Posted on Monday, October 23 2017 @ 21:46:09 CEST by Thomas De Maesschalck
Looks like Google used Intel's foundry unit to manufacture a custom chip. CNBC received confirmation from the search giant that the Pixel Visual Core, which is found in the new Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL smartphones, was built with Intel:
"Google built Pixel Visual Core with Intel," the Google spokesperson wrote in an email to CNBC. "Pixel Visual Core is a custom designed processor from Google, built to serve specific computational photography requirements that could not be met by existing chips."
The Pixel Visual Core is designed to process HDR+ images five times faster and ten times more energy efficient than the smartphone's main Snapdragon 835 SoC. Additionally, the Pixel Visual Core will also boost the performance of certain AI features of apps. At the moment, this core is still deactivated. Google's upcoming Android 8.1 build will activate this feature.
Posted on Monday, October 23 2017 @ 16:20:05 CEST by Thomas De Maesschalck
NVIDIA launches its GeForce 388.00 WHQL driver, you can grab it over here. This is the Game Ready edition for Destiny 2 and Assassin’s Creed Origins. No new features in this release but you do get two bug fixes:
[Notebook][GeForce GTX 1080][G-Sync]: Stuttering occurs while playing games such as Doom, CS Go, and Witcher 3 on the external display. 
[Notebook][GM204]: Alienware laptops with GM204 GPUs are not included in this driver release. Support for these products will be added in the next driver. 
Posted on Monday, October 23 2017 @ 16:13:22 CEST by Thomas De Maesschalck
The GeForce GTX 1070 Ti cards keep leaking, this time VideoCardz got its hands on photos of four models from EVGA. One model has a reference-like blower-style cooler, while the other three cards feature the dual-fan iCX cooling system:
There are at least four variants of GTX 1070 Ti from EVGA. The ICX models are coming in black and silver designs. Third ICX model has full-custom PCB, which is slightly wider than NVIDIA’s reference.
There could be more models, but EVGA will probably launch fewer GTX 1070 Ti cards than its other GTX 10 series because of NVIDIA's decision to not allow factory overclocks.
Posted on Monday, October 23 2017 @ 15:22:17 CEST by Thomas De Maesschalck
Sharkoon showcases the AM5, a new line of ATX mid-tower cases with front panels with glossy metallic car paint. You can get these cases with a red, blue, or titanium front. The Silent models with pre-installed noise damping mats cost 59.90EUR but for 10EUR extra you can get a version with an acrylic side window.
With the AM5 case series, Sharkoon introduces a new Midi tower with a front panel finished with a glossy metallic car paint and available in two versions: The Sharkoon AM5 Silent offers pre-installed damping mats; the AM5 Window comes without damping mats, but with an acrylic side panel. Both versions are available with front panels painted in a mirror finish in the colors red, blue or titanium.
Airflow is possible thanks to the numerous air vents on both sides of the front panel, behind which is also a removable dust filter. The Silent version has two pre-installed 140 mm fans in the front, while the Window version comes with one pre-installed 140 mm fan. Additional pre-drilled holes for more fans are also available. Alternatively, a 280 mm or 360 mm radiator with a total height of up to 5.5 cm, including fan, can be installed. Microphone and headphone audio ports as well as two USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 ports are all located on the top panel. Easily remove the front panel at any time thanks to its cableless design. On the top panel of the Window version, there is a pre-installed dust filter with magnetic fasteners plus the possibility to mount either up to three 120 mm fans or up to two 140 mm fans. With the Silent version, as expected, the top panel is closed. On the rear panel of the AM5 Silent, a 120 mm fan is pre-installed. With the AM5 Window, the pre-installed 120 mm LED fan on the rear panel matches the color of the front panel lacquer.
The body designs of both versions are similar, therefore in both versions a CPU cooler with a maximum height of up to 16.7 cm can easily install through an opening in the mainboard tray. Maximum length of graphics cards is up to 40 cm in length. Inside the tunnel, there is sufficient space for a power supply up to 20.5 cm in length for decoupled mounting. Up to two 3.5" hard drives can be installed decoupled into the HDD cage. If necessary, the HDD cage can be positioned up against the fans in the front panel thanks to the oval hole cutouts and convenient thumbscrews on the tunnel floor. For example, if more space is needed for the power supply cabling. Up to two 2.5" HDD/SSDs can also attach behind the mainboard tray with help from two 2.5" drive bay trays and the provided thumbscrews. Optionally, the HDD cage also can accommodate up to two SSDs. Simple and discreet cabling is ensured, thanks to the sophisticated cable management system and numerous cable pass-throughs within the case.
The Sharkoon AM5 ATX Silent, with a painted front panel in either red, blue or titanium, is available for the suggested retail price of 69.90 euros from authorized retailers. The Sharkoon AM5 Window, also with a front panel painted in red, blue or titanium, is available for 59.90 euros.
Posted on Monday, October 23 2017 @ 15:01:40 CEST by Thomas De Maesschalck
Kaspersky Lab has long been regarded as one of the premier security software makers, but in recent years the company's products have come under scrutiny over fears of ties between the firm and Russian intelligence agencies. While there hasn't been any hard evidence for these claims, the security fears were enough for the US government to completely dump software from Kaspersky Lab.
To combat these concerns, Kaspersky Labs announced the launch of its Global Transparency Initiative. The security vendor will allow third parties to review its source code. The first step will be an independent review of the company's source code by Q1 2018, with similar reviews of software updates and threat detection rules to follow.
The next step will be the opening of Transparency Centers, where customers, trusted partners, and government stakeholders can review the source code. Kaspersky Lab plans to open its first Transparency Center in 2018 and by 2020 it should have centers in Asia, Europe and the US.
Kaspersky Lab is announcing the launch of its Global Transparency Initiative as part of its ongoing commitment to protecting customers from cyberthreats, regardless of their origin or purpose. With this Initiative, Kaspersky Lab will engage the broader information security community and other stakeholders in validating and verifying the trustworthiness of its products, internal processes, and business operations, as well as introducing additional accountability mechanisms by which the company can further demonstrate that it addresses any security issues promptly and thoroughly. As part of the Initiative, the company intends to provide the source code of its software – including software updates and threat-detection rules updates – for independent review and assessment.
Here's a look at what the company has in its pipeline to alleviate the fears about potential backdoors in its software:
The initial phase of Kaspersky Lab’s Global Transparency Initiative will include:
Initiating an independent review of the company’s source code by Q1 2018, with similar reviews of the company’s software updates and threat detection rules to follow;
Commencing an independent assessment of (i) the company’s secure development lifecycle processes, and (ii) its software and supply chain risk mitigation strategies by Q1 2018;
Development of additional controls to govern the company’s data processing practices in coordination with an independent party that can attest to the company’s compliance with said controls by Q1 2018;
Formation of three Transparency Centers globally, with plans to establish the first one in 2018, to address any security issues together with customers, trusted partners and government stakeholders; the centers will serve as a facility for trusted partners to access reviews on the company’s code, software updates, and threat detection rules, along with other activities. The Transparency Centers will open in Asia, Europe and the U.S. by 2020;
Increasing bug bounty awards up to $100,000 for the most severe vulnerabilities found under Kaspersky Lab’s Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure program to further incentivize independent security researchers to supplement the company’s vulnerability detection and mitigation efforts, by the end of 2017.
Posted on Monday, October 23 2017 @ 13:18:15 CEST by Thomas De Maesschalck
Virtual reality, augmented reality and now also mixed reality are some of the biggest buzz words in today's tech landscape. While the general public hasn't really been enamored yet by the idea, lots of tech giants are pushing really hard to make this the next big thing. The latest company to join the train is Mozilla, they just announced a plan to bring mixed reality to the web.
The browser maker says it's working on specifications, browser implementations and services to give users open VR and AR web experiences. Mozilla proposes a new WebXR API, this set of tools expands WebVR with augmented reality capabilities:
We have created a draft WebXR API proposal for providing access to both augmented and virtual reality devices. The WebXR API formalizes the different ways these technologies expose views of reality around the user, and it exposes concepts common in AR platforms such as the Anchors found in Hololens, ARKit, and ARCore.
WebXR is designed to make it easy for web developers to create web applications that adapt to the capabilities of each platform. These examples run in WebVR- and AR-enabled browsers, including desktop Firefox and experimental browsers such as one supporting ARCore on Android (although each small example is targeted at AR or VR for simplicity).
Furthermore, Mozilla is adding broader 3D support to Firefox, including support for the Meta AR headset.
Full details at the Mozilla blog.
Posted on Monday, October 23 2017 @ 12:58:50 CEST by Thomas De Maesschalck
One of the biggest drawbacks of the Microsoft HoloLens is the device's limited field of view but that may change in future hardware revisions. MSPowerUser reports a patent application from Microsoft describes a method to double the field of view of the HoloLens from 35 degrees to 70 degrees. This will bring the technology closer to the 100 degrees field of view that is offered by VR headsets like the Oculus Rift.
Microsoft writes that to enable the use of internal reflection in the waveguide they are forced to limit themselves to a range of exit angles of around 35 degrees, which dictates the subsequent field of view of the hologram as seen by the user.They have however developed a clever technique to get around this limitation, by splitting the image sent down the waveguide into two elements, which then has 2 separate exits, and while each will be limited to 35 degrees, the subsequent final image seen by the user can span up to 70 degrees.
Posted on Monday, October 23 2017 @ 12:51:50 CEST by Thomas De Maesschalck
A new research report from IHS Markit claims sales of gaming displays are booming. The research agency says sales totaled 1.1 million units in the first half of this year, up 350 percent versus the first half of 2016. Gaming displays are specified as models with a panel that supports a framerate of 100Hz and above.
The biggest player in the gaming display market is ASUS, with a marketshare of 17.4 percent. Acer takes the second spot with 12.4 percent and HKC is third with a marketshare of 9.9 percent. IHS Markit expects this segment of the market will see further growth.
Global shipments of gaming monitors increased 350 percent to 1.1 million units in the first half of 2017 from the same period a year ago, according to new research from business information provider IHS Markit (NASDAQ: INFO).
Gaming is the hottest application for desktop monitors, invigorating a mature product category. Many monitor brands are offering novel features such as curved, slim borders and touch interfaces to provide an immersive gaming experience. Gamers demand high-performance desktop monitors for fast gaming action, as these products enhance gameplay.
IHS Markit tracks shipments of gaming monitors with frame rates of 100Hz and above, in addition to G-sync, Free-sync and others. In the first half of 2017, Asus led gaming monitor shipments with a share of 17.4 percent, followed by Acer at 12.4 percent and HKC with 9.9 percent. The growing gaming monitor market is attracting new entrants, with more than 16 brands competing this year.
IHS Markit forecasts that the gaming monitor market will exceed 1.6 million unit shipments in 2017.
“Gaming applications with frame rates of 100Hz and above are setting the agenda in monitor products today. We expect that more players, including major US and Korean brands, will enter the gaming monitor market,” said Jeff Lin, principal research analyst at IHS Markit.
“Both monitor brands and panel makers are introducing a slew of new features to differentiate gaming monitors, such as quick response time, curved and high dynamic range (HDR) panels — all of which improve the gaming experience,” Lin said.
Posted on Monday, October 23 2017 @ 11:28:23 CEST by Thomas De Maesschalck
Newegg is sued by four South Korean banks, who allege that the e-tailer collaborated with South Korean home appliance maker Moneual to defraud investors of hundreds of millions of dollars. The banks claim Newegg and computer wholesaler ASI Corp. were involved in a scheme to drive up the valuation of Moneual by placing a large volume of fake orders at highly exaggerated prices:
Now the banks have filed suit against Moneual’s alleged partners. The lawsuit argues that the banks loaned Moneual hundreds of millions of dollars, based on the large volume of orders made by Newegg and ASI. The computers that Moneual ordered were allegedly priced at 300 times their actual retail value, which is why the banks believe Newegg and ASI were part of the scam.
“No such business would have bought the products at such an inflated price, unless it intended to create the illusion of extensive, profitable, high-value commerce between it and its supplier for the purpose of defrauding lenders into supporting the transactions,” the lawsuit alleges.
Moneual was able to squeeze over $3 billion in funding from 10 South Korean banks but defaulted on many of those loans. The company CEO, Hong-seok Park, is currently serving a 15-year prison sentence. Full details DigitalTrends.
Posted on Monday, October 23 2017 @ 11:16:37 CEST by Thomas De Maesschalck
G.Skill has a new treat for fans of compact Mini-ITX builds. The company teases a quad-channel DDR4 kit for motherboards with four SO-DIMM slots, like the newly released ASRock X299E-ITX/ac.
The new 32GB kit (4x 8GB) features a frequency of 3800MHz, uses a voltage of 1.35V and has
CL18-18-18-38 timing. Additionally, G.Skill will also offer 3200MHz and 3600MHz variants with 16-16-16-36 timings. The 3600MHz version will be offered in 32GB (4x 8GB) capacity, while the 3200MHz edition will ship in both 32GB (4x 8GB) and 64GB (4x 16GB) versions.
Pricing is unknown, G.Skill promises these kits will be available in December.
G.SKILL International Enterprise Co., Ltd., the world’s leading manufacturer of extreme performance memory and gaming peripherals, is thrilled to announce the release of a new high performance DDR4 Ripjaws SO-DIMM series for small-form factor (SFF) platforms, at DDR4-3800MHz CL18-18-18-38 32GB (4x8GB) at 1.35V, making this the world’s fastest SO-DIMM memory kit. In addition, 3 new specifications will be added to the Ripjaws DDR4 SO-DIMM family, including DDR4-3600MHz CL16-16-16-36 32GB (4x8GB), DDR4-3200MHz CL16-16-16-36 32GB (4x8GB), and DDR4-3200MHz CL16-16-16-36 64GB (4x16GB). Such extremely high speed on SO-DIMM modules are achieved with the use of the ultra-high performance Samsung B-die DDR4 ICs.
Big Performance, Small Package
At Computex 2017 in June, G.SKILL demonstrated high-speed Ripjaws SO-DIMM series at DDR4-3466MHz, and we are now once again raising the speed of the fastest SO-DIMM memory kit to the intense mind-bending speed of DDR4-3800MHz. Validated on the latest ASRock X299E-ITX/ac motherboard and the Intel® Core™ i9-7900X X-series Processor, extreme memory performance is now a reality with small-form factor workstations.