Quite happy to report that I finally made time to finish XCOM: Enemy Unknown. It was a long time in coming as I had been looking forward to the game as I noted in my Best Video Games of Holiday Season 2012 (back in August) and the actual release of this great game in October! I’m a big XCOM Fan and this title lived up to my expectations thus my review. Created with perceivable love for this series, the FIRAXIS team did a great job!
One of my favorite things from the original series was using the Guided Missile(XCOM)/Guided Torpedo launcher (XCOM: Terror from the Deep) to zip through the level to destroy that perfectly positioned Alien. While the fidelity wasn’t the same on Enemy Unknown, I did get quite excited when I was able to research and finally produce this same launcher. Ultimately it hit that perfect medium between nostalgia and updated implementation.
Xbox 360’s SmartGlass shows my hard earned achievement on my iPhone. Of note the “Classic Difficulty.” I figured being an experienced XCOMer I could handle it. Clearly my excitement is conveyed via my avatar’s expression!
Seriously, if you’re looking to venture away from what has become the standard First Person shooter console experience XCOM: Enemy Unknown, a great turn based game, is where you should start!
I got to check out some of the new top of the line gear and the best screen protection technology has been producing while at CES at the beginning of the year. I have always wondered why individuals take a gorgeous product like the new iPhone 5 and slap the ugliest and size negating case over these phenomenal Apple products.
While there is always a lag getting out new cases for any gadget Zagg already has the iPhone 5 Screen Protector available! While most of us treat these new and very costly devices with the care they require micro scratches and dings from other items in our pockets or bags. Zagg’s Screen protectors are the very best and every invisibleSHIELD purchase comes with a Lifetime Replacement Guarantee demonstrating Zagg’s confidence in their products.
If you’re like me you’re looking to make things a bit easier at home but at the same time make utility costs lower while not breaking the bank to do it. Enter the Belkin WeMo into the home automation arena. The WeMo Switch ($50) provides the ability to activate lights or any electronic device to turn on or off on a schedule it provides what we immediately expect from a simple device. But the Belkin WeMo goes further. It has the capability of motion sensing, WeMo Switch + Motion ($100), which will activate desired devices and lights as a family member enters a room and transitions through the others (with multiple WeMos). Obviously this is most immediately applicable to lighting applications or even area fans to cool down a house but you could use it to kill off vampire power devices (the power plugs and other items that simply consume power when not in use yet plugged in).
If you don’t desire to place these items on a set schedule you can have full control over them via the iOS application which allows you to remotely turn WeMo’d devices on or off from your iPhone or iPad. This network ability then provides some additional features with IFTTT (If This Then That). This allows for notification via email when the motion sensing capability of WeMo is activated with something like a front door light or even the IFTTT Weather Channel interaction to determine sunset/sunrise and the activation of WeMo’d lights.
From this Cyber Fellows perspective this is an excellent step toward the internet of things. What I’d like to see WeMo integrated with Belkin’s Conserve devices to provide power analytics. This would then allow for an automation and control function on top of the power analytics (Air Conditioning just turned on when no one is home). I’m surprised I didn’t see this at CES even though it was there; what I did notice is the numerous devices and companies that are getting into home device automation so Belkin will need to be innovative to stay ahead of the pack in this area.