Marvel announces augmented reality app, exclusive digital comics at SXSW

Marvel ReEvolution wants to augment your comic books.
Not content with simply doling out free digital comics to fans who favor the tangible page, Marvel is now giving readers a new reason to reach for their tablets: augmented reality. Android and iOS devices will be able to look beyond the page using Marvel AR, an Aurasma-powered app slated to launch alongside Avengers vs. X-Men #1 this April. When pointed at a compatible comic, the app will server up creator commentary videos, extra art and interactive 3D models of Earth's greatest heroes.

Don't worry, your standard Marvel Comics app isn't being replaced -- in fact, it's getting a new line of sequential funnybooks called Marvel Infinite Comics. "Writers and artists now have a whole host of new tools at their disposal to redefine the comic book medium," Marvel Comics Editor in Chief Axel Alonso said at SXSW this week, "Current tablets and smartphones, along with comiXology's Guided View technology, allow us to develop new, full length stories for a different medium that are very much truly comics -- but experienced by readers in a way no other major company has ever executed." The digital-exclusive series kicks off with Avengers vs. X-Men #1 Infinite, which incidentally, will be free to folks who pick up the similarly named physical book. Ready for the revolution ReEvolution? Check out the links below for Marvel's official announcement and CNET's hands-on video.

Marvel announces augmented reality app, exclusive digital comics at SXSW originally appeared on Engadget on Mon, 12 Mar 2012 01:57:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Activists tap court to block Japan reactor restart – AFP


AFP

Activists tap court to block Japan reactor restart
AFP
TOKYO — A group of Japanese citizens said they would file a lawsuit Monday to prevent the restart of a nuclear power plant, a day after the first anniversary of the country's atomic disaster. The group of 259 citizens are to file the suit in Osaka ...
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‘Halo: The Fallen’ fan film is gorgeous, gory, grunty



Here's a stark look into the wartorn lives of a group of marines and ODSTs during the events of the first Halo title, as lovingly recreated by a group of fans. The prologue reel for Halo: The Fallen, viewable above, has a wizened veteran relive the first battle with the Covenant on Reach, complete with professional-quality CGI Elites, Grunts, plasma rifles and bullets.

The Halo: The Fallen prologue film is not-for-profit and was made with $200 to showcase the creators' talents, the YouTube description reads. If we could pay people in our own humble respect, these guys would be millionaires.

Update: This post originally credited the Halo: Helljumper folks as having created the above piece of video, which is inaccurate. It also referred to "Elites" as "Arbiters," which, frankly, we find inexcusable. Those responsible in the Department of Halo Alien Class References have been summarily sacked.

Joystiq'Halo: The Fallen' fan film is gorgeous, gory, grunty originally appeared on Joystiq on Sun, 11 Mar 2012 23:59:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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IBM’s Holey Optochip transmits 1Tbps of data, is named awesomely

Be honest: was there any doubt whatsoever that something called a "Holey Optochip" would be anything short of mind-blowing? No. None. The whiz-kids over at IBM have somehow managed to transmit a staggering 1Tbps of data over a new optical chip, with the fresh prototype showing promise for ultra-high interconnect bandwidth to power future supercomputer and data center applications. For those who'd rather not deal with esoteric descriptions, that's around 500 HD movies being transferred each second, and it's enough to transfer the entire U.S. Library of Congress web archive in just 60 minutes. Needless to say, it's light pulses taking charge here, and researchers are currently hunting for ways to make use of optical signals within standard low-cost, high-volume chip manufacturing techniques. Getting the feeling that your own personal supercomputer is just a year or two away? Hate to burst your bubble, but IBM's been touting similar achievements since at least 2008. Actually, scratch that -- where there's hope, there's Holey.

IBM's Holey Optochip transmits 1Tbps of data, is named awesomely originally appeared on Engadget on Mon, 12 Mar 2012 00:17:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The war begins in this Mass Effect 3 trailer


In the future, after Bill Pullman is long dead and unable to deliver emphatic speeches, it will take the stirring words of MaleShep and Mass Effect 3 review scores from major outlets to motivate the galaxy to stand up against the Reaper threat.

JoystiqThe war begins in this Mass Effect 3 trailer originally appeared on Joystiq on Sun, 11 Mar 2012 22:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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NASA’s GRAIL spacecraft begin the process of staring way too hard at the moon

NASA's overall initiatives may be throttled, but the Gravity Recovery And Interior Laboratory (GRAIL) spacecraft haven't heard of any such limitations. These guys have officially started their collection mission, orbiting the moon for the next 80-some-odd days in order to obtain a high-resolution map of the lunar gravitational field. Why? Humans told 'em too, of course. Outside of the conventional knee-jerk response, scientists are also hoping to grok more about the moon's "internal structure and composition," and perhaps even get a better understanding of how "Earth and other rocky planets in the solar system formed and evolved." Cleverly, the GRAIL mission's twin machines are named Ebb and Flow (thanks to a group of youngsters in Bozeman, Montana), and while it's not being made public, we wouldn't be shocked to hear that the whole thing is being covertly funded by Sir Richard Branson. The moon is totally the next hot real estate market, right?

Continue reading NASA's GRAIL spacecraft begin the process of staring way too hard at the moon

NASA's GRAIL spacecraft begin the process of staring way too hard at the moon originally appeared on Engadget on Sun, 11 Mar 2012 23:26:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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How would you change the Samsung Focus S?

Samsung's 4.3-inch Mango phone looked and felt very much like a Galaxy S II, even down to that lovely Super AMOLED Plus display and its plastic housing. It packed the same internals as the Focus Flash, excepting that it came with 16GB rather than 8GB on-board. It was perfectly likable as a handset, which was our reviewers biggest problem with it: we just couldn't find a strong and compelling reason to part with $200 for one. Still, thousands of you got one of these, so we'd like to know what compelled you all to go for it and, after several months of using it day in, day out, if you had the choice, what would you change?

How would you change the Samsung Focus S? originally appeared on Engadget on Sun, 11 Mar 2012 22:47:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Switched On: The iPad’s landscape orientation

Each week Ross Rubin contributes Switched On, a column about consumer technology.
The two major classes of tablet seeking to grab a share of the iPad's market have in many ways been driven by operating system advances. Windows 8 will bring the new Metro user interface and ARM support to allow what has historically been the more powerful PC class to scale down. Android 4.0 unifies the platform's tablet and smartphone operating systems, encouraging it to take better advantage of the larger screen capabilities and scale up.

Indeed, the full potential of the new iPad won't be known until the release of iOS 6 to fuel Apple's historically tight pairing of hardware and software; that other shoe will likely drop at its developer conference in June. Despite the lack of a new operating system or form factor, the third-generation iPad and its now price-reduced predecessor have set the stage for how Apple plans to defend against Android and Windows tablets.

Continue reading Switched On: The iPad's landscape orientation

Switched On: The iPad's landscape orientation originally appeared on Engadget on Sun, 11 Mar 2012 22:22:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Iraqi murders put gay and emo youth on edge – CNN


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Iraqi murders put gay and emo youth on edge
CNN
Baghdad (CNN) -- A recent rash of killings of people perceived to be gay or emo in Iraq has stoked fear within those communities, which worry the government might be unwilling or unable to protect them. At least 14 such victims were killed in Baghdad ...
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