(You're reading all posts by Rob LeFebvre) Anchorage, Alaska-based freelance writer and editor Rob LeFebvre has contributed to various tech, gaming and iOS sites, including 148Apps, Creative Screenwriting, Shelf-Awareness, VentureBeat, and Paste Magazine. Feel free to find Rob on Twitter @roblef, and send him a cookie once in a while; he'll really appreciate it.
About Rob LeFebvre
This week: the oddly uplifting tale of Apple co-founder Ron Wayne, who sold his stake in the company for $800. Plus, road-ready gifts for bicyclists, killer Vainglory strategy guide, and awesome iOS 8 widgets you won’t want to miss. That and more in this week’s Cult of Mac Magazine!
My team slid in under cover of night over at Harfeld Manor, an easy run into a low-security data vault that my old shadowrunner pal Monica promised would be an easy in and out.
It wasn’t, of course, but it took the death of our mutual friend, the mage Deitrich, to really wake us up to that fact.
Sure, we hit that place hard, but there was a ton of security both on the ‘Net and in the premises themselves, and we paid dearly for our hubris.
It would take us another several runs to really figure out what was going on in the dark shadows that we came across in our shadowy dealings, but I think we’re getting somewhere. If only we knew where this will finally lead.
This, then, is Shadowrun: Dragonfall in the special Director’s Cut edition, out now from Harebrained Schemes for your iPad. Check out the game trailer below to get a sense of how it all plays out.
In what seems to be a new pattern of movie promotion, the next entry in the Terminator film series, Genisys, got a teaser trailer Wednesday for the official trailer coming the following day.
Take a look at this tiny trailer, which features a liquid-metal Terminator that looks a lot like ex-Governator Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Famous astrophysicist Stephen Hawking has a better way to talk now, thanks to a new custom predictive text software upgrade from SwiftKey and Intel Labs. The technology that Professor Hawking was currently using was going on 20 years old, and needed a fix to help him communicate and work faster and more efficiently.
His life-long motor neurone disease of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) has necessitated his use of communications technology, and this new system will allow him to choose words rather than individual letters, which lets him type less than 20 percent of all needed characters in his messages. It also makes him 10 times more efficient with other computing tasks like browsing the web, working with files, and switching between tasks on the computer.
Well, that didn’t take long.
It’s only been four days since The Force Awakens trailer appeared on all of our computer and iPhone screens, and here we have the entire thing recreated with the ubiquitous plastic building toy.
Why did this YouTuber build his stop-motion homage?
“Made this out of boredom,” he says, “… enjoy!”
Star Wars VII: The Force Awakens
With the new Star Wars: The Force Awakens trailer hitting everywhere this weekend, anticipation for the new movie — and thirst for all the details and rumors we can handle — is at an all time high. What are the story details? Who are the characters in the trailer? What about all the original cast members?
Set 30 years after The Battle of Endor (seen in 1983's The Return of the Jedi), The Force Awakens is directed by hotshot and super Star Wars fan J.J. Abrams, fresh off his success with the Star Trek franchise. If the trailer is anything to go by, the new films are in fantastic hands. What the final product will be is any fan’s guess, so here are seven crazy rumors about the details coming to the films next December.
Andy Serkis narrates the trailer and will play two different roles in the film
According to Jedi News, Andy Serkis is the narrator of the new trailer. He'll also play more than one role in the film. One role may be motion-captured as Serkis has been in many movies like King Kong and as Gollum in the Lord of the Rings films, as one of a group of super acrobatic creatures. The other role has Serkis's character involved in some way with the young lady in the trailer, Daisy Ridley. This character will have a pivotal role that could have more to it than it seems. Like Obi Wan and Luke Skywalker, perhaps?
John Boyega may play the main character
The rumor here is that Attack the Block star Boyega will be the audience viewpoint character, much like Luke Skywalker was in the original films and Anakin was (less successfully, perhaps) in the prequel trilogy. Latino Review goes even a step farther saying that Boyega may not initially be a Jedi, but might become one under the tutelage of none other than Skywalker himself.
Han and Leia's children may be the protagonists
In a somewhat conflicting rumor, Collider says that the twin children of Han Solo and Leia Organa may in fact be the lead characters in the upcoming film. Named Jacen and Jaina, the two might be powerful Force-sensitives who receive training from Uncle Luke, but go their own ways when Jacen takes to the Dark Side. File this one under "not likely, but fun."
Daisey Ridley may be playing Han and Leia's daughter
The determined-looking young lady on the improbably designed speeder vehicle in the trailer is none other than Daisey Ridley, a relatively unknown British actress. Speculation is that her character will be the daughter of Han and Leia, Kira, who will meet up with Boyega's character and help him find Luke. CBS News puts her between Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher in a publicity shot to lend some weight to this rumor.
Han Solo gets plastic white armor again
According to TheForce.net, everyone's favorite smuggler with a heart of gold will put on the Stormtrooper armor again in The Force Awakens in a nice nod to the original trilogy. In A New Hope, Han and Luke both don Stormtrooper outfits to gain access to the Death Star prison hold and free Princess Leia, fresh from her viewing of her home planet being vaporized by the moon-sized super weapon. Here’s hoping Solo wearing the armor again won’t turn into a fourth-wall breaking corn-fest, but it’ll be fun to see him wearing the whites one last time.
Soccer-ball droid is an R-series astromech
Ralph McQuarrie's designs live on, especially in the little soccer-ball droid we get to see partway through the trailer, bloop-bleeping like R2-D2. It's rumored that this new comic relief is, in fact, another R-series droid, as fan site Jalopnik thinks, placing this cute little fellow as an astromech droid, as opposed to the humanoid droids and the non-barrel bodied mechanical creatures.
Luke Skywalker may end up going to the dark side
In a bit of wild speculation, Making Star Wars thinks some leaked concept art of the scary cyborg character staring at an old Vader helmet is actually Luke Skywalker, the protagonist of the original three movies, who ended up defeating Darth Vader while using the light side of the Force. Who knows, it might be true - the cloak is similar to the one Mark Hamill wore in The Return of the Jedi, and the mouth could be Hamill's, and that robotic hand is also the correct one for the Luke character.
In George R.R. Martin’s Song of Ice and Fire series, anyone can play the Game of Thrones, including little-known House Forrester.
Telltale Games, the house behind video gaming hits like The Wolf Among Us and The Walking Dead, have brought this more obscure Westeros family to the forefront of a brand-new game set in Martin’s Game of Thrones universe, and it looks delightfully dramatic.
Check out the trailer below, which includes some fine voicework from Natalie Dormer and Peter Dinklage as their respective characters from the show, wily Margaery Tyrell and diminutive Tyrion Lannister.
Chances are, the first time you try your hand at Vainglory you’ll get ganked almost immediately by a crystal-toting Glaive.
If you’d rather avoid that ignominious end, you’ll want to read our guide to all things Vainglory. It’s loaded with tips and tricks on how to kick ass in this excellent iOS game, an Apple favorite that showcases the awesome fun possible in the multiplayer online battle arena genre.
You’ll find basic and advanced gameplay tips, plus a special top 10 list for every hero in the game, right from the developers themselves.
Pretty soon you’ll be the one pwning your enemies with nonchalant ease, just like Scarf Guy.
We’re a bit early this week, but wanted to make sure you got all the Cult of Mac goodness in one fine compilation in time for your four-day weekend. Dig in and enjoy a whole slew of gift guides, including those for the women in your life, that special college student, and outdoor adventurers. Plus? Pro tips on surviving that modern ordeal of American culture: Thanksgiving. All that and some of the week’s biggest Apple-related news are ready for you right now. Just download and enjoy!
Let’s face it – not all of us want every purchase we complete via the iTunes or App stores available to anyone who uses our iPhone, iPad, or Macbook. Some things just need to remain, well, private.
Luckily, it’s pretty easy to hide the evidence from unauthorized users via a quick trip to the iTunes app on your Mac or PC.