We audition several streaming music services and give you the low down on each one
A candidate for the world's oldest known instrument is the Divje Babe Flute carved from the femur of a cave bear over 40,000 years ago. Replicas proved it was capable of two and a half octaves, or three if overblowing. Over time, musical instruments would become more sophisticated, as would the songs, but one thing that hasn't changed is the inherent love of music that nearly all human beings seem to possess.
Windows 8.1: Another year in the oven makes for a tasty piece of meat
Reviewing an update to an operating system feels a little odd, doesn’t it? After all, if you already use Windows 8, it’s not like you’re not going to install Windows 8.1. Sure, there’s always the threat of compatibility issues, but Microsoft seems to have this one covered pretty well with the website (and scanning tool) that it’s dedicated to the Windows 8.1 update.
New Android 4.3 update will introduce console mode, Gamepad Mapper, and allow you to install apps to your Shield’s MicroSD card
We liked Nvidia’s Shield gaming handheld system when we reviewed it back in August but one of its glaring flaws is that only a little over 100 Android games supported its controller (most of them were touch-based). Nvidia is attempting to fix that issue with an upcoming over-the-air update that will include what the green team is calling the Shield Gamepad Mapper. This new feature will allow users to manually map touch-controls to the Shield’s physical buttons via a drag-and-drop system. Furthermore, users will be able to save these profiles to the cloud and will also be able to download other user-made profiles from the community. Nvidia says the Gamepad Mapper will expand controller support from about 140 Android games to thousands of titles.
EA’s public relations team plays Spincity all weekend long.
SimCity made our list of “most anticipated games of 2013”, and with good reason. This PC reboot was not only long overdue, but the franchise itself is an all-time classic. We were confident Maxis was the studio to deliver a proper sequel, but the studio’s choice of an always online DRM solution has proven to be a complete disaster. Maximum PC online managing editor Jimmy Thang has criticized EA’s handling of the situation, and the company’s PR department has been pulling overtime trying to repair the games reputation.
Some people believe piracy has no negative effect on sales. I am not one of those people. So I sympathize with EA's desire to combat piracy with SimCity. However, I do not believe that requiring users to always be connected to EA's servers to be the best solution to the problem, especially when those servers come crashing down and prevent honest customers from playing legitimate copies of their game.
Forget the CD and install Windows 8 with your flash drive
A guide? To install Windows? Slapping a new operating system on your desktop or laptop PC should be old hat by now, right? This is Windows 8, after all: Odds are pretty good that you, an astute and well-travelled Maximum PC reader, have been around the ol’ Windows installation block a few times before.
So, er, what does that leave us to talk about?
Plenty. Ditch your discs; we’re going all-USB for your first big Windows 8 installation.
DayZ is widely considered one of the best PC mods of all time. Who wouldn't want to be dropped off into a gigantic post-apocalyptic zombie world where death is permanent? Over one million players are having a blast just trying to survive in the game.
While DayZ is amazingly tense and fun, the Arma 2 mod can also be a headache to install. Which version of Arma 2 should you get? Retail? Steam? What patches should you download? Maximum PC's DayZ installation guide will answer all of the questions and address some of the more common issues plaguing the mod.
While most web service companies work day and night to lock you in, Google has always maintained funding to its Data Liberation Front to help you do the exact opposite. One of the principles that have always made us admire Google is their commitment to making it as easy to leave a web service as it was to join, and today they are adding an important new expansion. As of now, YouTube users can download the original (non-transcoded) version of any clip they have uploaded to the service in the past, or in the future.
Replacing physical media with streaming music, movies and more is a wonderful idea, but in order to do it, you need a big, open bandwidth pipe. Nobody's ever watched an HD version of "Mad Men" on a 768kbps connection, after all. Christmas in July came early for cord cutting Verizon FiOS customers; the company plans on increasing users' max download speeds by a factor of two-fold or more, depending on which plan you're currently subscribed to.