Modular Mining Systems, a leader in informational management solutions for operations, has released the ShiftBossTM Mine Production Tracking System. This program allows mines to use the effective production tracking and crew management capabilities associated with Modular® products, as well as a number of new material management and safety features. One such feature, the MineCompass navigation map, displays all equipment and locations positions to operators and can send out hazard and speeding alerts to help promote safe behaviour. Additionally, Store&Forward technology provides on-board data buffering when equipment units are out of wireless network range, ensuring production data reliability. “The ShiftBoss application provides operators with a fully automated experience, recording production with minimal user interaction,” says Stephane Cantin, Product Manager. “Customers can obtain the system at an affordable price, and its Store&Forward capabilities allow mines to significantly reduce the required amount of network infrastructure.”Modular says that ShiftBoss 1.0 shares several core components with the DISPATCH® NextGen product line, due to be released next year, allowing an incremental upgrade path to customers that want automated production tracking without the expense of full scale optimised mine management. www.modularmining.com
In 2011, gold production in West Africa was up 9.3% from 2010, according to Economics Group’s (MEG) recent Strategic Report. Production was reported by nine of the 16 West African countries-Burkina Faso, Ghana, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal, and Sierra Leone. The largest gold-producing country continues to be Ghana, with 47% of the region’s total 2011 production. With the only new mine scheduled to begin production in 2012 – Noble Mining’s 90%-owned Bibiani (Government of Ghana 10%) – and three mines that began production in 2011 and are ramping up, Ghana is expected to continue as West Africa’s top gold producer. Mali produced 16% of the region’s gold followed by Burkina Faso at 15% and Guinea at 9%. Mauritania’s production increased marginally in 2011 to 4.5%, while Ivory Coast’s production, representing 5% of the region’s total, almost doubled, as its mines recover from the political turmoil that began in late 2010.The report goes on to say that 70% of West Africa’s gold resources are contained in producing mines. West African gold mines in steady-state production hold 59% of the total gold in reserves and resources in active projects with reported resources. Mines undergoing expansion accounted for an additional 11%. Reserves development-stage projects hold 15%, feasibility-stage projects hold 10%, and preproduction-stage projects contain 5% of the total.The piechart shows West African Gold Resources by Development Stage (Total contained gold: 298.7 Moz)The West African Gold Pipeline, 2012 report contains details on– West African Gold Production and Prices, 2002-11– West African Gold Production by Country, 2011– West African Gold Resources by Development Stage– West African Gold Exploration Spending and New Mines, 2002-12– West African 2011-12 Startups– West African Preproduction-stage Mines– West African Expansion-stage Mines– Active West African Gold Resources by Country– Largest West African Gold Resources
China Gold International Resources plans to expand production capacity at its Jiama mine to 50,000 t/d (Phase II plant capacity) with the addition of a new floatation plant (44,000 t/d ore), the development of two additional open-pits (Jiaoyan and South pits) and the expansion of the underground mining operation. Total production is planned to increase from its current production rate of 1.8 Mt to 16.5 Mt/y of ROM ore. Metal concentrate will be sold to smelters within China.The company has the results of an updated NI 43-101 compliant, independent feasibility study for the Phase II Expansion of its Jiama copper-polymetallic mine in Tibet Autonomous Region, China. Mining One has produced the NI 43-101 compliant report based on the Phase II Expansion project feasibility study, prepared by the Changchun Gold Design Institute in conjunction with independent consulting engineers and the company’s management.The Jiama project is a large scale polymetallic (Cu, Mo, Au, Ag, Pb, Zn) deposit located approximately 68 km east-northeast of Lhasa, the capital city of Tibet Autonomous Region, along the Sichuan-Tibet Highway within the Gangdise Copper Metallogeny Belt in Central Tibet, China and represents one of China’s largest copper-gold mines.Phase I of the Jiama Project commenced commercial production in September 2010 and included the development of the Tongqianshan and Niumatang open pits. These pits currently produce 1.8 Mt/y of run-of-mine (ROM) ore. The ore from these mines is processed via two processing plants with a combined processing capacity of 6,000 t/d of ore. The company plans to expand production capacity to 50,000 t/d (Phase II plant capacity) with the addition of a new floatation plant (44,000 t/d ore), the development of two additional open-pits (Jiaoyan and South pits) and the expansion of the underground mining operation. Total production is planned to increase from its current production rate of 1.8 Mt to 16.5 Mt/y of ROM ore. Metal concentrate will be sold to smelters within China.More details on this project can be found in next week’s International Mining Project News, http://corporate.im-mining.com/subscribeprojnews.asp
Bayhorse Silver has reached an Agreement with GreenHawk™ Global Corp to install a closed-loop mine water treatment pilot plant using the patented SOLO™ processing system at the Bayhorse silver mine near Ontario, Oregon, where underground work is ongoing.Bayhorse says it is marrying mining with technology to minimize mineral processing and upgrading costs and will use the SOLO technology in a closed-loop system in conjunction with dense media and ore-sorting upgrading systems. The SOLO system is a potentially cost effective and environmentally friendly method enabling recovery of additional silver values.Bayhorse believes implementation of green technology is necessary for the mining industry. The SOLO system has potential to deal with environmental issues from mining and provide solutions which will allow mines to meet more demanding environmental standards required of mining today.Additionally, many mines produce contaminated water or mine waste that is an environmental problem if discharged untreated. SOLO provides a solution to this problem. It is a patented technology based upon a variant of electromagnetic ionic flocculation and is a result of 20 years of research, development, and application in Mexico.Thirteen permanent commercial installations in Mexico currently utilise the SOLO system for water and industrial waste remediation. The system is designed to not only produce clean agricultural quality water from contaminated mine effluent, but to also treat solid mine waste, such as tailings piles that can be a serious environmental issue, rendering clean back-fill and/or beneficial end use products.SOLO is under license to GreenHawk (www.ghwk.com). The Bayhorse pilot plant will be GreenHawk’s first deployment of its SOLO technology for mining in Canada and the US.Graeme O’Neill, Bayhorse President & CEO: “On the surface, it may look to be a minor thing, but as there is more, and significant, scrutiny of mines and mining, especially on the environmental side, this small thing will have a huge impact for Bayhorse. SOLO is applicable to many industries, but for Bayhorse it does two specific things. The first is it cleans mine water.”Ron Krusemark Mining Engineer: “All mines have water issues, from small to big, so better be proactive about it.”O’Neill continues: “With the closed loop clean water process we cut costs, eliminate potentially harmful mine water discharges and for the mine, the lower the costs the better.“But it does one more thing and that is allow us to recover silver from what we call the slimes, and better yet, it promises to help, in conjunction with ore-sorting and dense media processing systems, to substantially reduce the cut off grade that is mined. That means we should be able to recover more silver at minimum cost, and that goes straight to the bottom line.”The picture shows President & CEO Graeme O’Neill, Mining Supervisor Dan Capparelli, AMT, at the Bayhorse mine.
Danakali Ltd and its joint venture partner, the Eritrean National Mining Corp have appointed Tony Harrington as Project Manager for the construction phase of the worldclass Colluli potash project with immediate effect. He has over 37 years’ experience in the mining industry delivering EPC, lump sum and EPCM projects in the capacity of both client representative and service provider over a diverse range of commodities, with a wide range of mineral processing units, across multiple jurisdictions including East Africa, West Africa, Southern Africa, China, Continental Europe, UK and Australia.Danakali completed a DFS (announced 30 November 2015) which demonstrates a project with a massive 1,100 Mt ore reserve, the company reports, and “industry leading capital intensity, bottom quartile operating costs and unrivalled product diversification potential.”The company announced on 1 February 2017 that the permitting processes have been completed. Danakali continues the advancement of the project to construction and production.The Colluli deposit is located in the Danakil region of Eritrea and is some 177km southeast of the capital (350 km by road), Asmara and 180 km from the port of Massawa (230 km by road), which is Eritrea’s key import/export facility.The project is a joint venture between ENAMCO and Danakali with each having 50% ownership of the joint venture company, the Colluli Mining Share Co (CMSC). CMSC is responsible for the development of the project.The Danakil region is an emerging potash province and one of the largest unexploited potash basins globally – geologists in the picture are on site. To date, over 6,000 Mt of potassium bearing salts suitable for the production of potash fertilisers have been identified in the region and the potash potential has attracted a number of major international potash producers, including both Yara International and ICL.The Colluli resource is located approximately 75 km from the Red Sea coast, and mineralisation commences at just 16 m below surface, making it one of the most accessible potash deposits globally. Shallow mineralisation makes the resource amenable to open-pit mining.The Colluli resource comprises three potassium bearing salts in solid form: sylvinite, carnallitite and kainitite. These salts are suitable for high yield, low energy production of SOP, which is a high quality potash fertiliser carrying a price premium over the more common MOP. Potassium sulphate has limited production centres around the world and is suitable for application to fruits, vegetables, coffee plants and other chloride intolerant crops.The salt composition in the Danakil region also provides the ability to produce a suite of potash products that not only includes potassium sulphate, but also potassium magnesium sulphate and potassium chloride. Such potash product diversification cannot be achieved by any other region in the world.The DFS utilises a modular development approach which mitigates risk while enhancing fundability and economic return. Phase I is expected to produce approximately 425,000 t/y of premium SOP product with commissioning currently targeted for Q4 2018. Phase II, commencing production in year 6, will increase total SOP production to 850,000 t/y.
Norwegian left wing Thea Mork (22) will stay in the best domestic team Larvik HK until 2016. She got a chance to sign a new three years deal after good performances this season. Mork came to the team in 2010 and after the serious injury got the chance to show all her qualities…-I was incredibly happy when Ole came and told that the club will have a new three-year deal with me. It feels absolutely perfect, because I like incredibly good, and I look forward to continuing my progress here – says Thea for the official club website.The sporting director and head coach Ole Gustav Gjekstad is pleased with the new deal:– Thea is a serious athlete who work hard every single day. There was no guarantee that she would get back to the level that she now holds, after a serious knee injury earlier in his career. She has been patient and worked purposefully-it she gets paid for now. She will be an important player for us in the coming years – says Ole Gustav. Larvik HKThea Mork ← Previous Story Buducnost fan jumped off the bridge in Moraca after Gyor defeat Next Story → Kornel Nagy stays in Dunkerque until 2015: I fell good here
“Mr Rehn acknowledged the significant progress that Ireland has made over the course of the adjustment programme and that Ireland is now in a strong position to exit the programme this year.”The main issue with Ireland’s bailout exit centres on whether or not it will need to apply for a precautionary credit facility to help ease the transition from bailout to raising money on the normal international lending markets.Having the stopgap facility could help ease Ireland’s borrowing costs, but Noonan suggested at the Fine Gael national conference earlier this month that it may not be needed.Rehn made similar noises the day before that speech by Noonan. Any discussions about the credit facility are likely to focus on what sort of conditions would apply to it.But the Department of Finance was keen to outline the discretion Ireland has in relation to any credit facility, adding: “Ultimately, the final decision on post-programme options is one for the Irish authorities.”Read: EU avoids its own shutdown after MEPs agree to fill €2.7bn funding shortfallESM chief: Recouping of AIB, BoI costs “either difficult or impossible” FINANCE MINISTER MICHAEL Noonan is in Frankfurt, Germany today for talks with the president of the European Central Bank, Mario Draghi, about Ireland’s expected bailout exit in December.Noonan meets the ECB president a day after he held talks with the EU’s economics commissioner Olli Rehn in Strasbourg where Ireland’s likely exit from its international bailout programme on 15 December was discussed.In a statement from the Department of Finance, the talks last night were described “constructive”, allowing Noonan and Rehn “to take stock of the state of play of the Irish adjustment programme and discuss issues related to the forthcoming programme exit”. “Minister Noonan updated Vice President Rehn on the recent Budget and in particular Ireland’s plans to reduce the deficit to 4.8 per cent in 2014, well within the 5.1 per cent GDP target, and to deliver a primary balance or small surplus in 2014.
Like politics? Then why not ‘Like’ TheJournal.ie’s Politics page?Explainer: How does a Bill become a law? WHAT’S GOING ON in Leinster House?Every day the Dáil and Seanad are sitting, TheJournal.ie brings you the most comprehensive guide to what our lawmakers are getting up to in the Houses of the Oireachtas.So, here is what we can expect to be happening in the Dáil, Seanad and Committee rooms today…3 things we’ll be keeping an eye on Dáil: Leaders’ Questions – The Taoiseach will be taking questions first thing at 10.30am.Dáil: Order of Business – After that at 10.51am, the first matter up for discussion is the Social Welfare Bill 2013, which would bring into effect cuts outlined in Budget 2014 such as the discontinuation of the Bereavement Grant and changes to Jobseekers payments.Committees: Health and Children – An EU Directive which addresses issues such as the lack of control on legal highs will be discussed at 2pm in Room 3.Everything else that’s happening in the DáilIt’s time for a break at 2.40pm.Minister for Communications, Energy, and Natural Resources Pat Rabbitte will be taking questions at 4.30pm. A topic in his portfolio which has been in the headlines this week is nuclear energy, and just yesterday an MEP called for an independent review of security risks posed by British stations.Didn’t get your fill of the Social Welfare Bill? It’s likely to be back again at 5.45pm when morning business is continued.Everything else that’s happening in the SeanadThe report on the European Public Prosecutors Office, heard without debate in the Dáil yesterday? It will be appear in the Seanad at 10.30am during Order of Business with a motion for Council Regulation.At 11.45am a bill by Senators Mark Daly, Marc MacSharry, Diarmuid Wilson will be discussed. The EU Scrutiny and Transparency in Government Bill 2013 would ensure directives from the EU would be, as the name suggests, scrutinised before a Minister puts their signature to it.After that will be Matters on the Adjournment, where Senators can raise any concerns they might have.Everything else that’s happening in the CommitteesThe Ambassadors of Estonia and Lativa to Ireland, Mr Mait Martinson and Mr Gints Apals respectively, will meet the European Union Affairs committee at 2pm in Room 3 to discuss the experience of their countries in the EU.The Children and Youth Affairs sub-committee will be back again with Minister Frances Fitzgerald to discuss the Child and Family Agency Bill 2013, which would see groups like the Family Support Agency and the National Educational Welfare Board merged into one agency. That’s at 5.15pm in Committee Room 2.At 10am in Room 3 the Education and Social Protection committee will be meet to continue discussion of the General Scheme of Gender Recognition Bill 2013, which would “provide a process enabling transgender people to achieve full legal recognition of their self-identified gender”. Among those in attendance this time will be Amnesty International and the Equality Authority.In Room 4, the Joint Committee on the Implementation of the Good Friday Agreement will hear from the Fred Barry, CEO of the National Roads Authority, on the development of roads along the border region at 10.30am. At 11.30am, all-island economic development will be discussed.The Health and Children committee in Room 3 will see two sessions on End of Life Care, both featuring a range of exports on the topic. The first is at 10am and the second at 12pm.Here’s how to watch what’s going on in Leinster House todayDáil ÉireannSeanad ÉireannCommittee Room 1Committee Room 2Committee Room 3Committee Room 4To access streams on iOS, click here
THE NUMBER OF people using smartphones and mobile data on the biggest mobile network in the country has increased, Vodafone has said.The telecommunications company released its financial results for the third quarter today and said that almost 70 per cent of its customers are now using mobile data on their devices, including phones, tablets and notebooks.The company says it is the market leader among mobile phone companies in Ireland with 2.1 million mobile customers, an increase of more than 10 per cent on the same time last year.Vodafone made an overall profit of €21.4 billion worldwide in the months up to 30 September this year, which was boosted by a multi-billion tax credit.The company says it is using some of the proceeds of its recent deal with Verizon – after it sold its US joint-venture stake to partner Verizon – to improve network quality and speed access across Europe.It plans to invest €8.2 billion to boost businesses in European and emerging markets.- Additional reporting by AFPRead: Why don’t the new iPhones have 4G connections in Ireland? > Read: Vodafone paid British Government over €1 billion Irish subsidiary > Read: Vodafone sells stake in Verizon wireless for $130 billion >
THE HEAD OF the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) has agreed to release correspondence submitted to the PAC by St Vincent’s Hospital.The documents, which can be seen here, are from Noel Whelan, Chairman of St Vincent’s Healthcare Group, which states to the PAC that they believe they are “compliant” with the health sector pay policy based on “their interpretation”.Today the hospital held firm in their refusal to disclose how much they pay senior staff in additional payments.The hospital have told the HSE that it would not disclose payments to senior staff because of data protection issues and because they come from private funds.John McGuinness said today that regardless of where funding comes from, the hospital should disclose how much top staff are paid will restore confidence in the sector.They correspondence advises the PAC that they informed the Health Service Executive in 2009 that three senior executives had contracts of services for which they “were in receipt of separate remuneration”.RemunerationThey added that the remuneration is “fully taxed, non-pensionable and sourced exclusively from income generated from St Vincent’s Private Hospital” and that no public sector or charitable funds are involved.The letter goes on to say that there had been “public commentary” in relation to the €554,377 listed in the SVHG accounts for Director’s remuneration “for other services” which it states pertains to the employment of remuneration of three staff who are also Board directors and that it is not the director’s fee as no director’s fee is paid, states the letter.Read: St Vincent’s top-up stance is “not good enough” says PAC chairman>Read: We’re compliant “based on our interpretation” say St. Vincent’s bosses>
Updated 13:10pmSTRONG GALE FORCE winds and floods across the country have caused widespread damage to the phone and electricity network overnight with some 35,000 people without power and 7,500 without telephone and broadband service.This morning, some 70,000 people were without power but the supply has now been restored to around 35,000, ESB said.“This is the worst storm in 15 years,” it said in a statement this morning.Meanwhile Eircom hs said that the storms left more than 7,000 people without telephone and broadband service with this figure expected to rise as the bad weather continues.“The impact on our network is widespread but the worst impacted areas are Cork, Galway, Mayo, Kilkenny, Carlow and Wexford,” the company said in a statement. “Working conditions in many areas of the country remain extremely difficult as a result of the dangerously high winds and lightning. These conditions are hampering our repair efforts in some areas of the country.”Both companies sought to assure customers that crews working hard today to restore services.First published 7:02 amRead: ESB restores power to 20k customers but urges conservation of electricity in Achill>Read: Wild weather knocks out power, leads to ferries being cancelled>
UPDATED Thursday 9.20amYESTERDAY WE BROUGHT you the news that a house phone from Carlow had accidentally been posted to Australia in a box of birthday goodies, causing all kinds of consternation back home in Borris.You can catch up on the whole tale below, but we have some updates for you this morning:1. The remote control was NOT sent in the second birthday package, as feared. It still hasn’t turned up, but the second parcel has arrived in Oz, and contains no remote:2. Figerty the dog was originally blamed for the disappearance of the phone, but has since been exonerated. He may still know something about the remote control. We now have a photo of Figerty:His name is an offshoot of “fidgety”, apparently #JusticeForFigertyIf you missed any of the story from yesterday, here it is…SINEAD FROM BORRIS in Co. Carlow is getting ready to celebrate her birthday and St. Patrick’s Day in Australia.Her family have prepared a couple of packages to remind her a little of home.However, they went a little overboard… by packing the home phone in with some chocolate and soup.Our favourite thing about this story has been the fallout back at home:Mam has been on a mission tearing the house apart looking for that phone.While Sinead has told DailyEdge.ie that she’s going to be posting it back because:The other phone in the house only rings three times and then it stops.And according to Sinead’s sister Ciara…We can never get to it on time. You may post that one back.And if that’s not enough, Sinead has even been taking messages for her family in Carlow, all the way over in Oz:Emma (another sister) won a Moses basket from a random furniture shop in Carlow. They could only contact me here in Oz.And wait, it gets better…The remote control is also missing. We think it might be in the other parcel. It hasn’t arrived yet.Figerty the dog had been blamed for hiding the items until now.Vindication Figerty. Vindication.Australia sends largest recruitment team yet to Ireland> VIDEO: Irish abroad sing The Fields of Athenry in Bondi, Australia>
Updated at 9.07pm The rainfall radar at 7.30am Source: Met.ieMET ÉIREANN HAS lifted two weather warnings put in place yesterday as heavy rain battered the east coast.Initial reports suggest that last night’s rain was not as severe as Saturday’s, which caused flooding in Dublin.Motorists are advised to take extreme care on the roads as conditions are still wet.AA Roadwatch reports that M1 is closed due to flooding southbound between J4 and J2.There is a single vehicle collision on the N17 in Mayo with traffic down to one lane, while debris is partially blocking the N2 Dublin to Monaghan Road in Meath. Source: AA Roadwatch/Twitter DUBLIN: The M1 is closed southbound between J4 Donabate and J2 Airport due to flooding. Diversions are in place. http://t.co/qvBPcggRh8— AA Roadwatch (@aaroadwatch) August 3, 2014 Spot flooding & heavy surface water on roads countrywide. Extreme care advised to road users this Bank Holiday W/e. http://t.co/EY0qAehvcA— AA Roadwatch (@aaroadwatch) August 2, 2014 Source: AA Roadwatch/Twitter Rain in the northern half of the country but sunny spells & scattered showers gradually extending NE by evening.Highs 15-20C,warmest in S— Met Éireann (@MetEireann) August 3, 2014 Source: Met Éireann/Twitter Originally published 7.41pmLast night: Batten down the hatches (for now): Orange warning remains in place for Leinster >Yesterday: Dublin hardest hit by flooding as east soaked by torrential rain overnight > However, the end is in sight – sunny spells experienced by some luckier parts of the country yesterday will extend from Munster to the rest of the country this afternoon.The rain is due to remain mainly light until it clears later, and after that there’s a chance that cloudy conditions will persist.A small craft warning currently remains in place from Erris Head to Rossan Point, extending to Fair Head this afternoon, and also from Carlingford Lough to Howth Head to Wicklow Head.What’s the weather like where you are? Send your pics to email@example.com
They say there is an app for everything and this may just well be the case, with news that iDevices has released their iGrill product.iGrill is, from what we can tell, the world’s first wireless cooking thermometer for iOS devices (iPad, iPod touch, and iPhone. It transits dat using long-range Bluetooth (over 200 feet) and installed application.The combo turns your Apple device into your own personal sous-chef, enabling you to multi-task between your cooker and guests with the peace of mind that your food is perfectly cooked, at target temperature, and safe for eating.The $100 iGrill is available through its website and, but allso Apple Stores across North America. It comes with one temperature probe and a display device equipped with the BT transmitter and 4 AA batteries.Read more at iDevices
Google is taking a hard line on the latest version of Android. Honeycomb, it turns out, is not for phones. Asked when a version of Android 3.0 would launch for smartphones after the event, a Google spokesman told the crowd that the last version of the operating system is intended to be tablet-only. “Features will arrive on phones over time,” he told the press.The answer isn’t entirely surprising. After all, Google insisted that Android 2.2 wasn’t optimized for tablets–not that everyone listened, of course. We saw a number of Android tablets flood the market prior to the soon-to-be unreleased Honeycomb.Now, such a proclamation raises questions–for starters, what does that mean for the numbering system? Before Honeycomb, every Android upgrade was tailored for smartphones–now that 3.0 is tablet-only?Google’s in a bit of a precarious position at the moment. The company is still preaching the openness of the software, but it’s beginning to insist on more concrete rules, to help avoid risking further potential fragmentation for the OS.
If you own a high-end graphics card then you know that applying the latest graphics driver update is probably going to give your games a bit of a performance boost as well as sort out a few bugs. What kind of performance gain you see depends on the games and the age of the card, but a single-digit percentage gain is most likely.Intel also has to release graphics driver updates for the chips it sells that include an integrated graphics solution. For example, the latest Sandy Bridge Core processors with Intel HD Graphics 3000 integrated. What we didn’t expect to see is the latest version of Intel’s drivers boasting as much as 37 percent 3D gaming performance gain in a certain Blizzard-developed title.That’s exactly what Intel is claiming though, with the release notes accompanying driver versions 188.8.131.529 and 184.108.40.206.2590 listing substantial performance gains for six popular titles. Here’s the games and claimed frames-per-second gain you should experience:Starcraft 2: Wings of Liberty – Devil’s Playground – 37% gainDawn of War: Chaos Rising – 29% gainBattlefield: Bad Company 2 – 28% gainSupreme Commander 2 – 16% gainDIRT 2 – 12% gainResident Evil 5 (Benchmark) – 10% gainThe reference machine used to log those gains was an Intel Core-i7-2677M running at 1.8GHz on an Intel 6 Series Chipset coupled with 4GB RAM and Hitachi 320 hard drive. The Intel graphics and Media Control Panel Power Plan was set to “Plugged In, Balance” and the games were all running on low settings.The new drivers also fix an issue with HDMI monitor connections crashing machines intermittently, and rendering artifacts have been resolved in a long list of titles. Any games using OpenGL should also see some performance improvements due to a new extension, performance optimizations, and a few fixes.One thing is clear, if you run a version of Intel’s HD Graphics solution then it’s definitely worth updating your drivers if you use your laptop for gaming or anything involving 3D rendering.Read more at the Intel Graphics Media Accelerator Driver page and associated release notes (PDF), via Hot Hardware
Today HP has announced its intention to launch two new services that should make buying printer ink cheaper while at the same time getting you to print a lot more.The first new service is called HP Instant Ink. Instead of waiting for your printer to tell you when you need new ink, HP has decided to offer a subscription for a monthly cost of between $5.99-$10.99 (depending on your printer) that delivers ink cartridges direct to your door, automatically and when you need them. The thinking is that you will never run out again, and HP is claiming you can save up to 50% on the cost of the ink using a direct subscription.While Instant Ink may save you money on ink purchases, the second new service definitely won’t. HP has done a deal with publisher Conde Nast to offer a print-to-home service for magazine subscribers. Basically, instead of getting your Conde Nast publication of choice through the post, you can instead print it yourself on your HP printer. The magazines on offer through the service haven’t been finalized yet, but will include Wired, Allure, Golf Digest, Details, Epicurious, Self, and Glamour.For HP it’s potentially a chance to remove the retailer from the ink selling equation while saving the user some cash. But at the same time, it may push up ink costs for the individual who chooses to print their magazines. The only way to offset that cost is with a lower subscription fee to Conde Nast, something HP don’t mention is going to happen.The Instant Ink subscription service is set to appear before the end of the year offered through select retailers in northeastern states as a trial. If successful I expect HP will expand it and offer an online sign-up option with delivery anywhere in the U.S.A similar trial is going to be appear this year for the print-to-home service, and hopefully we’ll learn more about how much that is going to cost exactly. As Conde Nast don’t have to print and post magazines, the subscription surely has to be cheaper.Read more at HP
Whether you’re a child or an adult Lego is almost everyone’s favorite toy. After all, it allows you create almost anything your imagination can think of. A company has combined an iPod touch with Lego and the idea is not as crazy as it sounds.It’s called Tinkerbrick and it gives iPod users the ability to mod their iPod touvh cases on the go. Because the case, which is a perfect fit for the touch (unlike your Lego-based homebrew — has Lego nubbins on it you can turn iPod touch into a truck, give it handles, or even a make it a stand.Tinkerbrick isn’t just for building upon though, building your iPod touch into existing Lego models means you can use apps to turn your Lego into more interactive toys. For example, Tinkerbricks website shows a free app, called Android FX, being used with an iPod on top of a Lego Star Wars X-Wing. The result is you can give your Lego X-Wing sounds effects. It can also be used to create truck and car noises so kids can generate realistic engine noises whilst pushing around their Lego truck.There’s also an app that uses the tilting function of your iPod touch to direct a ball around. To make playing games like this easier, Tinkerbrick has uploaded a design to build your own game controller, giving your touch handles which could improve your contorls.The cases are currently available on Amazon for $32.95 and come in yellow, black, red or white. At the moment there’s only cases for the iPod Touch 4G on sale but you can vote on Tinkerbrick’s homepage for what device you’d like to have Lego bricked next. It’s an awesome idea that provides endless customization for your iOS device (maybe Android one day) and it sounds like great fun for kids and adults alike.More at Tinkerbrick
If you didn’t find Sprint’s price drop on the iPhone 4S a compelling reason to open your wallet, here’s another option: why not drop $10,000 on a sealed first-generation iPhone instead? Yes, apparently the O.G. iPhone is already considered a collector’s item by at least two eBay sellers.Maybe it’s been so long that you can’t remember what the original iPhone hardware was, so here’s a quick rundown. It had a single-core 412MHz ARM 11 processor, 320 x 480 resolution display measuring 3.5 inches, a 2MP camera, 802.11 b/g Wi-Fi, an accelerometer, and 4, 8, or 16GB of storage. It’s the 8GB version up for sale here, which originally sold for $599 back in 2007. It’ll be another 40 years or so before this baby’s considered an antique, but this is the device that sparked the smartphone revolution.$10,000 seems a bit steep, but one of the phones can be had for a starting bid of just $2,000. Or you could always take a stab at one of the the many sealed first-gen iPods touch units on eBay, which generally list at around a quarter of that price. If you’re a true Apple fan, of course, there’s only one option: you’ll have to suck it up and bid on both.What do you think, Geek readers? Seem a little too soon to shell out that kind of cash for early iOS devices? Or is now the time to buy — before the nostalgia really kicks in and the prices go sky high (assuming there’s something more sky-high than ten grand when it comes to an old smartphone)?More at iDownloadBlog
Budweiser has decided that beer drinking needs to be even more social than it already is, and has taken the next step–integrating Facebook directly into the cup you drink your beer out of.That new beer cup is called the Buddy Cup and it contains a chip in the base that links it to Facebook. It’s not that simple, though. As well as having a Buddy Cup to drink out of, you also need to turn it upside down and use the printed code (much like a QR code) to link the cup with your Facebook account using a smartphone and presumably an app.Once that is done, your have a Facebook-aware cup in your possession. Now, if you toast another Buddy Cup (which has also been linked to a person’s Facebook account), you automatically become friends on the social network. If the toast was done accidentally then that’s tough luck, you’re friends with that person and will have to remove them later.This is clearly a marketing campaign, but one that I think could make people less social, not more. If I took the time to activate the cup I’d be walking around more guarded so as to avoid accidental Buddy Cup toasts. I’d also be pretty annoyed because the chip in the base takes up valuable space that would otherwise be filled with beer.Depending on how common these cups are, I suspect some geek will get hold of one and take it apart. It can’t be an expensive chip they’ve placed in the base, but I’d like to know how it is setup and how they’ve gone about registering a toast, transferring details between cups, and uploading that information to Facebook.