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FEAR 3 multiplayer trailer, includes mode called "F**KING RUN"

Anthony Garreffa | Gaming | Fri, Apr 15 2011 6:36 AM CDT

The official trailer for the multiplayer portion of FEAR 3 is out and I must say, it looks quite good! It includes a few different modes with the most interesting one called "F**KING RUN" where a wall of evil comes toward you and you must F**KING RUN away from it.

I find the trailer very old-school in its multiplayer look and feel, which is a very cool thing these days with clone after clone of Call of Duty being released. FEAR 3 is being developed Day 1 Studios and not Monolith like the original, awesome FEAR. Other modes in FEAR 3 are "Contractions" where you survive wave after wave of soldiers, "Soul Survivor" which looks like a mode in which where you die, you can use your "soul" to possess another player. Finally, we have "Soul King", which lets you possess the bodies of soldiers and is "every soul for himself".

Left 4 Dead definitely looks to have some competition coming out soon!

Continue reading: FEAR 3 multiplayer trailer, includes mode called "F**KING RUN" (full post)

Nintendo 3DS racks up 400, 000 US sales in opening week, takes punches at the month-long total for DS sales

Anthony Garreffa | Gaming | Fri, Apr 15 2011 4:56 AM CDT

Nintendo is pumping out some serious numbers with their new handheld, the Nintendo 3DS - selling 400, 000 3DS units in the last week of March alone. Impressive stuff. It launched on March 27 so really just a standard working week worth of sales.

Nintendo 3DS racks up 400, 000 US sales in opening week, takes punches at the month-long total for DS sales | TweakTown.com

On the flipside, Nintendo sold 460, 000 Nintendo DS units for the entire month of March - these sales were boosted with some decent game launches for the platform in the form of two new Pokemon games which combined sold 2.5 million copies. Nintendo were also proud of their Wii sale numbers with 290, 000 Wii units pushed out to customers resulting in a total of 1.1 million units of Nintendo hardware sold for the month.

Continue reading: Nintendo 3DS racks up 400, 000 US sales in opening week, takes punches at the month-long total for DS sales (full post)

Spotify Restricts Free Music Access, Incenses Media Pirates

Anthony Garreffa | Software | Fri, Apr 15 2011 12:12 AM CDT
Spotify Restricts Free Music Access, Incenses Media Pirates | TweakTown.com

In a blog post today, Spotify announced they would be making some big changes to its advertisement-funded free music streaming service, and not necessarily the good kind.

- New Spotify users will be able to enjoy our unrivalled free service as it is today for the first 6 months.

- As of May 1st, any user who signed up to the free service on or before November 1st 2010 will be able to play each track for free up to a total of 5 times. Users who signed up after the beginning of November will see these changes applied 6 months after the time they set up their Spotify account.

- Additionally, total listening time for free users will be limited to 10 hours per month after the first 6 months. That's equivalent to around 200 tracks or 20 albums.

10 hours per month? I tend to hit ten hours in a day, depending how long I'm working. And you can only ever play a single track five times? There are some songs I listen to five times a day- but I guess the real incentive is the following:

For anyone who thinks they might reach these limits, we hope you'll consider checking out our Unlimited and Premium services, neither of which will be affected, plus we have a 7-day free trial for Spotify Premium that we'd love you to try. Throughout May, we'll also have a pretty nice 30-day free trial for Spotify Premium - more details...

Continue reading: Spotify Restricts Free Music Access, Incenses Media Pirates (full post)

Google hits 3 billion installed apps on Android

Anthony Garreffa | Apps | Thu, Apr 14 2011 8:48 PM CDT

It took Google 20 months to reach the 1 billion apps installed on Android, five months later they had reached the 2 billion mark and now it's sitting at a very impressive 3 billion apps installed. If Google continue going at this speed we should see 4 or 5 billion apps installed by next month!

Google hits 3 billion installed apps on Android | TweakTown.com

During Google's first-quarter earnings call today, senior vice president for commerce had said that the platform has grown from 2 billion apps installed to 3 billions apps installed in just two months. Huber also mentioned that app installs are up by 50-percent quarter-over-quarter (from Q4 2010 to Q1 2011) and that Android-powered devices are seeing 350, 000 activations per day.

Continue reading: Google hits 3 billion installed apps on Android (full post)

Mionix Zibal 60 backlit mechanical gaming keyboard, includes "rage-proof durability"

Anthony Garreffa | Peripherals | Thu, Apr 14 2011 8:38 PM CDT

Mionix have unveiled their first mechanical keyboard to the market today, the gaming-orientated "Zibal 60". The board sports some sexy looking Cherry MX Black switches, which have a linear (non-tactile) travel, require about 60 grams of force to actuate and are typically favored among FPS gamers.

Mionix Zibal 60 backlit mechanical gaming keyboard, includes

The Zibal 60 has "rage-proof durability" which is thanks to its 1.6mm-thick steel frame - obviously this is added at the FPS market as it's full of rage at times (myself included). The Zibal 60 features green multi-level backlighting that can illuminate the entire board or just the cluster of WASD keys. The spec sheet lists support for up to six simultaneous key presses (6KRO) via USB. On the top right of the keyboard is an I/O hub with two full-speed USB2.0 ports and audio/mic jacks.

Continue reading: Mionix Zibal 60 backlit mechanical gaming keyboard, includes "rage-proof durability" (full post)

The NBN Box, what does it do?

Anthony Garreffa | Networking | Thu, Apr 14 2011 8:21 PM CDT

Pictures of the NBN Network Termination Unit or "NBN Box" have surfaced and are now causing people to raise questions on how it works. The NBN Box is not a replacement unit for your current wired or wireless router which plugs into your telephone wall socket and gives you access to the Internet. The NBN box is actually a replacement for the wall socket that will provide users with six sockets - two dedicated to voice services, four dedicated to data services such as the Internet.

The NBN Box, what does it do? | TweakTown.com

This way, your telephone will plug into one of the voice sockets and your router will plug into one of the data sockets. Each data socket can provide a single and distinct service of the fibre network into your home or business. The NBN Box is not a switch - as each and every socket is completely independent of each other.

Continue reading: The NBN Box, what does it do? (full post)

Suwappu: Collectible Augmented Reality Toys That Live Bizarre Eclectic Lives

Trak Lord | Virtual & Augmented Reality | Thu, Apr 14 2011 7:24 PM CDT
Suwappu: Collectible Augmented Reality Toys That Live Bizarre Eclectic Lives | TweakTown.com

London based creative communications agency Dentsu has announced their collectible interactive line of toys they call Suwappu. These adorable eastern-influenced and strangely bipedal incarnations of woodland creatures derive their names from their ability to "swap" (which is what Suwappu translates to) out their lower halves with each other, which Dentsu call "pants".

So we've got cute animal toys that switch pants- what about the AR? The fine folks at Dentsu have used the flat fronts of these cute things to utilize augmented reality natural feature tracking to use the toys in interactive mobile AR experiences. The swapping of the pants (I love writing that) changes the environment around the character while the top part controls the dialogue. Check out this video:

I gotta love the random Kanye tweet. As entertaining as the video is, it's kind of unclear what the actual experience will entail. Tish Shute, New Media advocate and journalist, wrote in her blog that she's trying to get them to Santa Clara, CA for this year's Augmented Reality Event (at which I will be present...

Continue reading: Suwappu: Collectible Augmented Reality Toys That Live Bizarre Eclectic Lives (full post)

NYC Billboard Is Feeling Augmented Reality

Trak Lord | Virtual & Augmented Reality | Thu, Apr 14 2011 6:10 PM CDT

Billboards are a tough sell for augmented reality- they're expensive real estate, they're constantly exposed to a variety of external conditions that wreak havoc on natural feature tracking algorithms and sdk's, and outside of urban environments they're generally only seen while moving past them at 65-80 mph. So how does one utilize a billboard for an AR experience? Tack it to a place in an urban environment where there are always a @#$%load of slow-moving vehicles present. Cue bustling New York City's Holland Tunnel, where readers familiar with the area will immediately summon memories of exhaust stench, honking horns, and that dreadful summer day mid-way through a heatwave when your AC on your Nissan Stanza craps the bed.

NYC Billboard Is Feeling Augmented Reality | TweakTown.com

To express your inevitable sentiment, rather than raging and yelling at your car and fellow commuters, why not just take your iPhone, point it at the billboard, and snap a picture to post to your Facebook wall that says "I am feeling (ANGRY FACE)"? New York-based GPS augmented reality app GoldRun partnered up with Tronic Studio and outdoor marketing firm ADstruc to bring us the first billboard with feelings. The billboard is part of the latter's "Billboards For Everyone" campaign, which brings together local design talent to create...

Continue reading: NYC Billboard Is Feeling Augmented Reality (full post)

Sources Confirm New Nintendo Console For E3

Trak Lord | Gaming | Thu, Apr 14 2011 5:43 PM CDT

Earlier this week, we reported on how trusted sources confirmed the Nintendo Wii was getting a price drop to $150 in mid-May, just weeks before the Entertainment and Electronics Expo (E3) in June. This was strange news, as companies like Nintendo tend to reserve announcements like this for the kind of large conferences and trade shows (like, you know, E3), so why would they do something like that? In the article linked above, I hypothesized that they must be planning on releasing a new system- and I was right!

Sources Confirm New Nintendo Console For E3 | TweakTown.com

Game Informer reported today that multiple sources have confirmed the impending E3 announcement of a new Nintendo Console. Very little is known about the system outside of gross speculation, but the same sources confirmed that this console will be HD compatible, a great move for Nintendo in strengthening its historically-poor relations with third-party developers. In the Game Informer article, one source was said to have described the system as "not gimmicky, like the Wii". I for one love the Wii, and any gimmicky aspects were overshadowed by how accessible, entertaining, and esthetically pleasing the interface and gameplay was for the majority of the games, but I kinda get where they're coming from.

Continue reading: Sources Confirm New Nintendo Console For E3 (full post)

Social Media Startup Social Guide Secure $1.5 Million Seed Funding

Trak Lord | Business, Financial & Legal | Thu, Apr 14 2011 3:51 PM CDT
Social Media Startup Social Guide Secure $1.5 Million Seed Funding | TweakTown.com

Social is just everywhere these days. Yesterday we had news of GetGlue's 1 Million users, and today it's New York City startup SocialGuide announced the beginning of what could be a very promising future with a seed round of $1.5 million from angel investors, including Alex Zubillaga:

With more than half of the nearly 300 million Americans who watch TV having a second screen experience, the market is ripe for a social TV product that connects with consumers and networks. SocialGuide is the only product that is built around the existing social TV behavior that is happening with millions of consumers across the most popular social networks. Consumers now have one place to enjoy their favorite programming, and networks have a way to more deeply engage with their audience

CEO Sean Casey believes that the social TV space is "nascent", and spoke of the pending improvements to SocialGuide's already strong interface and user experience. SocialGuide is essentially a social data collecting service that filters and displays millions of discussions occurring in real time about televised media, and ranks them according to popularity. SocialGuide also makes it very easy to share this type of information throughout your various social networks

Continue reading: Social Media Startup Social Guide Secure $1.5 Million Seed Funding (full post)

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