The word "performance" seems to be thrown around a lot in the automotive world these days. With increasing expansion and competition within the luxury sport sedan category, manufacturers are eager to drop statistics about horsepower, torque, zero-to-60 speeds, and other numbers to woo (and maybe even slightly intimidate) potential buyers. But specifications alone can't convey the true spirit of a car; as Aristotle said, the whole is more than the sum of its parts. So it makes sense that the ideal road test subjects the car to a wide range of variables: twisty turns of varying camber, … Read more
Earlier this month, New York enacted an Air Passenger Bill of Rights. Among other things, it requires that airlines make minimal provisions for passengers stranded on the tarmac for more than three hours. If you've done any traveling with kids, you probably know how difficult it is to both pack light (a key strategy for successful travel generally) and to pack enough stuff so that if there's a delay, you can keep the little ones occupied. The New York law bounds the problem a little bit: if your longest leg is 6 hours, you can be relatively assured that your outbound leg from a New York airport won't add more than 3 hours to that. But as the US Customs and Border Patrol SNAFU at LAX confirms, airport authorities don't seem to get particularly concerned about tarmac waits of 6, 8, or 10 hours, be they outbound or inbound. I think that when traveling with children, that's a bit much. What's a parent to do?… Read more
Maybe it's just us, but we never really thought digital storage products would ever be considered sexy enough to merit the attention from the likes of Ducati. But the motorcycling legend must see something we don't, because it's lent its famous name to SanDisk to stamp on a USB flash drive and memory cards, according to Fareastgizmos.
The marketing link is speed, as in data transfer rates, which we think will be lost on most true Ducati fans. The items do at least bear the company's signature red-and-black glossy color scheme, however, and the USB drive … Read more
ooVoo is a free, standalone desktop chat application that has both a text and video chat capabilities. Its official launch is next week, but the beta has been available since mid April. I took it for a spin this morning and came away impressed.
There are a ton of chat clients out there, so one of the things it has done to differentiate itself is multiperson video chat. ooVoo can handle as many as six people in one video conference, which is two more than what iChat is capable of. Users can drop in and out of conversations, and the video windows will scale with a similar effect to iChat's "swoop." Along with video, users can chat among themselves with their computer's microphone or a headset. There are volume controls for both speakers and the microphone right in the chat window, a handy addition.
I found the video and audio to be fairly clear, even when topped off at six users. ooVoo's creators tell me that when running full six-user video, it will take up only half the bandwidth on a low-end DSL connection. Assuming you're not downloading or uploading large files in the background, your connection shouldn't drag to a halt.
In addition to live video and text chat, ooVoo doubles as a video e-mail service. Users can send each other video messages as long as a minute in length that are available right in the app or via e-mail. Users who get the e-mail are also provided a link that takes them to a live flash version of the video, so they can access it while away from their home machine.
For people interested in adding a quick way to be reached on their social networking profile or Web site, ooVoo gives users the option to embed a quick contact button that will automatically launch an ooVoo conversation if installed. I've posted an example image of this on the left side of this post.
ooVoo is not alone in the multiperson video chat space; competitor SightSpeed also offers a free video and text chat service. The main difference is that SightSpeed is aimed at businesses and limits video chat to four users at a time with a monthly subscription fee.
ooVoo is currently available only for Windows users, although the team is releasing a beta for Macs in about six weeks. Users on both platforms will be able to chat with one another using the same client.
We extend our thanks in advance for your indulgence of our trip down memory lane this morning. Honest, we've tried to shake this nostalgia bug, but it keeps coming back--and this time we're not going to fight it, and you'll see why.
The Speed Racer car is real. That's right. The "Mach 5" has been brought to life in full glory from the '60s animation version (at least the body, anyway) for the Warner Bros. movie scheduled for release next year, according to Gizmodo. And thank goodness for that, because it's probably the … Read more
Nothing is more annoying that waiting and watching your PC struggle as your operating system slowly loads. Tom Merritt offers some new tips on how to speed up startup in both Windows XP and Windows Vista.
I could tell you just how quick the 2007 Mercedes-Benz CL550 is by quoting a bunch of dry statistics (0 to 60mph in 5.4 seconds, top speed governed at 155mph, net power 382 hp, net torque 391 lb-ft, blah, blah, blah), but I thought it might be more instructive to provide some real-world evidence courtesy of California Highway Patrol. Yes, I was just out on one of our highly scientific test drives for a CNET Car Tech review when I saw the five-o in the auto-dimming rearview mirror; they wasted no time in presenting me with a speeding ticket, … Read more
We at Crave would never advocate speeding or any other illegal activity on the road, but we do think it's only fair that motorists get a fighting chance against overzealous, quota-driven traffic cops (this is America, dammit). Besides, this windshield speed projector can actually help you keep your eyes on the road, making it easier to dial a cell phone phone or watch a DVD while behind the wheel.
GlobalTop Technology's "GPS HUD Speed Meter" projects your miles per hour on the windshield so your eyes don't need to drop down to the dashboard for … Read more
If this isn't a match made in heaven, we don't know what is: Porsche and yachting. Offering the opportunity of a "blank canvas," Florida-based Fearless Yachts approached Porsche Design Studios to seize what it calls the "aquabahn" with a state-of-the-art seacraft, a 28-foot cruiser built for high speed (surprise) featuring a 525-horsepower Viper engine.
Typical for what you'd expect from Porsche, the luxury racer has "the sleek curves and lean silhouette of a European coupe" with a seamless fiberglass hull that "does away with unsightly rivets that might slow it … Read more