Rounding up CES 2012 on PCWorld Podcast #130

It's been awhile since we casted a pod from the PCWorld offices, what with the holidays and CES throwing a wrench in the schedule. But we're back, and ready to blab about all the gizmos, gadgets, computers, and TVs on display at the big CES show last week. Join Nate Ralph, Melissa Perenson, Megan Geuss, and Jason Cross as we think over the major products and trends from the mother of all conventions.

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The Old Republic, Diablo 3, eSports and More in Game On #2

Game On Podcast
Hello and welcome to the sophomore episode of the PCWorld Game On podcast! We take a break from running down the gaming news of the day to talk about the last big game release of 2011: BioWare's The Old Republic. PCWorld Editors David Daw, Jason Cross, Patrick Miller and Alex Wawro jumpstart this week's episode with a frank discussion of whether or not it's feasible for publishers like Electronic Arts to charge a subscription fee for massively multiplayer online games. The Old Republic may well be the last MMORPG to launch with a subscription system; if it fails, what does that mean for the future of online gaming? And what can we expect from Blizzard's next online game, the mysterious Project Titan?

That leads into a frank discussion of Diablo 3 based on our experiences with the beta. Blizzard Entertainment is going to allow players to buy and sell fictional game items for real money, collecting a small fee on both sides of the business. After spending some time with Diablo 3 our podcast panelists debate the merits of allowing players to pay for premium gear instead of earning it the old-fashioned way; without the loot grind that defined Diablo 2, can the sequel hope to snare as many players?

And what about games for the holidays? The PCWorld Game On team shares some of their favorite mobile games that are perfect for long flights or car rides; listen in for their suggestions and be sure to leave some of your own in the comments below. And if you see a player named GrumpyMutt in your favorite online game, make sure to give him some grief for missing this episode of Game On.

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GamePro closes, Nintendo may lose Miyamoto and OnLive brings LA Noire to Android tablets in Game On Podcast #1

Game On Podcast
Hello and welcome to the inaugural episode of the PCWorld Game On podcast! Video games were once a niche market, but these days you can play them on almost any device you won; whether you play on a PC, HDTV, smartphone or tablet, games are always on the cutting edge of technology and going forward we'll be here to help you get the most out of both.

Every week the PCWorld Game On Podcast will bring you expert opinions and commentary from PCWorld editors who are passionate about the games we play and the technology we use to play them.

To get this party started we run down some of the top stories in gaming with PCWorld Editors Nate Ralph, Jason Cross, Patrick Miller and Alex Wawro. We kick off this week's episode with a frank discussion of how our games coverage must evolve in the wake of GamePro's closure. Next, we recap the rumors that Nintendo may lose Miyamoto as a General Manager if he steps down to pursue new game ideas with smaller Nintendo development teams. We guess that means he'll be working on games for the Nintendo 3DS and their eShop download service, but does anyone still play games on their handheld devices, or are tablets the future of mobile gaming?

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Xbox 360 and Nintendo 3DS Updates, Windows Store, and the HP TopShot on PCWorld Podcast #129

This week, PCWorld Editors Nate Ralph, Melissa Riofrio, Elsa Wenzel, and Jason Cross talk a lot about Microsoft. First, there's the big huge Xbox 360 update that brings the Metro design style to the game console, along with a whole slew of streaming video and audio services. Then there's the surprise release of an official Xbox Live app for iOS.

Perhaps the biggest Microsoft news this week was the event detailing the Windows Store for Windows 8. This will be the way hundreds of millions of Windows 8 users download metro-style apps, and Microsoft's policies are, surprisingly, more open than app stores from Google or Apple.

Last but certainly not least, we discuss HP's new TopShot printer: a color laser multifunction that replaces the traditional scanner with a multi-photo-taking arm, allowing you to "scan" objects with depth.

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Amazon Kindle Fire and Google Music with Guest Carlos Rodela on PCWorld Podcast #128

This week, PCWorld Editors Ginny Mies, Melissa J. Perenson, and Jason Cross are joined by guest Carlos Rodela to talk about Amazon's new Kindle Fire tablet and the Barnes & Noble Nook Tablet. Carlos worked at Amazon for years in the early days of its push into digtal products, and has some insight into how Amazon is thinking of the tablet a bit differently than others.

The coversation then shifts to the new Google Music store, fresh out of beta. You can still upload 20,000 of your own tracks, but now you can buy music for around $0.99 per track. Does the world need another "buy songs for a buck" music store? Not really, but Google does bring a few unique features to the table and Android users should probably have a default music service they can rely on being integrated into the OS.

Follow us on twitter: Jason Cross, Melissa Perenson, Ginny Mies, and Carlos Rodela.

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Mechanical Keyboards, Lytro's Light-Field Camera, Nokia's Windows Phones, and Reader Mail on PCWorld Podcast #127

Join PCWorld Editors Ginny Mies, Tim Moynihan, Patrick Miller, and Jason Cross as we give you the low-down on mechanical keyboards. What's the difference between these and the keyboard you probalby have on your PC today? What are the different switch types? Which ones are best?

And what's this about Nokia's new Windows Phone 7.5 phones? Are they just nice to look at, or is there a real reason to wait for them? They're going to miss the holidays here in the U.S., but Europeans should get them real soon now. Is this what Windows Phone 7 needs to be relevant in the market, or is it too little too late?

Speaking of new entries to the marketplace, there's Lytro and it's rather amazing light-field camera. Focus after you take the picture? That's crazy talk! It looks like it works, and does a few other neat things no other camera does, but there are some significant drawbacks.

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AMD's new FX Processor, Qwikster is Dead, Memristors by 2013, and Most Useful Websites on PCWorld Podcast #126

PCWorld Editors Megan Geuss, Nate Ralph, and Jason Cross express their disappointment in the new FX processors from AMD. "Bulldozer" was supposed to get AMD back in the arms race against Intel for high-performance CPUs, but it's not nearly fast enough and draws too much power. The best AMD can compete with seems to be the middle-of-the-road from Intel.

We're also sort of dismayed by Netflix's decision to kill the whole Qwikster idea. Yes, it was a terrible name, but we're actually sort of in favor of the DVD rental business splitting off from the streaming business. Now it just looks like they don't know what they're doing over there. Speaking of web services, Megan gives us a sneak peak at the results of her coming feature on the most useful websites on the 'net.

Oh, and would you like an SSD that is almost as fast as RAM and draws less power? That's the promise of memristors, a new fundamental circuit component HP has been developing. That, and potentially higher storage density and lower cost, once manufacture ramps up. The first products might be on the market in 2013...it'll be here before you know it.

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