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Design tools

Unity CEO David Helgason foretells the future of gaming

Unity builds technology to help developers build games. At GDC 2014, I chatted with the CEO of Unity, David Helgason. The gaming innovator previewed some of the latest Unity 5 features that developers will be able to use, including improvements in lighting effects and audio mixing.

Games that use Unity:

Dead Trigger (Android)

Device 6 (iOS)

GDC 2014's virtual-reality highlights

Eddie Cho looks at the latest developments in immersive gameplay, including the second version of the Oculus Rift dev kit, Project Morpheus, and the Virtuix Omni controller.

Also check out the IGF winners from GDC.

Adobe brings 3D printing to Photoshop CC

Watching 3D printing evolve reminds me of the nascent days of desktop publishing -- now complete that deja vu with Adobe jumping into the market. The company thinks 3D printing is on the cusp of going mainstream and sees a coming inflection point in the consumer market once full-color printers, full-color content, and a robust marketplace for third-party downloadable models emerges. Adobe sees its role as providing the tools for helping generate the full-color content -- that makes sense given its users and applications.

Yes, Windows 8.1 now has built-in support, but here's the rub: the 3D API in Windows 8.1Read more

Add depth to your Android screen with these 2 parallax wallpapers

Visual effects like parallax have been around since the 1980s and have been popularized as a development technique during the golden days of gaming in the 16 bit era. Parallax effects simulate depth by giving the foreground and background layers of an interface independent constraints in direction. An example of this is when you play Super Mario and the background seamlessly moves in reverse as you walk forward. The result is a multi-plane effect that makes for an illusion of depth.

Reverse wallpaper scrolling makes for a subtle but interesting experience on your phone. Android has had this capability for … Read more

Safeguard your school year with McAfee and more

You're a student and you're poor. Because of the cuts in Financial Aid (thanks Obama!), you're working at two different McDonalds across town to pay for that triple dorm room. You have to go back to school soon, but you don't have enough money to buy the tools you need to succeed. You resort to piracy and bam, the FBI is on your tail. You flee to Mexico but run into some trouble with the Federales. They deport your behind back to the States and a judge gives you 15 years and says you shouldn't … Read more

Dislike Adobe subscriptions? Xara updates its design suite

Creative types alienated by Adobe Systems' Creative Cloud subscription program have a new alternative for some of their work: new image-editing, illustration, and layout software from Xara.

Last week, the U.K. company released the new version 9 of Xara Page & Layout Designer, and this week, it released the ninth version of its flagship product, Xara Designer Pro X9. The former is geared for page design tasks for which people might use Adobe InDesign, and the latter bundles that layout tool with the company's other newer version 9 products, Xara Photo & Graphic Designer X9 for illustration and … Read more

Ready or not, compulsory Creative Cloud cometh

It's been a bumpy few weeks for Adobe since announcing its controversial decision to move all its "perpetual license" Creative Suite applications to a subscription-only plan -- almost 32,000 people have signed a petition against the move and our own survey with Jeffries indicates that "Creative Suite users loathe Adobe's subscriptions" -- but as of Monday night it's officially here.

If you've bought into or opt to buy into the plan, you'll get a host of interesting application updates, settings sync via the cloud, and access to all of Adobe'… Read more

Adobe's professional cloud push arrives at its final destination

In a move that's bound to tick off a lot of (probably formerly) devoted users, Adobe's finally made the jump we've been expecting to an all-subscription model for the applications that used to be part of Creative Suite. Adobe's not just rebranding all of its professional applications with the Creative Cloud moniker (except Lightroom -- so far). Now it's created a supercell composed of Photoshop CC, Dreamweaver CC, InDesign CC, so on and so on, ad infinitum. You'll only be able to get individual copies of those packages by subscription, though that individual-product subscription … Read more

Adobe kills Creative Suite, goes subscription-only

In a major shift for its business and its customers, Adobe Systems on Monday announced it no longer will sell its Creative Suite software as it moves instead to the $50-per-month Creative Cloud and other subscription plans.

"We have no current plans to release another perpetual release of the CS tools and suites. Creative Cloud is going to be our sole focus moving forward," said Scott Morris, senior director of product marketing for Creative Cloud.

When Adobe launched its Creative Cloud subscription last year, executives weren't sure how long it would offer it alongside the traditional perpetual-license … Read more

Apple tries new pitch to woo video pros to latest Final Cut

Just days ahead of one of the largest gatherings of video producers, Apple's making a new push for attention -- and hopefully adoption -- of its controversial video editing software.

Apple today debuted a new series of promotional plugs by some top film and content makers, all in an effort to push others to Apple's Final Cut Pro X software, notes the Los Angeles Times. Some of those include videos featuring video editor and director Julian Liurette, director Tsui Hark, and Mexican media company TV Azteca.

It's not unusual for Apple to make these types of videos, … Read more