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PC Gamer builds “Large Pixel Collider”


Imagine building your dream gaming rig with an unlimited budget. Any piece of hardware, no matter how expensive, is yours to assemble. Sites like PC Part Picker let gamers pick and chose parts for their gaming rig and its easy to get carried away with all the options. As always, reality quickly sets in and the limitations of our own wallets prevent us from building the machine of our dreams.

But the editorial staff at PC Gamer have no such limitations. They built one of the world’s finest gaming PC’s and it’s called the Large Pixel Collider.

The Large Pixel Collider (LPC) is named after the Large Hadron Collider in Geneva, Switzerland, a monstrous particle accelerator that’s regarded as one of the greatest human accomplishments of all time. The LPC won’t smash electrons at the speed of light, but it will play games off Origin as easily as a Ferrari driving 35 mph. Here are some of the dream components used to build LPC:

Case

First, the world’s best gaming PC can’t be housed in an average case. PC Gamer used an Aventum II from Digital Storm to house the monstrous components. It’s body is made of metal that dissipates heat, it comes equipped with three 143mm fans, and it has the room to house a mega motherboard and four graphics cards (which, of course, PC Gamer does not let go to waste).

Motherboard

The nervous system of the LPC is the Asus Rampage IV Extreme. The average motherboard has space for 16 GB of RAM and two graphics cards, (sometimes only one) but the Rampage fits an astonishing four graphics cards and 64 GB of RAM. It’s more than enough to power games for years to come.

CPU

The LPC packs the Intel i7-4960X, which runs six cores at a base clock of 3.6 Ghz with the ability to overlock to 4.0 GHz. Coupled with with the motherboard’s ability to run Turbo Boost, this processor will handle several tasks like it’s the only one running.

GPU

Let’s get to the real fun. The true meat of the LPC is the video cards. The Large Pixel Collider houses not one, not two, not three, but four Nvidia GeForce GTX Titans, the most powerful video cards on the market. Each one costs a bank-busting $1000, but we’re not counting costs, are we? The four Titans are daisy-chained in quad-SLI to make any other setup look like pure amateur hour.

Cooling

Those 1200 watts of electricity coursing through four video cards and a six-core CPU produces just a bit of heat. In order to prevent the LPC from boiling down into lava, PC Gamer installed Digital Storm’s custom liquid cooling system connected to all four graphics cards as well as the CPU to keep the system cool and running lightning quick.

Next Steps

The best feature of the LPC is that it’s a constant work in progress. As new hardware hits the market, PC Gamer will upgrade the Large Pixel Collider to keep it on top of the PC gaming heap. And as the machine continues to grow, it will benchmark the latest games to show off its prowess. After all, that’s what these rigs are for, right?

How to Start Using Bitcoin on Android


Android has become one of the most popular mobile device operating systems in the world. Android has gained popularity for many reasons. Mostly, it is because of the large variety of applications available on the Google play marketplace, but also because it is open source. This means that anybody can view the code and modify it as pleased. Since there is no price for manufacturers to install it on their devices, it’s much more ideal. Android is such a popular operating system so it would only be natural for Bitcoin solutions to exist in the marketplace for free.

How do you get a Bitcoin wallet?
Bitcoin is also open source, just like Android. Anybody can get them and anybody can use them. To get started, you need to obtain a bitcoin wallet. Wallets come in two forms, local and cloud-based. Both of which are available on the Google Play market place. A great local wallet for the Android operating system is the one that is available at Bitcoin.org. Local wallets have their advantages and disadvantages. An advantage is that you don’t have to pay any fees to use the wallet like you would do for a bank account. However, the disadvantage is if your device were to get stolen or damaged, you will lose your coins forever, because coins can’t be replicated. This is assuming you didn’t take the precautionary measures to ensure your money’s safety. The kinds of measures to be executed depends on the wallet you are using. You also have a selection of cloud based wallets to choose from. A good choice is the Coinbase online exchange wallet. These wallets work similar to the local ones. You can send and receive coins but there are some strings attached. When you use a cloud based wallet, you need to pay them to withdraw sometimes. It’s not ideal, but you might end up using them if you want a way to manage your money on more than one device.
Now that you have set up your Bitcoin wallet, you’re going to need some Bitcoins to put in them.

How do you pay with Bitcoin?
Every Bitcoin wallet has at least one address associated with it. This is a secure method of transferring funds anonymously. Without it, you have no method of receiving payment. You can also generate a QR code as an alternative payment method. This is mostly for convenience when it comes to transactions. Not everyone is willing to write down an entire string of characters for a simple donation. As an alternative, you can place QR codes on website ads, fliers on the street, and more. Bitcoin applications on Android devices revolutionizes how all of this bitcoin stuff works. For instance, an android mobile phone can be used to take a picture of the qr code on a flier or bus stop bench, and donate money to a charity that accepts Bitcoins as a method of payment.
When you go out to spend Bitcoins on a website somewhere, you need to sign up for the site first. This will bind a wallet address to your account. One popular application is poker for Android. For that, you would need to purchase credits for the site, then you can start playing. Be aware that some gambling sites have high payout thresholds which makes you sit at the computer for hours until you have enough credits to withdraw into your wallet. Imagine these sites like taking a trip to Vegas but without any travel fees, expensive hotel bills and the potential for returning home broke. Having an application like this available on the android device would enable more people to get involved in a simple game of poker. Since not every poker addict has the luxury of being near a computer with internet access 24/7., this could satisfy peoples gambling addiction if they are able to play casino games with their phone. Almost everyone that owns a cell phone has a smart phone and this is potential for increasing the pot in online gambling.

There are also numerous other uses for paying with the virtual currency. Online retailers like Overstock have also started to accept it, meaning that users are beginning to have more and more options for using Bitcoin on Android devices.

There Is Only One True Social Network


Over the past few years, a steady proliferation of quality social networks and the ubiquity of mobile devices have increasingly fragmented how people spend their time on the social web. For more and more users every year, Facebook is no longer their one-and-only social channel. Now, their time is divided among Facebook + Twitter + Pinterest + Instagram + Snapchat + plenty of others. While each platform shares at least some common ground, they’re all uniquely attractive because they each offer a distinctive user experience and provide unique value to their users. This is why it has become so important for brands to share quality content that contextually matches the language, tone and style of the platform they’re sharing on. Too many businesses still struggle with this and continue distributing the same exact piece of content to three or four different channels. Perhaps what is needed is a slight change in how businesses define these channels and what they should be used for.

Try this for a change: Realize that, in essence, Twitter is the only true social network out there. Everything else, by contrast, is a content platform.

This doesn’t mean there isn’t any socializing between brands and their customers on other platforms besides Twitter, because obviously there is. Nor does it mean that Twitter isn’t a great place for content marketing. It simply means that while other platforms specialize in sharing high quality visual content (Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram), Twitter specializes in rapid, real-time communication — aka social networking. While you can and should respond to customer inquiries on your Facebook page, and you can and should share great images on Twitter, there is tremendous value in understanding the respective strengths that each social media destination provides. The brands that do this well end up speaking each platform’s unique language and therefore attract far more followers, engagement, leads and sales. They find that they’re presence on Twitter (the social network) vs Facebook (a content platform) looks very different.

I could use several different brands as an example of this, but the one that comes to mind right now is Waze. Waze, as you may know, is the popular mobile maps app used by more than 40 million drivers around the world who tune in for directions, traffic notifications and real-time communication with fellow users who keep each other updated about police activity and accidents on the road, among other things. It’s a fabulous and extremely useful application that major players soon took notice of, causing Google to swoop in and pick it up in a $1 billion dollar acquisition. The app is free but has still maintained a strong presence on the social web to express its playful personality and communicate with a global userbase.

Waze totally gets the fact that Twitter is a social networking tool while Facebook is a content marketing platform. Check out these screen grabs to see what I mean.

This is what Waze’s typical Facebook activity looks like. They wisely emphasize big, quality images and keep their text to an absolute minimum. The Christmas-themed posts show that they care enough about their content to make it timely and relevant to their fans. The post in the left column showcases the company’s fun and hip personality in that it leverages some clever Waze-branded icons with trending pop culture (a cute play on the uber-popular song “Royals” by Lorde). That same post, as you can see in the company’s comment, is actually an image originally created by a dedicated Waze fan. The company loved it, reshared it and gave the user credit for it. Facebook is excellent for this kind of sharing and resharing of visual content. Waze is savvy enough to treat Facebook as the content marketing platform that it is.

Now take a look at Waze’s Twitter activity.

Does this look at all like what they’re doing on Facebook? Do you see any posts that were originally shared on Facebook then carelessly “pushed” to Twitter by some autosharing tool like Hootsuite or Buffer? No, and no. Waze just gets it. Every single one of their tweets are one-to-one interactions with Waze users, mostly with those looking for help with the app. Waze obviously realizes that users seeking assistance with the app are likely on the road right then and there and therefore need feedback immediately. Twitter is far and away the best tool for this kind of instant, real-time communication with customers. It’s a safe bet that Waze has a sizeable team working around the clock on Twitter alone to ensure its global userbase receives immediate assistance with whatever problem they need. If you read the tweets, you’ll also notice that they sound like an actual human being is communicating with users. There’s virtually no sense of automation or corporate agenda. There’s no jargon-heavy sales tactics or shameless self-advertising. They rarely talk about themselves and focus solely on communcating with needy customers — and they do so like a normal, social human being: With personality, humor, concern and helpfulness. Waze recognizes and utilizes Twitter for what is really is: The web’s only true social network. Everything else, for them, is a content platform.

I realize not all companies are like Waze. The challenges, obstacles and competition faced by other businesses in the world vary and depend on an infinite number of factors. But the reason Waze is on social media is essentially no different from the reason why a completely different brand like, say, Burberry is on social media. Each business seeks to leverage the social web to create loyal customers and encourage people to buy/use their product or service. So although Waze may not reflect the way your or your client’s business operates, their shrewd use of social media should be emulated.

When you truly understand the platform you’re using, your activity there begins to reflect what the platform is actually intended for. Each social channel offers a unique proposition value. Recognize that Twitter’s value lies in actual social networking, while essentially everything else caters to sharing quality content.

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More Leadership Less Management, Please.


Understanding what your organization really, needs.

A couple of weeks ago I found an article on the HBR blog network written by John Kotter outlining the difference between Management and Leadership. Even though I was intrigued by his distinct separation of the two terms, I still believe the two are linked and need to go hand in hand. I also believe that one is greater than the other, but in order to explain what I mean by that, lets define the two powerful terms.

Management (in all organizational activities) is the act of coordinating the efforts of people, to accomplish desired goals and objectives using available resources, efficiently and effectively. Management is a set of tools such as planning, organizing, maintaining, checking, controlling. Management helps you to produce products and services as you have promised, of consistent quality, on budget, day after day, week after week. The lack of management can result in a very messy organization.

“Management is crucial — but it’s not leadership.”

Leadership is entirely different. Leadership is about vision and about taking something from A to B. It’s about finding opportunities faster and faster and successfully exploiting those opportunities. It’s about being a motivational figure and it’s about empowerment. Leadership is not about attributes, it’s about behavior. Leadership is increasingly needed from more and more people in organizations, no matter where they are in a hierarchy because leadership is about producing useful and meaningful change.

“The notion that only a few extraordinary people at the top can provide all the leadership needed in an organization is ridiculous, and most importantly it’s a recipe for failure.”

Management and Leadership are not the same, but they do go hand in hand as they’re both essential to run a functional organization. Every organization needs great management, there’s no doubt about it, but every organization needs even greater leadership. Most organizations today, want to solve the leadership problem by adding more management and they usually end up with an over-managed organization that is lacking motivation and inspiration. Every group is different but no matter what size and objective, trust that there’s always room for fantastic leadership, but not always a need for management.

Are you a transformer looking to improve your organization? Figure out what it is your organization truly needs, before making a move.

If you take away one thing from this article, let it be this:

Aim to motivate your employees and colleagues to become leaders, not managers. Managers will always naturally take shape and form on an ongoing basis, but leaders are different. Leaders need leadership.

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Samsung Profit Growth Slows Down, As Galaxy Faces Heat From iPhone And Cheaper Rivals


Next Story

Samsung’s latest financial results underscored slowing growth in the smartphone business and its increased rivalry with Apple, which seems to be closing the gap, at least in the U.S.

Samsung reported its first decline in quarterly profit in two years for the December quarter. Fourth quarter net income was 7.22 trillion won ($6.7 billion), lower than what the analysts had expected. Operating income for Samsung’s mobile business during October to December period remained flat at 5.47 trillion won.

While consumers in both India and China are expected to buy over half a billion smartphones this year, they are going to look for cheaper versions, triggering a pricing battle. This basically means lower profit margins for Samsung’s Galaxy range of phones — the company’s biggest and most profitable business division.

With Apple iPhone at the higher end of the market (and even pushing lower-priced iPhones in markets like India), and aggressive rivals such as Lenovo and Micromax selling much cheaper versions of Android phones, this year is going to be tough for Samsung.

Investor concerns on Samsung’s ability to keep growing its mobile phone business became visible early this year, when the company lost $8 billion of the market value. According to a Bloomberg report, Samsung shipped only 9 million units of Galaxy S4 during the fourth quarter ending December, much lower than the 13 million units it had expected.

Samsung chairman Lee Kun Hee even warned employees last January to watch its back and continue to innovate in new business, as competition increases and the global economy continues to drag.

Earlier this year, Apple finally managed to strike a deal with China Mobile for selling iPhones in the country. Tim Cook also said that Apple sold more iPhones in China than ever before during the quarter. Moreover, Apple now seems to be working on bigger-sized iPhones to address the opportunity in markets like China where many consumers still prefer the 5.7-inch Galaxy Note over iPhones that offer 4-inch screen.

Among new launches planned for this year, Samsung said it will release Galaxy S5 by April and at least one other wearable device during 2014.

The company attributed lower growth to currency fluctuations and one-time bonus payments to workers to celebrate the 20th anniversary of chairman Lee’s new management strategy.

To be sure, Samsung is still the world’s biggest smartphone maker, accounting for nearly half of all the sales, but the challenge is more in terms of protecting its turf — both in terms of volumes and profitability.

http://techcrunch.com/2014/01/23/samsung-profit-growth-slows-down-as-galaxy-faces-heat-from-iphone-and-cheaper-rivals/

This is how Google is killing the Web


On our Desktops & Smart-devices, everything is just one touch away. So why on the browser do we solely rely on Search?

For the past 7 years I have been on an ongoing search to present the best new sites, services & apps to my readers. Every week I find at least one site that blows my mind. I get excited about how this service could evolve into something big, it’s potential to grow into a billion dollar business, and how it can change the face of the Internet.

But you won’t find these great sites on the first page of Google results—you might not find them on the first 10. As a result, these services, some of them genuinely life-changing, get lost in the dark recesses of the Internet. Even when you find these gems, you probably won’t think to access them the next time you log on. Their biggest challenge is finding a large enough audience to create a habit around their product.

Creating a habit around a product is limited by the way we browse the Web.

Take a moment and think about the browser user experience. It hasn’t changed much in the past 20 years and since the days of Netscape, we’ve been confined to a search box. We need to know exactly what we’re looking for, either through a search or by typing in the exact web address.

This experience is based on an intention, one that is transformed into a search query. But what happens when we don’t have a specific intention in mind? These moment of non-intention define our daily Internet routine.

How many times a day do you procrastinate with one of the big services available to you? Whether it’s Facebook or Twitter, NYTimes or HuffPost you’re limited to only the “top of mind” services that pop into your head at that specific moment. When we want to shop online, one or two sites pop into our mind. When we’re looking for news, a few publications pop into our mind. With any given topic, you can usually think of one or two services that provide it.

But what about the hundreds of other websites available in that specific topic? While you certainly don’t need hundreds of options, it’s useful to branch out and explore different directions (especially when they are just a few clicks away). Even when we do find useful alternatives to our tried-and-true sites, it’s difficult to form a habit and start using them more often.

This habit is formed by bookmarking the site, adding it to a list, sending an email to yourself about the site, sharing it on Twitter, or whatever you do to try and save an interesting service. No matter what you do, when you need it, you can’t find it. You are still limited.

Lets say you came across an interesting website for boutique hotels called ‘Stayful’. You save and share it somewhere online. A few months later, you have a trip to plan. Now begins the search through endless lists in order to find that one service whose name you can’t even remember. This is no easy feat for most people.

This is where Google reaps the benefits. Chances are, you won’t find this site again while searching for a keyword such as “boutique hotels”. You start refining the search, all the while seeing tons of ads and maybe you even click on a few. Google makes a profit. Sounds legit right?

One might say, including me, that Google provides such a great service. I don’t mind if they make a profit over it. Of course… but what I ask for, don’t force me into searching, provide me with an easy way to access my Web.

Just take a brief look at all of our smart devices.

On our desktops. Every application is just a click away…

Microsoft / Windows 8

On our tablets, all our apps are just one touch away.

Google Nexus / Android 4.2

On our smartphones, just a touch away…

Apple iPhone / iOS 7

So why on the browser are we confined to a search box?

The browser experience is deliberately forcing us into searching everything. These browsers make most of their profit by keeping this experience alive. So, who cares? The ones who care are the millions of startups, businesses and content providers out there, trying to get the world’s attention.

Apple, Google & Microsoft built amazing app stores for mobile and desktop. They made it as simple as possible for their users to access these products. However, on the Web, they don’t have control over what we are doing. So they provide us with a lousy experience. Forcing the user to only a handful of websites that he can remember by heart.

Due to the difficulty in marketing a Web product, developers turn to the platforms provided by these companies because they offer an “easier” marketing platform. This provides the companies with full control over these profitable platforms. They control which apps are approved, they control the profits and they control the content.

This control over our lives is dangerous!

Before we look at net neutrality issues over bandwidth, we need to look at our favorite companies and their control over our virtual world. The Web should be an open platform allowing anyone to enjoy and take part in.

We deserve a better browsing experience; an experience as easy and intuitive as we have with our smart devices.


“You affect the world by what you browse.” Tim Berners-Lee


I’m the co-founder & CTO of Wibki. Our aim is to advance browsing into a new era. You can read more about our vision here.

If you like this post, hit “Recommend.”

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Hypothetical Dates I Didn’t Go On With These Eligible Bachelors of OK Cupid


Usernames have been altered to protect the bold and the awkward

If you give a mouse a cookie, he’ll want a glass of milk. If you give me half a bottle of wine, I’ll want someone to love me.

But, having just moved to Los Angeles, I was home alone on a Friday night with no boys around. So instead, I used that liquid courage to create half of an OK Cupid profile and then promptly passed out on my futon. I answered enough compatability questions, uploaded a vain Mac Photo Booth selfie, input my height, heritage, and zodiac sign and nothing else.

However, the lack of personal information did not stop the messages from coming in.

I have not replied back to anyone from the site nor have I met up with any of these gentlemen, but these are some hypothetical dates I suspect I would have gone on based on each of their attempts at a cyber based pick-up.


GlobalBliss420 — 92 percent match

Hey,

I liked your profile…your eyes tell more about you then you know…God, did I just say that online…now before you go and report me to our local PD I should probably preface that by saying that in my profession you do well if you can learn to read people well. Hence, the comment. SO, if I haven’t scared you off. I would love to talk some time…hope to hear from you soon. Take care.

I sip happy hour beer and nosh on soggy sweet potato fries. He says two sentences to me repeatedly over the course of the evening while licking his lips. They are: “Well, well, well…” and “So you an Aries, right?”


SyrianMike23 — 65 percent match; message received in August

September 27th, 2013

Hello, you are my future girlfriend, we start off dating of course and getting to know each other and all that fun stuff, you actually can’t stand me when I send this message to you but you eventually warm up to me….. We don’t kiss until the 3rd date and from that moment it’s like WOW! I know this is a lot for you to take in but I was sent here to tell you this… I’ll be hearing from you pretty soon.

He proposes in the parking lot. When I don’t respond, he gives me a knowing look and says “You say yes. Wanna go halfsies on a condo?”


Pennies_From_Heaven — 80 percent match

i actually see all three blends of ethnicity in your face. your not half bad. Loved the profile, definitely not messaging you based on your cuteness.

When I introduce myself he says, “I thought you’d have a browner name.” He asks me to say something in Guyanese. When I explain to him that they speak English there, he is visibly disappointed, fakes an expired meter and leaves the Carl’s Jr. That night I get a text at 2:00 AM saying: “u up? cum over.” He follows up minutes later with, “bitch u a’int even dat cute tho.”


Looking4MySweetie — 60 percent match

I would do battle with a family of wolverines inside of a port-o-potty with my hands tied behind my back and anal beads flail strapped to my head as my only weapon just to get the chance to split a 5th of vodka with the male nurse that was in the delivery room when you were born.

He invites me to a party where I beat him in flip cup and sip whiskey drinks. The evening ends with us gabbing in the corner about the 25th season of Saturday Night Live and we high-five good night. He becomes a very good friend and someone whom I unconditionally trust. He attends my wedding and dances with my husband’s grandmother. He later becomes the godfather of my middle child. Just past middle-age, he dies in a tragic accident and I eulogize him with inside jokes.


MrFootMassage4U — no match statistics found

hello

We watch Black Swan in complete darkness in his mother’s basement. I shower for 3 days straight.

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