GeForce RTX 2080 Benchmarks From Final Fantasy XV Posted By Square Enix

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Nathan Kirsch |

Tue, Sep 18, 2018 – 9:18 AM

We aren’t able to publish our own benchmark results on the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti and RTX 280 until September 19th, but it appears benchmark results are being posted by game developers. Over the weekend it looks like Square Enix posted some of their numbers to the Final Fantasy XV benchmark result site. Please keep in mind that Final Fantasy XV is a GameWorks title. Let’s take a quick look at Square Enix’s results at 1440p and 4K resolutions with the “High” image quality preset.

The NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti tops the 1440p performance chart with a substantial lead over the NVIDIA Titan V ‘Volta’ card. We believe this is without NVIDIA’s Deep Learning Super-Sampling (DLSS) as that is not available in the public benchmark. NVIDIA says that DLSS will boost frame rates even higher rather than using TXAA. The AMD Radeon RX Vega has half the performance of the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti according to this chart.

When you move up to a 4K display the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti still tops the chart with the RTX 2080 performing just below the Titan Xp. These are impressive numbers and show just how powerful the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti and RTX 2080 are. The NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Founders Edition card better be performing well as the card is available for pre-order at $1199!

We don’t use this benchmark tool on Legit Reviews as Square Enix has noted that it suffers from LOD and stuttering issues. The benchmarking tool does not contain fixes that are included in the retail game. It’s still valid to use to compare cards, but it’s not really representative of what you’ll see in the shipping game title.

via Legit Reviews Hardware Articles

September 18, 2018 at 09:20AM

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Visa and MasterCard agree to settle swipe fee class action for $6.2 billion

Visa and MasterCard, along with some top US banks, have agreed to pay as much as $6.2 billion in a class action settlement with US retailers over swipe fees.

The settlement ends a 13-year old suit brought by the nation’s leading merchants, which claimed that Visa and MasterCard violated antitrust laws by fixing prices to benefit the banks. It’s the largest antitrust settlement ever.

The suit has been settled before, but the original settlement reached in 2012 was rejected by major merchants as unfair and overturned on appeal. Opponents of the earlier agreement argued it would have limited the retailers’ ability to bring future lawsuits and done little to end uncompetitive practices.

The amended settlement represents a $900 million increase over the previous one. The new settlement was disclosed in corporate filings by Visa (V) and MasterCard (MA) early Tuesday. It must still be approved by the court.

Under the new deal, Visa will pay an additional $600 million, while MasterCard will pay an additional $108 million, according to the companies’ filings.

MasterCard said it was an important step to finally reach an agreement with merchants in this case.

“We can put this behind us and focus on continuing to innovate with our merchant partners to deliver the experience and convenience that consumers expect,” said Tim Murphy, general counsel for Mastercard.

CNNMoney (New York) First published September 18, 2018: 10:07 AM ET

via Business and financial news –

September 18, 2018 at 09:20AM

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Every Single Power Plug Should Have a Built-in Electricity-Sensing Flashlight

GIF: Andrew Liszewski (Gizmodo)

The tiny, thin pair of prongs used on plugs in North America and in other parts of the world are nearly impossible to jam into a power outlet if you can’t see what you’re doing. Ten One Design’s new Stella plug improves on the design with something we’ve never seen before: a built-in flashlight that automatically turns on near outlets to light the way.

There are bleeding-edge technologies that promise to one day free us from not only having to find a power outlet when we start panicking about a device’s dying battery, but cords and cables altogether. Ossia’s Cota technology, for example, can wirelessly deliver power to electronics the same way wifi delivers internet to your phone and computer. But a practical mass rollout of such a system is still years away.

The reality is that cords, plugs, and physical power outlets will be with us for many decades to come, so even the smallest of improvements or innovations that make plugging in our gear less of a hassle are welcome. The surprisingly useful addition of a simple LED flashlight to its plug isn’t the only thing that makes Stella a worthwhile upgrade; Ten One Design’s execution is nearly-perfect.

The MacBook version of the Stella comes in two color versions, while the PC version comes in two and three-prong options.
Photo: Andrew Liszewski (Gizmodo)

The $35 cable is designed to replace the section of cord that connects your laptop’s power brick to a wall outlet, and is currently available in versions for both Apple and PC laptops—but I’d make sure to double-check the compatibility of your machine if you’re buying the Stella for a non-MacBook device.

The Stella uses a braided nylon shell that’s more flexible and easier to wind up.
Photo: Andrew Liszewski (Gizmodo)

I tested the Stella with an older MacBook Pro, and swapping out the brick’s standard power cord for Ten One Design’s upgrade was as simple. The Stella does look a little different than the power cord Apple includes with its MacBooks; trading a thick rubber sheathing for a braided nylon shell. But I much prefer how the Stella looks, and the braided cable is actually more flexible, so it’s easier to wind around the power brick when cable wrangling.

Despite the extra tech, the Stella’s plug is still small enough to easily squeeze into a crowded power bar.
Photo: Andrew Liszewski (Gizmodo)

The business-end of the Stella—the part that actually plugs into an outlet—is only just slightly bulkier than Apple’s. But it can still easily squeeze into a crowded power bar, and Ten One Design has made the braided cord exit the plug at a 45-degree angle which the company claims will help reduce stress and damage at the connection point.

It looks like a perfectly normal two-prong plug, but inside the Stella is additional hardware similar to what you’d find inside a non-contact voltage tester, tools electricians use to detect the presence of a live wire without actually having to touch it by detecting the surrounding electrical field. The Stella incorporates a simplified version of this technology to automatically activate an LED when power is detected. It’s not quite as sensitive as the tool an electrician would use, but I found it was able to detect a power outlet from as far as a couple of inches.

A tiny window protecting an LED is the only hint that this plug does more than meets the eye.
Photo: Andrew Liszewski (Gizmodo)

The Stella uses a non-replaceable battery to power its low-energy LED that Ten One Design claims will work for at least a decade—well past the life of any laptop. But while the LED is certainly bright enough to illuminate an outlet when it’s a couple of inches away, it’s in no way usable as a flashlight. You’ll want to treat it more as a last mile tool (or in this case, a last inches tool) that can save you from having to blindly try to jam a plug into an outlet in the dark, but you’ll need to know where that outlet is first.

Is the Stella a must-have upgrade? If your laptop spends its entirely life sitting in one place, then the answer is no. But if your laptop never leaves your side, joining you on business trips and hotel stays where you’re constantly plugging and unplugging your computer into strange and different places, then there’s a strong case to be made for the upgrade. But I actually run into this problem far more often with my iPhone’s charging cable, so if Ten One Design ever manages to squeeze a smart LED into that tiny wall wart, I’ll be first in line with my credit card.


  • What seems like a novelty feature becomes genuinely useful the first time you have to reach under a dark desk to plug in your laptop.
  • At $35 it’s more expensive than Apple’s $19 replacement power cable, but far more functional.
  • Currently only available for laptops, which is disappointing.
  • A nylon braided shell around the cable is more flexible and easier to wind than the one Apple includes.
  • The power brick connector on the Apple version of the Stella includes a handy pop-out cord clip to help with cable wrangling.
  • You never need to swap batteries, but the low-power LED is dim and really only useful a few inches away from an outlet.

via Gizmodo

September 18, 2018 at 09:03AM

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US government payment site leaks 14 million customer records

Getty Images/iStockphoto

Government Payment Service Inc — the company thousands of local governments in the US use to accept online payments for everything from court-ordered fines and licensing fees — has compromised more than 14 million customer records dating back to 2012, KrebsOnSecurity reports. According to the security investigation site, the leaked information includes names, addresses, phone numbers and the last four digits of credit cards.

KrebsOnSecurity alerted the company — which does business as — to the problem on September 14th. The site found that it was possible to view millions of customer records simply by tweaking the digits in the web address displayed by each receipt. Two days later, the payment site released a statement saying it had addressed a “potential issue,” and that while there was “no indication that any improperly accessed information was used to harm any customer” the company has nonetheless updates its systems to prevent the issue reoccurring.

Government Payment Services Inc was acquired by Securus Technologies at the start of 2018. The Texas-based company provides telecommunications services to prisons, among other things, and has come under fire a number of times for data breaches this year alone. In May, it emerged that Securus was abusing its cell phone-tracking capabilities, then just weeks later hackers broke into its system and stole the online credentials of multiple law enforcement officials. As KrebsOnSecurity notes, fixing these information disclosure issues is relatively simple, so it’s remarkable how many organizations are falling foul of these basic vulnerabilities — especially if their name, ‘Securus’ suggests they should really be on top of their game.

via Engadget

September 18, 2018 at 08:33AM

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Tesla’s most credible rival raises $1 billion from Saudi Arabia

Electric car speeds across desert.
Enlarge /

The Lucid Air, due out in 2020.

Lucid Motors, the electric car startup we described as Tesla’s most credible rival last year, got a shot in the arm on Monday as Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund announced a $1 billion investment. The company aims to bring its first car to market in 2020.

Lucid has been building up to this moment for more than a decade. The company was founded in 2007 under the name Atieva to build technology related to electric cars—but not the entire car itself. In 2015, the Chinese state-owned automaker BAIC became Lucid’s biggest investor, and we learned that Atieva was pivoting to face Tesla head-on by building an electric car of its own.

The company rebranded as Lucid two years ago and has a number of Tesla veterans—including chief technology officer Peter Rawlinson—helping design its first car, the Lucid Air.

Ars Technica’s Jonathan Gitlin got a firsthand look at a prototype of Lucid’s first model, the Lucid Air, 18 months ago, and he liked what he saw. Gitlin described it as “remarkably functional for such an early stage in the development process.” Lucid is aiming for the same luxury sedan market as Tesla’s Model S. Lucid brags that its prototype is the size of a Mercedes-Benz E Class while offering more interior space than the roomier S Class.

via Ars Technica

September 17, 2018 at 03:56PM

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Amazon is Readying the Alexa Device You Dreamed of: a Microwave

Alexa, re-heat my 3-day-old white sauce pizza.

Amazon is about centuple down on its Alexa-powered devices, according to a new report. The online shopping behemoth will introduce at least 8 new devices that can be controlled by voice before the end of the year. They may show them all off before the end of the month.

The report arrives via CNBC who says they’ve learned of the new devices, as well as an upcoming event, thanks to details in internal documents. The info they’ve reviewed shows a list of devices that includes a microwave oven, amplifier, receiver, subwoofer, and an in-car gadget. All of these products has Amazon’s Alexa on some level and can act as a voice assistant.

Pricing or a release time frame wasn’t provided, but an event this month should mean that many of these items will be available by the holidays. And you know how much Amazon loves selling its own goods at big discounts during Black Friday.

With devices like a microwave, subwoofer, and amplifier on the list of new Alexa-equipped Amazon goods, we’re starting to branch further and further away from just smart speakers here and there. This is Amazon preparing to push into all of your home electronics and appliances. For someone like me, who loves smart gadgets that can be controlled remotely or via phone or voice, this is awesome news. If you like privacy, well, lol.

Who wants the Amazon microwave? (Me!)


via Droid Life: A Droid Community Blog

September 17, 2018 at 06:32PM

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If BPA is so terrible, why is everybody still drinking beer and pop out of BPA lined cans?

There is a fundamental logical inconsistency here. Either the stuff is bad for you or it isn’t.

TreeHugger Katherine reports that BPA replacements aren’t safe either, study finds. She is discussing new research that shows that “the chemicals used to replace BPA over the past 20 years have the same damaging effects.” Katherine reminds us:

BPA does indeed have a serious effect on the developing brain, heart, lung, prostate, mammary gland, sperm and eggs. This spurred a widespread rejection of BPA in many consumer products, which is why it’s now common to see ‘BPA-free’ labels on certain plastics.

Most websites discussing the research use the same kind of construction and language, basically acknowledging that BPA is bad. Quartz: BPA-free plastics may not be safer than regular plastics after all, a new study finds (while showing disposable water bottles which are made from PET which has never included BPA). Science: BPA substitutes may be just as bad as the popular consumer plastic. Even the authors of the research write in Science Alert: We’ve Replaced BPA, But Mounting Evidence Suggests The Replacements Cause The Same Issues. Which is particularly maddening, since we haven’t replaced BPA except in polycarbonates.

All of which makes me want to bang my head against the wall and scream in bold upper case: BUT YOU ALL ARE DRINKING OUT BPA LEACHING EPOXY LINED BEER AND POP CANS! The epoxy resin lining the cans so that they don’t taste like aluminum is 80 percent BPA. One hundred billion cans made in the USA every year, almost all of them lined with BPA.

The fundamental contradiction

Here’s the thing. If BPA is harmless and is not an xenoestrogen (a chemical that mimics estrogen) then you can delete Katherine’s story and every other one on the internet about this new research, there is no story here. Except you can’t because they found effects from the BPA substitutes that they say are just as bad as the BPA they replaced, scrambling the chromosomes of baby mice. So there is a story and everyone is covering it.

If you go to any website of any brewer that addresses the issue, they all say BPA is harmless. Sierra Nevada claims that “some studies show that you’d have to eat and drink the contents of roughly 450 cans per day, every day, to ingest enough BPA from a can liner to reach unsafe levels.” But they conclude “in our opinion, the benefits of cans—portability, lower carbon footprint, recyclability, and absolute protection from light and oxygen—outweigh the risk.” They got that from the Bisphenol site which also notes that the FDA considers BPA to be harmless.

Human exposure to BPA from can coatings is minimal and poses no known risk to human health. Can coatings have been and continue to be recognized as safe by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the U.K. Food Standards Agency, the EC Scientific Committee on Food and other government bodies worldwide.

We know that BPA leaches from the inside of beer and pop cans, the beer companies even acknowledge it and worry about it. From industry mag Beer Advocate:

bpa in beerGovernment of Canada/Public Domain

“Human exposure to bisphenol A is widespread and it does quantifiably leach into beer,” says Jaime Jurado, director of brewing operations at Abita Brewing, pointing to a Canadian study that measured BPA in eight of eight beer cans it sampled. In contrast, the study only found BPA in one of the eight beer bottles it studied. Still, Jurado says, just because you detect BPA doesn’t mean you’ve proven that it’s harmful. That area still needs more research. “Little information on the effects of BPA on development in humans is available,” explains Jurado.

It is interesting how Joe Mohr beat the new science, with his line at the bottom, “stay tuned for Bisphenol S.”

This is not the first time I have written about BPA in cans,(see related links below) which continue to rule the market because they are convenient, cheaper to ship, and all the cool kids like drinking from them; I can’t even get my own kids to listen to me. But it makes no sense reading and believing every website saying “BPA substitutes are as bad as BPA” while we swill down a can of pop or beer lined with BPA epoxy. Either you believe it or you don’t.

If BPA is so terrible, why is everybody still drinking beer and pop out of BPA lined cans?

There is a fundamental logical inconsistency here. Either the stuff is bad for you or it isn’t.

via TreeHugger

September 17, 2018 at 12:31PM

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