Apple to Start Paying $16B Tax Bill

You have likely heard about Apple being put on the spot in Ireland when the EU slapped the company with a $16B tax bill not so long ago. While Apple is appealing the EU ruling, it is now starting to repay all that cash. It will be held in escrow while the appeals process is going on. Now worries, it is just pocket change to Apple. Thanks @cageymaru.

This is a very, very significant development now in terms of dealing with this issue,” Mr Donohoe told reporters in Dublin. “This is the largest recovery fund of its kind ever to be established and, due to the complexity of such, together with our duty to comply with EU procurement rules, it has taken some time to get to this point.”

Discussion

Racing with the Ryzen 5 2400G APU at 1080p

Is the Ryzen 5 CPU with Vega Graphics worthy of being deemed an actual gaming CPU/GPU by someone that actually plays games? Jason Evangelho put the Ryzen 5 2400G ($175) to the test in several racing games, by actually playing the games. We like that approach and he has a very solid takeaway after using gaming as an excuse for work.

I decided to start with a genre I’ve been obsessed with since I played Pole Position in the arcades: racing. However, I’m not giving the Ryzen 5 2400G an easy ride. I chose 6 racing games in total, but 3 of them are fairly demanding. Regardless, I had another requirement beyond 1080p: at least Medium quality graphics settings and an average of 30 FPS or higher.

Discussion

Google Pixel Deal

How much is an old Google Pixel phone worth? Treefiddy? Na, not that much. Over at w00t you can grab one for as little as $200. I still own the first Pixel I bought, and that is a hell of a deal. Thanks @cageymaru.

Pixels are kind of like Legos. On their own, they’re not that impressive. But stick a whole bunch of them together and you’ve got a beautiful picture. Or a rocket ship. (That’s where pixels and Legos differ.) These Google Pixel Smartphones are also a little like Legos. On their own, they aren’t much to look at. But when you connect a whole bunch of them together over a wireless network, it’s a whole different story. You still can’t use them to make a rocket ship, though. Sorry.

Discussion

EVGA GTX 1070 Ti In Stock at Below MSRP

Keeping on our trend this morning of finding good deals on electronic stuffs, @cageymaru also pointed out that you can grab a EVGA GeForce GTX 1070 Ti FTW ULTRA SILENT GAMING card for $510 at Amazon with Prime Shipping, and those are still in stock. So if you have been looking for a new card to push PC or VR games, this might be the time to jump on it.

Discussion

DICE Ending Monthly Support For Battlefield 1 in June

In a bit of news that slipped past us, DICE has announced that it will be ending monthly support for Battlefield 1 starting in June. In a news post last Wednesday DICE talked about the final expansion, Apocalypse, as well as making more maps available for everyone, and a new game mode called Shock Operations coming in June. However buried at the very bottom DICE had this to say:

We’re continuing monthly updates for Battlefield 1 until June 2018, in which you can expect fresh content together with various tweaks and fixes for the player experience. As you may have seen on the Updates Page, these updates can cover anything: matchmaking, weapon balancing, even Dreadnought horns that sometimes won’t stop blaring.

So shy of 2 years after release, they are dropping monthly support. Likely because they are going to shift focus onto whatever Battlefield 2018 will be. I can personally say I’m disappointed in the battlefield series overall. Though 1942, Vietnam, BF2, 2142 it was honestly my favorite game, but ever since the expansion packs for Battlefield 3, the spark seems to be fading on what made the series so great.

Discussion

Samsung Releases 970 PRO and EVO SSDs

Samsung has announced today the 970 PRO and EVO solid state drives. The new M.2 drives are using the latest V-NAND technology and an all new Phoenix controller to give speeds of up to 3,500 MB/s read and 2,700 MB/s write, which is nearly 30% faster sequential writes than the 960 series, as well as boasting a 5 year or 1,200TBW warranty.

The 970 EVO will be available in 250GB, 500GB, 1TB, and 2TB capacities, and the 970 PRO in 512GB and 1TB starting May 7th. The release is a little confusing on price stating that the MSRP will be $329.99 and $119.99 USD, which we can only assume is the pricing for the 512GB PRO and the 250GB EVO.

Incredible performance, and the MSRP isn’t too bad at all. Surprising that they aren’t launching a 2.5″ version of the 970s and going strictly M.2 so far. You can check out the full press release here.

“Samsung has led the NVMe SSD industry since its inception, and the company continues to define the latest standards of consumer storage with unprecedented performance of the 970 PRO and EVO SSDs,” said Un-Soo Kim, senior vice president of Brand Product Marketing, Memory Business at Samsung Electronics. “The 970 series sets a new bar in all aspects for the NVMe SSD market with groundbreaking performance, superior reliability and best-in-class capacity.”

Discussion

MyEtherWallet Hacked Via BGP Hijacking

At midnight, users visiting MyEtherWallet.com found a warning for an unsigned SSL certificate. Those that chose to ignore the warning, got their wallets emptied. The Verge is reporting that hackers attacked the infrastructure of the internet, by hijacking a Border Gateway Protocol router in the vicinity of an internet exchange in Chicago, and directed traffic from MyEtherWallet to a server in Russia. So far at least $13,000 was stolen.

Based on what security researcher Kevin Beaumont has to say about the attack in the quote below, it is possible that more domains were affected during the attack. It is also worth noting that the attackers already had more than $17 million in Ethereum in it before the attack today.

The security vulnerabilities in BGP and DNS are well known, and have been attacked before. This is the largest scale attack I have seen which combines both, and it underscores the fragility of internet security.

Discussion

Dark Souls: Remastered First Gameplay Trailer; PC Requirements; and a Discount

Bandai Namco has released the first gameplay trailer for Dark Souls: Remastered today, and it looks like Dark Souls…. but remastered. However I can’t tell from the video of the controls on PC got remastered along with the graphics, but one can hope. The bigger news comes from DSOGaming, where they are reporting that according to the Japanese Dark Souls website, all PC owners of Dark Souls Prepare to Die Edition will receive a 50% discount on the remake, which is scheduled to release on May 25th.

Minimum Requirements:

i5 2300 or FX-6300
6GB RAM
GTX 460 or HD6870

Recommended Specs:

i5 4570 or FX 8350
8GB RAM
GTX 660 or HD 7870
Xbox One or 360 Controller

The requirements also mention that an internet connection is necessary for activation at the first start, as well as (obviously) for online play.

DIscussion

Hack Your Nintendo Switch and ALL NVIDIA Tegra X1 Processors

I am not going to proclaim that there are a lot of things to do with your hacked Nintendo Switch, as I have never touched one, but I think the bigger story is that it is being proclaimed that all NVIDIA Tegra X1 processors are hackable with a wire jumper. Before you go throwing your hands up and running around waiting for the sky to fall, this is one of those things that requires physical access to the device. Cool to see. I guess this means someone might steal all your Pokemons? Thanks @Monkey34.

It’s not just limited to the Nintendo Switch. Temkin has discovered that the exploit extends across Nvidia’s entire line of Tegra X1 processors. – Since this bug is in the Boot ROM, it cannot be patched without a hardware revision, meaning all Switch units in existence today are vulnerable, forever. – Will work on ANY Nintendo Switch console regardless of the currently installed firmware, and will be completely future proof.

You can use a simple piece of wire to bridge Pin 10 and Pin 7 on the console’s right Joy-Con connector. They’ve also linked to a 3D-printable accessory that can be created in tandem with a micro-USB connector. It’s only a few short steps, and acts as a “permanent” solution since the exploit needs to be executed at every boot.

Discussion