Intel and AMD Say Their Next CPUs Will Not Have Spectre And Meltdown Security Issues

Ever since Google’s Project Zero unveiled security issues inherent in CPUs from Intel and AMD (to some extent), manufacturers have been scrambling to patch up the problem software-side. These mitigations have had varying degrees of success; Microsoft administered an emergency Windows security update, while Intel had to retract an early version of its own patch. As Intel and AMD look toward the future, both companies’ CEOs have promised to take care of Spectre/Meltdown on hardware level with their next generations of processors.

During an investors conference call, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich stated, “We’re working to create silicon-based changes to future products that will directly address the Spectre and Meltdown threats in hardware. And those products will begin appearing later this year.” Krzanich also went on to say that the vulnerabilities won’t impact sales. No details were given as to which “future products” he was referencing, but it’s rumored that Cannon Lake or Ice Lake (9th generation) could be out by the end of the year, which would fit the time frame Krzanich referenced.

On AMD’s side, CEO Lisa Su had something similar to say: “Longer term, we have included changes in our future processor cores, starting with our Zen 2 design, to further address potential Spectre-like exploits.” AMD was confident in their CPUs being virtually free of the security exploits when the news initially came out, but fact that the company came out to say its next generation will be free of the problem speaks to the broad impact of Spectre and Meltdown are having. AMD still has Zen+ CPUs set to release in April this though, and Zen 2 chips aren’t due out until 2019.

Aside from next generation CPUs to overcome the recently discovered Spectre and Meltdown issues, both chip manufacturers are shaking up the PC hardware market in other ways. At CES 2018, Intel and AMD announced a partnership to bring Radeon RX Vega tech to integrated graphics for Intel Core CPUs in laptops. AMD is also set to launch Ryzen CPUs with Vega integrated graphics next month. For more details on the security exploits, check out our breakdown of the five things you should know about Spectre and Meltdown.

from GameSpot

Get a job: Armature Studio is hiring a Graphics Engineer

Texas-based Armature Studio is seeking a Mid to Senior level Graphics Engineer to join it on exciting, high visibility projects for a variety of platforms and utilizing various engines. …

from Gamasutra News

Here’s The Most Anticipated PC-Exclusive Games Of 2018

Despite the launch of two new consoles last year, PC dominated much of the conversation in 2017 thanks to the phenomenal success of PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, which released in Early Access in March and proceeded to shatter player and sales records throughout the remainder of the year. But while PUBG may have been the platform’s biggest success story in 2017, it certainly wasn’t the only noteworthy PC game to come out last year, with critically acclaimed titles like Divinity: Original Sin II and Doki Doki Literature Club all releasing exclusively for the platform.

2018 is likewise shaping up to be another great year for PC players. In terms of breadth, no platform has more exclusive games on the way this year than PC. Hundreds of games are set to launch on the platform over the course of the next 12 months thanks to digital storefronts like Steam and GOG, which allow independent developers to release their titles to the public more easily than they would traditionally be able to.

While it would be impossible to mention all of the PC games in store for this year, there are a few high-profile releases that should be on everyone’s radar. In the video above, we take a look at some of the biggest PC exclusives on the way in 2018, from the Monster Hunter-like co-op RPG Dauntless to the classic strategy game Age of Empires: Definitive Edition and Obsidian’s next RPG, Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire. You can also see all of the year’s big PC exclusives in our gallery.

Regardless of which platform you own, there are a lot of exciting games to look forward to in 2018. In addition to the biggest PC titles, we’ve taken a look at the most anticipated PS4 games, Nintendo Switch games, and Xbox One games of the year.

from GameSpot

Learn These 27 Cyberpunk Terms If You Want To Understand Netflix’s Altered Carbon

For the sci-fi junkies of the universe.

Netflix’s Altered Carbon is some heady, intense science fiction–the most hardcore sci-fi on TV in years. The first episode alone is packed with so many cryptic, futuristic terms and concepts it might make your head spin. And you wouldn’t want that–who knows what it might do to your cortical stack?

Don’t worry if you have no idea what that means. We’ve got you covered with this list of the important cyberpunk and sci-fi terms, phrases, and concepts you’ll need to fully grasp exactly what’s going down in Netflix’s noir sci-fi epic, Altered Carbon, which hits Netflix this Friday, February 2.

27. Cortical Stack

The cortical stack is the sci-fi invention at Altered Carbon‘s core. It shapes the story’s world, and it makes all the show’s events possible. Think of it like a USB drive that houses your memory and personality–everything that makes you who you are. It rests somewhere within each person’s upper spine/lower skull. If your body dies, your stack can be implanted in a new one, as long as it remains intact.

26. Sleeves

Sleeves are what the denizens of Altered Carbon‘s world call their bodies. Thanks to cortical stacks, bodies are basically disposable–depending how wealthy you are, at least.

25. Re-sleeving

Re-sleeving is the process of your cortical stack being implanted or “downloaded” into a new sleeve. The wealthy can be re-sleeved whenever they want, sometimes treating different sleeves like changes of clothes, while the poor do it once in a lifetime–if that.

24. Spin Up

Spinning someone up or being spun up is the process of being awakened after re-sleeving. It can be disorienting, especially if your most recent memories were heightened or traumatic (such as if your last sleeve died in combat).

23. Sleeve Sickness

Sleeve sickness is a physical malady that includes disorientation and other symptoms. It can occur when your stack is re-sleeved and can be overcome with the aid of re-acclimation drugs.

22. Organic Damage

Organic damage is the illegal act of damaging or killing a sleeve.

21. Sleeve Death

This is simply the name for when your sleeve gets destroyed or damaged. The mind lives on without the body–as long as your cortical stack isn’t destroyed with it.

20. Real Death

This is the real, scary kind of death, when your cortical stack is destroyed or lost along with your sleeve, making it impossible for you to be re-sleeved and spun back up. Of course, the wealthy have secure backups, so the richer you are, the more unlikely real death is.

19. Meths

“Meth” is the somewhat derogatory term for the richest of the rich–and therefore the oldest of the old, the untouchable, borderline inhuman elite at the top of Altered Carbon‘s society. Meths usually live in decadent mansions above the clouds. They’re named after the Biblical figure Methuselah. The exact passage quoted in the Altered Carbon book is “and all the days of Methusaleh were nine hundred sixty and nine years.”

18. Grounders

“Grounders” is the derogatory term Meths use to refer to those at the other end of society, especially poor people who live on the world’s surface rather than above the clouds.

17. Needlecast

A needlecast is a “tightbeam transmission”–in other words, an extremely precise digital broadcast–of the contents of your cortical stack. For example, Meths can needlecast to different stacks around the globe–or the universe–to attend faraway business meetings or simply go on vacation.

16. Personality Frag

A “personality fragmentation” occurs when a person re-sleeves into too many different bodies. Basically, you go insane. That’s why Meths keep multiple clones on ice, often in multiple places; re-sleeving into your own body (even a copy of it) avoids adverse effects.

15. Synthetic Sleeve

A synthetic sleeve is a lab-made body that possesses abilities a normal (i.e. born) sleeve does not, such as some shapeshifting capability to change your appearance. However, synths are limited in other ways.

14. AI Hotels

Altered Carbon is set so far in the future that AI hotels–hotels owned and operated entirely by artificial intelligences–are considered archaic. The AI are programmed to crave customers, and they’re often eccentric. In the book, protagonist Takeshi Kovacs stays at a hotel called the Hendrix, themed after Jimi Hendrix, while in the show he stays at The Raven, where the AI proprietor resembles none other than Edgar Allan Poe.

13. Dipper

A Dipper is someone who can hack into a transmission and remove or add information, such as copying your private memories while you download into a new stack. For all intents and purposes, they’re Altered Carbon’s version of hackers.

12. Trauma Loop

One character in Altered Carbon gets stuck in a trauma loop, meaning her sleeve died in so traumatic a fashion that her backup is essentially corrupted. Her stack can’t be spun back up properly without her suffering.

11. Songspire

Songspire is a structure that appears to be part rock and part tree. It grows on Mars, and individual songspires can be small enough to fit on a necklace or bigger than a house. They emit pleasant sounds and fragrances when touched. Their purpose isn’t fully clear, but they appear to have some significance in both the book and the show.

10. Extreme Organic Damage Event

An “extreme organic damage event” in the context of the show is an event at which significant organic damage–damage to one’s sleeve–will occur, like a pre-planned fight to the death. These require permits issued by the police to be fully legal.

9. Simulspace

Simulspace is simply Altered Carbon‘s name for virtual reality. However, unlike the VR of today, simulspace is often indistinguishable from “the real.”

8. Psychosurgery

A form of mental therapy that takes place in simulspace, often to help people deal with traumatic events.

7. VR Interrogation

VR interrogation is a brutal form of torture that takes place in simulspace. Your interrogator spins your stack up in VR, then tortures you to digital sleeve death over and over in whatever creative ways the simulation’s programming can support. Your stack and sleeve remain intact in the real, so you never truly die, but you feel everything in your mind.

6. Multisleeving

Multisleeving is a criminal activity that involves copying the contents of your stack and downloading yourself into separate sleeves simultaneously. Essentially, there are two or more yous walking around. It’s highly illegal, and the penalties are harsh, though it can be hard to prove.

5. Neo-Catholics

Neo-Catholicism is a religion whose devotees believe in the “natural order,” and that being re-sleeved destroys the soul, even as it preserves the mind. Neo-Catholics’ stacks carry special “Neo-C coding” that prevents them from being legally spun up when their original sleeves (i.e. their actual birth bodies) die. It’s a big source of the conflict in Altered Carbon. Resolution 653 is a bill that would allow murder victims to be spun back up to testify, even if they have Neo-C coding.

4. Reaper

Reaper is a drug that simulates a near death experience. It’s cheaper than actual sleeve suicide, a thrill only those wealthy enough to keep clones and backups on hand can afford to experience. It can also be used in small doses to lower your body temperature and instill a feeling of cool indifference that makes it easier to commit violence. As a result, soldiers often use it.

3. Portable 3D Bio Organic Printer

Imagine a 3D printer that can work bones, flesh, and organs into actual living bodies, A.K.A. sleeves. That’s a portable 3D bio organic printer, an extremely expensive gadget that Meths sometimes keep around.


The Colonial Tactical Assault Corp (CTAC) is a universal police force whose soldiers needlecast to pre-trained sleeves on whatever world they’re needed. They fight sleeve sickness by injecting chemical cocktails. Depending what side you’re on, you might see them as the enemy.

1. Envoy

The Envoys were a group of soldiers who rose up in resistance against humanity’s colonial forces and CTAC. It didn’t end well. They had some vaguely defined enhanced abilities (including improved senses, intuition, and physical capabilities).

from GameSpot

Marvel’s Black Panther Cast On The Power And Importance Of Wakanda’s Female Warriors

While Black Panther looks to be a gamechanger for the Marvel Cinematic Universe based on early reactions, it’s not just Marvel’s first movie centered around a black superhero that is helping the movie blaze a new path. Black Panther is also a film filled with powerful female characters that are as important when it comes to saving the world as the titular superhero himself.

While the previous MCU movies have introduced characters like Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) and Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen), Black Panther takes the inclusion of women one step further. The females of the film are put in the spotlight, thanks in large part to the Dora Milaje–an all-female group of special forces bodyguards and operatives. They are responsible for the protection of Wakanda and its royal family, with two high-ranking members, Nakia (Lupita N’Yongo) and Okoye (Danai Gurira) spending much of the film at the Black Panther’s (Chadwick Boseman) side.

“[They] were fully-developed female characters, too,” Gurira explains during a press conference at Black Panther‘s junket. “A lot of times movies, and sometimes comics, have a weird history sometimes with female characters. These were fully-developed women in this movie, which I loved.”

For Gurira, it all started when she shaved her head for the role. “The pride started to grow,” she says. “There’s pride around it, and there’s this sort of embracing of this symbol of power of these women.”

It’s not just the Dora Milaje that are given the spotlight, though. The royal family itself is treated with importance, well beyond Wakanda’s king. “In African culture, they feel as if there is no king without a queen, and I think this story highlights the warrior, the general, the young sister,” Angela Bassett, who plays Queen Mother Ramonda, says. “I was so proud to have my daughter and my son there last night because in their faces and in their spirit, they were feeling themselves, and they stood taller after last night.”

Perhaps what this film attempts beyond showing how powerful the women are, though, is showing how different they are from each other. T’Challa’s sister Shuri (Letitia Wright) is a 16-year-old genius with a wicked sense of humor, while Okoye is a traditional and proud warrior who serves her nation above all, and Nakia is a skilled spy who thrives in undercover situations. Still, even with fundamental differences in their personalities, the cast takes pride that it doesn’t turn confrontational.

“What I love about the way this film represents women is that each and every one of us is an individual, unique. We all have our own sense of power and our own agency. And we hold our space without being pitted against each other,” Nyong’o says. “I think that’s a very, very powerful message to send to children, both male and female. This idea, often times in movies, we fall into that trap where women–there’s very few of us–and men go against each other. There’s a competitive spirit. This film freezes all of that, and we see women going about their business and supporting each other and even arguing with each other, having different points of view, but not being against each other. I think that’s extremely important.”

Clearly, Marvel understands the importance of empowered women in its universe. Whether it’s Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson) in Thor: Ragnarok, Brie Larson’s upcoming turn as Captain Marvel, The Wasp (Evangeline Lilly) joining Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) on his next adventure, or the MCU finally getting to work on a Black Widow standalone movie, this franchise is taking encouraging steps. Hopefully, that’s something that continues.

Black Panther is in theaters on February 16.

from GameSpot