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Group Sponsored By Comcast Gives An Award To Comcast

This would be awfully funny if it just wasn't so damn sad. I hope Comcast got to at least pick the plaque that it paid for. wink

Sometimes you have to pat yourself on the back after a job well done. But if you’re a company for whom accolades may be in short supply, it helps to sponsor (and have one of your executives be in charge of) a professional organization that is willing to give you an attaboy when you need one.

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Apple Watch vs Liquid Nitrogen

Our buddy Richard over at FullMag is at it again.

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[H]ardware Round-Up II

Cases: Fractal Design Define S @ Tweak.dk

Raidmax Hyperion Cube Case @ techPowerUP!

Cooling: Noctua NH-L9x65 @ TechnologyX

SilverStone Tundra TD03-E @ Benchmark Reviews

ETC.: Lexar JumpDrive P20 64GB @ Legit Reviews

Motherboards: GIGABYTE X99 GAMING-5P @ Vortez

Microsoft Logs IP Addresses to Catch Windows 7 Pirates

All you Windows 7 pirates out there better watch out! Redmond has its eye on you.

A presumed pirate with an unusually large appetite for activating Windows 7 has incurred the wrath of Microsoft. In a lawsuit filed at a Washington court, the Seattle-based company said that it logged hundreds of suspicious product activations from a Verizon IP address and is now seeking damages.

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Court: Warrantless Cellphone Tracking Not Illegal Search

So there you have it - authorities do not need to get a search warrant to obtain cellphone tower location records in criminal prosecutions.

The Atlanta-based 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, overturning a three-judge panel of the same court, concluded that authorities properly got 67 days' worth of records from MetroPCS for Miami robbery suspect Quartavious Davis using a court order with a lower burden of proof. In its 9-2 decision, the 11th Circuit decided Davis had no expectation of privacy regarding historical records establishing his location near certain cellphone towers.

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Introducing The Apple Watch Hand

Is your wrist tattoo stopping you from buying an Apple Watch? Conan has just what you need! big grin

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DHS Scales Back License Plate-Tracking Surveillance

Don't get all excited over that headline, "scaled back" just means license plate-tracking lite.

The new system, announced last month, will compile license plate records from "at least 25 states" instead of all states, DHS Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials said in a May 1 modification of the contract requirements. Officials later told Nextgov relaxing the requirements would allow more companies to compete for the job.

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Windows 10 Has New Middle Finger Emoji

The award for best emoji goes to "Reverse Hand with Middle Finger Extended."

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EU Delays Apple Tax Probe Decision

I'm not sure if this delay will be good or bad for Apple. Who knows, maybe this gives all parties involved time for a settlement.

Margrethe Vestager, the European Union’s competition chief, said regulators will miss a self-imposed deadline to complete tax probes into four companies, including Apple Inc., by the middle of this year. "We will not sacrifice the rule of law or the quality of our work to speed up the process," she told European Parliament lawmakers in Brussels on Tuesday.

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Black Mesa Is Now On Steam Early Access For $20

It looks as though Black Mesa is now an Early Access Game. It would seem that some people are taking issue with the fact that the Early Access version isn't free, as the developers are charging $19.99. Thanks to SoFGR for the heads up.

Making a game with the scope and scale of Black Mesa is a massive undertaking. Back in 2012 we made the decision to release what we had completed up to that point, and were blown away by the community’s response, feedback, and improvements to our work. We want to keep that relationship alive and well by using Early Access as a tool for allowing our community to participate in the final phase of Black Mesa’s development.

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Gaming [H]eadlines

GTA 5 PC Gravity Gun Mod @ YouTube

Mortal Kombat X PC Patch Today @ Blue's News

Tony Hawk Pro Skater 5 Announced @ VG24/7

Wolfenstein: The Old Blood Trailer @ Shacknews

Grand Theft Auto V Multi-GPU Performance Review Part 2

For those of you that haven't seen it yet, make sure you read our Grand Theft Auto V Multi-GPU Performance Review Part 2 today. If you want to know which multi-GPU set-up is right for you, we have all the answers for you right here.

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This is Part 2 of our full evaluation of Grand Theft Auto V's video card gaming performance. In this part we dive into NVIDIA SLI and AMD CrossFire highest playable gameplay settings and apples-to-apples at 1440p and 4K resolutions. We find out just what it takes to get the most out of GTA V at its highest settings.

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Two New Free Games With GeForce GTX 970 And GTX 980?

According to this post over at VideoCardz, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt and Batman: Arkham Knight will soon be bundled with GeForce GTX 970 And GTX 980.

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How The NSA Converts Spoken Words Into Searchable Text

You'd think that something like this would churn out a million false positives a day.

Top-secret documents from the archive of former NSA contractor Edward Snowden show the National Security Agency can now automatically recognize the content within phone calls by creating rough transcripts and phonetic representations that can be easily searched and stored. The documents show NSA analysts celebrating the development of what they called "Google for Voice" nearly a decade ago.

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[H]ardware Round-Up

Cooling: Corsair H100i GTX @ ThinkComputers

Thermaltake Frio Silent 12 @ Technic3D

ETC.: Element Gaming Neon 250 @ Vortez

Pivos XIOS XS Media Player @ XtremeHardware

Motherboards: Gigabyte X99M Gaming 5 @ Modders Inc.

Malware That Wipes Hard Drives To Prevent Detection

I guess this is one way of trying to avoid detection. eek!

The spyware is unusual, however, in how far the malicious code will go to prevent detection, analysis and debugging. According to Cisco, before the malware begins spying on a victim Rombertik runs a final check to detect if it is being analyzed in memory. If this check fails, it will destroy the master boot record (MBR) of a compromised computer -- rendering the PC inoperable.

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GTA In Real Life

This is definitely the must see video of the day. cool

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Lost Planet 3 Developer Shuts Its Doors

It looks as though Spark Unlimited, the studio behind Lost Planet 3, suddenly closed up shop.

A tweet from Spark Unlimited indicates the Lost Planet 3 developer has shut down, saying: "Elvis has left the building. Good night and drive safe." There were no previous indications they were in trouble, as their previous tweet is one from January saying they are hiring.

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Internet Customers Surpass Cable Subscribers At Comcast

It will be interesting to see how companies like Comcast deal with this shift.

The Internet is taking over television. That shift is occurring at Comcast, where the number of people who subscribe to the company’s Internet service surpassed its total video subscribers for the first time during the second quarter this year.

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Creeps Embrace a New Tool: Peeping Drones

Do you own a drone? If you answered "yes," you are a creep and a peeping Tom.

"Drones have a lot of potentially useful and extremely innovative uses," said Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson, the California Democrat who introduced the bill. "Invading our privacy and property without permission shouldn’t be among them. When we’re in our backyards, with our families, we have an expectation that we have a right to privacy."

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First All-Robot Manufacturing Plant Opens In China

This is just the first step. Soon, we will all be replaced by robots.

A total of 1,000 robots would be introduced at the factory initially, run by Shenzhen Evenwin Precision Technology Co, with the aim of reducing the current workforce of 1,800 by 90 per cent to only about 200, Chen Xingqi, the chairman of the company’s board, was quoted as saying in the report.

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Intel Expands Storage Offerings for Data Center

Intel announced today the availability of the Intel® SSD DC S3510 Series to meet the demands for high-performance, high- capacity data stores in the data center. The DC S3510 Series expands the Intel SSD Data Center Family – the #1 chosen SATA SSD product line according to Forward Insight - and offers cost and power advantages over hard disk drives while delivering proven performance and reliability. It is well-suited for read-intensive or virtualized applications in a cloud or data center environment, such as web servers, operational databases and analytics. Intel and VMware developed the industry’s first 32-node all-flash Virtual SAN with NVM Express technology to show how enterprise customers can cost effectively deploy this technology.

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Monday May 04, 2015

$200 'Case' Puts Your Bitcoins In Your Pocket

Why in the world would you need to carry around bitcoins in your pocket?

There's no such thing as being too crazy about security, especially when it comes to hoarding mountains and mountains of invisible, digital, volatile money. If that description hits just a little too close to home, you might just have a new friend in the $199 Case, a physical Bitcoin wallet the size of a credit card that secures your nebulous funds and lets you sign off on transactions with just a touch of a finger.

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[H]ardware Round-Up II

Cases: Zalman Z11 NEO @ ThinkComputers

ETC.: Cougar 200K Gaming Keyboard @ LanOC

Diamond Wireless Video Stream HD @ eTeknix

Element Gaming Xenon 700 @ Vortez

Power Supply: Be quiet! PurePower L8 730W @ Tweak.dk

Video: Desktop Graphics Card Comparison Guide @ TechARP

Internet Censorship, Kill Switches Violate Human Rights Law

Any effort to restrict access to the internet "can never be justified" under human rights law. Apparently that doesn't apply here in the United States. Your internet access can be cut off for just about any ol' thing. wink

A coalition of rights experts, including the UN special rapporteur on freedom of opinion and expression David Kaye, said in a joint declaration released Monday that any effort to restrict access to the internet "can never be justified under human rights law." That includes forcing the shutdown of networks, filtering and censoring content, and the physical takeover of broadcast stations.

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Android Apps That Secretly Connect to User Tracking and Ad Sites

I knew there were a lot of apps out there that tracked Android users but I didn't think there were this many. eek!

But because Google Play is more open, the apps it offers span a much wider quality range. Many connect to ad-related sites and tracking sites while some connect to much more dubious sites that are associated with malware. But here’s the problem—this activity often takes place without the owner being aware of what is going on. That’s something that most smartphone users would be appalled to discover—if only they were able to.

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Twitch Updates Copyright Claims Appeals Process

Twitch has updated its content appeals process. If you are a streamer, you might want to hit the link and read the full blog post.

The new functionality will initially be available to all members of the Twitch Partner Program and non-partner broadcasters whose videos are in HTTP Live Streaming (HLS) format, which is roughly 25% of non-partner broadcasters. We are in the process of storing all newly created VODs in HLS format rather than Flash Video (FLV) format. (How can you tell if your videos are in HLS or FLV? Check the VOD URL. HLS VODs will have /v/ in the URL; FLV will have /b/.)

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Microsoft Announces New Solutions To Empower IT Professionals

Monday at its first-ever Ignite Conference, Microsoft Corp. announced a range of new products and services that help IT professionals lead their companies in the new era of enterprise computing, including the next generation of Windows management, Microsoft Office, hybrid cloud infrastructure and SQL Server. "No business can succeed and scale without IT innovating and transforming," said Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft. "Empowering IT professionals is a key part of Microsoft’s technology agenda spanning Windows 10, Office 365, Azure and other cloud technologies." Speaking to more than 23,000 conference attendees, as well as thousands of online viewers, Nadella showcased how Microsoft is fueling IT pro innovation and success. He was joined on stage by José Ángel Sánchez, CEO of Real Madrid C.F., winner of the 2014 FIFA Club World Cup and the FIFA Best Club of the 20th Century.

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Deaf And Blind Woman's Take On The Apple Watch

This story is actually pretty damn neat. Yeah, yeah, yeah...it's an iWatch but she seems to really dig it.

I was born deaf and registered blind when I was 14. The condition I have is Usher Syndrome Type 2a. I am severely deaf and have only a very small tunnel of vision in my right eye now so I was concerned not just about the face size but how busy it would appear to me and also if there would be an uncomfortable glare.

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