I write on everything from videogames to fictional narratives. Yes, that includes to-do lists. Words in SUPERJUMP, The Startup, Writing Cooperative, and more.
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CREATOR INTERVIEW

An exclusive interview with Dr. Greg Zeschuk, the co-founder of BioWare

Narratives with emotional beats and meaningful choices have always been at the heart of BioWare, one of gaming’s biggest juggernauts. And as a doctor-turned-developer, BioWare’s co-founder has been responsible for some of the best AAA games ever made. Dr. Greg Zeschuk spearheaded most of BioWare’s highly-ambitious projects, from the enduring to the revolutionary

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Dr. Greg Zeschuk, C.M. Source: gg.ca.

While Larian Studios is at the helm of the next release, BioWare is hard at work on the next entry in the acclaimed franchise (and I hope they’ve got a secret game in the works). We had the privilege to speak with Dr. Greg Zeschuk recently. He is a man whose enviable career is as varied as it is remarkable. …


After years of iteration, are computers finally going to evolve?

Microsoft Apple NVIDIA Intel AMD ARM x86 comparison vs
Microsoft Apple NVIDIA Intel AMD ARM x86 comparison vs
Photo by Heidi Fin on Unsplash

Even the best Black Friday deals didn’t kick up enough dust to hide Apple’s new ARM-powered Macbooks. The Cupertino giant made a mockery of Intel’s x86 chips with its M1 processors, marrying both performance and battery life in a svelte package. Compatibility concerns aside, Apple’s looking pretty smug right now. Instead of having a single ARM variant like Microsoft did with the Surface Pro, Apple boldly launched three new Macs.


The highly anticipated open-world game might just live up to expectations

Cyberpunk 2077 PS5 Xbox Series X PC Review
Cyberpunk 2077 PS5 Xbox Series X PC Review
Source: Cyberpunk wiki.

From its first reveal back in 2013, Cyberpunk 2077 has come a long way. So have videogames. The futuristic adventure game marks a clear departure from the Witcher fantasy games that earned CD Projekt Red its legendary reputation. For a next-gen game almost a decade in the making, the stakes have never been higher. With information slowly fed crumb by crumb, the wait has gone on for long enough. I’ve gone from a student to an engineer. Phones don’t have headphone jacks. NVIDIA’s 780 Ti is no longer the king of the hill. Raytracing is no longer confined to wet dreams.

CD Projekt Red occupies a place in my heart that no other developer has earned. And with Cyberpunk 2077, I raise my expectations knowing that I won’t be disappointed.

Here’s a pre-review roundup over at Reddit. My body is ready for the 10th of December.


Applies if you make less than $1 million in revenue per year

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A reimagination of Apple’s iconic logo from its 2018 event. Source: AR7.

In an announcement that took the developer community by surprise, Apple finally decided to scale back on its prevalent 30 percent App Store commission rate. It’s a move that drastically alters how developers get paid for their work. And in this time of uncertainty, it has the potential to get developers back on their feet. Apple is calling it the App Store Business Plan. And here’s why you should look forward to it.

If you’re a developer building apps and services for Apple’s App Store, you are eligible for a reduced App Store commission of 15 percent, half of how much Apple used to charge. The only condition? Less than $1 million in revenue from the previous calendar year. It’s a lucrative proposition that could end conflicts that have plagued the Cupertino giant in the recent past. …


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Should mainstream games depict ideal inclusion or real oppression?

Racism is real. It’s a systemic problem that has yet to truly leave society. While political leaders speak of equality and unity on the podium, the streets are still an unwelcome place for both people of color and individuals whose idea of love strays from the imposed norm. And while games have shied away from depicting prejudice and bigotry in the past, a few outliers have dared to tread uncharted territory by putting players in the shoes of the oppressed. Or those of the oppressor.

But even these well-meaning creators grapple with how to approach discrimination. Should videogames stick to a level playing field that offers a glimpse of a society cleansed of its differences? Or should they confront the matter by letting the player experience racism as a consistent pinprick in their conscience? Picking the latter means having to walk a tightrope between explicit and implicit forms of intolerance as well. …


Here’s why your 60 Hz display is obsolete no matter how you use it

Macbook Pro 60 Hz refresh rate
Macbook Pro 60 Hz refresh rate
Apple’s Macbooks still come with 60 Hz displays. Photo by Michał Kubalczyk on Unsplash

Once you go beyond 60 Hz, there’s no going back. That’s what anyone with a snazzy high refresh rate display on their phone or computer will tell you. And with good reason. Despite its advantages, laptops have yet to adopt these screens across every price category. Phones on the other hand have been flaunting 90 Hz and 120 Hz displays, even in the budget segment. For less than $200, the Realme 6i comes with a 90 Hz display in India, a market known for its stiff mid-range competition. …


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The originator of the battle royale genre claws its way back with some significant caveats

Two months after the game’s ban in India, is making a comeback. Citing privacy concerns over its affiliation with China’s Tencent, Indian digital regulators banned the game, stranding 50 million monthly active users across the country. While existing users still had access to their accounts, the game was taken off Android and iOS app storefronts. Over a hundred apps were affected by this ban, ranging from games like to services like TikTok and WeChat. PUBG Corporation’s return signifies that India is willing to reconsider things if apps alter how they handle user data. …


Microsoft’s ARM approach was dead on arrival but can Apple do better?

Apple M1 ARM chip Macbook Air Pro Mac Mini
Apple M1 ARM chip Macbook Air Pro Mac Mini
The new ARM-based Apple M1 chip makes bold strides in the CPU space. Source: Apple.

Up to 3.5x faster CPU performance. Up to 6x faster GPU performance.

Apple’s delivery of the capabilities of its devices has changed little over the past decade. But these numbers are impressive, even by Apple standards. The new M1 chip promises performance and endurance hitherto unheard of in the computing space. The power of a workhorse in a device that lasts as long as a smartphone? 20 hours of battery life on a family of devices superior to its predecessors? I wouldn’t be surprised if viewers left Apple’s snazzy keynote with equal parts hope and skepticism.

Right off the bat, Apple bets big on its ARM-powered future with not one but three powerful additions to its Mac lineup, from the diminutive Macbook Air to the desktop-class Mac Mini. With a sprinkling of terms like unified memory architecture, neural engine, and industry-leading 5nm technology, there’s no doubt that the M1 is a powerhouse that packs a punch. Comparing one of its four cores to the performance of its current Intel-powered dual-core Macbook Air set the stage for the next generation of Macbooks. But performance isn’t what I’m worried about. …


This is who we are and what we aren’t

Cyberpunk 2077 body modification art
Cyberpunk 2077 body modification art
Lizzy Wizzy from the game Cyberpunk 2077. Credits: Rohinee Phatak/Graphique

I’ve always wanted robotic arms. Who hasn’t?

They promise strength and dexterity to hands that were once organic and prone to damage. But this article isn’t about augmenting your abilities. It’s about what appearances mean to people. And the lengths that one is willing to go to align their physique with what society dictates as the norm. How much of ourselves do we have to replace before we are no longer human?

Before you think that body modification is a dazzling but daunting prospect of the future, we’ve been taking apart and putting ourselves together for centuries. India had access to plastic surgery in 800 BC, back when Rome didn’t even exist. In numerous civilizations, appearances have been a vehicle for expression and representation. But defying norms came at a cost. Today, straying from the norm nets eyeballs. …


NVIDIA’s DLSS 2.0 tech makes gaming even more accessible

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Control takes advantage of NVIDIA’s DLSS 2.0 to deliver phenomenal visuals. Source: Remedy.

Picture this. An impossibly polished next-gen game running on an excuse of a gaming rig with all the bells and whistles intact. At remarkable frame rates, no less. While it sounds like a pipe dream that is clogged by the fact that most run-of-the-mill hardware just isn’t good enough for these games, NVIDIA’s focus on the high-end ended up giving PC peasants a boon in the process.

While raytracing caters to those who want the best from their machines, the AI-accelerating Tensor cores present in NVIDIA’s RTX graphic card lineup has another trick in the oven. …

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