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News Archives for October 2013

Hardware Roundup: Tuesday Edition

Posted: October 1, 2013 @ time: 08:38AM
Author: bp9801

There's just a few items for you to consider today, but all can fill a need. If you're looking for a new case and want something fairly unique, there's the Silverstone Fortress FT04. It looks similar to the original FT01, but with a bit bigger size that should allow for even more goodies to be placed inside. We also have a review on the be quiet! Pure Power L8 700W power supply, which is the company's more value-minded series of power supplies. If you just want a new game to play, then perhaps a chance to win EA DICE's upcoming Battlefield 4 is the thing for you. The contest does require Facebook, but you do get the opportunity to win one of the year's hottest FPS games.

Cases
Silverstone Fortress FT04 @ TechSpot

Power Supplies
be quiet! Pure Power L8 700W @ PC Perspective

Miscellany
Win a copy of Battlefield 4! @ ThinkComputers


Complete Story


Freeing Light from LEDs

Posted: October 1, 2013 @ time: 09:09AM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

Many people will tell you about how light emitting diodes are very efficient, because they directly produce light. In actuality though, they are not as efficient as they can be, as their structure allows polarized light to become trapped within the LED. Researchers at the University of Utah though, have found a design that could free as much as 80% of the trapped light.

Typically the molecules in an LED are long and thin, like spaghetti. This causes whatever light they produce to be polarized in the direction of the molecules, but it also means the light can become trapped within the molecules, as they are like optical fibers. To free the light, or rather to keep much of it from being trapped in the first place, the researchers have built round, symmetrical molecules, shaped like rotelle. This will increase the amount of light released and the efficiency of the LEDs, which could greatly affect the battery-lives of devices with OLED displays. At least in theory.

As promising as this approach is, more work has to be done to prove it works. Once that is done, maybe we will see it enter our devices and keep our batteries going longer.

Source: University of Utah


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Corsair Announces High Airflow Case Fans

Posted: October 1, 2013 @ time: 02:23PM
Author: CheeseMan42

Corsair has announced a pair of new case fans that will make up the Air Series, with low noise and LED lighting. The Air Series will use Corsair AF impeller fan blades, custom molded and ultra thin. The low noise of the fans doesn't come at the cost of decreased performance, with the 120mm model pushing 52.19 CFM and the 140mm model providing 66.4 CFM. The 120mm model operates at 1500 RPM while the 140mm runs at 1200 RPM, and neither fan exceeds 26 dBA of noise. Both models will have LED colors of red, white, blue, and purple available. Director of Product Marketing Xavier Lauwaert said, "Our new Air Series LED fans combine the proven low-noise, high-performance design of our standard Air Series fans with just the right amount of LED visual flair. Now users can enhance and customize the look of their PCs with LED fans without compromising performance." The 120mm version will cost $12.99 while the 140mm has an MSRP of $15.99.

Source: Press Release


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New Material for Phase-Change Memory Discovered

Posted: October 1, 2013 @ time: 04:11PM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

When it comes to data storage, we want it faster, smaller, and more efficient. While flash memory has given us those, compared to hard disks, it has its limits, so researchers are looking to new types of memory. One of these is phase-change memory, and, as reported by the American Institute of Physics, Chinese researchers have discovered a new material that should make the technology easier to work with.

Phase-change memory (PCM) requires a material that can be switched from a resistant amorphous state to a conducting crystalline state, and back, using an electrical pulse. These different electrical states can thus be mapped to the 0 and 1 values we use to store data. One material capable of this switching is an alloy compromised of germanium, antimony, and tellurium, but such ternary alloys are difficult to work with. The researchers however have found that a combination of aluminum and antimony, with fifty atoms of each element, is not only stable enough for use in PCM, but also has three electrical states, which means it can be used for multilevel data storage.

With as much promise as this alloy has, more testing is required to determine if it is suitable for use in phase-change memory. Currently the researchers are testing how well it stands up to being switched back and both between its phases.

Source: American Institute of Physics via EurekAlert!


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Hardware Roundup: Wednesday Edition

Posted: October 2, 2013 @ time: 09:33AM
Author: bp9801

If you're looking for a new motherboard for an Intel Haswell build, then we have two that could fill your need. The MSI Z87 XPOWER is the flagship board in the company's MPOWER line, which means it's filled to the brim with features to improve reliability, stability, and performance. Likewise, the ASUS Maximus VI Extreme is the flagship member of the ROG series, which also has a ton of features to keep you gaming and overclocking for a long time. We have some other things to check out too, like a review on Zalman's all-in-one liquid CPU cooler that uses a round radiator instead of the more traditional square or rectangle. There's also a look at how ARMA III performs on a variety of video cards to see which offers the best performance, and even a review on the HTC One Mini smartphone.

Motherboards
MSI Z87 XPOWER @ PC Perspective
ASUS Maximus VI Extreme @ [H]ardOCP

CPU Cooling
Zalman Reserator 3 MAX Nanofluid AIO Liquid CPU Cooler @ Benchmark Reviews

Gaming
ARMA III Video Card Performance and IQ @ [H]ardOCP

Mobile
HTC One Mini: Downsizing the best Android phone @ TechSpot


Complete Story


Simulating Brushstrokes with Big Data

Posted: October 2, 2013 @ time: 09:34AM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

A fundamental component of paintings, are the brushstrokes, which can create a sense of texture and depth. Recreating them with computers has proven very difficult though, because of their complexity. Researchers at Princeton University however have found a way to bring brushstrokes to computers using Big Data.

Called RealBrush, the prototype software employs machine learning to identify the features of a library of exemplar brushstrokes. By analyzing the spine of the brushstrokes, the software is able to determine their shape, and from that, warp and blend segments to generate any shape desired. It is also able to smear and smudge the brushstroke, using a similar approach. If the library does not have the necessary brushstrokes, RealBrush is able to accept photographs of real brushstrokes and add those to its library. This use of Big Data is a growing trend for modern computing, when mathematical algorithms simply do not suffice.

Though RealBrush is ready for use in the lab, it is not ready for anything outside of it. As the researchers point out, it is still a research project and would require more effort before it could be made available.

Source: Princeton University


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Deus Ex Franchise Set to Expand

Posted: October 2, 2013 @ time: 01:42PM
Author: CheeseMan42

Eidos has announced that it is hard at work on the next generation of Deus Ex games that will all be connected in a Deus Ex Universe. The Universe will encompass PC and console games along with books, graphic novels, and mobile games. Studio head David Anfossi called it "a commitment on our part to deliver meaningful content that expands the franchise on a regular basis and to deliver a deep conspiracy that will span several connected Deus Ex games, creating a more immersive and richer experience than ever before." Development of the game for PC and next generation consoles is under way and features several members of the team that worked on Deus Ex: Human Revolution.

Source: IGN


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Upcoming Chip Maker Might Threat Intel

Posted: October 2, 2013 @ time: 01:55PM
Author: Prunes

It appears that Intel has got a new contestant. Applied Micro Circuits, a new upcoming chipmaker, is aiming at the energy saving server market, and, according to Raymond James analyst Hans Mosesmann, it will be a major threat to Intel's business. The company currently has 649 employees and annual sales amount to $195 million, and while this is not much compared to Intel, AMC is optimistic. With a low power, ARM based chip called the X-Gene as it main product, AMC seems to have convinced many analysts that it will be able to compete with Intel. In a recent report from Bernstein Research, analysts have concluded that "[they] see some risks for Intel", and Sergis Mushell from research firm Gartner agrees. A chip expert from the Linley Group, Linley Gwennap, believes that Intel will use whatever they an to ensure that AMC does not gain a foothold. 

The X-Gene is a ARM based, 64 bit server processor that has been improved upon to fit AMC's target market. The processor will be running at 3.0 GHz, while using very small amounts of power.The processor is scaleable up to 128 cores with very low latency and quad issue out of order . The chip will also have integrated PCI-Express, storage and network interface controllers.

Source: Fudzilla


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Superconducting Passive Sensor Developed for Detecting Hidden Threats

Posted: October 2, 2013 @ time: 04:35PM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

In certain situations, security is of the utmost importance, but some security technologies present risks of their own. That is why researchers are working on new techniques to detect threats. Now those at the National Institute of Standards and Technology have developed a prototype system that can detect hidden weapons and threats up to 28 meters away.

This system is actually based on a camera design used in advanced telescopes. It utilizes superconductors that change in resistance when exposed to very faint light. In this case the light has to have a frequency around 850 micrometers, which is a terahertz frequency. Terahertz radiation has the ability to pass through clothing, but presents no threat the living tissue, which should make it very useful in sensing technologies. The system is also passive, so instead of requiring a dedicated terahertz source, it is able to image targets with only naturally occurring light.

The prototype's 251 sensors have the ability to resolve details as small as one centimeter, but operates at only six frames per second, which is a bit slow. Further development though could quadruple the number of sensors, which will increase the area it can image and the framerate.

Source: NIST via EurekAlert!


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Hardware Roundup: Thursday Edition

Posted: October 3, 2013 @ time: 09:44AM
Author: bp9801

We have a few items for you to consider today, with all of them covering some pretty important aspects. There's a review on the Corsair Obsidian 750D computer case, which resembles the 900D just a bit smaller and easier on the wallet. We have a look at the Cooler Master V850 power supply from the company's new V-Series of PSUs, which features modular cables, a single 12V rail, and 80 PLUS Gold certification. Rounding things out today is Raijintek's Themis heat sink, a tower-style CPU cooler that has three 8mm heat pipes and a 120mm PWM fan keeping things cool.

Cases
Corsair Obsidian 750D @ Madshrimps

CPU Cooling
Raijintek Themis @ Frostytech

Power Supplies
Cooler Master V850 @ ThinkComputers


Complete Story


Funding for 4D Printing Granted

Posted: October 3, 2013 @ time: 11:13AM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

A future is quickly approaching where the average citizen will be able to purchase a 3D printer with the capability to print out a variety of objects. For some though, that future is just not enough, so they are looking to what could lie beyond it. Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh, Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, and the University of Illinois have received a grant from the United States Army Research Office to develop printable 4D materials.

While most people would associate a fourth dimension with time, in this case the additional dimension could be for a number of metrics, including light exposure, temperature, and physical force. The idea behind these materials is that they will react to external stimuli, such as changing color in bright light, or stiffening when struck. Achieving this will require the ability to manipulate materials at the micro and nano levels, so that properties can be controlled on the macro level.

As this news is just about a grant to fund the work, there is nothing to show for it yet. Eventually though we could see Army uniforms that adapt their camouflage, alter their permeability at different temperatures, and even harden to catch incoming shrapnel.

Source: University of Pittsburgh


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Amazon Looking to Load up an Upcoming Set-top Box

Posted: October 3, 2013 @ time: 02:23PM
Author: CheeseMan42

Amazon is rumored to be working on a set-top entertainment box with plans for release in time for the holiday season. The news of a device resembling the popular Roku box was released months ago, but new developments include Amazon soliciting other companies for software apps to run on the box. Amazon has reached out to a "variety of media app developers, as well as cable television providers, seeking partnerships for the rollout of the set-top box." A mid-October deadline for app submittals was reported. A set-top box from Amazon is seen as a potential sales booster for its Prime service, which offers a large selection of television and movie for streaming, and as a Prime subscriber I will be following this news closely.

Source: Wall Street Journal


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Terraria 2 is in Development

Posted: October 3, 2013 @ time: 02:33PM
Author: CheeseMan42

The creator of Terraria, Andrew "Redigit" Spinks, has revealed to Rock, Paper, Shotgun that the mystery project he quit Terraria to work on is in fact Terraria 2. Spinks stepped away to work on this mystery project but eventually released a substantial update to the first game before returning to work on the sequel. He has his sights set high for his next game, hoping to expand on the gameplay and offer gamers even more customization options. "In Terraria 2, I really want to have infinite worlds so you’re not just stuck to one world. You can travel anywhere. I want more biome diversity in that, too. There’s a lot of stuff [I want to add and change]." He also added that another update may come to Terraria, perhaps Halloween themed, and pointed out that nothing is set in stone for now.

Source: Rock, Paper, Shotgun


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Verifying Quantum Computers

Posted: October 3, 2013 @ time: 02:56PM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

For the most part, we all trust that when we ask our computers a question, the answer it gives us will be correct, so two plus two is always four. For quantum computers though, which are still in development, the answers they give us may not be correct, so a verification method is needed. One way to check results would be to use more quantum computer resources, but researchers at the University of Vienna have a more elegant solution.

The researchers added error-traps, if you will, into the tasks for a quantum computer to run. These traps are calculations we already know the answer to, so if the computer misbehaves and provides an incorrect answer, we know there is a problem. By building more traps into the task, the more certain a user can be that the computer is operating correctly.

The researchers have already tested it in an optical quantum computer, which uses photons as qubits, but the technique can be applied to any quantum computer design.

Source: University of Vienna


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Nearly Three Million Adobe Customer Accounts Hacked; Source Code for Certain Apps Also Taken

Posted: October 3, 2013 @ time: 07:32PM
Author: bp9801

If you've recently bought something with your Adobe account, then I have some bad news for you. A grand total of 2.9 million Adobe customer accounts have been compromised, with information like names, expiration dates, and credit/debit card numbers taken. Thankfully the credit/debit card numbers are all encrypted and Adobe doesn't think any decrypted ones were taken, but even so just keep an eye on your bank account. The company has reset all account passwords, so if yours was involved in the attack then you'll be receiving an email. Likewise, if your credit/debit card information was taken, you'll receive an email containing the steps to take in order to protect yourself. Customers whose credit/debit card numbers were taken will also have an option to enroll in a one-year credit monitoring membership free of charge. Banks have also been notified of the attack.

Some source code for select apps, like Acrobat and ColdFusion, was also taken, and Adobe believes the two attacks are related. If you use any of those programs, the company recommends using only the supported versions and applying all available security updates. You can also follow the advice in the Acrobat Enterprise Toolkit and ColdFusion Lockdown Guide to find out how to keep those programs secure. Fortunately Adobe doesn't believe there's any "increased risk" to customers of the selected apps.

When more information is available about these hacks, you can be sure to find out here. In the meantime, Adobe is working with federal investigators to find out who did this and punish them accordingly.

Source: Adobe Featured Blogs and ASSET Blog


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First Cloud Map of Exoplanet Made

Posted: October 4, 2013 @ time: 09:11AM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

Clouds are not only something to watch, but actually impact the weather a great deal. This is true here on Earth and on Kepler 7b, a planet roughly a thousand light years away. Using NASA's Kepler and Spitzer Space Telescopes, researchers at MIT have successfully observed the cloud patterns of an exoplanet for the first time.

A couple years ago, researchers were analyzing the reflectivity of Kepler 7b and noticed that it is very bright for an exoplanet. The exact cause of this was a mystery at the time, but by combining the data from the two telescopes, the researchers are confident much of the reflectivity is caused by the clouds. The planet is considered a hot Jupiter, which means it is a gas giant, like Jupiter, though 1.5 times larger, but orbits its host star very closely. It is actually close enough that the planet is tidally locked to the star, which means only one side ever faces it. By measuring the reflected light during each orbital phase, the researchers were able to determine that the explanation for the high reflectivity is clouds.

Interestingly, while one side of the planet is completely overcast, the researchers have noted that the distribution of clouds leaves the other hemisphere completely clear. The exact mechanism that forms the clouds is not known.

Source: MIT


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Hardware Roundup: Friday Edition

Posted: October 4, 2013 @ time: 09:55AM
Author: bp9801

There's a lot on today's menu, including two different computer cases. The Fractal Node 304 is a unique Mini-ITX desktop case that's still fully capable of handling large video cards, plus the white exterior gives it a stunning appearance. The Fractal Define XL R2, on the other hand, is a full tower design that offers minimalistic looks and noise redeucing material, yet still has plenty of room inside for any number of components. We have a look at the CM Storm Pulse-R gaming headset to see how the company's newest offering stacks up to the competition. The Aidos heat sink from Raijintek gets reviewed, which sees how this small tower-style cooler handles some of the more demanding CPUs out there. There's also an article examining six things Apple got right with iOS 7 and six things that are still missing, as well as the latest podcast from PC Perspective.

Cases
Fractal Define XL R2 @ LanOC Reviews
Fractal Node 304 White @ LanOC Reviews

CPU Cooling
Raijintek Aidos @ Frostyech

Speakers/Headphones
CM Storm Pulse-R Gaming Headset @ Benchmark Reviews

Mobile
iOS 7: Six Things Apple Got Right And Six That Are Still Missing @ TechSpot

Miscellany
Podcast #271 @ PC Perspective


Complete Story


Valve Reveals the Specifications for its Steam Machine Prototype

Posted: October 4, 2013 @ time: 01:14PM
Author: bp9801

It's been just over a week since Valve unveiled its Steam Machines, its reimagining of the Steam Box, and today we have a little more information on what to expect in the beta hardware. The initial 300 Steam Machines for the beta test are being built with top of the line hardware and contained inside a custom enclosure. Valve will allow anyone to upgrade any part of the hardware themselves, and since all the hardware used is off-the-shelf parts, anyone can build their own Steam Machine. It just won't have the custom enclosure, however Valve is including the source CAD files for that for the more mechanically inclined gamers to even build one of those. This top of the line model is what Valve thinks many gamers want in the living room, however there'll be plenty of others who want something not as powerful or quieter or even smaller. Luckily there are going to be a wide range of Steam Machines to fit whatever idea people want.

So, just what does each Steam Machine have inside for the lucky 300 beta testers? Well, it'll be one of a selection of NVIDIA GPUs, with the Titan, GTX 780, GTX 760, and GTX 660s being selected. The CPUs are all Intel-based, with some machines running the Core i7 4770, others the i5 4570, and some with Core i3s. Memory totals will be 16GB of DDR3-1600 for the CPU and 3GB GDDR5 for the GPU for all systems, with a 1TB/8GB Hybrid SSHD providing storage. A 450W 80 PLUS Gold power supply will run the show. Each Steam Machine measures 12 x 12.4 x 2.9 inches, so it won't be taking up very much space in the living room at all.

Valve still isn't ready to reveal what the beta hardware looks like for the Steam Machines, but it'll do that before they ship. Steam Machines also aren't meant to replace your current PC, but rather provide a new means for PC gaming in the living room without having to spend a ton of money.

Source: Valve


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ECS Partners with Complexity Gaming for Giveaway

Posted: October 4, 2013 @ time: 02:27PM
Author: CheeseMan42

ECS is teaming up with professional gaming team Complexity Gaming for the L337 Top Ganks Competition. Three lucky winners will receive the newest motherboard in the ECS L337 series, the L337 GANK Drone Z87H3-A3X. The new board uses the Intel Z87 Express chipset and supports fourth generation Intel Core processors. Two entries can be obtained by sharing the contest page on Facebook or re-tweeting the contest link on Twitter. Entries will be accepted until October 15.

Source: ECS Press Release


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In-game Giveaway Coming to Borderlands 2

Posted: October 4, 2013 @ time: 02:40PM
Author: CheeseMan42

A massive giveaway is coming to Borderlands 2 a week from today, just days after the Game of the Year Edition is released. The Borderlands 2 $100,000 Loot Hunt will run from October 11 to November 7 and will have several prizes available. Entries can be obtained each day by killing a specific target in game, and in-game items will be awarded if enough people complete the challenge each day. Cash prizes start at $5,000 for the first week and go up to $50,000 for the grand prize. Additional prizes include PlayStation Vitas, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660 Ti GPUs, and a lifetime supply of all past, present, and future 2K games.

Source: IGN


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Mushkin Releases New USB 3.0 Drive

Posted: October 6, 2013 @ time: 11:44AM
Author: CheeseMan42

Mushkin first announced its newest USB 3.0 drive, the Ventura Ultra, at CES 2013. Mushkin claims that the drive is the fastest available USB 3.0 drive with read and write speeds up to 380 MB/s and 325 MB/s, respectively. The inclusion of USB Attached SCSI Protocol support allows for even faster transfers with the use of command queuing. The Ventura Ultra has capacity of 240 GB and will be available for purchase October 7.

Source: Press Release


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Hardware Roundup: Monday Edition

Posted: October 7, 2013 @ time: 04:06AM
Author: CheeseMan42

We have a pair of small, feature packed devices for you in today's roundup. The iconBIT NetTAB THOR Quad FHD NT-1005T is a 10.1" 1080p Android tablet that is powered by a quad core ARM Cortex-A9 and Mali-400 GPU. It features all of the usual bells and whistles that come in this area. The Razer Tartarus features 25 programmable LED backlit keys for a fully customizable gaming experience. The Tartarus offers something different and extra for gamers that aren't content with just a keyboard.

Gaming Accessories
Razer Tartarus Membrane Gaming Keypad @ Benchmark Reviews

Tablets
iconBIT NetTAB THOR QUAD FHD NT-1005T @ Mad Shrimps


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Curious Carbon Nanotube Property Explained

Posted: October 7, 2013 @ time: 06:14AM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

Carbon nanotubes are long, thin carbon structures with special properties, including great stiffness. In some configurations though, nanotubes will have a stiffness orders of magnitude less than expected, which could affect many applications. Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology have recently determined that the cause of this variation is kinks in the nanotubes.

Prior to this study, the variation in stiffness was believed to be due to buckling or growth defects of the nanotubes. After attaching silicon to the tips of the nanotubes and either pulling or compressing them, the Georgia researchers determined that the variations could not be completely explained by the defects. After placing them under an electron microscope and magnifying them by 10,000 times, the researchers have found a new answer. The nanotubes have very small kinks in them, which cause forests of them to be wavy. This waviness allows the nanotubes to act like springs, which is why they are not as stiff when aligned vertically, like trees in a forest.

Though it may seem like the lack of stiffness could be a problems, for some applications, it could be very useful. Carbon nanotubes are excellent thermal conductors, as much as ten times better than copper, and this compliance to pressures should make them ideal for connecting a silicon chip to a heat spreader. As the chip and spreader expand and contract with temperature changes, the nanotubes will not break, and thus continue to conduct heat away from the chips.

Source: Georgia Institute of Technology


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First Intel Powered Arduino Board Announced

Posted: October 7, 2013 @ time: 10:56AM
Author: Prunes

Last month at IDF, Intel unveiled a new chip line up. Called the Quark, it is the smallest and least powerful chip currently made by Intel, though you should not count it out yet. At the time there were no announcements of products using Quark chips, but now it seems that Intel has made a rather unexpected collaboration. At Maker Faire Rome, Brian Krzanich, Intel's CEO, announced a new collaboration between Intel and Arduino.

This collaboration has already amounted in a product called the Galileo, which is supposed to allow DIY folks to make even more complex and intricate projects. Previous Arduino boards have used simple microcontrollers to handle various inputs coming from sensors, USB or some specific Arduino connectors. The problem with these microcontrollers is that they do not offer much connectivity and they have limited processing power. Arduino has also offered so called "shields" that connect to the Arduino board adding additional I/O options. While the simplicity has been a blessing to the DIY crowd, because it allowed novices to get involved as well, it might now be a limitation for some of the more dedicated and demanding users. Therefore the new Galileo might allow those advanced users to build even more complex robots and other demanding projects.

The Galileo reference board will, as mentioned above, use the Quark SoC, which has about the same computing power as a Pentium 3. This also means that the user can now utilize x86 applications. Furthermore, the board will have the known Arduino connectors for compatibility with shields; however, it will also feature USB, 100 Mbps Ethernet, micro SD, RS-232, and a mini-PCI-Express slot. 

The price will be around $60 or less, which makes it very competitive with other Arduino boards, since it has more features and more processing power, while costing about the same as the other boards. It is scheduled for release on November 29.

Source: Ars Technica


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Flexible Ceramic Material Made

Posted: October 7, 2013 @ time: 11:51AM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

Flexibility is a rather common property of metals, which can be deformed without breaking, but not for ceramics. Often you cannot deform a ceramic by even one percent of its size without it shattering. Researchers at MIT and Singapore though have created flexible ceramics that are also able to remember their original shape.

To make the flexible ceramic, the researchers made it small, but with large grains. Smaller objects are typically more resistant to cracking, and increasing grain size reduces crystal-grain boundaries, where cracks most often form. This combination of techniques allowed the researchers to make a micrometer-wide filament of zirconia that can be deformed up to seven percent its size without breaking. The shape-memory property is something seen in some metals and polymers, but has never been seen in ceramics before, though the mechanics involved would allow it. The issue has been that ceramics would break before the property could be utilized.

The researchers believe the ceramic has potential in micro and nanodevices as an actuator. As the material is able to push things with more force than anything else for its size, the researchers are probably right.

Source: MIT


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NVIDIA Lowers Prices of GeForce GPUs

Posted: October 7, 2013 @ time: 02:19PM
Author: CheeseMan42

NVIDIA has lowered the prices on some of its video cards, effective today. The GeForce GTX 650 Ti BOOST 1GB will drop to $129. The 2GB model of the same card will have a new price of $149. The final card to receive a price drop is the GeForce GTX 660, which will now retail for $179. The company believes that some offerings from GPU partners will drop even lower. The new prices should now be live at online retailers including Newegg and NCIX.

Source: Press Release


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Hardware Roundup: Tuesday Edition

Posted: October 8, 2013 @ time: 03:51AM
Author: CheeseMan42

The roundup today features a diverse array of products spanning a number of categories. The Lian Li PC-10N is the latest mid tower case from the popular manufacturer and it offers a number of configuration options. The ASUS G750JX-DB71 is branded with the Republic of Gamers tag and packs enough power to take the latest games with you in your travels. The Scythe Grand Kama Cross 2 is built with a unique looking X shaped design and several copper heat pipes. The VOLOS mouse from Thermaltake uses a laser sensor and is targeted at MOBA gamers with its 14 buttons. Finally, we have a pair of reviews for the latest AMD GPUs that are part of the RX 200 Series, specifically the R9 280X, 270X, and 260X.

Cases
Lian Li PC-10N @ LanOC Reviews

CPU Cooling
Scythe Grand Kama Cross 2 CPU Air Cooled Heatsink @ HardOCP

Gaming Notebooks
ASUS G750JX-DB71 Gaming Notebook @ PC Perspective

Mice
Tt eSPORTS VOLOS Gaming Mouse @ Think Computers

Video Cards
AMD Radeon R9 280X, R9 270X and R7 260X @ PC Perspective
AMD Radeon R9 270X and R7 260X @ Tech Spot


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Haptics and Gesture Control Taken Off-Screen

Posted: October 8, 2013 @ time: 06:33AM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

Something you will find in many examples of science fiction are technologies that allow a user to interact with a system, without directly touching it. What you do not see with these technologies very often though is haptic feedback. Researchers at the University of Bristol decided to do something about that by developing UltraHaptics, so uses can interact with a device in mid-air, while also getting feedback.

With the right sound and sound system, you may be familiar with how sounds can exert enough force to be felt by the body. By creating a phased array of ultrasonic transducers, the researchers are able to focus the force of the sound waves into specific areas, thereby providing tactile feedback in mid-air. Above the transducers is an acoustically transparent display and a Leap Motion sensor to allow control of the device.

The researchers envision their UltraHaptics technology being integrated into public interactive surfaces, where it will provide haptic feedback without compromising simplicity or accessibility.

 

 

Source: University of Bristol


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Details on Some of AMD's New GPUs

Posted: October 8, 2013 @ time: 01:26PM
Author: Prunes

Specifications on five of AMD's next generation GPUs have been made public and the figures looks interesting. The details on the R9 290X and 290 are still under NDAs, but I will keep you informed as soon as they are revealed. The cards in question are the R9 280X, R9 270X, R7 260X, R7 250, and R7 240. All of these cards use PCI-Express 3.0, and support DirectX 11.2, OpenGL 4.3, and Mantle. These cards look like they might give NVIDIA some restless nights, and the top tier cards still have to be revealed. Below is a table with what is currently known about the cards.

Model Stream Processors Core Clock Compute Performance Memory Config. Memory speed Power Connectors TDP Price
R9 280X 2,048 1 GHz 4.1 TFLOPS 3 GB GDDR5 384-bit 6 Gbps 1 x 6-pin and 1 x 8-pin 250 W $299
R9 270 1,280 1.05 GHz 2.69 TFLOPS 2/4 GB GDDR 5 256-bit 5.6 Gbps 2 x 6-pin 180 W $199
R7 260X 896 1.1 GHz 1.97 TFLOPS 2 GB GDDR5 128-bit 6.5 Gbps 1 x 6-pin 115 W $139
R7 250 384 1.05 GHz 806 GFLOPS 1/2 GB GDDR5 128-bit 4.6 Gbps None required 65 W N/A
R7 240 320 780 MHz 499 GFLOPS 1/2 GB GDDR5 128-bit 4.6 Gbps None required 30 W N/A

Source: MaximumPC


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NZXT Adds Source 530 to Case Lineup

Posted: October 8, 2013 @ time: 02:56PM
Author: CheeseMan42

The Source 530 is the latest case offering from NZXT, designed with the goal to "prove that high performance doesn't have to mean a high price tag." The case is flexible enough to accommodate air cooling or large water cooling setups, with mount points for a 360mm radiator on top or 240mm in front. The case is a perfect match for the company's own Kraken X60 all-in-one liquid cooling solution. Up to nine fans can be installed to keep the airflow up, with supported sizes ranging from 120mm to 200mm. The Source 530 is available immediately in black at an MSRP of $89.99.

Source: Press Release


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Optical 'Tuning Fork' Created

Posted: October 8, 2013 @ time: 03:55PM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

Tuning forks are a classic tool in science classrooms, as a simple strike causes them to produce a pure frequency for a long period of time. This also makes them useful as a reference when sound frequencies are involved, such as when tuning an instrument. Recently researchers at the California Institute of Technology have developed an optical equivalent to a tuning fork, and it is about the size of a quarter.

Optical resonators are not a new technology, but building them with a high quality factor is not very easy. Energy surges in a resonator will cause the frequency of light to fluctuate, and some of these surges are unavoidable due to thermodynamics. However, by creating the longest possible path for the light to travel within the resonator, the surges are dampened. By using an Archimedean spiral, the path, which covers the area of a quarter, is over one meter long; one hundred times longer than previous designs.

This ability to create a stable, pure frequency of light could see use in electronics which have to process optical signals. Given the ever-increasing use of fiber-optic communication, this technology could become very useful as it enables high-performance systems.

Source: California Institute of Technology


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Hardware Roundup: Wednesday Edition

Posted: October 9, 2013 @ time: 03:46AM
Author: CheeseMan42

We start off the roundup for today with another pair of reviews featuring the newest AMD GPUs from the RX 200 Series. First up is an offering from ASUS that features a large aftermarket cooling solution. The other takes a look at the AMD reference designs for the R9 270X and R7 260X. Next up we have a look at one of the newest Android powered entries into the smartphone market, the Motorola Droid MAXX.

Smartphones
Motorola Droid MAXX @ LanOC Reviews

Video Cards
AMD Radeon R9 270X & R7 260X Review @ Neo Seeker
ASUS R9 280X DirectCU II TOP Video Card Review @ HardOCP


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Multicore Optical Fiber-Based Network Built

Posted: October 9, 2013 @ time: 06:17AM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

For most people, the Internet enters their home, office, school, etc. through electrical cables, but the backbone of the Internet actually utilizes fiber optics. Instead of electrical signals, fiber optic cables are able to transmit information via optical signals, which can travel significantly faster, but the demand for connectivity is eventually going to be greater than that speed. Researchers at the University of Bristol and National Institute of Information and Communications Technology in Japan however have made the first demonstration of a multicore fiber network, which has the potentially to outperform modern networks.

The typical fiber optic cable contains a single core for light to travel through, while a multicore cable is able to carry multiple optical signals at the same time. Though this hardware can definitely improve performance, the researchers also used Software Defined Network (SDN) control. This system allows the network to be flexible and respond to different situations, and thus maintain optimal performance.

To reduce the need for error correction of the signals, the researchers also applied self-homodyne detection, which sends a pilot-tone signal along another optical core. By combining the data and pilot signal, the receiver is able to remove a great deal of noise, reducing the need for signal processing.

Source: University of Bristol


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L337 GANK Drone is the Latest Motherboard from ECS

Posted: October 9, 2013 @ time: 01:42PM
Author: CheeseMan42

ECS has officially released the latest motherboard in the L337 series, the L337 GANK Drone Z87H3-A3X. The board is described as "entry level" and uses the Intel Z87 Express chipset. In addition to support for fourth generation Intel Core processors, the Drone also offers support for dual GPU solutions from NVIDIA or AMD, four DDR3 slots, and custom designed heatsinks to keep components cool under load. The board also has a number of pre-configured overclocking profiles for an easy performance increase in your system, and the use of Golden Solid Capacitors boasts up to six times increase in lifespan.

Source: Press Release


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Real-time 3D Mapping of Object's Interior Achieved Via X-Rays

Posted: October 9, 2013 @ time: 02:22PM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

Thanks to some science and a lot of cartoons, people know that to look inside of something, they want to use X-rays. These high energy photons are able to pass through most matter and are transmitted, absorbed, or scattered when they actually run into something. Researchers at the University of Manchester have recently found a new way to apply X-rays that allows for the 3D mapping of an object's internal structure, in real time.

X-rays offer a non-invasive way to analyze a material's internal structure. Typically this is done by shining X-ray beams at the objet, and recording the transmitted beams. Thanks to some advanced computer algorithms, we are able to create a density contrast image. What the Manchester researchers have done is created a system that records and analyzes the scattered X-rays, which carry information about the internal structure and chemistry of the object.

As this technique allows researchers to determine what specific atoms are doing without taking an object apart, it should have a great deal of potential. One day we may see it used to study stress-strain gradients, identification of minerals and other substances, as well as distinguishing between healthy and diseased tissue.

Source: University of Manchester


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Hardware Roundup: Thursday Edition

Posted: October 10, 2013 @ time: 05:04AM
Author: CheeseMan42

Today we open with an accessory that no online gamer should be without, a microphone. The design of the V-MODA BoomPro makes it a great choice for PC and console gamers alike. Next up we have a pair of NVIDIA graphics cards at opposite ends of the spectrum. The MSI GeForce GTX 770 Twin Frozr has a massive heatsink to keep the high performance card cool. On the other hand, the Asus GTX 670 Direct CU Mini is designed with small form factor systems in mind and is much shorter. We finish the roundup today with a look at another new card in the RX 200 series from AMD, the MSI Radeon R9 270X Gaming.

Microphone
V-MODA BoomPro Microphone C-BP-BLACK Review @ Benchmark Reviews

Video Cards
MSI GeForce GTX 770 Twin Frozr Gaming OC Edition Video Card Review @ Think Computers
Asus GTX 670 Direct CU Mini @ LanOC Reviews
MSI Radeon R9 270X GAMING 2GB Video Card Review @ Benchmark Reviews


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Special Nano-Thin Film Protects Against Oxidization

Posted: October 10, 2013 @ time: 06:46AM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

Oxidation is a big deal for many applications, as it can change a material's properties or compromise a material's strength. For these reasons, many methods to prevent oxidation have been created, but some environments are too extreme for those methods to survive. Researchers at Rice University though have discovered that hexagonal boron nitride (h-BN) can protect a material from oxidizing, even when it is applied as a thin film just nanometers thick.

Hexagonal boron nitride is a sheet of boron and nitrogen that can be as little as one atom thick, and has special properties because of it. These properties are why it is being studied for use in electronic and photonic devices, but if it can be produced at a large enough scale, we may see it used for other applications. Using chemical vapor deposition, the researchers were able to grow a film of h-BN on nickel foil and expose it to temperatures as high as 1100 ºC in an oxygen-rich environment, without any oxidation of the nickel. The researchers were also able to grow the thin-film on pieces of graphene, to be transferred to copper and steel.

With such amazing performance, despite its small size, the researchers see it having potential in turbines, jet engines, and underwater environments. Hexagonal boron nitride could also be used to protect solar panels, as at just nanometers thick, it is effectively invisible.

Source: Rice University


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Hardware Roundup: Friday Edition

Posted: October 11, 2013 @ time: 04:08AM
Author: CheeseMan42

Our final roundup of the week brings several articles and reviews focused around gaming. The team over at HardOCP compares the performance of an NVIDIA GeForce 770 GTX and the recently released AMD Radeon R9 280X in the Battlefield 4 Beta. Neo Seeker gives us our second look this week at the Tt eSports VOLOS gaming mouse. Benchmark Reviews takes a look at the other half of a typical PC game setup with the Thermaltake MEKA G-Unit mechanical keyboard. PC Perspective gives a video tour and review of a small form factor ORIGIN PC from Millenium. LanOC Reviews goes into the heart of a gaming machine with the R9 270X Windforce from Gigabyte, featuring a massive cooler with three fans and heat pipes. The OCZ Vertex 450 provides a great drive for quickly loading all of your favorite games. A departure from the gaming theme gives us a review from Mad Shrimps of a new 4TB drive from Hitachi that is targeted toward enterprise users. Finally, Tech Spot takes a walk down memory lane and looks back on some products that were "ahead of their time." This article had me feeling nostalgic, remembering the good old days of Sega Channel.

Gaming
Battlefield 4 Beta Performance Preview @ HardOCP

Keyboards
Thermaltake MEKA G-Unit Illuminated Mechanical Keyboard Review @ Benchmark Reviews

Mice
Tt eSPORTS VOLOS Gaming Mouse Review @ Neo Seeker

Miscellaneous
Technology Before Its Time: 9 Products That Were Too Early to Market @ Tech Spot

Pre-built Systems
Video Perspective: ORIGIN PC Millennium Custom Gaming Rig @ PC Perspective

Storage
HGST Ultrastar 7K4000 3.5-inch 4TB 7200 RPM HDD Review @ Mad Shrimps
OCZ Vertex 450 128GB Solid State Drive RAID Review @ Think Computers

Video Cards
Gigabyte R9 270X Windforce @ LanOC Reviews


Complete Story


New Algorithm for Improving Robot Vision

Posted: October 11, 2013 @ time: 06:00AM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

If robots are to ever enter the household, they will have to be able to recognize the objects around them. While the human brain can achieve this very quickly, computers have a much harder time determining what they are looking at, and what its orientation is. Researchers at MIT though have developed a new algorithm that may greatly improve a robot's ability to do this.

Central to the new algorithm is a statistical tool called a Bingham distribution. This is a probability distribution that the researchers realized could be applied to aligning a real object with a geometric model. To determine the orientation of an object, a robot will attempt to align a geometric model of the object with it. The catch is that rotating the model to align some points of the model and the object, may cause others to go out of alignment. It turns out that the probability a rotation will align the model and object can be described with a Bingham distribution, and thus it can be used to quickly determine the object's orientation.

When tested, the new algorithm produced about as many false positive as other algorithms but was able to identify 73% of objects in a scene, compared to 64%. The performance should improve, according to the researchers, as more information is provided to the system, such as the likelihood of certain objects being found at unusual angles.

Source: MIT


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Hardware Roundup: Monday Edition

Posted: October 14, 2013 @ time: 05:14AM
Author: CheeseMan42

We open up the new week with a strong showing for the Monday roundup. PC Perspective takes a look at the latest full-tower ATX case from Corsair, the Obsidian 750D, a massive case with a side window and plenty of space for components. A new podcast is also available from PC Perspective with highlights including a discussion on the newest AMD video cards and the Steam Machine specs. Frosty Tech offers a review of the Silverstone NT01-Pro heatsink which features a combination of aluminum fins and copper heat pipes to provide cooling for the latest AMD and Intel CPUs.

Tech Spot branches out into the mobile product space with a review of the Android powered LG G2 that has a quad core Qualcomm CPU. Madshrimps takes readers along for a tour of the Firstlook 2013 trade show. We finish out the day with two more reviews of the AMD RX series of GPUs. LanOC Reviews puts the Sapphire Toxic R9 270X through its paces and Benchmark Reviews reviews the HIS Radeon R9 280X IceQ X2. Both cards have massive after market cooling solutions that should allow for improved performance and overclocking ability.

Cases
Corsair Obsidian 750D Full-Tower ATX Case Review @ PC Perspective

CPU Cooling
Silverstone NT01-Pro Heatsink Review @ Frosty Tech

Podcasts
Podcast #272 @ PC Perspective

Smartphones
LG G2 Review @ Tech Spot

Trade Shows
Firstlook 2013 @ Mad Shrimps

Video Cards
Sapphire Toxic R9 270X @ LanOC Reviews
HIS Radeon R9 280X IceQ X2 Video Card Review @ Benchmark Reviews


Complete Story


Another Carbon Allotrope with Extraordinary Properties

Posted: October 14, 2013 @ time: 06:44AM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

Carbon can be found in many places around us, and certainly in us, so some may think it is not that special of an element. They would be very wrong as materials such as graphene, a two-dimensional, pure carbon structure, have extraordinary properties that could revolutionize many technologies. Now researchers at Rice University have determined some properties for another allotrope of carbon, including its world-record tensile strength.

Called carbyne, it is a one dimensional carbon structure, as the carbon atoms either share double bonds or alternating single and triple bonds with each other. It was first theorized over a hundred years ago and first synthesized in 1960, but only now has a complete mechanical picture of it been made. According to this study, it should have double the tensile strength and stiffness of graphene and carbon nanotubes, stretching it changes its band gap, and twisting it alters the band gap so much it can become a magnetic semiconductor. Perhaps most its most important property though is its stability. Contrary to prior literature, the new research indicates that at room temperature, carbyne chains will not collapse into graphite or soot upon contact, but will just connect at a single spot.

As impressive and potentially useful as these properties may be, there is no means to mass produce carbyne at this time. Of course, now that we can start to think of ways to use it, that may change.

Source: Rice University


Complete Story


Deepcool Releases new Mini ITX CPU Cooler

Posted: October 14, 2013 @ time: 11:42AM
Author: CheeseMan42

The latest CPU heatsink from Deepcool has been announced and will be released under the Gamer Storm product line. The GABRIEL CPU cooler is targeted at users with small form factor PCs and is compatible with Mini ITX boards. The low profile heatsink has a copper base and four copper heatpipes that run into aluminum cooling fins. A 120mm fan that measures just 20mm thick is included and the entire package is only 60mm thick. The included fan is capable of pushing 61.93 CFM at up to 1800 RPM with a noise level that tops out at just over 18 dBA. The cooler has mounting options for all major Intel and AMD sockets and will be available in November at an MSRP of $40.

Source: Press Release


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Researchers Surprised by Counter-Intuitive Healing Process

Posted: October 14, 2013 @ time: 03:25PM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

Wouldn't it be nice if broken and cracked materials could repair themselves? Of course it would which is why researchers are searching for self-healing materials. Those at MIT have recently stumbled upon a way by which metals could self-heal, and it was such a surprising find, they had to recheck their work.

Normally one would expect that pulling on a piece of metal with a crack in it would cause the crack to grow. According to the MIT researchers, it may not be that simple. Their computer showed cracks actually sealing as tension was applied, though the cracks had to be of a special kind. Disclinations are a type of defect where the crack extends partially into a crystalline grain, but do not reach from one side to the other. This kind of defect was first discovered a century ago and can have such intense stress fields that the effects of an applied load can be reversed, forcing a crack to heal itself.

Currently this work is just theoretical, but if real metals and alloys can be made to self-heal like this, we could see substantially longer lasting materials in the future. Metal fatigue, possibly the most common cause of metal failure, can occur as nanoscale cracks build up, and potentially it is these cracks that can be healed with tension.

 

 

Source: MIT


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Hardware Roundup: Tuesday Edition

Posted: October 15, 2013 @ time: 06:31AM
Author: CheeseMan42

Up first today is a look at a two bay network attached storage offering from Synology targeted at home and small business users. Tech Spot evaluates how Windows 8 has changed since release, revealing what it likes and what could still use some work. PC Perspective takes a look at an XSPC watercooling kit that is compatible with both Intel and AMD platforms, complete with a reservoir and a 240mm radiator. We finish out our roundup for the day with three reviews for cards in the AMD RX series of video cards. Two cards are from Sapphire, the R9 270X Vapor X and the R9 280X Toxic. The Asus Matrix R9 280X Platinum is the final card of the day and continues with the theme of massive after market cooling options.

Network Attached Storage
Synology DS213j Home to Small Office 2-bay NAS Review @ Madshrimps

Operating Systems
Windows 8.1: Six Things Microsoft Got Right and Others That Are Still Missing @ Tech Spot

Video Cards
Sapphire Radeon R9 280X Toxic Video Card Review @ Think Computers
Asus Matrix R9 280X Platinum @ LanOC Reviews
Sapphire Radeon R9 270X Vapor-X Video Card Review @ Benchmark Reviews

Watercooling
XSPC Raystorm 750 EX240 Watercooling Kit Review @ PC Perspective


Complete Story


Combining a Polymer and Graphene to Trap Gases

Posted: October 15, 2013 @ time: 07:11AM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

In many situations, we want to hold gases within a container or keep them out. Achieving this is harder than you may think though, as many materials are permeable to gas molecules, including many plastics. Researchers at Rice University, and in Hungary, Slovenia, and India though have managed to combine a polymer and graphene nanoribbons to make a nearly impermeable barrier.

Graphene is an atom-thick sheet of carbon that is capable of blocking gas molecules, but it is difficult to produce, so the researchers had to look elsewhere. In this case they went to graphene nanoribbons, which are actually made by unzipping carbon nanotubes. The nanoribbons are then solution cast into a polymer, where they disperse enough to mimic a full sheet of graphene. When the composite material, containing just 0.5% nanoribbons by weight, was used to separate a vacuum from a chamber full of nitrogen, the pressure did not change after 1000 seconds, and barely dropped over 18 hours.

Potentially this composite material could be used for preserving food, drinks, beer, and storing compressed natural gas for cars. As the 0.5% mixture also provided optimal strength for the polymer, that latter possibility could become quite real, as the polymer could be a lot lighter than an all metal tank.

Source: Rice University


Complete Story


Cooler Master Expands PSU Line Up With New GM Series

Posted: October 15, 2013 @ time: 12:51PM
Author: Prunes

A new addition to Cooler Master's PSU line up has been released. Called the GM Series, it will be available in 450, 550, 650, and 750 W capacities. The PSUs will be semi-modular and have an 80PLUS Bronze certification. On top of that, they will use a unique 3D circuit design that will reduce the amount of unnecessary internal cabling, which in turn reduces crosstalk and signal noise, while allowing for better airflow to critical components. The GM Series will be based on a single +12 V rail design with a DC-DC module that increases voltage stability and overall efficiency. Furthermore, the PSUs will support C6/C7 sleep state along with a zero load operation feature, which ensures Haswell compatibility. 

The PSUs will be cooled by a single 120 mm fan and, as stated above, be semi-modular with flat ribbon cables. As for connectivity, the 650 W and 750 W will have a 24-pin ATX, an 8-pin EPS, four 6+2-pin PCI-Express, eight SATA, six Molex and one floppy connector. The 450 W and 550 W will have to settle with two 6+2-pin PCI-Express, and less Molex and SATA connectors.

The GM Series will be available in Europe as of next week with a MSRP set at around €41.93 for the G450M, €50.34 for the G550M, €58.74 for the G650M and €67.14 for the G750M.

Source: Fudzilla


Complete Story


Bringing Genetic Analysis to a Device Near You

Posted: October 15, 2013 @ time: 04:24PM
Author: Guest_Jim_*

Our genetic code contains a great deal of information about us, including where our families are from and what diseases we are predisposed to. If you want to learn this information about yourself, you will have to use one of multiple services to sequence your genome, and wait for select results. Researchers at Tel Aviv University though want to change that by putting part of the analysis in the palm of your hand.

At present, when you have genetic tests done, only specific sequences are analyzed, and if you want some new tests run, you need to provide a new sample. The GeneG app and website however are being designed with a different approach in mind, where your entire genome is sequenced and stored to your profile. This way, new tests can just be applied to the existing data, without a new sample. Also this gives you and by extension your doctor quick access to your genomic data. As medicine goes advances towards pharmacogenomics, where treatments and drugs are customized to a patient's genetics, this could be an invaluable tool.

The researchers are planning to release the GeneG service to doctors this month and later to the public. The website and a demo app are presently available, for those curious about the subject.

Source: American Friends of Tel Aviv University


Complete Story


Hardware Roundup: Wednesday Edition

Posted: October 16, 2013 @ time: 05:12AM
Author: CheeseMan42

Opening up the roundup today is a look at a very unique method of controlling your computer, the Leap Motion Controller. The primary goal of this product is to offer an alternative to the traditional computer mouse. HardOCP then takes a look at a new motherboard from MSI, the Z87 MPower LGA 1150. As the name suggests, this board uses the Intel Z87 chipset and as a member of the MPower series it represents the best that MSI has to offer.

Accessories
Leap Motion Controller LM-010 Performance Review @ Benchmark Reviews

Motherboards
MSI Z87 MPower LGA 1150 Motherboard Review @ HardOCP


Complete Story


3DMark Now Available for Windows RT

Posted: October 16, 2013 @ time: 05:20AM
Author: CheeseMan42

3DMark, the popular benchmark tool from Future Mark, is now available as a free app for Windows RT devices in the Windows Store. With the new application users can determine how well devices like the Surface 2 perform, and can even compare benchmarks across platforms. This version of the benchmark includes three tests that will put your system under a varying amount of stress. Ice Storm uses DirectX 11 running at 720p for graphics testing. Ice Storm Extreme bumps up the resolution to 1080p and uses higher quality textures and effects. Ice Storm Unlimited cranks up the stress even higher to really bring the system to its knees.

Source: Press Release


Complete Story


CPU Graphics Show Off at IEM New York

Posted: October 16, 2013 @ time: 05:28AM
Author: CheeseMan42

The latest stop of the Intel Extreme Masters gaming tour took place at the recent New York Comic Con and saw professional gamers go head to head in games like StarCraft 2: Heart of the Swarm. The tournament was won by Startale Life, who defeated Naniwa of the The Alliance 4-2. Another story to come out of the weekend was that all games were played on systems using Intel Iris Pro graphics. The CPU based graphics of the Iris Pro 5200 were paired with an i7 4750HQ in a Cyberpower Zeus Hercules laptop. The games were all played at 1080p resolutions and according to Laptop Magazine, "the Iris Pro machines easily handled the demanding tasks thrown at them during the tournament without any hiccups."

Source: Intel


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