Tech/Games

Monday, October 29, 2018

TCC Takeover: 11th Annual Tucson Comic-Con

Posted By on Mon, Oct 29, 2018 at 2:00 PM

click image The 11th annual Tucson Comic-Con will take place on Nov. 2-4. The event is presented by Zia Records with a mission of "Pop Culture for All". - TUCSONCOMIC-CON
  • tucsoncomic-con
  • The 11th annual Tucson Comic-Con will take place on Nov. 2-4. The event is presented by Zia Records with a mission of "Pop Culture for All".

Tucson Comic-Con will take place on Friday, Nov. 2 at 3 p.m., Saturday Nov. 3 at 10 a.m. and Sunday Nov. 4. at 10 a.m. at the Tucson Convention Center. The mission is “Pop Culture for All”.

The 11th annual Tucson Comic-Con is presented by Zia Records. It is dedicated to bringing a community-based pop culture experience. They will have TV and movie celebrities, comic book creators, artists, costume groups, photo ops, games, panels, a scavenger hunt and a Kid Zone.

Tucson Comic-Con was founded by Mike Olivares and began as a single-day event with 500 fans. Over the years the event has now grown into the three day festival it is today, complete with all your favorite comic-related activities and over 10,000 attendees each year.

The celebrity guests include Jake “The Snake” Roberts who is known for his work with the World Wrestling Federation, Tim Rose who is most famous for his character Admiral Ackbar in Star Wars, Rachel Lillis who is best known for her work in Pokémon and Kirk R. Thatcher who is an Emmy award winning writer/producer for Dinosaurs, Muppet Treasure Island and numerous Muppet films.

Comic industry guests include Dennis O’Neil, an acclaimed comic book writer and editor, Budd Root, whose first comic book Cavewoman has been continually published for well over 20 years making it one of the longest running independent titles in recent memory, Sina Grace, writer and artist who drew several series, Dan Mendoza, creator of Zombie Tramp in 2009, Dawn Mcteigue, a comic book artist and Eric M. Esquivel, a comic book author.

The annual costume contest will take place at the Tucson Convention Center’s Leo Rich Theater on Saturday, Nov. 4 at 7 p.m. with the youth costume contest a little earlier in the day at 2 p.m.

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Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Apple Releases New 2018 Products

Posted By on Wed, Sep 12, 2018 at 1:13 PM

Apple is notorious for introducing its technological advancements and new products to its users in September. Well, for all of you who have been waiting, it's finally here.

If you're on Twitter, you may have already watched the live event, but for those who didn't, let's catch you up:

Apple Series 4 Apple Watch:


Jeff Williams, Apple's COO, took the stage to release the new series of Apple Watches and said the new product's three core values are connectivity, fitness, and health. The first thing he discussed was the new display, it is now 30 percent larger with an edge-to-edge screen but is now thinner according to Williams. It is made with black ceramic making sound waves and cellular service travel better. The sound is now 50 percent louder and the watch can now detect when you fall. This detections feature gives the user the option to call emergency services if the fall was serious. If there is no response from the user within one minute, emergency services are called automatically.

The heart rate alert that has been on the previous series now has three new features:

The new model has a low heart rate alarm that will notify the user of signs of atrial fibrillation-a condition of having an irregular heartbeat. What's more, there is now an electrocardiogram feature, making it the first ECG feature available over the counter.

The Series 4 Apple Watch with GPS will be available for $399 while the one that includes cellular will be $499. It comes in three colors, space grey, silver and gold. It can be preordered this Friday, Sept. 14 and can be received as early as Friday, Sept. 21.

iPhone Xs and Xs Max:
The event also included the announcements of new iPhone models. The iPhone Xs has a 5.8 inch super retina display with an all screen front display, while the iPhone Xs Max is 6.5 inches, Apple's biggest phone yet. Both phones have an LCD screen and are waterproof in up to two meters of water for 30 minutes. Better yet, it's orange juice, wine, and beer proof.

They now come with the all new A-12 Bionic chip, a neural engine with machine learning, expanding the way users experience photos, gaming and more. The camera, even better than before, has dual lenses at 12MP with an improved portrait mode making it possible to adjust the level of blur in your photos.

The iPhone Xs is said to last 30 minutes longer than the X, while the iPhone Xs Max lasts 90 minutes longer. They will be available in the same three colors as before, silver, space gray and gold. With storage options of 64, 128 and 512 GB. The new additions still do not have a home button and will rely on facial recognition. They include wireless charging but can still be charged with a lightning cable.

The iPhone Xs starts at $999 while the iPhone Xs Max starts at $1,099. They will be available for purchase on Friday, Sept. 14.

iPhone Xr:

With a 6.1 inch display, liquid retina and the most advanced LCD a phone has ever had, Apple made an effort to make sure this new product would not disappoint. The camera is the same as the two other new releases, 12 MP, but only contains one lens. It is only waterproof for 30 minutes up to 1 meter. It will also include facial recognition and wireless charging. It also comes in a wider range of colors which include the following: yellow, white, blue, black, coral and red. The storage options are 64, 128, and 264 GB.

The iPhone Xr starts at $749 and will be available for purchase on Friday, Sept. 14.

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Friday, September 7, 2018

AVATAR: UA's Deception Detection

Posted By on Fri, Sep 7, 2018 at 12:35 PM

UA NEWS
  • UA News
A new deception detecting software has been developed by the University of Arizona’s Center for the Management of information. AVATAR, as its been dubbed, stands for Automated Virtual Agent for Truth Assessments in Real-Time.

In essence, the program shows the user an automated interviewer who asks the user a set of questions. The user’s voice, body language and eye movement are analyzed as the interview takes place. These then get sent through a system of complex algorithms that will respond in one of three ways: green means no issues were detected, yellow means there are some issues to be investigated and red means there are serious issues that need to be addressed.

Jay Nunamaker is the director of the Center for the Management of Information at UA and will serve as the CEO for Discern Science International Inc., the company UA licensed to commercialize the program.

The main application for AVATAR is border security. With somewhere between 70 to 92 percent accuracy, the program could enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of border checkpoints.

The Department of Defense, National Science Foundation, FRONTEX and Department of Homeland Security provided funding for the work, with Tech Launch Arizona helping with the transition to commercialization.

Learn more here

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Tuesday, August 28, 2018

UA Online Ranked Third in Arizona

Posted By on Tue, Aug 28, 2018 at 2:39 PM

click image DEPOSITPHOTOS
  • DepositPhotos
The University of Arizona’s online program was ranked third in the state by onlinecolleges.com. Northern Arizona University clinched the top spot with Grand Canyon University at number two.

The website ranks schools based on 11 criteria including graduation rate, tuition, electronic library collections, number of programs and services among others.

Onlinecolleges.com named NAU as the best online college in Arizona because of the large number of programs offered and their Personalized Learning Programs that allow students to complete classes at their own pace.

U
download_4_.png
A landed at number three because of the broad range of majors that can be completed online such as mining, cybersecurity and pediatric nursing.

Other notable schools include the University of Phoenix, ranked number four, and Arizona State University at number six.

See the full list here.

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Wednesday, August 8, 2018

UA Astronomers Studying Light Echoes and Star Death

Posted By on Wed, Aug 8, 2018 at 4:48 PM

The Carina Nebula - ESO/IDA/DANISH 1.5 M/R.GENDLER.
  • ESO/IDA/Danish 1.5 m/R.Gendler.
  • The Carina Nebula
Nearly two centuries ago, astronomers witnessed the explosive death of one of the brightest star in our galaxy—or so they thought.

Eta Carinae is a stellar system that seemingly went through a supernova in the mid-1800s, yet is still around to tell the tale. But how? Astronomers at UA’s Steward Observatory are making the most of a fascinating phenomenon to look back in the past and figure out the mystery of the star that won’t die.

A “Light Echo” is when light bounces off celestial bodies before reaching Earth, essentially taking longer than it normally would to reach us. This delay allows astronomers to, in a sense, look back in the past at Eta Carinae’s great eruption.

First off, Eta Carinae is a binary star, which means it’s actually two stars in close orbit that can look like a single star to the untrained eye. Using data gathered from light echoes, UA astronomers theorize that the supernova witnessed in 1837 wasn’t the death of a single star, or even of a binary star, but an energy transfer between three stars.

In this proposed scenario, two large stars orbit closely together while a third star orbits in the distance. When the largest of the two binary stars begins to die, it expands and transfers most of its material onto its slightly smaller sibling, thus resulting in the two extant stars post-supernova that we see today.

Extra: About the photo: The Carina Nebula is a large bright nebula that surrounds several clusters of stars. It contains two of the most massive and luminous stars in our Milky Way galaxy, Eta Carinae and HD 93129A. Located 7500 light years away, the nebula itself spans some 260 light years across, about 7 times the size of the Orion Nebula, and is shown in all its glory in this mosaic. It is based on images collected with the 1.5-m Danish telescope at ESO's La Silla Observatory. Being brighter than one million Suns, Eta Carinae (the brightest star in this image) is the most luminous star known in the Galaxy, and has most likely a mass over 100 times that of the Sun. It is the closest example of a luminous blue variable, the last phase in the life of a very massive star before it explodes in a fiery supernova. Eta Carinae is surrounded by an expanding bipolar cloud of dust and gas known as the Homunculus ('little man' in Latin), which astronomers believe was expelled from the star during a great outburst seen in 1843.

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Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Like Quality Sound? Don’t Buy Into Bluetooth.

Posted By on Tue, Sep 20, 2016 at 12:00 PM

Convenience is key, but quality is nice. - BIGSTOCK
  • BigStock
  • Convenience is key, but quality is nice.

There has been a lot of hype over tech juggernaut Apple’s new iterations to the iPhone 7—primarily over the introduction of packaged in Bluetooth headphones and the removal of the headphone jack which will not allow wired headphones to be used unless you have an adapter.

Many see it as a step forward, others see it as a disadvantage. This bold decision by Apple is a step towards evolution in the tech world. However, also points us in a less desirable direction: loss of sound quality.

Bluetooth headphones are nothing new. They have been in on the market for a while now with prices ranging from fairly affordable to fairly expensive. But if you are looking to get the best quality sound from your iPhone or MP3 player, Bluetooth headphones are not the way to go.

Continue reading »

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Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Apple's iPhone 7: Has it Gone Too Far?

Posted By on Tue, Sep 13, 2016 at 3:30 PM

When I was younger my mother always told me, "An apple a day keeps the doctor away." Now, at that time, I don't think my mother was referring to a cellular device. But, as time has progressed, that definitely seems to be the only Apple people care about these days.

On Sept. 7 the heavily anticipated iPhone 7 was finally announced. But, like many high profile electronic releases it did not come without making some noise. Since the iPhone's release in 2007, the company has done nothing but take the world on a journey of innovation, whether good or bad is up to the eye of the beholder. 

At this point the question can even be raised if Apple is solely innovating just to continuously innovate, and also if the consumer is actually cognizant of these changes being made. 

Yes, everyone is aware of new things such as the water resistant capabilities, and the loss of the headphone jack, but other than that are people truly aware of all the differences? 


Take these unsuspecting people on Jimmy Kimmel. They had absolutely no idea that the phone they received back was the exact same phone they had in their hands before. In the video they spoke about supposed innovations that in reality were not even true. They were even willing to pay $50 for the "new iPhone 7" just because of a name. 

Over the years, Apple has built such a strong brand that even though people are aware that the changes are not noticeable or a necessity, they will still purchase a new device. 

Are you guilty of falling victim to the Apple name game or do you think it has gone too far? 

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Monday, August 1, 2016

Enjoy a Classic Pokéfilm at the Loft's Pokémon Party

Posted By on Mon, Aug 1, 2016 at 2:00 PM


While Pokémon Go hasn't even been out a month yet, the franchise has been around for years, together both the new app and the original games and movies have a large fan base. Tucson is no exception. 

It's hard to go almost anywhere without seeing someone with their head buried in their phone trying to find the nearest Pokémon. 

Tucson businesses have picked up on this offering specials for those playing or simply using their many poke stops and a few lures to their advantage. 

While you can go to parks round Tucson or even attend Reid Park Zoo's Pokémon Go Safari Nights every Saturday to hunt, you can also party with other Pokémon trainers at the Loft. 

On Wednesday, Aug. 3 the Loft Cinema (3233 E. Speedway Blvd.) is hosting a Pokémon party for all those with Pokémon fever. 

Serving as both a PokéStop and a gym, the Loft is hosting a Pokémon-themed Cosplay costume on stage and showing the classic 2002 Pokémon theatrical release, Pokémon Heroes: The Movie!

Regular admission prices apply. Tickets and more information can be found on the Loft website.

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