Tech News

Apple's iPhone Pro Shipments May Fall 20 Million Units Short of Estimates

apple - Posted On:2022-11-29 20:45:01 Source: slashdot

Apple's iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max model shipments could miss market expectations by up to 20 million units in the holiday quarter due to labor unrest at a major Chinese factory, TF Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said. Reuters reports: Kuo is the latest to flag a hit to the world's most valuable company from protests over pay and strict COVID-19 curbs at the world's biggest iPhone factory, the Foxconn-operated plant in the central city of Zhengzhou. He trimmed his estimate for quarterly iPhone shipments by about 20% to between 70 million and 75 million units, compared with the market consensus of 80 million to 85 million units. Kuo, in a blog post on Tuesday, also predicted that the supply shortfall could erase demand for the more popular Pro models, instead of deferring sales, as consumers also grapple with a weakening economy. In contrast, other Apple analysts expect sales to pick up once production constraints ease and more Pro models become available. Some analysts signaled the possibility of the challenges extending into 2023. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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Torrent Site User Who Transferred 120TB of Pirated Content Avoids Prison

yro - Posted On:2022-11-29 20:15:00 Source: slashdot

A torrent site user accused of downloading and uploading at least 120TB of movies, TV shows, eBooks, music and software, has avoided an immediate prison term. The 28-year-old was arrested as part of a police operation against DanishBytes. A member of the same site was sentenced earlier this month after he uploaded Netflix content obtained using hacked credentials. TorrentFreak reports: Early November 2021, Denmark's Public Prosecutor for Special Economic and International Crime (SOIK) announced that six people had been arrested following criminal referrals by Rights Alliance. All were members and/or operators of ShareUniversity and DanishBytes. Prosecution of site operators is not uncommon but when it's deemed in the public interest, pirate site users can also face charges. Every case is unique so criteria differ, especially across national borders, but when evidence shows large volumes of infringement, successful prosecutions become more likely. That was the case when a former DanishBytes user was sentenced last week. According to Danish anti-piracy group Rights Alliance, the 28-year-old man was a regular site member and wasn't involved in running the site. That being said, evidence showed that for the period January 2021 to November 2021, he downloaded and/or uploaded no less than 3,000 copyrighted works, including movies, TV shows, music, books, audiobooks and comics. Information released by the National Unit for Special Crimes (NSK), a Danish police unit focused on cybercrime, organized crime, and related financial crime, reveals that the user's traffic statistics interested prosecutors. "During the period, the man downloaded no less than 100 TB and uploaded no less than 20 TB of copyrighted material," NSK says. BitTorrent trackers operating a ratio model usually insist on a better ratio of downloads to uploads but DanishBytes' situation was out of the ordinary. The site launched in January 2021 in the wake of other sites being shut down, so had to get going from a standing start with no users. Even when arrests were being made, the site still had a relatively small userbase, which can limit opportunities to upload more. That may have been a blessing in disguise. Faced with the evidence, the man decided to plead guilty and was sentenced last week at the Court in Vibourg. In common with similar prosecutions recently, he received a suspended conditional sentence of 60 days' probation, 80 hours of community service, and confiscation of his computer equipment. The case against the DanishBytes user began with a Rights Alliance investigation and a referral to the police. As part of his sentence, the man must pay the anti-piracy group DKK 5,000 (US$600) in compensation but Rights Alliance director Maria Fredenslund is focused on the deterrent effect of another successful prosecution. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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Snap Demands Employees Work In Office 80% of the Time Starting Early Next Year

slashdot - Posted On:2022-11-29 19:30:00 Source: slashdot

Snapchat's parent company is asking workers to return to the office 80% of the time, or the equivalent of four days a week, beginning early next year, in the latest sign of tech employees receiving less flexibility nearly three years after the pandemic took hold and amid a wave of industry cost cutting. CNN reports: "After working remotely for so long we're excited to get everyone back together next year with our new 80/20 hybrid model," a spokesperson for Snap (SNAP) confirmed to CNN in a statement Tuesday. "We believe that being together in person, while retaining flexibility for our team members, will enhance our ability to deliver on our strategic priorities of growing our community, driving revenue growth, and leading in [augmented reality]." The new policy will take effect at the end of February. News of Snap's stricter in-office policy was first reported by Bloomberg, which cited an internal memo from CEO Evan Spiegel telling employees they may have to "sacrifice" some amount of "individual convenience" but it will benefit "our collective success." Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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OpenAI upgrades GPT-3, stunning with rhyming poetry and lyrics

Biz & IT - Posted On:2022-11-29 18:45:01 Source: arstechnica

On Monday, OpenAI announced a new model in the GPT-3 family of AI-powered large language models, text-davinci-003, that reportedly improves on its predecessors by handling more complex instructions and producing longer-form content. Almost immediately, people discovered that it could also generate rhyming songs, limericks, and poetry at a level GPT-3 could not previously produce.

On Hacker News, commenters expressed amazement after convincing GPT-3 to write a short rhyming poem explaining Albert Einstein's theory of relativity. Another commenter asked GPT-3 to re-write the poem in the style of John Keats, and it obliged, dropping lines like "Mass doth affect the shape of time."

Prompt: "Write a short rhyming poem explaining Einstein's theory of general relativity in easy but accurate terms"

OpenAI makes GPT-3 available as a commercial product with an API, but for a fee ($0.02 per 1,000 tokens), anyone with an OpenAI account can experiment with the AI through a special "Playground" website that requires no coding skill.

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Latest Super Mario Bros. movie trailer features a bold, new Princess Peach

Gaming & Culture - Posted On:2022-11-29 18:45:01 Source: arstechnica

It's only been a few weeks since the first official trailer for the long-awaited Super Mario Bros. animated movie introduced Chris Pratt's somewhat distracting voice for Mario. The movie's second trailer, released today during a Nintendo Direct presentation Tuesday evening, focuses more on supporting characters and a good-versus-evil battle across the wide-ranging Mario universe.

The trailer leads off with Mario entering a massive coliseum and muttering a somber, breathy "let's-a-go" unlike anything ever heard in a Mario game. He then launches headlong into a battle with Donkey Kong, who casually grabs the plumber by the head and slams him to the ground for a series of slapstick, Smash Bros.-style slaps.

Donkey Kong creator Shigeru Miyamoto notes that Donkey Kong's design here has been altered for the first time since the ape's appearance in Donkey Kong Country back in 1994. The new design, which looks a little more rounded and friendlier than usual, is intended to be "reminiscent of the original character," Miyamoto said.

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'I Don't Even Know How To Code': FTX's Sam Bankman-Fried Has Long, Candid Talk With Vlogger

slashdot - Posted On:2022-11-29 18:15:00 Source: slashdot

Former FTX head Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF) selected cryptocurrency vlogger Tiffany Fong for a series of lengthy and candid telephone interviews. In the two interviews that had been released on YouTube at press time, SBF speaks about many of the major questions connected with the collapse of FTX. CoinTelegraph reports: The first interview was conducted Nov. 6 and released Nov. 29 on YouTube. [...] The recording began with SBF saying, "You don't get into the situation we got in if you, like, make all the right decisions." Taking her cue from that, Fong started her interview by asking about the "backdoor" that allowed SBF "to execute commands that could alter the [FTX] company's financial records without alerting others." SBF expressed surprise at the very idea. "And this is something I would be doing?" he asked. "That I can tell you is definitely not true. I don't even know how to code. [...] I literally never even opened the code for any of FTX." This set the tone for the rest of the conversation, in which Fong politely asked hardball questions and SBF answered with seeming openness. SBF went on to comment on FTX's FTT coin. "I think it had real value. That being said, there are a few problems. [...] This was f*****g embarrassing given my background. [...] I think it was basically more legit than a lot of tokens in some ways. Its was more economically underpinned than the average token was," he said. "Illiquidity didn't cause the crash," SBF continued. Rather, it was "the massive correlation of things during market moves, especially when they are triggered by fear over the position itself." SBF agreed with Fong that "the recovery looks pretty slim" for international customers, while "U.S. is a hundred percent. If its Amazon account had not been turned off, "they could already be withdrawing." Speaking about his political activities, SBF said, "I donated about the same to both parties. [...] All of my Republican donations were dark." [...] In the second, undated, phone interview, SBF addressed the use of FTX customer funds by Alameda Research. Struggling for words, SBF said that he should have thought more about "what a hyper-correlated cross-scenario looks like. It's the oldest game in the book in finance. [...] There was no one person in charge of monitoring risk positions at FTX." Fong pressed for specifics from the situation, with little success. SBF took a moderate position on the role of Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao (CZ) in the FTX downfall. "Things would certainly be a lot more stable and there would be a lot more ability to generate liquidity [...] and I don't know for sure." Asked about the impact of the collapse of FTX and surrounding scandal on him, SBF said, "I wake up each day and think about what happened, and I have hours per day to ruminate on it. [...] It's different than what it seems to other people." Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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Google reportedly has Gmail and Calendar apps in the works for Wear OS

Tech - Posted On:2022-11-29 17:45:00 Source: arstechnica

Google recently launched the Pixel Watch and breathed new life into Wear OS after years of neglect, but how serious is Google about its second swing at the smartwatch market, really? Getting its flagship apps up and running on the platform would be a good sign of support, and a new report from 9to5Google says some heavy hitters are on the way. The report says: "We’ve learned that Google is testing both Gmail and Calendar for Wear OS. The experience has been described as “full” to us, though we weren’t able to find out whether this involves event creation or composing new emails."

Building any wearables apps would be a big step for the Google Workspace suite, which, for whatever reason, has been very wearable-hesitant over the last eight years. Workspace doesn't even have apps for the Apple Watch, let alone Wear OS. Google's biggest productivity competitor, Microsoft, has an Outlook app for both wearable platforms.

Wear OS mirrors your smartphone notifications, so for something like Gmail, you can still see and read a new Gmail message if it arrives in your notifications, and you can send a reply. You can even send a new email by voice if you know the address or have a contact, all without the app. What you can't do are most of the normal browsing tasks, like looking through your inbox and searching your older mail. It would also be nice to have watch-centric notification options, as opposed to just mirroring the settings for your phone.

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How secure a Twitter replacement is Mastodon? Let us count the ways

Biz & IT - Posted On:2022-11-29 17:45:00 Source: arstechnica

As Elon Musk critics flee from Twitter, Mastodon seems to be the most common replacement. In the last month, the number of monthly active users on Mastodon has rocketed more than threefold, from about 1 million to 3.5 million, while total number of users jumped from about 6.5 million to 8.7 million.

This substantial increase raises important questions about the security of this new platform, and for good reason. Unlike the centralized model of Twitter and virtually every other social media platform, Mastodon is built on a federated model of independent servers, known as instances. In this respect, it’s more akin to email or Internet Relay Chat (IRC), where security depends on the ability and attention of the admin who configured it and maintains each individual server.

The past month has seen the number of instances mushroom from about 11,000 to more than 17,000. The people running these instances are volunteers who may or may not be versed in the nuances of security. The difficulty of configuring and maintaining instances leaves plenty of room for mistakes that can put user passwords, email addresses, and IP addresses at risk of being revealed (more about that later). Twitter security left much to be desired, but at least it had a dedicated staff with a deep background in security.

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SpaceX fires up 11 engines as it prepares massive rocket for orbital test

Science - Posted On:2022-11-29 17:45:00 Source: arstechnica

On Tuesday, SpaceX test-fired its Super Heavy rocket for about 12 seconds, making it the longest duration firing of the massive booster so far. The test, which ignited 11 of the 33 Raptor rocket engines, came as SpaceX continues working toward an orbital launch attempt of this Super Heavy first stage and its Starship upper stage.

Earlier this month, SpaceX fired 14 Raptor engines on this booster for a few seconds, so Tuesday's test did not set a new record regarding the number of engines tested. However, this "long duration" firing is the longest period of time that so many Raptor engines have been fired at once.

So what happens now? The path to orbit for SpaceX and its Starship launch system is unclear. Previously, SpaceX founder Elon Musk said the next step was to fire a subset of Super Heavy's engines for about 20 seconds to test autogenous pressurization. This method of pressurizing fuel tanks uses gases generated on board the rocket rather than a separately loaded, inert gas such as helium.

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Anker's Eufy Cameras Caught Uploading Content To the Cloud Without User Consent

yro - Posted On:2022-11-29 17:30:01 Source: slashdot

Anker's popular Eufy-branded security cameras appear to be sending some data to the cloud, even when cloud storage is disabled and local only storage settings are turned on. MacRumors reports: The information comes from security consultant Paul Moore, who last week published a video outlining the issue. According to Moore, he purchased a Eufy Doorbell Dual, which was meant to be a device that stored video recording on device. He found that Eufy is uploading thumbnail images of faces and user information to its cloud service when cloud functionality is not enabled. Moore demonstrates the unauthorized cloud uploading by allowing his camera to capture his image and turning off the Eufy HomeBase. The website is still able to access the content through cloud integration, though he had not signed up for cloud service, and it remains accessible even when the footage is removed from the Eufy app. It's important to note that Eufy does not appear to be automatically uploading full streaming video to the cloud, but rather taking captures of the video as thumbnails. The thumbnails are used in the Eufy app to activate streaming video from the Eufy base station, allowing Eufy users to watch their videos when away from home, as well as for sending rich notifications. The problem is the thumbnails are uploaded to the cloud automatically even when the cloud functionality is not active, and Eufy also seems to be using facial recognition on the uploads. Some users have taken issue with the unauthorized cloud uploads because Eufy advertises local-only service and has been popular among those who want a more private camera solution. "No Clouds or Costs," reads the Eufy website. Moore suggests that Eufy is also able to link facial recognition data collected from two separate cameras and two separate apps to users, all without camera owners being aware. Moore received a response from Eufy in which Eufy confirmed that it is uploading event lists and thumbnails to AWS, but said the data is not able to "leak to the public" because the URL is restricted, time limited, and requires account login. There is also another issue that Moore has highlighted, suggesting Eufy camera streams can be watched live using an app like VLC, but little information on the exploit is available at this time. Moore said that unencrypted Eufy camera content can be accessed without authentication, which is alarming for Eufy users. There's a dedicated Reddit thread where other Eufy users are reporting the same thing happening. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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Influencers Were Paid By Google To Promote a Pixel Phone They Never Used

mobile - Posted On:2022-11-29 17:00:00 Source: slashdot

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Ars Technica: Google and iHeartMedia -- the US's biggest radio station operator -- are being hit with a false advertising lawsuit for ads they ran about the Pixel 4 [...]. The FTC and four states say the companies aired "nearly 29,000 deceptive endorsements by radio personalities" during 2019 and 2020, with Bureau of Consumer Protection Director Samuel Levine saying that "Google and iHeartMedia paid influencers to promote products they never used, showing a blatant disrespect for truth-in-advertising rules." The two companies have settled the lawsuit and will be required to pay $9.4 million in penalties. Google's ads had on-air personalities give first-hand accounts of how much they liked the Pixel 4, but, to quote the FTC's press release, "the on-air personalities were not provided with Pixel 4s before recording and airing the majority of the ads and therefore did not own or regularly use the phones." Therefore the first-person claims made in the ads, like, "It's my favorite phone camera out there, especially in low light, thanks to Night Sight Mode," "I've been taking studio-like photos of everything," and "It's also great at helping me get stuff done, thanks to the new voice-activated Google Assistant that can handle multiple tasks at once," can't be true. [...] As part of the settlement, Google and iHeartMedia are barred from "misrepresenting that an endorser has owned or used, or about their experience with, certain products." The agreement is subject to a public comment period of 30 days, after which the commission will vote on whether to make the proposed consent orders final. A Google spokesperson commented to TechCrunch, saying, "We are pleased to resolve this issue. We take compliance with advertising laws seriously and have processes in place designed to help ensure we follow relevant regulations and industry standards." Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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It took nearly 500 years for researchers to crack Charles V’s secret code

Gaming & Culture - Posted On:2022-11-29 16:45:00 Source: arstechnica

In 1547, Holy Roman Emperor Charles V penned a letter to his ambassador, Jean de Saint-Mauris, part of which was written in the ruler's secret code. Nearly five centuries later, researchers have finally cracked that code, revealing Charles V's fear of a secret assassination plot and continued tensions with France, despite having signed a peace treaty with the French king a few years earlier.

The future Holy Roman Emperor was born in 1500 to Philip of Hapsburg and Joanna of Trastamara—daughter of Ferdinand II of Aragon and Isabella I of Castile in Spain. She was nicknamed "Joanna the Mad" because of her rumored mental illness and actually gave birth to Charles in a bathroom in the wee hours because she insisted on attending a ball despite clearly having labor pains. Generations of inbreeding conferred on Charles an enlarged jaw (mandibular prognathism), a condition that later became known as "Hapsburg jaw," since it became even worse in subsequent generations. Charles also suffered from epilepsy and gout; the latter became so severe late in life that he had to be carried around in a sedan chair.

Charles V began inheriting various family titles at a young age, and his dominion eventually encompassed the Holy Roman Empire—which extended from Germany to northern Italy in the early 16th century and included Austrian hereditary lands, the Burgundian states, and the Kingdom of Spain. During his reign, he continued the Spanish colonization of the Americas and embarked on a short-lived German colonization effort, earning the label "the empire on which the sun never sets." As his health deteriorated, Charles V abdicated as emperor in favor of his brother Ferdinand in 1556, although it was not legally recognized until February 1558. He retired to the Monastery of Yuste in 1557 and died the following September.

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Musk’s Twitter abandons COVID misinfo policy, shirking “huge responsibility”

Policy - Posted On:2022-11-29 15:30:01 Source: arstechnica

Under the leadership of billionaire Elon Musk, social media platform Twitter has abandoned its efforts to prevent the spread of dangerous COVID-19 misinformation on its platform, dismaying experts who say false and misleading health information can harm individuals and put lives at risk.

"Effective November 23, 2022, Twitter is no longer enforcing the COVID-19 misleading information policy," the company noted in various places on its website.

From the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic, public health responses have been severely stymied by a plague of misinformation, often in digital spaces.

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Used thin client PCs are an unsexy, readily available Raspberry Pi alternative

Biz & IT - Posted On:2022-11-29 14:45:00 Source: arstechnica

"Raspberry Pi boards are hard to get, probably also next year," says Andreas Spiess, single-board enthusiast and YouTuber, in his distinctive Swiss accent. He's not wrong. Spiess says he and his fellow Pi devotees need "a strategy to survive" without new boards, so he suggests looking in one of the least captivating, most overlooked areas of computing: used, corporate-minded thin client PCs.

Spiess' Pi replacements, suggested and refined by many of his YouTube commenters and Patreon subscribers, are Fujitsu Futros, Lenovo ThinkCentres, and other small systems (some or all of which could be semantically considered "thick clients" or simply "mini PCs," depending on your tastes and retro-grouch sensibilities). They're the kind of systems you can easily find used on eBay, refurbished on Amazon Renewed, or through other enterprise and IT asset disposition sources. They're typically in good shape, given their use and environment. And compared to single-board enthusiast systems, many more are being made and replaced each year.

They've always been there, of course, but it makes more sense to take another look at them now. "Back to the future," as Spiess puts it (in an analogy we're not entirely sure works).

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Behavior-changing parasite moves wolves to the head of the pack

Science - Posted On:2022-11-29 14:45:00 Source: arstechnica

Toxoplasma gondii is a ubiquitous protozoan parasite that can infect any warm-blooded species. In lab studies, infection with T. gondii has been shown to increase dopamine and testosterone levels along with risk-taking behaviors in hosts including rodents, chimps, and hyenas. Oh, and humans.

But its effects have not really been studied in the wild, so some researchers decided to assess how infection impacts gray wolves in Yellowstone National Park. They found that “the odds that a seropositive [infected] wolf becomes a pack leader is more than 46 times higher than a seronegative wolf becoming a pack leader.”

Serum samples have been taken from the wolf packs in Yellowstone since 1995. These scientists assayed samples from 229 individual wolves taken over the years—116 males, 112 females, and one hermaphrodite—to try to correlate the presence of antibodies against the parasite with demographic factors and specific behaviors. (The relationship between antibodies and infection is complicated, given that the parasite can persist at low levels indefinitely after infections.)

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Influencers were paid by Google to promote a Pixel phone they never used

Tech - Posted On:2022-11-29 14:45:00 Source: arstechnica

Google and iHeartMedia—the US's biggest radio station operator—are being hit with a false advertising lawsuit for ads they ran about the Pixel 4 (which we found to be overpriced and full of half-working experiments). The FTC and four states say the companies aired "nearly 29,000 deceptive endorsements by radio personalities" during 2019 and 2020, with Bureau of Consumer Protection Director Samuel Levine saying that “Google and iHeartMedia paid influencers to promote products they never used, showing a blatant disrespect for truth-in-advertising rules.” The two companies have settled the lawsuit and will be required to pay $9.4 million in penalties.

Google's ads had on-air personalities give first-hand accounts of how much they liked the Pixel 4, but, to quote the FTC's press release, "the on-air personalities were not provided with Pixel 4s before recording and airing the majority of the ads and therefore did not own or regularly use the phones." Therefore the first-person claims made in the ads, like, “It’s my favorite phone camera out there, especially in low light, thanks to Night Sight Mode,” “I’ve been taking studio-like photos of everything,” and “It’s also great at helping me get stuff done, thanks to the new voice-activated Google Assistant that can handle multiple tasks at once,” can't be true.

It seems like everything would have been fine if these ads weren't in first-person. Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey explains: “It is common sense that people put more stock in first-hand experiences. Consumers expect radio advertisements to be truthful and transparent about products, not misleading with fake endorsements. Today’s settlement holds Google and iHeart accountable for this deceptive ad campaign and ensures compliance with state and federal law moving forward.”

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Free ray-tracing update will overhaul Portal’s graphics on December 8

Gaming & Culture - Posted On:2022-11-29 14:45:00 Source: arstechnica

Valve's first-person puzzle-platformer Portal was a genuine phenomenon when it was released back in 2007, and its core gameplay mechanics—solving puzzles and thwarting enemies by shooting interconnected portals onto various surfaces—still hold up today. But the game's visuals haven't aged as well, particularly its low-resolution textures; it was built using the same game engine and some of the same assets as 2004's Half-Life 2, and there's only so much that a modern GPU can do to spruce it up.

Enter Portal with RTX, a remastering of the game with ray-tracing effects and other improvements that Nvidia says will be available for free to all Portal owners starting on December 8. The update was originally announced in September alongside the RTX 4000-series GPUs. Developed by Lightspeed Studios, Portal with RTX doesn't just add fancy lighting effects to the original but also includes "hand-crafted hi-res physically-based textures" and "enhanced high-poly models" that substantially overhaul the aging game's visuals for the modern era.

As a DirectX 9 game from early in the Xbox 360 lifespan, the original Portal runs well on just about anything, including old Intel-integrated GPUs. But Portal RTX's system requirements are a lot higher; Nvidia lists the RTX 3060 as the minimum recommended GPU and says it can achieve "playable" 30 FPS frame rates at 1080p with DLSS enabled. Jumping to 60 FPS at 1080p requires an RTX 3080 with DLSS enabled, while hitting 60 FPS at 4K will require at least an RTX 4080 with DLSS 3 enabled. The CPU and RAM requirements also climb along with the GPU requirements (check the Nvidia-provided system requirements table below).

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Epson quitting laser printers doesn’t address its bigger sustainability issue

Tech - Posted On:2022-11-29 14:45:00 Source: arstechnica

There was a time when laser printers were a luxury. High prices pushed them out of the budgets of most homes and small businesses decades ago, but they eventually became more affordable. But now, printer-vendor Epson is turning its back on the technology in favor of inkjet alternatives and self-bestowed sustainability cred.

As noted by The Register on Monday, Epson announced last week that it will stop selling and distributing laser printers by 2026, affecting both its consumer and business users. The Seiko-owned company proudly declared that the move is being done in the name of "sustainability," but the company still has a long way to go in that department.

Epson's announcement said that its decision to focus completely on inkjet printers over laser ones is about the planet. And this is largely based on how laser printers work compared to inkjet. Laser printers rely on a laser, drum, toner, and heat to print an image. Inkjet printers, meanwhile, use nozzles to deposit ink.

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Amazon's New Chip Moves AWS Into High-Performance Computing

technology - Posted On:2022-11-29 14:15:00 Source: slashdot

Amazon's cloud-computing unit is rolling out new chips designed to power the highest-end of computing, supporting tasks such as weather forecasting and gene sequencing. From a report: Amazon Web Services, the largest provider of over-the-internet computing, on Monday said it would let customers rent computing power that relies on a new version of its Graviton chips. Peter DeSantis, a senior vice president who oversees most of AWS's engineering teams, said in an interview that the product is a springboard for making what the industry calls high-performance computing more readily available. The newest chip is the latest piece of Amazon's effort to build more of the hardware that fills the massive data centers that power AWS. Amazon says making its own chips will give customers more cost-effective computing power than they could get by renting time on processors built by the likes of Intel Corp., Nvidia Corp. or Advanced Micro Devices. The move has put AWS in direct competition with those companies, which are also among its biggest suppliers. DeSantis said the chipmakers remain "great partners," and that AWS plans to continue to offer high-performance computing services based on chips made by other companies. On Tuesday, AWS Chief Executive Officer Adam Selipsky announced a new version of the Inferentia chip, which is designed to draw inferences from vast amounts of data. Inferentia2 is built to handle bigger sets of data than its predecessor, enabling things like software-generated images or detecting and interpreting human speech, Amazon said. [...] The latest version of AWS's line of Graviton processors, the Graviton3E, will have twice the ability of current versions in one type of calculations needed by high-performance computers, DeSantis said. When combined with other AWS technology, the new offering will be 20% better than the previous one. Amazon didn't say when services based on the new chip would be available. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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China Launches Astronauts To Newly Completed Space Station

science - Posted On:2022-11-29 13:15:00 Source: slashdot

Tall as a 20-story building, a rocket carrying the Shenzhou 15 mission roared into the night sky of the Gobi Desert on Tuesday, carrying three astronauts toward a rendezvous with China's just-completed space station. From a report: The rocket launch was a split-screen event for China, the latest in a long series of technological achievements for the country, even as many of its citizens have been angrily lashing out in the streets against stringent pandemic controls.The air shook as the huge white rocket leaped into a starry, bitterly cold night sky shortly before the setting of a waxing crescent moon. The expedition to the new space station is a milestone for China's rapidly advancing space program. It is the first time a team of three astronauts already aboard the Tiangong outpost will be met by a crew arriving from Earth. The Chinese space station will now be continuously occupied, like the International Space Station, another marker laid down by China in its race to catch up with the United States and surpass it as the dominant power in space. With a sustained presence in low-Earth orbit aboard Tiangong, Chinese space officials are preparing to put astronauts on the moon, which NASA also intends to revisit before the end of the decade as part of its Artemis program. "It will not take a long time; we can achieve the goal of manned moon landing," Zhou Jianping, chief designer of China's crewed space program, said in an interview at the launch center. China has been developing a lunar lander, he added, without giving a date when it might be used. The launch of Shenzhou 15 comes less than two weeks after NASA finally launched its Artemis I mission following many delays. That flight has put its uncrewed Orion capsule into orbit around the moon. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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