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Intel to Split Manufacturing Branch Into Three Divisions

The Oregonian says that Intel will split its manufacturing and technology group into three different segments. Mike Mayberry, head of Intel labs, will lead the technology division. Ann Kelleher will lead manufacturing and operations, while Randhir Thakur will run the supply chain branch. Sohail Ahmed, who led the manufacturing division since 2016, will retire, and former Qualcomm executive Venkata "Murthy" Renduchintala will supervise all three divisions. This shakeup comes after long delays of the deployment of Intel's 10nm process, which was supposed to be ready in the second half of 2016.

"Thanks to the efforts of Sohail and the entire Intel team, we are making good progress on 10nm," Renduchintala wrote to employees Monday. "Yields are improving consistent with the timeline that we shared in April, and we continue to expect systems on shelves for the 2019 holiday season." Intel has been without a chief executive since June, when Brian Krzanich abruptly resigned after the company uncovered "a past consensual relationship with an Intel employee" in violation of corporate policy. Chief Financial Officer Bob Swan is serving as interim CEO.

Posted by alphaatlas October 18, 2018 7:52 AM (CDT)

A Nude Mod for Shadow of the Tomb Raider Has Been Released

A nude mod for Shadow of the Tomb Raider has been released. Modder Fonglee of the Untertow Club has graced us with his vision of what Lara looks like in the buff. Needless to say the art contained in the link is NSFW.

The mods span a smorgasbord of options, this includes the complete nude mod version of Lara Croft from Angel of Darkness, a sheer version of the Angel of Darkness Lara, a desert tank top version wearing a sheer shirt, a sheer version of Lara from Tomb Raider II, a green-eyed version of Lara, a Lara wearing tactical shorts, and a variety of sheer dresses, shirts, and ripped pants based on the outfits from Shadow of the Tomb Raider.

Posted by cageymaru October 17, 2018 2:12 PM (CDT)

Tesla Secures Land for $2 Billion China Gigafactory

Electric car manufacturer Tesla has successfully purchased the land for its Shanghai Gigafactory. The 860,000 square meter plot in China cost the company $140.51 million and will be home to a $2 billion factory. The annual output of the factory is estimated at 500,000 electric cars. China has an insatiable desire for new-electric vehicles.

Tesla signed a long-anticipated deal with Shanghai authorities in July to build its first factory outside the United States, which would double the size of its global manufacturing and help lower the pricetag of Tesla cars sold in the world's largest auto market. "Securing this site in Shanghai, Tesla's first Gigafactory outside of the United States, is an important milestone for what will be our next advanced, sustainably developed manufacturing site," Robin Ren, Tesla's vice president of worldwide sales, said in a statement.

Posted by cageymaru October 17, 2018 1:00 PM (CDT)

Instagram Users with 100,000+ Followers Get Free Food for Posts

The "This is Not a Sushi Bar" restaurant in Milan, Italy is offering Instagram users with 100,000+ followers free food if they post a picture of their meal and tag the restaurant on social media. "Owner Matteo Pittarello said he hoped the offer would attract millennials as patrons and create '2.0 word-of-mouth that could make our brand strong and viral.'"

Italian fashion blogger Clizia Incorvaia had a free sushi lunch on Tuesday courtesy of her 200,000 Instagram followers. Incorvaia said: "We tasted everything from gunkan to tartare, and I have to say it is all really good."

Posted by cageymaru October 16, 2018 4:23 PM (CDT)

Here Is an Early Build of the "Beyond the Baltic Sea" DLC for Euro Truck Simulator 2

The developers of Euro Truck Simulator 2 have decided to release some footage of their upcoming map expansion called Beyond the Baltic Sea. The DLC will feature locations within Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Finland, and parts of Russia. It is expected to launch on the Steam Store later this year.

A few glimpses from driving through Saint Petersburg in Euro Truck Simulator 2's upcoming DLC Beyond the Baltic Sea.

Posted by cageymaru October 16, 2018 3:01 PM (CDT)

Eminem's Performance of "Venom" Was Recorded with Google Pixel 3 Phones

Eminem recorded his performance of "Venom" on Jimmy Kimmel Live using the camera on the recently released Google Pixel 3 phone. The video playback is set to 720p60 HD which never looks the best on my 4K screen. What do you think of the video quality? Worth $800 - $1,000?

Eminem's exclusive performance of "Venom" from high atop the Empire State Building. Presented by Google Pixel 3.

Posted by cageymaru October 16, 2018 2:28 PM (CDT)

Google Pixel USB-C to 3.5mm Headphone Adapter Performance Review

Most everyone misses the headphone jack on modern phones. Companies such as Google and Apple have replaced them with USB-C dongles with a DAC+amp built into them. Audio Science Review performed testing on 3 flavors of adapters to find out just how well designed are these USB-C to 3.5mm adapters. For comparison, read the glowing review of the ESS quad DACs ES9218P with integrated headphone amplifier found in the LG G7 ThinQ Smartphone.

I did some brief testing of the dongles using my Sennheiser HD-650 headphone. Here, I was surprised that the original Pixel V1 had decent amount of bass with clear response and loud enough for enjoyment. In sharp contrast, the other two dongles would not even reach my normal listening level. Yes, you can hear the music but this is no way to treat the HD-650. This whole business of removing the headphone jack is anti-consumer. No phone is thinner than the 3.5 mm jack allows. I don't like the idea of a dongle as it can get lost, get damaged, etc. If you are going to get one for your Pixel phone (or whatever else it may work with), then my strongest suggestion is to buy the original version before the stock runs out on them. It has far more power, and better performance. The other two dongles, the Google Pixel 2 and Venture/Veclan are what we name "phoned in design." You call a shop in China and ask them to produce a checklist item with no attempt to set quality and performance standard. What you get produces sound but it is a very poor attempt at engineering.

Posted by cageymaru October 16, 2018 1:09 PM (CDT)

Sony Wants to Use Blockchain for DRM

Sony is officially jumping on the blockchain bandwagon. The company announced that it intends to integrate blockchain technology into their current DRM scheme for "electronic textbooks and other educational content, music, films, VR content, and e-books" and possibly more. We've noted that blockchain doesn't necessarily work with every problem, and the effective's of Sony's new DRM remains to be seen.

Today, advances in technologies for digital content creation allow anyone to broadcast and share content, but the rights management of that content is still carried out conventionally by industry organizations or the creators themselves, necessitating a more efficient way of managing and demonstrating ownership of copyright-related information for written works. This newly-developed system is specialized for managing rights-related information of written works, with features for demonstrating the date and time that electronic data was created, leveraging the properties of blockchains to record verifiable information in a difficult to falsify way, and identifying previously recorded works, allowing participants to share and verify when a piece of electronic data was created and by whom. In addition to the creation of electronic data, booting up this system will automatically verify the rights generation of a piece of written works, which has conventionally proven difficult. Furthermore, the system lends itself to the rights management of various types of digital content including electronic textbooks and other educational content, music, films, VR content, and e-books. As such, Sony is contemplating possible uses in a wide range of fields.

Posted by alphaatlas October 16, 2018 11:44 AM (CDT)

Researchers Develop New Manufacturing Process for 2D Nanosheets

Researchers from UCLA, UT Austin, and Hunan University developed a novel way for making semiconducting nanosheets. The approach involves "electrochemical intercalation of quaternary ammonium molecules into 2-D crystals, followed by a mild sonication and exfoliation process." Among other things, the researchers replaces small lithium ions with larger ions, such as quaternary ammonium, to mitigate undesirable electrical characteristics. The process can be applied to a range of 2D crystals, like MoS2, WSe2, In2Se3, and black phosphorus, while preserving their desirable properties. One major application seems to be the production of flexible displays and electronics, and the researchers say it could reduce the cost of displays in general. The full research paper is available here, for a fee.

"The most interesting finding of our study is the development of a scalable and low-cost solution-based approach to fabricating high-performance, flexible thin-film transistors (TFTs) and electronic circuits based on 2-D semiconductor ink," Prof. Duan said. "The atomically thin and intrinsically flexible 2-D nanosheets represent attractive building blocks for flexible/wearable electronics, similar to pieces of paper that can be easily bent, folded and flattened." The TFTs that the researchers produced using their MoS2 2-D nanosheet ink showed greatly improved device performance over existing solution-processed MoS2 TFTs, with at least one order of magnitude increase in carrier mobility and three to four orders of magnitude increase in switching ratio. Their new approach is easily scalable with a high yield, enabling complex logic gates and computational circuits that were so far unattainable using other 2-D inks. "The solution-phase fabrication process of flexible TFTs and circuits is intrinsically scalable and cost-effective and can be readily made into the large scale (> m2) when combined with printing approach and industrial roll-to-roll productions," Prof. Duan explained. "TFTs are the fundamental building blocks for many large-area electronic applications, including the well-known TFT-LCD, a liquid-crystal display that uses TFT technology to improve image qualities such as addressability and contrast."

Posted by alphaatlas October 15, 2018 12:22 PM (CDT)

Inforcharge Scans Faces for Free Charging

The Taiwanese wireless charging station provider Inforcharge is now scanning faces for advertising purposes. Their chargers normally show some sort of promotional content in exchange for the free juice, as well as the use of an adapter in phones that don't support wireless charging. But soon, those charging stations will scan your face, using AI to "identify the user's age and gender," and use that information for targeted advertising. There's no word on if or when the company plans to expand to the US, but as the technology matures. this type of service is bound to spread outside of Taiwan.

So far, the company has installed around 400-500 units of the wireless charging station throughout Taipei and is looking to form partnerships with more stores, such as cafe chains.

Posted by alphaatlas October 15, 2018 11:15 AM (CDT)

For Honor Gets an Expansion and Graphical Update

For Honor is getting a big, free update alongside the Marching Fire expansion. Among other things, Ubisoft's fantasy brawler is getting a "major" global illumination upgrade, a revamped skybox, better textures, and new post processing effects. The free update will also include major balance changes, fixes, and new features like the PvP castle breach siege mode. Players who drop $30 for the full expansion will get a whole new faction to play with, as well as a ton of new features. The patch and expansion will be available on if October 16th if your preorder, and the characters will be available for purchase with in-game currency on October 30. You can read the full patch notes here. Check out the expansion's trailer below:

For Honor Marching Fire is a major expansion encompassing a brand-new faction with instant and early access to four new heroes, a new PvP mode, unlimited PvE content, and far-reaching graphical enhancements. This content is split into two categories: Free (available on Oct 16 for all current For Honor game owners) and Paid (available only with purchase of the For Honor Marching Fire Expansion or Edition).

Posted by alphaatlas October 15, 2018 7:42 AM (CDT)

Epic Games Sues Yet Another Fortnite Cheater, Alleging Copyright Infringement

Popular YouTuber "Golden Modz" (Brandon Lucas) is the latest personality to get sued by Epic Games for cheating in Fortnite. The streamer has made a name for himself by advertising cheats (dubbed "magical powers") to his 1.7 million subscribers, which he would then sell on multiple storefronts. An associate, Colton Conter (a.k.a. "Exentric"), is also being sued.

Both defendants have displayed their use of cheats in various YouTube videos. By using these cheats, they inject code into the game which modifies the original, which is a clear violation of copyright law, according to Epic Games. Even worse, Golden Modz also stands accused of selling cheats online through the websites and, which are often advertised in his gameplay videos.

Posted by Megalith October 14, 2018 2:05 PM (CDT)