Friday Tech Roundup (04 April 2014): Radeon R9 295X2 specs leak

Amazon Fire

By on April 4, 2014 at 12:47 pm

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 AMD’s new monstrous Radeon R9 295X2, John Carmack’s response to Facebook’s Oculus acquisition, and the Amazon Fire TV.

Radeon R9 295X2 specs leak, with photos

According to a report from our friends over at TechPowerUp, specs for AMD’s upcoming Radeon R9 295X2 monster-GPU have leaked, which show that the company is swinging hard for the benchmark set by Nvidia’s ludicrous GeForce GTX TITAN-Z. Radeon’s new baby, codenamed “Vesuvius,” supports a pair of 28nm “Hawaii” chips, each with every single one of their 2816 stream processors enabled, bringing the total count up to 5632. Each GPU is connected to 4GB of memory, totalling 8GB on the whole card, with the full 512-bit memory bus width enabled. The two scarily powerful 250W GPUs are to be cooled by a hybrid liquid/air solution, likely similar to that used by the Asus in their ROG ARES 2.

Amazon announces Fire TV set-top streaming box

At a press event in New York yesterday Amazon unveiled the Fire TV, a streaming box set-up to compete directly with the Apple TV, the Roku, and in some cases, the Ouya. Amazon maintains a number of services that offer a compelling value proposition to those interested in shelling-out for Amazon Prime, such as a large catalogue of movies and TV shows available for streaming, same-day shipping (in limited areas), and obviously their large library of books. By giving Prime account-holders access to the TV and movie catalogue in their living room, Amazon stands to reap some pretty significant rewards around the world. The box is somewhat standard hardware-wise, but includes an optional game controller for playing games designed for the system, including those that will be inevitably designed by Amazon Game Studios’ latest big-name hires, Portal designer Kim Swift, and Far Cry 2 designer Clint Hocking. It’s just a shame that the controller looks as though it was designed by someone who saw a controller once, from a great distance. Check out The Verge’s hands-on preview.

John Carmack breaks silence on Facebook’s Oculus acquisition

In a response to a blog post by chiptune musician Peter Berkman, Oculus CTO John Carmack has said that he “wasn’t expecting Facebook” to purchase the company he had joined in August 2013. “I wasn’t personally involved in any of the negotiations,” he said, “I spent an afternoon talking technology with Mark Zuckerberg, and the next week I find out he bought Oculus.” In response to the idea that Oculus abandoned its early supporters, Carmack said “There is a case to be made for being live Valve, and trying to build a new ecosystem like Steam from the ground up. This is probably what most of the fans wanted to see.” But that comparison doesn’t make sense, Carmack argues, because Oculus simply isn’t in the same position as Valve held when it retained sole control of the digital games industry for a number of years. Virtual reality is already being hotly contested by companies with the kind of resources of which Oculus could only dream. “The real questions were how deeply to partner, and with who,” says Carmack.

Smart skin patch delivers drugs on time and as needed

Current-day drug delivery systems are inherently flawed, because they either rely on the fallable patient to stay on top of their dosage, or they deliver a constant stream of therapeutics without being sensitive to the down-to-the-minute needs of the patient’s body. Fortunately, a group of South Korean researchers are developing a dermal patch that ensures that the patient is receiving their regulated dose of drugs, and is also capable of knowing when it is time to change that dosage. The 2-inch long patch is made of stretchable nanomaterials, and contains heat-activated silica nanoparticles that monitor muscle activity and release therapeutic agents based on the patient’s body temperature. Such a device is perfect for sufferers of Parkinson’s disease, as the patch is able to monitor when the accompanying tremors have begun, and release a small amount of the appropriate drug.

“Microsoft” phone scammer caught and fined more than AUD$45,000

Most Australians that still have a landline have received calls from scammers claiming to be from Microsoft, who say that their computer is sending out “distress signals,” and that they can help. Unfortunately, those that aren’t tech-savvy enough to see the warning signs tend to fall for it, and end up following instructions to give the scammer remote access to their machine. The scammer then installs any number of viruses or extracts sensitive information, and charges the captive PC-owner upwards of £150 to install free Microsoft antivirus software. Well, BBC News has reported that one Mohammed Khalid Jamil, 34, from Luton, England has received a suspended four-month sentence and a £24,594 fine for running the scam, by employing India-based people to do his dirty work. It is however unlikely that this will spell and end to the scam.

24 comments (Leave your own)
charliebrownau

If the Amazon Fire Streaming BOX can play back DLNA + Shoutcast streams over the internet , offer youtube and twitch apps , along with ABC + SBS free apps . Along with the ability to play back XviD/MP4 from DLNA/USB stick Ill consider getting this new gadget and getting rid of the 360 thats basically a media centre now

 

“Microsoft” phone scammer caught and fined more than AUD$45,000
Good. Getting calls at dinner time from idiots claiming to be from “Windows” is really annoying. Although nowadays I tell said folks I have a Mac, generally gets rid of them. (no I don’t but…)

 

vcatkiller:
Although nowadays I tell said folks I have a Mac, generally gets rid of them. (no I don’t but…)

Man, asking them “which computer?” Gets rid of them. I love listening to them panic and reel off random numbers when I ask for an identifying IP address.

 

My favourite tactic is to ask for their manager and their address details, then saying look it’s ok mate I just need them so I can report them to ASIO for prosecution purposes :)

They either get really angry or hang up really fast :D

 

I remember telling one of them I was using Ubuntu and started asking “wait how did you guys know I was getting errors?” before the guy hung up on me halfway through the question.

 

vcatkiller,

Jason Imms,

Why do you want to get rid of them? my best is 50 minutes on the phone playing dumb. They told me I had to go to my home page, I said I didn’t have one can I buy one from them, they were going nuts trying to explain things to me. The call ended with them offering condolences on the recent death of my mother at the hands of a koala bear.

 

schrapple,

Yeah sometimes I like to mess with them. Mostly though, I’ve just got home from work feeling tired and irritable, just sat down at the table to eat and the phone rings. Usually at that point it could be Bill Gates himself telling me he’s just deposited a bazillion dollars into my bank account and I’d still tell him to get lost.

 

We get called almost every night, so I got a little bored and started playing with them. After last phone call below, have not heard from them for a while.

I told them I don’t believe in computers, they are the work of the devil, etc. He hung up on me?

Then another time I told them I don’t own a computer and he asked me to go upstairs and see if there was a Laptop (I live in a single story house) I made out I was going up stairs, then asked him, what does a Laptop look like?

Another time I told them I don’t have a computer, but my brother has one and would they like his phone number. I gave them the ASIO NSW phone number – 02 8904 0251.

 

By giving Prime account-holders access to the TV and movie catalogue in their living room, Amazon stands to reap some pretty significant rewards around America.

FTFY

Until this region mess is changed, I’ll find my media, um, elsewhere…

3. LIMITED TO U.S.
Due to restrictions placed on us by our content providers, we are currently only able to make the Service available to customers located in the United States.

 

Hang a very loud ear-drum-breaking terrifyingly-piercing whistle next to your home phone and blow hard next time they phone … works beautifully for mothers-in-laws as well.

 

Still waiting on 790ti release date/pricing, any word on expected price for the 295?

 

Well what i did was install a virtual machine on my computer, and when the “windows team” called i booted into it and went along with them. After about 10mins they passed me to a “senior tech” and he got remote access into the virtual machine (he didnt know it was a virtual windows installation) and went through everything with me :)

He opened a word document and started typing what he could offer me. basically it was “windows 7 service pack 1 new edition, with norton antivirus protection for 3 yrs $350″ or the same as the above for 5 yrs for $450. Since i had no money on my credit card i told him i couldnt afford it, and he said “oh ok” and hung up :) then i deleted the virtual machine.

 

My operating system ? you mean DR-Dos 1.2 ? I didn’t think there were viruses for that ? O I have one ? you want me to go to my start menu … I don’t think you know what DR-Dos is do you ? *Hangs up*

 

I must say, I’m genuinely surprised at the number of GONners who still actually use a landline

 

ooshp:
I must say, I’m genuinely surprised at the number of GONners who still actually use a landline

If you have a method for me having a decent internet connection without paying for a landline I’d love to hear it.

 

Yeah I only have the landline for the ADSL. We Rockyites don’t have nice stuff like cable and the wireless broadband here is incredibly flaky at best. Or I could convince my landlord to stick a really expensive satellite dish on the roof?

 

schrapple: If you have a method for me having a decent internet connection without paying for a landline I’d love to hear it.

I think you know what was meant. It’s surprising that people actually have landline telephones.

As for the Amazon box, I am mystified as to why it doesn’t have gigabit ethernet for an extra 2 cents, and I really want to know if it supports custom DNS servers. For… reasons. Optical out = epic win, though.

 

caitsith01: I think you know what was meant.It’s surprising that people actually have landline telephones.

As for the Amazon box, I am mystified as to why it doesn’t have gigabit ethernet for an extra 2 cents, and I really want to know if it supports custom DNS servers.For… reasons.Optical out = epic win, though.

Then you think wrong, I would think that the majority of Australian still have an internet connection that requires them to hire a landline .But I’m only assuming, I haven’t seen the stats regarding how many Australians still have landlines.

 

caitsith01: I think you know what was meant.It’s surprising that people actually have landline telephones.

As for the Amazon box, I am mystified as to why it doesn’t have gigabit ethernet for an extra 2 cents, and I really want to know if it supports custom DNS servers.For… reasons.Optical out = epic win, though.

Quick bit of research and it seems about 20% of Australian households don’t have a landline, meaning of course about 80% of Australian households still have a landline.

 

Can you read?

Landline telephones. Not landlines.

I have a landline. I do not have a landline telephone. I know lots of people who are in the same position, who use their mobile exclusively for calls.

 
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