Home monitoring is so much more accessible now than it used to be. Now with smartphone integration, it’s pretty easy to keep tabs on the homestead while you’re away. We reviewed the Belkin Netcam HD a while back. Now meet a home monitoring solution that’s suitable for the great outdoors as well as indoors: the D-Link DCS-2330L Outdoor HD Wireless Network Camera, a network-enabled camera that is flexible, effective, and resilient in our Canadian climate.
There are many things in the world that are a big mystery to the average consumer. Straddling the line between alchemy and sorcery, these secrets lead to much head-scratching and face-scrunching, due to the mystical nature of these odd occurrences. One of these puzzles is the “check engine” light that occasionally pops up on the dashboard, indicating some issue with your car, which leads you to drive to your local garage and pay for a diagnostic and a fix (if required). Lemur Vehicle Monitors helps to fan away the fog of mystery with the BlueDriver diagnostic tool, which turns your smartphone into an automotive information center.
People really love a good team-up. It’s not hard to see why; the idea of something being greater than the sum of its parts is very compelling – especially when the components are amazing. We have seen it before, with games like Street Fighter vs. Capcom, or the Super Smash Bros. franchise – and it works. I have often wondered what it would be like for Professor Layton and Luke Triton to meet other videogame characters on one of their adventures. Would it work? Well, Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney (Level-5 and Capcom) answers that question, in a Nintendo 3DS game that has the most FPS out of any game ever made. And by FPS I mean Finger Pointing Sequences, of course.
The first time I tackled an “Endless” game from Amplitude Studios was 2012’s Endless Space. I was generally positive about the game and its DLC, though I sharply criticized the combat – a core component of any 4X game – as being woefully insufficient. Rock-paper-scissors in space? Uh, no, thanks – no matter how shiny the guns and ships are. I want my games to be deep, tactical and replayable with as few “oh-please-no-don’t-make-me-play-this-part” moments as possible. Two years later, Amplitude is back with Endless Legend – a game set in the same universe as Endless Space1 except instead of a galaxy-conquering space epic, you’re fighting over the planet Auriga. How does the lure of Dust and the glory of conquest translate from a galactic to a planetary scale? I break it all down in my latest video review.
Several years ago, Hasbro and their partners took the My Little Pony franchise to a new place with the Equestria Girls film and line of toys. A significant departure from the normal My Little Pony series, Equestria Girls featured the ponies as humans – transformed by walking through a magic mirror. Now, Hasbro shines a spotlight on the My Little Pony Equestria line with the My Little Pony Equestria Girls Rainbow Rocks Mane Event Stage, which corresponds with the recently released film, My Little Pony: Equestria Girls – Rainbow Rocks.
Audio is a very important part of the home theatre experience. Without effective audio delivery, movies and videogames become a ho-hum affair, and they lose their immersive quality. It makes sense; so much work goes into creating realistic sound fields in films and video games – even movies that don’t have a lot of “special effects” still have a fair bit of work done in the audio production. In my opinion, having discrete speaker outputs (5.1 minimum) is the way to go; but what if you can’t run wires? What if you have a small space and you can’t justify spending a lot of money on a number of different speakers? What if I told you that there is actually a great product from VIZIO (which we first saw at the Future Shop Smart Loft) that allows you to have a great 5.1 surround sound system that doesn’t require complicated installation – but still delivers a powerful and immersive experience?
Sometimes it’s like pulling teeth to get children interested in things that are good for them. Vegetables, chores, school – these are things that cause some parents to rely on bribery to achieve a reasonable result. While Budding Biologist can’t really help with the consumption of greens, they have made a very interesting app for iOS and Android devices called Lizard Island: Observation to help generate interest in science. This app allows your young scientist to experience some of what biology has to offer. What’s interesting about it is that it does offer a level of challenge that makes it far more than a passive experience.