Posts Tagged ‘tech’

I Kind Of Miss The Tech War

The slow-down of PC tech has left a strange hollow in my life. If you’re older than a tiny baby, you’ll remember the days when your PC was perpetually on the verge of not being able to play the current crop of games no matter how frequently you upgraded it. Now, my PC insides are a couple of years old, and playing everything on maximum. This is, I think on balance, a good thing. But there are downsides to it too.

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Fiddle With Nvidia’s GraphicsFace Features

Eyes of Staring
It feels like it was only, ooh, 1 month and 24 days since we last risked our collective sanity. We stared into the cold, shark-like eyes of the technological advancement of NvIdIa’S FaceWorks and lived. But at what cost? Back then, we were given a peep into the future of GraphicsFace with Digital Ira, a sadly uninteractive demonstration of what gamefaces will be like in the future. It looked impressive, but with the caveat that it was shown on stage and running on a Titan, Nvidia’s mahoosive card of graphics. Well the tech monolith has just released the demonstration for everyone to play with. If you fancy making a high-fidelity head gurn, then your fetish is well catered for.
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Week in Tech: 4K Screens, Virtual Reality, New GPU Grunt

Let’s shake off the downbeat vibe from our last installment involving console toyboxes with some promising prospects for PC display tech. For starters, ultra high-res LCD panels look fairly likely to transition to the PC. If that’s an incremental step, could virtual reality in the form of the Oculus Rift headset deliver a real-world rendering revolution? I’ve also got a little something known as frame latency for you to think about regarding graphics performance. Read the rest of this entry »

MANFACE: Perfecting CG Spotty Skin

Imperfect makes for perfect. My head is spinning.
The battle of Uncanny Valley is where CGI finally triumphed over reality: pixels stood proudly over humans showing off their parametrization maps and tone mapping that accurately depicted the imperfection of human skin and declared victory over reality. The first shot in the war fired when researcher Jorge Jimenez released this work on real-time realistic skin rendering, showing off the difference SSSS (Sexy Separable Subsurface Scattering – okay, I added that first ‘S’) makes.
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David Braben Making A USB PC For £15?

Braben's hand is not included.

David Braben, he of Elite fame, has unveiled a PC that fits on a USB stick, the Raspberry PI. He has also unveiled a brand new way of pronouncing “obfuscated”. The device has an HDMI in at one end, and a USB out at the other, letting you plug it directly into a television, and then attach a keyboard. Braben’s rather egalitarian idea is that it would be cheap enough (“Ten to fifteen pounds,”) that every child could own one, with the idea that they could learn to program. It sounds really promising. But are there some issues, too?

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Motion Tracking Controller For PC?

I can shoot dead people.

Are you ready to have the way you play PC games revolutionised? No? Well tough, because a man said it’s going to happen. News from Consumer Electronics Show suggests that there’s a push to convince us we need a six-axis/Wii remote/wavy throwy gun-style controller for the PC, and no less than Valve are providing the shouting. The attack is coming from three companies, peripheral manufacturer Razer, Sixense, a motion tracking tech company, and them there Valve lot, who appear to be suggesting it’s how we should be playing Left 4 Dead 2.

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Valve Survey – New Results Available

Valve have released the latest user survey data, which records the specs of the machines, and software on those machines, belonging to the people playing their games.

Feel small yet?

If you’ve used Steam, you’ll know that every now and then you’re asked to participate in the survey (and if you’re me, which I am, you’ll know that for some reason it always fails to send). All that data is collated into their constantly updating results page, where you can go, “Coo, are people really still trying to use machines with 128MB RAM?” And then laugh about how superior your machine is, until noticing that 3.95% of people have quadcore, and feeling rubbish again.

You can view the latest figures here, and compare them to the May to August figures here. Below are some of the more interesting changes.

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