[H] Enthusiast Archives: February 2017 Archive Listing

Tuesday February 28, 2017

Nvidia GeForce Live Event

I guess this means it's TIme.

What might Nvidia have to share? Could it be a 1080TI?

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Nvidia GeForce 1080Ti:

- Claimed by Nvidia to be faster than the Pascal Titan X at stock settings with plenty of room for overclocking.

- $699

- Available next week.

More details from Nvidia here.

Discussion

Kyle Bennett Announces Inside VR on Stage with AMD at GDC

Just in case you guys missed it earlier, our Founder and Chief Editor, Kyle Bennett was on stage during AMD's Capsaicin and Cream Vega event at GDC where he among other things discussed the importance of VR in 2017, and announced his new episodic show Inside VR, targeting hardware coverage, talking to developers and other aspects of VR. Kyle is at GDC right now, but he did chime in with a HardForum post this morning that gives us a bit of backstory on what has actually gone on behind the scenes.

Ongoing Discussion

What the Game Industry Thinks of Nintendo’s Switch

Polygon has gathered up a bunch of developers and executives to get their thoughts on aspects of the Nintendo Switch, such as third-party support and motion-controller technology. I am going to be completely honest with the fact that I couldn’t care less about what they have to say and am merely here for the illustrations, but if you want some industry-figure insight, this may be worth reading. A newer article is arguing that Nintendo’s latest console isn’t even "finished." Who got their pre-orders in?

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To some, though, the system seems incomplete. From early reports of controllers that don't properly sync to a limited launch lineup, a lack of non-game apps like Netflix, a missing Virtual Console library and lingering questions about the online service, there's a simplicity to Switch's launch that recalls the '90s—Zelda is Mario 64, and if you don't want that or a few other games, you might not need the system right away. In time, Nintendo will address those issues. Yet more than most consoles, Switch remains a bit of a mystery at launch. Are motion controls going to be a big part of it? What type of player will Switch developers cater to? And will third-party studios embrace the hardware once the initial hype dies down?

Discussion

Amazon Outage Breaks Large Parts of the Internet

Something hit the fan with Amazon’s S3 web-based storage service earlier, and as a result, a ton of websites, apps, and devices were/are broken and inaccessible. I read that this was "sweeping the East Coast," but I am in the Tri-state area and haven’t run into anything so far. How about you?

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If your favorite website or internet service isn't accessible today, it's probably not just you. Amazon Web Services' S3 cloud storage is experiencing "high error rates" that have caused chaos among many of the sites that depend on AWS to work. [Engadget] is one of them, but the failure has also affected some or all of Giphy, Medium, Slack, Quora and a slew of other websites and apps you likely use. Some connected home devices aren't working correctly, either. Even Amazon's ability to report problems was broken for a while -- the AWS dashboard wasn't changing color because its issue was "related" to S3's problems.

Discussion

Kyle Bennett Presents "Inside VR" at AMD’s "Capsaicin & Cream" Event

In case you missed it, some random (but nicely dressed) guy named Kyle showed up and presented an up-and-coming series called Inside VR, which will be about—well, just take a guess. Hit the link to hear what our esteemed editor-in-chief had to say about his show, along with a few thoughts on Ryzen.

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Ongoing Discussion

AMD "Capsaicin & Cream" Livestream

In the words of some evil sorcerer guy: "It has begun!" Let us see what AMD has to share about Ryzen and Vega

Ongoing Discussion

Is DirectX 12 Worth the Trouble?

I am pretty sure that someone asked the same question recently, but here we go again. There are all sorts of amusing sessions taking place currently at GDC, and this one ponders whether anyone should waste their time with DirectX 12. All I got out of it is that developers shouldn’t be lazy and async compute is pretty darn great, but I’ll see what you guys have to say. Thanks to cageymaru for this one.

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The developers revisit the question—is DirectX 12 worth it? Well, if you are willing to invest a lot of time into your DirectX 12 implementation, you could succeed, such as in case of "Rise of the Tomb Raider," in which users noticed "significant gains" with the new API. They also argue that it's possible to overcome CPU bottlenecks with or without DirectX 12, if that's relevant to your game or user-base. They also concede that Async Compute is the way forward, and if not console-rivaling performance gains, it can certainly benefit the PC. They're also happy to have gotten rid of AFR multi-GPU as governed by the graphics driver, which was unpredictable and had little control ( remember those pesky 400 MB driver updates just to get multi-GPU support? ).

Discussion

Unreal Engine 4 2017 Features Trailer

Epic Games wants to remind developers how great the Unreal Engine is with their latest video, which serves to showcase all of the new features game makers will be able to play around with in 2017. You may download the engine at the official site.

Discussion

126 vBulletin Forums Hacked; 819,977 Accounts Leaked on Hacking Forums

Shame on all of the admins out there who never bothered to update their vBulletin software. A hacker has stolen information from a number of forums by taking advantage of a security vulnerability that was discovered back in June 2016. Not that the leaked passwords are plain text here, but it’s a neat idea to use a unique password for each and every site if you can.

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…a hacker going by the online handle of "CrimeAgency" on Twitter is claiming to have hacked 126 vBulletin (vB) based web forums, stealing personal data of administrators and registered users and leaking them on an underground hacking forum. The data was scanned by online data mining and breach notification platform Hacked-DB. The hack was conducted between January and Febuarary 2017 in which 819,977 user accounts were stolen from the vulnerable forums. The stolen data includes email addresses, hashed passwords, and 1681 unique IP addresses, while the email count based on domains is Gmail: 219,324 accounts, Outlook: 11,070 accounts, Yahoo: 108,777 accounts, and Hotmail: 121,507 accounts.

Discussion

Xiaomi Reveals 64-Bit Surge S1 Chipset, Its First-Ever SoC

Xiaomi is joining Apple, Samsung, and Huawei as one of the few manufacturers who can lay claim to having a proprietary smartphone chip. The company has introduced their first in-house chipset, the Surge S1, which incorporates four 2.2GHz cores and four 1.4GHz cores, providing a nice balance between performance and power efficiency. Xiaomi is now free to shun Qualcomm and MediaTek’s offerings for their own devices.

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The Surge S1 is an octa-core SoC with four high-performance ARM Cortex A53 cores running at 2.2 GHz and four power-efficient ARM Cortex A53 at 1.4 GHz. These are optimized with ARM’s big.LITTLE processing tech to help deliver "peak-performance capacity, higher sustained performance, and increased parallel processing performance, at significantly lower average power." The Surge S1 uses TSMC’s 28nm HPc process technology, and implements a Mali T860 GPU (said to be 40% more power efficient than the previous-gen Mali-T760), and a 32-bit DSP, supporting VoLTE and 16 kHz sampling.

Discussion

Meizu's "Super mCharge" Tech Will Juice up Your Phone in 20 Minutes

Is this the battery-charging breakthrough we’ve been waiting for? At MWC, Meizu demonstrated the potential of their Super mCharge technology by charging a 3000mAh device from 0% to 100% in 18 minutes. Your first concern is probably how badly it degrades the battery, but they claim that 80% original capacity is retained even after 800 charge cycles.

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Currently, even the fastest-charging phones take around an hour and a half to get their batteries fully recharged: the Galaxy S7 takes 1 hour and 28 minutes, the OnePlus 3T is a bit faster with its Dash Charge at 1 hour and 25 minutes, while the Google Pixel is slower at 2 hours, while the iPhone 7 takes an excruciatingly long 2 hours and 21 minutes. Meizu's new technology would certainly be a huge improvement over current tech. So how would Meizu pull this off? The company says it has developed an "upgraded data cable" and couple with clever circuitry in the charger itself and on the phone, it is able to deliver a 11V/5A electrical current, for a total power of the impressive 55 watts.

Discussion

SpaceX Plans to Send 2 Tourists around Moon in 2018

Would you pay $35 million for a trip into space with no guarantee that you would return? Two rich folks have actually approached Musk about this, and the madman has agreed to the venture. The trip, which will make them the first humans to venture that far out into space in more than 40 years, will involve a fly-by of the moon’s surface before it (hopefully) lands back on Earth. One industry pundit would have you know that "SpaceX has yet to get crew from the ground to low-Earth orbit."

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[Elon Musk] said two private individuals approached the company to see if SpaceX would be willing to send them on a weeklong cruise, which would fly past the surface of the moon — but not land — and continue outward before gravity turned the spacecraft around and brought it back to Earth for a landing. "This would do a long loop around the moon," Mr. Musk said. The company is aiming to launch this moon mission in late 2018. The two people would spend about a week inside one of SpaceX’s Dragon 2 capsules, launched on SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy rocket. The spacecraft would be automated, but the travelers would undergo training for emergencies.

Discussion