Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Jon Wertheim: America's next big star? Don't fall for the hype ... again

It's not time to anoint a young American the next great star. But Jon Wertheim says it is OK to be guardedly optimistic of several U.S. women who are flourishing early at the U.S. Open.


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Peter Rojas and Ryan Block launch gdgt -- the Swiss Army knife of tech sites

When Ryan Block (our former Editor-in-chief) and Peter Rojas (founder of Engadget, Gizmodo, and RCRD LBL) announced last year that they were embarking on a new project together, alarm bells went off across the interblogs. Following nearly 12 months of rampant speculation, the duo's hard work is finally revealed. Combining the best of social networking, forums, news aggregation, and wiki-based sites, gdgt presents a fairly awe-inspiring range of tools for the hardcore gadget lover.

Imagine if Facebook, Wikipedia, your favorite forum, and Google Reader all got mashed into one gigantic, delicious smoothie, and you might begin to get the idea of gdgt. Instead of retreading territory in which they've already blazed a path, Ryan and Peter present a logical step forward for the gadget community -- a place where you can discuss, dissect, and grow your passion with other like minded individuals. It's an ambitious project with lots of really cool stuff to discover, like product comparison tools, the ability to track gadgets you own (or used to own, or want), news from top gadget sites (wink wink), and embeddable widgets.

Look, we've found the best way in life to learn about something is to scuttle the user manual and dive right in -- we highly suggest you do the same and take gdgt out for a spin. We think you'll like what you find.

Congrats Peter and Ryan!

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Peter Rojas and Ryan Block launch gdgt -- the Swiss Army knife of tech sites originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 01 Jul 2009 14:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Interpol is an American rock band formed in 1997 in New York City. The band's original line-up consisted of Paul Banks (vocals, guitar), Daniel Kessler (guitar, vocals), Carlos Dengler (bass guitar, keyboards) and Greg Drudy (drums, percussion). Drudy left the band in 2000 and was replaced by Sam Fogarino. In 2010, shortly after recording finished for the band's fourth album, Dengler left to pursue personal projects. While the band is officially now a trio, they have recruited David Pajo as their new bassist and Brandon Curtis as their new keyboardist and backing vocalist for their current tour. Interpol is one of the bands associated with the New York indie music scene, having first performed at Luna Lounge and being one of several groups that emerged out of the post-punk revival of the 2000s. The band's sound is generally a mix of bass throb and rhythmic, harmonized guitar, with a snare heavy mix, drawing comparisons to post-punk bands such as Joy Division and The Chameleons. Aside from the lyrics, their songwriting method includes all of the band members, rather than relying on any given chief songwriter. Interpol's debut album Turn on the Bright Lights (2002) was critically acclaimed, making it to tenth position on the NME's list of top albums in 2002 as well as #1 on Pitchfork Media's Top 50 Albums of 2002. Subsequent records Antics (2004) and Our Love to Admire (2007) have confirmed the band's initial success and turned them into a commercial and critical success. The band released its 4th album which is self titled in september!


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Irene, Jose, Katia: A storm by any other name ...

In another time, Tropical Storm Katia, which was barreling across the Atlantic early Wednesday, would have been called Katrina.


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Collective Soul is an American rock band originally formed in Stockbridge, Georgia.[1] Collective Soul broke into mainstream popularity with its first hit single, "Shine", which came from their debut album Hints, Allegations, and Things Left Unsaid, released in 1993. They have recorded seven Number One mainstream rock hits.[2] Collective Soul was inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame on September 19, 2009. This is my FAVORITE band of all time. I mean that, hands down I will never stop listening to them and I have been doing so since I was a kid. I have included two songs in this post just to show the contrast of how their music has changed, or 'evolved'. The first song entitled "Smashing Young Man" is from their self titled album released in 1995; the guitar solo at 2:30 is absolutely fantastic, gives me chills every time  I hear it..and I have heard it 100's of times! The second song is titled "She Does" which is from the album "Rabbit" released in 2009, their most recent release (that I'm aware of at least!) It does carry special meaning behind it, and there is once specific person who "She" is. Have a listen and enjoy!



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Xbox 360 modders claim CPU hack, make it party like an N64 (video)

The security system built into the 360's motherboard has more layers than an onion, which is why previous hacks have generally focused on the optical drive instead. But a couple of circuit breakers named Gligli and Tiros claim to have finally freed up the console's CPU, allowing all 360 variants to boot homebrew software while also making them invulnerable to patches sent out by Microsoft. The video after the break purports to show the fruits of their labor, including an N64 emulator running on a version of Linux. It doesn't really prove anything, except perhaps the lengths these guys have gone to: they use various hardware tools to slow down the console's CPU and then confuse it with so-called 'glitch' pulses in an effort to make it forget its normal boot-up checks. Certainly not a trick for the average F-Zero X racer, particularly when speed-boosting around copy protection like this may be shady in the eyes of the law. (One more thing: don't be put off by the video's soundtrack -- starts out weird but gets better, baby.)

[Thanks, Rodolfo]

Continue reading Xbox 360 modders claim CPU hack, make it party like an N64 (video)

Xbox 360 modders claim CPU hack, make it party like an N64 (video) originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 31 Aug 2011 08:00:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Pepper began in 1996 when singer/guitarist Kaleo Wassman joined forces with bassist/singer Bret Bollinger and drummer Yesod Williams. With the trio in place, Pepper left Hawaii for San Diego and went on to open shows by Burning Spear, Shaggy, and other major reggae artists. Pepper first entered the studio in 1997 and recorded a seven-song demo. In 1999, after gathering a local following on the Big Island, Pepper gained the interest of an independent, L.A.-based record company, Volcom Entertainment. Volcom produced and distributed the band's first release, Give'n It, which combined dancehall, reggae, hip-hop, and pop genres. With the success of Give'N It, the band landed a spot on the 2001 Warped Tour. It is a short but informative bit of info. This band is great and this is a really good song that I first heard with a good friend of mine. Enjoy and share!!



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By 1995, Ssaul williams had become a open mic poet and, in 1996, he won the title of Nuyorican Poets Cafe's Grand Slam Champion. The documentary film SlamNation follows Williams and the other members of the 1996 Nuyorican Poets Slam team (Beau Sia, Mums da Schemer and Jessica Care Moore) as they compete in the 1996 National Poetry Slam held in Portland, Oregon. The following year, Williams landed the lead role in the 1998 feature film Slam. Williams served as both a writer and actor on the film, which would win both the Sundance Festival Grand Jury Prize and the Cannes Camera D'Or (Golden Camera) and serve to introduce Williams to international audiences. Williams was at this time breaking into music. He had performed with such artists as Nas, The Fugees, Christian Alvarez, Blackalicious, Erykah Badu, KRS-One, Zack De La Rocha, De La Soul, and DJ Krust, as well as poets Allen Ginsberg and Sonia Sanchez. After releasing a string of EPs, in 2001 he released the LP Amethyst Rock Star with producer Rick Rubin and in September 2004 his self-titled album to much acclaim. He played several shows supporting Nine Inch Nails on their European tour in summer 2005, and has also supported The Mars Volta. Williams was also invited to the Lollapalooza music festival in Summer 2005. The Chicago stage allowed Williams to attract a wider audience. He also appeared on NIN's album Year Zero, and supported the group on their 2006 North American tour. On the tour Williams announced that Trent Reznor would co-produce his next album.  This collaboration resulted in 2007's The Inevitable Rise and Liberation of NiggyTardust!. This album was available only at the website until a physical CD of the album was issued. The physical release included new tracks and extended album artwork.  The first 100,000 customers on the website had the option to download a free lower-quality audio version of the album. The other option was for users to pay $5 to support the artist directly and be given the choice of downloading the higher-quality MP3 version or the lossless FLAC version. The material has been produced by Trent Reznor and mixed by Alan Moulder. It was Reznor who said that, after his own recent dealings with record labels, they should release it independently and directly As a writer, Williams has been published in The New York Times, Esquire, Bomb Magazine and African Voices, as well as having released four collections of poetry. As a poet and musician, Williams has toured and lectured across the world, appearing at many universities and colleges. In his interview in the book, Words in Your Face: A Guided Tour Through Twenty Years of the New York City Poetry Slam, Williams explained why he creates within so many genres, saying:

It's not that I balance [those arts] out, all the different arts balance me out. So, that there is a certain type of emotion that is more easily accessible through music than poetry... Some things are meant to be written, some are meant to be sung, some things are meant to be hummed, some things are made to be yelled, and so that's just how life works

Williams is a vocal critic of the War on Terrorism and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan;  among his better-known works are the anti-war anthems "Not In My Name" and "Act III Scene 2 (Shakespeare)". In early 2008, a Nike Sparq Training commercial featured Williams' song "List of Demands (Reparations)". In a November 2008 interview with, Williams talked about his forthcoming projects: ...but there's one [album] that I'm waist-deep into. I'm aiming to finish it up next month. Trent wants to work on a sequel for Niggy that I think would be cool and I also have an album and new songs demoed at home that I'm ready to go into the studio and lay down.It’s a complete reflection of how I feel in this country; it's a very transformative time


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Prize Winning 'Something Unreal' Mod The Haunted Snapped Up By THQ [Video]

Grisly Unreal mod The Haunted, winner of the 2010 "Make Something Unreal" contest, has been snapped up by THQ and will be released as an honest-to-goodness commercial game featuring gore-splattering hellspawn later this year. Meet The Haunted: Hells Reach. More »


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Galaxy S II for Sprint, AT&T, and T-Mobile hands-on (video)

Galaxy S II for Sprint, AT&T, and T-Mobile hands-on
If you've been wondering just when you'll be able to get Europe's hottest smartphone from last year, wonder no more: tonight the Samsung Galaxy S II was formally (and finally) announced for US release. Sprint, T-Mobile, and AT&T all will be receiving variants, with the first two getting a 4.5-inch Super AMOLED Plus display, the AT&T unit being stuck with the same 4.3-inch display as the earlier GS II. In fact, the AT&T model looks indistinguishable from the European version that we compared it against, while the other two look a bit different.

Sprint's model, aka the Epic 4G Touch, has that larger 4.5-inch screen, plus a slightly more rounded profile than the AT&T model. The T-Mobile version, meanwhile, is the most rounded of the three, but otherwise we were hard-pressed to find any differences between 'em, as you can see in the video below. All are powered by 1.2GHz dual-core processors, 16GB of storage, eight megapixel webcams on the back, batteries that are said to be at least 10 percent larger than the previous version, and "4G" wireless -- either in the form of HSPA+ or WiMAX.

Only Sprint has announced formal pricing and availability, September 16th for $199, while the others will be available in the always ambiguous "soon."

Update: We got curious about those battery sizes and popped the backs off the two phones that we could get our hands on. The AT&T model has the exact same battery size as the European Galaxy S II (6.11Wh), while the Sprint version is indeed about 10 percent larger (6.66Wh). We presume the T-Mob one is bigger too, but that's locked up. In a box.

Continue reading Galaxy S II for Sprint, AT&T, and T-Mobile hands-on (video)

Galaxy S II for Sprint, AT&T, and T-Mobile hands-on (video) originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 30 Aug 2011 19:20:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Generic arts and entertainment headlines

Inspired by media columnist Jack Shafer's piece about generic news headlines that we see over and over again, I thought I'd compile my own list of generic headlines, an arts and entertainment edition (disclosure: I'm sure I've been guilty...


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iPad dock shopping cart keeps footie fans and their other halves happy

British football fans agree on very few things: how much everyone likes Jimmy Bullard, Arséne Wenger's need to buy a proper centre-half and how painful it is to be dragged out shopping just before kickoff on Saturday. It's those sympathetic and forward-thinking people at Sky who have the answer, at least to that last one. The company has teamed up with supermarket Sainsbury's (which has a track record of innovation) to trial a new trolley with a solar-powered iPad dock and speakers. Now you can watch the game, or anything else, via the Sky Go app on your device and get the grocery shopping done at the same time. Worried about getting so engrossed in Juan Mata's footwork that you'll be a danger to others? Rest easy, the cart has proximity sensors attached to let you know when you're about to sideswipe a pensioner. It's being trialled in the Cromwell Road Sainsbury's in West London -- all you need to try it yourself is an iPad, Sky Go access and a desire to be on the cutting edge of sports and technology. If the thought of shouting 'Taxi for Bent!' down the fruit aisle appeals, you can catch another pic and the press release after the break.

Continue reading iPad dock shopping cart keeps footie fans and their other halves happy

iPad dock shopping cart keeps footie fans and their other halves happy originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 31 Aug 2011 02:55:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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