Category Archives: News


It’s Time to Develop Educational Games: Here’s How

Video games have reached into every aspect of our lives, and educators are seeing a growth in games being used to teach. Research published by Online College Courses reveal that 95 percent of educators use video games designed specifically for education. Getting started creating and implementing educational video games in the classroom and online requires several key components, and here’s what you need to know to develop and release an educational game:

Your Team

Many different people are involved in the creation of a video game, and not all of them are programmers. There is software, such as ClassTools, that allows educators to develop educational games on their own, but many larger or unique projects require a team working in concert to develop. Game development requires the creation of resources such as graphics and sound, and while many game development suites have free resources available, any unique game will require the creation of the resources in-house. Additionally, the educational nature of the game will require educators themselves to contribute content — for example, a game meant to teach medical or anatomical lessons will require a professional in the field to contribute information as well as fact check.

The Demographics

Choosing the demographic your game targets will help you develop a game that is appropriate for its audience. Video games meant to target reading skills work best for younger audiences; Research published by Edudemic suggests that video games can improve early literacy skills in players aged 4 to 5, especially when the focus is on letter recognition and story comprehension. Games meant to focus on complex problem solving should contain a tone and mood that is more appropriate to older audiences.

Reaching a demographic is another important aspect of game development. If a game is meant for a specific class, simply allowing them to download should suffice. If the intention is to reach a broad demographic of players, sites that provide free game access, like iWin, are an excellent choice. While console gaming systems do have downloadable games, the console market for educational games has been relatively weak compared to the personal computer and smartphone app market.


Educational games can create profit for their developers if they are well-built and parents approve. The 2012 Essential Facts About the Computer and Video Game Industry report shows that 66 percent of parents believe playing video games can provide education and positive mental stimulation.

Funding can come from many sources. The U.S Department of Education awards funds to small businesses dedicated to the creation of commercial technologies designed to educate and, according to its official blog, more than half of the recipients of these grants in 2013 were educational game developers.

These sorts of grants are not limited to games for children, and developers working to create adult education games are also viable for these grants. Despite this, most commercially successful educational games tend to target children; The Guardian reports that the children’s smartphone app Toca Boca has generated more than more than 30 million paid and free downloads, and that Duck Duck Moose has reported well over 2 million downloads. Currently, the market seems to best support educational games for children, and developers looking to create a profitable educational game should bear this fact in mind when designing and developing their titles.

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Revived with BYOD: Blackberry Turns to Amazon Apps

BlackBerry won’t quit. Before the word “smartphone” was even widely used, BlackBerry was the best choice for business people who wanted a mobile device that combined the Palm (remember those?) and cellphones. BlackBerry was the first to figure out how to make one great mobile device for work, and delivered better ones than Palm tried, too late, to get on the market.

Then, came iPhones and Android phones, and BlackBerry’s cache fell. People started using these devices to manage their personal lives, and in recent years, their professional ones as well. This launched the BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) trend, and changed the face of the workplace.

BlackBerry’s BYOD Revival

BYOD is helping to revive BlackBerry. After an initial struggle with IT staff and CIOs, BYOD is now part of many company’s guidelines on using personal devices at work. According to ZDNet, more than 60 percent of companies had BYOD policies in place by the end of 2013. These policies lay out acceptable uses for smartphones and tablets at work, the brands and models IT will support and a lot on security practices that IT can only hope employees follow.

Since BlackBerry was already in tune with workplaces, it created, along with several cloud providers, mobile device management (MDM) systems to protect workplace data. MDM ensures that company data doesn’t mingle with employees’ personal data. The best systems work with all mobile brands and operating systems, ending the conflict between employees whose devices aren’t on the A-List and harried BYOD policymakers.

BlackBerry’s Embrace of the App

BlackBerry is still in the mobile device market, which is strongly driven by apps. Although it offers about 130,000 of its own apps, the company opened itself up to the Android market for BlackBerry 10 phones. Although the company initially kept quiet about it, they released an upgrade released in January 2014 allowing users to directly download Android apps. There were some initial challenges with an open ecosystem, BlackBerry’s Vice President for Platforms Chris Smith told PC. “That’s held us back in certain markets.”

However, the ecosystem appears to be working enough for Amazon to agree to give owners of BlackBerry 10.3 devices access to 240,000 apps it has available online. Although the numbers don’t match the volume offered by Google and Apple, it includes many familiar ones that consumers love. This deal can only support the current revival BlackBerry is enjoying.

Smartphones don’t last for more than a few years. When it’s time to buy a new one, current Android uses could be more willing to look at a BlackBerry if they know they can continue to enjoy the same apps.

Amazon’s Gain

Through this deal, Amazon gets more customers visiting its App Store site instead of the Apple Store or Google Marketplace. These same customers also could decide to purchase Amazon Prime membership or other products while they are there. It also could be another front on Amazon’s war against Apple, where the two have fought over e-publishing pricing. Just a year ago, Apple was convicted in a Federal court of conspiring to raise the price of e-books.

The deal also happens to fall just as Amazon’s first-ever smartphone was released to reviewers. The phone, called Fire, doesn’t appear to be a BlackBerry competitor, but one packaged for consumer use (it features 3D viewing). Could it tempt some iPhone users? “Amazon wants you to purchase things,” says TechRadar, “and it’s come up with a way to do so from your pocket.” What could be sweeter than announcing two new deals in one week?


Four Reasons Why Driving Cameras are More Important than Ever

You are driving down the freeway, minding your own business, when all of the sudden another driver abruptly cuts in front of you and then slams on the brakes for no reason. Although you do your best to stop in time, you end up rear-ending the doofus driver. Since this type of accident is usually considered to be the fault of the person doing the rear-ending, you are understandably worried about a huge jump in your insurance bills.

This scenario is just one of many reasons why on-board cameras are such a good idea. The following four reasons explain why investing in a dash cam or other type of on-board surveillance system can be incredibly useful:

Avoiding insurance hassles

As the situation above illustrates, a car security camera can be an incredibly useful tool to help avoid insurance disputes. As Brick House Security notes, video evidence will clearly show both a police officer and a judge who was at fault in an accident, and it may help prove that a situation might not be what it seems. On-board cameras are also extremely useful for motorcycle owners, and they can easily be mounted to the body of the bike or the rider’s helmet. Companies like BikeBandit have a variety of riding accessories for this purpose, including cameras that are ideal for capturing video on a motorcycle that is zipping along at 65 miles per hour.

Keeping tabs on your teen

Yes, you want to trust your teen to make the right decisions while on the road. But you also remember your own teenage years and you know that sometimes even the best kids will make dumb choices while driving a two-ton piece of metal. This is another reason why investing in an in-car camera is such a great idea. For example, a dual view camera comes with two lenses that will simultaneously record the inside and outside of the vehicle at all times. The GS50 model from Rear View Safety features a handy suction cup mount that allows the camera to be quickly installed on the windshield of your car.

The in-car camera can also come in handy while you are teaching your teen to drive. As Driving Instructor notes, once you finish your lesson, you can play the recording back to your teen and point out everything he or she did really well, as well as use it as a teaching tool if your new driver made any errors.

Being more aware of the cars around you

As J Trader notes, an in-car camera can also be installed in a way that allows you to get a much better view of the sides of your vehicle. By mounting your camera to capture the blind spots around your car, you will be much-better equipped to see everything that is around you on the road; simply look at the camera screen in addition to your mirrors.

Capturing vacation memories

While car and motorcycle cameras are often used for more serious reasons, they have a fun side to them, as well. For example, if you are on vacation with your family and are about to drive through some gorgeous section of the country, you can use your car camera to capture the amazing scenery.


Yahoo INC. Employee Maria Zhang Is Being Accused Of Sexual Harrasment

( SoshITech ) – Maria Zhang is being sued by Nan Shi, according to reports. Both female individuals have had important roles working at the globally recognized internet corporation Yahoo Incorporated. The case against Maria Zhang involves both unethical issues and sexual harassment allegations from Nan Shi.  


Cleveland Cavaliers v New York Knicks

Lebron James – “I’m coming home.” – Ohio Rejoice!

( SoshITech ) – Kyrie Irving, Tristan Thompson, Dion Waters and Anderson Varejao will have the luxury of playing with one of the all time basketball greats in Lebron James.  The four time Most Valuable Player and two time champion of the National Basketball Association announced on Friday, July 11th, 2014 that he will be taking his talents back to the Cleveland Cavaliers at the start of next season.

AMAZON-395 Is Hit With A Multi Million Dollar Lawsuit From The Federal Trade Commission

( Soshitech ) – A multi million dollar lawsuit involving the online retail and ecommerce organization Amazon has taken center stage. According to the Federal Trade Commission, has charged parents more than one million dollars for in application acquisitions in which their children fashioned without the proper consent.