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'Half-Life 2' mod puts the sequel inside of the original

As you might imagine, the game isn't pretty. But, the end result might make you nostalgic for that resonance cascade we witnessed at Black Mesa in 1998. As Kotaku notes , that original toolset was a mod itself, expanding on the Quake engine's framework. When Half-Life 2 was first released in 2004 on its newly developed Source engine, it was a benchmark for what games were capable of in terms of physics, facial animation and overall graphics...
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Facebook hands Russia-backed ads to election investigators

The insiders claim that Facebook rejected House and Senate Intelligence Committee attempts to get the ads. The site's policy, in line with the Stored Communications Act, requires a warrant before it can hand over search data. Mueller's spokesperson declined to comment, and Facebook would only say that it continues to "work with the appropriate investigative authorities." Don't expect to learn many specifics, then. All the same, this both hi...
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Apple bans misleading apps on iOS

As soon as you get your shiny new iPhone 8, you'll probably want to download some apps. So Apple took the opportunity to update its developer app review guidelines to make sure the App Store is in tip top shape. According to 9to5 Mac , it's now officially cracking down on misleading apps. The App Store has already had policies against such apps already, but the recent update makes it more explicit. The ban is against apps "including content...
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Fox's takeover of Sky referred to the UK's competition regulator

In a statement, the Culture Secretary said that the CMA will focus on "the genuine commitment to broadcasting standards as well as media plurality grounds." Fox already owns 39% of Sky but announced in December last year that it launching a fresh bid to acquire the rest of the company. Less than 48 hours earlier, Bradley had updated MPs on her findings -- including 30,000 "representations" that produced evidence against a Fox-Sky merger -- ...
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'Destiny 2' studio will remove armor that looks like a 'hate symbol'

1/2 It's come to our attention that a gauntlet in Destiny 2 shares elements with a hate symbol. It is not intentional. We are removing it. — Bungie (@Bungie) September 12, 2017 A second tweet offered the company's deepest apologies, saying that such hate symbols do not represent its values. The team is "working quickly to correct this. We renounce hate in all forms." While Bungie gave no specifics as to which armored gauntlet it was referri...
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Tesla plans to add more Superchargers in big cities

The bottom line is that for Teslas to fully take off, charging them has to be as convenient as pulling into a gas station to refuel. Right now, that's just not the case, and the company is well aware of it. The bulk of Superchargers are currently along major highways at hotels and restaurants. Tesla plans on expanding into urban grocery store parking lots, shopping centers, and downtown districts. They've redesigned the Supercharger to give...
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MIT is crowdsourcing hurricane flood maps in Florida

Tomas Holderness, the MIT research scientist who led the project, says RiskMap "shows the importance that citizen data has to play in emergencies." He added that "[b]y connecting residents and emergency managers via social messaging, [their] map helps keep people informed and improve response times." While it's unfortunate that the tool is only useful to residents of one county for now, the team aims to make it available to other locations ...
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What to expect from Apple's iPhone event on September 12th

iPhone 10th anniversary edition For years, Apple was on a "tick-tock" iPhone upgrade cycle. One year would bring a new design, while the following year would introduce under-the-hood upgrades to otherwise identical hardware. That changed last year, as the iPhone 7 was physically very similar to the 6 and 6S. That, along with the iPhone's 10th anniversary, has set the stage for the line's most radical redesign yet. As reported by both Bloomb...
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IBM is installing a Watson AI lab at MIT

Those focal areas include deep-learning algorithms that can help neural networks move from single-use applications to more generalized performance. Not only will this make AI systems more versatile, it will improve their transparency as well, enabling them to explain how they reached the answer they did. The IBM-MIT partnership will also study the intersection between machine learning and quantum computing . Interestingly, this focal area w...
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GameChanger brings virtual worlds to the kids who need it most

GameChanger came out of that idea, and it really started to ramp up after Taylor left for college in 2013. (He just graduated from Harvard this spring.) At first, the charity was giving around 500 gaming consoles per year to hospitals around the country, but that quickly started to grow once gaming and tech corporations started to get involved. Some of the charity's partners now include giants like Amazon, Microsoft and Sony, as well as com...
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VR throwback 'Duck Season' arrives September 14th

The game starts out with a simple premise: you're a kid who's playing through a rented copy of Duck Season on a long summer's day in 1988, blasting ducks while your companion dog collects your kills. However, you gradually learn that the dog isn't what he seems, and a much deeper story emerges. There are seven unique endings, and even multiple subplots and short videos to find. In theory, the title a good showcase for VR -- it takes advanta...
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Apple's OS chief is taking over Siri from Eddy Cue

The tech titan has been giving Siri deeper access to both iOS and MacOS for a while anyway: the voice assistant made its way to Macs with Sierra , you can use it to control third-party apps like Uber and it will soon be able to add events to your calendar if you sign up for them on Safari. We wouldn't be surprised if Federighi already has a few projects underway either, since he's been involved in Siri's development for quite a while now as...
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Tesla hit with unfair labor complaint from US watchdog

Workers say Tesla security stopped and interrogated them when they tried to hand out flyers, and threatened firing if the practice continued. Furthermore, they say Tesla forced them to "sign an overly-broad confidentiality agreement that could bar them from talking about their working conditions and safety issues at the facility." The UAW (United Auto Workers) is a party to the NLRB complaint, and has reportedly been working to unionize Tes...
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Andy Rubin apologizes for Essential's massive privacy mistake

Unfortunately, they can't erase their details from other people's inboxes and can't prevent anyone from keeping copies. Essential has offered them a year's worth of identity theft protection service through LifeLock, though -- and a promise to prevent something similar from happening again. Rubin said the company has already "taken steps internally to add safeguards against this happening again in the future." It has disabled the misconfigu...
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Intel's 18-core Xeon CPU may be destined for the iMac Pro

After the 18-core model, you're looking at Xeon Ws with 14, 10, 8 and fewer cores. The top-of-the-line chip can be boosted to 4.3 GHz if you've got the cooling, while the lesser models can go up to 4.5 GHz. The new CPUs also support up to 512GB of DDR4-2666 ECC RAM and have 48 PCI Express 3.0 lanes, giving you plenty of storage and port options. All told, performance is 38 percent better than the current Xeon E5 generation, Intel says. To b...
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Hyperloop Pod Competition winner hits over 200 mph

With a speed of just over 200 miles per-hour, the Warr (pronounced Varr) team from the Technical University of Munich handily beat the two other finalists with its small, but quick pod. Weighing just 80 kg (176 pounds) and powered by a 50kw motor, the vehicle was essentially a small electric car built specifically for winning the competition. The team is no stranger to the winner's circle, it won the previous Hyperloop Pod Competition back ...
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The director of 'Final Fantasy XV' isn't finished yet

What was the reaction to FFXV at launch? Hajime Tabata: Most of our fans seemed to enjoy the experience, which was great to hear. Some, however, didn't feel satisfied with the final part of the game. [The team subsequently adjusted the final chapters of the game in an update.] Many thought that Chapter 13 was difficult, so we adjusted to game to ensure those players were more satisfied. After the game launched, we had already planned the su...
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215 Hits

'Half Life' writer reveals what could've been Episode 3

Nearly ten years after the debut of Half-Life 2: Episode Two, the world is still waiting for Valve to deliver the final episode in the trilogy, but we may have to settle for something else. Just a few months after the last of the game's writers left Valve , and 21 years to the day since the company started, lead writer Marc Laidlaw has posted "Epistle 3" to his personal website (it's overloaded and inaccessible now, but you can view it on A...
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Watch Hulu's live TV service on your Mac or PC

This is the first time Hulu will stream live television to something other than set-top boxes and mobile devices. It makes sense, as Netflix , Amazon and HBO already allow you to watch from the comfort of your web browser. The web-based version will be basic to start while Hulu takes more time to finalize the final interface, according to Hulu'shulu macbook Ben Smith. "This is a very early version of the new Hulu experience on the Web and w...
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'Cuphead' is as wondrous as it is difficult

Just take one look at Cuphead's gorgeous hand-drawn art style and you'll understand the hype. First-time indie developer Studio MDHR created a game that's as detailed and fluid as classic Disney cartoons. And it has that hint of magic that you can only get from traditional, non-CG animation. It's also a dream to play, with controls reminiscent of Contra and other extremely difficult 2D side scrollers. Simply running around and shooting enem...
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Prisma hopes to market its AI photo filtering tech

The Prisma app is staying put, to be clear -- it has 5 million to 10 million monthly users, which is no mean feat for a small startup. It just won't be the sole focus. There's no mention of initial customers, but Facebook likely isn't in the running given that it already riffed on the photo filtering concept soon after Prisma became popular. Not that Prisma is averse to dealing with its erstwhile rival. Co-founder Alexey Moiseenkov visited ...
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ASUS ZenFone AR review: A 'better' Tango phone doesn't mean much

Google's vision of a future with devices that sense the world around them is a potentially game-changing one, and now one of its biggest rivals is embracing it too. Needless to say, there's a real chance that your next phone (or maybe your next-next phone) will support augmented reality. For Tango, though, the progress has been slow. It's been a little less than a year since the first Tango phone launched, and the number of available apps h...
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Monster's headphones get their own voice assistant

World's first or not, Melody adds a new level of hands-free convenience to Monster's devices. You'll have to download the Melody app from Google Play or iTunes and pair it with your device. But once that's done, you can simply tap on the headphones when you want to tell Melody to play a specific song, album or artist. You can also tell it to skip/pause a track, turn the volume up/down or to access iHeartRadio, Spotify Premium, NPR and, in t...
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Trump dissolves two advisory councils, one of which already disbanded

But shortly thereafter, the president tweeted that he was dissolving both it and his manufacturing council, which was reportedly planning to have a similar discussion. Rather than putting pressure on the businesspeople of the Manufacturing Council & Strategy & Policy Forum, I am ending both. Thank you all! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 16, 2017 Trump's manufacturing council has had a wave of defects of late including D...
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Aetna may offer customers a free Apple Watch as a perk

Neither company is commenting on the apparent leak. With that said, the talks reportedly involve executives as well as chief medical information officers from hospitals around the US. This isn't a casual exploratory talk, in other words. It's no secret why Aetna would consider handing out Apple Watches like so much candy. As one of the tipsters says, Aetna hopes that this would encourage customers to lead a healthier life. Whatever money Ae...
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Amazon offers refunds for dodgy solar eclipse glasses

It won't shock you to hear the reason why Amazon is taking the initiative: as with its reaction to unsafe hoverboards , it's exhibiting an "abundance of caution." The last thing Amazon wants is thousands of customers damaging their eyesight with sub-par glasses bought from its store, especially if the manufacturers falsely claim to meet safety standards. As before, you'll want to be sure that any pair of glasses meets those ISO standards be...
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Vizio TVs add the Google Play video app

The app features film and shows from Google's 200 partner global distributors and recently began offering 4K movies to take advantage of your ultra HD display. If you have a Vizio VIA+ or D-Series, keep an eye on the home screen for the app icon, download it when it becomes available and check out the stuff not on your other streaming services. Original link
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Netflix takes on JFK in ‘The Crown’ season two December 8th

This will be Claire Foy's last season playing the queen as the series plans to use different actors throughout the six-decade storyline that it aims to cover. Michael C. Hall and Jodi Balfour are new faces this time around, depicting John F. Kennedy and wife Jackie. Matthew Goode is also a new addition and he plays Princess Margaret's husband Antony Armstrong-Jones, aka Lord Snowdon. The first season of The Crown won two Golden Globes and t...
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Google is about to tell websites they serve annoying ads

We singled out pop-ups, because it's no secret that they're universally hated. According to research conducted by the Coalition for Better Ads, they're usually what drive people to stop visiting a website or to install ad blockers -- and ad blockers mean loss in revenue. Mountain View will also notify websites if their mobile versions are too cluttered. The coalition's research found that mobile versions typically suffer not just from pop-u...
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Uber co-founder says Kalanick will not return to as CEO

As reported by ReCode , Camp wrote, "Our CEO search is the board's top priority. It's time for a new chapter, and the right leader for our next phase o growth. Despite rumors I'm sure you've seen in the news, Travis is not returning as CEO. We are committed to hiring a new world-class CEO to lead Uber." The email continued to assert that Uber must "evolve and mature" as it seeks to improve its corporate culture and business practices. While...
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