Author: James Smythe

Paper Water Bottle to Save the Planet

Brandimage have come up with an ingenious solution to the millions of plastic bottles that are used each day for water. They have developed the 360 Bottle which is made from 100% renewable paper. Apparently 60 million plastic bottles are used each day in the U.S alone! So if this product could hit the mainstream there would be considerable benefits for the environment! Also I am sure Brandimage would earn a little pocket money if they managed to get all 60 million of them bottles made from their product! The company has already received an IDEA (International Design Excellence Award) for this design so hopefully it will get enough attention to be taken seriously as an alternative for plastic...

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First Freesat+ Recorder Launched by Humax

Freesat has been around for a few months now, and while it may of arrived to a  slightly lukewarm reception it does appear to be gaining momentum. One of the major downfalls of it was that it lacked the recording functions of Sky+ or DVB solutions such as the Humax and Topfield. I am glad to see Humax has fitted the device with a heft 320GB hard disk so there is plenty of room to record all your favourite shows. I was personally a bit anti Freesat when it released, however I have just ditched Sky in favour of a Humax PVR9150T (DVB recorder) as I just don't watch any of the exclusive sky channels. One of the reasons I didn’t try out Freesat was the lack of recording so I think I could be swayed to trying out one of these new boxes in the near future. Full specification continued. *320GB hard drive to store up to 80 hours of HD programming, or up to 200 hours of standard definition shows *Eight day electronic programme guide to plan your viewing and recording with ease *Series recording to automatically capture all the episodes of your favourite shows *Live pause and instant rewind to give you full control over your viewing *Option to record programmes in standard and high-definition when shows are broadcast in both formats *Split recordings for two-part...

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Apple to ditch DRM?

It is rumoured that Apple is currently in negotiations with Universal, Warner and Sony BMG to secure the rights for its iTunes website to distribute music without DRM. This could have very big implications for Apple and the music industry as a whole as DRM has always been one of the main talking points of downloadable music. The music industry has typically been pro DRM to stop piracy while the end user is normally anti DRM as it has a tendency to screw the user over by restricting what you can play the files on. If iTunes manages to secure the deal it could mean that people without iPods will be able to download music from iTunes and play on whatever device they want. Currently Play.com and 7Digital already offer DRM free music, and there are rumours that Sony may also be ditching DRM however iTunes has the largest catalogue of music and therefore it would be a significant...

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Review: Snakebyte Retro Controller for the Wii

For those of you that despise the mess of wires and enjoy a bit of retro gaming on the Wii there are a growing number of solutions for you. One of which is the Snakebyte Wii Wireless Retro Controller. The manufacturer of this controller, SnakeByte, a European peripheral manufacturer that is offering an increasingly large range of peripherals for the NDS, PS3, PSP, Wii and the Xbox 360. The Wireless Retro Controller is quite simply what it says on the box, a wireless version of the retro controller. The controller works by inserting a wireless dongle into the Wiimote, and it requires 2 batteries on top of the 2 you already have in the Wiimote. This is one thing I did think that was bad about the controller, just think of the number of batteries you could potentially go through? Though to be fair this is an unavoidable issue. The controller itself is well built, it feels really solid, I haven't used any 3rd party retro controllers but I did use a 3rd party Gamecube controller (which I cant remember the name of) and I found the build to be quite poor. Performance wise the controller met all expectations, it works just as well as the official Nintendo wired version and I had no issues with losing connection. I have not played it enough to test hw long the...

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Review: Snakebyte Retro Controller for the Wii

For those of you that despise the mess of wires and enjoy a bit of retro gaming on the Wii there are a growing number of solutions for you. One of which is the Snakebyte Wii Wireless Retro Controller. The manufacturer of this controller, SnakeByte, a European peripheral manufacturer that is offering an increasingly large range of peripherals for the NDS, PS3, PSP, Wii and the Xbox 360. The Wireless Retro Controller is quite simply what it says on the box, a wireless version of the retro controller. The controller works by inserting a wireless dongle into the Wiimote, and it requires 2 batteries on top of the 2 you already have in the Wiimote. This is one thing I did think that was bad about the controller, just think of the number of batteries you could potentially go through? Though to be fair this is an unavoidable issue. The controller itself is well built, it feels really solid, I haven't used any 3rd party retro controllers but I did use a 3rd party Gamecube controller (which I cant remember the name of) and I found the build to be quite poor. Performance wise the controller met all expectations, it works just as well as the official Nintendo wired version and I had no issues with losing connection. I have not played it enough to test hw long the...

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