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Monday July 25, 2016

Facebook, Twitter Co-Operated With Brazil Probe Of Alleged Militants

According to the judge presiding over the case, both Facebook and Twitter co-operated with investigators by providing information that led to the capture of about a dozen militants in Brazil. Not sure why any of these idiots thought using social media was a good idea.

In an interview late Sunday with Fantastico, a weekly news program on the Globo television network, Judge Marcos Josegrei da Silva said cooperation by both companies, after a judicial order tied to the investigation, was instrumental to understand the nature of discussions carried out by the suspects, a 12th of whom was detained late Sunday. "The companies began to provide data related to the content of the conversations and data about where those conversations were posted," the judge said, without providing more details.

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[H]ardware Round-Up II

ETC.: GAMDIAS Hephaestus v2 Gaming Headset @ BmR

Motherboards: ASUS Rampage V Edition 10 @ ocaholic

Storage: Kingston UV400 480GB SSD @ Myce

LaCie 2TB Porsche Design External HDD @ BigBruin

Video: Gigabyte GTX 1070 Xtreme Gaming @ Modders Inc.

MSI GeForce GTX 1060 GAMING X @ Vortez

The Razer HDK2 Virtual Reality @ Hardware Secrets

Audi Is Trying To Beat Tesla At Its Own Game

Audi is trying to beat Tesla at its own game? I say good luck with that. Unless they come out with a quality vehicle with a price tag well below competing Tesla vehicles, I just don't see it happening. I'm not saying it can't be done but, to be honest, the entire auto industry was asleep at the wheel when it came to electric vehicles. Had it not been for Tesla, the electric car industry wouldn't be where it is now. So, in my opinion, everything these other car makers are doing right now amounts to playing catch up.

Audi's ramping up its electric car plans and hopes to have three models by 2020. It'll also form a new subsidiary to work on autonomous cars. The company's chief executive Rupert Stadler told Reuters that Audi's renewed push for electric cars is a direct result of the emissions scandal that embroiled its parent company Volkswagen. Stadler wasn't spilling the beans on the new cars, but did say there would be a subcompact among them.

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3D Art Using The HTC Vive

While this may look a bit silly, there is no arguing that the end result is pretty damn cool. Obviously you need a bit of artistic talent to do something like this, it's not like you can just strap a HTC Vive to your melon and instantly become Rembrandt, but it still looks fun either way. cool

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MSI Brings RX 480 Graphics Cards To New Levels Of Cool

MSI is proud to present brand new graphics cards based on AMD’s Polaris architecture. Both the Radeon™ RX 480 GAMING X 8G and Radeon™ RX 480 GAMING X 4G cards brandish the imposing TWIN FROZR VI thermal design to keep the 14 nm FinFET GPU cooler than ever before. The new levels of cool allow for higher core and memory speeds for increased performance in games up to 1440p and VR. The recognizable shapes of the eye-catching TWIN FROZR cooler are intensified by a fiery red GAMING glow piercing through the cover, while the MSI GAMING dragon RGB LED on the side can be set to any of 16.8 million colors to match your mood or build. A completely new custom 8-phase PCB design using Military Class 4 components with an 8-pin power connector enables higher overclocking performance to push your graphics card to the max. The classy matte black solid metal backplate gives the card more structural strength and provides a nice finishing touch.

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Sammy Corporation Selects AMD for New 3D Gaming Machine

AMD today announced that Sammy Corporation in Japan is using the AMD Embedded R-Series APU for its new pachislot machine, named "Pachislot Hokuto no Ken: Shura no Kuni." Much like other gaming options, pachislot systems are increasingly compute intensive and graphically immersive, requiring high performance 3D graphics for the modern game player. Sammy has announced that the new machine is expected to launch in pachislot parlors across Japan beginning in fall, 2016. The strong visual element and growing need for quality graphics in gaming machines are an ideal match for AMD Embedded R-Series processors that combine high performance x86 CPUs and with leading graphics capabilities.

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Google Maps Has Been Updated

Google announced today that it has updated Google Maps with a cleaner, less cluttered look and new features like "areas of interest" that highlight active neighborhoods.

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Yahoo's Homepage Through The Years

Network World is taking a trip down memory lane today with a slideshow showing Yahoo's homepage throughout the years. Be honest, when is the last time you visited Yahoo for anything? Accidental clicks don't count. wink

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Judge Says Uber May Have Engaged In Criminal Conduct

Laws? What laws? If we have learned anything from Uber by now it is that the company does whatever the hell it wants and then asks permission later (usually after being compelled by the courts).

A federal judge on Monday banned Uber Technologies Inc and its Chief Executive Travis Kalanick from using information from a background check on a passenger bringing a price-fixing lawsuit, saying the investigative firm conducting the probe may have engaged in criminal conduct. "The court finds perfectly appropriate an order enjoining defendants from making use of the fruits of their own troubling conduct," Rakoff wrote. "The court cannot help but be troubled by this whole dismal incident."

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Facebook Admits It Blocked Links to Wikileaks DNC Emails

Have you ever noticed that every single time Facebook does something like this, they always blame it on an algorithm or something beyond their control? I would have more respect for them if they just came out and said "whoops, you caught me, my bad" and left it at that.

Facebook admitted it briefly blocked links to Wikileaks files containing internal Democratic National Committee (DNC) emails. The block seems to be the result of another algorithm accident that may have incorrectly determined the links to be malicious or spam. Facebook Chief Security Officer says the company has fixed the error, after receiving heavy criticism from WikiLeaks.

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Gaming [H]eadlines

8 Million Heroes & Generals @ Blue's News

Darksiders Remastered Announced @ Shacknews

Destiny: Rise of Iron Armor Sets Teased @ VG24/7

The Best Overwatch Cosplay From Comic-Con @ GameSpot

Enermax Revolution X't II 750W Power Supply Review

We have posted an evaluation of the Enermax Revolution X't II 750W power supply today for those of you interested. If you are PSU shopping, make sure you read what our in-house power supply expert had to say about this unit.

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Enermax' Revolution series of computer power supplies has been a staple among enthusiasts for a good long time. Today it adds a newly updated 750 watt PSU to the lineup that touts Gold level efficiency, Japanese capacitors, and a HeatGuard feature that cools down the PSU after shutdown.

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Twitter Announces Changes To Attract New Users

What's Twitter's brilliant plan to attract new users? Starting today, the company is going to spend a lot of money rolling out digital videos and marketing ads that re-explain to people what they do and who they are. Ummmm, what?!?

But what about the people who know the brand but don’t use Twitter? We asked lots of questions and two key themes emerged. First, most didn’t know or simply misunderstood what Twitter was for - many thought of Twitter primarily as a social network, a place to find and connect with friends and family members. Second, they thought if they wanted to use Twitter, they were "supposed to Tweet every day" and didn’t think they would have that much to say. We realized we had some explaining and clarifying to do!

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Which iPhone is the most FIREPROOF?

I don't know why but there is something soothing about watching every generation of iPhone covered in gas and set on fire. The funny part about the video is how many of the older phones actually survived the test while all newer the ones bit the dust.

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[H]ardware Round-Up

Cases: In Win 303 @ Technic3D

ETC.: SteelSeries Siberia 350 Headset @ FunkyKit

PSU: Silverstone Strider Platinum 750W @ Modders Inc.

Storage: Kingston SSDNow UV400 @ SSD Review

Video: EVGA GTX 1070 SC Gaming ACX 3.0 @ LanOC

Nintendo Investors Realize It Doesn't Actually Make Pokémon Go, Shares Plummet

How did Nintendo investors not realize this? This has been common knowledge since Pokemon Go was announced last year. Shares in Nintendo fell 18% today wiping out $6.7 billion in market value. Thankfully the Tokyo stock exchange rules prevent share prices from moving more than 18% in a single day or things could have been worse.

The correction comes after Pokemon Go’s release almost doubled Nintendo’s stock through Friday’s close, adding $17.6 billion in market capitalization. Nintendo is a shareholder in the game’s developer Niantic Inc. and Pokemon Co., but has an "effective economic stake" of just 13 percent in the app, according to an estimate by Macquarie Securities analyst David Gibson.

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NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Founders Edition Review

Another review of the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Founders Edition has popped up on the internet today and this time around it is the crew at NikKTech doing the reviewing. You can see our evaluation here for comparison purposes.

The GeForce GTX 1080 graphics card is based on NVIDIA's brand new Pascal architecture (GP104 processor) which features a total of 2560 CUDA cores, 160 TMUs (texture mapping units), 64 ROPs (raster operations pipelines) and a 256bit memory interface along with a total of 8GB GDDR5X RAM by our friends over at Micron (memory is effectively clocked at 10GHz).

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Spicy Horse Studios Is Closing

American McGee has announced that the Shanghai studio of Spicy Horse Games is closing its doors. McGee, best known for American McGee's Alice and his days at id Software, says he is turning his focus to indie development and will continue to publish small titles under the Spicy Horse brand from his sailboat. Yup, you read that correctly, he said sailboat.

After more than 10 years, 10 games, tons of wonderful memories. The Shanghai studio of Spicy Horse Games is closing its doors. The company itself will remain intact, and we'll continue to operate existing games online. At our peak, during development of Alice: Madness Returns, the studio contained 85+ people. These days we're down to just 6, and it feels like a good time for a radical shift. I'm going to turn my focus to indie development and will continue to publish small titles under the Spicy Horse brand. Much of this work will be done in a challenging new environment - aboard my sailboat, bobbing around the S.E. Asia region.

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Verizon To Buy Yahoo's Core Business For $4.83B

It looks like all those rumors about Verizon buying Yaho's core business turned out to be true. Verizon is plopping down $4.83 billion Yahoo's core business, slightly more than the $4.4 billion it paid for AOL last year.

Verizon Communications Inc (VZ.N) said Monday it would buy Yahoo Inc's (YHOO.O) core internet properties for $4.83 billion in cash to expand its digital advertising and media business, in a deal that ends a lengthy sale process for the fading Web pioneer. The purchase of Yahoo's operations will boost Verizon's AOL internet business, which it bought last year for $4.4 billion, and give it access to Yahoo's ad technology tools, BrightRoll and Flurry, and assets such as search, mail and messenger.

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Start Folding With The [H] Today!

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Folding is a wonderful way to help your fellow man using your spare CPU cycles and now, thanks to the Quick Setup V7 Guide for Windows, it is easier than ever to get started. Remember to put the number 33 in the "team" field and you’ll be folding with the [H]orde in no time! Thanks to all our team members for the wonderful job they are doing.

BIOSTAR Pushes Continued Market Presence

BIOSTAR is proud to announce its commitment to the industry with its ongoing activities throughout the globe. BIOSTAR has recently been conducting regional product launches and activities to reinforce its brand and promote its dedication to the industry with its new product line. BIOSTAR is celebrating its 30 years in the industry and with is determined to fulfill its theme of Racing to the Future by further promoting itself in more regions. BIOSTAR has been holding activities through out the first half of 2016 with a grand activities held in COMPUTEX 2016 and has immediately proceeded to visit more regions to engage in dealer and media promotions to launch its new products.

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Jetson Wins by Landslide in Image Classification Efficiency Challenge

Image recognition systems are growing increasingly sophisticated – but they don’t come close to matching the efficiency of the ones we carry around with us inside our skulls. As part of an effort to close that gap, our Jetson TX1 embedded computing module swept both tracks of the recent Low Power Image Recognition Challenge, held in Austin, Texas, at the IEEE Rebooting Computing event.

We’ve invested substantial resources in the power efficiency of Jetson’s GPU compute architecture. In gaming and professional design, this means fluid framerates on a frugal power budget. But in the realm of computer vision, performance per watt enables rapid control loops and near real-time responsiveness from an autonomous machine, such as a drone or a robot.

The Low Power Image Recognition Challenge began when NVIDIA’s David Kirk and Yung-Hsiang Lu at Purdue University, decided that image recognition on a power budget was a worthy challenge. The first two years presented modest challenges, with smaller groups of researchers, Yung-Hsiang notes. He plans to expand the competition over the coming years, including larger prizes.

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Sunday July 24, 2016

7 Reasons PC Gaming Is Not Too Hard

"PC Gaming Is Still Way Too Hard." That article had to have been bait, but PC Mag fell for it and came up with a list to remind everyone that building a system is, well, pretty easy. Maybe the older folks can tell me stories from back when PCs required real work.

Last week, Emanuel Maiberg of Vice made waves among some Internet circles—all the ones in which I move, apparently—with a column for Motherboard titled "PC Gaming Is Still Way Too Hard." In it, he related his recent painful experience building a gaming PC from scratch and lamented that, despite being happy with the computer he ended up with, he still had to jump through ridiculous hoops in order to get there and play the games he wanted. Though I sympathize with Maiberg's troubles, he let his frustration get in the way of his common sense. Maiberg couldn't be more wrong about the state of PC building or PC gaming.

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Xbox One Is Now $249

With the S and Scorpio in the pipeline, Microsoft is initiating a fire sale of sorts and cutting the cost of the original console even further to $249. The PS4, on the other hand, is still hovering around $349 and will likely stay there due to better sales.

…any 500GB Xbox One console is $249, including the Gears of War: Ultimate Edition bundle, the Special Edition Quantum Break bundle with white console, and the Name your Game bundle, which allows you to choose a full game download of one of four blockbuster titles: Forza Motorsport 6, Rise of the Tomb Raider, Gears of War: Ultimate Edition, or Rare Replay. With blockbusters like Gears of War 4, Forza Horizon 3, ReCore, and Madden NFL 17 on the way, a growing number of Xbox 360 classics playable on Xbox One, and Xbox Live, the most advanced multiplayer network, everything you love about summer is even better with Xbox One.

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Verizon To Pay $4.8 Billion For Yahoo’s Core Business

Well, it looks like it’s all over for Yahoo. Verizon is buying the company for $4.8 Billion, and the sale should be officially announced tomorrow. Meanwhile, Mrs. Mayer is laughing all the way to bank.

Verizon, one of the nation’s biggest telecommunications companies, plans to combine Yahoo’s operations with AOL, a longtime Yahoo competitor acquired by Verizon last year. The idea is to use Yahoo’s vast array of content and its advertising technology to offer more robust services to Verizon customers and advertisers. Bloomberg first reported the price of the Verizon deal. Marissa Mayer, who was hired as Yahoo’s chief executive four years ago but failed to turn around the company, is not expected to stay after the deal closes. But she is due to receive severance worth about $57 million, according to Equilar, a compensation research firm.

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Transistors Will Stop Shrinking In 2021

That is what the latest semiconductor roadmap predicts, anyway. Shrinking transistors in microprocessors is no longer "economically desirable" and manufacturers will try engineering vertically instead, stacking circuitry.

For some, this change will likely be interpreted as another death knell for Moore’s Law, the repeated doubling of transistor densities that has given us the extraordinarily capable computers we have today. Compounding the drama is the fact that this is the last ITRS roadmap, the end to a more-than-20-year-old coordinated planning effort that began in the United States and was then expanded to include the rest of the world.

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Sony's High-End 4K HDR LCD TVs Start At $7,000

Would you pay 7k for a TV? Sony’s new Z-Series can supposedly compete with OLED, incorporating Backlight Master Drive technology, which offers new levels of brightness and contrast.

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Backlight Master Drive is essentially a precision backlight technology that aims to provide the best lighting possible. There's a dense LCD layer atop the TV that is coupled with a unique lighting algorithm to do the job. Discrete LED controls prompts the TV to dim and boost each LED individually instead of lighting up entire zones. Meanwhile, a calibrated LED beam means the light focuses in on a specific area instead of leaking. This, Sony says, offers "unparalleled contrast and realism," leading to a deeper blacks and brighter images.

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Gears Of War 4's PC-Exclusive Features Detailed

Gears of War 4, which will be cross-playable between Windows 10 and Xbox One, is intended to be a "highly optimized, customizable" experience on the PC that will include unlocked framerate support on day one, 4K textures, and more. Sadly, it is still a Windows Store exclusive.

Rayner also listed "a few items of note" the team are adding to the PC version. In his own words: Dynamic resolution support (any resolution will be supported with a sensible dynamic field of view - including ultra-wide). Increased texture resolution (up to 4K resolution for select texture groups). A benchmark mode. Full keyboard/mouse input remapping (including cover/run and roll split). Far more comprehensive video settings. "Today we sit at 28 different settings and we're thinking of ways to add more for people to really have full control," Rayner tells us. "Along with more settings, we're putting extra time into making it clear what impact a setting will have on GPU/CPU/VRAM so there is a clear correlation between a setting change and its performance impact."

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Ben Heck Powers On The Nintendo PlayStation's CD Drive

The Nintendo PlayStation lives. While some of the electronics required replacing, Mr. Heck has gotten the system running. Now it’s just a matter of finding compatible disc games.

…the CD drive was struggling to move its optical head, plus the screen was flickering. Ben figured this was to do with a power glitch caused by three leaky electrolytic capacitors on the logic board, so he replaced those with modern ones, and boom! The CD drive is alive! The diagnostic software gave all the green ticks, and the CD player's control panel appears to be working. As a bonus, the audio function has also been restored since that's part of the CD drive's decoder, so we can now fully enjoy SNES games on this super rare device as well.

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"Star Trek" Reveals Title, First Look At U.S.S. Discovery

The new series will be called Star Trek: Discovery, and we have our first look at the starring ship. It looks to me like they drew inspiration from Ralph McQuarrie’s intended design for the cancelled Star Trek: Phase II.

There will be no Captain Kirk or Picard when the new Star Trek debuts. When CBS unveiled a teaser trailer for it at May's upfronts, the promo advertised "New Crews. New Villains. New Heroes. New Worlds." The official Trek site also confirmed that the TV series will not be connected to the feature franchise Star Trek: Beyond in any way. What's more, CBS All Access' Star Trek had to be held until January because CBS has to wait six months after the release of Beyond to avoid confusion. The first episode will air on CBS with subsequent episodes available on the network's digital and VOD platform. Netflix has international rights.

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