Chrome OS NetbookThe laptop itself is really sexy, if I do say so myself. It looks like its rubberized (like most phones are now). Based on screenshots and articles, here are some specs:

  • Solid State Drive
  • 12″ LCD Screen
  • Large trackpad
  • VGA-Out
  • 1 USB port
  • SD Card reader
  • 1/8″ headphone jack
  • 8 hours of battery, 8 days of standby
  • 10 second boot, instant wake
  • Webcam

They left out “Spinning disks, caps-lock key, function keys, and lap burns,” according to the site.

Oh, and also,

There’s no caps lock key. Hopefully the comments on the internet will be less stupid.

[Google Chrome]

New iPad to launch in April

iPad

Apparently, Foxconn, the company that manufactures all of Apple’s stuff, will start shipping the new iPads in February to brace for an April launch. This exciting new iPad is said to make it more like a computer and less like a super-sized iPod Touch, giving it a USB port and camera (not to mention other previously-released goodies like a Retina Display and a gyroscope).

The sources pointed out that the iPad 2 will ship as soon as the end of February in 2011. Apple originally planned to start mass production in January, but because the device’s firmware is currently still in testing, Apple has been postponing the schedule.

-Digitimes

Initial shipments are said to be somewhere between 400,000 and 600,000. This is exciting, isn’t it?

[DigiTimes via iPodTouchFans]

Streaming Games Live: Fast on ANY machine.

More and more, I’ve been seeing services pop up offering high-speed games, rendered on remote servers, streamed to your computer. What does that mean, you ask? Essentially, all the work that is needed to play the game is done somewhere else. Your computer only displays the games and gives the controls. ¬†OnLive, GameString, and Gaiki have all gained a suitable reputation in the past month. Here’s a quick overview of each of them.

OnLive

OnLive: Game streaming!

This is the first one I got a chance to see. It markets itself as an instant game system, allowing users to play any game they want instantly (or, at least, after a purchase). And it’s true to its word. The PC client is completely free. Download it and play through a variety of free demos pretty much immediately. Their catalog is pretty extensive. You’d think streaming games would be confined to obscure, indie games, but names like Homefront, Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood, and Just Cause 2. They charge for 3 and 5 day passes, as well as full game licenses. They are also trying out a new $10 a month unlimited plan. Plus, they offer a $100 console, complete with a controller, to let you play OnLive games on your TV. I tried out the PC, and although the video quality is a little grainy, it works really well overall. I was thoroughly impressed.

Gaikai

In-browser games, courtesy of Gaikai.

But I was more impressed with Gaikai. It functions a lot like OnLive, but instead of charging for games and subscriptions, the site hosts advertisements. That’s right, companies actively test your bandwidth when you visit the site, and if you meet requirements, it will offer you free game tests that stream similarly to OnLive’s games in the hopes that it will get you to buy their games. ¬†The site is offering a 90 minute demo of Mass Effect 2 (a very good game, might I add), among other great demos. Their servers are a little swamped due to the publicity they’ve received as of late, so if it takes a bit to load, give it some time.

GameString

GameString streams games to your phone. Whoa. If you have an Android phone, you can literally play server-hosted games on your device. Interface worries? The service allows for customization of your interface so that literally any game works as you want it too. There’s a nice demo of the service playing WoW on an Android smartphone below.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zRwaPxBz2jk

By the way, the awesome music in that video is by the Glitch Mob, I think. I’ve been listening to a lot of them recently, but that’s another story for another time.

Is the future in the cloud?

Perhaps. Things done for us remotely seem to be how things are moving. I’m not a huge fan, as I actually take pride in the fact that I can manage all of the software and data that I use, but for non-power users, perhaps the cloud isn’t such a bad thing. You don’t need to worry about drivers, compatibility, or system performance. It seems like a good deal in the end.