Internet Explorer 8 Beta 1

Thanks for the heads up on this on, Microsoft. The company has just released a public beta version of their new web browser, Internet Explorer 8. The supposedly-standards compliant browser showed up out of nowhere this afternoon on the company’s site. Available immediately, you should be able to install the software on any machine running Windows Vista, Windows XP, or Windows 2003 Server edition. We haven’t had much time to put it through the motions here, but given the “beta” tag, we’re not expecting anything terribly polished. Let us know if you take the plunge and discover any new features of note. Oh, and Microsoft: You might want to consider releasing a product like this with a bit more fanfare. Just a thought.

Asus Eco Notebook

After months of testing (and showing), the Asus eco-book has finally been launched at Cebit. Green is a big cash-cow right now and every company seems to find a way to say that they are somewhat greener. Asus’s argument is that they are using less plastic, thanks to the partial bamboo casing of this Eco Notebook. Asus thinks that Bamboo is the best thing ever, while IBM says “green IT is hype”, what is your take?

Alienware

Believe it or not, Alienware’s Aurora ALX rig was boasting quad SLI support two whole years ago. After yesterday’s official launch of ATI’s CrossFireX technology, now the ALX has another partner in quad GPU crime. Dubbed the Area-51 ALX CFX, this rig features a 3.0GHz Core 2 Extreme QX9650 processor, up to 4GB of RAM, a bevy of HDD choices, optional Blu-ray burner, a 1,000-watt power supply and of course, twin 1GB Radeon HD 3870 X2 cards (four GPUs in all). Granted, this thing will run you at least $5,649 as a CrossFireX-equipped rig, so think carefully if slicing into your son’s college fund is really worth 4x the graphical mayhem.

Samsung PAVV 650 LCD TV

Panasonic has added more TVs to their PAVV line, this time three high-end LCDs at 40, 46 and 52 inches. Incorporating a new LCD panel, dubbed “crystal rose,” the TVs have slim-bezel cases with touches of red, which at least makes them a dash more elegant than the usual run-of-the-mill black boxes. Samsung has also upped the eco-friendliness by avoiding volatile organic compounds in the design. The screens are 120Hz, full HD and use the Digital Natural Engine technology. They’ll be available in Korea at first, then worldwide by the end of April, for between $3,375 and $6,120.

G10IL

Perhaps the ECS G10IL could use some help in the naming department, but it certainly isn’t having any trouble bringing a bit of class to the subnotebook market. In addition to those stylish good looks, the G10IL sports a webcam, HSDPA 7.2, three USB ports, Ethernet and a 56Kb modem (joy of joys!). No mention is made of WiFi or Bluetooth, but at least the former seems a given. Other details are slim, but the price is supposedly “sub-$500.” Perhaps this “race to the bottom” won’t be so horrible after all.

Casio EXILIM Zoom EX-Z9

While Casio — along with most everyone else — took the time to roll out a gamut of shooters at CES, the EXILIM Zoom EX-Z9 is sashaying in late. This 8.1-megapixel camera sports a 2.6-inch LCD monitor, face detection technology, anti-shake DSP, a 3x optical zoom, 18.6MB (and not byte more) of built-in storage, an SD / SDHC / MMC expansion slot, a video mode capable of capturing at 848 x 480 pixels and a rechargeable Li-ion for good measure. You’ll also find a USB / AV output socket and 23 “Best Shot” modes for those who just love choices, but the hard part will be deciding which of the four colors (pink, silver, black and orange) is really worth your $159.99.