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Back to the Future: The Game goes 88mph on Wednesday!

By: Anthony Garreffa | Gaming | Posted: Dec 20, 2010 @ 19:30 CST

Telltale Games are releasing the first episode of Back to the Future: The Game for PC and Mac on Wednesday. The game picks up 6 months after the end of the original movie trilogy.

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After these 6 months in the Back to the Future world, Doc Brown's lab is on the verge of being sold off because of his absence. Marty gets a surprise visit from the DeLorean where it brings him to the past, where he must help a teenage Emmett Brown to keep all of space and time from unraveling.

Continue reading 'Back to the Future: The Game goes 88mph on Wednesday!' (full post)

Futuremark update 3DMark 11 to v1.01

By: Anthony Garreffa | Software | Posted: Dec 20, 2010 @ 18:29 CST

Futuremark have today released the first major update to 3DMark 11. The update introduces some critical stability improvements to 3DMark 11 and addresses some specific bugs that needed squashing.

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One of the fixes with v1.01 included a problem with the SystemInfo component that prevents the Physics and Combined tests from running, crashes related to the absence of DirectX 11 API and .NET, and updated SystemInfo component, etc.

Continue reading 'Futuremark update 3DMark 11 to v1.01' (full post)

Steam has Holiday sales, discounts 1000+ games!

By: Anthony Garreffa | Gaming | Posted: Dec 20, 2010 @ 18:16 CST

The guys and gals at Valve are a very festive bunch, with Steam having another Holiday sale and this one being a doozy. Steam are discounting over 1000 games and the Holiday sales run through til January 2nd.

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Each day brings a new batch of sales - today's sales include Battlefield Bad Company 2 for $6.79 (which I just picked up for my newphew as an early-Christmas present, shoutout to Cozza!), that in itself is 66% off making it a huge bargain to go along with the newly released Vietnam pack for Bad Company 2.

Continue reading 'Steam has Holiday sales, discounts 1000+ games!' (full post)

Sharkoon Flexi-Drive Extreme Duo USB 3.0 flash drive is really fast

By: Shane McGlaun | Storage | Posted: Dec 20, 2010 @ 14:02 CST

Sharkoon has pulled the wraps off a new flash drive that is called the Flexi-Drive Extreme Duo. the new drive is blazing fast and has write speeds that are faster than the read speeds on many flash drives. The drive uses synchronized SLC NAND to hit the super fast speeds that it is capable of. The synchronized NAND memory management feature is enables the really fast speeds.

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The drive is capable of maximum read and write speeds of 130MB/s. The device uses a single chip USB 3.0 controller and consumes 1.2V of power in use. The drive is offered in 16GB storage capacity. Sharkoon says that the NAND used in the flash drive is picked and tested by hand to ensure reliable operation and performance.

The drive measures in at 68 x 12 x 9mm and weighs 12.4g. It supports all major operating systems, uses the USB 3.0 interface, and is backwards compatible with older and slower interfaces as well. The drive will stand up to 100,000 writes per cell and will ship in Europe for 49.90 euros.

Doctoral student finds good and bad in dissertation for online gaming in college

By: Shane McGlaun | Gaming | Posted: Dec 20, 2010 @ 13:00 CST

There are numerous studies that have looked at gaming and the incidence of violence and other issues when it comes to players of games with violence. The studies come down on different sides of the topic often with some showing no link between video games and how people act in the real world and others showing an alleged link between games and real world behavior. A doctoral student at the University of the Rockies did her dissertation on the relationship between demographic factors, social anxiety, proneness to boredom, grade point average and Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game playing.

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The student found that college students that are prone to excessive playing of MMORPG titles often miss meals, classes, and lose sleep to play their favorite video game. The study found that males are more prone to excessive play, but the effects are the same for males and females. The study author is Sabrina Neu and she claims that 42% of those in the survey cited online gaming for interfering with work or academics.

Neu also found potential good benefits for online gaming. "Players cite social opportunities as a primary reason for play. Players can overcome shyness, actualize previously untapped talents, mentor other players, free themselves from physical disabilities, develop a sense of purpose and achievement and engage in altruistic, heroic and generous acts," she said.

Google asks partners to not unveil new Google TV gear at CES

By: Shane McGlaun | HT & Movies | Posted: Dec 20, 2010 @ 12:04 CST

Things aren't looking good for Google TV. At first, the new service sounded really good and I wanted to get it so I could watch Hulu and other content on my TV without needing a computer. It didn't take long for the networks, Hulu and other sites to device to block Google TV from streaming their shows making the Google TV products just about worthless.

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The NYT reports that Google has approached partners that were set to unveil new Google TV boxes and sets at CES next month and asked them to not unveil the devices. NYT sources say that the partners were surprised by the request. Apparently, Google has asked for the delays to make refinements to the software.

The Google TV software was panned by reviewers for being hard to navigate among other things. One analyst thinks that the delay could be to allow for upgrades to be made to the Google TV software to address the concerns from reviewers. I hope the delay might be something to do with working out a deal with the content providers like Hulu and all major networks that are blocking Google TV users right now.

Best Buy ends high-priced restocking fees

By: Shane McGlaun | Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Dec 20, 2010 @ 11:06 CST

I think I can speak for everyone when I say restocking fees suck. We all know it doesn't really cost companies 10% or more of what the purchase price of a gadget is to restock them. Those fees are just a way for the company to help talk us into keeping the gadgets we really don't like and would return if we didn't have to pay a fee. Best Buy has announced it has finally stopped being such a douche and eliminated restocking fees.

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The fees were killed off on December 18 and the store will even refund you that restocking fee if you made a return in the 30 days or so prior to the 18th and were charged 10% or 15%. The old restocking fees were 10% of the price on an iPhone and 15% on other electronic devices like notebooks, TVs, GPS devices and more. Those high fees could add up to some really big losses for the consumer.

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Amazon investigating Kindle cover issue that allegedly causes lockups and more

By: Shane McGlaun | Mobile Devices | Posted: Dec 20, 2010 @ 10:00 CST

One of the best selling gadgets on the Amazon website and one of the most popular eReaders on the market is the Kindle. The Kindle sold in droves since the reader first debuted and many of those buyers also picked up the official Amazon Kindle case for the reader too. Many consumers who purchase the case with no light have noted some serious issues with the case.

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There have been many reports that the non-lighted case for the Kindle is causing the Kindle to have screen freeze issues and to reboot repeatedly. Amazon has announced that it is investigating the cause of the issues when the kindle uses the non-lighted case. The company also notes that anyone who purchased a non-lighted Kindle case can return the thing for a replacement or a full refund.

The issues with lockups and reboots are thought to possibly be a result of metal hooks integrated into the case, but that is unconfirmed. The lighted case for the Kindle has not suffered from the same issues. "There have been some forum discussions regarding the non-lighted Kindle cover, and our engineering team is looking into this," the company said in an email statement that was also posted to its customer forum where users were complaining. "Regardless, if anyone is having any problem with an Amazon-manufactured Kindle cover, please contact us at [email protected], and we will be pleased to replace it for free or accept a return for a full refund, no matter when the cover was purchased."

Team Fortress goes all medieval on your ass for the Holidays!

By: Anthony Garreffa | Gaming | Posted: Dec 19, 2010 @ 22:21 CST

Valve are celebrating Australian Christmas this year in the form of a new Team Fortress 2 update. The update includes 20 new hats, new store items and the olde weapons-only "Medieval Mode".

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Medieval Mode is filled with up close weaponary such as knives, swords, axes and bonesaws. The medieval mode also includes some new weapons - The Claidheamohmor, The Back Scratcher, The Boston Basher, The Fists of Steel, The Amputator, The Crusaders Crossbow, The Ullapool Caber, The Loch-n-Load, The Buffalo Steak Sandvich, The Brass Beast, The Warriors Spirit, The Candy Cane, and The Jag.

Continue reading 'Team Fortress goes all medieval on your ass for the Holidays!' (full post)

Download of the Day: Dropbox 1.0.10

By: Steve Dougherty | Software | Posted: Dec 19, 2010 @ 22:14 CST

Our Download of the Day today is Dropbox 1.0.10.

Dropbox is the easiest way to store, sync and share files online.

File Sync

• 2GB of online storage for free, with up to 100GB available to paying customers.

• Sync files of any size or type.

• Sync Windows, Mac and Linux computers.

• Automatically syncs when new files or changes are detected.

File Sharing

• Shared folders allow several people to collaborate on a set of files.

• You can see other people's changes instantly.

Online Backup

• Automatic backup of your files.

• Undelete files and folders.

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Download Now - TweakTown Download of the Day