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Switched's Comprehensive Guide to Video Game Emulators

The video game emulator -- the bit of software that allows nostalgic button-mashers to mount an NES on their PCs in order to relive halcyon "HADOUKEN!" days -- is one of the most misunderstood elements of modern computing. But we're here to tell you exactly what they are, how they work, and even offer a comprehensive directory of the best ones for your favorite platform. Read on for our...

A Baker's Dozen Tips for Spring Cleaning Your Mac

Whether you're a recent convert, ambivalent veteran or one of those hardened Apple fanboys, let us remind you: a Mac, like any other computer, needs to be maintained. No, you probably don't need anti-virus software (yet), you may never have to fiddle with registry editing, and you'll likely never need to reinstall the operating system. But you may face a kernel panic, a raft of mysterious app...

Overdue Reviews: 'Strange Days'

Overdue Reviews takes a critical look at tech-centric films that are well-loved, well-loathed or eye-rollingly obscure. When Kathryn Bigelow's 'Strange Days' was released in 1995, it didn't even break $8 million at the box office; with a production budget of $42 million, it was by all accounts a commercial disaster. Even the critically panned 'Johnny Mnemonic' pulled in $19 million, and...

Kicks Picks: Memes, Star Wars Dreams and Outer Space Stylus Schemes

We've selected our favorite and most promising Kickstarter projects, and spoke with the creators about why they deserve your time (and money). Check them out for yourself, and if these bright young things inspire you, maybe you can help launch their dreams into reality. Kickstarter doesn't have to be about changing the world -- the simple design of a well-crafted stylus may be groundbreaking...

April Fools' Day: The Most Horrible Time of the Year

Sadly, April Fools' Day has arrived. Every year on this day, tech companies across the country and the globe spend countless man hours and millions of dollars playing pranks on hapless consumers and frustrated tech journalists. In the past, we've been treated to such delightful jokes as Gmail Paper and every link on YouTube leading to a rickroll. Even NASA got in on the action by announcing it...

Amazon Cloud Player Streams Your Music Collection to Your Android Phone

We know that Google is planning a streaming music service for Android devices, and rumors of Apple offering a similar product have been circulating for years. Late last night, though, Amazon stole their thunder. With little to no fanfare, Amazon unveiled 'Amazon Cloud Player,' a service that comes bundled with 5GB of free Cloud Drive storage for uploading your music and other files, too. The...

Nintendo 3DS: Not a Gaming Revolution, Still Makes Hands Happy

The best way for me to start off my hands-on with the Nintendo 3DS is to be completely honest about my relationship with the Nintendo DS; I love the little split-screened device. I have a white Lite from 2007, and have never found the need to upgrade. That was until the E3 Expo last year, when Nintendo trotted out these little guys to a crowd practically electrified with excitement. But the 3-D...

Audiofile: Cut Copy Shows Off Synths and Talks Todd Rundgren

One of the reasons that Aussie dance quartet Cut Copy is constantly on our iPods is because the band, with its electro-pop-meets-arena-rock stylings, is one of the most forward-thinking dance acts around. The boys use the futuristic preoccupations that were pervasive in the '70s and '80s -- think classic synths or dreamy vocals that owe a bit to Boy George or OMD -- to make incredible music...

Kicks Picks: DIY Movies, MPAA and Computational Couture

We've selected our favorite and most promising Kickstarter projects, and spoke with the creators about why they deserve your time (and money). Check them out for yourself, and if these bright young things inspire you, maybe you can help launch their dreams into reality. Imagine using your purchasing power to support a brand new, totally original idea. From intellectually challenging porn...

March Madness Contest Guide, With a Little Coaching from Bracketologist Brad Wachtel

March Madness serves as the ultimate sports equalizer. The seemingly infinite number of outcomes, and the requisite unforeseen upsets, annually level the bracket playing field. Even the most uncoordinated and uninformed Tournament rookies can -- and frequently do -- conquer the cocky braggarts who spend months poring over trends and statistics. And with myriad options of tracking the tournament...

Sci-Fi Movie Interfaces: Why Transparent Screens Are Miserable to Use

Yesterday, we sat in on the excellent 'Made it So (Interface Makers in Movies)' panel at SXSW with Chris Noessel, Mike Fink, Mark Coleran and David Lewandowski, some of the designers behind the on-screen interfaces in movies ranging from '80s classics 'Blade Runner' and 'WarGames' to modern day blockbusters 'Avatar' and 'Tron: Legacy.' The panel followed a simple question and answer format,...

'Blade Runner's Mike Fink: Sound Sells a Fictional Computer

Sound goes a long way to selling futuristic interfaces. Especially with the new graphical interfaces -- they are non-tactile. No more clicking switches, turning things over that go 'clunk', little motors aren't turning gears to make needles move, nothing makes noise anymore. So you really have to add a sound component to give a tactile sensation to the audience. One of the first names in...

SXSW Dispatch: Gamasutra's James Portnow on the Hidden Politics of Games at SXSW

Interactivity is a much better way to learn than passive reception. Studies have shown that. But knowing that, we must also be wary. In games, it is very easy to hide our own perspectives. It is very easy to incentivize people for agreeing with us. There is a danger to us all when we make propaganda, instead of actual proper experiences. At a South By Southwest panel on using games as agents...

SXSW Dispatch: Hunting the Lobster Dog

We bring out the costume a lot. I think we wear it once a year, for Halloween. But I think this might come as a shock, but I don't think dogs like wearing clothes. I think they hate it, actually. It may be wrong to do it, but I love my dog, and if she really didn't like it, I wouldn't put her through it. We have done a hot dog. The dog's aspect ratio is 7:1, so you get all these cool costumes...

4Chan's 'Moot': Zuckerberg's Single Identity Is 'Totally Wrong'

Christopher 'Moot' Poole, founder of 4chan and Canv.as, spoke at SXSW's Sunday keynote, and explored privacy, creativity and the importance of anonymity online. With persistent identities (often tied to our real names) from sites like Facebook, Twitter and Disqus tracking our actions across the Internet, Poole compared the loss of anonymity online to a loss of youth -- a time for experimentation....