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AMD sees another six months of video game chip shortages

ZDNet

The world's hunger for graphics chips for PCs and gaming consoles means there will be short supply in many markets through the first half of this year, according to chip titan Advanced Micro Devices. "We did have some supply constraints as we ended the year," said CEO Lisa Su on a conference call with analysts Tuesday evening following the company's report of stronger-than-expected Q4 results. Shortages of supply "were primarily, I would say, in the PC market, the low end of the PC market and in the gaming markets," said Su. "That being said, I think we're getting great support from our manufacturing partners. The industry does need to increase the overall capacity levels. And so we do see some tightness through the first half of the year." AMD's Radeon RX 6900 XT graphics card, introduced last quarter.


Gesturing with your hands can make your words more memorable, new research suggests

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Searching for a way to make your point? Then look no further than your hands. Gestures such as slicing the air or waving can make what we are saying more memorable, according to scientists. It may explain politicians' annoying habit of making chopping motions to emphasise words in their speeches – and why people in some countries such as Italy tend to gesticulate when they speak. The research shows gestures can affect the sounds people hear, for example making vowels seem longer.


Ticker: Amazon adds jobs in Boston; Lottery sales, profits rising during pandemic

Boston Herald

Amazon's 2020 hiring spree does not appear to be slowing in the new year with the company announcing 3,000 new jobs in the city in coming years. The hires announced Tuesday will double the workforce in Amazon's Boston tech hub, with new jobs spread across Alexa, Amazon Web Services, Amazon Robotics and Amazon Pharmacy. In its most recent quarter which ended in September, Amazon hired more than 250,000 permanent full-time and part-time workers, Chief Financial Officer Brian Olsavsky said during a conference call with industry analysts. In October, the start of this quarter, it hired another 100,000. The jobs announced Tuesday in Boston include technology positions in software development, artificial intelligence and machine learning, as well as new jobs in product management, human relations, finance and other areas.


Tesla's dominant autonomous EV leadership, ride-hailing services, and the Boring Company

ZDNet

ARK Invest focuses solely on offering investment solutions to capture disruptive innovation in the public equity markets. ARK believes that the world is rapidly changing and passive investment strategies are counterproductive. ARK also believes that innovation is causing disruption and the risks associated with the traditional world order are rising. Therefore ARK invests at the pace of innovation. ARK's analysts are organized by a cross-sector innovation theme to capitalize on technological convergence across markets and industries.


I recreated 'Phasmophobia' in 'The Sims 4' with the game's new paranormal pack

Washington Post - Technology News

With each séance, things got spookier. The ghosts became angrier, soon transforming from green to red blobs that spewed fire from their mouths; they can set fire to homes and sims, making hauntings potentially lethal. My sims quickly became total wrecks, often exhausted from lack of sleep due to strange sounds and flickering lights, reminiscent of the terrors in "Phasmophobia." They weren't eating properly or showering, because all they could think about was fear. While scared, sims hide under covers, take "a panicked poop" in the bathroom and scream incoherently to one another.


Smart displays are stealing the show from smart speakers

ZDNet

Resembling a sawed-off section of stovepipe in black or PVC in white, the original Amazon Echo was the anti-smartphone. It operated tethered to an outlet, it was communal. And it was pre-pandemically touch-free if you didn't care about muting its microphone. Unbound by a display, it inspired voice-driven variants that ranged in size from tiny rings to giant rigs. We've hand-picked 11 smart displays that will satisfy a range of wants and needs.


Here's how to get an Echo Dot for just $10 when you buy a Fire TV Edition smart TV

Mashable

SAVE $39.99: Now through Feb. 7 at 8:55 p.m. PST, you can enter the code FTV2021 during checkout to get a 4th-gen Echo Dot for just $10 (normally $49.99) with the purchase of any Insignia or Toshiba Fire TV Edition smart TV from Amazon. Owning a smart TV but not a smart speaker is like having Mario but not Luigi, or Hall but not Oates, or a Wendy's Frosty but not a large order of French fries. Each of those entities can technically exist on their own, but they're much better as duos. Pair a smart TV and speaker and you open up a whole new world of extra functionality where you can use voice commands to boot up the next episode of your current binge-watch, adjust the display's volume, and search for different actors and genres. Conveniently, Amazon is running a promotion now through Feb. 7 at 8:55 p.m. PST where you can score the new 4th-gen Echo Dot for only $10 when you buy certain Fire TV Edition smart TVs.


Researchers built an AI that plays chess like a person, not a super computer

Engadget

We mere mortals haven't truly been competitive against artificial intelligence in chess in a long time. It's been 15 years since a human has conquered a computer in a chess tournament. However, a team of researchers have developed an AI chess engine that doesn't set out to crush us puny humans -- it tries to play like us. The Maia engine doesn't necessarily play the best available move. Instead, it tries to replicate what a human would do.


UK regulator to write to WhatsApp over Facebook data sharing

The Guardian

The UK's data regulator is writing to WhatsApp to demand that the chat app does not hand user data to Facebook, as millions worldwide continue to sign up for alternatives such as Signal and Telegram to avoid forthcoming changes to its terms of service. Elizabeth Denham, the information commissioner, told a parliamentary committee that in 2017, WhatsApp had committed not to hand any user information over to Facebook until it could prove that doing so respected GDPR. But, she said, that agreement was enforced by the Irish data protection authority until the Brexit transition period ended on 1 January. Now that Britain is fully outside the EU, ensuring that those promises are being kept falls to the Information Commissioner's Office. "The change in the terms of service, and the requirement of users to share information with Facebook, does not apply to UK users or to users in the EU," Denham told the digital, culture, media and sport sub-committee on online harms and disinformation, "and that's because in 2017 my office negotiated with WhatsApp so that they agreed not to share user information and contact information until they could show that they complied with the GDPR."


Google's Future, Artificial Intelligence, Is Now a Management Challenge

WSJ.com: WSJD - Technology

Alphabet Inc. Chief Executive Sundar Pichai has bet big on artificial intelligence as central to the company's future, investing billions of dollars to embed the technology in the conglomerate's disparate divisions. Now, it is one of his trickiest management challenges. Over the past 18 months, Google's parent has waded through one controversy after another involving its top researchers and executives in the field. In the most high-profile incident, last month Google parted ways with a prominent AI researcher, Timnit Gebru, after she turned in studies critical of the company's approach to AI and complained to colleagues about its diversity efforts. Her research findings concluded that Google wasn't careful enough in deploying such powerful technology and was callous about the environmental impact of building supercomputers.