Sony has been revealing more details about the PlayStation 5 and its games, looking towards the future. However, someone recently unearthed a patent that suggests the company is also interested in its past: namely, PS5 may have more games on it than just PS5 and Ps4 games.
The patent was revealed by a Twitter user called @renka_schedule. If you translate from Japanese, it says a number of PS1, PS2, and PS3 games can be stored in the cloud, and can be played via a virtual machine that emulates the original consoles’ operating systems.
— れんか (@Renka_schedule) July 4, 2020
They also followed it up with more patent documents, one of which suggests these games may come with short demos you can play before buying them.
Usual disclaimers: this is just a patent, it doesn’t mean Sony is actually going to do anything with the technology, it may not even be real, etc etc. Still, let’s imagine how it would change the console race if this turned out to be a real feature of the PS5. This would substantially raise the PS5’s usability, and it’d be great for us, the gamers.
Backwards compatibility has always been the area where the PlayStation has lagged behind the Xbox One. The XB1 is compatible with original Xbox and 360 discs, giving interested gamers a reason to keep them and still get value out of them. The PS4, on the other hand, only ever allowed PS3 games via the PS Now streaming service. While there’s nothing wrong with PS Now, it is essentially making you pay to play PS3 classics you might already own.
So if, if Sony could make this tech work, and if it turns out to be more than just a fancy PS Now upgrade, it’d be a huge advantage. Imagine being able to say you can play hundreds of games on the PS5 out of the box, rather than just the few that’ll be available at launch. Also, it’d just be great to see Sony pay tribute to the classic games we otherwise can only play if we take out an old console or (horrors) own a PS Vita.
Also, just by coincidence, Sony also tweeted an image of what game boxes for the PS5 will look like. I suppose even if we never get full backwards compatibility on the PS5, its games will look pretty.
— PlayStation (@PlayStation) July 9, 2020
But you tell me: would this raise the PS5 in your esteem at all? Ping me on Twitter and let me know.
Inside GM’s plans for the EV market — with new cars from Cadillac, Chevrolet, and Hummer
This article was originally published by Michael Coates on Clean Fleet Report, a publication that gives its readers the information they need to move to cars and trucks with best fuel economy, including electric cars, fuel cells, plug-in hybrids, hybrids and advanced diesel and gasoline engines.
Often news comes not from corporate press releases, but secondary material. Such is the case with General Motors electric vehicle product plan, which has dribbled out in individual announcements and teasers, but was finally drawn together in the company’s 2019 Sustainability Report that was released this month.
The document lays out a 12-EV strategy that would take GM from a one trick pony with its Chevrolet Bolt EV to a broad lineup of vehicles unmatched by any other in the American market. There are rumors of additional models beyond the 12 announced ones, which is logical given the flexible nature of the EV platform GM has developed.
Each of GM’s four brands would have a piece of the EV plan, but the most significant and broadest product lineup will be allocated to Cadillac as it assumes the role of GM’s leader in EVs.
The timing of the introduction of the new EV is spread over the next three models years will the bulk of them coming in the 2023-24 model years. Not surprising, they also are heavy on SUV/crossover models, tapping into the most popular segments in the current market.
Cadillac’s five-prong approach
Cadillac has been designated by GM as its lead electric vehicle division, possibly indicating a reluctant acknowledgement of the Tesla strategy that started with a premium sedan as its lead volume product after seeding the market with a low-volume sports car.
Cadillac will start its EVolution with the introduction of the 2022 Lyriq. The midsize crossover has been treasured in multiple images during the past several months. Its official launch was pushed back by the pandemic but now is scheduled for August 6. It also sets the nomenclature pattern for upcoming Cadillac EVs, using “iq.” In addition, it will be one of the first products to use the new GM Ultium batteries.
The following year (2023) Cadillac will get a flagship product, which they describe as a “high-performance, ultra-luxury sedan,” the Celestiq, designed to be virtually hand built in low volumes. An Escalade-size electric SUV also will join the lineup that year. In 2024 two more crossover/SUVs will join Cadillac’s EV lineup—probably a compact crossover similar in size to the XT4 and an extra-large, three-row (Escalade ESV-size) SUV. All of the Cadillac EVs are expected to be built in Michigan, most in the Detroit-Hamtramck plant that has been dedicated to electric vehicle production.
Chevrolet expands the bolt brand
Next year, GM’s volume division will freshen the 2022 Chevrolet Bolt EV and add a new crossover Bolt model based on the same architecture. Expect more tech features in what GM envisions as its volume EV models. Both of these models are expected to be on the market in 2021, delayed by the pandemic.
Other EVs for the Chevy brand include a rumored electric van during 2022 (which could be joined by a GMC-branded twin), an announced electric version of the Silverado pickup in 2023 (potentially with a new name) with 400-plug mile range and three crossover/SUV models in the 2024 model year—a compact crossover, large (Suburban-size) SUV and a midsize SUV.
There is also a rumor that a hybrid or plug-in hybrid version of the Corvette could appear in 2022.
The return of the Hummer/Buick SUVs
Already teased extensively, the Hummer will return as an electric sub-brand of GMC. A pickup is due in 2022 followed by an SUV based on the same chassis the following year. Bragging rights will be based on “1,000 horsepower, 11,500 pound-feet of torque and 0-to-60 acceleration in three seconds.”
Buick Division will offer two EVs in the 2023 model year—a midsize crossover about the size of the Envision and a large SUV. Those models may be previewed by some of the electric Buicks being introduced in China, the brand’s largest market. The brand may follow those two with a small electric SUV sourced out of China.
GM has made it clear that its gasoline and diesel-powered models (mostly crossovers and SUVs) will be the source of funds to build the not-yet-profitable electric vehicles that the company sees as its long-term future. That will extend the transition to electric models and probably blunt GM’s marketing of any of its divisions or vehicles as EV leaders.
Even though it has provided examples of product delays as a result of the pandemic, GM claims its EV strategy has not been delayed significantly and the commitment to it, as evidenced by the 12-vehicle lineup in the Sustainability Report, remains strong.
The key is GM does not exist in a vacuum. Ford have several strong EV models due soon, led by the Mustang Mach-E crossover. European luxury and mainstream brands promise a cavalcade of new product, so it will be a competitive market for this lineup. The EV market is rapidly evolving in technology and broadening its appeal, so the next few years should be an exciting time for new models. We promise to be on top of every one as they appear.
Published August 8, 2020 — 17:00 UTC
This training bundle can get you ready for a career in video game development, even if you’ve never coded before
TLDR: With the training in The Build a Strategy Game Development Bundle, you’ll have a step-by-step guide to building brilliant strategy-based games and more.
Game development doesn’t start the day you decide to build your own Fortnite. That’s the result of hundreds of artists and other game design professionals all contributing thousands of man-hours. Instead, if you’re looking to understand game development and maybe go into the business one day, start small.
But not too small, of course. You don’t have to stick to Mindsweeper-level simplicity here. In fact, the training in a package like The Build a Strategy Game Development Bundle ($40, over 90 percent off from TNW Deals) can not only give you a solid foundation in what it takes to make a fun game from scratch, but it also offers exposure to some of the most vital tools in the 2020 arsenal of a professional game designer.
This collection includes 10 courses, each an intellectual and skill-dependent stepping stone to one day craft amazing strategy games of your own.
From building turn-based games and real-time strategy games to resource management games and multiplayer strategy games, this is core training in the art of video game development, all based around creating in the Unity game engine, the world’s most popular game generation hub.
Along the way, you’ll also be challenged to create 12 separate gaming projects, each utilizing a different facet of your newly acquired skills. First, you’ll develop a simple 3D platformer game, then watch as your skills advance, leveling up to real-time strategy problems centered on learning how to select, move, and coordinate units, adding mechanics for resource gathering, unit spawning, camera controls, and more, and even combat mechanics.
There’s also a deep dive into AI, as you work to create smart enemies in your games that will give your hero a worthy run for his money. Finally, you’ll amass enough knowledge to take on your greatest task, build a multiplayer, turn-based strategy game using the popular networking framework Photon as well as Unity.
Once you’ve got all this training down, you’ll have all the ammunition you need to take these ideas and develop your own dream game. Who knows…you might have a Fortnite in you yet.
You can start down the path to a career in gaming with this expansive step-by-step collection only for $40.
Prices are subject to change.
Why governments are threatened by teens on TikTok
In Egypt, teenager Menna Abdel Aziz used social media to ask for protection after a sexual assault. She was arrested on a variety of charges, including misusing social media and corrupting family values.
Two young women, Haneen Hossam, with 915,000 TikTok followers, and Mawada Eladhm, with 3.1 million TikTok followers) were also arrested for their social influencing videos. Renad Imad, another social media influencer, was arrested after allegations of posting indecent content and prostitution.
In late June, belly dancer Sama El-Masry was sentenced to three years’ imprisonment for posts to the TikTok video sharing platform and other social media.
These and several other arrests follow on the heels of earlier cases, including singer Sherine Abdel Wahab’s arrest for insulting the Nile River at a concert, Rania Youssef’s arrest for wearing a revealing dress in 2018 and the 2015 arrest of novelist Ahmed Naji, said to be the first contemporary Egyptian writer arrested for violating public modesty.
These cases illustrate the social vulnerability of young women, especially those without social and economic connections, and confusion about what is permissible expression, and what isn’t.
What is clear is that the Egyptian women mentioned above are seen as increasingly dangerous to entrenched social, political, and gendered hierarchies.
COVID-19 has only underlined questions about when to regulate speech. Quarantines and lockdowns have affected social engagement patterns, as people seek new outlets to connect with others. Usage rates of Netflix, Instagram Live, and TikTok have skyrocketed.
In the US, the media market is ring-fenced by the norms of free speech. But recently, US President Donald Trump threatened to shut down Twitter after it added fact-checking links to his tweets. Both Trump and a Florida congressman have had tweets flagged for glorifying violence. Facebook’s hands-off policy to policing politics on its platform has resulted in a virtual walk-out at that company – and a new commitment to regulating political speech.
Some commentators consider the present moment to be a turning point in the battle to keep fake news and alternative facts out of social media.
A pressing question is whether a “platform for expression” such as TikTok deserves to be regulated. The Trump administration is considering a TikTok ban. Their concern is Chinese control of US data, not dance videos. What, if anything, should be done about user-created content?
Liberalism and social media
To understand the perils of over-regulation, we can consult the most important theorist of liberty, John Stuart Mill. In my recent book, I present Mill as a liberal, a feminist, and a critic of state interventionism. Mill argues for almost complete freedom of expression and freedom of the press in countries capable of free discussion and exchange of ideas. He places individuality at the center of his vision of what a person with “character” is, and he argues that there is value in nonconformism.
Social media platforms often play a role in reinforcing trends and in creating a sort of sameness, but they remain vehicles for self-expression, especially of young people. Mill would not support their regulation by the government.
Social media and authoritarianism
If we want to understand why non-liberal governments see threats in self-expression, we can return to communist Czechoslovakia and dissidents such as Václav Havel. In his 1978 essay, The Power of the Powerless, Havel identifies a “hidden sphere” of youth culture. “Pre-political” engagement takes place there and sometimes leads to the creation of a “parallel polis,” or space where a group of citizens can feel politically active.
During the Arab Spring, graffiti and popular songs were part of the “parallel polis”. Similarly, Czechoslovakian dissidents found places for expression in popular culture. Thus, Charter 77, the political movement which Havel co-founded, was connected to popular music and concerts. Politically, even music matters.
Thus, in a manner reminiscent of the American youth culture of the 1960s, the “parallel polis” offers an alternative to a tightly controlled, state-centered public life. Both an unfettered utopia and an escape, this space is the dream of users of immersive platforms such as Second Life. And in the case of Minecraft, an in-game “uncensored library” exists as an archive of censored real-world data. Thus, a game can have important real-world consequences.
So can Twitter. Media analysts see Twitter’s 500-million daily tweets as an important vehicle of activism. The book #Hashtag Activism: Networks of Race and Gender Justice explains how counter publics use Twitter to “advocate for social change, identity redefinition, and political inclusion”.
Now, in the aftermath of the George Floyd shooting, we are also seeing more overtly political uses of TikTok. Teens are using the platform to record protest marches and to make statements about social justice.
Today, TikTok and Instagram, or even mahraganat music (described as an Egyptian fusion of electronic and folk music) are seen by some governments not as entertainment, but instead as challenges to state social control. Mahraganat, for example, was recently banned in Egypt. Calls to ban TikTok have been raised worldwide and bans have been tried out in India and Indonesia.
Platforms such as TikTok are oriented towards younger users. The age of users raises valid questions about the privacy and protection of minors. But outright bans may over-regulate the legitimate expression of young people. And applying cybercrimes laws to regulate user-created content may do the same thing. A new Egyptian social media campaign (#If Egyptian Families Permit) to free the arrested young female TikTok users makes just this point.
Women in the Middle East and North Africa region have been complaining about legal and social restrictions on their behavior and bodies since well before the Arab Spring. Until this tension is mediated in civil society, governments will continue to see a hidden sphere of resistance in even apolitical, user-created dance videos on TikTok. And young people will continue to find new ways to connect on social media, in spaces that are increasingly hard for governments to regulate.
Twitter and TikTok reportedly have had talks about a deal
TikTok lawsuit against Trump administration could come as early as Tuesday
IPO mistakes, fintech results, and the Zenefits ‘mafia’
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