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TweakTown News Posts - Page 61

U.S. ballistic missile defense system test touted as a success

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Science, Space & Robotics | Posted: Jun 23, 2014 4:45 am

The U.S. Missile Defense Agency used the Boeing-led Ground-Based Midcourse Defense (GMD) System, which intercepted and destroyed a dummy target over the Pacific Ocean. Military researchers have big hopes of using the Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle (EKV), attached to the intercept booster, to help prevent ballistic missiles from hitting the mainland United States.

 

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If the test was unsuccessful, the Pentagon would have likely reevaluated deploying more interceptors on the west coast - there are 30 of them in silos located in California and Alaska.

 

"The operational complexity of the GMD system is a major engineering challenge, but we have drawn upon our unmatched expertise to work toward today's successful intercept," said Norm Tew, Boeing VP and VMD program director, in a press statement. "This test enables us to continually modernize and improve the system, providing even greater capabilities to protect this country."

Continue reading 'U.S. ballistic missile defense system test touted as a success' (full post)

DDR4 RAM hits Japan retail shelves, 16GB and 32GB modules available

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: RAM | Posted: Jun 23, 2014 4:35 am

Intel is poised to launch its X99-based chipset in September, where we should see the launch of the 16-threaded processor from the company - the Core i7-5960X. Well, DDR4 is what will be getting slotted into the motherboards, something that has just hit Japan retail shelves.

 

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The DDR4 RAM is being sold in 16GB and 32GB modules, which are priced at $350 and $685, respectively. Expensive, but you could actually build a system with 128GB of RAM, which is a great thing for high-perfomance and enthusiast users. Intel should better introduce us to both DDR4 and its X99 chipset at the upcoming IDF event, so continue checking back until then.

Crytek is in trouble, not many developers are using CryEngine

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jun 23, 2014 3:31 am

It wasn't even 48 hours ago that I wrote my article about Ubisoft and the future of PC gaming, but now there is news floating around that Crytek is in some serious trouble. The studio is reportedly not seeing developers using CryEngine that much, with German videogames magazine Gamestar throwing around the word bankruptcy.

 

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Gamestar has said that the adoption rate of CryEngine is not that great, and that word of mouth at the Game Developers Conference (GDC) a couple of months back was negative. During GDC, Crytek announced that it was offering up CryEngine as an 'engine as a service' which should've seen more developers jumping onto the graphics engine, but this wasn't the case.

 

Another problem was the Xbox One exclusive 'Ryse' which didn't sell well for the company, and Microsoft. Ryse was a 'catastrophe' for the company, with the studio only completing it by getting more staff onto the job. There is reportedly a cash injection deal close to completion, which will see the company hopefully headed toward a brighter future, but DSO Gaming is reporting that "a lot of big publishers are waiting for a possible bankrupt in order to sign the talent and shop the IPs from Crytek".

Continue reading 'Crytek is in trouble, not many developers are using CryEngine' (full post)

Win a copy of 3 Days to Kill on Blu-ray thanks to Roadshow

By: Ben Gourlay | More News: Contests & Giveaways | Posted: Jun 23, 2014 3:02 am

To celebrate this week's release of 'Three Days to Kill' on home video formats, our friends at Roadshow Home Entertainment Australia have supplied us with copies of the film on Blu-ray to give away to five lucky readers.

 

We took a look a the film in its theatrical release earlier this year, leaving suitably entertained and garnering a 72% score.

 

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To go into the running to take one Blu-ray copy home, simply answer the following question:

 

If you had just three days left to live, what would you do and why?

 

To enter, simply 'like' this post via Facebook or Twitter and send your answers, along with your postal address to Ben at TweakTown dot com before the competition closes on June 27th. The total prize pool is approximately $199.75.

 

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'3 Days to Kill' is available on Blu-ray + digital combo pack, DVD and Digital from Australian retailers on June 27th.

Continue reading 'Win a copy of 3 Days to Kill on Blu-ray thanks to Roadshow' (full post)

Companies should be more transparent and open about data breaches

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Jun 23, 2014 3:02 am

Businesses struggle to keep their data secure, but find it even harder to deal with data breaches once they already happen. Companies that try to bury their heads in the sand and keep breaches secret could be harming themselves more than anything else, and should be more transparent.

 

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Some companies try hiding data breaches or only confirm the news after security incident details are released. That can lead to major problems from shareholders, customers, and law enforcement officials.

 

"It's brought it to a point now where businesses have to pay attention," said Al Pascual, Javelin Strategy & Research senior analyst, in an interview with journalists. "Before, it was more of a concern for folks in the back office. They may have had some minor concerns about regulators or government officials, but now they have to worry about being punished by their shareholders, being punished by consumers who are pretty likely not to come back or to reduce their patronage."

Continue reading 'Companies should be more transparent and open about data breaches' (full post)

Smithsonian Institution unveils 3D-printed bust of President Obama

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: 3D | Posted: Jun 22, 2014 11:26 pm

The Smithsonian Institution successfully created a 3D portrait of President Barack Obama's head, and he has become the first sitting president to have a 3D-printed bust made. The scanning process only took a few minutes, with the president asking the team questions along the way.

 

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The 3D printing took more than 40 hours to print, with more than 5,000 layers of durable plastic that was melted with a laser.

 

"[First], we 3D-scanned the face, ear to ear, at extremely high resolution, capturing details down to the pore level of the skin,", according to Smithsonian 3D program officers. "We worked with a team from the University of Southern California, who use this technology to 3D scan Hollywood actors. And then the Smithsonian 3D team used hand-held structured light scanners to scan the rest of the bust - the sides of the face, under the chin, the back of the head. We put these two data sets together in order to create the model we used for the 3D print."

Continue reading 'Smithsonian Institution unveils 3D-printed bust of President Obama' (full post)

Underwater cave with Ice Age animal bones to be mapped by 3D modeling

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: 3D | Posted: Jun 22, 2014 10:06 pm

Researchers will use 3D mapping technology to give divers and archaeologists a better map on how to study the Hoyo Negro underwater cave. The cave was first found seven years ago, but only a small number of cave divers are trained properly to enter Hoyo Negro.

 

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Photos are being combined to create a 3D image of the cave, which has at least one human skeleton, along with saber-toothed cats, ground sloths, and other prehistoric animals. The researchers will analyze features in photos captured by divers, and will create a 3D structure-from-motion complete image.

 

"If we can document all the artifacts, make a phone map of the bottom of the pit and create a 3D visualization that puts the archaeologists and paleontologists there - without ever getting wet - those discovers and interpretations are made possible," said Dominique Rissolo, University of California, San Diego (UCSD) scholar, in a statement.

Continue reading 'Underwater cave with Ice Age animal bones to be mapped by 3D modeling' (full post)

Medical device company Medtronic compromised by data breach

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Jun 22, 2014 4:58 pm

Medical company Medtronic said it was breached by cyberattacks in separate incidents last year, with some patient records compromised. A number of medical records in the diabetes business unit was taken, but the company didn't disclose how many patients were affected, or what information was at risk.

 

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Medtronic is the biggest standalone medical device maker in the world, and is a significant problem that rivals should pay attention to.

 

"Medtronic, along with two other large medical device manufacturers, discovered an unauthorized intrusion to our systems that was believed to originate from hackers in Asia," Medtronic confirmed in a filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Continue reading 'Medical device company Medtronic compromised by data breach' (full post)

League of Legends creator offers money to new hires who quit their job

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jun 22, 2014 8:49 am

Riot Games, the developer behind League of Legends, seems to be quite flexible when it comes to employees. The company has announced a new initiative called Queue Dodge, which allows its US employees 10% of their yearly salary if they leave the company within the first 60 days of joining.

 

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The company has stated: "Basically, we're offering new hires cash to quit". The company has added that it's not forcing out or daring employees to quit, but the Queue Dodge is aimed at helping out new employees get back on their feet much quicker with an injection of money, if they join the company to find out it wasn't the best fit for them.

 

On top of this, Riot hopes it will increase the company's culture. Riot stated in a news post revealing Queue Dodge: "We operate on a foundation of shared mission, values, passion, trust, and mutual respect. If someone gags on the unique flavor of our culture, they'd be doing themselves and the company a disservice to hang on just for the paycheck".

NVIDIA's Tegra K1 powers the upcoming HTC-made 8.9-inch Nexus tablet

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jun 22, 2014 6:48 am

Google I/O kicks off in a few days time, but it looks like we've just been introduced to the 8.9-inch Nexus tablet early. It is made by HTC, and is powered by NVIDIA's Tegra K1 processor. This news can't be confirmed until the full unveiling, but Android Police seems pretty confident about it.

 

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We should expect Google to roll this out as the Nexus 9, which features an 8.9-inch 2048x1440 display, NVIDIA's Tegra K1 processor (which is 64-bit capable). It's interesting to note that NVIDIA powers this tablet, and not Qualcomm with one of its Snapdragon SoCs. The full specs of the Nexus 9:

 

  • 8.9" Display at 2048x1440 (281ppi)
  • NVIDIA Logan 64-bit processor (Tegra K1)
  • 2GB RAM
  • 16/32GB internal storage
  • 8MP OIS main camera, 3MP front facing camera
  • Aluminum zero-gap construction
  • Stereo front-facing speakers
  • 8.91"x5.98"x0.31" body (that's 22.63x15.19x0.79cm)
  • 418g (or 427g with LTE) (that's 14.74/15.1 ounces)

 

Android Police reports that the price point for the Nexus 9 will be $399 for the 16GB version, and $499 for the 32GB version. The LTE-capable model will cost more, ramping up into the $600+ range. The site believes that the Nexus 9 will launch in Q4 2014, and to not expect it to be released at, or after Google I/O.

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