It's raining Men ... and Orks and Eldar

Subject: General Tech | May 4, 2016 - 03:00 PM |
Tagged: gaming, warhammer 40k, dawn of war III

The Dawn of War series has been very popular, well designed and as pretty as there were bloody; THQ and Relic even managed decent add-ons that surpassed your run of the mill DLC for the most part.  The trailer below gives you a CGI tease of what Dawn of War III might look like when brought to you by Sega and Relic.  Those who preferred DoW II are in for a very unpleasant, even heretical, surprise; according to what Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN have heard, the base building of the first instalment is coming back.  They do promise to continue the equipment customization of heroes from the second game; here is to hoping they are not just talking about silly hats.

"This isn’t the first public mention of Dawn of War 3. That was way back in 2011, when Relic were still owned by the now departed THQ. It’s likely safe to assume little of that original plan remains."

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Psst Comrade! Want to buy some email account details cheap?

Subject: General Tech | May 4, 2016 - 12:39 PM |
Tagged: security

272.3 million is a big number and sadly it refers to the number of email accounts which have been affected by a recent data breach.  The vast majority of the accounts are from Russia's Mail.ru but Yahoo accounts for 15%, Hotmail 12% and Gmail 9% of the leak.  With 50 rubles and the right connections you can have the email addresses and passwords of a very large number of people.  Sadly, The Inquirer also heard that this collection includes details of user accounts of US banking, manufacturing and retail companies.  When you are changing your passwords today, try to avoid obvious Star Wars references.

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"Reuters has the scoop, having heard from Alex Holden, founder and chief information security officer of Hold Security - and the man who last year uncovered the largest data breach to date - that the details of 272.3 million stolen accounts are being traded."

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Source: The Inquirer

Patch 'em if you got 'em; 40 Google patches for you

Subject: General Tech | May 3, 2016 - 02:09 PM |
Tagged: Android, google, security

Assuming your service provider is not one of those who block Google's patches from coming to you directly you should probably charge up that device, get on WiFi  and check your available updates.  Any Google device running 4.4.4 or newer, including Nexus devices, will have up to 40 patches to slurp up.  Many of the patches are for a vulnerability similar to the previous Stagefright exploit, apps can use the drivers from Qualcomm and NVIDIA to break into the Qualcomm TrustZone on unpatched devices.  The Register provides a full list of the patches which are being pushed to Nexus and Android One devices.

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"Google has today issued a bundle of 40 security patches for its Android operating system.

A dozen of the fixes correct critical vulnerabilities in versions 4.4.4 of the operating system and above. About 74 per cent of in-use Android devices run Android 4.4.4 or higher."

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Source: The Register

NVIDIA Game Ready for Battleborn and the betas of Forza Motorsport 6: APEX, Paragon, and Overwatch

Subject: General Tech | May 2, 2016 - 06:21 PM |
Tagged: nvidia, graphics driver, game ready

Some of the games may still be in beta but the driver is fully WHQL; NVIDIA has released Version 365.10 of their graphics driver which focuses on Battleborn which arrives on May 3rd.  We do hope that you have not helped perpetuate the crime against gaming humanity which is the pre-order, but if you have then you should be pre-ordering this driver as well.  Along with Battleborn comes support for three games currently in beta, open or otherwise, Forza Motorsport 6: APEX, Paragon, and Overwatch. The Release Notes also mention new SLI profiles for Everybody's Gone to the Rapture and Overwatch and even good 3D Vision support for Battleborn for the dozen of you out there which will benefit from it.  If you follow the links below you can read NVIDIA's suggested GPUs for these games.

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Today, we’ve launched our Game Ready driver for Battleborn.  It also covers some beta games:  Forza Motorsport 6: APEX (Beta), Paragon (Beta), and Overwatch (Beta).
 
You can grab GeForce Game Ready 365.10 WHQL drivers on this link.
 
Related Links:
 
Game Ready Driver Article: http://www.geforce.com/whats-new/articles/battleborn-forza-motorsport-6-...
 
Overwatch Recommended GPU Article: http://www.geforce.com/whats-new/articles/overwatch-system-requirements
 
Paragon Recommended GPU Article: http://www.geforce.com/whats-new/articles/paragon-early-access-now-avail...
 
Forza Motorsport 6: Apex System Requirements (external page): http://www.forzamotorsport.net/en-us/news/fm6_apex_beta_announce
 
Game Ready Driver Release Highlights: http://www.nvidia.com/download/driverResults.aspx/102199/en-uk

 

Source: NVIDIA

People may actually be migrating to Linux, or at least off of Windows

Subject: General Tech | May 2, 2016 - 03:36 PM |
Tagged: windows 10, microsoft, market share, linux

We've all seen the comments about how Windows 10 has finally convinced people to switch operating systems but today we have numbers which show that some may have been true to their word.  According to Netmarketshare the marketshare of Windows on desktop machines has dropped below 90% for the first time.  Mac OSX holds onto 3.96% of the market but the Other category is up to 8.59%, which is the category that represents the various flavours of Linux; it holds 1.56%, as well as other non-Microsoft OSes.  It may not be the year of Linux but it certainly is not Microsoft's year.  You can read the calm, rational discussion over at Slashdot on this topic, it is guaranteed to provide amusement.

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"Windows 7 is still the king, but it no longer holds the majority. Nine months after Windows 10's release, Windows 7 has finally fallen below 50 percent market share and Windows XP has dropped into single digits. While this is good news for Microsoft, April was actually a poor month for Windows overall, which for the first time owned less than 90 percent of the market, according to the latest figures from Net Applications."

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Source: Slashdot

AMD Announces Joint Venture with NFME

Subject: General Tech | April 30, 2016 - 12:33 AM |
Tagged: SoC, nfme, gpu, cpu, amd

Nantong Fujitsu Microelectronics Co., Ltd. (NFME) is a Chinese company that packages and tests integrated circuits. Recently, AMD has been working with China to reach that large market, especially given their ongoing cash concerns. This time, AMD sold 85% of its stake in two locations, AMD Penang, Malaysia and AMD Suzhou, Jiangsu, China, to NFME and formed a joint venture with them, called TF-AMD Microelectronics Sdn Bhd.

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I see two interesting aspects to this story.

First, AMD gets about $320 million USD in this transaction, after taxes and fees, and it also retains 15% of this venture. I am curious whether this will lead to a long-term source of income for AMD, even though the press release claims that this structure will be “cost neutral”. Either way, clearing a third of a billion dollars should help AMD to some extent. That equates to about two-to-three quarters of net-loss for the company, so it gives them about six-to-nine extra months of life on its own. That's not too bad if the transaction doesn't have any lasting consequences.

Second, NFME now has access to some interesting packaging and testing technologies. NFME's website claims that this allows them to handle dies up to 800mm2, substrates with up to 18 layers, and package sizes up to 75mm. These specifications sound like it pulls from their GPU experience, which could bring all of that effort and knowledge to completely different fields.

The press release states that 1,700 employees will be moved from AMD to this venture. They do not state whether any jobs are affected over and above this amount, though.

The VR chair is now a reality thanks to Praevidi

Subject: General Tech | April 29, 2016 - 05:00 PM |
Tagged: Praevidi, turris, vr chair

You are not alone if you are confused by what exactly a VR chair is, but The Tech Report can help.  Aaron Schradin created the Turris VR chair which essentially allows you to steer VR games with your butt.  By leaning forwards, backwards or to the sides you can make your in game avatar move, instead of needing something in your hands.  Swiveling is also mapped, which is more important than you might think; with your torso decoupled from your head movements you can look around while maintaining the same walking direction.  The Turris also doubles as a case, you can install your PC directly into the chair to clean up the overall look of your VR rig.  Check out the video and full review for a look at this interesting piece of technology.  There is no price nor release date yet but Aaron is aiming for Q4 for the first release.

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"Praevidi's Turris VR Chair lets players navigate seated VR experiences by shifting their bodies, an approach that decouples head- and torso-position tracking to create a potentially more immersive experience in VR environments. Join us as we explore this device and its implications for the future of VR control."

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Not just for the Beatles and Final Fantasy; the Kingston HyperX Cloud Revolver headset

Subject: General Tech | April 28, 2016 - 02:48 PM |
Tagged: audio, kingston hyper x, Cloud Revolver, gaming headset

50mm neodymium drivers have become standard issue on gaming headsets and the Kingston HyperX Cloud Revolver is no exception.  With a frequency range of 12Hz–28,000 Hz and impedance of 30 Ω this headset should work well with just about any device.  The steel and leather construction looks nice and will help these headphones resist being damaged while being stored for travel.  As to how they sound, Modders Inc rather liked this analogue headset, read more about it here.

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"The Kingston HyperX Cloud Revolver is the latest headset in Kingston's product family. Kingston's gaming headset line up has grown to four different models which feature both 3.5mm and USB connectivity."

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Source: Modders Inc

Podcast #397 - AMD Radeon Pro Duo, NZXT Manta, AMD's new deal with China, and more!

Subject: General Tech | April 28, 2016 - 01:50 PM |
Tagged: video, radeon pro duo, podcast, nzxt, nvidia, Manta, GTX 1080, GT 710, GP104, amd, Alpha 12

PC Perspective Podcast #397 - 04/28/2016

Join us this week as we discuss the AMD Radeon Pro Duo, NZXT Manta, AMD's new deal with China, and more!

You can subscribe to us through iTunes and you can still access it directly through the RSS page HERE.

The URL for the podcast is: http://pcper.com/podcast - Share with your friends!

This episode of the PC Perspective Podcast is sponsored by Lenovo!

Hosts: Ryan Shrout, Jeremy Hellstrom, Josh Walrath, and Allyn Malventano

Subscribe to the PC Perspective YouTube Channel for more videos, reviews and podcasts!!

Up close and personal with GP100

Subject: General Tech | April 28, 2016 - 01:47 PM |
Tagged: nvidia, GP100, pascal

The Tech Report takes you on a walk through NVIDIA's HPC products to show you just what is interesting about the Tesla P100 HPC which Jen-Hsun Huang introduced us to.  The background gives you an idea of how much has changed from their first forays into HPC to this new 16nm process, 610mm² chip with 56 SMs.  If you missed out on the presentation or wanted some more information about how they pulled off FP16 on natively FP32 hardware or how the cache of this chip was set up then click on over and read it for yourself.

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"Nvidia's GP100 "Pascal" GPU launched on the Tesla P100 HPC accelerator a couple weeks ago. Join us as we take an in-depth look at what we know about this next-generation graphics processor so far, and what it might mean for the consumer GeForces of the future."

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