Stories by Joel Strauch

Top 10 Graphics Boards for Gamers

Rated on specs alone, ATI's latest board--the much-anticipated Radeon--would be a top contender. It packs an impressive technological résumé, with fill-rate specifications of over 1 gigatexel per second, a sophisticated new hardware transform-and-lighting engine, ATI's innovative Hyper-Z compression for faster frame rates at the highest resolutions, and the ability to process three texture units per pass (more than any other board). The version we tested comes with 64MB of fast Double Data Rate memory (the 32MB version uses a slightly slower version of DDR and has a slightly slower clock speed).

Duron, Duron: AMD's New Processor Rocks

Our first look at Advanced Micro Devices Inc.'s new Duron processor--in a TaskMaster 600D system from Sys Technology--shows that this fast and inexpensive CPU will be one to watch.

PCs for a Networked World from HP and Micron

In a networked world, PCs must offer security, stability, and enhanced performance. PC World tested two new systems that were designed with these features in mind: Hewlett-Packard Co.'s Vectra VL400 and Micron Technology Inc.'s ClientPro Cn. We found that these systems do deliver, although what you get for the price significantly differs.

ICQ's Quick Shortcut Bar

ICQ 2000a adds a new feature to the instant messaging program's contact list: the "ICQuick" shortcut bar found along the right edge of the contact list window. You can use the shortcut bar to access ICQ's advanced features and can even fill it with shortcuts to other applications.

Dell's Pricey, Packed PIII-1000

In this age of budget computers, you can still splurge on a PC. Dell Computer Corp.'s latest Dimension, the XPS B1000r Special Edition, has a 1-GHz Pentium III processor--and a $3769 price.

Robotic Pals and Pets Debut

Always wanted your own robot? Now you can have one--cheap. It may not clean the house or wash the car in Jetsonian fashion, but it'll keep you company and entertain guests.

Digital Toys Mix Form, Function

Digital cameras flashed, mobile phones rang, handhelds beeped, and maybe even a few Game Boys chirped as keynote speaker America Online Inc. President Bob Pittman spoke of convergence at the opening of the Electronic Entertainment Expo here.

OCR on the Run: QuickLink Pen Scanner

Business cards, memos, charts, magazine articles--you want the information you collect while away from your desk, but you don't want to lug a notebook or all that paper back to the office. Wizcom Technologies Ltd. offers a better way to capture and organize text information: the $130 QuickLink Pen Personal Scanner, a compact and practical handheld text scanner with built-in optical character recognition capabilities. The pen's internal memory can store up to 1000 pages of scanned text for eventual transfer to your PC. And unlike many pen scanners, it doubles as an address book and syncs easily with desktop PIMs, browsers, word processors, and spreadsheet apps.