PS4 update lets parents decide which games kids can chat in

Sony is giving the PlayStation 4 one more big update before the PS5 arrives, and it’s particularly good news for parents. A version 8.00 update releasing today makes multiple additions, including simpler and more adaptable parental controls. Limits on communication and viewing user-made content are now lumped together to make it “easier for parents to understand.” Crucially, kids can now ask for permission to use communications in specific games — you can make an exception if you know a young one will be talking to friends.



a close up of a speaker: PS4 Slim with DualShock 4 controller


PS4 Slim with DualShock 4 controller

Not everything is positive. The 8.00 update removes user-made events and the creation of private communities. You can still use private communities that already exist, but they’ll clearly dwindle without the option to make more. Sony hasn’t explained the move, but we’ve asked for comment.

Loading...

Load Error

There are more additions that might offset that decision. Party and Messages are now more closely connected, with a new interface that uses the same groups for party voice chats and messages. Two-factor authentication finally supports third-party authenticator apps during activation as well as sign-ins across PS4, mobile apps and the web. And you can finally mute all mics from the Quick Menu — you don’t have to wade through menus (if your headset doesn’t have a mute switch) just to take a quick break from the action.

Sony is also updating its Remote Play apps for phones and computers to enable PS5 connections, although that clearly won’t be useful until the new console’s November 12th debut.

You might not want to rush to update to 8.00 when there are reports (albeit a handful) of party and friend issues. We’ve asked Sony about those as well. Even so, it’s hard not to be at least a bit sentimental about this update.

Bytebase App Lets You Catalog Your Thoughts Like an Engineer

Illustration for article titled A New App Lets You Catalog Your Thoughts Like an Engineer

Screenshot: ByteBase

Bytebase, a new app by two Columbia University software engineers, promises to let you store your snippets, thoughts, and notes in a way that is instantly searchable and automatically organized.

Created by ex-Twilio engineer Cara Borenstein and ex-Nextdoor engineer Theo Marin, the barebones web app is sort of like Evernote amped up on the drug from Limitless.

Explaining how the app works is actually kind of difficult. Like any other note-taking system, you enter data and paste in code, text, or whatever you want to save. You can share it with others and create separate notebooks for each project. More important, each note can act as a link to another note, allowing you to nest information within other pieces of information. To use it, you simply paste in code snippets and text into the “No Man’s Land” area and then move it into separate projects later. You can also make outlines and to-do lists in the app.

Each one of those lines can act as another separate note.

Each one of those lines can act as another separate note.
Screenshot: ByteBase

A feed lets you send notes, called bytes, to co-workers within Bytebase. Because the co-founders are coders, they’ve also added clever keyboard shortcuts that will be familiar to Vim and Emacs users. You can also add large text chunks called BigBytes.

“As a software engineer, it was challenging to get the information I needed to do my job. The information was supposed to be on the wiki, but it wasn’t,” said Borenstein. “So we went back to the drawing board and invested in more user research. We knew that people weren’t really using wikis to their potential, but they were collaborating. We wanted to figure out what it was that they were already doing and see if

If the ad industry is serious about transparency, let’s open-source our SDKs

Year after year, a lack of transparency in how ad traffic is sourced, sold and measured is cited by advertisers as a source of frustration and a barrier to entry in working with various providers. But despite progress on the protection and privacy of data through laws like GDPR and COPPA, the overall picture regarding ad-marketing transparency has changed very little.

In part, this is due to the staggering complexity of how programmatic and other advertising technologies work. With automated processes managing billions of impressions every day, there is no universal solution to making things more simple and clear. So the struggle for the industry is not necessarily a lack of intent around transparency, but rather how to deliver it.

Frustratingly, evidence shows that the way data is collected and used by some industry players has played a large part in reducing people’s trust in online advertising. This is not a problem that was created overnight. There is a long history and growing sense of consumer frustration with the way their data is being used, analyzed and monetized and a similar frustration by advertisers with the transparency and legitimacy of ad clicks for which they are asked to pay.

There are continuing efforts by organizations like the IAB and TAG to create policies for better transparency such as ads.txt. But without hard and fast laws, the responsibility lies with individual companies.

One relatively simple yet largely spurned practice that would engender transparency and trust for the benefit of all parties (brands, consumers and ad/marketing providers) would be for the industry to come together and have all parties open their SDKs.

Why open-sourcing benefits advertisers, publishers and the ad industry

Open-source software is code that anyone is free to use, analyze, alter and improve.

Auditing the code and adjusting the SDKs

Free Pikmin 3 Deluxe Switch Demo Now Live, Lets You Transfer Progress To Full Game

Pikmin 3 Deluxe launches on Nintendo Switch at the end of this month, but players have a chance to sample the unique strategy game before then. During the latest Treehouse Live presentation, Nintendo announced that a free Pikmin 3 Deluxe demo is available to download from the Switch eShop, and you’ll unlock some things in the full game for playing it.

If you can defeat the final boss at the end of the demo, you’ll unlock the Ultra-Spicy difficulty in the full version of Pikmin 3 Deluxe right from the outset. Ultra-Spicy is a brand-new difficulty option for Pikmin veterans; it caps your Pikmin field limit at 60, making the experience much more challenging.

Additionally, Nintendo has confirmed that the Pikmin 3 Deluxe demo allows you to carry over your save data to the full game, so you’ll be able to pick up where you left off when it launches.

We learned a few other new details about Pikmin 3 Deluxe during the Treehouse Live stream. Nintendo confirmed that motion controls and pointer functionality will return as optional control methods. The company also showed off some new features being introduced in this Switch version, including the Piklopedia–which catalogues all the enemies you’ve defeated–and the new side story missions starring Olimar and Louie.

Pikmin 3 Deluxe launches on October 30. You can learn more about the game in our Pikmin 3 Deluxe preorder guide.

That wasn’t all that we saw during the Treehouse Live stream. As advertised, the company

Free Pikmin 3 Switch Demo Now Live, Lets You Transfer Progress To Full Game

Pikmin 3 Deluxe launches on Nintendo Switch later this month, but players will have a chance to sample the unique strategy game before then. During Wednesday’s Treehouse Live presentation, Nintendo announced that a free Pikmin 3 Deluxe demo is available to download from the Switch eShop, and you’ll unlock some things in the full game for playing it.

If you can defeat the final boss at the end of the demo, you’ll unlock the Ultra-Spicy difficulty in the full version of Pikmin 3 Deluxe right from the outset. Ultra-Spicy is a brand-new difficulty option for Pikmin veterans that caps your Pikmin field limit at 60, making the experience more challenging.

Additionally, Nintendo has confirmed that the Pikmin 3 Deluxe demo allows you to carry over your save data to the full game, so you’ll be able to pick up where you left off when it launches.

We learned a few other new details about Pikmin 3 Deluxe during the Treehouse Live stream. Nintendo confirmed that motion controls and pointer functionality will return as optional control methods. The company also showed off some new features being introduced in this Switch version, including the Piklopedia–which catalogues all the enemies you’ve defeated–and the new side story missions starring Olimar and Louie.

Pikmin 3 Deluxe launches on October 30. You can learn more about the game in our Pikmin 3 Deluxe preorder guide.

That wasn’t all that we saw during the Treehouse Live stream. As advertised, the company also showcased more of