Windows 10 Lean: Microsoft Working on Cut-Down Version of OS

Microsoft is releasing a lighter version of Windows 10 for Redstone 5, the big OS update due out in the Fall. Dubbed “Windows 10 Lean,” it features an installer 2GB smaller than Windows 10 Pro and loses basics such as wallpaper, drivers for CD/DVD drives, and apps like Regedit.

It is not clear what Microsoft plans to do with the SKU. It may simply be intended for virtual machines, or Microsoft may be looking to make another go at a version of Windows for really low-powered devices.

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[H]ardOCP News/Article Feed 2018-04-22 20:04:00

Google’s engineering teams have acknowledged an issue in which certain Gmail accounts are sending out spam. At least some of these accounts had two-factor authentication enabled, and despite changing passwords, users found that the spamming continued.

We are aware of a spam campaign impacting a small subset of Gmail users and have actively taken measures to protect against it. This attempt involved forged email headers that made it appear as if users were receiving emails from themselves, which also led to those messages erroneously appearing in the Sent folder.

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[H]ardOCP News/Article Feed 2018-04-22 20:04:00

According to Senior Vice President and General Manager Jim Anderson, AMD did not bother releasing a 2800X because the recent Ryzen lineup (2600X and 2700X) already covers all current performance and price points. He does admit that a 2800X is not out of the question, which has led some to think that it will be used to counter Intel’s rumored 8C/16T CPU.

“We felt like, with the 2700X and 2700 at the performance and price points, we had that space covered. We just felt that with those two SKUs we had it sufficiently covered where we wanted to position the product. That doesn’t preclude a 2800X someday, right, maybe. But for now we believe those two SKUs cover the space well.”

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[H]ardOCP News/Article Feed 2018-04-22 19:04:00

Philips is releasing a new 43″ MVA-panel display that flaunts VESA’s highest HDR certification, DisplayHDR 1000, which demands local dimming and a peak luminance of 1000 cd/m2. But despite this certification, it is arguably still “fake” HDR, as the panel is 8-bit (16 million colors) only and relies on FRC (frame rate control) to achieve more colors. A true HDR panel is 10-bit and capable of 1 billion colors.

With DisplayHDR 1000 and UHDA certifications, the Momentum 436M6VBPAB promises to deliver a great HDR experience with 97.6% coverage of the DCI-P3 color space, a peak brightness of over 1000 nits, local dimming for deeper blacks and support for 10-bit color (8-bit + FRC). The display will support HDMI 2.0, DisplayPort 1.2, mini DisplayPort and USB Type-C (DP alt mode) inputs, though at this time the monitor’s Variable Refresh Rate (VRR range) is unknown.

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[H]ardOCP News/Article Feed 2018-04-22 19:04:00

While the legendary director of “Terminator” and “Aliens” admits that he enjoys the occasional comic book movie, part of him hopes that they come to an end soon, as they are dominating the sci-fi genre but all tell a similar story with comparable set pieces and themes. James Cameron hopes to diversify things with his Avatar sequels, which he describes as family dramas akin to “The Godfather.”

“I’m hoping we’ll start getting ‘Avenger’ fatigue here pretty soon,” Cameron said. “Not that I don’t love the movies. It’s just, come on guys, there are other stories to tell besides hyper-gonadal males without families doing death-defying things for two hours and wrecking cities in the process. It’s like, oy!”

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BT Pushes Ahead with Plans to Switch Off Telephone Network

British multinational telecommunications company BT is terminating its telephone network and shifting all customers over to IP telephony (internet-based voice calls via fiber) by 2025. Broadband, rather than voice, will constitute the primary service.

Other communications companies in Germany, Japan, Sweden, are already in the process of moving voice to run over IP. Orange has set a goal of having all IP (digital) networks by 2020, and Deutsche Telekom aims to migrate all its lines in Europe to digital by the end of 2018.

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Amazon Gets Tax Breaks While Its Employees Rely on Food Stamps

The Intercept is reporting that Amazon is effectively receiving a double subsidy by accepting food stamps for grocery orders, as many of its own employees are dependent on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. In at least four states, Amazon was featured on the list of top employers with SNAP recipients.

The American people are financing Amazon’s pursuit of an e-commerce monopoly every step of the way: first, with tax breaks, subsidies, and infrastructure improvements meant to lure fulfillment centers into town, and later with federal transfers to pay for warehouse workers’ food. And soon, when the company begins accepting SNAP dollars to purchase its goods, a third transfer of public wealth to private hands will become a part of the company’s business model.

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[H]ardOCP News/Article Feed 2018-04-22 17:04:00

Fallout: New Vegas and Knights of the Old Republic II developer Obsidian Entertainment spoke at Reboot Develop this week and mentioned that they want to evolve the RPG genre radically, but it is difficult to do so because its audience is too traditional and demand elements such as hit points and stat tweaking. But Obsidian believes that RPGs are defined by how actions affect a story, not numbers.

“Fans tend to skew towards the more hardcore cases and they tend to be fairly resistant to change. I don’t want to paint too broad of a stroke there, but RPGs can be a lot more than we have done with them so far. There’s much more than we can do, and it’s much more radical.” He pointed to Bethesda’s success with Fallout and The Elder Scrolls games as examples of a developer taking role-playing games in a different direction.

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Net Neutrality Rules Expire Monday, as Lawmakers Push for Paid Data Prioritization

Net Neutrality rules will officially be repealed tomorrow. Coincidentally, US Representative Marsha Blackburn championed the idea of paid data prioritization at a hearing last week, effectively urging ISPs to charge customers more for fast lanes. Experts say that service providers will probably wait before screwing us, however.

I would also point out that in real life, all sorts of interactions are prioritized every day. Many of you sitting in this room right now paid a line-sitter to get priority access to this hearing. In fact, it is commonplace for the government itself to offer priority access to services. If you have ever used Priority Mail, you know this to be the case. And what about TSA pre-check? It just might have saved you time as you traveled here today.

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