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Month: June 2020 (Page 1 of 21)

Microsoft and Bridgestone launch real-time tire damage system

d61e8830-baba-11ea-b5b9-3eb0571e79cdAs vehicle diagnostics and real-time safety advisories get smarter, there’s not much your car (assuming it’s a newer model, of course) can’t tell you about what’s going on under the hood. Until now, however, there has been one element of vehicle main…

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The 7 Best Free Video Editing Programs for Windows

DaVinci Resolve 16DaVinci

Whether you’re looking to learn video editing or just want to cut costs, there are some impressive options when it comes to free video-editing programs. From open-source software to full programs that are just free, there are plenty of tools out there that can rival the best of the best in the industry.

What to Look Out for in a Video Editor

Here is some basic criteria you can go over when deciding between various programs.

  • Design: Video editors are complicated programs, chockfull of complex tools and options. A poorly designed video-editing program can be overwhelming to new editors and confusing to use for experienced editors. However, there are ways programs can improve this on this while still delivering on the complex tools you need. And, the programs included on this list are the perfect examples of that.
  • Basic Features: Any video editor you use should cover the basics of trimming and cropping clips, transforming clips (zooms, rotations, and position adjustments), transitions, and basic text creation. These are the base-level tools of video editing, and you’ll find yourself using them for almost every project. Fortunately, they’re included in almost every program you can find, and all of the ones on this list.
  • Advanced Features: Once you start getting into more complex editing, then tools like chroma-keying, keyframing, masking, more advanced text-creation options, and color-grading all start to become a lot more important. Most desktop editors feature these tools, but it’s important to consider what tools you need now and what tools you might need in the future before settling on a program to use.
  • Performance: As we’ve already said, video editors are complicated tools, which means they can take quite a toll on your computer. That doesn’t excuse these programs from being poorly optimized, but you’ll need to be careful when selecting your program that your computer is up to the task. Most of these programs will include recommended computer specs on their respective sites and download pages.
  • Additional Tools: Audio editing, VFX work, 3D animation, and motion graphics, these are all fields of work closely related to video editing, but not every video-editing program includes tools for them (nor will every editor need them). It can be useful to have these tools included in a program, even if you don’t need them right now—so it’s something to keep your eye out for.

With all that out of the way, let’s start talking about the programs themselves.

Professional Grade: DaVinci Resolve 16

DaVinci Resolve 16DaVinci

If you’ve ever heard of DaVinci Resolve 16, it’s because of the color-grading tools. DaVinci’s color-grading tools are best in class, to the point where many professional editors import their projects from other programs into DaVinci solely for color-grading. But your use of DaVinci doesn’t have to stop with the color-grading process, as it features many tools that make it viable video editor as well.

DaVinci Resolve manages to fare well even compared to premium editing programs. You have access to all the basic and complex editing tools you’ll need in an easy-to-use and smooth UI, whether that’s trimming, keyframing, clip adjustments, masking, or text creation.

DaVinci doesn’t stop with normal video-editing either, as it also features some basic tools for VFX (Visual Effects) work, creating motion graphics, audio-editing work, basic 3D animation, and a media library to organize clips. When you combine this varied toolset with DaVinici’s intuitive and smooth UI, it becomes clear that DaVinci Resolve 16 is one of the best video-editing programs around—regardless of it being free.

There’s also a series of training videos from DaVinci, which teach you everything from the basics of editing to 3D animation.

Special Effects Master: HitFilm Express

HitFilm ExpressHitFilm

Similar to DaVinci Resolve, HitFilm Express has managed to make a name for itself by featuring specialized tools but for VFX work. And unlike programs such as Adobe After Effects, it also features a full video editor within itself, meaning you can do both your video-editing and VFX work in the same program.

This makes HitFilm Express an invaluable tool for anyone interested in learning VFX, and even if you aren’t, the editing tools found within the program are powerful enough to be a viable editor as well. You can trim clips, create text, mask clips, and use keyframes all within the program, while also working with the complex VFX tools at the same time. HitFilm also makes some extensive tutorials you can find in the program, which should help newcomers get off their feet.

It is worth noting that HitFilm Express does have some paid expansions that expand the program’s utility even more. The base version is still more than enough for most people, but if you want features like advanced audio editing tools or enhanced color-grading, you’ll need to buy the corresponding packs off of Hitfilm’s store. (They vary in price between $10 and $50.)

Another Powerful Option: VSDC

VSDC Video EditorVSDC

While it may not boast industry-grade color-grading or VFX tools, VSDC is still a great all-around editor. It features complex tools such as chroma-keying and keyframing, while also having the standard trimming and text-creation tools. And the various effects and tools for video and audio editing are organized in an intuitive way.

VSDC also produces its own compatible video and audio file converter (both of which are also free), which should make file formats less of a bother.

Online and Simplistic: Adobe Spark

Adobe SparkAdobe

Adobe Spark is an interesting tool, and unlike the rest of the programs here, it’s web-based. This means it’s not running locally on your computer, and considering how intensive video-editing programs are, this could be vital if you have less powerful hardware.

The web-based nature does come at a trade-off though—you don’t have as much freedom here to do whatever you want. This is because Spark largely focuses on presets and simple tools rather than anything more complex. Considering it’s free, this is fine (and could even be preferable if you just want to do a quick edit),but for those looking to get into the nitty-gritty of video editing, you might want to look elsewhere.

Open Source: Shotcut

ShotcutMeltytech, LLC

Open-source programs are great. They’re typically free (so perfect for this list), and they offer some of the highest levels of customization available in the software scene. Open-source means that anyone with the technical know-how can crack open the code of these programs and edit whatever they want, whether that’s adding tools, more options, or UI changes.

Shotcut is one of the largest open-source video editors around, so it’s your best bet if you want full access to the benefits of being open-source. Even without third-party add-ons though, ShotCut is still a powerful editor by itself with a surprisingly great interface.

There are also a bunch of Shotcut tutorials available, which are perfect for new editors to learn their way around the program.

Also Open-Source: OpenShot


Just like ShotCut, OpenShot is an open-source program, except this time with a focus on being friendlier to new editors. The interface is made to be as simple as possible, which means if you’re brand new to video editing this is the perfect program to get your feet wet.

All the basic tools are covered with text-creation, transitions, trimming, and clip adjustments, but OpenShot doesn’t skimp out on complex tools either, as it also features 3D animation tools, keyframing, and some audio-editing tools as well.

OpenShot also has its own tutorials for the program, which makes it that much easier to learn.

3D Animation: Blender


Blender is a well-known open-source 3D animation tool, but what you might not be aware of is the full video-editing suite included in the program. This editor covers your basics of trimming, transitions, and text-creation, while also including the complex tools you’d expect at this point like chroma-keying, masking, and keyframing.

This unique combination of animation and editing tools makes Blender a useful tool, especially for those interested in learning 3D animation. And, just like Shotcut and OpenShot, its open-source nature opens the door for third-party addons to expand the program’s utility even further.

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The Article Was Written/Published By: Eric Schoon

YouTube TV hikes price to $64.99 per month following new channel additions


YouTube TV is getting another price hike, making its live TV streaming service less competitive with the cable TV services it aims to replace. The company announced today its service would now cost $64.99 per month, starting today, June 30, for new members. The change will also be reflected on the next billing cycle for current members after June 30.

The bump in pricing is now one of several price increases YouTube TV has seen since its debut, starting with a modest $5 per month bump in 2018, followed by a much more substantial price hike last year to $50 per month.

The increases are due to the rising costs of programming for the streaming TV service as the pay TV industry collapses amid a rise in cord cutting — a trend now accelerating at even a faster pace due to the pandemic.

YouTube TV had announced in May it would soon gain 14 more ViacomCBS channels as part of an expanded distribution deal. This included the addition of new channels like BET, CMT, Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon, Paramount Network, TV Land and VH1 which are today being made available. This brings YouTube TV’s base plan to over 85 channels.

Other channels that were are a part of that same deal — including BET Her, MTV2, MTV Classic, Nick Jr., NickToons, and TeenNick — are due to arrive at a later date, the company noted.

While YouTube TV didn’t announce its plans to raise prices back in May, at this point it’s to be expected whenever a service says it’s adding channels to its core offering.

But for YouTube TV’s some 2 million subscribers, new additions aren’t always welcome.

The original promise of live TV streaming services were smaller lineups, sometimes even a la carte options, for a lower monthly price.

Services like Sling TV, Hulu with Live TV, Philo, and others offer pared down channel selections compared with the hundreds of channels offered by cable and satellite providers. But in the years since their respective launches, they’ve slowly closed the gap with cable by adding more and more channels to base packages and raising prices.

In addition to the ViacomCBS channels, YouTube TV also recently introduced premium add-ons including Cinemax and HBO Max.

Now, instead of wooing consumers on price, YouTube TV focuses on feature set.

For example, YouTube TV announced today a new feature that allows users to jump to various segments within select news programs on the service, starting first on TV screens and coming to mobile in the next several weeks. It also touted its unlimited DVR, dark mode option, “Mark Watched” feature, and redesigned Live Guide with access to TV programming for the week ahead.

“We don’t take these decisions lightly, and realize how hard this is for our members,” YouTube TV’s announcement read, in detailing the price hike.

“That said, this new price reflects the rising cost of content and we also believe it reflects the complete value of YouTube TV, from our breadth of content to the features that are changing how we watch live TV,” wrote YouTube TV VP of Product Management, Christian Oestlien. “YouTube TV is the only streaming service that includes a DVR with unlimited storage space, plus 6 accounts per household each with its own unique recommendations, and 3 concurrent streams. It’s all included in the base cost of YouTube TV, with no contract and no hidden fees,” he said.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

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The Article Was Written/Published By: Sarah Perez

Amazon Watch Party Lets 100 Prime Subscribers Enjoy Movies Together

After testing Watch Parties for Twitch, Amazon is rolling out a Prime Video Watch Parties feature for all U.S. subscribers. With Watch Parties, up to 100 Prime subscribers can join a group chat and watch a show or movie together.

Read This Article on Review Geek ›

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The Article Was Written/Published By: Andrew Heinzman

How to Find Your Library Folder on a Mac

When fixing problems on a Mac, sometimes you need to roll up your sleeves and directly modify system settings files in your Library folder. Apple hides the Library folder by default, so it can be tough to locate. Here’s how to find it.

Read This Article on How-To Geek ›

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The Article Was Written/Published By: Benj Edwards

Microsoft Edge Doesn’t Wait for Permission to Import Your Data

Most browsers offer to import your data from other browsers when you first install them. That’s pretty handy when you’re making the switch from Firefox to Chrome, for example. But it appears Microsoft’s Edge browser is a little too proactive—it imports your data from Chrome and Firefox before asking your permission.

Read This Article on Review Geek ›

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The Article Was Written/Published By: Josh Hendrickson

The iRig Pro Duo makes managing advanced audio workflows simple anywhere

Connecting audio interfaces to the various mobile and computing devices we use these days can be a confusing headache. The iRig Pro Duo, which IK Multimedia announced this year at CES and recently released, is a great way to simplify those connections while giving you all the flexibility you need to record high-quality audio anywhere, with any device.

The basics

The iRig Pro Duo is a new addition to IK’s lineup based on the original iRig Pro, which adds a second XLR input, as the name implies. It’s still quite small and portable, fitting roughly in your hand, with built-in power optionally supplied via two AA batteries, while you can also power it via USB connection, or with an optional dedicated plug-in power adapter accessory.

Compared to desktop devices like the Scarlett Focusrite 2i2 USB audio interface that’s a popular standard among home audio enthusiasts, the iRig Pro Duo is downright tiny. It’s still beefier than the iRig Pro, of course, but it’s a perfect addition to a mobile podcaster’s kit for ultimately portability while also maintaining all the features and capabilities you need.

The iRig Pro Duo also includes balanced L/R 1/4″ output, built-in 48v phantom power for passive Macs, a 3.5mm stereo jack for direct monitoring, 2x MIDI inputs and dedicated gain control with simple LED indicators for 48V power status and to indicate audio input peaking.


Beveled edges and a slightly rounded rectangular box design might not win the iRig Pro Duo any accolades from the haute design community, but it’s a very practical form factor for this type of device. Inputs go in one side, and output comes out the other. IK Multimedia employs a unique connector for its output cables, but provides every one you could need in the box for connecting to Mac, iOS, Windows and Android devices.

The whole thing is wrapped in a matte, slightly rubberized outside surface that feels grippy and durable, while also looking good in an understated way that suits its purpose as a facilitation device. The knobs are large and easy to turn with fine-grained control, and there are pads on the underside of the Duo to help it stick a bit better to a surface like a table or countertop.

The lighting system is pretty effective when it comes to a shorthand for what’s on and working with your system, but this is one area where it might be nice to have a more comprehensive on-device audio levels display, for instance. Still, it does the job, and since you’ll likely be working with some kind of digital audio workflow software whenever you’re using it that will have a much more detailed visualizer, it’s not really that much of an issue.

Bottom line

As mentioned, iRig Pro Duo works with virtually all platforms out of the box, and has physical connector cables to ensure it can connect to just about every one as well. IK Multimedia also supplies free DAW software and effects, for all platforms – though you do have to make a choice about which one you’re most interested in since it’s limited to one piece of software per customer.

If you’re looking for a simple, painless and versatile way to either set up a way to lay down some music, or to record a solo or interview podcast, this is an option that ticks essentially all the boxes you could come up with.

Techcrunch?d=2mJPEYqXBVI Techcrunch?d=7Q72WNTAKBA Techcrunch?d=yIl2AUoC8zA Techcrunch?i=S6eck-nimps:vNgsnhKUJCg:-BT Techcrunch?i=S6eck-nimps:vNgsnhKUJCg:D7D Techcrunch?d=qj6IDK7rITs

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The Article Was Written/Published By: Darrell Etherington

PowerA’s Nano Enhanced is a compact Switch controller with pro features

ad454ae0-b78e-11ea-bf3a-20d28ed004dbPeripherals maker PowerA does a good job of making third-party gamepads — the MOGA Pro has been a bit hit with Android gamers, for example. Now, the company is launching a new controller for the Nintendo Switch. The Nano Enhanced Wireless controller…

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Facebook Is Rolling Out Dark Mode to Mobile

The Facebook app in dark modeNotFridayCraig

If you’re on desktop, you can already get Facebook on dark mode, but what if you’re on iOS or Android? If you’re one of a few lucky iOS users, you can get dark mode on Facebook today. But very few users have the option yet, and there’s no word on Android.

Some people love dark mode, and it’s easy to see why. Implemented correctly, it’s easier on the eyes, and for some devices, it also extends battery life. Facebook already has a dark mode for Messenger, Instagram, WhatsApp, and its desktop interface. But mobile didn’t get the same attention until now.

So I have dark mode on Facebook now. 😍 #darkmode #facebook #iOS14

— 🐍🏀💜💛 (@NotFridayCraig) June 26, 2020

As spotted by SocialMedia Today, a few users found a new dark mode option on the Facebook iOS app. You see screenshots and examples on Twitter. When SocialMedia reached out to Facebook, the company confirmed that it released the feature for “a small percentage of users globally right now.”

The company didn’t say when it would start rolling out the feature more widely or when Android users would get the option. But if you want to check if you’re one of the lucky chosen few, head to your Facebook app settings. The rest of us will have to wait.

via SocialMedia Today

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The Article Was Written/Published By: Josh Hendrickson

Microsoft’s New File Recovery Tool is Free for Windows Users

Microsoft's new command line tool for recovering lost files.

Imagine, if you will, someone selling an antique sewing machine. Heavy, unwieldy, and covered in decades of dust, but still entirely operable if you know what you’re doing. Now imagine that antique sitting on the shelf of your local Walmart, right next to a shiny new toaster. That is the new Windows File Recovery Tool.

Microsoft released the tool to help users who’ve lost files that are now irretrievable, either because they didn’t go to the Recycle Bin in Windows 10 or because the drive has suffered some kind of horrible hardware failure. Good! But Microsoft made it as a command line tool—it only works in Command Prompt (cmd.exe) or the new Windows Terminal. Strange. And it’s a free download for all users. Good! They download it on the Microsoft Store, sitting next to Candy Crush and Sea of Thieves. Strange.

Odd juxtapositions of tools separated by decades of computing interfaces aside, it seems to be working, at least for some users. I was able to get it to scan my primary SSD for ZIP files (including deleted ones) and back them up to a newly-created folder on my secondary hard drive. It felt like rubbing sticks together to make fire.

Keep in mind that the files recovered from one drive must go to a separate drive in the tool (so you’ll need a flash drive or external hard drive if your computer only has one). And also that, because of the way Windows handles free drive space, recently-lost files are more likely to be successfully recovered. But if you get the tool running, you can filter by folder or file type fairly easily. If you need help with the syntax, check out this Microsoft page. And if you find yourself needing this tool and wanting an interface from this century, there are plenty of alternatives.

Source: Microsoft Store via The Verge 

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The Article Was Written/Published By: Michael Crider

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