Co-founder of The Pirate Bay hopes for it to stay closed indefinitely

Chris Smith | Internet & Websites | Dec 11, 2014 11:55 PM CST

Peter Sunde, citing the network's loss of vision over the years, apparently doesn't mind if The Pirate Bay never sees the light of day again. Commenting that it's now "ugly" and how the new owners haven't taken precautions to improve the experience for the community.

This news comes as we've reported multiple stories in recent months of the controversial site being the centerpiece of multiple arrests, closures and server shuffles.

Further commenting on his claims, Sunde stated "the site was ugly, full of bugs, old code and old design. It never changed except for one thing - the ads. More and more ads was filling the site, and somehow when it felt unimaginable to make these ads more distasteful they somehow ended up even worse." He also mentioned that the original spirit and direction of the site had completely disappeared from his time serving the torrent community - commenting that he would rather the website die a noble death rather than continue to live in on it's current (or former) state.

Continue reading: Co-founder of The Pirate Bay hopes for it to stay closed indefinitely (full post)

Microsoft releasing more Windows 10 information on January 21

Chris Smith | Software & Apps | Dec 11, 2014 11:07 PM CST

We've just received reports that Microsoft will be releasing their "next chapter" of Windows 10 on January 21, 2015. This will be hosted in the form of a Webcast and in-person event held in Redmond.

Led by Chief Executive Satya Nadella and accompanied by senior executives from Microsoft's Operating Systems division (Terry Myerson, Joe Belfiore and Phil Spencer), this forum will see new operating system specifications and information as expected announcements.

After the reveal of Windows 10 in September by Myerson, this version was originally quoted as an enterprise product containing an interface that would look and feel familiar to those using the previous versions of 7 and 8 or 8.1. He went on to mention that "they [users] will find all the tools they're used to finding, with all the apps and tools they're used to today".

Continue reading: Microsoft releasing more Windows 10 information on January 21 (full post)

Microsoft says the Xbox One outsold the PS4 in US and UK last month

Chris Smith | Gaming | Dec 11, 2014 10:05 PM CST

Marking a turn of events, Microsoft has claimed that their Xbox One model has bested Sony's PlayStation 4 in monthly sales across the United States and the United Kingdom throughout the month of November, 2014.

Alongside this being a record month for Xbox, they've finally edged ahead of their main competition in two of their major countries. Mike Nichols, corporate vice president of Xbox marketing couldn't be happier with the reports, claiming the response to their holiday lineup of games as "incredible, with Xbox One fans buying more games in November in the U.S. than any other gen eight platform and enjoying over 357 million hours of gameplay globally".

Nichols added "In fact, more fans logged into Xbox Live across Xbox One and Xbox 360, and enjoyed more entertainment, than any other month in the history of Xbox".

Continue reading: Microsoft says the Xbox One outsold the PS4 in US and UK last month (full post)

Sony UK boss is "embarrassed" by the launch of Driveclub on the PS4

Anthony Garreffa | Gaming | Dec 11, 2014 9:30 PM CST

The launch of Driveclub on the PlayStation 4 has been nothing but a mess, and even though Evolution Studios has been doing an amazing job patching up the game since its launch, Sony's UK Managing Director Fergal Gara, isn't happy.

Gara spoke with IGN, saying that he and the Driveclub team are "embarrassed" by the performance of the game so far. He continued: "It's a disappointment. When you lay your soul out as being '4ThePlayers', then what you certainly don't want is games that are not fully ready. It certainly wasn't any ill-intention on behalf of the team. It's ambitious as a game; they're as embarrassed as we are and all you can do in those situations is say sorry. We apologize to any players affected and are doing our damndest to make things right. So that's what we've been doing and the game is pretty near-complete now. We don't want to introduce the PS Plus Edition until we're confident the servers can take the load".

Evolution Studios have been patching up the game, with the latest update to Driveclub introducing some super impressive dynamic weather effects to the already very pretty driving title.

Continue reading: Sony UK boss is "embarrassed" by the launch of Driveclub on the PS4 (full post)

Razer announces its new high-quality Seirēn digital microphone

Chris Smith | Peripherals | Dec 11, 2014 9:29 PM CST

In regular fashion, Razer have announced yet another product that we can barely pronounce - a professional grade microphone named the Seirēn. As just published on CEO Min-Liang Tan's Facebook page, this product is quoted to have been designed by working "closely with some of the top streamers and Youtubers".

This news comes linked with Razer's announcement of sponsorship for upcoming streamers and YouTube personalities in a bid to add to their already large list including hits such as PewDiePie and Swifty.

If you're a regular watcher of Razer sponsored streamers, it's likely you've already heard the Seirēn. It's claimed that this device has been used by sponsored streamers over the past few months - reportedly being hid behind a black card to hide it's identity.

Continue reading: Razer announces its new high-quality Seirēn digital microphone (full post)

Peter Lik's black and white photo sells for $6.5m - sets records

Chris Smith | Health, Lifestyle & Travel | Dec 11, 2014 8:55 PM CST

As seen through his personal Twitter banner, Peter Lik has just nabbed himself a hefty paycheck, selling a recent black and white photo titled Phantom for a cool $6.5 million.

Born in Melbourne-Australia and currently residing in the United States, Lik now lays claim to four of the 20 most expensive photo's sold in the world. This latest piece is a black-and-white nature shot taken in Arizona's Antelope Canyon - located in the south-west corner of America. Commenting that he is often drawn to this area due to it's natural beauty, he's been able to capture this monstrous canyon carved out by natural flowing water in all its beauty.

Sold to a private buyer, this marks the third large-priced acquisition by the same party, seeing them also gathering Lik's Illusion photo for $2.9 million AU and Eternal Moods for $1.3 million AU - it becomes obvious that someone has expensive tastes.

Continue reading: Peter Lik's black and white photo sells for $6.5m - sets records (full post)

Star Wars VII Hero and Villain alias' revealed through trading cards

Chris Smith | Celebrities & Entertainment | Dec 11, 2014 8:03 PM CST

There have been trading cards now publicized for the much-anticipated release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens - these have been used as a slightly unusual method to announce the latest heroes and villains to the public. Said to look like the original playing cards released a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away - we'll cover for you a select few of these announced characters.

Leaked originally to Entertainment Weekly, these cards have been designed to look like the original 1977 releases, with each card containing a still from the highly-regarded teaser trailer.

Firstly we have the lovable droid, named BB-8.

Continue reading: Star Wars VII Hero and Villain alias' revealed through trading cards (full post)

Valve gives a 15-year-old Counter-Strike map a polish and upgrade

Anthony Garreffa | Gaming | Dec 11, 2014 7:32 PM CST

Valve has just given one of Counter-Strike's most famous maps a new look and feel, with Train being updated with new higher-end graphics and a bit of a tweak to the gameplay, too.

The company reworked the map from the ground up in order to "improve both the visual appearance and competitive gameplay balance of this iconic location" the company wrote on its Counter-Strike blog. Valve continued: "Our primary goals were to improve the gameplay balance of the map while simultaneously upgrading the overall visual experience. This meant making more intuitive layout changes, then re-interpreting large and small-scale environment elements to improve judgement of space and distance".

Valve have a before-and-after shot available on their Counter-Strike blog, which gives you a great look at just how much work they've done to Train. We've taken a screenshot of that above, to give you a quick look at what to expect. The company goes into great detail on the big, and subtle changes it has done to Train, so check out the full blog article here.

Continue reading: Valve gives a 15-year-old Counter-Strike map a polish and upgrade (full post)

Barracuda employs storage expert Ken Grohe from Virident/HGST

Chris Smith | Storage | Dec 11, 2014 7:10 PM CST

As according to a newly issued press release, networking giants Barracuda have just placed Ken Grohe on their payroll. This well-known storage expert has just come off employment with some large name companies spanning his massive 26+ year campaign in the industry.

Barracuda is a provider of cloud-connected security and storage solutions, with their goal set to simplify IT. Their solutions are reportedly used by more then 150,000 organizations worldwide. With Grohe appointed as their Senior Vice President & General Manager of Emerging Products, he will oversee the CudaTel and CudaEye product lines while helping drive sales for the Barracuda copy (file syncing and sharing) and SignNow (eSignature) services.

Steve Duplessie, founder and senior analyst at ESG praised Grohe's previous achievements and work ethic, stating that he "an industry star joining a growing company", further stating that "Barracuda continues to impress with its talent acquisition and its relentless execution."

Continue reading: Barracuda employs storage expert Ken Grohe from Virident/HGST (full post)

DayZ creator opens new studio, will still help out with DayZ

Anthony Garreffa | Gaming | Dec 11, 2014 6:25 PM CST

The creator of DayZ has officially announced his new studio, as he leaves his first job behind him at Bohemia Interactive. Dean Hall has promised to continue helping the team finish DayZ, which is preparing for a 2016 launch.

Hall spoke with Polygon, which asked if he was officially no longer with Bohemia Interactive, to which Hall replied "While my role as project lead officially winds up, my involvement continues as the creator. Bohemia are not only people I've worked with, but they're close friends. We have an ongoing relationship and I'm committed to providing whatever support and assistance that is appropriate and required for the title to continue to succeed. I'm excited by the continued progress of DayZ into a much more streamlined and traditional production development cycle".

There's not much known about Hall's new studio, but he did say "Not much to really say at the moment, the focus of the studio is to make games that we want to play. As a consumer I get quite frustrated when movies/games are announced very far in advance. I know why it's done but I don't like it and hopefully I can make games without having to resort to that. So for the moment I'm keeping quiet about what we are doing until I have something worthwhile to say".

Continue reading: DayZ creator opens new studio, will still help out with DayZ (full post)