Also, Edward Snowden's "doomsday" cache of secrets.
By Jason Imms on November 29, 2013 at 11:32 am
Welcome to the Friday Tech Roundup! Contained herein is your weekly dose of some of the best tech news from across the Internet, rounded up for your edification and entertainment. Read on for all the details of the end of OCZ, the first official Steam Machine prototype, and Kano: the little computer that could, and hopefully will.
As OCZ breathes its last, will we wave goodbye to SSD innovation?
Popular SSD manufacturer OCZ Technology has filed for bankruptcy this week, after defaulting on certain operating ratios and covenants in its loan agreement with Hercules Technology Capital. OCZ was popular with PC enthusiasts for the performance to price ratio of its products, especially when compared to the prices of some of its big-name competitors, such as the Intel/Micron joint venture, the Sandisk/Toshiba joint venture, and Samsung.
With the closure of OCZ, we’re left with naught but the three big manufacturers on the market, the same three whose race to the bottom has forced out these smaller, more innovative ventures. (Via: PCAuthority)
iBuyPower announces the first official Steam Machine prototype
The first official third-party Steam Machine prototype has surfaced, and has been put together by iBuyPower. The prototype is quite powerful, with a multicore AMD CPU, a discrete AMD Radeon R9 270 GPU, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, a 500GB hard disk, and comes bundled with one of Valve’s Steam Controllers for US$499. According to a statement to The Verge, the box itself is bigger than a PlayStation 4, but smaller than an Xbox One. iBuyPower claim that the box will run any existing Steam for Linux games at 1080p, and 60fps.
Parallax compositing brings still photos to life
The Creators Project, an art/tech collaboration from Intel and Vice aims to “inspire new and emerging artists by showcasing the infinite possibilities presented by the advancement of modern technology.” One of the titular creators, graphic artist Joe Fellows, has produced a video that demos the process of animating a static photograph by using a technique called parallax compositing. The artist takes a photograph, uses Photoshop to define discrete layers using the content-aware feature, and then imports those layers into After Effects for animation. The result feels like a ponderous slow-motion glide through a scene. Check it out for yourself below. (Via: Tested.com)
Snowden’s “doomsday” cache of secrets to protect him from prosecution and harm
US and British intelligence officials are concerned that former NSA contractor Edward Snowden maintains a “doomsday” cache of highly sensitive classified information, such as previously unpublished names of US and allied intelligence personnel, and other documents generated by the NSA and other agencies. “The data is protected with sophisticated encryption, and multiple passwords are needed to open it, said two of the sources, who like the others spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss intelligence matters,” Reuters reported. “The passwords are in the possession of at least three different people and are valid for only a brief time window each day, they said. The identities of persons who might have the passwords are unknown.”
University of Pennsylvania security and cryptography expert Matt Blaze is sceptical, however, saying that the description sounded as if it had been “re-written by bad sci-fi writer.” He illustrated his point with, “I assume the documents are in a booby-trapped attaché case with a flashing countdown timer.”
Kano promises to make the path to software development easier for kids