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Subject: General Tech, Storage, Mobile | June 15, 2014 - 10:54 PM | Scott Michaud
CFast is a standard, based on the merging of CompactFlash with SATA, for memory cards to have SSD-like performance. It has been around for a while, CFast 2.0 having been released in Q4 2012, but with very limited adoption. You could count the number of camera models which use it on a single hand. Still, ADATA is entering that market with a lineup of memory cards, with quite a bit of variety.
The ADATA ISC3E will come in SLC (one stored bit per memory cell) and MLC (two stored bits per memory cell) models. Capacities will range from 4GB to 64GB (SLC) or 4GB to 128GB (MLC). Speeds are fairly low, compared to modern SSDs. SLC is rated at 165 MB/s read and 170 MB/s write, while MLC can read at 435 MB/s and write at 120 MB/s. They support ECC and S.M.A.R.T.
Of course, this is kind-of interesting in terms of its small, removable form factor. Beyond that, it seems to be a few years back in terms of SSD technology. For the high resolution (or high frame rate) camera use case, read and write speeds really do not matter, except when you transfer your media off of your device (which the MLC version is clearly better suited for). Otherwise, as long as your write speed is consistently above what the camera can output, going bigger will be wasted overhead. ADATA suggests using these CFast 2.0 cards in POS terminals and kiosks but, at that point, would you really need small and removable memory?
ADATA has not released pricing and availability.
Subject: General Tech | June 14, 2014 - 11:19 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: thief, steam sale, steam, splinter cell blacklist
Update: Uh, apparently GOG's DRM-Free Summer Sale (note: everything on GOG is DRM-Free) has not yet ended. Those deals are definitely worth your time to check out.
While I missed writing about GOG's Summer Sale (okay, at the time of this publishing, theres a few hours left), I can at least alert our readers about these two deals. Splinter Cell: Blacklist, released late last summer, is almost two-thirds off at $10.19 USD (normally $29.99). Also on sale is Thief, released in late February, for about half price at $14.99 USD (normally $29.99). If you purchased these games and wanted a little more content to them, each title's downloadable content is on sale for an equivalent markdown.
While not as unforgiving as Splinter Cell: Conviction, a UPLAY account is required to activate Blacklist. You do not, however, need to be continuously logged in to it in order to play its single player mode. I believe that Thief, on the other hand, just uses Steam for its DRM.
Subject: General Tech, Mobile, Shows and Expos | June 14, 2014 - 10:51 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: x86, SteamOS, Steam Machine, Steam Controller, steam, mobile, handheld, E3 14, E3
To be doubly clear, if the title was not explicit enough, this announcement is not made by Valve. This company is called, "SteamBoy Machine team". If not a hoax, this is one of the many Steam Machines which are expected to come out of the SteamOS initiative. Rather than taking the platform to a desktop or home theater PC (HTPC) form-factor, this company wants to target the handheld PC gaming market.
If it comes out, that is a clever use of SteamOS. I can see Big Picture Mode being just as useful on a small screen as it is on a TV, especially with its large font and controller navigation. The teasers suggest that it will use the haptic feedback-based touchpads which Valve are expected to base the Steam Controller on. It will also include a 5-inch touchscreen.
The Escapist got into contact with the team and received a few more specs:
- Quad-Core CPU (x86)
- 4GB RAM
- 32GB built-in storage
Even if this company does not make good on their expectations, companies will now be considering portable SteamOS devices. This is the sort of outside-the-box thinking that Valve was pushing for when they wanted to create an open platform. Each party will struggle to win in their personal goals, yet they can also rely on the crowd (other companies or individuals) to keep up in areas where they do not want an edge.
Philosophy aside, the company is targeting 2015 with a "Standard Edition" supporting WiFi and 3G. It would make sense to have a WiFi-only model, but who knows.
Subject: Editorial, General Tech, Graphics Cards, Processors, Chipsets | June 13, 2014 - 03:45 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: x86, restructure, gpu, arm, APU, amd
According to VR-Zone, AMD has reworked their business, last Thursday, sorting each of their projects into two divisions and moving some executives around. The company is now segmented into the "Enterprise, Embedded, and Semi-Custom Business Group", and the "Computing and Graphics Business Group". The company used to be divided between "Computing Solutions", which handled CPUs, APUs, chipsets, and so forth, "Graphics and Visual Solutions", which is best known for GPUs but also contains console royalties, and "All Other", which was... everything else.
Lisa Su, former general manger of global business, has moved up to Chief Operating Officer (COO), along with other changes.
This restructure makes sense for a couple of reasons. First, it pairs some unprofitable ventures with other, highly profitable ones. AMD's graphics division has been steadily adding profitability to the company while its CPU division has been mostly losing money. Secondly, "All Other" is about a nebulous as a name can get. Instead of having three unbalanced divisions, one of which makes no sense to someone glancing at AMD's quarterly earnings reports, they should now have two, roughly equal segments.
At the very least, it should look better to an uninformed investor. Someone who does not know the company might look at the sheet and assume that, if AMD divested from everything except graphics, that the company would be profitable. If, you know, they did not know that console contracts came into their graphics division because their compute division had x86 APUs, and so forth. This setup is now more aligned to customers, not products.
Subject: General Tech | June 13, 2014 - 10:46 AM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: OpenVR, oculus rift, DIY
Owning an Oculus Rift is enough to make your gamer friends turn green with envy but what if it was an open sauce Rift you built yourself? The specs for this build specifies
two one 5.6″ 1280×800 LCDs which will give you resolution on par with the Facebook owned version and the casing is 3D printed which offers you a chance to personalize your own model. The steps for setting up the hardware are available by following the link from Hack a Day as well as a link to the source code on GitHub. The price is right and you not only get a working VR headset you get the credit for building it as well!
"The Oculus Rift is a really cool piece of kit, but with its future held in the grasp of Facebook, who knows what it’ll become now. So why not just build your own? When the Oculus first came out [Ahmet] was instantly intrigued — he began researching virtual reality and the experience offered by the Oculus — but curiosity alone wasn’t enough for the $300 price tag."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- How to Rescue a Non-booting GRUB 2 on Linux @ Linux.com
- Firefox 31 beta brings Firefox OS apps to Android @ The Inquirer
- AMD announces new business and personnel alignments @ DigiTimes
- Intel prepared for emerging industries, says company president Renee Jame @ DigiTimes
- Kids hack Canadian ATM during LUNCH HOUR @ The Register
- Intel prods PC market's corpse, corpse shouts 'I'M NOT DEAD!' @ The Register
- Car titans WON'T STEAL our tech, says Musk: DAMNIT, I'll GIVE IT to 'em @ The Register
Subject: General Tech | June 12, 2014 - 09:42 AM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: memristor, hp, the machine
HP is thinking of the long term as evidenced by their estimate of 2016 as the release date for the first viable DIMMs using memristors. Their plans are much larger than a new type of memory, they are planning a scalable architecture dubbed The Machine which will take advantage of the high speed and lower power needs of memristors to develop a new type of system which will need to use photonic interconnects to keep up with the memristors. They see this scaling from tiny devices and mobile phones with 100TB of storage to supercomputers whose speeds will make a mockery of the current record holder, the Fujitsu K. Of course many of the claims The Register heard HP make should be taken with a grain of salt, after all the memristor was originally predicted to hit the market a year ago. It is something to look forward to, who doesn't want faster, denser and more power efficient storage?
"The beleaguered IT giant plans to rejuvenate itself with a set of advanced technologies that, when combined, make a device called "The Machine" that can be as small as a smartphone and as large as a 160-rack supercomputer, the company announced at its HP Discover event in Las Vegas on Wednesday."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Mozilla To Sell '$25' Firefox OS Smartphones In India @ Slashdot
- Console OS will let you run Android on a Windows PC or tablet @ The Inquirer
- Gigabyte sees over 50% growth in 2013 profits @ DigiTimes
- Evernote taken out by DDoS attack @ The Register
- New Version of 3DMark Basic Edition (2013) Now Available on NGOHQ
- Net Neutrality: FCC Hack is a Speed Bump on the Internet Fast Lane @ Hack a Day
Subject: General Tech | June 11, 2014 - 11:21 AM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: gaming, Survios, oculus rift, razer hydra
With E3 2014 in full swing there are a lot of demos and trailers whetting our appetite and if the past is any proof, setting us up for disappointment as release dates move and features get dropped. You can immediately scroll down to the long list below but first you really should take a look at Survios, once called Holodeck and then Prime, which uses an Oculus Rift, Razer Hydra, and PlayStation Move to immerse you in a zombie survival game; literally in first person. The movie showing off the gameplay that Slashdot has linked to doesn't quite do justice to what the game will be like while wearing a Rift but the display behind does intimate just how much fun this style of gaming will be once it begins to mature.
"Ben Lang from Road to VR goes hands on and heads in with virtual reality technology company Survios' newest version of untethered VR system 'Prime 3'. He moves around the virtual space, holding and reloading weapons as you would in real life. 'At one point while playing, I was wielding the shotgun with two hands, with the table of weapons was on my right side. Several zombies were approaching and I needed a bit more fire power. I dropped the shotgun, reached over with my right hand to grab the tommy gun off the table, then virtually tossed it from my right hand to my left hand (because I'm a lefty), then pulled my pistol out of the holster with my right hand and continued to shoot both weapons.'"
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Civilization V Officially Available On Linux For SteamOS @ Slashdot
- Humble Bundle: PC and Android 10 Review @ OCC
- Soulier Than Thou: Dragon Age – Inquisition @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Next-Gen Tetronimoes: Ubisoft Announce Tetris Ultimate @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Store Wars: GOG Launching Its Own Steam-Like Service @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- InSomnia Has Old-School RPG Style, Modern Graphics @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Witcher 3 Gets Release Date, Bonkers New Trailer @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Doom E3 trailer teases upcoming reveal at QuakeCon 2014 @ HEXUS
- Ubisoft abandoned women assassins in co-op because of the additional work @ Polygon
- A Little More Faith: Mirror’s Edge 2 E3 Trailer @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Grapplewatch 2014: Far Cry 4 Gameplay Swings Away @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Beyond Seven Minutes Of Civ: Beyond Earth @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
Subject: General Tech | June 11, 2014 - 09:33 AM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: google, virtualization, linux, container, Linux Containerization, docker, Red Hat, ubuntu
Docker has put the libcontainer execution engine of their Linux Containerization onto Github, making it much easier to adopt their alternative virtualization technology and modify it for specific usage scenarios. So far Google, Red Hat and Parallels have started adding their own improvements to the Go based libcontainer; adding to the Ubuntu dev team already at work. This collaboration should help containerization become a viable alternative to virtual machines and hopefully be included as a feature in future Linux distros. Read more over at The Register.
"Docker has spun off a key open source component of its Linux Containerization tech, making it possible for Google, Red Hat, Ubuntu, and Parallels to collaborate on its development and make Linux Containerization the successor to traditional hypervisor-based virtualization."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Semiconductor boffin: 3D NAND don't need NO STEENKIN' TSVs @ The Register
- Alienware's Alpha Steam Machine will arrive running Windows 8.1 @ The Inquirer
- Sosecure seeks funding for world's first smartphone controlled SSD @ The Inquirer
- Stuff Wireless Charging Into a Nook’s Crannies @ Hack a Day
- EnerPlex Kickr II Review @ TechwareLabs
Subject: General Tech, Systems, Shows and Expos | June 10, 2014 - 11:44 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: Steam Machine, E3 14, E3, dell, alienware alpha, alienware
While "Steam Machines" are delayed, Alienware will still launch their console form-factor PC. The $550 price tag includes a black Xbox 360 wireless controller (with receiver) and Windows 8.1 64-bit. Alienware has also designed their own "Console-mode UI" for Windows 8.1, which can be navigated directly with a controller. It will ship Holiday 2014.
Apparently PC-based consoles equate to dubstep and parkour.
About the "Console-mode UI", it will apparently be what the user sees when the Alpha boots. The user can then select between Steam Big Picture, media, and programs. They also allow users to boot into the standard Windows 8.1 interface.
As for its specifications:
|Base Model ($550)||Upgrade Options|
|Processor||Haswell-based Intel Core i3||Core i5, Core i7 (user accessible)|
|GPU||"Custom" Maxwell-based, 2GB GDDR5
(see next paragraph)
|(none) (not user accessible, soldered on)|
|System Memory||4GB at 1600 MHz||8GB (user accessible)|
|HDD||500GB SATA3||1TB or 2TB (user accessible)|
|Wireless||Dual-band 802.11ac||(user accessible)|
The GPU is not specified, or even given a similar part to refer to. PC World claims that it will be comparable to the performance found on the two next-gen consoles. Since the 750 Ti has around 1.3 TeraFLOPs of performance, this GPU is probably near that, or slightly above it. PC Gamer says that it will be based on mobile Maxwell, so it might be similar to an current or upcoming laptop GPU.
One thing that has not been addressed is the HDMI-in port. We know that it supports passthrough for low latency, but we do not know what it will do with the input video. Alienware has several of these set up at their booth on the show floor, so we might hear more soon. While its specifications are a bit on the light side, particularly on the default amount of RAM (although that is easily and cheaply upgraded), its $550 price, which includes a wireless controller and its adapter, is also pretty good.
Subject: General Tech | June 10, 2014 - 12:32 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: hp, 3PAR 7450
If you are looking for extreme storage you can't top HP's 3PAR 7450 server at this time. With a total capacity of 460TB you can have the largest and fastest commercially available storage for whatever you need stored. There are some very interesting enterprise level features on this device, from deduplication to Adaptive Sparing which allows the 7450 to recover some of the over-provisioned storage on the drive used to replace failed flash. They also offer a 5 year warranty on the drives inside as well as guaranteeing six 9's of reliability which works out to less than a minute of downtime per year. According to what HP told The Register you can expect to pay $2/GB; it is nice to dream isn't it?
"The drives actually have 1.6TB of raw flash capacity but, using this aforementioned technology, HP says it can recover some of the over-provisioned storage – so the effective capacity of the 7450 SSDs is up to 1.92TB. Note the “up to” in HP’s statement; a cue for lots of fierce examination of Megsco’s capacity uplifting claims by competing suppliers."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
Subject: General Tech, Shows and Expos | June 9, 2014 - 08:31 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: E3, E3 14, GTA5, GTA Online
So my best guess is that Rockstar was waiting on the "next-gen" assets before they bothered releasing Grand Theft Auto V on the PC. The game will be released this fall, alongside Xbox One and PlayStation 4 ports. They do not mention distribution platforms, but Steam is a fairly safe assumption, at least now that Games for Windows has been given its final rest.
Hopefully, this delay in releasing a PC version will be a temporary hiccup due to the overlapping console generations. With Grand Theft Auto IV, the same could not be said. The problem is, with how secretive Rockstar is, we cannot really tell whether the above assumption is true, or whether they were just non-committal to the PC platform until now. At either rate, until the PC version is launched, Rockstar has not and will not get my money. Of course, there is always that danger that, by the time the game does launch, I will not be able to afford its time or expense.
That's why you should always release the PC version as early as possible.
Subject: General Tech, Memory, Storage | June 9, 2014 - 08:08 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: kingston, ssd, hyperx
Kingston, known primarily for RAM, flash drives, and SSDs, discussed the health of their company. VR-Zone reported on the interview and highlighted the company's sentiments about the PC industry. Long story short, Kingston sees growth in sales of PC gaming hardware -- apparently 20% year-over-year. The company expects that this growth comes primarily from SSD upgrades, either from rotating media or, they claim, replacing years-old, entry-level SSDs with more modern (probably in both speed and size) options.
Nathan Su, APAC (Asia-Pacific) director of Kingston, believes that "many users" have experienced low-tier SSDs and, it seems, would be willing to invest in the full thing. He does not clarify what he means, whether he is talking about SSD caching, or just a really small (or slow) SSDs from drive generations past.
There is a bit of a concern that SSD prices will continue to fall, with some drives reaching under 40c/GB in recent sales. As a consumer, I (selfishly) hope that prices continue to drop, while still remaining profitably sustainable for the manufacturers. Hopefully Kingston is accounting for this and will continue to see growth at the same time.
Subject: General Tech, Shows and Expos | June 9, 2014 - 06:04 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: E3, E3 14, GOG, gog galaxy
Good Old Games (GOG), a subsidiary of CD Projekt RED, is releasing an online gaming manager similar to Steam and Origin. The difference is that everything about it is DRM-free and completely optional. Galaxy will manage game updates, provide achievements, and host communication between friends... if you want. If you don't? That's okay. Have fun.
Obviously, their most popular competitor is Valve. Steam has a history of being nice to their customers and erring on their side. GOG, historically, takes it to the consumer-friendly extreme. If it lives up to their statements, this is no exception. The hope seems to be just that people will remember GOG more often and have more happy customers.
Basically, most platforms are give-and-take. This is take what you want.
When will it launch? What will it look like? Who knows. We will get more news this year, which suggests that we will not get the software until at least next year. Hopefully they will take their time and get it right. I mean, it is not like they need to rush. It is not a mandatory DRM platform - it is not a DRM platform at all. I do expect they will try to target The Witcher 3's launch window (February 2015) for marketing purposes, though.
Subject: General Tech | June 9, 2014 - 02:08 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: sentey, gaming keyboard, Phoenix Extreme Gamer Series, input
Overclockers Club offers an alternative look at the extreme gaming keyboard market which most seem to have accepted as a reasonable product now. There are many who will pay a high price for a mechanical keyboard with good switches as they do make a difference for frequent typers though arguably not as much for gamers. Then there are the $50 gaming keyboard with common gel switches but a fancy exterior, eye catching colours and backlighting which generally come with bottle openers and fridge magnets. The Sentey Phoenix Extreme Gamer is one such keyboard and if you consider it reasonable to spend $50 on a pretty keyboard you probably don't want to read this review. Those who agree with the author and would rather kill 5 generic keyboards over time will probably crack at least one smile while they read.
"The keyboard ultimately is a joke to my hands and for the $50 asking price, I'd rather burn through five generic builder series keyboards instead. This keyboard has no home on my desk and shouldn't on yours either. I'm happy to be done with the review, simply for the sake of never using it again. Fortunately, the carry bag will prevent me from picking up shattered keys in my driveway later; good thinking Sentey."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Deck 87 Francium Pro Mechanical Keyboard @ NikKTech
- Roccat Siru gaming mousepad @ Kitguru
- SteelSeries Sensei Wireless Laser Mouse @ Kitguru
- Logitech G502 Proteus Core Gaming Mouse @ Legit Reviews
- Gamdias Demeter GMS5010 Gaming Mouse @ Benchmark Reviews
- EVGA TORQ X10 Gaming Mouse @ Benchmark Reviews
- Mionix NAOS 7000 and NAOS 8200 Review @HiTech Legion
- SteelSeries RIVAL Optical Gaming Mouse @ NikKTech
- Mionix NAOS 7000 gaming mouse @ Kitguru
- iRocks M05 Spirit Cocoon Mouse @ Kitguru
- Tt eSPORTS Level 10 M Hybrid Gaming Mouse Review @ Madshrimps
- Logitech G502 Proteus Core Gaming Mouse Review – A Serious Gamer’s Tool @ Techgage
Subject: General Tech | June 9, 2014 - 01:43 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: E3 14, E3, beta, battlefield hardline, battlefield
Quick message: The Battlefield Hardline Closed Beta is accepting applications now on a first-come-first-serve basis. Hardline is Battlefield in a cops and robbers universe. Think of PayDay 2 with Battlefield 4 graphics and gameplay elements, basically. It is developed by Visceral Games, the studio known for Dead Space.
Note: The signup page is a bit glitchy, likely because of server load. If you are interested, hop in quick, before all of the slots are gone. The beta is open now, although it apparently takes a little bit of time before Origin recognizes that you are in it. You will know you are in when you get an email "invoice" for the Battlefield Hardline beta with a $0 transaction.
Subject: General Tech | June 9, 2014 - 12:25 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: E3, E3 14, steelseries, sentry
SteelSeries has announced Sentry, a device which tracks the user's eye movement. Since so much of professional gaming is perception and attention, it can be valuable to acquire feedback on how your eyes scan the display. This is not exactly a new service for teams. Some StarCraft 2 tournaments have even broadcast eye-tracking data to the audience.
This is obviously a niche product, but that is not reason to discredit it. One of the leading reasons for purchasing a high-speed camera is to analyze golf swings (I avoided the "driving reasons" pun, for your sanity). More subtly, SteelSeries is a major sponsor of several gaming teams. They might consider their personal needs as a form of subsidization, depending on if their business arrangement with Tobii and their investment in the Sentry. If it is not significantly more expensive than licensing a different service for their players, or that service is missing critical features, then why not make it and sell part (or all) of it as a product?
Currently no pricing or availability yet.
Subject: General Tech, Mobile, Shows and Expos | June 9, 2014 - 11:10 AM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: shield tablet, shield, nvidia, E3 14, E3
The Tech Report had their screenshot-fu tested today with the brief lifespan of NVIDIA's SHIELD Tablet product page. As you can see, it is fairly empty. We know that it will have at least one bullet point of "Features" and that its name will be "SHIELD Tablet".
Image Credit: The Tech Report
Of course, being the first day of E3, it is easy to expect that such a device will be announced in the next couple of days. This is expected to be based on the Tegra K1 with 2GB of RAM and have a 2048x1536 touch display.
It does question what exactly is a "SHIELD", however. Apart from being a first-party device, how would they be any different from other TegraZone devices? We know that Half Life 2 and Portal have been ported to the SHIELD product line, exclusively, and will not be available on other Tegra-powered devices. Now that the SHIELD line is extending to tablets, I wonder how NVIDIA will handle this seemingly two-tier class of products (SHIELD vs Tegra OEM devices). It might even depend on how many design wins they achieve, along with their overall mobile market share.
Subject: General Tech | June 9, 2014 - 10:32 AM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: windows phone 8, nokia, kinect
If you recall, the Nokia Lumia 1020 was the 41MP camera with a phone bolted to it that was released last year. Nokia is following up their unique product with a new version which will incorporate Kinect sensors into the phone and called it "3D Touch" or "Real Motion". Nokia sees possible usages such as turning on the phone by grabbing it and to hover your finger over a Live Tile and tap down in the air to bring up sub-menus. Combine gestures with Bluetooth and you will never again know if that strange person on the street is a hipster or hallucinating. Catch more at The Inquirer.
"KINECT TECHNOLOGY reportedly will debut on Windows Phone this year, with the sensors set to appear in the sequel to the Nokia Lumia 1020."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Computex 2014 Event Coverage: Asus @ TechwareLabs
- Computex 2014 Event Coverage: Patriot @ TechwareLabs
- Computex 2014 Event Coverage: Thermaltake @ TechwareLabs
- Computex 2014 Event Coverage: Final Press Conference @ TechwareLabs
- The Strippers, Unicorn Computers and Martian Watches of Computex @ The Register
- Computex 2014 round-up: Intel Core M, Kingston fabs and electric toilets @ The Inquirer
- Redmond is patching Windows 8 but NOT Windows 7, say security bods @ The Register
- Eugene Goostman becomes the first AI to pass the Turing Test, convincing judges that he’s a 13-year-old boy? @ ExtremeTech
Subject: General Tech, Displays | June 8, 2014 - 02:09 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: wacom, Cintiq, Intuos, hack
A couple of years ago, you might remember my review of the Wacom Cintiq 22HD. It was not a review unit. I was originally saving for the Cintiq 24HD until the 22HD and the 24HD Touch were announced. At that point, I was making decision whether to upgrade to the 24HD with a touchscreen for Windows 8 development, or save some money and get the 22HD. If you have read my many editorials on Windows Store certification requirements, you might guess that, at least I believe, I made the right decision.
Image Credit: Hack a Day
This purchase was actually the second graphics tablet that I owned. Years earlier, I purchased an Adesso CyberTablet 12000 but had problems with drawing in one location and seeing the results in another. I, then, transitioned to scanning pencil-and-paper and inking/filling them with a mouse. It was at that point that I took a gamble on a Wacom Cintiq.
Why am I telling this story? Wacom Cintiqs are based on the same technology as their Intuos tablets, even down to pen compatibility, with a display built in. Well, at Hack a Day, one of their clever readers decided to make their own Cintiq out of what appears to be a Wacom Intuos3 A5. Basically, he fit a replacement 9.7-inch, 2048x1536 display, designed for Retina iPads and similar tablets, behind the touch sensor. It apparently worked without much fuss.
You can find Wacom Intuos3 6 x 8-inch pen tablets for about 120-150$ used. You can also find a 9.7-inch 2048x1536 panel and the other necessary hardware for about $70. While it is not an exact replacement for a Wacom Cintiq, it is the best you will do for under $250 (or even under $900).
Subject: General Tech | June 8, 2014 - 01:09 AM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: xbox, microsoft, pc gaming, reverse-consolitis
Ah cool. Microsoft has provided the 32-bit and 64-bit (x86) drivers for their Xbox One controllers. The controller can only be used in wired mode, connected to the PC with a micro-USB cable, and there does not seem to be any plans to develop a PC wireless dongle like the 360 had. It will support any game which can make use of an Xbox 360 controller, which is certainly a lot of games.
The D-Pad is said to be a huge step up from the 360, which is a polite way of saying the 360's directional pad was absolute garbage. I am hesitant about the rest of the controller, though. I have heard numerous complaints about its design, particularly with its shoulder buttons, although it is hard to know without physically trying it. Like all peripherals, I would expect it comes down to personal preference to some extent.
PC gamers have other choices, too. For instance, unofficial support for the PS4 controller exists, albeit it is missing features from what I remember (it does support Bluetooth wireless on the PC, however). Also, and this is a better option, numerous PC gaming companies have their own controllers, including Razer, Logitech, and others.
But, of course, if you already have an Xbox One -- then why not try its controller on your PC?
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