TabPro S
Samsung Galaxy TabPro S

Samsung CFG70 Curved LCD

EpicGear MorphA X Mouse

Super Mario Run
App Pick - Super Mario Run

Windows 10 Fall Creators Update is Killing Stuff

There is a fall update coming for Windows 10 and while most of these updates add features, this one is more about killing features that Microsoft doesn't think you use. Granted, many people don't use these features, but still it is frustrating for the thousands that do. Included among the things on the chopping block are Paint, Outlook Express and even screen savers. 

The main feature that stands out to me, and which is being deprecated and therefore a risk of removal is the Paint app, which I used multiple times per day to resize, crop and label images. It remains much faster than a full image editor, and its absence will be missed.

Source: MSPowerUser

Quad-core CPUs Coming to Ultrabooks

There is some good news if you are an Ultrabook user, but want more power. Soon, there will be quad-core Intel processors available! There are a lot of hurdles to jump over in order to bring this extra power to those thin and light machines. They require more power and they generate more heat. Both of these are enemies to thin and light machines, but the upcoming 8th generation Core processors look to solve this problem.

The new models that are showing up are the Core i5-8250U and Core i7-8550U, both of which are listed as having four cores, and would therefore have eight threads. From the benchmarks, it looks like the i5 will be clocked at about 1.8GHz and the i7 will be 2GHz, and it looks like there are PCs planned with these chips from ASUS, Dell, HP, Acer, and Lenovo.

Source: Neowin

Intel killing off their wearable division?

For the past couple years we've seen a ton of wearables entering the market, most being rather quite unremarkable. With all the increased competition and what seems to be a very saturated market, it's not surprising that we'll start seeing some players exiting. Intel is reportedly the latest to pull the plug on wearables by shutting down their wearables division. The fact that Intel is exiting isn't new news, however, thanks to a round of layoffs it looks like although they'd been denying it for a while, Intel looks like to have pulled the plug on wearables for the time being. Engadget has more details.

When TechCrunch reported last year that Intel is getting out of wearables, the tech titan vehemently denied it. Now a new report by CNBC indicates that the company is indeed leaving the business behind: the publication says Intel has axed the whole division working on smartwatches and fitness trackers two weeks ago. The New Technologies Group, which is in charge of the chipmaker's cutting-edge businesses, has now reportedly shifted its focus to augmented reality. If true, this is the second project the company has scrapped in recent months: it also canceled the development its Raspberry Pi competitors in June.

Microsoft enters thermostat game

Microsoft has announced a new product in association with Johnson Controls, a new cortana-powered thermostat. The new thermostat, dubbed GLAS, will be running on Windows 10 IoT and have Cortana voice control functionality. While this might seem like an odd product for Microsoft to be behind, but it's just another example of companies jumping in on the connected home market. The Verge has the full details.

Microsoft is partnering with Johnson Controls to build a thermostat. The software giant unveiled the new GLAS thermostat in a YouTube video today. It’s built by Johnson Controls, makers of the first electric room thermostat. It appears that GLAS will include a translucent touchscreen display that will allow owners to alter room temperatures, check energy usage and air quality, and see calendar information.

The end of Windows Phone

This week marks what is being called "the end of Windows Phone" as Microsoft has officially killed off support for Windows Phone 8.1. While there are some Windows 10 Phone devices out there, 80% of the Windows Phones being used today are still running Windows Phone 7, 8, or 8.1. So to recap, of the already market share that Windows Phone controls, only 20% of the phones are even being supported anymore. I think it's pretty safe to say that Windows Phone won't be taking over the world yet.

The Verge has the details.

Microsoft is killing off Windows Phone 8.1 support today, more than three years after the company first introduced the update. The end of support marks an end to the Windows Phone era, and the millions of devices still running the operating system. While most have accepted that the death of Windows Phone occurred more than a year ago, AdDuplex estimates that nearly 80 percent of all Windows-powered phones are still running Windows Phone 7, Windows Phone 8, or Windows Phone 8.1. All of these handsets are now officially unsupported, and only 20 percent of all Windows phones are running the latest Windows 10 Mobile OS.

No one reads the terms of service

It's not surprising that no one reads the terms of services, as made evident by Purple (free wi-fi service provider) when they added a clause in that users that agree to the terms could be required to put in 1,000 hours of community service cleaning public washrooms (among other things). In the two weeks the fun clause got added in, 22,000 people didn't notice and only 1 found the clause. Mashable has the full story.

Public Wi-Fi provider Purple added a spoof term to its T&Cs on its network of branded hotspots to illustrate the "lack of consumer awareness" of what people are signing up to when accessing free Wi-Fi portals. 

In agreeing to the spoof T&Cs, people unwittingly agreed to a "community service clause" which signed them up to clean portaloos, hug stray cats, and paint snails' shells. Wow. 

Cryptocurrency Mining uses a ton of power

If you've tried to buy a new video card in the past year you've probably noticed that supply seems to be extremely limited. If you look into it more you'll realize that cryptocurrency miners are basically buying up mid and high end hardware to setup farms of computers to do this mining. Between Ethereum and Bitcoin, the amount of power used to mine these cryptocurrencies exceeds the power consumption of Syria, a country with 17 million people. 

So much for going green!

TechPowerUp has the full story.

So, yes, the headline is accurate. We all know that cryptocurrency mining has now reached an all time high, which has affected availability and pricing of most graphics cards from both AMD and NVIDIA. Who doesn't want to make a quick buck here and there? So long as it's profitable, right?

Well, that kind of thinking has already brought the global mining power consumption to unprecedented levels (some might also say demented.) The two top cryptocurrencies right now (by market-cap), Bitcoin and Ethereum, are each responsible for 14.54 TWh and 4.69 TWh power consumption figures. As of now, Ethereum consumes almost as much power as the 120th most power-consuming country, Moldova, which has a population of around 3 million. Bitcoin, on the other hand, stands at 81st on the list, in-between Mozambique and Turkmenistan, the latter of which has a population estimated at 5.17 million people. Combined, Ethereum and Bitcoin consume more power than Syria, which had an estimated 2014 population above 17 million.

KFC Smartphone

I don't know know what just happened, but KFC is making a smartphone.

In conjunction with Huawei, KFC is releasing a smartphone to celebrate their 30th anniversary in China. I was completely skeptical and thought it was a joke until I watched the video they made and then realized how life changing the KFC smartphone was and how everywhere you go with it now turns into a party. I want one.


Net Neutrality - Day of Action

Chances are good you've probably seen some buzz today as more than 80,000 websites join the protest against the FCC's decision to reverse net neutrality. Basically net neutrality in one line is the law that makes it illegal filter content or slow down speeds for different types of content in the United States. Of the 80,000 sites joining the protest, the big guys like Facebook, Amazon, and Google, are taking part so chances are good you'll see a banner or some type of notice as you surf the internet today while pretending to be working. CNBC has more on the net neutrality day of action.

More than 80,000 websites including giants such as Facebook, Amazon and Google, are taking part in an online protest on Wednesday against the U.S. telecoms regulator's plan to roll back net neutrality rules.

Under the Barack Obama administration in 2015, rules were put in place that meant internet service providers (ISPs) such as Comcast, Charter, and AT&T, had to treat all internet content equally. Essentially these ISPs are not allowed to block content or speed up or slow down data from certain websites.

Android Wear for Under $100

Premium Android Wear devices can cost upwards of $400, but there are some more affordable options that are actually quite decent. Often, if you want an affordable wearable, you have to give up a lot, but the Ticwatch S and E are actually pretty solid devices that get you a heart rate sensor, GPS and a very nice display. Best of all, they come in under $100. If this interests you, make sure you head to the link below for more details.

Of course that's only if you buy the Ticwatch E on the company's Kickstarter project before it becomes more widely available. When that happens, it will cost $159 and you'll be able to get it on Amazon or Mobvoi's website. A higher-end version called Ticwatch S will cost $119 on Kickstarter, and $199 at retail. Even after the early bird period, though, that's still the cheapest Android Wear 2.0 watch around right now.

Source: Engadget

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