Daily News Brief: Has DirectX 10.1 Gaming Arrived?


First DirectX 10.1 Title?

Rage3D thinks they've found the first game to exploit DirectX 10.1, and we have to admit their evidence looks compelling. Firing up Assassin's Creed running on a Radeon HD 3870 X2, they noticed a perceptible performance difference pre- and post-SP1, measuring up to a 25 percent boost, and set out to find what was going on. Wading through some AMD whitepapers seemed to suggest DX10.1 caused the performance hike, as did Rage3D's benchmark comparisons. Get the complete rundown here , including what AMD/ATI had to say on the matter.

Quad-Core? How Quaint

What once used to be a race towards higher MHz/GHz in the CPU industry has suddenly turned into marathon towards more cores . While developers continue to learn how to code for dual- and quad-core processors, AMD's already on the path to dodeca-core. That's 12, folks, just one shy of a baker's dozen. Late this year, AMD hopes to unleash Istanbul , a 45nm native six-core chip that will eventually get a twin-die per package treatment. A twin-die Istanbul processor could enable 12 cores, with each one communicating through AMD's HT3.0 interconnect. And so it has begun...

Macs > PCs

Just kidding Mac fans, we still love our PCs. Even so, Apple doesn't appear to be starving for customers, as Mac shipments in the first quarter outpaced each of the other top five U.S. PC makers. Apple sold 1 million Mac units in the first quarter, compared to 762,000 in the same quarter a year ago. Ever since Apple switched to Intel's x86 platform in 2006 from IBM's PowerPC, they've enjoyed solid market gains, and in fact tripled their market share last year. Meanwhile, US PC sales remain stagnant.

Red Hat Shifts Away from Desktop Scene

Find yourself lured towards Linux lately? If so, you can stop waiting for Red Had to deliver a consumer desktop OS and jump on one of the alternatives instead. Red Hat said it's dropping plans to offer a consumer Linux desktop, saying " the desktop market suffers from having one dominant vendor, and some people still perceive that today's Linux desktops simply don't provide a practical alternative. " However, Red Hat will deliver a commercial Linux desktop, Red Hat Enterprise Linux Desktop. More here .

NPD Group: 'People are Lazy'

Manufacturers are going green in an effort to up their environmental responsibility skill-set, but on the consumer front, many end users are not recycling old electronic gadgets. Stephen Baker of NPD Group concluded " people aren't doing it because people are lazy. When it comes right down to it there are no incentives. " According to the Consumer Electronics Association, U.S. consumers will spend $171 billion on 500 million electronic devices in 2008, many of which will replace existing gadgets. Read more of the four page guilt trip here .

One BILLION Colors!

Co-developed with DreamWorks Animation SKG, HP said it plans to deploy a new color display technology capable of displaying 1 billion colors. Called HP DreamColor, the 30-bit color display would trump today's existing 24-bit displays, which offer a comparative paltry 16.7 million colors per pixel. The new display will also incorporate a new LED backlight technology that purports to make blacks blacker and whites whiter. Expect to see the new technology in action sometime this summer.

Head of Samsung Charged with Fraud

According to ABCNews Australia , Lee Kun-Hee, head of Samsung Group and one of South Korea's most powerful business leaders, was indicted yesterday on charges of breach of trust and tax evasion. However, Lee avoided arrest because " it could cause enormous disruption in the company's operations ." Among the allegations are hiding profits and maintaining a $200 million slush fund to bribe officials.

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