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The Internet has been a godsend to gaming. Having an infrastructure in place to connect multiple systems together for collaborative or co-operative play has made millions of hours of entertainment possible and verified the art as a viable social pastime. However, the Internet has brought with it some of the biggest controversies of the modern technology era.

Over even just the past few months, the industry has been alive with controversy over DRM, stability and other Internet-related worries and the announcement of Microsoft’s Xbox One last week has sparked the latest batch of discussion. Today we’re going to take a look at some of these controversies and how they might be affecting our gameplay. (more…)

One day, you’re happily using a free app without a care in the world. The next day, you hear that the app has been bought out, and the whole world is panicking. All your friends are posting that they’re glad they didn’t use that app, or how they’re switching to another app and wish they’d switched sooner. And you’re wishing everything could just go back to normal.

But the internet’s a fast-paced place, and stuff changes faster than we’d ever expect. So what’s one to do in a world where apps become popular overnight, get bought out for billions, shut down on a whim, and lost to history in less time than a movie can get produced?

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It’s pretty clear that we’re moving to become a hyper-connected society. It’s no longer just activities like email and online gaming that are enhanced, or obstructed, by your connection. Instead, we’re increasing our reliance on apps and services for video, banking and even reading a book.

But what happens when the web breaks? When you have that power outage or, worse, when the server farm thousands of miles away does? Outages are a big obstruction to becoming a completely online society and it’s something we’re going to take a look at today. (more…)

When I first heard of App.net, the idea didn’t appeal to me. I’m not the kind of person who pays for a social network because I’m not that serious about chatting with people online. Sometimes Twitter is very useful, though. I use it to chat with a few people each day and even though I’ve taken breaks from it time to time, I always end up going back because I like the simplicity. That’s what App.net promised, along with a third-party API, so why wouldn’t I like it?

Since I didn’t want to pay for the service, I simply dismissed the thought of trying it out. Then a way to get free access was officially added. You have to be asked to the network by a current member, and there are limitations to storage and following counts. All in all, it sounded like a fair way for me to get a taste of this fresh site.

I was invited to this free tier by Andrew Kunesh, one of our other writers here at AppStorm. I’ve been using the service since the day its “freemium” version was announced, but I actually don’t use it every day. I’m going to explain what I like about App.net, followed by what’s holding me back from visiting the site every day. (more…)

Facebook today announced that it has prepared a fresh and more focused News Feed for its users. The updated design will include the usual timelines, along with four new ones: All Friends, Photos, Music, and Following. With this upcoming redesign, the social network hopes to make your online experience much simpler — it wants to be the social nucleus that you’ve been waiting for.

With that promise, it has a chance to win back users who left over the privacy complications and overall clutter the site has gathered over time. Is this audacious overhaul enough? (more…)

Yesterday, Google unveiled the latest addition to its Chromebook family: the Chromebook Pixel. Grabbing headlines with a starting sticker price of $1299, the device features a MacBook Pro-like high-resolution display and a price tag to match.

In this article, we’re going take a look at the Chromebook Pixel, how it stacks up to similar devices, and question why exactly the crew in Mountain View even bothered sending it to retail.

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Google.

For many people, Google is the internet. It is one of a handful of companies that have become part of everyday language of the young and old. I’ve grown up with Google, and recently realized just how many of the company’s tools I use on a daily basis. I’m not a fanboy, but I’m living in a Google world, and loving it.

It could be argued that Google has gained something of a monopoly, but even still, Google is a company that has earned a place in many people’s hearts. It is generally looked on rather affectionately, rather than with the suspicion that is reserved for Microsoft. That may be changing, but for me – and many others – it’d be hard to imagine life without many of the tools the company has produced.

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Ever seen a device advertised as coming with extra “cloud” storage? Depending on what device you buy, you’ll get 5-50Gb of free storage in iCloud, Skydrive, Box.net, Dropbox, Google Drive, or any number of other online storage services. Gmail amazed us all when it offered 1Gb inboxes when it first came out, but today, it seems that everyone is offering tens of gigs of storage for free, and ever-larger amounts for basic paid accounts.

And yet, when the Microsoft Surface Pro came out, everyone was dumbfounded to find it had so little local storage space free. It was advertised as coming with 10Gb of free online storage, so shouldn’t that help?

As anyone who’s use online storage enough knows, free online storage won’t help anything. (more…)

As a web developer, I have to keep track of an awful lot of things at work, not to mention my life and projects outside of work as well. With a wife and small child thrown into the mix I really have to make the most of my time! I need a way to ensure that the tasks that I have to do get done at the right time and in the right order and somehow still leave me time to enjoy being with my family.

I’ve tried a lot of different web apps for organisation and task management, and WorkFlowy is how I choose to organise a lot of my life, both inside and outside of work. I want to give you an insight into how I use it for everything from keeping up to date with my personal projects to keepings tabs on who has asked for what for Christmas. I’m not dictating how you should use it, as the beauty of it is that it is what you want it to be, I’m merely sharing my techniques for keeping track of things, hopefully there will be a few things that you haven’t thought of doing.
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App Stores are overflowing with native apps for the web apps we’ve grown to love: Facebook, Gmail, Evernote, Dropbox, WordPress, and more. It’s sometimes hard to choose between using a native app for a web service, and just opening it in another tab. Many of us end up downloading native apps for some of our web apps, as we found in this week’s poll, but sometimes, it’s just better to use the web app.

That’s what Mac.AppStorm writer Reid Leamaster found with his favorite task management app, Todoist. It’s a great todo list app that’s gotten even better since our last review, and he’s come to rely on it for his to-dos. The Todoist team recently made a new Mac app, but he found that the original web app was more powerful, and switched back to using it in Flow, an app-specific browser for the Mac.

Now there’s a nice new Mac app … wait, that’s a web app?!?

Head over to Mac.AppStorm to see how Reid uses Fluid to make Todoist’s web app even better, and if you have a Mac, be sure to try out using Fluid to turn web apps into native-like apps. On a PC, you can do much the same with Chrome’s Application Shortcuts.

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