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Google Fiber at 1Gbps being offered for free to select US residents

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Connectivity & Communications | Posted: 1 day, 16 hours ago

Well... Google is offering its super-fast optic-based 1Gbps Internet service for free to residents living in public housing, once the company hooks its Fiber lines up to the properties.

 

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The news is coming directly from Google, from their new blog titled "Connecting Public Housing at Gigabit Speeds". It all started in July 2015 when Google partnered with ConnectHome - a joint initiative led by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the White House, where it wanted to speed up Internet adoption for families with school-aged children, living in public housing.

 

Soon, public housing tenants will be able to access 1Gbps up/down from Google, for free. Google will begin its free 1Gbps Fiber rollout starting with residents in West Bluff, an affordable housing community in Kansas City, Missouri. Around 100 homes have been connected to the service, but Google is working with nine low-income property regions that would eventually connect over 1,300 local families.

LG's upcoming 'LG 360 VR' should be a competitor to Samsung's Gear VR

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Virtual & Augmented Reality | Posted: 1 day, 17 hours ago

360-degree video and VR content are all the rage right now, and as were preparing for Mobile World Congress 2016, notorious mobile leaker Evan Blass (aka @evleaks on Twitter) posted something on Twitter regarding the 'LG 360 VR'.

 

 

Blass tweeted "LG 360 VR", which we're expecting to see as a VR headset in the fashion of Samsung's Gear VR headset. But, the LG 360 VR could also be a 360-degree camera, which makes just as much sense. Better yet, the LG 360 VR could plug into that mysterious "magic slot" on the bottom of the G5 smartphone that LG teased yesterday.

 

We'll know more on February 21, which is when LG will unveil its new G5 smartphone - the same day that Samsung will show off its next-gen Galaxy S7 handset.

Continue reading 'LG's upcoming 'LG 360 VR' should be a competitor to Samsung's Gear VR' (full post)

DayZ forums have been hacked, user data compromised

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 1 day, 18 hours ago

The forums for the popular zombie apocalypse MMO DayZ have recently been hacked, and the devs at Bohemia Interactive say that the situation is much worse than they anticipated.

 

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According to the dev's Twitter update, the forum user data has been compromised and downloaded by cyber criminals. The security breach is so severe that the developers are advising users to change their global passwords if they match those used on the DayZ forums. So if you use the same password for your banking as the DayZ forums, change it ASAP.

 

"A security incident occurred on forums.dayzgame.com recently. According to our investigation, all usernames, emails and passwords from the forums were accessed and downloaded by hackers," reads the update. "While the passwords were not stored in plain text, but in a more secure form, it is highly reccommended that you if you have used the same password elsewhere that you change it immediately on all applicable websites and services."

Continue reading 'DayZ forums have been hacked, user data compromised' (full post)

German nuclear fusion reactor yields hydrogen plasma for first time

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Science, Space & Robotics | Posted: 1 day, 19 hours ago

Fusion power is seen as the holy grail for renewable and clean energy sources. Harnessing the power of the stars would propel mankind to extraordinary heights, and instantly resolve our growing energy crises to boot. Now thanks to the nuclear fusion experiments conducted by the Max Planck Institute of Physics in Germany, we're one step closer to unlocking the secrets of fusion power.

 

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The world's largest nuclear fusion stellarator, the Wendelstein 7-X, has just made history by being the first stellarator-type fusion device to produce hydrogen plasma. Hydrogen plasma is vital to re-creating and molding the specific conditions of our Sun, thus facilitating fusion reactions.

 

"It's a very clean source of power, the cleanest you could possibly wish for. We're not doing this for us, but for our children and grandchildren," Karlsruhe Institute of Technology physicist John Jelonnek said.

Continue reading 'German nuclear fusion reactor yields hydrogen plasma for first time' (full post)

AMD partnered modding contest kicks off next month in the AU

By: Jeff Williams | More News: Modding | Posted: 1 day, 20 hours ago

If you're a prospective tinkerer or modder of all things PC, and you live in Australia, then you'll love the AMD Modder Manifest project that's set to kick off next month.

 

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The project is designed by two very prolific modders in the community that want to show off relatable and realistic examples of modding, park picking and really how modding is done. They're focusing on entry-level gaming to show that modding can be an activity for everyone with every budget.

 

The project will run for six weeks and have weekly updates showing off the progress they'll make. You can sign-up to participate right here. After the first project, more will happen for six weeks at a time with appropriate increases in value and performance of the parts.

Continue reading 'AMD partnered modding contest kicks off next month in the AU' (full post)

Overwatch beta blasts back into action February 9

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 1 day, 20 hours ago

After a month-long lapse, the Overwatch closed beta test is set to wreak FPS chaos once again starting February 9.

 

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Blizzard today announced the schedule, revealing that the beta test will be tweaked with a few content updates. Overwatch will now sport a brand new progression system, two new maps with a fresh game mode to keep things interesting, hero balances (which spells nerfs for some overpowered avatars) and a bevy of Private Game updates such as AI-on-AI battles.

 

If you had access to the Overwatch beta before the break, then you'll still be able to get in once it resumes next week. Blizzard says they're going to start enlisting fresh players, so if you haven't already, be sure to sign up today.

Continue reading 'Overwatch beta blasts back into action February 9' (full post)

Logitech makes a classier looking mechanical gaming keyboard

By: Jeff Williams | More News: Peripherals | Posted: 1 day, 21 hours ago

Logitech has toned down the overt aggressive "gaming" design with their newest addition to their G-line of keyboards. The G810 Orion is a more subdued mechanical keyboard that still has the gaming accolades of the more, noticeable, Orion G910 Orion Spark.

 

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Just like its big brother, it has the same Romer-G switches that have increased measured durability compared to CherryMX switches as well as a shorter press, with an actuation point at only 1.5mm deep. And it'll have the per-key RGB lighting as well, letting you customize to your hearts content. And just in case, you'll be able to disable individual keys, such as the Windows key or even the ALT key. This can be quite useful in frantic gaming sessions.

 

Of course mechanical keyboards are nearly a must-have for the modern gamer, though which type of switch is a personal preference. Some like the quick actuation that comes with these Romer-G's or even CherryMX Red's or others, while others might prefer a bit longer of a press with less force required. It's such a personalized preference that you almost have to try everything to determine what you like. It's a trial and error affair. But now Logitech has a more subdued selection for those looking for something a little less garish.

Be wary of cheap USB Type-C cables, they can fry your hardware

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: 1 day, 21 hours ago

USB Type-C is the new connectivity standard that aims to do it all--video, sound, and data--and even allows mobile devices to be charged super fast. Given the format's capabilities, a Google engineer proves that you can't get away with cheap third-party USB Type-C cables lest you fry your precious new gadgets.

 

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Google engineer Benson Leung has been reviewing various brands of USB Type-C cables to ensure and check performance. His findings are actually quite surprising: only three out of the ten USB Type-C cables he's reviewed are spec compliant to charge his Chromebook Pixel. If that wasn't enough, one of the cheap third-party cables actually fried the $1,000 laptop's ports.

 

Surjtech's 3M USB A-to-C cable is the culprit, and Leung says that the cord was so badly wired that it burnt out both of the Pixel C's USB Type-C ports and fried two separate USB PD Sniffer devices. "I directly analyzed the Surjtech cable using a Type-C breakout board and a multimeter, and it appears that they completely miswired the cable. The GND pin on the Type-A plug is tied to the Vbus pins on the Type-C plug. The Vbus pin on the Type-A plug is tied to GND on the Type-C plug," the Google engineer said in his review.

Continue reading 'Be wary of cheap USB Type-C cables, they can fry your hardware' (full post)

Halo 5 is getting a singlular $25 microtransaction for REQ

By: Jeff Williams | More News: Gaming | Posted: 1 day, 22 hours ago

Microtransactions are a fact of life now, something that's inevitable in any online multiplayer experience. Of course there's a right way and a wrong way to implement them, and in this case, the $25 spent within Halo 5 is actually the right way; for optional items only.

 

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The new singular Arena REQ bundle contains a whole host of different armor, weapon and other skins to help you define your individuality within the Halo universe. You don't want to be just any ol' Spartan, now do you? But this is a limited offer with 14 separate packs smashed together that have "Mythic" and "Legendary" items that you likely won't find elsewhere. It'll be available starting February 16th.

 

But, even though it seems like a lot of money, it's cosmetic only and doesn't change the gameplay or give you an advantage. Aside from people staring at your newly applied weapon, armor and other skins. So don't fret, because you don't have to buy it.

Epic Games develops a VR game while in VR

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Virtual & Augmented Reality | Posted: 1 day, 22 hours ago

Virtual reality is poised to completely change our lives and shake up a number of industries. We've seen how VR can be used for tons of different applications, but what about games development? Thanks to Epic's new Unreal VR Engine, devs can now build games in fully immersive VR spaces. It's like VR-ception!

 

 

In a new video, Epic Games' Mike Fricker is seen developing a game in real-time while ensconced in a HTC Vive headset. Using the new Unreal Editor's VR mode, developers can literally create video game environments while standing in them, adding a whole new depth to content creation. The editor is rendered virtually in a VR environment and contains the full scope of utilities and tools as traditional 2D software, and devs will be able to use Oculus Rift motion controllers to mold and shape digital world's.

 

VR expert and Moor Insights and Strategy analyst Anshel Sag adds some perspective to the new Unreal VR Editor: "With this new tool, developers can finally preview their games as they are making them in VR and get a good idea of how things will feel for the gamer, immediately. I don't see someone building or finishing a game in this tool, but I do see someone making minor changes to a game with it and making it a part of the development phase."

 

Epic Games will show off the tech at GDC 2016 in March, and we'll be sure to relay the coverage when the show rolls around.

Continue reading 'Epic Games develops a VR game while in VR' (full post)

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