Aussie cloud service gets the tick to serve its government

Chris Smith | Hacking, Security & Privacy | May 18, 2015 6:07 AM CDT

In a world of leaked information and hacking sprees, Australian cloud services provider Macquarie Telecom has been the first ever of its kind to be approved on the government's list of providers thanks to its performance in the security standards testing.

With this accreditation approved by the Australian Signals Directorate (ASD), Macquarie Telecom's Managing Director Aiden Tudehope stated "the ASD was detailed and thorough and Macquarie is proud that out hard work has been recognized in this way." Tudehope added that the motive for this accreditation is quite reasonable as "our analysis shows governments are increasingly looking for a range of cloud computing services for different data classification use cases."

Further privatization of Government services can be good or bad depending on which way the situation is assessed and it's up to you to decide if you're happy with this movement or not. Either way, congratulations Macquarie Telecom for being the first of a kind.

Continue reading: Aussie cloud service gets the tick to serve its government (full post)

Two Intel Xeon CPUs and a TV screen inside this PC, because why not?

Chris Smith | Modding | May 18, 2015 5:09 AM CDT

Thermaltake has been promoting its global modding competition like crazy recently, with seven modders chosen from countries around the world to represent their homeland in a 'mod-off'.

Bringing his best to the table is the Australian modder Stuart Tonks, showcasing his build which features a dual-CPU laden ASUS Z9PE-D8 WS motherboard coupled with three ASUS NVIDIA STRIX GeForce GTX 980's and no less than three SSDs.

If that's not impressive enough, the full Thermaltake watercooling setup within is finished off with a built-in 24" 1080p touchscreen.

Continue reading: Two Intel Xeon CPUs and a TV screen inside this PC, because why not? (full post)

Female-only gaming tournaments continue strong with $15k for CS:GO

Chris Smith | Gaming | May 18, 2015 4:03 AM CDT

Somewhat debated female-only leagues and competitions are still going along strong with ESWC announcing a $15,000 prize pool for its CS:GO female contingent of the upcoming event.

Held on July 9-12 and boasting a $75,000 male CS:GO tournament, the old 3DMAX squad is the fan favorite to take out the female event while on the search for a new home as their organization packed up last month.

Four of the competing teams will be decided through an open qualifier for European and North American teams (two each), alongside an application to decide the last three placings - one of which will be French.

Continue reading: Female-only gaming tournaments continue strong with $15k for CS:GO (full post)

500GB version of NVIDIA's Shield 'Pro' console listed on Amazon

Anthony Garreffa | Gaming | May 18, 2015 2:02 AM CDT

While the leak on NVIDIA's website last month that hinted at the possibilities of a 500GB version of the Shield Android TV, it looks like it was real. A new listing has appeared on Amazon, but was quickly pulled.

The listing had an image of the box, which said "500GB Android TV" and the image doesn't look like something that was thrown together for a laugh. The description says that the new NVIDIA Shield has "4K entertainment and apps, powered by Android TV" as well as "a new class of Android games-only on SHIELD". But it's the "500GB storage for all your media and games" that has us excited, and you will get a Shield controller and HDMI in the box, too.

It looks like there will be a normal Shield, and then the Shield Pro that we have here with a 500GB internal 2.5-inch HDD. As we mentioned above, Amazon has since pulled the listing, but we're sure we'll see a 500GB Shield from NVIDIA in the very, very near future.

Continue reading: 500GB version of NVIDIA's Shield 'Pro' console listed on Amazon (full post)

Mortal Kombat X receives a massive new patch for PS4, Xbox One and PC

Anthony Garreffa | Gaming | May 18, 2015 12:54 AM CDT

Mortal Kombat X is getting fixed up, with a new patch being pushed out to the PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC versions of the game. The patch fixes up different parts of the game, such as online matchmaking for ranked, and player matches. The full list of general gameplay fixes can be found below:

The list of character-specific fixes is also quite long, check it out:

Continue reading: Mortal Kombat X receives a massive new patch for PS4, Xbox One and PC (full post)

Next-gen drug test can detect cocaine in your system from fingerprints

Researchers from the University of Surrey in the UK have developed an interesting new, noninvasive drug test that can detect cocaine in your system through your fingerprints. The system looks for two common cocaine metabolites: benzoylecgonine and methylecgonine.

These two metabolites can be found in blood, sweat, and urine using a "mass spectrometry technique known as Desorption Electrospray Ionisation (DESI)", reports Engadget. Metabolites dissipate from our sweat much quicker than they do in blood and urine, so law enforcement will one day in the near future be able to know if a suspect is high right then and there, or was high a few nights ago.

The study's lead author, Melanie Bailey, told Motherboard: "We can distinguish between cocaine having been touched and cocaine having been ingested". With fingerprints being unique, it's hard to swap out a urine sample or test, which will make this type of technology fast-tracked beyond belief. The team has added that their research is still in its early stages, as they'll need to secure much more data on the effects of dosage and timing before they can move to more reliable testing. They still say that this technology will be made available to law enforcement within 10 years.

Continue reading: Next-gen drug test can detect cocaine in your system from fingerprints (full post)

AMD to rebrand Hawaii-based cards as Radeon R9 300 series, coming soon

Anthony Garreffa | Video Cards & GPUs | May 17, 2015 8:31 PM CDT

According to VideoCardz.com, we should expect rebranded AMD Radeon R9 200 series cards based on the Hawaii architecture to arrive next month with a disguise, as the Radeon R9 300 series.

While the HBM-based Radeon R9 390X will arrive in two flavors: 4GB and 8GB (and maybe one model with GDDR5 and another with HBM), there will be other Radeon R9 300 series cards based on the Hawaii architecture. These should arrive as the Radeon R9 385, and R9 380 - but those specifics could change. But these new cards will feature slightly higher Core Clocks, and a nice jump on Memory speeds.

The Radeon R9 290X has a Core Clock of 1GHz, but the new R9 300 series rebrand will have 2816 stream processors, while its Core set at 1050MHz, a 50MHz jump. The Memory Clock on the other hand, jumps from the 1250MHz found on the R9 290X, to 1500MHz on the new cards, according to VideoCardz.com. This will give that particular card based on the Hawaii XT GPU around 384GB/sec of memory bandwidth, up from the 320GB on the R9 290X.

Continue reading: AMD to rebrand Hawaii-based cards as Radeon R9 300 series, coming soon (full post)

DICE will provide new weapons, Gun Master Mode to Battlefield 4 soon

Anthony Garreffa | Gaming | May 17, 2015 7:23 AM CDT

With DICE rolling out future DLC for free to all Battlefield 4 gamers, the Spring Patch which drops later this month on all platforms will be something that gamers will be excited over.

The new Spring Patch will offer up five new guns, a revamped damage, fall off and suppression model for the guns, and the return of Gun Master. Gun Master is something that was a fan favorite back in Battlefield 3: Close Quarters, and is played like a Team Deathmatch game, except with a big twist. You don't get to choose the weapons you use, with weapons being swapped every time you get two kills in a row on an opponent, and whoever is the first player to get a kill with the final weapon, wins.

The PC version of Battlefield 4 is also getting an injection of stability, with the Battlefield 4 Community Test Environment, or CTE, being used to find the problems, and fix them. The Spring Patch focuses on the crashes and issues with both the game client and server. DICE is asking that all gamers update their graphics drivers to the latest stable versions, and to keep their overclocks at a minimum to ensure the best experience with Spring Patch.

Continue reading: DICE will provide new weapons, Gun Master Mode to Battlefield 4 soon (full post)

CD Projekt Red removes 'PC vs PS4' comparison videos of The Witcher 3

Anthony Garreffa | Gaming | May 16, 2015 11:31 PM CDT

The launch of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt has been an interesting one, something that hasn't been filled with bugs and watered down graphics with hidden options in it like Watch Dogs experienced, but something entirely different.

CD Projekt Red, the developer behind The Witcher series of games, has been quite open during the development of its open-world title. Except, that is, when it comes to comparing The Witcher 3 between the PlayStation 4, and PC. Marcin Momot, who works for the studio, talked with German website PCGamesHardware, where he talked about the differences between the PS4 and PC versions of the game. The developer reached out to the website, asking them to remove their video.

Momot said that the main differences between the PC and PS4 versions of the game will be the draw distance, frame rate, resolution and exclusive features like NVIDIA's HairWorks technology. Momot also said that there will be many more NPCs in the PC versions versus the PS4 version, and that the now removed video of the game was "not representative" of the PC version, as it made the PC version look pretty bad. He said: "Regarding the comparison video, unfortunately we don't know how this video was created and what PC settings have been used. It compared an early PC version with a PS4 debug build without the day 1 patch".

Continue reading: CD Projekt Red removes 'PC vs PS4' comparison videos of The Witcher 3 (full post)

First glimpse of Rebel Galaxy from Double Damage Games

Michael Hatamoto | Gaming | May 16, 2015 10:11 PM CDT

TweakTown recently spent a few days playing the preview build of Rebel Galaxy, a single-player spaceship combat action game from Double Damage Games. Rebel Galaxy will be released for the PC first, though it will be available for Mac, Sony PlayStation 4 and the Microsoft Xbox One. Admittedly, I called upon my 16-year-old brother for his gaming knowledge - and I am not a game reviewer, so here is the meat and potatoes about Rebel Galaxy.

A mouse and keyboard or gamepad work, with fully re-mappable controls for gamers - though it's worth pointing out that Double Damage recommends using a gamepad. Many PC gamers are used to relying on just the mouse and keyboard, which proved to be adequate. The keyboard is used to steer the ship, while the mouse is used to aim accurately and move camera angles.

If you're a fan of a game like Sid Meier's Pirates!, you should feel right at home with Rebel Galaxy. It's a similar type of fighting style, with broadside fighting - and there are turrets so you can blow stuff things up - while you're traveling around completing missions.

Continue reading: First glimpse of Rebel Galaxy from Double Damage Games (full post)