Tag Archives: ‘debacle’

Nvidia Pushes RTX 3070 Launch Back 2 Weeks to Avoid Bot Debacle

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Nvidia’s RTX 3080 and RTX 3090 sales were the worst examples yet of how badly online bots are damaging product launches, and the company wants to prevent a similar event from happening when it launches the RTX 3070. To that end, Nvidia will delay the RTX 3070 debut by two weeks, from October 15 to October 29, in order to build inventory and ensure an adequate supply of cards.

Nvidia-Announcement

This is going to be an interesting stress test of the bot armies, OEM manufacturing, and retailer attempts to identify real orders versus scalpers. I’m not terribly optimistic about the outcome. As I wrote earlier this week, Nvidia has every reason to crack down on bots and scalpers, but other companies in the distribution chain don’t necessarily see things that way.

According to Rob Fahey at GamesIndustry.biz, Amazon apparently took no action to prevent people from buying pre-order stocks before immediately re-listing those exact same products for sale at a substantial markup compared with previous listings. Companies like eBay have no reason to attempt to block preorder scams and scalping, given that they literally make their money from online auctions and will earn more from an inflated sales price than a normal one.

Fahey writes:

Up front, we have to acknowledge that the first come, first served paradigm is a disaster; it’s meaningless in the age of the Internet, when even a tech company with the prowess of Amazon can’t build store pages that keep up with the speed of traffic at a popular launch. The result is confusing, contradictory and frustrating for consumers who add the product to their cart only to see it disappear a screen later, or go out of stock while they’re choosing a delivery address, or flicker in and out of availability as they refresh browser pages. Using this kind of hare-brained system only gives the advantage to the scalpers, who can afford to set up bots and web crawlers to secure stock for themselves.

Fahey suggests the use of lotteries as one method to create a more fair distribution system. I’ve suggested either validated pre-orders or a return to retail distribution as a means of fighting scalping, though the latter obviously depends on the degree to which your state is open for business and how comfortable you feel shopping in it.

Image credit: Twitter

After the RTX 3080 debut/debacle, screenshots surfaced of individuals successfully ordering 18 to 42 GPUs for themselves. We don’t know if Nvidia or any other reseller successfully caught these orders and terminated them. If they did, then waiting an extra two weeks to build inventory might be sufficient to keep the market fed for longer than 2-5 minutes, which is how long Ampere stocks lasted in some online stores. If, on the other hand, the bot detection methods were less successful than previously believed, no reasonable amount of additional stock is going to solve the problem.

If the customer who bought 42 GPUs was an outlier, Nvidia is fine. If he represents the median bot purchase — or is even within one standard deviation of it — then we’re talking about bots sucking down 1-2 dozen cards apiece. If 1,000 to 2,000 bots can account for 12,000 to 48,000 video cards, it’s going to be much harder to overwhelm the collective credit limits and resources of the botters. Some scammers might take whatever profits they earned from the first wave of RTX 3080 and 3090 order abuse, then pour those profits into buying more RTX 3070s in the hopes of pulling the same trick again.

I’m glad to see Nvidia taking the situation seriously and I hope retailers and manufacturers do the same in order to make certain hardware gets into the hands of customers attempting to buy it as opposed to flipping it for profit, but the bots have definitely won Round 1 of our metaphorical match-up. Here’s hoping better detection methods and more inventory can hand a win to the good guys in Round 2. Nvidia has claimed the $ 500 RTX 3070 will outperform the $ 1,200 RTX 2080 Ti, and that’s going to have a lot of people eyeing the RTX 3070 as a potential upgrade.

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’90 Day Fiance’ Tell-All: Tania Tearfully Defends Herself After ‘Soulmate’ Debacle

’90 Day Fiance’ Tell-All: Tania Tearfully Defends Herself After ‘Soulmate’ Debacle | Entertainment Tonight

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Thailand has reason to smile after debacle against U.S.

A couple of seconds elapsed before a disbelieving Kanjana Sungngoen raised her arms in celebration.

It really happened.

Thailand had finally scored at this Women’s World Cup.

By the time Sungngoen found the net against Sweden in the first minute of stoppage time, Thailand was already trailing 4-0 Sunday in Nice, France.

But simply scoring was a triumph after Thailand’s humiliating 13-0 opening loss to the United States. Coaches embraced on the bench and Thai flags were raised in the stands on the French Riviera.

This one goal made us laugh, made us smile and makes us happy.— Thailand coach Nuengrutai Srathongvian on Sunday’s 5-1 loss to Sweden

They were still beaming after the final whistle, even after Elin Rubensson scored with the final kick of the game from the penalty spot to seal a 5-1 victory for Sweden, which advanced to the round of 16 with a game to spare.

“Everyone was very happy that we at least scored one,” Kanjana said through a translator. “The whole team is very glad.”

Even if it was only a consolation goal and the team remains bottom of Group F.

‘You can feel some empathy for them’

“It was a difficult goal and playing a great team like Sweden, it meant so much,” Thailand coach Nuengrutai Srathongvian said through a translator. “It meant that all of our preparation paid off. We had a lot of chances today. This one goal made us laugh, made us smile and makes us happy.”

Forget that Thailand’s 18 goals conceded equals the tournament record set by Argentina in 2007. And, Thailand still must face Chile in the group finale.

Even Sweden goalkeeper Hedvig Lindahl, through the disappointment of not keeping a clean sheet, could see what scoring meant to the Thais.

“We are all human,” Lindahl said, “and having had that defeat they had against the US, and now scoring their goal, you can feel some empathy for them.”

It helped that her teammates had already scored four times by the time Sungngoen got on the end of a high ball on the right flank and cut in before beating Lindahl at her near post.

Early deficit

The first of the five Swedish scorers netted in the 6th minute in Nice, with Linda Sembrant heading past Waraporn Boonsing.

The Thai goalkeeper did manage to palm away Anna Anvegard’s shot in the 19th minute but she couldn’t recover the ball to prevent Kosovare Asllani scoring. Boonsing couldn’t stop the 41st-minute strike from Fridolina Rolf curling into the top corner.

Just like in the game against the United States, it was 3-0 at halftime. Unlike in Paris, Thailand didn’t concede another four times in the opening 11 minutes of the second half.

In fact, it took Sweden until the 81st minute to find the net again through Lina Hurtig’s header before being beaten by Thailand on the counterattack.

So when the final whistle blew, the Thai squad was able to bow to its fans. Some pride had been restored.

“Our defeat in the last game was massive,” Srathongvian said. “We were disappointed, but scoring one today we made some success. We still need to develop and we need to improve and make it better. We need to get as close to other super teams. We need to play better so we can enjoy it more.”

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Trump's 'déjà vu' Eurotrip: Upcoming Putin, NATO summits raise concerns after G7 debacle

There's an old Russian saying that U.S. President Donald Trump might heed as he departs Tuesday for a week of high-level meetings in Europe, including one with a foreign foe. It goes: "Repetition is the mother of learning."

Those words may help him navigate a familiar scenario — a potentially strained meeting with allies just ahead of a tête-à-tête with a major U.S. adversary.

"Déjà vu is one way of thinking about it," said Alina Polyakova, an expert on Russian foreign policy at the D.C.-based Brookings Institution.

It was only last month that Trump travelled abroad to meet, then insult one of his country's closest allies, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, before he departed to laud a Western adversary, North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un.

NATO members "are trying to understand what this president might do, and watching how he's interacted with other authoritarians — Kim being the most prominent recent example," Polyakova said.

"They're trying to take lessons from that."

But if it's solidarity the alliance of 29 North American and European powers is after, Trump seems comfortable playing the role of disrupter, lashing out at members over military spending while treating Russian President Vladimir Putin amicably.

'Europe is almost powerless'

Trump will enter the talks in Brussels amid an already strained relationship with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Last week, the White House sent missives to several NATO leaders, including Trudeau, admonishing the U.S. allies for their defence spending shortfalls, though the spending guidelines are not formal rules, only targets.

This photo of G7 leaders and advisers at the G7 summit was posted to the Instagram account of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, centre, on June 9. (Jesco Denzel/German Federal Government via AP)

Making things more awkward will be the steep tariffs the U.S. is imposing on imported steel and aluminum from the EU, Canada and Mexico.

In June, Trump departed the G7 in Quebec, then rejected a joint communiqué, in order to meet with Kim in Singapore. Now, NATO members are reportedly concerned about whether the president will renege on U.S. commitments to the alliance before his one-on-one with Putin.

The Europeans won't like the sequencing, Polyakova said, especially if a routine diplomatic affair goes off the rails, as the G7 did, leading right into a "glowing meeting of Trump and Putin." 

"It's like Europe is almost powerless as they have to sit by and watch as their fates are decided by two men," she said, the implication being that Russia is back at the table with superpower status.

Putin would likely request a lifting of sanctions, she said.

'Putin's wish list'

Trump reportedly hinted at the G7 that Crimea in Ukraine should belong to Russia, reasoning that most citizens there speak Russian. But legitimization of Russian annexation of Crimea would be a huge win for Putin, possibly incentivizing other land grabs, said Brian Klaas, author of The Despot's Apprentice: Donald Trump's Attack on Democracy.

"It's not just about Ukrainian territory, it's about a bedrock principle that has created international security and prosperity since World War Two, and that's the principle that you can't divide by force."

The Western world is held together by NATO and the European Union, and Trump is attacking them.– Brian  Klaas , author of  The Despot's Apprentice: Donald Trump's Attack on Democracy

Alliance members worry that the U.S. would withdraw its forward presence in Baltic states such as Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, leaving them vulnerable to a possible Russian military offensive.

If Trump was distracted during the G7 by his summit with Kim, his planned sit-down with Putin threatens to overshadow NATO discussions set to begin on Wednesday, said Klaas, a comparative-politics fellow at the London School of Economics.

"The Western world is held together by NATO and the European Union, and Trump is attacking them at the same time he's trying to make friends with Putin."

After all, he said, "NATO exists largely to deter Russian aggression."

A weakened NATO and a U.S. president who's seemingly reluctant to criticize the Kremlin "are literally what Putin's wish list has been for the last two decades."

Article 5 'in question again'

How Trump can square his commitments to what the alliance stands for with a cozier relationship with the Kremlin will likely keep NATO members on edge. They will want reassurances from the Americans, Klaas said, and Trump campaigned in the 2016 election as a NATO skeptic.

It took Trump nearly half a year into his presidency for him to formally endorse NATO's Article 5 principle of collective defence, in which an attack on one member is considered an attack on all allies.

"I think that's up in question again," Klaas said.

Polyakova's worry, based on reports of satellite images showing ongoing nuclear activity in North Korea, is what kind of concessions Putin may be able to extract from Trump "without getting much in return, if anything at all."

Kim may have deceived this administration, she said, "but Putin has shown himself to be absolutely untrustworthy as a partner, potentially more so than Kim."

Experts expect Trump to continue pressing NATO allies toward more burden-sharing, in line with a 2024 goal for members to contribute two per cent of their GDP on defence.

Russian matryoshka dolls depicting Putin and Trump are on sale in the Ruslania bookstore in Helsinki Monday. (REUTERS)

In 2014, only four partners were meeting those targets. Trump wants more. His lobbying may have succeeded in that regard: eight countries now meet the spending targets.

"That's already a positive move," said Elena Sokova, a nonproliferation expert at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, in California. "Because no matter how you slice and dice it, there's a need for countries to be stepping up their spending for allocations for the military budgets."

Despite the president's rhetoric, his administration has arguably reinvigorated NATO, hiking spending on European defence by approving $ 6.3 billion.

A more fortified NATO is bad news for Putin, though he's at least scored a win by securing a meeting with Trump.

The president, for his part, said he is "looking forward" to the meeting in Finland, though one of his tweets on Monday raised eyebrows about just how willing he'll be to take the Russian leader to task.

Following reports that Kim had not honoured what Trump termed a denuclearization "contract," Trump wrote that he remained confident the North Korean would stay true to his word, based on "our handshake."


That reminded Sokova of Trump's rationale for doubting the Russians meddled in the 2016 U.S. election. Trump said he was certain because Putin told him so.

"You could say that's the equivalent of a handshake," Sokova said.

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