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TweakTown News Posts - Page 38

New email privacy bill actually sailed unanimously through Congress

By: Jeff Williams | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Apr 28, 2016 1:03 pm

Email privacy had always been a point of contention in nearly all circles. It wasn't until quite recently that most cloud providers started encrypting your messages while just sitting in your inbox, and requests for your email data have been made without search warrants under other executive order authority as well as under the auspices of the older law, the Electronic Communications Privacy Act.




The Email Privacy Act was just passed by the US House of Representatives that would require the use of a warrant when looking at emails, even those that are 180 days or older. This new bill is a much needed update to the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, which required only a more simple subpoena to find older emails. This bill subsequently closes that loophole. This bill may be response to the recent lawsuit from Microsoft regarding the older ECPA, who argue that it violates the Constitution.


Just as with before, the government is not required, and won't, notify you if they're rummaging through your emails though some providers have taken it upon themselves to notify users if they're the subject of an investigation. This bill, however, still has to pass through the Senate, and then be rectified by the President, but with the momentum it already has, it very well could be a much needed update to privacy that doesn't get hung up for political reasons.

Minecraft is now available for the Gear VR

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Apr 28, 2016 12:44 pm

After saying it would be bringing Minecraft to the Oculus Rift and Samsung Gear VR back at its Oculus Connect 2 event in September 2015, the day has come - Minecraft is now available for the Gear VR.



Minecraft is available on the Oculus Store for $6.99, with one of the biggest games ever now available to play in VR. The Gear VR edition of Minecraft features everything you find in pocket edition, including both the Creative and Survival modes, skins and multiplayer support.


You'll need a Bluetooth controller to play, with Oculus stating that Minecraft for the Gear VR is 'comfortable for some'. We tried it during the Game Developers Conference earlier this year and walked away impressed, with no motion sickness at all.

Continue reading 'Minecraft is now available for the Gear VR' (full post)

Second-generation Xbox One console reportedly in mass production

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: Apr 28, 2016 12:32 pm

A new second-generation Xbox One model has been in mass production since February 2016, according to recently unearthed documents.




Microsoft is planning its own mid-cycle second-generation Xbox One refresh to counter Sony's new 4K-ready PlayStation Neo, leaked documents suggest. The Japanese documents were spotted on NeoGAF, and have since been translated to read:


New Project

AP5 XBOX One 2nd Gen Project


Project Start Time 2014 March

Client : Microsoft

Product : Xbox One 2nd Gen

Machine : Kingston

Estimated Shipment : Maximum 400K / week

Plastic Product Unit weight : 600 ~ 800g

Current Status : AP(V) work with client co-develop and certify Sabic & Chill raw material

EVT D : Now

Hard Tool Development : Oct -- delay

MP ( Mass Production ) : Feb


Reports of Microsoft's new Xbox One refresh have piled up recently: new Xbox One components were revealed in pre-released FCC filings, and The Verge was told by internal sources that Microsoft is testing various new Xbox prototypes with high-end hardware. AMD let slip that new PS4 and Xbox One consoles were on the horizon, with the PS4 Neo possibly leveraging AMD's next-gen Polaris 10 Ellesmere GPU technology.

Continue reading 'Second-generation Xbox One console reportedly in mass production' (full post)

Massive Galactic Civilizations III update makes Starbases better

By: Jeff Williams | More News: Gaming | Posted: Apr 28, 2016 12:03 pm

Galactic Civilization III has just been updated to version 1.7, and this one is quite sizable in nature. The focus of which is to help make managing your no doubt plethora of Starbases much easier than it was then ever before.




Starbases, for all the obvious benefits, had some limitations. Namely, that you had to manage each one explicitly. But now you can very easily upgrade your floating space stations from your shipyards, too, which will deliver those upgrades as quickly as possible from the closest shipyard as well. Stardock has also added a more detailed look into the various systems of those bases, making it far more convenient to run your empire.


Among the other changes in v1.7 are a few improvements to the diplomacy system that was itself recently overhauled. Trade prices are now actually dependent on your diplomacy with the various species around you. They've closed a few loopholes, such as the stacking of treaties, that were exploited often. Now it's a bit more random and a bit more fun as well. There's plenty more than just that with the full change log that can be read right here.

Microsoft unveils new Iron Man-themed Xbox One console

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: Apr 28, 2016 10:41 am

Microsoft reveals a special edition Xbox One designed by Stark Industries.



I've long thought that most custom special edition consoles are pretty lackluster, but Microsoft has just unveiled an interesting Xbox One designed by none other than Tony Stark. Microsoft and Marvel teamed up to promote Captain America: Civil War, with the partnership culminating in this special Stark Industries-themed Xbox One. The console looks pretty interesting, especially with its mock arc reactor, but I'm worried about ventilation as the system's top is pretty much covered up.


This Xbox One is part of a giveaway, so don't expect to see them in stores. You can enter the win the console by retweeting this Tweet from Xbox France, or liking the Xbox France Facebook page. We'll also likely see a Captain America-themed console as well.

Continue reading 'Microsoft unveils new Iron Man-themed Xbox One console' (full post)

Samsung teases an all-in-one 'Holodeck' experience for the future

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Virtual & Augmented Reality | Posted: Apr 28, 2016 10:21 am

Samsung was one of the first companies to see the future with VR, collaborating with Oculus from nearly the beginning, while building their own Gear VR headset in collaboration with the Rift maker.




At its own Samsung Developers Conference (SDC) the company has teased the future of its plans with its research into VR, and that it thinks a future Gear VR would be an all-in-one headset, without the need of a smartphone, that could reportedly offer a 'Holodeck' experience. Yes, a Holodeck experience - bring it on.


Injong Rhee, Samsung's Executive Vice President, Head of R&D, Software and Services - which is a mouthful of a job title, said it was his personal duty to reveal Samsung's future plans. Rhee teased that Samsung is researching untethered HMD technology, which is an 'all-in-one' device that has a built-in smartphone by the looks of things. Motion tracking and touch sensors are also a big part of Samsung's R&D, which comes as no surprise considering how much better the VR experience is with better, VR-ready controllers.

AMD positions itself in the mainstream market, wants to own VR

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Video Cards | Posted: Apr 28, 2016 8:33 am

AMD is positioning itself for a huge battle with NVIDIA this year, in more ways than one. First we have their next-gen Polaris architecture, the new GPU division being spun into Radeon Technologies Group, and an all-in approach when it comes to VR.



The first step for now is the release of Polaris-based video cards, with the expected Radeon 400 series to be unveiled next month and even more so at Computex in the first week of June. We should expect new cards that will beat the Radeon R9 380 and R9 390X, and thanks to the 14nm FinFET process, lower power consumption but much faster cards performance per watt wise.


During an interview with Ars Technica, AMD's main man Roy Taylor said: "I don't think NVIDIA is going to do anything to increase the TAM, because according to everything we've seen around Pascal, it's a high-end part. I don't know what the price is gonna be, but let's say it's as low as £500/$600 and as high as £800/$1000. That price range is not going to expand the TAM for VR. We're going on the record right now to say Polaris will expand the TAM. Full stop".

Continue reading 'AMD positions itself in the mainstream market, wants to own VR' (full post)

Robert Downey Jr. could be open to 'Iron Man 4' after all

By: Ben Gourlay | More News: Celebrities & Entertainment | Posted: Apr 28, 2016 7:07 am

Ever since the release of 'Iron Man 3' in 2013, Robert Downey Jr. has been pretty cold on the potential of headlining a fourth solo 'Iron Man' film, even telling publications last month that "I don't think that's in the cards". But it looks as though the stance might be moving.



Speaking to ABC News on the eve of the release of 'Captain America: Civil War' which sees him return as Iron Man for the sixth time, Robert Downer Jr. says "I feel like I could do one more", which is a big change from 2014's "There isn't one in the pipe. No, there's no plan for a fourth Iron Man".


Last week it was revealed that Downey Jr. has signed up to reprise his role in the upcoming 'Spider-Man: Homecoming", which hits cinemas worldwide next July.

Continue reading 'Robert Downey Jr. could be open to 'Iron Man 4' after all' (full post)

Sky Tower for the HTC Vive lets you watch YouTube videos in the sky

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Virtual & Augmented Reality | Posted: Apr 28, 2016 6:55 am

If there was a more unique way of watching YouTube, it would be up in the clouds and away from your monitor or smartphone, right? This is what Sky Tower is all about, a new 'relaxation VR experience' for the HTC Vive.




Sky Tower is set in a tower where the Vive player sits back and enjoys YouTube videos, where you can use your controller to navigate throughout your videos. Sky Tower is a seated VR experience, where it uses a tracked motion controller according to the developer.


There's no word right now on whether Sky Tower will float over to the Oculus Rift and the PlayStation VR, but we can be sure it'll happen in the near future.

Oliver Stone's 'Snowden' leaks a full trailer

By: Ben Gourlay | More News: Celebrities & Entertainment | Posted: Apr 28, 2016 6:32 am

From the assasination of 'JFK' to the corruption of 'Wall Street' and the Vietnam War in 'Platoon', director Oliver Stone is never one to shy away from controversy and the legendary director's latest project is sure to be no different - 'Snowden'.



Starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt as NSA leaker and fugitive Edward Snowden, the film is set to put the security agencies activities back in the spotlight on the eve of the upcoming U.S. election. The film is also set to star Shailene Woodley, Zachary Quinto and Scott Eastwood (son of Clint).


'Snowden' is set to release on September 16 in the United States.

Continue reading 'Oliver Stone's 'Snowden' leaks a full trailer' (full post)