In his QuakeCon 2008 keynote today, John Carmack stated that he thinks the iPhone developer's kit is much better than the ones for Java or Brew-based phones. In terms of pure graphics, the iPhone is roughly the equivalent of a Dreamcast, said Carmack. It's feature set and horsepower can deliver what gamers saw on the PS2 or original Xbox, especially since it has a lot of RAM.
Originally, Carmack contemplated porting Orcs and Elves for the iPhone, but he didn't want to devote 3 man-months to make it happen, when he wasn't sure the company could make the money back (Carmack estimated that only about 15% of the QuakeCon audience had iPhones). Instead, id has plans for two new iPhone games. One will be an RPG syle game, and the other a "graphical tour de force." This second game will be beyond anything you've seen on the PSP or Nintendo DS. No release date was announced for these tiles, only that they were in early development.
Carmack's enthusiasm for for mobile gaming was readily apparent in his keynote. He's excited by the success of iPhone game sales, and hopes that the iPhone will drive other providers into making better hardware.
With the help of LG, Netflix just took another giant step into your living room. With the production of the LG BD300 Network Blu-ray Player, Netflix users will now be able to stream Netflix videos directly to their TV. But does this come at an additional cost? And what about high definition streaming?
We were beginning to wonder if Creative would ever update its X-Fi soundcard drives to work properly in Vista, and after the whole Daniel_K fiasco, we were about ready to throw in the towel. For those that stuck it out, Creative has finally released a new driver package that fixes the hardware Dolby Digital and DTS decoding in its X-Fi cards running under Vista. The company also added DVD Audio playback, a feature that previously went by the wayside when upgrading from XP to Vista.
The new driver also addresses a niggling bug that causes system crashes when switching to an unsupported sampling rate in the Audio Creation Mode while Dolby Digital Live is enabled.
All X-Fi soundcards except the Xtreme Audio version are supported with the driver update.
Capturing high definition video in the palm of your hand is about to get easier if Sanyo's DMX-HD800 can live up to its billing. The 8MP compact camera will come in gold, pink, and black and be capable of recording video in 720p (1280x720) using the AVC/H.264 video codec. Features include:
Drag and drop capable
HD videos and still pictures
Snap photos while filming without pausing the video
Face recognition (up to 12 faces)
Digital image stabilizer
In-camera video editing
Capturing quality videos from a handheld gadget always elicits skepticism, but Sanyo promises its three-dimensional digital noise reduction (3DDNR) filter will offer both clear videos and crisp photos. It was enough to impress AkihabaraNews, who claims the camera represents a "HUGE step forward in video quality" and described the change as "AMAZING" compared to Sanyo's previous model, the HD700.
Tired of all the drama surrounding the future of Yahoo? You're not the only one. Not a week goes by without a new twist emerging in what's to become of the would-be search giant, and billionaire investor T. Boone Pickens has had enough. Aside from having one of the coolest names ever, Pickens also owned 10 million Yahoo shares, all of which he sold at a loss.
Pickens picked up the stock back in May in anticipation that activist Carl Icahn would wage a proxy contest to force Yahoo's board into signing on the dotted line with Microsoft. Tired of waiting, Pickens unloaded all his shares, but not without taking a parting short at Yahoo management.
"I think that Yahoo management was pathetic," Pickens told the San Francisco Chronicle.
It's unclear exactly how much money Pickens lost in the ordeal, but Yahoo stock was selling around $27 per share in late May and has since dropped to around $20 per share. Talk about a costly way to make a point.
Solid state drives continue to make headway into the marketplace and Buffalo appears to be readying a herd of 32GB (SHD-EP9M32G) and 64GB (SHD-EP9M64G) SSDs for the Asus Eee PC 900 and 901 ultraportables. Not much else can be discerned from the translated press release, but according to PC Watch (and Google Translate), Buffalo will price the 32GB and 64GB at 16,800 and 33,600 yen, or $150 and $300 USD respectively.
Japan will get first crack at the new SSDs come mid to late September, but if you simply can't wait for Buffalo's drives to migrate stateside, at least one company is already selling the units with worldwide shipping.
Tired of staring at a shelf full of discarded gadgets? Wondering what to do with old digital media players, digital cameras, and laptop computers? Want to get some cash for your technological discards? Gazelle.com provides an earth-friendly answer worth considering.
Gazelle.com offers users with unwanted cell phones, MP3 players, digital cameras, GPS devices, laptops, camcorders, gaming consoles, satellite radios, and portable hard drives a way to sell their products without the uncertainties of other methods like eBay or consignment sales. Gazelle buys unwanted products from you, refurbishes them, and then resells them through a variety of channels.
Selling Items to Gazelle
According to PC Magazine, Gazelle currently offers listings for over 18,000 products in these categories. You can search by category, brand or model name. However, you can also sell unlisted items to Gazelle: if you enter an unlisted item, Gazelle pops up a customized quote form.
The price you're offered by Gazelle is based on the item, its condition, and the accessories provided with the item. Gazelle provides free shipping, emails you when the product has been inspected and evaluated, and pays you promptly. If you don't like Gazelle's offer, Gazelle will return your item to you. If you prefer to donate your sale proceeds to charity, select from a list of over 20 non-profits and Gazelle will do the rest.
To find out how Gazelle helps you decide if now's the right time to sell, and for your chance to give us your thoughts, join us after the jump.
While Dell stays busy jazzing up its Studio line of laptops and desktops with various color schemes, the OEM let loose another product but without all the fanfare. Available now is Dell's S2409 24-inch widescreen LCD panel, representing the company's first 16:9 aspect ratio display. That puts the screen resolution at 1920x1080 (as opposed to 1920x1200 for 16:10), matching the 1080p output of most high definition content including Blu-ray movies. Other notables include:
HDMI with HDCP
1000:1 contrast ratio
0.276 mm pixel pitch
5 ms response time (gray-to-gray)
16.7 million colors
The new display doesn't come with bells and whistles such as a USB hub or integrated speakers, but it does carry a relatively friendly price tag at $379 with 3-year warranty.
In-game advertising is the need of the hour as game production costs continue to mount. Additionally, it presents a huge opportunity to companies like Google with valuable ad brokering experience. The contextual ads giant is keen on leaving its mark in the fledgling in-game advertising market, too. It has been polishing its “AdSense for Games” service – first announced in 2007 – for quite some time now.
It has developed a new technology specifically for in-game advertising. However, if the initial information about the new technology is to be believed, Google’s in-game ads might not be all that subtle but a tad intrusive: imagine a game’s central character abruptly interrupting the game with something like “and now a word from our sponsor” or “the game continues after the following message.” Google has its task cutout as Double Fusion, IGA Worldwide, Microsoft’s Massive, MochiMedia and NeoEdge Networks are already in the fray.
Colossi like Google almost always telegraph their foray into a new market with an acquisition. And Google honored the tradition by acquiring in-game advertising company Adscape for $23 million in February, 2007 and announced its ambitions.
Do you think that video ads are intrusive and subtly placed ads should be persisted with, or am i the only one making all the fuss?
I hate it when people, speaking of a game review, say, "Well, they wouldn't have scored it so high if it weren't for the graphics." Like it or not, humans interpret the world around them predominately through sight, so graphics are an integral part of any gaming experience -- just as special effects, lighting, and set pieces are to film.
That does not, however, mean I'll contemptuously scoff at any game without eye-popping bump maps or heroes lacking meticulously detailed stubble, however. In fact, with the advent of gaming's current generation, I have to wonder: is game development so focused on pleasuring our eyes that it's neglecting our gray matter?
What ever happened to promises of emergent worlds and truly life-like A.I.? Sure, games like Rainbow Six: Vegas draw us into their worlds like never before, but the moment we see an A.I. partner attempt to take cover on the wrong side of a bullet-ridden pillar, the illusion is blown into bloody chunks. For once, I'd like to see a dev team throw themselves headlong into crafting a believable world -- even if that means serving up graphical sloppy seconds. Agree? Disagree? I'd love to hear what you think.
Today's Roundup features one title that gives me some hope for a more balanced, less graphics-intensive future, yet by virtue of its existence, in a way, proves my earlier point. Speaking of hope, Nintendo fans might have reason to strip out of their mourning garb, although it's kind of a long shot. And we also have Aerosmith! See it all after the break.