Il faut bien rentabiliser le manque de sommeil de temps en temps… Allez hop : surf de nuit, geeekeries. Petite compilation de news en anglais : de quoi lire les flux RSS sur sa PSP (encore un hack, oui), les coréens pourront surfer peinards sur la portable de Sony, une batterie qui se recharge en 60 secondes et pour finir, les taiwanais qui se regroupent pour tenter une (pathétique) contre-attaque contre le Blu-Ray et le HD-DVD. Enjoy.
So if we can’t have longer-lived batteries, Toshiba’s new Super Charge cells may be the next best thing. The company claims the new cell charge to 80 percent of its capacity in just 60 seconds and cap top out in just « a few minutes more. » Not only that, but after 1000 charge cycles, the lithium-ion cell loses only 1 percent of its charging capacity. Two of these cells and a nearby power outlet and you’ll be able to stay mobile indefinitely.
You didn’t think the battle over which high-def disc format is going to succeed DVD would be confined to just Blu-ray and HD-DVD, did you? A simple two-way format war would be way too easy, and we’d almost completely forgotten about another contender, the Forward Versatile Disc, which had its formal launch yesterday. First announced almost a year ago, FVD is a new red laser 11GB disc format dreamed up by a Taiwanese consortium that uses Windows Media Video 9 to squeeze in a couple hours of high-definition video. It’s doubtful that FVD will get very far here in the States, given the number of tech heavyweights and movie studios which have already lined up behind either Blu-ray or HD-DVD, but FVD is getting a big push in Taiwan, mainly because FVD discs and players are supposed to be a lot cheaper to produce than HD-DVD and Blu-ray discs and players (also there are no royalties to pay to the Blu-ray or HD-DVD camps). Don’t expect to ever see a Sony or Toshiba FVD player, but a bunch of Taiwanese manufacturers like Tatung, Sampo, and BenQ have committed to the new format and there are even two companies we’ve never heard of, Actima Technology and Actima Electronics, that already started making FVD players.
They’ve still got over a month to wait, but when South Koreans finally get hands on with the PlayStation Portable on May 2, they’ll be able to get some decent internet access for it. South Korea’s largest ISP is teaming up with Sony to offer the services to users, who will be able to surf the internet (we’re assuming a little more directly than we’re surfing it now) from wireless access points and view content prepared specifically for the device — we’re guessing that would be primarily Sony content, seeing as how they love to lock this stuff down. And what exactly is the deal with needing a “special partnership” to give internet access for the PSP, when it clearly already has the function built in to access existing wireless infrastructure? Ahhhhh, Sony…
This how-to serves a few functions: to piggy-back off the excellent work already done by roto to sniff out and untether the browser feature inside the PlayStation Portable’s Wipeout Pure game, to serve as a step-by-step graphical walk-through for PSP owners who are unfamiliar with dabbling in the ways of DNS settings, and to provide another portal DNS server option for PSP users who don’t have need or desire to set up their own DNS. Our portal includes a handy link to the Bloglines web-based RSS reader service, to add in some RSS reading functionality to the PSP.
What you’ll need for this how-to:
- Sony PlayStation Portable
- Wipeout Pure PSP game
- A free Bloglines account. We won’t go over setting up this account — just head over to Bloglines if you don’t have an account already; it’s self-explanatory.
Fire up your PSP and head on down to Settings, all the way to the left in the main menu. Go all the way down and select Network settings area:
Select Infrastructure mode:
Choose “New Connection” to, um, set up a new connection:
Give a name to your connection. You can store up to 10 different network connections on the PSP, so as other portals spring up and/or if you set up your own, you can store them all and point to whichever one you fancy, plus keep your regular network settings stored. If one portal is down, you can head on over to another (share the bandwidth, share the love). We’ll call ours, cryptically, “Engadget portal”:
Hit Enter to save the name for this connection, then press the right arrow button to continue. You’ll be prompted for your local network’s SSID. If you know the name of your network you can enter it, but in most cases you can just have the PSP scan for available networks and select the correct SSID. We’ll scan:
We have two wireless networks in our vicinity, and the PSP finds them both. Being of sound mind, we choose the one with the strongest signal strength, hit X to select it, then the right arrow button to continue.
Here’s where we’ll make the all-important DNS setting change that unchains the poor Wipeout Pure browser from endlessly phoning home to ingame.scea.com. In the Address Settings window, choose Custom.
First you’ll see the “IP Address Setting” pane — this can remain set on the default choice: Automatic. Hit the right arrow button to move to the “DNS Setting” pane. Here you’ll select Manual:
Hit X to select and modify the Primary DNS server address. The address of our portal server is 126.96.36.199 — make your changes in each of the four IP segments by using the up and down arrow keys to scroll through the list of numbers. You can leave Secondary DNS as is. Hit X to save the settings when you’re done.
Hit the right arrow key again and you’ll see the “Proxy Server” settings pane, which can stay set on the default choice, “Do Not Use.” Hit the right arrow to continue. You’ll see a summary of the settings you chose under the “Setting List” header. Press the right arrow button again, then press X to save these settings. When the save is completed, you’ll have the option to test the connection. Go ahead and give yourself some piece of mind and do this.
Following a successful connection test, the Network Settings pane will spit back your settings. The PSP has automagically detected the settings you didn’t fill in from your wireless router, which doles out IP address via DHCP like Hare Krishnas hand out pamphlets at airports, except much more useful. You’ll see the “Succeeded” flag next to “Internet Connection” and ye shall do the dance of joy. Still dancing? We’ll wait.
Finished there, hotfoot? Hit the O key to back out of the Network Settings menu subtree and back out into the main plaza of the main menu. Throw in the Wipeout Pure game, stored on that bastion of standards — the UMD disc. Fire it up.
From the main menu, scroll down to the Download option and select it. Once you do, you’ll be prompted to select which of your saved network connections you want to use to connect. Select whatever you’ve named our portal and hit X:
You should see something approximating the view below (sans the Gmail link, which we tried to get going but the browser definitely balked at trying to enter a secure site). Ultimately, as other folks experimenting with this have mentioned, we found the browser to be a bit wonky. Sometimes connections were solid and relatively fast, whereas other times we could have written a short novella in the time it took to load even a simple page (luckily we had the good sense to spare the world from our literary onslaught). One persistent error consistently cropped up, which was that all elements of the page would seem to load except the background color, which would remain black, black, none more black, making plain text impossible to read. We don’t know why. Has anyone else seen this? Still, links left unstyled show up despite this wonky rendering, so the portal should remain usable regardless. The text box at the bottom of the page will take a standard URL as input so you can go anywhere from here. Below this (off the screen) is a textbox that will perform a Google search on whatever text you enter there.
Hie on down to the Bloglines link by using the down key to traverse the links (you’ll see them highlight as you walk through them). Select it with the X key.
Hit the down arrow again to bring focus to the “Email:” login text box. When you hit X, the PSP keyboard entry API will open, allowing you to enter data into the text box. Enter your bloglines email login, then hit Enter. Hit the down key to select the password textbox; enter your password using the keyboard entry again and hit Enter. Arrow down to the Log In button and hit X to activate the button.
This will log you into the Bloglines mobile site, which is specially formatted for portable devices. It suits the PSP screen rather well. You’ll see your list of feeds displayed; just use the up and down arrow keys to scroll through the list, and the X key to select whicever feed you’d like to view.
The feed you selected should load in the PSP browser; pretty simple! Just use the arrow keys to scroll up and down and read your feed. At the top of the page is a handy set of navigation links; use the “Subscriptions” link to hike back out to your main list of feeds.
To get back out to the portal home to access other links and/or use the URL bar to input any destination of your choice, just hit the “Start” button on the PSP. You’ll get a prompt to Continue, Goto Home Page, or Quit. Quit will exit the Wipeout Pure game (funny that we’re still technically inside a game, no?), and Goto Home Page will take you back to the Engadget portal. Should our portal ever be bandwidth throttled, you can set up other portals as network connections for redundancy when you need it.
Given the wonkiness of this method, we’re not recommending anyone run their small business off their PSP browser connection or anything. Your mileage may vary — but it does expand the possibilities of the device, and can be useful as an extra portable newsreader or Flickr client. In a perfect world we wouldn’t have to jump through these hoops just to squeeze out a bit of functionality that’s already present but locked down in the device, but we don’t have to tell you that, do we?