Massively Speaking Episode 211: Champions Online interview

Look up in the midnight sky! It’s a stealth bomber! It’s an owl! It’s… Nighthawk!Today we welcome to the show Champions Online Executive Producer Brad Stokan, who’s got the inside scoop on superheroes and their secret identities. Then we’ve got earth-shattering news to cover and an avalanche of listener emails. Prepare to have your eardrums blown, for this is Massively Speaking: Epic Edition!Have a comment for the podcasters? Shoot an email to podcast@massively.com. We may just read your email on the air! Get the podcast:[iTunes] Subscribe to Massively Speaking directly in iTunes.[RSS] Add Massively Speaking to your RSS aggregator.[MP3] Download the MP3 directly.Listen here on the page:Read below the cut for the full show notes. Sh419论坛_上海419论坛_新上海419龙凤ow Notes For Massively Speaking Episode 211Hosts:Justin OlivettiBree RoycePatrick MackeyBrad Stokan, Cryptic StudiosTyler Nagata, Cryptic StudiosTopics:What we’ve been playingInterview with Brad Stokan on Champions OnlineZentia closes its doorsWorld of Warcraft loses 1.1 million playersSWTOR goes F2PListener emailsTheme Music:Champions Online main themeMassively Speaking is the official podcast of Massively.com. Hosted by Justin Olivetti, Brianna Royce, and the L2P Backup Dancers, Massively Speaking takes on the week’s biggest news and dev interviews with plenty of opinion, rants, and laughs thrown in for good measure. Join us every Tuesday afternoon to listen in and see what we’ll say next!


Klipsch quietly teases new in-ear headphone lineup: S4 (II) series, X7i set to arrive this month

Leave it to Klipsch to surprise us with new gear for our ears when we least expect it. Within the last day or so, the company quietly pushed a “coming soon” page live on its website chock full of new in-ear headphones. To start, the S4 series is getting a complete refresh across the lineup and taking up the (II) moniker — namely, the $80 S4 (II), and the $100 S4i (II) and S4a (II), which respectively feature an inline remote / mic for iOS and Android devices. While the trio of intra-aurals look largely similar to their ear-pleasing predecessors, Klipsch has graced them with flat cables to kill the tangled-cord issues we’ve experienced. Better yet, it’s also showcasing the $200 X7i (seen middle), a curvaceous set of balanced armature-loaded ceramic ‘bubs, equipped with an iOS-compatible remote / mic. The S7i essentially fills the “mid-range” gap in price from the S4i to the $350 X10i. Detailed specs for all the sets aren’t anywhere to be seen currently We’ll be sure to get some impressions at Klipsch’s NYC event next week, but for now, you can rest assured knowing that you’ll have a choice of black or white for ever419论坛_上海419论坛_新上海419龙凤ything except the S4a (II) — and that it’s all already up for pre-order at the source link below.


Judge denies Apple’s request for dismissal after Samsung evidence leak

Judge Lucy Koh denied Apple’s request for a judgment that would hand the company a victory in its patent infringement case with Samsung, according to Electronista. Apple made the request after Samsung deliberately defied Judge Koh’s order by releasing excluded documents to the media. These documents suggest Apple copied Sony wh419论坛_上海419论坛_新上海419龙凤en it designed the iPhone. Despite repeated attempts by Samsung to include these documents in the trial, they were excluded because Samsung produced them too late in the proceedings.Samsung lawyer John Quinn defended the company’s decision to release the documents by saying Samsung was acting in accordance with the Court’s view that the “…workings of litigation must be open to public view.” Quinn adds that Samsung only provided these documents when journalists requested them and that it “was not motivated by or designed to influence jurors.”Apple said in its motion that Samsung “apparently believes that it is above the law, and that it-not this Court-should decide what evidence the jury should see.” Apple adds that Samsung “engaged in bad faith litigation misconduct by attempting to prejudice the jury.”Koh may have denied Apple an early win, but she did not rule out the possibility of other sanctions against Samsung. The trial will resume as expected on Friday afternoon.[Via Ars Technica] #next_pages_container { width: 5px; hight: 5px; position: absolute; top: -100px; left: -100px; z-index: 2147483647 !important; }


Zynga and Hasbro make CityVille Monopoly, more, for when you’re board

Pretty soon your mom won’t need the computer to get her Words with Friends fix. The Zynga and Hasbro partnership will bear its first fruit this fall, when board game adaptations of CityVille, Words with Friends, Farmville and Draw Something hit retail, ABC reports.CityVille Monopoly will be available in October for $24.99. It’s a version of the Hasbro classic where players are tasked with building skycrapers instead of houses and hotels, and the first player to build four skyscrapers wins. Hungry Hungry Herd also releases in October, for $22.99, and is Hasbro’s interpretation of FarmVille – it’s just Hungry Hungry Hippos without the hippos.Words with Friends will be available in two flavors this October and will play exactly the same as the online game, in the standard, $19.99 edition and a deluxe $39.99 edition with a rotating board. Not much is known on the fourth and final419论坛_上海419论坛_新上海419龙凤 game, an adaptation of OMGPOP’s Draw Something, which Zynga acquired for $200 million back in March. The board game adaptation of Draw Something is planned for late October/early November and will likely play a lot like Pictionary.


Who owns your iTunes? Bruce Willis probably doesn’t care (Updated)

Bruce Willis versus Apple — this time, it’s personal. Is he Moonlighting as a legal Hudson Hawk who refuses to let his digital media rights Die Hard? (I’m so sorry about that.)Update: Noted by TechCrunch, Willis’s wife Emma Heming-Willis has now said on Twitter that the report of his potential legal action vs. Apple is “not a true story.” As we mentioned, when it comes to the British tabloids and celebrity coverage… well, let’s just say I had a bit of a Sixth Sense about this tale. (Really, really sorry.)Let’s frame this story by noting that it’s a holiday weekend in the US, and perhaps the relative calm before the news storm of a major political convention and some anticipated Apple product announcements is giving tech and legal reporters some coverage latitude. Also, the sources for the Willis story (UK tabloids The Daily Mail & The Sun) are not always 100% accurate when it comes to celebrity coverage, or indeed about anything else. Nevertheless, the issues raised are current and challenging.Willis is supposedly considering legal action, among other remedies, to ensure that he can include his large iTunes media collection among the assets of his estate when he dies. His three daughters (Rumer, Scout and Tallulah), the beneficiaries of the estate, would then have full rights to thousands of songs, movies and more. Unfortunately, under the current T&C covering iTunes purchases, it’s not clear whether that’s allowed.When you buy a song from iTunes, the music comes along with certain conditions for its use. (Technically you are in fact purchasing the song, or “iTunes Products” as the terms have it, rather than licensing it; both Venture Beat and The Next Web are citing a part of the T&C discussing a “nontransferable license,” but that covers iOS or Mac apps, not music.) Specifically, you are allowed to listen to the song for your own personal, non-commercial use; you are also limited in the number of devices you can use your music with (up to five), among other constraints. The key here is that the devices have to be under your personal control; otherwise you’d be permitted to put songs on your friends’ iPods, which is contrary to the rules.When Willis passes on, hopefully many years hence, obviously he can no longer “personally control” said devices. While the current T&C doesn’t say anything about transferring music, Apple support will not help users merge, split or transfer iTunes accounts. In theory, then, his estate would be stuck. Similar issues are already cropping up in divorce cases, where ownership of the digital assets has to be considered in settlement discussions.[Also worth noting: while Apple is far from alone in having digital property challenges, the company is restrained in how much latitude it can give end users because it in turn has rights agreements with the record labels, movie studios etc. Even if Apple wanted to give free and easy transfers to account holders, the original content owners might balk. –MR]In practice, though, there are some workarounds to these challenges. One would be to change the account/payment information on Willis’s iTunes to give control of the digital assets to a trust in his daughters’ names, although that’s a lot of aggravation for the payoff — he would still need a way to share the tunes between his kids (multiple iPods engraved with Dad’s bald, menacing scowl?) without running afoul of the iTunes rules. The question of transferability is one that really hasn’t been settled yet for Apple’s digital products, or for that matter on Amazon or Barnes & Noble’s e-book stores.The other, simpler approach Willis could take is iTunes Plus. Apple’s DRM-free version of the iTunes music library is covered by terms that are noticeably looser and more flexible than the traditional iTunes library. The CYA sent419论坛_上海419论坛_新上海419龙凤ence in question is “You may copy, store, and burn iTunes Plus Products as reasonably necessary for personal, noncommercial use.” Depending on whether “personal use” can include “personally passing on my assets to my heirs,” a library full of iTunes Plus tracks could be handed off alongside the family silver and the rights to Quentin Tarantino’s career.Whether or not Willis pursues a course through the courts, the issue of digital asset ownership is one that isn’t going away anytime soon.Thanks Michael G.[Photo by Gage Skidmore, Wikimedia Commons]


Enter at Your Own Rift: What’s in your bag?

I have a little confession to make. When it comes to random clicky items, unusual vanity pets, eccentric appearance items, and other quirky stuff in RIFT, I’m completely obsessed. During world events, while everyone else is eyeing the essences and new mounts, I’m scanning the appearance outfits and the clicky-effect items. I’ll even do quests and content that I’m not necessarily interested in if the reward is something out of the ordinary. Clickies and odd items are great ways to lighten the mood when your group or raid has hit a wall, and they’re a good way to liven up downtime in game. There’s nothing like the sudden appearance of fireworks or the instant transformation of your raid leader into foliage.For this week’s Enter at Your Own Rift, I’m diving into my RIFT bags and bank vault to highlight a few of my favorite clickies. Share some of yours! SnogsI love Snogs partially because of the look of the pet but mainly because of the way I got it. I was doing an Ember Isle zone event and fell behind the pack because I had stopped to heal someone and ended up getting aggro from a wandering mob. I fought it off and noticed a tiger roaming past with the name Tak’gnarl. I’ve been conditioned to always immediately attack anything with an unusual name, thanks to EverQuest, so I hit him and eventually took him down. Later on, after the event was over and I had gone back to town, I noticed that I had mail.When I checked, it turned out to be a companion pet named Snogs, with a little congratulati419论坛_上海419论坛_新上海419龙凤ons message inside. I did a search of the pet’s name because I had no idea what I had done to receive it, and I discovered that I had found a pretty rare mob that rewarded me with an equally rare vanity pet. I almost felt guilty because there were several posts from people who talked about camping the named for long periods of time with no luck, and here I was just stumbling upon it thanks to some unwanted aggro from a trash mob. The pet is actually not a tiger but a little striped prairie dog, and while I’m not usually a pet fiend, I do like to break him out because he’s so darned cute.Cozy Summer CampfireThis one is the gift that keeps on giving. It’s a fun campfire that you can summon once every 24 hours, and it was purchased during the summer world event. What I especially like about it is that everyone can click on it and get a Sunfish Po’ boy, and consuming one causes you to transform into a random illusion. The sandwiches were made from summer sunfish during the event, but now that the event is over, it’s nice to still be able to get a sandwich a day, stock up, and then break them out when things are getting tense. I also had fun running around as a bogling in Sanctum and doing a zone event as a tiny crab.Scotty’s sheeping wandThis is a fun item that you can purchase with lucky coins from artifact collections. I was excited to buy this because I loved the questline in Argent Glade that involves young students zapping each other, turning classmates into random animals. At one point, I recall having to run out into the woods to transform some “unusual-looking deer” back into students, but my inner imp loves the idea of being able to zap other players and change them into sheep, if only for a few minutes.Foliage disguiseThis one’s another of my favorites from the artifact vendor. With enough lucky coins, I was able to purchase a clicky that turns me into a bush (I’m the one with orange leaves). Granted, it lasts only a few minutes, and I can’t move while I have the illusion on, but I love being able to blend in with the forest and leave friends and groupmates scratching their heads. If only it would help me survive a Conquest instance…Satyr SnowmanI must have gotten about a half dozen of these during the Fae Yule event, and while they didn’t necessarily stand out during the winter-themed decorations in town, they are definitely cause for a double take in the dog days of summer. I have the regular snowman and the holiday snowman, but my favorite by far is the Satyr snowman. There’s nothing better than a devil-horned Frosty! At one point, they were on individual cooldown timers, so I could spawn a chain of snowmen all the way down the path in Sanctum, but now they all seem to share a common timer, meaning I have to choose wisely which guy I bring out. Either way, though, they’re a great conversation piece (especially if we’re in a particularly hot zone!).Soccer ballI haven’t yet built up enough Farclan faction to purchase one of these, but it’s definitely on my wish list. It’s a soccer ball that you purchase from the Ember Isle quartermaster with the proper faction, and you can summon and then kick it around to other players. I’ve always been a fan of making sports in fantasy MMOs, going way back to playing soccer with a Gnome corpse in EQ. (It sounds much worse that it was, honest!) It’s not easy to get the soccer ball, and the result is probably just a few minutes of chaos and a few laughs from surprised players, but for a clicky junkie like yours truly, it’s well worth it.The great thing about things like clickies and vanity pets is that they are yet another way to carve out your identity. Personally, I prefer things that are a bit out there, while others might go for the sparkle, and still others might go for things that make a bold (and intimidating) statement. Whatever the image is that you create, it’s nice to see so many options in RIFT for showing who you are and what you like. Having said that, I am wondering what fluff items are in your bags? Have you snagged any particularly unusual or rare pets, appearance clothing, or clickies? Share them below!Whether they’re keeping the vigil or defying the gods, Karen Bryan and Justin Olivetti save Telara on a weekly basis. Covering all aspects of life in RIFT, from solo play to guild raids, their column is dedicated to backhanding multidimensional tears so hard that they go crying to their mommas. Email Karen and Justin for questions, comments, and adulation.


Kindle for iOS update adds adjustable margins, more

Amazon pushed an update to its Kindle app that’ll make it even easier for you to read your Kindle books on your iPad or iPhone, according to a report in The Next Web. The latest update brings rapid highlighting to all devices and adjustable margins to the iPad. The latter feature offers three different layouts, so you can pick the style that best meets your needs. There’s also an improved brightness slider, which will let you pick the right font hue for your lighting conditions.Students heading back to school will appreciate the new features for print replica textbooks. Navigating through a textbook is easy thanks to the addition of page thumbnails and back and forward buttons. Students can also now highlight illustrations, photos, tables and charts within a textbook. All these highlights, as well as bookmarks and notes, will be stored in a new notebook feature. Students can tag an419论坛_上海419论坛_新上海419龙凤d filter the notebooks so they can easily find and review items for their upcoming exams.The Kindle app is a universal app that works on the iPad and the iPhone. It is available for free from the iOS App Store.


STEM Innovation iZON and Time Command Giveaway: 3 chances to win

Our friends at STEM Innovation, the makers of the iZON Remote Room Monitor and Time Command Audio Alarm Dock, have joined with TUAW to give three readers an amazing summer giveaway.STEM Innovation is known for its App-Enhanced products; accessories for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad that take advantage of iOS apps to simplify setup and use. TUAW previously reviewed the iZON Remote Room Monitor (US$129.95), which is a slim wireless camera that can be used to watch children, pets, or a room in your house while you’re away. Not only is it the easiest “webcam” to set up that I’ve reviewed so far, but the monitoring app makes keeping an eye on your loved ones as simple as tapping a button.Likewise, the Time Command Audio Alarm Dock ($99.95) is a well-designed iOS dock with a companion app for setting up a variety of alarms or shutting down a bedside lamp. It also helps that the Time Command Audio Alarm Dock has pretty good sound quality t419论坛_上海419论坛_新上海419龙凤o lull you to sleep and wake you up.Each winner from our random drawing of entries receives one iZON Remote Room Monitor AND one Time Command Audio Alarm Dock. There will be three winners in all. Here are the rules for the giveaway:Open to legal US residents of the 50 United States, the District of Columbia and Canada (excluding Quebec) who are 18 and older.To enter, fill out the form below completely and click or tap the Submit button.The entry must be made before August 5, 2012 11:59PM Eastern Daylight Time.You may enter only once.Three winners will be selected. Each will receive one iZON Remote Room Monitor and one Time Command Audio Alarm Dock with a combined value of US$229.90.Click Here for complete Official Rules. #next_pages_container { width: 5px; hight: 5px; position: absolute; top: -100px; left: -100px; z-index: 2147483647 !important; }


The Blue Child returns to Azeroth

Players who were around during classic may remember that Azeroth once had two moons: The large, white moon was called the White Lady, and the smaller, blue moon was called the Blue Child. Lorewise, the White Lady was what the night elves called Elune and the tauren Mu’sha. The Blue Child doesn’t seem to have figured quite as prominently in the lore, so I guess it was an auxiliary back-up moon for when Azeroth experienced419论坛_上海419论坛_新上海419龙凤 sudden spikes in moon-related demand.The Blue Child disappeared during patch 1.10.0 before the Burning Crusade. Anne’s theory is that, since this coincides with Blizzard’s addition of weather effects to the world, it was probably removed due to graphical errors. Whatever the reason, since then there have been only occasional references to its existence within the game: You could see it around the three-dimensional map of Azeroth in Halls of Lightning, and it was briefly visible during the Dragonwrath, Tarecgosa’s Rest quest line. However, players were delighted to discover that it made a reappearance on the Mists of Pandaria beta, and it looks like patch 5.0.4 has finally restored the Blue Child to the world.Thanks to Jeff Hoskins for the tip and Dawn Moore for the picture!


SwiftKey 3.0.1 brings new themes, languages and bug fixes

Rejoice, Android keyboard enthusiasts! SwiftKey announced today that it’s pushing out an update to its popular virtual keyboard that brings new themes, languages and bug fixes. Version 3.0.1 incorporates two new summer themes — Sky blue and Fuchsia — and bumps the language count to 44 with the addition of Malay and Urdu. The keyboard now also supports continuous dictation with Google voice typing on Ice Cream Sandwich and Jelly Bean. Most important, however, are a p419论坛_上海419论坛_新上海419龙凤lethora of tweaks, performance improvements and bug fixes designed to further improve the SwiftKey user experience. We’ve been using the update for a few hours now on AT&T’s red Galaxy S III and it definitely makes our favorite Android virtual keyboard even better. Hit the break for screenshots of the new themes plus the full PR. Show full PR text SwiftKey announces new update to SwiftKey 3 SwiftKey today is unveiling two colorful new themes to celebrate summer – Sky and Fuchsia and adding two new languages, Malay and Urdu, which takes the total to 44. The update, version 3.0.1, also includes a host of bug fixes and improvements to ensure the user experience is better than ever, whatever browser or device you choose. If you like to talk rather than type you’ll be happy to know that SwiftKey now incorporates Google voice typing for continuing dictation, if you are using Android Ice Cream Sandwich or Jelly Bean (4.0 or 4.1). Predictions now appear in Google Now and the Jelly Bean web browser, as well as Dolphin HD and the HTC notes app; SwiftKey’s done substantial work on the “doubledouble” problems in Google Chrome and Firefox (where text repeats or corrupts in web fields when backspacing); the jumpy cursor in Chrome has also been fixed; and the smiley button is back in GTalk! Additionally, we’ve improved behavior on Samsung Galaxy S3 devices. The full list of fixes and changes is below. The new version is available for smartphones and tablets via Google Play, Amazon Appstore, and AndroidPIT and is free of charge to current users. There is also a one-month trial available, as always. Dr Ben Medlock, SwiftKey co-founder and CTO, said the latest update shows the team’s commitment to our customers, “Themes and languages are often the most discussed topics on our community and we’re positive our users will be excited to get their hands on more.” “We’ve also worked hard to roll out improvements and bug fixes as quickly as possible as we know having a smooth user experience is vital.” The update comes after a phenomenal response to the launch of SwiftKey 3. It shot SwiftKey back up to the top of the global paid-apps chart on Google Play to critical acclaim. FULL DETAILS – Look and feel New Themes: Two new themes for summer, Sky and Fuchsia. – User Experience General performance improvements; Improved application compatibility; – Improvements Google voice typing for Android 4.0 and 4.1 users – now allows continuous dictation – Chrome Fixed Doubledouble problems; Fixed Jumpy cursor problems; – Dolphin HD browser Now has predictions. – Firefox Fixed Doubledouble problems; – Google Now Now has predictions; -HTC notes app Predictions in the HTC notes app; – Jelly Bean stock browser Now has predictions; -Samsung default mail client app Fixed selection problems on the Samsung Galaxy S3; Fixed crashes on the Samsung Galaxy S3. KNOWN ISSUES – Chrome Arrow keys still not functional due to restrictions from the browser – we’re looking for workarounds; Predictions do not update when coming back from sleep, need to set selection a couple of times to make them re-sync – have informed Google of this bug; – Jellybean stock browser Arrow keys do not work due to restrictions from the browser – we’re looking for workarounds; NEW LANGUAGES Two new supported languages added, bringing the total to 44: Malay and Urdu. BUG FIXES Fixed the following issues: Font size and indentation inconsistencies in preference menus; Font size too large on the sharable Heatmap; GTalk smiley button has gone in JellyBean Handle the case where languagePacks.json somehow gets set to “readonly” Punctuation does not always auto correct Reports of performance lag on some devices for some users; Swedish localization problems for key height settings; Theme list wrong after upgrade 2.2 -> 3.0; Twitter personalization does not handle OAuthException gracefully; When composing, after an auto-completing punctuation character, selecting the prediction inserts it twice.