Gas powered laptops!

By Pete | @kingpetey | 19 Aug 2002

?Darling, I?m just popping down to the gas station to top up the laptop?
Well maybe that?s a bit far fetched but by the end of 2004 we could be seeing gas powered laptops in the shops. As laptop components such as processors and graphics cards become more powerful they also require more electricity, in desktops this isn?t a problem as you have the mains supply but in laptops, where battery power is essential on the move trying to use as little power is important. This and the increasing sales in the laptop market has led to design changes in laptops. You could in theory either try to save more power in the laptop or put more power into it.

Various companies have tried different ways of improving power supplies, one of these has to fit laptops with small methanol powered system, you can extract the power needed out of the methanol without going over the flammability point of methanol. This meaning that the gas substitute for a battery is still a safe alternative. The advantages are that the laptop will be usable for up to 10 times longer however charging isn?t as simple as plugging it into the mains, its more likely you will have to pay for cartridges of gas.

Other companies have been looking at fitting laptops with super capacitors that can hold a lot more charge and can be charged a lot faster. Results have shown up to a 200% improvement. The advantages to this are that it can be charged by the mains and won?t cost you too much in electricity to charge it.

Intel has decided to invest in both companies to continue development in better technology for the future.

Winamp 3

By Pete | @kingpetey | 19 Aug 2002

Winamp for most people is a must have program for playing all sorts or audio including the popular MP3. Winamp is one of the first good mp3 players after the likes of windows media player so when I heard Winamp 3 was released I quickly wanted to have a look. By reading the Winamp site I had heard high hopes for Winamp 3 in the ways or being able to completely change the shape of Winamp 3 and by being able to watch video files as well as listen to music. Winamp it seemed was finally becoming a more full media player like its competition ? the likes of windows media player and real one player.

Once installing Winamp3 the first thing you notice is the change in design, other components now join the main window and play list editor, components like the ?thinger? and the media library are to name a few. The new features to Winamp 3 are clearly quite vast. I liked on the media library how you could search for songs on your hard drive easily then add them to your play list a feature you could only get from another plugin for Winamp 2. The thinger also made it easier to add and remove components on screen without getting things too cluttered or having to find them on a menu every time you want to open them. So far everything looks a good improvement on Winamp 2*.

However I decided to checkout the new cool skins I had seen on the site and heard all about, so I downloaded one but Winamp came up with an error when the download had finished. So I restarted Winamp to find that when starting Winamp I got an insertion error, I had to reinstall Winamp before I could use the skin I downloaded. Its annoying having to reinstall every time I want to try another skin. I checked with a few other people and they hadn?t been having this error but had been receiving just as annoying other errors.

Overall I think Winamp 3 is a good start for what could be a great follow up to Winamp 2*. Winamp 3 is suffering from the same sort of bugs that came up just after Winamp 2 was launched which should all be sorted out in subsequent releases. For now I?m sticking with Winamp 2.8, once Winamp 3 is a bit more stable and I maybe have a faster computer I will upgrade.

For now I?m giving Winamp 3 6/10 simply because the program is a bit too buggy for my liking at the momment.

MP3 Party?

By Pete | @kingpetey | 16 Aug 2002

"Are these guys serious or just messing around?" This is what I thought when I heard that the UK electoral commission had officially agreed to register the political party. According to one source the goal of the party is to "sustain and promote within the Nation the objectives and value of the "mp3-generation", whether this is economically viable to support the music industry the party does give some interesting ideas and stands against laws which the US is bringing in concerning digital anti-piracy and what the UK has to bring into place before December 22nd. These laws include new legal protection for digital watermarks, copy protection systems and other measures used to protect copyright material online.

There are also plans to incorporate laws against internet piracy But the most contentious part of the new rules is that which mirrors the DMCA's outlawing of devices intended to distribute anti-copying technologies. ?The downloading of music is not an economic phenomenon, it is cultural and political,? the Party Leader said in an interview. ?The downloading of music is not an economic phenomenon, it is cultural and political,? the Party Leader said in an interview. Though the standings of the party still seem a little weak the party it is certainly in favour with many music download users online, however how long can it be before they find themselves in court with one of the major music companies?

Computer problem

By Pete | @kingpetey | 15 Aug 2002

Just after i get my computer working just how i want it too the hard drive crashes big style! As i went to turn my computer on the other day the bios (that black screen you first see when yuo turn your computer on) could not detect the hard drive, so i opened up the tower and checked all the cables etc etc but nothing was wrong, i then checked the drive in another computer incase it was my computer playing up but still no joy. Thus i'm going to have to send it back to the manufacturers to either be fixed or to get me a new one. I'm hopeing for all my datas sake that they can fix it as i have a lot of songs and videos it would be a shame to loose let alone all the site files and the files for imafish 5!!

Anyway before my computer crashed we were making good progress on the beta version of imafish 5 and i have to admit its looking very good and a lot more professional. We were orginally planning to have the site done by the end of august/beginning of september now i'm not sure :/ However we will push on and keep working on more great content and articles for the site!

Case mods

By Pete | @kingpetey | 04 Aug 2002

This simple guide should give u an insight into making your PC case look more funky. I will go through the simple steps we used to spraying benjies case. We do not take any responsibility for any smeg ups you may have!!!

1. First you need to find an old case or a gullible person willing to let you "modify" there case. (i suggest finding an old case) Next you need to clean the case up then pull the front plastic bit off, this is the bit we are going to spray, if the case you are tryin to modify doesn't have a front which pulls off get a case which does!! Also take out any drive pannels on the front as you can paint these seperatly.

2. Once you have spent many minutes cleaning your case, you are allmost ready to spray your case. You need to find a well ventilated area most people use their garden as its outside. Once you are in your well ventilated area you will need to cover the area where you will be spraying in newspaper.

3. You can now attempt to spray your case. You can get spraypaint from most diy shops, if they dont sell it they clearly are NOT a good diy shop. Hold your can about 20-30cms away from the case and apply an even coating of paint. Do not keep the can over one area for too long otherwise the paint will be too thick and will probably drip.

Here you can see we have a lot of newspaper in our well ventilated area. We decided to spray our case silver to make it look more modern

4. Once you have finished spraying wait for your case to dry. You may have to apply a second coat. In some cases its best to apply the paint in coats rather then all at once.

Here is our case drying.(It gives a new meaning to watching paint dry :/)

5. Next your going to have to paint the drive pannels which you removed from your case earlier. We decided to do ours black as we happened to have black paint and it goes well with the silver.

We decided to paint the pannels but you could easily spray them the same color as the case.

Here is another picture of the finishes sprayed case. Note that the wall is not silver. If you have any sucessfull mods then please send your pictures in and we will stick them online. We also like to laugh over the disasters. Benjie contributed to this article.