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TweakTown News Posts - Page 2308

Thunderbolt poised to become part of the key spec of motherboards in second half of 2012

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Motherboards | Posted: May 25, 2012 10:18 am

Thunderbolt has been all out of thunder lately, debuting last year on the refreshed Apple MacBook line up, it now looks like the technology will make a bigger appearance on motherboards later this year. DigiTimes is reporting that it is expected to become one of the key specifications that motherboard makers will be competing with in the second half of this year.




This is thanks to sources from motherboard players, but we all know Thunderbolt will eventually be a bigger thing as time goes on. Thunderbolt supports PCI Express and DisplayPort, allowing a Thunderbolt port to smash through data at high speeds. Compared to USB 3.0, unfortunately, the higher costs stop Thunderbolt's market penetration.


At the moment, Thunderbolt chips are offered only by Intel, with quotes of around $20-$25. This leaves non-Intel chipmakers unable to make much profit from the technology, which leaves us with adapter chips being more popular. We should hopefully see more Thunderbolt-powered products at Computex in just over a weeks time.

Dell's Windows 8-based tablet is unveiled, kinda

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: May 25, 2012 9:29 am

Dell is hard at work on their Windows 8 tablet, but as with all Windows 8-based tablets, information on the specs is hard to come by. But, Neowin have gotten their hands dirty and found a slide which shows off Dell's upcoming Latitude 10 tablet.




The Dell Latitude 10 is a 10.8-inch tablet with a 1366x768 resolution, sports Intel's Clover Trail dual-core Atom processor, fingerprint reader, 2GB of RAM, 128GB SSD, and of course, Windows 8. What is surprising is that it has a swappable battery, Dell are offering a 2- or 4-cell battery with either 30/60WHr, depending on which battery is installed.


The smaller battery should be good for 6-8 hours of use, with the bigger battery achieving around 10-12 hours. Remember, this is probably just one of many tablets that Dell have in development that will run Windows 8, but it's good to see them finally taking form. Swappable batteries? Very nice change to the tablet world.

Facebook to set up an official office in Dubai next week

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: May 25, 2012 8:23 am

If the current Facebook IPO problems weren't enough of the social networking hitting the screens of computers, tablets, smartphones, TVs and more across the world over the past month or so, then this news won't surprise you: Facebook are opening up an office in Dubai next week.




The social networking site is set to pack a bag of tricks and open up its first office located in the Middle East. The company has not listed any details, and won't do so until after the event, but the office would add to its collection of about 30 outputs that are pegged across the world.


The news of an office in Dubai comes just after four days of the site in the public market. Do you think this will help them? Will it calm investor nerves?

Google acquires design studio that worked on the G1

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: May 25, 2012 7:25 am

If Google's acquisition of Motorola Mobility, Project Glass, and their push toward hardware design and manufacturing wasn't enough, the acquisition of the industrial design firm Mike and Maaike should be enough to convince most people that Google are in it for the long haul.




Who are Mike and Maaike? They're a studio that worked on the very first Google Nexus phone, and bill themselves as "a progressive industrial design studio" who is focused on "functionality, intelligence, and ease" in the design process for the G1. Mike and Maaike have some rather large clients in Belkin, Steelcase, Microsoft and the City of San Francisco.


Google representatives have commented on the purchase, saying that it was a "natural next step" for the company to get "even more serious and to really for for it" when it comes to mobile device offerings sporting their Android OS.

Blizzard discusses Diablo III hotfixes, secutity, announces that the real-money auction house has been postponed

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: May 25, 2012 6:24 am

Blizzard community manager 'Nethaera' has posted on the official Diablo III forums, talking about some of the problems and concerns from the Diablo III community, and how the company plan to handle some of the post-launch issues so that players can continue slaying demons and more in Diablo III.




Blizzard have applied various hotfixes to Diablo III since the launch of the game that address gameplay issues, as well as tweaks to improve service stability, and performed occasionally server maintenance when necessary to ensure that in the long-term, players have the best gameplay experience possible. But, the fixes won't stop there, Nethaera has said that sometime next week we should expect a game update in the form of a patch that will address client issues, as well as additional bug fixes.


One of the big shockers from this post is the delay of the real-money auction house. It was previous delayed from May 22 to May 29, but has now been delayed beyond this date. Blizzard want to ensure that everyone has the "smoothest experience possible when the real-money auction house launches", citing that they need more time to iron out the existing general stability and gameplay issues before a feature like that goes live. Blizzard haven't given a date for this yet.

Continue reading 'Blizzard discusses Diablo III hotfixes, secutity, announces that the real-money auction house has been postponed' (full post)

NCSA is building a supercomputer with 380 petabytes of storage... of magnetic tape capacity

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Super Computing | Posted: May 25, 2012 5:25 am

Just when you thought tape was dead, the National Center for Supercomputing Applications is getting ready to build a new storage infrastructure that will include 380 petabytes (PB) of magnetic tape capacity which will be backed up by 25 petabytes of online disk storage made up from 17,000 SATA drives.




The new storage infrastructure is said to be built to support one of the world's most powerful supercomputers, Blue Waters. Blue Waters was commissioned by the National Science Foundation (NSF), and is expected to have a peak performance of 11.5 petaflops. The NCSA says that they're building the system to:


Predict the behavior of complex biological systems, understand how the cosmos evolved after the Big Bang, design new materials at the atomic level, predict the behavior of hurricanes and tornadoes, and simulate complex engineered systems like the power distribution system and airplanes and automobiles.

Continue reading 'NCSA is building a supercomputer with 380 petabytes of storage... of magnetic tape capacity' (full post)

Apple's new iPad has caught up on the market share of the first-gen iPad

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: May 25, 2012 5:24 am

Apple's third-generation iPad has only been available for two months now, but it has already caught up to the first-generation iPad market share in the US, according to market analysis firm Localytics. The new model is enjoying over 20-percent of all US-based iPad sales, a little over 1-percent more than the first-generation iPads.




The iPad 2, released last year, is ahead of both the first- and third-gen iPads in terms of market share. The iPad 2 has around 60-percent of the US iPad market share, but the third-generation iPad has moved up from the 14-percent it had just after it was released, to the now 20-percent market share, a nice improvement for a very new product.


How have Localytics gotten to these numbers? Well, the market share determination comes from iPad apps that use Localytics for app analytics.

Intel building Skynet, are launching research into technology that mimics the human brain and "learns" about its user

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Virtual & Augmented Reality | Posted: May 25, 2012 4:24 am

Reuters is reporting that Intel are launching research in Israel into technology that will mimic the human brain, with devices that will hopefully "learn" about their user. Intel's Chief Technology Officer, Justin Rattner told reporters in Tel Aviv:


Machine learning is such a huge opportunity. Despite their name, smartphones are rather dumb devices. My smartphone doesn't know anything more about me than when I got it. All of these devices will come to know us as individuals, will very much tailor themselves to us.




Intel Collaborative Research Institute for Computational Intelligence, as well as specialists from the Technion in Haifa and the Hebrew University in Jerusalem will carry out the research, and is aimed at enabling new applications, as well as small, wearable computers that can enhance, or help with daily life. One example cited is if you were to leave your keys in the house, the wearable system would remember where you left them, and learn this. By the second week it will remind the user to pick up the keys before you leave the house.

Continue reading 'Intel building Skynet, are launching research into technology that mimics the human brain and "learns" about its user' (full post)

Apple patents stylus for iPhone, iPad

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: May 25, 2012 3:31 am

It seems as though Apple are looking at stylus pens for the iPad, and iPhone, according to a new patent from the Cupertino-based company. Apple's latest patent applications have shown that they're definitely working on one, but whether we see it eventuate into a physical product is another thing.




The patent filed is for an optical stylus, with haptic feedback. The optical stylus is an input device with an optical camera on the tip, when you move the stylus over the touchscreen, the optical camera tracks specially formatted pixels, or special, user eye invisible markings on the display.


So as you can see, it's not just a simple stylus pen. The stylus with haptic feedback comes with a built-in haptic actuator and a short-range wireless receiver. The vibration commands are transmitted through a tiny wireless transmitter built into the bezel of the iPad. Right now, these products are just teases, nothing concrete yet. But it's definitely funny for Apple, a company that once laughed at stylus pens, with the late Steve Jobs saying "if you see a stylus, they blew it."

Facebook petition pushing for new Mac Pro

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Computer Systems | Posted: May 25, 2012 2:31 am

The power of Facebook has allowed a disgruntled Apple fan to start a petition for the company to pay more focus to its Mac Pro line of systems. The maker of the page, Lou Borella, wants Apple to refresh its professional-level desktops, or at least be vocal with Mac Pro fans to let them know something is at least coming soon.




The maker of the page is said to be a professional editor and graphic animator in the New York City area, and initially posted a lengthy plea to Apple to update everyone on their Mac Pro plans, claiming that he didn't want to go to "the Dark side" by buying a Windows-based machine, and that hacked models combining more modern equipment with Apple's OS X operating system were insufficient to meet professional needs.


The page has more than 4,200 likes, and over 2,270 people talking about it. You know what, I love this idea. I have to hand it to Lou, this is one of the best ways to get attention from a usually secretive company. Apple has been concentrating more on slightly updating their iOS-based devices, than they have on their Mac Pro line. But, we can see the changes within OS X, and the upcoming Mountain Lion, where it's going more toward iOS. Maybe this is why Apple are being hush-hush when it comes to refreshing their Mac Pro.

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