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For those who find respite in PC games, this year will bring comfort in the familiar. All the releases that have been confirmed for 2013 are either sequels to long-running series, or a reboot of classics.

The age of PC exclusives has been fading since the last few years, and this year’s releases has just StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm, and SimCity from this category. Having said that, there are enough big releases across genres, to whet anyone’s appetite for PC gaming.

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Most people do not have many occasions when they need a screenshot, but there is always one here and there. For those of us who write about technology the need is much greater. For that reason, many writers I know use a professional program such as Snagit – which is very powerful and has countless options.

However, I prefer to budget my technology spending as much as I can and, to that end, I always look for free software alternatives. Of course, this also gives me some insight into what an average user would look for.

For grabbing screenshots, a task I do daily, I have been using PicPick for sometime. It is free for home use, so it fits the mold of real-world use, but it is powerful enough to handle what I need as a writer. Personally, since I use it professionally, I paid for a license,  but I am not an average use-case either.

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Video games are something we all love to indulge. Some are complex, whereas others can be some of the simplest games ever designed. Platform games in my opinion are one the most basic types, but, can also be the most fun and addicting making platform games a worthy candidate for January’s Windows Phone Elite article.

Even if you don’t know what a platform game is, chances are you’ve played a wealth of them already. Wikipedia defines platform games as, “a video game which requires players to jump to and from suspended platforms or over obstacles.” Hopefully, that’s cleared things up.

In this article, I’m going to be looking at the ten best platform games I’ve found for the Windows Phone platform. Read on to find out more!

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We return for our third segment in the cord-cutter series, this time focusing on how to watch TV without a cable or satellite service. Previously we have looked at Media Center and its alternatives and media servers. This time around we will focus on the actual TV and movie sources available.

All of you likely know the big names in this market, and I will briefly touch on each of those, but there are less well known sources that can be indispensable in this effort. Those we will cover as well. There are so many sources, in fact, that it would be impossible to get them all, but I will hit the ones I have found most useful and rely on you to add others in the comments.

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As we draw to the year’s close and are still alive (what’s up Mayans?), what’s better than using this time to find and play the best games of 2012? Well, a lot could be, but I am speaking from a gamer’s perspective.

Year 2012 saw some amazing titles come up, but what really made 2012 special were the awesome sequels to super-awesome franchises. Unsurprisingly, some of these sequels have made it to our list of 8 titles that rocked 2012. So, hold your breath as we unveil our super 8 for the year 2012!

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Ho Ho Ho! Christmas is here. I absolutely love this festive season for ONE reason, among others, – presents. This is the one time of the year where you can indulge in a mindless shopping spree, without worrying too much about the budget (that part comes later).

But sadly it also means crowded streets which I’m strictly allergic to. To that end, I prefer to take things online. If you’re anything like me, read on. This guide is for you.

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What really is the point of bragging about your new shiny, new Windows Phone if you can’t show off your cool apps? Without a doubt, the apps are what define a phone now.

Within a deluge of apps, I have selected 40+ of the most useful, beautiful and productive ones that will enhance you phone’s usability and your entire user experience. Let’s get started!

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One of the major pain points of using a Windows PC is the constant attention it needs to secure and optimize it. However, things have improved to a great extent with the current crop of Windows releases. Besides, there a ton of quality apps available to help you make the experience a whole lot better.

In fact, with the right set of apps, you can actually optimize, tune and push the limits of your hardware. After the break we have compiled a list of apps that will come in handy to make the most out of your desktop. Check it out!

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If there is anything like an addiction to taking notes, I’m right up there in the list of addicts. There are at least 10 different things I regularly use to jot down everything from names & phone numbers to quick snippets to file later, to todo lists and all sorts of random thoughts. Although I’ve been using the good old pen-and-paper to do this for years now, it has always fallen short of what the my ideal workflow should have been. As has become a yearly ritual now, I recently embarked on a hunt for the best minimalistic note taking app that does everything I need and fits perfectly in my workflow.

It’s probably no surprise that the stock Notepad app in Windows falls awefully short of my expectations. There are the high-profile alternatives like OneNote and Evernote, but they are better suited for longer term, heavier duty knowledge archival than for quick and dirty note-taking. I needed something that was lightening fast and has just the right mix of features to allow me to jump in and out of it at the spur of the moment. What followed was a battle of five free Windows apps that came closest to what I was looking for, with a winner that I am committed to skicking with for at least the next year.

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Travelling from place to place can often be a difficult task. If you don’t know where you’re going you’ll soon have a pretty frustrating task on your hands. On Window’s Phones we all have a map based system. But, this doesn’t cut it most of the time and often leads to greater annoyance.

Don’t fear. For our fifth installment of the Windows Phone Elite series, we are going to cover the best eight apps for making your next journey a bit easier. Read on to find out we recommend.

If you would like to read the last two editions of Windows Phone Elite the links are here: Windows Phone Elite: Photography Apps! and Windows Phone Elite: Finance Management Apps.

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