Tesla is probably the world’s most known electric cars, with everything from everyday vehicles to supercars, all powered by electricity without a drop of petrol in their engines. Tesla is unique though in that they sell directly to customers, skipping out middlemen and offering its models and services without any additional costs. This very practice is the backbone of Tesla’s sales, and it has received criticism in some states in the U.S. where dealers have been less than pleased with the model. In a recent battle with the state of Indiana, Tesla once again comes out on top as they can continue to sell direct-to-consumers.
The recent battle focuses on an amendment to a bill that would make it illegal for any manufacturers to sell cars directly to a consumer, an amendment which has now been removed from the bill in question. Tesla stated that rival company GM, who released an elective vehicle that would complete with the Model 3, pushed the bill through the state legislature, a move that would have effectively crippled Tesla’s current model for selling its cars. A spokesman for GM even stated that they supported the amendment and that “All industry participants should operate under the same rules and requirements on fundamental issues that govern how we sell, service, and market our products”.
Tesla is obviously happy about the removal of the amendment saying that their store at Keystone will “remain open indefinitely”. While happy, you have to argue, who does it benefit other than the resellers and dealers when a company can’t provide you with the equipment directly?
For today’s review I am taking the TP-Link Archer VR900AC 1900 Wireless Dual Band Gigabit VDSL/ADSL Modem Router for a spin in our test area to see how well it performs, it surely sounds like a great device. While the Archer VR900 looks very similar to the Archer C9 that we reviewed not long ago, it’s quite the different device and it also sports some general improvements over the C9.
Most noticeable is the built-in modem that allows you to connect it directly to your phone line when using that sort of connection. There is no need to keep the old modem around and couple a router on the back of it in order to gain the features and functionality you want; The Archer VR900 does it all. It supports all current ADSL as well as VDSL formats right out of the box.
TP-Link didn’t just stop after adding the DSL modem to the VR900, they also made sure that it will work with pretty much any connection. At some point, and as it becomes available in more and more regions, there is a good chance that you’ll switch from your DSL line to a more modern Fibre optical connection. When you do so, you don’t need to replace the VR900 with something new as it also supports a direct WAN connection via the fourth LAN port. But once again, TP-Link weren’t satisfied with the connection options, so they made sure that you’re also able to connect it to 3G or 4G/LTE network via a USB dongle and the two onboard USB ports. All in all, there isn’t much that this router can’t do and connect to.
The TP-Link VR900 is an AC1900 dual-band router, meaning it can perform with up to 600Mbps on the 2.4GHz band and up to 1300 Mbps on the 5GHz band for a combined throughput of 1900 MBps. It has a great coverage thanks to the three 5 dBi omni-directional antennas. The wireless range and performance is further enhanced thanks to the beamforming technology that is applied on both wireless bands.
Inside the router is a 1GHz dual-core processor that makes sure that you don’t encounter any bottlenecks as the router has to perform its tasks.
The wireless bands feature the normal 64bit and 128bit WEP, WPA, and WPA2 encryptions for secure connections and the WPS button makes connecting devices as easy as it can be. The software parts feature everything from Wireless MAC filtering, QoS control, NAT Firewall, VPN, Virtual server and Port Triggers, as well as any other function you could want from a router. Guest networking and parental control is also present and both are great features to have around.
Packaging and Accessories
A great router like this also deserves a beautiful wrapping and TP-Link delivers that. The Archer VR900 has a simple yet very beautiful package. The front shows the device itself as well as providing all the basic feature information.
On the rear of the package, we find more details about the specific functions as well as a comparison table with other TP-Link devices. That way it’s even easier to pick just the right model when you’re visiting your local tech shop and have them all in front of you.
Inside we find everything we need to get it set up. The router itself and a power supply for it, two RJ11 cables and a splitter for your DSL connection, an RJ45 LAN cable, and the three detachable antennas as well as a quickstart guide and technical references.
Scientists have managed to send an email from India to France, a distance of about 5000 miles, using only the force of thought (and some technology). Okay, if it really is telepathy or not is a matter of opinion. The definition of the word (from Ancient Greek) is that tele is meaning “distant” and pathos or patheia meaning affliction or experience, and telepathy is the purported transmission of information from one person to another without using any of our known sensory channels or physical interaction. So by that definition it kind of both is and isn’t.
Computers and electroencephalography (EEG) devices were involved in the experiment, so it wasn’t really direct telepathy. The distance is also somewhat uninteresting since the internet was involved and the message wasn’t very complex either. The words hola and ciao were translated into binary and mapped to the brain activity. It’s still a pretty impressive result.
In the initial test, the greeting was sent from a volunteer in Thiruvananthapuram, India to Strasbourg, France where a computer translated the message and then used electrical stimulation to implant it in the receiver’s mind. This message then appeared as flashes of light in the corner of their vision. The light sequences allow the receiver to decode the information in the message.
Enthusiastic about the first success the researchers conducted two more similar experiments. One from Spain and one from France. The second test resulted in a total error with just 15% data accuracy. The other two were however a success.
The technology was developed as part of a collaboration between the University of Barcelona and Starlab in Spain, Axilum Robotics in France and Harvard Medical School. This is said to be the first time humans have sent a message almost directly into another persons brains.
“We anticipate that computers in the not-so-distant future will interact directly with the human brain in a fluent manner, supporting both computer- and brain-to-brain communication routinely,” the study wrote.
Human-to-brain technology is gaining traction in many areas, in May German scientists showed how seven pilots used mind control to fly with astonishing accuracy. Even more amazing was what the University of Oregon researchers showed in June when they unveiled a device that claimed to be able to monitor memories in near real time to see what a person is thinking.
Thank you DailyMailfor providing us with this information.
Instagram has just launched its own private messaging service. With the latest update to version 5 of the app, you can now send images and videos directly to individuals and groups rather than have all your stalkers from the followers group see what you are doing.
You now have the option select where your image will be uploaded and sent, whether to “Followers” or “Direct”, after you’ve taken and edited your picture or video, and if you select Direct you’ll have a choice of sending to just one or several people of your liking. Once you have sent your picture, you’ll see an indication underneath the picture of who has seen and liked the photo, along with a standard Instagram comment thread underneath. It’s the same Instagram experience you know, but with a smaller audience of your choice.
You can go straight into the Direct feature of the app with a new inbox button in the top left of the home screen, where you’ll see both read and unread messages, along with “Direct Requests” from people who you don’t follow. The latest update is live in the Google Play Store and Apple AppStore, ready for you to download or update.
Having looked at a number of choices for the 7790 from MSI, Sapphire and Club3D, its time to see what is on offer from Asus and when we mention Asus, what comes to mind is DirectCU. We’ve seen some manufacturers use their own design of coolers across their own product ranges, but no-one it seems has been more successful at this over Asus. Bar only minor design tweaks to cater for different cards, the DirectCU II coolers inherently all look pretty much a part of the same family, each shrouded by the iconic black metal frame and three red stripes that run along the breadth of the cooler.
So what sets DirectCU apart from the competition ? Well we’ve found time and time again that they are some of the most efficient when it comes to cooling, especially on the acoustics front, with the top four spots on the charts taken up by a cooler of this design. This naturally gives this cooler a chance to join that group. On the basis of Bonaire, we’ve seen some impressive results to date and knowing that Asus don’t like to displease their huge following of users, I’m sure there is going to be something special hidden somewhere inside this card.
In a standard Asus fashion, we find the box decorated with an artistic breakdown of the cooler and the moniker three claw slashes that run to the top right hand corner. Inside we also find a standard accessory set that includes a legacy display adaptor, CrossFire bridge, driver CD with GPU Tweak and a setup guide.