As great as PC gaming is, let’s face it, when it comes to gaming in the living room, consoles have the PC beat. Alienware and the Steam Machines were supposed to change that, but considering Valve delayed its hardware initiative, Alienware decided to releases its box early as a small Windows 8.1 PC, dubbed the Alienware Alpha. While the PC does an admirable job of attacking the PC’s problem areas in the living room, as the name implies, it’s still (unfortunately) in a bit of an alpha stage.
Having recently ruffled Microsoft’s feathers by (responsibly) disclosing three unpatched vulnerabilities in Windows to the general public, Google’s Project Zero team has now turned its attention to the other side of the PC-Mac divide. The outfit recently spilled the beans on three zero-day vulnerabilities in Apple’s OS X operating system.
Google and Microsoft have different opinions on public disclosure policies
For the third time in a month, Google has gone ahead and disclosed all the gory details of a zero day vulnerability affecting Windows before Microsoft could get around to releasing a patch. It affects both Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 and has to do with how applications handle memory encryption to allow for data flow back and forth between processes running in the same logon session.
Technology news can make you feel old. To wit, it may not seem like much time has passed since Microsoft agreed to a five-year deal in which Windows users in Europe would be offered a choice of browser upon first boot, but that commitment is now behind the Redmond outfit. Having lived up to its end of the deal, Microsoft has yanked the so-called browser ballot, which may not have done much anyway.
There are several interesting things taking place in the leaked Windows 10 build, the one that Microsoft is apparently super calm about making the rounds. One that we wanted to touch a bit more on is a new Xbox app. This is something that Microsoft is still working on, as the app clearly states when it's fired up, but the Redmond outfit is so excited about it that it wanted to give early users a sneak peek.
Along with a new OS release comes a new strategy to make money
Things are going to be different with Windows 10 in a number of ways, and all presumably for the better (or so we're hoping and knocking on wood with Hulk-like force). It's not just the features and design that Microsoft is altering, however, but also its business model. Microsoft COO Kevin Turner spoke at a Credit Suisse technology investment conference recently, revealing that his company is looking at new ways of making money off of Windows.
Black Friday? Check. Cyber Monday? Check. Ongoing savings, Steam Weeklong Deals, and GOG DRM-Free Big Winter Sale? Check, check, and check again! Phew, talk about a busy holiday shopping season, and it doesn't feel like it's coming to a close anytime soon. Instead, more and more promotions keep popping up, like Microsoft's 12 Days of Deals starting with a Toshiba Encore Mini tablet for $79, marked down from $119.
PC gamers (and PS4 players) get first dibs on Street Fighter V
Being a PC gamer doesn't come without the occasional indignity, likely crappy console ports and being left out of the equation altogether. Thankfully it's not always like that, and it certainly won't be that way when Street Fighter V comes out, or so it seems. How do we know? Capcom posted a game trailer revealing that Street Fighter V will launch exclusively to Windows PCs and the PlayStation 4.
When it comes to Microsoft's upcoming successor to Windows 8/8.1, the company seems to be hitting the right notes in many ways. So the latest bit of news should excite audiophiles everywhere now that it has been revealed that Windows 10 is going to support FLAC straight out of the box, according to Gabriel Aul who is the head of Microsoft’s Operating Systems Group’s Data and Fundamentals Team.
We're beginning to notice more low-cost Windows laptops in the $200 range, though one thing we haven't seen is a manufacturer revive the netbook nomenclature. Fair enough, since these machines are more powerful than yesterday's netbooks, and generally cheaper too. The least expensive so far is the Asus X205TA Signature Edition, a $199 laptop that's been reduced to $179 in the Microsoft Store.