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TSMC invests heavily into 10nm process, wants to fight off Samsung

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: CPU, APU & Chipsets | Posted: Jul 10, 2014 6:35 am

TSMC is reportedly increasing the development of its upcoming 10nm process so that it can better prepare itself against Samsung, which has reportedly received an order from Qualcomm to build 14nm FinFET chips, reports DigiTimes.

 

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DigiTimes writes: "TSMC and Samsung are currently competing fiercely in the development of FinFET process, with the Korea-based foundry house utilizing a 14nm process and TSMC a 16nm node. Both the 14nm and 16nm processes are scheduled to enter volume production in early 2015". TSMC has been at the forefront of FinFET development, with plans to begin producing 16nm FinFET chips in Q4 2014.

 

DigiTimes' sources have said that TSMC has rescheduled its commercial production for the 16nm FinFET process, pushing forward with the more advanced 16nm FinFET Plus process. This process will consume less power, and shrink die sizes even more. TSMC is running scared at the moment, as it didn't anticipate Samsung to develop its 14nm process so quickly, so now the Taiwanese company is accelerating its development of the 10nm process, to continue staying out ahead of its competitors.

No Man's Sky will feature 'traditional' multiplayer, too

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jul 10, 2014 5:28 am

Hello Games' co-founder, Sean Murray, spoke with GameSpot explaining that the incredibly large No Man's Sky will still feature a "traditional" multiplayer component.

 

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No Man's Sky multiplayer won't act like traditional MMOs, but it doesn't meant it won't feature large scale fights either. Murray explains: "This is not a game about forming a clan or allegiances, right? But it has some MMO-esque mechanics, I guess". With the galaxy being virtually unlimited in size, won't it be hard finding other players?

 

Murray continued: "There is this thing, which I'm not going to talk about now, that is a plan for multiplayer and for people to have a more traditional multiplayer experience within the game. And that's something that we'll deal with further down the line that is exciting. But that is not what's core to the game right now".

Dragon Age: Inquisition receives 16 minutes of new gameplay footage

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jul 10, 2014 4:30 am

If you're waiting for the new Dragon Age: Inquisition, then you might want to check out the just-released 16-minute gameplay video for it, which we've included for your viewing pleasure below.

 

 

The video shows off some real in-game footage, which does look quite beautiful. In the first 40 seconds, BioWare shows off a space that is just one area, but is bigger than the entire world of Dragon Age: Origins. Inquisition is built on multiple regions, of which you get to explore the entire game world over your multiple adventures.

Continue reading 'Dragon Age: Inquisition receives 16 minutes of new gameplay footage' (full post)

Sigourney Weaver lends her voice for Alien: Isolation DLC

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jul 10, 2014 3:37 am

SEGA is pumping the gas on Alien: Isolation before its release in October, announcing some DLC for the game. But, The Creative Assembly seem to be on the right track here, with this DLC reuniting the cast of the original Alien movie.

 

 

The pre-order DLC includes some missions that will see Sigourney Weaver return to the role that made her famous: Ellen Ripley. The actors that played Dallas, Lambert, Brett, and Parker are also coming back, some 35 years after they starred in the Ridley Scott directed movie. There will be two DLC missions that recreate parts of the movie in a kind of 'what if' alternative path.

 

It's an interesting way of giving DLC to customers, but offering it before the game is here is definitely going to turn some people away. Especially after the mess that was the previous Aliens game, Aliens: Colonial Marines.

Continue reading 'Sigourney Weaver lends her voice for Alien: Isolation DLC' (full post)

Chinese couple sells their kids to buy in-game weapons and armor

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jul 10, 2014 1:39 am

A young Chinese couple has sold their two sons to child traffickers, all so they could fund their gaming habits. The couple sold their two sons on two separate occasions, to fund the purchase of in-game items such as armor, and weapons.

 

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During an interview with Guangdong TV from a local detention center, the couple said that their first child wasn't planned. The father, A Hui, said that he had no intention of financially supporting the child, so they sold him to Fujian-based child traffickers. His partner, A Mei, fell pregnant again, where he explained: "[A Hui] likes buying items in online games, and he likes staying out all night at internet cafes".

 

This meant that most of their finances were being funneled into A Hui's gaming life, so it meant the second child couldn't be supported. They then sold him to traffickers. The traffickers in China sell children to couples who want to be parents, street gangs and street peddlers, and even to orphanages where they put them up for adoption overseas. A Hui's father was aware of what was going on, and in the end reported the couple to the police. The two were arrested, and are now awaiting trial and sentencing for the crime of selling children.

HGST launches the world's largest 10K RPM HDD, a 2.5-inch 1.8TB drive

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Storage | Posted: Jul 10, 2014 12:57 am

HGST has just unveiled its latest Ultrastar C10K1800, something the company is pegging as the world's highest capacity, highest performing 10K RPM HDD. The new drive is a 2.5-inch 1.8TB drive, that cranks along at 10,000 RPM.

 

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The drive uses HGST's media cache architecture, which uses a portion of the platter as drive cache. This allows a massive 2.5X increase in random write performance, and a 23% improvement in sequential performance over previous generations of 2.5-inch 10K RPM HDDs. According to the company, this new Ultrastar C10K1800 is also more power efficient, with up to a 7% improvement in active and idle power savings.

 

HGST's new Ultrastar C10K1800 ships with the fast 12Gbps SAS interface, but even with 10K RPM under its belt, it won't make great use of that like an SSD or four will. It has a maximum sustained transfer rate of 247MB/sec on its 12Gbps bus.

Antenna patent ruling threatens Motorola products in Europe

By: Tamlin Magee | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jul 9, 2014 11:34 pm

A German firm could have just forced Google's Motorola handsets off store shelves thanks to a new patent ruling.

 

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It was argued that Motorola's antennas infringe on a patent owned by German laser specialist company LPKF, and now a local court has just ruled in the latter's favor. At the moment LPKF hasn't decided how it will act, but it has the power to pull Motorola products if an agreement is not reached. The patent dispute surrounds a technology LPKF believes it has the rights to - Laser Direct Structuring - which cuts costs and simplifies creating patterns for antennas.

 

LPKF had previously filed against companies in China, but a court overruled the claims. "The more attractive a patent is, the harder you have to work to defend it," LPKF CEO Ingo Bretthauer said in a statement. "We will continue to fight for our patent in China and systematically take action against infringers outside China." A Motorola spokesperson said the company had "taken steps" to avoid interruptions in the supply line.

Crushing Brazil World Cup defeat against Germany breaks Twitter record

By: Tamlin Magee | More News: Social Networking | Posted: Jul 9, 2014 10:38 pm

Brazil's crushing 7-1 FIFA World Cup defeat against Germany has broken Twitter records to become the most talked about sporting event of all time on the social network.

 

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Out of 10 trending topics on Twitter, six were about the match, and the fifth goal of the match spurred 580,601 tweets in just one minute. 35.6 million tweets were sent total during the game. The previous record was held by another World Cup showdown - Brazil against Chile - at 389,000 tweets per minute, with the record before that held by 2014's Superbowl at 382,000 tweets per minute.

 

Some users pointed out Germany were scoring goals quicker than they could hash out their tweets, as the BBC points out, while mocking Photoshop pictures also quickly made the rounds. One tweet from user @tomcmmiller put a cheerful Angela Merkel in place of Brazil's famous Christ the Redeemer, and another showed the Redeemer weeping morosely, as pictured - credit to @WorldCupProbs.

Security experts use anti-malware, anti-virus to defend against APTs

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Jul 9, 2014 9:10 pm

Most companies combat advanced persistent threats (APTs) using anti-virus and anti-malware security software, according to the "Advanced Persistent Threat Awareness" report released by the ISACA non-profit information security group. The study found 96 percent of survey participants note AV or anti-malware solutions as the most popular option - with 60 percent also relying on remote access.

 

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APTs are described as stealthy, prolonged attacks typically aimed at cyberespionage attacks against businesses and governments. Due to large numbers of malware, security experts try to keep end-users and networks secure while pinpointing activity from command and control network traffic.

 

"The technical controls most often identified as being used to prevent APTs are network perimeter technologies, such as firewalls and access lists within routers, as well as anti-malware and anti-virus," according to the ISACA report. "While these controls are proficient for defending against traditional attacks, they are probably not as well suited for preventing APTs for a number of researchs," including spear phishing or zero-day threats.

Rats use whiskers like humans use hands, research says

By: Tamlin Magee | More News: Science, Space & Robotics | Posted: Jul 9, 2014 8:34 pm

Rats actually use their whiskers in a similar way that humans use their hands and fingers, particularly when exploring the dark, according to a revelatory new piece of research on the rodents.

 

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Although it's long been known that mammals tend to use their whiskers to navigate dark patches, the full extent of control over the facial features was not known until now. Academics at Sheffield University set about using high speed videography to keep an eye on animals, each of which had been trained to run circuits for treats. Undergoing different scenarios, such as putting obstacles in their way or taking away visual cues, showed that the animals used their whiskers in a "purposeful" way to complete the track.

 

As the rats got quicker at running circuits, they also tended to change their whisker movements accordingly - whether that was to sweep surfaces or pushing their whiskers forward to detect objects that could be in their way. In the scenarios where they were likely to run into objects, the animals were more cautious and deliberately felt their way around using their whiskers. "All mammals except humans use facial whiskers as touch sensors. In humans we seem to have replaced this sense, in part, by being able to use our hand and fingers to feel our way," said Professor Tony Prescott. "The rat puts its whiskers where it thinks it will get the most useful information, just as we do with our fingertips."

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