Tag Archives: Computer

Will Microsoft Disable Your Computer If You Share Fake News?!

Is Microsoft planning to disable your computer if you post or share fake news / misinformation?!

Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : Microsoft To Disable Your Computer If You Share Fake News!

People are sharing an article (archive) by The People’s Voice (formerly NewsPunch), which claims that Microsoft is planning to disable your computer if you post or share fake news / misinformation!

Microsoft To Disable Computers of Users Who Share ‘Non-Mainstream Content’ Online

Recommended : Is Interpol Investigating Bill Gates For Murder?!

 

Truth : Microsoft Won’t Disable Your Computer If You Share Fake News!

This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS created / promoted by The People’s Voice, and here are the reasons why…

Fact #1 : Microsoft Did Not Announce Plans To Disable Computers

Let me start by pointing out that Microsoft did not announce any plans to disable computers of people who share “non-mainstream” content online, in an attempt to combat “misinformation” in the run-up to the 2024 US Presidential election.

If Microsoft actually announced such plans, it would have been major news covered by news outlets all over the world. It would also have gone viral on social media, with conservative and right-wing personalities criticising those plans.

Microsoft certainly made no such announcement, and The People’s Voice offered no evidence to back up its “fact checked” claim.

Fact #2 : Satya Nadella Is Microsoft CEO, Not Bill Gates

Interestingly, The People’s Voice article used a photo of Bill Gates, even though he handed over day-to-day operations at Microsoft more than 15 years ago. He also stepped down as Microsoft Chairman, when Satya Nadella was appointed as CEO in February 2014.

If Microsoft does indeed plan to disable computers to fight fake news, that decision would have to be approved by its CEO and Chairman, Satya Nadella. Not its former founder, Bill Gates.

How is Bill Gates involved in this “story”? Nothing in the article even remotely suggests that Bill Gates is, in any way, involved in Microsoft affairs, or the non-existent plan to disable computers of people who share fake news / misinformation.

Recommended : Is Bill Gates Planning To Kill Billions Using Turbo AIDS?!

Fact #3 : Satya Nadella Never Said Anything About Disabling Computers

The People’s Voice article used a video of Lester Holt from NBC News interviewing Satya Nadella as evidence that Microsoft plans to disable computers of people who share misinformation. However, that’s completely nonsensical.

The NBC News video only shows Satya Nadella saying that the tech industry is using technological solutions like watermarking [AI created content], detecting deep fakes, and implementing content IDs, to fight disinformation and misinformation.

This is not the first election where we dealt with disinformation or propaganda campaigns by adversaries and election interference.

We’re doing all the work across the tech industry around watermarking, detecting deep fakes and content IDs. There is going to be enough and more technology quite frankly in order to be able to identify the issues around disinformation and misinformation.

Fact #4 : Microsoft Can’t “Magically” Disable Computers Remotely

Even if Microsoft is so inclined, disabling a computer remotely isn’t like waving a magic wand, or chanting “Abracadabra”!

With the possible exception of specifically hacking into your computer to gain access, or tricking you into installing malware, it is not possible for Microsoft to remotely disable your computer simply because you shared fake news or misinformation.

The People’s Voice article certainly offered no explanation of how Microsoft might conceivably disable your computer remotely… like magic!

Recommended : Is Bill Gates Facing Life Behind Bars For Child Rape?!

Fact #5 : The People’s Voice Is Known For Publishing Fake News

The People’s Voice is the current name for NewsPunch, which possibly changed its name because its brand has been so thoroughly discredited after posting numerous shocking but fake stories.

Founded as Your News Wire in 2014, it was rebranded as NewsPunch in November 2018, before becoming The People’s Voice. A 2017 BuzzFeed report identified NewsPunch as the second-largest source of popular fake news on Facebook that year.

Its articles have been regularly debunked as fake news, so you should never share anything from NewsPunch / The People’s Voice.  Here are some of its fake stories that I fact checked earlier:

Please help us FIGHT FAKE NEWS by sharing this fact check article out, and please SUPPORT our work!

 

Please Support My Work!

Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
Bank Transfer : CIMB 7064555917 (Swift Code : CIBBMYKL)
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

Recommended Reading

Go Back To > Fact Check | CybersecurityTech ARP

 

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Synology DiskStation DS223j 2-Bay NAS Review!

In this review, we are going to take a close look at the Synology DiskStation DS223j – its latest 2-bay NAS system, and find out how well it performs!

 

Synology J Series NAS Systems

The Synology J Series are its entry-level NAS systems – offering an affordable way to get networked storage for backup, or personal storage. They also have a more consumer look, with a white chassis.

The Synology J series comes in below the Value series, and lacks hot-swappable drives, and front USB ports. However, it has most of its key features, including support for the Btrfs file system.

Synology currently has two J series models – the 2-bay DS223j, and the single-bay DS120j.

 

Synology DiskStation DS223j Price

As its entry-level 2-bay NAS system, the Synology DiskStation DS223J comes at an affordable price point.

It has a suggested retail price of US$189.99 (diskless), but you can get some pretty good deals online, with or without bundled drives:

 

Synology DiskStation DS223j Specifications

Here are the key specifications of the Synology DiskStation DS223j 2-bay NAS system:

Specifications Synology DiskStation DS223j
CPU Realtek RTD1619B
4 x ARM Cortex-A55 cores @ 1.7 GHz
Hardware Encryption Engine
Memory 1 GB DDR4 (non-ECC)
Drive Bays 2
Drive Compatibility 3.5-inch SATA
2.5-inch SATA (with optional adaptor)
Hot Swappable No
Internal File System Btrfs / EXT4
NAS Features Power Recovery
Scheduled Power On/Off
Wake on LAN / WAN
Front Ports None
Rear Ports 1 x RJ-45 1GbE LAN port
2 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 ports
Internal Fan Yes, 92 mm
Noise Level 18.2 dB(A)
Thermal Output 55.62 BTU/hour (active access)
13.64 BTU/hour (HDD hibernation)
Power Consumption 16.31 W (active access)
4 W (HDD hibernation)
Power Supply 60 W power adaptor
Power Input 100 V to 240 V DC power input
50/60 Hz, single phase
Operating Temperature 0°C to 40°C (32°F to 104°F)
Storage Temperature -20°C to 60°C (-5°F to 140°F)
Size 165 mm high
100 mm wide
225.5 mm deep
Weight 0.88 grams
Warranty 2 Year Hardware Warranty

 

Synology DiskStation DS223j Box Contents

The Synology DiskStation DS223j comes in a large cardboard box, with a label to let you know exactly what’s inside the box. On opening the box, you will find the following items:

  • Synology DiskStation DS223j NAS system
  • 3.5-inch drive bay bracket
  • Pack of 10 drive screws
  • Pack of 3 chassis screws
  • Pack of 3 bracket screws
  • 60 watt power adaptor
  • AC power cord
  • RJ-45 LAN cable
  • Quick installation guide

Recommended : 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) Hard Disk Drive Review!

Next Page > Synology DS223 Performance

 

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Synology DiskStation DS223j Performance

We tested three NAS systems, with these settings:

WD MyCloud EX4100

  • 4 x 6TB WD Red drives
  • RAID 1 with EXT4 file system

Synology DS223j

Synology DS214+

  • 2 x 4TB WD Red drives
  • RAID 1 with EXT4 file system

We then compared their read and write performance to a 1TB SDD, using a Gigabit LAN connection, and these two file sets:

  • Large File : Movie with a 9.3 GB file size
  • Small Files : 2193 photos with a 9.48 GB file size

Large File Read Speed

When it comes to transferring very large files like a movie, the Synology DS223j did very well, offering an average read speed of just over 100 MB/s!

Even the much older DS214+ model did very well, almost delivering 100 MB/s of throughput, and beating out 4-bay MyCloud EX4100 by 23%!

Recommended : 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) Hard Disk Drive Review!

Large File Write Speed

However, when it comes to writing files to the NAS, the number of bays, and the drive speeds are what counts.

The 4-bay MyCloud EX4100 is far ahead, because it’s able to write to two drives at the same time (in RAID 1).

The faster 4TB Synology Plus drives used in the DS223j allowed it to pull ahead of the DS214+ by 16%.

Small Files Read Speed

This is quite a surprising result. For some reason, the Synology DS214+ did very well in this test, beating even the 4-bay MyCloud EX4100 by almost 30%!

And the Synology DS223j, which is much faster in every way, delivered a much lower speed of just under 48 MB/s.

Small Files Write Speed

That’s completely flipped when it came to write speed – copying small files to the NAS systems.

Again, the 4-bay MyCloud EX4100 has the advantage here, because it can write to two drives at the same time.

But the Synology DS223j did very well here, coming within 23% of the MyCloud EX4100. This is likely due to its faster 4TB Synology Plus drives.

Next Page > Synology DS223j Verdict + Award

 

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Synology DiskStation DS223j Verdict + Award

The Synology DiskStation DS223j is a cheap but solid 2-bay NAS system. Its plastic chassis feels cheap, but it packs all of the key features most home users would need.

You get an affordable RAID 1 backup solution, with fast Gigabit LAN connectivity, and two USB 3.0 (rebranded as USB 3.2 Gen 1) ports at the back for when you need to copy files to or from a USB flash drive or portable HDD.

It also gives you access to the excellent Synology DiskStation Manager operating system, as well as hundreds of add-on packages which you can use to add capabilities to your NAS.

Synology updates its DiskStation Manager regularly, which is great, because it fixes bugs that may cause considerable grief. For example, when I started testing the DS223j, I encountered a problem accessing it on macOS with a VPN enabled.

No matter what I did, the Mac computer simply could not “see” or “locate” the DiskStation on the network. The only way was to disable the VPN. Fortunately, the problem “magically” went away a few updates later. *

Mac users will also be happy to know that it supports Time Machine backup. While it requires some simple setting up, it works perfectly… which is not something I can say about the MyCloud EX4100!

Prosumers might want to spend a bit extra to upgrade to the non-J version – the DiskStation DS223 from the Value series. Not only does it come with a front USB port (for more convenient use), it allows you to hot swap drives.

If any drive fails on the DS223j, you will need to power it down and open it up to swap out the drive. On the non-J version, you can simply slide out the old drive and replace it with a new one without even powering down the DS223 NAS. But of course – this is a nice feature that most home users probably won’t need.

Performance-wise – the DS223j runs on the same Realtek RTD1619B process as the non-J model. Its four Arm Cortex-A55 cores is more than fast enough for transferring files. Its CPU usage is usually less than 50%. Even when I ran data scrubbing, its CPU usage was around 15% on average.

And if you are wondering about whether you can live with just 1 GB of RAM on the DS223j, yes, you can. The RAM usage is usually less than 20% on our DS223j.

Generally, if you want something cheap and good from Synology, you can’t go wrong with the DiskStation DS223j. For these reasons, we think it deserves our Reviewer’s Choice Award!

* It would have lost the award if Synology did not manage to fix the accessibility problem for macOS.

 

Synology DiskStation DS223j : Where To Buy?

As its entry-level 2-bay NAS system, the Synology DiskStation DS223J comes at an affordable price point.

It has a suggested retail price of US$189.99 (diskless), but you can get some pretty good deals online, with or without bundled drives:

 

Please Support My Work!

Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
Bank Transfer : CIMB 7064555917 (Swift Code : CIBBMYKL)
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

Recommended Reading

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4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) Hard Disk Drive Review!

In this review, we are going to take a close look at the 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) hard disk drive, and find out how well it performs!

Updated @ 2023-11-09 : Updated with operating temperature results, and minor changes.
Originally posted @ 2023-10-05

 

Synology Plus Series (HAT3300) NAS Drives

The Synology Plus Series (HAT3300) hard disk drives are designed to populate their Network-Attach Storage (NAS)  systems for homes and small businesses.

These Synology Plus Series drives are designed for light-to-intermediate use. Based on the Conventional Magnetic Recording (CMR) technology, they are similar to the WD Red and Seagate Iron Wolf range of NAS drives, with a 1 million hour MTBF and 180 TB per year workload rating.

The main advantage of these drives is that their firmware can be automatically updated using the DiskStation Manager (DSM) in Synology NAS systems.

 

4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) Price

The 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) hard disk drive commands a slight premium over comparable drives like the 4TB WD Red (Price Check) and the 4TB Seagate IronWolf (Price Check).

Retailing at about $90 as of 3 October 2023, it works out to a cost of $22.50 per TB. Here are some online purchase options:

The 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) drive also comes bundled with certain Synology NAS systems.

Recommended : MSI Hit By $4 Million Ransomware Attack + Data Theft!

 

4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) Specifications

The Synology Plus series offers storage capacities of 4TB, 6TB, 8TB and 12TB. With the exception of the 12TB model, all drives in this family are air-filled, and have a 5,400 RPM spindle speed.

The baby of this family, which we are reviewing today, is the 4TB Synology Plus drive, which has a model number of HAT3300-4T. Here are its key specifications:

Specifications 4 TB Synology Plus
Model HAT3300-4T
Capacity 4 Terabytes
Form Factor 3.5-inch
Drive Design Air
Recording Technology Conventional Magnetic Recording (CMR)
Interface SATA 6 Gb/s
Cache 256 MB
Rotational Speed 5,400 RPM
Max. Data Transfer Speed 202 MB/s
Mean Time Between Failure (MTBF) 1,000,000 hours
Workload Rating 180 TB / year
Power Consumption Idle : 3.96 W
Random Read : 4.85 W
Random Write : 4.85 W
Operating Temperature 0°C to 65°C
32°F to 149°F
Non-Operating Temperature -40°C to 70°C
-40°F to 158°F
Operating Shock 80 Gs (2 ms duration)
Non-Operating Shock 300 Gs (2 ms duration)
Operating Vibration 10 Hz to 22 Hz: 0.25 Gs, Limited displacement
22 Hz to 350 Hz: 0.50 Gs
350 Hz to 500 Hz: 0.25 Gs
Non-Operating Vibration 5 Hz to 22 Hz: 3.0 Gs
22 Hz to 350 Hz: 3.0 Gs
350 Hz to 500 Hz: 3.0 Gs
Acoustics Idle : 23 dBA
Seek : 27 dBA
Size 20.20 mm high
101.85 mm wide
147 mm long
Weight 490 g
Warranty 3 Years

 

4TB Synology Plus HDD Unboxing + Hands-On

The 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) hard disk drive comes in a large cardboard box, with a window to let you peek inside.

On opening the box, you will see that the drive is well-protected. It’s sealed in an anti-static bag, placed within a plastic enclosure, and further protected from shock and vibration by two large foam inserts.

Recommended : MSI Users At Risk Of Rogue BIOS / Firmware Updates!

Next Page > 4TB Synology Plus Features + Temperature

 

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4TB Synology Plus HDD Key Features!

The 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) hard disk drive is designed for the light-to-intermediate usage requirements of personal and SMB (small and medium business) NAS systems. Here are its key features:

Manufactured By Seagate

Synology does not make this hard disk drive, which was manufactured by Seagate. Think of this as a Seagate IronWolf hard disk drive that was customised to Synology’s requirements, and with custom firmware for Synology.

Under The PCB

In the following video, we took a look under its PCB, and here was what we found:

The 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) comes with a large 256 MB SDRAM cache, courtesy of a Samsung K4B2G1646F memory chip. This is a DDR3-1866 SDRAM chip with 16 memory banks, and a peak transfer rate of about 466 MB/s.

It also uses a Seagate Dillon motor drive controller, which features ST Microelectronics’ proprietary Smooth Drive pseudo-sinusoidal digital drive technology. The drive controller itself has a thermal pad to help keep cool, by transferring heat to the drive chassis.

Finally, this NAS drive has two sensors on its PCB, which allow it to better detect shock and vibration events, and dynamically adjust the flying height of the read/write heads to avoid head crashes.

Recommended : Samsung Unveils 2023 QLED, OLED TVs + Monitors!

Always-On Operation

The 4TB Synology Plus is backed by a million hour MTBF (Mean Time Before Failure) rating, and is rated for a workload of 180 TB per year.

That works out to 15 terabytes per month, and is about par for the course for consumer-grade NAS drives.

Easy Firmware Updates

Unlike third-party NAS drives from Western Digital or Seagate, you can easily update the firmware of the 4TB Synology Plus hard disk drive using DiskStation Manager (DSM) in Synology NAS systems.

This is a convenient feature for those who use Synology NAS systems – you won’t need to remove the drive, or use a separate computer, to update its firmware.

Low Power Consumption

Power consumption is pretty low, at just under 5 watts. Even if you run this drive 24/7, it will only consume 42.5 kW per year.

Real world usage will be significantly lower, since NAS systems are designed to power down drives during periods of inactivity.

 

4TB Synology Plus Operating Temperature

We monitored the surface temperature of the three hard disk drives while idle, and during their benchmarks. The following chart shows their operating temperature range, from idle to maximum load.

Please note that instead of giving you the absolute numbers, we are showing the temperature delta, which is the difference between the actual temperature and the ambient room temperature.

The 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) appears to run slightly hotter than the 4TB WD Red, but significantly cooler than the 6TB WD Red. This is good news, because it can get really hot inside the NAS enclosure!

Next Page > CrystalDiskMark Performance Results

 

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4TB Synology Plus CrystalDiskMark Performance Results

Let’s take a look at the 4TB Synology Plus hard disk drive’s sequential read and write performance, compared to the 4TB WD Red, and the 6TB WD Red drives.

Sequential Read Performance

With a queue depth of 1, the 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) delivered a maximum sequential read speed of 215 MB/s.

This is about 6% over its rated transfer rate of 202 MB/s, and puts it 20% ahead of the 6TB WD Red drive, and 39% ahead of the 4TB WD Red.

When queue depth increased to 8, the 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) delivered a maximum sequential read speed of just under 217 MB/s.

This is about 7% over its rated transfer rate of 202 MB/s, and puts it 20% ahead of the 6TB WD Red drive, and 38% ahead of the 4TB WD Red.

Sequential Write Performance

With a queue depth of 1, the 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) delivered a maximum sequential write speed of 214 MB/s.

This is about 6% over its rated transfer rate of 202 MB/s, and puts it 29% ahead of the 6TB WD Red drive, and 42% ahead of the 4TB WD Red.

When queue depth increased to 8, the 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) delivered a maximum sequential write speed of just over 214 MB/s.

This is about 6% over its rated transfer rate of 202 MB/s, and puts it 24% ahead of the 6TB WD Red drive, and 42% ahead of the 4TB WD Red.

Now, let’s take a look at the 4TB Synology Plus hard disk drive’s random read and write performance, compared to the 4TB WD Red, and the 6TB WD Red drives.

Random Read Performance

With a queue depth of 1, the 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) delivered a maximum random read speed of 670 KB/s.

That puts it 6% ahead of the 6TB WD Red drive, and 15.5% ahead of the 4TB WD Red.

When queue depth increased to 32, the 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) delivered a maximum random read speed of 2.08 MB/s.

That puts it on par with the 6TB WD Red drive, and just 4% ahead of the 4TB WD Red.

Random Write Performance

With a queue depth of 1, the 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) delivered a maximum random write speed of 1.85 MB/s.

That puts it 23% behind the 6TB WD Red drive, but 44.5% ahead of the 4TB WD Red.

When queue depth increased to 32, the 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) delivered a maximum random write speed of just over 1.8 MB/s.

That puts it 24% behind the 6TB WD Red drive, but 43% ahead of the 4TB WD Red.

Next Page > ATTO Results, Conclusion, Where To Buy

 

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4TB Synology Plus ATTO Benchmark Performance Results

Let’s take a look at the 4TB Synology Plus hard disk drive’s peak read and write speeds, compared to the 4TB WD Red, and the 6TB WD Red drives.

Peak Read Performance

The ATTO Benchmark shows that the 4TB Synology Plus drive delivered a peak read speed of just under 205 MB/s, putting it 12% ahead of the 6TB WD Red, and 36% ahead of the 4TB WD Red.

Peak Write Performance

The ATTO Benchmark shows that the 4TB Synology Plus drive delivered a peak write speed of just over 205 MB/s, putting it 25% ahead of the 6TB WD Red, and 48% ahead of the 4TB WD Red.

Peak Read IOPS

The ATTO Benchmark shows that the 4TB Synology Plus drive delivered a peak read IOPS of just under 64.75K, putting it 50% ahead of the 6TB WD Red, and 65% ahead of the 4TB WD Red.

Peak Write IOPS

The ATTO Benchmark shows that the 4TB Synology Plus drive delivered a peak write IOPS of just over 61.25K, putting it 46% ahead of the 6TB WD Red, and an incredible 81% ahead of the 4TB WD Red.

 

4 TB Synology Plus Review Conclusion

The 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) is, without doubt, a fast NAS hard disk drive. Our benchmark results show that it consistently outperforms the 4TB and 6TB Western Digital Red drives.

It may be sold at a slight price premium, but its better performance and the ability to conveniently upgrade its firmware (rare as that may be) directly using the DiskStation Manager (DSM) makes it a no-brainer choice for Synology NAS users.

If you are planning to use a Synology NAS system for your home or SMB use, you would be well-served to purchase the Synology Plus drive to populate it. We definitely think it deserves our Reviewer’s Choice Award!

 

4 TB Synology Plus : Where To Buy?

The 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) hard disk drive retails at about $89.90 as of 3 October 2023, it works out to a cost of $22.50 per TB. Here are some online purchase options:

The 4TB Synology Plus (HAT3300-4T) drive also comes bundled with certain Synology NAS systems.

 

Please Support My Work!

Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
Bank Transfer : CIMB 7064555917 (Swift Code : CIBBMYKL)
Credit Card / Paypal : https://paypal.me/techarp

Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

Recommended Reading

Go Back To > First Page | Computer | Tech ARP

 

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Please support us by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or donating to our fund. Thank you!

Was Bill Gates Destroyed In ABC News Interview?!

Was Bill Gates just destroyed in an ABC News interview with Sarah Ferguson?!

Take a look at the viral video, and find out what the facts really are!

Updated @ 2023-10-07 : Updated with new information after video went viral again
Originally posted @ 2023-03-08

 

Claim : Bill Gates Was Destroyed In ABC News Interview!

People are sharing a TikTok video with the title “Bill Gates caught in corner”, which shows Bill Gates getting destroyed in a recent ABC News interview.

Here are the accompanying subtitles from the interview, but it’s rather long, so feel free to skip to the next section for the facts!

ABC News : So Mr Gates, in your own words, what have you contributed to the world?

Bill Gates : Um I’m not sure if you’re aware, but I created the world’s most popular computer operating system.

Recommended : Is Bill Gates Releasing Millions of GMO Mosquitoes?!

 

Truth : Bill Gates Was NOT Destroyed In ABC News Interview!

This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS created to go viral on TikTok, and here are the reasons why…

Fact #1 : ABC News Interviewed Bill Gates On Jan 31, 2023

First, let’s start by sharing some basic context on the ABC News interview with Bill Gates.

The interview was conducted by Australian Broadcasting Corporation journalist, Sarah Ferguson, on her current affairs show – 7.30, and released on Tuesday, 31 January 2023.

Fact #2 : ABC News Did Not Destroy Bill Gates In That Interview

Anyone who watches the actual ABC News interview of Bill Gates will be puzzled by the viral video and claim, because Sarah Ferguson never “destroyed” Bill Gates.

You can read all about her interview and even watch the video in an article written by Sarah Ferguson and her colleague Myles Wearring. In her interview, she only asked Bill Gates about:

  • COVID-19 conspiracy theories
  • Elon Musk buying Twitter
  • the rise of artificial intelligence
  • climate change and renewable energy
  • his association with Jeffrey Epstein
  • his philanthropy, and pledge to give away most of his wealth

Sarah Ferguson ended the interview by thanking Bill Gates, who only nods. He never quit the interview in frustration as shown in the viral video.

Fact #3 : Gates Foundation Called Viral Video Fake

The media department for the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation labelled the viral video as fake:

We confirm that the audio in this altered video is fake.

Recommended : Did Philippines Issue Arrest Warrant For Bill Gates?!

Fact #4 : Viral Video Was Edited Using Artificial Intelligence

The viral video was created by a TikTok creator called bdti989, who posted it with the caption:

How dangerous AI can be 😱
#BillGates #billgates #microsoft #Microsoft #followformore #follow #msdos #uops #ups #ops #world #interview #interviews #artificialintelligence #ai

bdti989 also stated several times that he edited the ABC News interview using artificial intelligence. It is basically a deep fake video.

Yes, it’s AI generated!

Fact #5 : Fake Video Was Not Satire

While some people are trying to justify the creation and/or sharing the video as “satire”, that is not true. Even the content creator himself did not call it satire.

bdti989 does not appear to create satire. His account is full of typical edited news content pushing right wing conspiracies, not satire.

Most of his videos aren’t particularly popular, typically with less than 3,000 views. Only his AI-generated fake video of the ABC News interview of Bill Gates has gone viral, with over 1.4 million views.

It is likely he created it to test his ability to create fake videos using artificial intelligence. Hopefully, it does not inspire him to create more of such deep fake videos to increase the popularity of his TikTok channel.

Fact #6 : Bill Gates Was A Notable Programmer

Regardless of what we may think of Bill Gates as a businessman and/or person, he was well regarded as a programmer. Both Gates and Paul Allen developed Altair BASIC – a BASIC programming interpreter for the MITS Altair 8800 and S-100 computers.

Paul Allen would famously write a bootstrap program for it during a flight to demonstrate their Altair BASIC interpreter, but Bill Gates would famously win the bet on who could write the shortest possible bootstrap program.

Fact #6 : MS-DOS Was Not Created By Gary Kildall

Gary Kildall (wrongly named as Gary Kildahl in the fake video) was the creator of the CP/M operating system that was once considered by IBM for its first PC.

Bill Gates not only did not steal MS-DOS from Gary Kildall, it was Gates who suggested that IBM should purchase CP/M-86 from Kildall for its forthcoming PC.

However, Gary Kildall famously went flying on his private plane instead of meeting IBM representatives, and they failed to reach an agreement.

Fact #7 : MS-DOS Was Based On 86-DOS

MS-DOS (wrongly named as Emma’s DOS in the fake video) was based on 86-DOS from Seattle Computer Products.

After IBM and Digital Research failed to reach an agreement on CP/M-86, IBM lead negotiator Jack Sams asked Bill Gates to find a usable operating system for the IBM PC. Gates later proposed using 86-DOS.

Microsoft then purchased a non-exclusive licence for 86-DOS in December 1980 for US$25,000, and hired Tim Paterson to port it to the IBM PC, so it would work on the Intel 8086 processor. IBM would submit over 300 change requests before accepting the final port.

It was only in July 1981 – a month before IBM released the PC, that Microsoft purchased all rights to 86-DOS from Seattle Computer Products for US$50,000. Microsoft then licensed the modified 86-DOS to IBM, and it became PC DOS 1.0.

In short, MS-DOS (rebranded from PC DOS) was based on 86-DOS, which was a different operating system from CP/M invented by Gary Kildall.

Kildall would later persuade IBM to offer CP/M-86 with the PC. That would not be possible if Kildall really sold CP/M to Microsoft “for a couple of dollars” as the fake video alleges.

Recommended : Is Interpol Investigating Bill Gates For Murder?!

Fact #8 : COVID-19 Vaccines Have Been Proven Safe + Effective

Anti-vaccination proponents are not interested in your health, which is why they keep lying about the safety and efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines.

The truth is – COVID-19 vaccines were only approved AFTER they have undergone extensive safety and efficacy tests, involving tens of thousands of volunteers.

And even after receiving Emergency Use Authorisation and full FDA approval, they continue to be monitored for safety and efficacy.

The reason why doctors and health authorities STRONGLY advocate vaccination is because the vaccines have been PROVEN to protect the vast majority of people from getting COVID-19 in the first place.

And even if you do get infected after vaccination, the vaccine will protect you against hospitalisation and death from COVID-19.

Please help us FIGHT FAKE NEWS by sharing this fact check article out, and please SUPPORT our work!

 

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Malaysia Airlines Passengers Won’t Need To Turn Off Devices!

Passengers on Malaysia Airlines, Firefly and MASwings won’t need to switch off personal devices during take-off and landing! Here is what you need to know!

 

Malaysia Airlines Passengers Won’t Need To Turn Off Devices!

On Tuesday, 28 June 2023, the Malaysia Aviation Group (MAG) announced that its airlines – Malaysia Airlines, Firefly, and MASwings – are the first airlines to enable Gate-to-Gate connectivity for passengers by the Civil Aviation Authority of Malaysia (CAAM).

From 1 July 2023 onwards, passengers on three airlines can keep their personal devices switched on at all times. There is no longer the need to switch off your phone, tablet, laptop, or other devices, or stow them during take-off or landing.

As long as those devices must have their wireless connectivity turned off using the “Airplane Mode” or “Flight Mode“, you can continue to use them during take-off, or landing. This allows you to continue working on your laptop, or watch downloaded content on your phone or tablet during the entire journey, without interruption.

With this new regulatory approval, Malaysia Airlines, Firefly, and MASwings are the first airlines to allow Gate-to-Gate connectivity for passengers departing from Malaysia.

We are committed to providing exceptional customer service and innovative travel experiences which places customers at the heart of everything we do.

By enabling gate-to-gate connectivity across all our airlines, it allows passengers to stay connected throughout their journey with us; whether it’s to keep their loved ones updated on the move or even get some work done during their flight.

– MAG CEO Ahmad Luqman Mohd Azmi

Recommended : 2023 Public + School Holidays For Malaysia!

 

Malaysia Airlines To Provide Free Wi-Fi For 2H 2023!

Malaysia Airlines also announced that it will provide limited free Wi-Fi connectivity to its Business Suite, Business Class, and Enrich Platinum (regardless of ticket class) passengers from 1 July until 31 December 2023.

Each passenger will be given up to 100 MB of free Wi-Fi data per sector to use, at a speed of up to 512 kbps. This free Wi-Fi offer will be made available on 20 Malaysia Airlines aircraft.

Beyond that free limit, passengers can continue to surf the Internet through its pay-per-use Wi-Fi offering. In addition, all passengers can access its wireless in-flight entertainment system through its web-based MHStudio service.

As part of our connectivity strategy, we will be actively expanding the number of our aircraft equipped with Wi-Fi to provide an improved in-flight experience to our valued customers. With a focus on safety, comfort, and convenience, we are dedicated to making air travel more accessible and enjoyable for all of our passengers.

We will continue to invest in innovative technologies and services to meet the changing needs and provide comfort to our passengers as guests to our ‘home’.

– MAG CEO Ahmad Luqman Mohd Azmi

Recommended : Did FedEx + Southwest Jets Almost Collide In Video?!

The wireless connectivity onboard MAS aircraft, and passenger ability to use their devices from Gate-to-Gate, will come in handy with the refreshed Boeing 737 cabin, which feature lightweight seats that lack in-flight entertainment screens.

Instead, these new seats will come with a personal device holder, and a pair of USB Type A and USB Type C charging ports.

 

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Gigabyte motherboards shipped with firmware backdoor!

Millions of Gigabyte motherboards and laptops shipped with a built-in backdoor in its UEFI firmware!

Here is what you need to know about this cybersecurity danger, and what you can do about it!

 

Gigabyte Motherboards Shipped With Firmware Backdoor!

On 31 May 2023, researchers at the cybersecurity firm Eclypsium revealed that 271 Gigabyte motherboard models have been compromised with UEFI firmware with a built-in backdoor!

Eclypsium’s heuristic detection methods recently began flagging suspicious backdoor-like behaviour in Gigabyte motherboards. When its researchers looked into it, they found that Gigabyte motherboard firmware was executing a Windows native executable during the system start up process. This executable then insecurely downloads and executes additional payloads.

From their analysis, the executable appears to be a legitimate Gigabyte module called WpbtDxe.efi:

  • it checks to see if the “APP Center Download & Install” feature is enabled
  • it downloads executable payloads from Gigabyte servers
  • it has a Gigabyte cryptographic signature

They also found that the downloaded payloads have Gigabyte cryptographic signatures too, which suggest that this firmware backdoor was implemented by Gigabyte itself.

However, Eclypsium researchers discovered that the Gigabyte implementation had a number of problems, which would make it easy for threat actors to abuse the firmware backdoor:

  • one of its payload download locations lacks SSL (using plain HTTP, instead of the more secure HTTPS), allowing for Machine-in-the-middle (MITM) attacks
  • remote server certificate validation was not implemented correctly even when the other two HTTPS download locations were used, which allows for MITM attacks
  • one of its payload download locations is a local network-attacked storage device (NAS), which could allow a threat actor to spoof the location of the NAS to install their own malware
  • the Gigabyte firmware itself does not verify any cryptographic signatures, or validates the downloaded executables.

In short – millions of Gigabyte motherboards have a cybersecurity vulnerability, due to their firmware which includes an insecure / vulnerable OEM backdoor. As John Loucaides from Eclypsium put it:

If you have one of these machines, you have to worry about the fact that it’s basically grabbing something from the Internet and running it without you being involved, and hasn’t done any of this securely.

The concept of going underneath the end user and taking over their machine doesn’t sit well with most people.

Note : This vulnerability affects all computers using Gigabyte motherboards, including laptops.

 

Gigabyte Rolls Out New Firmware To Mitigate Backdoor!

After the news blew up inconveniently during Computex 2023, Gigabyte quickly rolled out new beta firmware upgrades for its AMD and Intel motherboards.

According to Gigabyte, the new beta firmware upgrades have “improved security mechanisms” that will “detect and prevent malicious activities during the boot process“. It also appeared to have implemented other changes:

  • enhanced the signature verification process for fils downloaded from its remote servers
  • conduct more thorough checks of file integrity to prevent the introduction of malicious code
  • enabled standard cryptographic verification of remote server certificates

The new firmware has just been released for AMD 600-series motherboards, as well as Intel 500- and 400-series motherboards, but will eventually be introduced for older motherboards. The new firmware will have the description, “Addresses Download Assistant Vulnerabilities Reported by Eclypsium Research“.

As Gigabyte does not intend to remove the backdoor feature, you might want to consider Eclypsium’s advice on how best to reduce the risk of malicious actors taking advantage:

  1. Scan and monitor systems and firmware updates in order to detect affected Gigabyte systems and the backdoor-like tools embedded in firmware. Update systems to the latest validated firmware and software in order to address security issues like this one.
  2. Inspect and disable the “APP Center Download & Install” feature in UEFI/BIOS Setup on Gigabyte systems and set a BIOS password to deter malicious changes.
  3. Administrators can also block the following URLs:
    – http://mb.download.gigabyte.com/FileList/Swhttp/LiveUpdate4
    – https://mb.download.gigabyte.com/FileList/Swhttp/LiveUpdate4
    – https://software-nas/Swhttp/LiveUpdate4

For starters, you should definitely download and update your Gigabyte motherboard or laptop with the improved firmware. Then disable APP Center Download & Install in the BIOS.

Let’s hope Gigabyte will be able to quickly issue new and improved firmware to mitigate, if not remove, the backdoor vulnerability for the affected 271 motherboard models, and its future motherboards and laptops. Even so, many users might not be aware of this vulnerability or these updates.

It seems likely that threat actors will have access to this backdoor vulnerability in many Gigabyte motherboards and laptops for years to come. Even Eclypsium’s Loucaides believes so:

I still think this will end up being a fairly pervasive problem on Gigabyte boards for years to come.

 

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MSI Users At Risk Of Rogue BIOS / Firmware Updates!

MSI users are at risk of rogue BIOS / firmware updates, after hackers got hold of its source codes, private keys and BIOS firmware!

 

MSI Hit By Ransomware Attack + Data Theft!

On 7 April 2023, MSI (Micro-Star International) was hit by a ransomware attack, in which the hackers allegedly exfiltrated 1.5 terabytes of source codes, BIOS firmware, private keys and other data from its servers.

In its terse regulatory filing with the Taiwan Stock Exchange (TWSE), MSI admitted that it was hacked, but did not detail the circumstances or nature of the attack.

After detecting some information systems being attacked by hackers,MSI’s IT department has initiated information security defense mechanism and recovery procedures. The Company also has been reported the anomaly to the relevant government authorities.

MSI claimed that the attack had “[no] significant impact our business in terms of financial and operational currently“, but said that it was “enhancing the information security control measures of its network and infrastructure to ensure data security.

In a public statement, MSI also urged users to only obtain firmware / BIOS updates from its official website, and refrain from using other sources.

Read more : MSI Hit By $4 Million Ransomware Attack + Data Theft!

 

Stolen Data Exposes MSI Users To Rogue BIOS / Firmware Updates!

The MSI ransomware attack and data theft appear to be committed by the Money Message ransomware gang, which has threatened to release the 1.5 terabytes of critical data that it exfiltrated from MSI servers.

While MSI has apparently restored files encrypted by the ransomware, exposure of the private keys and source codes, will likely allow Money Message or other threat actors to develop rogue BIOS or firmware updates.

Installing rogue BIOS / firmware updates will give the malware the access level of a super-low-level rootkit, giving it full control over your computer, with the ability to spy on almost everything you do. Such malware will also be extremely difficult to detect and remove. After all, it boots up before the operating system!

These days, rogue BIOS or firmware updates are much less of a problem because they are usually digitally-signed by the vendor, MSI in this case. Even if threat actors distribute Trojanised downloads for MSI users, they cannot create the right digital signatures for those files.

However, now that MSI’s private keys have been stolen, they can be used to create rogue BIOS or firmware updates with authentic digital signatures! MSI users downloading and installing those updates will never know the difference.

Recommended : Can Approve New Participant block WhatsApp hackers?!

The biggest risk right now is with PC hardware enthusiasts who enjoy installing unofficial firmware updates to gain access to special settings. That is precisely why MSI is urging its users to only download files from its official website.

Of course, this assumes that the MSI download servers are secure, and have not been compromised. If the threat actors have access to the MSI download servers, they can insert Trojanised downloads with proper signatures, and MSI system administrators may be none the wiser!

Let’s hope that this incident forces MSI to take a much closer look at its cybersecurity measures, and run penetration tests to ensure that its download servers are secure. Otherwise, some threat actors will likely hit pay dirt with MSI users!

 

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Apple MFI plan to limit speed, power on USB-C leaked!

Apple may be planning to limit data transfer and charging speed on USB-C ports used in its devices, by introducing MFI certification!

 

Earlier : Apple Forced To Adopt USB-C Port!

Apple has been hesitant about moving to the superior USB-C port for years, limiting it to Mac computers and iPad tablets.

The 12-inch MacBook was the first Mac computer to get USB-C in 2015, while the 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro tablets made the switch from Lighting to USB-C in 2018. However, Apple stubbornly refused to migrate its iPhones to USB-C.

The choice to stick with their proprietary Lightning port was taken out of their hands on October 4, 2022, when the European Parliament voted decisively to adopt the USB-C (USB Type C) port as the new standard for all portable devices.

By the end of 2024, all portable devices sold in the EU must come with a USB-C charging port. This directive is more or less directed at Apple, which is the only brand that continues to use its own proprietary Lighting connector.

Read more : EU Orders All Brands To Use USB-C, Including Apple!

 

Apple MFI plan to limit speed, power on USB-C leaked!

Now that the EU is firmly forcing everyone to use USB-C, Apple will start using the USB Type C port in its upcoming iPhone 15 models.

However, Apple apparently isn’t going to give up its lucrative side gig of selling its users MFI (Made for iPhone) cables and accessories at exorbitant prices.

According to ShrimpApplePro, who accurately leaked on the iPhone 14, Apple will introduce MFI for its USB-C cables and accessories.

And even worse – cables that lack MFI certification will have their data and charging speeds limited.

Yeah usb-c with MFI is happening

Foxconn already in mass production accessories like EarPods and cables

Cables w no MFI will be software limited in data and charging speed

MFI-certified cables have a small authenticator chip to verify that they are “certified” to work with Apple devices. If you use cables that lack this authenticator chip, you will get the “This accessory is not supported” warning on your Apple device.

Apple gets paid for every authenticator chip, so MFI cables and accessories are priced at a premium, even if they work just as well as non-MFI cables and accessories.

Apple is already expected to limit the iPhone 15 base model, and iPhone 15 Plus, to USB 2.0 data transfer speeds of up to 480 Mbps (60 MB/s), while Pro models will get the much higher transfer rates of 20 Gbps (USB-C 3.2) or even 40 Gbps (Thunderbolt 3).

People may not bat an eye at Apple limiting data transfer speeds to differentiate their Pro models from the non-Pro models, but limiting battery recharging speeds for non-MFI cables should ruffle some feathers. After all, there is technically no good reason why Apple cannot allow their devices to benefit from faster charging using non-MFI cables.

Naturally, Apple benefits financially from introducing MFI for USB-C. It will force Apple users to pay the notorious “Apple tax” on top of the “Apple premium” they paid for their Apple devices.

Imagine if Apple introduces MFI for USB-C and phases that in for future Mac computers and iPad tablets, as well as the upcoming iPhone 15 smartphones. Even those who have been happily using regular, non-MFI USB-C cables will have to switch them to MFI cables, and for what?

There is really no discernible benefit for Apple users to use MFI-certified cables over regular USB-C cables. It’s not like they will give your Apple devices magical powers. If there is any reduction in transfer rate or charging speed, it will only happen because Apple intentionally chose to make it so.

Of course, this leak may turn out to be true, and Apple may not be quite so evil as to foist the MFI tax on its loyal users. But I fear that Apple believes its users are more loyal than discerning, and will yet again, quietly pay for MFI cables just because Apple said so.

 

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Apple To Move MORE iPhone Production Out Of China!

Apple has accelerated its plans to leave Zhengzhou in China, where the massive iPhone City manufacturing zone is located!

 

Apple To Move MORE iPhone Production Out Of China!

As anti-government protests continue across China, Apple is accelerating its plans to leave Zhengzhou – where the massive iPhone City manufacturing zone is located!

Apple CEO Tim Cook is now eyeing Vietnam and India as new manufacturing hubs to replace Zhengzhou, where Foxconn workers earlier fled amidst repeated protests.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Apple now plans to move to 45% of iPhone production to factories in India, and ramp up production of its MacBooks, Apple Watches and AirPods in Vietnam.

Those moves come with serious challenges as Apple faces having to deal with different regional government bureaucracies in India.

Meanwhile, Vietnam only has 10% of China’s population, and can only handle a 60,000 person factory – far smaller than the 300,000 person “iPhone City” in Zhengzhou.

So Apple is still considering switching to other suppliers in China – Luxshare Precision Industry Co. and Wingtech Technology Co., although these alternate plans may be jeopardised by the Chinese government’s persistence with its Zero COVID policy.

Read more : China Lifts Some COVID-19 Restrictions Over Protests!

 

Apple Earlier Planned To Move iPhone Production Out Of China!

While Apple had been planning the move for months due to the Chinese government’s insistence on Zero COVID policy, the recent uprisings at its Zhengzhou manufacturing hub has accelerated those plans.

In November, iPhone City in Zhengzhou erupted in violent protests by Foxconn employees over strict Zero COVID policies and pay disputes, prompting a lockdown.

This forced Foxconn to offer $1,400 to quit their jobs, and later, a $1,800 bonus to stay. Even so, manufacturing at Zhengzhou is down to about 20% of its capacity.

Foxconn has tried to shift some of its production to its Shenzhen factory, but it cannot make up the shortfall, which is reported to be as much as 6 million iPhone Pro smartphones.

Things got so bad the Chinese government even called on military veterans and CCP members to work at the iPhone City factories as volunteers!

 

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How NVIDIA A800 Bypasses US Chip Ban On China!

Find out how NVIDIA created the new A800 GPU to bypass the US ban on sale of advanced chips to China!

 

NVIDIA Offers A800 GPU To Bypass US Ban On China!

Two months after it was banned by the US government from selling high-performance AI chips to China, NVIDIA introduced a new A800 GPU designed to bypass those restrictions.

The new NVIDIA A800 is based on the same Ampere microarchitecture as the A100, which was used as the performance baseline by the US government.

Despite its numerically larger model number (the lucky number 8 was probably picked to appeal to the Chinese), this is a detuned part, with slightly reduced performance to meet export control limitations.

The NVIDIA A800 GPU, which went into production in Q3, is another alternative product to the NVIDIA A100 GPU for customers in China.

The A800 meets the U.S. government’s clear test for reduced export control and cannot be programmed to exceed it.

NVIDIA is probably hoping that the slightly slower NVIDIA A800 GPU will allow it to continue supplying China with A100-level chips that are used to power supercomputers and high-performance datacenters for artificial intelligence applications.

As I will show you in the next section, except in very high-end applications, there won’t be truly significant performance difference between the A800 and the A100. So NVIDIA customers who want or need the A100 will have no issue opting for the A800 instead.

However, this can only be a stopgap fix, as NVIDIA is stuck selling A100-level chips to China until and unless the US government changes its mind.

Read more : AMD, NVIDIA Banned From Selling AI Chips To China!

 

How Fast Is The NVIDIA A800 GPU?

The US government considers the NVIDIA A100 as the performance baseline for its export control restrictions on China.

Any chip equal or faster to that Ampere-based chip, which was launched on May 14, 2020, is forbidden to be sold or exported to China. But as they say, the devil is in the details.

The US government didn’t specify just how much slower chips must be, to qualify for export to China. So NVIDIA could technically get away by slightly detuning the A100, while offering almost the same performance level.

And that was what NVIDIA did with the A800 – it is basically the A100 with a 33% slower NVLink interconnect speed. NVIDIA also limited the maximum number of GPUs supported in a single server to 8.

That only slightly reduces the performance of A800 servers, compare to A100 servers, while offering the same amount of GPU compute performance. Most users will not notice the difference.

The only significant impediment is on the very high-end – Chinese companies are now restricted to a maximum of eight GPUs per server, instead of up to sixteen.

To show you what I mean, I dug into the A800 specifications, and compared them to the A100 below:

NVIDIA A100 vs A800 : 80GB PCIe Version

Specifications A100
80GB PCIe
A800
80GB PCIe
FP64 9.7 TFLOPS
FP64 Tensor Core 19.5 TFLOPS
FP32 19.5 TFLOPS
Tensor Float 32 156 TFLOPS
BFLOAT 16 Tensor Core 312 TFLOPS
FP16 Tensor Core 312 TFLOPS
INT8 Tensor Core 624 TOPS
GPU Memory 80 GB HBM2
GPU Memory Bandwifth 1,935 GB/s
TDP 300 W
Multi-Instance GPU Up to 7 MIGs @ 10 GB
Interconnect NVLink : 600 GB/s
PCIe Gen4 : 64 GB/s
NVLink : 400 GB/s
PCIe Gen4 : 64 GB/s
Server Options 1-8 GPUs

NVIDIA A100 vs A800 : 80GB SXM Version

Specifications A100
80GB SXM
A800
80GB SXM
FP64 9.7 TFLOPS
FP64 Tensor Core 19.5 TFLOPS
FP32 19.5 TFLOPS
Tensor Float 32 156 TFLOPS
BFLOAT 16 Tensor Core 312 TFLOPS
FP16 Tensor Core 312 TFLOPS
INT8 Tensor Core 624 TOPS
GPU Memory 80 GB HBM2
GPU Memory Bandwifth 2,039 GB/s
TDP 400 W
Multi-Instance GPU Up to 7 MIGs @ 10 GB
Interconnect NVLink : 600 GB/s
PCIe Gen4 : 64 GB/s
NVLink : 400 GB/s
PCIe Gen4 : 64 GB/s
Server Options 4/ 8 / 16 GPUs 4 / 8 GPUs

NVIDIA A100 vs A800 : 40GB PCIe Version

Specifications A100
40GB PCIe
A800
40GB PCIe
FP64 9.7 TFLOPS
FP64 Tensor Core 19.5 TFLOPS
FP32 19.5 TFLOPS
Tensor Float 32 156 TFLOPS
BFLOAT 16 Tensor Core 312 TFLOPS
FP16 Tensor Core 312 TFLOPS
INT8 Tensor Core 624 TOPS
GPU Memory 40 GB HBM2
GPU Memory Bandwifth 1,555 GB/s
TDP 250 W
Multi-Instance GPU Up to 7 MIGs @ 10 GB
Interconnect NVLink : 600 GB/s
PCIe Gen4 : 64 GB/s
NVLink : 400 GB/s
PCIe Gen4 : 64 GB/s
Server Options 1-8 GPUs

 

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US Targets Chinese Military With New Chip Export Ban!

The US government just imposed sweeping chip and chipmaking export restrictions that target Chinese military capabilities!

 

US Targets Chinese Military With New Chip Export Ban!

On Friday, October 7, 2022, the US government announced new regulations on computer chips and chipmaking technologies designed to target Chinese military capabilities.

The stated goal of these new export restrictions is to “block the People’s Liberation Army and China’s domestic surveillance apparatus from gaining access to advanced computing capabilities that require the use of advanced semiconductors.

According to US officials, these rules target not only the sale and export of chips, but also the tools and software that might help the Chinese military in any way, including aiding the development of weapons of mass destruction.

Unlike earlier rules that target specific Chinese companies (like HUAWEI), the new rules have far greater reach, covering everything from chips made by AMD and NVIDIA, to complex and expensive hardware and software used to design and manufacture semiconductor chips.

These rules, some of which go into effect immediately, build on existing restrictions that were earlier applied to top chip toolmaking companies in the US, like KLA Corporation, Lam Research Corporation, and Applied Material Incorporated.

It’s not just advanced chips used for AI computing and national security or military applications that are being targeted.

The new rules are more generic, and forbid US companies from selling technologies to indigenous Chinese companies that will enable the production of:

  • DRAM chips at 18 nm or below,
  • NAND flash chips at 128 layers or above, and
  • logic chips at 14 nm or below.

Even foreign companies operating China are somewhat affected. US companies will need to obtain a license to export more advanced equipment to them.

But in a concession to South Korea, the US government will spare SK Hynix and Samsung from these measures. US companies will be able to continue supplying their production facilities in China.

Many of the rules aim to block foreign companies from selling advanced chips or chipmaking technologies and tools to China. However, the US government will need to “lean” on those countries to introduce similar measures.

Most advanced chips are manufactured in South Korea and Taiwan. If they continue to export to China, they will allow China to bypass US restrictions.

Read more : Biden To Hit China With More Chip Restrictions!

 

Chinese Government Criticised US Chip Export Ban

On Saturday, the Chinese government criticised the new US chip export ban, calling it a violation of International economic and trade rules that will “isolate and backfire” on the US.

Out of the need to maintain its sci-tech hegemony, the U.S. abuses export control measures to maliciously block and suppress Chinese companies.

It will not only damage the legitimate rights and interests of Chinese companies, but also affect American companies’ interest.

– Mao Ning, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson

Despite Mao’s assertions that US actions will not stop China’s progress, the new wide-ranging chip and chipmaking export ban will undoubtedly be detrimental to the Chinese semiconductor industry, and set back its attempts at indigenous production by many years.

On the other hand, this export ban will spur China to redouble its efforts to develop its own chipmaking capabilities, and possibly “strike back” by restricting exports of rare earths to US companies.

Read more : Did China Make 7nm Chips In Spite Of US Sanctions?!

 

US Chip Export Rules Affecting Chinese Companies Summarised

Here is a summary of the new restrictions that take effect on Friday (October 7, 2022):

  • Tools that are capable of producing logic chips made using fin field-effect transistors (FinFET) are blocked from sale to China.
  • Tools capable of fabricating NAND flash storage chips with 128-layer technology or greater, and DRAM based on 18-nanometer half-pitch or less technology are blocked from sale to China.
  • Servicing and maintenance of restricted tools are also banned, which would prevent keeping advanced equipment in good enough shape to keep producing quality chips at high volume.
  • US citizens currently servicing or supporting tools on the restricted list must halt their activities by Wednesday, October 12.
  • Export of items that China can use to make its own chip manufacturing tools, such as a photolithography light source and other specialised components are also blocked from sale to China.

The US Commerce Department also enacted these additional measures on Friday:

  • 31 Chinese entities were added to the Unverified List, which consists of companies that the US government believes could divert technology that they purchase to restricted entities.
  • The Commerce Department expanded the scope of controls for the 28 Chinese firms already on the US Entity List, including presumptively denying any licenses because of the risk they will divert technology to the Chinese military.

Then two weeks later, these restrictions will take effect on Friday, October 21, 2022:

  • Using a new foreign direct product rule, the U.S. will block any chips that used in advanced computing and artificial intelligence applications.
  • The foreign direct product rule can block chips made by non-US companies — including Chinese chip designers — if they use American technology or software.
  • TSMC may be forced by this new rule to halt production on advanced AI or supercomputer chips designed by Chinese firms that are fabricated in Taiwan, unless it gets an exemption.
  • A new foreign direct product rule will apply to components and chips destined for supercomputers in China.

 

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EVGA Quits GPU Business Over NVIDIA Disrespect!

EVGA just confirmed that it is quitting the GPU business for good, citing disrespect and unfair behaviour by NVIDIA!

Here is what we know so far…

 

EVGA Won’t Produce Next-Gen NVIDIA Graphics Cards!

EVGA has been a long-time NVIDIA partner for over 20 years, and exclusively produces only graphics cards based on their GPUs.

But on 16 September 2022, the veteran NVIDIA partner confirmed that it was quitting the graphics card business for good in a terse community forum post.

EVGA will continue to sell the current GeForce RTX 30-series graphics cards, and support their existing customers.

However, it will no longer produce the next-generation GeForce RTX 40-series (Lovelace) graphics cards.

Hi all,

You may have heard some news regarding the next generation products from EVGA. Please see below for a message on future products and s

  • EVGA will not carry the next generation graphics cards.
  • EVGA will continue to support the existing current generation products.
  • EVGA will continue to provide the current generation products.

EVGA is committed to our customers and will continue to offer sales and support on the current lineup. Also, EVGA would like to say thank you to our great community for the many years of support and enthusiasm for EVGA graphics cards.

EVGA Management

The majority – about 78% – of EVGA’s revenue comes from sales of its NVIDIA GeForce RTX graphics cards, which will run out eventually.

But the company does not plan to layoff its employees even after they finish selling their stock of RTX 30-series graphics cards. Instead, it will focus on other products like motherboards and power supplies, although it does not plan to expand into new product lines.

EVGA is not even entertaining the idea of “working with Intel or AMD” to produce graphics cards. It will quit the graphics card business for good.

The California-based company currently employs about 280 people worldwide, and employees currently working on graphics cards will be reassigned to other departments, although it also expects some “attrition” to take place.

 

EVGA Quits GPU Business Over NVIDIA Disrespect!

While EVGA did not officially mention the reasons for its drastic decision, it was apparently over the way NVIDIA disrespected them and behaved unfairly.

EVGA CEO Andrew Han pointed out that the margin on graphics cards is incredibly thin, and they make 300% more profit on power supplies. Yet NVIDIA was a bad partner to them.

  • NVIDIA would not tell EVGA their cost price for GPUs before announcing the price of cards like the RTX 3080, making it difficult for EVGA to figure out how much to charge for their own cards.
  • NVIDIA sends journalists drivers for the new graphics cards before sending them to EVGA
  • NVIDIA keeps EVGA in the dark about how many GPUs it would receive.
  • NVIDIA competes directly with EVGA with their Founders Edition cards. EVGA complained that it had to sell high-end cards like the RTX 3080 and RTX 3090 at a loss of “hundreds of dollars” to compete with the Founders Edition cards.
  • NVIDIA blocks partners from selling cards below a price floor for some models, and above a price ceiling for other models.

Han reportedly said that “the decision to stop working with NVIDIA was easy, because working with NVIDIA was so hard”.

This discontent had been simmering for a long time, and NVIDIA leadership was well-aware as far back as April 2022.

When asked for a response to those allegations, NVIDIA spokesperson Bryan Del Rizzo said :

We’ve had a great partnership with EVGA over the years and will continue to support them on our current generation of products. We wish Andrew [Han] and our friends at EVGA all the best.

Even though EVGA has been with NVIDIA since the RIVA TNT2 days in 1999, the GPU giant probably couldn’t care less as they can still count on their other “partners” to fill in the hole.

 

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Google Pixelbook Is Dead, But Chromebook Lives On!

Google just cancelled their next Pixelbook, and dissolved the team behind it, but don’t worry – the Chromebook lives on!

 

Google Kills Pixelbook + Dissolves Team

Google just cancelled the next-generation Pixelbook laptop that was supposed to debut next year. They also dissolved the team developing it, and transferred its members to other teams.

This sudden decision came after Google said in May 2022 that it planned to continue its Pixelbook laptop business.

Then in July, Google CEO Sundar Pichai said that he wanted to slow down hiring and cut some projects :

In some cases, that means consolidating where investments overlap and streamlining processes. In other cases, that means pausing development and re-deploying resources to higher priority areas.

It looks like Google decided that their next Pixelbook would be a waste of resources, and killed it to shift their resources elsewhere.

 

Google Pixelbook Is Dead, But Chromebook Lives On!

While there will no longer be a new Pixelbook laptop in 2023, that does not mean Google has given up on ChromeOS or Chromebook laptops.

In fact, Google likely canned their Pixelbook project because their OEM partners are doing a great job of producing a plethora of good or even great Chromebook laptops.

As Google hardware chief Rick Osterloh pointed out at Google I/O 2022 in May, the Chromebook market had matured and would last a long time.

Google have always developed hardware as a way to push the envelope, and to show its partners what can be achieved. It doesn’t benefit Google to directly compete with its partners.

Now that OEM partners like Acer, Lenovo and HP are offering Chromebook laptops in a wide range of price points and configurations, it just doesn’t make sense for Google to muddle the market with a new Pixelbook.

 

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HUAWEI CEO Ren Zhengfei Warns Of Tough Times!

HUAWEI CEO Ren Zhengfei just warned of tough times ahead, and called for his company to go into survival mode!

Here is what you need to know…

 

HUAWEI CEO Ren Zhengfei Warns Of Tough Times!

On 22 August 2022, HUAWEI founder and CEO Ren Zhengfei posted a memo on its internal network, stating that “The entire company’s business policy should shift from the pursuit of expansion to the pursuit of profit and cash flow“.

In Ren’s opinion, the global economy will continue to decline and be in the doldrums for the next ten years, putting HUAWEI under great pressure.

He also said that it is unclear if HUAWEI can survive the 2023-2024 financial year, partially blaming its woes on a “continued blockade” by Western countries.

Therefore, he says HUAWEI must focus on its own survival, and shift from expanding to pursuing profit and improving cash flow over the next 3 years. To that end, the CEO said that HUAWEI will completely abandon its business in certain countries.

The HUAWEI CEO also said that the “chill” in business sentiment to be passed down to HUAWEI employees, linking their bonuses and promotions to business results. In addition, he called for responsibilities to be consolidated, which sounds like euphemism for job cuts.

This alarming memo by its CEO comes after HUAWEI – China’s largest company – saw revenue decline by 14% in the first three months of 2022, with its profit margin narrowing to 4.3% from 11.1% just a year ago.

The HUAWEI CEO appears to believe that China will experience a much longer and persistent economic slowdown spreading far beyond the current collapse of its real estate sector.

It is surprising to note that Chinese censors has not removed the memo, which suggests the HUAWEI CEO has enough clout to speak openly. His memo went viral on Chinese social media, and has been discussed and shared by more than 100 million Chinese netizens.

Recommended : Can HUAWEI Phones Get Free Calls + Internet From BeiDou?

 

HUAWEI CEO Ren Zhengfei Tough Times Memo : Key Points

Here are the key points from HUAWEI CEO Ren Zhengfei’s “tough times” memo, machine-translated from NetEase:

Live with quality in the next three years

We have to see the difficulties faced by the company and the difficulties in the future. The next ten years should be a very painful historical period, and the global economy will continue to decline. Now, due to the impact of the war and the continued blockade and suppression by the United States, the world’s economy is unlikely to improve in the next 3 to 5 years. Coupled with the impact of the epidemic, there should be no bright spot in the world. Then the consumption power will be greatly reduced, which will not only put pressure on the supply, but also the pressure on the market.

Under such circumstances, Huawei’s overly optimistic expectations about the future will be lowered. In 2023 and even 2025, we must take survival as the main program to survive, and survive with quality. This slogan is very good. Every business must be carried out carefully.

If we have a little bit of hope in 2025 as planned, then we must first find a way to get through these three difficult years, and the basis of survival must be adjusted to focus on cash flow and real profits, not just sales revenue. The respite period of our life is 2023 and 2024. We are still not sure whether we can break through in these two years, so every mouth should not tell stories, but must talk about realization, especially when conducting business forecasts, do not No more illusions, telling stories to deceive the company, losses will be deducted from your food package, first of all, you must survive, and if you survive, you will have a future.

Blind investment business to shrink

The 2023 budget should maintain a reasonable pace, blind expansion, and blind investment in businesses should shrink or close.

The entire company must use the budget effectively, and cannot blindly close all projects. The manpower saved will go to the front line, continue to optimize the organization’s business, rationally staff the ICT infrastructure, or our black land granary. Competitive complex hardware platforms and complex software platforms, and the projects that hang on to ride on them must be picked out. The legion is to build a basic information platform and sell ICT better. The infrastructure is not for the ecology. The terminal is the foundation for our rise and breakthrough in the future, but it should not be blind. Now we need to narrow the front lines, concentrate our troops to fight the war of annihilation, and increase profits.

Huawei cloud computing should focus on supporting Huawei’s business development in a down-to-earth manner, and take the road of supporting the industrial Internet. Digital energy has increased investment in the strategic opportunity window, created greater value, contracted institutions, and strengthened combat teams. Smart car solutions cannot be rolled out on a complete front. It is necessary to reduce the research budget, strengthen the business closed loop, and take a modular approach to R&D, focusing on a few key components to be competitive, and the rest can be connected to others.

In addition to the main goal of continuous investment for survival and profitability, businesses that cannot generate value and profits in the next few years should be scaled down or closed, and human and material resources should be concentrated on the main channel. We must face the reality and not be too far away. The great ideal is to cut through the mess quickly, and the surplus personnel will be adjusted to the strategic reserve team, and then they will be combined into reasonable positions to grab food.

The peripheral business must be taken out of the strategic core. After the marginal business is taken out, we first evaluate whether it can be done well and how much resources are needed to do it well. If it is not possible to do a business with huge resource consumption, it is better to open it up and let others do it after closing it. We must do it, and if we do not do well enough, we will reorganize the combat team and change cadres. If there are some windows of opportunity, we expand the strategic resource pool of strategic reserve teams and cadres and experts, and form commandos to attack in the window of opportunity.

Adhere to seeking truth from facts, and shrinking in the market must be firm. We used to embrace the ideal of globalization and aspire to serve all mankind. What is our ideal now? Survive and earn a little wherever you have money. From this perspective, we need to adjust the market structure and study what can be done and what should be abandoned.

Give up part of the market

The first focus is on value market value customers, and the main force is used in the middle section of the normal distribution curve. In some countries, we completely give up in the market. We also have a fat meat market, and the people who used to eat bones are transferred to eat fat meat.

Second, for hard-fought countries and regions, as an assessment and training base for new cadres to be promoted in the future, some countries have low output. Although we still have to do it, should we no longer send soldiers to guard the top of the snow, because he will still be a soldier after he comes down? Xueshan Mountain is a test of people, and potential new cadres will have the opportunity to be promoted to army commander. Because it is easy to integrate a small country, he calculates from the estimated budget, contract, tender delivery, working hour quota, and the solution is all done together. When I came back, I passed 5 and 6 on the cadre’s resume and passed the threshold of 11 generals in one day. Of course, some employees have been on the frontier for a long time, and their incomes have decreased when they return to China. There is also the issue of children going to school.

Third, employees returning from overseas should have priority in obtaining skills training and job opportunities. Employees returning from overseas must have a period of protection to protect them from their posts and ensure that they receive certain training. The skills of personnel in difficult countries may be worse than those in China, because they do not have a realistic combat environment. How can they improve? Just like a soldier on the plateau, although he stood very high, he did not absorb any cosmic energy. They paid the price. They could not take the exam as soon as they returned to China, and then they were eliminated. No one wanted to go to such difficult areas, so we have to It is guaranteed that the returning employees have job arrangements and a relaxed study time. As for his ability to catch up during this period, it is another matter.

Financial planning needs to be done for cash flow. In times of crisis, the main purpose is to make blood. Although we say that it will improve in 2025, what if there are no shells by then? So that’s a wonderful plan, we have safe food measures.

The company has two major expenditures to distribute dividends to employees, including wage stability, which is to enhance internal confidence and cohesion, and repayment of loans to banks, which is to enhance the society’s trust in us. For projects that already have obvious potential risks, don’t have any illusions, and surface them as soon as possible, let the audit come to a conclusion, and quantify the risks. At the same time, it is still possible to continue to manage these assets that have been eliminated. Through management, risks can be turned into appropriate returns. We should not have a bubble in our hearts. When we look at the report, we will be very determined, but we will not actually be able to make money. to the money.

Let the chill pass to everyone

Consolidate responsibilities, and link bonuses, promotions and promotions to business results, so that the cold will be passed on to everyone.

First, in this year’s and next year’s assessment, the weight of cash flow and profit should be increased. It is better for sales revenue to decline a bit, but profit and cash flow to increase. The bonus for operating profit growth should be a little more, so as to encourage everyone to compete for profits.

Second, each responsibility center signs the assessment responsibility letter. The company should aim at the KPI-based reciprocal reward mechanism. The normal promotion and upgrading will remain unchanged next year, but the link with the equivalence of responsibility should be strengthened, which makes people feel cold year after year. , but we need to be patient and enthusiastic in our transition. I once told the executive board that the basic salary framework should not be changed. This is a rigid indicator, but if the employees are excellent, they can be promoted and upgraded, and the bonus can be very flexible. Why is it elastic? Encourage everyone to go to the battlefield to grab food, the front line is different from the agency.

Third, the bonuses of various businesses this year must widen the gap, and it is absolutely not allowed to force everyone to achieve the short-term goal of grabbing food. In the past, the company’s policy was basically to settle things down. Everyone didn’t feel the cold in winter. Everyone covered the quilt, but it was a little thicker and thinner. At the end of this year, businesses with more profit and cash flow will have more bonuses, and businesses that cannot create value will have very low bonuses. They don’t even force the business to commit suicide and pass on the cold.

At present, we have to survive, not to fight for our ideals. The legion competition is the year-end bonus, because the bonus is not given by the company, but the profit earned by the legion itself, and part of it is handed over to the company. If we cannot earn food, we must dare to Bonuses are not given because the basic income of the employees covers the necessities of life. Of course, some strategic businesses cannot create value in the short term, which we can determine through evaluation, but many marginal businesses with poor performance must be cut off. This is adjustment, consolidation, enrichment, and improvement.

Invest at all costs at the point of survival crisis

Quality is the primary productive force. We must adhere to this line. R&D must be responsible for the quality and performance of products, and we promise that service experts must have comprehensive capabilities. Poor quality products are a shame for R&D personnel. This sentence should be posted on On the wall of the R&D office area of ​​the R&D office, the rate of network failures around the world is getting higher and higher, and an accident may destroy the trust system of the entire market.

100-1=0, for our research and development, the research and development of single boards, the research and development of single devices, and the research and development of systems must put quality first. Quality is the best support guarantee for R&D and manufacturing personnel to market service personnel. If the quality of the product is not good, it is equivalent to letting the brothers brave the hail of bullets, ice and snow, hot and sweltering heat, and the new crown virus is charging on the front line. Therefore, we need to establish a reverse assessment mechanism. The first-line reverse assessment should not only assess the service organization of the agency, but also extend to the product line. If the quality is not good in the office, then the front line should be narrowed and the competitiveness should be improved.

We need to improve the status of the service system, and service experts must have a comprehensive ability to judge the network experience of accidents. In the past, we paid more attention to R&D than service, but now we also need to pay attention to the service system.

Reasonable, scientific and reasonable control of inventory. We must change from panic-stricken self-rescue in the past to high-quality self-rescue. We must pay attention to reducing inventory reasonably, and do not cause insufficient profits and tight cash flow of the company due to excessive inventory, which constitutes our new crisis. We can invest at all costs on strategic key opportunities and existential crises, but we cannot spend money on non-strategic opportunities.

 

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Did China Make 7nm Chips In Spite Of US Sanctions?!

Did China successfully fabricate 7nm chips, despite US sanctions on advanced chip manufacturing technology?

Well, yes, but not quite. Here is what you need to know about China’s mysterious 7nm chips!

 

China Made 7nm Chips In Spite Of US Sanctions!

A TechInsights report recently concluded that China has successfully created 7nm chips since last year.

This caused quite a ruckus, because it essentially meant that China jumped two generations ahead in chip manufacturing technology!

The TechInsights team bought a MinerVa mining ASIC which used a custom chip that has been manufactured by China’s SMIC since July 2021.

When they examined the chip, they discovered that it was fabricated on a 7nm process that appears to be a “close copy” of a 7nm process used by TSMC – the Taiwanese foundry giant.

The MinerVa chip is small – at just 19.3 mm², with 120 chips populating the MinerVa board. Each mining ASIC has 3 of these boards, for a total of 360 chips and a total power consumption of 3300 watts.

This discovery is deeply concerning to many people, because it meant that China has more advanced chip manufacturing technology than is even available in the United States or EU.

After all, US sanctioned the sale of advanced chip manufacturing technology to China – which was meant to crippled China’s ability to manufacture such chips.

US Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer used this report to stress the danger of delaying the $50 billion subsidy package for semiconductor manufacturing in the United States.

Members of both sides know that America’s chips crisis is sending shock waves across the economy.

It is endangering our national security. […] China’s top chips maker has now likely advanced its tech by two generations, threatening U.S. competitiveness.

But the situation really isn’t as dire as many people make it out to be…

 

SMIC / China Barely Made Those 7nm Chips

After the report was released, the Internet fell into two main camps – American politicians and China hawks bemoaning the “loss” of Western chip making advantage, and pro-CCP netizens celebrating it.

First, let me start by congratulating China / SMIC on achieving this feat despite being hobbled by US sanctions on crucial chipmaking technology.

Whether China / SMIC “copied / stole / bought” the technology knowhow from TSMC whose 7nm process it closely resembles, it is still a remarkable achievement.

That said, SMIC / China barely made those 7nm chips, and here are the reasons why…

SMIC manufactured these 7nm chips using older Deep Ultraviolet Lithography (DUV) machines, instead of the state-of-art Extreme Ultraviolet Light (EUV) lithography machines made by Dutch company ASML.

This isn’t extraordinary in itself – TSMC and Samsung had much earlier developed 7nm process nodes using the older DUV machines. However, this comes at the cost of “increased process complexity and design rule restrictions“.

That is likely why the MinerVa chip is not only very small, it actually lacks SRAM (Static Random Access Memory) that is critical in processors that run our computers and smartphones.

The simpler design and small size allow SMIC to obtain sufficient workable chips, even with a poor yield. However, the cost of chip would be much higher than if it was manufactured on a higher-quality process.

So for all intents and purposes – this should be considered as a niche / prototype 7nm process, and not a true 7nm process node.

On top of that, SMIC apparently isn’t capable of producing large quantities of these 7nm chips, suggesting either a yield problem, or difficulty in scaling up.

MinerVa has not been able to deliver the mining ASICs based on these SMIC 7nm chips in large numbers. A Bitcoin mining company – Stronghold Digital Mining, for example, said that it ordered 15,000 miners from MinerVa but only received about 3,200 units as of March 2022.

For China / SMIC to present a true “threat” as far as chipmaking is concerned, it would have to be capable of manufacturing MILLIONS of chips, not thousands.

Regardless of whether the Americans are howling in despair, or the pro-CCP netizens are howling in delight, China really does not have true 7nm chipmaking capability for mass production yet.

And even if they somehow manage to improve and scale up this 7nm DUV process, they cannot make more advanced chips without EUV machines made by ASML.

As long as the Dutch government holds firm on blocking sale of ASML’s EUV machines to China, this is likely as far as they can go… unless they invade Taiwan, which is where TSMC is based and has the world’s most advanced chip manufacturing facilities.

 

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Apple settles Butterfly Keyboard lawsuit for $50 million!

Apple just agreed to pay $50 million to settle a class action lawsuit over the controversial butterfly keyboard used in its MacBook laptops!

 

Apple Sued For Controversial Butterfly Keyboard!

Apple introduced the controversial butterfly keyboard mechanism to their MacBook laptops from 2015 to 2019, to make them slimmer.

The butterfly mechanism uses mirrored switches that expand like wings, unlike the typical scissor mechanism used in laptop keyboards which uses two interlocking switches that click together when the key is pressed.

While the butterfly mechanism made the keys thinner, they also made the keyboard prone to trapping dust and debris, resulting in sticky and/or easily broken keys.

Apple added a membrane to the butterfly mechanism, in an effort to make it quieter while keeping debris out; but it didn’t help. Small design changes in 2019 also did little to improve the keyboard.

The Wall Street Journal even printed a famous typo-ridden column to demonstrate the butterfly mechanism’s issues in 2019.

Two law firms – Girard Sharp LLP, and  Chimicles Schwartz Kriner & Donaldson-Smith LLP – then bought on a class action lawsuit, claiming that Apple was aware of the problem but failed to rectify the problem and do enough in supporting customers who experienced the problem.

 

Apple Settles Butterfly Keyboard Lawsuit For $50 million!

On July 18, 2022, Apple filed a $50 million settlement in San Jose, California, to settle the class action lawsuit over its butterfly keyboard.

If approved by a judge, the law firms can claim up to $15 million out of the $50 million settlement, for legal fees. Apple denied any wrongdoing, and did not offer any comments.

The rest of the settlement would be used to pay customers who bought a MacBook, MacBook Air, and most MacBook Pro laptops between 2015 and 2019 in seven US states :

  • California
  • Florida
  • Michigan
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Washington

Under the proposed settlement, customers who had issues with their butterfly keyboards in those states will receive :

  • up to $395, for those who had to replace multiple keyboards
  • $125 for those who had a single keyboard replacement
  • $50 for those who had to replace key caps

Apple dumped the butterfly keyboard for the more traditional scissor mechanism keyboard in 2019, with the introduction of the 16-inch MacBook Pro and the Magic Keyboard.

 

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ViewSonic Launches New Corporate + Education Solutions!

ViewSonic just launched new solutions for the corporate and education segments!

Here’s a quick look at the new ViewSonic LED projectors, and the ViewSonic Studio!

 

ViewSonic Launches New Corporate + Education Solutions!

Thanks for the COVID-19 pandemic, many of those working in the corporate and education industry are looking for a hybrid approach to combine in-person and online meetings and education.

Capitalising on the increased demand in those market segments, ViewSonic is introducing two new 3rd Generation LED projectors, as well as their Hybrid Ecosystem ViewBoard Interactive Display.

3rd Gen ViewSonic LED Projectors

ViewSonic is offering two new 3rd Generation LED projectors – the LS500WHE and the LS550WHE, both offering a maximum brightness of 3,000 ANSI lumens, as well as greater energy efficiency, and a longer lifespan.

The ViewSonic LS500WHE delivers 125% Rec.709 colour gamut, with 50% lower power consumption, and an LED light source that does not require replacements (thanks to its 30,000 hour lifespan), and is mercury-free.

Its optical engine is sealed against dust, with an IP5X rating, ensuring optimal image quality regardless of the environment. And the LS500WHE offers a 360-degree tilt angle projection to support floor and ceiling projections.

The ViewSonic LS550WHE is a short-throw version that offers all of the LS500WHE’s capabilities, with a 0.49 short throw lens, together with horizontal and vertical keystone correction, as well as 4-corner adjustments to eliminate crooked or distorted images.

ViewSonic LS500WHE (left) and LS550WHE (right)

ViewSonic Studio For Education Tech Solutions

ViewSonic also launched the first ViewSonic studio in Malaysia, which offers educators and policy makers access to their latest edtech solutions, like the ViewBoard Interactive Display, and the myViewBoard visual learning software suite.

The ViewBoard interactive display has made significant inroads in the Malaysian education system, taking up 43.5% of the market share up to Q1 2022.

ViewSonic hopes to expand on this through their myViewBoard software suite, which would allow for Student-Centered Active Learning Environment with Upside-down Pedagogies (SCALE-UP).

The integration of the ViewBoard interactive display, with their myViewBoard software suite will allow classrooms to adopt group work, with better engagement through enriched content and an immersive learning system.

 

ViewSonic Corporate + Education Solutions : Price + Availability

The new ViewSonic corporate and education solutions are available with immediate effect.

Here are the launch prices for the 3rd Generation ViewSonic LED projectors :

  • LS500WHE : RM3,599 (about US$815 | £672 | A$1,187 | S$1,137)
  • LS550WHE : RM3,999 (about US$905 | £747 | A$1,319 | S$1,263)

Online purchase options in Malaysia :

Online purchase options in Singapore :

 

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Dell Introduces 14-inch Portable Monitor + S Series Displays!

Dell just introduced a slew of new S Series monitors, as well as its first 14-inch Portable Monitor!

 

Dell Introduces 14-inch Portable Monitor + S Series Displays!

Thanks to the pandemic, the workplace has changed globally, with many companies now adopting a hybrid workplace policy.

Dell just introduced a slew of new S Series monitors, as well as its first 14-inch Portable Monitor, to address the need for employees to work between home and the office.

Dell 14 Portable Monitor (C1422H)

Built to be the ultimate laptop companion, the C1422H is Dell’s first ever 14-inch portable monitor, designed to deliver dual-screen productivity to work, present and collaborate anywhere.

Professionals working in the office, at home or on the go  will appreciate the Dell Portable Monitor’s lightweight design. It weighs just over half a kilogram, and is less than a quarter-inch thick at its slimmest, making it extremely easy to travel with.

With an IPS panel that offers a Full HD display resolution, with an 16:9 aspect ratio, the Dell C1422H Portable Monitor offers easy plug and play with USB-C connectivity. Simply press the quick access buttons to adjust brightness (up to 300 nits) and the ComfortView feature that reduces harmful blue light emissions.

This sleek yet practical portable monitor complements all workstyles and productivity demands with a small continuous tilt stand that bends from 10 to 90 degrees. It also features Energy Star and EPEAT GOLD certification.

Dell 24 and 27 Video Conferencing Monitor (S2422HZ and S2722DZ)

Hanging out virtually with friends, family and co-workers will be easier with the new 27-inch QHD / 23.8-inch FHD monitors that are specifically designed for video calls.

For an easy out-of-box experience, these monitors come with a built-in 5 MP privacy pop-up camera, noise-cancelling microphones and dual 5 watt speakers. The pop-up camera stays hidden until you’re ready for video chatting, for privacy.

These video conferencing monitors feature Dell’s TÜV-certified ComfortView Plus – an always-on low blue light reduction technology that optimises eye comfort while retaining colour accuracy.  Other features include USB-C connectivity, AMD FreeSync technology and a 75 Hz refresh rate for smoother graphics.

Dell 27 4K UHD USB-C Monitor (S2722QC) and Dell 27 USB-C Monitor (S2722DC)

These two USB-C monitors offer the convenience of a single cable solution with USB Type Connectivity, to deliver video, audio, and data; while charging your laptop with up to 65 watts of power.

These monitors are great for those who want a clutter-free workspace, with a single-cable monitor to complement their laptops.

 

Dell 14-inch Portable Monitor + S Series Displays : Price + Availability!

These monitors are available with immediate effect from Dell online and authorised stores, at these starting price points :

  • Dell 14 Portable Monitor (C1422H) : RM 1,499 (about US$341 / £277 / A$491 / S$471)
  • Dell 24 Video Conferencing Monitor (C2423H) : RM 1,439 (about US$327 / £266 / A$471 / S$452)

Online purchase options in Malaysia :

Online purchase options in Singapore :

  • Dell 14 Portable Monitor (C1422H) : S$498 | S$515
  • Dell 24 Video Conferencing Monitor (C2423H) : S$479 | S$479
  • Dell 24 Video Conferencing Monitor (S2422HZ) : S$428 | S$499
  • Dell 27 Video Conferencing Monitor (S2722DZ) : S$589 | S$599 | S$599
  • Dell 27 4K UHD USB-C Monitor (S2722QC) : S$595 | S$599 | S$629
  • Dell 27 USB-C Monitor (S2722DC) : S$469 | S$479

Online purchase options in United States :

  • Dell 14 Portable Monitor (C1422H) : $319.97
  • Dell 24 Video Conferencing Monitor (S2422HZ) : $385.98
  • Dell 27 Video Conferencing Monitor (S2722DZ) : $299.99
  • Dell 27 4K UHD USB-C Monitor (S2722QC) : $399.99

Online purchase options in United Kingdom :

  • Dell 24 Video Conferencing Monitor (S2422HZ) : £250
  • Dell 27 USB-C Monitor (S2722DC) : £299.99

Online purchase options in Australia :

  • Dell 27 Video Conferencing Monitor (S2722DZ) : A$915

 

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He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Chipmakers Brace For Noble Gas Shortage, After Russia Cut Supply!

Chipmakers worldwide are bracing for a noble gas shortage, after Russia cut supplies! Here is what you need to know…

 

Chipmakers Brace For Noble Gas Shortage, After Russia Cut Supply!

On June 2, 2022, the Russian government issued a decree stating that export of noble gases will be subject to Moscow’s approval until December 31, based on the recommendations of the Ministry of Industry and Trade.

This effectively cuts or limits the export of critical noble gases to “unfriendly” countries, and was a direct response to the fifth round of sanctions imposed by the European Union in April.

Russia and Ukraine were leading producers of noble gases since the days of the Soviet Union, and jointly supplied about 30% of the chipmaking industry’s supply of neon gas.

Both countries were closely intertwined in their noble gas supply to the world. Russia produced raw neon gas as a byproduct of its steelworks, and sent it to Ukraine for purification. That ceased with the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

 

How Badly Will Russia Noble Gas Cut Affect Chipmakers?

Noble gases like neon, argon, xenon and helium are critical in the production of microelectronics that power everything from computers to smartphones and cars.

Neon, in particular, plays a critical role in the optical lithographic process used to etch patterns on silicon wafers, creating circuits in semiconductor chips.

The state-of-the-art excimer pulsed laser used to create semiconductors, for example, requires an argon-fluorine-neon mixture, up to 95% of which is made up of exceptionally pure neon gas.

That’s why about 70% of the world’s supply of neon gas (about 540,000 tonnes) is used by the semiconductor industry.

Fortunately, Russia’s decision to cut noble gas supplies may have less impact that they assumed, because chipmakers prepared for such an eventuality.

The semiconductor industry used to rely on Ukraine and Russia for about 80% to 90% of their neon gas supply, but they started diversifying their noble gas supplies after Russia invaded and annexed Crimea in 2014.

Over the last 7-8 years, they managed to cut down their dependence on Ukraine and Russia to about 30%. And the industry generally maintains gas reserves that would last 3-6 months.

China is the main beneficiary of reduced noble gas supply from Russia. Since the war started, Chinese noble gas producers said that their daily order enquiries have jumped 5X to 6X.

For now, the semiconductor industry does not need to reduce production, but the reduced market supply will mean noble gas prices will remain elevated for some time to come.

Needless to say – this will increase the cost of semiconductors, the cost of which will be passed onto consumers.

 

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He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Apple Silicon M1 Series vs. M2 Comparison!

Apple just launched the M2 – their second-generation M-series system-on-a-chip (SoC) for Mac computers!

Let’s compare the new M2 against the last-generation M1 series SoCs!

 

Apple Silicon M1 vs. M2 Comparison

On 6 June 2022, Apple unveiled their second-generation M-series system-on-a-chip (SoC) for Mac computers – the Apple Silicon M2!

Built on an improved 5 nm process technology, the Apple M2 has 20 billion transistors – 25% more transistors than the M1.

All those transistors allow the Apple M2 to deliver better performance than the last-generation M1 :

  • Faster Performance cores with a larger cache
  • 18% faster CPU performance
  • 35% more powerful GPU at max. power
  • 40% faster Neural Engine
  • 50% more memory bandwidth
  • up to 24 GB of unified memory
  • a new image signal processor (ISP) for better image noise reduction

The new M2 no doubt offers a significant boost in performance and capabilities over the M1.

On top of that, it partially addressed the limited Unified Memory capacity offered by the M1, by offering a 24 MB option.

The new M2 will debut in the 2022 MacBook Air, and the updated 13-inch MacBook Pro 2022 laptops.

To give you a better idea of how they compare, here is our direct comparison b between the Apple M1 and the Apple M2 :

Specifications M1 M2 Difference
Fab Tech 5nm (N5) 5 nm (N5P)
Transistor
Count
16 billion 20 billion +25%
Die Size 120 mm² NA
CPU Cores
(Performance)
4 x Firestorm
@ 3.2 GHz
4 x Avalanche cores
@ NA GHz
CPU Cores
(Efficiency)
4 x Icestorm cores
@ 2.06 GHz
4 Blizzard cores
@ NA GHz
L2 Cache P-core : 12 MB
E-core : 4 MB
P-core : 16 MB
E-core : 4 MB
P-core : +33%
SLC 16 MB 32 MB +100%
GPU Cores 7 / 8 cores
1278 MHz
8 / 10 cores
NA MHz
+1 / +2 cores
Neural Engine 16 cores
(11 TOPS)
16 cores
(15.8 TOPS)
+44%
Memory Options 8 GB / 16 GB 8 GB / 16 GB / 24 GB
Memory Type LPDDR4X LPDDR5
Memory Speed 2133 MHz 3200 MHz +50%
Memory Bus 128-bit 128-bit
Memory
Bandwidth
68.2 GB/s 102.4 GB/s 50%

 

Apple Silicon M1 Series vs. M2 Comparison

While the M2 may offer significant improvements over the M1, Apple has been careful in not letting it cannibalise sales of the higher-performing M1 Pro, M1 Max and M1 Ultra chips.

Even without testing the new M2, its specifications show that it slots in between the M1 and the M1 Pro.

  • M2 has 8 cores like M1, with 2-4 fewer Performance cores than the M1 Pro.
  • Its Performance cores have L2 cache size of 16 MB, right between M1 (8 MB) and M1 Pro (24 MB).
  • Its 8-10 GPU core count is right between M1 (7-8 cores) and M1 Pro (14-16 cores).
  • Its maximum Unified Memory option is 24 GB, right between M1 (16 GB) and M1 Pro (32 GB).
  • It retains the M1’s narrower 128-bit memory bus, but uses the M1 Pro’s faster LPDDR5 memory.

To show you what I mean, here is a table I created comparing the key specifications of the M1 series against the new M2 :

Specifications M1 M1 Pro M1 Max M1 Ultra M2
Fab Tech 5nm (N5) 5 nm (N5P)
Transistor Count 16 billion 33.7 billion 57 billion 114 billion 20 billion
Die Size 120 mm² 245 mm² 432 mm² 864 mm² NA
CPU Cores
(Performance)
4 cores
(Firestorm)
3.2 GHz
6 / 8 cores
(Firestorm)
3.23 GHz
8 cores
(Firestorm)
3.23 GHz
16 cores
(Firestorm)
3.23 GHz
4 cores
(Avalanche)
NA GHz
CPU Cores
(Efficiency)
4 cores
(Icestorm)
2.06 GHz
2 cores
(Icestorm)
2.06 GHz
2 cores
(Icestorm)
2.06 GHz
4 cores
(Icestorm)
2.06 GHz
4 cores
(Blizzard)
NA GHz
L2 Cache P-core : 12 MB
E-core : 4 MB
P-core : 24 MB
E-core : 4 MB
P-core : 48 MB
E-core : 8 MB
P-core : 16 MB
E-core : 4 MB
SLC 16 MB 32 MB 64 MB 128 MB 32 MB
GPU Cores 7 / 8 cores
1278 MHz
14 / 16 cores
1296 MHz
24 / 32 cores
1296 MHz
48 / 64 cores
1296 MHz
8 / 10 cores
NA MHz
Neural Engine 16 cores 32 cores 16 cores
Memory Options 8 / 16 GB 16 / 32 GB 32 / 64 GB 64 / 128 GB 8 / 16 / 24 GB
Memory Type LPDDR4X LPDDR5
Memory Speed 2133 MHz 3200 MHz
Memory Bus 128-bit 256-bit 512-bit 1024-bit 128-bit
Memory
Bandwidth
68.2 GB/s 204.8 GB/s 409.6 GB/s 819.2 GB/s 102.4 GB/s

 

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He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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IBM z16 : Industry’s First Quantum-Safe System Explained!

IBM just introduced the z16 system, powered by their new Telum processor with an integrated AI accelerator!

Take a look at the z16, and find out why it is the industry’s first quantum-safe system!

 

IBM z16 : Industry’s First Quantum-Safe System!

On 25 April 2022, IBM officially unveiled their new z16 system in Malaysia – the industry’s first quantum-safe system.

IBM Vice President for Worldwide Sales of IBM Z and LinuxONE, Jose Castano, flew to Kuala Lumpur, to give us an exclusive briefing on the new z16 system, and tell us why it is the industry’s first quantum-safe system.

IBM Z and LinuxONE Security CTO Michael Jordan also briefed us on why quantum-safe computing will be critical for enterprises, as quantum computing improves.

Thanks to its Telum processor, the IBM z16 system delivers low and consistent latency for embedding AI into response time-sensitive transactions. This can enable customers to leverage AI inference to better control the outcome of transactions before they complete.

For example, they can leverage AI inference to mitigate risk in Clearing & Settlement applications, to predict which transactions have high risk exposure, and highlight questionable transactions, to prevent costly consequences.

In a use-case example, one international bank uses AI on IBM Z as part of their credit card authorization process instead of using an off-platform inference solution. As a result, the bank can detect fraud during its credit card transaction authorisation processing.

The IBM z16 will offer better AI inference capacity, thanks to its integrated AI accelerator offering up to 1 ms of latency, expanding use cases that include :

  • tax fraud and organised retail theft detection
  • real-time payments and alternative payment methods, including cryptocurrencies
  • speed up business or consumer loan approvals

As the industry’s first quantum-safe system, the IBM z16 is protected by lattice-based crypto graphs – an approach for constructing security primitives that help protect data and systems against current and future threats.

 

IBM z16 : Powered By The New Telum Processor!

The IBM z16 is built around the new IBM Telum processor, which is specifically designed for secure processing, and real-time AI inference.

Here are the key features of the IBM Telum processor that powers the new IBM z16 system :

  • Fabricated on the 7 nm process technology
  • Has 8 processor cores, clocked at over 5 GHz
  • Each processor core has a dedicated 32 MB private L2 cache
  • The eight 32 MB L2 cache can form a virtual 256 MB L3 cache, and a 2 GB L4 cache.
  • Transparent encryption of main memory, with 8-channel fault tolerant memory interface
  • Integrated AI accelerator with 6 TFLOPS compute capacity
  • Centralised AI accelerator architecture, with direct connection to the cache infrastructure

The Telum processor is designed to enable extremely low latency inference for response-time sensitive workloads. With planned system support for up to 200 TFLOPs, the AI acceleration is also designed to scale up to the requirements of the most demanding workloads.

Thanks to the Telum processor, the IBM z16 can process 300 billion inference requests per day, with just one millisecond of latency.

 

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Samsung 980 Pro : Why It’s Now A Fast + Affordable SSD!

The Samsung 980 Pro is still the epitome of a fast gaming SSD that will let you boot up instantly, and load massive games quickly.

Find out why it is still the favourite SSD for discerning gamers all over the world!

 

Samsung 980 Pro : Super Fast Gaming SSD!

When it was launched back in September 2020, the Samsung 980 Pro was amongst the best and fastest gaming SSD money could buy.

It boasted a brand new 8nm Samsung Elpis controller with a native PCIe 4.0 interface, as well as improved TurboWrite caching.

To keep it running at peak performance, the Elpis controller is nickel coated to improve heat dissipation. It also uses a heat spreader label to keep the NAND chips cool.

The 980 Pro SSD also uses Samsung’s latest V-NAND TLC flash memory, with storage capacities of up to 2 TB in an M.2 2280 form factor.

Each SSD comes with 512 GB to 2 GB of LPDDR4 cache, and uses some of its storage as a fast SLC cache of between 49 GB and 216 GB in size.

Thanks to this combination of both DRAM and SLC caching, the Samsung 980 Pro boasts sequential read speeds of 6.4 GB/s to 7.0 GB/s, and sequential write speeds of 2.7 GB/s to 5.1 GB/s.

Of course, once the write caches ran out, sustained write speed fell to 400 MB/s for the 250 GB model, 900 MB/s for the 500 GB model, and 1.7 GB/s for the 1 TB and 2 TB models. But this was generally not an issue for gaming PCs, where read speed is paramount.

Capacity Fixed Intelligent Total TurboWrite
Speed
After
TurboWrite
250 GB 4 GB 45 GB 49 GB 2.7 GB/s 0.4 GB/s
500 GB 4 GB 90 GB 94 GB 5.0 GB/s 0.9 GB/s
1 TB 6 GB 108 GB 114 GB 5.0 GB/s 1.7 GB/s
2 TB 6 GB 210 GB 216 GB 5.1 GB/s 1.7 GB/s

But note that TurboWrite requires you keeping approximately 20% of the drive’s storage capacity free or empty. If you fill up the drive beyond that, the Intelligent portion of TurboWrite will be reduced.

Also, to fully utilise the Samsung 980 Pro, your gaming PC should  PCIe 4.0. It is backward compatible and will have no issues working with PCIe 3.0, but your drive will be limited to 3.5GB/s for sequential reads.

 

Samsung 980 Pro : Now A Fast SSD That Won’t Break The Bank!

When it was first released, the Samsung 980 Pro was not only expensive, it was much sought after and were consequently hard to come by.

The COVID-19 pandemic didn’t do us any favour, with computer part prices skyrocketing from a combination of increased demand and reduced production.

18 months later – the Samsung 980 Pro remains one of the better gaming SSDs money can buy, only it’s more affordable these days!

Of particular interest are the smaller 250GB and 500GB models. While they don’t offer that much storage space, they are much cheaper on a per GB basis.

Here is a look at the latest deals on the Samsung 980 Pro SSD globally :

Malaysia

Singapore

United States

United Kingdom

Australia

 

Samsung 980 Pro : Specifications

Specifications Samsung 980 PRO
Form Factor M.2 (2280)
Interface PCIe 4.0 x4 / NVMe 1.3c
Controller Samsung Elpis (8 nm)
NAND Storage Samsung 1xxL V-NAND TLC
Capacities 250 GB 500 GB 1 TB 2 TB
LPDDR4 Cache 512 MB 1 GB 2 GB
TurboWrite Cache
49 GB 94 GB 114 GB 216 GB
Sequential Read
6.4 GB/s 6.9 GB/s 7.0 GB/s
Sequential Write 2.7 GB/s 5.0 GB/s 5.0 GB/s 5.1 GB/s
Uncached Write 0.4 GB/s 0.9 GB/s 1.7 GB/s
Random Read 22,000 IOPS
Random Write 60,000 IOPS
Peak Random
Read
500K IOPS 800K IOPS 1M IOPS
Peak Random
Write
600K IOPS 1M IOPS
Endurance 150 TBW 300 TBW 600 TBW 1200 TBW
Security AES 256-bit
FDE, TCG / Opal v2.0, IEEE1667
TRIM Yes
Garbage Collection Yes
WNN No
Dimensions 80.15 mm long
22.15 mm wide
2.38 mm thick
Weight 9.0 grams

 

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Intel Condemns + Leaves Russia Over Invasion Of Ukraine!

Intel joined over 600 other companies in condemning and leaving Russia over its invasion of Ukraine!

Here is what you need to know…

 

Intel Condemned Russia Over Invasion Of Ukraine!

A week after Russia invaded Ukraine, Intel issued a press release condemning the invasion, and announcing a stop to all shipments to both Russia and Belarus.

While Belarus did not directly participate in the Russian invasion of Ukraine, it continues to be a willing partner in the invasion, allowing Russian troops, tanks and aircraft to attack Ukraine from their territory.

This announcement on 3 March 2022 effectively cut off supply of Intel chips to both countries.

Intel condemns the invasion of Ukraine by Russia and we have suspended all shipments to customers in both Russia and Belarus. Our thoughts are with everyone who has been impacted by this war, including the people of Ukraine and the surrounding countries and all those around the world with family, friends and loved ones in the region.

We are working to support all of our employees through this difficult situation, especially those with close ties to this region. We have launched an employee donation and matching campaign through the Intel Foundation that has already raised over $1.2 million for relief efforts, and we are proud of the work our teams in surrounding areas including Poland, Germany and Romania are doing to aid refugees. We will continue to stand with the people of Ukraine and the global community in calling for an immediate end to this war and a swift return to peace.

 

Intel Leaves Russia Over Invasion Of Ukraine!

After Russia’s initial attempt to seize Kyiv and topple the Ukrainian government failed spectacularly, Russian forces began a wholesale bombardment of Ukrainian cities.

Even worse, it was recently discovered that Russian forces raped and massacred Ukrainian civilians in the town of Bucha.

All those atrocities may have made it untenable for companies like Intel to even maintain a local presence while waiting out the war.

On 5 April 2022, Intel announced that they immediately suspended all business operations in Russia.

It is unknown what will happen to their 1,200 employees in Russia, but Intel says that it is now working to support those employees.

Intel continues to join the global community in condemning Russia’s war against Ukraine and calling for a swift return to peace. Effective immediately, we have suspended all business operations in Russia. This follows our earlier decision to suspend all shipments to customers in Russia and Belarus.

Our thoughts are with everyone who has been impacted by this war, particularly the people of Ukraine and the surrounding countries and all those around the world with family, friends and loved ones in the region.

We are working to support all of our employees through this difficult situation, including our 1,200 employees in Russia. We have also implemented business continuity measures to minimize disruption to our global operations.

Intel joins over 600 companies that have withdrawn from Russia, according to the Yale School of Management.

They include major brands like 3M, Adidas, Amazon, Cisco, Ikea, LVMH, Mastercard, McDonald’s, VMware, Visa, Western Union.

Notably, Chinese companies like Alibaba, Didi, HUAWEI, Tencent and Xiaomi continue to operate in Russia.

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Shocking Reason Why ASUS Z690 Motherboards Are Melting!

ASUS Z690 Hero owners are FUMING because their motherboards are MELTING, SMOKING and CATCHING ON FIRE!

Take a look at the SHOCKING REASON why these premium motherboards are literally melting down…

 

ASUS ROG Maximus Z690 Hero : Potential Fire Hazard?!

ASUS ROG Maximus Z690 Hero owners are complaining on social media, and in the ASUS Support Forum, that their premium motherboards are literally burning up!

In fact, one user, TheMaxXHD, had two of his ASUS Z690 Hero motherboards die in just 3 days, with one actually catching on fire!

Late at night I am merely surfing the web and all of a sudden it hard shuts off again, and this time when I look over there I see a component on the motherboard literally on fire.

Other users reported hearing loud pops, and either smelling or seeing smoke wafting from their ASUS Z690 Hero motherboards, before shutting down.

Even users who were lucky not to experience a fire or melting components, reported that their ASUS Z690 Hero motherboards were unstable, rebooting on and off.

The motherboard’s Q Code display would also show Error Code 53, which refers to a memory error. However, replacing or swapping the memory modules will not solve the problem.

 

Why ASUS Z690 Hero Motherboards Are Melting / Catching On Fire!

Users who reported problems with their ASUS ROG Maximus Z690 Hero motherboards, have noted that they were melting / smoking / catching on fire in roughly the same area – between the last DIMM slot and the Q Code display.

In that location, you can see two MOSFETs (Metal-Oxide-Semiconductor Field-Effect Transistors), but they are apparently not the cause.

According to a YouTuber called Buildzoid, the capacitor next to those two MOSFETs are the likely cause of the melting / smoking / catching on fire.

He pointed out that the etched text on the capacitor is upside down, which suggests that they were incorrectly installed in reverse!

In this comparison, the reversed capacitor is seen in the picture on the left, with the positive terminal on the left, instead of to the right, as seen on the picture on the right.

When such a capacitor is installed in reverse polarity, it will not only fail to work, it will actually act as a short circuit.

This quickly creates hydrogen gas (which is flammable!), and eventually destroys the capacity and could even start a fire.

There is no doubt that installing capacitors in reverse polarity is a dangerous mistake.

 

ASUS Confirms Reversed Capacitor On Z690 Hero Motherboards!

ASUS confirmed Buildzoid’s assessment, stating that they have “preliminarily identified a potential reversed memory capacitor issue in the production process“.

They also confirmed that the reversed capacitor issue affects units manufactured in 2021, with the part number 90MB18E0-MVAAY0 and serial numbers starting with MA, MB, or MC.

They did not, however, reveal how this dangerous mistake happened, or why their quality control (QC) measures failed to pick up the mistake.

To identify whether your ASUS ROG Maximus Z690 Hero motherboard is affected by this reversed memory capacitor mistake, you can check the part and serial numbers in the product packaging label.

ASUS also created a serial number tool, for you to check if your motherboard is affected.

 

ASUS ROG Maximus Z690 Hero : Is There A Recall?

Unfortunately, there is no general recall of the ASUS ROG Maximus Z690 Hero.

While ASUS admitted that there is a reversed memory capacitor issue, they did not recall the ROG Maximus Z690 Hero motherboards.

They only stated that they are going to continue their “thorough inspection” with their suppliers and customers, and “will be working with relevant government agencies on a replacement program“.

It is unknown why ASUS would need to work with government agencies on a replacement program, but for now – there is no recall program.

Neither did ASUS get back to the user whose Z690 Hero motherboard caught on fire after 2 weeks :

I have heard nothing from them. I sent them via reddit dm my second board’s serial number that I had returned to my local microcenter, which was the board that actually caught on fire, so they have a paper trail to follow and maybe retrieve that board from the store, and I explained the issue.

My only hope is they are actually looking into this, because it is a serious concern. However, I have heard nothing, so I don’t know.

One can only hope, but if they just sit there doing nothing, its a pretty big shame, as Asus support is one of the supposed big reasons why people buy Asus

 

ASUS ROG Maximus Z690 Hero : What Should You Do?

It is unfortunate that ASUS did not recall all affected ROG Maximus Z690 Hero motherboards. The memory capacitor installed in reverse polarity poses a real danger, and is a fire hazard.

Therefore, it would be advisable to avoid buying the ASUS ROG Maximus Z690 Hero until this issue is resolved satisfactorily.

If you are using a Z690 Hero motherboard that is affected by this issue, you should IMMEDIATELY STOP USING IT, and reach out to ASUS.

Until ASUS agrees to fix the affected motherboards, the ROG Maximus Z690 Hero should only be used by “Those Who Dare” to risk damage, or worse, from the reversed memory capacitor…

If possible, return the motherboard for a full refund, or exchange it for alternative motherboards like the GIGABYTE AORUS Z690 Master (US | UK | AU | SG | MY), like TheMaxXHD whose Z690 Hero caught fire :

I have since swapped out the board for a Gigabyte Aorus Z690 Master and has been going just fine for almost a full week. Nothing else was changed other than the motherboard, indicating to me, this is a motherboard issue.

All in all, it appears like some boards have components in flames, some merely just become bricked with code 53. In any case, I would advise avoiding until and if Asus responds.

 

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He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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HUAWEI 12.12 Sale : Don’t Miss These Awesome Deals!

The HUAWEI 12.12 sale is almost here, with a ton of AWESOME DEALS!

Check out what HUAWEI is offering in their 12.12 sale, and make sure you don’t miss them!

 

HUAWEI 12.12 Sale : Don’t Miss These Awesome Deals!

These HUAWEI smart devices and laptops will be available with these one-time only deals on 12 December 2021, starting at 12:01 AM sharp!

Look through the list below – you can start adding these deals to the cart, so you’re ready to check out on 12/12!

HUAWEI MateBook D14

12.12 Offer : RM2,299 (RRP : RM2,699) with FREE backpack worth RM199

Known for its sturdy yet lightweight body, HUAWEI MateBook D14 comes in a sleek and stylish design with a 14-inch FullView Display that boasts screen-to-body ratio of 84%.

The HUAWEI MateBook D14 has a large 56Wh battery that can serve you to last throughout the day, and a built-in fingerprint sensor that lets you quickly and securely log in.

Its support for HUAWEI’s Multi-Screen Collaboration feature lets you interact seamlessly between between your laptop and smartphone. It also allows you to take control of your smartphone using your laptop, allowing for greater productivity!

Add this deal to your cart and grab it on 12/12!

Read more : 2021 HUAWEI MateBook D 14 Laptop : A Quick Preview!

HUAWEI MatePad 10.4 LTE 4 (64 GB)

12.12 Offer : RM1,199 (RRP : RM1,399) with FREE Smart Magnetic Keyboard worth RM399

The HUAWEI MatePad is a great option for those who are looking for a tablet at an affordable price. It even comes with a keyboard case that protects it when closed, and turns it into a laptop when open!

It is designed to offer studio-quality audio with its quad-speaker, Histen 6.1 3D stereo and quad-channel Harmon Kardon sound system. And it supports HUAWEI’s Multi-Screen Collaboration feature which lets you transfer, drag and drop files between devices, as well as screen sharing between tablet, smartphone and laptop!

The tablet comes with 64 GB of storage, which can be extended to 512GB storage through an optional microSD card. It also supports 4G LTE connectivity – all you need to do is insert a SIM card!

Add this deal to your cart and grab it on 12/12!

HUAWEI MatePad 11

12.12 Offer : RM1,999 with FREE M-Pencil and Smart Magnetic Keyboard worth RM998

Running on HarmonyOS 2, the MatePad 11 is the first HUAWEI tablet to feature a 10.95-inch FullView display with a 120 Hz refresh rate for a silky-smooth visual experience, and a DCI-P3 colour gamut for real-to-life colours!

The MatePad 11 comes with the 2nd Generation M-Pencil stylus, which boasts an almost imperceptible lag as low as 2 ms. It has 4,096 pressure levels and tilt sensitivity, giving you a natural writing and drawing experience.

The MatePad 11 is also a multimedia powerhouse, with quad-channel large amplitude quad-speaker system, tuned by Harman Kardon.

It is further enhanced with Histen 7.0 for greater bass and a new sound field enhancement algorithm, giving you that immersive cinema-like audio experience when you watch movies!

Add this deal to your cart and grab it on 12/12!

Read more : HUAWEI MatePad 11 + MateBook D15 : A Synergistic Combo!

HUAWEI MatePad T10 (32 GB)

12.12 Offer : RM499 (RRP : RM799)

The HUAWEI MatePad T10 comes with an anti-glare screen that is TÜV Rheinland certified Eye Comfort. By reducing the amount of blue light significantly without affecting the screen colour tone with its true tone technology, it ensures that you have greater viewing pleasure while preventing eye strain.

Whether it’s for work, watching movies or social media, this is a highly-affordable tablet that offers better eye comfort for everyday use!

Add this deal to your cart and grab it on 12/12!

HUAWEI Watch GT2e 46mm

12.12 Offer : RM329 (RRP : RM599)

The HUAWEI WATCH GT2e lets you work out anywhere you want, inside and outside the gym with a tracker that supports precise positioning systems and delivers professional sports guidance.

It lets you easily monitor your heart rate with its accurate TruSeen 3.5 and a calorie counter that displays the amount you have burnt after each session.

Add this deal to your cart and grab it on 12/12!

HUAWEI Band 6

12.12 Offer : RM149 (RRP : RM219)

The HUAWEI Band 6 monitors your SpO2 level all day long, to ensure that your blood oxygen saturation will never drop too low.

Get notified when its simple reminder feature vibrates to warn you when your SPO2 level drops below the average range!

Add this deal to your cart and grab it on 12/12!

HUAWEI WATCH Fit

12.12 Offer : RM299 (RRP : RM499)

The HUAWEI WATCH Fit offers you a total of 96 Effective Workout Modes to start your personal fitness training immediately.

It also delivers precise and real-time workout metrics for 11 professional sport modes, inclusive of running, swimming, and cycling. And it comes along with 85 more custom workout modes for a diverse fitness routine throughout the month.

Add this deal to your cart and grab it on 12/12!

Read more : HUAWEI WATCH FIT Smartwatch Review!

HUAWEI FreeBuds 4i

12.12 Offer : RM199 (RRP : RM379)

Tthe HUAWEI FreeBuds 4i are active noise cancelling TWS earbuds, that lets you hear only what you want, while its dual-mic system comes with a slit-duct design that works to effectively reduce outdoor wind noise.

It also boasts an exclusive beamforming technology that uses AI noise reduction technology to pick up your voice with extra accuracy, maintaining its quality regardless of the environment you are in.

Add this deal to your cart and grab it on 12/12!

 

HUAWEI 12.12 Sale : Full List Of Deals!

Here is the FULL LIST of deals that HUAWEI is offering on 12.12.

Product RRP Promotion
Price
Free Gifts
MatePad T10 2020 WiFi
(2GB + 32GB)
RM 799 RM 499
MatePad 10.4 2020 WiFi
(4GB + 64GB)
RM 1,399 RM 1,199
Keyboard (RM399)
MateBook D14 RM 2,699 RM 2,299 Backpack (RM199)
HUAWEI MatePad 11 WiFi
(6GB + 128GB)
RM 1,999 M-Pencil + Keyboard
(RM998)
HUAWEI Band 6 RM 219 RM 149
HUAWEI WATCH Fit RM 499 RM 299
HUAWEI WATCH GT2 46mm
(Fluoroelastomer Matte Black)
RM 799 RM 599
HUAWEI WATCH GT2 42mm
(Fluoroelastomer Night Black)
RM 799 RM 459
HUAWEI WATCH GT2e 46mm
(Graphite Black)
RM 599 RM 329
HUAWEI WATCH GT2e 46mm
(Leather)
RM 899 RM 649
HUAWEI WATCH GT2e 46mm
(TPU Mint Green)
RM 599 RM 329
HUAWEI FreeBuds 4i RM 379 RM 199
HUAWEI WATCH GT3 42mm
(Black)
+ FreeBuds Lipstick
RM 1,998 RM 1,698
HUAWEI WATCH GT3 42mm
(White)
+ FreeBuds Lipstick
RM 2,098 RM 1,798

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Why HUAWEI MateBook 14s Is A Great All-Round Laptop!

HUAWEI just introduced a new laptop – the MateBook 14s with a 90Hz display, and the latest 11th Gen Intel Core processors.

Find out why this is such a great all-round laptop!

 

Why HUAWEI MateBook 14s Is A Great All-Round Laptop!

In the past few years, HUAWEI has been aggressively creating laptops, to drive their 1+8+N concept of a fully-connected life.

The new HUAWEI MateBook 14s is their latest computing lynchpin in that strategy, as an affordable, high-performance laptop for business professionals.

Let’s take a look at its key features, and why it is such a great all-round laptop!

90 Hz High-Resolution Display

When you open up the HUAWEI MateBook 14s, the first thing you will notice is the expansive 14-inch FullView display with really thin bezels.

This is a high-resolution touch-screen display with a 2.5K resolution of 2520 x 1680 pixels, that supports a maximum refresh rate of 90 Hz and a wide 100% sRGB colour gamut.

For maximum viewing comfort, it has built-in Smart Brightness Adjustment with Dual Eye Comfort, and is certified by TUV Rheinland as a low blue light and flicker-free display.

Performance

The HUAWEI MateBook 14s is powered by the latest 11th Gen Intel Core processors, with two variants at present :

  • Intel Core i7-11370H : 4C / 8T, 12 MB cache, up to 4.8 GHz
  • Intel Core i5-11300H : 4C / 8T, 8 MB cache, up to 4.4 GHz

Both variants feature the latest Intel Iris Xe Graphics, with these RAM + storage options :

  • Core i7 variant : 16 GB RAM + 1 TB NVMe SSD storage
  • Core i5 variant : 8 GB RAM + 512 GB NVMe SSD storage

And if you need additional performance, you can activate its Performance Mode. By simply pressing the Fn+P key combo, the CPU TDP will be boosted to 45W, giving you a boost in CPU performance!

All that is powered by a 60 Who battery, and a pocketable 90W power adapter that supports HUAWEI Super Charge. A quick 15 minute charge gives you up to 3 hours of battery life.

Multimedia Prowess

Whether it’s for work or entertainment, the HUAWEI MateBook 14s will surely impress with its four speaker system.

Powered by HUAWEI SOUND, these speakers produce an enveloping virtual surround sound field around the user, which can be further adjusted using the four pre-set audio modes.

The MateBook 14s also features a quad-microphone system, which works with the new HUAWEI Personal Voice Enhancement technology, to intelligently isolate and boost your voice while cutting out ambient noise.

Its four microphones, which are placed along the laptop edges, can pick-up audio from sources up to 5 metres away, and ensure that you are clearly heard, even in noisy environments.

HUAWEI Innovation

The HUAWEI MateBook 14s is designed to work with other HUAWEI ecosystem devices, as part of their 1+8+N concept. Hence, it comes with a bevy of innovative tools for multi-device sharing and collaboration!

  • The Mirror Mode lets you mirror the MateBook 14s display onto a HUAWEI tablet, letting you use those devices as a digital drawing pad.
  • You can also use Mirror Mode to allow different groups to collaborate on the same content.
  • The Extend Mode lets your HUAWEI tablet serve as a secondary display, giving you more space to work with, or letting you play music / video while you work.
  • The Collaborate Mode lets you easily and wirelessly transfer content between the MateBook 14s and another HUAWEI device! You can just drag and drop the files you want using the mouse!
  • The Collaborate Mode also lets you use your laptop keyboard and mouse with your HUAWEI tablet or smartphone!

It Can Run Mobile Apps!

The HUAWEI MateBook 14s comes with the beta version of Mobile Apps Engine, which lets you run mobile apps (like WeChat, for example) directly on the laptop!

This not only lets you have a bigger, more expansive view of your mobile apps, you can now have two mobile accounts – one for personal use, one for work or business use.

 

HUAWEI MateBook 14s : Price + Pre-Order Deal!

The HUAWEI MateBook 14s is available to pre-order from RM4,999 (approx. S$1,599 / US$1,999 / £869 / A$1,599), from 28 October until 6 November 2021.

Every purchase of the HUAWEI MateBook 14s will come with freebies worth RM1,366 :

  • HUAWEI FreeBuds Pro
  • HUAWEI Bluetooth mouse
  • HUAWEI Backpack
  • Office 365 (1 Year Subscription)

You can grab the pre-order deal for the HUAWEI MateBook 14s at these two official stores :

 

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Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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2021 MacBook Pro Restores 4 Features Jony Ive Threw Out!

The 2021 MacBook Pro restored four great features that famed designer, Jony Ive threw out!

Well, isn’t it fortunate that he left Apple?

 

2021 MacBook Pro Restores 4 Features Jony Ive Threw Out!

Famed designed Jony Ive did many things right, but he also screwed up the MacBook Pro for many years.

In his obsessive quest for ever THINNER form factors, Sir Jony dumped four great features that MacBook Pro users loved.

  • Physical function keys
  • SDXC card reader
  • MagSafe charging port
  • HDMI port

The good news is – the 2021 MacBook Pro restores all four features that Jony threw out!

Magic Keyboard With Physical Function Keys!

Jony Ive introduced the butterfly keyboard mechanism because it was THINNER. However, it has less key travel (of course) and was prone to failure.

Apple finally gave up on the butterfly keyboard after Jony left, when they introduced the Magic Keyboard with a scissor mechanism in the 16-inch MacBook Pro (2019).

But it was with this new 2021 MacBook Pro that nailed the coffin shut for the Touch Bar, which many MBP users considered an expensive boondoggle.

FINALLY, MacBook Pro users have a proper keyboard with physical function keys that provide tactile feedback!

SDXC Card Reader + HDMI Port Are Back!

Many MacBook Pro users are photographers who loved how their MBPs had an integrated SDXC card reader. They can just slot in their SD cards and get to work.

Many users also loved the convenience of an integrated HDMI port, which allowed quick and easy video output to an external monitor or even a projector.

Unfortunately, Jony Ive sacrificed both the SDXC card reader and the HDMI port on the altar of a THINNER profile, forcing users to use USB card readers and dongles.

Well, the good news is the 2021 MacBook Pro restored both the SDXC card reader and the HDMI port!

MagSafe 3 Charging!

Another stupid decision Apple made with their 4th Gen MacBook Pro was to remove the MagSafe charging connector.

Not only does the MagSafe prevent damage if anyone trips over the cable, it also has a very nifty indicator light that quickly tells you its charging status.

Fortunately, Apple just introduced MagSafe 3 in the 2021 MacBook Pro. It is now slimmer, and can support up to 140 watts of power delivery!

Don’t worry – you can still use USB-C charging if you want to.

 

2021 MacBook Pro So Much Better After Jony Ive Left

Now, I do not mean to disparage Sir Jony Ive’s excellent design work. I just think he went overboard with his obsession with THINNESS.

How much functionality is worth trading away to shave off an extra millimetre or two? Never enough in Jony’s book, from what I can tell.

Even with all that gone, he couldn’t even get the MacBook Pro to be thinner or lighter than the Dell XPS 13… so what was the point of removing them???

Hence, it is fortuitous for MacBook Pro users that he is no longer in charge of the design work at Apple.

The restoration of these four long-missed features arguably makes the 2021 MacBook Pro far more functional than its fancy mini LED display or M1 Pro / Max processor could achieve.

Read more : 100% Correct : MagSafe 3, SDXC + HDMI 2.0 In 2021 MBP!

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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100% Correct : MagSafe 3, SDXC + HDMI 2.0 In 2021 MBP!

Back in February 2021, we gave you all a sneak peek at what the 2021 Apple MBP would offer in terms of connectivity.

We said back then that “Apple will not only introduce a new MagSafe 3 connector in the upcoming 2021 MacBook Pro, they will also bring back the SD card slot!

Take a look at what we revealed back then, and what Apple just revealed earlier today!

 

We Were Right About MagSafe 3 In 2021 MBP!

In our February 2021 sneak peek of the 2021 MBP’s connectivity options, we shared that Apple will bring back their long-missed MagSafe connector.

It would be a brand new connector with a slimmer profile called MagSafe 3, which would be bidirectional with 5 pins, and have a slimmer profile.

Take a look at the picture we shared in February, showing MagSafe 3, next to two Thunderbolt ports and a 3.5 mm headphone jack.

And take a look at the connectors on the left side of the actual 2021 MacBook Pro. Pretty much the same, right?

 

We Were Right About SDXC Card Reader + HDMI 2.0 In 2021 MBP!

In our February 2021 sneak peek, we also shared that Apple would bring back the sorely-missed SDXC card reader, as well as the HDMI 2.0 port.

Here was the picture we shared in February, showing the SDXC card reader, together with the HDMI 2.0 port.

Doesn’t it look EXACTLY like the actual right side of the 2021 MacBook Pro?

We also revealed back then that the OLED Touch Bar would finally be banished… hopefully for good. It was an expensive boondoggle that MBP users were forced to pay for.

 

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Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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2021 Acer Predator Orion 7000 Gaming PC First Look!

Acer just unveiled the 2021 Predator Orion 7000 – an upgradeable liquid-cooled gaming PC!

Here is our first look at the 2021 Acer Predator Orion 7000 gaming PC!

 

2021 Acer Predator Orion 7000 : First Look!

Acer just introduced their new 2021 Predator Orion 7000 gaming PC (P07-640) at their 2021 “Made for Humanity” Global Press Conference.

Here is our first look at this awesome-looking liquid-cooled gaming PC!

 

2021 Acer Predator Orion 7000 : Key Features

Here is a quick overview of its key features :

Performance

The 2021 Predator Orion 7000 is powered by the latest 12th Gen Intel Core processors, paired with up to NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 graphics card, and up to 64 GB DDR5-4000 RAM!

This makes it one of the most powerful gaming PC in the market today! And it is upgradeable, so you can upgrade to the next best thing that comes along!

Cooling

An AIO CPU liquid cooler, with three Predator FrostBlade 2.0 fans and advanced airflow management keep system components cool, even in the most demanding gaming conditions.

The improved FrostBlade fans’ thin and curved blades are designed to smoothly increase airflow without creating turbulence, while their wear resistant and fully-sealed rifle bearings ensure that they will keep spinning for many years to come.

Design

The 2021 Predator Orion 7000 comes with an EMI-compliant chassis with transparent, tempered glass side panels.

The design showcases two massive 140 mm (5.5-inch) Predator FrostBlade 2.0 fans in the front, and a 120 mm (4.7-inch) Predator FrostBlade 2.0 fan at the back, which can be lit and configured with a dazzling array of ARGB colours.

Accenting the bold lighting and design are an illuminated teal blue Predator logo on the front panel, with an easily-accessible teal prism-refraction power button.

Storage

The rig comes with ample storage bays, with these storage options :

  • 1 x 2.5-inch USB 3.2 Gen2 Type C hot swap drive bay
  • 2 x M.2 PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSD bay (up to 1 TB each)
  • 2 x 3.5-inch SATA 3 hard disk drives (up to 3 TB each)

Connectivity

The 2021 Predator Orion 7000 also comes with lots of wireless and wired connectivity features built-in :

  • Intel Killer 2.5G LAN port
  • Intel Wi-Fi 6E (AX211) with 2×2 MU-MIMO technology

In the front of the chassis, it offers these easy-to-reach ports :

  • 3 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type A ports
  • 1 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type C port
  • 2 x audio jacks

At the back of the chassis, you will find these additional ports :

  • 3 x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type A ports
  • 1 x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type C port
  • 2 x USB 2.0 ports
  • 3 x audio jacks

 

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Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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2021 Acer Predator Triton + Helios Gaming Laptops First Look!

Acer just introduced the 2021 Predator Triton and Predator Helios line of gaming laptops!

Take a look at these brand new gaming laptops and find out what they offer!

 

2021 Predator Triton + Helios Gaming Laptops Are Here!

On 30 September 2021, Acer unveiled the 2021 Predator Triton and Predator Helios line of gaming laptops!

These newly-refreshed gaming laptops now offer a new level of gaming performance, with even better displays!

Let’s start with their official launch briefing video…

 

2021 Predator Triton 500 SE

The 2021 Predator Triton 500 SE (Special Edition) is a discreetly-designed gaming laptop that look like professional business laptops, but will blast the competition out of the water in any game!

The new Predator Triton 500 SE is incredibly powerful, pairing an 11th Gen Intel® Core™ i9 processor with the NVIDIA® GeForce™ RTX 3080 GPU, with up to 32 GB of fast DDR4 memory.

Its 16-inch IPS display offers a large work space with a resolution of 2560 x 1600 pixels. No one would possibly guess that this large, high-resolution display is also fantastic for gaming, especially when it supports a 165 Hz refresh rate!

To ensure that it stays cool, even under the most strenuous work or gaming conditions, the Predator Triton 500 SE employs the Acer Vortex Flow cooling design, which features :

  • a triple-fan cooling system
  • 5th Generation AeroBlade™ 3D fans
  • five dedicated heat pipes
  • strategically-placed intake and exhaust vents

Best of all – it offers up to 12-hours of battery life, in a 19.9 mm thin all-metal chassis that weighs only 2.4 kg! This lets you use the Predator Triton 500 SE for a full day of work or game on-the-go!

Why waste money on two separate laptops – one for work, one for play, when you can use the Predator Triton 500 SE for both? That’s why I’m especially excited about the 2021 Predator Triton 500 SE.

Acer is offering two models, priced at RM12,999 and RM8,999 respectively, with a 2 year on-site warranty with protection against accidental damage and theft!

Specifications Predator Triton 500 SE
Model PT516-51s-91KS PT516-51s-70NF
Display 16-inch IPS Display
2560 x 1600 pixels, 165 Hz refresh rate
Processor Intel Core i9-11900H Intel Core i7-11800H
GPU NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 8GB NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 6GB
Memory 32 GB DDR4-3200 16 GB DDR4-3200
Storage 1 TB PCIe NVMe Gen4 SSD
with 1 extra SSD slot
Connectivity Killer Wi-Fi 6 AX1650i
Bluetooth 5.1
Killer Ethernet E3100G
Ports 2 x USB Type C ports with one port supporting
– USB 3.2 Gen 2
– DisplayPort over USB-C
– Thunderbolt 4
– USB charging
2 x USB 3.2 Gen 2 ports
– one port supports power-off USB charging
1 x HDMI 2.1 port with HDCP
1 x 3.5 mm audio jack
Card Reader SD Card Reader
Audio DTS X : Ultra
Supports Windows Spatial Sound
Webcam 720p HD webcam
Dimensions 358.5 mm wide
262.4 mm deep
19.9 mm thick
Weight 2.4 kg
Price RM12,999
~ US$3,110
~ £2,306
~ A$4,294
~ S$4,221
RM8,999
~ US$2,153
~ £1,596
~ A$2,972
~ S$2,922

 

2021 Predator Helios 500

For those who want the ultimate desktop-like gaming performance in a laptop, the 2021 Predator Helios 500 is the answer.

The top-of-the-line model pairs up to 11th Gen Intel® Core™ i9-11980HK processor, with an NVIDIA® GeForce™ RTX 3080 GPU with 16 GB of GDDR6 memory, together with up to 64 GB of RAM and up to 2 TB of fast SSD storage!

The Intel® Core™ i9 model comes with a magnificent 17.3-inch Mini LED display, with 4K resolution and support for full-array local dimming!

The Intel® Core™ i7 model, on the other hand, comes with a super-fast Full HD display with a 360 Hz refresh rate and a 3 ms response time.

The 2021 Predator Helios 500 is kept cool by Predator PowerGem – a custom metal-alloy polymer on the CPU, as well as Acer Vortex Flow technology with two 5th Generation AeroBlade™ 3D fans.

The RGB-lit keys can also be further customised by the discerning gamer, who can swap them for Acer Racing or MagForce keys (featuring MagTek mechanical switches).

If you really want the best gaming laptop money can buy, definitely look at the Predator Helios 500.

Acer is offering two models priced at RM19,999 and RM13,999 respectively, with a 2 year on-site warranty with protection against accidental damage and theft!

Specifications Predator Helios 500
Model PH517-52-90NY PH517-52-78L6
Display 17.3-inch Mini-LED IPS
3840 x 2160 pixels
120 Hz refresh rate
100% DCI-P3
HDR1000
17.3-inch IPS
1920 x 1080 pixels
360 Hz refresh rate
100% sRGB
Processor Intel Core i9-11980HK Intel Core i7-11800H
GPU NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 16GB NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 8GB
Memory 64 GB DDR4-3200 32 GB DDR4-3200
Storage 2 x 1TB PCIe NVMe Gen4 SSD 1TB PCIe NVMe Gen4 SSD
Connectivity Killer Wi-Fi 6 AX1650i
Bluetooth 5.1
Killer Ethernet E3100G
Ports 2 x USB Type C ports with one port supporting
– USB 3.2 Gen 2
– DisplayPort over USB-C
– Thunderbolt 4
– USB charging
3 x USB 3.2 Gen 2 ports
– one port supports power-off USB charging
1 x HDMI 2.1 port with HDCP
1 x mini DP 1.4 port
1 x 3.5 mm headphone jack
1 x 3.5 mm microphone jack
Card Reader SD Card Reader
Audio DTS X : Ultra
Supports Windows Spatial Sound
Webcam 720p HD webcam
Dimensions 400.0 mm wide
319.2 mm deep
35.3 mm thick
Weight 3.9 kg
Price RM19,999
~ US$4,785
~ £3,552
~ A$6,614
~ S$6,494
RM13,999
~ US$3,349
~ £2,486
~ A$4,630
~ S$4,546

 

2021 Acer Predator Helios 300 (17.3-inch)

Those on a tighter budget but still want a large gaming laptop, should consider the 2021 Acer Predator Helios 300 (17.3-inch).

Now refreshed with the 11th Gen Intel® Core™ i7-11800H processor and up to the NVIDIA® GeForce™ RTX 3070 GPU, it comes with two excellent 17.3-inch display options :

  • a 2560 x 1440 display with a 165 Hz refresh rate, and 100% DCI-P3 colour gamut, or
  • a 1920 x 1080 display with a 360 Hz refresh rate, and 100% sRGB colour gamut

It comes with 16GB of RAM, which can be expanded to 32GB, and up to 1TB of fast SSD storage, which can be expanded with another SSD and even a HDD!

To ensure it stays cool even in the most demanding gaming session, it features dual AeroBlade™ 3D fans, which can be monitored and controlled by the PredatorSense app.

The 17.3-inch Predator Helios 300 is definitely a great option for those who are looking for a good gaming laptop with a large display at an affordable price point.

Acer is offering two models priced at RM8,999 and RM7,999 respectively, with a 2 year on-site warranty with protection against accidental damage and theft!

Specifications Predator Helios 300 (17-inch)
Model PH317-55-7695 PH317-55-76CR
Display 17.3-inch IPS
2560 x 1440 pixels
165 Hz refresh rate
100% DCI-P3
17.3-inch IPS
1920 x 1080 pixels
360 Hz refresh rate
100% sRGB
Processor Intel Core i7-11800H
GPU NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060
Memory 16 GB DDR4-3200
Storage 1TB PCIe NVMe Gen4 SSD 512GB PCIe NVMe Gen4 SSD
Storage
Expansion
1 extra SSD slot + 1 extra HDD slot
Connectivity Killer Wi-Fi 6 AX1650i
Bluetooth 5.1
Killer Ethernet E2600
Ports 1 x USB Type C port supporting
– USB 3.2 Gen 2
– DisplayPort over USB-C
– Thunderbolt 4
– USB charging
1 x USB 3.2 Gen 2 port supporting power-off USB charging
2 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 ports
1 x HDMI 2.1 port with HDCP
1 x mini-DP 1.4 port
1 x 3.5 mm audio jack
Card Reader None
Audio DTS X : Ultra
Supports Windows Spatial Sound
Webcam 720p HD webcam
Dimensions 398.0 mm wide
375.3 mm deep
26.55 mm thick
Weight 2.9 kg
Price RM8,999
~ US$2,153
~ £1,596
~ A$2,972
~ S$2,922
RM7,999
~ US$1,913
~ £1,418
~ A$2,463
~ S$2,599

 

2021 Acer Predator Helios 300 (15.6-inch)

The smaller 2021 Acer Predator Helios 300 offers great gaming performance in a compact, portable laptop for gaming on-the-go.

Now refreshed with the 11th Gen Intel® Core™ i9 or Core i7 and up to the NVIDIA® GeForce™ RTX 3070 GPU, it comes with two excellent 15.6-inch display options :

  • a 2560 x 1440 display with a 165 Hz refresh rate, and 100% DCI-P3 colour gamut, or
  • a 1920 x 1080 display with a 360 Hz refresh rate, and 100% sRGB colour gamut

It comes with up to 32GB of RAM, and up to 1TB of fast SSD storage, which can be expanded with another SSD and even a HDD!

To ensure it stays cool even in the most demanding gaming session, it features dual AeroBlade™ 3D fans, which can be monitored and controlled by the PredatorSense app.

The 15.6-inch Predator Helios 300 is an affordable option for those who are looking for great gaming performance in a more portable form factor for on-the-go gaming.

Acer is offering three models priced at RM9,999, RM7,699 and RM6,299, with a 2 year on-site warranty with protection against accidental damage and theft!

Specifications Predator Helios 300 (15.6-inch)
Model PT315-54-9763 PT315-54-77YR PH315-54-78G9
Display 15.6-inch IPS Display
2560 x 1440 pixels
100% DCI-P3165 Hz refresh rate
15.6-inch IPS Display
1920 x 1080 pixels
100% sRGB
360 Hz refresh rate
Processor Intel Core i9-11900H Intel Core i7-11800H
GPU NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060
Memory 32 GB DDR4-3200 16 GB DDR4-3200 8GB DDR4-3200
Storage 1 TB PCIe NVMe Gen4 SSD 512 GB PCIe NVMe Gen4 SSD
Storage
Expansion
1 extra SSD slot + 1 extra HDD slot
Connectivity Killer Wi-Fi 6 AX1650i
Bluetooth 5.1
Killer Ethernet E2600
Ports 1 x USB Type C port supporting
– USB 3.2 Gen 2
– DisplayPort over USB-C
– Thunderbolt 4
– USB charging
1 x USB 3.2 Gen 2 port supporting power-off USB charging
2 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 ports
1 x HDMI 2.1 port with HDCP
1 x mini-DP 1.4 port1 x 3.5 mm audio jack
Card Reader None
Audio DTS X : Ultra
Supports Windows Spatial Sound
Webcam 720p HD webcam
Dimensions 363.0 mm wide
255.0 mm deep
22.9 mm thick
Weight 2.3 kg
Price RM9,999
~ US$2,392
~ £1,774
~ A$3,306
~ S$3,249
RM7,699
~ US$1,842
~ £1,366
~ A$2,546
~ S$2,502
RM6,299
~ US$1,507
~ £1,117
~ A$2,083
~ S$2,047

 

2021 Predator Gaming Laptop Deals!

Acer is offering several deals for the 2021 Predator gaming laptops :

  • Now until 6 October 2021 : Any purchase of the new Predator Helios 300 will be entitled to free gifts worth more than RM1,000 including Predator Gaming Utility Backpack, Predator Galea 350 Headset and limited edition merchandise.
  • Now until 6 October 2021 : Any purchase of the Core i9 variant of Predator Helios 300 (PH315-54-9763) will receive an additional Predator Gaming Chair worth RM1,299 for FREE!
  • From 30 October until 6 November 2021 : Any purchase of Predator Triton 500 SE / Predator Helios 500 will be entitled to free gifts worth more than RM2,000 including Predator Gaming Chair, Predator Gaming Utility Backpack, Predator Galea 350 Headset.

Here are some online purchase options :

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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