Category Archives: Futurelooks

This is where I talk about the latest stuff happening at Futurelooks and the future of the site.

Kingston Technology Gives Futurelooks a Big Upgrade

This is definitely one of those times where the saying "If you ask for it, you just might get it" totally applies and then some. In this case, we asked for a small RAM upgrade to one of Futurelooks' servers (Futurelooks Apache One to be exact). The server has been acting all shades of weird over the last few weeks as traffic has been climbing steadily. After a while it became apparent that the problems were caused by not having enough RAM.

I gave our friends at Kingston Technology a shout to see if they could help us out. I totally expected to pay for the RAM since I would be getting some anyway. I was just hopping for a deal and a couple more gigabytes to keep the machine from dying. Our man over there, Dave, has always offered to help us out with whatever we needed. We've just never needed anything aside from the usual review products that we check out on occasion. Instead of giving us what we needed, he went above and beyond and made sure we'd never need RAM again...

So that means we're going from a measly 2GB of ECC DDR2 to a whopping 12GB's of ECC DDR2 RAM! Want to see what 12GB's of RAM looks like going into our DELL PowerEdge 1850 Server? Check out the video below...

Wayne Au from Auphan Software gave me a hand with the upgrade. Despite the fact that he's successful and busy as hell, he still took the time to help me out with the servers (at 1AM in the morning no less) so I'm really thankful for his generosity. His company builds some of the best restaurant software in the biz (way better than that expensive Squirrel or shady Profitek stuff). That's why his company has been doing extremely well, converting some huge chains over to his system including Blenz Coffee.

Wayne's a real standup guy and he only hires the best so if you're looking for a kick ass POS system for your restaurant, cafe or major restaurant chain and you want something that saves you time and money and stays running 24/7, make sure you check out his company. Also, if you're looking for some exceptional quality RAM, you have to give Kingston Technology a ring or just find it at your favourite store because it's everywhere. It's definitely good stuff and it wouldn't be in our mission critical servers if it wasn't. Big thanks to Dave at Kingston for the hook up once again. You guys rock!

This Just In - Research in Motion (BlackBerry) Acquires Palm Inc.

Huge news in the mobile industry today. Corporate smartphone juggernaut, Research in Motion has taken the bow off their plan to acquire Palm Inc, makers of the highly anticipated Palm Pre that is due to launch later this year. This announcement makes Apple's iPhone announcements sound like lunch room banter. Here's a clip from this worldwide exclusive announcement posted on Futurelooks:

"It has just been announced that Research in Motion, maker of the BlackBerry line of devices, is in the process of acquiring Palm, Inc. This news comes mere months before the pending release of the Palm Pre, a smartphone that is supposed infuse new energy and excitement into the Palm brand. Research in Motion wants to capitalize on this excitement and extend it to the BlackBerry line as a whole."

This is hot on the heels of this morning's launch of the new Blackberry App World. Looks like Waterloo is full of surprises today. Head on over to Futurelooks for the whole story on how this latest deal came together.

With the power and security of the BlackBerry Platform and the beautiful OS of the new Palm Pre, the new PalmBerry handsets will have people saying "iPhone Who?"

A Proud Moment For Futurelooks at COMPUTEX 2008

Probably one of my proudest moments at COMPUTEX this year was seeing Futurelooks recognized as a site that matters. While perusing the FOXCONN booth, I noticed what appeared to be a Futurelooks award logo featured on one of the large walls of the booth.

As I neared the booth, I could make out a Futurelooks' Editors Choice award. We gave this award to their 9800GTX Video Card earlier this year and thought it was a very solid performer. However, I never expected our award to be important enough to earn a space on a large prominently featured display wall at an international trade show. I was so proud! However, this recognition would not have been possible without the hardwork of Futurelooks Hardware Editor, Jason Landals. I'd like to thank him for producing such an outstanding review that got the attention of one of the largest OEM component manufacturers in the world. It was his review of this card that got us this recognition. Jason couldn't make it out to COMPUTEX this year, but next year, I'll make every effort to ensure that he's on the plane and in Taipei for the only computer show that matters.

Why is this show so important? If you think about it, all the engineering and development of potential products is done in Taiwan and many proofs of concept are shown there. Based on the interest or the number of orders they get on a product, a manufacturer can decide whether or not a product even goes to production. If you're here, you get to see things that won't be reality until CES or even CeBit. Although I love CES, by the time you get there you're already looking at old stuff, at least on the computer hardware side. That show really is about new consumer electronics, not so much about new computer hardware.

For any site that covers computer hardware, being at COMPUTEX is important. It means that you're serious and that you want to be on the cutting edge. Most importantly, it means you matter and the fact manufacturers feel the same way too by proudly displaying your award logo means that your opinions and feedback are important to the development of future products. It's funny, but I noticed a couple sites trying to get in on the action without being there by trying to "Regurgitate" press kits. How can you form a real opinion of a product on a press kit? Also, much of the information on early product is not included in those kits. For example, during my meeting with Thermaltake, they showed me something that won't see the light of day till CES 2009, but more likely, CeBit 2009. It was so secret, proof of concept stage, that I had to convince the CEO of the company to show it to me. It was a great scoop and you can only find out this stuff if you're there.

Even though it's only been a few days after the show, I'm already starting to see the impact of our presence there. I'm starting to get requests to take product reviews, straight from Taiwan, bypassing the North American wait. I also spoke directly to the people that sign the checks when it comes to advertising dollars and where to spend it. You can bug your local reps all you want, but it always pays to talk to the boss and build that relationship directly because at the end of the day, where does the money come from?

So I have to ask, knowing that webmasters from other sites occasionally stroll by here, what is stopping you from coming to the only show that matters for the latest Computer Hardware? If your only answer is cost, then my friends, I have to tell you, it's costing you more to stay on the sidelines.

COMPUTEX 2008 Booth Babes Anyone?

Futurelooks Brings the COMPUTEX 2008 Booth Babe Love!

While I figure out how to reset my internal clock to Vancouver time and dig through all these videos and pictures, I'll keep you folks occupied with the Futurelooks COMPUTEX 2008 Booth Babe Gallery. This gallery contains over 168 photos for your viewing pleasure. If you want to know who we thought were the best, you can check out the top ten right here.

Just in case you've missed it, the Futurelooks crew has been busting out article after article on the latest techie goodness. Check out all the stuff that a geek should care about right here.

Techie Toys I'm Currently Playing With

I thought I'd give you guys a look at what I'm currently torturing. Sometimes I forget what I'm playing with too so it's good to write it down somewhere.

More Terabytes Of Goodness

A couple weeks ago, Seagate sent me four one terabyte drives that I needed for an upcoming review. Unfortunately, they sent me the wrong ones. Instead of sending me Serial ATA ones, they sent me Serial Attached SCSI drives! Serial Attached SCSI or SAS drives typically end up in servers or high end workstations. None of my systems supported that interface. Seagate apologized, asked me to hang on to them while they got me a SAS adapter so I could play with them. In the meantime, they sent me four more one terabyte drives.

Today I got four more drives with the SATA interface. I'll definitely be putting these into use shortly. The SAS adapter also showed up. Since the adapter supports both SAS and SATA drives, I can use it with both sets of drives. I can't wait to see just what the big deal is about SAS when I finally get everything setup. Because SAS is backwards compatible with SATA, I can definitely see boards coming out with this interface standard in the future.

Cool Those 8800 Ultras...

Canada's very own CoolIT Systems sent along their latest MTEC powered 8800 GTX/ULTRA coolers. I've had my eVGA 8800 Ultras for quite some time now and my biggest annoyance with them is how hot they get and how un-overclockable they seem to be. In fact, they get so hot that the pair of them heat warped the VGA channel in the back of my CoolerMaster Cosmos 1000 case. I was also unable to run them with the case closed as they would start to crash after reaching over 90+ degrees celsius. Case open was the only option.

I was able to install them today, and currently, they are on their sixth hour of torture running the 3DMark06 Demo. I was never able to run them for this long without crashing or flakiness, especially with the case closed. Hopefully, they'll be fully cooked and ready for some temperature readings and overclocking in a couple days.

Surviving Hot, Cold and becoming Roadkill...

Corsair dropped off one fo their Survivor USB Flash Drives, a tougher version of their Voyager series of flash drives. The drive features 32GB's of flash storage sealed inside a durable machined aluminum chassis. A rubber seal keeps the elements out and screws shut to create a waterproof seal up to 200 meters. To test it, I froze it, boiled it out of its icy grave, and then I drove over it with my car. Did it survive? You'll have to stay tuned for the review.

Take Pictures and Save The Planet...Polar Bears Too...

LowePro fired over one of their new Primus AW camera bags for me to torture. It was originally supposed to get here in time for the Telus Whistler Ski and Snowboard Festival, but it didn't make it in time. LowePro designed this bag for their 40th anniversary and it embodies all of their latest technologies including their new eco friendly recyclable materials, new slide lock tripod system and a new design. The bag's recycled material is equivalent to 21 water bottles and a portion of the sales of this bag will go to save the Polar Bears. I'm sure Al Gore has one and I'm eager to see how well this recycled material stands up to abuse.

Well, that's all for today. Look for all these product reviews coming up soon at Futurelooks!