Day: March 10, 2010

Official Google Blog: Finding awesome stuff online with Google Reader Play

source –

I use Google Reader a lot — not only to stay on top of the news, but also to find interesting blog posts and articles. I’m always telling my friends about Google Reader, and while some of them love it, others don’t want to take the time to set it up. For those of you who fall into this second category, we’re announcing Google Reader Play, a new product that makes the best stuff in Reader more accessible for everyone. Reader Play is a new way to browse interesting stuff on the web, customized to the topics you’re interested in, with no setup required.

Items in Reader Play are presented one at a time, and images and videos are automatically enlarged to maximize the viewing experience. We use the technology behind Recommended Items in Reader to populate Reader Play with the most interesting content on the web. While you don’t need a Google account to use Reader Play, your experience will be personalized if you sign in. As you browse, you can let us know which items you enjoy by clicking the “like” button, and we’ll use that info to show you other content we think you’ll enjoy.

We think Reader Play is a fun way to browse interesting items online that you wouldn’t find otherwise. We designed it especially for people who don’t want to spend time curating their own set of feeds — but folks who already use Reader can easily use it to read their feeds as well. Just click the feed settings menu on any feed in Reader and select “View in Reader Play.” We’re launching Reader Play as an experiment in Google Labs so that we can test it out, get feedback from you and then improve it as quickly as possible. Visit to give it a try, and let us know what you think!

Posted by Garrett Wu, Software Engineer

Lenovo IdeaPad S10-3t review – amazing review by Engadget

source – By Joanna Stern

Who says you have to pick between a netbook and the coming onslaught of standalone tablet devices? Okay maybe some (eh hem Apple), but Lenovo’s trying to have it both ways with the IdeaPad U1 and the S10-3t. In clamshell mode the S10-3t looks like any old 10-inch netbook, but swivel around its capacitive mulitouch display and it turns into that slate device you’ve been dreaming of. That’s not all: the S10-3t is one of the first netbooks (or netveritbles) that has the new Intel 1.83GHz Atom N470 processor. But can the S10-3t straddle both worlds and do it well? And perhaps more importantly, is it worth the premium $649 price tag? That’s the question we’ve been asking ourselves for the last few days, so hit the break for some answers in our full review.

Look and feel

There’s nothing too jaw-dropping about the S10-3t’s design, and we’d actually be totally fine with that if it didn’t have the glossiest black lid known to man. While the lid is inlaid with a subtle glitter tint and boxy pattern, you wouldn’t know it with all the smudgy fingerprints it collects. And though the plastic chassis feels solid enough, the lid did collect some scratches from being in our bag so you’ll want to pick up a case to keep the little guy clean and warm.

For a netbook the .79-inch S10-3t is actually rather trim, and it’s noticeably narrower than other 10-inch systems. While it’s obviously thicker than standalone tablets or e-readers like the Kindle DX, when equipped with its four-cell battery the 2.7-pound tablet was light enough to hold up in bed while reading. However, that eight-cell bulging battery version that we saw at CES looks like it would be incredibly uncomfortable to hold in arm.

One of the biggest benefits of the convertible form factor is having access to a full size, physical keyboard, but for a netbook we’re just not that impressed with the S10-3t’s layout and keys. The matte white keys are particularly bouncy and are more cramped than usual. Perhaps it’s the fact that we’ve gotten used to the chiclet keyboard layout, but our first draft of this review was ridden with typos.

As a result of the S10-3t’s narrower dimensions, its palmrest is thinner, which in turn means very limited touchpad real estate. The rectangular pad with its integrated mouse buttons is about the size of a USB stick, and provides an incredibly cramped navigation experience. While it doesn’t make up for all the backtracking our fingers had to do, we do like the feel of the raised dots on the pad itself. Are we totally crazy for thinking Lenovo should have grabbed a ThinkPad pointing stick and stuck it in the middle of the keyboard?

Screen and tablet performance

Of course, the hope is that you should be able use the capacitive touchscreen to move around in Windows 7 Home Premium, and for the most part it’s a decent touch navigation experience. The 1024 x 600 resolution is actually ideal for the 10.1-inch display – desktop icons are large enough to select with a light finger tap, but getting at the smaller menus requires more than a few jabs at the screen. Lenovo does preload Bumptop, which creates a 3D desk-like view of your desktop, but honestly we find the whole interface rather frustrating and would have just preferred Lenovo put on its SimpleTap software for those larger touch controls to adjust the volume or view the remaining battery power.

Multitouch gestures were responsive; we got in the hang of sticking two fingers on the screen to scroll down the length of web pages or pinching to make text larger. As soon as you swing the display around using the S10-3t’s fairly sturdy, bidirectional hinge, Lenovo’s Natural Touch interface launches. The full screen finger-friendly carousel interface provides large shortcuts to Lenovo’s own photo, music and e-book software. We’re not sure why you’d choose this multimedia software over Microsoft’s Media Player and Photo Gallery, but the e-book software does open PDF or e-pub files and adds note taking and bookmark functions. Though it’s a nice piece of software, we preferred Amazon’s Kindle for PC app to access our collection of already-purchased titles.

While the touch reading experience was smooth and we enjoyed flicking through pages and pinching to zoom in on text, it was our experience reading the New York Times Reader while laying down that brought out the biggest issue with the screen – its viewing angles. Though the extra glossy screen contributes somewhat to the issues, we encountered major color distortion both horizontally and vertically, and at some angles we couldn’t even see what was on the screen. It was especially apparent when we tried to look at an Olympic photo gallery while lying in bed – we had to adjust ourselves and the tablet quite a bit to comfortably flick through the images. Why Lenovo had to use a cheap LCD on this device is beyond us – it craps up a perfectly enjoyable experience.

The device has an accelerometer, but we found it to be a bit flaky; we ended up using the button on the side of the screen more often than not to change the screen orientation, and even when we used this solution we got impatient with the typical five second adjustment period. Lastly, we should mention that Lenovo doesn’t include a stylus, so if you want to take advantage of Windows 7’s handwriting functionality you’re going to need to come up with one of your own or, you know, find a piece of meat.

Performance and battery life

We went into reviewing the S10-3t hoping it would be one of the faster netbooks we’ve ever used considering its new 1.83GHz Atom N470 processor and 2GB of RAM. However, those dreams quickly faded when we were met with the typical netbook performance. In fact, the N470 scored 1,348 on PCMark05, which is actually lower than the N450-powered HP Mini 210’s 1393. That’s sort of a letdown for us, but in typical usage — writing this review and surfing the web — performance seemed snappy. We did notice it taking a bit of time for certain apps within Lenovo’s NaturalTouch to open but we’re inclined to blame the slow 320GB hard drive or software for that. With no change made to the GMA 3150 graphics, the S10-3t was fine for playing standard def video, but couldn’t handle streaming a 720p music video without stuttering.

PCMark05 3DMark06 Battery Life
Lenovo IdeaPad S10-3t 1348 160 3:12
HP Mini 210 1393 147 5:15
ASUS Eee PC 1005PE 1431 157 8:10
Toshiba Mini NB305 1272 156 6:30

On our video rundown test the S10-3t’s four-cell battery lasted three hours and 12 minutes, but when we actually used the system to write this review and surf the Web we got close to four and a half hours of battery life. In our minds that’s not all that bad considering the battery fits flush with the system, but you can always go up to the chunky eight-cell for a couple more bucks.


As both a netbook and a tablet the S10-3t leaves a bit more to be desired. Sure, we’re disappointed that the N470 processor doesn’t provide improved performance, but what’s even more aggravating is that $649 buys you a tiny trackpad, sluggish touchscreen software and terrible viewing angles. Maybe you can live with those shortcomings, but we’re personally holding out for a better netbook / tablet combo to come along.

Doggy mustaches – a cool toy

Otter Methods Of Transportation – Otter riding on mom

source –
Spotted off the coast of Alaska: Baby otter catches up on his sleep while using mom as a raft.

Tree Railing

Fashionable Home in Denver, A Showcase of Luxury And Style

source – Author: Lavinia

Located in Cherry Creek, one of the most “trendy” neighborhoods in Denver, this property amazes through luxury, style and design. The fashionable home catches one’s attention from a great distance, due to its large windows and the combination of stone and stainless steel used to style up the exterior. The overall costs of this building were $4,695,000, a striking sum, but one that justifies what the place houses. When stepping inside, a live-life-to-the-fullest interior is revealed. The residence features an impressive wine room, a library, an indoor office and of course, a well defined entrainment area. We also like the interior design of this house, with interesting furniture elements and the inspiring decorating ideas. We are waiting for you to highlight the things you enjoy seeing and the ones you dislike in the pictures below. -via DigsDigs

Fashionable Home

luxury contemporary house design with floor to ceiling windows 12 554x296 Fashionable Home in Denver, A Showcase of Luxury And Style residence in denver

luxury contemporary house design with floor to ceiling windows 11 554x296 Fashionable Home in Denver, A Showcase of Luxury And Style luxury contemporary house design with floor to ceiling windows 2 554x296 Fashionable Home in Denver, A Showcase of Luxury And Style

beautiful architecture
luxury contemporary house design with floor to ceiling windows 10 554x296 Fashionable Home in Denver, A Showcase of Luxury And Style luxury contemporary house design with floor to ceiling windows 8 554x296 Fashionable Home in Denver, A Showcase of Luxury And Style luxury contemporary house design with floor to ceiling windows 7 554x296 Fashionable Home in Denver, A Showcase of Luxury And Style
luxury contemporary house design with floor to ceiling windows 6 554x296 Fashionable Home in Denver, A Showcase of Luxury And Style
luxury contemporary house design with floor to ceiling windows 5 554x296 Fashionable Home in Denver, A Showcase of Luxury And Style
luxury contemporary house design with floor to ceiling windows 3 554x296 Fashionable Home in Denver, A Showcase of Luxury And Style

New Shelf System : Konnex by Florian Gross

source – Author: Michael
Konnex is a new shelf system by German designer Florian Gross. It is super versatile and can be put together in several ways. It has a contemporary appearance and would fit in most places. The shelf system is a basic cube set, which can be assembled according to the need of the house. It can also be moved into a similar cubicle shape already present at home. The design in total features about six cubes with slits. Each cube can be fixed to the slit of the other and a compact voluminous shelf can be created. When not in use, the cubes can be placed one inside the other, allowing it to occupy minimal space. Most importantly, its basic design will complement any home decor style.
konnex bookshelves1 New Shelf System : Konnex by Florian Grosskonnex bookshelves New Shelf System : Konnex by Florian Grosskonnex bookshelves2 New Shelf System : Konnex by Florian Grosskonnex bookshelves3 New Shelf System : Konnex by Florian Gross

Windows Phone 7 series to support full 3d gaming XNA games

source –

Alright, we’re going to be straight with you: you’re not going to like this. See, Microsoft just showed us a pair of 3D games running on its ASUS Windows Phone prototype and built with its brand new XNA Game Studio 4.0, but wouldn’t let us nab a single photo or video of the process. What we can tell you is that they exist, they work, and at least Microsoft tossed us some screenshots to wave in your face. The two titles are The Harvest (pictured), a good looking touch-controlled dungeon crawler with destructible environments, being developed by Luma Arcade; and Battle Punks, a less impressive one-on-one sword fighting Facebook game by Gravity Bear that’s being ported over. We didn’t get to see any full motion 3D camera moves, since Battle Punks is just composed of two characters duking it out, and The Harvest has a fixed camera and some pre-rendered elements, but there were indeed some real polygons being crunched before our eyes at a full resolution (no upscaling), alpha-rev, choppy framerate, and we were assured that full screen 3D was possible. We also got to see one of our first glimpses of universal notifications on Windows Phone: Achievement unlock notices (also pictured above) that slide down from the top of the screen in a black bar and then slide back, and can’t be interacted with. Follow after the break for some more nerdy details, along with a video of VisualStudio in action, and screenshots of the two games are in the gallery below.

Microsoft spoke to the ease of its Direct3D development platform, which was built by the same folks responsible for the first-gen Xbox (though we’re under the impression that most of the similarities end there). What we saw of The Harvest was built in “two or three weeks,” mostly from scratch, and folks who’ve already built games for XNA in VisualStudio shouldn’t have much trouble with a port from the sound of things: “very, very easy,” said Microsoft. Right now developers can do their testing in Windows, but there should be a Windows Phone 7 Series emulator out for devs eventually — though it’s unclear right now if it’ll make it into the upcoming XNA release scheduled for the coming month. Other details are up in the air like support for using a device’s camera in game, along with that fancy pause and resume cross-platform function we saw demo’d at TechEd. One thing that’s clear is that there’s no fast track for porting OpenGL games to the Direct3D environment, but that’s not stopping regular suspects like Oberon, Sega, Glu, EA, Popcap, Hudson Entertainment, Namco, Konami and Microsoft Game Studios from signing on. We’ll have to wait until MIX for more details and hopefully some shareable demos! Below we have a video of that same platforming game we saw from TechEd being demo’d across platforms, though sadly with the save state sending disabled.

Motorola CLIQ XT

source –

We know you’ve barely recovered from our Devour review, but Moto just threw another Blur-ified phone in our laps this afternoon – the CLIQ XT. We’ve been playing around with the Android 1.5-based, Flash Lite-supported, multitouch-capable handset for the last couple of hours — but before we grace you with our first impressions, just a fair warning: we don’t yet know the price of the new T-Mobile Android handset, though Motorola did promise us that it will hit shelves this month. With that said, hit the break for a quick rundown of our early thoughts.

  • We’ve been getting off on the right foot with the CLIQ XT. Though it’s a bit thick — it’s a tad thinner than the Droid — the 0.28-pound handset actually feels lighter than we expected, and the rubbery back feels nice in hand. Judge us all you want, but we do think the included purple back is a nice accessory.
  • While some may miss the physical keyboard, we’re really digging the preloaded Swype virtual keyboard — we’ve set it as the default and it’s been incredibly accurate in figuring out our text. We do wish that it had a “.com” shortcut, though.
  • The clickable touchpad is just fine for maneuvering through smaller menus, but we’ve been all touchscreen, all the time.
  • Speaking of the multitouch feature is everything we dreamed of, pinching to zoom is very responsive in both the newly improved Photo Gallery and in the browser.
  • As for Flash Lite, we we’re able to watch a YouTube video in the browser when we switched over to the “desktop” version in order to avoid launching the YouTube app. Video was laggy over 3G, but that’s to be expected here in New York.
  • We’d be remiss not to mention the 5 megapixel cam — we’ve taken some nice shots so far with it, though it does seem to be a bit slow to launch
  • Overall performance seems good enough, but it’s not going to blow you away. Toggling through the Blur menus was snappy and keeping open four browser windows didn’t seem to slow too much down.

That’s all we got for now — stay tuned for our full review coming up shortly!

Pioneer 11 and 12-inch Atom N470, ION 2 Netbooks Now Available

source –

Previously we saw the 11.6” DreamBook Lite U11a and heard it was coming with ION 2 graphics. That model is now available with ION 2 graphics (GT218M) for a $59 upgrade and an upgrade to an Atom N470 processor costs $29 which brings the base price up to $537 AUD ($491). Looks of other cool customizable options but it’s a shame in only comes in Red / Black.

Then there’s the 12.1” DreamBook Lite U12 ION 2. Same deal with an Atom N Pinetrail processor except this one comes with a color combination more easy on the eyes: Black on the inside and brown on the outside. The Atom N470 upgrade is $29 and the base price prior to that upgrade is $549 AUD ($502) which includes ION 2 by default.

DreamBook Lite U12 ION2

Some features are optional and not included in the base price above

  • 12.1” 1366 x 768 display
  • Intel Atom N450 / N470 processor
  • Intel NM10 chipset
  • Nvidia ION 2 graphics
  • 1x RAM slot (2GB max)
  • 2.5” SATA storage
  • Card reader, VGA, audio jacks, LAN, 3x USB, HDMI
  • 4-cell Li-poly battery (7.2V / 4600 mAh) OR
  • 6-cell Li-poly battery (7.2V / 6900 mAh) no mention of battery life
  • 1.3M webcam
  • 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi
  • Bluetooth 2.1+EDR
  • 3G module + antennas
  • Windows XP / Vista / 7 / Ubuntu 9.10 Linux
  • 1.45 kg / 3.2 pounds