After reviewing the bold but polarizing Razer Blade gaming laptop, we were inspired to discuss whether Razer's gamble made sense for a laptop debut, or whether Razer should have pursued a more conventional approach with its first system. We go a few rounds, in which we discuss the Blade's ultrathin form, the second-screen Switchblade user interface, and the value of design versus performance.… Read more
In the computing world right now, there are two general ways to show windows on a screen: with the window taking up the entire screen, as on smartphones and tablets; or with resizable, overlapping windows, as on personal computer OSes.
Until yesterday, Google's browser-based operating system, Chrome OS, fell into the former camp. Users had no choice but to see browser pages and run browser apps at the full size of the screen. That changed with a new window manager that debuted with Chrome OS 19.0.1048.17, released in a developer build.
With the Chromebook notebooks that … Read more
If you're not already a pro at using the command line, OnyX is a solid choice for conducting routine maintenance and tweaking the interface on your Mac. This free utility shares much of the functionality of applications like Cocktail (which its help files suspiciously resemble), and it can help you with everything from checking SMART status on your disks to configuring the Dock, Finder, and Dashboard and Expose to your liking.
OnyX can even help you run Unix utilities, change your desktop to an animated background, and unlock hidden functions in apps like Safari and iTunes. As with all … Read more
The last time I took a look at the Razer Blade, it was sitting amid the crowded show floors and weird wireless networks of CES 2012. Razer's bold, somewhat experimental foray into gaming laptops has finally begun shipping, and we have one here at CNET to check out at long last.
First off, the Razer Blade is hardly cheap; $2,799 places it at the higher end of gaming laptops. Regular laptop shoppers would quake in their boots at those prices, and rightfully so. However, the Blade does incorporate some design and technology that make it a design piece of sorts.
It's a bit like a collectible Nike shoe: not completely practical, but sexy for a certain kind of person. The matte black, solid-metal construction has an attractive if fingerprint-collecting appeal, and the Blade does have some solid specs, with a 2.8GHz dual-core Intel Core i7 processor (3.5GHz in Turbo mode), Nvidia GeForce GT 555M graphics, 8GB of RAM, a 256GB SSD, and a 17.3-inch 1,920x1,080-pixel display.… Read more
Waiting patiently for the next-generation of laptops with Intel's latest silicon? Well, deets have leaked that expose future Ivy Bridge chips in all their wattage and gigahertz glory.
Intel is placing greater emphasis on power-efficient chips (designated with a "U" or "M" suffix) for the emerging ultrabook category as well as Apple's popular MacBook Air line. Intel's most power-efficient chips draw less than 20 watts, a veritable trickle of energy compared with the traditional desktop computer.
There's a trade-off of course. Generally, the lower the wattage, the lower the performance. For example, … Read more
Windows users can grab some Angry Birds and a host of other games when Microsoft's Windows Store opens for business later this month.
The new store is slated to launch in preview mode by the end of February at the same time the Windows 8 Consumer Preview debuts.
Citing a "source familiar with Microsoft's plans," The Verge has spilled the beans on which games will be among the first titles to pop up in the store. Though Pinball and Solitaire will automatically come with the Windows 8 Consumer Preview, several other games will be available for … Read more
Say goodbye to the Windows start button. Microsoft has gotten rid of it from the latest build of Windows 8.
Hitting the Web over the weekend, screenshots of the new Windows 8 build display the "super bar," but without the start button orb on the left, according to The Verge. Build 8220 will be the final version released before the beta, now known as the Consumer Preview, debuts before the end of the month.
Until its untimely (or timely) death, the Windows 8 start button located in the Metro UI offered access to the search, share, devices, and … Read more
Microsoft has been coy about certain details on Windows 8 ARM devices. But a new rumor suggests that some type of desktop interface may join the new Metro UI on such devices.
The folks in Redmond could be eyeing a limited or restricted desktop for Windows 8 ARM tablets and other devices, and one that will support only specific apps. At least, that's the scuttlebut from the Verge's Tom Warren, who wrote yesterday "that's exactly what we are hearing the software giant plans to do."
The move to Windows 8 initially stirred up confusion over … Read more
New video landed online this week that shows us our first real-world look at the unannounced HTC Ville.
Expected to be unveiled at Mobile World Congress in late February, the Ville should be HTC's thinnest smartphone to date.
The Ville first broke cover in early November when we learned that it would feature some rather high-end hardware. Rumored specs include Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, an updated version of HTC's Sense UI, a dual-core 1.5GHz Snapdragon S4 processor, a 4.3-inch qHD Super AMOLED display, and an 8-megapixel camera.
Capable of recording 1080p HD video, the … Read more
Microsoft does listen to user feedback, at least when it comes to fine-tuning some of the features in Windows 8.
Through their Building Windows 8 blog, the folks in Redmond have worked to reveal changes in store for Windows 8, notably in the area of file management. Among them are improvements to the cut, copy, paste, rename, and delete commands; refinements for file collisions; and a new look and feel for Windows Explorer.
In reaction to those blog posts, more than 2,000 users chimed in with suggestions for further tweaking the new file management. And Microsoft apparently listened.
Detailed … Read more