Nintendo DS2 Revealed!

We got an exclusive scoop on Nintendo’s newest handheld right here!.


Philippine Presidential Security Group loves Payongs, Eh?

Coup plotters and potential assassins beware. Never has a Philippine president been so well defended by a cadre of dedicated men and women who outwardly appear to be only concerned with the weather. To the untrained eye, some of them look like they’re carrying plain umbrellas. Anyone posing as a threat to national security are in for a surprise. They’re not just umbrellas, but Unbreakable Umbrellas. These presidential parasols can protect GMA from both atmospheric and undesirable elements. As demonstrated in this video, it is strong enough to support the weight of a full grown man. Not only that, watch in awe as the Unbreakable Umbrella man whack the living shit out of a water melon and a punching bag. We’re also willing to bet that Rihanna’s security would want a few of these.


Acer Predator Hunts for Prey, Asks: “Where are the Aliens?”

Right now, I’m still very much in awe with my encounter with the Acer Apire G7700, better known as the Predator. Up close, it looks like a cross between a Lamborghini Reventon and a Decepticon Transformer. It also looks like a gigantic armor-plated insect; encased within the exoskeleton is a menacing organic entity. The paint job looks like it came from a sports car as well.   As gaming PCs go, the casing isn’t obscenely huge. The Predator’s size is quite near that of a Mac Pro (blasphemy!), although it’s a bit more wider.

I was expecting the front lid to have some sort of hydraulic assist, but I found out that the lid had to be manually lifted to expose the optical drives, multi-card reader, and hard drive cage door. The all-black front fascia is lined with vertical ridges, giving the impression that it’s one giant heatsink panel. The lid nicely fits on top to form a canopy. The two optical drives are hidden beneath a double mandible-like mechanism which open up sideways when you eject a disc. A little down below is the HDD grille door which emits a blue glow. It opens up to reveal the multiple hard drive bays. It all looks normal from the back with the usual cluster of ports. It comes with a color-matched 24-inch Acer G24 LCD monitor. Too bad the included Logitech G11 keyboard and G5 gaming mouse don’t come in metallic orange. The Predator that you see here is configured with the following: 2.66GHz Core 2 Quad CPU, nForce 780 SLi chipset, 4GB DDR2 RAM, 640GB SATA II HDD, 512MB GeForce 9800GTX, DVD-R and Blu-ray ROM drive. Retail price goes for P138,000 ($3,052).

Acer’s One Subnote Aspires for Greatness but Falls Short

The Acer Aspire One has a lot going for it: corporate muscle from the world’s third largest PC maker, Atom-powered goodness, learned lessons from the Eee’s shortcomings, and a market still hungry for subnotebooks. As the next step in subnote evolution, it should’ve been as good, if not better than the MSI Wind. At yesterday’s Acer’s launch event, I had a chance to play with the ultramobile that’s being touted as the next Eee PC killer. It seems it won’t be killing that many subnotes anytime soon.

There’s a lot to like about the One. The exterior has a nice glossy paint job, the keyboard is big, and the build quality and battery life won’t dissappoint. If the Wind has arrived for the Atom subnote party smartly dressed, the One seems to have forgotten to put on pants. Specifically, Acer seems to have forgotten to put in an adequately-sized hard drive like the ones you’d find in the aformentioned Wind and HP Mini-Note. Having 8GB for storage simply doesn’t cut it for people who live in 2008. Even Asus’ pre-Atom Eee PC 900 has a 12 to 20GB SSD. Given that the One is priced at P18,800 ($460), it’s well below the Wind’s P25,999 ($637) asking price. Although you get XP, a 10-inch screen, and 80GB hard drive for the extra dough spent on the Wind.

The Dark Knight Deconstructed

Apart from his martial arts training, Bruce Wayne owes a lot to his gadgets.
In most of Batman’s incarnation in the comics, TV series, and earlier films,
the Caped Crusader uses customized gear in his war against crime in Gotham City. Of course it also helps that he’s a billionaire playboy. As the Dark Knight returns to theatres this month, we take Batman’s gear out of the Batcave and with the help of some detective work, discover real-life Bat gadgets.

Grapple Gun
A pistol-shaped device that fires a charged round fitted with a grappling hook. The Grapple Gun’s barbed projectile is attached to a retracting cable which Batman uses for rapid vertical ascent and descent.

Atlas Rope Ascender
Designed by an MIT grad student, the Atlas Rope Ascender can propel its user upwards at the speed of 10 feet per second. It’s powered by batteries and has a 113Kg load capacity.

The Joker Says:
The Grapple Gun can also be used as a non-lethal way of subduing criminals. Batman can use it to ensnare fleeing miscreants.

Developed by Lucius Fox, Batman’s cape is made from a special shape changing memory fabric. The cape can turn into a glider when an electrical current from Batman’s gloves passes through it.

Wingsuits gives skydivers and BASE jumpers the ability to glide and perform aerial maneuvers. Wingsuits come in two variants, a three-wing design with wings on both arms and between the legs and a mono-wing design where the entire body is a wing.

The Joker Says:
Bob Kane’s original design for Batman’s cape was inspired by Leonardo da Vinci’s drawings.

Originally designed for the battlefield, the Batsuit consist of several layers of protection and multiple pieces of armor. The suit is made from high-tech materials such as Nomex and bi-weave Kevlar.

Future Warrior Concept
Currently in development by the US Military, the Future Warrior Concept suit consists of several subsystems including weapons and computerized headgear. The Combat Uniform subsystem offers three layers of protection for its user.

The Joker Says:
The Batsuit in Batman Begins has the most detailed description of a Batsuit. It even has its own origin and prototype form.

Batman’s new two-wheel ride is equipped with cannons, machine gun and grappling hook. Because of the unconventional design, Batman rides belly down on the seat and steers the bike with his shoulders. Two separate motors provide power for the front and rear wheels.

Dodge Tomahawk
Powered by a 500HP Dodge Viper engine, the Tomahawk can achieve speeds of up to 675Kph. The front and rear wheels actually consist of a pair each in order to handle the power of the bike’s V10 engine.

The Joker Says:
The Batcycle made its first onscreen appearance as a modified 1959 Harley Davidson with a sidecar. A year later, a new Batcycle was made. It was derived from a Yamaha Catalina 250.

Segway Bot to Save the Day

Taking its cue from a Segway, the uBot 5 is a small remote-controlled robot developed by the University of Massachusetts. The 16Kg uBot 5 can balance itself on two wheels and can stand back up if it falls. Its ‘head’ is an 8-inch LCD monitor for displaying the face of its operator. Although its club-like arms have no hands, the uBot can still grip various objects up to 5lbs. It can even throw a baseball using a special pitching glove attachment for its arms. Because of its relatively small size and quick mobility around the house, its designers are envisioning it as a domestic robot for monitoring the elderly in their homes. It even has a stethoscope attachment for examining patients. No word yet on when the bot will go into commercial production.

Japan Transforms the Lowly ATV into One Sweet Ride

All Terrain Vehicles, especially the four-wheeled variant, rose to popularity in the ’80s as a recreational and utilitarian go-anywhere vehicle. Off-road performance was the primary concern in influencing its design  rather than aesthetics. After nearly three decades of improvements in engine and drivetrain technology, quads still won’t win any beauty contests. Unless you live in Japan, birthplace of the modern ATV.

In Japan, ATVs have evolved into dazzling quad-tastic street machines. These high-performance vehicles are the furthest thing from their mud ploughing and dune hopping counterparts halfway across the world. They’re so new, in fact, that the vehicles don’t have an established name yet outside of Japan. The vehicles are starting to be called as STVs (as in street), but we’d rather call them pimped-out civvie Mongooses in honor of the nimble four-wheeled vehicles in Halo 3. We could imagine ourselves riding this thing with a guy at the back holding a big friggin’ bazooka.

The vehicles are designed for paved roads and thus have stiffer, low profile sports-tuned suspension. The longer wheelbase gives it a rather predatory gait. In Japan, the STVs can be easily modified with aftermarket parts, but it seems that the smokin’ rims and radials in the photo are standard equipment. One guy is working hard on bringing this sweet ride to local roads so stay tuned.

[More photos and videos at JapanATV]