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July 31, 2014

Google Chrome 64 Bit Windows Builds Hit Beta

chrome background runningIf you’re a Chrome user running a 64-bit version of Microsoft Windows then you may want a native 64-bit build of the browser to go along with it.

The first steps towards this were made public two months ago, with Google debuting native 64-bit Windows builds of Chrome on the Canary and Developer channels.

Today, the company has gone a little bit further. It nudges its flagship browser ever-closer towards mainstream release by bringing Beta channel users into the mix.

25% Better Performance

Has it been a long wait to get this far? You bet. But has it been worth it? Based on performance reports from the builds, most certainly.

As reported during June’s dev debut, 64-bit Chrome for Windows features performance improvements of “up to 25% in graphics and multimedia content handling” and a ‘marked increase in stability’ over its 32-bit sibling.

You can download the 64-bit version of Google Chrome here. The Chrome Team cautions that installing the release will replace any existing 32 bit version on your system. Your settings, apps, bookmarks and user accounts will be carried over as part of the upgrade.

[Source: OMG! Chrome!]

July 30, 2014

Swiftkey updated, introduces performance improvements and more

swiftkey-updated

There’s a lot to like about Swiftkey, such as its excellent prediction engine and decent emoji. One area where it’s not so great is its tendency to lag from time to time. Thankfully a new update is rolling out that promises to improve this situation.

In addition to improving overall performance, the update introduces plenty of other bug fixes and improvements that have to do with Yahoo personalization, forced closes and other issues. Here’s the full change log:
  • Improved typing performance
  • Improved translations
  • Improved keyboard loading time
  • Improved Flow performance
  • Fix for the bottom row being hidden in some devices
  • Fixed Yahoo! personalization
  • Fixed background disappearing issue in some themes
  • Fixed various other force closes and crashes
In addition to bringing us plenty of improvements, Swiftkey also has added new themes to its store: Spotlight Purple, Edge Green, Pulse Yellow, Pulse Pink and Hazy Pink. Swiftkey is also holding a sale that applies to many of its existing themes, bringing prices down 33% for a limited time.

Google Docs, Sheets and Slides pick up new home pages with Material Design look


Google Docs and several other Google Android apps are receiving hints of Material Design in their latest updates, and now the web components of Google Docs, Sheets and Slides are coming along for the ride. Google is promoting its simple shortcut URLs to go straight into your Google Docs, Sheets and Slides now that they have a fresh look, which keeps with the idea of bold colors, drop shadows and clean lines.

To access the new pages you'll simply go to google.com/docs, google.com/sheets or google.com/slides, and you'll be greeted with a fresh new page to get at all of your content.

Of course if you want to see it all together you'll have to go to the Google Drive website, which has recently received an update as well but doesn't have the exact same design elements as shown off here. The above URLs will be great for folks who don't live in Drive all the time, and instead focus on creating and working with just one document type.

These new pages look great, and it just keeps getting us even more excited to see the Material Design refreshes of the rest of Google's properties.

[Source: Android Central]

July 26, 2014

Google Play now offers section for games that can be played offline

google play store

Google has now set up a section of its Google Play Store devoted to games that can be played offline, in an apparent attempt to give Android device owners a choice between those types of games and others that require an online connection.

While many of the titles listed in the Offline Games section do have online multiplayer features, such as Minecraft, Asphalt 8: Airborne and others, they don't need a cellular or WiFi connection to play other parts of their games that are meant for a single player experience.

It's likely that Google added this section into Google Play because there were some customers who downloaded games that could only be played with some kind of Internet connection, when they really wanted to have something to play on their phone or tablet when such a link was not available.

[Soruce: Android Central]

July 25, 2014

Chrome 37 beta for Android released with Material Design update and more


Google has released the beta version of Chrome 37 for Android, which has some Material Design updates and more for the web browser.

The change log includes:
  • Material Design updates
  • Simplified sign-in
  • Lots of bug fixes and performance improvements!
[Source: Android Central]

July 24, 2014

Jibanyan (Yokai Watch) Model Kit

This was a quick and easy build. Done within 1 hour.
This little critter is absolutely adorable.
I find it hilarious how Yokai Watch is targeted to young children (on par with Pokemon and Digimon audience) and the anime mascot is some pervy cat creature - as demonstrated by Jibanyan loving to read some cat gravure magazine.
My only dilemma was choosing the stickers for his face for different expressions - There were so many stickers to choose from!!
It was really nice of Bandai to create a little stand to hold the extra pieces (left piece) - 2 faces and 1 extra set of arms.
This was definitely worth my money, in terms of product quality, the amount of build-able pieces and cuteness. If I ever come across the second model kit then I would buy it without hesitation!
The only downside of this model is that the collar is missing the blue colour.

[Life] De-stressing


Post-assessment block + Pre-prac de-stress, aka binge shopping.
I loved the first VVV kit I made last time so I went and bought another one, Hiasobi. Picked this one namely because it was purple 
And then I saw the Yokai Watch cat, and it was too adorable to not buy, so it joined my shopping basket.
Not pictured is an awesome red scarf I got for $2 (originally $15 - talk about bargains!!)

July 23, 2014

Google Play Store updated to v4.9.13, introduces Material Design and other improvements

Nexus 7

Material Design was all the hype at Google IO. And of course – it is probably the biggest Android design alteration we have seen in years. The graphic intensive and cleaner look is to be spread across the whole UI, and the Google Play Store is finally taking all these design elements to the streets.

If you thought the previous major update was substantial, you will be blown away by version 4.9.13. The navigation and overall UI is left nearly untouched, the main difference here is in the details. To be more specific, things get a bit whacky once you get to app/content pages.

store-4.9.13

For example, change logs are now only visible to those who have apps installed, images and trailers are a major focus (they take a huge part of the top area) and app descriptions now go full-screen. In addition, small details like the app’s size and version have been moved out of the way and taken to the app’s description. The +1 and sharing button have also been relocated below the featured reviews.

The focus and general way we shop for applications and other content have definitely been kept in mind with the new design elements. Images and videos blend into the background and buttons. The robotic details are taken off the main viewing area. It’s just so much cleaner and simple now.

The new Google Play Store is ready to be updated and should arrive at your devices soon.

[Source: Android Authority]

July 22, 2014

First Look: Child of Light


Child of Light is a beautifully illustrated RPG platformer game on any different gaming platforms. The game puts players in the shoes of Aurora, a child stolen from her home, who, in her quest to return, must bring back the sun, the moon and the stars held captive by the mysterious Queen of the Night. My review coming soon just as I finish playing the game!

July 21, 2014

Pumpkin's Palette - Shimakaze from Kantai Collection

Requested by JH.
Never watched the anime myself, but the girl looks cute.

July 18, 2014

Time to Upgrade: Ubuntu 13.10 Support Ends Today


It’s had a fair old run, but after 9 months basking in the sun today marks the end of official support for Ubuntu 13.10 ‘Saucy Salamander’.

Despite the name ‘Saucy’, the changes on offer were rather bland
Those still running it should look at upgrading to the most recent stable release, Ubuntu 14.04 LTS. Launched back in April, it will be supported with updates on the desktop all the way until mid-April 2019.

Support for the server version of Ubuntu 13.10 also formally ends today.

Ubuntu 13.10 came out last October with Canonical pledging to provide a full 9 months of ongoing security and bug fixes on the desktop. As of July 17 these updates will cease and no further updates or backported packages will be provided.

Canonical’s recommended upgrade path is to 14.04, a transition that can be handled directly on the desktop itself through the Software Updater application or via the command line through the ‘do-release-upgrade‘ command.

[Source: OMG! Ubuntu!]

July 17, 2014

Chrome 36 Stable Released, Brings New Look Incognito Page

incognito pageGoogle has released Chrome 36 to the stable channel, marking a major milestone for Web Components.

Chrome 36 includes a redesigned Incognito landing page. The new design simplifies the text displayed when you open an Incognito tab and features a cleaner, brighter design with a new ‘incognito man’ icon to the right.

Fixes and tweaks for rich notifications, the Chrome App Launcher on Linux, the new tab page for guest sessions, and a “crash recovery bubble” are included with Chrome 36, as are 26 security fixes.

The new stable release also includes support for HTML imports – a major building block for Web Components. While it’s not a big user-facing change like the Chrome App Launcher or a restyled landing page, Web Components are a huge stepping stone for web developers.

Projects like Polymer and X-Tag are leveraging Web Components to make your favourite sites easier for developers to create, improve, and maintain. Chrome has already added support for the <template> element, custom elements, and the shadow DOM. With HTML imports now in tow, Chrome (and Opera) users worldwide will have full support for Web Components.

[Source: OMG! Chrome!]

Chrome for Android update rolling out, brings back Doodles on new tabs and more


The Google Chrome browser for Android has been updated to version 36.0.1985.122.

So what’s new here? While not a major update, there are tons of bug fixes and performance improvements, improved text rendering on non-mobile optimized sites and the return of Doodles to the new tab page. Additionally, the latest update is said to include security fixes for the following issues:
  • [$3000][352083] High CVE-2014-3159: Omnibox URL Spoofing (Android). Credit to Keita Haga.
  • [334204] Medium CVE-2014-3161: Same origin policy bypass (Android). Credit to HÃ¥vard Molland from Opera
As is typical, the update is rolling out in stages so don’t be surprised if it takes a few days to reach you.

[Source: Android Authority]

July 16, 2014

Google+ now allows the use of any name of your preference


Google+ has been strict about their policies from the very first day. It’s important to keep a new social network legit and organized, so the use of fake or chosen names was not an option. One had to use a real name. As of today, this is no longer the case.

Google is ready to let you choose whatever name that may tickle your fancy. This is not a new movement, though. Google has been slowly bringing this feature for a while. First by allowing page owners to choose their names, later by allowing YouTube users to bring their usernames to the new social network.

Now that this restriction has been lifted, what will become of Google+? The idea behind forcing users to use their real names was to create a community of real people. It was much more complicated to create a fake account or hide someone’s identity, giving more credibility to the network. A new Google+ era is upon us.

How will the new name policy change Google+?
According to Google, the idea is that there is a healthy list of people that would want to be part of Google+, but without sharing their real name. Users have been requesting this feature for a long time, meaning we have been leaving a part of the community in the dark.

Chances are we may see an influx of people, but we must wonder how much of a difference this new feature really makes. Will it really make people change their minds about Google+? Maybe, maybe not, but we do know it makes Google+ a bit more welcoming.

Google-Plus-Logo-with-Google-Logo2

Does quantity equal quality?
Now, if this does result in more people joining our favorite social network – is that really a positive change? In this case, more may not mean merrier. We know many users have legitimate reasons for wanting to use another name, but more fake accounts may also be a result of this change.

This means Google+ may very well become a less credible source, much like some of the other social networks. This is not to say Google is wrong. After all, they do have to take down their walls at some point, but Google+ as we know it may soon change and this could be the very first step in that direction.

[Source: Android Authority]

July 11, 2014

Google Keyboard updated, brings spoken emoji and a few other changes

google-keyboard

Google has updated the official keyboard with a few changes. The new update is listed as version 3.1.19633, and while not a major update, it does make a few noticeable tweaks.

For starters, it appears that Google has added support for spoken emoji, which allow you to add select emoji using hotwords such as “smiley face”, “sad face” and a few others. They’ve also moved the voice input shortcut to a new spot and have added new input languages: Indian English, Swiss Italian, Basque, Galician, and Latin American Spanish.

android-keyboard-update

Interestingly enough, they’ve also removed the long-press delay adjustment as the setting no longer exists in the preview version as well. There could be a few other hidden features, changes and bug fixes underneath, but these seem to be the most noticeable things.

The update will roll out in stages, so you will have to wait your turn if you don't receive the update now.

July 10, 2014

Pumpkin's Palette - Momotarou (Free!ES)

I needed to get my F(r)eels off my chest. 
Mikoshiba Momotarou from Free!Eternal Summer - voiced by my beloved SuzuKen.
It's been over 5 months since I drew? I miss the art side of me. If only I had more time!

July 6, 2014

Free! Eternal Summer - Episode 1 [v.P]

Let me let you in on a secret: There'll be even more hot bods, muscles and water in Free! Eternal Summer.
The highlight of my week, the return on my bishies.
You can't say no to Nagisa's cuteness.
And to create some angst and competition, there's a new guy in town, and he's hot!
You won't be able to hold your pedo-ness back.
Click below for more hot bods.

Shonen Hollywood + SAO II - Episode 1 [v.P]

It seems like everyone wants to jump onto the "bishounen, idol, sing and dance" bandwagon, hoping to scam money off desperate ladies given the success of UtaPri.
Shounen Hollywood is another series targeted at the ladies where they promote a group of 5 "hot" teen soon-to-be-idols.
Take my word: Do NOT watch this anime.
It sucks.
For an anime that focuses on music, the OP and ED songs are pathetic.
The art is not "pretty" at all.
While the seiyuus are decent, the plot is too cliche and predictable.
Essentially you will waste 6 hours of your life watching 5 pathetic males learn how to sing and dance and face an audience.
There were no character development what so ever in this first episode. Everyone feels so empty.
Now moving on to SAO II.
Did I have high hopes for this series? Nope, given that they screwed up ALO.
I was happy that the first voice I heard was HiroC's (the guy pictured below), I was sad to see him die within the first 6 minutes of the anime.
The CGI of the bullet shooting was cool, but that only lasted a minute or so.
It felt refreshing to see my OTP, Kirito and Asuna again.
The art is typical quality.
The OP/ED song was good. I still preferred the first set of songs.
I will keep watching for the sake of my loyalty to the series.

Bakumatsu Rock - Episode 1 [v.P]

The more I tell myself not to procrastinate, the more I actually do procrastinate.
Given that I have 5 assignments due within 3 weeks, I so ingeniously decided to watch anime instead.
Let's start off with the YowaPed wrap up.
I'm disappointed that they cut season 1 off without finishing the 2nd day of the interhigh race. I really want to know who wins! But now I've got to wait till October to find out.
There were many precious team moments in the last episode, especially the comradery between Imaizumi and Onoda.

To start off the new anime season I decided to watch Bakumatsu Rock.
Now I played the game, never really finished it, but I did enjoy it, especially the music/songs and seiyuus.
I was anticipating a poorly made adaptation of an otome game, as most otome anime adaptations go.
However, I was not disappointed.
The character introductions were fairly cliched but the funny moment made up for it.
The art is decent.
"So far so good".
We'll wait and see how hopeless it becomes as it develops throughout the season.

Dear future

July 3, 2014

Google Docs and Sheets updated, edit MS Office files and see a hint of the new design

Google Docs

Google Docs and Google Sheets both have updates pushing out in force, and they have two things that were announced at Google I/O — support for Microsoft Office documents and a hint of the new Material Design language.

What's New for Google Sheets
  • Open, edit, and save Microsoft Excel files.
  • View charts, insert formulas, and use find/replace.
What's New for Google Docs
  • Open, edit, and save Microsoft Word documents
[Source: Android Central]