Author Archives: JC Torres

An open source contributor and holds doubly lethal degrees in Philosophy and Computer Science. When not working, he spends his time lurking and helping out in KDE Project.

Galaxy Fold unofficial hands-on video doesn’t hide the warts

Galaxy Fold unofficial hands-on video doesn’t hide the warts

The much-hyped foldable phone from Samsung isn't due to launch until late next month but, to the surprise of no one, a Galaxy Fold was already spotted in Vietnam. While we are always advised to exercise caution when it comes to unofficial sightings, the AT&T-bound unit shown in the video leaves little doubt to its authenticity. It is exactly what Samsung showed but also includes the angles that Samsung took great pains not to show.

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Firefox 66 silences autoplaying videos, content-pushing ads

Firefox 66 silences autoplaying videos, content-pushing ads

Although it's no longer a Wild, Wild West, World Wide Web is still far from being a peaceful territory. There is no shortage of players who'd do everything to make an easy buck or even legit actors that impose their will on users, even if it means ruining the latter's experience. From autoplaying videos that can scare the daylights out of you to late-loading ads that throw you off your reading groove, the latest Firefox release reins these misbehaving elements in to ensure a pleasurable Web experience for users.

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Qualcomm QCS400 SoCs to power the next wave of smart speakers

Qualcomm QCS400 SoCs to power the next wave of smart speakers

Qualcomm may be best known for its smartphone processors but those are hardly its only silicon product. There is, for example, its LTE chips that is part of the legal battle between Qualcomm and Apple. And while Snapdragon chips haven't become as common in IoT as they are in mobile, Qualcomm is making a move to target a fast-growing segment of that connected home market. With the new QCS400 System-on-Chip (SoC) series, Qualcomm is making sure that its be the household name in the next generation of smart speakers that will be invading households in the years to come.

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NVIDIA GauGAN neural network makes masterpieces out of doodles

NVIDIA GauGAN neural network makes masterpieces out of doodles

Soon, not being able to draw may no longer be an excuse not to express yourself or your ideas in beautiful, photorealistic images. If you can scribble a shape and click on a few buttons, a shaky line can turn into a mountain range, a lopsided circle can become a lake, and incomprehensible doodles can transform into a masterpiece. That's pretty much the unbelievable accomplishment that NVIDIA researchers have made in developing the deep learning model named GauGAN that can turn almost any collection of lines into a work of art.

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Google Tasks becomes more useful with starting and recurring times

Google Tasks becomes more useful with starting and recurring times

Google Tasks isn't new. It has been around for as long as Google Calendar was. Until recently, however, it was mostly an obscure feature available only on the Web version of the app. Google has recently given it a makeover and its very own mobile app but it has mostly remained as a simple checklist. Now it's adding yet another critical and long-overdue feature, allows users to set a starting time for a task as well as repeated occurrences.

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Xiaomi Redmi 7 touts long-lasting battery life

Xiaomi Redmi 7 touts long-lasting battery life

There's no denying that our smartphones are getting more and more powerful every year. That power, however, comes at the price of, well, price as well as battery life. As smartphones get more features and better hardware, the prices rise even higher and the drain on batteries gets even bigger. Xiaomi has always prided itself for offering affordable alternatives to premium flagships but its new sub-brand pushes the price tag even lower. With the Redmi 7, Xiaomi is offering an extremely budget-friendly option that will last you throughout the day. That is if you're prepared to make some compromises.

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NVIDIA Jetson Nano brings big AI muscles to a palm-sized dev kit

NVIDIA Jetson Nano brings big AI muscles to a palm-sized dev kit

Artificial intelligence and machine learning is the buzzword not only in tech but even in the enterprise. Even for some developers, however, AI remains an almost esoteric field accessible only to those with beefy computers that can handle the workload. NVIDIA says that shouldn't be the case and to prove its point, it's launching the newest and smallest member of its Jetson family. While no Raspberry Pi, the Jetson Nano developer kit and Nano module put NVIDIA's CUDA-X AI chops in a compact and power efficient form that anyone can afford.

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1995 Star Wars: Dark Forces unofficially recreated in Unreal Engine

1995 Star Wars: Dark Forces unofficially recreated in Unreal Engine

Fans can be quite an interesting bunch. Depending on rabidity, they can be a force for good or a pain in the posterior. Some fans, however, have enough skill and knowledge to take things where their original creators would probably never tread. Like Jason Lewis, whose applies his expertise as Obsidian's senior environment artist to redo parts of a classic Star Wars game in Epic's Unreal Engine, giving it not just beauty but the feeling of a modern game that will never be.

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Public Google+ posts will be available at the Internet Archive

Public Google+ posts will be available at the Internet Archive

The Internet has a pretty long memory but if content gets taken down, they will eventually disappear for good. Fortunately, the Internet Archive exists to serve as both a museum and a library for the Internet's past, including the embarrassing ones. Soon, those will include even the publicly accessible Google+ posts that would have been forgotten forever if not for efforts of the loose collective that calls themselves "The Archive Team".

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Apple Watch Stanford study show how it can save lives

Apple Watch Stanford study show how it can save lives

While some consumers would complain about its outdated style, the Apple Watch may be winning hearts in the medical field, figuratively and literally. While its rivals may boast of fancy styles, the Apple Watch has repeatedly been cited in stories of how the smartwatch may have saved a life. Those, however, have mostly been anecdotal but now a more scientific study from Stanford has the numbers to back those up.

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Android Q might get more iPhone-like navigation gestures

Android Q might get more iPhone-like navigation gestures

In Android 9 Pie, Google introduced a new navigation system that almost threw away years' worth of refinement in favor of gestures. Naturally, it was compared a lot with Apple's gestures that it introduced starting with the iPhone X. Depending on your preferences, Android's version might either be too iPhone-like or not enough. For better or worse, Android Q might change that and by change, we mean making its gestures resemble Apple's even more closely.

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Epic Games Store isn’t spying but does scan Steam local cache

Epic Games Store isn’t spying but does scan Steam local cache

Epic Games almost started to become the shining beacon in the gaming industry with its launch of the very developer-friendly Epic Games Store. Thanks to its zeal to get developers and games onboard, however, it has started to be painted in a less favorable light. The latest controversy the game publisher has found itself in involves accusations of spying, for China even. The company naturally denies the admittedly flimsy association but does own up to peeking into the Steam data stored on PCs.

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