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Oculus VR secures Valve's Michael Abrash as its new Chief Scientist

Oh, you thought Oculus VR news was done for the week? Well, it just keeps on going, as the VR start up that will soon be operating under Facebook has just announced that it has Valve's Michael Abrash as its new Chief Scientist.

 

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Abrash is one of the key components in the world of VR, as he worked his magic in the early days of gaming with id Software, on the Xbox, and much more. Recently, he has been working with Valve on its VR and AR research and technologies. The Oculus VR blog has a lengthy post talking about it, something you need to definitely read.

Turkey puts the brakes on YouTube, blocks all access to the video site

Turkey has just issued a complete and total ban on Google's video hosting service, YouTube. Earlier today a Google spokes person issued a statement that read, "We're seeing reports that some users are not able to access YouTube in Turkey. There is no technical issue on our side and we're looking into the situation." Just hours later Turkish authorities said that an "administrative decision" was made to block the site from being viewed within its boarders.

 

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This move comes just days after Turkey issued a ban on Twitter, which was later blocked by an injunction from a Turkish court. Some are speculating that the ban on YouTube is in retaliation to the the courts injunction, while others say that it is just the beginning of a movement to ban most western social sharing sites. With net neutrality a growing concern here in the US, a lot can be learned by these events, and allowing government regulations to take over the internet.

Two buildings collapse after explosion in New York City

This New York City Residents awoke to a loud explosion that reportedly shook buildings and busted windows for dozens of blocks. The explosion was centered on the corner of 116th Street and Park Avenue, and it appears that two buildings have collapsed due to the explosion and resulting fire. No cause has been determined as to what may have caused the explosion, but there were reports of a natural gas smell near the buildings just before the explosion.

 

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Around 9:15am this morning, New York City utility company ConEdision dispatched a crew to reports of a "strong gas smell" at a building on Park Avenue. Before the crews could arrive, the two buildings exploded and blew debris for blocks and shutting down the Metro subway system's North Line. At the moment, authorities are reporting just one fatality, and more than 20 injuries ranging from minor to serious.

 

NBC Channel 4 is reporting that the Metro North Line may be shutdown for the rest of the day, and the news station has confirmed that the smell of gas was reported by several people in the area just before the explosion. Residents and business owners in the area have also reported shaking around the time of the explosion, which has lead to speculation that construction inside the two buildings could have ruptured a major gas line. At the moment, the fire is under control, and first responders are now combing the rubble at the scene for anyone who may be trapped in the debris.

Continue reading 'Two buildings collapse after explosion in New York City' (full post)

Malaysian Airlines loses contact with a plane carrying 239 passengers

Update #3: Another strange update for the still missing Malaysian Airlines flight MH370, where five passengers checked into the flight but never boarded the plane. Their luggage was removed after officials realized they were not boarding the plane.

 

No wreckage of the missing Boeing 777-200 have been found according to the Director-General of Malaysia's Department of Civil Aviation said in press briefing in Kuala Lumpur. Azharuddin Abdul Rahman said that authorities still had no idea where the plane was, with a search involving 34 planes, 40 ships and more than 100 people have still not found plane. He announced: "We have not found anything that appears to be an object from the aircraft, let alone the aircraft."

 

Update #2: It is being reported that two passengers on the missing Malaysian Airlines flight boarded with stolen passports. Terrorism has not been ruled out, but is now being questioned because of the stolen passports. This means that the passports were not checked, or were incredibly elaborate fakes to be let through the Kuala Lumpur airport.

 

One of the stolen passports was from the father of an Italian man, who said his son's passport had been stolen over a year and a half ago when he was travelling in Thailand. Walter Maraldi said: "He deposited it with rental car agency, and when he returned the car it was gone."

 

Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 sent off no distress signal, indications of rough weather, or other signs of trouble.

 

Update: Malaysian Airlines has confirmed that it has lost all contact with flight MH370, with the company calling all of the next-of-kin of all passengers and crew on-board the flight. Right now, Malaysian Airlines is focused on working "with the emergency responders and authorities and mobilize its full support".

 

Original story: Malaysian Airlines has announced it has lost flight MH370 bound for Beijing, with air traffic controllers losing contact with the plane carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew members just a few hours ago.

 

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The company has released a media statement confirming the news, saying that it had lost contact with Subang Air Traffic Control at 2.40am. Malaysian Airlines said on its Facebook page: "Flight MH370, operated on the B777-200 aircraft, departed Kuala Lumpur at 12.41am on 8 March 2014. MH370 was expected to land in Beijing at 6.30am the same day. The flight was carrying a total number of 227 passengers (including 2 infants), 12 crew members".

 

Malaysian Airlines has said that it is working with authorities who have activated their Search and Rescue team to locate the lost aircraft. The company has also stated that it will provide updates on the situation when it can, with the public who are concerned able to contact the company for more information on +603 7884 1234.

Continue reading 'Malaysian Airlines loses contact with a plane carrying 239 passengers' (full post)

Facebook domain hacked by Syrian Electronic Army

The Syrian Electronic Army has taken to Twitter of all social networks, to announce the hacking collective has just gained possession of Facebook - yes, Facebook.

 

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You wouldn't know that Facebook is any different, but the SEA has teased that it has changed the name servers to hijack the site, but this was "taking too much time" according to the SEA. The attack on Facebook is at the right time for the SEA, as the social network is currently celebrating its 10th anniversary.

 

There's not much more on this at the moment, but as things change we'll keep you updated!

North Korea confirms it has landed a man on the Sun

This just in: North Korea has landed a man on the Sun. 17-year-old Hung Il Gong started his journey at 3am this morning, travelling alone, to reach our nearest star, a journey that took him just 4 hours.

 

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A North Korean central news anchorman said during a live broadcast: "We are very delighted to announce a successful mission to put a man on the sun. North Korea has beaten every other country in the world to the sun. Hung Il Gong is a hero and deserves a hero's welcome when he returns home later this evening".

 

Hung is expected back on Earth in just a few hours time, where he will be greeted by his uncle, and supreme leader: Kim Jong-un. Hung traveled in the cover of darkness, as it would protect him from the harsh, and extreme temperatures of the Sun. Hung will also be bringing back some sun spot samples for his uncle, which I'm sure he will show off to the world in a short amount of time.

 

The North Korean central news agency is calling the 18-hour mission the "greatest human achievement of our time" - and so they should, landing a man on the Sun, a trip that took 18 hours return, is quite the achievement, all things considered. I wonder if Dennis Rodman considered this a slam dunk for the country.

DERP takes down EA login, Origin is not working at all

EA's login is not working right now, with Origin logins completely broken right now for most. It looks like a hacking group known as "DERP" are responsible, who aimed their "Gaben Laser Beam" at the EA login servers, taking them offline.

 

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The hacking group said 5 minutes before it took EA's login servers down that "5 minutes from this tweet we will begin officially" and then minutes later, DERP tweeted "We've directed the Gaben Laser Beam @ the EA login servers. Origin #offline". Right now, I cannot access Origin, and my tears are flowing.

Apple signs iPhone deal with world's largest carrier: China Mobile

Apple has finally inked the deal it has been waiting for, with the world's largest carrier: China Mobile. The Wall Street Journal was the first to break the news, stating that iPhones will be available through China Mobile by the end of the month.

 

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China Mobile is expected to announce its new 4G service on, or around December 18, so we should expect the iPhone to go on sale at that time. This is a big deal for Apple, as it continues to bleed customers to Samsung around the world, it now has tens of millions of new customers it can begin to scoop up into the world of iOS.

id Software co-founder John Carmack leaves his post at id Software

John Carmack co-founder and programmer at id Software has resigned from id and is focusing on working full time as Chief Technology Officer at Oculus VR. Carmack co-founded id Software twenty-two years ago and co-created games such as Doom, Quake, and Wolfenstein 3D. Carmack also founded Armadillo Aerospace in 2000. This is the second big departure from id Software this year, during the summer Todd Hollenshead former CEO and President left after seventeen years with the company.

 

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Carmack became Chief Technology Officer of Oculus VR earlier this year in August. Carmack mentions on Twitter that he wanted to remain as Technical Advisor at id but that it did not work out. Bethesda Softworks' President of PR and marketing, Pete Hines, says that Carmack had been long interested in the work over at Oculus VR and that Carmack would like to be more engaged in that project.

 

id Software studio director Tim Willits says: "John Carmack, who has become interested in focusing on things other than game development at id, has resigned from the studio, John's work at id Tech 5 and the technology for the current development work at id is complete, and his departure will not affect any current projects. We are fortunate to have a brilliant group of programmers at id who worked with John and will carry on id's tradition of making great games with cutting-edge technology. As colleagues of John for many years, we wish him well."

Continue reading 'id Software co-founder John Carmack leaves his post at id Software' (full post)

OCZ stock tanking, down 22% today already, trading below $0.90

OCZ may have finally came to the end of its journey as a maker of SSDs if this mornings stock trading is any indication. Soon after the markets opened on Monday, OCZ began to see its stock price began to sharply decline from its opening price of $1.07 to just over $0.80 at the time of this writing.

 

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It appears that investors have lost all confidence in OCZ after almost a year of poor performance numbers, high operational cost, and financial woes. OCZ has a monthly overhead of more than $2 million and that is before it pays its employee salaries. You might recall earlier this year when the NASDAQ threatened to Delist OCZ from its index after the company failed to disclose financial earnings. Is this the end of OCZ, or will the stock rebound before the close of trading today? Stay tuned to TweakTown for the latest breaking information on OCZ and all of the happenings in the tech world.

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