Updates from March, 2008 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Chris 4:01 pm on March 31, 2008 Permalink | Reply  

    A Bigger Drive 


    I wrote this up a while ago when I liberated a Western-Digital Passport HDD from its plastic enclosure and inserted it in my MacBook, this method could be used for any laptop that has a SATA drive, granted on the Windows side you’d have to reformat and do a fresh install and then install your applications, it still a very easy way to get a new bigger hard drive and also be able to use your old drive as an external or portable drive. The only reason I revisit this post is because I just upgraded the original 120GB drive from this post to a 320GB drive

    The only negative part of this process is that you void the warranty on the drive that you liberate.

    I’ve had many people claim that the drive inside the WD Passports is an inferior drive compared to the WD Scorpio laptop drives, but this is not the case. The same WD3200BEVT listed on the WD site is the exact same one that is inside the 320GB Passport.

    (originally posted June 6th 2007 on cyclingplatypus.com)

    Since the MacBook is really more of a desktop replacement for the mini I wanted to upgrade the hard drive from the stock 80GB drive to something a little more “robust” and as I was browsing around Mac Rumors I saw that a few people bought 120GB or 160GB Western-Digital Passport drives which happens to house a 2.5 inch SATA hard drive in it and just swapped them for the stock drive.

    This a great solution because not only do you get a bigger drive but you also get a 2.5 inch SATA enclosure for your stock drive, so in actuality you are swapping your 80GB space for 240GB or you could use the old drive as a back-up like I am doing.

    How did I do it? Glad you asked:

    • Plug in and reformat the Passport.
    • Fire up Carbon Copy Cloner and clone the stock drive.
    • Turn off and allow time to cool down.
    • Crack open the black plastic enclosure of the WD Passport (no screws, just plastic so you do actually get a little of that uncomfortable cracking sound).
    • Remove the battery.
    • Unscrew the little “L” door (or bracket) behind the battery.
    • Slide out the stock drive.
    • Unscrew drive.
    • Remove stock drive.
    • Insert new drive.
    • Re-screw drive.
    • Slide the new drive in.
    • Re-screw the “L” door.
    • Put the battery back in.

    and

    • Boot up your Mac and viola…good to go.

    Total time including cloning: 35 minutes…WOOHOO!!!

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    • Bryan 2:55 pm on April 1, 2008 Permalink | Reply

      Cool, I am thinking about buying a MacMini at the end of the summer and I would like to back it up some how, so I might be buying that.

  • Bryan 3:41 pm on March 31, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Broadcast, , , Creek, Killhouse, ,   

    A Sneek Peek of the new Call of Duty 4 Map Pack 

    It looks like we have just seen the a new “sneek peek” of the new map pack that is coming out for at least the Xbox 360 and PS3, I’m not sure how or if they are releasing the maps for the PC. The map names are Broadcast, Creek, Chinatown, and Killhouse. They all look really good and I can’t wait until they get released.

     
  • Bryan 3:30 pm on March 31, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Call of Duty, , Call of Duty 3, , Call of Duty 5, Map Pack, , WWII game,   

    Call of Duty 5? 

    Everyone in the gaming industry knows that Call of Duty 4 is probably the best shooter out now. With it’s great graphics and war intensity no one can stand up to it. So the game is called Call of Duty 4. There has already been 1-3 so it makes you wonder if there will be a 5th game released.

    So lets look at some history of the Call of Duty franchise. Call of Duty “1” was released on October 29th, 2003. This was a fairly good game and started the franchise in World War II. The only real competition during this time was Medal of Honor but even that was a little short of Call of Duty. One great thing about the earliest Call of Duty game is that it was able to be played in multiplayer this is something that most other war game’s of it’s time didn’t have.

    On October 25th, 2005 Infinity Ward release the second game in the franchise Call of Duty 2. This is a great game for its time, and it has a great multiplayer feature. I have this game an I know first hand that it is a fantastic game. I personally think that this is the point when Call of Duty really starts to break away from all of the over war games out there.

    The next game to be released was Call of Duty 3. That was on November 6th, 2006 and it was only released for the Xbox 360, Wii, and PS3. This also was a WWII game and turned out really good for some of the big consoles out there.

    The newest and I think best Call of Duty ever made was Call of Duty 4. Call of Duty 4 was released on November 5th, 2007. This game is great because they put in some big multiplayer enhancements that made the game very famous and exciting to play. The two big ones where the ranks and create a class. I have played Call of Duty 4 and can tell you that both of these features work very well.

    So, most of the Call of Duty’s are released around late October or very early November. The question is “will there be another Call of Duty?”. To answer this in one word I would say yes. But, personally I don’t think it would be soon. The reason why is, they are still working on Call of Duty 4. As you probably know the new map pack is coming out anytime now (which should be some great maps) and there will most likely be more on the way.

    Even though it might not be coming out soon, there is still some talk of Call of Duty 5 already. At this link it refers to Call of Duty 5 as “in the pipe” so we know that someone is thinking about it. One thing I am interested to see is what they change from Call of Duty 4 to 5. I’m guessing that they will still stay in Iraq in the current war because they were on WWII for 3 games, I don’t think it will change anytime soon.

     
    • Tom Stanley 3:56 pm on March 31, 2008 Permalink | Reply

      I was on Yahoo and found your blog. Read a few of your other posts. Good work. I am looking forward to reading more from you in the future.

      Tom Stanley

    • Chris 4:13 pm on March 31, 2008 Permalink | Reply

      I just recently got back into shooters thanks to the Battlefield: Bad Company beta, CoD is a great franchise, I do hope that it is another modern combat game and not a WWII game.

    • Tony 8:58 pm on April 6, 2008 Permalink | Reply

      I’m going to have to disagree with you on something here. In my opinion Call of Duty 2 is a way better game than Call of Duty 4. When I played the single player version of Call of Duty 2, I could play for about 4 hours at a time before I got tired of it. I get bored with CoD4 within about 30 minutes, I think that Infinity Ward made a poor decision in switching away from WWII, mostly because in making the game modern, they made it much more complicated. The thing about CoD2 that I like so much was how simple it was. The biggest problem I have with CoD4 multiplayer is the class system. That’s a little weird because the biggest problem I had with CoD2 multiplayer was the lack of a class system (I was a huge Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory fan). But something seems wrong with the classes in CoD4, I’m not quite sure what it is, something just seems wrong.

      Sorry for the length.

    • Michael 4:35 pm on April 28, 2008 Permalink | Reply

      This “Tony” character is out of his mind. CoD4 is the best!!!

    • Free COD4 10:25 pm on May 25, 2008 Permalink | Reply

      Want to play this game for free?!?!?

      Well, come on down and sign up via this link, and you can do surveys (which you can easily bullshit with fake info.) to gain points ; with said points you can get COD4:MW for free instead of its $60 price tag!!

      http://www.prizerebel.com/index.php?r=180219

      You wont regret it!

  • Bryan 10:59 am on March 29, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Blog Email, Email, Gmail   

    New Blog Email Address 

    To make it seem more “official” instead of using my personal one I made a new email address that you can send all of your comments or questions to. It is gadgetsandtech@gmail.com. So, if you need anything send it there.

     
  • Tyler 2:47 pm on March 28, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Guild Wars 2, Hopes, Improvements, Preview   

    Hopes for Guild Wars 2 

    gw2logo4.jpg  The Guild Wars games have become a huge success since the Prophecies was released back in 2005. The many campaigns and most recent expansion (Eye of the North) has given GW the ability to say they have over 5 Million active players right now and still growing. The reason for this success has a lot to do with the game’s no monthly fee. It is also because of their releases of new games very fast. This will all ways give the gamers something to look forward to, but NCSoft and Arenanet have announced that the Guild Wars games are over and they are now working on a completely new game called Guild Wars 2. This will offer at least 4 new races, these races are the Sylvari, Asuras, Norn, and the Charr. I don’t know if the races in GW 1 will still be playable or will be eliminated. The one things probably most GW players are hoping for is not just an expansion that is the same game with just a little tweaks. They want a completely new game that includes all of the old things but adds new things to the game that make the experience much different than that of the old games. I am expecting a great game to be created and there are some things that I am hoping they put in the game that wasn’t in GW1. The first thing I want to see is adding a jump feature to the game. This would be a great thing to add to the game. Second is adding a larger skill bar. This would be very beneficial to the gamers because you would be able to have many different types of skills equipped at all times, and if you are like me you have tons of skill that just sit there because there isn’t enough space on the bar. Lastly, I would like to see a great improvement on the capacity in the storage. The storage now can only hold I think 30 items. This is not enough because you storage is use for all the characters you have created. This is hard to manage and you will end up tossing things that you want to keep because of the lack of space. With these simple add ons and improvement I think the game will be a lot better. I have Guild Wars Prophecies so if you want to see me in the game my three characters are Znerf Argon, Illuvatar Argon, and Melkor Argon. You can just send me a friend request and we can go questing or just talk about the game.

     
  • Chris 11:21 am on March 26, 2008 Permalink | Reply  

    Little Tech That Could 


    Or more appropriately
    “Little Tech That Could, Had It Been Given A Chance”

    The problem with being a tech-head is that occasionally you nibble on something that you think is going to be huge, it has the potential to be an out of the box success but it suffers one fatal flaw, you believe it is better than the company does.

    There are plenty of examples of this and I’ve been the unknowing sucker on many a time and I’ll probably wear that badge a few more hundred times in my lifetime. I picked the wrong format in the great format war of 2008 (granted I believe that HD downloaded content will be the big winner, but I digress). It isn’t as if it is one particular company that kills off things that could’ve been huge, there are many things like my example below that have suffered the “yeah we made it and well we like it but not enough to really get out advertise it and I don’t think we are really going to put any more money into it either”.

    A few years ago when we lived in Metro Detroit I picked up my first SPOT watch, (Smart Personal Objects Technology), and it came from the big M out of Redmond. The concept was that the device (a watch in this case) could receive information via FM radio waves. You could have up to date weather, traffic, news, etc. The watches were big and bulky (that’s one reason I liked them) and you had to recharge them, you had to subscribe to the company’s MSN Direct service but most watches came with a free year to get you hooked on the service and then it is a fee after. The problem is that watch manufactures were on board but Microsoft really wasn’t. The coverage is limited to larger metro areas with the promise at the time that it would expand until there was country wide coverage, easy enough since everywhere gets FM signals and all they’d have to do is piggyback on existing FM towers. Well I moved from Metro Detroit and canceled my service because where I was moving to didn’t have coverage, I remember distinctly the customer service rep saying “that area is planned coverage in the next year” in an attempt to get me to stay on, but I still cancelled and sold that watch.

    Last week I was in a Brookstone outlet and what did my eye spy? This beautiful Abacus SPOT watch that originally sold for $180 for $29.99. Now I realized that the fact that it was less than $30 and the fact that all of the original SPOT watch makers had left the game and Microsoft had moved onto MSN Direct powered coffee makers and GPS receivers that I would most likely just be getting a plain old digital watch that had awful battery life and had to be recharged avery 4 days but sitting in the bottom of the box was also a free year of MSN Direct. So I ponied up my $30 and came home charged and activated the watch only to discover that the fact that my area was planned to get coverage two years ago it still hadn’t and that absolutely nothing had changed in the 3+ years since I last used it. I do get SPOT-ty (HAHAHA, get it SPOT…yeah, didn’t think so) coverage in my neck of the woods and it only took two days for it completely register but I have to say that it still has so much potential, even in the days of fully connected cell phones, this watch could’ve been huge…if only the company would have stood behind it and supported it the way that it should’ve been. I’m glad a spent the $30, it is a great watch, but I don’t think I’ll hop on the renewal bus.

    But this got me thinking about the other old technology that I still have that could have been huge and it hit me, there has to be others who have some tech they thought was going to be huge and I wondered what others got suckered into, I mean were early adopters to products that just never lived up there potential.

     
  • Bryan 2:21 pm on March 25, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: is.gd, , Snurl, Twhirl, TwitPic,   

    Review of Twhirl 

     abac_logo.gifIf you use twitter you know that sometimes it is annoying when you always have to keep on bringing up their website to post something. Now with Twhirl you don’t have to do that. Twhirl is a free Twitter client that lets you do everything that you do with the normal twitter.com. It also makes it very easy to post things and reply to people.Twhirl lets you do everything that you would normaly do with Twitter. You can reply to people, send direct messages, delete posts, and mark tweets as your favorite.There are also other things that Twhirl has combined with twitter to make your experience with Twhirl even better. The first improvement that they made was making it very easy to shorten urls. As you probably know you are only allowed to put in 160 characters in one update. So you need to make the url shorter if you want to share it with your friends. With Twhirl you can choose either Snurl or  is.gd.The second improvement that they made was making it easy to post pictures on Twitter through TwitPic. TwitPic is a website that lets you upload photo’s to share them with your friends on Twitter. I have posted a couple of pictures using TwitPic through Twhirl and it works very nicely.Twhirl also notices you if you have a twitter that just came in so you are always up to date. You can also set the time span between when it checks for new twits. Thwirl also has different color schemes so you can make it look how ever you want. There are also a couple of other little things that this application does. One is that it uses a thing called TweetScan. In this you can search the public timeline to see if anyone posted about a topic that you are interested in. I have used this and it works great. Twhirl is also compatible with many operating systems. They are 2000, XP, and Vista for Windows, and also Mac OS X. The last great thing that Twhirl does is it can combine more than one Twitter account. This is defiantly useful so you don’t have to keep on going back and forth between Twitter accounts.To get Twhirl you can go to this link, and download it. I suggest that everyone tries it because it is a great application. 

     
  • Bryan 1:49 pm on March 25, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , New Banner   

    New Blog Banner 

    As you can see we have a new banner at the ^top^ of our page. This banner was made by Graham Hall, he did a great job and I thank him very much for that. Graham has a website here. I recommend that everyone checks it out. And again thanks Graham!

     
    • Michael 2:25 pm on March 25, 2008 Permalink | Reply

      New Banner looks great!

    • Mark H 10:03 pm on March 25, 2008 Permalink | Reply

      Nice.

    • ghall 10:12 pm on March 25, 2008 Permalink | Reply

      @ Michael: Thanks. It was quite fun to make, but I won’t bore you with the blow by blow of how I came up with the design. Being the perfectionist that I am, I could tweak the hell out of that banner, and still not be satisfied with it. It’s a curse I tell you!

  • Bryan 9:37 am on March 25, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: New Writer   

    New Writer 

    Well as you can probably see, we have a new writer here at Gadgets and Tech. His name is Chris Miller and he will be writing a lot of different things including reviews of different hardware and opines on different topics. His first post was about the SwitchEasy Capsule, a case for the iPhone. So, Welcome Chris!

     
  • Bryan 8:49 am on March 25, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Intercooler, Red Ring of Death,   

    Xbox 360 Nyko Intercooler 

    As everyone with an Xbox knows the red ring of death is going around them very fast and killing everything in it’s path. We have also posted about the red ring of death a couple of days ago and talked about some ways that you might be able to protect you from that. Now we would like to add one more to the list. This is called the Xbox 360 Nyko Intercooler. It’s job is to cool down your Xbox even if you play it a lot. I just bought it recently and it is doing an amazing job and keeping my Xbox cooled. Usually I could feel how hot it is but now it is easily 10 to 15 degrees colder, which is great to keep it running perfectly.

    The Intercooler also fits on the Xbox so if you have a wireless adapter it won’t interfere with it. In the back of the intercooler it has a plug so the power cord can fit right in. To the right of the power plug it has a button that lets you easily detach the intercooler if you need to transport it for travel.

    0282.jpg

    Now the question is how much does it cost. For a device like this I was very surprised to see the price tag, and this was in a good way. I bought this intercooler at Game Stop for $20. A remarkable price for something that might save you from the ring of death. I would defiantly suggest everyone to go and get one of these intercoolers.

     
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