Friday, October 18, 2013

Xbox One graphics currently output in 900p, worse than PS4′s ...

In the ongoing prerelease war between Sony’s PS4 and Microsoft’s Xbox One, the PS4 continually appears to be the clear victor, from Sony’s E3 showing and Microsoft’s DRM and indie game debacle, to the PS4′s superior hardware and the Xbox One’s higher price. Now, a mysterious insider that has leaked correct Microsoft info in the past, is claiming that the Xbox One can’t output in 1080p, and tops out at a mere 900p.

Update, 4:38PM ET: We’ve spoken with a representative from Microsoft, who provided the following statement: “Xbox One fully supports native 1080p output at 60 fps. It is up to individual developers to determine what resolution best fits their design goals. At launch, Xbox One will present all titles at 1080p—whether natively or upscaled.” It’s worth keeping in mind that just because a box can output at 1080p doesn’t mean it will. For instance, we already know that Ryse – a high-profile launch title — will be running at 900p. The further we get into a console’s life, though, the more experience developers will have with that console, and can figure out methods to get the most out of it. The representative said they could not comment on the rumor regarding the stress test boxes outputting at 900p.

The PlayStation 3 supports 1080p (1920×1080) output, but a large swath of games only displayed in 720p. Meanwhile, the Xbox 360 caps out at 720p. This upcoming generation, both consoles are supposed to support 1080p. A NeoGAF forum user, CBOAT, claims that 720p to 900p (1280×720, 1600×900) will be the Xbox One norm. As far as we know, the PlayStation 4 adheres to this promise, but if this new leak is true, the Xbox One will find yet another category in which to trail the PS4.

However, before you eBay your Xbox One pre-order, you should know exactly what kind of place from which this new “leak” is coming. The leak comes from NeoGAF user CBOAT, which stands for “crazy buttocks on a boat.” While choice of online handle shouldn’t completely damn or praise someone, it can cast the things they say in a certain light. Furthermore, CBOAT has his own troll-speak style language, where everything is misspelled so poorly that you can instantly tell that it was done intentionally. Both the troll-speak and acronym could easily disprove anything CBOAT says, but can also be a clever tactic to disguise actual leaked information. The reason why you shouldn’t instantly discredit CBOAT’s claims is because the user is known within the NeoGAF community for predicting just about everything that went down during the Microsoft E3 press conference this year before it happened.

PS4 vs. Xbox One

CBOAT claims that the reason the Xbox One won’t output in true 1080p is because Microsoft rushed to release the console. Just because CBOAT has something of a pedigree with regards to Microsoft rumors, doesn’t mean the person is spot on this time around — especially with something as finicky as game console resolution.

CBOAT also made note of Forza 5 being displayed natively in 1080p, which was confirmed back in September, stating that it should be the exception, not the rule.

In response to CBOAT, an Xbox One developer took to Reddit and responded to the 900p claims. The developer (who has been confirmed as such), stated that the 900p claims were true, but that the resolution was output from consoles specifically made for stress testing. This means that the performance of those consoles should not be indicative of the final, retail unit’s performance.

Whether or not CBOAT or the Xbox One developer are legitimate sources remains to be seen, but both did more or less confirm that there are Xbox One units out in the wild that can only max out at 900p. Take everything with a grain of salt, of course. However, if the Xbox One can’t output in true 900p and instead has to resort to upscaling wizardry, then it would appear that the PS4 once again has an advantage over the Xbox One.

Now read: PS4 is ’50% faster’ than Xbox One, report game developers

Tags: 1080p, 720p, eighth generation, game consoles, gpu, gpus, graphics, hardware, microsoft, ps4, resolutions, xbox one

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Thursday, October 17, 2013

Billy Crystal Finds Fun In Growing Old (But Still Can't Find His Keys)

Billy Crystal has hosted the Academy Awards more times than anyone except Bob Hope. "I love doing it because I love the danger of it," Crystal says. "You have to come through and think on your feet."

Timothy A. Clary/AFP/Getty Images

Billy Crystal has hosted the Academy Awards more times than anyone except Bob Hope. "I love doing it because I love the danger of it," Crystal says. "You have to come through and think on your feet."

Timothy A. Clary/AFP/Getty Images

Billy Crystal isn't happy about turning 65, but at least he's finding a way to laugh about it. His new memoir — Still Foolin' 'Em: Where I've Been, Where I'm Going, and Where the Hell Are My Keys? — is on the best-seller list, and he'll be back on Broadway in November.

Crystal got his start in standup comedy, and in 1977 he landed a leading role in the sitcom Soap — playing one of the first openly gay characters on TV. In 1984 he joined the cast of Saturday Night Live and went on to star in the films When Harry Met Sally, City Slickers and Analyze This. He's hosted the Oscars more times than anyone except Bob Hope. In 2007 he received the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. His autobiographical one-man show 700 Sundays won a Tony in 2005 and reopens on Broadway in November.

Interview Highlights

On how his show business family brought him to comedy early

[I did impressions] of relatives because I heard so many different sounds. You know, my dad was in the music business and of course my uncle was a giant [music producer], but my dad in particular had the house filled with these Dixieland jazz stars — really the best of them, Henry "Red" Allen, Willie "Lion" Smith, Buster Bailey, Cutty Cutshall, Tyree Glenn, Zutty Singleton, these are big names in the Dixieland world. It was mostly African-American [musicians] and my Jewish Eastern European relatives.

The house as I say ... smelled of brisket and bourbon, so you could hear that. I started imitating them. Phrases came out of that, "Can't you dig that?" "I knew that you would." We were at [Passover] Seders and they were confused with the bitter herbs, "Do we smoke these or do we do we dip them in salt water?" "We dip them in salt water, well that's gonna kill the vibrancy of the weed, you know." So that's what I was around. So I would imitate them. That's where it all started.

On losing his father at age 15

At the time it was devastating, of course. My two older brothers were both out of the house and in college, and I was left alone with [my mom] and we developed this incredible bond where I could not let her get too sad, [even] when I felt it in myself. It was a hard thing to juggle. I never felt like I could have a weak moment, I had to always be there for her and keep her up. ...

I'd try to make her laugh, and try to do things with her. ... She is the greatest hero I'll ever know because she kept us all together, she made sure we all graduated college. She always believed in us no matter what we do. My older brother Joel became an art teacher; my brother Rip ultimately became a television producer and singer and actor himself.

For me, it was always, "Whatever you want to do, I'm there for you." I never stopped believing in us and I never felt like I was wanting for anything, except for my father, and that was not going to be. I describe in the book [that] I don't think I ever felt young again in that way. I never felt I had my 15, 16, 17 kind of years the way I maybe should have. It's a huge dent in you that it's hard to knock out and make it all smooth again.

On his early standup days opening for Sammy Davis Jr., who used to lie to the audience about their relationship

I have 40-something intros [that Davis Jr. did]; all are different, none of them happened. And it was hilarious. ... [He did it] because it was show business. Because I think he thought he was doing a good thing for me and for him. He created this whole wonderful fantasy world for the two of us that was part of the show. I was OK with it. I thought it was really fascinating.

I loved him. Every time I was with Sammy it was like going to the show business museum because the stories were so extraordinary, and I didn't care if they were true or not after a while. ... I don't know if he really got high with Humphrey Bogart or not. It didn't matter because he was painting these fantastic pictures.

On playing Jodie, one of the first openly gay characters on television, in the show Soap in the late '70s and early '80s

We were in front of a live audience and I would be acting with the man who was playing my lover, and we used those words, and the audience would titter and laugh, and make me uncomfortable doing the scenes. ... I wanted to sort of stop and yell at them, "What's so funny? What's the matter with you people? Grow up!" It made me very self-conscious at times.

I think back to what we did and the things we talked about, all these years ago, and I'm so proud of what we did. I think it was in the third season Jodie was confused about his sexuality and he has a one-night stand with a woman and she gets pregnant and has a baby. ... Now I have to raise this little girl and so we go to court [to determine] who is going to get custody of the child. ABC did a poll and the poll at that time said 3 to 1 that the country wanted Jodie to get the baby. And I thought, "OK, we did good here."

On hosting the Oscars

I love doing it because I love the danger of it and you have to come through and think on your feet. That's why that show, no matter who hosts it, it really should be a fast-thinking comedian who is really quick on their feet that can handle situations that happen, or somebody with that kind of mentality that can capitalize on something.

On his proudest Oscar moment

I was introducing [director and producer] Hal Roach — Mr. Roach was 100 years old, he was one of the fathers of early days in films, he put Laurel with Hardy, he created the Our Gang kids, and all these silent movies he did — he was a giant. I think it was his 100th birthday and he was just supposed to take a bow. So I'm at center stage and I say, "Ladies and Gentlemen, one of the fathers of this industry, he's 100 years old, Mr. Hal Roach." Big hand, he stands up. And he starts talking and he has no microphone. ... And it's getting restless in the audience and they're all looking at me going, "What are you gonna say?" And I see the red light is right on me, and I looked at the audience and lines are flying through my head and one settled like a slot machine, three cherries, and I said, "Ladies and Gentleman, it's only fitting because he got his start in silent films." It took the pressure away, and that's one time I will pat myself on the back.

Category: ny giants   yom kippur   engadget   alexis bledel   JJ Cale  

Kendrick Lamar Slams "Sensitive" Drake at 2013 BET Hip Hop Awards, Plus the Complete Winners List

Kendrick Lamar took home five awards at the 2013 BET Hip Hop Awards. But it was the emcee's controversial verse that actually swept Tuesday evening's telecast.

Before he even took to the stage to perform, #KendricksVerse was already trending on Twitter.

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The artist, whose pointed dig at Drake and other hip-hop contemporaries stirred trouble after the release of his guest verse on Big Sean's "Control," finally responded to the feud during the show, which was taped Sept. 28 at the Boisfeuillet Jones Atlanta Civic Center in Atlanta, Ga. In two minutes of an emotionally-fueled TDE cypher, Lamar spewed, "Yeah, and nothing's been the same since they dropped 'Control.' And tucked a sensitive rapper back in his pajama clothes."

"Pin the tail on the donkey, boy you been a fake," he continued.

PHOTOS: Celebrities' biggest, most outrageous demands

While the Nothing Was the Same artist was not present at the show to react to the jab, Drake nabbed a healthy helping of awards including the People's Champ honor for his single, "Started From the Bottom." He also won Best Hip-Hop Video for the same track. Other winners included Jay Z and J. Cole. View the complete list below.

Best Hip-Hop Video: Drake - "Started From the Bottom"

Best Collaboration, Duo or Group: A$AP Rocky (ft. Drake, 2 Chainz and Kendrick Lamar) - "F---in' Problems"

Best Live Performer: Jay Z

Lyricist of the Year: Kendrick Lamar

Video Director of the Year: Benny Boom

Hustler of the Year: Jay Z

PHOTOS: Us Weekly's Most Stylish New Yorkers 2013

Best Hip-Hop Style: A$AP Rocky, Nicki Minaj

Best Hip-Hop Online Site: World Star Hip-Hop

Best Club Banger: French Montana (feat. Rick Ross, Drake and Lil Wayne) - "Pop That"

Album of the Year: Kendrick Lamar - good kid, m.A.A.d city

Sweet 16: Kendrick Lamar - "F---in' Problems"

Impact Track: J. Cole (feat. TLC) - "Crooked Smile"

MVP of the Year: Kendrick Lamar

Track of the Year: Mike Zombie and Noah "40" Shebib - "Started From the Bottom" 

Producer of the Year: Mike Will Made It

DJ of the Year: DJ Drama

Best Mixtape: Big Sean - Detroit

Rookie of the Year: A$AP Ferg

People's Champ Award: Drake - "Started From the Bottom"

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WHO agency: Air pollution causes cancer

(AP) — What many commuters choking on smog have long suspected has finally been scientifically validated: air pollution causes lung cancer.

The International Agency for Research on Cancer declared on Thursday that air pollution is a carcinogen, alongside known dangers such as asbestos, tobacco and ultraviolet radiation. The decision came after a consultation by an expert panel organized by IARC, the cancer agency of the World Health Organization, which is based in Lyon, France.

"The air most people breathe has become polluted with a complicated mixture of cancer-causing substances," said Kurt Straif, head of the IARC department that evaluates carcinogens. He said the agency now considers pollution to be "the most important environmental carcinogen," ahead of second-hand cigarette and cigar smoke.

IARC had previously deemed some of the components in air pollution such as diesel fumes to be carcinogens, but this is the first time it has classified air pollution in its entirety as cancer causing.

The risk to the individual is low, but Straif said the main sources of pollution are widespread, including transportation, power plants, and industrial and agricultural emissions.

Air pollution is a complex mixture that includes gases and particulate matter, and IARC said one of its primary risks is the fine particles that can be deposited deep in the lungs of people.

"These are difficult things for the individual to avoid," he said, while observing the worrying dark clouds from nearby factories that he could see from his office window in Lyon on Wednesday. "When I walk on a street where there's heavy pollution from diesel exhaust, I try to go a bit further away," he said. "So that's something you can do."

The fact that nearly everyone on the planet is exposed to outdoor pollution could prompt governments and other agencies to adopt stricter controls on spewing fumes. Straif noted that WHO and the European Commission are reviewing their recommended limits on air pollution.

Previously, pollution had been found to boost the chances of heart and respiratory diseases.

The expert panel's classification was made after scientists analyzed more than 1,000 studies worldwide and concluded there was enough evidence that exposure to outdoor air pollution causes lung cancer.

In 2010, IARC said there were more than 220,000 lung cancer deaths worldwide connected to air pollution. The agency also noted a link with a slightly higher risk of bladder cancer.

Straif said there were dramatic differences in air quality between cities around the world and that the most polluted metropolises were in China and India, where people frequently don masks on streets to protect themselves. China recently announced new efforts to curb pollution after experts found the country's thick smog hurts tourism. Beijing only began publicly releasing data about its air quality last year.

"I assume the masks could result in a reduction to particulate matter, so they could be helpful to reduce personal exposure," Straif said. But he said collective international action by governments was necessary to improve air quality.

"People can certainly contribute by doing things like not driving a big diesel car, but this needs much wider policies by national and international authorities," he said.

Other experts emphasized the cancer risk from pollution for the average person was very low — but virtually unavoidable.

"You can choose not to drink or not to smoke, but you can't control whether or not you're exposed to air pollution," said Francesca Dominici, a professor of biostatics at Harvard University's School of Public Health. "You can't just decide not to breathe," she said. Dominici was not connected to the IARC expert panel.

A person's risk for cancer depends on numerous variables, including genetics, exposure to dangerous substances and lifestyle choices regarding issues such as drinking alcohol, smoking and exercising.

Dominici said scientists are still trying to figure out which bits of pollution are the most lethal and called for a more targeted approach.

"The level of ambient pollution in the U.S. is much, much lower than it used to be, but we still find evidence of cancer and birth defects," she said. "The question is: How are we going to clean the air even further?"



Associated PressSource:
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US shutdown hits cult German late-night TV show

(AP) — The United States government shutdown could have the unintended effect of making Germans go to bed earlier.

Fans hoping for fresh episodes of a cult late-night German TV show featuring footage of Earth seen from space accompanied by ambient music have been told its relaunch will be delayed by at least two weeks because of the U.S. budget battle.

Public television station Bayerisches Fernsehen said Monday that new high-definition video it hopes to use for its "Space Night" program won't be able available Nov. 1 as planned because archivists at NASA, a key source of footage, are among U.S. federal employees currently furloughed.

"Space Night" was launched in 1994 and is a favorite among rave goers and insomniacs.


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Government Workers Must Get The Wheel Turning Again

President Obama has signed legislation that ends the partial government shutdown and raises the U.S. debt ceiling. The Office of Management and Budget says federal employees should report to work Thursday. But it will take some time until all the agencies are back up to speed.

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UFC heavyweight contender Junior Dos Santos wants to box Klitschko brothers

Former UFC heavyweight champion Junior Dos Santos challenges current division king Cain Velasquez at UFC 166 this Saturday in a rubber match between the two big men. There’s plenty of competitiveness and bad blood between the two to promote their third fight this weekend, but the most outrageous promotion came from Dos Santos recently when he dropped a name other than “Velasquez.”

During an interview with MMA Fighting, Dos Santos, who has used his hands to devastating effect in the UFC, turned his attention to the two best heavyweight boxers of the past decade, brothers Vitali and Wladimir Klitschko.

"I’m a boxing guy. I love to box with my training partners and everything but now everybody is saying this, everybody wants to fight with boxing guys. It’s become not sincere. When I say that, I’m sincere,” Dos Santos said, leading up to his punch line.

"I think if they give me four months to get prepared, I can beat [the Klitschkos]" he said. "I love to train boxing and I think I have enough skills in boxing. I know how to see a good fight. Four months, that’s what I need."

Now, we’ll be the first ones to jump down the throats of any foolish boxer who disrespects the well-rounded skills that mixed martial arts fights possess by suggesting that they could dismantle any UFC fighter with ease. It is just as absurd for even a top-level MMA fighter like Dos Santos to suggest that he would be able to beat any top-ten heavyweight boxer, to say nothing of the two very best, in a straight boxing bout.

Just as MMA fighters spend decades learning myriad skills and styles to prepare them for the most realistic and useful of combat sports, professional boxers spend their entire lives refining a very specific set of skills that, within the confines of boxing rules, no one that hasn’t spent the same amount of time doing the same could hope to match them in a boxing contest.

"I did talk to Dana but just a little bit once," Dos Santos of him doing boxing matches.

"It wasn’t very serious. Next time, maybe I’ll do that."

Dos Santos may be serious, but he has no serious prospect of beating either of the Klitschkos in a boxing bout even if he manages to pull off the near-impossible cross-promotional logistics to make such fights happen.

Dana White is no longer fond of cross-promoting and Vitali is busy with running for President of the Ukraine. Perhaps Wladimir would be open to an easy pay day.

What do you think? Does Dos Santos have the athleticism and KO power to beat the Klitschkos in a boxing ring or should he just worry about avenging his last loss to Velasquez this Saturday at UFC 166.

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