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Graphics

DX11 Tested Against DX9 With Dirt 2 Demo 201

MojoKid writes "The PC demo for Codemasters' upcoming DirectX 11 racing title, Dirt 2, has just hit the web and is available for download. Dirt 2 is a highly-anticipated racing sim that also happens to feature leading-edge graphic effects. In addition to a DirectX 9 code path, Dirt 2 also utilizes a number of DirectX 11 features, like hardware-tessellated dynamic water, an animated crowd and dynamic cloth effects, in addition to DirectCompute 11-accelerated high-definition ambient occlusion (HADO), full floating-point high dynamic range (HDR) lighting, and full-screen resolution post processing. Performance-wise, DX11 didn't take its toll as much as you'd expect this early on in its adoption cycle." Bit-tech also took a look at the graphical differences, arriving at this conclusion: "You'd need a seriously keen eye and brown paper envelope full of cash from one of the creators of Dirt 2 to notice any real difference between textures in the two versions of DirectX."
Businesses

OnLive and Gaikai — How To Stop a Gaming Revolution 125

happierr writes "The gaming industry has been struggling in the last few months, and it is about to struggle even more when OnLive and Gaikai launch later this year. The new services are both a step in the right direction to counter piracy and provide easily-accessible gaming to people with low-end PCs. They might even do for PC gaming what the Wii did for casual gaming; greatly expand the market and draw interest from people who would not ordinarily play games. The services are a real threat for the Big Three video game companies (Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo). How will they combat these revolutionary services? There are a few steps that the Big Three are taking to combat the New Two, such as an increased reliance on peripherals and vision cameras, exclusivity deals, and more online multiplayer features, which OnLive and Gaikai will have a hard time matching."
Education

We Rent Movies, So Why Not Textbooks? 398

Hugh Pickens writes "Using Netflix as a business model, Osman Rashid and Aayush Phumbhra founded Chegg, shorthand for 'chicken and egg,' to gather books from sellers at the end of a semester and renting — or sometimes selling — them to other students at the start of a new one. Chegg began renting books in 2007, before it owned any, so when an order came in, its employees would surf the Web to find a cheap copy. They would buy the book using Rashid's American Express card and have it shipped to the student. Eventually, Chegg automated the system. 'People thought we were crazy,' Rashid said. Now, as Chegg prepares for its third academic year in the textbook rental business, the business is growing rapidly. Jim Safka, a former chief executive of Match.com and Ask.com who was recently recruited to run Chegg, said the company's revenue in 2008 was more than $10 million, and this year, Chegg surpassed that in January alone."

Comment Re:Notably missing from the video: (Score 1) 79

Regarding the bandwidth: take a look at the left side of the video, it shows the needed info.

One thing many people missed: Almost at the end of the demo, he shows Photoshop CS4, and then he moves the windows. Take a good look at the cursor, specially when the cursor is out of the window it shows something which might be familiar to any Linux user :)

Mozilla

Mozilla Preparing To Scrap Tabbed Browsing? 554

Barence writes "Mozilla Labs has launched a design competition that aims to find an alternative to tabbed browsing. 'Tabs worked well on slow machines on a thin internet, where ten browser sessions were "many browser sessions,"' Mozilla claims on its Design Challenge website. 'Today, 20+ parallel sessions are quite common; the browser is more of an operating system than a data display application; we use it to manage the web as a shared hard drive. However, if you have more than seven or eight tabs open they become pretty much useless.' Aza Raskin, the head of user experience at Mozilla Labs, has already blogged on the possibility of moving tabs down the side of the browser, with tabs grouped by the type of activity involved (i.e. applications, work spaces)."
Graphics

Submission + - Carmack speaks on ray tracing, future id engines (pcper.com)

Vigile writes: As a matter of principle, when legendary game programmer John Carmack speaks, the entire industry listens. In a recent interview he comments on a multitude of topics starting with information about Intel, their ray tracing research and upcoming Larrabee GPU. Carmack seems to think that Intel's direction using traditional ray tracing methods is not going to work and instead theorizes that using ray casting to traverse a new data structure he is developing is the best course of action. The "sparse voxel octree" that Carmack discusses would allow for "unique geometry down to the equivalent of the texel across everything." He goes on to discuss other topics like the hardware necessary to efficiently process his new data structure, translation to consoles, multi-GPU PC gaming and even the world of hardware physics.
Operating Systems

Is Linus Torvalds Speaking for Linux Anymore? 417

An anonymous reader writes to tell us CNET is currently running a story asking 'Is Linus Torvalds even speaking for Linux anymore?' It examines both Torvalds' recent public statements on other operating systems and his current approach towards Linux. The author wonders if his utopian view of how an operating system should be viewed and used is just too alien from what the majority of users are really looking for. "if it were up to Torvalds, beauty and intuition would take a backseat to functionality. But when you look at distributions like Ubuntu or OpenSuse, it looks like no one is paying attention. 'An OS should never have been something that people (in general) really care about: it should be completely invisible and nobody should give a flying [expletive] about it except the technical people.' Sure, that statement makes some sense, but in the grand scheme of things, it's the design and usability factor that makes the operating system much easier to use. And while both Mac OS X and Windows have their issues, for the average person, it makes more sense to use those than Linux."

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