LJ Archive

New Products

James Gray

Issue #160, August 2007

Motorola's RAZR2 V8

Motorola started tinkering with Linux on mobile phones as an experiment in China, which was supported, interestingly, by the Chinese government. Because the company was so impressed with Linux, our beloved OS is becoming ever-more common on its mobile devices. One of the latest Linux-powered options is the RAZR2 V8, a next-generation edition of this popular handset line. The RAZR2 V8 features up to 500 minutes of talk time, quad-band connectivity, up to 2GB of memory, a two-megapixel camera, Opera Web browser, independent speech recognition and music management based on Windows Media Player 11. Motorola was coy about the latter feature, divulging only that it has licensed audio codecs, DRM and transfer protocols from Microsoft and integrated them into its Linux-Java platform. Still, it calms the Linux-questing soul to know that one can intentionally go out and get a butt-kicking Linux-based phone!


Kyle Wheeler's Qmail Quickstarter (Packt Publishing)

If qmail's home page is too unwieldy for you, pick up Kyle Wheeler's Qmail Quickstarter, a new book for folks familiar with Linux/UNIX and DNS servers who desire to set up a qmail mail server. Starting with the basics, Qmail Quickstarter moves on to getting e-mail messages in and out of the queue, along with storing, retrieving and authenticating them. The book also covers virtualisation of domains and user management, filtering spam, SSL encryption and mailing lists. Packt says that the book's style focuses on practical examples that system administrators can use right away, but that it also explains the rationale behind every example.


Axigen Mail Server

Axigen continues to add to the feature set of its Mail Server messaging solution, with version 4.0 now shipping. The key new feature in version 4.0 is a Personal Organizer module offering features such as calendaring, tasks, journal, notes and collaborative support. The feature is available via Axigen's WebMail interface and Outlook clients. In addition, the product now contains the Axigen Outlook Connector, which implements most Exchange-like features, such as server-side search folders. Axigen Mail Server comes in three additions: ISP/HSP, Business and a free Office edition.


Drew Technologies' DashDAQ

As the Detroit automakers obsessively perfect the cupholder, Drew Technologies seeks to sneak a slick Linux-based device, the DashDAQ, on board your new ride. The DashDAQ, says DrewTech, is “a cross between an automotive gauge, dashboard, navigation system, data acquisition system, trip recorder, diagnostic tool and a handheld computer.” The device was designed for use as an automotive display, includes OBD2 communications protocols and runs on Linux (yesss!). The software that is included with DashDAQ allows users to create their own themes and automotive gauge skins. Other features include dual-ARM architecture, 4" (QWVGA) 24-bit TFT color display, a touchscreen and 64MB of RAM. The product is available through resellers, distributors and directly from DrewTech.


Ulrik Pilegaard and Mike Dooley's Forbidden LEGO (No Starch Press)

Book publishers seem to release their books in waves, and presently we find ourselves in the midst of a geek-book tsunami. The ever-eclectic No Starch Press continues to pack its LEGO Mindstorms series with fun titles, the latest being Forbidden LEGO by Ulrik Pilegaard and Mike Dooley, subtitled cheekily as “Build the Models Your Parents Warned You Against”. Presto, rebellion accomplished! Forbidden LEGO focuses on “free-style building” and shows you how to make zany models, such as “a toy gun that shoots LEGO plates, a candy catapult, a high-voltage LEGO vehicle, a continuous-fire ping-pong ball launcher and other useless but incredibly fun inventions.” A word to the wise: stock up on LEGOs in advance!


ActiveState's Tcl Dev Kit

The latest news from ActiveState is the release of Tcl Dev Kit (TDK) 4.0, a multiplatform toolkit for creating and deploying Tcl applications. In addition to providing essential tools for building self-contained, installation-free executables, TDK includes a graphical debugger, profiling and analysis tools for code optimization, a pre-compiler and a Windows services manager. New features in TDK 4.0 include checker enhancements for finding errors in Tcl scripts, enhanced TEA package management, compiler support for Tcl 8.5, GUI facelifts and support for Mac OS X and Solaris x86. Other supported platforms include Linux, Windows, AIX and HP-UX.


Data Structures and Algorithms for Game Developers by Allen Sherrod (Charles River Media)

Grand Theft Auto ain't Pong, which is why you'll need this book—Data Structures and Algorithms for Game Developers by Allen Sherrod—for your next game undertaking. Published by Charles River Media, this title focuses on teaching game developers the fundamentals of data structures and algorithms using C++ and its alternative options, such as C++ STL. The book also covers many topics that today's game and graphics programmers must know to be successful, including geometry management techniques, KD-Trees, binary space partitioning trees, sphere trees and so on. Furthermore, the code that's included is not platform- or OS-dependent, which is just as we Linuxers like it!


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