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Maximum PCMaximum PC

Maximum PC March 2018

Maximum PC is the magazine that every computer geek, PC gamer, or content creator should read every month. Get Maximum PC digital magazine subscription today for punishing product reviews, thorough how-to articles, and the illuminating technical news and information that PC power users crave. Maximum PC covers every single topic that requires a lightning-fast PC, from video editing and music creation to PC gaming; we write about it all with unbounded enthusiasm for our collective hobby.

Country:
United States
Language:
English
Publisher:
Future Publishing Limited US
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13 Issues

IN THIS ISSUE

access_time2 min.
i’m ready for an intel-based graphics card

FROM TIME TO TIME, I reminisce about the old days of tech—the early 2000s, to be precise. I guess that wasn’t too long ago, but it feels like eons. So many things have changed. Actually, I probably think about those days because I’m hoping for some of what happened to reoccur. I’m talking about when there were lots of companies competing for each component in your PC. I thought those days were gone, leaving just a handful of large businesses competing, but some of what I’ve been hoping for is about to re-emerge. At the tail end of 2017, after a year of 15 to 20 percent improvements in primary hardware components, and an ocean of RGB devices, Intel shocked the tech world with an announcement no one expected: It would…

access_time3 min.
bitcoin, ripple, and cryptokitties

BITCOIN DID RATHER WELL last year, to put it mildly. Talk and speculation is now everywhere. Bubbling under, however, we have a new hot property: Ripple. This rose 120 percent in a week, to become the second largest cryptocurrency by market value. One to watch, and there’s good reason: It can do what Bitcoin struggles to achieve. Bitcoin remains the trailblazer for now. It started last year trading at $976 a pop, high enough to start attracting attention from pundits, investors, and less savory characters. Stories of Mafia money laundering and North Korean sanction dodging painted a somewhat unwholesome image, and major financial figures, such as Warren Buffett, were scathing. However, the new generation of tech money was hot. More cryptocurrencies were launched, and Bitcoin was seen as the benchmark for an…

access_time2 min.
apple’s battery brouhaha

OLD IPHONES can get slow, and the suspicion was always that Apple was deliberately throttling them to push upgrades. The iPhone 6 seemed particularly prone to this. Tempers shortened, forums filled with complaints, and rumors passed back and forth. At least four class action lawsuits were filed. Third-party testing revealed that the slowdown was real: Old iPhone’s are having their processors slowed down by the OS. Apple finally admitted what it was up to. Apple issued a statement just before the New Year confirming that a software upgrade last year (iOS 10.2.1) does indeed detect a battery with degraded performance, and slow things down if power demand is too high. It did have reasonable technical arguments for this: Old batteries can’t reliably supply the peak power of a fresh one; if…

access_time1 min.
gaming disorder official

THE WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION has classified an addiction to gaming as a metal health disorder, and has issued a guide that outlines the symptoms and diagnosis of the condition. Many countries already recognize gaming addiction as a identifiable and treatable condition. South Korea has a law that bans those under 16 from playing online games between midnight and six in the morning. China also limits the hours for younger players. Not everybody is happy about this. Critics argue that extensive gaming is simply a coping mechanism for other metal health issues, rather than a specific one in itself. They point out that any “fun” activity can be taken to extremes, and cause suffering. To be clear, this isn’t about enthusiastic players, or the odd night lost to a marathon session. Gaming…

access_time1 min.
memory prices may be fixed

WHEN PRODUCTION struggles to satisfy demand, prices go up. That’s basic economics. However, last year’s increases in DRAM and NAND prices have raised suspicions. The Chinese anti-trust regulator is looking into the possibility of collusion between the big manufacturers to limit supply and maximize profits. Senior official, Xu Xinyu, is quoted as saying they had “noticed the price surge, and will pay more attention to future problems that may be caused by price fixing.” This follows complaints from the big Chinese phone makers about a series of significant price rises over the last year (typically 50 percent). This made memory the single most expensive component in a phone, above the CPU and screen. If evidence is found, a large fine will be dished out. Samsung has been caught out like this…

access_time1 min.
tech triumphs and tragedies

TRIUMPHS PUBG A HUGE HIT Despite having no franchise or brand to push it, PUBG is now bigger than the next nine games on Steam put together. APPLE LISA GOES OS Apple has given the source code of Lisa, the precursor of the Mac, to the Computer History Museum. HARD DRIVE BOOST Seagate has developed an HDD with multiple actuators, initially two, which will double speeds. Four arms are being planned. TRAGEDIES FBI USES RUSSIAN CODE The FBI and 18,000 other agencies use fingerprint analysis software containing code from a firm with strong ties to the KGB. FACE RECOGNITION FOOLED An infrared photo can fool Win 10 Hello face recognition security; latest builds are largely immune. STARBUCKS MINING Argentinean branches’ Wi-Fi was caught installing Monero Miner to mine Bitcoin on customers’ machines—local ISP blamed.…

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