Don't forget to set aside a few dollars for food and other bills
Word to the wise -- don't go quitting that second job you got to pay for all the games you bought during Steam's Autumn Sale, you're going to need it to fund another round of discounts. The 2013 Steam Holiday Sale is now on and runs through the remainder of the holiday shopping season, all the way up until January 3, 2014. As always, big savings are to be had on popular titles, such as 50 percent off Batman: Arkham Origins ($24.99) and 75 percent off Bioshock Infinite ($9.99).
After more than a year in closed beta and amassing over 1 million downloads, Google's Niantic Labs just launched Ingress to the public. What is Ingress, you ask? It's a journey into alternate reality gaming, is one answer. Another answer is that it's a blending of augmented reality with MMO gaming for people with Android devices (iOS support will come later). It gets gamers outdoors in a sort of geo-caching expedition with real-life capture point control.
Valve recently made its Debian Linux-based SteamOS available to download free of charge in beta form and though it's only been available for a short time, there are already some benchmarks to digest. The benchmarks come courtesy of the folks at Phoronix who tested more than half a dozen Nvidia graphics cards ranging from the GeForce GTX 550 Ti on up the GeForce GTX 780 Ti.
Various problems continue to plague Battlefield 4, one of the most hyped game releases of the year. If fixes don't come soon, Electronic Arts could find itself facing multiple lawsuits, both from users frustrated with persistent issues marring the overall experience, and from stockholders who have begun to investigate whether or not EA was completely upfront during the development process.
If you have any pieces-of-eight left over from Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Steam's Autumn Sale, Green Monday, and every other shopping occasion this holiday season, you can dump what's left of your pockets at GOG for its 2013 DRM-free winter sale. While you're there, be sure to collect Fallout, Fallout 2, and Fallout Tactics for the tantalizing low, low price of absolutely free!
SugarSync users who have been enjoying the service's free 2GB tier received some news today that they may find hard to swallow. Beginning February 8, 2014, SugarSync will no longer welcome freeloaders to the fold, and instead will adopt a paid-only model. On the bright side, customers will still be able to try the service at no cost for 90 days and 5GB (or 30 days for any of the paid plans), but after that, it comes time to pay the piper.
Microsoft last week made it be known that system retailers would not be allowed to sell Windows 7 PCs past October 2014. The deadline is known as the "End of sales" date, which refers to the date when a particular version of Windows is no longer shipped to retailers or OEMs, as well as the last day partners are allowed to peddle the OS. After listing October 30, 2014 as the end of sales date for Windows 7, Microsoft pulled a 180 and is now leaving it up in the air.
Maxthon's developers have officially joined the ranks of braggadocios browser makers who puff out their chest and claim their online vehicle is the fastest around. You may recall that Maxthon (originally called MyIE2) started as a nifty shell of Internet Explorer that brought tabbed browsing to the IE experience. Now dubbed "Maxthon Cloud Browser," these days it stands on its own two feet.
The Start menu is coming, the Start menu is coming! Feel free to run up and down the aisles of your office building shouting the news at the top of your lungs. Act crazy enough and you may not have a job tomorrow, but at least you can look forward to the return of a feature in Windows 8/8.1 that should never have been left out in the first place. Oh, and to be clear, don't confuse the Start menu with the Start button, the latter of which made its triumphant return in Windows 8.1, but without the all-important menu (thanks for the half-assed concession, Microsoft).
If you've been sitting pretty with a Windows 8.1 Preview license and have intentions of sticking with it for any length of time, you may want to add a retail copy to your holiday wish list and start dropping hints for your friends and family. Microsoft posted a reminder on its TechNet blog giving users a heads up that the Windows 8.1 Preview license will expire sometime in January 2014, though the Redmond software giant didn't specify an exact date.