Back in 2000, countless moms, dads, and teenagers stood in line for hours to be among the first to take home a brand new Playstation 2. Almost immediately, the gaming system sold out across the world, opening up plenty of opportunities for scammers to swindle desperate parents in fake eBay deals. Months later, once supply caught up with demand, millions of homes sported a brand new, state-of-the-art gaming system. The PS2 not only featured amazing graphics unlike any seen before, it also doubled as a DVD player. Back then, DVD players were also relatively new, so this was a big deal for those looking to save a little money by combining two systems into one. Kind of like how now the PS3 also doubles as a Blu-Ray player.
Angry Birds, a little free game app created by Rovio, is taking the world by storm. What started as a casual game of slinging very grumpy birds at felonious, kidnapping pigs branched out into a massive franchise practically overnight. From spin-offs to board games to plush animals, t-shirts, toys, and more, you could theoretically deck out your entire house in Angry Birds merchandise. When something hits the big-time on that grand of a scale, it inevitably also hits the big screen in a film version. Angry Birds is no exception, and the rumors of a movie have been proven true, but don’t expect to see it until around 2016.
The recent school shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut was a horrible tragedy. Adam Lanza, for reasons that are still unknown, open-fired and killed 26 young children and ten adults in what is being called the worst school shooting in American history. When something this tragic happens, everyone starts looking for a reason. What made 20-year-old Adam lose his mind and kill over three dozen innocent people? Was it a mental disorder? Bad parenting? Too easy access to weapons? No one really knows, and likely never will. When tragedy strikes, the reason behind it rarely makes sense.
Wearable computers are moving out of the realm of science fiction movies and into the real world…and straight onto bodies everywhere. At least they will be in about three more years or so, according to Sarah Rotman Epps, a senior product strategist analyst at Forester Research. By then, wearable computers may be as common as iPhones, laptops, and tablets.
Computers are already being worn in many ways right now. In the fitness industry, there are monitors that can tell how many calories you’ve burned, devices that electronically count your steps, and shoes that tell you how much you weigh. Fashionable USB flash drives are a big thing already, and even virtual reality glasses are making leaps and bounds. While many wearable computers will have the potential to make lives easier, at what cost will that convenience come?
Nintendo’s newest gaming system, Wii U, released on November 18th and flew out of the stores as fast as they came in, despite some majors issues with the firmware updates. While the basic gaming system retails for $299, and the deluxe for $399, third-party sellers on Amazon are already listing the basic system at over $500. Expect to see that number rise as shoppers who just can’t hold off until supply catches up with demand plunk down much more than the system is worth for the new Wii U gaming experience.
The Many Ways to Play with Wii U
Nintendo pretty much revolutionized gaming with the original Wii system, which featured a motion detector that really allowed players to get up and get moving along with their characters. Of course, it didn’t take long for XBOX and PlayStation to catch up with their own versions. . Although it can be argued that PlayStation’s Eye-Candy really started the whole trend), Nintendo really does deserve the recognition for popularizing this style of gaming.
Now, Nintendo wants to revolutionize the industry once again with the Wii U system. Just what’s so different about Wii U? For one thing, it offers several ways to enjoy the system. Rather than just slapping a console on your entertainment system and accessing control through a complicated controller, the controller itself now becomes its own gaming system. You can:
Families and friends can also enjoy multiplayer games by using up to 4 original Wii controllers and the Gamepad, so a total of 5 people can share the fun.
The Gamepad itself has way more features than ever before seen on a controller or handheld gaming device. Use the onboard camera for in-game video chat, throw out your old TV remote and access the remote on the pad to change channels, and use the motion sensors in the device itself to get moving along with your characters. You can even make video calls to friends and families right through your TV.
The Wii U system is backward compatible, so you can still enjoy all those Wii games that are stacked up on your shelves. Plus the system comes loaded with fun apps (because these days, everything comes in app form) to get you started.
There’s no doubt that the Wii U is definitely going to be fun for the whole family, but if you’re expecting to snag one before Santa comes crashing down your chimney, don’t hold your breath. The chances of that happening are pretty darn slim.