How to Emulate a Graphing Calculator on Your Phone or PC


This post is by David Murphy from Lifehacker


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I feel like graphing calculators were only really a “thing” for most people during that year or two of high school when you were forced to use one for whatever math class you were taking. It finally felt like you were getting old—teenage-old, that is—when everyone pulled out their bulky little beasts on the first day…

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How to Win at Classic Arcade Games


This post is by David Murphy from Lifehacker


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Even though I had plenty of access to PC games and consoles as a kid (ah, the amazingness that was the Super Nintendo Entertainment System), I loved going to the arcade. While I probably spent way too much time trying to master titles like Smash TV and Cyber Sled—and, of course, side-scrollers like Golden Axe and The

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Mobile games now account for 33% of installs, 10% of time, and 74% of consumer spend


This post is by Sarah Perez from TechCrunch


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Mobile gaming continues to hold its own, accounting for 10% of the time users spend in apps — a percentage that has remained steady over the years, even though our time in apps overall has grown by 50% over the past two years. In addition, games are continuing to grow their share of consumer spend, notes App Annie in a new research report out this week, timed with E3.

Thanks to growth in hyper-casual and cross-platform gaming in particular, mobile games are on track to reach 60% market share in consumer spend in 2019.

The new report looks at how much time users spend gaming versus using other apps, monetization, and regional highlights within the gaming market, among other things.

Despite accounting for a sizable portion of users’ time, games don’t lead the other categories, App Annie says.

Instead, social and communications apps account for half (50%) of the time

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Apple announces its 2019 Design Award winners


This post is by Sarah Perez from TechCrunch


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Apple doled out its 2019 Design Awards at its Worldwide Developer Conference this afternoon, highlighting a range of apps that work as beautifully as they look, the company said. This year, half the award winners were mobile games, which may speak to where much design innovation is today taking place. Other creativity focused and health care apps filled out the rest of the winners’ list.

To take home a prize, the apps’ had to excel across three areas: visual design, technology, and innovation. Specifically, Apple looks for apps that take full advantage of its latest devices and technologies.

The award winners don’t just get to take home a (newly redesigned) trophy. They also get an envious Apple prize pack that includes a 512GB iPhone 10S, AirPods, a 512GB 12.9 inch iPad Pro, Apple Pencil 2, a 64GB Apple TV 4K, an Apple Watch Series 4, a top of the

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Eyeing an entry into China, Roblox enters strategic partnership with Tencent


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Kids gaming platform Roblox has its sights set on China with today’s news that it has entered into a strategic relationship with Chinese tech giant, Tencent. The companies announced a strategic partnership that will initially focus on education — specifically, coding fundamentals, game design, digital citizenship, and entrepreneurial skills.

The joint venture — still unnamed — will be based in Shenzhen, Roblox says. And its eventual goal is to bring Roblox to China. This is something Roblox has been steadily working towards ahead of today, most recently by adding support for Chinese languages and making its coding curriculum available for free in Chinese.

The first initiative from the new JV will be a scholarship fund that sponsors 15 young developers, who will fly to the U.S. to attend a week-long creator camp at Stanford University. The camp, taught by iD Tech, will teach the students game design, including how

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Get the Amazing ‘Bloons TD 6’ for Free on iOS and Android


This post is by Brendan Hesse from Lifehacker


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The very-excellent tower defense game, Bloons TD 6—normally $5 on mobile—is now available for free on iOS and Android for a limited time. Even if tower defense games aren’t your scene, this one is going to suck you in with its combination of cutesy, monkey-themed gameplay and a decent difficulty curve as you get…

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Cheeze Wizards


This post is by Fred Wilson from AVC


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Our portfolio company Dapper Labs, the maker of the popular crypto-collectible game CryptoKitties, is back with their second game, called Cheeze Wizards, also built on the Ethereum blockchain.

Cheeze Wizards is in “pre-sale” mode right now. You can “summon” your wizard in anticipation of the game which will be played this summer.

I summoned a wizard this morning from the fire wizards region. I spent a bit more than half an ETH on it and I am ready to rumble.

Dapper built this game for crypto enthusiasts who will be drawn by the large prize pool (322.6 ETH right now and growing) and that is why some of the most powerful wizards (like mine) are quite expensive. That said, you can summon a “neutral” wizard for 0.07 ETH right now which is less than $20. The focus on a smaller number of higher value players

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Microsoft’s Mixer now lets streamers reward fans for participation, not just subscriptions


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On game streaming platforms today, there’s really only one way to earn status within a creator’s community: you have to become a subscriber. Microsoft’s game streaming service Mixer is today aiming to offering a third path to status through loyalty and participation. In doing so, it hopes to better differentiate itself from larger rivals like Twitch and YouTube.

Channel Progression, as this new feature is called, is a system that rewards community members and a streamer’s fans for more than just their financial contributions. It also takes into account other activity within the channel and on Mixer as a whole.

Members can level up by participating in the stream’s chat, by their repeat visits, by using Skills (aka other forms of expression like stickers, effects and GIFs that are used in chats), and more. That means that viewers will be able to earn rewards and raise their rank by just

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‘The Division 2’ is the brain-dead, antipolitical, gun-mongering vigilante simulator we deserve


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In The Division 2, the answer to every question is a bullet. That’s not unique in the pervasively violent world of gaming, but in an environment drawn from the life and richly decorated with plausible human cost and cruelty, it seems a shame; and in a real world where plentiful assault rifles and government hit squads are the problems, not the solutions, this particular power fantasy feels backwards and cowardly.

Ubisoft’s meticulous avoidance of the real world except for physical likeness was meant to maximize its market and avoid the type of “controversy” that brings furious tweets and ineffectual boycotts down on media that dare to make statements. But the result is a game that panders to “good guy with a gun” advocates, NRA members, everyday carry die-hards, and those who dream of spilling the blood of unsavory interlopers and false patriots upon this great country’s soil.

There are two

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Consumer spending in apps to reach $156B across iOS and Google Play by 2023


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Consumer spending in mobile apps across both Apple’s App Store and Google Play will grow by 120 percent to reach $156 billion worldwide by 2023, according to a new report out today from app store intelligence firm, Sensor Tower. The forecast estimates that both stores will more than double their revenues during the next five years, with China, the U.S. and Japan leading the way on iOS and the U.S., South Korea and Japan leading on Google Play.

The report projects that Apple will reach $96 billion in worldwide consumer spending by 2023, an increase of 104 percent over 2018’s total of $47 billion. Google Play is set to grow by 140 percent over 2018 to reach $60 billion — closing the gap even further with Apple’s platform. However, Apple’s store will account for nearly 62 percent of all revenue generated by the two platforms, Sensor Tower

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In a challenge to Twitch and YouTube, Facebook adds ‘Gaming’ to its main navigation


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Facebook’s gaming efforts and challenge to Twitch are taking another big leap today, as the social network begins the initial rollout of a dedicated Facebook Gaming tab in the main navigation of Facebook’s app. The goal with the new addition is to help people more easily find games, streamers and gaming groups they follow, as well as discover new content, based on their interests.

After clicking the new Gaming tab, there will be a feed of content that points to instant games you can play with friends; videos to watch from top streamers, esports organizations and game publishers; and updates from your various gaming groups, the company says.

The new Facebook Gaming tab builds on the gaming video destination the site launched last year as Fb.gg. That hub had offered a collection of all the video games streaming on Facebook, and a way for gamers and fans to interact.

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Spice Up Your Super Bowl Party With Prop Bets


This post is by Emily Price from Lifehacker


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Football is admittedly not my game. I love basketball and hockey, and can enthusiastically get behind a good baseball game, but football has never really done it for me. However, I do like a good party, especially one that encourages people to make crazy food products. And so, I find myself at a Super Bowl party every…

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Funding Friday: Pigzbe


This post is by Fred Wilson from AVC


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A friend sent me this Kickstarter project earlier this week. I took a look and thought “wow, that’s so great. a digital piggybank for kids with its own cryptocurrency, a mobile app, and educational games teaching them to earn and save.” I backed it this morning and though I don’t normally take the rewards on Kickstarter, I did this time. I can’t wait to give this to a kid when I get it this summer.

App downloads across iOS & Google Play up 10% to 113B in 2018, consumer spend tops $76B


This post is by from TechCrunch


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The app economy is continuing to grow, both in terms of app downloads and consumer spending. According to preliminary year-end data shared by App Annie, it’s predicting the number of global app downloads in 2018 will surpass 113 billion, up 10 percent from last year. Consumer spending in apps has grown even quicker – it’s up 20 percent year-over-year to surpass $76 billion worldwide.

The app intelligence firm came to these figures by analyzing data across both Apple’s iOS App Store and Google Play, up until December 15, 2018. It doesn’t include the third-party Chinese app stores, which would make the figures even higher.

The rest of this month may see the numbers increase a bit – especially as people unwrap new smartphones over the holidays, then download and buy apps. However, the numbers should still be in the general ballpark. App Annie will release a full “State of Mobile”

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