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TGR News: August 2009

Following on from my previous post, I’ve been looking into some alternate theme options and various other improvements that can be made around here. Here’s all the details, organized in convenient point-form.

  1. New writer! Though he unofficially joined us a little earlier on in the year, The Green Room welcomes Liam F. to the editorial team. His latest articles can be found at his author page.
  2. New look! As promised, here’s a quick preview of TGR’s “new look”. Please let me know if you love it or hate it, I’m open to any suggestions and still attempting (albeit rather slowly) to learn WordPress.org site development.
  3. New year! Five days from now, TGR will be one year old. We’ll take a trip down memory lane on the day with our finest moments.

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter for quicker, less-reading-required messages and fan us up on Facebook while you’re at it for brownie points. – r.

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Alfa Passion

alfa romeo 8c competizioneIn modern day society,  two Italian super car brands seemingly dominate their category, Ferrari and Lamborghini, undoubtedly great cars, with their Italian/ German style, finesse and of course their stomach wrenching speeds and power.

Trying to outdo one of the two… well? let’s be quite frank, is a huge risk and could end in tears. So what were Alfa thinking then? did they actually believe they could abolish the Ferrari’s finesse or the Lambo ludicrousness… Well its name just so happens to translate into Competition in it’s birth language, so let us see if it lives up to it shall we?

It has been dubbed the Alfa romeo Competitzione, A civil war is about to break out. But it’s got the specs to give the Stallion a run for it’s money, beside its mind-boggling 0-60 time of 4.4 seconds its deliver a massive punch. As a sports coupe, we will see how it’s shapes up to probably it’s biggest rival in the market. The 599 GTB Fiorano.

The 599.

  • 0-60.  3.7 seconds.
  • BHP   611 bhp
  • Curb weight  1,690 kg.
  • Fuel Capacity  19 MPG

Alfa romeo Competitzione.

  • 0-60. 4.4 seconds.
  • BHP   444 bhp.
  • Curb weight  1585 kg
  • Fuel Capacity  23 MPG

Sadly, The Alfa does not compare with the Ferraris  sheer power or speed. But, what I believe is the reason I adore this car so much, and why I share love for every romeo. Is the vast amounts of passion and effort that is gently tee spooned onto these machines. Whilst lambo is being overruled by the Germans, Alfa still retains it’s Italian heritage, and this is why I so highly recommend this car, because it is not just a piece of machinery, it’s a work of pure art.

Better than it’s rivals, well… lets be honest no, but Alfa has made a statement about itself which will send chills down the Stallions black neck.

-l.

Confessions of a lazy blogger

Picture 7

Isla Fisher's head really is full of Air.

Cue these three songs immediately.

Right, well it’s been quite a while since last posting here at The Green Room. This time, however, I promise we’re back (honest)!

This is just a heads up about a pretty major site upgrade that will hopefully be launched on our first birthday (August 20th). Until then, posts are going to be a little light around here (just like usual) but rest assured, we haven’t abandoned TGR.

To verify that I’m not lying, I’m adding a rather large “Under construction” banner to the site’s header in the meantime, so keep hitting that refresh button every now and then for updates and juicy details about TGR 2.0.

Now that you’ve read this, you can cue this song instead, knowing that the best really is yet to come… – r.

Thoughts on the PSP Go

sony-psp-go_1PSP Go

Last month at E3, Sony announced the fourth addition to the PSP (Playstation Portable) family, the PSP Go. This ‘futuristic’ gadget looks impressive. The two previous additions to the original PlayStation Portable have been largely unexciting, but Sony hopes to recapture the market with the more portable option.

This new PSP has been, as expected, completely redesigned. This new PSP has a huge slide out screen to enhance game play, movie viewing and internet surfing. Graphics in this hand held device have supposedly been highly improved, and publishers have announced a slew of new games to be released when the device arrives in October.

Keep on the look out for the new PSP Go…

– o.

Errors in The Sydney Morning Herald’s technology articles

BeautyMeters App Store description

BeautyMeter's App Store description

If you’ve ever seen ABC’s Media Watch, you’ll be well aware of the rapidly declining online journalism standards here in Australia. On more than a few occasions, I’ve noticed errors and omissions in The Sydney Morning Herald‘s technology news and I thought it was important to share them here. Obviously, the internet isn’t (nor should it be) error-free. It’s full of mistakes – I’ve made dozens here at The Green Room, and a fair few of them could have been avoided with a little more fact-checking and clarification. It’s the nature of blogs and it’ll remain that way for the foreseeable future. That said, it’s more important for online news sites to ensure that their pieces have been thoroughly checked before publication. They, above all other sources, are the most trusted for news on the internet. Essentially, I don’t want to bash the Australian media, but these mistakes are at the point of frustration for me.

Being a somewhat ‘Apple oriented’ blog, I’ve only looked at articles that cover Apple news and rumors, the latest of which regards the controversy over an application available on the App Store. BeautyMeter is a “Hot or Not” style app. It briefly showed child pornography that was uploaded by one of it’s users recently. There are several issues I have with the article.

iPhone app disabled after teen porn appears

Apple doesn’t “disable” third party applications. The app was removed.

Explicit photographs of girls purportedly as young as 15 were distributed to iPhone users in a controverisal new racy app that was approved by Apple.

The line has been phrased inaccurately – the photo was only ‘distributed’ to iPhone users who had downloaded and installed the BeautyMeter app. Furthermore, the app became available in mid-April. I’d hardly call that “new”. Finally, the app was approved by Apple, but the line’s once again phrased misleadingly – Apple approved the app before any explicit photos appeared on the application, and once an app is approved it is only subject to further scrutiny by Apple if the developer updates the app or Apple finds a clear terms of use violation, which in this case it did after the content was added.

The BeautyMeter app was available for download today despite the apparent child pornography, however, the app would not launch, with a message saying “the item you tried to buy is no longer available”.

If the article’s description is accurate, then he was unable to download the application. While the application’s description page and download link was probably still available after the article was published, the actual file was removed before then. The application didn’t launch because it wasn’t downloaded in the first place. As written, the item he tried to buy was no longer available, so it’s inaccurate to write that it was still available to download or that it wouldn’t launch.

Developer Funnymals or Apple should be able to trace the person who uploaded the offending images

Funnymals can trace the person uploading the images because sign-up is required to use the app and upload images, but Apple can’t. BeautyMeter wasn’t made by Apple – like all (except three) of more than fifty thousand apps on the App Store, Apple has very limited control over how the application operates once it’s been accepted onto the App Store, so it would be extremely difficult for Apple to trace whoever uploaded them.

The original article can be found here. – r.

iPhone 3G & 3G S

WWDC coverage


iPhone 3G

iPhone 3G S

Price

$99 8GB

$199 16GB

$299 32GB

Camera

2 megapixels

3 megapixels

Autofocus

Tap to focus

Video recording

New features

Cut, Copy, and Paste

MMS

Spotlight Search

Landscape Keyboard

Voice Memos

Improved performance

Built-in video camera

Voice Control

Compass

Cut, Copy, and Paste

MMS

Spotlight Search

Landscape Keyboard

Voice Memos

Color

Battery life

Talk time:

Up to 5 hours on 3G

Up to 10 hours on 2G

Standby time:

Up to 300 hours

Internet use:

Up to 5 hours on 3G

Up to 6 hours on Wi-Fi

Audio playback:

Up to 24 hours on audio

Video playback:

Up to 7 hours of video

Talk time:

Up to 5 hours on 3G

Up to 12 hours on 2G

Standby time:

Up to 300 hours

Internet use:

Up to 5 hours on 3G

Up to 9 hours on Wi-Fi

Audio playback:

Up to 30 hours on audio

Video playback:

Up to 10 hours of video

[Apple] – c.

WWDC: Ten things you should know

Picture 3

Now that Phil Schiller’s WWDC keynote is done with, here’s the ten things you should know in case you missed our liveblog coverage. – r.

1. There are now over 75 million Mac users worldwide

2. The unibody 13-inch MacBooks are now called MacBook Pros. They’ve got better batteries, better screens, Firewire, SD cards and they cost less, too.

3. The final copy of Safari 4 is out today, and you can download it here.

4. Snow Leopard is almost here. It gives you 6GB of storage BACK, it’s got OpenCL, 64-bit and Grand Central Dispatch. It’s also got Exchange support built-in at no extra cost.

5. QuickTime X has a new UI, it’s frameless and it’s beautiful. Built from scratch. It’s really fast and lets you do quick & easy editing.

6. Better yet, it’s only $29 (USD) to upgrade from Leopard when it arrives in September. Unfortunately, it’s an Intel only OS.

7. iPhone OS 3.0 arrives on June 17th. Previously unannounced features include: Buy movies, TV shows, music videos and audiobooks using iTunes on your device, multiple iTunes accounts, better Parental Controls and more language love. The really good news? Internet tethering via USB or Bluetooth. The bad news? AT&T won’t support it.

8. There’s a new iPhone arriving, also on June 17th (depending on your location), and it’s called iPhone 3GS. It’s got a 3 megapixel auto-focus, video recording camera (and you can edit, too). It also (finally) allows voice controls and commands and has a built-in compass. It looks and feels exactly the same as iPhone 3G does. You can browse the internet for up to nine hours on 3GS.

9. That iPhone is $199/$299 (AT&T prices) for 16/32GB capacities and sits along side the 8GB iPhone 3G (for just $99). There’s an ad here.

10. Overall (in my opinion), it was a better-than-average keynote from Phil Schiller and the team. The new iPhone is somewhat disappointing, but has some useful (and long needed) new features. Your average consumer is going to be a little disappointed with the backend-driven Snow Leopard OS, and everyone in the US now hates AT&T more than ever before for not supporting tethering or MMS at launch.

More WWDC coverage can be found here – r.


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