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AMD's RDNA 2 technology will deliver 10 TFLOPS in Tesla cars for high-end gaming
by João Carrasqueira
AMD made some major announcements during its Computex keynote, including new laptop GPUs, new desktop APUs, and the long-awaited availability of FidelityFX Super Resolution, a technology similar to Nvidia's DLSS. But some announcements were mentioned so briefly they might have flown under the radar, like the fact that AMD GPUs are coming to Tesla's new Model S and Model X cars.
During its keynote, AMD said that the gaming system inside Tesla's electric vehicles will combine an AMD Ryzen Embedded APU for general compute tasks with an RDNA 2-based GPU for AAA gaming. Specifically, the company promised 10 TFLOPS of graphics processing power for the GPU inside the gaming system, which is almost on par with Sony's PlayStation 5 - though it's likely fair to expect CPU performance to be lower than that. Alleged performance details of this system were actually leaked earlier this year, but AMD didn't dive deep into them.
Unfortunately, it didn't mention any specific games you'll be able to play in your car though an image shown during the presentation showed The Witcher III: Wild Hunt on the vehicle's display. Even before this announcement, Tesla has already dipped its toes into gaming, with some titles already available, including popular games like Cuphead.
AMD also reiterated during the presentation that it's working with Samsung to bring RDNA 2-based graphics to the company's Exynos mobile chipsets. Samsung itself had confirmed this already, but AMD specifically mentioned support for ray tracing and variable rate shading during its presentation, which will be interesting to see. We should expect to hear more specific announcements from Samsung later this year.
Tesla stops taking Bitcoin for vehicle purchases after just 49 days
by Subir Kathuria
Tesla started accepting bitcoin in late March. But 49 days later, the company has had a change of heart.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk says it would resume accepting bitcoin when the process of mining bitcoin “transitions to more sustainable energy." The company is also “looking at other cryptocurrencies that use <1% of Bitcoin’s energy/transaction.”
Musk has also stated that Tesla will not sell any more of the $1.5 billion of bitcoin it purchased at the start of this year. Tesla sold some of that bitcoin in the first quarter of 2021, which was done primarily to help the company’s quarterly profit figures.
Just a day before the Tesla CEO had posted a poll on Twitter asking if people want Tesla to accept Dogecoin, in which over 78% of respondents said yes to adding the cryptocurrency as a means of payment on the Tesla website.
According to one estimate Bitcoin uses up as much electricity annually as the Netherlands. All that energy comes with a huge carbon footprint. And it's not easy to fix because the blockchain that the cryptocurrency is built on is purposely energy inefficient. That clashes with Tesla’s mission to “accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy.”
Musk has also hyped another cryptocurrency, Dogecoin. Musk has called Dogecoin, which was invented as a joke to satirize bitcoin, his favorite cryptocurrency and “the people’s crypto.” The cryptocurrency’s worth plunged after Musk called it a “hustle” on Saturday Night Live. Bitcoin’s value has similarly plunged about 8 percent after today’s Musk tweet according to Coindesk.
Elon Musk confirms that you can now use Bitcoin to buy a Tesla
by Anmol Mehrotra
Back in February, Tesla announced that it had made a $1.5 Billion investment into Bitcoin and is planning to add Bitcoin as a mode a payment. Now, the company has confirmed that customers can buy Tesla cars using Bitcoin.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk confirmed on Twitter that customers in the US can now book cars using Bitcoin. He further noted that the company plans to expand the ability to buy Tesla using Bitcoin to other countries later this year. Musk also confirmed that Tesla will operate the Bitcoin node directly and will not convert Bitcoin to fiat currency (like USD, EUR, etc).
Tesla has also published a FAQ page answering some of the basic questions regarding the announcement. The company has clarified that it will only accept Bitcoin and will not deal with other cryptocurrencies. According to the FAQ, once the customer initiates the transaction, a timer will begin, and the customer will have to complete the transaction before the timer ends or the transaction will expire. The timer is added to ensure that Tesla or the customer does not incur a loss due to price fluctuation especially during extreme volatility in the crytocurrency market. Tesla also recommends the customers to send the payment in one transaction to avoid any delays with the order.
Immediately after Elon's tweet, Bitcoin saw a spike in the price. Currently, Bitcoin is trading at $57,081, up 3.4% from yesterday's price of $54,350. Bitcoin has seen an increase in popularity recently with companies like Apple working with cryptocurrency companies to add support for cryptocurrency payments. PayPal, on the other hand, acquired Curv to improve its cryptocurrency expertise.
However, not everyone is excited about cryptocurrency boom as the Indian government is working on a new bill to penalise traders, miners, and digital asset holders.
Bill Gates says there needs to be an Elon Musk in every sector
by Paul Hill
Just days after Bill Gates launched his new book, How To Avoid A Climate Disaster, the Microsoft founder and former CEO has said that we need innovators like Elon Musk in every sector - naming steel and cement specifically - to help tackle global warming. Musk’s contributions to climate change include pushing the limits of electric vehicles with Tesla and developing reusable rockets.
Gates made the comments in an interview with CNBC while being quizzed over whether or not he has been shorting Tesla stock, to which he said that he doesn’t discuss his investing practices.
In the interview with CNBC, Gates said:
Heavy industries such as steel and cement produce more carbon dioxide emissions than the entire United States, according to New Scientist, but the development of new technologies could significantly reduce the carbon emissions in these sectors. Gates clearly thinks that those industries need people that will experiment and improve on nascent technologies as Musk has done with electric vehicles and rockets.
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Bitcoin has passed $50,000 for the first time
by Paul Hill
For the first time in its history, bitcoin has passed the $50,000 threshold according to data from CoinMarketCap. The latest milestone comes just a week after Tesla announced that it had purchased $1.5 billion worth of bitcoin and was working to allow the purchase of its vehicles using bitcoin as a payment option.
Alongside Tesla’s announcements, the banks JPMorgan and Morgan Stanley have reportedly been looking at getting involved with cryptocurrencies; this latest development comes despite criticism of bitcoin by JPMorgan head Jamie Dimon several years ago who said he’d fire employees that traded in digital currencies.
The price of bitcoin has hit a lot of new milestones in the past several years with 2017 being a monumental year of the cryptocurrency’s growth. Over the last several months, the cryptocurrency saw a big increase in its value which attracted new interest, including from businesses like Tesla and the aforementioned banks.
With the corporate backing it now has, more people will likely come to see its usefulness and the barriers to entry will be lowered as new products allowing the easy acquisition and spending of bitcoin come to market. It’s not clear what it means for the price of bitcoin but some experts believe it will rise in value in the future, though, not necessarily immediately.
If you are interested in buying bitcoin, you should make sure that you only buy what you can afford to lose. While it doesn’t look likely, bitcoin’s price is volatile and could drop to zero overnight and you’d lose all the money you invested. Additionally, you should ensure you familiarise yourself with tax rules around bitcoin in your country because governments are now more up-to-date on cryptocurrencies and want their slice of the money you make.