Issue 1409 - Friday 16th July, 2021

In Today's Issue

The News

Valve's Steam Deck is a handheld PC designed for gaming

Valve has announced the Steam Deck - a souped up Nintendo Switch (or Sega Game Gear if you're an old fart like me) looking handheld game console. Specs wise, it's got a custom made AMD x86 SoC using a Zen 2/RDNA 2 design, 7" touchscreen and shitloads of buttons, joysticks, triggers and touchpads. Unlike the Switch, it does not have removeable controllers, but Valve will sell a USB-C dock with HDMI-out so you can plug the Steam Deck into a TV. The Deck will run a "new version" of SteamOS (a fork of the Arch Linux distro apparently) that'll allow Windows games to run on it using Valve's Proton compatability layer. Steam Deck reservations go live in a few hours, will ship in December 2021 and have a starting price of US$399. Australia isn't in the list of launch countries unfortunately.

Rumours floating around that Intel might buy GlobalFoundries

Intel is looking to buy GlobalFoundries for around US$30b according to the Wall Street Journal. GloFo was spun off from AMD when they decided to focus on chip design rather than chip manufacturing and also owns a semiconductor factory that used to belong to IBM. Intel's primary reason to purchase GloFo would be to have a group of people and processes to deal with handling external customers, something Intel seriously lacks (also probably a bit of old fashioned competition killing). Meanwhile, Intel's arch-rival, TSMC, is planning to open its Arizona factory in 2024 and is expecting the shortage of car related semiconductors to ease significantly this quarter.

Black teen ejected from roller rink due to dodgy facial recognition

If you need an example as to why facial recognition is undercooked in its current state, Lamya Robinson is one of many. She went to a roller skating rink in Detroit with her friends and was denied entry as the system accused her of getting into a fight at the same place previously. Only problem is she's never been there. The system thought she was someone else but the staff "removed her from the building and put her outside alone" anyways. The rink said the software claimed Lamya was a 97% match. How embarassing that must have been. I hope Lamya and her family sue.

Something I Saw On The Internet

AliExpress Spelunking

Have you seen anything weird or cool on Aliexpress lately? Please email me with anything you find!


The End

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The Sizzle is created on Wathaurong land and acknowledges the traditional owners of country throughout Australia, recognising their continuing connection to land, water and community. I pay my respect to them and their cultures and to elders both past and present.‚Äč