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After a year of development and another year on life support, Clang -- the sword-fighting game from science fiction writer Neal Stephenson and Subutai games -- is finally dead. Thing started off well enough after it topped its $500,000 crowdfunding goal on Kickstarter and an early beta was released to Steam. But a year later the Kickstarter cash ran out and Stephenson, reduced to working part-time on the project, said that the prototype "wasn't very fun to play." With no more cash to improve it, Clang has now been terminated, though Kickstarter investors can receive a refund on request. Stephenson accepted part of the blame in the final update post, adding that the story of the failure could fill a book. In fact, he did write a short book about it, which may eventually get published -- we imagine that would be far more interesting than the game itself.

[Image credit: Subutai Corp.]

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Google has gone on record as saying it loves original YouTube content like Epic Rap Battles of History, and now it looks as though the outfit is doubling down on such. How so? Well it seems that its fully-stocked studio spaces for partners are just the beginning. YouTube is investing millions into its partner channels, according to Recode. And it's part of a more concerted push into different types of content, replete with varying lengths and formats, too. That includes partnering with Hollywood producers, according to Recode's sources, which naturally gives Google something to sell. The wording on head of YouTube Originals Alex Carloss' blog post makes it sound like the firm's existing pool of talent will be commissioned to do new shows -- albeit with a heavier infusion of cash than they're used to. It sounds like it could be a solid deal for everyone involved: affording content creators more money for their work and pushing YouTube's hopes of becoming a more TV-like experience another step closer to reality.

[Image credit: Lionel Bonaventure/AFP/Getty Images]

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Google Maps can now tell more people whether to turn left or right at the next intersection, now that the Navigation feature has arrived in 20 more countries. The expansion makes turn-by-turn navigation available to more African, Caribbean and South American nations, along with Sri Lanka and Nepal in Asia. It also looks like they're getting the whole enchilada, including bus, taxi and walking/biking routes. Of course, those who've been usign Navigation regularly know its instructions aren't always right (say aye if it's led you to the middle of nowhere before), but it's still a free and decent option. Check out the list of countries the service now supports, as spotted by Android Police on its support page, after the break.

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Remember the French law that, if passed, would make life impossible for companies like Uber, LeCab and Allocab? Last night the country's national assembly gave a Gallic thumbs-up to the rule. The biggest change is that drivers are now banned from sharing their GPS location, preventing customers from being able to hail the nearest cab from their phone. If there is an upside, however, it's that the late amendment that required Uber drivers to return "home" after each trip was shot down at the last minute. We won't bore you with the more minor details, but the TL;DR version is that the balance of power is back with France's entrenched Taxi monopoly. If we were in the mood, we'd make some sort of joke about a country with such a history of revolution is now slavishly enforcing the status-quo...

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The best thing about iOS 8 isn't continuity texting or a liberated keyboard -- it's that it'll give you rock hard abs. Which is exactly what you need if you're going to pull off any of Under Armour's skin-tight clothing. The sports brand wants to help you along with that, and has just updated its suite of apps (the popular MapMy... franchise it bought) to include unified activity tracking. This means if you have compatible hardware (like Jawbone's UP, or a Withings Pulse) or an iPhone with an M7/M8 chip in it, you can fold all your activity data into the one MapMyFitness app. This also means you won't get dupes any more if you were already tracking with the app and a tracker separately. Already working on those biceps by lifting your fancy new iPhone 6 Plus? Good, because the apps have also been given a digital nip and tuck to look extra buff on the new larger displays.

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Privacy. Sometimes we all crave a little. 'Bocchi tent': a 1.3 meter by 1.3 meter soft-cornered cube that makers Bibi Lab reckons offers the "ultimate gaming space". With a slender gossamer wall between you and the rest of humanity, there's a degree of sensorial blockage, but we could -- obviously still hear the din of the Tokyo Game Show floors -- headphones will be necessary if you're looking to block out Other People. (The computer inside didn't even have any games! What a waste.)

With all the space-age science of a popup tent, open up the storage pouch and the temporary gaming den makes itself - you'll just have to add the furniture (and well, gaming hardware), yourself. The tent is set to retails for 5000 yen in Japan - and if you're particularly taken with the idea of your own flatpack Internet Cafe, at least it should fit in your suitcase.

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Starbucks Life!.

Love Starbucks but hate feeling left out of the shake-to-pay fun because the device in your pocket is running Android instead of iOS? Those days are over, my caffeine-craving friend. An updated version of the titular app has hit Google Play and it's packing the aforementioned payment option as well as digital tipping. The coffee juggernaut's rewards system is now on the payment screen too -- all in time for the Seattle outfit's declaration that autumn is officially here.

[Image credit: pgneto/Flickr]

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If only there was a way to combine your two greatest passions: high-quality audio and soft, fluffy fabrics? Well as it turns out, Libratone is kind of a specialist in that field, and for its next wool-covered creation, the company is revisiting soundbars with the "Diva," announced today. Following on from its "Lounge" speaker of several years past, the Diva trades the square form factor for a curvier, oblong shape. And while it's supposed find a home under your big-screen TV, the idea is the Diva can be your primary sound system, rather than just an accessory. Nestled beneath its woolen coat are two 1-inch, 25W tweeters taking care of the higher end; two, 3-inch 50W mid-range speakers; and one, 5-inch 75W subwoofer dealing with bass tones. In addition to the on-board digital amplifier, that sub is also supported by two passive radiators that are meant to facilitate a richer low-end sound without increasing energy consumption or weight.

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Do you hate emojis? Too bad, because they're everywhere: they've even arrived on Pebble and Pebble Steel via the smartwatches' latest firmware. The software upgrade allows emoticons to show up on Pebble's monochrome screen -- sure, they're not yellow or animated, but they're better than those blank boxes that typically take their place. More importantly for Apple users, though, this firmware brings iOS 8 compatibility and a really neat notification management feature to their watches. Now, when they dismiss an alert from their Pebbles, it also disappears from their phones' notification centers. (Hey, Android users, the company says it's working on a version for your devices, as well!) Other than these, the firmware also enables the watch's built-in compass and adds a fun Domo-kun watchface to your collection.

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Sony SmartEyeWear

As Sony's smartphone division continues to struggle, the company is working out what it needs to return to profitability. Does it concentrate on the high-end market dominated by Apple and Samsung, or does it try to appeal to customers looking to get their very first smartphone? One thing you might not expect is for the company to push forward with the release its own smart eyewear, a Google Glass clone of sorts, that connects to its devices to superimpose images, videos and text into the wearers view. "SmartEyeglass," as it's known, looks like a bulky pair of 3D glasses that have been modified to include a 3-megapixel camera, accelerometer, gyroscope, compass, brightness sensor, a microphone and a pretty large battery pack.

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