In just a week's time, the biggest Counter-Strike: Global Offensive tournament kicks off, with DreamHack Open: Winter seeing two teams disqualified already. Three professional CS:GO players have also been issued in-game bans for cheating, which has lead to some heated headlines before the tournament.
The first player to receive the slam of the ban hammer was banned from ESEA, which is a third-party matchmaking client for CS:GO, with this player alleging that as much as 40% of the pro CS:GO scene hacks. The three pro CS:GO gamers that were issued in-game bans for cheating are Simon "smn" Beck, Gordon "Sf" Giry and Hovik "KQLY" Tovmassian. Sf and KQLY were banned on Valve Anti-Cheat, or VAC.
DreamHack is a gigantic Swedish gaming event, which is also referred to as the "World's Largest LAN Party", with a $250,000 prize pool for CS:GO alone.
Sometimes as a boss, you've got to be sitting there in your executive chair wondering what your staff are doing at that exact moment. Are they planning world domination, are they doing hard work or are they on Reddit?
Well, if they're discussing that "ludicrous display last night" (See: IT Crowd) over instant messaging app 'Slack' - they could now be in some hot water. Slack's upcoming paid Plus plan includes a handy new feature named "Compliance Exports".
Announced to the public on Monday, Compliance Exports will make you feel like more of a vicious dictator than ever before, allowing management to peak into their employee's private communications - public and private. They've also included the ability to edit your workers messages or mark them for deletion - helping manage any conversation as you see fit.
When the PS4 exclusive 'Driveclub' launched, it was met with a slew of issues, and post-launch updates and fixes. But for those who want to know why there wasn't any additional in-house testing before it launched, the Sony Computer Entertainment America (SCEA) President and CEO, Shawn Layden, has some nice words to say.
Layden explained the issues, saying that games like Driveclub, and their online communities, cannot be tested thoroughly before launching the game itself. He continued: "In the development cycle, we try to do all things. In the development cycle, we try to test against every possibility. We have a [Quality Assurance] team, we have a QA plan. You do a beta test, you scope against that. But now, in a connected world, you can't effectively test in your house or in your beta group what it means to have 50,000, 100,000, 200,000 users hit your service. And the guys [at the studio] are struggling with that. It's throwing up things they had not anticipated".
Evolution Studios, the developer behind the open-world driving game has continued its path toward a fully-baked game, even offering free DLC and extending Season Passes.
Japan has endured a major economic slump in recent years, but the country's robotics industry is rebounding as new research funds are becoming available. The Japanese government reportedly wants to utilize more than 30 million SoftBank "Pepper" humanoid robots able to help greet customers in stores, direct guests in hotels, and other unique interactions with regular people.
Robots, especially humanoids, have a unique ability to not only serve a role in factories and production facilities, but interact with the general public.
"The companies that want to use these kinds of robots are increasing rapidly, so these humanoid robots will keep evolving, become faster and even more efficient," said Toshifum Tsuji, manager of Nextage, which is using robots in its factory outside of Tokyo. "The robots have cameras and they can find defects which are hard to find for humans. I think they are helping us make better products."
(RED) is a nonprofit organization that was originally founded by U2's lead man Bono to combat the rise of HIV/AIDS in Africa. Apple will be supporting this cause in the upcoming Black Friday sales and beyond/
Set to be providing (RED)-branded iTunes gift cards with every purchase of selected Apple products on Black Friday, they will also be providing proceeds from every Apple sale on Cyber Monday towards the charity. Cyber Monday falls on World AIDS day, which is a convenience and a blessing for (RED).
What's one of people's favorite things to do these days? Complain about Facebook. For those who wish to do more than simply 'like for world peace', Tsu has offered up their own social networking alternative for those gutsy enough to make the plunge.
The first question you've got to ask is, what does Tsu do differently to the other copious amounts of Facebook alternatives out there? A quick look at their information page points something out straight away - "Social media should be paying you".
According to Tsu, you can sign up today - all you need is an invite from another member, or you can use the generic invite that they will provide to you anyway. They believe that they will be leading the 'social revolution', providing 90% of their total revenue from advertising and sales towards their customer base.
A new battery recharging solution from Israel promises to recharge smartphones in just 30 seconds, with nanotechnology synthesizing artificial molecules. The new battery stores a higher charge, and while it is still far too large to use while on the go, StoreDot hopes a slim model will be available by 2016.
As the number of smartphone owners is expected to reach almost 1.75 billion by the end of the year, finding new mobile charging solutions will be critical.
"These are new materials, they have never been developed before," said Doron Myersdorf, StoreDot founder and CEO.
It has been a fantastic year for console gaming, with the Microsoft Xbox One and Sony PlayStation 4 both racking up great sales since launching in late 2013. The PS4 has outsold the Xbox One all year, but it appears Microsoft is beginning to close ground, due to a recent price cut.
Xbox boss Phil Spencer applauded both Microsoft and rival company Sony: "This 1st year has been incredible. Great launch for 2 consoles, exciting competition & great games. Thanks for all the support and feedback," Spencer said on Twitter. He also offered the PS4 additional praise: "Those Sony peeps had a great first year."
There have been 13.5 million PS4 units sold, while Microsoft has racked up 10 million Xbox One units sold since launch.
Said to be the first eReader on this planet to be resistant to water and dust, it seems that Kobo's new Aura H20 is perfectly suited to a day in the Sahara Desert or at your local beach.
Set for release in February 2015, Kobo's new product offering is IP67 certified - meaning that it's resistant to water and dust. We haven't come across a release price for this product as of yet, but you should expect it to be announced by the new year ahead of it's launch into the market.
Apple saw a drastic increase in iOS App Store downloads in October, increasing from 5.5 million daily downloads up to 7.8 million downloads month-over-month, according to mobile tracking company Fiksu. The iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPad Air 2 and iPad Mini 3 were all released in the fall, and as users upgraded to iOS 8, downloads skyrocketed.
The data covered the top 200 free iOS apps available, and a 42 percent jump compared to September - and 39 percent year-over-year - is a major success for Apple.
As of September, there are more than 1.3 million apps in the App Store, with more than 300 million visitors every week.