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Wednesday April 01, 2015

MSI 970 GAMING AM3+ Motherboard

There is a review of the MSI 970 GAMING AM3+ motherboard posted this morning at HwC. As far as I can tell, this looks like a regular ol' non-April Fool's Day review. No joke.

Due to what we can only describe as stagnating CPU development and a palpable lack of reader interest, we haven't actually reviewed an AMD AM3+ motherboard since all the way back in May 2011. Surprisingly - and regrettably - there really hasn't been any huge advancements since then. The processors are still fundamentally based on the Bulldozer microarchitecture, there is still no support for PCI Express 3.0, and the SB950 southbridge is still being used so high speed connectivity is limited to SATA 6Gb/s and USB 3.0.

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Half-Life 3 Trailer

It wouldn't be April Fool's Day without a Half-Life 3 trailer to kick things off. wink

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UK: Join ASUS At Multiplayer Insomnia i54

Multiplay Insomnia i54 takes places at the Ricoh Arena, Coventry, UK, from 3rd – 6th April. ASUS will be there, sponsoring several areas and supporting our retail partners and epic system builders. Attendees will be able to play the latest games on ASUS-powered PCs with ASUS Strix peripherals on numerous booths, including OcUK, PC Specialist, CCL, Chillblast and Eclipse Computers. If you fancy getting hands-on with the ROG Swift PG278Q G-Sync monitor then Chillblast has nine (!!) of these beauties ready to enjoy!

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Microsoft Announcing New Surface 3

Today, Microsoft introduces the new Surface 3, powered by the recently announced Intel® Atom™ x7 processor, the highest performing processor in the Intel Atom™ product family. The Intel Atom x7 processor doubles the graphics performance over the prior generation processor. Surface 3 is the thinnest and lightest Surface yet and is optimized to run Windows and Office at an affordable price.

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Tuesday March 31, 2015

In Win D-Frame Mini

Another review of the In Win D-Frame Mini has hit the internet today. This time around it is the gang at CowcotLand doing the reviewing. You can see our evaluation here for comparison purposes.

Physically, the D-Frame Mini looks like a small D-Frame except that the case comes already assembled. But look closer, many changes have been made, both on the frame as the overall design. We thus find a tubular aluminum structure, with two tempered glass panels for the left and right sides.

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[H]ardware Round-Up II

Cases: Bitfenix Aegis @ ocaholic

Storage: Samsung 850 EVO M.2 SATA and mSATA @ PCPer

Samsung 850 EVO M.2 SATA and mSATA @ Legit Reviews

Samsung 850 EVO M.2 SATA and mSATA @ HotHardware

Samsung 850 EVO M.2 SATA and mSATA @ Tech Report

Samsung 850 EVO M.2 SATA and mSATA @ TechSpot

Samsung 850 EVO M.2 SATA and mSATA @ Bjorn3D

Video: HIS Multi-View X2 @ MadShrimps

GTA V PC 60 FPS Trailer Coming Thursday

Normally we don't like posting announcements about announcements but we are talking about the Grand Theft Auto V PC 60 frames-per-second trailer that is coming out Thursday. Here's a handful of screenshots to hold you over until then:

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Man Who Sued Comcast Wants $5M For Being Smeared

Remember the guy that got fired over complaining about his Comcast bill? Well, not only is he suing Comcast, he is seeking more than $5 million in damages.

But this time, he's now raised the demanded amount to more than $5 million. Previously, he had asked for "all damages legally and/or proximately caused to Mr. O’Rourke by Defendants totaling more than $1 million" when the suit was first filed in October 2014.

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Fans Have Dropped $77M On This Guy’s Buggy, Half-Built Game

It sure doesn't seem like Wired is a fan of Star Citizen or its creator, Chris Roberts.

Star Citizen gets relatively little attention from the countless gaming-enthusiast websites that breathlessly report every tiny development on big mainstream titles. But Ten Ton Hammer, a site devoted to massively multiplayer online games, has been voicing some Emperor-has-no-clothes skepticism about Roberts' project. "Pushing imaginary ships that cost $2,500 when there isn't a shred of a game," wrote critic Lewis Burnell, "feels like a con rather than an investment."

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HP Sues Former Autonomy Execs, Seeking $5B

You'd think that all this stuff would have come out before HP overpaid $5 billion for the company. eek!

HP can confirm that, on March 30, a Claim Form was filed against Michael Lynch and Sushovan Hussain alleging they engaged in fraudulent activities while executives at Autonomy. The lawsuit seeks damages from them of approximately $5.1 billion. HP will not comment further until the proceedings have been served on the defendants.

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Funny Video of the Day

You don't even have to be a fan of Top Gear or Just Cause 2 to appreciate this video. big grin

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Study: People Try Apple Pay Once, Don’t Go Back

Let's be honest, Apple’s new mobile-payment system won't go anywhere until the issues outlined in this article are resolved.

88% of survey participants who set up Apple Pay went out into the world and tried to use it, Phoenix reports, but almost half of those users (47%) say that they tried to use the service in a store that advertised Apple Pay capability but didn’t actually have it. About two-thirds of people who tried to use Apple Pay out in the wild reported problems actually using it at checkout. The process was slow, the cashier didn’t know what they were doing, or they couldn’t resolve problems: they experienced a variety of issues with the service, and didn’t use it again.

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Microsoft And Seattle Bring Fast, Free Wi-Fi To Seattle Center

Microsoft and the City of Seattle are teaming up to bring fast, free Wi-Fi to people who visit Seattle Center, a spacious city attraction that hosts major festivals and draws tourists from around the world. The pilot program – part of Mayor Ed Murray’s efforts to bring high-speed Internet access to city residents – uses "TV white space" technology, delivering broadband through unused television channels. The new system lets users browse at speeds more than 5,000 times faster than they could before. The program not only benefits the more than 10 million people who visit Seattle Center each year but also "tests new technology that we may be able to deploy to other neighborhoods in the city," Murray says.

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PNY GTX 980 XLR8 Pro OC Review

The PNY GTX 980 XLR8 Pro OC is on the test bench at HardwareCanucks today. Overall, the HwC crew seemed to really like this card. Here's a quote from the full review:

While the PNY GTX 980 XLR8 Pro OC may have one mouthful of a name, its specifications are reasonably impressive. On-paper core frequencies lie between ASUS’ ultra expensive Matrix Platinum and the less expensive STRIX OC which should put it a good 10% faster than a reference card.

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Gaming [H]eadlines

Assassin's Creed 'Chronicles' Trilogy In April @ Shacknews

Bloodborne Finished In Under 45 Minutes @ VG24/7

Dying Light's April Fool’s Joke @ Kotaku

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt Is 200+ Hours @ Blue's News

20 Of The Worst PC Setups

It's time once again for Think Computer's monthly Worst PC Setups feature. Yikes! How can you even find anything in this mess? eek!

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Put USB Ports On Your Wall Without Wiring

What manner of sorcery is this?

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Play Pac-Man In Google Maps

If you are sitting around with nothing to do, fire up Google Maps and pick a location. Once you've done that, click on the Pac-Man icon in the lower left corner of the map and enjoy. cool

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7 Reasons The PC Is Owning The PS4 And Xbox One

This list is a good start but I'm sure most of you can think of way more reasons the PC beats consoles.

Of course, there are a ton more reasons why the PC is worth your hard-earned cash more than Sony's and Microsoft's next-generation machines. Using arguments presenting during TechRadar's recent PC Gaming Week, we delve into some of the best.

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DARPA's New Concept For Air Warfare Using Drones

DARPA wants to take some of the burden off of pilots by effectively overwhelming the enemy using drones. This keeps the pilots out of attack range and the added bonus is that drones are cheaper to use and maintain.

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Supreme Court: GPS Trackers Are a Form of Search and Seizure

So GPS trackers are a form of search and seizure? I guess the courts are saying that the best way to keep track of serial sex offenders is to keep them in jail. No GPS needed and you always know where they are. Problem solved. big grin

"It doesn’t matter what the context is, and it doesn’t matter whether it’s a car or a person. Putting that tracking device on a car or a person is a search," said Jennifer Lynch, a senior staff attorney at the Electronic Freedom Foundation (EFF).

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Facebook Moves Into Its New Garden-Roofed Building

I just want to know how Facebook plans on keeping the roots of those trees from growing through the roof. Other than that, this whole thing is kinda neat.

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The roof of the new Facebook building, about 70-feet up, offers a winding walk through nine acres of greenery. This walkway sits above the marshlands of Menlo Park, California, not the big city. But, Goler says, it feels a lot like the elevated railroad line that now serves as a park on the West Side of Manhattan. "It’s a half mile loop," she says. "It gives space to think."

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AMD Dives Deep On Asynchronous Shading

AMD has announced a new feature called Asynchronous Shaders and the crew at Anandtech have the complete rundown.

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Earlier this month at GDC, AMD introduced their VR technology toolkit, LiquidVR. LiquidVR offers game developers a collection of useful tools and technologies for adding high performance VR to games, including features to make better utilization of multiple GPUs, features to reduce display chain latency, and finally features to reduce rendering latency. Key among the latter features set is support for asynchronous shaders, which is the ability to execute certain shader operations concurrently with other rendering operations, rather than in a traditional serial fashion.

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U.S. Offers $3M Reward For Alleged Russian Cybercriminals

This $3 million reward for the arrest and conviction of Russian cybercriminals is totally different from the $3 million reward the FBI is offering for the arrest and conviction of Russian cybercriminals announced last month.

The U.S. Department of State announced on Thursday that it’s offering a total reward of $3 million for information leading to the arrest or conviction of two Russian nationals suspected of being involved in cybercriminal activities.

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WD's My Passport X Delivers 2 TB of Storage for Xbox One and PC Gamers

WD®, a Western Digital company, and world leader in storage solutions, today introduced the My Passport® X portable hard drive for gamers. When connected to Xbox One™ or a PC, the sleek 2 TB My Passport X drive provides much-needed storage capacity for gamers to store up to 50 extra game titles1, eliminating the need to delete previously purchased games from their Xbox One or PC hard drives and removing those "storage full" warning messages while allowing players to get back to their games. In addition to added storage, gamers can use My Passport X to take saved games to use on friends’ systems2 without having to download.

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Corporate Harvard Researchers Win Center of Excellence Achievement Award

Researchers from Harvard University snagged the fourth annual Achievement Award for NVIDIA Centers of Excellence, recognizing their work using GPUs to study extended excitonic systems and vibrational-excitonic effects. Separately, Esteban Walter Gonzalez Clua, a researcher from Brazli’s Universidade Federal Fluminense, has been named a CUDA Fellow

The Harvard team, led by Nicolas Sawaya, received the top award for their work focusing on the way light is photosynthesized, and how this knowledge might be used to design better photovoltaics and light-emitting diodes. Additionally, three other finalists from top universities were selected by a panel of experts from among our 22 CUDA Centers of Excellence.

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Monday March 30, 2015

GitHub.com Victim Of Large Scale DDoS Attack

What kind of morons would DDoS attack GitHub? Seriously, what could they have done to piss anyone off?

We are currently experiencing the largest DDoS (distributed denial of service) attack in github.com's history. The attack began around 2AM UTC on Thursday, March 26, and involves a wide combination of attack vectors. These include every vector we've seen in previous attacks as well as some sophisticated new techniques that use the web browsers of unsuspecting, uninvolved people to flood github.com with high levels of traffic. Based on reports we've received, we believe the intent of this attack is to convince us to remove a specific class of content.

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Volvo Selling Highly Reflective "Life Paint" For Bicyclist

Volvo has developed something called "Life Paint" that will hopefully prevent you from running over people on bicycles at night.

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Governor Increases License Plate Data Retention To 60 Days

It's too bad that voters can't "amend" this guy's term to sixty days the way he amended this bill on license plate data retention. big grin

But on Friday, McAuliffe changed the seven-day limit to 60 days, and changed "any surveillance technology" to "license plate readers." Brian Moran, the Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security, said Friday that he had "been informed by numerous law enforcement agencies that license plate readers result in salient and compelling information.

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[H]ardware Round-Up II

Cases: BitFenix Pandora Window @ Tweak.dk

Cooling: Noctua NH-U9S and NH-D9L @ HiTech Legion

ETC.: Logitech G402 Hyperion Fury @ NikKTech

Storage: HyperX Predator M.2 PCIe SSD @ Bjorn3D

Video: Club3D R9 285 royalQueen @ pcGameware


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