Austrian computing pioneer created "May Breeze" with 3,000 donated transistors
Every so often we learn about the passing of a pioneer in the field of computing, and this time it's Heinz Zemanek, creator of "May Breeze" (or Mailüfterl in German) the first computer in Europe to run solely on transistors instead of vacuum tubes. With the help of students at the Vienna University of Technology (TUV), the Austrian engineer and programmer built the PC from 3,000 transistors donated from Philips, along with 5,000 diodes, 1,000 assembly platelets, 100,000 solder joints, 15,000 resistors, 5,000 capacitors, and 20,000 meters of switching wire.
Looking to replace your desktop system with a laptop but weary of the performance you might be giving up? If so, then you owe it to yourself to check out MSI's new GT72 Dominator Pro laptop line. Available in two SKUs, the Dominator Pro is a 17.3-inch laptop that wields an Intel Core i7 4710HQ processor (2.5GHz to 3.4GHz), Nvidia GeForce GTX 880M graphics, and gobs of RAM.
Microsoft prepares for the biggest round of layoffs in company history
Satya Nadella is going to make history at Microsoft, though not the kind he'll ever want to brag about. Following up on an open memo sent out to employees last week, the CEO of Microsoft confirmed in another open email to all employees that job cuts are on the horizon as the company looks to reduce its workforce by up to 18,000 workers. No other round of layoffs in Microsoft's history have come close to that figure.
It's estimated that around 10 percent of the world's population are left-handed. If you whittle that down to PC gamers, the market quickly shrinks, though that doesn't come as any consolation to left-handed gamers lamenting the fact that most peripherals are geared toward right-handed users. Most, but not all. For example, Tesoro's Tizona mechanical keyboard sports an optional mechanical numpad that can attach to either side of the plank.
Week four of a five week, five million Steam key giveaway
For the past several weeks, our sister site PC Gamer in collaboration with Bundle Stars has been giving away millions of Steam keys for a new game each week. Past titles have included SpaceChem, Dino D-Day, and Really Big Sky. Ready to grab another one? Now in week four of a five week promotion, PC Gamer is giving away one million Steam Keys for Gun Monkeys, a procedurally generated, physics based, online deathmatch platform game.
Work in peace and quiet before jumping into a game
Asus today unveiled its new Strix GeForce GTX 750 Ti OC graphics card, and the first time you install it, you might be inclined to think something's wrong when the fans don't start spinning. Don't fret though, that's by design. Using the company's semi-passive Strix technology, the card's fans will sit there motionless and let the rest of the cooler passively chill the card until thermals reach 65C.
Cortana, Siri, Google Now, meet BlackBerry Assistant
Starting soon, pretty much any smartphone you buy will come with a virtual helper. Microsoft's Windows Phone platform has Cortana, Apple's iOS software has Siri, Google's Android OS has Google Now, and beginning with BlackBerry 10.3, BlackBerry users will have BlackBerry Assistant to boss around and ask for help. BlackBerry Assistant is the Canadian handset maker's equivalent to all the others, and it will act similarly.
Palit isn't a name you see bounced around too often in the U.S., though if you dig around online, you can find the company's products scattered about. Two of Palit's newest offerings fall under its new KalmX Series of silent graphics cards -- GeForce GTX 750 and GeForce GTX 750 Ti. Both of these Maxwell cards sport Palit's new passive cooler for a 0dB solution (provided there's no electrical noise).
Analysts can talk about the post PC era until they're blue in the face, Intel will continue to cash checks either way. Big ones, at that. Intel reported second-quarter revenue of $13.8 billion, up 8 percent for $12.8 billion in the same quarter a year ago. That translates into a $2.8 billion profit for the quarter, which is 40 percent higher than the $2 billion profit it recorded in Q2 2013.
LeapFrog, the company behind the popular LeapPad for kids, once again has the little ones in mind with its new LeapTV console. Billed as the first educational, active video gaming system, LeapTV was designed from the ground up for kids ages three to eight years old. LeapFrog's grand vision is to change the way kids learn by combining activity and movement with educational curriculum.