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Top 5 Things Every Mobile Gamer Must Have

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With phones and tablets edging ever closer to sixth gen console quality, it's not surprising that mobile devices have become many people's go-to gaming machines. High-end graphics are only one piece of the puzzle, though. Better-quality audio, boosted speed and enhanced touch-screen responsiveness have all contributed to mobile's rise in the gaming sphere. A sphere, it should be noted, that will likely be worth $100 billion by 2017 with a majority of those dollars devoted to mobile gaming. 

Top 5 Things Every Mobile Gamer Must Have

Gamer is quickly coming to mean something very different than it did once upon a time, thanks to changing demographics (women are now the largest video game playing group) and a flood of all-ages titles. But even players who gravitate toward Monument Valley versus titles like Mirror's Edge can appreciate the need for externals. To make mobile your main gaming machine, it helps to have these five things:

1. The right device 

Many of today's mobile games have been designed to make use of multiple cores, so a device with a quad- or dual-core processor is a must. More importantly, a device with a quad- or dual-core processor can “future proof” your phone or tablet, i.e., ensure that it can play the new and better games of tomorrow. Multiple cores enhance a device's ability to deliver the kind of impeccable graphics, speed and sound that serious gamers expect and even casuals want. 

2. An external controller 

Phones and tablets put amazing games into your pocket for anywhere play, but the feel of touch screen controls can leave a lot to be desired. The MOGA Pocket Controller is a serious win for gamers who love the feel of physical buttons and a real steal at about $30. That includes the controller (which looks like it came out of an Xbox One box), a case, tablet stand and the MOGA pivot app with its library of games like GTA and Call of Duty. Thanks to a comfortable rubberized grip and ergonomic wire-free design, mobile gaming sessions can go longer. 

3. A scaled-down sound solution 

Patching into your wireless sound system is a fine way to overcome the limitations of tiny phone speakers at home but out and about tinny audio is the norm. Or was. The Mini Jambox is incredibly portable at just 6″ x 1″ by 2.3″ and 9 ounces, and the acoustic drivers and bass radiator provide audio that proves that bigger isn't necessarily better. 

4. Longer game play 

Big time mobile gamers know that even the baddest batteries can't stand up to a serious session, which means a battery backup solution is essential. The EViO EUP power bank will keep you up and running, which is especially important when you're playing through titles that take time. The 13,000mAh battery takes a while to charge up but once it's good to go, so are you.

5. Something fun 

Don't let the overuse of the word serious fool you – games are still for playing and at least some of your accessories should reflect that! The Impulse Controller is a wireless mini gamepad with real physical buttons that clips on to your keychain. It's also a great way to find your lost keys, a camera trigger (goodbye, Selfie Stick) and a digital media controller that's compatible with virtually any device. There's also the Joystick-IT Arcade Stick – self sticking joysticks that attach to any touchscreen to give players that old school gaming experience.


There is always going to be a place for consoles in the gaming world. But as the mobile experience becomes richer and more satisfying thanks to must-haves like these, chances are good that place will grow ever smaller.

*by andreascy*

Space Travel and Exploration: Dreaming About the Future of Space Tourism

Description :

Welcome fellow hustler! Busy morning? Here's what you need to know to start your day.

For ages mankind has dreamed of traveling the stars and visiting distant planets. Not just astronauts but civilians too. Over the years we have seen a few of these achievements come to fruition. People have been sent up to orbit the earth and collect data for scientists back on the planet. A select few have claimed the great achievement of setting foot on the moon. A rover was even sent to Mars and transmitted back pictures of the alien surface.

Space Travel and Exploration: Dreaming About the Future of Space Tourism

Even with all these advancements over the last 30 years, space exploration is still in its infancy. The recent crash of Virgin’s Space Ship Two can attest to that. Not only are the ‘kinks’ still being worked out, but what has been explored so far, is merely a drop in the ocean when compared to the billions and billions of stars that have yet to be reached. Aside from Mars and the Moon, our own solar system remains an unexplored mystery. With the future of space tourism hinging on uncertainty; what does this mean for the average citizen?

The taxpayer no longer foots the bill

When the idea of space travel was first put on the table, it was the taxpayer’s dollars that funded the missions. Politicians formed the plan, while the working class paid for it. With the introduction of private spaceflight, the politicians have no say and the American citizen isn’t left paying for everything. The only real restriction they have is how much money is available.

Failure is an option

Private companies can fail as much as they want, within reason. They aren’t tied to an ever shrinking budget like NASA was. Unfortunately, not every test is a success, just look at Virgin Galactic. The explosion of their Space Ship Two was a tragedy and devastating blow to private space flight; but this doesn’t mean they have to call it quits. And now that the politicians can’t step in and pull the funding, that’s one less hurdle they have to deal with. Virgin now has the option to try again, if the funds are there. 

Engineers play a bigger part

If one were to work for NASA as an engineer, they would be part of a larger team working together. With smaller teams being employed by private companies, it allows for a more hands on experience. The engineer actually gets to go in the field and fire the rockets, rather than sit behind a desk all day. Smaller teams and limited resources actually foster more creativity, making them almost like modern day MacGyver’s. 

The price of space travel will drop

The flight of a Virgin space plane costs $250,000. That’s nothing compared to the $12 million price tag of launching a satellite into orbit. On top of that, the rocket that sends it to space can only be used once. If the privately funded space planes can make it to orbit consistently, the price of space travel is going to be drastically reduced. A host of scientists are standing by waiting to run tests on these flights. Also, lower cost means more accessible tourism.

Hypersonic travel may finally happen 

Circumnavigating the globe will be achievable in an afternoon. The promise of sub-orbital travel has been talked about for a while now. Until these privately funded space flights came around, it has always been just out of reach. Right now $95,000 for a ticket still may not be for everyone, but as with any new technology it’s always expensive when it first hits that market. The first microwave cost about $5,000. Now you can pick one up for less than $50. The same thing will happen with sub-orbital flights. Once they hone the production process and discover cheaper ways to build these space planes, tickets may even be as cheap as regular commercial flights.

The view will be humbling

Every astronaut has said that seeing the planet against the infinite backdrop of space was not only awe inspiring, but life changing. What’s going to happen when an artist sees this for the first time? What happens when politicians and CEOs start to take these flights regularly? Will they be moved like the astronauts; or will it be business as usual? 

Even though Richard Branson suffered a major set-back, this doesn’t leave him down and out. Without politicians calling the shots, they can go back to the drawing board and try again. This doesn’t mean that failure isn’t costly; this just means that without the threat of having funding pulled, they have a better chance of learning from their mistakes. Whatever Virgin is doing in the wake of this tragedy, people need to start seriously thinking about how space tourism will affect their lives and how it’s about to change the world.


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*by andreascy*

All The Things You Should Know About Windows 10

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Helloooo everyone! Happy Monday... Happy new day... Happy new week... :) 

If you’re an avid PC user then you are probably familiar with one of the most popular operating systems Microsoft Windows. As you might have guessed, Microsoft has its newest version of Windows (Windows 10) just on the horizon and will be released to the public in late - 2015. 

All The Things You Should Know About Windows 10

The new version doesn’t necessarily mean a new user interface. If anyone is familiar with Windows 7 and Windows 8 they may be pleasantly surprised by this updated version. Windows 10 promises to ‘blend’ the two, making for a richer user experience.

What To Expect 

 1. Windows 10 is going to be available on all devices (laptops, desktops, smartphones, phablets and tablets). This will make it easier to access the “Internet of Things” and communicate with everyday appliances. There’s also been talk of integrating the Xbox system into it as well. Microsoft aims to make the interface as similar as possible, across all media devices (by creating universal apps). 

2. Windows 10 will bring back the Start Menu (bigger, better, stronger) with a customizable space for apps. This should make a lot of Windows 8 users happy since there were many complaints about it's “migration". 

3. There is also a new “quadrant” layout system, making it easy to quickly snap-arrange (side by side) 4 apps to a screen. 

4. Windows 10 comes with new touch features for interfaces and environments.

5. Microsoft is also introducing ‘Continuum’, a new system which makes for a more seamless experience between the tablet/laptop combos (switch between touch and non-touch). 

6. Another Windows feature from the past is the command prompt. This updated version is making a comeback and even allows copying and pasting.

7. Internet Explorer is dead! Spartan (codename) Browser, a Microsoft alternative to IE, is here.

8. Windows 10 is clearly targeting Enterprise users through Windows Software Assurance (SA) program.

9. Microsoft takes serious security measures with two-factor-authentication (2FA), storing user access tokens and offering data loss prevention solutions.

10. Finally there's a support for multiple desktops. But... we're going to need bigger screens.

11. Microsoft brings Cortana, its digital assistant, to the desktop supporting features like calling people, reminders, mapping and location, checking weather information and launching apps.

12. Microsoft's HoloLens (Holographic Glasses) with Windows 10 will deliver a next-gen computing experience.

More Information

As of right now the only version that is offering a smooth install is Windows 8.1, so make sure to check with the Compatibility Center before you install Windows 10. Microsoft is also warning that it's not for new users. If you don’t know what an ISO file is, or have a separate computer to install it on, stick with your current version. Because is in its pre-release stages (Technical Preview, Build 9926), it’s going to have bugs in it (some things about the interface may even change). Users can expect a friendlier version upon release, but for now it’s still a work in progress. 

 You should also sign up with the Windows Insider Program. All this really does is absolve Microsoft from any responsibility of deleting anything important off your computer. Just like previous versions of Windows, this will get regular updates as well. 

Another thing to take into consideration is that it's a 4GB download. There is a 32 and 64-bit version available and in several different languages. You’re also going to need a USB drive or a DVD with 4GB of space on it. ImgBurn and Rufus are the two programs recommended for copying the OS to a drive. And if you want a sneak peek then you better get on it. The pre-release version is only going to be available until April 2015.

One other great thing is that you don’t need to invest in hardware upgrades to be able to use the new software. If your PC can handle Windows 8.1 then the Windows 10 Preview shouldn’t be a problem. Your processor needs to be 1GHz or faster and 1GB of memory for the 32 bit version. If you have the 64 bit version then you’re going to need 2GB or memory. Lastly make sure that you have 16GB of free space on your hard drive.

You can never go back. Once you have Windows 10 installed on your computer, you won’t be able to use your recovery partition to downgrade to a previous version of Windows. The only way to downgrade will be to wipe Windows 10 from your system, and do a re-install of the previous version. This is another reason having a back up PC is important, if you make a mistake you can just start over or have all your information safe and backed up


Since it’s in the early stages, Windows 10 may not be the right choice for your system just yet. But the changes that Microsoft is incorporating suggest they are paying more attention to the consumer this time around. Your best bet is to stick with your most recent version of Windows, let them work out all the kinks and then purchase it. It’s even a good idea to wait a month or two after the initial release. New software is always going to be a bit buggy right after launch no matter how much testing is done. 


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*by andreascy*

Let's talk about Ello, the New Social Network

Description :

Hello there my friends, hope you're gearing up for the holiday season. We want to thank you for your ongoing engagement and support around The *Official AndreasCY*. You showed us your symbolic interest and loyalty in the technology and community. Thanks for everything!

So, what is this 'Ello' everyone's talking about? 

It's a new social network, being called the “anti-Facebook”, that was birthed by a small group of designers and artists. The draw of Ello is its promise to remain ad free and not sell users data to third parties.

Let's talk about Ello, the New Social Network

Nearly every popular social network is run by ad revenue 

There are many people whose only job is to record your every move online. These are data miners and ad salesmen. Creepy huh? Your information is being auctioned off to the highest bidder. Not only that, but they are reading your posts and keeping tabs on your social connections. All of this is made possible by the service being offered to the user for “free”. Seth Levine, one of Ello’s backers, is so serious about keeping users data private and the network ad free, that if they can’t do things that way they simply “won’t build a business”.

Despite the recent cynicism from the press and naysayers, founder and CEO Paul Budnitz is not budging on his promise to keep the platform ad free. Also the company has filed as a Public Benefit Cooperation, which legally binds them from showing ads, selling user data to a third party, or selling the company to someone that plans on doing so. The long term business plan that his company has put in place, is said to be lucrative as well as principled.

What started out as a private network, has now become public

The social network launched on Aug. 7 with only 90 users and its growth reached viral status shortly after its launch. Once people caught wind of Ello, they wanted in; so a public version was created. Within a week they had grown to where they thought they would be in 6 months (they had reached a steady 40,000 to 50,000 requests an hour). At one point they had to put sign-ups on hold, just to make sure that the site was up to the task of taking on so many users at once. Not to mention this is an invite only network. One can only assume that the everyday user is enticed by the idea of a truly ad free network, that doesn’t sell your information to third parties. 

This growth is partially attributed to Facebook’s recent crackdown on fake names. Ello allows fake names. With no shortage of users or investors, the company seems to be becoming a fierce competitor, in the social network arena. In its most recent round of investing the company has generated $5.5 million in Venture Capitalist’s revenue. Budnitz’s inbox has a new VC everyday that wants to invest in Ello. So the recent claims about Ello not making enough money seems pretty laughable. 

Also with the recent acquisition of $5.5 million in funds, the company plans on being profitable very soon. Ello plans on making its revenue for expansion directly from its users. It is free to join but later Ello plans on releasing some Premium features that can be accessed for a small price. Actually many apps on the market offer free versions of their app and additional features, for a small fee.

Do you Ello?

Right now this is an invite only site. If you can’t wait for an invite then you can go to their homepage and request one. The ones who get in are allotted a certain amount of invitations, usually about 5 to 10. The goal is not to sign up everybody in the world, or even to be a competitor of Facebook, but simply to build a nice community.

So far the social network has chosen to go with a very simple design and color scheme. When users log on, they see a black and white scroll down layout. This is where the user can post status updates, pictures, links and comment on other users’ posts. Their contacts are divided into 2 columns, Friends and Noise and the user can switch between the different “feeds” with the click of a button. 

Conclusion 

Since Ello is just in its early stages, what it is going to grow into, is anybody’s guess. Only time will tell if this is truly a niche market or just a trend. Similar platforms have seen major growth, only to be abandoned in droves, months or years later; remember MySpace? In any case if you’re not into having your every little move tracked, Ello is a perfect alternative. While the popularity may only be short-lived, Ello’s promise to uphold its credo, shall not be.


What are your experiences so far? Post them below. 

*by andreascy*

Furious 7: The Fast Boys Are Back With An Epic Trailer

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Hello guys. How are you? If you have been around for the last decade or so then you’ll probably remember a little film called The Fast and The Furious. Here we are 13 years later and the franchise is still going strong! 

Furious 7 has been one of this year’s most anticipated films. The fans are interested to see what new direction the producers are going to take the film, after suffering the loss of one of its main characters; Brian O’ Conner, played by Paul Walker.

Furious 7: The Fast Boys are back with an Epic Trailer

Walker was killed in a high-speed car crash in November of 2013 and the producers, finished filming and wrapped up, despite his death. Walker’s brothers were enlisted to help with key scenes in the movie. One can’t help but think of the recent tragedy involving Heath Ledgers passing, during the production of The Dark Night. The cast and crew for Furious 7 has been together for so long and the Vin Diesel, one of the producers, often referred to the crew as "family". Paul, Tyrese and Vin were all very close; both on and off screen.

But... the show must go on right? Fans were treated to a trailer that can only be summed up in one word: EPIC. If the film promises to be as action packed as the preview, then get ready for a visual feast. The movie is set to hit theaters April 2015 and has already generated a huge buzz.

The Plot:

In this film, the team ends up in Tokyo after learning of their friend Han’s death. They meet Sean Boswell who was also friends with Han. Teaming up with Boswell and some extra allies, they set out to find the person responsible for murdering Han. Enter Ian Shaw, played by Jason Statham.

Furious 7: The Fast Boys are back with an Epic Trailer

Jason Statham (the older brother of Owen Shaw, the bad guy from Fast 6) joins the Furious 7 entourage as, the new villain that the cast faces off against. As you may have guessed Shaw is hunting the crew down to avenge the death of his younger brother. Statham is a seasoned action movie star and should be able to hold his own when it comes to the action sequences.

Another addition to the cast is Kurt Russell. He is seen for a brief moment in the preview and has a somewhat ominous air about him. From the 3 seconds he’s in the preview, one can already tell that his character is hard to get a bead on. Russell has even said that his character is staged to be suspicious. He can be seen, kind of, mentoring Dominc Toretto in the preview, so the film may play out the misplaced trust notion. This is just speculation, no spoilers. 

Furious 7: The Fast Boys are back with an Epic Trailer

With the passing of Paul Walker, one of the most asked questions by the fans is; what is going to be the fate of Brian O’ Conner? It turns out that O’ Conner will get fitting send off. 

Writer Chris Morgan and director James Wan are reworking the script and using previously shot footage of Walker, to give him a suiting farewell. This will still allow the franchise to continue and, if they want to risk it, they can maybe bring O’ Conner back for a cameo or still involve him with the story in some way. There has even been talk of bringing Paul’s brother Cody on, as a new addition to the crew. In the meantime Walker’s other brother Caleb will be filling in for Paul’s scenes.

Furious 7: The Fast Boys are back with an Epic Trailer

The whole process is a really fine line to tread. On the one hand there is a movie that needs to be finished, but in a way that leaves the fans satisfied. On the other hand, no one wants to disrespect the memory of Paul Walker. Giving him a “send off into the sunset” seems like a win-win for everyone.

Furious 7 kicks off with action and story right out of the gate. Two members of the crew are now dead and Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) is injured. Fans can only assume that the story is building up to O’ Conner’s farewell. Dark, would be going a bit too far to describe the tone of this movie, perhaps pensive is a bit better. The fans will get a sense that the family Dominic has worked hard to put together, isn’t as ‘bulletproof’ as they used to be.


Despite the passing of Paul Walker being a huge tragedy, the film looks as though it will not disappoint and be a fitting final role. I'm looking forward to this, for sure. Can't wait!


The community is the lifeblood of this website. If you enjoyed this article, please consider sharing it via a social site or leaving a comment below. 

*by andreascy*


5 Keys To Launching A Startup

Description :

Launching a new business can be both exciting and intimidating. It’s exciting because it is introducing something new into the world. At the same time, it’s intimidating because there are numerous unknown factors to consider, complex concepts to learn, and dreams to validate.

5 Keys To Launching A Startup

One way to get to a good start when it comes to launching your own business is to find out if it’s a good idea, create a plan, build a team, use good technology, and model best practices.

1. Find out if it’s a good idea

A business idea worth pursing has to be validated. There has to be a market for the product or service. Customers should either want or need it. The vision has to align with the opportunity. Besides validating the idea, you should also research the scope of the idea. Can the idea be improved, scaled up, or adapted to different markets?

2. Create a business plan

Your business plan is a formalized decision-making process about mission and values, business structure and revenues. These plans will serve as a blueprint to raise money and shape policies. When setting up the proposed budget, it’s a good idea to assume zero profits in the first year of operations. This does not mean that there will be no profits; it just means that should things not go according to plan, there will be enough money available to pay the rent, keep the lights on, and retain employees.

3. Build a core team 

Despite the prevailing myth about the self-made man or woman, all businesses are actually a team effort. You should build a core team early to design the business’s philosophy. It’s essential to build this team built around shared values, aspirations, and ideals because a team that lacks a unified perspective faces the risk of falling apart due to dissension. A cohesive team will work together to evolve the groundbreaking decisions necessary to launch and grow a new business.

4. Use good technology

Technology is no longer something to add to a business. It is more like one of the foundations of business. Like office walls and furniture, technology is essential to the infrastructure of a business. Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of MegaPath, a company that builds Ethernet-based networks, summed up the intrinsic value of technology in a business when he said, “In today’s competitive environment, businesses require solutions that help them improve the way they do business, while reducing costs,”.

5. Model best practices

While your initial research may have validated that your idea is a feasible one, you will get a head start if you model the best practices of those in the same or similar fields. This will give you a template to work from as you develop your business. There is no point wasting time and money reinventing the wheel. Instead, use the knowledge and wisdom gained from others who have gone before you. This borrowed model will help to shape and reshape your own business model. A model is not about imitating what other businesses are doing but about observing what works and what does not work. Additionally, a model need not be derived entirely from a single business. It could be a compilation of different businesses. 

Summary

By finding out if your inspired vision is a good idea, creating a plan, building a core team, using good technology, and modeling the best practices of other businesses, you are taking practical steps to develop a firm foundation for the success of your business.

*by andreascy*

10 Gadgets to Help You Catch More Fish

Description :

Fishing has changed dramatically over the past decade with the increasing popularity of smartphones and other technology. Even those who have strongly resisted the change are giving into the pressure to adapt. Once there is a smartphone in your pocket, it's difficult to keep refusing time-saving, fish-catching options. 

10 Gadgets to Help You Catch More Fish

Here are 10 tech tools that will make your outing both safer and more successful without ruining the great outdoors.

Find Where to Go

Fishing Hot Spots Maps: It's an old tool in a new format. You no longer have to track down paper maps for the water you want to fish but rather this company provides digital maps for both freshwater and saltwater. You can even get maps that work with older units and handheld devices.

The Fishidy Mobile App: This app provides maps as well as a community for sharing tips and up-to-date reports. You can track your fishing successes on a map using GPS in addition to identifying water depths, underwater contours and fishery data.

Learn How to Get There

Broadband RADAR: This tool boasts that it is the most significant radar breakthrough since 1940. It has much lower power requirements and crystal clear images, which helps for limited visibility situations or tight maneuvering. Plus, it does not require a license.

SIMRAD: This tool is very similar to Broadband RADAR. It also has clear imagery, low power consumption and low emissions. Whether you combine navigation with your fishfinder or separate the two, broadband technology is taking hold quickly.

Locate the Fish

Lowrance HDS-5x Gen2: There are plenty of fishfinder models to choose from, but the new Gen2 model uses a broadband sounder, supports wireless signals and uses Spotlight Scan Sonar, making it a top-notch gadget.

Raymarine Dragonfly: For CHIRP (Compressed High-Intensity Radiated Pulse) lovers, Raymarine Dragonfly is the tool for you. This new unit delivers incredibly clear images and includes Navionics charts on microSD in addition to a temperature sensor and 50-channel GPS.

Play it Safe

Iridium Satellite PhoneWhether speaking with family or getting out an emergency call to the Coast Guard, you can always contact land and other satellite-equipped vessels when you pack a satellite phone. They also claim that their call quality is three times better than their competitor's.

C-pod Security: The C-pod sends current status information about location, heading, intrusion, battery voltage and other vital statistics to your phone or computer. Remote on/off capability allows you to be in control of C-pod sensors from the helm.

Stay in the Game

XPand: If you are you taking a green seafarer along on the next voyage, consider the Xpand anti-motion sickness glasses to keep queasiness at bay. Pills and patches often cause drowsiness and confusion, but the sunglasses use electro-optical systems to reduce motion sickness in a noninvasive way. They are powered by a rechargeable lithium-ion polymer cell.

Gomadic Solar Charger: Stay prepared with a solar charger to keep any of these gadgets charged and ready to use. It can charge multiple devices simultaneously, and does it just as quickly as a wall outlet would.

Prices in each category can vary widely, so be sure to do your homework. Many times you can cut back on features to make a tool better fit the budget. Yesterday's top-dollar fishfinder or navigation aid, for instance, can often be found at rock bottom prices as others switch to broadband units. So, get ready, be prepared and fish on!

SEE ALSO: Science Nation - Electric Fish Charges up Research on Animal Behavior

Join the discussion by posting a comment below or tweeting #OFFICIALANDREASCY. Let me know what you think.

*by andreascy*

The Battle between Windows, Chromebook and Mac

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Hi friends! We are friends by now, right? If you haven't before, I would be grateful if you follow our page on Twitter. Please share with others. 

Chances are that you’re already quite familiar with all the options that the technological world provides us when it comes to computers and their operating system. 

The Battle between Windows, Chromebook and Mac: Which one is best

In stores, you have a choice between 3 operating systems: OS X by Apple, Chrome OS by search engine giant Google, and Windows from former software monopoly Microsoft. Each OS has their own pros and cons, and when choosing the right fit for you, there are a few things to consider for each one of them. 

Windows

Everyone has probably used a Windows computer at least once in their life. Windows is still the most popular operating system out there, used by companies, governments, and individuals worldwide. Because of its huge user base, Windows has an advantage over the other OS’s, as almost all software on the internet is made for Windows. Another pro of Windows is its usability. Just about everyone is able to use a Windows computer. A final pro is that you have a wide variety of choices when it comes to the computer that runs the OS.

Microsoft Canada

But on the con side, Windows needs a lot of extras when it comes to security. Its big user base makes it a target for hackers, and it’s incredibly easy to get a virus when surfing the web. Physically, Windows computers are quite heavy when you compare them to Chromebooks and MacBooks. Finally, most of the best working Windows computers are above the $400 mark. This doesn’t exactly make it the most affordable computer out there. 

Chromebooks

When comparing Chromebooks and Chrome OS with that of the big guys (Windows and Apple), Google’s computer is still in diapers. Nevertheless, it is growing rapidly in popularity. Chrome OS is based entirely around Google’s web server, Chrome, and this is both a gift and a curse. It’s a gift in that everything goes directly into the cloud, making it impossible for you to lose files even when something happens to the computer itself. Another reason it’s a gift is its usability. Even your grandmother could handle a Chromebook! It’s nowhere near as frustrating as using a Windows computer can be for the older generation. A Chromebook is also highly affordable, with most computers sold at under $400. The screen quality is way better than that of a MacBook. 

However, as I mentioned before, the way the Chrome OS runs is also a curse. You are unable to download any software or hardware onto your Chromebook, and while you are able to make a lot of apps available offline, it definitely can be a pain in the ass. Another definite con of the Chromebook is that you can’t fully download Skype. If you want to use Skype, you have to make do with the IM+ messenger, which comes without the option for video calls. For those of you who can’t live without video calls, there is the option of Hangouts, Google’s very own version of Skype. Google Hangouts comes with a few extras, like free group calls and the ability to draw on the person you’re calling with. 

MacBooks

When Apple decided to make the MacBook Air, they were aiming for something portable and high performance, with a great design and usability. An Apple MacBook is often the first choice for designers, graphic artists, and anyone else who has made it their job to bring you high quality media. All of your files, pictures, etc. get stored into iCloud, which makes it incredibly easy to transfer a file from one device to another. MacBooks are lightweight, which makes them great for travel or just moving about at home. 

The biggest con of MacBooks is their price. Apple has always been about the exclusive feel that you get from their products, and the MacBook Air is the perfect example of this. Prices range from $800 to $3000. So, is it worth the price? Yes, it can be. Contrary to popular belief, Mac OS X is not immune to viruses. The threat just isn’t as big, because like stated before, most hackers focus on Windows computers. Just as with Apple’s other products (like the iPhone and the iPod), it is nearly impossible to make any changes to the MacBook itself, which can be a little impractical when it comes to having to change the battery or upgrading the internal storage space. 

So which one is the best?

That is up to you to decide. Don’t mind a computer that’s completely based around internet and Google? Then the Chromebook will be a great choice for you. Are you a gamer, or do you like to mess around a bit? Then the obvious choice for you is a Windows laptop. A designer or artist? The MacBook is your perfect match.

*by andreascy*


Cars Of Tomorrow: 3 Technological Advances That Will Change Driving

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The cost of gasoline has steadily risen since the economic crash of 2008, and car manufacturers have responded by making more fuel efficient vehicles. Toyota and BMW formally agreed to collaborate on perfecting hydrogen fuel technology in 2013, while Ford, Nissan, and Daimler said they would team up to completely revolutionize fuel cells in their vehicles by 2017, according to the Economist. 

New car technology is usually dictated by economic conditions or public demand. The 1973 oil embargo by several OPEC member nations caused long lines at the pump, while a barrel of oil quadrupled in price within a 12 month period. The following year GM, Ford and Chrysler all made cruise control a mainstream option for their vehicles to help drivers save gas, while lawmakers pushed conservation and domestic energy efforts, including the enactment of the national 55 mph speed limit in 1973. 

Cars Of Tomorrow: 3 Technological Advances That Will Change Driving

The technology of tomorrow will continue to make cars more efficient and safe, and will bring more comfort and convenience to the driver. These three features are the next big advances that will soon be just as common as rear-view mirrors in most U.S.-made vehicles:

Forward Collision Avoidance Systems

Most DMV practice tests online will advise drivers to keep a safe following distance of about 3 seconds between your car and the one ahead of you. But new technology will soon remove human judgment from the driving equation altogether.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) estimates forward-collision avoidance systems reduce crashes by up to 7 percent, and up to 14 percent if they include auto-braking features. An alarm will sound when the system senses the speed and trajectory of a vehicle is likely to lead to some type of collision. The IIHS rates all manufacturer system, from basic to superior, based on its capabilities.

A basic rating, for instance, is given to vehicles that meet the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's criteria on at least 5 of 7 test runs. There are 74 vehicles with forward-collision avoidance systems, including the 2014 models of the Cadillac ATS, Mercedes C-Class Sedan and Subaru Legacy, that have earned the organization's advanced rating. The 2014 Acura MDX SUV and 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee Cherokee are among the models with superior ratings.

David Zuby, the chief research officer for IIHS, said auto-braking features will help inattentive and older drivers avoid fender benders, and ultimately lower insurance costs.

Camless Engines

A typical four-stroke piston engine utilizes camshafts to run the followers and open the valves that regulate gasoline flow. But if Christian von Koenigsegg of Sweden's Koenigsegg Automotive has his way, camshafts will be a thing of the past by 2020. He told Jalopnik.com at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show that his company has been working on a camless engine for several years and believes it will be the rule rather than the exception for automobiles in the near future.

All the valves in a camless engine will function independently, translating to better fuel efficiency and horse power. Several manufacturers, including BMW, GM, and Ford have been tinkering with the idea, but it appears the technology may still be a few years away from being available to the masses.

Cargines and LaunchPoint Technologies are currently the leaders in camless engines. Brian Paden, the lead designer for the LaunchPoint, told Car-Engineer.com that this type of valve timing technology will increase fuel efficiency by 20 percent, reduce emissions by 10 percent, and improve torque by up to 13 percent.

Hands-Free Driving

The Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers predicts 60 percent of cars will be connected to the Internet by 2025. This first step is essential to the organization's other major prediction: that 75 percent of vehicles will be self-driving by 2040.

Autonomous cars not only have to be able to communicate with one another, but also with the satellites that safely route them. These vehicles will enable blind individuals, along with the handicapped and elderly, to drive to the grocery store and even take cross-country road trips. Google announced in April that its driverless technology completed over 700,000 miles of driving without an accident.

The National Highway and Safety Administration estimates car accidents cost the country nearly $900 billion a year. The International Organsation for Road Accident Prevention estimates more than 90 percent of accidents are caused by human error. Driverless technology can eliminate most accidents, the need for traffic lights, and lower insurance premiums for all drivers.

Driverless vehicles are currently only being tested in the states of California, Nevada, Michigan, and Florida.

SEE ALSO: Top 10 Best Cars of 2014 Under $60K

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*by andreascy*