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Submission + - Battlefield 4 DRM Locking Part Of North America Out Of Its Release Date.

An anonymous reader writes: On the whole, Battlefield 4 had a reasonable launch. The have clearly learned from their past experiences with Battlefield 3 and, more notably, SimCity. Still, some customers are unable to access the game (until presumably October 30th at 7PM EDT, 39 hours after launch) because they are incorrectly flagged by region-locking. Do regional release dates help diminish all the work EA has been putting into Origin with their refund policy and live technical support? Should they just take our money and deliver the service before we change our minds?

Submission + - AMD Radeon R9 290X Fixes Pacing with New CrossFire

Vigile writes: AMD is releasing its fastest single GPU graphics card today, the $549 R9 290X based on a new, 6.2 billion transistor GPU called Hawaii. The brand new part has 2,816 stream processors and has a peak theoretical performance of 5.6 TFLOPS. PC Perspective has done a full round of testing on the card to see where it stacks up and it does in fact beat the GeForce GTX 780, a card that costs $100 more. In fact, it also compares well to the $999 GTX TITAN flagship. Maybe more interesting is the completely redesigned CrossFire integration that no longer uses a bridge and fixes the CrossFire + Eyefinity/4K pacing issues that have plagued AMD for some time. As it turns out, with this new hardware, 4K tiled display CrossFire appears to be corrected.

Submission + - Next Gen Graphics and Process Migration: 20 nm and Beyond (pcper.com)

JoshMST writes: So why are we in the middle of GPU-renaming hell? AMD may be releasing a new 28 nm Hawaii chip in the next few days, it is still based on the same 28 nm process that the original HD 7970 debuted on nearly two years ago. Quick and easy (relative terms) process node transitions look to be a thing of the past with 20 nm lines applicable to large ASICs not being opened until mid-2014. This covers the issues that we have seen, that are present, and that which will be showing up in the years to come. It is amazing how far that industry has come in the past 18 years, but the challenges ahead are greater than ever.

Submission + - Bell Canada Will Begin Tracking All Customer Online Activity

theshowmecanuck writes: A report in the Financial Post says: "A move by BCE Inc. to track its cellular customers’ every move and use that information for marketing purposes has prompted public complaints along with an investigation by Canada’s privacy regulator. ... BCE plans to change its privacy policy on Nov. 16 and begin using account and network usage information to serve up personalized advertising it says will be more relevant to users. ... BCE’s policy states it will collect network usage information including: web pages users visit from their mobile devices or home Internet, search terms used, location, app usage, television viewing and calling patterns." BCE == Bell Canada Enterprises. Granted Google and Facebook do this already, but you have a choice to use them or not. With limited competition in the mobility market, when your service provider gets in on the act, it gets increasingly hard for people to opt out of corporate bother's ever watchful eye. Is VPN (or similar mechanism) for all mobile users the answer? Or do we just have to learn to eat whatever they feed us?

Submission + - The Xbox One Also Won't Support Legacy Headsets At Launch (itworld.com)

itwbennett writes: Last week we learned that, at launch, USB headsets that work with the PS3 won't work with the PS4 — and the news is worse for Bluetooth headsets, which have no planned update. Now comes word that Xbox 360 owners planning to upgrade to the Xbox One will have a similar problem. While Microsoft is planning to sell an adapter that will allow third-party headsets to work with the Xbox One, it won't be available at launch.

Comment Re: Will it work with game consoles? (Score 1) 139

Actually, Gabe Newell at last year's CES (last January) was talking about NVIDIA Maxwell architecture. He claims NVIDIA will allow GPU virtualization for gaming applications. In other words, one PC could power multiple netbooks or Roku-style Steam boxes.

That said, split-screen (even multi-monitor "split-screen") is cool and occasionally occurs in PC games.

Submission + - NVIDIA's G-Sync Is VSync Designed for LCDs (not CRTs).

Phopojijo writes: A monitor redraws itself top to bottom because of how the electron guns in CRT monitors used to operate. VSync was created to align the completed frames, computed by a videocard, to the start of each monitor draw; without it, midway through a monitor's draw process, a break (horizontal tear) would be visible on screen between the two time-slices of animation.

Pixels on LCD monitors do not need to wait for above lines of pixels to be drawn, but they do. G-Sync is a technology from NVIDIA to make monitor refresh rates variable. The monitor will time its draws to whenever the GPU is finished rendering. A scene which requires 40ms to draw will have a smooth "framerate" of 25FPS instead of trying to fit in some fraction of 60 FPS.

Submission + - NVIDIA Announces Surrund 4K, Breaks Through 10K Pixels Wide (techgage.com)

Deathspawner writes: At a press event held in Montreal, Canada, NVIDIA announced the latest update to its Surround multi-display technology. While it will require a ridiculous amount of graphics horsepower, the company has touted compatibility with 4K displays, resulting in a resolution of 11520×2160, effctively 1080p x 12. Prepare to open that wallet wide.

Comment Re:Great if you have real broadband (Score 1) 84

"Perpetual Motion Engine" can operate on the FILE protocol. You can point the web browser to a web page located on your hard drive (or a USB thumb drive) and it will work.

It can be run from a website over HTTP, but does not need to be. Heck, you could even burn it to a DVD and double-click the index.html file in it.

Comment Re:summary has weird language (Score 1) 84

Actually the demo doesn't raytrace. In this demo "scene" (one triangle) it uses barycentric coordinates to determine if a pixel is inside or outside of a triangle. If it is inside? It shades it with one of two functions. These two functions derive red, green, and blue from how far the pixel is away from a vertex compared to the distance between that vertex and the center of the opposite edge (the animated function also has a time component). If it is outside the triangle? Pixel is skipped.

The specific algorithm is somewhat irrelevant (although it is actually pretty efficient for very large triangles). The point is that the GPUs are not limited to scanline triangles passed by a graphics API anymore.

Comment Re:I/O Bandwidth (Score 2) 84

Only if you want it to! You can share resources between OpenCL and OpenGL without passing through the CPU.

Now, of course, you may wish to (example: copy to APU memory, run physics, copy to GPU memory, render)... but the programmer needs to explicitly queue a memory move command to do so. If the programmer doesn't move the content... it stays on wherever it is.

Comment Re:STAAAAAHP! (Score 2) 84

It's getting much closer. Most ASM.js demos show C++-compiled-into-Javascript is only half performance of native C++ (and getting faster). That's a difference between 30fps and 60fps if all code was Javascript. WebCL, on the other hand, is almost exactly OpenCL speeds... so for GPU-accelerated apps (depending on whether Javascript or WebCL is your primary bottleneck) you could get almost native performance.

SmallPtGPU, from the testing I did a while ago, seems to be almost the same speed whether run in WebCL via Javascript or OpenCL via C++

Comment Re:Missing the point? (Score 2) 84

Some want to use the same algorithms OpenGL and DirectX does... and those APIs are still for them.

Some do not. A good example is Epic Games who, in 2008, predicted "100% of the rendering code" for Unreal Engine 4 would be programmed directly for the GPUs. The next year they found the cost prohibitive so they kept with DirectX and OpenGL at least for a while longer. Especially for big production houses, if there is a bug or a quirk in the rendering code, it would be nice to be able to fix the problem directly rather than hack in a workaround.

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