Mark August 22, 2013 on your calendar. That's the day Microsoft will permanently retire the PC Marketplace on Xbox.com, effectively ending the sale of Games for Windows Live titles, the company confirmed. Microsoft is encouraging gamers with a Microsoft Points balance to go ahead and spend those Points prior to the change. However, even though the purchase functionality will be discontinued, your previously purchased games and DLC won't disappear.
Apple recently pulled the plug on its developer portal after an "intruder attempted to secure personal information" from the site, the Cupertino company indicated in an email and in a message on its website. The company went on to say that while sensitive information was encrypted and cannot be accessed, it couldn't rule out the possibility that some developers' names, mailing addresses, and/or email addresses may have been accessed, and indeed they were.
If you're one of the approximately 1.8 million registered users at Canonical's UbuntuForums.org portal, then consider your login details compromised. You should have received an email from "The Canonical Sysadmins" this morning alerting you to the security breach that allowed a remote attacker to make off with your username, email address, and an encrypted copy of your password after breaking into the forum's database.
Fancy yourself a competitive gamer? If you're willing to put your money where your mouth is at, BetArmy.com will help set you up in matches with other competitive gamers who want to play for cash. The inherent challenge with playing for money is that a sore loser can refuse to pay up as promised, and BetArmy's solution to this is to use a "sophisticated feedback reputation management system" to weed out such players.
Google has begun updating Chrome users on Windows and Mac with version 28 (you can manually check by selecting "About Google Chrome" from the customization pull-down menu). Windows users are the bigger beneficiary, as they're the ones who will begin to see richer notifications for apps (shipping to Mac soon), a feature that was previous only available in the beta build of Chrome but is now accessible to everyone.
While many people in the U.S. are planning barbecues with family and friends, an evening of fireworks, and other ways to celebrate Independence Day, thousands of others are planning to join nationwide rallies in protest against recently revealed spying activities conducted by the National Security Agency (NSA). Dubbed "Restore the Fourth," the effort was put together by Reddit and has drawn support from a number of other online entities, including Mozilla.
AltaVista is shutting down, and if you find that the least bit surprising, it's probably because you're shocked to discover it still exists. Well, it does, for a few more days anyway. On July 8, 2013, Yahoo will pull the plug on one of the web's earliest search engines, ending a run that spanned nearly two decades (AltaVista launched on December 15, 1995). How did it come to this? Google, of course.
Game publisher Ubisoft today confirmed that one of its websites suffered a security breach and that the person or people responsible made off with usernames, email addresses, and encrypted passwords. Ubisoft stressed that it doesn't store any personal payment information, meaning no debit or credit card data was stolen as a result of this server hack. Nevertheless, Ubisoft recommends that you change your password right away.
It's the dawn of a new era for Opera Software. The Scandinavian browser maker just finalized its Opera 15.0 browser, but more than just a version upgrade, this latest release is packing a brand new engine underneath the hood. Pop the top and you'll no longer find Presto working its magic, as Opera Software decided to switch to Google's Chromium-based Blink rendering engine, which is a fork of WebKit.
Boutique builder tries hands at selling peripherals
You know Origin PC as a boutique builder of high-end gaming desktops (Genesis, Millennium, Millennium RTS, Chronos, and Big O) and notebooks (EON15-S and EON17-S), but if you're not in the market for a new system, the company might still have what you're looking for. From t-shirts and beanies to mousepads and headsets and everything in between, it's all available in Origin PC's new online gear shop.