[H]ard News

Tuesday July 07, 2015

Microsoft Inviting Academics To Create New HoloLens Experiences

Microsoft is offering up some serious cash to the academic community to develop new holographic computing experiences.

We are pleased to announce the Microsoft HoloLens Academic Research request for proposals (RFP), which will enable the academic community to join us in advancing the creation of new holographic computing experiences. The Microsoft HoloLens Academic RFP will award US$100,000 and two HoloLens development kits to academic institutions.


[H]ardware Round-Up

CPU: Intel Core i7-5775C @ ThinkComputers

ETC.: Cherry MX Board 6.0 @ ocaholic

Sennheiser MX 686G Sport Earphone @ TechnologyX

Motherboards: ASRock X99 Extreme6/3.1 @ Hardware Secrets

Video: SAPPHIRE R9 Fury X @ Vortez

Zotac GeForce GTX 980 Ti AMP! @ Technic3D

Another Phantom Console Surfaces On The Internet

I'm not sure why the unearthing of another Phantom console is making news today, we gave you an in-depth look into one almost 11 years ago. I guess you could say we cracked one open twice if you count this:

Some quick Internet sleuthing doesn't turn up any information or photos of any similar Phantom prototypes after the fall of Infinium; these design mockups of the console's shell that popped up in 2010 might be the closest thing. We reached out to a couple of avid game collectors who are constantly looking for rarities like this, and neither of them had ever seen a Phantom prototype out in the wild. The collector that brought this machine in to Schlesinger may have a one-of-a-kind item on his hands.


Eighteen Minutes Of No Man's Sky Gameplay

IGN has posted an eighteen minute gameplay video from the upcoming game No Man's Sky.


Apple Should Break Its Silence On Apple Watch Sales Data

Why should Apple "break its silence" on Apple Watch sales figures? You and I both know they are probably less than expected. Why? Because Apple isn't bragging about it. When is the last time Apple didn't brag about sales figures when they were great? Exactly.

"This quarter marks the first quarter of Watch sales," she said. "After tight supply early on, continued international expansion and recent comments from Apple lead us to believe that supply and demand (have) stabilized. We find it a bit unusual that Apple has not provided an update on sales as typically, Apple provides detail on units shipped for large and successful product launches."


Drones To Deliver Medicine To Rural Field Hospital

Drones are being used to deliver medicine to a rural field hospital in Virginia.

Unmanned aerial vehicles — drones — are supposed to deliver medicine to the Wise County Fairgrounds in part to study how the emerging technology would be used in humanitarian crises around the world. Organizers expect the July 17 flights to the Remote Area Medical clinic to make history as the first federally approved package deliveries in the United States.


Lawmakers Want Internet Sites To Flag ‘Terrorist Activity’

So the lawmakers in our country are essentially leaving it up to Twitter, YouTube and Facebook to decide what is terrorist activity? I'm all for it as long as they flag that PewDiePie guy. big grin

The measure, contained in the 2016 intelligence authorization, which still has to be voted on by the full Senate, is an effort to help intelligence and law enforcement officials detect threats from the Islamic State and other terrorist groups.


Deepcool Captain 240 Liquid CPU Cooler

The Deepcool Captain 240 is on the test bench today at ThinkComputers. If you are shopping for a new all-in-one cooler, this review should be of interest to you.

Since we have been reviewing their products we have moved from simple air coolers to the very steampunk inspired AiO that we are taking a look at today. The Captain 240 is the middle of their Captain line of AiO coolers and really sets itself apart with it’s aesthetics.


Funny Picture of the Day

Obviously this is a feature, not a bug. I knew the minute I looked at it. big grin

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Former Valve Economist Quits As Finance Minister Of Greece

Apparently it is harder to be finance minister of Greece than it is to run virtual economies in Team Fortress 2. Who knew?

Varoufakis, an economics professor based in Athens, joined Valve in March 2012 as a consultant after Gabe Newell emailed to describe the problems his company ran into as the virtual economies around games such as Team Fortress 2 and Dota 2 saw explosive growth.


NVIDIA Doubles Performance For Deep Learning Training

NVIDIA today announced updates to its GPU-accelerated deep learning software that will double deep learning training performance. The new software will empower data scientists and researchers to supercharge their deep learning projects and product development work by creating more accurate neural networks through faster model training and more sophisticated model design. The NVIDIA®DIGITS™ Deep Learning GPU Training System version 2 (DIGITS 2) and NVIDIA CUDA®Deep Neural Network library version 3 (cuDNN 3) provide significant performance enhancements and new capabilities.

For data scientists, DIGITS 2 now delivers automatic scaling of neural network training across multiple high-performance GPUs. This can double the speed of deep neural network training for image classification compared to a single GPU. For deep learning researchers, cuDNN 3 features optimized data storage in GPU memory for the training of larger, more sophisticated neural networks. cuDNN 3 also provides higher performance than cuDNN 2, enabling researchers to train neural networks up to two times faster on a single GPU. The new cuDNN 3 library is expected to be integrated into forthcoming versions of the deep learning frameworks Caffe, Minerva, Theano and Torch, which are widely used to train deep neural networks.


Monday July 06, 2015

AMD Cuts Revenue Estimate, Citing Weak PC Sales

It looks like AMD's stocks took a hit today after the company cut its revenue estimate to below what analysts were expecting.

Chipmaker Advanced Micro Devices Inc lowered its revenue estimate for the second quarter, below analysts' average estimate, saying the demand for personal computers was weaker-than-expected. AMD's shares fell as much as 15 percent to $2.10 in extended trading, after the company also cut its adjusted gross margin forecast for the quarter ended June 27.


[H]ardware Round-Up II

Cases: Phanteks Enthoo Mini XL @ Technic3D

ETC.: Netgear Nighthawk X6 R8000 AC3200 @ NikKTech

Storage: Samsung 850 PRO 2TB SSD @ Legit Reviews

Samsung 850 PRO 2TB SSD @ The SSD Review

Video: BenQ XL2730Z FreeSync Gaming @ pcGameware

Gigabyte GTX 980 Ti G1 Gaming @ Hardware Heaven

AMD Statement On Fury X Pump Noise

AMD has released a statement today regarding the pump noise of the Fury X line of video cards. The full statement reads as follows:

We have received feedback that during open bench testing a small number of Fury X cards emit a sound from the high speed liquid cooling pump that, while not loud, is bothersome to some users. While the vast majority of initial Fury X owners report remarkably quiet operation, we take this feedback seriously, as AMD’s mission is to always deliver the best possible experience to our Radeon customers.

AMD Radeon R9 Fury X customers demand and deserve the best, so adjustments in the sound baffling adhesive compound were applied in the assembly of the high speed cooling pump to address the specific sound a few end users experienced as problematic. This improved the acoustic profile of the pump, and repeat testing shows the specific pitch/sound in question was largely reduced through adjustments to the sound-baffling adhesive compound in the pump.

AMD will work with its graphic card partners to ensure the satisfaction of the small number of initial customers who observed this specific sound and experienced it as bothersome. AMD is confident that on-going production of Radeon R9 Fury X product reduces the specific sound in question, but this is also a highly subjective matter with wide differences in PC case builds and room acoustics.

The AMD Radeon™ R9 Fury X radiator fan is near silent, and this makes any sound from the high-speed pump more noticeable to some end users, especially during open bench testing. Thus although the overall sound levels are remarkably low for an enthusiast product, AMD has worked to reduce the specific sound that some customers report as bothersome.

Not up to speed on AMD's Fury X yet? Read our evaluation here.


Free Font Automatically Redacts NSA Surveillance Trigger Words

A free font that automatically redacts NSA surveillance trigger words? Why would anyone want that? It's not like I'm going to ______ a bank or _______ the president. wink

Some might see downloading this free font called Seen as the digital equivalent of donning a tin foil hat. Except that we know that security agencies like the NSA are intercepting emails and other communications, scanning for specific trigger words that this font automatically crosses out.


Amazon Is Data Mining Reviewers’ Personal Relationships

This lady seems pretty upset with Amazon but, as customers, how do you feel about this?

"We cannot post your Customer Review… to the Amazon website because your account activity indicates that you know the author," explained the response from the company. "Customer Reviews are meant to give customers unbiased product feedback from fellow shoppers. Because our goal is to provide Customer Reviews that help customers make informed purchase decisions, any reviews that could be viewed as advertising, promotional, or misleading will not be posted."


HardOCP Contracting New Video Card Editor

If you are a Hard|OCP reader in the Chattanooga, Tennessee vicinity or surrounding 100 mile area, we are looking for a part time person to author video card evaluations. This is a paid contractor position per review.

Your duties will include:

  1. Evaluating Gameplay Experience delivered by video cards using PC games

  2. Creating All Graphics, video card pictures, logos, tables, graphs, screenshots

  3. Making educated comparisons and analysis to find the highest playable game settings and apples-to-apples testing

  4. Authoring the Evaluation from start to finish

  5. Complying with Deadlines and Completing in a Designated Time Frame

Recommended background includes:

  1. Deep PC Gaming Experience

  2. GPU and Video Card Knowledge

  3. Technical, or Exposition or Creative Writing ability

  4. Having a Passion for Gaming & Hardware at the Enthusiast Level

Click HERE for all the details.

NVIDIA HairWorks 1.1 Demonstration Video

This NVIDIA HairWorks 1.1 demo is pretty impressive. Make sure you watch the video all the way to the end.


Google’s Ad-Targeting System Holds Women Down

Google is so misogynistic that even its ad-targeting system holding women down. Shame on you Google! roll eyes (sarcastic)

Researchers from Carnegie Mellon University and the International Computer Science Institute built a tool called AdFisher to probe the targeting of ads served up by Google on third party websites. They found that fake Web users believed by Google to be male job seekers were much more likely than equivalent female jobseekers to be shown a pair of ads for high paying executive jobs when they later visited a news website.


Samsung Announces 2TB 850 PRO And 850 EVO SSDs

Samsung has just announced 2TB 850 PRO and 850 EVO SSDs today. The drives aren't showing up on the company website yet so there is no pricing info yet but, according to the press release, the 2TB 850 PRO for 10 years or 300 terabytes written, and the 2TB 850 EVO for five years or 150 TBW.

Samsung, a market leader in advanced memory technology and an innovator in consumer electronics, today introduced the 2-terabyte (TB) 850 PRO and 850 EVO solid state drives (SSDs). Samsung’s 3D Vertical NAND (V-NAND) based retail SSD lineup now features 20 different products with a wide range of capacity options from 120 gigabyte (GB) to 2TB. Available in 50 countries, the launch of the 2TB drives addresses the ever-increasing consumer demand for high-performance and high-capacity memory solutions.

The new 2TB 850 SSD PRO and EVO drives remain in the same 7-millimeter, 2.5-inch aluminum case as their predecessors did. Equipped with Samsung’s advanced chip solutions, including 128 individual Samsung 32-layer 128Gb 3D V-NAND flash chips, an upgraded high-performance MHX controller that supports 2TB capacity, and four 20nm-class process technology-based 4Gb LPDDR3 DRAM chips, the 2TB 850 family provides industry-leading performance and power efficiency. With added capacity, professionals and consumers can experience a smoother computing environment prepared for the intense demands of rich content such as 4K UHD video editing and viewing.


‘Pirate’ Site Admin Ordered To Pay Hollywood $12.8M

If you had any interest in running a site that links to pirated content, this judgment for $12.8 million will no doubt dissuade you from following that career path. eek!

The operator of a forum which linked to Hollywood movies, TV shows, music and software has been hit with a massive claim for damages. After previously being sentenced to one year in jail, the 26-year-old must now pay Hollywood at least $12.8m plus a further $4.4m to a pair of music groups and software giant Microsoft.


Gaming [H]eadlines

New MSG 5 Trailer Tomorrow @ GameSpot

Star Citizen Executive Producer Departs? @ Blue's News

The Witcher 3 Getting 'Very Large Update' @ Shacknews

The Witcher 3 Ultimate Review @ Real Hardware Reviews

MSI Radeon R9 390X GAMING 8G Overclocking Review

If you are in the market for a cool and quiet video card with plenty of overclocking options, make sure you take a moment today to read our MSI Radeon R9 390X GAMING 8G Overclocking Review.

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We take the new MSI Radeon R9 390X GAMING 8G video card and overclock it to it fullest and compare it with an overclocked GeForce GTX 980 at 1440p and 4K in today's latest games. Find out how much overclocking the R9 390X improves performance, and which video card is best performing. Can R9 390X overclock better than R9 290X?


Uber Hires Guards In South Africa

I wonder if Uber is taking the added cost of security out of their percentage of the ride fees or the driver's cut?

Uber has been in contact with the police and deployed security to help prevent intimidation by metered taxi drivers at the Sandton City shopping mall and Sandton Gautrain station in northern Johannesburg, the San Francisco-based company said in a statement on its website on Monday.


[H]ardware Round-Up

Cases: Supermicro S5 Gaming Case @ Techgage

ETC.: BIOS Option Of The Week @ TechARP

ROCCAT Kave XTD 5.1 Headset @ CowcotLand

Storage: Samsung 850 EVO 2TB SSD @ Guru3D

Video: XFX R9 380 4G DD @ Bjorn3D

The World's First Cloud Movie

This movie isn't playing from the cloud, it's actually playing on the clouds. cool


Doom On Raspberry Pi

Is there anything you can't do with a Raspberry Pi? big grin


Amazon's 20th Birthday Brings "More Deals Than Black Friday"

Attention Amazon Prime members, the company has just announced Prime Day. The July 15th event will have "more deals than Black Friday" so you'd have your credit cards out and be ready to shop. smile

More than 90 years ago, holiday shopping found its official start the Friday after Thanksgiving, eventually becoming Black Friday, the biggest shopping day of the year. Over the years, Amazon has helped make Black Friday even more of a global online shopping phenomenon. Next week, Amazon turns 20 and on the eve of its birthday, the company introduces Prime Day, a global shopping event, offering more deals than Black Friday, exclusively for Prime members in the U.S., U.K., Spain, Japan, Italy, Germany, France, Canada and Austria. On Wednesday, July 15, new and existing members in the U.S. will find deals starting at midnight, with new deals starting as often as every ten minutes. They can shop thousands of Lightning Deals, seven popular Deals of the Day and receive unlimited fast, free shipping.


New Android Malware Found Every 18 Seconds

One solution to finding this much malware, is to quit looking for it. Problem solved. wink

Wrap your mind around this statistic: A new piece of malware on the Android platform is discovered every 18 seconds. That’s at least one new malware found in the time it took me to write these opening sentences. That’s insane.


ASUS X99 Sabertooth Motherboard Review

The crew at Hardware Canucks has spent a little quality time with the ASUS X99 Sabertooth motherboard today. For comparison purposes, you can see our evaluation here.

The TUF Sabertooth design philosophy starts above the surface of the motherboard and works down from there. Specifically ASUS has included their iconic TUF Thermal Armor which utilizes the concept of a wind tunnel by providing direct airflow through the heat-critical components of the board.


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