As much as we’d like to maintain a paperless lifestyle, it’s still pretty difficult to get by purely in the digital realm. Whether we’re being sent bills in the mail or given handouts at a conference, paper still surrounds us every day of our lives. If you do wish to maintain a paperless lifestyle, you could always scan in those documents and save them as images, but that becomes messy fairly quickly, and you can’t annotate an image either. So, what’s the answer? Optical character recognition. More commonly known as ‘OCR’, this technique is exactly what Nuance uses in its OmniPage software, which allows you to scan in your documents and have them converted to editable, digital files. [Read more…]
F1 finally came back to the PC and major consoles last year in the form of Codemaster’s F1 2010 video game and, the occasional AI and pit-stop bug aside, it certainly lived up to the hype receiving widespread critical acclaim including a gaming BAFTA for the best sports game.
However, whilst the game created a solid base there was still much room for improvement and so this year’s version of the franchise aims to build on the successes of last year whilst learning from the mistakes, and all indications suggest that there have been some substantial leaps forward in F1 2011.
The first major change in the game mirrors those occurring in the sport in real life: the rules. DRS (which stands for ‘Drag Reduction System’) and KERS (‘Kinetic Energy Recovery System) have both been introduced into the sport this year as a way to increase the excitement of races; the former opens a rear-wing flap reducing drag (and thus increasing speed) whilst the latter gives a speed boost from a battery charged under breaking. Both of these technologies along with the new Pirelli tyres have proven very effective at creating interesting races in real life, and there is no reason given that they are present in the game that they will not do the same.
Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D is a remake of the original game which was released on the N64 in 1998. Many consider the N64 version to be one of the best games of all time. This game was the first in the Zelda series to be a 3D polygon world and it was also the first game that introduced the left trigger targeting system, which has since been used by everything from third person actions games to role playing games.
So What’s Different?
One of the major differences is the actual graphics themselves. The Nintendo 3DS version isn’t just a simple port of the N64, but more of a repainting. The game’s visuals have been completely revamped by Japanese developer Grezzo, but the game has kept the same gameplay engine. Grezzo’s intention was to try and make the game look like the original concept art rather than to make it look like Zelda Twilight Princess.
The Sony Ericsson Xperia Play – casually known as the PlayStation Phone – may be one of the most anticipated mobile devices of the past few years; rumours of such a device had been circling the internet for months before its eventual unveiling at the early stages of this year. The concept is quite simple really: take what is arguably the most successful gaming platform of all time and merge it with your everyday smartphone to give people a great gaming experience on the go. After all, if any company knows what it takes to make a successful games console it’s Sony, right?
With physical, slide-out controls and a dedicated PlayStation application alongside the Android market, the Xperia Play certainly has a lot of promise for those wanting to take their games with them, but does it live up to all the hype? Let’s take a closer look and find out for ourselves! [Read more…]
The Electronic Entertainment Expo (otherwise known as E3) is a strange and fantastical beast of a convention. Large companies forgo their everyday suits and shareholder meetings to install fully-fledged stylised buildings within the Los Angeles convention centre’s great halls, complete with multiple floors, ventilation, windows, backrooms and theatres.
These strange architectures are then rammed with PR trying to sell games they understand little of, developers nervous and agitated at the prospect of doing hundreds of almost identical interviews and ‘booth babes’ clueless as to what’s going on at all. And thus, as in previous years’ of E3, a literal gaming city is erected for the sole purpose of hype; most of it we see, some of it, such as the altogether more business-like buyer meetings and VIP rooms, we don’t.
Well E3 is well and truly here, and on the day before the show floor opens up to a hungry press, two of the console companies along with EA and Ubisoft held press conferences to demonstrate their latest and (hopefully) greatest, and of course, to brag about games/consoles sold.
L.A. Noire. The game that promised so much, the hype almost became unbearable, and the wait even more so. Having pre-ordered the game a couple of months back, May 20th just couldn’t come fast enough for me and as I scampered home on that bright spring afternoon, carefully peeled away Amazon’s stress-free packaging, and with bated breath waited for the seemingly eternal installation. There was only one question on my mind: How good will it be, being the good guy?
This is new territory for Rockstar, with previous esteemed titles such as GTA and Red Dead Redemption providing hour upon hour of sometimes hilarious criminal escapades and proving so popular, it’s certainly a bold step to adopt the same system with a complete role reversal. The problem is for me, that whilst street shoot-outs, car/horse-jackings and driving motorcycles from the top of the empire state building is unquestionably entertaining in the aforementioned titles, sprinting through the streets of LA armed with not a lot more than a pencil and a little black book isn’t quite so enthralling.
But, what we’ve got with L.A. Noire is quite the mixed bag. [Read more…]
Back in July of last year Steelseries announced two headsets specifically designed for Xbox 360 gaming: the Spectrum 5xb and 4xb, and over the last couple of weeks we’ve had our hands on the former of these to see how well it matches up not only to the pretty good pedigree that Steelseries have created for themselves but also against the competition.
The SteelSeries Spectrum 5xB Gaming Headset is their first (or more correctly, the better of their first two) headsetsÂ specificallyÂ designed for gaming on the Xbox 360 which means that not only do they come with the usual headsetÂ paraphernaliaÂ but also a neat little box that allows you to adjust the audio from your Xbox to ‘optimise your gaming experience’. [Read more…]
It was criticised at first, many calling it no more than a giant iPod Touch, and that was probably the reason I promised myself I would wait for at least the second rendition of Apple’s tablet before I hopped aboard the bandwagon.
Not because I didn’t like the iPad since of course, it was ‘magical’. But more because it was obvious to me that the tablet industry would take time to truly discover itself, and it’s questionable as to whether the point has yet been reached when people know what tablets are for, exactly. I mean, it’s clear that each manufacturer has it’s own view as to what a tablet should be, with many opting for smaller screens, slide-out physical keyboards or what have you, but one thing is clear: nothing quite came close to the original iPad.
Back when Steam was finally released on the Mac, many users (myself included) got their first taste of the original physics-based puzzle game: Portal. It was unique in so many ways and earned rave reviews from even the most critical of judges thanks to it’s relaxing, yet challenging tests; humerous, yet at time frustratingly difficult characters; and altogether brilliant storyline, gameplay and visuals.
However, one criticism of the original though, was its length. It really was a game that could be completed in just a couple of hours, and that grinds with many people who were left wanting more of such a potentially classic title.
Until Airdrop arrives with the update to Mac OS X 10.7 (Lion) and hopefully what will be an update to iOS 5 for the iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch, there is no simple way of wirelessly transferring files between one Apple device and another. Enter Mover.
Whilst it comes under different names, the application works in tandem between your Mac and iOS devices, with dedicated apps for OS X, iPad and iPhone helping to organise and synchronise your files.
Of course, with the iOS edition comes a neater, more touch friendly user interface, but the premise of the app is still the same, and works perfectly in almost all cases.