Faster hardware and better software means artificial intelligence is only going to get more, er, intelligent. Games are one way to put electronics smarts through their paces and when researchers got bored of Chess they, naturally, moved onto Texas Hold'em. So, how well does a dedicated, poker-playing cyber-brain go against the professionals? Not well.
Tagged With Computing
Legos have been experiencing something of a renaissance lately. With adults now using their childhood building bricks in more creative ways than ever, it was only a matter of time before somebody decided to bring a portable, customisable, LEGO-based desktop computer into the world.
The Australian dollar might be weaker than it was a year ago, but bargains can still be found on the likes of Amazon. If you're in the market for an SSD, Samsung's 500GB 850 EVO is currently on-sale for $US180. Even when you factor in the exchange rate and shipping, it's a great deal compared to local offerings.
Sometimes, even if you're only spending a small amount of money, it's worth shelling out that little bit more and getting yourself a superior piece of technology. That edict is very much true when it comes to getting a new solid state drive for your PC, actually. Samsung's 850 Evo SSD is relatively cheap, but doesn't give up any ground when it comes to performance, warranty or bundled features.
You might not realise it, but the most technologically advanced nation in the world is a small ex-Soviet state in Eastern Europe. Estonia has pioneered secure digital identities for its citizens, helping it become a frontrunner in everything from online voting to preventing Craigslist ripoffs. But it also makes the country a particularly juicy target for cyberattacks.
We recently learned that PC manufacturer Lenovo is selling computers preinstalled with a dangerous piece of software, called Superfish, that uses a man-in-the-middle attack to break Windows' encrypted Web connections for the sake of advertising. Research from EFF's decentralised SSL observatory has seen many thousands of Superfish certificates that have all been signed with the same root certificate, showing that HTTPS security for at least Internet Explorer, Chrome, and Safari for Windows, on all of these Lenovo laptops, is now broken.
Toshiba's Portege thin and light laptops have always been small, but they've made minor compromises to get there -- generally in battery life or overall flexibility. Not the Portege Z20t, though -- in the one device you'll get the portability of a sub-800g tablet, or clip on the included docking keyboard for a laptop that barely tips the scales at 1.5kg.
The desktop graphics space hasn't been that exciting in recent years, but all the improvements in power optimisation, fabrication processes and performance have not gone to waste. Now more than ever, lightweight, yet powerful gaming notebooks are becoming commonplace (and affordable) and while there's still a way to go, getting grunt without sacrificing on portability is very realistic.
Storing data in a state of quantum entanglement could hold enormous promise for securing our online information, but right now we can only maintain these states for a short time before the entanglement fails. An Australian research team has found a way to store data for hours, not milliseconds: Say hello to the world's first solid state quantum hard drive.
CES 2015 may not have any huge wow moments -- at least so far -- but it's proving to be a good place to see the world's biggest tech brands giving their product ranges a solid refresh and reboot. Along with new Alienware gaming machines and Dell will have the world's thinnest tablet on sale in Australia by the end of the month, with a beautiful screen to boot.
The last time we read anything about SSD longevity, it was courtesy of the Tech Report's ambitious project to punish a variety of SSDs over the course of many months. That was at 500TB of constant writes, where all the drives were still in the race. At two petabytes however... some losers have appeared.
You probably know IBM's Watson platform best from its winning performance on Jeopardy. But the supercomputer is more than just a mechanism for IBM to publicly shame smart people. It's arguably the most powerful natural-language supercomputer in the world, and thanks to a new public beta, its number-crunching abilities are open to all.
Buying devices directly from Google has always been a decent option if you're price-conscious, but there are times when other suppliers -- even local ones -- can beat the source. Such is the case with the Nexus 9, which you can grab now from Google or, if you're willing to wait a couple of weeks, a bit cheaper from Kogan.
It's been over a year-and-a-half since documents leaked by Edward Snowden shook our sense of privacy to the core. Those documents proved that government is spying on us pretty much all the time. And now that we know Congress isn't going to do anything about it right away, it's time to find the tools to protect yourself. Detekt is a good one.