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A Stealth Startup for Better VR?

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Finnish startup Varjo emerges from stealth mode to present what it claims is a superior VR and AR headset-- "20/20," a headset with supposedly "human eye resolution" of over 70 megapixels per eye.

VarjoIn comparison, the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive push around 1.2MP per eye. In addition, the headset supposedly mimics how human vision works, with smaller, high-density displays filling the centre of the field of view surrounded by lower-resolution displays at the left and right edges. Eye tracking and software calculate the spot the wearer is focusing on, ensuring the eye is focused on the high-resolution display.

Prototype versions of the headset currently have a high-resolution microdisplay (similar to the OLED microdisplays found in professional broadcast cameras) mounted on top, which in turn is reflected inside the headset via mirror. The eye tracking is not in place as yet, but Varjo promises it will eventually allow for an ultra-clear viewing.

Microsoft Hides Fingerprint Sensor in Modern Keyboard

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Microsoft quietly adds a pair of peripherals to its online storefront-- the Modern Keyboard and Modern Mouse, both featuring Bluetooth 4.0 allowing use with any device compatible with the wireless standard.

Microsoft Modern KeyboardThe Modern Keyboard has a low profile aluminium frame Microsoft claims is "virtually indestructible" while matching the sleek design of the Surface product line. It can be used with either wireless or wired connection, has a built-in battery promising up to 2 months on a single charge, and is compatible with Windows 10, MacOS, iOS and Android devices.

However what makes the Modern Keyboard rather interesting is a fingerprint sensor nestled between the Alt and Ctrl keys. It is compatible with Windows 10 devices, and allows users to unlock their PCs through Windows Hello and a finger press.

Kodak Presents Photo Printer Dock

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Kodak Dock PrinterKodak announces what it describes as an "easier and more affordable" means to print photographs from smartphones-- the Photo Printer Dock, a device offering one-touch printing from any compatible device.

The Photo Printer Dock is compatible with Android and iOS devices, as well as digital cameras and any other device with USB connection. Printing takes place over either dock or wifi and companion Printer Dock app complete with editing features, filters and stickers.

Dark Web Hosts New Mac Malware

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Security news site Bleeping Computer discovers a pair of Mac malware strains on the Dark Web-- a piece of spyware dubbed MacSpy and MacRansom, an example of Mac ransomware.

Mac malwareThe two pieces of malware are the work of the same developer (or cybercriminal group), and are found on almost identical Dark Web portals. Both websites run on a "closed" manner, meaning interested parties have to contact the malware creator for demo packages and the price negotiations.

Following the initial Bleeping Computer report, security researchers at Fortinet and AlienVault managed to get samples of the Mac malware. The two companies believe MacSpy and MacRansom are the work of an inexperienced coder, since MacRansom is not a digitally signed file (meaning it triggers security alerts if executed as a standard macOS installation) and MacSpy is built from code copy-pasted from Stack Overflow.

Creative Presents Sound BlasterX AE-5 Sound Card

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Creative Technology uses E3 2017 to launch what it claims is the "world's first sound card with an integrated RGB controller"-- the Sound BlasterX AE-5.

Sound BlasterXThe PCIe sound card is designed for gamers, and as such features high-end components including a 32-bit 384kHz ESS ES9016K2M Sabre 32 Ultra DAC, a custom-designed 600O discrete headphone amp, German-made WIMA film/foil capacitors and proprietary Sound Blaster audio enhancement technologies. It supports discrete 5.1 or virtual 7.1 channel aduio, and promises a low noise figure of 122dB DNR.

Meanwhile the BlasterX Acoustic Engine suite handles audio processing, such as 3D sound effects for speakers and headsets, Crystal Voice sound enhancement and a Scout 2.0 enemy audio radar overlay, an addition apparently useful for FPS games.

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