Along with the release of “Halo 3” and the unfortunate postponement of “GTA IV”, one of the biggest video game stories of the year is the saga of Rockstar’s “Manhunt 2”. First, it was banned in England due to its graphic violence. Then it was given the kiss-of-death “Adults Only” rating here in the US by the ESRB. Sony and Nintendo do not release games with that rating—and they’re not carried by Blockbuster and Walmart. Undaunted, Rockstar made some revisions, and eventually the game received a “Mature” rating.
So now “Manhunt 2” is available in stores for Nintendo Wii, Playstation 2 and PSP. Having followed the saga, and very curious about the game’s content (plus I’m a huge fan of previous Rockstar games), I made it my business to rent the Wii version and play it. Having never played the original “Manhunt”—and not being a fan of stealth games—I had little idea what to expect. After completing the tutorial of Wiimote and Nunchuk moves (which includes some very funny, if grisly, sound effects), I dove in.
Apple has just unleashed updates for iTunes and QuickTime, and both are available now through Software Update on OS X and Windows, as well as through the Apple website. Here are the changes in iTunes, according to Apple:
iTunes 7.5 features the ability to activate iPhone wherever service is offered and support for Phase, a new interactive music game designed exclusively for iPod nano (third generation), iPod classic, and iPod (fifth generation). This release also includes bug fixes to improve stability and performance.
And as for QuickTime:
QuickTime 7.3 addresses critical security issues and delivers:
- Support for iTunes 7.5
- Updated support for creating iPhone-compatible web content
- Numerous bug fixes
This release is recommended for all QuickTime 7 users.
If you’d like more detailed into on the security content of the update, hit the link below.
Read More | QuickTime 7.3 Update Notes
Alright, let’s take a break for just a moment away from the standard news fare. We know that you guys love the gadgets, gizmos, and consumer electronics just as much as we do. These expensive and cool toys are often a marvel when you break them down to the technology that drives them. That’s what makes what we do fun, and why we love the interaction we have with our readers. However, we want to focus a bit of attention on the young ones in our country who would be happy to have a calculator for use in class, and the teachers who work for districts that can’t afford things like projectors for use in their schools.
Gear Live has joined the 2007 DonorsChoose Blogger Challenge, and we have chosen ten great causes that are centered around getting some basic technology into classrooms located in our local area, as well as some of the hardest areas still suffering the affects of Hurricane Katrina. We’ve chosen ten causes that we thought touched on what we believed in, and you can take a look at them and choose which one(s) you want to help. Our goal is to raise $10,000 for the children of our nation. Just know that the money you donate will go directly to that specific teacher request - not into some big pot of money that is then doled out by the organization. As donations come in, there meter over on the right will fill up.
Some of the most expensive purchases for schools are consumer electronics. We believe that all children need to get acquainted with the tools of the future as they learn so they when they are ready to hit the workforce, they can succeed alongside their peers. Please, help us in assisting teachers, children, and schools in low-income areas get the tools they need to help their children excel.
Read More | Gear Live Gives Back
Midway announced today in a press release that the PlayStation 3 version of Unreal Tournament 3, originally scheduled to release with the PC version this November as a timed console exclusive, isn’t expected to be released until the first quarter of 2008. David F. Zucker, president and CEO of Midway, said he regretted having to lose the holiday sales from the delays but said, “[W]e remain confident that our technology strategy and product plan position us to grow both revenue and market share as we move into the heart of this console cycle.”
Developer Epic Games’ Mark Rein said in a forum post that the press release included UT3 as an obligation to investors and said that he was still optimistic about a 2007 release, but that they wouldn’t ship until the game was ready and “the best game (they could) deliver.” He also confirmed that the PC version, due out in November, was still on schedule to ship as planned.
Why is it that Sony keeps pumping out new products before anyone else? We are beginning to think that they keep clever people holed up in windowless think tanks and working 22 hours a day. Their latest contribution to home entertainment is an ultra-thin TV with OLED to produce a 3mm thick screen. OLEDs are brighter than LCD panels and have better contrast ratio and sharper images. Sony’s president Ryoji Chubachi says, “I want this world’s first OLED TV to be the symbol of the revival of Sony’s technological prowess.”
We hope so too, for their sake, but other companies, such as Samsung, are also working on the technology. Sony’s TV has an 11-inch display and will become available in Japan for ~$1,735.00 beginning December 1.
Read More | BBC
We have even more video goodness for you from the HP Your Life is the Show event. This time we talk with David Fishman about the brand new line of HP iPaq handhelds. Specifically, we’re talking about the iPaq 100 Series, iPaq 200 Series, iPaq 310 GPS, iPaq 600 Series cell phone, and iPaq 900 Series smartphone. All good stuff. Let us know what you think, and stay tuned for one more video more from the Your Life is the Show event.
A few days ago we mentioned that we had some cool video content coming to you by way of HP. Time to deliver. In this episode, we speak with HP’s Phil McKinney, the main man behind the Blackbird 002. If you haven’t heard, the Blackbird 002 is a project that HP has spent a long time on, and with great purpose - this is the PC to get if you are a big hardcore PC gamer. In an unconventional move, HP did away with the proprietary parts, and instead focused on what exactly it was that gamers wanted out of a PC. This thing is configurable to no end, inside and out. You can even get it with water-cooling on both the CPU and GPU. As you can tell, a lot of this is the result of HP and Voodoo PC coming together. Rather than continue blathering on about it, we will let the video do the talking. Enjoy the footage, and stay tuned for more from the Your Life is the Show event.
We know that plenty of our readers have been waiting anxiously for Halo 3 to drop, and Microsoft just threw us all a bone today with the Xbox 360 Halo 3 Special Edition console. And yes, that is the entire name of the unit. While it won’t satiate your appetite for Halo 3 gaming goodness (that happens in a little over a week,) it really is a sweet looking piece of machinery. We got our hands on one today, and naturally, took a bunch of unboxing images for your viewing pleasure - 41 in total. We give you a look at everything that comes in the box in our Halo 3 Xbox 360 unboxing gallery, but for a quick glance, this is what you get for $399 USD:
- Halo 3 Special Edition Console
- Halo 3 Special Edition Wireless Controller
- Halo 3 Special Edition 20GB Hard Drive
- Halo 3 Special Edition Wired Headset
- Halo 3 Special Edition Gamer Pics and Theme (Exclusive download via Xbox LIVE)
- Component HD AV Cable
- Ethernet Cable
- HDMI Port
- Play & Charge Kit
- Xbox LIVE Silver Membership
- One-month Xbox LIVE Gold Membership
Don’t forget to hit the gallery for all the images.
Read More | Xbox 360 Halo 3 Special Edition Unboxing Gallery
In this episode of Unboxing Live, we show you the new Apple iMac. The new aluminum and glass iMac was announced yesterday, and we were able to get our hands on one for your (and our) unboxing pleasure. We show you the new iMac, along with everything else that is packed in, including the newly redesigned Apple keyboard.
Let us know what you think, or what you want us to unbox next!
Robert and Maryam are speaking on getting noticed in the new word-of-mouth network.
1) Blog because you want to. A story without live is not worth telling. Maryam talks about how Robert kept pushing her to blog for four years. Then one day, she started to blog. As soon as she started, she was blogging about Robert and he tried to get her to stop talking about him on her blog.
If you are blogging about something you don’t really care about because you think it’s profitable, you won’t have passion to go long-term.
2) Read other blogs. Use Technorati to find blogs that are similar to the topics you want to discuss, pick up writing styles, and learn about your competitors. If you read 50 blogs in two weeks and you aren’t compelled to answer back the things that you are reading, you probably won’t be a good blogger.
Maryam started blogging because she was going to a lot of conferences, but people told her they had no way of linking to her. It brings out community and a bond that she hadn’t experienced before. Through blogging she has gotten a much better job and has made a lot more friends. She loves it.
3) Pick a niche you can own - be different. There are two kinds of bloggers - ones that want to make things, and shake things. Others just want to talk to their friends and use their blogs to post baby pictures, talk about books they read, etc. Either way, each group should have a common set of values. When Robert visited people outside of Silicon Valley, he studied the way people use their computers. People go to Google and search for Yahoo because they want to get to Yahoo. Same for Yahoo, one of their top terms is Google.
Normal people outside the tech world aren’t using things like Google Maps, Google Groups, or Picasa. Everyone comes at this world through the search engine, so how do they interact with that?
Question - if you were to pick a category to be different in, would that be the tech category? Yes, it would be hard, but Mike Arrington came in late to the game and went to number one. He was also very focused on a very specific part of the tech industry, being Web 2.0.
There was a niche blogger in London who talks about the London Underground transportation system. After the London bombing, everyone hit her site, and now she is popular. Of course, we don’t want to have a terrorist act happen to make us famous, but you get the point.
© Gear Live Inc. – User-posted content, unless source is quoted, is licensed under a Creative Commons Public Domain License. Gear Live graphics, logos, designs, page headers, button icons, videos, articles, blogs, forums, scripts and other service names are the trademarks of Gear Live Inc.