This week’s line-up of product previews include a wood-housed computer (pictured), Firefox 2 from Mozilla and mobile version of the Gmail service.
What is it? A wood-housed computer
How much? €1,299 including Vat
For environmentally aware computer users out there an Irish company has brought out a range of wood-housed PCs. The machines, which are assembled in Ireland by Iameco, contain none of the harmful materials such as PVCs and heavy metals used in most PCs. They come in several varieties of wood including Ash, Beech, Maple and Ebony and even have matching wood-finished keyboards, mice and flat-screen monitors that double as high-definition TVs. In terms of performance, the machines come with a 160MB hard drive and have 512MB of RAM plus a dual layer DVD burner. The machines can be bought online at www.iameco.com or at the Cultivate store in Dublin’s Temple Bar.
Mozilla Firefox 2
What is it? Web browser
How much? Free
Let the browser wars begin! Mozilla’s Firefox 2 is now available to download and according to recent reports the new web browser is being downloaded at a rate of 30 browsers per second. The new browser works on Windows, Mac and Linux operating systems and includes anti-phishing technology. The new browser comes with built-in spell checking, just like in Word, and also has a feature that suggests search terms for what you are looking for. Another key feature is Session Restore, which allows you to pick up exactly where you left off if you had to shut out of the browser for any reason or by mistake. It also has a pop-up blocker that notifies you when pop-ups are blocked. The new browser can be downloaded at www.getfirefox.com.
What is it? A mobile version of Gmail’s email service
How much? Free, but by invitation only
Existing users of Google’s internet email service Gmail never look back. The very fact that you can store 2,500MB of email and have all that annoying spam blocked adds to the appeal. Well, users of the service will be delighted to learn that Google has created a new web client specifically for Gmail users. All you do is download it onto your phone and the email you receive on Gmail is sychronised to your phone. The interface is exactly the same as the standard Gmail interface you know on your screens and it allows you to view PDFs and Excel files on your mobile. The only drawback is that unless you’re invited by an existing Gmail subscriber it is nigh impossible to sign up. Existing Gmail users have no worries though.
By John Kennedy