As you all know, Intel announced the launch of its much anticipated 22nm Ivy Bridge processors earlier today. Intel is counting on these third-generation Core processors for the success of ultrabooks, which it hopes will be able to check the rampant growth of tablets and, in the process, conquer a large chunk of the mobile PC market. But ultrabooks will not be the only products to make use of Ivy Bridge chips; there will also be plenty of all-in-ones, desktops and notebooks. In all, over 570 Ivy Bridge-toting systems are expected to ship in 2012. The MSI GT70 and GT60 are two such products. Hit the jump for more.
Everything we need to know, we learned from video games
When we were kids, all we heard was how worthless video games were. "Those dopey things will rot your brain," was a favorite of my grandmother's, and even watching television was considered far more educational and intellectual than the mind-melting morass that was video games. Just how much I learned from reruns of Three's Company, The Dukes of Hazzard, and Magnum P.I. is debatable, but I can tell you, there are plenty of valuable life lessons I learned from video games.
Women who play games online tend to be a little more social, are happier, and live in the south. Oh, and they also have more sex than females who don't play online games, according to a study by Harris Interactive that was commissioned by Gamehouse. That would explain why they're happier, and presumably, so are their partners. More than half -- 64 percent -- of online women gamers are in a serious relationship of some sort, and 7 out of 10 are happy with their relationship status, whether they have one or not.
When life hands PC gamers lemons – like news that the massive $1.6m Battlefield 3 tourney is console-only – they figure out a way to hack the lemons to bits and make lemonade. In this case, gamers have gained access to 128-player support for the “Operation Metro” map available in the BF3 beta, which isn't offered on the official servers. Don’t necessarily go rushing out to find the action, though; DICE, the makers of the game, thinks the lemonade tastes mighty bitter and they’re threatening to swing the banhammer at anyone who participates in the unsanctioned fun.
A few months ago, we highlighted some of the best PC-related ink we could find, which turned into quite the project because it turns out there are a lot of people willing to tattoo themselves with binary code or an Android.
However, while researching that piece we realized that there are a considerably larger number of people who are willing to sport video game related ink, which, really makes sense because games have a larger variety of artistic content than, say, software code being a visual medium and all.
We found a vertible boatload of people who chose to make their love of Mario, Nintendo, Portal, or Pac-man really permanent. So, join us as we pay homage to the games that we all love and cherish by highlighting some of the best game-related tattoos we could find.
We fell in love with the click action of the Das Keyboard, which is largely attributable to the mechanical keys. A handful of copycats have since released mechanical keyboards of their own, but according to Razer, their new BlackWidow is the first one aimed exclusively at gamers.
"The Razer BlackWidow is the world's first mechanical keyboard that has been engineered from the ground up for gaming," said Robert Krakoff, president, Razer. "Imagine every single key on the keyboard with the precision of a mouse click -- no more pressing of keys without knowing for certain if they have been actuated. Precision clicking coupled with an optimized lighter key actuation force, this changes the way gamers will play from now on."
Razer claims the BlackWidow is three years in the making, with part of that development time put into constructing mechanical keys that won't leave users feeling fatigued after extending typing/gaming sessions.
Other features include fully programmable keys with five additional gaming keys, on-the-fly macro recording, 1000Hz ultrapolling, easy access media keys, and a gaming mode option.
The BlackWidow is available now for $80. There's also an Ultimate edition for $130, which adds individually backlit keys with five levels of lighting, headphone/mic jacks, and an additional USB port.
Do you consider yourself a gullible gamer? Maybe you should, based on what security firm BitDefender has to say. According to BitDefender, gamers are 50 percent more likely to receive spam and be the target of phishing attacks.
Why so? Apparently gamers are a bit too gung-ho to add anyone to their friends list in order to have more people to play with.
"Users are more likely to accept spammers in their friends list when they are in a social network than in any other online communication environment," said George Petre, BitDefender threat intelligence team leader.
"This fact brings spam and social engineering schemes closer to the user than any e-mail spam or online scam. Moreover, we have seen that in a social applications environment, users can easily be tricked to add spammers to their profile. Thus, we recommend social gaming aficionados use extreme caution before enlarging their circle of friends."
BitDefender came to its conclusion after creating three false accounts. One of them had no photo and little information, one had a pic with a little bit of info, and one added more detail. BitDefender then signed up to a generic interest group and after one hour, the three profiles had 23, 47, and 53 friends, respectively. Doing the same in a games group, however, netted the profiles 85, 108, and 111 friends.
Several upcoming titles have announced support for Nvidia's hardware PhysX, which could be good news for the GPU maker. However, up until this point, games supporting PhysX have been a mixed bag, perhaps leading to a sense of apathy among gamers. Or at least that's what AnadTech's newest poll seems to suggest.
When asked how important hardware PhysiX acceleration is in buying software, 52 percent of the nearly 9,000 respondents said it was only "Marginal; PhysX is a bonus if a game I like supports it." Thirty-one percent took it a step further calling PhysX 'Not useful,' and 3 percent said it was "Detrimental." Only 13 percent found PhysX 'Useful,' 'Important,' or 'Very Important.'
Things weren't much better (for Nvidia) when the same question was asked about making a hardware buying decision. A slightly less 79 percent of respondents found PhysX to be anywhere from a marginal to detrimental marketing bullet. And the responses weren't overly swayed by ATI videocard owners, either. According to current poll results, 52 percent of respondents own an Nvidia card with support for PhysX.
From baseball's Mitchell Report to track star Marion Jones being stripped of her Olympic medals, the awareness of drug use in competitive sports is at an all-time high. So high, in fact, that even professional gaming can't stay ducked under the radar.
Casting aside for the moment whether or not gaming qualifies as a 'sport,' there's no debate to the amount of money being made in professional gaming. Major League Gaming gives up to $100,000 a tournament in prize money, and the other U.S. based major league, the newly minted Championship Gaming Series, has awarded as much as $500,000 in tournaments. The tally gets even higher when expanding to a global view.
And whether or not you count professional gaming as a sport, with that much money at stake, is anyone surprised that accusations of drug use have started to be thrown? According to GamePlayer, an Australian lead gaming site, some of the commonly abused substances include marijuana, amphetamines, Dexamphetamine and Methylphenidate (Ritalin), Caffeine, and FpsBrain.
In a followup to the story, GamePlayer pinged Alex Walker, the director of the Australian World Cyber Games Tournament, who readily acknowledged that players are abusing drugs in order to enhance their performance. Walker notes seeing "a number of players at national tournaments who came in "baked" purely so they could play better."
As professional gaming grows in popularity, drug use could potentially become an even bigger problem. But at the current profit margin, gaming leagues can ill afford to implement drug testing, and DailyTech notes that a strict drug enforcement policy that includes marijuana could be met with a backlash among gamers.
Thoughts on the subject? Hit the jump and let us know.