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‘Pokémon Go’ Abandons Tracking, World Explodes

Pokémon Go has received a new update… and it’s nothing short of disastrous.

One of the game’s most interactive features – the 3-step Pokémon tracking system – had been broken for weeks, making it impossible for trainers to track Pokémon without the aid of a third party site or app. But rather than fixing the flawed tracking system, Niantic has decided to scrap the feature all together.

Niantic provided little-to-no information about the update once it was made available (smooth, real smooth), but they finally broke their silence late last night, explaining that the tracking system was “confusing and did not meet our underlying product goals.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hmm… I’m free ballin’ my thoughts here, but maybe, just maybe, that confusion is rooted in the fact that Niantic included no tracking tutorials within the game? Or any tutorials for that matter?

A lack of information from Niantic, coupled with the tracking system’s poor (and mostly non-existent) performance, ultimately sent many trainers into the warm, reliable arms of third party Pokémon Go websites and apps designed to help trainers find Pokémon in their area. These apps were especially helpful for physically disabled trainers, many of whom relied on this information to plan their Pokémon Go route.

But did we really think Niantic would make Pokémon hunting that easy? Ha!

Niantic has since issued cease and desist letters to all third party Pokémon finding sites and apps (including the popular Pokevision), and as of this writing, nearly all are abiding by Niantic’s wishes and have shut down their services for the foreseeable future.

 

With tracking and the third-party Pokémon finder sites disabled, trainers now have no choice but to wander around their neighborhoods mindlessly in order to find that Dragonite, Gyarados, or, God help us, Pidgey.

Needless to say, folks aren’t happy.

The social media backlash after the removal of the tracking feature has been massive, and some of the more zealous (and cheap) trainers have even gone so far as to demand refunds from Google and Apple for Pokémon Go in-game purchases. And shockingly enough, people are actually receiving them.

Niantic has not yet revealed any plans to reinstate a working version of the tracking feature, but if the backlash surrounding its absence says anything, they’d be fools not to at least try.

Follow GeekGirl World on Facebook and Twitter for up to date Pokémon Go news!

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Crew Demolishes Wrong Home, Blames Google

Rowlett, Texas resident Lindsay Diaz has had a pretty rough couple of months.

A devastating tornado last December left Diaz and her 8-month old daughter temporarily displaced, their home too damaged to reside in. But while the damage to her home was no doubt devastating, the structure itself was deemed repairable. This news was a godsend to the underinsured Diaz, who could not afford the high premiums that come with demolition and rebuilding.

Diaz’s contractor was ready to submit a building permit to the city to begin the repair process, when suddenly, Diaz received a phone call from a frantic neighbor.

“My neighbor called me. She was hysterical and crying. She said, ‘I hope you’re sitting down. Someone demolished the house by mistake.’ I was so upset, and I was just hoping that it was a bad joke – that someone was messing with me. But I got there, and it was just a slab. They took everything.”

The demolition company responsible for this horrifying blunder, Billy L. Nabors Demolition, has not apologized to Diaz for destroying her home and all the pricey and priceless items within it (including her vintage Coca-Cola collection), nor have they claimed any formal responsibility.

Instead, the company is pointing the blame at an unlikely source: Google.

The demolition crew directed themselves to their job site using Google Maps, verified the house number over the phone upon arriving at the location, and then they demolished the house that existed on that property. The team did everything they were supposed to do step-by-step, so how on earth did Diaz’s home end up getting demolished?

Diaz’s home (7601 Calypso Drive) and the intended demolition target (7601 Cousteau Drive) each exist at the end of the their respective street with only 344 feet separating the two (as seen in the graphic below), so it’s fair to assume that this isn’t the first time visitors looking for house number 7601 have made this mistake. Only difference is, those visitors didn’t show up with wrecking equipment.

Screen Shot 2016-03-25 at 9.08.41 PM

The tornado knocked down street signs in this neighborhood, so services such as Google Maps and Apple Maps became essential for visitors and contractors attempting to reach their destination. But a Google Maps error mistakingly directed anyone looking to find 7601 Cousteau Drive to Diaz’s house instead (as seen in the graphic below).
Screen Shot 2016-03-25 at 8.04.15 PM

Based on all of these factors, the accidental leveling of Diaz’s house by Billy L. Nabors Demolition doesn’t appear to be negligent, and truthfully, it’s understandable why the company would be upset with Google. But as far as legality is concerned, would the demolition company even be able to successfully sue Google for damages?

Here is what Google Map’s terms and conditions has to say about this matter:

When you use Google Maps/Google Earth’s map data, traffic, directions, and other Content, you may find that actual conditions differ from the map results and Content, so exercise your independent judgment and use Google Maps/Google Earth at your own risk. You’re responsible at all times for your conduct and its consequences.

So no, the company will not be able to successfully file a suit against Google…. but that hasn’t stopped people from trying in the past.

In 2010 a woman sued Google for issuing her walking directions that led her onto a highway, where she was subsequently struck by a car. Google Maps walking directions were in Beta stage at that time, and Google did issue warnings about their accuracy, but come on.. it doesn’t take a genius to realize that walking onto a highway is probably a bad idea.

If the demolition company does decide to file a lawsuit against Google, then only one person in this story would suffer: Lindsey Diaz.

“I was hoping for an apology – ‘I’m sorry my company did this, we’ll make it better,’ and instead he’s telling me how the insurance is going to handle it, and telling me that it’s going to be a nasty fight.”

The company wants to protect their reputation, but a lawsuit would only throw Diaz and her family into a legal quagmire, hindering her from getting settled into a new home quickly. Diaz, not the company, is the victim here, and regardless of whether or not the demolition company feels 100% responsible, the fact remains that they did in fact demolish her home.

Lindsey Diaz and her family are owed a debt, and the first payment is simple: an apology.

Billy L. Nabors Demolition, it’s your move.

Leave your thoughts below.

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Plants In Space! – GeekGirl Daily

NASA celebrated a brilliant accomplishment this week that has made us one step closer to actually living in space on organic food! This makes Julie happy, because now the rest of you all can hurry up and leave the planet! HAHA, just kidding! But, no, not really.

http://spotthestation.nasa.gov/

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Windows 10, The Apple Watch and Sleepy Hollow – GeekGirl Daily

On Monday’s edition of the GeekGirl Daily, Microsoft has announced that Windows 10 will be available on Wednesday, July 29, however, it’s streaming on the Xbox One console now. Windows 10 will be a free upgrade for 1 year for current Windows 7 and Windows 8 users. That is a huge deal considering there is usually an upgrade fee with the Windows operating system. The price point for new users is $119 for the home edition and $199 for the pro edition, and even that pricing is not too shabby. That’s not enough for a hardened Mac user like me to switch to PC again, but I might consider getting PC as a backup, and I can always just check it out on my Xbox One.

Speaking of Apple, the Apple Watch isn’t doing too well, and I wonder why. The price point is kind of ridiculous and pretty much alienated their core demographic. For an accessory that does everything your phone does except call independently coming in at $550-$1,100 for the standard edition is a bit much. And I think everyone can agree that the Apple Watch Edition starting at $10,000 is a bit of a joke considering only the bezel and buckle are in gold. Here’s hoping that when the Apple Watch 2 or S or whatever they decide to call the next iteration will have some nice features that will make consumers want to buy it other than just being an apple product.

Segueing into TV news, fans are raging over the casting of Nikki Reed as Betsy Ross in Sleepy Hollow, and I totally agree with them because Why? Why do we need her? The casting notice made mention of this incarnation of Betsy Ross being the “Mrs. Smith” to Icabod’s “Mr. Smith”, which already lets me know I’m not going to like this season at all. Not to mention they are throwing in some pointless crossover with Bones, a show that is dying a slow death when Sleepy Hollow is already on life support. Pretty much if I don’t like what I see in the season premiere, I’m not sticking around for the cross over episode, and I think the majority of the fanbase will agree with me.

Thanks for watching, remember subscribe to our YouTube channel for more GeekGirl Dailies!

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SDCC Survival Guide!

Can you believe that San Diego Comic-Con is just two days away!? Start preparing your mind for the sheer epicness right now by arming yourself with the Comic-Con Survival Guide, lest your head explodes immediately upon entering the convention.

The guide, which you can download here, is the 8th annual edition produced by Click Communications.

As one could gather from the name, the Survival Guide will provide convention-goers with essential tips on how to get the most out of their experience at SDCC. In addition to tips, it also provides facts about many of the celebrities and fandoms that will be on display during the convention.

And for those of you hoping to pick up some souvenirs while at the convention, Click has complied a list of some of the more geeky toys and items that you should check out, and they have even complied a check list for you (just in case you’re planning on buying all of them, no judgement!).

If anything the guide will act as excellent reading material when you’re inevitably stuck in line waiting for a panel to begin.

Download the guide and keep it on your mobile device while you’re at the convention! You also could print it out (if having a paper guide is more your cup of tea).

Are you prepared for SDCC? Share your excitement in the comments below!

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James Frain to Join ‘Gotham’ Cast for Season 2

Photo from deadline.com

James Frain, the actor you love to spot in your favorite series like a game of “I Spy,” has just joined the upcoming season of Gotham!

Deadline reports that Frain will be among the new villains to make their mark in Gotham as Theo Galavan, whose sister, Tabitha, becomes Tigress down the line, one of my favorite DC villainesses. Theo is a billionaire industrialist do-gooder who is another in a slowly moving line of folks who want to save Gotham. Good deeds aside, Galavan and his sister harbor a deep vendetta and soon he and Tigress set out to turn the whole place upside down. No word yet who will portray Tigress.

Frain’s role is one of two new regular roles recently cast (Nicholas D’Agosto, who previously was recurring as Harvey Dent, was also bumped up to series regular). I can see it; Frain does excel in roles requiring a fair amount of smarm and he’s always memorable.

What do you think about this casting news? Are you looking forward to the new season of Gotham?

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‘Uncharted 4’ Game Play Revealed at E3

Sony rounded off their E3 conference with a brand new look at Uncharted 4′s game play!

The game play for Sony’s flagship series definitely starts off a little awkward!

After the cut scene ends, main character Nathan Drake just stands there instead of following Sully, and the game play restarts itself shortly after and heads in a normal direction.

This definitely was a mistake on Sony’s part, but I personally found watching the villagers go about their daily business while Nate stood there awkwardly quite intriguing!

Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End will be available early 2016 exclusively on Playstation 4.

How did you like the footage? Let us know in the comments below!

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Microsoft Releases Epic 6-Minute ‘Halo 5’ Campaign Demo, Intros Warzone

Microsoft’s press conference for E3 was absolutely overflowing with awesome news. Kicking everything off in spectacular fashion, we were treated to a campaign demo of Halo 5: Guardians that is over six minutes long! Here’s the clip:

Once again we have a Halo game that looks and acts like a Halo game, but this time, everything is SO BIG. Like, grandiose. The demo follows Spartan Locke as he and his unit search for Master Chief – and engage in some serious combat while they’re at it. There are huge explosions, large spacecrafts, and formidable (and enormous) looking enemies that are sure to give even the most seasoned Halo vet a run for their money. With seamless drop-in, drop-out cooperative play being a huge selling point this time around, it’s easy to see why Microsoft began their conference with a bang.

And don’t forget the other awesome thing about Guardians: the addition of Warzone, the new multiplayer mode. Here’s a taste:

Microsoft expects Warzone to be the real game changer for Halo 5, calling it “player versus everything.” The set up is two teams of 24 – one led by Master Chief and the other by Spartan Locke – engage in explosive head-to-head battle in an environment four-times the size of any Halo map we’ve ever seen.

Have I mentioned Halo 5: Guardians is going to be epic? Look for it to hit stores October 27, 2015.

Images and videos courtesy of Microsoft.

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Fallout 4 “Fallout Shelter” Mobile App Game Released For Free

After their mind blowing first ever E3 showcase, Bethesda Softworks released their brand new mobile game for free. Fallout Shelter, is a new Fallout franchise tie-in app game that allows players to act as overseers of their own vaults. What’s really cool about this game is that not only does it build on the mythos of the Fallout franchise, but also acts as its own mobile app standalone, where you don’t have to have any previous gameplay experience with the Fallout franchise to enjoy.

Fallout Shelter is a post-nuclear strategy and simulation experience that puts you in control of a state-of-the-art underground Vault. Build the perfect Vault from a variety of rooms, oversee your very own thriving community of Vault Dwellers, and protect them from the dangers of the Wasteland.  Vault-Tec has provided the tools, but the rest is up to you. – Bethesda Softworks

falloutshelter2 falloutshelter3

 

Fallout Shelter requires iOS7 or later, is compatible with iPhone 5 or later, iPad Mini 2 or later, iPad 3 or later and is optimized for iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus and iPad Air 2, and is only available currently in the Apple App Store, so Android and Windows Phone users will have to wait. No word yet on when it will be released on additional platforms.

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First Look at Trailer for ‘Fallout 4’

Bethesda did not disappoint with game trailers at their pre-E3 conference last night! The trailer for the fourth installment of their Fallout series is so nuanced and layered, you’ll notice something new each time you watch it. Take a look:

You’ve got your callback to the first Fallout game with the “Please Stand By” imagery, your standard post-nuclear apocalyptic house and surroundings, plus flashbacks to just before this fallout as we follow a dog’s explorations. Following a klaxon, the dog runs through a neighborhood and the clip interweaves shots from the once-developed streets and bridges with their currently deserted and bleak counterparts. More and more, we see what now passes for life here: various robots, weird scavenging creatures of different kinds, small groups of people living in a tent city, and mutant zombies affected by the fallout, natch.

As we’re following reaches his destination we see the city, which appears to be Boston, in all its former resplendence and glory – and then the bomb goes off and ruins everything. Continuing to explore, the dog comes upon an inactive mech in a garage and then a lone human walking down the street with a rifle. The man and the dog bond and they walk off together.

Yeah, Fallout 4 is going to be all about survival, but did you expect anything else? If the man at the end is any indication, he’ll be your player and the dog will likely be your companion at some point in the game so good luck keeping him alive! Ooh, and how about that mech? He’s got to figure into the story line somewhere, or else why did the trailer focus on him in the end? This is going to be a fun one.

Fallout 4 is due out November 10, 2015 for Xbox One, Playstation 4, and PC.

Image and trailer courtesy of Bethesda Softworks.

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