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Two Triple-Screen Laptops Were Stolen From Razer's CES Booth (theverge.com) 165

In a Facebook post, Razer CEO Min-Liang Tan said two of their prototype laptops shown off at CES 2017 were stolen. "We treat theft/larceny, and if relevant to this case, industrial espionage, very seriously -- it is cheating, and cheating doesn't sit well with us," Tan wrote. "Penalties for such crimes are grievous and anyone who would do this clearly isn't very smart." Both items were prototype models of a laptop, called Project Valerie, that has three 4K displays. The Verge reports: Tan says that Razer is working with law enforcement and CES management to investigate. He's also asking show attendees to email legal@razerzone.com with any info they might have on what happened. A company representative added that a $25,000 reward is being offered for information leading to a conviction. The alleged theft occurred "after official show hours," says Allie Fried, director of global events communications for the Consumer Technology Association, which runs CES. "The security of our exhibitors, attendees and their products and materials are our highest priority," Fried wrote in an email to The Verge. "We look forward to cooperating with law enforcement and Razer as the incident is investigated."
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Two Triple-Screen Laptops Were Stolen From Razer's CES Booth

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  • Ironic (Score:5, Insightful)

    by spaceman375 ( 780812 ) on Tuesday January 10, 2017 @09:06AM (#53640821)

    Even though it was after hours, just how many cameras are there within sight of their booth? At the biggest electronics show in the US? The building itself probably has more than enough "footage" (bitage?) to at least pinpoint when if not who.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      This *could* be a publicity stunt to keep "three display laptop" meme bouncing around in the `news'.

      • Re:Ironic (Score:4, Informative)

        by geekmux ( 1040042 ) on Tuesday January 10, 2017 @09:46AM (#53641063)

        This *could* be a publicity stunt to keep "three display laptop" meme bouncing around in the `news'.

        If this turns out to be nothing more than that, then good luck to Razer, as local city officials tabulate the bill calculating waste of law enforcement resources, along with facing punishments related to a fraudulent report.

        And we should throw the book at them. Marketing is not a viable excuse here.

        • ... as local city officials tabulate the bill calculating waste of law enforcement resources, along with facing punishments related to a fraudulent report.

          And we should throw the book at them. Marketing is not a viable excuse here.

          It's a darn good thing those rules don't apply to politicians. The jails would be overflowing (even more).

        • What fraudulent report? Did it say they filed a report with the police? The news story said they were working with law enforcement, that's it.
          And they gave you an email address from their domain if you have any information. (?!)

          Sure, someone might have nabbed them, laptops get stolen all the time. Just somewhat interesting that this made the news feeds. Do I care? Not in the least.

      • Re:Ironic (Score:5, Funny)

        by Oswald McWeany ( 2428506 ) on Tuesday January 10, 2017 @09:47AM (#53641075)

        This *could* be a publicity stunt to keep "three display laptop" meme bouncing around in the `news'.

        Until Gillette produce competition against Razer, with a 4 screened monitor next year.

        • Re:Ironic (Score:5, Funny)

          by Timothy Hartman ( 2905293 ) on Tuesday January 10, 2017 @09:54AM (#53641107)
          Pretty sure they'd say fuck everything, we're doing five monitors [theonion.com]
          • It's not over until somebody puts a bucky-ball of displays around your head.

          • I know that was a joke article by the Onion, but they do actually sell 5 bladed razors... actually they're up to 7 now.

            http://www.dorcousa.com/pace-7... [dorcousa.com]

            Soon razors will be so big and have so many razors they'll be bigger than your face.

            • That's why that Onion article was so funny, in retrospect: at the time the article came out, Gillette wasn't yet making 5-bladed razors, I think they were only up to 4. Then, sometime after the satirical Onion article, they really did come out with 5-bladed razors, making the article now ironic (if I'm using my literary terms correctly; I'm an engineer, dammit, not a liberal arts major!).

              It's a little bit like Arnold's 1986 movie "The Running Man". At the time, it was a not-so-serious and fairly humorous

              • The article was published after the Mach 3 (3 blades) was released. I don't know if the 4 blade razors (Quattro, from Schick) were on the radar at the time or not. The latest razors have 6 blades. There's a single blade on the top edge. Marketing says it's for precision. I say it's absolutely useless. The other 5 blades and the vibrating razor itself are pretty great. They lost a long damned time too, and replacements aren't very expensive online. They work out to be far cheaper than the dollar shav

            • I know that was a joke article by the Onion, but they do actually sell 5 bladed razors... actually they're up to 7 now ....

              Ha. I laugh at those pathetic little 7 blades. Obligatory "mine goes to 11" [youtu.be]

          • by aquabat ( 724032 )
            Oblig Southpark reference [youtube.com]
        • Great, now I'm imagining a laptop with multiple vibrating screens that ooze aloe gel when you touch them. Eww.

          • As long as it is screens that are vibrating and oozing stuff. There is another vibrating industry that I hope doesn't start oozing stuff.

      • This *could* be a publicity stunt to keep "three display laptop" meme bouncing around in the `news'.

        An item like this *could* also be headed into a private collection, not to be seen to the outside world for at least seven years. Something as unique as "a very early example of a three display laptop" would be interesting to more than a couple of people with the means to do this.

        Somehow I doubt the industrial espionage angle, triple display drivers are so common they are built into Intel integrated graphics units now.

      • by darkain ( 749283 )

        Nobody would EVER steal laptops as a publicity stunt...

        http://www.eonline.com/news/35... [eonline.com]

  • by TimothyHollins ( 4720957 ) on Tuesday January 10, 2017 @09:08AM (#53640833)

    Would anyone like to buy a triple-screen laptop? The brand logo is scratched, but otherwise it's brand new.

  • Usefulness: Debatable.
    Uniqueness and recognizability: 100%.

    Someone is asking for trouble.

    • Almost as stupid as the idea to make it in the first place. Portable and unwieldy... might be easier to ship 2 conventional flat screens wherever you are going and just connect them.

      If anyone did steal them, it's to go in their private tech-person-cave until the statutes of limitations run out.

      • by Pascoea ( 968200 )

        Almost as stupid as the idea to make it in the first place.

        I respectfully disagree. I love the concept, the execution could use a little help. I think a business class type of similar device would be great. Triple 4k screens is a little excessive for business purposes, but if I could get a reasonably sized (not 12 pound) laptop with dual 1080 (or 1200) line monitors I would be all over it.

      • Portable and unwieldy... might be easier to ship 2 conventional flat screens wherever you are going and just connect them.

        Not really, the laptop is pretty clunky, but looks like it's much easier to carry round than any of the monitors I have by a long way. Sometimes you need a portably desktop rather than a laptop, and this one looks like it fits the bill.

      • I completely disagree. I haven't seen this particular laptop, but conventional flat-screen monitors are not that small, because of the built-in stands and cases and all. Shipping 2 of these means now you have to lug around two rather large boxes, which have the monitors, their stands, their cables and power supplies, plus styrofoam to protect them. Setting it up will be a big PITA too: you'll need a power strip, you'll have to plug in a bunch of cables, set up the stands, etc., Conceivably, with a 3-scr

        • it up means just unfolding the displays and you're done

          Deployment of the screens is completely motorized. No kidding.

        • Oh how the world has changed... back in the early 2000's when casemodding was the great geekfad - and we all had drawer-handles screwed to the top of our desktops for easy carrying, one guy who showed up at our local lan-parties (remember those) had actually built a case where one entire side WAS a flat-screen (which was still new technology at the time). So he could carry the PC and the screen as one unit. Just plonk it down, and game on the left side of the box.

          While very ingenious - I gave it a go and de

      • by swb ( 14022 )

        The 4K part at laptop sizes sounds like something I'd be willing to sacrifice, but otherwise it's a pretty cool idea as far as I'm concerned.

        If you need a super-portable laptop, maybe the extra weight would be a hassle but if your primary portability is just going from location to location with minimal concern for the weight from car-office-hotel type trips then it would be a huge win.

        I do client projects out of hotel rooms sometimes and will haul a spare monitor with me if I'm able to drive to the project.

    • Usefulness: Debatable.
      Uniqueness and recognizability: 100%.

      Someone is asking for trouble.

      Especially because one of the primary usefulness of a 3 screen laptop is portability and the portability is severely limited if you can't be seen in public with it therefore negating most of the usefulness of it. If it was a laptop that was already being sold then you could maybe get away with it but not something where only a handful even exist.

    • by Calydor ( 739835 )

      Completely offtopic, but as your signature asks to have mistakes pointed out you should capitalize English and German. I'm assuming you over-compensated for German's tendency to capitalize anything that could ever remotely be considered a noun?

  • Offering reward? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by poofmeisterp ( 650750 ) on Tuesday January 10, 2017 @09:09AM (#53640839) Journal

    How typical and old-school. I'd bet half of my life savings this is an advertising stunt.

    • by ai4px ( 1244212 )

      Oddly enough, I had the same thought... advertising stunt. We'll see....

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      I'll take that bet. Ten bucks is ten bucks.

    • by Ogive17 ( 691899 )
      An advertising stunt that very few people will ever read about? Of course it's possible, just seems risky. If word gets out it was a stunt, probably do more to harm their reputation than actually help out.

      Cleaning and security folks typically are making just above minimum wage. Occasionally you get a bad egg in there that sees a potential quick profit on craig's list and risks their job for a few hundred dollars. Our office has had things go missing during the evening. A few laptops were swiped. I h
  • Linus (No, the other one) dropped them and did not want to be embarressed again.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Linus (No, the other one)....

      Uh, so you mean that kid from the Snoopy comics, then?

  • No lock? (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward

    I guess with 3 screens there was no room for a Kensington Security Slot to lock them down.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Every news outlet is covering this story. Millions of dollars of free advertising for Razer.

  • I know criminals are not supposed to be that smart, but if you read between the lines here, nobody is getting any money for information. It could take 1-2 years to convict someone of this theft. By the time someone is convicted, Razor will conveniently forget about any reward money.

    Offer a reward leading to an arrest.

    • by cdrudge ( 68377 ) on Tuesday January 10, 2017 @09:37AM (#53641007) Homepage

      Offer a reward leading to an arrest.

      For $25k, I'd implicate all 3 of my kids and my wife. If you could take her dog too I'd appreciate it but leave the goldendoodle, he's mine.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Offer a reward leading to an arrest.

        For $25k, I'd implicate all 3 of my kids and my wife. If you could take her dog too I'd appreciate it but leave the goldendoodle, he's mine.

        Hell, I'll give you twice that if you could implicate my (ex-)wife.

        You know what the definition of a successful man is? One who makes more money than his ex-wife spent.

        I am not a successful man.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Sorry, I was with your wife that night, she has a rock solid alibi.

    • By the time someone is convicted, Razor will conveniently forget about any reward money.

      I'm pretty sure that the 25K will be sitting in escrow from arrest to conviction. I'm not a lawyer, informant or criminal, but that's usually how such conditional payments are handled in areas of my life where I do have experience, to prevent exactly what you describe.

  • Jokes on them! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ArchieBunker ( 132337 ) on Tuesday January 10, 2017 @09:46AM (#53641069) Homepage

    These weren't even real prototypes. The whole thing is vaporware at the moment. You won't see this thing for another 5 years at least. Find me a graphic card capable of driving three 4K displays, now explain how you're fitting that inside a laptop.

    • Re:Jokes on them! (Score:4, Informative)

      by naughtynaughty ( 1154069 ) on Tuesday January 10, 2017 @10:03AM (#53641165)

      Many graphics cards can drive 3 4k monitors, including those using the NVIDIA 1080 GPU

      If you were really asking how many can do it for gaming to your personal satisfaction, that's an entirely different question.

      To explain how you can fit one inside a laptop, buy one of the several laptops on the market that have teh NVIDIA 1080 GPU inside, tear them apart and you'll see how they fit them inside.

    • There are already laptops with two desktop GeForce GTX 1080s. If you're willing to put up with the weight of a cooling system, I don't think tri-SLI presents an insurmountable problem.

      And if you're looking at a three-screen prototype, weight is certainly not a problem.

      Of course, they might not have gaming-grade GPUs in them at all. Driving three 4k screens in 2D isn't that difficult and that's all you'd need for a demo unit.

    • Wait a minute... is it just a big mix up (some jr. guy safely put em away) while generating some press time?
    • Not only do Nvidia and ati both support this, but they are also comfortably able to do 3D gaming on them. Please try and keep up with technology.

      • So why a mockup if the technology is there?

        • So why a mockup if the technology is there?

          Because it's CES? Or did you think MS was being held back by technology when they had their Xbox demonstrations running on a PC in the first place?

          I mean a Matrox has been able to power multiple monitors at 4K for a good 2 years now (If you don't care about 3D performance), their latest C680 can do 6 monitors at 4K at a time, and multiple can be put into a PC. The single GTX1080 mobile chipset supports 3x 4K monitors, and they can be teamed with multiple in a PC reverting to SLI in gaming for even more moni

    • No really.... we made these super cool laptops with 10...errr..4k! screens... 2 of.. err. no, 3 of them that would fold out. They were super portable and played Crysis on full settings! .... THEY WERE REAL! but somebody stole 'em so I can't show 'em to you....

    • I don't think it's vaporware. http://www.razerzone.com/proje... [razerzone.com] Razer is a big, reasonably dependable company. I'd bet on something like this eventually hitting the market.
  • Every $399-and-up iPhone at the Apple store is held in place with a cable. And these crazy-expensive prototype laptops weren't because...?

    If it were my prototype laptop, I"d've specced it with not just one but two Kensington slots. And it'd go into a substantial locking box after hours, or into the hotel room of a trusted rep.

    • ...If it were my prototype laptop, I"d've specced it with not just one but two Kensington slots...

      Because two zip ties are better than one?

      Give me a break. If a thief wants your multi-thousand dollar laptop bad enough, they're going to use a $5 pair of wire cutters to defeat your pathetic attempt to secure it with that sales gimmick of a solution.

    • Every iPhone at an Apple store relies on a store employee being nearby when someone snips the cable.

      Two Kensington slots means it takes someone 20 seconds to cut two cables instead of 10 seconds to cut 1.

      • Every iPhone at an Apple store relies on a store employee being nearby when someone snips the cable.

        The same is true of any CES booth. I've been there after hours on a vendor badge - there are a TON of people wandering around, as you'd expect with so many people working each booth... just because it's after hours does not mean you can walk away from any valuable equipment for a second. Any computers or cameras at the vendor I was at were put into a locked closet for the night before the booth was left una

    • If it were my prototype laptop, I"d've specced it with not just one but two Kensington slots.

      Why? Two cases without the locks - It's not stolen, the locks would have been extra cost and expense; It is stolen, excellent PR. Adding locks is a lose-lose (well, except for the city and expo people working to solve the crime.)

  • by Anonymous Coward

    I've exhibited at these big shows - security is very lax, there's loads of people milling around after hours and the risk of getting caught is minimal. Anyone who leaves anything of any value unattended on the stand (whether in a cupboard or on display) is asking for trouble. I'm amazed these guys were so green - especially if they thought there was the slightest risk of 'industrial espionage'.

  • BS. It was the flight-simulator gang.

    • BS. It was the flight-simulator gang.

      No, three displays is "innovatious". The only folks driving serious "innovatious" tech are in the porn industry. So look out for porn that is filmed simultaneously from three angles, which can be displayed on three screens . . . and you have found the culprit!

  • by organgtool ( 966989 ) on Tuesday January 10, 2017 @11:25AM (#53641665)
    Well, we know it likely wasn't an Apple employee since they would be more interested in a laptop with no screen, or at least a screen that requires a dongle.
  • Guess they don't want their prototypes back, then.

  • ... any thoughts on embedded GPS?

  • I've heard of security personnel *filling* hotel rooms with stolen gear from booths, and I know someone who stopped a theft-by-security-guard after hours a couple of years ago at CES. Those guys are about as trustworthy as a hungry bear.

  • At least you know its portable...

  • The Russians.

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