Blade Shadow Ghost turns your TV into a snappy cloudgaming PC

first_img Share your voice Post a comment Blade Shadow Ghost delivers great gaming performance… The Ghost itself costs $140 (£110), while the service runs $35 (£27) per month. All told, it’s a pretty good deal. It’s not available in Australia yet, but the Ghost’s price converts to about AU$205.Like many competitors, the service is essentially a Windows virtual machine (VM) running on a Windows server within a datacenter; in my case, the server is running a 3.2GHz Xeon E5-2667 V3 with 12GB RAM and a Quadro P5000 with 16GB GDDR5X. It’s not cutting-edge gaming performance, but it is roughly in the same league as the GTX 1070 max-Q laptops we’ve seen recently. Overall performance will depend on the game and your quality settings.But unlike almost every other cloud gaming system I’ve seen, it runs well in 1440p and, depending upon the game, even 2160p. And it feels more baked now than it did when we tried it in its early US rollout. It’s probably the slickest, too, for a VM. (Gaming-only services such as GeForce Now are obviously more streamlined.)Though it publicly specs frame-rates of 4K at 60 frames per second (which matches most 60Hz displays and TVs and thus shows fewer artifacts) and 1080p at 144fps, it also does 1440p at 75fps, which is a solid happy medium for a lot of games. The alternative resolutions are also a perk that many competitors don’t supply, as most are limited to 1080p.04-blade-shadow-ghostGhost provides all the essential connections. However, if you hook up wired devices to the USB ports, it does ruin the look a bit, like a Mac Mini. Sarah Tew/CNET The Ghost box connects to a display via HDMI. It has four USB Type-A ports, a headphone jack and an AC adapter input. You connect via gigabit Ethernet or 802.11ac Wi-Fi (aka Wi-Fi 5). The overall fit and finish is good — for a device that feels like it’s 3D printed.It’s easy to set up and compact enough to tote from one place to another. Windows recognizes USB devices such as keyboards, mice and an HP Omen Mindframe headset as if they were running locally. (Note that I didn’t test chat or streaming functions.) There’s one big problem with the Shadow: Its 256GB Windows partition isn’t nearly big enough. You’ll need a USB hard drive to swap game installations. I’d like to see the company either increase the base configuration or introduce a tier of service with more space.       The Shadow can also connect to wireless input devices via Bluetooth. The connection isn’t really through Windows, though, just through the box itself. It doesn’t work while the VM’s open, so it’s not as convenient as it could be. 02-blade-shadow-ghostThere’s only one button, for turning it on and off. Sarah Tew/CNET Performance on the Shadow side is one thing, but your connection to the internet is another. It doesn’t handle latency problems gracefully — that’s when your internet connection sends data packets erratically and is a bigger issue than bandwidth for most people, since it can vary so much from moment to moment. It’s hard to diagnose if your network’s at fault, because (obviously) you can’t launch offline or in safe mode, among other things. And it requires a mouse and keyboard to start up, so disconnecting them to diagnose any USB connection issues isn’t an option.There’s a control panel application that displays network statistics and lets you select some basic options. In the US, Blade owns its own servers in data centers around the country (called “co-location”), and it’s newer to the US than Europe. At the moment, you can’t pick which data center to access; it’s all automatic. 03-blade-shadow-ghostSwoopy! Sarah Tew/CNET The Shadow suffers the same problems as every cloud gaming system I’ve tried, most notably a compressed tonal range. No matter how good your bandwidth is, the bitrate is never high enough that it doesn’t have to compress the video signal, which can result in flatter colors. Some people may not even notice, or they’ll notice it less once they’re immersed in gameplay. Aside from selecting the option to automate Windows updates, the rest is in your hands, such as Nvidia driver updates. Restarting during driver updates can be a bit wonky, since that tends to close the Shadow on the first reboot. But it keeps running in the cloud for 90 minutes, which means it’s really easy to launch right back into what you were doing.And when you’re not gaming? I’ve been using it as my primary work system, attached to a monitor. So far it hasn’t groaned once under the weight of several browsers’ worth of tabs or anything else I’ve thrown at it. Updated 1:04 p.m. ET: Blade doesn’t lease servers in datacenters as originally stated; it co-locates its own servers in datacenters. In practice, that gives the company more flexibility over the configurations. Tags 1:47center_img Now playing: Watch this: Desktops Gaming 0 It glows from the bottom to indicate it’s on. Sarah Tew/CNET Blade’s Shadow Ghost is a cool little box that lets you use the Shadow desktop-in-the-cloud service with just a TV or monitor. No PC required. The box that gives you the device and network connections you need to use the Windows-based desktop service. When I tried it out, I kept forgetting I wasn’t on a local PC and never found myself shrieking about the speed. I still can’t believe I like it so much.A “Shadow,” as Blade dubs the virtual system the service provides, can be used for anything, but the most obvious mainstream allure of a virtual machine these days is for cloud gaming. Think of the Ghost as a console without any local storage and simple video decoding that can run any Windows game. This is actually the second version of the box, but now it’s got a catchy name and most of the kinks worked out. last_img read more

Most and Least Ethnically Diverse US Cities Identified

first_imgBy Stacy M. Brown, NNPA Newswire National Correspondent@StacyBrownMediaWith immigration reform remaining one of the most prominent political issues, suggesting that the U.S. demographic landscape may soon change, the personal-finance website WalletHub released its report on 2019’s Most & Least Ethnically Diverse Cities.To identify the most ethnically diverse places in America, WalletHub compared more than 500 of the largest U.S. cities across three key metrics: ethno-racial diversity, linguistic diversity and birthplace diversity.(Photo: iStockphoto / NNPA)Oakland, California, has the highest racial and ethnic diversity than any other city in the country, a figure that’s four times higher than in Hialeah, Florida, the city with the lowest.Meanwhile, Hialeah enjoys the highest concentration of Hispanics or Latinos, at 96.44 percent while Laconia, New Hampshire has the highest concentration of whites, at 94.81 percent.Jackson, Mississippi has the highest concentration of blacks, at 81.44 percent.Jersey City, NJ; Gaithersburg, Md.; Germantown, Md.; Silver Spring, Md. and Spring Valley, Nevada were the most ethnically diverse cities in America according to the study.New York City, Oakland, San Jose, Ca.; Rockville, Md. and Kent, Washington also made the top 10.Barre, Vermont; Clarksburg, West Virginia; Watertown, South Dakota; Parkersburg, West Virginia; and Hialeah, Florida, comprised the rest of the 10 least ethnically diverse cities.Rutland, Vermont; Wheeling, West Virginia; Laconia, New Hampshire; Miles City, Montana and Bennington, Vermont, were identified as the five least ethnically diverse cities.Havre, Montana; had the highest concentration of residents who spoke English (98.57 percent), while Hileah, Florida found itself at the opposite end with just 5.59 percent of its residents speaking English (93.96 percent of Hileah residents speak Spanish and just 0.33 percent of those in Havre speak Spanish).For birthplace diversity (locations where residents continue to reside long after they were born) Greenville, Mississippi topped every city with 86.79 percent, while Hilton Head Island, S.C., came in last at 16.80 percent.New York (69.40 percent) is the most diverse large city, Jersey City counts as the most diverse mid-size city and Gaithersburg, Md., is the most diverse small city in America, according to the report.“A growing body of social psychological research suggests that information about increasing ethnic diversity can lead white Americans to express greater concerns about their ethnic group’s status and, further, these concerns can have implications for interethnic attitudes as well as political attitudes,” said Dr. Maureen Craig, a WalletHub expert and assistant professor in the Department of Psychology at New York University.“For example, prior research has found that viewing a media report detailing increases in national ethnic diversity can lead white Americans to express ethnic bias, support more exclusionary political stances, and express greater concerns about anti-white discrimination,” Craig said.“However, an important caveat is that these experiments all focus on what happens when white Americans are asked to anticipate ethnic demographic change,” she said.There are many benefits to a diverse, multicultural city some of which are being exposed to different neighborhoods, communities, culture, parks and restaurants, said Dr. Kwame Dixon, a WalletHub expert and an assistant professor of African American Studies in the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University.“In most cases a diverse cultural setting leads to some common boundaries of understanding. The social citizen of the 21st century must be being exposed to multiple cultural settings and environments,” Dixon said.If diversity becomes a smokescreen for displacement or gentrification or if a historically black or Latino community is diversified in a short period of time by newcomers defined as white then there will be tensions around space, identity and displacement, he said.“This may lead to other tensions – former residents being pushed to the margins or to poorer communities,” Dixon said.Click here to view the full report.last_img read more

Physics team proposes a way to create an actual spacetime crystal

first_img Journal information: arXiv More information: Space-time crystals of trapped ions, arXiv:1206.4772v1 [quant-ph] progresses have been made in exploring exciting physics of low dimensional materials in last few decades. Important examples include the discovering and synthesizing of fullerenes (zero dimensional, 0D), carbon nanotubes (1D) and graphene (2D). A fundamental question is whether we can create materials with dimensions higher than that of conventional 3D crystals, for example, a 4D crystal that has periodic structures in both space and time. Here we propose a space-time crystal of trapped ions and a method to realize it experimentally by confining ions in a ring-shaped trapping potential with a static magnetic field. The ions spontaneously form a spatial ring crystal due to Coulomb repulsion. This ion crystal can rotate persistently at the lowest quantum energy state in magnetic fields with fractional fluxes. The persistent rotation of trapped ions produces the temporal order, leading to the formation of a space-time crystal. We show that these space-time crystals are robust for direct experimental observation. The proposed space-time crystals of trapped ions provide a new dimension for exploring many-body physics and emerging properties of matter. Citation: Physics team proposes a way to create an actual space-time crystal (2012, July 9) retrieved 18 August 2019 from Explore further Wilczek thought that it should be possible to construct a space-time crystal because crystals naturally align themselves at low temperatures and because superconductors also operate at very low temperatures; it seemed reasonable to assume that the atoms in such a crystal could conceivably move or rotate and then return to their natural state naturally, continually, as crystals are wont to do as they seek a lowest energy state. He envisioned a rotation with a ring of ions that flowed separately rather than as a stream, likening it to a mouse running around inside of a snake laying as a circle. The bulge would flow, rather than the snake itself spinning and would just keep on going, potentially forever. The problem was, he couldn’t figure out how such a crystal structure could be created in the real world.Taking Wilczek’s original idea, but not his method for creating a real world example, Li et al, suggest that to create a space-time crystal all that’s needed is a better ion trap. They believe that if ions could be forced using such a trap, into a ring at very low temperatures, as a superconductor, all that would be needed would be a little nudge from a tiny bit of a magnetic field to cause the ions to begin rotating as a single ring. Because there would be no resistance, and because of their natural mutual repulsion, the ring should then continue rotating indefinitely with no additional injection of energy, resulting in the space-time crystal that Wilczek imagined.The team is quick to point out, for those that might be making the jump, that the result would not be the mythical perpetual motion machine because no energy could be extracted from the space-time crystal. They do believe that building an actual space-time crystal should be possible though, in the near term if a future team has the funds necessary to overcome the difficulty of creating a better ion trap. Schematic of creating a space-time crystal. a, A possible structure of a space-time crystal. It has periodic structures in both space and time. The particles rotate in one direction even at the lowest energy state. b, Ultracold ions confined in a ring-shaped trapping potential in a weak magnetic field. The mass and charge of each ion are M and q, respectively. The diameter of the ion ring is d, and the magnetic field is B. c, The pseudo-potentials (Vext) for a 9Be+ ion in a quadrupole ring trap (solid curve) and a linear octupole trap (dashed curve) along the x or y axis. See arXiv:1206.4772v1 paper for details.center_img ( — Earlier this year, theoretical physicists Frank Wilczek, of MIT put forth an idea that intrigued the research community. He suggested that it should be possible to construct a so called space-time crystal by adding a fourth dimension, movement in time, to the structure of a crystal, causing it to become an infinitely running clock of sorts. At the time, Wilczek acknowledged that his ideas on how to do so were inelegant, to say the least. Now another international team led by Tongcang Li has proposed a way to achieve what Wilczek proposed using a far more elegant process. They have posted a paper on the preprint server arXiv describing what they believe is a real-world process for creating an actual space-time crystal that could conceivably be carried out in just the next few years. © 2012 Time crystals could behave almost like perpetual motion machines This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Part of hospital car park to close for 24 hours

first_imgDriver named following fatal collision Police search for missing woman Punter found hiding in bushes Follow StokeonTrentLive Download our app – You can download our free app for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or get the Android version from Google Play.  Follow StokeonTrentLive on Facebook – Like our Facebook page to get the latest news in your feed and join in the lively discussions in the comments. Click here to give it a like! Follow us on Twitter – For breaking news and the latest stories, click here to follow SOTLive on Twitter. Follow us on Instagram – Featuring pictures past and present from across Stoke-on-Trent, North Staffordshire & South Cheshire – and if you tag us in your posts, we could repost your picture on our page! We also put the latest news in our Instagram Stories. Click here to follow StokeonTrentLive on Instagram.center_img Dad slams ‘disgusting’ hospital window Get the biggest Daily stories by emailSubscribeSee our privacy noticeThank you for subscribingSee our privacy noticeCould not subscribe, try again laterInvalid EmailA section of the car park at Royal Stoke University Hospital’s Cancer Centre is to be shut for 24 hours – to allow a new machine to be installed. The area of car park will be closed from around 12pm on Friday July 12, and is due to reopen early on Saturday afternoon. The drop-off area and disabled bays will still be accessible. A Royal Stoke University Hospital spokesman said:  “This is to allow for the replacement of one of our linear accelerator machines (LINAC). “A linear accelerator customizes high energy x-rays or electrons to conform to a tumour’s shape and destroy cancer cells while sparing surrounding normal tissue. “We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.” Read MoreTop stories on StokeonTrentLivelast_img read more

Greek pay TV operator OTE has launched a new lowc

first_imgGreek pay TV operator OTE has launched a new low-cost package for its DTH service, including free decoder and satellite dish.For €14.99 per month, subscribers can access over 45 thematic channels, including 10 HD channels, along with domestic channels. OTE said the free decoder and satellite dish are worth €175.“OTE TV continues to enrich its product proposition with new competitive services and quality content designed to meet consumers’ needs,” the operator said.last_img

OTT TV provider Viewster has seen the number of un

first_imgOTT TV provider Viewster has seen the number of unique viewers for its mobile apps grow by 1,200% this year, according to the company. Viewster says that its Android app is now in the top 20 entertainment service apps globally and the number three app in Germany.Viewster’s iOS and Android apps now support Google Chromecast, while its mobile website is adaptively scaling for all screens, according to the company.last_img

An agreement between Mediaset and Telecom Italia

first_imgAn agreement between Mediaset and Telecom Italia (TIM) to combine the former’s content with the latter’s distribution network and customer base is “desirable” provided Italy retains influence over development, according to the country’s undersecretary of state for telecommunications, Antonello Giacomelli.Antonello GiacomelliInterviewed by La Stampa newspaper, Giacomelli said that “an industrial agreement” between the pair that allows both to grow is “desirable” but that any collaboration between French media giant Vivendi, TIM’s largest shareholder, and Mediaset should not be one-sided in favour of the French group.Giacomelli told La Stampa that it was important to avoid leaving the cultural field entirely to the likes of Sky owner 21st Century Fox and Netflix, and that to achieve this European companies needed to collaborate across borders. However, he said, such an agreement should not involve Italy giving up control to France.The possibility of a deal between Mediaset and TIM has been touted in Italy recently as a possible alternative to the aborted agreement between Mediaset and Vivendi that would have seen the latter take control of Mediaset’s pay TV unit, Mediaset Premium. The Italian broadcaster and the French media giant are still engaged in a long-running legal battle over the cancellation of the deal by Vivendi and the alleged subsequent financial impact on Mediaset. Vivendi is separately engaged in a battle to convince Italy’s markets regulator CONSOB and the Italian government that it does not “control” Telecom Italia, potentially triggering government intervention, but that the pair are merely “coordinating” on specific issues of strategic importance.These areas include the creation of a possible move by TIM and Vivendi’s French pay TV unit Canal+ to create a new pay TV joint venture in Italy as an alternative to the abandoned Vivendi-Mediaset partnership – seen by some observers as a way to force Mediaset to the negotiating table.last_img read more

Internet advertising will account for 52 of globa

first_imgInternet advertising will account for 52% of global advertising expenditure in 2021, exceeding the 50% mark for the first time, according to Zenith’s Advertising Expenditure Forecasts.The figure is up from 47% of global ad-spend that internet advertising will account for this year, and up from 44% in 2018.However, the growth rate is falling rapidly as the internet ad market matures. Internet ad spend grew 17% in 2018, but activity in the first half of 2019 leads us to expect only 12% growth for the year as a whole. By 2021 we expect internet ad spend growth to have fallen to 9% year on year. The growth rate of the internet ad market is starting to converge with the growth rate of the market as a whole.Internet adspend growth is led by online video and social media, which are expected to grow at average rates of 18% and 17% a year, respectively, to 2021.Broadcast television is now beginning to shrink, though not on the same scale as other traditional media such as print.  Zenith forecasts traditional television ad revenues to shrink every year from now to 2021, falling from US$184 billion in 2018 to US$180 billion in 2021, when it will have a share of just 26.5% of the total.According to Zenith, much of the growth in internet ad spend is coming from small, local businesses that spend all their budgets on platforms like Google and Facebook. Big brands are investing large sums in internet advertising, but the majority are still spending most of their budget in traditional media.Global ad spend growth will trail behind growth in the global economy as a whole this year, after outpacing it last year, according to data from Zenith.Zenith predicts global ad expenditure will grow 4.6% in 2019, reaching US$639bn by the end of the year. This is slightly below the 4.7% growth rate the group forecast in March.The agency expects advertising expenditure to grow behind the global economy as a whole in 2019- 2021, after it outpaced it in 2018.Zenith previously  upgraded its estimate of growth for 2018  from 5.9% to 6.4%.The outfit sees strong growth in North America, oosted by the flood of new small and medium-sized companies using Facebook and Google to advertise for the first time. It estimates that ad spend grew by 8% in both 2017 and 2018, and forecasts 5% annual growth to 2021.According to Zenith, Western and central Europe has seen solid growth since 2014, at 3% to 5% a year. Overall its  expects the region to continue to grow at the low end of this range out to 2021, despite a 0.4% decline in Germany this year as business confidence declines. Despite Brexit uncertainty, it expects 3.9% growth in the UK, though this is down 0.6% from a previous estimate.Among other regions, Latin America is set to grow by just 2.2% this year, rising to 4.3% a year through to 2021, while MENA will decline by 4.8% – a recovery following a decline of 47% between 2014-18.Growth in emerging Asia is slowing as China’s market matures, and is expected to achieve 4.7% average annual growth to 2021, excluding Japan, which will grow at 1.7% a year. Eastern Europe and Central Asia together will grow at 7% a year to 2021 after recovering from a decline earlier this decade.Advanced APAC countries – Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Singapore and South Korea – are likely to grow at 4% to 2021, according to Zenith.Television’s share of global ad spend will decline to 26.5% by 2021, according to Zenith.last_img read more

European TV content accounts 24 of all episodes f

first_imgEuropean TV content accounts 24% of all episodes found in TVOD catalogues and 19% of all episodes found in SVOD catalogues in Europe, according to a study by the European Audiovisual Observatory.According to the report, national  TV series episodes make up  the majority of European TV episodes on pay per view or transactional VOD services, accounting for 62% of the total. However, they represent a minority of 32% on subscription VOD services.On average, national TVOD and SVOD services have a higher share of EU TV titles, where the latter account respectively for 45% and 46% of episodes, than multi-country TVOD and SVOD services, where they account for 31% and 25% of episodes respectively.Content from outside the EU and outside the US represents a significant part of TV content on offer in SVOD, and there are more non-EU/non-US titles and episodes available in SVOD than EU titles/episodes, according to the report.The top five EU production countries for TVOD services account for 91.2% of all EU TV titles on such services. These are, in order, the UK, Germany, France, Sweden and Denmark. The top five EU countries providing content for SVOD services, with an 84.1% share of EU content, are the UK, France, Spain, Sweden and Germany.The report is based on the analysis of 29 SVOD catalogues and 32 TVOD catalogues.. The data was collected during November and December 2018The SVOD sample is based on 16 Netflix country catalogues, with an average 1,018 cumulated titles, but with significant differences between markets. Only Now TV in the UK has a comparable sized catalogue, with 744 titles.last_img read more

We do need to make it clear to those involved in

first_img“We do need to make it clear to those involved in causing disturbances in our community and to those who encourage or manipulate young people to do this, that there are consequences that last, not only to the community but more significantly to the young person themselves.“Our plea is to think long and hard before you engage in this type of activity.”TWO CHARGED OVER RIOTING ON DERRY’S LECKY ROAD was last modified: February 1st, 2018 by John2John2 Tags: THE PSNI say two people, including a teenager, have charged over rioting in Derry last month.A police spokesperson said: “Officers from the Public Order Enquiry Team at Strand Road currently investigating the public disorder that occurred in the Lecky Road area during the security operation on the 7th January 2018 have to date charged a 23 year old and a 17 year old to court for several public order offences including incitement to riot and riotous behaviour.“It is far from our desire to bring any young person into the criminal justice system for these types of offences. ShareTweetcenter_img PSNIPUBLIC ORDER ENQUIRY TEAMSTRAND ROADTWO CHARGED OVER RIOTING ON DERRY’S LECKY ROADlast_img read more