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Submission + - Windows 10 Upgrade Strategies, Pitfalls And Fixes As MSFT Servers Are Hit Hard-> 1 1

MojoKid writes: The upgrade cycle begins, with Microsoft's latest operating system--the highly anticipated Windows 10--rolling out over Windows Update for free, for users of Windows 7, 8 and 8.1. For those that are ready to take the plunge over the weekend, there are some things to note. So far, Microsoft has been rolling out the upgrade in waves and stages. If you are not one of the 'lucky' ones to be in the first wave, you can take matters into your own hands and begin the upgrade process manually. While the process is mostly simple, it won't be for everyone. This guide steps through a few of the strategies and pitfalls. There are two main methods to upgrade, either through Windows Update or through the Media Creation Tool. In either case, you will need to have opted-in for the Windows 10 Free Upgrade program to reserve your license. Currently, the Windows Update method is hit or miss due to the requirement for additional updates needing to be installed first and Microsoft's servers being hit hard, leading to some rather humorous error messages like the oh-so helpful description, "Something Happened". Currently, it would be best to avoid the Windows Update upgrade, at least for the time being. Numerous issues with licensing have been reported, requiring manual activation either through the dreaded phone call, or by running slmgr.vbs /ato at the command prompt to force license registration.
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Submission + - Intel And Micron Unveil 3D XPoint Memory, 1000X Speed And Endurance Over Flash->

MojoKid writes: Today at a press conference in San Francisco, Intel and Micron unveiled 3D XPoint (Cross Point) memory technology, a non-volatile memory architecture so disruptive it could very well change the entire landscape of consumer electronics and computer architectures for years to come. Intel and Micron claim that 3D XPoint memory is 1000 times faster than NAND, boasts 1000x the endurance of NAND, and offers 8 — 10 times the density of conventional memory. 3D XPoint isn't electron based, it's material based. The companies aren't diving into specifics yet surrounding the materials used in 3D XPoint, but the physics are fundamentally different than what we're used to. It's 3D stackable and its cross point connect structure allows for dense packing and individual access at the cell level from the top or bottom of a memory array. Better still, Intel alluded to 3D XPoint not being as cost-prohibitive as you might expect. Intel's Rob Crooke explained "You could put the cost somewhere between NAND and DRAM." Products with the new memory are expected to arrive in 2016 and the joint venture is in production with wafers now.
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Submission + - Intel Core i7-5775C Desktop Broadwell With Iris Pro 6200 Graphics Tested

bigwophh writes: 14nm Broadwell processors weren’t originally destined for the channel, but Intel ultimately changed course and launched a handful of 5th Generation Core processors based on the microarchitecture recently, the most powerful of which is the Core i7-5775C. Unlike all of the mobile Broadwell processors that came before it, the Core i7-5775C is a socketed, LGA processor for desktops, just like 4th Generation Core processors based on Haswell. In fact, it’ll work in the very same 9-Series chipset motherboards currently available (after a BIOS update). The Core i7-5775C, however, features a 128MB eDRAM cache and integrated Iris Pro 6200 series graphics, which can boost graphics performance significantly. Testing shows that the Core i7-5775C's lower CPU core clocks limit its performance versus Haswell, but its Iris Pro graphics engine is clearly more powerful.

Submission + - Pocket SCiO Spectrometer Sends Chemical Composition Of Anything To Smartphones->

MojoKid writes: Is that a tricorder in your pocket or are you just happy to see me? All joking aside, the handheld SCiO could truly make you feel like a member Bones McCoy's medical team. The SCiO turns science fiction into science fact by shrinking mass spectrometry technology used in traditional lab settings into a device small enough to fit in the palm of your hand. While pricey handheld spectrometers have been available for researchers, the SCiO is the first such device marketed directly at consumers. To get the SCiO down to a reasonable price point, Consumer Physics uses near-IR spectroscopy and optics typically found in smartphones to measure the light reflected from any given object. Held at a distance of 5 to 15 mm from the intended target, SCiO captures reflected spectrum data and uploads it to its own cloud platform. The company's proprietary algorithms then analyze the data and send the information back down to your smartphone (SCiO require a Bluetooth connection). Reportedly, this whole process occurs within 1.5 seconds. The hope is to empower consumers to learn more about the world around them and even about the things that we put in our mouth. You'll be able to ascertain nutritional information about the foods you eat without having to rely on labels, or even determine the ripeness of fruits and vegetables with the push of a button. The Whole Foods crowd will be all over this, one would think.
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Submission + - Emotionally Aware Apps That Respond To Feelings Are On The Horizon->

bigwophh writes: Machine learning has helped a multitude of different technologies become a reality, including emotion-detection. Most examples to date have been rather simple, such as being able to detect a smile or a frown. But with today's super-fast computers, and even mobile devices, we're now able to detect emotion with far greater accuracy and nuance. Facial recognition expert Rana el Kaliouby recently gave a talk at TED to highlight just how accurate emotion-detection has become, and depending on your perspective, the result is either amazing, or downright scary. To accurately detect someone's emotion, Rana's software detects eight different factors, which include frowning, showing disgust, engaged, and raised eyebrows, among other things. Through research with this software, a couple of interesting factoids are revealed. In the United States, women are 40% more likely to smile than men. But the technology is ultimately destined for software that will detect the user's emotion and react accordingly.
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Submission + - Marshall Amp Cranks It To 11 With First Android Smartphone Called 'London'->

MojoKid writes: Marshall may be better known for its music equipment, but that isn't stopping the company from bringing a better audio experience to the smartphone market with its London handset. Given its highly customizable nature, it should come as no surprise that London runs Google's Android operating system (Lollipop 5.0.2). The London features dual front-facing speakers, a Wolfson WM8281 sound processor, Bluetooth atpX support, and a gold-tinged scroll wheel on the right side of the device that handle volume control, which Marshall says offers "tactile precision [that] allows you to find that sweet spot of sonic goodness." Once you get past the audio-centric functionality, there's a lot of lower-end hardware under the hood of the London. You'll find a 4.7-inch 720p display, a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 410 processor with 2GB of RAM, 16GB of internal storage, a microSD slot, LTE connectivity, 8MP rear camera, 2MP front-facing camera, and a removable 2500 mAh battery. In other words, those specs make the London more in line with the Moto G.
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Submission + - OCZ Toshiba Breaks 40 Cent Per GiB Barrier With New Trion 100 Series SSD->

MojoKid writes: OCZ is launching a brand new series of solid state drives today, dubbed the Trion 100. Not only are they the first drives from the company to use TLC NAND, but they're also the first to use all in-house Toshiba technology with the drive's Flash memory and controller both designed and built by Toshiba. That controller is paired to A19nm Toshiba TLC NAND Flash memory and a Nanya DDR3 DRAM cache. Details are scarce on the Toshiba TC58 controller but it does support Toshiba's QSBC (Quadruple Swing-By Correction — a Toshiba proprietary error correction technology) and the drives have a bit of SLC cache to boost write performance in bursts and increase endurance. The OCZ Trion 100 series is targeted at budget conscious consumers and users still contemplating the upgrade from a standard hard drive. As such, they're not barn-burners in the benchmarking department, but performance is still good overall and a huge upgrade over any HDD. Pricing is going to be very competitive as well, at under .40 per GiB for capacities of 240GB, 480GB and 960GB and .50 per GiB for the smallest 120GB drive.
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Submission + - Beam Me Up, Scotty: Real Life Star Trek Communicator Pairs With Your Smartphone->

MojoKid writes: If you're a fan of Star Trek (and what self-respecting geek isn't?), The Wand Company has just announced what could possibly be one of the greatest smartphone accessories you've seen in quite some time. The company has built a true-to-life Communicator — yes, that Communicator which we saw Captain Kirk whip out on numerous occasions when leading his away team on the surface of uncharted planets. Part of what makes the Communicator so special is that it acts as a Bluetooth handset that connects to your smartphone (hands-free calling and music streaming is supported). So even though the Communicator is after all a prop modeled after an object from a nearly 50-year-old television sci-fi series, it at least is actually useful for something.
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Submission + - How Light Is Too Light For A Laptop? Lenovo LaVie Z Breaks 2 LB Barrier->

MojoKid writes: Ultralight notebooks or "ultrabooks" have become the norm, with the demand for thinner and lighter frames that are still capable of delivering full-featured notebook performance. With the advent of solid state storage and faster, lower-powered processors that require less complex cooling solutions, the average mainstream notebook is rather svelte. Recently, however, Lenovo announced their LaVie Z and LaVie Z 360 ultrabooks and at 1.87 and 2.04 pounds respectively, they're almost ridiculously light. Further, with Core i7 mobile processors and fast SSDs on board, these machines perform impressively well in the benchmarks and real world usage. If you actually pick one up though, both models are so light they feel almost empty, like there's nothing inside. Lenovo achieved this in part by utilizing a magnesium--lithium composite material for the casing of the machines. Though they're incredibly light, the feeling is almost too light, such that they tend to feel a little cheap or flimsy. With a tablet, you come to expect a super thin and light experience and when holding them in one hand, the light weight is an advantage. However, banging on a full-up notebook keyboard deck is a different ball of wax. Which begs the question: Are ultrabooks getting too light? Microsoft's Surface 3 is 1.37 pounds, but it's a tablet doubling as a notebook (a 2-in-1 device). What about full-up business or consumer class notebooks? Do they really need to be that light?
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Submission + - Mario Running In Unreal Engine 4 Is Strangley Satisfying And Awesome->

MojoKid writes: You no longer have to wonder what Super Mario would look like if he was rendered in 3D using the Unreal Engine 4. Did the thought ever crossed your mind? Well it did for YouTube user aryoksini, the same cat who showed off samples Super Mario 64 remade in HD using the Blender engine. As nifty as that was, his newest project is even better. Using the Unreal Engine 4, aryoksini created a 3D world in which you see Mario like you've never seen him before. Not that we haven't seen Mario in 3D before, just not as well rendered as this. Here we see Mario running in Unreal Engine 4 with all the environment assets taken from the Unreal marketplace, all the character actions scripted using blueprints only, all animations were re-created from scratch as well as the PBR ready textures. Unreal Engine 4 supports advanced DirectX 11 & 12 rendering features such as full-scene HDR reflections, thousands of dynamic lights per scene, artist-programmable tessellation and displacement, and physically-based shading and materials.
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Submission + - Oxford Professor Says AI Could Enslave And Sustain Humans With 'Heroin Drips'->

MojoKid writes: Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak isn't the only one envisioning a world where artificially intelligent systems rise up and rule over mankind. Dr. Stuart Armstrong, an academic at the Future of Humanity at Oxford University feels we're precariously close to creating computers that will ultimately wipe out mankind, though if it comes as any consolation, they'll have good intentions. The future Dr. Armstrong envisions is one where machines have an incredible amount of computing power, and they'll be able to access all that information at speeds that would boggle the human mind. These machines will become so smart and sophisticated that they'll create their own global network to communicate with each other without the aid of pesky humans, who would only slow them down. This will mark the beginning of the end. At some point, Dr. Armstrong sees these super intelligent machines doing something incredibly dumb because of nuances in human communication. For example, a command such as "keep humans safe and happy" might prompt this network of machines to "entomb everyone in concrete coffins on heroin drips," Dr. Armstrong says.
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Submission + - Steve Wozniak Projects AI Will Become Smarter Than Humans, Keep Us As Pets->

MojoKid writes: No matter what your opinion is of Steve Wozniak, there is little doubt he's one of the most influential people in the history of Personal Computing. Often times noted for making bold enthusiastic claims, especially when it comes to the advancement of technology in every day life, Woz may have stepped slightly off the deep end in a recent interview where he projected the advancement of AI (Artificial Intelligence) so capable that it would be smarter than humans and eventually turn us into pets of the Internet of Things. Woz also joked, "I got this idea a few years ago and so I started feeding my dog filet steak and chicken every night because, do unto others." The projection was made for hundreds of years in the future and Woz doesn't necessarily view it as a bad thing because he feels AI would want to take care of us and "make things nice for humans."
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Submission + - Steve Wozniak Projects AI Will Become Smarter Than Humans, Keep Us As Pets->

MojoKid writes: No matter what your opinion is of Steve Wozniak, there is little doubt he's one of the most influential people in the history of personal computing. Often times noted for making bold enthusiastic claims, especially when it comes to the advancement of technology in every day life. Woz may have stepped slightly off the deep end, however, in a recent interview where he projected the advancement of AI (Artificial Intelligence) so capable that it would be smarter than humans and eventually turn us into pets of the Internet of Things. Woz also added "I got this idea a few years ago and so I started feeding my dog filet steak and chicken every night because, do unto others." The projection was made for hundreds of years in the future and Woz doesn't necessarily view it as a bad thing because the he feels AI would want to take care of us and "make things nice for humans."
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Submission + - Lenovo Considers A Retro ThinkPad X300 Remake With Current Technologies->

MojoKid writes: The ThinkPad brand has been around for a long time; the first model was introduced by IBM way back in 1992. And although technological advances over the past two decades have lead to Lenovo ThinkPads that are lighter, much faster, and highly more cable than any model in the early 1990s could have ever imagined, there's still a clear visual link between yesteryear and today with regards to design cues. Well, apparently, Lenovo is seriously toying with the idea of making a "unique" model that would incorporate some of the strong ThinkPad language that has been erased in recent years. "Imagine a blue enter key, 7 row classic keyboard, 16:10 aspect ratio screen, multi-color ThinkPad logo, dedicated volume controls, rubberized paint, exposed screws, lots of status LEDs, and more. Think of it like stepping into a time machine and landing in 1992, but armed with today's technology." It might not be for everyone but some execs at Lenovo think there might be a market for it.
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Submission + - AMD Radeon R9 Fury X Launched, Independent Benchmarks, HBM Put To The Test->

MojoKid writes: AMD officially launched the Radeon R9 Fury X based on their next generation Fiji GPU and HBM 3D stacked DRAM memory. Fiji is manufactured using TSMC's 28nm process. At its reference clocks of 1050MHz (GPU) and 500MHz (HBM), Fiji and the Radeon R9 Fury X offer peak compute performance of 8.6 TFLOPs, up to 268.8 GT/s of texture fill-rate, 67.2 GP/s of pixel fill-rate, and a whopping 512GB/s of memory bandwidth, thanks to HBM. Its compute performance, memory bandwidth, and textured fill-rate are huge upgrades over the previous generation AMD Hawaii GPU and even outpace NVIDIA's GM200, which powers the GeForce Titan X and 980 Ti. To keep the entire assembly cool, AMD strapped a close-loop liquid cooler onto the Fury X. There's a reason AMD went that route on this card, and it's not because they had to. There will be air-cooled Fury and Fury Nano cards coming in a few weeks that feature fully-functional Fiji GPUs. What the high-powered liquid-cooler on the Fury X does is allow the use of an ultra-quiet fan, with the side benefit of keeping the GPU very cool under both idle and load conditions(around 60C max under load and 30C at idle), which helps reduce overall power consumption by limiting leakage current. The AMD Radeon R9 Fury X performed very well in the benchmarks, and remained competitive with a similarly priced, reference NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti, but it wasn't a clear win. Generally speaking, the Fury X was the faster of the two cards at 2560x1440. With the resolution cranked up to 3840x2160, however, the Fury X and 980 Ti trade victories.
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