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Friday August 26, 2016

[H]ard|OCP Week in Reviews

Today is Friday and you know what that means! It is time once again for the [H]ard|OCP Week in Reviews! For anyone that might have missed them, we like to take a quick look back on the hardware evaluations and articles we posted earlier in the week. We kicked the week off with our AMD & NVIDIA GPU VR Performance: Google's Tilt Brush article, followed by our evaluation of the SilverStone SX700-LPT 700W SFX-L power supply. Finally, we wrapped things up our Deus Ex: Mankind Divided Performance and IQ Preview and our AMD & NVIDIA GPU VR Performance: Project Cars article.

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Sign Up To Watch AMD IFA Keynote On VR

Those of you interested in watching AMD's IFA keynote can sign up here. The keynote will be delivered by AMD CTO and SVP Mark Papermaster in Berlin, Germany on September 3rd.

Virtual Reality (VR) immerses us in an entirely computer generated world, enabling experiences beyond our wildest dreams, where we can see and do things unimaginable now. An increasing chorus of pundits predict VR will dramatically change the landscape of every industry, from healthcare to entertainment, education, fashion, and business. This new era will connect the world of our imagination, our senses and even our intuition. The fact VR is now possible is due to tremendous advancements in computer processing power, graphics and display technologies, and software development tools. This visionary keynote provides unique insights as to where The Immersive Computing Era may take us…today and tomorrow.

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HTC Vive at Gamescom 2016

HTC partnered with AMD this year to show off the power of the Vive at Gamescom 2016. In addition to AMD, developers such as Croteam, Mifcom, Narayana Games, VR Unicorns, and others all had VR games and simulations on display at the show. Watching people play VR games in a room scale environment gives you a good idea why we like to use the HTC Vive in our VR reviews.

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[H]ardware Round-Up II

Cases: Deepcool DUKASE WHV2 @ FunkyKit

Cooling: CM MasterLiquid Maker 92 @ techPowerUP!

ETC.: Cooler Master Devastator II @ OCInside

SteelSeries Rival 700 Mouse @ APH Networks

Video: Custom GTX 1080 Round-Up @ HotHardware

EVGA GeForce GTX 1060 SC @ LanOC

Self-Driving Uber Spotted In Pittsburgh

Remember when we told you that Uber would be rolling out its self-driving fleet in Pittsburgh later this month (here)? Well, it is later this month and self driving Uber cars are being spotted in downtown Pittsburgh.

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Bummer: Binge Watching Is Bad For Your Boner

Seriously folks, you can't make stuff like this up. Researchers claim that we are having less sex because we are binge watching Netflix. Oh yeah, before I forget, binge watching TV also leads to depressions and chronic disease. So much for your plans to binge watch Family Guy. frown

In the 1990s, says David Spiegelhalter, a professor and statistician at Cambridge University, couples had sex about five times per month. Today it's down to three — and Spiegelhalter says binge watching is partially to blame. (In fairness, he also points to people's obsessions with their phones and other digital distractions.) A seeming combination of obsessive watching of shows and the ensuing lack of sleep results in a lowered libido.

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Apple Zero-Days Mark A New Era Of Mobile Hacking

But....but...iPhones are invulnerable to these types of attacks. How can this be? All joking aside, three zero-days chained together to form a one-click jailbreak is just craziness. eek!

On August 12, a week after Krstic’s announcement, Apple’s fears about an unknown vulnerability came true. Ahmed Mansoor, an activist based in the United Arab Emirates, showed strange text messages he’d received to the human rights and technology organization Citizen Lab. The text messages contained a suspicious link, and analysis by Citizen Lab and the security firm Lookout determined that the link delivered a highly sophisticated packet of three zero-days that could take total control of Mansoor’s phone and spy on his calls, emails, text messages and contact lists.

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FBI-Controlled Megaupload Domain Now Features Soft Porn

The U.S. Government is doing a fantastic job of making sure the seized Megaupload domains are safe and secure. Just kidding, the sites are now home to soft porn advertisements. That's gotta be embarrassing.

As part of its criminal case against Megaupload, the U.S. Government seized several domain names belonging to Kim Dotcom's file-hosting service. Nearly five years later the authorities still control the domains but they haven't done a very good job of securing them. Megaupload.org now links to a soft porn portal.

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Twitter Working On A Keyword Tool To Combat Harassment

Why does Twitter always take such a lame approach to everything? By that I mean, what ever happened to actually acting on reports and complaints? Will this keyword filtering system know the difference between friendly cussing between friends and hateful cussing from trolls? Are your friends tweets blocked if they contain a word you've blocked?

Twitter has been weighing the new feature for "about a year," Bloomberg claims, and would "screen out" any keyword specified by the user, including swear words and racial slurs. Instagram introduced a similar feature for photo and video comments last month, giving people word filters and the ability to turn off comments entirely.

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Random [H] Sighting In Deus Ex: Mankind Divided

Sharp-eyed [H] reader Jorona noticed that, while playing Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, there was something extra special about Václav Koller the underground augmentation specialist. I'll give you a hint, look at his left arm. cool

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Linus On Linux's 25th Birthday

Let's face it, the only reason you read interviews with Linus Torvalds is in case he goes completely off script and starts cussing people out or flipping people off. Well, that and he is a pretty interesting guy too. wink

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I don't know. There are several odd moments that still stand out to me -- when people started using Linux in consumer electronics (Tivo comes to mind) was really interesting. But there's really no one thing that stands out. I'm proud that I kept at it. As evidenced by -- Christ -- a quarter-century celebration.

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$10K Shipping Deal of the Day

For all those times when you really, really want to get your can of mixed nuts 3 days faster than the free shipping option, Amazon offers $10,000 one week shipping. Needless to say I opted for the free shipping. big grin

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Gaming [H]eadlines

Diablo III Stress Test @ Blue's News

Resident Evil 7 Details Leaked @ Shacknews

Tomb Raider Dev Hires Dead Space Veteran @ GameSpot

Vampyr 15 Min Pre-Alpha Footage @ VG24/7

AMD & NVIDIA GPU VR Performance: Project Cars

If you are a fan of racing games and you own a VR headset (or plan on getting one) you really need to read our AMD & NVIDIA GPU VR Performance: Project Cars article. You might be surprised at just how demanding this game can be and what kind of hardware it takes to run it.

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If you like racing games then it is likely that you are familiar with Project Cars. This racing game can push a system to its limits when you turn up the visuals, and that is just what we are doing today while using our HTC Vive VR headset. And this is certainly a game we will add to the VR Leaderboard.

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Theater Trying To Pop Popcorn Using A Lightning Rod

Obviously this is just a publicity stunt but even so, I really want to see if this works. I might not want to eat any, and I definitely wouldn't want to try this at home, but I still want to see if it works. big grin

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If you’ve ever wondered what would happen if lightning struck a giant bag of unpopped popcorn with a lightning rod mounted in it, you may soon have your answer. Cineplex Entertainment has placed a six-metre-high blue popcorn bag containing unpopped popcorn and a lightning rod near Hwy. 401 between Windsor and Tilbury.

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Own A Drone? You May Need An FAA Drone Pilot Certificate

After looking at the new rules and requirements for drone operators, something tells me there are going to be a lot of "illegal" drone operators out there. frown

The new rules do require a commercial operator to get a Remote Pilot Certificate with a Small Unmanned Aircraft Rating — licensed, current pilots have to pass a simple online test; non-pilots have to pass an aeronautical knowledge test which includes the ability to read aeronautical charts, understand and decipher aviation weather reports, in addition to learning the new operational drone rules. It costs approximately $150 to take the test. After taking the test, would-be drone pilots need to be vetted by TSA to determine whether they are a security risk. Only after that vetting is done will the FAA issue an applicant a certificate to fly a drone.

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[H]ardware Round-Up

Cases: Case Mod Friday @ ThinkComputers

Cooling: Scythe Ninja 4 @ HardwareSlave

ETC.: Cooler Master MasterKeys Lite L Combo @ Technology X

Open Source Hardware Comes of Age @ Hardware Secrets

Motherboards: Gigabyte X99 Ultra Gaming @ Hexus

Storage: ASUSTOR AS6204T 4-bay NAS@ MadShrimps

Play Solitaire In Google Search Results

Google has announced that, as of yesterday, you can now play solitaire and tic-tac-toe just by searching the word solitaire (or tic-tac-toe). Kinda neat and it's free.

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UberEats Drivers Are Revolting In London

UberEats couriers in London are complaining that they could earn less than the minimum living wage due to recent changes made in their rate of pay. Uber on the other hand says that the rate change is actually a pay increase.

Drivers now get paid £3.30 per delivery plus £1 per mile travelled, with Uber taking a 25 percent cut of that total. A bonus of £3 or £4 is then added depending on the day of the week and whether the delivery is during peak or off-peak hours. Before last weekend, though, that bonus reward was a flat £5. Uber says this was a "very generous" incentive offered to drivers while the customer base was growing. Now business has picked up, these incentives have been lowered.

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CORSAIR Announces Full New Range of LUX Mechanical Keyboards

CORSAIR®, a leader in high-performance gaming hardware, today announced the immediate and worldwide availability of its new LUX range of mechanical keyboards. Building on the phenomenal success of the CORSAIR K70, K70 RGB and K65, the new LUX range adds a host of new features and improvements. With enhanced lighting, USB pass-through and a back-lit optimized key cap font, CORSAIR LUX keyboards retain the core-design, premium materials and commitment to quality that has earned the CORSAIR K-series over 300 global media awards, making them the benchmark for high-performance keyboards.

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Microsoft Cancels Free-to-Play Halo Online

Apparently I'm not the only person that totally forgot there was a free-to-play Halo Online game in Russia. If social media posts are to be believed, it would seem that Microsoft has totally forgotten about the game as well.

It was a game that seemed to mimic Activision’s partnership with Tencent to develop Call of Duty Online for China. In both cases, the developers took a globally popular IP and adapted its gameplay and publishing format for a foreign market. However, according to a member of the development team going by Fogeyman, Microsoft had "failed to [make] decisions on the future of the project" for the last six months.

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Critical Flaws Let Attackers Hijack Cellular Phone Towers

Let's pretend for a moment you are a hacker, what would you do with a hijacked cell phone tower? I could see the value if you were the government, they do this stuff all the time. Maybe I just don't think like a hacker but I just don't know what the hell you would do with a hacked cell phone tower.

Mobile security firm Zimperium, the company that found the Stagefright bug, says it discovered three critical flaws in several software packages that run on BTS stations. According to Zimperium, other software packages not included in their tests might also be affected since they all seem to run in the same manner, with a similar architecture. Affected vendors and their software include Legba Incorporated (YateBTS <= 5.0.0), Range Networks (OpenBTS <= 4.0.0 and OpenBTS-UMTS <= 1.0.0), and OsmoCOM (Osmo-TRX <= 0.1.10 and Osmo-BTS <= 0.1.10).

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Start Folding With The [H] Today!

This is your end of the week reminder that joining the best folding team on the planet (Team #33) is now easier than ever. We don't give you money to join and we can't promise you prizes or other incentives, we do this simply because it is our passion and that is why we've had the best folding community around...for years. So, if you want to make a difference with a group of people that honestly care about what they are doing, join team Team #33 today.

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

Western Digital SanDisk InfiniFlash Platform Adopted by SoftBank

Western Digital® Corporation, a global storage technology and solutions leader, today announced that SoftBank Corp. has adopted the SanDisk® InfiniFlash™ all-flash storage platform for its software-defined storage solution. Previously, SoftBank was running an in-house traditional storage system combining hard disk drives (HDD) and solid state drives (SSD) for some of its applications. Today, SoftBank has built a new software-defined, multi-petabyte in-house system using the SanDisk InfiniFlash platform as its core storage engine for real-time data transaction applications, enabling the installation of software in general-purpose servers.

This has allowed SoftBank to integrate operations of complex systems, solve the problem of silos, and eliminate vendor-specific tasks, which has led to higher efficiency. With its scalability and high density, the new system is able to handle a soaring volume of data and has made it possible to reduce the number of racks by 75% and power consumption by up to 83% within the data center, compared to traditional dedicated storage. SoftBank selected the SanDisk InfiniFlash platform after considering compatibility with diverse software-defined storage solutions and costs through a proof-of–concept process. This system is deployed by PS Solutions Corp. a leading provider of IT solutions and IT outsourcing.

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Thursday August 25, 2016

Domino's Gets Okay For Drone Delivery

Pizza delivered by drone? Oh hell yeah, sign me up! The downsides? It's Domino's pizza and it's only in New Zealand. If one of you [H]'ers down under orders a drone delivered pizza we want video of the delivery. With any luck, drone delivery will become a thing here in the United States soon.

Aerial pizza delivery may sound futuristic but Domino's has been given the green light to test New Zealand pizza delivery via drones. The fast food chain has partnered with drone business Flirtey to launch the first commercial drone delivery service in the world, starting later this year. Domino's Group chief executive and managing director, Don Meij said the company had been investigating innovative and new delivery methods as business had grown.

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[H]ardware Round-Up II

Cases: Raijintek Nestor @ Modders Inc.

Cooling: CM Masterfan Pro 120 @ FunkyKit

ETC.: CM MasterKeys Lite L Combo @ Hardware Asylum

SteelSeries Rival 700 Gaming Mouse @ Vortez

SSD: Plextor M8Pe NVMe M.2 256GB @ HardwareOverclock

Video: Deus Ex: Mankind Divided @ Guru3D

No Man's Sky PC Gameplay And Performance @ HotHardware

Google Fiber Hits Speed Bumps As Alphabet Looks To Cut Costs

It seems like every person you talk to wants Google Fiber to come to their town but, if this report is to be believed, Google Fiber isn't doing so well when it comes to subscribers. Maybe they are just picking crappy towns?

The report says that Google had expected to land 5 million subscribers over the course of five years, but the company's actual progress was much slower. At the end of 2014 Google Fiber only had 200,000 subscribers. Its TV service has also suffered from sluggish growth. Last month, CEO Larry Page reportedly asked Google Fiber head Craig Barratt to cut his staff in half, to 500 people, and reduce costs of delivering fiber to customers' homes to one-tenth of their current rate.

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NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 Founders Edition Review

The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 Founders Edition is on the test bench today at Neoseeker. The crew pit the GTX 1060 against an AMD RX 480 and a GTX 970 for good measure. You can see our evaluation here for comparison purposes.

The new NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 is built around the Pascal GP106, a scaled-down GPU compared to the GP104 powering the beastly GTX 1080 and 1070. However, the new chip still offers all of Pascal's features at a lower price bracket. NVIDIA also opted to remove the SLI feature from the GTX 1060 in what seems to be a crippling blow to a very promising card at first glance. Today I'm taking the NVIDIA GTX 1060 Founders Edition for a spin to see how it fares against AMD's Radeon RX 480 8GB and the beefy EVGA GTX 970 SC.

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Dotcom Wants Extradition Hearing Live-Streamed

It sure is funny how Kim Dotcom acts like he's a rock star. If people sitting around waiting for him to finally be extradited to the U.S. so the actual trial can begin is considered "global interest" then I guess our standards have dropped a few notches.

Kim Dotcom is hoping to have his fight with the U.S. government pushed further into the public consciousness by having his extradition appeal streamed live on the Internet. U.S. authorities are already objecting to Dotcom's application but they could be up against stiff opposition since New Zealand is proud of its courtroom transparency.

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HTC Vive Capturing Developer Attention In Volatile VR Market

A recent survey conducted by research analyst Jessica Smith found that HTC Vive is currently the most popular platform among developers. No doubt one of the reason for this is, as Kyle has covered in our VR performance reviews, is the HTC Vive's room scale play and handheld controllers.

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Stand-alone headset platforms are most favored by developers in the early days of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR). HTC Vive is the most popular platform among developers, with almost half of developers creating content for it, according to a survey of 543 developers conducted by the Virtual Reality Developers Conference in July and August 2016.

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