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Saturday, October 21


Daily News Stuff 21 October 2023

Accidental Accidents Edition

Top Story

  • Instagram has apologised for accidentally labelling terrorists as terrorists.  (Ars Technica)
    Not everyone has accepted Meta's apology. Director of Amnesty Tech—a branch of Amnesty International that advocates for tech companies to put human terrorist rights first—Rasha Abdul-Rahim, said on X Twitter that Meta Instagram apologizing is "not good enough."
    "You're not allowed to tell the truth", said Abdul-Rahim.  "You have to lie, and you have to tell the lies we feed you."

Tech News

  • Zotac's ZBox Pico PI430AJ uses Frore's piezoelectric Airjet cooling system.  (AnandTech)

    These are often called solid state, but they do have moving parts.  They're nearly silent because they vibrate too fast for you to hear - the only sound is the moving air.

    The catch?  This device has a 7W CPU and would run fine without a fan anyway.  Though a quick look at the benchmark results suggests it might be thermally limited, so it's possible the fan does help.

  • Samsung's new HBM3E memory is big and fast.  (AnandTech)

    A single package - not exactly a chip, but a stack of 12 silicon dies - holds 36GB, runs at 9.8GHz, and is 1024 bits wide, giving a bandwidth of 1.2TB per second.

  • Mediatek is no longer a second-tier manufacturer of chips for cheap phones.  (WCCFTech)

    The company used to be synonymous with budget devices, but its Dimensity 9300 is just a hair slower - 1.7% - than Apple's best mobile chips in multi-core tests.  The difference is wider in single-core benchmarks, where Apple still holds a convincing lead.

    I'd like to see chips like these in NUCs.  Windows Arm devices have been pretty underwhelming so far, mostly using chips that are badly out of date by the time the products hit the market.

  • Reddit is considering blocking search engines and other web spiders - particularly those used by AI companies - though exactly how it plans to do that is an open question.  (The Verge)

    Google and Microsoft are big targets with lots of money that you can sue if they breach their own terms of service related to web indexing.  If you flag them in your robots.txt file - which they promise to obey - and they ignore it, that's grounds for a great big settlement.

    AI companies are much smaller and less scrupulous, and if your content is still public there's no simple way to block them.  Instagram has been doing this for years, and people still scrape its content.

    And the AI companies need Reddit far more than Reddit needs them.  You can only train AIs on AI content for a very short time before it all turns to sheep.

Disclaimer: Or shirts.  One of those, anyway.

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Friday, October 20


Daily News Stuff 20 October 2023

Steady State Of Disks Edition

Top Story

  • AMD's Threadripper and Threadripper Pro 7000 CPUs are finally here, for users for whom time is money.  (AnandTech)

    These chips ain't cheap: Prices start at $1499 for the 24-core 7960X, and zoom up to $10k once you get to the 96-core 7995WX.

    But for comparison, a 24-core Intel Xeon W7-2495X costs $2199, and that's at the top of Intel's high-end desktop range.  The 7960X is cheaper, faster, and at the bottom of AMD's comparable range.  It's $100 more expensive than the previous 3960X, but it's a lot more than $100 faster.

    The regular Threadripper models provide four memory channels (up to 1TB total RAM), 48 PCIe 5 and 32 PCIe 4 lanes, and up to 64 cores.

    Threadripper Pro provides eight memory channels (up to 2TB total), 128 PCIe 5 lanes, and up to 96 cores.

    Also, similarly to Intel with its Xeon 2400 and 3400 chips, you can plug a Threadripper Pro into a Threadripper motherboard.  You probably wouldn't want to, since Threadripper already goes up to 64 cores (where the Xeon 2400 maxes out at just 24), but you can.

    Available wherever extremely expensive computer components are sold.

Tech News

Disclaimer: Possibly two forevers.

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Thursday, October 19


Daily News Stuff 19 October 2023

Newsless Edition

Top Story

Tech News

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Wednesday, October 18


Daily Tech News 18 October 2023

Shouty McTwintails Edition

Top Story

Tech News

  • Intel's 14th gen desktop chips get put to the test and...  Eh.  (Tom's Hardware)

    They're fast, but (a) for gaming they are still slower than AMD's 7800X3D, (b) for productivity they're still slower than AMD's 7950X, (c) you still have the problem with having two entirely different core designs in one chip, and (d) power consumption is insane.

    On the Y-Cruncher benchmark, the 7950X3D uses 99W while the 14900K uses 262W, and the 7950X3D is faster.

  • Corsair's 4TB MP600 Core XT is selling for $160.  (Tom's Hardware)

    It's a DRAMless QLC drive, so not even slightly high-end, but 4TB for $160 is pretty good if you just want fast storage for video files or games.

  • Twitter is running a trial charging $1 per year to new users for full access.  (WCCFTech)

    Don't cough up the buck and the site is read-only.

    This only applies to New Zealand and the Philippines right now, but signs are they want to take it worldwide to filter out the bots and general idiocy.

    At worst, make the idiots a profit center.

  • How to hack Switzerland's new e-voting system.  (Schneier on Security)

    You still need to hack your targets' computers, but once you've done that, the carefully designed voting protocol does nothing to protect anyone.

    The solution is paper.

Disclaimer: Or cheese.  Cheese works.  Mmm, cheese...

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Tuesday, October 17


Daily News Stuff 17 October 2023

Escape From New York Edition

Top Story

Tech News

Disclaimer: If we outlaw outlaws, only outlaws will have outlaws.

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Monday, October 16


Daily News Stuff 16 October 2023

Sheeps Edition

Top Story

  • Minecraft has sold over 300 million copies.  (The Verge)

    That's a lot.  That's a lot of a lot.

    Also, with Henya pushing the crabs and Pina Pengin naturally enough backing the penguins, the Minecraft userbase voted for the armadillo to be the next animal added to the game.

    Seriously, what are they going to do?  There aren't any 18 wheelers for them to run under.

Tech News

Arr Music Video of the Day

Disclaimer: Unless you install the Create mod anyway.

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Sunday, October 15


Daily News Stuff 15 October 2023

Not A New Edition

Top Story

Tech News

Disclaimer: There wolf.  There castle.

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Saturday, October 14


Daily News Stuff 14 October 2023

Corporate Slave Cabbage Edition

Top Story

  • NASA has just launched its Psyche mission, an aptly named probe to explore the asteroid Psyche.  (Ars Technica)

    Sent into space atop a SpaceX Falcon Heavy - and in fairness, it's much better for NASA to build just the spacecraft and leave the launches to private industry - the mission is expected to total $1.4 billion between the craft, the launch vehicle, and eight years of operations.

    The estimated value of the minerals on Psyche itself is in the range of $10 quintillion.  That's 400,000 years of the US GDP, or about 7 trillion times the cost of this mission.

    Say what you will about government waste; this one would appear to be justified.

Tech News

Not Even Remotely Tech News

The referendum for "The Voice", a bid to enshrine racism into the constitution of Australia, was held today.

It went worse than I could ever have hoped.

It needed to win a majority of the vote nationwide plus a majority of states to pass.

It seems to have lost in every single state - even communist Victoria.

Update: Oof.

Also, Aussie Jacinta (Price) - a conservative Aboriginal Senator - is infinitely preferable to Kiwi Jacinda (Ardern).  I hope to see her Prime Minister some day.

Disclaimer: Perhaps in exchange for some of those little pancakes?

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Friday, October 13


Daily News Stuff 13 October 2023

Poopy Edition

Top Story

  • In which The Verge tries to explain a joke.  (The Verge)

    So Rick and Morty is back with season seven, though without series co-creator and the voice of both Rick and Morty, Justin Roiland, who got Me Too'd.

    Given the way the show was headed in seasons four through six - straight downward - this is less of a loss than it might have been otherwise.

    But that's not the point here.  The point is that The Verge spends eight paragraphs discussing an episode called How Poopy Got His Poop Back and makes it sound about as entertaining as a simultaneous barium enema and double root canal.

    It's a talent.  Of some sort.

Tech News

Disclaimer: Wait, the entire thing is made of blancmange?

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Thursday, October 12


Daily News Stuff 12 October 2023

Alan Moore Hornet Nest Edition

Top Story

  • CRISPR skimmed chicken: Genetically engineering chickens to not get sick and die by the millions any time a sparrow sneezes in Mongolia.  (New York Times)  (archive site)

    There are three specific proteins that the H5N1 virus hijacks in chickens to reproduce itself, and the scientists adjusted each one slightly so that it couldn't do that.

    Result: Chickens that don't catch colds.

    Or almost.  They've grown healthy chickens with any one of those genes altered, which are highly resistant to the flu, but not yet with all three genes updated; that's only been tested in cell cultures.

    Still great progress, and I'm expecting in five years or so we'll see these on the supermarket shelves, and shortly after that we'll be told that somehow they got pangolin genes in the mix and we all have to be buried alive for our own good.

Tech News

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* Reboots
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