News en Cryptic Studios to Create In-game Memorial for Leonard Nimoy in Star Trek Online <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u166440/star_trek_online.jpg" alt="Star Trek Online" title="Star Trek Online" width="200" height="123" style="float: right;" />Players visited Vulcan to pay their respects</h3> <p>Yesterday, actor <a title="MPC Nimoy Passes at 83" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Leonard Nimoy passed away</span></a> at his home at the age of 83. Nimoy was known for his iconic role as Mr. Spock on Star Trek: The Original Series, and subsequent movies, though he was also a director, author, producer, and singer among other things. As a tribute to the actor and his role in Star Trek, <strong>Cryptic Studios announced that it will create an in-game memorial for Mr. Spock and Leonard Nimoy in Star Trek Online</strong>.</p> <p>Shortly after Nimoy’s death was announced, around a thousand players logged into the free-to-play MMO and travelled to Vulcan to pay respect to the actor and his character, Mr. Spock, which Nimoy voiced in the game. STO developer Cryptic Studios posted its own acknowledgement of Nimoy’s passing and then followed up with an announcement for plans to include an in-game memorial.&nbsp;</p> <p>“I want to once again express my heartfelt condolences to the friends, family, and fans of Leonard Nimoy,” said Star Trek: Online executive producer Steve Ricossa on the game’s <a title="STO forums" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">official forums</span></a>. “Everyone at Cryptic Studios was saddened to hear of his passing and we want to make sure we never forget the cultural impact of the man or the character he played. To that end, the Star Trek Online team will implement a standing in-game memorial to Spock and Leonard Nimoy this Thursday March 5th with our regular weekly maintenance.”&nbsp;</p> <p>Ricossa continued, “In this way, we hope to keep his memory as alive in our game as he is in all of our hearts.”</p> <p>Were you one of the STO players who paid tribute to Leonard Nimoy and will you visit the memorial when it is added? Let us know in the comments below!</p> <p><em>Follow Sean on&nbsp;<a title="SeanDKnight Google+" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Google+</span></a>, <a title="SeanDKnight's Twitter" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Twitter</span></a>, and <a title="SeanDKnight Facebook" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Facebook</span></a></em></p> Cryptic Studios Leonard Nimoy memorial Mr Spock Star Trek Online Gaming News Sat, 28 Feb 2015 23:50:46 +0000 Sean D Knight 29497 at Capcom Looking for Solution Over Resident Evil Revelations 2's Lack of Offline Co-op <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u166440/resident_evil_re2.jpg" alt="RE: R2" title="RE: R2" width="200" height="151" style="float: right;" />PC version was initially advertised to have offline co-op</h3> <p>If you were one of those PC gamers who purchased Resident Evil Revelations 2 for its advertised offline co-op, then you already know that the PC version has no such feature. Owners of the game soon discovered that the feature was missing despite it being advertised on the Steam store page. However, <strong>Capcom says that it is “currently looking into the matter” in regards to the lack of offline co-op in Resident Evil Revelations 2</strong>.&nbsp;</p> <p>“We apologize to our Resident Evil Revelations 2 PC players who purchased the game and expected to have local co-op as a feature,” said Capcom in a <a title="Capcom statement" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">statement</span></a>. “The feature wasn’t intended for this version and that caveat was mistakenly omitted from the product description on the Steam page earlier, and then included as soon as we were made aware. This was an unintentional error and again, we apologize for the confusion this may have caused.”</p> <p>Resident Evil Revelations 2 is an episodic action-adventure, survival horror title that follows Claire Redfield, one of the survivors of Raccoon City, who appears in a number of games in the Resident Evil franchise. The feature was initially advertised on the Steam store page and was quickly removed. But, at the very least, this incident has resulted in Capcom looking for a way to make it up to PC gamers as the statement adds, “We are currently looking into the matter and potential solutions and we hope to have new information to share very soon, so please stay tuned. Thank you for your patience and understanding.”&nbsp;</p> <p>While it doesn’t sound as if Capcom will include offline co-op mode, it did announce that the game’s Raid mode will support online co-op when it releases a patch “shortly after launch.” But in the meantime, feel free to check out our list of <a title="22 Best Co-op PC Games" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">The 22 Best Co-op PC Games</span></a> if you are looking for a co-op game.</p> <p><em>Follow Sean on&nbsp;<a title="SeanDKnight Google+" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Google+</span></a>, <a title="SeanDKnight's Twitter" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Twitter</span></a>, and <a title="SeanDKnight Facebook" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Facebook</span></a></em></p> capcom co-op offline co-op pc version resident evil Resident Evil: Revelations 2 Gaming News Fri, 27 Feb 2015 23:48:02 +0000 Sean D Knight 29494 at GDC 2015: What to Expect <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u154082/tf2_oculus_trio-970-80.jpg" alt="GDC 2015" title="GDC 2015" width="250" height="140" style="float: right;" />VR is going to be big</h3> <p>The <a title="GDC" href="" target="_blank">Game Developers Conference</a> is taking place just around the corner between March 2-6 and we’ll be in San Francisco covering it. There will, of course, be a bunch of game discussions and demos as usual, but we wanted to approach it from a hardware/PC perspective. Having said that, this year is going to be an interesting show for hardware with <a title="valve gdc" href="" target="_blank">Valve</a> finally pushing the Steam Machines again along with its VR system. On that notion, expect Valve and VR to be the talks of the show. Seriously, guys, this is going to be the year of VR.</p> <p>Below are our predictions for what you’ll see at GDC 2015. Let us know what games or hardware you’re most excited to see in the comments below!</p> controller game developers conference GDC 2015 microsoft Steam Valve virtual reality vr windows 10 News Features Fri, 27 Feb 2015 22:58:46 +0000 Jimmy Thang 29487 at IBM Announces it will Reach $40 Billion in Annual Revenue by 2018 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u166440/ibm_logo.jpg" alt="IBM logo" title="IBM logo" width="200" height="200" style="float: right;" />"Strategic imperatives" will help reach this goal</h3> <p>Last year, we saw some interesting sales and investments by International Business Machines Corp. IBM had announced that it was selling off its <a title="IBM selling off chip business" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">chip business</span></a>, revealed plans to invest $3 billion for <a title="IBM to invest $3 billion in R&amp;D" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">semiconductor research and development</span></a>, and selling its <a title="IBM sells server business" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">x86-based server business</span></a> to Lenovo. Now, <strong>IBM is looking to reach an annual revenue of $40 billion</strong>.</p> <p>The high target was set by IBM executives at the company’s annual investor meeting that took place on Thursday in New York where IBM CEO Ginni Rometty announced the new long-term goal. Rometty expects the revenue to come from areas IBM has designated as “strategic imperatives” which includes the cloud, analytics, social, mobile, and security software.</p> <p>The $40 billion amount would represent around 44 percent of $90 billion in total revenue that analysts are expecting from IBM in 2018. Last year, the businesses that IBM is relying on to reach that target generated $25 billion in revenues which was 27 percent of the company’s $93 billion in sales. To help achieve its goal, IBM will be shifting $4 billion in spending to its “strategic imperatives” this year in order to hit $40 billion annual revenue by 2018.</p> <div>Do you think this is a feasible goal for IBM? Sound off in the comments below!</div> <p><em>Follow Sean on&nbsp;<a title="SeanDKnight Google+" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Google+</span></a>, <a title="SeanDKnight's Twitter" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Twitter</span></a>, and <a title="SeanDKnight Facebook" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Facebook</span></a></em></p> 4 billion 40 billion cloud Ginni Rometty ibm mobile Security News Fri, 27 Feb 2015 22:00:58 +0000 Sean D Knight 29493 at VLC Player 2.2.0 is Available for Download <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u166440/vlc.png" alt="VLC" title="VLC" width="200" height="186" style="float: right;" />Popular media player just got better</h3> <p>When it comes to watching videos on your PC, there are a <a title="Best Media Player Roundup" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">number of media players</span></a> out there that can get the job done. But one of the more popular software happens to be VLC Media Player. The open source video player is popular due to its ability to play all kinds of file formats and its versatility (check out our editorial about <a title="How to Get the Most out of VLC " href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">getting the most out of VLC</span></a>). Today, <strong>VLC Media Player 2.2.0 was released</strong> and includes a selection of new feature, fixes, and mobile support.</p> <p>According to the <a title="VideoLAN press release" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">press release</span></a>, the new update is the result of over one year of volunteer work that fixes thousands of bugs and increases the scope of formats supported. In addition to the PC version of the software, new versions of VLC for iOS, Android, Android TV, WinRT, Windows RT, and Windows Phone were released at the same time.</p> <p>One new feature for the PC version is the ability to resume playback that was, until now, only available on mobile versions. Users can now open a video file, which they were watching previously, and will be prompted by a question at the top of the screen when re-open a file.&nbsp;</p> <p>The new version also includes improved compatibility for Ogg, MP4, and WMV files and experimental support for interactive menus of BluRays. &nbsp;</p> <p>For a full list of new features and improvements, be sure to check out the <a title="VideoLAN" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">official website</span></a>.</p> <p><em>Follow Sean on&nbsp;<a title="SeanDKnight Google+" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Google+</span></a>, <a title="SeanDKnight's Twitter" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Twitter</span></a>, and <a title="SeanDKnight Facebook" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Facebook</span></a></em></p> 2.2.0 videolan vlc VLC 2.2.0 vlc media player News Fri, 27 Feb 2015 21:33:35 +0000 Sean D Knight 29492 at Actor Leonard Nimoy, Spock of Star Trek, is Dead at 83 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/leonard_nimoy.jpg" alt="Leonard Nimoy" title="Leonard Nimoy" width="228" height="181" style="float: right;" />He lived long and prospered</h3> <p>Today is a sad day, as <strong>the universe just lost Leonard Nimoy, the actor best known for his role as Mr. Spock on Star Trek</strong>. According to reports, he passed away at his home this morning as the result of end-stage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Nimoy announced last year that he was battling the disease, blaming it on years of smoking, which he had given up around three decades ago.</p> <p>Nimoy's grandson <a href="" target="_blank">confirmed the news</a> on Nimoy's verified Twitter account.</p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;">"<em>Hi all, as you all know, my Grandpa passed away this morning at 8:40 from end-stage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. He was an extraordinary man, husband, grandfather, brother, actor, author-the list goes on- and friend. Thank you for the warm condolences. May you all LLAP. - Dani</em></p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;"><em>"P.S. I will be putting special shirts up on our site, <a href="" target="_blank"></a>, where all of the proceeds will go to the COPD Foundation. I hope to hear from you all.</em>"</p> <p>Star Trek premiered on NBC on September 8, 1966. Nimoy had been a star ever since, forever attached to the enduring character with long, pointy ears who served aboard the starship Enterprise, often offering Captain Kirk a logical outlook on situations without the interference of emotions.</p> <p>As his grandson points out, Nimoy was also many other things, including a writer, photographer, film director, producer, singer, and of course a Twitter user. His <a href="" target="_blank">last tweet</a> posted last Monday reads, "A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. LLAP."</p> <p>Nimoy is survived by his wife, Susan Bay Nimoy; children, Adam and Julie Nimoy; a stepson, Aaron Bay Schuck; six grandchildren; one great-grandchild, and an older brother, Melvin.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> actor entertainment Leonard Nimoy Spock Star Trek News Fri, 27 Feb 2015 20:58:24 +0000 Paul Lilly 29491 at Intel's Next NUC Could Feature Respectable Graphics Performance <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/nuc_0.jpg" alt="NUC" title="NUC" width="228" height="140" style="float: right;" />Get ready to game on a NUC?</h3> <p>Pint sized PCs are a thing now. Not that they weren't before, but with increasingly faster and energy efficient hardware coming out of Santa Clara, little boxes like the NUC (Next Unit of Computing) are fast becoming viable candidates for primary PC duties. That's especially true of <strong>Intel's fastest NUC yet, the forthcoming NUC5i7RYH</strong> equipped with a 5th Generation Intel Core i7 5557U processor.</p> <p>The chip is a Broadwell part that will power Intel's NUC 2.0 models, otherwise known as Rock Canyon, based on the literature <a href="" target="_blank"><em>FanlessTech</em> got its hands on</a>. It's a dual-core part clocked at 3.1GHz to 3.4GHz with 4MB of cache and a 28W TDP. The real treat, however, is the integrated Intel Iris Graphics 6100, which Intel says will make its upcoming NUC "perfect for immersive gaming and applications that leverage the GPU."</p> <p>That's a bit of marketing fluff, though the Iris 6100 should prove capable of respectable gaming performance, depending on the title, resolution, and settings. The 6100 is the fastest GPU Broadwell currently has to offer, with 48 execution units and a 300MHz to 1,100MHz frequency. We've seen claims that it should be slightly faster than a GeForce GTX 820M.</p> <p>The NUC5i7RYH will also support up to 16GB of DDR3-1866 RAM and feature four USB 3.0 ports, internal support for an M.2 SSD card, internal SATA 6Gbps for a 2.5-inch drive, 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, mini HDMI 1.4a and mini DisplayPort 1.2 outputs, and a few other bullet points.</p> <p>No word yet on when exactly the new NUC will come out or how much it will cost.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> broadwell core i7 Hardware intel Iris 6100 mini pc nuc NUC5i7RYH News Fri, 27 Feb 2015 17:22:25 +0000 Paul Lilly 29489 at Lenovo Promises No More Bloatware Starting with Windows 10 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/lenovo_yoga.jpg" alt="Lenovo Yoga" title="Lenovo Yoga" width="228" height="170" style="float: right;" />Moving on from Superfish</h3> <p>What a month it's been for Lenovo, the world's top supplier of PCs and generally a well liked company. The OEM put both of those traits <a href="">at risk</a> by <a href="">pre-loading adware</a> onto its consumer laptops and desktops, adware that was later discovered to be a serious security threat. We might never know for sure how savvy Lenovo was to the software's nefarious methods of serving up ads, but in the wake of it all, there have been <a href="">apologies</a>, explanations, a software tool to remove Superfish, a <a href="">class action lawsuit</a>, and now a promise -- <strong>Lenovo wants to be the leader of clean PCs</strong>.</p> <p>In yet another statement, Lenovo again waxed remorse for the Superfish situation. This time, however, the OEM also said it was offering its customers affected by the issue a free 6-month subscription to McAfee LiveSafe service, or a 6-month extension to existing subscribers. More details will be made available within the next week, but McAfee? Yeah, that's not going to smooth things over.</p> <p>What might, however, is Lenovo's promise to stop installing bloatware and only including software that's necessary for included hardware, like a webcam application.</p> <p>"The events of last week reinforce the principle that customer experience, security and privacy must be our top priorities," Lenovo said in a <a href="" target="_blank">statement</a>. "With this in mind, we will significantly reduce preloaded applications. Our goal is clear: To become the leader in providing <strong>cleaner, safer PCs.</strong></p> <p>"We are starting immediately, and by the time we launch our Windows 10 products, our standard image will only include the operating system and related software, software required to make hardware work well (for example, when we include unique hardware in our devices, like a 3D camera), security software and Lenovo applications. This should eliminate what our industry calls 'adware' and 'bloatware.' For some countries, certain applications customarily expected by users will also be included."</p> <p>The bolded text for emphasis was done by Lenovo to drive the point home. In addition to eliminating crapware, Lenovo said it will begin posting information about any and all software that comes preloaded on its machines and clearly explain what each one does.</p> <p>"We view these actions as a starting point. We believe that these steps will make our technology better, safer, and more secure," Lenovo said.</p> <p>This is all well and good by Lenovo, and now it needs to follow through. It will be critical for the company to avoid another situation like this, not just because of the "fool me once" saying, but also because it's flat out saying this won't happen again.</p> <p>The good news for Lenovo is that it has an opportunity to turn lemons into lemonade. What started off as a sour situation could take a sweet turn of events, if in fact Lenovo follows through and becomes a leader in clean PCs. It will have competition, of course, mainly from boutique vendors like Maingear that tout zero bloatware. Where Lenovo has the advantage is in price, assuming it can continue to keep costs down without the aid of third-party software.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> adware bloatware Hardware lenovo LifeSafe Mcafee OEM rigs Software Superfish News Fri, 27 Feb 2015 16:49:34 +0000 Paul Lilly 29488 at This Is How Verizon Bullshits You <!--paging_filter--><h3>Verizon plays you for a fool; hopes you won't dig too deep</h3> <p>Today was arguably a landmark event for the FCC and net neutrality. The <a href="">FCC successfully passed a vote</a> that classifies Internet service as a public utility under Title II of the Communications Act, which makes ISPs become what's otherwise known as a "common carrier." If you want to read the actual rules from the FCC, <a href="">check this out</a>. Here are the important bits:</p> <ol> <li><strong>No Blocking</strong>: broadband providers may not block access to legal content, applications, services, or non-harmful devices.</li> <li><strong>No Throttling</strong>: broadband providers may not impair or degrade lawful Internet traffic on the basis of content, applications, services, or non-harmful devices.</li> <li><strong>No Paid Prioritization</strong>: broadband providers may not favor some lawful Internet traffic over other lawful traffic in exchange for consideration or any kind—in other words, no "fast lanes." This rule also bans ISPs from prioritizing content and services of their affiliates.</li> </ol> <p>And for the record:</p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;"><span style="white-space: pre-wrap;">Broadband service will remain exempt from state and local taxation under the Internet Tax Freedom Act. This law, recently renewed by Congress and signed by the President, bans state and local taxation on Internet access regardless of its FCC regulatory classification. </span></p> <p>For the better part of the last decade, <a href="">net neutrality has been an increasingly hot topic</a>, which exploded into the limelight after Netflix and other content providers started <a href="">revealing network benchmarks</a> that claimed large Internet service providers throttled network speeds for some and not for others, mainly, not for those who were willing to pay higher prices.</p> <p>While this sounds just fine, it is not. On the customer side, yes, absolutely charge me more if I want a faster Internet connection. However:</p> <p>Let's say I am paying $50/month for a 100Mbps connection. I then decide, I want a 200Mbps connection from my provider, and pay $100/month. I expect, under ideal circumstances to get double the bandwidth. But then, my carrier is secretly slowing down traffic from content providers and then going out to solicit extra money from those affected providers to "ensure" good service. This is called double-dipping. A webpage from a popular online website gets delivered to me at full speeds, while the video from a popular streaming website gets throttled. This is the issue at hand with net neutrality, where neutral states that all content is the same regardless of what it is -- since it's all 1s and 0s.</p> <p>Imagine if I were a delivery courier for packages. I charged you $10 to deliver 2-day, and then went to the company you ordered your goods from and asked them for more money or else I'll prioritize another vendor first.</p> <p>As you may have heard, most if not all of the Internet service providers are up in arms about the FCC's ruling. It throws a wrench in their attempts to curb the user experience that's already been paid for, in a back-handed attempt to get more money. Much <a href="">has already</a>&nbsp;been <a href="">documented</a> about these <a href="">shady maneuvers</a>.</p> <p>So, let's get back to the issue at hand.</p> <p>The carriers, like Comcast, TWC, Verizon, etc., are all claiming that the new FCC net neutrality rules based on Title II Regulations, will "hurt" and "stifle" Internet innovation for future generations. In fact, Verizon went as far as&nbsp;<a href="">releasing a press release in Morse code to mock</a> how the FCC is using a dated rule from the 1930s to regulate modern technology.</p> <p><img src="/files/u191083/screen_shot_2015-02-26_at_6.27.22_pm.png" alt="Verizon FCC Net Neutrality PR" title="Verizon FCC Net Neutrality PR" width="350" height="543" style="float: right;" /></p> <p>Clicking on the "translated statement here" <a href="">leads to a readable version</a>, except it's written in old, unclear, type-writer font, to continue mocking the FCC on using a Title II Regulations.</p> <p>This is amusing because Verizon previously forced its hand through the FCC by saying it is a common carrier under Title II Regulations. In fact, it's not recent at all. According to an <a href="">extremely detailed PULP report on Verizon</a>, the carrier has been using Title II Regulations on and off, depending on its business needs. Verizon flip-flops between saying that it's a heavily regulated network or a deregulated service provider. <a href="">In a report by The Verge</a>, <strong>Verizon's own documents say</strong>:</p> <p><strong>"As noted, Verizon NJ has been upgrading substantial portions of its telecommunications network with FTTP technology as a common carrier pursuant to Title II of the Communications Act of 1934..."</strong></p> <p><strong>Straight from the horse's mouth. Talk about hypocrisy.</strong></p> <p><strong><span style="font-weight: normal;">Verizon uses Title II to gain common carrier benefits, such as regulated lower prices, for when it wants to push out infrastructure and dip its hands into tax dollars for the build-outs, but shams Title II for when it wants to throttle broadband speeds so that it can siphon money from content providers--all after the Verizon customer has already paid for the access.</span></strong></p> <p><strong><span style="font-weight: normal;">How exactly can Verizon claim Title II? Easy: Verizon also has a landline telephone business. Telephone carriers are classified and regulated under Title II of the communications Act. This regulation controls costs, and allows telephone carriers to use backbones of other utilities, to ease the build-out of networks by piggybacking on existing infrastructure. Since landline businesses are dying, Verizon and others <a href=";;xs=1&amp;isjs=1&amp;;xguid=9616a9ff2bb5c080e16cb484a77ec53e&amp;xuuid=8c28656282ab035e4a57bc4f98654d34&amp;xsessid=f91c565af82043ff8fdd008558f315ff&amp;xcreo=0&amp;xed=0&amp;;;xtz=480">keep this part of its business around as a very powerful tool</a>.</span></strong></p> <p>So, Verizon jumps back and forth on Title II classification, depending on whether or not it perceives an advantage, and even outright classifies itself under Title II. Yet today it is publicly trashing Title II as an antiquated regulation from the 1930s.</p> <p>The fact that Verizon is releasing this kind of PR stunt designed to tell you, the public, that the FCC is using an outdated regulation not suitable for the modern technology era, is complete horse shit. The PR machine at Verizon is essentially spitting in your face, thinking you won't even notice because it knows the majority of the public is too ignorant of what actually goes on behind the scenes and that most people don't really have the time to dig through reports and papers.</p> <p>Up until today, Verizon was freely using Title II on and off wherever it felt it could cut costs and fund infrastructure using public funds. It's now only making a play that the FCC's rules are unfit for modern society because the new rules will hurt its revenue stream from content providers.</p> <p>It still remains to be seen what will happen in the coming months and years. Carriers will no doubt take the FCC's ruling to court and attempt to have it modified or thrown out. And for critics who are claiming that the FCC's new net neutrality regulation is a play by the government disguised to fool the average citizen? Verizon dealt that card already.</p> fcc net neutrality tittle ii regulations tom wheeler Verizon News Fri, 27 Feb 2015 04:05:24 +0000 Tuan Nguyen 29486 at Microsoft Removing Google Chat and Facebook from <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u166440/outlook_logo.jpg" alt="Outlook logo" title="Outlook logo" width="200" height="199" style="float: right;" />Nothing but Skype from here on out</h3> <p>For those who use, they will have to rely on Skype for all of their communication needs. In an email to its users, <strong>Microsoft announced that it will be removing Facebook and Google Chat from</strong>. It is a move that is unsurprising given how much Microsoft has invested in Skype.</p> <p>"Within the next couple of weeks, we will be discontinuing support for Facebook Chat in And due to Google's decision to discontinue the chat protocol used by the Google Talk platform, we can no longer provide Google Chat in," reads an email from the company. "We understand that this may disappoint some of our customers, but we hope that you'll try Skype for chat, and video and voice calling, so you can take advantage of the more robust ways to keep in touch with friends and family."</p> <p>Microsoft went on to say that this will not affect users’ connection to their Facebook or Google accounts. This means that users’ People page and the People apps will continue to be updated with the latest contact information from those services.</p> <p>Whether the removal of these two services will cause users to go elsewhere, rather than use Skype, remains to be seen.&nbsp;</p> <p>But do you use and does the removal of Facebook Chat and Google Chat matter to you? Let us know in the comments below!</p> <p><em>Follow Sean on&nbsp;<a title="SeanDKnight Google+" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Google+</span></a>, <a title="SeanDKnight's Twitter" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Twitter</span></a>, and <a title="SeanDKnight Facebook" href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Facebook</span></a></em></p> facebook Facebook Chat Google Google Chat microsoft Outlook News Fri, 27 Feb 2015 01:23:23 +0000 Sean D Knight 29485 at Tesoro Launches Low Cost Gungnir Gaming Mouse with RGB Illumination <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/tesoro_gungnir.jpg" alt="Tesoro Gungnir" title="Tesoro Gungnir" width="228" height="202" style="float: right;" />This rodent won't break the bank</h3> <p><strong>Tesoro today expanded its line of gaming mice with the Gungnir Black</strong>, an affordable rodent with customizable RGB illumination. It's named after the magical spear Odin used in Norse mythology, which is supposed to always be able to hit its mark no matter who wields it. See where Tesoro is going with this? The company likens its namesake mouse to the spear, saying that its 3,500 DPI optical sensor "ensures smooth and controlled movements."</p> <p>Aside from the mythology lesson, the Gungnir also boasts seven programmable buttons and 64KB of onboard memory to allow for the configuration of up to 35 macro keys and 1,600 recordable actions. This is done through Tesoro's new software, which has been redesigned to be more user friendly. You can also adjust the DPI and polling rate (up to 1,000Hz) in the software, and then save your custom setup to a profile.</p> <p>Other features include a lift distance of 2mm, 20G acceleration, 1.8m cable, four DPI levels, and an ergonomic design with a rubberized thumb grip.</p> <p>Tesoro says the <a href="" target="_blank">Gungnir</a> is available now in North America for $29 MSRP.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> Gungnir Hardware mouse Peripherals tesoro News Thu, 26 Feb 2015 20:55:22 +0000 Paul Lilly 29482 at It's Official, FCC Reclassifies Broadband Internet Under Title II (UPDATED) <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/express_lane.jpg" alt="Express Lane" title="Express Lane" width="228" height="144" style="float: right;" />A new era for net neutrality</h3> <p>As seemed destined to happen, <strong>the Federal Communications Commission voted today to reclassify broadband Internet service as a public utility</strong>, thus giving the FCC the power it sought to implement strict net neutrality rules. The new rules were approved in a 3-to-2 vote and also apply to mobile Internet service, though the war isn't over just yet -- opponents of the Title II classification are sure to mount a legal challenge, and though it's an uphill battle, they may have an easier time convincing a court to issue a stay on the new rules.</p> <p>Under the new rules, ISPs will not be allowed to implement paid fast lanes, block access to legal content or services, or throttle speeds unless it's for "reasonable network management," such as upgrades to the infrastructure.</p> <p>"Today, the Commission -- once and for all -- enacts strong, sustainable rules, grounded in multiple sources of legal authority, to ensure that Americans reap the economic, social, and civic benefits of an Open Internet today and into the future," the <a href="" target="_blank">FCC said in a statement</a>. "These new rules are guided by three principles: America’s broadband networks must be fast, fair and open—principles shared by the overwhelming majority of the nearly 4 million commenters who participated in the FCC’s Open Internet proceeding."</p> <p>According to a report in <a href="" target="_blank"><em>The New York Times</em></a>, each of the five commissioners took turns speaking before the vote, with Republicans making clear their opposition.</p> <p>"The Internet is not broken. There is no problem to solve," said Republican commissioner Ajit Pai.</p> <p>Verizon was also quick to respond in a <a href="" target="_blank">Twitter post</a> saying, "The FCC's Throwback Thursday vote on Net Neutrality brought 1930s regulations to the 21st century Internet," along with link to a statement in morse code to drive the point home. The statement in English can be <a href="" target="_blank">read here (PDF)</a>.</p> <p>The new rules adopt only parts of Title II while ignoring others. For example, the FCC will not involve itself in pricing decisions or in how ISPs decide to manage their networks from an engineering standpoint. As such, FCC chairman Tom Wheeler considers this a modern adaptation of Title II.</p> <p>"These are a 21st century set of rules for a 21st century industry," Wheeler said.</p> <h3>Update</h3> <p>The topic of net neutrality and whether reclassifying the Internet as a utility is the correct approach is a topic with a clear division in opinions. Not many people or organizations find themselves wavering back and forth -- they're either for government regulation or against it (as it pertains here).</p> <p>Naturally, the Obama administration is thrilled with the vote, with the White House having <a href="" target="_blank">tweeted out</a>, "The FCC just voted to keep the Internet open and free. That's the power of millions making their voices heard. Thank you!"</p> <p>You can also count Netflix among those that are stoked with the vote:</p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;"><em>The net neutrality debate is about who picks winners and losers online: Internet service providers or consumers. Today, the FCC settled it: Consumers win.," Netflix said in a statement.</em></p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;"><em>Today’s order is a meaningful step towards ensuring ISPs cannot shift bad conduct upstream to where they interconnect with content providers like Netflix. Net neutrality rules are only as strong as their weakest link, and it’s incumbent on the FCC to ensure these interconnection points aren’t used to end-run the principles of an open Internet. </em></p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;"><em>Given the lack of competition among broadband providers, today’s other FCC decision preventing regulations that thwart local investment in new broadband infrastructure also is an important step toward ensuring greater consumer choice. These actions kick off a new era that puts the consumer, not litigious corporate giants, at the center of competition policy.</em></p> <p>On the opposite side, <a href="" target="_blank">Comcast has come and said</a> it's "disappointed the Commission chose this route, which is certain to lead to years of litigation and regulatory uncertainty and may greatly harm investment and innovation, when the use of Section 706 alone would have provided a much more certain and legally sustainable path."</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">AT&amp;T offered</a> similar rhetoric alluding to a lawsuit, saying that "Partisan decisions taken on 3-2 votes can be undone on similarly partisan 3-2 votes only two years hence. And FCC decisioins made without clear authorization by Congress (and who can honestly argue Congress intended this?) can be undone quickly by Congress or the courts."</p> <p>Image Credit: <a href="" target="_blank">Flickr (Mike Licht)</a></p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> broadband fcc Internet net neutrality tom wheeler News Thu, 26 Feb 2015 20:19:00 +0000 Paul Lilly 29481 at Should AMD Jump on the Chromebook Bandwagon? <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/chromebooks_2.jpg" alt="Chromebooks" title="Chromebooks" width="228" height="175" style="float: right;" />Chromebooks and AMD don't currently mix</h3> <p>You have options when it comes to Chromebooks. Some have touch displays, a few are rugged so they can endure a day at the playground, many are relatively inexpensive at around $200, while others like the Chromebook Pixel ($1,300) are quite a bit more. But one option you don't have is buying a Chromebook powered by AMD -- it's either ARM or Intel. That may change someday, but for now, <strong>AMD simply isn't interested in the Chromebook category</strong>.</p> <p>We know this because AMD chief technical officer Mark Papermaster said as much earlier this week during the International Solid State Circuits (ISSCC) conference.</p> <p>"You have to really look at the Chromebook, and what Google's objective with it is," Papermaster told a small group of reporters at ISSCC, <a href="" target="_blank">according <em>PCWorld</em></a>. "For us, it's just a business decision, when you need our type of CPU and graphics technology that can make a difference."</p> <p>For now, it isn't hurting AMD to ignore Chromebooks -- only around 4.6 million units were sold in 2014, representing a mere 1.5 percent of the PC market. However, the category is growing, with double the number of Chromebooks sold in 2014 compared to 2013.</p> <p>AMD is gambling that Chromebooks never become anything more than a niche product, or if they do, that it can jump in and become a player. And the Sunnyvale chip designer might be right. I've pointed out several times in the past that the top selling notebooks on Amazon are Chromebooks, but a glance today shows that's no longer the case.</p> <p>Instead, the top selling laptop is now a 15.6-inch Asus machine running a dual-core Celeron chip for $249, followed by the HP Stream 11 (No. 2), HP Stream 13 (No. 3), a 15.6-inch Acer Aspire (No. 4), and another HP Stream 13 (No. 5). None of these are more than $250, which suggests that customers weren't necessarily interested in Chromebooks for many of the reasons Google laid out other than price.</p> <p>Now that Windows laptops can be had at similar price points, Chromebooks aren't as popular, at least on Amazon. They only comprise the No. 7 and No. 8 spots out of the site's 10 best selling notebooks, whereas before they led the pack.</p> <p>"For us, it’s when do you need our CPU and graphics capability that can make a difference," Papermaster added. "Again, you’ll see that there’s these rock-bottom markets... so those don’t have our value proposition."</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> amd chromebook Google laptop notebook News Thu, 26 Feb 2015 19:33:28 +0000 Paul Lilly 29480 at Why I Think Nvidia Is Going to Announce a VR Headset <!--paging_filter--><h3>Column: Jimmy Thang gathers the trail of breadcrumbs</h3> <p>There’s a rumor floating around right now that Nvidia is going to reveal its own VR headset at GDC. <a title="vr focus" href="" target="_blank">VRFocus</a> is reporting this will happen during the company’s teased “Made to Game” event happening next Tuesday, March 3rd.</p> <p>While I don’t know how rock-solid VRFocus’ source is, I have been speculating that Nvidia would announce its own VR headset prior to this supposed leak. Allow me to walk you through my logic.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="" width="609" height="601" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>It will "redefine the future of gaming," you say?</strong></p> <p>In Nvidia’s “Made to Game” invitation teaser (seen above), details are pretty scarce, but we do have this line from Nvidia’s CEO Jen-Hsun Huang that reads, “More than 5 years in the making, what I want to share with you will redefine the future of gaming.” That already has a very VR vibe to it, but isn’t really substantial enough evidence to be worth reporting on, so let’s move along.</p> <p>If you’ve been listening to our <a title="no bs podcast" href="" target="_blank">No BS podcasts</a>—<a title="no bs 229" href="" target="_blank">episode #229</a> in particular—you might recall that we got Nvidia’s Distinguished Engineer Tom Petersen and Senior Director of Engineering Rev Lebaradian into the recording room. When I asked them what they thought of VR way back in this July 2014 recording, this is how the two gentlemen responded:</p> <p>“I love VR,” stated Petersen, adding, “I think it’s going to be great. It’s got some real challenges though, let’s be honest. VR today, even though Oculus is doing great things and is a great partner of ours, I think that VR in the future could be very, very good. The biggest challenge in VR is [figuring out] how do you couple the graphics subsystem to the sensor subsystem and the display; and you know the people who are best positioned to make that great and are willing to invest? That’s us.”</p> <p>We then expressed that we’d love to see a wireless solution, but that we understood it was difficult with the added latency. To which Petersen responded, “Think about GRID, think about [Nvidia] GameStream. What are we working on? Latency.” Nvidia’s Senior Director of Engineering Rev Lebaradian added, “with GSync, we’re working on displays.” Petersen then added, “I don’t want to talk too much about it other than to say it’s another one of those crazy technologies for gamers that’s right in the middle of our wheelhouse. It’s the kind of the stuff that we get excited about.” Lebaradian chimed in and said, “So we’re definitely invested in it, if that’s the question.” Petersen echoed those sentiments and added, “We’ve been investing in it and we’re going to do so… we are not a follower, and anything that’s new and innovative, we want to be there.”</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><iframe src="" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>VR talk begins at 1:37:18.</strong></p> <p>Did I mention that Nvidia is hosting a panel titled “<a href="">How Nvidia Technology Is Improving the VR Experience</a>” on March 4th... the day after its “Made to Game” event? It's also worth pointing out that the description for this panel says it will go over methods to "improve the gaming experience on the Oculus Rift and <strong>other VR headsets</strong>."</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong><img src="" alt="nvidia 3d vision" title="nvidia 3d vision" width="620" height="625" /></strong></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>Nvidia has plenty of experience with stereoscopic 3D.</strong></p> <p>Finally, Nvidia sent us an email today stating, “In addition to the event we have planned for Tuesday, March 3, we’ll have a booth presence at GDC in the Moscone Center, South Hall, Booth #1016 where we’ll be demonstrating a glimpse into the future of gaming.”</p> <p>Could this one-on-one invitation be a glimpse at Nvidia’s VR headset? All the clues seem to be pointing that way.</p> <p>Could I be wrong? Stranger things have happened.</p> column headset made to game maximum pc nvidia vr oculus rift rumor titan virtual reality News Thu, 26 Feb 2015 19:29:42 +0000 Jimmy Thang 29475 at Intel Rebrands Atom CPUs, Hints at New Silicon <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/intel_atom_rebranded.jpg" alt="Rebranded Atom" title="Rebranded Atom" width="228" height="172" style="float: right;" />Rebranded Atom chips follow Intel's Core naming convention</h3> <p>Intel is rebranding its Atom processor line so that customers will have an easier time determining the level of CPU performance at a glance. To do that, <strong>Intel is splitting Atom into three distinct levels -- Atom x3, Atom x5, and Atom x7</strong>. It's a similar approach to Intel's Core i3, Core i5, and Core i7 naming conventions, which follows the good, better, best construct, and it will start with the next generation of Atom CPUs.</p> <p>"Intel Atom x3 processor provides basic, but genuine Intel-level tablet, phablet and smartphone performance. Intel Atom x5 processor has more capabilities and features for people who want an even better experience, and the flagship Intel Atom x7 processor provides the highest level of performance and capabilities for the Intel Atom family," <a href="" target="_blank">Intel explains</a>.</p> <p>The new branding is part of a larger breakdown that also includes three tiers -- Atom x3/x5/x7 for when mobility is a priority, Core M for a blend of performance and portability, and Core i3/i5/i7 for when performance matters most.</p> <p>While Intel didn't provide any details about the next generation of Atom that will kick off the new naming convention, we suspect it will be the company's 14nm Cherry Trail CPUs that are supposed to debut this year. Cherry Trail is the successor to Bay Trail and promises to deliver better graphics performance and battery life optimizations.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> atom cpu Hardware intel processor x3 x5 x7 News Thu, 26 Feb 2015 18:50:00 +0000 Paul Lilly 29479 at