Scott Merrill


Latest from Scott Merrill

  • Inside the HP Workstation Lab part 3: Support


    During my brief tour of the HP workstation lab, I was impressed by HP’s engineering history as well as the rigor they apply to testing and integrating hardware components. But as a customer, I know that what happens after the sale is just as important as what happens before the sale. You can have the best engineering discipline in the world, but your products will still wear out, or… Read More

  • HTML5 slideshows + Short URLs = Min.us


    min.us is a new and super simple way to make online slideshows. Simply drag photos from your computer to your browser window and you’ve got a slideshow. Each show gets a nice short URL you can post to Twitter or Facebook, and each show also gets a second short URL for you to bookmark if you want to edit the show. No need to log in, no OAuth or OpenID tomfoolery. Brilliant. The whole… Read More

  • Inside the HP Workstation Lab part 2: Implementation


    When you think about it, building a computer isn’t that difficult today. Intel publishes reference designs for their motherboards, so a lot of the work has been done for you already. But to build a computer that you can guarantee will work in a number of potentially hostile environments requires a deep understanding of computers and electronics, but also requires the resources to test… Read More

  • Linux is Gaining Popularity in Enterprise Computing


    The Linux Foundation recently conducted a survey to identify just how popular Linux is in the enterprise computing world. Traditional studies of OS popularity conducted by traditional analyst firms usually only count number of units sold. But with a free operating system you can’t reliably count units sold or installed. Instead, you need to ask a different set of questions, like… Read More

  • Inside the HP Workstation Lab Part 1: History


    I recently had the pleasure of touring the HP Workstation facility in Ft. Collins, Colorado. I was there with a number of other journalists, both web and print, for a behind-the-scenes look at what goes into the construction and support of HP workstations. The word “workstation” is often used interchangeably with the word “computer” in a lot of general conversations… Read More

  • Meet the PogoPlug Pro

    Since it’s launch, the PogoPlug has been an interesting little NAS device. The PogoPlug software has been continually updated with new features. There’s a vibrant developer community. And, most interestingly to me, the PogoPlug does not try to hide the fact that it runs Linux; indeed, they even tell you how to SSH into the thing! The recently released business-oriented PogoPlug… Read More

  • A DIY iPhone Dock for your iPad


    Do you feel compelled to look at your iPhone while simultaneously using your iPad? Or do you just miss the ability to actually multitask with either of your iDevices? Geeky Gadgets has instructions for making an iPhone dock for your iPad. This allows you to watch a movie on your phone while using your iPad. Read More

  • Need A Portable Turntable? Meet the Crosley Revolution

    Vinyl is not dead, friends, and the respected record player is not without modern updates. We’ve seen USB turntables before, but turntables have, historically, been pretty large edifices of technology. That changes today with the Crosley Revolution. Stripped of the cabinetry that traditionally accompanies a turntable, the Revolution is portable features a built-in handle, and can run on… Read More

  • Don’t Waste Money on a New Computer for College

    Heading off to college? Here’s my suggestion: buy a used laptop from Craigslist and install Ubuntu onto it. Seriously. You don’t need a new computer for college. If you’re pursuing a liberal arts degree, you really don’t need a brand new computer just to write all the papers you’ll write. If you’re pursuing an engineering degree, the chances are high that… Read More

  • Site Memory: Evernote for Websites

    The most popular note type created by Evernote users is a webpage. It seems that people love to save webpages in Evernote! Now Evernote is making it even easier for sites to get saved into notes with the announcement of the Evernote Site Memory Button. This is something of a departure from the historical Evernote modus operandi, where the user invokes a client application or opens up the… Read More

  • WOULD YOU LIKE TO PLAY A GAME? High schoolers invited to NYU-Poly cyber-security games

    When I was in high school, “hacking” mostly meant wardialing the local phone numbers looking for BBSes, and occasionally downloading “warez” from the “elite” boards. I have a funny story about the time our own John Biggs wrote a trojan disguised as a blue box program. Mostly, we were killing time and not really doing any of the exploration and… Read More

  • Kobo Releases Free Kobo Desktop Application

    The e-book world is slowly evolving into a number of fairly similar, homogenized ecosystems. No one wants to be shackled to using a single device to read their e-books: the Kindle is both a device and an app on your smartphone; Apple’s iBook’s is an app on your iPad and your iPhone. And today Kobo is following the trend with the announcement of the Kobo Desktop Application. Like… Read More

  • Review: HP Photosmart D110a, the printer with an email address

    Despite numerous advancements in printer technology, the fundamental failing of almost every consumer printer on the market today is the necessity to install printer drivers. Usually these drivers are accompanied by all manner of essentially junk software that “helpfully” pop up reminders when your printer is out of ink, or out of paper, or whatever. Hewlett Packard is making… Read More

  • Not-so-Stealthy StealthArmor: COLOR Series giveaway

    StealthArmor, the fancy skin for your iPhone or iPad, is now available in red, pink, blue, yellow, orange, purple and green. I know you’ve been itching for a green iPad. If you want the boring carbon fiber look, you can have it, but that’s pretty old fashioned. We’ve got three to give away to lucky readers! Read More

  • PogoPlugs Print! Also, Biz Model and WiFi Adapter Now Shipping

    PogoPlug keeps getting better and better. Today they’re announcing that wireless printing, first mentioned earlier this summer, is now available. Users can print from iPads, iPhones, Androids and pretty much any other Internet-connected device. While you’re vacationing in Rio, you can print off instructions for your buddy who’s house sitting for you! Or you can print off a… Read More

  • Ksplice Now Free for Fedora Users

    Ksplice, the technology that allows Linux kernel updates without a reboot, is now free for users of the Fedora distribution. Using Ksplice is like “replacing your car’s engine while speeding down the highway”, and it can potentially save your Linux systems from a lot of downtime. Since Fedora users often live on the bleeding edge of Linux development, Ksplice makes it even… Read More

  • Ohio LinuxFest 2010: sudo install freedom

    The eighth annual Ohio LinuxFest is September 10-12 in lovely Columbus, Ohio. As always, this is a free event chock full of interesting hands-on Linux and free software solutions. Register at the Supporter level for $65 and you’ll get lunch, one of the gorgeous t-shirts pictured here, and that warm fuzzy feeling that comes from supporting an event like this. Read More

  • Whither the Ubuntu Tablets?

    The iPod revolutionized the portable media player market. The iPhone shook up the smart phone market. The iPad is setting the standard for the revived tablet market. What is it about Apple that makes these products so great? In part it’s Apple’s dedication to user experience; but I’d argue that the larger factor in their success is Apple’s end-to-end control of the product. Read More

  • In-Depth Security Analysis of Portable Encrypted Hard Drive

    Jeroen Domburg, aka “sprite”, has written an excellent step-by-step security analysis of the iStorage DiskGenie. The DiskGenie is a hardware encryption solution for portable hard drives that operates completely free of client-side software. The hard drive inside the DiskGenie is unlocked by way of a keypad built into the casing. I’m always a little skeptical of the… Read More

  • Gozer the Gozerian, The Traveller Has Come

    And boy is he delicious! The Stay-Puft Marshmallows are caffeinated bite-sized pieces of the Destructor and come in a groovy collectable box. No need to claim to be a god on this one, Ray. Just pop ‘em in your mouth! Read More