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Will the Nintendo Network...work?

During an investor assembly this week, Nintendo President Satoru Iwata announced the Nintendo Network, marking the first time the company has attempted to streamline its online gaming effort in a way that promises a consistent and reliable experience across all platforms, all while delivering the content and features that gamers have grown to expect.

It's no secret that Nintendo has struggled with its online presence and follow-through since the launch of the Wii and DSi, attempting to navigate the fragile balance of a younger-skewing demographic and the inherent dangers of online gaming and interaction.

Unfortunately these real-world issues mean nothing to the average gamer, who has had to deal with 16-digit friend codes, access limitations, and shoddy presentation, not to mention several name iterations that include almost every combination of the words "Wii," "DSi," "Shop," "Store," and "Channel."… Read more

TI offers rare demo of Windows 8 Explorer on newest ARM chip

LAS VEGAS--Texas Instruments is offering one of the most revealing demos of Windows 8 on ARM yet at CES.

That's not saying a lot, though, as demos of Microsoft's next operating system on ARM processors have been extremely restrictive, if nonexistent to date in public (Nvidia's untouchable, relatively static CES demo is behind closed glass). But TI pushed the boundaries a bit in a demo for CNET at CES.

The demo tapped TI's freshly minted OMAP4470 ARM processor, according to Bill Crean, an OMAP product marketing manager.

Needless to say, I was not permitted to take … Read more

Here's what an HD Zelda Wii U game might look and play like

LAS VEGAS--Nintendo held a few behind-closed-door meetings with an up-close and personal demo of the Wii U at CES 2012.

While the vast majority of demos and presentations were mostly stuff I had heard before, I was able to put together what playing a Zelda game on the Wii U might look and play like.

I had seen this quick Zelda on Wii U teaser video before, but through some generous imagination, I was able to carefully piece together how it could potentially work.

The Wii U's tablet controller's screen is very impressive, and would be the perfect … Read more

Networking and storage: What to expect at CES 2012

CES has always been the biggest show for consumer electronics. It's unlikely that anyone can actually visit all of the exhibition booths and demos, and see every single new product. I know I can't.

So it's helpful to have some ideas of what you can expect at the show. If networking and storage are among your interests, here are a few of my educated guesses on what will be showcased at the show.… Read more

Capture the action on your desktop

ScreenFlow is a popular screen-recording and editing tool for creating screencasts, such as presentations, tutorials, and product demos, on your Mac. This app can handle every aspect of pulling together a screencast, from high-quality screen capture (including the ability to grab iSight and DV camera data, and mic and computer audio) to editing and exporting, with built-in YouTube publishing.

Thanks to ScreenFlow's fairly intuitive interface (now with even more time-saving shortcuts and contextual menus), even novice users can assemble a basic screencast. Experienced users, on the other hand, will appreciate the app's more sophisticated touches, such as the … Read more

MHL demo: Samsung Galaxy II turned home-entertainment system

Around about this time in 2010, I blogged about WHDI and its potential to change the way we entertain ourselves in a big way when this wireless display is implemented in mobile devices. Now a year later, that reality is still in the distant future.

Fortunately, there's something else to take its place. It's already here, and chances are your phone and HDTV at home come with it. It does require a wire, however, but that's a good thing.… Read more

preGame 61: Batman: Arkham City, Sonic Generations

Today on preGame we venture into the dark and ominous world of Batman: Arkham City. It'll be tough following up one of 2009's games of the year, but from what we've been able to play, we think the team at Rocksteady Studios nailed it.

Next, we'll be showing off an incredible amount of gameplay we were recently treated to for the upcoming game Sonic Generations. In this veritable Sonic all-star game, players can play as "new" and "old" Sonic in a collection of 2D and 3D levels. We've got Sega's Aaron Webber in the studio to explain the process involved in creating such an epic Sonic experience for fans new and old.

Got an idea for preGame? E-mail us! pregame [at] cnet [dot] com.

Be sure to subscribe to the show: RSS (video) | iTunes (video)Read more

preGame 60: Dark Souls, Rochard

This week on preGame, Mark and Jeff will crawl through a dungeon or two in Dark Souls and then mess around with a gravity gun in Rochard.

But first we'll dive into instant reactions regarding the news that broke today about Xbox 360 bringing TV programming to Xbox Live. Beginning around the holiday season, Microsoft will partner with close to 40 content providers like HBO GO, Verizon, and Comcast and stream over Xbox Live.

All these demos, stories, the Xbox Wireless Speed Wheel, and chance to win a limited-edition Deus Ex: Human Revolution T-shirt on today's show!

preGame … Read more

Aurasma may have found market for augmented reality

We've been seeing whizzy augmented-reality demos and apps for years. But so far, AR has been a gimmick--a fun toy for your smartphone or tablet, but not something you go back to a lot.

At the Demo conference today, yet another company, Aurasma, showed off AR technology. While the demo I saw looked way too much like a product from Total Immersion that I saw at Demo in 2007, Aurasma might actually have (finally) found a non-trivial use for this technology.

With this company's innovation, any real-world object can act as an AR trigger. Point your phone at … Read more

Lumoback sensor will nag you to straighten up

SANTA CLARA, Calif.--It's a stretch to say the Lumoback app made the audience at Demo sit up and take notice, but it was one of the most unusual pitches here at the conference.

Lumoback monitors your posture. All you have to do is stick a little flat sensor on your lower back (stay with me, here), and install the companion app on your mobile, and it will gently nudge you when your posture slacks.

There are additional game and social mechanics that go along with this data. Because we all want to join a social network of people who have giant pains in their necks.

Now, to be fair, back pain and back-related injuries do cost the U.S. $50 billion a year, according to CEO Monisha Perkash. And minor adjustments in posture can make a big difference in keeping us out of the medicine cabinet--or worse, the doctor's office.

And, as one of the VC judges said after this presentation, this kind of thing could sell really well on TV shopping channels. Not to mention through prescription channels. And it is pretty cool that a cheap wireless sensor and a free app can keep people healthy. If they use it. Which most won't, of course.

Still, gutsy play. … Read more