The eGames International Gaming Tournament – The Olympics For Video Games

Some people argue that video games take as much skill and preparation as actual sports, hence the attraction for people to take part in the competitions that now offer millions in rewards. In light of this, we want to introduce everyone to the eGames International gaming tournament.

Set to debut this summer alongside the summer Olympic games in Rio, the eGames International gaming tournament will take place in every Olympic year, be it the summer or winter games, and will take place in the Olympic games host cities. That means after Rio we will get a tournament in Pyeongchang in 2018 and one in Tokyo in 2020.

In the years in between people can accept national qualifiers, making the games as equal as the sporty Olympic games. Open to gamers of all kinds aged 18 and over, gamers can expect to face some tough competitions from all over the world as they face the world to represent their countries.

In Brazil, the game will be show-cased with a two-day pop-up tournament and the event already has the backing of Britain, Canada, Brazil and the USA. Designed as a not-for-profit initiative, the schemes been set up with support from the UK government and with aims of “positively shaping the future of competitive eSports gaming”.

With Gold, Silver and Bronze medals on the line, will gamers be enticed to step away from prize pots for the chance to gain national recognition? With more details coming out this month and in May, we may see a list of the games that participating countries will be facing off against each other in.

“2G Tuesdays” Arrives For Facebook Employees.

Facebook is launching a new initiative by the name of 2G Tuesdays, sounds like a tech version of TFI Friday, which will give all employees a taste of a super slow connection to better emphasize the current speeds in countries including the developing market place of India. While this implementation is certainly essential to a better understanding of the parameters for designing and testing the Facebook App in areas that offer atrocious speeds, I can see a text-book example of slow connection rage.

Surely the speeds cannot be that slow, well engineering director Tom Alison remembers the first time he opened Facebook on a phone with a 2G connection, he exclaimed that “It definitely tested my patience — it felt like parts of the product were just broken”. While US citizens are accustomed to a faster 3G or even 4G, millions of people are accessing the World Wide Web with 2G where a single webpage can take around 2 minutes to load, or as western audiences would say $@%$@.

This is why Facebook’s team of “emerging market engineers”, yes, apparently they have a division dedicated to this, have spent an extensive amount of time re working Facebook’s News Feed for slow connections.

So, how will 2G Tuesday work? Well, when a Facebook employee logs into the app on a Tuesday of every week, “they’ll see a prompt at the top of their News Feed asking whether they want to try out the slower connection for an hour”. For that hour their computer experience will be akin to a person residing in India or any other slow connected country.

A better understanding of varying speeds throughout the world has led to some fascinating projects including an Open-Sourced Network Connection Class System, (sounds like a citizen reviewed social class status), that lets Facebook and its app figure out how fast your connection is with the aim of then conveying a different news feed depending on the speed.

Facebook reckons a large proportion of employees will opt into this experiment, what mood they will be in by the end is another matter. On a side note, while many tech employees enjoy the freedom to develop with a comparable connection for their area, they may fall into the mindset that the whole world is the same, by slowing them down it speeds up a unique process with the aim of benefiting consumers who suffer from appalling speeds to the web.

Netflix Knows The Moment a TV Show Hooks Your Attention

Television is additive to many consumers, from the vast entertainment collections which are now available within various streaming services, to the outstanding quality of notable award-winning shows which are served up by US and UK productions that quickly grab the attention of individuals. You may think a devotion to a particular series begins with a killer pilot episode which immediately embeds into the consciousness of watchers, but this is not the case as a new study commissioned by Netflix analysed the episode which first hooked people’s attention.

Traditional viewing restricted consumers to one episode per week; therefore if you missed the pilot then it may have been difficult to become interested in the plot of a series. The boom of streaming programs to your device has led to consumers dipping in and out of episodes as they see fit. Therefore, Netflix has “analysed its global streaming data across the inaugural seasons of some of today’s most popular shows”, which has included both Netflix original series and shows that premiered on other networks with the aim of gauging the signals that pointed to when viewers became hooked

It turns out that 70% of viewers who view the “hooked” episode went on to complete a whole season and therefore buy into the product. The episode at which a consumer becomes addicted is dependent on the series in question; Netflix have released data of 25 shows which have been analyzed for that hook moment and the results vary, from episode 2 of Breaking Bad to episode 8 of How I Met Your Mother and Arrow.

Netflix analysed viewing habits on its own service across 16 markets which included the US, Australia and Canada. An exemption within this research lies in the reality of the unavailability of certain shows in certain countries; therefore, the episode which Netflix names as the “hooked” episode is the global average. The study did find variations in viewing habits across countries including residents in Holland who tend to become captivated with a series the fastest.

This study is interesting considering the power consumers have within the platform of online viewing and the omission of endless commercial breaks. Viewing habits have rendered every episode within a season to be a pilot and a potential attraction for consumers, gone are the traditional means of waiting until next week before you found out the answer to a plot twist.

A side note to this lies in the notion of reducing dramatic build up within an episode and replacing it with all action set pieces, after all, production companies would need a hook device in every episode for a consumer base which switches between shows.

Thank you theverge and netflix for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of mashable

 

Facebook Wants to Bring Free Internet to Europe

Free internet is something that everyone wants nowadays, and for good reason too. Where do you go when you want to read the latest news, speak to friends or check your email account? This is why Facebook plans to bring free internet to Europe soon.

Zuckerberg was present in a Q&A recently and divulged its plans to connect countries with limited access to the Internet. He stated that there are a lot of people who are still not connected to the internet today and he wants to change all that.

“Yes, we want to bring Internet.org [everywhere] where there are people who need to be connected. We’re starting off by prioritizing the countries with the most unconnected people and by working with network operators and governments who are most excited about working with Internet.org to get everyone online in their countries.”

The company also launched a feature that provides basic mobile internet in countries such as Kenya, India, Tanzania and Columbia. Though it won’t bring Google Fiber to your doorstep, it still provides some way to stay connected with the changing times.

Zuckerberg seems to have disclosed some other information regarding his company’s future plans with the latest Facebook Messenger payment feature and that Oculus is going to go well beyond the boundaries of gaming.

“Our mission [is] to give people the power to experience anything,” he wrote. “Even if you don’t have the ability to travel somewhere, or to be with someone in person, or even if something is physically impossible to build in our analog world, the goal is to help build a medium that will give you the ability to do all of these things you might not otherwise be able to do.”

Facebook has quite a lot planned for the future, from connecting everyone and bringing them together with free internet and its social media platform, to digging into future technologies such as Oculus and attempting to exploit it to its full potential. What are your thoughts on the matter?

Thank you Tech Radar for providing us with this information

Worldwide Bitcoin Regulations Still Unclear, Law Library of Congress Survey Reports

There were many questions on how can the Bitcoin be taxed, having more and more countries coming up with different ways on how the cryptocurrency could be treated. While countries such as Germany do not consider Bitcoin a legal tender and cannot be considered as taxable income, Canada was pro-taxing Bitcoin incomes.

“At the moment, we’re studying Bitcoin and we have no plan to issue a regulation on it,” a spokesperson for the Bank of Indonesia told the Jakarta Globe in December.

Law Library of Congress has surveyed 40 jurisdictions and the European Union to see what laws have been implemented for the Bitcoin all around the world. They found that China has declared it illegal to use Bitcoin as a currency, while Brazil has successfully adopted and made regulations for it, having been adopted under Law No. 12,865. And while the U.S. is the place where most Bitcoin makers and users are, the New York State Department of Financial Services are said to be in talks to consider Bitcoin-specific regulations.

While we see most countries accepting or letting Bitcoin have its way for the moment ( and of course China that bans just about anything that looks democratic ), the U.S. might be preparing something to take a bite out of every profit made through Bitcoin, especially having more and more companies starting to accept cryptocurrency payments.

Thank you The Verge for providing us with this information