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Virtually Formula1

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Ladies and Gentlemen, start your engines. As the inaugural Indian Grand Prix commences, there are a few places a die-hard petrol head would want to be today outside of the Buddh International Circuit. However if you are — like me — far from attending the race today, Codemasters has just the fix of racing action you need. I give you, F1 2011, the 2011 successor of Codemasters' hugely successful licensed game franchise that taught us just how ferociously intense jostling for track position with 23 others cars can be.
 
Once you understand this simple fact, you realise that F1 2011 is no ordinary racing game. If anything, the experience of racing one of these beasts is about as authentic a driving simulation as you will get outside the closed-door testing labs at Ferrari or McLaren. Not only do you get a raw sense of the speeds at which a F1 driver has to make decisions (and turns, not to forget), but you get a very real sense of how much surgical precision this sport requires. Miss the apex of the turn, brake too hard and before you know it, your car has spun you out onto the gravel and the race is history.
 
As intensely terrifying as it may sound, this is a game at the end of the day, and while the focus is on realism front-and-center, you can choose to turn on a wide range of driving aids and customisable car setups to allow for your driving handicap. So you can choose to race down the Buddh International Circuit, admiring the banked track layout while the game handles the minor details like, you know, the brakes for example! Or if you find the full race distance too much to handle, you can choose to just do 3 laps of the Monaco circuit and get on with your day. Either way, playing the game with some patience, planning and attention to detail is recommended.
 
The game makes large strides in the visuals department over last year's game, with finer car and track details, and much improved audio feedback – you can now listen to your car or the radio chatter for what strategy to follow mid-race.
 
All in all, if you're an F1 fan and want a game that is faithful to the sport in both spirit and realism, this is the game to buy.
 
Rating: 8/10
Price: Rs 2,499 (PS3, also available on Xbox 360 and PC)
URL: http://bit.ly/r4K7Oy

Memory On The Move
As tablets and phones become our TVs of today – many folks I know watch movies, TV sitcoms and recorded content while on the move – storage for this entire media becomes a paramount consideration. Seagate's GoFlex Satellite claims to offer a solution. What you get with the Satellite is essentially a portable external hard drive, but one with a built-in battery and a Wi-Fi access point that wirelessly broadcasts digital content stored on it. This added feature makes this device a must-have, especially for owners of the storage-constrained iPad which cannot otherwise access external hard disks without using a computer as an intermediary.
 
How it works is interesting. Switch it on and you get an open Wi-Fi network that lets you access drive contents either via a web browser or via the iPad/iPhone app. Bear in mind, the app also lets you download content onto your device, but you can view it only in the GoFlex Media app, not the iPod/iPad library. That said, the device can stream basically all content supported by the iPad including videos, audio, documents and photos.
 
What started as a terrific idea does that some execution issues. The Satellite supports only 3 wireless clients at a time, and it can't work with an existing Wi-Fi network. For now, iPad owners have to pick either to connect to it, and stream media, or to another wireless network to gain access to the Internet. The iPad app is limited in functionality as well – you can't play multiple items in a playlist for example, and have to play each one, one by one. It may work for movies, but wont for songs.
 
Rating: 7/10
Price: Rs 11,500 (plus taxes) for 500 GB
URL: http://bit.ly/oC77eI

technocool at kanwar dot net
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