May 2, 2007

[THE GET IT]
I’m bringin’ back the cheap hard drives. I know every once in a while I swear them off, but I can’t pass up a great deal. This week Buy.com is featuring Seagate’s 500GB FreeAgent USB 2.0 external hard drive. This drive spins at a fast 7200RPM, has 480 MB/sec speed, is PC and Mac compatible and comes wrapped in an attractive enclosure. Most importantly it has that rare hard drive feature, a 5-year limited warranty. Buy.com has this great external hard drive priced at a low $138.95 with free shipping (Tax in CA, MA, MD, TN). 
http://www.buy.com/prod/seagate-500gb-freeagent-usb…
[THE GIZMO]
If you haven’t heard of Vudu yet, you certainly will in short time. The voodoo that they do is basically put over 5,000 movies from seven major studios, as well as indie distributors, at your fingertips. Vudu is describing itself as “a revolutionary new product that will transform the way you get and watch movies.” Big deal, right? We already have Comcast On Demand, Netflix and DVRs. Well there are two things that separate Vudu from the rest of the pack. The first is the fact that Vudu does not require a PC or a cable box. The second, and this is important, is that it is being run by some of the biggest players in Silicon Valley. The all-star list includes Tony Miranz from Tahoe Networks and AT&T Bell Labs, Alain Rossman, who brought us WAP and got his start at Apple, then founded Phone.com (now Openwave Systems), EO Corporation, and C-Cube Microsystems among others. The COO and VP of Engineering both come from TiVo and Vudu is being funded by Greylock Partners and Benchmark Capital. In addition to a great UI and some nice hardware, the company has been quietly courting content providers for the last two years and is starting to get a lot of attention.
http://www.vudulabs.com/
[THE GORGEOUS]
The Italian brand Brionvega has been manufacturing audio and video products since 1945 and their parent company, the Formenti Group, is the leading producer of television sets in Italy today. In fact, many of their TVs and radios have ended up in museums and design collections with a few, such as the Cubo, still highly sought after today. The amazing thing about Brionvega is that the shell of their classic line remains virtually unchanged with all the advantages of modern technology inside. They refer to them as “future antiques.” However, this past week Brionvega unveiled a new design coined the Alpha TV. This new concept looks part flat screen TV and part Marcel Breuer chair. Besides sporting some sweet retro colors, chrome accents and rounded lines, it also features a built-in DVD player and a nice chunky remote that looks a bit like a second generation iPod. Rumor has it going on sale around September.  
http://www.ictblog.it/index.php?/archives/2551-Brionvega…
[THE GREEN]
Did you know that to produce what we consider junk mail we chop down approximately 100 million trees and use around 28 billion gallons of water each year? It’s insane. I know in my case, I receive an inordinate amount of useless solicitations every day. Well, if you’re mad as hell and not going to take it anymore, all you have to do is pony up a mere $36/year. For about a dime-a-day GreenDimes offers a service that will reduce this avalanche by contacting dozens of direct mailers and literally thousands of catalog publishers on your behalf and make sure that you stay off their lists. In addition, GreenDimes will register you with the Direct Marketing Association’s Mail Preference Service. And don’t worry about not getting your favorite catalogs, GreenDimes has it covered. They give members a really easy tool on their website to tell them which catalogs to stop. To top all of this goodness off, GreenDimes will also plant a tree on your behalf each month!
http://www.greendimes.com/
[THE GOSSIP]
Holy gazookas! What is the meaning of this? ‘Vista More Secure than Mac OS’, yes, you read that right. Sorry for the gloating, it’s just the culmination of the many years of watching those annoying commercials with that smug Mac guy. All kidding aside, it’s obvious that all operating systems have their vulnerabilities and as the number of Mac users grows, so does the incentive of hackers to exploit them. Dino Dai Zovi, the prize winning New York-based security researcher has poked a stick in the hornet’s nest this week and is causing quite a stir. I won’t bore you with all the details; you can get all you’d like after the link.
http://www.macworld.com/news/2007/04/30/daizovi/index.php