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TweakTown News Posts - Page 78

Everest is even better in VR, thanks to NVIDIA's injection of PhysX

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Virtual & Augmented Reality | Posted: Mar 19, 2016 6:15 am

GDC 2016 - NVIDIA was displaying various VR demos at the Game Developers Conference this year, where we got to step onto the dangerously real Everest VR demo.



In the demo, NVIDIA is using their latest version of GameWorks with PhysX on top - and while it might sound like much, the additional immersion and presence that is provided is well worth it. The use of PhysX in Everest VR sees snowflakes and snow floating around at the top of the mountain, so that when you look up, you can see snow floating around - which for me, created an entire new layer of presence.


As my viewpoint was going up the mountain, I looked to the absolute peak of Everest where I could see the great use of PhysX in Everest VR. I'm not someone who would normally be sitting here bragging up PhysX, but if you ever had doubts of NVIDIA's PhysX, then Everest VR with PhysX will change your mind. It created something that Oculus, HTC and Valve have been saying since introducing VR headsets - a huge layer of presence.

Continue reading 'Everest is even better in VR, thanks to NVIDIA's injection of PhysX' (full post)

200-inch 8K TV with seamless 1mm bezel shown off at CEBIT 2016

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Displays & Projectors | Posted: Mar 19, 2016 4:10 am

Prepare to have your TV, no matter how big it is, feel inadequate by Tabler Systems. The company unveiled its huge 200-inch 8K TV at CEBIT 2016, with it coming in at 5m (16.4 feet) wide and 2.4m (7.8 feet) high.



The 200-inch 8K TV has a seamless 0mm bezel which makes it perfect for a video wall, as well as a truly gigantic touchscreen surface. How did Tabler Systems seemingly come out of nowhere with a 200-inch 8K TV? Well, the company is using light-emitting plastics, with the panel capable of being designed to be in any shape, with no bezel at all, flexible and the panel is just 1mm thick.


If you can't remember what resolution 8K rolls in with, we're talking about 7680x4320. It's a huge increase on 4K which has a resolution of 3840x2160 and makes 1080p look like nothing at 1920x1080. Back to the TV, which can be connected to a gaming PC for huge 200-inch 8K goodness, filling your entire vision and pulling you right into the game.

Continue reading '200-inch 8K TV with seamless 1mm bezel shown off at CEBIT 2016' (full post)

Pope Francis will join Instagram this weekend

By: Sean Ridgeley | More News: Social Networking | Posted: Mar 19, 2016 3:08 am

Continuing his tradition of being the most progressive Pope in recent memory (and maybe ever?), Pope Francis will join Instagram this weekend (Saturday, March 19, specifically). His handle: Franciscus, the Prefect for Communications, Msgr Dario Viganò. Beat that.




Pope Francis joined Twitter in 2012, although has elected to avoid Facebook. The Archbishop in charge of social media for the Vatican, Claudio Maria Celli, stated this is because there is too much opportunity on Facebook for publicly viewable abuse.

Valve's 'The Lab' is one of the best VR experiences on the HTC Vive

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Virtual & Augmented Reality | Posted: Mar 19, 2016 2:23 am

GDC 2016 - After getting rather excited over Valve announcing The Lab recently, we had to stop by and try it out while we were at the Game Developers Conference.



The Lab is a gigantic playground with VR experiences and games that really show off what Valve has been doing behind closed doors with the HTC Vive. There are multiple parts to the demo, with a beautifully rendered scene of the real-world mountain, Vesper Peak - and that's just the start of it.


There's also Longbow, which lets you use the Lighthouse controllers as a bow-and-arrow, fighting off enemies in a tower defense style game. Next up was Slingshot, which lets you fling around spherical robots into huge towers, destroying them for points.

Continue reading 'Valve's 'The Lab' is one of the best VR experiences on the HTC Vive' (full post)

Windows 7, 8 will support Skylake for an extra year

By: Sean Ridgeley | More News: Operating Systems | Posted: Mar 19, 2016 1:35 am

Intel Skylake users who aren't in any hurry to upgrade anything are in luck: Microsoft has extended Windows 7 and 8 support for the prized microarchitecture for an extra year, now extending to July 17, 2018. Extended support (critical updates) will continue until 2020 and 2023, respectively.




The company says the change is a bid to "provide greater flexibility for customers who have longer deployment timeframes to Windows 10" (businesses especially fit into this category) and to help customers "purchase modern hardware with confidence, while continuing to manage their migrations to Windows 10."

3DMark 11 performance numbers teased for purported NVIDIA Pascal GPUs

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Video Cards | Posted: Mar 19, 2016 12:19 am

With only weeks left until NVIDIA's GPU Technology Conference, where we'll be formally introduced to the Pascal architecture and everything that makes it tick. We've already been teased by the purported GeForce GTX 1080, GTX 1080 Ti and Titan X successor, but now we have some early performance numbers on the purported Pascal GPUs.




The performance numbers are coming from WCCFTech, who have spotted an unidentified NVIDIA video card with 7680MB (7.6GB) of RAM - 512MB less than 8GB, which should find itself onto the GP100-based GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (that's what we're going to call it for now, but I don't think NVIDIA will call the Pascal range by the GTX 1080 moniker).


Now, the performance numbers on 3DMark 11 were hitting 9038 - but an Intel Core i3-2100 processor was used - it lost out to various other video cards, but there were more details in the 3DMark results worth looking at. Firstly, the unidentified NVIDIA video card had 8GB of GDDR5 clocked at 8GHz - now this is noteworthy, as there are no video cards on the market with 8GB of RAM with performance close to the GTX 980 Ti.

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Windows 10 Maps app receives major enhancements to search

By: Sean Ridgeley | More News: Apps | Posted: Mar 19, 2016 12:02 am

Windows 10 Insiders get the benefit of some major enhancements to the Maps app today, namely to search, but also navigation and interface, among other areas.




For search, there's the new ability to conduct and view multiple searches simultaneously (e.g. see nearby hotels and restaurants at the same time, or see multiple directions at the same time), with the option to view them separately if need be. Algorithms are improved, too, which closer and better results.


Regarding the interface and navigation, navigation buttons are now at the top of the app on desktop and at the bottom on mobile, making everything more intuitive whatever device you're on; labels are now found directly on the map; elements can be hidden or shown at will; public transit routes are easier to follow with more precise instructions and an improved design, and Cortana will give you instructions when enabled.

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Less than half of developers expected to use Windows by next year

By: Sean Ridgeley | More News: Operating Systems | Posted: Mar 18, 2016 10:34 pm

Programmer community site Stack Overflow's new survey sees OS X overshadowing Linux again this year as the more popular operating system among developers. Although Windows still leads the pack (currently at 52.2%, including the different versions), it's expected to continue trending downward, below 50% by this time next year.




The survey -- which covers many topics -- is based on answers from more than 56,003 developers among 173 countries, which is said to make it the "most comprehensive developer survey ever conducted." Stack Overflow notes the survey is inherently biased against developers who don't speak English, at least not as their native tongue.

Sony reportedly looking to refresh the PlayStation 4.5 for 4K gaming

By: Jeff Williams | More News: Gaming Consoles | Posted: Mar 18, 2016 9:04 pm

There seems to be some substantial information regarding a minor (or fairly major) refresh of Sony's PlayStation 4. In fact, some developers have reportedly told Kotaku that there have been actual discussions behind closed doors about a "PlayStation 4.5" that could include a more powerful GPU for actual 4K gaming.




More than three independent sources in the developer community seem to have been able to confirm the existence of some type of evolution in hardware and design. This information seems to be even more substantiated after a supposed behind-closed-doors meeting from Sony at GDC. And just what does it mean for current owners?


Well, it would be the anti-thesis of what makes a console such a valuable ecosystem. The hardware is similar for a full generation of development, meaning no one has to upgrade to experience their games at the greatest possible settings for that platform. Having different versions, even if one is discontinued, defeats the purpose of the fixed-specification console. This is even in line with Microsoft's want to have upgradable console hardware in the future. The console as we know it, then, might be doomed. Or we could be looking at the definitive next generation, earlier than usual.

Continue reading 'Sony reportedly looking to refresh the PlayStation 4.5 for 4K gaming' (full post)

Sword Art Online gets seriously real with a VR makeover by IBM

By: Jeff Williams | More News: Gaming | Posted: Mar 18, 2016 8:15 pm

IBM Japan has a big surprise in store for MMO fans. Out of nearly 100K applicants they only took a small sample of 208 people and showed them what they're calling a Virtual Reality Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game. They've transformed, in what looks like just a technical experiment at the moment, Sword Art Online into a massive VR experience.




They had hinted at such a project this past February, but there hasn't been much word about how they were going to make the futuristic MMORPG into a VR game, but now we have some more details on what they did. They've created their own VR headset based off of the Oculus Rift DK2, called the Navugia. They added additional sensors, including a Leap Motion sensor and a Kinect V2 attached to a helmet device. The resulting experience literally puts you into the years 2022, when the game is set.


The whole thing is running off of IBM's SoftLayer cloud service with their own cognitive layer, a showcase of what their deep learning tech can do. But really it's to show what life could be like if you wanted to literally live inside an MMO. Take a walk on the wild-side and you're likely never to come back. They're taking the "role-playing" quite literally here. The photos were taken by Inside Games while they took a look at it. It's an interseting use of VR, but perhaps cumbersome at this point. Nonetheless very impressive.

Continue reading 'Sword Art Online gets seriously real with a VR makeover by IBM' (full post)