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Intel falls on report Microsoft plans to design own chips for PCs and servers – CNBC

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Satya Nadella, chief executive officer of Microsoft Corp., speaks during the company’s annual shareholders meeting in Bellevue, Washington, on Nov. 29, 2017.
David Ryder | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Intel dropped 6.3% on Friday following a Bloomberg report that Microsoft plans to design its own chips for its Surface PCs as well as servers.

Intel has famously had a long-running partnership with Microsoft as the primary processor maker for Windows PCs.

“Because silicon is a foundational building block for technology, we’re continuing to invest in our own capabilities in areas like design, manufacturing and tools, while also fostering and strengthening partnerships with a wide range of chip providers,” Microsoft spokesperson Frank Shaw said in a statement.

The report comes a month after Apple started selling PCs using its own M1 processor, instead of Intel chips. The Microsoft chips are reportedly based on technology from Arm, which Nvidia is in the process of acquiring from Softbank.

Apple’s chips for its iPhones and Amazon‘s server chips are also based on Arm’s instruction set, which is distinct from the x86 technology Intel primarily uses.

Earlier this month, a senior Microsoft executive did not reject the idea that Microsoft would build its own “first party” chips at a conference.

“The partnerships that we have though in this realm, from the OpenAI efforts that we have to our relationship with Intel and Arm developments that we have certainly point to the need to have advanced capabilities here, whether we build it first party or have an ecosystem of third-party partners, it’s sort of yet to be disclosed,” Judson Althoff, executive vice president of worldwide commercial business at Microsoft, said during an appearance at the UBS Global, Technology, Media and Telecommunications conference on December 8.

Windows currently runs on Arm-based PCs, usually with chips made by Qualcomm. Microsoft introduced the Surface RT tablet in 2012 that contained an Arm chip from Nvidia, although the device was discontinued in 2013. Last year it introduced the Surface Pro X containing a Qualcomm Arm chip, and it came out with an updated version of the device this year.

Microsoft said in 2017 that it was working with Arm server makers to optimize silicon for use in its own data centers.

Intel reported $9.85 billion in revenue from its group that sells PC chips in the quarter ending in September. Server chips are also a major business for Intel. In the quarter ending in September, Intel reported $5.91 billion in revenue for its Data Center Group that sells server chips.

Intel has had challenges with manufacturing its chips in recent years. Intel controls its own chip factories, called “fabs,” as compared to other chip designers, which contract with companies in Asia to manufacture chips to client specifications.

The more transistors that a chipmaker can fit into the same space, the more efficient a chip is. Currently, Intel ships chips with 10-nanometer transistors, but dedicated foundries, like TSMC, are now making 5-nanometer chips, which are technically superior.

Earlier this year, Intel CEO Bob Swan said that it was considering outsourcing its manufacturing, like what Apple does.

Representatives for Intel and Microsoft didn’t immediately return requests for comment.

—Jordan Novet contributed to this story.

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Apple warns against putting an iPhone 12 too close to your pacemaker – Yahoo Movies Canada

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The Canadian Press

Central African Republic alleged rebel handed to intl court

THE HAGUE, Netherlands — An alleged rebel commander from Central African Republic has been detained and turned over to the International Criminal Court by authorities in the troubled African nation, on charges of crimes against humanity and war crimes in the capital, Bangui, in 2013. The court announced the surrender of Mahamat Said Abdel Kani, of the Seleka rebel group, on Sunday night. He was detained on a warrant issued by the court under seal in January 2019. Fighting raged in Bangui in 2013 between the predominantly Muslim Seleka rebels, who seized power from then-President Francois Bozize, and a mainly Christian militia called the anti-Balaka. The violence left thousands dead and displaced hundreds of thousands more. The Hague-based court already has detained two alleged commanders of the anti-Balaka, Alfred Yekatom and Patrice-Edouard Ngaïssona, whose trial is scheduled to start next month. Said is the first suspect detained from the Seleka side of the conflict. A judge at the court who issued the arrest warrant found “reasonable grounds to believe that, from at least March 2013 until at least January 2014, a widespread and systematic attack was conducted by members of the Seleka against the civilian population and those perceived to be collectively responsible for, complicit with or supportive of the former Bozizé government and, later, of the Anti-Balaka,” the court said in a statement. Said is charged with crimes including torture, persecution and enforced disappearances. The court’s chief prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, welcomed the arrest. “As I have previously stated, my office will relentlessly pursue justice for the victims of atrocity crimes in the Central African Republic. Today is another manifestation of that commitment,” she said. The detention came with Central African Republic again in turmoil. On Friday, the government declared a 15-day nationwide state of emergency as a coalition of armed groups seeks to overthrow the newly reelected President Faustin-Archange Touadera. Mike Corder, The Associated Press

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Players Unlock A New Secret Weapon In Assassin's Creed Valhalla After Hitting A Pile Of Rocks – Kotaku

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Screenshot: Ubisoft / Kotaku

Players have discovered a new hidden and powerful bow in Assassin’s Creed Valhalla. All you have to do is find a specific pile of rocks and hit it a few times and reload your save. Though, this isn’t the intended way to get the weapon.

Players have discovered that a small, unremarkable pile of rocks in the northern area of the main Valhalla map holds a strange and powerful secret. If you hit these rocks… nothing happens. Unlike similar rock piles in the game, this pile won’t break. However, if you hit this pile of rocks a few times, save your game, and reload, well nothing happens. But repeat this a few times, for most players, it takes about three reloads, and eventually, you’ll unlock Norden’s Arc.

JorRaptor did a great video showing off the rock method, how players even figured it out and how powerful the bow is. (Spoilers: It’s very deadly.)

This hunter bow is an Isu weapon. The Isu were an ancient civilization of super-powerful beings who enslaved humans and… look, you probably don’t care and I don’t have the time to fully explain it. They were powerful and aren’t around anymore, but their relics and weapons still exist, like this bow. That’s the short version.

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My new bow

My new bow
Screenshot: Ubisoft / Kotaku

I gave this method a try and got lucky. On my very first reload it worked. Though I deleted the save. Because, while this method works reliably, it doesn’t seem like the way Ubisoft would have intended players to unlock this special weapon. It seems like a glitch.

This was confirmed earlier today by Darby McDevitt, the narrative director on Assassin’s Creed Valhalla. McDevitt explained on Twitter, in a reply to a JorRaptor tweet, that this method was a “clever brute force hack” that might be useful for speedrunners.

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However, he clarified that there is an actual in-game way to unlock this bow, but didn’t say how. Though when someone pointed out that some player must have solved the secret by now, McDevitt vaguely responded “Someone almost has.

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This powerful Assassin's Creed Valhalla weapon is hidden in a pile of magic rocks – Eurogamer.net

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Rock bottom.

Assassin’s Creed Valhalla players have discovered a secret powerful weapon hidden in a pile of rocks. Well. Kind of.

The secret Nodens’ Isu Arc bow unlocks for players who repeatedly hit a small pile of rocks near Brunson Turret in Northumbria. In the lake to the north, there’s a small island, and on there, you’ll find the rock ore pile you need.

YouTuber JorRaptor takes you through the steps right here (thanks, Kotaku) and it’s been verified now by a number of players:

Hit the rocks a few times – you’ll notice it doesn’t break as others do – and then save and reload your game. Rinse and repeat until you load in to find the rock pile is now broken, and Nodens’ Arc Hunter Bow should pop up on the side of the screen.

Whether or not this is intentional remains to be seen (I suspect not), so if you’re keen, head there now and grab it before Ubisoft patch it out.

ICYMI, Ubisoft recently released a big bug-squashing update for Assassin’s Creed Valhalla. The game’s 1.1.1 update is light on new features but heavy on fixes, with dozens of common issues crossed off.

Among those that stood out for Tom in a quick scan down its very long patch notes are solutions to the bug experienced by numerous people which saw them permanently stuck in their Halloween-esque Mari Lwyd disguise even after completing that quest arc. Ubisoft Connect achievements have also been fixed, and should correctly unlock the next time you perform any achievement-related action past the unlock condition.

Next up for Valhalla is a new river raiding mode and a levelling system for your Jomsvikings, due to arrive in February.

Cover image credit: JorRaptor

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