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Wednesday, June 30

Geek

Daily News Stuff 30 June 2021

It Was Not Very Effective Edition

Top Story

  • Microsoft apologised for the confusion caused by its botched Windows 11 announcement and then immediately made things worse.  (ZDNet)

    They have repeatedly added and then deleted details from their compatibility documents.

    And the - largely useless - compatibility checker app they provided has now been removed entirely.

    The article estimates that 40% of PCs sold as recently as 2019 can't run Windows 11, as best as anyone can work out with the horribly confused state of the requirements.  And more than 60% of all PCs currently in use can't be upgraded.

    This has been a textbook case of how not to announce a new product.


Anime of the day is Gate from 2015.  A fantasy world full of magic and dragons manages to open a portal to our world, and marches an army through - right into the middle of Tokyo.

They are merrily proceeding to slaughter the civilian population when the JSDF shows up and quickly demonstrates that orcs are not immune to gunfire, nor dragons to surface-to-air missiles.

The problem is - apart from all the dead bystanders - the gate is still there, and no-one on our side knows how to shut it down.  So the JSDF has to head through and establish a beachhead on the other side, where things...  Are not always what they seem.

Lots of politicians on both sides of the gate being greedy and stupid to a self-destructive degree, which seems pretty damn accurate.


Tech News

  • The new HP Pavilion Aero looks pretty good.  (Thurrott.com)

    Ryzen 5000U CPUs, with up to 8 Zen 3 cores, a 13.3" 16:10 display with a resolution of 2303x1440 - a bit weird, but that's 1920x1200 with a 20% bonus, at 400 nits and covering 100% of Adobe RGB; charging over USB-C or a dedicated charge port, two full-size USB-A, HDMI, headphone jack, and a microSD slot.

    And the Four Essential Keys in their proper place.

    All in a 2.1 pound package, and available in white, silver, and regular or rose gold.  Starting at $749 and available next month.

    Might even run Windows 11.


  • Yes, those Western Digital My Book Live owners got hacked.  (Bleeping Computer)

    The hack involved calling the factory reset function on devices connected to the internet.

    That's it.

    You didn't need to do anything clever because the factory reset function wasn't protected in any way whatsoever.

    I mean, they had password protection in the code, they just, um, commented it out.


  • Russia had access to the network of Denmark's central bank for months.  (Bleeping Computer)

    This is obviously government action.  Hacking a bank, sure, criminals might try that.  Hacking a central bank is pointless unless you're a rival nation.

    And this was part of the broader SolarWinds hack, meaning that was almost certainly the Russian government as well.


  • The breach that wasn't: There are stolen details of 700 million LinkedIn users for sale on the dark web.  (9to5Mac)

    All of which was posted publicly, because that's what LinkedIn is for.  If you don't want your private information out there, the first step is to not post it publicly yourself.


Min Spec Daily Video of the Day


I've linked to articles on Thurott.com a number of times.  Here's Paul Thurrott and sidekick Brad Sams putting the boot into Microsoft over the Windows 11 debacle.

The PC press is much better at this than the Apple press, who are little more than acolytes of a particularly nasty cult.


Disclaimer: Nasty and vacuous.

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Tuesday, June 29

Geek

Daily News Stuff 29 June 2021

Endless October Edition

Tech News

  • October continues apace.  Start the day with three hours of meetings, end the day with two hours of meetings, constant interruptions between.

    On the one hand, customers are just throwing money at us.  On the other hand, it would be nice to have a few minutes each day to eat and sleep and stuff like that.


  • Will your PC run Windows 11?  (ZDNet)

    Nobody knows, including Microsoft.


  • Did Microsoft get paid by Apple to fumble this announcement?  (ZDNet)

    Only thing that makes sense.  I wouldn't even consider an Arm-based Mac until they support both Linux and BSD, but most people just want to run a handful of programs and not worry about things breaking.

    Sure, Macs break all the time and Apple complete screws you on repairs, but people aren't aware of that so they don't worry about it.


  • Microsoft successful migrated 90% of its users to a single version of their operating system.  (ZDNet)

    And then they completely fucked it up.  Hundreds of millions of users just got orphaned.

    Oh, and first-generation Ryzen, Threadripper, and Epyc CPUs (I have two of those) and 7th-generation Intel desktop and laptop parts (I have two of those as well) might be supported after all.  (Bleping Computer)

    Eventually.

    Or they might not.  Microsoft apparently didn't think about that question.

    Retards.


  • As for what Windows 11 delivers, it looks like Android, only crappy.  (Tom's Hardware)

    Seriously, no-one asked for this.


  • DDR5 modules are available right now!  (Tom's Hardware)

    Just the thing for your brand new Windows 11 system, because you can't get CPUs or motherboards that work with DDR5 yet anyway.

    Retail pricing is $311 vs. a recommended price of $400 for 32GB.  Frequency is 4800MHz which is very high for DDR4 but the new baseline for DDR5.

    Latency is 40 cycles, which is, frankly, crap.  But the first DDR4 modules were similarly slow.


  • The Fuck You pattern.  (CEdwards)

    This is a user interface designed purely to annoy anyone who tries to escape the box the want to trap you in. Generally this falls under "dark patterns", but this is a specific case of using everything in the dark pattern toolbox purely to shit on users who won't behave themselves.

    Case in point: Instagram.


  • Docker bites man.  (NewsBlur)

    The NewsBlur ransomware hack from the other day was a Docker config problem.  The attacker was able to delete the container, but couldn't actually encrypt it or exfiltrate the data, so the ransomware note was a lie.

    Fortunately they had followed Rule One of Backups: Actually try restoring from them.

    Actually a good examination of what happened and how they fixed it.


  • SafeDollar, a stablecoin on the Polygon network, wasn't.  (Cryptoslate)

    With a current valuation of $0 it proved to be neither safe nor stable.


  • YouTube TV is adding a $20 monthly fee for 4K resolutions and offline viewing.  (Tech Crunch)

    I've been watching YouTube on my new tablet - the Lenovo Somethingpad 10 FHD  Gen 2 I picked up cheap on a one day sale.  The YouTube app works infinitely better than a browser for watching livestreams with busy chat rooms.  I've seen Chrome balloon out to 11GB of RAM after a couple of hours.

    On the other hand, even when configured to prefer better video quality, it routinely resets to 144p.  There is no option to permanently fix the resolution to something sane, because fuck you that's why.


  • A Polish Bitcoin billionaire has reportedly drowned in Costa Rica.  (MarketWatch)

    My first thought was, did they recover the body?  Because they never did for the guy who reportedly died in rural India leaving the crypto exchange he ran to crash and burn because only he had the master passwords.


  • Google has a replacement for AMP, their attempt to control news articles on the web.  (The Register)

    It's called Core Web Vitals and, like AMP, its entire purpose is to hand control of your web pages to Google in return for...  In return for nothing at all.

Disclaimer: ENOWIFI.

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Monday, June 28

Geek

Daily News Stuff 28 June 2021

Ugh Blah Edition

Tech News



Disclaimer: I never could get the hang of Octobers.

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Sunday, June 27

Geek

But Really Though

I've mentioned a couple of times that I like to watch Hololive's Minecraft streams.

I think they're trying to kill me.

http://ai.mee.nu/images/Holocraft210627.PNG?size=720x&q=95

Lots of collabs or it would be even worse.  Ina and Lamy; Roboco and Aki Rose; Iofi and Watame; Towa, Botan, and Pekora; Reine, Subaru, Matsuri, and Choco; and Azki and Sora - the two traditional idols of Hololive.  Plus Nene, Miko, Rushia, Gura, Calli, Kiara, and Amelia individually.  And probably more being added in the next hour or two.

They're having a summer festival in Minecraft and they've all been scurrying about building stuff for the past couple of weeks.  Just what they've been streaming live has been more than 24 hours a day, and there's been even more going on off-stream.

Update: Add Coco and Fubuki to the list.

Update Two: Definitely trying to kill me.

http://ai.mee.nu/images/Holocraft210627A.PNG?size=720x&q=95

And NijiEN and Vyolfers' little group that I called VMN but is now VMNH both streamed this morning, building their respective Minecraft bases.

Update Three: Add Moona, Polka, and Kanata.

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Saturday, June 26

Geek

Daily News Stuff 27 June 2021

Penric And Desdemona Edition

Top Story

  • You know what else also can't run Windows 11?  Microsoft's $3499 Surface Studio 2.  (The Verge)

    Yesterday's recommended CPU list has overnight become a mandatory CPU list.

    Which excludes Microsoft's own current flagship desktop system.

    Oh, and all Windows 11 mobile hardware must have a camera, says Microsoft.  Because fuck you, that's why.

    Well, Microsoft, I have a roll of black electrical tape.  Because fuck you too.


  • Windows 11 recommends a TPM 2.0 module, but will install with a warning on older systems with TPM 1.2, right?  Because TPM 2.0 only came out a few years ago.  That would make sense.

    No.  Again, that was yesterday.  (CRN)

    Microsoft - with its two trillion dollar market cap - changed the hardware requirements for its biggest product announcement in five years THE DAY AFTER THE ANNOUNCEMENT and consigned hundreds of millions of perfectly functional computers to landfill.


  • Even some three year old computers may not be able to run the OS.  (Tom's Hardware)

    I bought this one - named Rally, after Rally Vincent from Gunsmith Cats - on the 4th of July 2018.  So check.  I might be able to fiddle with something in the BIOS settings.  Now multiply me doing that by a couple of hundred million people, many of whom don't know BIOS settings from a hole in the ground.

    If you have a nice modern system with a 7700K or even a 16-core Threadripper 1950X you've just been unpersoned.

    And apart from TPM 2.0 and CPU requirements you'll also need UEFI secure boot active.  Which means if you have Windows 10 installed using a conventional BIOS boot mode, you also can't upgrade without first converting your boot record, an operation that itself may or may not work.


  • And you will - at least officially - need Windows 11 Pro to upgrade without locking yourself to an online account.  (Ars Technica)

    Not clear what that means for free upgrades from existing Windows 10 systems.

    Though since it's possible that none of my computers can run Windows 11 given today's update to the hardware requirements, that point is slightly moot.

    Long live Windows 10, or something.


  • Literally top story - The Assassins of Thasalon is the tenth story in the Penric and Desdemona series from Lois McMaster Bujold.

    These are mostly novella length - around a hundred pages each - but this one is a short novel by itself at 240 pages.  The stories are being collected into print volumes but if you want them on Kindle you'll need to buy them individually.

    If you haven't read Bujold before you're seriously missing out.  If you like science fiction you should check out the Vorkosigan series, starting with either Shards of Honor or The Warrior's Apprentice.  Either entry point works fine.  (I actually entered with Weatherman, the first part of the fourth novel in the series, and then backtracked.)

    If you like fantasy, The Curse of Chalion - together with its sequel / conclusion Paladin of Souls - is one of the best constructed and most intelligently written fantasy novels of the past twenty years.

    The Penric stories are set in the same world as Chalion but 150 years earlier than the events in that novel, but there's no need to read them first.  Just proceed in publication order.


Anime of the day is Tiny Snow Fairy Sugar from 2001.  Sure, it's cute cotton candy for kids, but it's really well-made cute cotton candy for kids.  And that opening song is really catchy.

Cough.



Tech News

  • Google's plan to roll out a new totally-not-tracking-anyway tracking system called FLoC has been delayed by two years.  (Ars Technica)

    Apple, Microsoft, Amazon, Mozilla, and all the smaller browser providers have come out against Google's new scheme, which would replace all the current privacy-destroying tracking mechanisms on the web with a brand new privacy-destroying tracking mechanism controlled entirely by Google.


  • Intel's DG2 GPU performs similarly to the GTX 1050.  (Tom's Hardware)

    On the one hand, that's an entry-level gaming card from five years ago.

    On the other hand, the DG2 may be the secondary integrated graphics on Alder Lake mobile parts, which should be enough to compete with AMD's upcoming Rembrandt parts.


  • Speaking of AMD APUs the 4700S Desktop Kit is now officially a thing.  (WCCFTech)

    These are rebadged Xbox Series X (or S) dies with faults in the integrated graphics.  That leaves you with a perfectly good 8 core Zen 2 CPU.  Even so, in normal times they'd likely just get scrapped as a cost of doing business.

    The kit includes the CPU, a mini-ITX motherboard, and...  16GB of high-performance GDDR6 RAM.  Because that's what the Xbox chip is designed to use.

    There are only two SATA ports for storage, and the PCIe slot runs at x4...  At 2.0 speeds.  I don't know why it's limited like that; the Xbox supports PCIe storage at higher speeds.

    It officially only supports low-end graphics like the Radeon RX 580 - which is what I have.

    If have no idea whether it comes bundled with a TPM report for Windows 11 Annoying Edition


  • Genocide, schmenocide, says YouTube.  (Reuters)

    A human rights organisation highlighting abuses by China in Xinjiang province was blocked by YouTube because - this is amazing - they were flagged for "cyberbullying and harassment".

    YouTube prohibits personally identifying information of third parties in videos, including, it turns out, proof that your family has been the victim of government-sponsored mass murder.

    The channel was reinstated, but individual videos continue to receive strikes and get taken offline by YouTube's fascist algorithm of death.


  • Huawei sus.  (Phoronix)

    The tech arm of the PLA has proposed putting a transactional database inside the Linux kernel.

    The Linux maintainers are skeptical.


  • WhyNotWin11 gives you a detailed report of why Windows 11 won't run on your computer.  (Bleeping Computer)

    Which is helpful because all the official Microsoft tool says is NOPE.  This utility checks your boot mode and security, CPU architecture and version, core count and frequency, DirectX support, disk partitioning mode, memory size, available storage, and TPM report.

    Source code and binaries are available on GitHub.

    Chrome doesn't want you to download it.

    Windows 10 doesn't want you to run it.


  • Because, you see, it's not signed by a recognised publisher, unlike, oh, the Chinese Netfilter rootkit that received the official blessing of Microsoft themselves.  (Bleeping Computer)

    Oops, as Dr Gregory House would say.


  • The new Arm-based MacBook Air makes a suitable replacement for an Intel iMac - if the iMac is from 2013.  (ZDNet)

    My late 2015 iMac is holding up pretty well.  Hardware wise.  MacOS has been rather a disappointment and I regret the purchase.  It was not cheap, between Apple being Apple and the Aussie dollar being dead in a ditch at the time.  

    The two dekstops and two laptops I've bought since then came to about the same total price as that iMac.

    Okay, true, I got those laptops from HP when they had two overlapping 50% sales at the same time, only they sold out and gave me a free upgrade to a higher-end model.  About a $4500 system for $1100.


  • You might not be able to upgrade to Windows 11 but NASA can at least do a software update on a robot helicopter on Mars.  (CNN)

    That's actually pretty cool.


Endless Eight All Over Again Video of the Day



Sentient ribbon vtuber Pomu Rainpuff threatened her fans with singing God Knows from The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya one hundred times in a row.

She delivered.  It ended up being her celebration for 100,000 subscribers and at the end over 5000 people were watching.  And they demanded a 101st rendition of the song as an encore.

Her voice held up surprisingly well for a nine-hour live concert.

Someone posted the full set list with timestamps in the comments:

1. 13:22 God Knows... 
2. 18:13 God Knows... 
3. 22:54 God Knows... 
4. 27:37 God Knows... 
5. 32:21 God Knows... 
6. 37:07 God Knows... 
7. 41:49 God Knows...
8. 46:32 God Knows... 
9. 51:15 God Knows... 
10. 56:01 God Knows... but with Normal Pomu Voice 
11. 1:00:43 God Knows... 
12. 1:05:33 God Knows... 1:08:37 - Crackers 
13. 1:10:16 God Knows... while eating 
14. 1:15:02 God Knows... 1:18:43 - Smol Yakkai Pomu 
15. 1:19:45 God Knows... - Eyes Closed 1:21:32 - squint

...

90. 7:55:22 God Knows... 
91. 8:00:03 God Knows... 
92. 8:04:43 God Knows... but belting out. 8:09:12 POWEEEER 
93. 8:09:38 God Knows... 
94. 8:14:20 God Knows... 8:15:20 Cry pomu 
95. 8:19:03 God Knows... 
96. 8:23:40 God Knows... 
97. 8:28:36 God Knows... 
98. 8:33:30 God Knows... that Pomu is losing it. 8:39:20 Realizing that there's 2 more. 
99. 8:39:41 God Knows. 8:44:28 Pomu Message 
100. 8:46:58 GOD KNOWS... How Hard Pomu worked for this. 
101. 8:52:27 God Knows... ENCOOOOORE



Disclaimer: Don't know I'd last nine minutes.

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Geek

Daily News Stuff 26 June 2021

Spontaneous Minecraft Collab Edition

Top Story

  • You know what also can't run Windows 11?  Macs.  (9to5Mac)

    Intel Macs run Windows 10 pretty well under Bootcamp.  But no Mac supports TPM, the security module now required by Windows 11.

    Of course all the new Arm-based Macs are restricted to only running MacOS 11.  Windows and (thus far) Linux need not apply.


  • Speaking of MacOS 11, if you want to use a corporate VPN from your shiny new Mac, you're going to have a really bad day.

    We ran into it with Array Networks (which is what our hosting provider provides, since I didn't feel like maintaining OpenVPN anymore), but also affects Cisco and OpenVPN and others.

    Windows, no problem.  Linux, no problem.  MacOS 10.x, no problem.  MacOS 11, unmitigated disaster.

    I stopped updating MacOS a couple of years ago because every single update broke critical functionality.





Anime of the day is Haibane Renmei from 2002.  This one is like Cowboy Bebop not in the style or themes, but in that you can recommend it to someone who doesn't watch anime, but when they come back and ask where they can find more shows like that...  There really aren't any.

It's the story of a group of teenage girls who run an orphanage and help out in the nearby town...  And they all have little angel wings, only grey rather than white, and little halos, only they sometimes need an assist to stay on.

I won't say any more.  Just watch this one.



Tech News




Disclaimer: I really need to find some new AMVs.

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Friday, June 25

Geek

Daily News Stuff 25 June 2021

Worked Out So Well Last Time Edition

Top Story

  • To everyone's surprise, Microsoft has announced Windows 11.  (Tom's Hardware)

    It's mostly a theme pack for Windows 10, with a bunch of mandatory features you don't want.  Teams integration, for example, and Widgets, which Microsoft has been failing at since Vista.

    It does have some new features like the ability to run Android apps, so I can run all my Kairosoft games on my Windows desktop.  Except that it integrates with the Amazon app store and not Google Play, so I'd have to buy them all again.

    And it sidelines Cortana and Skype, so that's good.


  • You will need to fill out the TPM report before you can install it, though.  (Tom's Hardware)

    Do you have TPM 2.0 enabled on your PC?  If not, you won't be able to upgrade to Windows 11.

    And to give you an idea just how much of a mess this is going to create, I have absolutely no idea if it's enabled on any of my PCs.  I have a very nice laptop with a 4K display, but it's seven years old and I think that's older than TPM 2.0.

    Microsoft has an upgrade checker, but it just gives me a big fat NOPE with no details whatsoever.


  • Windows 11 also requires 64-bit hardware.  That shouldn't be a problem; the Athlon 64 came out in 2003, so any PC fast enough to run Windows 11 in the first place is going to be 64-bit.


  • I've noted that the state of Victoria accounts for 90% of Australia's Bat Flu deaths and 99% of the insanity, but 99% is not 100%.  Four local council areas within Sydney are currently in a week-long lockdown after an outbreak of new cases.*

    Including the CBD.

    Small mercies; there's no curfew.  You can go out at any time to buy groceries.  You can freely exercise outside and gather in small groups.  But a lot of stuff is closed down again.

    Not where I live, fortunately, not that I go outside anyway.

    * Not deaths.  Cases.



Anime of the day is Popotan from 2003, which I rated at the time the best anime series of the year with the worst premise.

It's the story of three sisters, their robot maid, and their pet ferret, who together run a time-travelling Christmas shop and have lots of baths.  They're seeking an enigmatic alien woman who lives in a giant dandelion - or something, it's been a while.  The Japanese for dandelion is tanpopo; popotan is a childish inversion of that word.

That's not the bad premise.  The bad premise is that in the original game that the anime drew from, the goal of the main character was to sleep with all the women.  And who knows, maybe the ferret too.  The anime took exactly the right approach in keeping all the weird elements of the story and deep sixing the original plot and the main character alike.

Also, if you've ever seen the Caramelldansen meme, this is where it came from.

Tech News



Not At All Tech News

  • The counter-revolution has begun: Anime Expo (which is virtual this year because California) will be featuring HoloMyth, LazuLight, and Vshoujo.




    I don't watch Vshoujo, since they're mostly on Twitch and I don't have time for another platform, but Hololive has kept me sane...  Well, helped keep a lid on my insanity, this past year, and particularly HoloMyth which is the first generation of English-language talents from Hololive.  (There's a zeroth generation as well.)

    LazuLight is the name for the first generation of English-language talents from Nijisanji, the other big Vtuber agency in Japan.  They've only been around for a month so they're a lot smaller - 100,000 subscribers each vs. HoloMyth's 1,000,000+ - but they've been playing a lot of Minecraft and that's what I like to watch.  (And today, Terraria).


Let Them Eat Tumblr Video of the Day



Short the hell out of these idiots.


Disclaimer: Idiots on the left of me, idiots to the right; here I am, stuck in the middle with idiots.

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Thursday, June 24

Geek

Daily News Stuff 24 June 2021

What Did Your Last Slave Die Of Edition


Top Story

  • The Radeon 6600 XT is on its way.  (WCCFTech(

    It's not super-fast; it amounts to a low-mid-range card by today's standards.  It has 32 compute units compared to 40 on the 6700 XT - pretty close - but only 32MB of cache compared to 96MB on the 6700 XT.

    But the advantage of that part is that it makes for a smaller chip that will still fly through games at 1080p and might actually be available at a reasonable price.



Sailor Mercury is best.


Tech News



Disclaimer: Seven hours of meetings today.  Yay.

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Wednesday, June 23

Geek

Daily News Stuff 23 June 2021

Dollars To Donuts Edition

Top Story

  • AMD's FidelityFX upscaling solution is here and it kind of works.  (Hot Hardware)

    The way this works is you select your target resolution - say, 3840x2160, if that's the native resolution of your display - and your desired quality level ranging from Performance to Ultra Quality - and it renders at a lower resolution and does intelligent upscaling.

    Downside is that it's not an automatic feature of the drivers; it needs to be implemented in games.  Upside is that games can use the upscaling for 3D content and render menu overlays at native resolution.

    Performance gains can be better than 50% even at the highest quality settings, and it works on older cards like the Radeon 5500XT - and even older Nvidia cards like the GTX 1650, both of which are benchmarked here.

    It also works with integrated graphics, providing a health performance boost with minimal impact to image quality.





Anime of the day is Full Moon wo Sagashite which ran for 52 episodes from 2002 to 2003.  It's the cheerful story of a girl who wants to grow up to be a pop star but has throat cancer and is facing an operation that will likely destroy her vocal cords - if she's lucky - and the two shinigami - basically apprentice Grim Reapers - assigned to her case.

It's certainly a different take from the swarm of of chirpy wish-fulfilment magical girl shows like Minky Momo, Fancy Lala, Creamy Mami, Magical Emi, Pastel Yumi, Cosmic Baton Girl Comet-san, or the other one which I actually watched and have now forgotten.  The wish fulfilment element is still there but so is a you're totally still gonna die element.

Tech News



Disclaimer: Name of anime I've forgotten goes here.  I was thinking of Fancy Lala.  I couldn't work out which one was missing from my list because it wasn't missing from my list.

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Tuesday, June 22

Geek

Daily News Stuff 22 June 2021

A Plague Of Debuts Edition

Top Story

  • Leaks ahoy!



    Okay, so this is AMD's next-generation embedded processor.  Looks nice for people working on mid-range embedded systems, but doesn't do a whole lot for the rest of us.

    Except that advanced chip design is expensive.  A large chip like a CPU or GPU at modern nodes - 7nm, 6nm in this case, 5nm, costs in excess of $100 million to develop.  AMD simply doesn't have the scale to drop that much money just on an embedded design.

    This is Rembrandt, the fill-in between current Zen 3 chips and the Zen 4 chips set to arrive late next year.

    CPU performance will be basically the same as current generation - it's still Zen 3 - but with a bit of a boost from the 6nm process and the DDR5 memory.

    PCIe 4.0 is new for AMD mobile parts.  So is USB 4.0.

    The dual 10G Ethernet ports are interesting, but those might not survive in the consumer models.  Every first-generation Ryzen chip has 10G Ethernet support built in, but it's not wired up to anything.  There's a crossbar switch inside the chip that connects various on-chip I/O devices - USB, SATA, PCIe, and Ethernet - to the pins on the package.  All generations of desktop Ryzen parts have 32 PCIe lanes internally, but only 24 are available because the other pins are used for SATA and USB.

    Same deal is likely here - the consumer version will likely have more PCIe lanes but no 10G Ethernet.

    And finally, 12 RDNA2 compute units.  It's a bit hard to say how that will perform since it's a combination of the number of compute units, clock speeds, memory bandwidth, and on-chip cache.  For comparison the Xbox Series S - the cheaper one - has 20 RDNA2 compute units, but according to WCCFTech the graphics cores on this chip are clocked about 30% faster than the Xbox Series S.

    Still not a replacement for an RTX 3090, but probably capable of playing Minecraft even at 4K.




Anime of the day is Dragon Half from 1993.  There's seven volumes of manga, but just two episodes of the anime.

The anime makes no sense whatsoever but in the best possible way.  These are the closing credits, but the show is all like this.



Tech News

  • China is ruining the cryptocurrency mining ecosystem with shutdown orders - and that's a good thing.  (Tom's Hardware)

    China ruins everything.  Crypto mining ruins everything.  So what if China ruins crypto mining?


  • Well, graphics card prices come back down, for a start.  (WCCFTech)

    Slowly but steadily.  I haven't seen a 6700 XT for under $1000 just yet.




  • Rocky Linux 8.4 is here.  (Rocky Linux)

    Rocky Linux is a replacement for the late lamented CentOS project, recently killed-ish by IBM.  It's led by one of the founders of CentOS and named after another (actually late and lamented) founder.

    8.4 is the first version because the version numbers are synchronised to RedHat Enterprise Linux, for which it is a drop-in replacement.  Except free.


  • Of course, being a drop-in replacement means copying all the design flaws too.  (DoltHub)

    Dolt - why the hell did they choose that name? - is a MySQL-compatible database that supports Git operations like cloning, branching, and merging data.

    Those aren't things you'd want to do in your conventional OLTP environment, but for development and research they are amazing tools.  Want to try out some new code?  Just branch the database and run it on the branch.  Want an up-to-date local copy?  Just clone the remote database to your computer.

    Merge is likely to be a problem though.  It always is.

    Anyway, the article is about how if you want to be truly compatible you have to be compatible with all the weird shit a platform does as well as all the sane, documented shit, because no matter how screwy a feature might be, someone, somewhere, has written code that will break if you fix it.

    Microsoft understands this.

    Apple also understands this but doesn't care.


  • Eight cheap M.2 SSDs compared.  (Serve the Home)

    Not everyone needs a RAID array of 15TB enterprise drives.  Sometimes you just need something better than your seven year old hard drive.  These are that, though if your motherboard is also seven years old it won't have an M.2 slot.


  • ADATA - a memory and SSD maker included in the review above - got hit by ransomware.  (Bleeping Computer)

    They told the hackers to go fuck themselves and restored from backup.


  • Apple is designing a whole new MacBook Air.  (MacRumors)

    It will increase the count of graphics cores from 8 to 10 and have a new style of rubber feet.  On the underside, the article takes care to note.  I'm not sure where else Apple puts rubber feet, and not sure I want to know.


  • Sony has won an order from a court in Germany forcing DNS provider Quad9 to block lookups to an unnamed "popular pirate site".  (TorrentFreak)

    Quad9 is based in Switzerland, which is not (hang on) yes, not part of Germany.  Or the EU for that matter.

    The court order carries fines of €250,000 per infringing lookup - which could easily run to a trillion dollars a day - and two years in prison.


Trust No One Video of the Day



ADATA has also hit the news for changing the hardware specs of a single SSD model at least seven times.  Basically I would trust Samsung and Micron/Crucial, who manufacture their own flash, Toshiba/Kioxia likewise, probably Western Digital and Seagate, and no-one else.

Because of this bullshit it doesn't matter how good the reviews are.  You can buy the exact same model and get a different product.  Even Kingston, which has a decent reputation, is pulling this shit with their NV1 SSDs.  At least they're honest enough to not even list detailed specs.



Disclaimer: ENOWATER: Extra crispy noodles.

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