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General News News (1378)

Google Unveils Tensor Processing Unit and Google Home

Category: General News
Posted: May 18, 2016 02:58PM
Author: Nick Harezga


The yearly Google I/O developer conference was held today and the company unveiled a pair of interesting projects, the Tensor Processing Unit (TPU) and Google Home. The TPU is a custom chip developed by Google with "an order of magnitude higher performance per watt than all commercially available GPUs and FPGA" according to CEO Sundar Pichai. Google has been testing the TPUs in its data centers for over a year and even used some to create the AlphaGo computer that defeated Lee Sedol at Go. Pichai expanded on the TPU in a blog post, describing it as a great platform for machine learning, which is "more tolerant of reduced computational precision, which means it requires fewer transistors per operation," going as far as comparing it to an ASIC. The TPU may not be able to compete with traditional CPUs for everyday use but the early results from Google indicate that in the right hands it could be a tremendous tool.

Google Home is the company's answer to devices such as the Amazon Echo that target a connected home. The device is smaller than the Amazon Echo and includes the ability to specify what speakers you want to play sounds through. Aside from that, the feature set appears to be similar to that of the Echo. It is expected that the Home will be available sometime this year, but no price was given at the conference. It will be interesting to see how the Home is able to distinguish itself from competitors, and if it will be enough to convince users to switch devices. I bought the Echo at launch and have found it be rather useful, and I can't see the Home going far enough above the Echo for me to make the switch.

Source: PCWorld and Fortune



Old Malware Continues to Plague Systems

Category: General News
Posted: May 17, 2016 03:06PM
Author: Nick Harezga

Research conducted by Check Point as part of its April 2016 Threat Index indicates that the Conficker worm continues to be responsible for one in six malware attacks, despite first being discovered in 2008. Joining it at the top of the rankings are the Sality virus and the Zeroaccess worm, which have been around since 2003 and 2011, respectively. As malware continues to advance in its complexity and reach, it is quite alarming that malware first introduced nearly a decade ago remains the most prevalent. Numbers like this should help to further emphasize how important it is to be mindful of your actions when using a computer, and continue to keep your system up to date to protect yourself as best as you can.

Source: WCCF Tech



Raspberry Pi Zero Adds a Camera Port

Category: General News
Posted: May 16, 2016 03:16PM
Author: Nick Harezga


The Raspberry Pi Zero was released in November 2015 as the smallest and cheapest iteration of the popular computer, at a cost of just $5. Customers eager to get their hands on the device have faced some difficulties as the Pi Zero sold out almost immediately and continues to do so with all new stock that becomes available. Users now have something else to get excited about as the Raspberry Pi Foundation has discovered that "the same fine-pitch FPC connector that we use on the Compute Module Development Kit just fits onto the right hand side of the board." This allows the standard Raspberry Pi camera module to be attached through the use of a custom cable, adding even more utility to the tiny device.

Source: Raspberry Pi Foundation




Solve Some Challenges and Win a GeForce GTX 1080 in NVIDIA's Order of 10 Contest

Category: General News
Posted: May 10, 2016 07:27PM
Author: bp9801

Contests are a wonderful thing. Everybody loves contests, the chance to win some cool prize or a big prize. In the case of this new one from NVIDIA, it's both. The NVIDIA Order of 10 Contest kicked off today, with 10 challenges offering 100 chances to win one of 1,000 prizes. What's up for grab? Well, each day 50 winners will receive an Order of 10 T-shirt and another 50 will receive Order of 10 pins. Oh, and one winner each day will get an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Founders Edition video card. Everybody who plays and gets the challenge right is entered for a chance to win an Elite Game Ready PC featuring an Intel Core i7-5820K processor, two NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Founders Edition GPUs with new SLI HB bridge, 32GB HyperX Fury DDR4-2666  memory, a VR HMD,  and Windows 10 Home 64-bit. That's a pretty good haul.

These challenges are kind of unique, since they're based on Pascal's triangle. It makes sense given the GPU powering the new cards are named for Blaise Pascal, but don't expect an easy time trying to solve it. There are a lot of clues to pick up on, and then once you have the answer, type it in the field and see if it's correct. A new challenge will appear nearly every day, with the final one on May 23. The contest is open to residents (18 and over) of all 50 US states and D.C., Canada (except Quebec), the UK (minus Northern Ireland), Germany, Denmark, Finland, and France. Good luck!

Source: Press Release and Contest Website



Tune Into NVIDIA's Twitch Stream Tonight for a Special Event

Category: General News
Posted: May 6, 2016 10:44AM
Author: bp9801

We are starting to get into the fun time of the year, the time of Computex and E3, where new games and hardware is introduced to the public. Many of the items aren't intended for release right away, at least for the games, but the hardware typically isn't too long of a wait. Sometimes things get announced a little early, which is exactly what NVIDIA is planning to do tonight. NVIDIA will stream, exclusively on Twitch, a "Special Event," where it will unveil... something. Nothing is really known right now exactly what NVIDIA is going to unveil, so it's anyone's guess. It could be the new video card line, such as the GTX 1080, 1070, and 1060, or it could be for some new game, maybe Battlefield 5 or a new VR experience. Really, NVIDIA isn't saying anything, so right now it's all just speculation. Maybe NVIDIA will throw us a curveball and announce plans for world domination. That's probably too much, at least right now. My money is on a new video game it's partnering up to show or just maybe its next video card line.

The Twitch stream starts tonight at 6pm PST, so be sure to check it out to see what NVIDIA is announcing!

Source: Press Release



New AI Software on the Way From Creators of Siri

Category: General News
Posted: May 5, 2016 03:46PM
Author: Nick Harezga

Before Siri was a staple on all of the latest iOS devices, it was created at the Stanford Research Institute by Dag Kittlaus, Adam Cheyer and Tom Gruber, who sold the company to Apple in 2010. The team then started to work on its next endeavor, another Artificial Intelligence project named Viv. Viv aims to "take things one step further than Siri," allowing users to complete actions from start to finish without any physical interaction with their devices. This advanced functionality is made possible through partnerships with popular applications such as Uber and Grubhub. The team plans to show off the software at an industry conference on Monday, providing an excellent platform to bring attention to the new platform.

Source: Mashable



Samsung to Release ARM Based Computer Board

Category: General News
Posted: April 28, 2016 04:29PM
Author: Nick Harezga

Samsung has a great deal of experience with ARM based chips due to the platforms popularity in the mobile phone market, and the company is now looking to transfer that experience into an ARM based computer board. The Artik 10 is entering the market that started to takeoff with the Raspberry Pi, and the offering from Samsung boasts an eight core 32-bit ARM CPU, Mali T628 MP6 graphics chip, 16GB of flash storage, and 2GB of LPDDR3. The latest Raspberry Pi beats the Artik 10 on CPU power as it uses 64-bit CPUs, but the Artik wins in graphical power and external connectivity. The ability to play HD video at up to 120 frames per second opens up a lot of possible uses for the Artik 10 including HTPCs and kiosk systems and its plethora of connectivity options make it a great choice for many other applications. Samsung has also created the Artik Cloud which is "an open platform through which a wide range of devices will be able to talk to each other." This plays into Samsung's "grand plan to equip homes with Internet-connected appliances like refrigerators, ovens, washing machines and bulbs starting next year."

The Artik 10 beats the Raspberry Pi 3 in some areas and falls behind in others, and with a price tag of $99.99 vs. $35 it isn't necessarily an easy choice in either direction. I don't personally know anyone that uses a Raspberry Pi, but many of my friends and former classmates have been rather creative with other platforms such as the Arduino.

Source: PC World



Intel Continues Shift Away From Focus on PC

Category: General News
Posted: April 27, 2016 04:34PM
Author: Nick Harezga

The PC market has been in decline for some time now, with an increasing number of people choosing tablets, smartphones, and other devices. As a result of this trend, PC focused companies like HP, Intel, and AMD have seen revenue and profit decrease as they attempt to adapt. Intel has done a good job up to this point with 40% of revenue and 60% of profits coming from outside the traditional PC market, but the company says it isn't enough and has outlined a new five point strategy to continue its transition. CEO Brian Krzanich described it is a way to move "from a PC company to a company that powers the cloud and billions of smart, connected computing devices." The plan includes an increased focus on cloud infrastructure, connected "things," memory, network connectivity, and manufacturing and fabrication.

The move could hurt the overall PC market if the shift in focus causes a drop in the performance of Intel CPUs, but could also present an opportunity for new players to enter the market and challenge the dominant market share of Intel and AMD. At the same time, it could be a potential boon for the areas that Intel is choosing to focus on as the company has long provided high performance solutions in areas such as SSDs and network cards.

Source: PC World



HTC Offering Support for VR Development

Category: General News
Posted: April 26, 2016 12:19PM
Author: Nick Harezga

HTC is planning to help speed up the adoption of its virtual reality headset, the Vive, by launching an accelerator program for startups interested in developing VR technology. The program, known as Vive X, is starting with a pool of $100 million and is taking applications in Beijing, Taipei, and San Francisco. The goal of the program is "to offer mentorship, help securing investment, and access to VR tech, doing things like temporarily providing office space and hosting demo days for potential investors." HTC isn't doing this entirely out of the goodness of its heart as it will seek "a small amount of equity" in exchange for investments between $50,000 and $200,000. Its partnership with Valve in creating the Vive should put the device on a strong track in the gaming market, but the Vive X program could certainly help increase its presence in other areas.

Source: The Verge



Amazon Now Offering Standalone Prime Video Subscription

Category: General News
Posted: April 18, 2016 04:52PM
Author: Nick Harezga

Amazon Prime was the first foray of the company into subscription based services, but it certainly hasn't been the last. Amazon has since expanded its services to include Kindle Unlimited, Prime Video, and Cloud Drive. Prime Video offers a similar service to Netflix and has also recently increased its focus on original programming with popular offerings such as Transparent. Until now, Prime Video has only been available to subscribers of the main Prime service, but Amazon has decided to begin offering a standalone service at a cost of $8.99 per month. For now it seems to make sense to keep paying for your normal Prime subscription and getting the video service included, unless you don't like the two day shipping option.

Source: Tech Crunch



Microsoft Files Lawsuit Against US Government Over Data Requests

Category: General News
Posted: April 14, 2016 04:30PM
Author: Nick Harezga

Earlier today Microsoft filed a lawsuit against the United State Justice Department in the District Court in Seattle. The subject of the lawsuit is Section 2705(b) of the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, which "allows the government to obtain secrecy orders preventing companies from letting their customers know when their data is the target of a federal warrant." Microsoft feels that this violates the First and Fourth Amendments, but recognizes that "secrecy may be needed in some cases." The main objection of Microsoft is that the number of requests seems to be increasing and the majority of the requests have no end date. Microsoft President and Chief Legal Officer Brad Smith addressed the lawsuit, stating "We believe these actions violate two of the fundamental rights that have been part of this country since its founding. These lengthy and even permanent secrecy orders violate the Fourth Amendment, which gives people and businesses the right to know if the government searches or seizes their property. They also violate the First Amendment, which guarantees our right to talk to customers about how government action is affecting their data. The constitutional right to free speech is subject only to restraints narrowly tailored to serve compelling governmental interests, a standard that is neither required by the statute being applied nor met by the government in practice here."

Source: WCCF Tech



FBI Paid Hackers to Gain Access to iPhone

Category: General News
Posted: April 13, 2016 03:40PM
Author: Nick Harezga

Late last month, the FBI dropped its fight to force Apple to help it gain access to an iPhone used by the San Bernardino terrorists, but declined to reveal how it was able to access the phone. According to "people familiar with the matter," the FBI was able to gain access to the phone by paying professional hackers who were able to find an exploit. The FBI was then able to create a hardware device that would allow it to disable a feature that erases all data on an iPhone after 10 incorrect attempts to enter a four digit PIN. The exploit is said to only work on the iPhone 5C with iOS 9, which the FBI describes as a "narrow slice" of phones. The government has not decided if it will release details of the exploit to Apple and Apple has said it won't pursue legal action to force the government to do so. FBI Director James B. Comey described the thought process of the Bureau, stating "they’re going to fix it and then we’re back where we started from."

Source: The Washington Post



Roku Announces Third Generation Streaming Stick

Category: General News
Posted: April 5, 2016 04:04PM
Author: Nick Harezga

Roku is one of the biggest names in the home streaming market, and the company has now updated its lineup with the third generation of the Roku Streaming Stick. As the "lower-cost streaming service," the Streaming Stick is priced at $49.99 and has a similar form factor to the Google Chromecast and Amazon Fire TV Stick. The latest iteration features a quad core processor that provides "8 times the processing power of the prior version" and puts it ahead of the previously mentioned competitors. After an update to the mobile app, users will be able to listen to their content through the app and a pair of headphones. The device is powered by the latest version of Roku OS, version 7.1, and gives access to more than 3,000 streaming channels and 300,000 movies and TV episodes.

Source: Tech Crunch



New Rumors of a Refreshed Xbox from Microsoft

Category: General News
Posted: April 1, 2016 09:06AM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

Lately there have been several rumors going around the Internet that Sony will be releasing a PlayStation 4.5. Well it appears Microsoft is not content with being left behind as a new rumor predicts the coming of the Xbox φ (Xbox phi). For those who do not know, φ is the Golden Ratio, a value with some interesting characteristics. For example φ2=φ+1 and φ-1 equals the square root of φ. It can also be found in various works of architecture, as the ratio seems to be pleasing to the eye, which is appropriate as the refreshed Xbox will provide better visuals.

If we do a little math, because φ is approximately equal to 1.618, the Xbox φ is a 0.618 improvement over the Xbox One, which is more than the 0.5 improvement the PS4.5 represents over the PS4. There is no word yet on if Nintendo might try to transcend both companies by releasing an NX e (≈2.718), or skip directly to an NX π (≈3.142).

Source: An Irrational Mathematician



Razer Announces Ripsaw Capture Card

Category: General News
Posted: March 30, 2016 03:59PM
Author: Nick Harezga


With the increasing popularity of live streaming video games and services like Twitch, many companies are releasing products aimed at the growing market. Razer is the latest to throw its hat into the ring with the Ripsaw capture card. Capture cards help to streamline the process of broadcasting your stream by "capturing the media in real time and broadcasting it via services like Twitch and YouTube before passing it on to your screen and speakers." The Ripsaw allows users to operate at 1080p resolution and 60 frames per second, giving some of the best streaming performance available. The Ripsaw will be available with an MSRP of $180.

Source: Tech Crunch



FBI Gains Access to iPhone Without Help from Apple

Category: General News
Posted: March 28, 2016 03:19PM
Author: Nick Harezga

When we last checked in on the saga of Apple vs. the FBI in regards to the former being compelled to help break iOS encryption to access the iPhone of the San Bernardino terrorists, some Apple employees said they would rather quit than break the encryption. The government has informed Apple that it will no longer require its assistance as it has successfully accessed the iPhone in question. This was revealed today in a court filing that stated "The government has now successfully accessed the data stored on Farook's iPhone and therefore no longer requires the assistance from Apple Inc. mandated by Court's Order Compelling Apple Inc. to Assist Agents in Search dated February 16, 2016." The announcement can be considered a victory for Apple and its many supporters who felt that giving the government access to the phone could set a dangerous precedent and compromise the security of iOS.

Source: Apple Insider



Google Introduces Machine Learning Service

Category: General News
Posted: March 23, 2016 03:26PM
Author: Nick Harezga

At the Google Cloud Platform Next conference in San Francisco earlier today, Google announced a private beta for a Cloud Machine Learning service based on its TensorFlow product. The service will utilize data collected in other Google services to create a custom machine learning model that "handles data ingestion and training and then uses the resulting machine learning model to make predictions." Google hopes that this new service and its ability to export to other products will help set it apart from competitors like Amazon and Microsoft.

Source: PCWorld



iMessage Flaw Puts iCloud Data at Risk

Category: General News
Posted: March 21, 2016 03:42PM
Author: Nick Harezga

Researchers from Johns Hopkins University have discovered a flaw in the encryption used by iMessage that could allow attackers "to decrypt photos and videos sent as secure messages." Professor Matthew Green alerted Apple to the suspected flaw but after the company didn't fix the problem, the team decided to exploit the flaw to prove it. The team created a server to act as an Apple server and then intercepted encrypted photos which included a 64-digit key that could be used to decrypt it. After thousands of attempts to brute force the key, they were able to view the photo. Apple has fixed the exploit in the most recent version of iOS, version 9.3, which released today. The researchers are holding off on releasing more in depth details about the exploit until after users have had some time to update their systems, which Apple is recommending you do as soon as possible.

Source: Computer World



ProtonMail Exits Beta, Offers End-to-end Encryption

Category: General News
Posted: March 17, 2016 04:36PM
Author: Nick Harezga

ProtonMail was created by people who were "motivated by demand for email that could not be monitored in the wake of Edward Snowden’s charges of U.S. National Security Agency eavesdropping on citizens (and other governments.)" For the past two years it has been in an invite only beta phase, with more than one million users utilizing the service. As of yesterday it is now available to anyone that wants access, with apps available for both Android and iOS.

Source: Fortune



Apple Employees Might Quit Rather Than Break iOS Encryption

Category: General News
Posted: March 17, 2016 04:18PM
Author: Nick Harezga

In the ongoing saga of Apple vs. the United States government over breaking iOS encryption to access the personal data of the San Bernardino shooters there is a new twist coming from the Apple side. According to "more than a half-dozen" statements from current and former employees, the engineers that might be tasked with the work "may balk at the work, while others may even quit their high-paying jobs rather than undermine the security of the software they have already created." Apple lawyers have argued that forcing employees to break the encryption "is fundamentally offensive to Apple’s core principles and would pose a severe threat to the autonomy of Apple and its engineers." It is believed that it would take six to ten engineers up to a month to complete the work, though it was noted that any push back from those chosen would further delay the work. While no team has been put together, employees talked to for the article have suspicions that "include an engineer who developed software for the iPhone, iPad and Apple TV. That engineer previously worked at an aerospace company. Another is a senior quality-assurance engineer who is described as an expert “bug catcher” with experience testing Apple products all the way back to the iPod. A third likely employee specializes in security architecture for the operating systems powering the iPhone, Mac and Apple TV."

Source: NY Times



Sony Announces Price and Release Date for PlayStation VR

Category: General News
Posted: March 16, 2016 12:58PM
Author: Nick Harezga

There are a number of virtual reality products that will hit the market sometime this year, including the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. Sony can now be added to that list with its announcement that the PlayStation VR will be available in October at a cost of $399. A number of peripherals will be included in the purchase price, but the required PlayStation Camera is sold separately for $59.99. Gamers will have access to The Playroom for free, which provides six "family-friendly" mini games, and an additional 50 games will be available this year. Sony added that 230 developers, "from smaller independent teams to larger studios at the industry’s top publishers," are currently working on VR offerings. Sony released a statement regarding the device and its October release date, stating "To make sure that we are able to prepare and deliver enough units of PS VR and a wide variety of software titles to consumers worldwide, we have decided to launch PS VR in October 2016. For those who are looking forward to its launch, we would like to thank everyone for their patience and continued support. We are beyond excited to deliver to consumers the amazing experience that PS VR offers."

Source: IGN



G.SKILL Wins iF Design Award 2016

Category: General News
Posted: March 11, 2016 04:39PM
Author: Nick Harezga

G.SKILL has announced that a pair of its products, the Trident Z Series DDR4 Memory and RIPJAWS KM780 Series Gaming Keyboard, were selected as the winners for the iF Design Award 2016. G.SKILL took on more than 5,000 entries in "one of the most prestigious design competitions in the world," winning the approval of 58 judges. Product Marketing Manager Frank Hung addressed the win, stating "Over the years, we have devoted ourselves in developing the most outstanding and unique designs for our customers and would continue to do so throughout each generation of our products. This award shows that we are consistent with our mission to provide excellently designed products in both form and function, in order to keep pace with our customers' growing needs."

Source: Press Release



Google Joins Open Compute Project

Category: General News
Posted: March 10, 2016 04:52PM
Author: Nick Harezga

The Open Compute Project "was started by Facebook six years ago as a way for end-user companies to get together and design their own data center equipment, free of the unneeded features that drive up costs for traditional vendor products." At the OCP Summit on Wednesday Google announced that it would finally join the effort, joining existing members such as Microsoft. As its first contribution, Google designed a server rack that operates on 48V rather than the traditional 12V, allowing for improved efficiency due to lower conversion loss. Google has already deployed the design internally alongside shallower racks. Google already has its eyes on more changes including developing a replacement for the Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) which senior VP of infrastructure Urs Holzle described as "outdated for a while," adding "I think there's an opportunity to define standards in a way that will let every operator use the same one, and then every vendor to export their data in the right way."

Source: PC World



Apple Fights Back Against KeRanger Ransomware

Category: General News
Posted: March 7, 2016 04:39PM
Author: Nick Harezga

Ransomware is a type of malware that operates by encrypting your files and then asking for a ransom, typically in some form of crypto-currency such as bitcoin, in order to regain access to the files. The KeRanger ransomware was first discovered by Palo Alto Networks and operated through two infected versions of the Transmission BitTorrent client. The hackers were looking for one bitcoin, which currently equates to around $400. Apple was alerted to the malware on March 4, and the quick fix applied by the company could ultimately prove to have saved a lot of people a good chunk of money. The malware itself "was signed with a valid Mac app development certificate, which is how it was able to skirt around Apple’s Gatekeeper protection mechanism." Apple has since revoked the certificate and updated the XProtect software while Transmission has also updated its software and is advising users to upgrade.

Source: Tech Crunch



Intel Working on Augmented-Reality Headset

Category: General News
Posted: March 3, 2016 05:24PM
Author: Nick Harezga

Intel is working on an augmented-reality headset powered by its RealSense technology. Intel is planning the headset as a "reference design for other manufacturers, rather than an end product in itself." RealSense provides depth-sensing capabilities and high resolution image capture, providing a possible competitor to Google Glass and the Microsoft HoloLens. Augmented-reality is different from virtual reality, working by "superimposing virtual elements onto the real world."

Source: Fortune



Raspberry Pi 3 Now Available

Category: General News
Posted: March 1, 2016 05:10PM
Author: Nick Harezga

The Raspberry Pi 3 is the latest version of the extremely small computer to hit the market. The Pi 3 is powered by a 1.2GHz, 64-bit, quad-core ARMv8 processor featuring HDMI, Ethernet, and four USB ports. The system also adds new features in the form of built-in wireless and Bluetooth 4.0. The price remains at just $35 despite the new features and represents a solid choice for anyone looking to get started with a small form factor PC.

Source: Venture Beat



Apple Patent Infringement Lawsuit Against Samsung Overturned

Category: General News
Posted: February 26, 2016 03:42PM
Author: Nick Harezga

In May 2014, Apple won a $120 million judgment against Samsung after it was ruled that Samsung used "Apple's patented technology without permission." Today, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit ruled that Samsung "did not infringe Apple's "quick links" patent, and that two other patents covering the iPhone's slide-to-unlock and auto-correct features were invalid." To add insult to injury, the court also ruled that Apple had infringed on a Samsung patent, though this patent wasn't named. The unanimous ruling is a small bright spot in the fighting between the two companies as Apple has come out on top more often than not.

Source: Reuters



Ubisoft Seeking Investors to Fight Potential Takeover Bid

Category: General News
Posted: February 26, 2016 01:10PM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

Ubisoft might be in for an important fight in the future, as Vivendi appears to be making moves to take over the company. Vivendi has recently acquired a 15% stake in the publisher and made an unsolicited takeover offer for Gameloft, which was founded by Michael Guillemot, who co-founded Ubisoft with his brothers. According to one analyst, this hostile bid for Gameloft is likely a first step to force talks with the Guillemot family over Ubisoft. The brothers hold 16% of the voting rights for the company, and are backed by major shareholders Blackrock and Fidelity, which hold another 15% together.

To prevent Vivendi from possibly trying to change the board at the next shareholders meeting in September, Yves Guillemot, Ubisoft's CEO and one of the founders, is working to get at least 50% of the vote behind them. To that end, he is working to increase the number of Canadian. Ubisoft has a strong presence across the nation, with over 3000 employees in Montreal, Quebec, Toronto, and Halifax, and hundreds of millions in capital invested. The fear is that if Vivendi got control of the company, Ubisoft would lose some of its decision-making and operational agility, by being forced to work with Vivendi properties instead of forging partnerships with other global media companies.

If Vivendi is able to push for a takeover but does not make a friendly deal with the Guillemot brothers, it might lose them and the employees loyal to them. As this industry is dependent on creative talent, such losses could be very significant.

Source: The Globe and Mail



AMD's Market Share Rumored to Hit Record Low in 1Q2016

Category: General News
Posted: February 26, 2016 09:26AM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

For some time we have been seeing more discrete GPU market share shift from AMD to NVIDIA, with the green team claiming 82% in the second quarter of last year. Now the rumor is that AMD's share may slide even further in the first quarter of this year for both GPUs and CPUs. Some of this is likely being driven by the reduced PC demand of recent times, but it still may be very hard to recover from.

Later this year AMD is going to be releasing both its Polaris GPU architecture and Zen CPU architecture. Both of these new designs represent major shifts as AMD transitions to 14 nm process nodes. This move should increase performance and efficiency significantly, with additional design improvements and tweaks pushing things even further. Obviously the hope is that these new designs will bolster AMD's numbers and recapture market share from both Intel and NVIDIA as the appropriate hardware launches. Polaris-based GPUs are expected in the middle of this year while Zen CPUs will likely come in the last quarter.

Source: Digitimes



Apple Exploring Added Security Options for iPhone and iCloud

Category: General News
Posted: February 25, 2016 01:27PM
Author: Nick Harezga

Apple has been at the center of digital privacy discussions lately as it fights an FBI order to create a backdoor to access data on an iPhone belonging to the suspects in the San Bernardino terrorist attack. Apple CEO Tim Cook stated that the company is "protesting the order" and a number of prominent names in the technology sector such as Mark Zuckerberg and John McAfee have chimed in as well. The FBI contends that Apple could create this backdoor as the current design of the device firmware update (DFU) mode, which exists for "troubleshooting purposes," can be accessed without the need for the iPhone passcode. In order to prevent these types of requests in the future, Apple is considering adding the need to know the passcode to unlock the phone as a requirement to enter DFU. In addition to this, Apple is also considering how it handles encryption of iCloud data. It currently encrypts all the data, but it also holds onto all of the decryption keys. If it were to give the public decryption key to the owner of the data, then it could not be forced to decrypt the data.

Source: Tech Crunch



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