Xbox backs down over DRM
If you decided to go to bed last night you may have missed the biggest tech company u-turn in living memory: following a mass of negative reaction, Microsoft's ditching the Xbox One's draconian game DRM and removing its always-on internet requirement.
Well done Microsoft, you just made the Xbox One about 115% more attractive. But the story is rather bittersweet. Here's our newly updated Xbox One vs PS4 feature, and here's an Engadget article about what's been lost. I, for one, would have liked to have at least tried playing without a disc in the drawer.
NASA's billion-pixel Mars masterpiece
NASA's stitched together almost 900 images of the 'Rocknest' site on Mars from the Curiosity Rover's on-board camera – and the 1.3billion-pixel result is staggering. Not a Tesco Metro in sight.
Pan and zoom around the gigapixel shot here.
[via The Register]
Intel boosts wireless power
The chip giant has joined the Alliance for Wireless Power (A4WP) with the express aim of fuelling "an ecosystem of innovative solutions capable of simultaneously charging a range of devices, from low-power accessories to smartphones, tablets and Ultrabooks."
This isn't WiTricity: the A4WP is rather trying to set industry standards for charging mats. Handy, yes, but we're no closer to the dream of a smartphone that charges while it's in your pocket.
[via The Register]
The speaker made from vases
Final-year Victoria University student Casey Lin has created the 'Timbre Speaker': a walnut box with a pair of amplified speakers inside that uses whatever objects you place on it to change the character of the sound – like a graphic equaliser that Elle Decoration wouldn't sniff at.
Our chums at What Hi-Fi? Sound and Vision might mock the impurity of the sound it generates, but hey - if it complements the curtains, that's a battle won.