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Archive for January, 2009

Ford electric van by 2010

Posted by bitguru on January 23, 2009

I have written about hybrid minivans b e f o r e but not for a few months because I hadn’t heard anything new. Well this week Ford announced that it will introduce a battery-powered van in 2010. It’s nice to know Ford is in the game, but there are some caveats:

  • It’s a full-size van (perhaps based on the Transit) not a minivan.
  • It’s a commercial vehicle intended for fleets, not private owners.
  • It’s a pure electric, not a hybrid or plug-in hybrid.

The announcement also mentions an “electric small car” in 2011 and “next-generation hybrid vehicles, including a plug-in version” in 2012.

While I’m here: The Chevy Orlando minivan is coming to North America in 2011 and could possibly get the Volt’s plug-in hybrid drivetrain.


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The Prisoner is Dead, Long Live The Prisoner

Posted by bitguru on January 14, 2009

McGoohan as Number 6Patrick McGoohan died today. He may have been more famous for his roles on Danger Man/Secret Agent and Columbo (two Emmy awards as a guest star) but to my mind he will always be the Prisoner. Evidently he wasn’t easy to work with, but as a force in front of and behind the camera he will be missed. He was 80 years old.

The Prisoner lasted for only 17 episodes and is something of an acquired taste, but I guess it qualifies as my favorite television series of all time. There’s the great Ron Grainer theme song, the whimsical Portmeirion setting, the nameless (in a literal sense) characters, the surreal elements (such as Rover), and the ambiguous series ending. What’s not to like?

The Prisoner lives on. There are the DVDs and the television reruns, of course, but that’s not what I’m talking about. AMC is remaking the series with Ian McKellen and Jim Caviezel in the leads. It is scheduled to air later this year. Apparently it’s not a literal remake but a reimagining, sort of like the new Battlestar Galactica. Read all about it on the official site.

I haven’t had a chance to look at much of the material on the official site yet, but kudos sto AMC for making all 17 episodes of the original series available for online viewing. Click on over to remember (or experience for the first time) McGoohan at his best.

Be seeing you.

Posted in Nostalgia | 1 Comment »

third-party mini-DisplayPort adapters available next week

Posted by bitguru on January 11, 2009

miniDP-to-DVI and miniDP-to-VGA adapters from MonopriceRespected discount cable house Monoprice has added miniDisplayPort-to-DVI and miniDisplayPort-to-VGA adapters to its catalog with an ETA of January 16, 2009.

Third-party adapters were expected after Apple licensed the mini-DisplayPort spec, but it’s nice to see them actually arrive. Monoprice’s prices are about half of Apple’s, which is also welcome.

I was also expecting to see miniDisplayPort-to-DisplayPort and miniDisplayPort-to-HDMI adapters, and also actual miniDP cables (as opposed to short adapters), but none have appeared yet. Perhaps they are on their way.

[update: The catalog now also lists a miniDisplayPort-to-HDMI adapter.]

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