Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Dell Laptop Uses New Intel Cooling Technology

Dell has announced an ultraportable laptop with a new technology from Intel that sucks in outside air to keep the system quieter and cooler.

Dell's Vostro V130 is one of the first laptops to incorporate Intel's Hyperbaric cooling technology, which uses an internal fan that draws air into the laptop to keep it from overheating. With most existing designs, the internal fans are used to push hot air out.

The air that's pulled in is channeled toward key components to keep them cool, such as the CPU. The air is drawn in through the left side of the laptop, and the warm air is then expelled out the right.
The system allows the fans to run at lower speeds, which results in a quieter laptop, said Rajiv Mongia, a principal engineer at Intel. It also leads to a cooler laptop, according to Intel, because the cooling system is more efficient.

"By using cold air directly from the outside and then directly blowing across the hot components, you create a more efficient cooling solution. This is because by blowing air across the components, you create more intense convective cooling and often get more cooling flow through the platform," Mongia said.

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Facebook to Launch Video Chat Effort with Skype?

Forget poke wars, how about bugging friends in different time zones by calling them at all hours of the night?

Facebook is already the king of social networks and with a newly improved messaging system and an integrated IM service, the site aims to cover all methods of communication. However, it is missing one service that rivals like Gmail already have, and that is video chatting. Still, it looks like Facebook won't be trailing behind Gmail in that regard for much longer.

A few weeks back, Skype 5.0 for Windows was released and it revealed some very interesting Facebook integration. The new feature allowed Skype users to SMS, chat or call their Facebook friends via the VOIP service right from the Facebook News Feed.  Now the latest rumors say the partnership between Facebook and Skype could widen to include video calling.

App developer Tal Ater writes that while developing a Facebook application called Green Any Site, he came across something in the site's code that as recently as a few days ago wasn't there. Further investigation revealed that the code checks for plug-in support using either ActiveX on IE or the Skype SDK. Ater says he believes Facebook is bucket testing the feature as the code doesn't appear every time he loads a page.

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Do Virus Scanners Slow Down Your System?

Does the presence of a virus scanner guarantee reduced performance, or does it have a negligible impact? We test 10 different products to see if you’re unknowingly suffering with security software.

Remember the days of Windows 98, when CPUs ran at triple-digit MHz speeds and slogged along with less than a gigabyte of RAM? Installing a resident program like a virus scanner often meant committing performance suicide. And heaven forbid a scheduled scan start up while you were actually at your desk. Productivity could literally grind to a halt. At least that’s how I remember things through the fog of time.

Today's personal computers are much more powerful than they were a few years ago, so perhaps the notion that an anti-virus application will still have a debilitating effect on performance is obsolete. Still, folks who began using computers after multi-core CPUs and gigabytes of RAM became the norm have likely never used a PC without a virus scanner installed. They'd have no way to relate to the days of running lean and mean to keep speed manageable. Now we have resources to spare. Cores sit idle, waiting for a task to execute, while low prices on memory make 6 GB and 8 GB kits affordable for even mainstream users.

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