The Future Of Gaming – What’s To Come?

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As a self-confessed “gamer” this next article is of a particular interest to me as it is pretty near and dear to my heart. Although computers and computer games have been around for decades, it’s only recently that games experts and enthusiasts have started to become especially interested and excited in computer games, because truthfully they simply can’t wait to see what’s coming next. Every four years or so, the next gaming console is released with “next generation” games consoles such as the PS4 and Xbox one being perfect examples. These consoles look and play absolutely fantastically, the graphics and game-play is near lifelike, and truthfully it’s hard to see how they can be topped, but rest assured they will be in a few years time. However, the gaming industry isn’t quite as black and white as that, and not all gamers are obsessed with lifelike graphics and complex storylines, which is why the future of gaming is looking especially promising. Here’s a look at what I, and many others, believe is yet to come with the future of gaming.

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More Apps And Phone-Based Games

10 – 15 years ago, the primary function of a mobile phone was to, well, be used as a phone, allowing you to send and receive text messages, and to of course make and receive telephone calls. These phones did indeed have a few very simplistic but highly addictive games built in, but for the most part the devices were used primarily for communication purposes. Nowadays however, thanks to the popularity of smart technology, the fact that phones can send and receive text messages and phone calls appears to be an added bonus. These days it’s all about apps as there are a number of highly popular gaming apps available for these phones and tablets, that generate a great deal of money for the developers, even if these apps are “free” to download and purchase.

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More Gambling Games

Gambling games, particularly apps which can be played directly on your phone, are now unbelievably popular, and if you want proof of this, just switch on the TV and count how many advertisements for various online casinos and apps you come across. With games such as casino slots and roulette proving especially popular, not to mention the fact that they’re generating billions every single year, it’s a pretty safe bet (pardon the pun) that more gambling online casino games will continue to keep showing up for the foreseeable future.

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Simplicity

Though super realistic and sophisticated computer games will always have a huge fan base and will always be vastly popular, so too will simplistic games that just so happen to be addictive and a whole heap of fun in the process. If you want proof of what I mean, just take a look at minecraft, which has developed a cult following and is one of the most popular games ever created, which is quite the achievement. Games such as ‘candy crush saga’ etc, are also proof that perhaps our tastes are changing slightly, or perhaps we simply want a game we can play and enjoy without feeling like we’re in the middle of a Hollywood blockbuster. Keep your eye out over the next 12 months or so, because I’ve a feeling that we’ll be seeing a lot more simplistic looking games that would not look out of place in the early nineties.

Are Wholesale Changes Needed With Internet Privacy?

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Journalism has a key role to play in the fostering and maintaining of democracy, exposing wrongdoing and providing a platform for diverse views, but journalism has also been abused to damage people’s personal lives and the advent of the internet has heightened the effects of privacy breaches and the damage they can do. As such, there is a need for changes to journalistic practices to ensure that an individual’s privacy is protected.

There are many examples of how an individual’s privacy can be breached for journalistic gain.  The exposure of phone hacking as a widespread practice among newspapers in the U.K., and tabloid newspapers in particular, highlighted that particular practice and its effect in damaging people’s private life, with information gleaned from phone hacking used to write and publish stories that were of little if no genuine public interest but were designed instead to titillate readers. Another widespread practice has been the bribing of officials with access to private information for the purposes of getting that material for publication. Close links between journalists and some police officers, for the purposes of procuring information related to individual’s private lives, has also emerged an issue of great concern for privacy campaigners. More recently, the hacking of cloud services and the subsequent leaking online of images of various celebrities highlighted the dangers of online platforms in releasing private information to a public audience.

In a broader sense, the celebrity photos hack highlighted the role of internet search engines and sites in the dissemination of private material. In particular, a debate has arisen as to whether search engines and sites can be held responsible in so far as to whether they knowingly accommodate the leaking of the information or not.  The internet is a global platform, so leaked information can be spread around the world in minutes. A breach of privacy can be distressing enough without the realisation that the information and/or images have been seen by millions of people.

The campaign for changes to privacy legislation is being led by individuals who themselves have been victims of breaches of their private life. Max Mosley – privacy campaigner – is one such example. Mosley, the former president of the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile, the governing body for Formula 1 and other motor sports, has campaigned on a number of privacy issues, arguing, for instance, that Google is a publisher and not merely a search engine and has a responsibility as such not to breach an individual’s privacy by allowing what is private information to appear in its search returns.

The internet has had a transformative effect on people’s lives and has been a power for good in many respects, but as with all communication platforms it does need to be policed to ensure it is not abused and that people’s privacy is respected. It has been suggested that the emergence of social media, in particular, has created a digital environment in which people’s expectations of privacy are reduced. It is imperative, therefore, that the proper laws are in place to protect individuals from incursions into their private lives.

A MacBook Skin for Every Personality

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If you own a MacBook laptop, then chances are you’re already a pretty style conscious person. Apple puts a lot of thought into the design of their products, which is just one reason why it has such a high cool factor. With such innovative technologyit’s hard to imagine any way to improve it but, you’d be surprised. If you’ve ever imagined your computer in amazing Technicolor, or maybe in an earthy bamboo finish that matches your inner earth child, then you should look into MacBook skins. You can custom order these things to fit any device.

Computers like the MacBook are an investment and protecting your investment never looked this good. The skins are made of industry leading 3M adhesives which leave no sticky residue on the surface of your device. This makes changing out colors and finishes a breeze. Don’t choose from just one – experiment with every kind and find which one matches you best.

If you’re looking to purchase some customizable MacBook skins, there are a variety of online retailers to choose from. However, only a select few truly cater to their customer. Stick with companies that make it a simple, straightforward process for their customers. They should have an online preview feature that displays how your selections would look on your device. Tools like these make it much easier to shop, as you don’t have to imagine your new fashion statement in your mind’s eye. It’s right there on the screen!

It’s also important to research to find the best prices. You’ve already spent enough money on your MacBook, so you shouldn’t have to spend a tonne to make sure it’s protected. If you check out dbrand online, you’ll find the best deals on cool MacBook skins since they have an amazing selection (through their preview feature) for a fraction of the cost offered by their competitors. They also ensure their skins are precision cut to match your device using the highest quality materials, fitting around its external ports and features. By using 3M vinyl for their skin, dbrand creates skins that offer top of the line protection against scratches and wear.

When Apple continues to make thinner and lighter laptops, you need to be sure your MacBook can withstand your lifestyle. With a variety of colours and textures, you can dress up your computer to be resistant to daily wear and tear. MacBook skins are a quick and easy way to make sure your laptop will last the test of time and look amazing while doing it.

The Enduring Appeal Of Superheroes In Gaming

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Since the very early days of video gaming, developers have been endlessly seeking ways to humanise their games. The games of Pong and Space Invaders worked on a simplistic level initially, but a human element was always needed for gamers to really identify with a game on an emotional level.

And since big name comic book heroes have had some incredible successes at the cinema, it’s only natural that these larger than life characters would find a new lease of life in the gaming arena. And so here are some of the biggest comic book hits in video games.

The Avengers

Marvel Comics have recently had an incredible run of success in the cinema. The X-Men series provided Hollywood with a much-needed dose of energy, and the recent run of Avengers films looks to extend Marvel’s dominance in this sphere.

Likewise, the gaming spin-offs from these films have been effortlessly adapted to the gaming world with last year’s Disney Infinity 2.0 Marvel Super Heroes taking advantage of the new gen consoles such as the PS4 and Xbox One to offer stunning graphics and in-depth gameplay.

Characters from the Avengers such as Iron Man have even been developed for the booming online gambling environment with their own slot games at Coral where the user interface takes advantage of the iconic superhero’s themes and imagery.

Batman

Batman is one of the most well-known superheroes and has enjoyed unparalleled success in comic books, television shows, film series and video games too.

Since the early days of gaming in 1986 where the first Batman game was developed for the Sinclair Spectrum, the caped crusader has achieved success on the Nintendo Gameboy, the Sega Megadrive and even became one of the first mobile phone games in 2005. But in June this year, Batman might make his most impressive gaming turn yet when Batman: Arkham Knight looks to become one of the flagship games for the impressive next gen range of consoles.

Super Mario

However, superheroes can also make the jump in the opposite direction too. This is what producer Avi Arad, the man behind the Marvel movie success, hopes to do with the upcoming Super Smash Bros movie.

This will take the iconic characters of Mario, Zelda and Donkey Kong from the video game arena and give them new life in the movie theatres. Whether this will achieve the same levels of success as the Avengers: Age of Ultron movie remains to be seen. But whatever happens, it looks like the symbiotic relationship between movies, video games and superheroes has a long way to run yet.

Creating A Tech-Friendly Home Office Design

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Do you remember the days of bulky computer monitors, towers and peripherals in your office? They took up space and although they were part of the technological revolution in terms of work with access to email and the internet, the rise of laptops and mobile media devices has revolutionised how office design can benefit employees and, consequently, business.

New and ever-developing technology has made life easier and more productive for everyone in the world of work. Some may worry about the ubiquitous use of email and chat interaction options on sales websites instead of telephone conversations, but the simplicity of the media on offer has made a real difference to working lives and, by extension, to office design.

Changing office appearances

Those bulky desktop monitors have been consigned to the scrapheap of tech change, and your desktop monitor will now be a smart, slimline screen. Apart from the saving in space, these give an office a slick, modern appearance. Of course, many employees will simply use laptops in the office, instantly available to take with them on a sales or other mission. Again, space that might have previously been at a premium is freed up.

You may have experienced, or been told about, the classic office cubicle, cutting employees off from each other, a little bubble created because managers often didn’t believe that fraternisation encouraged productivity. Not any more; and the new thinking about open office design is perfect for applying to the home office as well.

Thinking through your space

A home office is what you make it. It doesn’t matter if you don’t have a lot of space; you just need to use what you have to make the most attractive working environment that you can. It depends on what you are comfortable with and whether or not you are likely to have client meetings in your home office space.

You could really make an impression – as well as having a superb working environment – by incorporating specific office furniture into your workspace. You’ll want yourself, and any clients who visit, to be comfortable, so consider your initial furniture requirements. A leather two seater sofa adds both comfort and style to your office, taking away the hard edges of traditional office furniture.

For your own use, why not think about adding a chair that has a keyboard integrated, a multi-touch table and escritoires that are iPad ready? You want to make your environment as hassle-free as possible, removing all the wires and everything else that gets in the way of you functioning at the optimum level when you are working. If you feel relaxed and in control of your home office, then you’re likely to be much more productive.

Integration of devices and hiding behind furnishings anything that people don’t need to see gives a tech-friendly feel that makes for a creative work environment.

Design for what you want

Your home office has to work for you to enhance not only your environment but also to encourage you to get the best out of the time you spend working in it.

Entertainment Themed Websites You’ll Love

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Computing can be a rather tedious task at times, especially when using a device that relies heavily on applications. Hundreds of app downloads, clogging up hard-drives and quickly becoming boring; it seems that this isn’t the best way we could be spending our time on our devices, but there’s an easy answer to app-overload – websites with heaps of click and play entertainment! You’ll never download a single-use app again!

Netflix

The undisputed king of on-demand video streaming, Netflix is something everyone should subscribe to. Sign up now and you can get a month’s viewing free, after that the cost being a very healthy £5.99 a month. For that price you’re afforded access to the thousands of films and television episodes hosted by the site, plus Netflix’s excellent roster of in-house productions.

YouTube

Arguably the biggest media platform online, this is video hosting site that defined the mid to late noughties. Ascending to a near unassailable position as a web icon, it is currently undergoing some major changes, but fear not, this will not be the next MySpace, disappearing into oblivion. You probably know of the cats, pranks and music videos, but did you know that you can also rent films on Youtube for around $3 a piece? YouTube truly has it all.

Spotify

Music fans of all colours love the Spotify #ThrowbackThursday playlists, and for good reason. Anyone can use the service for free and have access to millions of tracks from a similar number of artists, or pay a small premium in order to lose the ads. You can also craft your own personal music collection, all without having to buy and download individual songs.

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For online games that allow you to win real cash whilst playing, MrSmithCasino is one of the best providers out there. The site hosts an enormous variety of slots, live casino and table games, and regularly offers bonuses on a constantly changing roster of titles. Right nowThe Dark Knight is our recommendation of the month, but there are other options for those looking for something completely different, including Leprechaun, TV-show and Pirate-themed games!

MiniClip

Every schoolchild knows about the procrastinatory power of MiniClip. The site hosts a massive variety of free to play browser games covering ever genre available. Action, shooter, MMO, puzzle, sports; they’re all featured, and there’s thousands to sink your gaming teeth in to.

SoundCloud

The first port of call for anyone wanting to listen to smaller, lesser known bands and artists, SoundCloud.com is today the gold standard of DIY music. You could spend weeks working through the millions of artists, big and small, who post music on SoundCloud and still have millions more to listen to.

What Makes Internet of Things Radio-Microchip so Powerful

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Technology in our lives is growing by leaps and bounds. In order to herald the historic rise of the “Internet of Things”, CES in Las Vegas chose to shed some light on the scope of IoT. Processor chip manufacturers all over the globe are ready to face the challenges associated with adding smarts to everything in human environment—from kitchen appliances to big machines in the industry. Digital electronics video tutorials can simplify the principles and applications of the latest technologies as such.

The Chip That has Become the Talk of the CES Town

Thanks to the soaring ambition of chipmakers, these devices will be capable of communicating data, co-ordinating a number of tasks and also maintaining themselves. This could only be possible with transmitters that are powerful enough to convey data wirelessly to devices in distance. These transmitters require being durable and power-efficient to draw energy from renewable resources.

A cluster of MIT academicians are working to turn the vision of Internet of Things into execution. The cutting-edge radio chip developed by Professor Chandrakasan and his team is still on its experimental basis. They claim that the chip will prevent energy from leaking. So, it is expected to consume less power and save more energy.

Mechanism of Digital Electronic Circuits

The new radio chip for “Internet of Things” is designed to initiate an economic use of energy in digital circuits. Digital circuits consist of transistors in which silicon or any other semiconducting material connects a couple of electronic leads. These connecting materials do not behave as conductors in their original states. A second wire is employed on the top of semiconductors running vertically to the leads.

The gate or the wire, when electrified, pulls electrons towards itself, creating a bridge between the leads allowing currents to flow. But unfortunately, semiconductors do not behave as good insulators either. And even during the absence of electric charge through the gate, currents do leak. Although it may appear as a marginal loss, after a while it can wane battery life that mostly rests at leisure.

IoT Radio Chip Goes a Step Ahead

The IoT-friendly radio chip designed by Chandrakasan and his MIT associates lessens the power leakage by employing a negative charge at the wire or the gate atop the semiconductors. As a result, even when the transmitter is inactive, it acts as a relatively more powerful insulator by warding off electrons from the pair of electronic leads. By adapting this path-breaking technique, the power leakage can be ingeniously prevented from the digital circuit.

This innovation of radio microchip is soon to serve as a boon for modern technology with an eye to save more and spend less energy. This is not just a joyful moment for the “Internet of Things”, it is a realistic step towards sustainable development. Digital electronics video tutorials can lend a clearer perspective on the nuts and bolts of circuits as such.

This article was contributed by Lisa Rose penned to benefit technology enthusiasts and hobbyists. High-quality video archives can also provide analog and digital electronics tutorials for beginners studying Electrical and Electronics Engineering.

High Speed Broadband: An Investment in Your Business’s Future

Fast and reliable broadband connection is now a crucial asset in business operation whether this is in a multi-national company or an individual working from home. If you’re connection isn’t fit for the job you risk handing over business to competitors. However, there’s no reason to panic just yet. This is a problem that can be easily and inexpensively remedied.

High speed broadband won’t guarantee business success but it can increase workplace productivity, win you customers and help you to steal the edge over your competitors.

Fast broadband in the workplace

A slow internet connection can be summed up in one word: frustration. This applies not only to employees who take longer to complete online tasks but also to customers who switch to a competitor’s website after a time-consuming end user experience. Consider how much a business now relies on emailing, social media, website sales, customer service, data analysis and even video conferencing. A sluggish internet service will mean a decline in staff productivity with hours of wasted time across the entire company. If it’s affecting staff, it’s also affecting customers.

Your business competitors

One of the major reasons to invest in high speed broadband is to stay ahead or at least gain a level playing field with competitors. Consider a company that provides an interactive video customer service facility but the connection continually cuts out, is of low quality or lags due to a slow connection. Customers today don’t feel any loyalty to companies — they want the best user experience as quickly as possible. Inadequate broadband can definitely damage a company’s image and it is business competitors who will benefit when customers decide to switch.

Investing for the future

Today’s internet service providers are hugely competitive in terms of price, and financially there’s no reason why a business shouldn’t sign up to high speed or superfast broadband. The price difference between standard connection and superfast broadband is small enough to make it a no-brainer when it comes to investing in a business’s future. The best broadband deals will provide superfast speeds during peak hours, a consistently reliable connection, access to Wi-Fi hotspots for employees in the field and 24 hour technical support. Essential business options such as cloud and off-site storage also mean you can free up more office space and access to files and data wherever you are and whenever you need them.

Switching to high speed broadband is easy and inexpensive. The first step is to compare companies and the services available in the local area. Most areas will have access to superfast fiber optic broadband, although some rural locations may still have to wait a little longer. However, fast broadband is one asset that requires only a small investment but can make a big difference to long-term business survival.

Image by KaiChanVong, used under Creative Commons license

Man Vs. Battery

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As technology evolves, the battery life of mobile devices seems to regress to a near primitive form, struggling to get a mere 2 hours of operating time out of the modern day lavish aesthetics of a smartphone. It’s frustrating we know – something so technically advanced having flaws such as insufficient battery life is completely befuddling. It’s like packing a Ferrari with a Smart Car engine. Why? For the sake of a sleek design and ergonomics?

We’ve seen the multitude of articles lambasting the iPhone 4, 5 and 6’s batteries, in fact they’ve flooded our social media timelines for what seems a lifetime now. And as helpful as some of the tips list have been to try and counter this by buying certain aids like miniscule battery packs and dimming your settings to save battery power, it all still seems like it could have been prevented somewhere down the line.

Yes, we’d all moan if the Apple developers released an ugly product that didn’t embody everything that an amateur tech hack thought should be exhibited on the latest model, or even some of the lesser smartphones. But what should the developers really be focusing on improving with these upcoming releases? We know that they’ll never risk sacrificing their aesthetical visions for functionality but how long before the consumer begins to become disgruntled by this major flaw in its design?

Firstly, not only were people aggrieved by the lack of development with the battery power of the iPhone 5 to the latest model, Apple didn’t do themselves any favors at all when they had to recall “affected” iPhone units last year. Some of the device’s batteries didn’t even last for the stated two-hour period, which meant Apple came under fire once again, for their ill-performing handset.

Secondly, one of the most frustrating pieces of advice from websites that’s often banded about is that by buying technical aids, you can help maintain your battery life for more than the derisory two-hour period. External power banks are great but why should we have to invest in a device like this for such a high-end product such as the iPhone? It doesn’t make any sense.

However, possibly the most frustrating issue is when you do finally look to charge your iPhone handset after it has failed on you again, no matter what model it is, it takes approximately 45 minutes to charge 20%. Compare that to the likes of the Samsung Galaxy Note 4, which takes only 30 minutes to charge 50%, it’s just crazy. Yes, we understand that the phones are different, and that the iPhone is most people’s choice of mobile but why aren’t we getting results? Shouldn’t the iPhone be outperforming other smartphones?

As developers seem to be losing the battle against battery deficiencies and have their hearts set more on building a fancy product that the world wants to see aesthetically. The consumer will continue to bumble through the day getting increasingly angrier at the inadequate battery life of one of technology’s flagship devices of the 21st century. Would Steve Jobs have tolerated such failures in this department? In short: no.

And instead of helping us find out what apps are draining our battery, maybe the answer is to just improve its specifications. In this day and age we shouldn’t be constantly challenged by a device, which is not only an aid to help us make phone calls but something that has become a vital part of all forms of our daily life.

Thanks to @WrittenbyJenni for sending this in.

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Mobile Internet Connections – What You Need To Know

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With smart phones, tablets, and other smart devices now playing huge roles in our everyday lives, it’s no wonder why the mobile internet connection industry is so competitive and so highly sought after. We can play games on our smart phones, we can do our banking online using our smart phones and tablets, and we can even pay for items using these devices. The world has gone smart mad it seems, with more and more of us owning smart devices than ever before. When it comes to these devices, the main appeal of them is the fact that they’re essentially super computers that you can carry around with you. They feature HD displays, CPU’s, and allow you to browse the internet pretty much anywhere. When it comes to connecting to the internet however, it’s important that you choose a trusted mobile internet connection provider such as Virgin media mobile broadband so you can ensure you’re getting the best services, the best tariff, and the best customer care. Do that, and your internet browsing experience will run much smoother. There are also other things that you need to know about mobile internet connections, some of which you may not have considered before previously.

You are pretty much constantly connected

The great thing about smart devices is that they allow you to be connected to the internet pretty much 24/7 365 days a year. This means you can check emails, browse for items, read books, watch films, or anything else for that matter, all thanks to your smart device. You can even turn your device into a WI-FI hotspot to allow you to really get the most out of your browsing whilst on the move.

You must connect to a WI-FI connection at home

This may sound like common sense to some of you, but for people new to smart devices, this is something that often catches them out, that can potentially cost them a fair bit of money. Most smart devices will connect to the internet via 3G or 4G, which can drain data usage from your device. Unless you have unlimited data, once the usage has been drained, you then be charged for whatever you go over by. People at home often forget to connect to their Wireless network box, which drains usage and costs them money. Once connected to your wireless network, you can browse the internet as much as you like, as it won’t affect the tariff of your smart phone.

Security is important

As your devices will have all of your personal details on, including your home address and even banking information if you do online banking, then making sure your device is secure is vital. There are plenty of steps and measures you can take, but what’s most important is to remember that when you do sell, recycle, or upgrade your current device, you must ensure all of the data has been permanently erased using special software which can be easily implemented with a little know-how.

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