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Thursday September 29, 2016

Enermax ETS-T50 Axe CPU Air Cooler Review

Those of you out there that are currently in the market for a new CPU cooler will definitely want to read our evaluation of the Enermax ETS-T50 Axe before you head out shopping.

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Enermax keeps up its onslaught of CPU air cooler designs today with a tower cooler that uses five direct touch heatpipes to move all those BTUs. It has LED lighted fans along with a stealthy black exterior. Interestingly, Enermax has included a ducting system on the back in order to hopefully help better exhaust all that hot air from your CPU.


[H]ardware Round-Up II

Cases: Zalman Z11 NEO @ Overclockers Club

Cooling: Arctic Liquid Freezer 240 @ OCInside

ETC.: ROCCAT Skeltr Gaming Keyboard @ Vortez

Memory: ADATA XPG Dazzle DDR4-2400 @ FunkyKit

Video: ASUS RX 460 STRIX OC 4GB @ Play3r

AMD RX 480 CrossFire Performance @ TechARP

California Tightens Background Checks On Uber, Lyft Drivers

Hmmm, I didn't know background checks for Uber and Lyft drivers in California didn't go back more than seven years. Well, thanks to the recent rash of assaults on passengers by drivers, the law has been changed to allow background checks that go all the way back to the day you were born. eek!

Uber, Lyft and other ride-hailing companies will now be required to give their drivers stricter background checks in California. Governor Jerry Brown signed legislation Wednesday forbidding ride-hailing companies from hiring drivers with any violent felony convictions; previously background checks went back just seven years.


Tesla On Autopilot Crashes Into Bus

I'm not saying this guy is lying his ass off but his story sounds pretty damn fishy. The man says his Tesla was "returning to the inside lane after overtaking" another vehicle when it rear ended the bus. I knew Tesla had Insane and Ludicrous modes but I didn't know it had an Aggressive Asshat mode as well.

"The car driver said he had used the car's Autopilot. It now has to be investigated why this did not work," police said in a statement, adding that the Tesla driver was slightly injured and none of the 29 bus passengers was hurt. The police statement said the 50-year-old Tesla driver from Brandenburg drove into the back of the Danish tour bus as it was returning to the inside lane after overtaking.


J.J. Abrams: Portal Movie Announcement Coming 'Fairly Soon'

It's been a few years since these rumors started so I'm not getting too excited just yet. Besides, J.J. Abrams never said it would be a positive announcement, he just said he would be talking to Gabe Newell and that an announcement was coming "fairly soon." wink

"We have a meeting coming up next week with Valve, we’re very active, I’m hoping that there will be a Portal announcement fairly soon," Abrams told IGN. "We are having some really interesting discussions with writers, many of whom...once you said you’re doing a movie or show about a specific thing that is a known quantity you start to find people who are rabid about these things."


Amazing Computer Deal of the Day!

Look what I stumbled upon in our For Sale & Trade forum! This thing is a beauty! Luckily for you, everything you see in the pictures below is for sale. Serious buyers only! big grin

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VR App Will Let You Draw in Mid-Air

Gravity Sketch is a mixed reality 3D creation tool that allows you to draw in 3D and then export your drawing to a 3D printer or a program like SolidWorks. Here's the video from the company's Kickstarter page:


How Organizations Enshrine Collective Stupidity

If you only read one article today, make it this one. Each and every one of you know exactly what this guy is talking about because either you've been there or you are currently in that situation. Seriously, this article is well worth the time to read.

Smart young things joining the workforce soon discover that, although they have been selected for their intelligence, they are not expected to use it. They will be assigned routine tasks that they will consider stupid. If they happen to make the mistake of actually using their intelligence, they will be met with pained groans from colleagues and polite warnings from their bosses. After a few years of experience, they will find that the people who get ahead are the stellar practitioners of corporate mindlessness.


Steam Controller On Sale For $35 Again

Those of you that missed out on this deal earlier this summer will be happy to know the Steam Controller is on sale again for the budget price of $34.99 with free 2 day Prime shipping. Get in on the deal before it is gone again.

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Gaming [H]eadlines

Destiny: Rise of Iron Hotfix Now Out @ VG24/7

Driveclub VR Launching With PSVR @ Shacknews

Hearthstone Balance Change Plans @ Blue's News

Titanfall 2 New Cinematic Trailer @ GameSpot

PlayStation Will Lead Premium VR Market

Let's hope this doesn't come true. Those of you that have been following our GPU VR performance reviews know that doing VR right takes a good deal of GPU horsepower. This means that, in order for Sony’s PlayStation VR to become the "standard" VR titles are developed for, we'll once again be stuck with games that are tailored for console specs and then ported to the PC. frown

Flavio Parenti (pictured right), CEO of Loading Human makers Untold Games, goes as far as to say that if it’s successful, PSVR could become the standard VR titles are developed for. "We expect PlayStation VR to be a market leader," he said. "We don’t know how big the market is or how big PSVR will be, but the sweet deal that Sony is giving to the players is amazing. For just half the price of the others you get everything. Developers will aim for PSVR standards, and then adapt games to PC if PSVR is the market leader."


FCC Delays Vote On Set-Top Box Proposal

It looks as though the Federal Communications Commission has delayed the vote on its set-top box proposal. The vote was supposed to take place today but will now have to be rescheduled for a later time. There is no word at this time when that might happen.

The potential rule on which the FCC was scheduled to vote this morning proposed to require pay-TV companies to create free, full-function apps that consumers would be able to use in place of traditional set-top boxes. Not only would that free up consumer choice, the logic goes, but also it could save consumers up to $20 billion annually in those mandatory monthly mental fees subscribers pay.


[H]ardware Round-Up

Cases: AZZA Taurus 5000 @ ThinkComputers

Cooling: Alphacool Eisbaer Solo Pump @ HardwareOverclock

ETC.: AZIO MGK L80 @ Hardware Asylum

Zalman ZM-K900M Gaming Keyboard @ BmR

Motherboards: ASRock X99 Taichi @ OCInside

Storage: LaCie Porsche Design 2TB @ NikKTech

iPhone 7 Plus 2,717 Foot Drop Test

What kind of idiot drops an iPhone 7 Plus off the world's tallest building? Who cares about whether the phone survived the fall or not, what if that damn thing landed on a car, or worse, hit a person? frown


Musk To Employees: No More Discounts On New Cars

No more discounts on new Teslas? Well that sucks. Since Musk said you can get a discount on cars that have been used for testing, just go in and test drive a Model X P90D and then ask for a discount because it has been test driven. big grin

Musk said there could be discounts to floor models, vehicles that had been used for testing or were damaged in delivery. "However, there can never - and I mean never - be a discount on a new car coming out of the factory in pristine condition, where there is no underlying rationale," he said. Musk was responding to a research note by an analyst with Pacific Crest Securities that criticized Tesla for offering discounts to boost third-quarter sales.


Yext Integrates Uber API To Help Businesses Drive Customer Engagement

Does this announcement from Uber and Yext sound appealing to any of you? The dynamic duo wants to deliver "branded content" and advertisements to your phone while you are on your way to your destination.

"Uber and Yext share the same mission to help people go places," said Marc Ferrentino, Yext EVP Strategy & Product. "That's why we integrated with Uber to create a new, immersive experience where stores, restaurants, and other businesses can bring consumers directly to their doors and increase customer engagement through Trip Branding. We're closing the loop so that businesses can provide a great experience all the way from search results to checkout which includes actually getting to the location."


Formula One Driving Is Surprisingly High Tech

Holy crap, watch how many buttons this race car driver presses during this lap. Wow! I had no idea that Formula One racing was this high tech. eek!


Doom's Soundtrack Now For Sale

According to the game's composer, the DOOM soundtrack is now available for $10 on Google Play and iTunes. All you try-before-you-buy types out there can hit up YouTube to hear what you are missing. I've embedded one of the videos below. You're welcome. wink


Battleborn Livestream And Reddit AMA

Gearbox Software has announced that it will be hosting a livestream on its Twitch channel that outlines the upcoming changes to Battleborn. There will also be a Reddit AMA on Friday. Do any of you even play Battleborn?

This Thursday (September 29th), we’ll be holding our next livestream on the Gearbox Software Twitch channel! A panel of Gearbox developers including Battleborn Creative Director Randy Varnell, Designer Grant Kao, and Community Manager Joe King will dig into the details of the update as well as announce its release date! Make sure to head over to the Gearbox Twitch channel and follow it so you can get notifications whenever we go live! In addition to the stream, the guys will also be participating in a Reddit AMA on Friday (September 30th) on the Battleborn subreddit at 12pm PT (3pm ET)! If you had a question that didn’t get answered during the stream, swing by and add it to the thread.


Introducing Xavier, the NVIDIA AI Supercomputer for the Future of Autonomous Transportation

At the inaugural GPU Technology Conference Europe, NVIDIA CEO Jen-Hsun Huang today unveiled Xavier, our all-new AI supercomputer, designed for use in self-driving cars. "This is the greatest SoC endeavor I have ever known, and we have been building chips for a very long time," Huang said to the conference’s 1,600 attendees. Xavier is a complete system-on-chip (SoC), integrating a new GPU architecture called Volta, a custom 8 core CPU architecture, and a new computer vision accelerator. The processor will deliver 20 TOPS (trillion operations per second) of performance, while consuming only 20 watts of power. As the brain of a self-driving car, Xavier is designed to be compliant with critical automotive standards, such as the ISO 26262 functional safety specification.

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Packed with 7 billion transistors, and manufactured using cutting-edge 16nm FinFET process technology, a single Xavier AI processor will be able to replace today’s DRIVE PX 2 configured with dual mobile SoCs and dual discrete GPUs at a fraction of the power consumption. Because autonomous driving is an incredibly compute-intense process, the need for an efficient AI processor is paramount. Xavier will bring self-driving car technology to automakers, tier 1 suppliers, startups and R&D organizations that are building autonomous vehicles, whether cars, trucks, shuttles or taxis.


Wednesday September 28, 2016

Spotify In Talks to Acquire SoundCloud?

If this story is to be believed, all those rumors about SoundCloud shopping around for buyers might actually be true. According to Variety's sources, Spotify is in advanced talks to buy SoundCloud.

Acquiring SoundCloud could help Spotify to bolster its own catalog and offer emerging artists an easier way onto the service. It would also help Spotify make the case for ad-supported streaming. Record labels have long pushed Spotify to move toward a purely paid model, similar to the way Apple Music operates. Apple’s service does offer listeners a three-month free trial, but cuts them off after that if they don’t open their wallets.


'No Man's Sky' Is Being Investigated For False Advertising

I wish I could say that we didn't see this coming but, we totally saw this coming. In fact, I think everyone on the planet saw this coming.

By their descriptions, the ASA is assumedly comparing the final game to its E3 2014 demo, which is also the first one that appears front and center on the game's Steam page. Among those are disparities, like UI design, flowing water and aiming systems, that are the kinds of things that change during a game's development. But others are more severe: It's clear that the released version lacks several features displayed in the press video, like animals interacting and crashing through environmental underbrush or large-scale space battles.


Google's Neural Machine Translation System: Bridging the Gap between Human and Machine Translation Google's Neural Machine Translation System

Google researchers released a paper today announcing the Google Neural Machine Translation, a complete learning system that was designed to eliminate the inherent weaknesses in traditional phrase-based systems used for machine translation.

Neural Machine Translation (NMT) is an end-to-end learning approach for automated translation, with the potential to overcome many of the weaknesses of conventional phrase-based translation systems. Unfortunately, NMT systems are known to be computationally expensive both in training and in translation inference. Also, most NMT systems have difficulty with rare words. These issues have hindered NMT's use in practical deployments and services, where both accuracy and speed are essential. In this work, we present GNMT, Google's Neural Machine Translation system, which attempts to address many of these issues. Our model consists of a deep LSTM network with 8 encoder and 8 decoder layers using attention and residual connections.


EFF: HP Must Make Amends For Self-Destructing Printers

It looks like the Electronic Frontier Foundation has sent a letter to HP asking the company to reverse its recent firmware update that blocks customers from using 3rd party ink cartridges. Selling printers that use proprietary ink isn't new but updating a printer to block aftermarket cartridges after people have already bought the printer has raised the ire of many consumers.

HP customers should be able to use the ink of their choosing in their printers for the same reason that Cuisinart customers should be able to choose whose bread goes in their toasters. The practice of "tying" is rightly decried by economists and competition regulators as an invitation to monopoly pricing and reduced competition and innovation. HP customers should choose HP ink because it is the best, not because their printer won't work with a competitor's brand.


White House Introduces 'Lock Down Your Login' Campaign

The White House has teamed up with the National Cyber Security Alliance in an effort to encourage people to use stronger authentication on their various online accounts. In true government style, here is the campaign video that looks like it was made by (and for) 5th graders.


MSI RX 470 Gaming X 8GB

There is a review of the MSI RX 470 Gaming X 8GB posted today at LanOC. If you are looking for a decent card for 1080P gaming, the review crew at LanOC have no problem recommending this card.

I was able to test the 4GB RX 480 by flashing our reference cards firmware but for the RX 470, MSI was nice enough to send a card for me to check out. I haven’t had a chance to see any of MSI’s current AMD lineup so the card also gave me a chance to see what they have going as well. So today I’m going to run the RX 470 Gaming X 8GB through all of our tests, dive into its features, and find out how it compares to the rest of the AMD lineup.


Samsung Washing Machines Will Murder You With 'Impact Injuries'

The Consumer Product Safety Commission says that, in addition to exploding phones, Samsung also has washing machines that will murder you too. The description "impact injuries" is pretty vague so I would definitely avoid taking one of these faulty devices on a plane, in a car or leave it plugged in overnight. wink

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is actively and cooperatively working with Samsung to address safety issues related to certain top-load washing machines made between March 2011 and April 2016. CPSC is advising consumers to only use the delicate cycle when washing bedding, water-resistant and bulky items. The lower spin speed in the delicate cycle lessens the risk of impact injuries or property damage due to the washing machine becoming dislodged.


Kim Dotcom’s Extradition Appeal Concludes

Kim Dotcom's extradition appeal has come to a close. Are we taking any bets on whether or not he gets extradited to the United States? Frankly, I'm going to say the courts will eventually rule against him and he'll have to stand trial.

After more than four weeks the extradition appeal hearings of Kim Dotcom and his former Megaupload colleagues have concluded. In his closing arguments, Dotcom's lawyer urged the court to carefully weigh the facts and give his client a "fair go," which he says the District Court failed to do. However, even if the High Court sides with the defense, the case is still far from over.


DIY Smart Vacuum Cleaning Robot

Who needs a Roomba when you can build something like this? I know the Roomba is sexier, but why spend over $325 when you can build this out for a fraction of the price!


Gaming [H]eadlines

CoD:BlOps 3 Mod Tools Available On PC @ GameSpot

Dishonored 2 Achievement List @ Shacknews

Gears of War 4 Pre-Load Live Now @ VG24/7

Wasteland 3 Announced @ Blue's News

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