If you'd like an alternative to Windows Media Player that plays just about every kind of audio and video file and is widely customizable and flexible enough to serve many roles, including DVD and Blu-Ray player, you really only have a few choices, and one of them is Media Player Classic, aka MPC. Actually, several others might be MPC too since this open-source freeware serves as the basis of more than one media player for Windows. The latest version is Media Player Classic-Home Cinema. MPC-HC is available in separate downloads for 32-bit and 64-bit Windows. We tried the 64-bit … Read more
Walk into a T-Mobile store and a second cell phone payment option might catch your eye: the Value plan.
At first, the plan looks a bit like an interest model: a lower up-front cost for your purchase, say $50 less, followed by 20 months of equal payments of $20 apiece. In other words, you spend most of your two-year contract paying hundreds of dollars more for your phone.
But peer closer and the Value plan actually saves you over $100 during a two-year contract, and more if you keep the device longer than its typical two-year tenure.
How? You pay … Read more
Media Player Classic-Home Cinema (MPC-HC for short) is a true classic among media players. It can play nearly every media file format, both audio and video, and also plays DVD content. With its old-school interface and widespread customizability, it may not be the best choice if you're looking for a click-and-forget player for video and audio files. But those who require more control over their media playback will appreciate the extra options MPC-HC offers. Since this program is lightweight, it's compatible with nearly every Windows edition since 98 (which it still supports). Moving forward in time, MPC-HC is … Read more
An application designed to replace the look, feel, and utility of Apple's old maps application has disappeared from the App Store, just days after its debut.
ClassicMap, an application from developer Katsumi Kishikawa -- who has two other applications on sale through Apple -- is no longer available.
The free application popped up on the App Store on Monday and made waves for offering users a way to get some of the same look and feel as the old version of Apple's maps, which used data from Google.
The app included an options menu that looked very much … Read more
While most classical concert halls deliver the best of Mozart, Beethoven, or Bach, the Boston-based Video Game Orchestra plays tunes from the annals of beloved franchises such as Final Fantasy, Metal Gear Solid, Castlevania, and others.
The eclectic musical group -- which weaves a Mannheim Steamroller-esque synthesis of classical music and a rock -- played to a packed house yesterday at the Boston Symphony Hall and completed a major milestone on Kickstarter by generating $40,000 in donations to launch an album recorded from the performance. … Read more
Media Player Classic Home Cinema is a free utility that provides video playback. Since there are a lot of video players on the market, this is a tough area for apps to really stand out from the competition. With a few performance issues and some operational quirks, Media Player Classic Home Cinema didn't come out at the top of the long list of similar programs.
The installation process is simple enough, although there's about a half dozen screens to step through. Once installed, Media Player Classic Home Cinema launches quickly, although there's no modification to the pop-up … Read more
Like clockwork, Apple never fails to refresh its iPod lineup every fall. In recent years, though, one can't help but notice that the ritualized iPod unveiling has lost some of its gusto compared with the fanfare surrounding the iPhone and iPad.
Still, Apple remains the top manufacturer of portable media players. Those of us old enough to remember the "iPod wars" that occurred nearly a decade ago can attest to the fact that Apple's tenacity in making the world's most popular MP3 player laid the groundwork for the success of the iPhone (pour one out for the Zune, friends). Apple may have moved on to bigger, better products, but maintaining its dominance in the diminishing world of MP3 players is just good housekeeping.
And so, the 2012 Apple iPod lineup offers a mix of new and old.… Read more
The perpetual running game genre that works so well on touch devices doesn't seem to be winding down anytime soon -- and I, for one, am very glad it keeps getting refreshed with new and unique games.
Running games are perfect for when you need to kill a little time because you can go for your high score a couple of times while waiting in line at the DMV or perhaps while riding the train, but they're not so involved that you can't put them down at a moment's notice. There are plenty of classics to explore in this category, such as Hook Worlds, Monster Dash, and many others, but I thought I would run a little comparison of old vs. new to see where the genre is headed.… Read more
I'm having flashbacks to high school typing class, caged in a room full of incessantly clacking keys. I was likely one of the last students to ever have to hunt and peck my way through "The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy hen" on a typewriter.
If you stick around long enough, what's old becomes new again. Hammacher Schlemmer came up with a most-excellent press release headline: "Hammacher Schlemmer Introduces The Classic Manual Typewriter." It's as if the classic manual typewriter had never existed before. What crazy alternate universe is this?… Read more
If you haven't guessed already, I'm a big fan of platform games. Maybe it's my background of playing games from both the Mario and Sonic franchises or the sheer number of solid platformers in the iTunes App Store, but I simply can't get enough of them. There's just something charming to me about exploring a level, making all the right jumps, and trying to collect all the items to go on to next level.
There have been several popular platform games to come through the iTunes App Store, but as time goes on, I've noticed the genre evolving in interesting ways. Particularly with a few of the newer games, I'm seeing unique types of challenges being added that take the genre to places it hasn't been before.
This week's collected iOS apps are all platformers with something extra. The first uses an interesting foreground/background playing dynamic that adds to the action. The second is a continuous climber with added bonuses that keep trying to get higher and higher. The third offers tons of side challenges and secret areas for those who like to explore.… Read more