Crowd-funded music: Omaha Diner joins a wave of artists asking fans for direct support

Paying for recorded music is a voluntary act -- you can get almost any tune you want on demand from streaming music services or YouTube. Of course, musicians wind up making little or no money from this arrangement, but thanks to crowd-funding, bands can get paid in advance of making a record. At least initially there are no freeloaders, so the band really has an incentive to record! The same Internet that made it harder than ever to make a living from recorded music has made it possible for bands to directly connect to their fans.

Amanda Palmer has been … Read more

The guns of D-Day remain powerful

OMAHA BEACH, France--When you study the liberation of France in school, you get a basic primer in D-Day history. You hear about the famous beaches: Omaha and Utah. But you don't learn much more.

As part of Road Trip 2011, I had a chance to come to Normandy this week and visit some of the most important sites of the Allied invasion of 1944 that freed the French people and helped lead eventually to the defeat of the German army.

What I didn't know prior to coming here was just how many important sites there were--and how many … Read more

Simple poker game

Enter the high-stakes world of poker with 3C's Texas Holdem Poker. With a simple layout and challenging options, this is a great tool for learning and perfecting your poker game.

This program impressed us with its flexibility, offering great options for experts and casual poker players alike. The interface resembles a poker table, with a comfortable and familiar layout. All commands were simple to control. We were able to easily select our bets, call, hold, and fold our hands during a game. The program's built-in opponents were intelligent but not impossible to compete with. There was nothing spectacular … Read more

Weirdest swag of 2009: Frozen video game steaks

We're only a couple of weeks into the new year, but we've already run into what will likely be one of the top 10 weird swag boxes we'll see in all of 2009.

The fine folks at EA, in an effort to promote the upcoming skateboarding game Skate 2, sent journalists a Styrofoam freezer box with some frozen Omaha steaks in it, along with a press release and an asset CD (wisely sealed in a Ziploc bag).

The tie-in? Well, the words "skate" and "steak" contain the same letters, and the game apparently has a mode called the Hall of Meat in it, so it's not as random as it seems.

Enjoy these photos of frozen video game meat.… Read more