Word Up! The Cotodama Lyric Speaker



The Cotodama Lyric speaker is one of those products that makes you go, “Whoa!” In fact, you’ll probably feel that way twice. First, although the Lyric is high fidelity speaker, it’s not what you hear but what you see that makes it special. Watch this.

Yes, the Cotodama Lyric displays the playing song’s lyrics on a semi-translucent display in time to the music. The speaker links with SyncPower Corporation (PetitLyrics), Japan’s largest lyrics database, recognises a song, analyses the mood and its “expression engine” to chooses fonts and animations to match so people can see the lyrics as the artist actually sings them.

For example if a slow love song is chosen, the Lyric speaker will react and show a more delicate font that drifts across the speaker. If no lyrics are found, or an instrumental song is played, the speaker shows abstract graphics that animate in sync with the music. No more singing the wrong words to the music!

The Lyric hails from Japan and each speaker is handmade. Consequently, only fifteen of these speakers are made each month. If you order one, there might be a little wait.

Jin Saito, CEO of Cotodama says, “In Japan, there is a culture of appreciating words themselves as art such as Shodo (calligraphy) and decorating your favourite words with Kakejiku (hanging scroll).Through making the Lyric speaker’s visuals with the artists and the programmers, we have strived to put Japanese aesthetics into our product and contribute to the world’s music industry.”

The Lyric Speaker uses Wi-Fi to connect to the free app which is compatible with Spotify, Apple Music, Deezer, Google Play, SoundCloud, Youtube, and other services. The speaker can play 96khz/24bit FLAC files, has a range of 40Hz to 40kHz, and has two coaxial loudspeakers and two drone cones.

Hopefully, you appreciate the first “Whoa!” The second is the price – it’s GB£4,320 and US$4,500. Whoa! More details and dealer contacts over at Cotodama Lyric Speaker.


God of War Launches in April on PS4



Cory Barlog, the creative director at Sony Interactive Entertainment’s Santa Monica Studio, announced on the PlayStation Blog that God of War will launch on the PS4 on April 20, 2018. You can pre-order God of War right now.

It’s a new beginning for Kratos. Living as a man, outside the shadow of the gods, he seeks solitude in the unfamiliar lands of Norse mythology. With new purpose and his son at his side, Kratos must fight for survival as powerful forces threaten to disrupt the new life he has created…

You can pre-order the Collector’s Edition, the Digital Deluxe Edition, and the Stone Mason Edition now. Those who preorder any edition at a supporting retailer will acquire three legendary shield skins for Kratos to use to bash and defend against all manner of creatures. Players will need internet connectivity to access the shield skins.

If you pre-order any edition of God of War at GameStop or EB Games, you will also receive the Luck of Ages XP Tailsman, which improves the wearer’s luck. It increases XP gain, increases Hacksilver gain, and increases the ability to trigger perks.

The God of War Digital Deluxe Edition is $69.99 USD / $89.99 CAD. Digital contents include: Death’s Vow Armor Set, Exile’s Guardian Shield Set, God of War Comic #0 by Dark Horse Comics, God of War Mini Artbook by Dark Horse Comics, and Dynamic Theme. Those who pre-order the Digital Deluxe Edition in the US and Canada receive an exclusive, limited-run God of War physical pin.

The God of War Collector’s Edition is $129.99 USD / $169.99 CAD. It comes with a 9” statue of Kratos and Atreus by Gentle Giant, a limited edition steelbook case, 2” Huldra Brothers Carvings, an exclusive Lithograph, a cloth map, and the full God of War game. It also includes everything in the Digital Deluxe Edition.

The God of War Stone Mason Edition is $149.99 USD / $199.99 CAD (EB Games Exclusive in Canada). It includes everything in the Collector’s Edition – plus four very distinct, rare items from the game. These include the Stone Mason Ring and the talking Mimir Head keychain.


Rust is Leaving Early Access



Rust, a game created by FacePunch Studios, is leaving Early Access. Rust was first created in 2013, and was originally being tested as a browser game. In December of 2013, FacePunch Studio released Rust on Steam in Early Access. The game has been in Early Access for years.

We plan to leave Early Access on the 8th of February 2018. We’re not planning any big reveals, launch parties, around the world tours or cash prize giveaways for this event. We’re not going to move staff onto other projects. It’s very much going to happen without much fuss. It’s business as usual.

Leaving Early Access does not mean that Rust is finished, or that it will disappear. They intend to keep updating and improving the game. The reason they left Early Access was to make the development more stable. Rust will be transitioning to monthly updates.

Players can help by continuing to play Rust. There will be two versions of it: Main Branch and Staging Branch. Main Branch will have monthly tested updates with smaller, irregular hotfixes between them. Staging Branch will be “bleeding edge” with daily updates. Players can have both versions installed at the same time.

Another thing to be aware of is that there will be a price change. The current price is $19.99. The new price will be $34.99. FacePunch Studio wanted players to be aware of that ahead of the change.


DJI Introduces Mavic Air Foldable Camera Drone



DJI, the world leader in civilian drones and aerial imaging technology, introduced the Mavic Air. It is an ultra-portable, foldable camera drone that delivers high performance, more intelligent features and greater creative possibilities than any other consumer drone.

Mavic Air was developed with the traveler and enthusiast in mind. It inherits the best features of DJI’s iconic Mavic series with a 4K camera for superior image quality, new QuickShot modes and SmartCapture for easier, more intelligent photo and video capturing, and FlightAutonomy 2.0 with Advanced Pilot Assistance Systems for smarter, safer, flight.

Weighing just 430 grams, Mavic Air is the most portable DJI drone ever created. Its folding arms and propellers sit flush against its slender aerodynamic frame, making it so compact that its footprint is nearly the size of a modern smartphone when folded.

Every aspect of Mavic Air’s camera has been designed for maximum performance. Its recessed three-axis mechanical gimbal is suspended from dampeners to further reduce vibration providing superior protection and steadier shot. A powerful camera housing a 1/ 2.3” CMOS sensor and the equivalent of a 24mm F2.8 lens (on a 35mm full frame sensor) captures high-quality photos and videos.

Mavic Air photographs crisp 12-megapixel still images utilizing new HDR algorithms that preserve more highlight and low light details, allowing you to capture stunning aerial pictures from sunrise to sunset.

It also shoots smooth stabilized 4K video at 30 fps, capturing the highest quality video of any DJI consumer drone with a maximum bitrate of 100 Mbps. Preserving the action in dramatic fast-paced scenes is now possible through its ability to shoot 1080p slow-motion video at 120 fps.

Mavic Air’s DJI’s first drone with 8 GB of onboard storage letting you save photos and videos directly to the aircraft on the go, plus a microSD card slot for additional storage capacity. The newly added USB-C port makes exporting captured footage easy and fast.


Free iPhone 6s #1252



You may have a chance to get a free iPhone6s see the link below, I get everyone caught up on the madness that has been happening here. I am hopefully on the road to recovery here with being down for the count last week.

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Heroes of the Dorm Returns for 2018



Heroes of the Dorm is a competition where teams of college students play Blizzard Entertainment’s Heroes of the Storm video game in an attempt to win money for their college tuition. This is the fourth year of Tespa’s collegiate Heroes of the Storm league.

This year, Tespa is adding regional play. Each college will field their strongest Heroes team to battle to the top of their regional division for a chance to play in the National Championship tournament. This year, we’re also partnering with Raycom Sports on a weekly broadcast for matches in Heroes of the Dorm’s Atlantic Coast Region for one-for-a-kind sports network viewing experience.

To enter, you must be a legal resident of the United States or Canada, who is at the age of majority in their jurisdiction of residence.

You must also be currently enrolled full-time (or will be enrolled full-time) in the 2018 Spring semester in an accredited graduate school, four-year college, four-year university or community college that is located in the United States or Canada. The school must have a physical campus location.

Registration for Heroes of the Dorm 2018 started on January 22, 2018, and will end on February 5, 2018. Make a team, or find an open spot on a roster at your school. Once your team has five eligible players, you are ready to battle!

Teams will be split up into Regions of 12-16 teams. Online matches begin February 7, 2018. Eventually, the top four teams will make it to the Heroic Four Event and be awarded a custom gaming rig brought to them by ASUS ROG. All five off the players on the team that becomes the championship team will earn tuition for their college careers.


Overwatch League Names Toyota as Launch Partner



Blizzard Entertainment announced that a major new brand-marketing partner has signed on to support the Overwatch league during its inaugural season: multinational automative manufacturer Toyota. This partnership marks the first time Toyota has partnered with an esports league.

The Overwatch League is further supported by sponsors HP and Intel, with players competing on cutting-edge gaming hardware including HP’s OMEN gaming PCs, powered by the latest Intel Core i7 processors.

“We’re thrilled to welcome Toyota to the Overwatch League,” said Pete Vlastelica, president and CEO of Blizzard Entertainment’s MLG division. “When we were building the league, our desire was to create a premium experience for players and fans, and partners like Toyota are helping us do just that.”

As part of the partnership, Toyota and the Overwatch League plan to develop an exclusive series called Access Granted that will present behind-the-scenes content to the community, centered around the unique journey of the esports athlete.

The series, produced by Blizzard Entertainment’s MLG division, will air featured clips in live matches that promote the series. The featured clips will include players driving Toyota vehicles to and from the competition at Blizzard Arena Los Angeles, where all regular-season games of Overwatch League will take place.

“Toyota is excited to be a launch partner of the Overwatch League,” said Steven Curtis, Vice President, media & engagement marketing for Toyota Motor North America.” We love the passion of esports fans, and the goal of our partnership is to help take the Overwatch League and the fan experience to the next level.”

The Toyota C-HR will have on-site presence at Blizzard Arena Los Angeles and media placements surrounding Overwatch League.


Facebook is ESL’s Main Broadcasting Platform



ESL, the world’s largest esports company announced that it will bring content from two of the top esports competitions exclusively to Facebook in 2018. Facebook will be their main broadcast partner.

WESA, the World Esports Association, along with ESL, announced that the world’s top Counter-Strike: Global Offensive competition, CS:GO Pro League, will be broadcast exclusively on Facebook, kicking off with the upcoming Season Seven. Distribution will begin on February 13, 2018, and will run for four seasons of Pro League, through December 2019.

ESL will also broadcast one of its flagship circuits, ESL One on Facebook, featuring Dota 2 and CS:GO. The first event this year will be ESL One Genting 2018, taking place January 23-28, 2018, bringing 16 of the world’s best Dota 2 teams to Malaysia for a six day event. Additionally, ESL will produce and broadcast a weekly five-minute show celebrating the Dota community on Facebook Watch, Facebook’s platform for shows.

Competitions will be streamed exclusively via Facebook Live in English and Portuguese, with other languages available as well. All live broadcasts from CS:GO Pro League and ESL One will be available in 1080p/60fps on Facebook. Both Pro League and ESL One will also be streamed in VR.

ESL will also leverage Facebook’s innovative cross-posting feature. With cross-posting, ESL can easily post videos and reach audiences on all participating team and player Pages. The feature will work with live and 360 video, and it will be available soon for videos that were previously live.

Although Facebook users will have the easiest time finding and following the action within the platform, it is not required to have a Facebook account to watch Pro League or ESL One. Embedded streams will continue to be shown on the respective product pages.


Amazon Raised the Price of Prime Monthly Memberships



Amazon announced that it has raised the price of its monthly memberships. This change went into affect on January 19, 2018, for those who create an Amazon Prime membership after that date. For current Amazon Prime members, the monthly price will increase when your membership period ends.

The monthly membership fees for Amazon Prime and Prime Student changed on January 19, 2018. The new price change depends on the type of monthly membership. The Prime membership for new members has increased from $10.99 to $12.99. The Prime membership for the discounted Prime Student monthly plan for new sign-ups increased from $5.49 to $6.49.

If you already have a Prime account, or a Prime Student account, and want to continue making monthly payments, your membership price will change. The new price will take effect either at the end of your free trial, or at the end of your chosen membership period. At that time, your card will automatically be charged for the next membership period.

Prime Video membership is staying at $8.99 a month.

Amazon points out that if you don’t happen to like the new change to price of the monthly plan, you could choose to be charged on an annual basis instead. Annual memberships for Prime are $99. Annual Memberships for Prime Student are $49. I figure that people who wanted an annual payment would have picked that option instead of the monthly one.

Amazon has a special Prime membership for people who are eligible for government assistance programs. The price of this type of Amazon membership is $5.99 a month. Amazon is not raising that price.


Pokémon GO Will Discontinue Support for Some Apple Devices



Pokemon Go logoPokémon GO announced an upcoming update that could potentially affect your ability to continue playing Pokémon GO. Players are warned that Pokémon GO will discontinue support for Apple devices that are not capable of upgrading to iOS 11.

This change is a result of improvements to Pokémon GO that push the application beyond the capabilities of the operating systems on such devices. This change will take effect on 02/28/2018. After that date, Trainers using affected devices may no longer be able to access their Pokémon GO accounts from that device, or use their PokéCoins or other items in their Bags.

If the Apple device you play Pokémon GO on is affected by this change, and you want to keep playing the game, you will need to switch to a device that can upgrade to iOS 11.

Pokémon GO has more specific information about devices that it will discontinue supporting. They include:

  • iPhone 5c – released in 2013 – Model numbers A1456, A1507, A1516, A1532
  • iPhone 5 – released in 2012 – Model numbers A1428, A1429, A1442
  • iPad (4th generation) – released late 2012 – Model numbers A1458, A1459, A1460
  • iPad (3rd generation) – released early 2012 – Model numbers A1416, A1430, A1403
  • iPad mini (1st generation) – released late 2012 – Model numbers A1432, A1454, A1455
  • iPad2 – released 2011 – Model numbers A1395, A1396, A1397