Monday, December 20, 2010

Unboxing and Overview of the Google Chrome CR-48

We've all heard of Google's new operating system Google Chrome OS, but how does it work, and does it work well? Well, I have those answers. In the first video you can see what comes in the box. The laptop, a power cord and instructions on powering up and what the keys do. Nothing special, but there doesn't have to be anything special. The computer comes with a removable battery that can stay on for 8 hours. The laptop is very light and has a rubber finish, so no smudges. When you first open up the computer, you see the Chrome logo, and in 10 seconds the computer boots up. After selecting the language, signing in with your Google Account, selecting your WiFi network and taking a picture for your account picture, you are all ready to surf the web. It takes probably two minutes to set up for the first time. After that, that's it. You can set up other user accounts and your sync your info to other Chrome browsers and you're all done. Now onto using the computer, which you can see in the second video. The computers keyboard is nice and big, so no mistakes on typing. The trackpad is one big button, like a MacBook so you have to get used to using one finger to click and two fingers to scroll and right click, if you aren't familiar already. The keyboard removes the Windows key or command key, and the function key. So the only buttons you need, are control and alt for the browser's shortcuts. The buttons on the top of the keyboard instead of F-number keys are, in order: back, forward, refresh, full screen, switch windows, brightness dim and brighten, mute, volume up and down, and the power key. The window switch button is used to go through different windows, not tabs, and when you hold down the power button while in the browser, it locks the screen so the login window appears, and when you hold down the power button in the login window, the computer shuts down. Starting up from shut down takes 10 seconds, and resuming from sleep is instant. When back into the browser, if you don't know what keystroke does what, click ctrl, alt and slash to bring up a window that when you press ctrl, alt, and ctrl-alt, it shows you everything you can do. Because the computer is made for the web and the web only, the only ports on it are VGA, one USB, headphones jack, and an SD Card slot. I haven't figured out how to access files on the SD Card or if I plug in an external hard drive, because nothing shows up. The computer is slow. It doesn't have a fast processor, so you won't be watching any videos in HD and some video websites are choppy. But overall, it's a step in the right direction. I can't say anything bad about the computer because, number one, it was free, and two, it's basically a prototype of what the OS is supposed to be. Because of that, I would recommend this to computer geeks, and not so much a beginner because it isn't complete and isn't straight forward on how to do things like create documents or set up a printer. If you are interested in the Google Chrome CR-48 or the Google Chrome OS, visit the Google Chrome OS website by clicking here.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

The Sony Mavica - A time before internal storage, and SD Cards

Once apon a time, there... oh, this is just from 2003! It's not that old! But it's definitely something to look at. Here's the Sony Mavica MVC-CD400, the digital camera that stores its files on a pocket CD. Today, that's just crazy, but back at this time, it wasn't too weird. There were not a lot of computers that came with SD Card slots and internal storage was expensive on a small device, and there's one thing almost every computer had: A CD drive. So why not store pictures and video on a CD. But today, there are many limitations to this. One, you can't store a lot. These pocket CDs come with 210 MBs. That's not a lot. The highest setting for pictures gives you about 30 pictures to take. And the video quality is at 320p, which today is very small, and low quality. So while this was a good idea at the time, today, it's out of the loop.