If you're paying for premium software, chances are there's a free alternative out there you could use instead, with features just as good as the ones you've become accustomed to. Whether you fancy a change from your usual application-of-choice, or you're just on a tight budget, these are the free software apps you need to know about.


The US Secret Service is tasked with keeping the President and members of his family safe. But newly released documents show that the agency has had trouble keeping tabs on its own equipment. Since 2001, the agency has lost at least 1024 computers, 736 mobile phones and 121 guns.


Damn this new MacBook Pro. As of this very moment I've had the new 13-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar for just a few hours. It's small, sturdy and typing my password in was pleasant enough. That Touch Bar looks really neat too, and when I set up Touch ID to login from the Touch Bar, I felt like I was in the future.

But $US2500 ($3361) worth of overpriced, hyper-engineered Apple laptop has now crashed 23 times — a full dozen in the first hour I had this thing.


Let's be real: It's been a pretty stressful year. The tragedies never seem end. Harambe was shot dead in front of children. David Bowie and Prince died unexpectedly. Oh yeah, and the US elected a screaming giant cheese wedge to be the next president. All of this bad news might want to make you just run away for a while. Now, there's an easier way to do it.


Virtual reality is great and all, but it needs a little more space — especially if you're using a room-scale HTC Vive. And that probably means you're going to want to set up your powerful VR gaming PC in an open area like your living room. And that means you're going to want a PC that can hide out of the way in your TV cabinet. Enter the MSI Trident, the world's smallest VR-ready PC.


If you own a MacBook, you're likely well aware of how scrolling and right-clicking work on the trackpad, but you may not know how to invoke Quick Look, Notification Center, or Exposè. Whether you're new to macOS or you just never bothered to learn them, these gestures can make your life a little simpler.


CSIRO needs some more teraflops. Australia's peak scientific research organisation has just put out a tender for a petaflop-grade supercomputer to replace the Bragg accelerator cluster that contributes to Australia's overall scientific distributed computing power.


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