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Subject: General Tech | April 17, 2013 - 12:44 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: Intel, otellini, earnings
The downturn in the PC market has depressed the earnings of Intel during Paul Otellini's last quarter as head of the company, but not as badly as many companies thanks to decent sales of data centre products. Their overall earnings are down $1bn from this quarter last year with their PC sales down 6.6% but their data centre sales up 7.5% when compared to Q1 2012. The numbers are not so rosy when you look at the last year of sales, PC down 6% and data centre down 6.9%, in line with expectations but far from good news. Intel has come a long way since 1974 when he first joined the company but even they are not immune to the decline in sales which has been hurting the industry recently. Get the full sales numbers at The Register.
"After 39 years at Chipzilla and over 80 earnings calls Paul Otellini has just finished his final one before stepping down in May. He didn't so much leave with a bang as a whimper.
The company booked $12.6bn in revenue for Q1 2013, down nearly a billion from the last quarter, and profits dropped 25 per cent to $2bn, over half of which will be given out as a dividend and another $553m used to buy back 25 million Intel shares. The results were broadly in line with analyst's expectations and Intel stock is up slightly in late trading."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Oracle critical patch plugs 128 security vulns @ The Register
- How to Install and Configure a Dedicated PhysX Video Card @ Hardware Secrets
- Google Drive and Gmail go down for some @ The Inquirer
- PLA4201 Powerline Ethernet Adapter @ VelocityReviews
- Magellan Switch Review @ TechReviewSource
Subject: Graphics Cards | April 16, 2013 - 10:24 PM | Ryan Shrout
Tagged: nvidia, metro last light, Metro
Late this evening we got word from NVIDIA about an update to its game bundle program for GeForce GTX 600 series cards. Replacing the previously running Free to Play bundle that included $50 in credit for each World of Tanks, Hawken and Planetside 2 title, NVIDIA is moving back to the AAA game with Metro: Last Light.
Metro: Last Light is the sequel to surprise hit from 2010, Metro 2033 and I am personally really looking forward to the game and seeing how it can stress PC hardware like the first did.
This bundle is only good for GTX 660 cards and above with the GTX 650 Ti sticking with the Free to Play $75 credit offer.
NVIDIA today announced that gamers who purchase a NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660 or above would also receive a copy of the highly anticipated Metro: Last Light, published by Deep Silver and is the sequel to the multi award winning Metro 2033. Metro: Last Light will be available May 14, 2013 within the US and May 17, 2013 across Europe.
The deal is already up and running on Newegg.com but with the release date of Metro: Last Light set at May 14th, you'll have just about a month to wait before you can get your hands on it.
How do you think this compares to AMD's currently running bundle with Bioshock Infinite and more? Did NVIDIA step up its game this time around?
Subject: General Tech | April 16, 2013 - 07:21 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: roccat, input, Isku FX
There is a new keyboard from the company that Ryan loves to try to pronounce; ROCCAT's new Isku FX is more than just a gaming keyboard with multimedia buttons and LED backlighting. With the configuration software installed you can change the Caps Lock key to modify the macro and thumb keys to give you a total of 16 macro keys, remap the multimedia keys or even change up what ROCCAT refers to as the Easy Zone. For aesthetic purposes you can choose from 16.8 million distinct colours in the backlighting. There are also apparently achievements you can unlock with this keyboard if you have become addicted to those thanks to Steam. If this sounds like something you might like you should check out the full review at Techgage.
"At the time of writing, the Isku FX is ROCCAT’s range-topping keyboard. Appropriately it’s packed to the gills with features and capabilities lesser keyboards tend to eschew. No, it’s not a mechanical keyboard, but despite this is it still worth your hard-earned dollars? Read on and find out!"
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- ROCCAT Isku FX Multicolor Gaming Keyboard Review @ Legit Reviews
- SPEEDLINK ATHERA Multi-Profile Keyboard Review @ Madshrimps
- AZiO Levetron Mech5 Mechanical Keyboard @ eTeknix
- Gigabyte AiVia Osmium Keyboard Review @ Hi Tech Legion
- Your Wireless Mouse Or Keyboard Acting Up? Blame USB 3.0! @ TechARP
- Corsair Vengeance M95 Performance MMO & RTS Laser Gaming Mouse @ Tweaktown
- Func MS-3 Gaming Mouse @ Rbmods
- FUNC MS-3 Gaming Mouse @ Modders-Inc
- Leetgion El'Druin "Optimized for Diablo" Gaming Mouse @ Tweaktown
- Steelseries Sensei Limited Edition Mouse @ eTeknix
- Razer ONZA Xbox 360 PC Tournament Edition Pro Gaming Controller @ eTeknix
Subject: Mobile | April 16, 2013 - 03:24 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: tap 20, sony vaio, hybrid, convertible tablet
Sony has joined the convertible tablet market with the new Tap 20 and Legit Reviews had a chance to work with one. They come in a wide variety of prices and internals, from $850-$1250, all using a 1600x900 IPS display but with CPUs ranging from Core i5's with 4GB of DDR3 to i7's with 8GB DDR3. Every model comes with a hard drive for local storage and you can expect almost 3 hours of battery life; since the battery is in the tablet portion you do not get longer life from docking it to the keyboard. There were a few strange omissions on the tablet as well as some attractive features which you can read about in the full review.
"The Sony VAIO Tap 20 is a very interesting Hybrid PC that runs Windows 8 with 10 finger touch capabilities. The internal battery is rated to last 2 hours 45 minutes, which actually isn't bad for a device like this. Having the ability to unplug the PC and move it around the home is actually rather nice and really makes the PC experience group friendly. The Sony VAIO Tap 20 can be used in tablet mode with it lying on the table and you can play touch games on it versus a friend or share photos and videos with a group..."
Here are some more Mobile articles from around the web:
- Acer Aspire V5-571P @ XSReviews
- Sony VAIO T14 Ultrabook Review - Out With Express Cache In With DataPlex For SandForce Driven Speed @ SSD Review
- Toshiba Qosmio X875-Q7390 Review @ TechReviewSource
- HP Envy X2 11-G010NR Review @ TechReviewSource
- Asus VivoTab Smart (ME400C) Windows 8 Tablet @ Kitguru
- Rightware Basemark X Tested on Several Popular Mobile Devices @ Tweaktown
- Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 with 4G LTE @ LanOC Reviews
- Asus Padfone 2 @ The Inquirer
- HP ElitePad 900 Review @ TechReviewSource
- ZTE Geek hands-on @ The Inquirer
- ASUS PadFone 2 @ Hardware.info
Subject: Graphics Cards | April 16, 2013 - 03:01 PM | Ryan Shrout
Tagged: vsync, stutter, smoothness, microstutter, frame rating, animation
We are running a poll in conjunction with our Frame Rating: Visual Effects of Vsync on Gaming Animation story that compares animation smoothness between fixed 30 FPS and 60 FPS captures and Vsync enabled versions.
If you haven't read the story linked above, these questions won't make any sense to you so please go read it and then stop back here to answer the polls!
Subject: General Tech | April 16, 2013 - 01:26 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: TMS RamSan, IBM, FlashSystem, flash, 1 billion
IBM has invested $1 billion in SSD research and development, creating a project called IBM FlashSystem. They will create a dozen 'competency centres' across the globe this year to help customers understand scenarios in which flash storage will help their business. To show off their prowess they created a 500TB system based on their FlashSystem 820; you can see a video of the system at The Register. IBM has already signed a deal with Sprint to build 9 storage systems and there will be more customers soon. IBM is also redesigning their system software to take advantage of the speed of flash which will make the transition even more attractive to companies.
"Say goodbye to TMS RamSan and hello to IBM FlashSystem. Back in 2001, IBM CEO Lou Gerstner said IBM would spend a billion dollars to boost its Linux business and that billion paid itself off within two years. In 2002, the firm splurged the same amount on Java tools, and in 2006, pumped $1bn into information management. Fast-forward seven years and Ginny Rometty's IBM is going to spend a billion dollars to boost its flash solid state storage business."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- VIA Labs lands new orders for USB 3.0 hub controllers @ DigiTimes
- Gigabyte gaining on Asustek in motherboard shipments @ DigiTimes
- 63 TRILLION maths ops a second - in 5 inches? Mm, show me @ The Register
- 10 dual-band router round-up @ Hardware.info
Subject: General Tech | April 16, 2013 - 12:25 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Today's deal is not something you see every day, a WiFi enabled console sized Alienware PC running Ubuntu. At that $600 price you get a Core i3-3220 @ 3.3GHz, 6GB RAM, 1TB HDD, DVD burner, a 1GB GTX 645, and pre-installed UBUNTU Linux 12.04. It also comes with a one year warranty which could come in handy if you are unfamiliar with Linux. This might not be the Linux powered Steambox of rumour, but it will certainly function as one and will provide more fun than speculating on when or if that device will ever be released.
Alienware X51 Compact Core i3 Gaming PC w/ Ubuntu Linux & GeForce GTX 645 @ $599
To get the cheapest Alienware X51 Core i3 deal, follow these steps:
1. Start here at Dell Home direct store
2. Click Review & Checkout button at the top
3. Proceed to final checkout/payment
Subject: Cases and Cooling | April 15, 2013 - 06:54 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: seasonic, Seasonic X-Series, 850W, PSU, modular psu
One drawback to impressing [H]ard|OCP with the quality of one of your PSUs is that the bar is now set that much higher for the next model they review. Seasonic is one such company that has a great reputation that they have to live up to with their new X-850 PSU. The half dozen PCIe 6+2 power plugs are a good start, as is being able to provide up to 99% of total power to the four 12V rails and the fully modular cabling is always appreciated. The real question is how it fared on the test bench, so go find out if it just makes it or if it passes the torture test with flying colours.
Seasonic is a long time favorite of HardOCP editors as you will find a Seasonic PSU in many builds we have done over the years. Today Seasonic pushes its X-Series forward just a bit more building its first gold efficiency rated fully modular enthusiast power supply. But will it blend?"
Here are some more Cases & Cooling reviews from around the web:
- Silverstone Strider Essential ST50F-ES 500 W @ techPowerUp
- Corsair CX430M Modular Power Supply Review - What $25 Can Buy @ Legit Reviews
- Corsair Builder Series Modular CX600M @ Kitguru
- Fractal Design Newton R3 1000 Watt 80-PLUS Platinum Power Supply Review @ Hi Tech Legion
- In Win Commander III 700W Power Supply Review @ Hi Tech Legion
- Enermax NAXN ADV 650-Watt 80 PLUS Bronze Power Supply @ Tweaktown
- Compact Power: Review of Five Low-Profile PSUs from Seasonic and Enhance @ X-bit Labs
- Fractal Design Integra R2 650W Power Supply Review @ Hi Tech Legion
- CyberPower PR1500ELCDRTXL2U Professional Rackmount Series UPS Review @ NikKTech
The WindForce 450W GPU cooler was not the only piece of hardware Gigabyte showed off at its New Idea Tech Tour event in Berlin, Germany. The company also detailed a new small form factor PC called BRIX. The Gigabyte BRIX computer is set to compete with Zotac's Nano and Intel's Next Unit of Computing (NUC) PCs. There is no word on pricing or availability, but GIgabyte did delve into specifications of the tiny desktop PCs.
Computerbase.de was on hand at the New Idea event in Berlin.
The Gigabyte BRIX PC is similar to Intel's NUC with a small motherboard, Intel CPU, mSATA connector for storage, Mini PCI-E slot for a Wi-Fi card, and a small case. The BRIX system is slightly smaller than both the NUC and Zotac's Nano systems, though the BRIX motherboard itself is a bit larger than the NUC's. The BRIX motherboard measures 100 x 105mm and the case with internals measures 114.8 x 108 x 29.5mm and weighs 404 grams.
Internal specifications on the BRIX include an Intel ultrabook-class processor with sub-17W TDPs, two SO-DIMM slots (a maximum of 16GB at 1600MHz), one mSATA port, and one Mini PCI-E slot. The BRIX further comes with a Wi-Fi card and VESA mount. Processor options include:
- Intel Celeron 1007U
- Intel Core i3-3227U
- Intel Core i5-3337U
- Intel Core i7-3537U
The top-end Core i7-3537U gives you a dual core processor with hyper-threading clocked at 2GHz and 3.1GHz max turbo and 4MB cache. Pretty impressive for such a tiny PC!
The Gigabyte BRIX features a single USB 3.0 port on the front of the glossy black case. Rear IO includes an additional USB 3.0 port, one HDMI port, one DisplayPort video output, and a single Gigabit LAN port.
The Gigabyte BRIX looks to be a decent system that will give Zotac and Intel some needed small form factor competition. Here's hoping Gigabyte will allow custom cases, as I would love to see a passively-cooled option!
Computerbase.de has further details on the Gigabyte BRIX PC as well as a gallery of photos from the event.
Subject: Memory | April 15, 2013 - 04:44 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: kingston, hyperX beast, DDR3-2400
At a speed of DDR3-2400 timings of 11-13-13-30 @ 2T are more than impressive and hint at the overclocking potential of these DIMMs. They also come with two XPM settings, the one just mentioned which runs at 1.65V and a 2133 MHz mode which runs at 1.6V and similar timings. Once TechPowerUp got their hands on the DIMMs they managed to hit 2634 MHz and tighten up the Command Rate to 1T. Keep in mind those pretty heatspreaders may make your life difficult if your motherboard is crowded around the socket and your heatsink doesn't have much clearance. That exact kit does not appear at NewEgg but a very similar 16GB kit does.
"A rabid animal hungry for food, the Kingston HyperX Beast stampedes into the overclocking scene, ripping through our benchmarks like no other. Clocked in at 2400 MHz out of the box, these beasts are ready to take on whatever you want to feed them."
Here are some more Memory articles from around the web:
- Kingston HyperX 10th Anniversary 2400MHz 16GB @ Bjorn3D
- Crucial Ballistix 240-pin DIMM, DDR3 PC3-12800 memory module @ Rbmod
- 32 GB (4 x 8 GB) DDR3 SDRAM Memory Kits from G.Skill @ X-bit Labs
- Team Xtreem DDR3-2666 C11 8GB Memory Kit @ Funky Kit
- Adata XPG 16GB DDR3-1600 / DDR3-2133 kits # Hardawre.info
- Team Xtreem LV 2133MHz CL9 8GB Memory Kit @ Kitguru
Subject: Graphics Cards | April 15, 2013 - 03:34 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: rumor, nvidia, kepler, gtx 700, geforce 700, computex
Recent rumors seem to suggest that NVIDIA will release its desktop-class GeForce 700 series of graphics cards later this year. The new card will reportedly be faster than the currently-available GTX 600 series, but will likely remain based on the company's Kepler architecture.
According to the information presented during NVIDIA's GTC keynote, its Kepler architecture will dominate 2012 and 2013. It will then follow up with Maxwell-based cards in 2014. Notably absent from the slides are product names, meaning the publicly-available information at least leaves the possibility of a refreshed Kepler GTX 700 lineup in 2013 open.
Fudzilla further reports that NVIDIA will release the cards as soon as May 2013, with an official launch as soon as Computex. Having actual cards available for sale by Computex is a bit unlikely, but a summer launch could be possible if the new 700 series is merely a tweaked Kepler-based design with higher clocks and/or lower power usage. The company is rumored to be accelerating the launch of the GTX 700 series in the desktop space in response to AMD's heavy game-bundle marketing, which seems to be working well at persuading gamers to choose the red team.
What do you make of this rumor? Do you think a refreshed Kepler is coming this year?
Subject: General Tech | April 15, 2013 - 02:53 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: fud, sales
Last week we saw a report describing the downturn in PC sales and it has been repeated today in a report from Gartner. With a global decline of sales this quarter totalling over 10% compared to the first quarter of 2012 the trend of falling PC sales continues for the fourth quarter in a row. It seems that tablets and smartphones are making headway into the market and many people who would have purchased an inexpensive TV for surfing and other light-duty tasks are satisfied with a smaller mobile device. In the US the decline was a hair under 10% and only Apple and Lenovo showed any growth. Get the full global breakdown at DigiTimes.
"Worldwide PC shipments totaled 79.2 million units in the first quarter of 2013, a 11.2% decline from the first quarter of 2012, according to Gartner. Global PC shipments went below 80 million units for the first time since the second quarter of 2009. All regions showed a decrease in shipments, with the EMEA region experiencing the steepest decline."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Increase the range of your wireless network @ Hardware.info
- Microsoft Windows 8 and Metro UI: The (d)evolution of the world's most popular OS @ Tweaktown
- Server Update April 2013: Positioning the HP Moonshot 1500 @ AnandTech
- CASIO Edifice EF-558D-1AVEF Review @ NikKTech
- Rosewill RSL-113 Solar Infrared LED Lights @ Benchmark Reviews
- Antec a.m.p Joint Giveaway @ NikKTech
Subject: General Tech | April 15, 2013 - 02:26 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Looking for a new TV, but not a 72" monster? Want 120MHz for smooth performance when hooked up to a PC plus support for 3D movies? How about a 55" 1080p TV for $650 plus free shipping which can access the internet for streaming video! The VIZIO E552VLE 55" 1080p 120Hz WiFi LCD HDTV is on sale right now.
- 1080p Resolution
- 100,000:1 contrast ratio
- 6.5ms response time
- 120Hz Refresh Rate
- Vizio Internet Apps (VUDU, Netflix, Hulu Plus, Pandora, Facebook, Twitter)
- 4 HDMI, 2 USB, Composite, VGA ports
- ECO HD exceeds the current ENERGY STAR Guidelines
Subject: Networking | April 15, 2013 - 02:28 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: skydog, gigabit router, 5GHz wifi
A new piece of networking hardware from PowerCloud Systems recently emerged on popular crowd-funding site Kickstarter. Aimed at consumers, the Skydog router is paired with a web interface and mobile application that makes managing your home network extremely accessible.
The Skydog router hardware itself has already passed regulatory certifications, and the super early bird backers will each get one of 250 pre-production units. The router features five Gigabit Ethernet ports (one port is for the WAN), a USB port, and a dual-band 802.11n Wi-Fi radio. The Wi-Fi radio can operate on the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands simultaneously, and has a maximum rated throughput of 300Mbps per band. The router chassis measures 17 x 11 x 2.5cm and includes a number of blue indicator LEDs on the top-front edge. The USB port is not currently supported, but is there for future feature updates.
Where Skydog differentiates itself from the crowd is in the software. After connecting the router to your modem and computers, you can log into the web interface. It will prompt you for either a Google or Skydog account, and then will reportedly automatically configure itself. The software supports Quality of Service (QoS) features that will allow you to prioritize certain traffic and/or to give bandwidth priority to certain users. The web interface will show you network statistics, connected devices, device signal strength, track and notify users of network issues (for example, the internet going down) via the Skydog mobile app, and track and restrict the websites users visit. Further, the administrator can set up schedules on a per-user basis. The schedules can restrict usage by approved time slices and by bandwidth limits. It will notify users when they are approaching the allotted time or bandwidth limit via the mobile app. Real time notifications include ISP connection issues, guests requesting access to the network, and the above-mentioned bandwidth limit notifications.
According to the Kickstarter FAQ, the Skydog Home Network (which consists of the router and management software) will cost approximately $149 for three years or $199 for five years without a monthly fee. The wording suggests that a model with a lower hardware cost but monthly charge might also be available. The cloud service is a bit worrisome, and I'm not sure if I like the idea of essentially renting the router via monthly or yearly fees. This router is not going to be for everyone, but it does have some useful and inventive features for families. This would be a router that I could see the various ISPs offering up as a rental device and that I might set up for my friends or relatives with kids so that they could easily manage the network and restrict the kids access to certain times of the day and age appropriate sites.
With 29 days left in the Kickstarter, the project has 543 backers, and $51,905 pledged of the 75,000 goal. It certainly looks like it is going to be funded, and I hope that the Kickstarter leads to a successful retail product launch.
Subject: Graphics Cards | April 14, 2013 - 07:59 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: windforce, nvidia, gtx titan, gtx 680, gpu cooler, gigabyte
Earlier this week, PC component manufacturer Gigabyte showed off its new graphics card cooler at its New Idea Tech Tour even in Berlin, Germany. The new triple slot cooler is built for this generation's highest-end graphics cards. It is capable of cooling cards with up to 450W TDPs while keeping the cards cooler and quiter than reference heatsinks.
The Gigabyte WindForce 450W cooler is a triple slot design that combines a large heatsink with three 80mm fans. The heatsink features two aluminum fin arrays connected to the GPU block by three 10mm copper heatpipes. Gigabyte stated during the card's reveal that its cooler keeps a NVIDIA GTX 680 graphics card 2°C cooler and 23.3 dB quiter during a Furmark benchmark run. Further, the cooler will allow these high end cards, like the GTX Titan to achieve higher (stable) boost clocks.
ComputerBase.de was on hand at Gigabyte's event in Berlin to snap shots of the upcoming GPU cooler.
The company has not announced which graphics cards will use the new cooler or when it will be available, but A Gigabyte GTX 680 and a custom cooled-Titan seem to be likely candidates considering these cards were mentioned in the examples given in the presentation. Note that NVIDIA has prohibited AIB partners from putting custom coolers on the Titan thus far, but other rumored Titan graphics cards with custom coolers seem to suggest that the company will allow custom-cooled Titans to be sold at retail at some point. In addition to using it for the top-end NVIDIA cards, I think a GTX 670 or GTX 660 Ti GPU using this cooler would also be great, as it would likely be one of the quieter running options available (because you could spin the three 80mm fans much slower than the single reference fan and still get the same temps).
What do you think about Gigabyte's new 450W GPU cooler? You can find more photos over at Computer Base (computerbase.de).
Subject: Editorial, General Tech, Graphics Cards | April 14, 2013 - 02:22 AM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: never settle, never settle reloaded, amd, far cry 3
So when AMD reloaded their Never Settle bundles, they left an extra round in the barrel.
Some of my favorite games were given to me in a bundle with some piece of computer hardware. You might remember from the PC Perspective game night that I am a major fan of the Unreal Tournament franchise. My first Unreal Tournament game was an unexpected surprise when I purchased my first standalone GPU. My 166MHz Pentium computer also came bundled with Mechwarrior 2 and Wipeout.
As we discussed, AMD considers bundle-offers as a way to keep the software industry rolling forward. The quantity and quality of games which participate in the recent Never Settle bundles certainly deserve credit as it is due. Bioshock: Infinite is a game that just about every PC gamer needs to experience, and there are about a half-dozen other great titles as a part of the promotion depending upon which card or cards you purchase.
As it turns out, AMD negotiated with Ubisoft and added Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon to their Never Settle bundle. The coolest part is that AMD will retroactively email codes for this new title to anyone who has redeemed a Never Settle: Reloaded code.
So if you have ever Reloaded your Never Settle in the past, check your email as apparently you can Never Settle your reloads again.
Subject: Graphics Cards | April 13, 2013 - 10:07 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: radeon hd7790, powercolor, GCN, amd, 7790
PowerColor launched a new factory overclocked graphics card recently that is a revision of a previous model. The PowerColor HD7790 OC V2 is based on AMD’s Graphics Core Next (GCN) architecture and measures a mere 180 x 150 x 38mm.
The AMD Radeon HD 7790 GPU features 896 stream processors, 56 texture units, and 80 ROP units. The GPU is clocked at 1000 MHz base and 1030 MHz boost while the 1GB of GDDR5 memory is clocked at the 6Gbps reference speed. PowerColor has fitted the overclocked card with an aluminum heatsink cooled by a single 8mm copper heatpipe and 70mm fan.
The new card features two DL-DVI, one HDMI, and one DisplayPort video outputs. Its model number is AX7790-1GBD5-DHV2/OC. According to Guru3D, the new/revised card is priced at 120 pounds sterling. However, considering the currently available OC (non-V2) card is $150, the revised card is likely to come in around that price when it hits US retailers.
Also: If you have not already, read our latest Frame Rating article to see how the Radeon HD 7790 graphics card stacks up against the competition!
Subject: General Tech, Mobile | April 13, 2013 - 03:16 AM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: w3c, Sauce Labs, modern.IE, IE
The main benefit of open Web Standards is that it allows for a stable and secure platform for any developer to target just about any platform. Still, due to the laws of No Pain: No Gain, those developers need to consider how their application responds on just about every platform. Internet Explorer was once the outlier, and now they are one of the most prominent evangelists. It has been barely two months since we reported on the launch of modern.IE for Microsoft to integrate existing solutions into their product.
Enter Sauce Labs. The San Francisco-based company made a name for themselves by providing testing environments for developers on a spread of browsers across Android, iOS, Linux, MacOSX, Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows XP. The company, along with competitor BrowserStack, got recent recognition from Adobe when the software company shut down their own also-competing product.
When we first covered modern.IE back in February (again, here), the initiative from Microsoft was created to help test web apps across multiple versions of Internet Explorer and check for typical incompatibilities. With the addition of Sauce Labs, Microsoft hopes to provide better testing infrastructure as well as automatic recommendations for common issues encountered when trying to develop for both "modern" and legacy versions of their web browser.
In my position, this perfectly highlights the problems with believing you are better than open architectures. At some point, your platform will no longer be able to compete on inertia. Society really does not want to rely on a single entity for anything. It is almost a guarantee that a standard, agreed-upon by several industry members, will end up succeeding in the end. Had Microsoft initially supported the W3C, they would not have experienced even a fraction of the troubles they currently face. They struggle in their attempts to comply with standards and, more importantly, push developers to optimize for their implementation.
There are very good reasons to explain why we do not use AOL keywords anymore. Hopefully the collective Microsoft keeps this grief in mind, particularly the Xbox and Windows RT teams and their divisions.
After the break: the press release.
Subject: Mobile | April 12, 2013 - 05:27 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: smartphone, Samsung, jelly bean, galaxy s4, exynos octa, android 4.2.2
Samsung recently launched its new flagship Galaxy S4 smartphone, and users will be able to pre-order it from several US carriers later this month.
AT&T customers will be able to pre-order the 16GB Galaxy S4 for $199.99 and 32GB model for $249.99 beginning April 16. Those prices are contingent on a two-year contract. US Cellular will also be carrying the new flagship smartphone, but has not announced how much it will cost. Customers can register to be notified when it becomes available, however. T-Mobile is also going to offer the Samsung Galaxy S4, but customers will need to pay full price. According to UK mobile site Phones Review, T-Mobile will offer the smartphone on its new no-contract plans for $99 plus a $20 per month fee until it is paid off starting May 1. Regrettably, there is no word on when (or whether) a Verizon or Sprint-comparable model will show up.
Of course, the Samsung Galaxy S4 offers up the following specifications. On the outside, the phone features a 5” Super AMOLED screen with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 and Gorilla Glass 3 protection. A 2MP webcam and 12MP auto-focus camera with LED flash are also included. The internals of the phone are also impressive, with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 SoC, 2GB of RAM, and up to 64GB of internal storage (expandable via microSD cards). The 2,600 mAh battery seems a bit weak compared to the one in the Galaxy Mega 6.3, but space constraints likely limited the battery size despite the beefier processor and higher-resolution display. Sensors and I/O include accelerometer, gyroscope, proximity, compass, barometer, temperature, humidity, and gesture. Wireless radios include a cellular modem (4G LTE, 3G HSDPA), A-GPS+GLONASS, dual band 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, NFC, and Bluetooth 4.0. The Qualcomm 600 SoC consists of a quad core Krait 300 processor clocked at 1.9GHz and an Adreno 320 GPU.
Note that the US version does not use the higher-performance Samsung Exynos 5 Octa SoC. For reference, the international model's SoC has the following features:
The Exynos 5 Octa consists of a PowerVR SGX 544MP3 GPU and both a quad core Cortex A15 clocked at 1.6GHz and a 1.2GHz Cortex A7 processor with four cores. The two ARM processors are configured in big.LITTLE configuration, so technically it is still a quad core phone--but the lower-power Cortex A7 cores will be used for background tasks and/or to save power while shutting down the Cortex A15 cores when CPU load allows.
The Galaxy S4 will come in White Frost or Black Mist colors. It is an impressive phone and one that I’m considering for my next upgrade pending good reviews. Another good consequence of the S4 launching is price reductions for the Galaxy S3, which may be an option if you don’t have impending upgrade pricing and can’t justify paying the approximate $600 full price of the S4--but still want a new Android phone.
Subject: Cases and Cooling | April 12, 2013 - 02:53 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: cooler master, Storm Stryker, XL-ATX
If you need a case with space consider this member of the Storm family, the CM Storm Stryker XL-ATX case. At 250x605x578mm (9.8x23.8x22.8") it will not fit under every desk but will hold a significant amount of hardware, you can fit up to 13 drives depending on the configuration of the HDD cages and it sports 9 add-in card slots on the back. With fans on both the top and the bottom of the case, you could easily attach a radiator to the case or make do with great airflow if you do not desire to watercool. Modders Inc was not only impressed by the brilliant white finish, they could not find a single bad thing to say about this case.
"The modular hard drive case setup was a great bonus to find when diving further into the case. These features, plus the fan controller, cable grip holder, and all the included fans that provide a constant flow of cooling air through the case really makes the CM Storm Stryker a well desired case."
Here are some more Cases & Cooling reviews from around the web:
- CM Storm Scout II Advanced Case Review @ Hi Tech Legion
- Cougar Spike Case Review @ Hardware Secrets
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NZXT Phantom 630 @ Hardware.info
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Cooler Master Seidon 240M Liquid CPU Cooler @ eTeknix
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