Saints Row: Undercover Playable ISO Officially Released

The Saints Row series is best known for its wacky, puerile comedy and over-the-top gameplay. While the first two games adopted a more serious tone, the developer began to focus on including sexual weaponry, silly physics and a story which doesn’t revolve around gang culture as much. This allowed the franchise to offer a unique open world experience which didn’t simply clone the very successful GTA formula. In addition to home console/PC games, the studio also commission two handheld games.

The first was entitled, Saints Row: Undercover, but also referred to as Saints Row: The Fall. Sadly, this project never came to fruition and was cancelled during development. Initially, the plan was to simply port a working version of Saints Row 2 to handheld devices. However, the project eventually turned into a brand new title with its own story, characters and gameplay mechanics. If you’d like to read more information about the game’s history please visit here for some additional background information.

In a rather surprising move, Volition has created a playable ISO of the Undercover prototype and released it to public. At the time of writing, you can acquire the game from the links below:

Mirror 1

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The reason I say this is a surprising announcement revolves around the way modern publishers treat their intellectual property. There’s numerous examples of cancelled projects, and fan-remakes being removed from websites, and video services. I have to commend Volition for adopting such a consumer-friendly approach and providing an insight into what the game was all about. Perhaps, some very talented modders could complete the project or update the graphics slightly. In theory, this should work with any PSP emulator on the PC, or on a soft-modded PSP console. However, it’s still early days and I’m sure there’s going to be some problems running it on certain bootloaders or specific models. Thankfully, in time the community will learn the game’s quirks and how to make it run properly.

Windows 10 November Update Download Has Vanished

Microsoft was preparing a significant update to Windows 10 but this has suddenly vanished without reason. The 1511 build was originally available through the Media Creation Tool and even allowed users to create a fresh install of the latest version. However, the latest 1151 build has now been removed in favor of the July’s version and you cannot perform a clean install of Microsoft’s latest revision. To clarify, the 1511 build will be available very soon via Windows Update, but any users running an earlier operating system have to download the RTM version, and then apply the update. Microsoft released a statement to Ars Technica regarding this issue and said:

“The November update was originally available via the MCT (Media Creation Tool), but the company decided that future installs should be through Windows Update. People can still download Windows 10 [Build 10240] using the MCT tool if they wish. The November update will be delivered via Windows Update.”

“Microsoft has not pulled the Windows 10 November 10 update. The company is rolling out the November update over time – if you don’t see it in Windows Update, you will see it soon.”

One theory is the .ISO files are encountering problems with Bitlocker encryption and the files themselves could be causing authentication problems. Brad Sams at Petri suggested Microsoft’s small QA team and streamlined approach is going to result in major bugs, and instability. This is certainly an interesting theory and makes sense given the recent problems with sleep mode, and random high CPU utilization on the Mail client.  I’ve personally experienced a host of problems with Windows 10 and honestly feel like it’s not a polished operating system. Obviously, this all depends on each user’s experience but the November update mess doesn’t evoke a sense of confidence in Microsoft’s ability to produce seamless updates.

Canon’s 4,000,000 ISO Camera Can Shoot 1080p in Pitch Black

Canon has unveiled a new full-frame, 35mm multi-purpose camera that can shoot full colour, full HD video in pitch black conditions. The ME20F-SH achieves this feat with an incredible ISO of 4,000,000. For photography novices, a camera’s ISO scale determines its sensitivity to light; the higher the ISO, the more sensitive to light the camera is, and the less light it needs to shoot a clear picture.

The drawback with higher ISOs is that it increases the signal-to-noise, so the more sensitive to light the camera is the more digital noise it will pick up. Canon has managed to compensate for this drawback by limiting the CMOS sensor to a below-industry standard 2.26 megapixels, and increasing pixel size to 19μm, 5.5-times more than a high-end DSLR.

Canon has been testing its ultra-low light sensors for a number of years, as evidenced by this impressive video (sadly in 360p):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eHnUtmenGQ0#t=19

The hope is that the ME20F-SH can usurp Sony’s A7 camera, the current industry leader for low-light shooting with its 409,600 ISO and 12.2-megapixel (8.4µm) CMOS sensor. Check this impressive video by photographer and filmmaker Philip Bloom, shot with an A7, and imagine what the Canon ME20F-SH could be capable of:

Thank you DigitalRev for providing us with this information.

Here’s How You Can Install Windows 10 Now!

I know, I know. There will be a lot of Windows 10 just started rolling out posts all day and people bragging about how they just started downloading the update. However, Microsoft did mention it will start rolling it out in waves, something that doesn’t sit quite right with everyone.

Well, I did some digging around and found some neat ways of getting past the waiting period. The first thing I saw is a little workaround found by someone over at VentureBeat. This involves deleting all your files in “C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution\Download” (or whatever windows drive letter you have) to refresh the Windows Update. Then, you have to start an elevated command prompt (if you do not know how to do this, Google is your friend). Type in the following command “wuauclt.exe /updatenow”, but do not hit enter! Next, open up your Windows Update and hit “Check for updates”.

While Windows is checking for updates as shown in the pic above, go to the command prompt and hit enter. This will force the update to check and start downloading the Windows 10 update. It supposedly worked for a lot of people, but I had no luck in making it run. However, if you just want Windows 10 installed and don’t really care if it’s through the Windows Update center, then the next approach might be more appealing to you.

I bet most of you don’t know, but you can actually download the final Windows 10 build straight from Microsoft’s website. It can be found in both 32-bit and 64-bit ISO and Microsoft even provides helpful tips and tools to make it USB bootable. So, if you are eager to get Windows 10 running on your machine right now, you best go to Microsoft’s website here and get downloading! Enjoy!

WhatsApp Messages Led to Belgian Terror Arrests

The FBI have been trying hard to get unlimited access messages passed by encrypted messaging services. However, it apparently didn’t need that level of access to WhatsApp messages sent between members of an alleged Chechen jihadist group operating in Belgium. According to reports released. A pair of men were arrested and warrants were issued for three others for allegedly preparing for a terrorist attack in Belgium.

Ars Technica posted:

“The arrests followed raids in which 16 people were detained, which Belgian law enforcement officials said was the result of “working with U.S. authorities to monitor suspects’ communications on WhatsApp Inc.’s messaging service,” Bloomberg’s Gaspard Sebag reported. The police investigation began after they obtained information about a man who had returned to Belgium after fighting as a jihadi in Syria.

Ars reached out to WhatsApp and to Facebook, which completed its acquisition of WhatsApp in October. A spokesperson from Facebook declined to comment on the matter.”

WhatsApp began encrypting their messages last November. In theory, if the encryption service was in use by the alleged terrorists, the content of their messages would have been very difficult to read; the protocol continuously changes pairs of encryption keys with each new message. But it’s uncertain that the messages were encrypted—particularly since the version of encryption is not supported by the Apple iOS version of WhatsApp, and group messages and images aren’t supported by WhatsApp for Andriod yet.

“Even if some of the messages remained protected by encryption, it’s possible that the FBI or NSA gathered metadata at the server for the messages. That metadata could have been used to establish the connections between the suspects and the wounded jihadi, which would have allowed the US agencies or Belgian law enforcement to do more targeted surveillance.”

Thank you to ArsTechnica for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of  RedmondPie

Microsoft Launched Windows 7 Restore Site with ISOs

With all the talk of Windows 10 in the media, many people have downloaded and installed it for a test. They might soon want to change back, but that could be difficult if the recovery partition is gone and reinstalling the system with Windows 7 might prove difficult.

Microsoft to the rescue. They’ve launched the new Microsoft Software Recovery site that allows you to return to Windows 7 by making ISO’s available for download. The downloaded ISO file can then be burned onto a DVD or to a thumb drive for quick and easy installation of the old system. The downloaded ISO will work for both clean installs and upgrade installation from Windows Vista.

But the site and the tool are both equally useful for anyone with a broken or bad disk, or maybe you lost it all together. All you need to have is a genuine key and there is no need to visit dubious pirate sites to get the ISO to use with that legal key.

Thanks to Microsoft for providing us with this information

 

Sony Unleashes the A7S w/ 4k Video

Sony has brought a third model into the new A7 family named the A7s. Like it’s older brothers, the A7s maintains the super small form factor that houses a beast of a full-frame sensor.

The star of the show is its new full-frame 35mm sensor pushing 12.2 megapixels that is capable of providing the user with improved ultra low-light performance when shooting both pictures or even in movies. Now remember not to focus on that pixel count because just like the A7 and A7R, Sony is banking on boosting individual photoreceptor pixel sizes.

In terms of ISO it has a staggering range of 50-409,600. So imagine having the incredible ISO ranges of high end DSLR’s like the D3S or the D4 but in a small form factor that is more comfortable to bring along with you where ever you travel. Sony is using its BIONZ X processor to be able to stream 4K video through its HDMI port.

This is one little beast and it looks like Sony is out for blood for any other competitor in this category of products. Let’s just hope that the price point is some what reasonable.

 

Thank you to Slash Gear for providing us with this information.