This Computer Is As Quiet As The Mouse

See the original posting on Hackaday

[Tim aka tp69] built a completely silent desktop computer. It can’t be heard – at all. The average desktop will have several fans whirring inside – cooling the CPU, GPU, SMPS, and probably one more for enclosure circulation – all of which end up making quite a racket, decibel wise. Liquid cooling might help make it quieter, but the pump would still be a source of noise. To completely eliminate noise, you have to get rid of all the rotating / moving parts and use passive cooling.

[Tim]’s computer is built from standard, off-the-shelf parts but what’s interesting for us …read more

How to Make Up Your Mind Between Node.js and Python

See the original posting on DZone Python

There is no such thing as the best programming language. There are languages that are used for more specific things than others. If you need a mobile application, web app, or a more specialized system, there may be a specific language. But let’s assume for the moment that what you need is a relatively simple website, where you can show your client’s products and maybe sell them online efficiently.

In this article, we have chosen to evaluate Node.js and Python to help you decide on the ideal programming solution.

Nintendo starts selling cheaper Switch bundle without dock in Japan

See the original posting on The Verge

Nintendo is now selling a cheaper Switch package in Japan that doesn’t include the TV dock. The “Switch 2nd Unit Set” is ostensibly aimed at households that already have a Switch hooked up to the family TV and therefore don’t need a second dock, but it could also be an option for players who only plan to use the system as a handheld device.

The 24,980-yen bundle comes with the Switch tablet, two Joy-Con controllers, and two Joy-Con strap attachments, meaning you’re saving 5,000 yen (~$50) on the regular Switch package. It’s not just the dock that’s excluded, though — the Joy-Con Grip and HDMI cable are obvious exclusions, but the lack of an AC adapter will be a bigger problem for anyone who doesn’t already have one. The dock and adapter…

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Machine Learning Crash Course From Google

See the original posting on Hackaday

We’ve been talking a lot about machine learning lately. People are using it for speech generation and recognition, computer vision, and even classifying radio signals. If you’ve yet to climb the learning curve, you might be interested in a new free class from Google using TensorFlow.

Of course, we’ve covered tutorials for TensorFlow before, but this is structured as a 15 hour class with 25 lessons and 40 exercises. Of course, it is also from the horse’s mouth, so to speak. Google says the class will answer questions like:

  • How does machine learning differ from traditional programming?
  • What is loss,

…read more

Disney’s Star Wars expansion land will open at Disneyland next summer

See the original posting on The Verge

Anticipation has been high for the Star Wars-themed expansion lands being built at Disneyland and Disney World, but it hasn’t been clear when fans will actually be able to venture into the new parks. Today that got a little clearer, with Disney officially announcing the Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge will be opening at Disneyland in summer of 2019, with the Disney World version of the park following suit in late fall.

Disney parks have incorporated Star Wars rides and other elements for years, but Galaxy’s Edge promises to be a more more ambitious project than anything the company has attempted before. Rather than being a one-off ride or themed area, Galaxy’s Edge is intended to be an entire immersive world, giving guests the experience of…

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Razer Slims Down Blade, Debuts MacOS-Compatible eGPU Enclosure

See the original posting on Slashdot

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Ars Technica: Today, Razer debuted big updates to its Razer Blade laptop, focusing on design and performance to usher the gaming notebook into 2018. While the new Blade still looks unmistakably “Razer,” its design has changed dramatically for the better. Razer upped the screen size from 14 inches to 15.6 inches, reducing the surrounding bezels to just 4.9mm so that the device fits in with the other nearly bezel-less ultrabooks popular today. Razer is offering 1080p 60Hz or 144Hz panels, along with a 4K touchscreen option as well. The larger display panel makes the laptop slightly heavier than its predecessor, and it’s a bit wider overall, too (4.7 pounds and 9.3 inches, respectively). However, the slimmer bezels, sharper edges, and aluminum unibody make the new Razer Blade look like a clear upgrade from the previous model.

Another new addition to the Razer lineup is the Core X, a Thunderbolt 3 external graphics enclosure with space for large, three-slot wide graphics cards. The Core X joins the Core V2 graphics enclosure as one of Razer’s solutions for gamers who want to add desktop-like graphics power to their laptops — and it’s more affordable than the V2 as well. While it’s a bit stockier than Razer’s existing enclosure, the Core X has an aluminum body with open vents to properly handle heat, regardless of the task at hand. The Core X connects to a compatible notebook through one Thunderbolt 3 port, providing eGPU access and 100W of power thanks to its 650 ATX power supply. It’s both cheaper and seemingly easier to use than the V2, but that comes with some compromises: the Core X doesn’t have Chroma lighting, and it lacks USB and Ethernet ports. Some other specs of the new Blade include a Intel Core i7-8750H processor, Nvidia GTX 1060 or 1070 with Max-Q graphics, up to 32GB of RAM, up to 2TB of PCIe-based SSD, and 80Whr battery. There are three USB-A 3.1 ports, one proprietary charging port, one Thunderbolt 3 port, a Mini DisplayPort, and an HDMI port.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Spared No Expense: Cloning The Jurassic Park Explorer

See the original posting on Hackaday

While you’d be hard pressed to find any serious figures on such things, we’d wager there’s never been a vehicle from a TV show or movie that has been duplicated by fans more than the Staff Jeeps from Jurassic Park. Which is no great surprise: not only do they look cool, but it’s a relatively easy build. A decent paint job and some stickers will turn a stock Wrangler into a “JP Jeep” that John Hammond himself would be proud of.

While no less iconic, there are far fewer DIY builds of the highly customized Ford Explorer “Tour Vehicles”. …read more

Happy World Goth Day: an ode to the cybergoth dance meme

See the original posting on The Verge

On September 7, 2011, the internet was blessed with a diamond in the rough: a home movie of a crew of German cybergoths gathered beneath a concrete overpass, enthusiastically demonstrating their best electro-industrial dancing skills. On this day, the 10th annual celebration of World Goth Day, we humbly thank them for their service.

This scrappy bunch of cybergoths — so-called for their intersecting passions for goth style, industrial aesthetic and EDM-raver esprit de coeur (not to be confused with Invisigoth, the hacker hero of a 1998 X-Files episode, though she probably would identify as both) — could not have known at the time, but their contribution to the creative spirit of the internet would go on to inspire one of the greatest…

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Turn a wall outlet into a wireless charger with the Legrand Radiant

See the original posting on The Verge

Wireless chargers are cheaper than ever, making it easy to put charging pads throughout your house. But what if instead of just putting charging pads everywhere, you built them straight into the wall?

That’s what Legrand envisions with the Radiant charger, which is designed to replace your regular wall outlet with a wall-mounted Qi charger (via 9to5Mac.) It’s an interesting idea with a slick look to it, but it also seems like it’d limited in actual practice.

First off, it assumes that you actually have a wall outlet that’s conveniently located at a height near eye level. (In my apartment, I’d basically be charging my phone by sticking it behind a bookshelf.) Next, if you do happen to have an outlet that’s in a good place, you’ll need to…

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Best Buy now sells a $200 per year tech support subscription

See the original posting on The Verge

Best Buy has launched a $200 per year subscription version of its Geek Squad service called Total Tech Support, which — despite the name — is anything but total, and is probably also a questionable value for tech support.

The service offers subscribers 24/7 tech support over the phone or online, for most tech products in the home (even if they weren’t purchased from Best Buy). Subscribers will also be able to go into Best Buy stores to receive help with basic tech support asks, like transferring data between computers, removing a virus, and something called “Level 1 Data Recovery,” which is where this also starts to sound like a Scientology scam. What is Level 2 Data Recovery? I’m not entirely sure. But I know you have to pay for it.

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Restoring A 1930s Oscilloscope – Without Supplying Power

See the original posting on Hackaday

We’ve all done it: after happening across a vintage piece of equipment and bounding to the test bench, eager to see if it works, it gets plugged in, the power switch flipped, but… nothing. [Mr Carlson] explains why this is such a bad idea, and accompanies it with more key knowledge for a successful restoration – this time revitalising a tiny oscilloscope from the 1930s.

Resisting the temptation to immediately power on old equipment is often essential to any hope of seeing it work again. [Mr Carlson] explains why you should ensure any degraded components are fixed or replaced before …read more

Disney’s human-scale ‘Stickman’ robot can do backflips

See the original posting on The Verge

Humans can be great acrobats, but what about Disney robots? Disney Research has one such human-scale robot — called Stickman, because it’s literally a robotic stick — that is capable of aerial acrobatics, like backflips.

Just as certain human inventions take after nature (like body armor), it seems as if robots can take after humans. During a full backflip maneuver, Stickman swings from a ceiling-mounted wire 19.6 feet (six meters) above ground, tucks into a ball at peak height, and executes the stunt.

Stretched out, Stickman measures seven feet tall or as the Disney Research paper puts it, “to approximate the height of a human stunt performer with arms raised over his or her head” — although, it’s worth noting most gymnasts are…

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Watch how machine learning can enhance low-light images

See the original posting on Boing Boing

At this year’s Conference on Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition, researcher Chen Chen presented a cool project that vastly improves the quality of images captured in low-light conditions.

Via his presentation:

Imaging in low light is challenging due to low photon count and low SNR. Short-exposure images suffer from noise, while long exposure can induce blur and is often impractical. A variety of denoising, deblurring, and enhancement techniques have been proposed, but their effectiveness is limited in extreme conditions, such as video-rate imaging at night. To support the development of learning-based pipelines for low-light image processing, we introduce a dataset of raw short-exposure low-light images, with corresponding long-exposure reference images. Using the presented dataset, we develop a pipeline for processing low-light images, based on end-to-end training of a fully-convolutional network. The network operates directly on raw sensor data and replaces much of the traditional image processing pipeline, which tends to perform poorly on such data. We report promising results on the new dataset, analyze factors that affect performance, and highlight opportunities for future work.

Here’s the full project page for more information.

Let’s enhance!

• CVPR 2018: Learning to See in the Dark (YouTube / Chen Chen)

Smiling Robot Moves Without Wires

See the original posting on Hackaday

What could be cuter than a little robot that scuttles around its playpen and smiles all day? For the 2018 Hackaday prize [bobricius] is sharing his 2D Actuator for Micro Magnetic Robot. The name is not so cute, but it boasts a bill of materials under ten USD, so it should be perfect for educational use, which is why it is being created.

The double-layer circuit board hides six poles. Three poles run vertically, and three of them run horizontally. Each pole is analogous to a winding in a stepper motor. As the poles turn on, the magnetic shuttle moves …read more

The unrestored version of 2001: A Space Odyssey is Christopher Nolan’s ultimate demo reel for an analog future

See the original posting on The Verge

Christopher Nolan has seen the future, and it looks a lot like the past. Nolan is one of a handful of directors who’s made no secret of his commitment to shooting movies on film for as long as possible, even as digital filmmaking becomes the default and maybe an inevitability. In the 2012 documentary Side By Side, an enlightening examination of the digital-versus-film divide produced and hosted by Keanu Reeves, even Nolan’s longtime cinematographer Wally Pfister seemed to think the end of film was near. “I will be one of the last guys shooting film,” he tells Reeves, “and Chris Nolan will be one of the last directors using film. But I’m certain that we’ll be using digital technology within the next 10 years.”

Six years later, Nolan…

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Ryan Reynolds, Michael Bay, and the writers of Deadpool are making a Netflix movie

See the original posting on The Verge

Last year Netflix made its first attempt at producing a blockbuster action movie with the fantasy-action hybrid Bright, but it appears the service has upped its ambitions considerably. According to The Hollywood Reporter, it will be producing a new Ryan Reynolds action film called Six Underground, which will be directed by Transformers’ Michael Bay.

Bay has become synonymous with bombastic, expensive action flicks, with a filmography made up of movies like Bad Boys, The Rock, and The Transformers franchise. Six Underground will reportedly revolve around “six billionaires who fake their own death and form an elite team to take down bad guys,” but it will likely have some raucous humor thrown into the mix, as well. It was written by Paul…

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