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Drobo Intros 5N2 NAS

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Drobo announces the 5N2-- a 5-bay NAS with featuring functionality from the company's enterprise-level products while being aimed at connected home users, media professionals and SMBs.

Drobo 5N2The 5N2 holds up to 5 HDDs or SSDs, with any mixture of drives. It also carries one mSATA SSD in the Drobo Accelerator Bay. BeyondRAID technology allows features such as drive hot-swapping, single or dual disk redundancies, instant expansion and secure remote access for private cloud configuration.

Connectivity comes from two 1Gb ethernet ports. Included software such as DroboDR allows users to set up a pair of 5N2s for offsite data copies and DroboPix provides mobile picture and video management. An internal battery protects against data loss during power outages.

Corsair Presents Vengeance RGB Memory

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Corsair VengeanceCorsair announces the Vengeance RGB-- a DDR4 memory line featuring native RGB lighting customers can control through Corsair Link software on compatible motherboards.

The Vengeance RGB modules do not need additional wiring in order to get the lighting to work, and are capable of 1 colour per dim at any moment. They can also shift between 4 dynamic modes, with either 1 static colour per module, breathing, colour shifting per module or a rainbow between different modules.

Nintendo Finds Early Success With Switch

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It might be early days for the Switch, but so far the curious hybrid of tablet and console shows success-- so much so the Wall Street Journal reports Nintendo needs to double planned production in order to meet demand.

Nintendo switchThe Japanese company was supposedly going to make 8 million Switch units in fiscal 2017 (starting in April), but higher-than-expected sales have lead to a doubling of the figure to 16 million, unnamed supply chain sources claim. The WSJ adds the widely praised Zelda game sold 1.5m units in its first week, and sales for March 2017 can total up to 2.5m.

Such reports follow tweets by New York Times journalist Nick Wingfield, who says the Switch was the fastest selling Nintendo machine in the Americas, with launch title Zelda: Breath of the Wild as best selling standalone launch title.

Meet Bixby, the Samsung Voice Assistant

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Samsung presents what it claims is a "new way to interact with your phone"-- Bixby, its take on the voice assistant likes of Siri, Cortana and Google Assistant.

Samsung GalaxyThe result of the acquisition of Viv, an AI specialist founded by the creators of Siri, Bixby promises to be superior to the competition through 3 specific properties. These are completeness (it can handle "almost" any task one can do using the touchscreen), context awareness (Bixby-enabled apps can summon Bixby at any time, and the assistant carries out tasks specific to the app) and cognitive tolerance (it understands commands with incomplete information, and prompts users to tell it more if necessary).

Bixby will also find use beyond smartphones, since Samsung plans to put it a wide variety of connected devices, including appliances, TV remotes and wearables. In fact, the company states Bixby can work on just about anything with an internet connection and a microphone. Uniting all Bixby-enabled offerings is a dedicated hardware button, which Samsung claims eliminates the "confusion around activating a voice interface."

A "Flow" Battery Powers and Cools Chips

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Scientists at ETH Zurich and IBM Research Zurich build what they call a tiny "redox flow" battery-- a battery able to simultaneously power and cool chips, especially those stacked on top of each other, pancake-style.

liquid batteryA flow battery creates electricity through the electrochemical reaction of two liquid electrolytes. A closed electrolyte loop pumps the two liquids into the battery cell from outside, and the liquids also serve as a cooling medium, dissipating excess heat from the chip stack via the same circuit.

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