March 2005 Archives



March 1, 2005

Mr. 3000 DVD Review

The team can win, lose, or tie. That's it. Sports movies have no other options. It's something that really defeats the purpose of filming one in the first place. If it's a true story, then it's excusable. "Mr. 3000" is not, so you can easily fault it for falling into the rut that so many of these films do. If it tried to do anything different it might be worthwhile, but it doesn't.

Continue reading "Mr. 3000 DVD Review" »

Staples Easy Rebates

I have seen the commercials, I am sure you have as well, but I didn't think much of it when I went to Staples recently. To my sunrise they had DVD-R 40 packs for a mere $5! This was after a $4 in store and $9 online rebate! I only went in to buy a flatbed scanner, HP Deskjet ink, and look at Palm PDAs but at that price, heck yea.

Staples has an Easy Rebates site where you put in two numbers, and your rebates are done. One number is a unique number per item, and the other is a ID number from that entire receipt. If you buy more then one of an item (DVD-R 40 pack, for example) you only have to input it once. Thats pretty nice.

The waiting is still the same, but you no longer have to slap a stamp on a letter and drop it in the mail. Online rebates are so cool. More stores should think about online rebates.

March 2, 2005

Free digital sub to ExtremeTech

This is not print, but I've heard this is a decent magazine. Covers gaming and computers.

Editors Note: This is a Zinio subscription. If you don't have an account, you can get one for free (I think). I have an account as half my magazines I get via Zinio. PC Magazine's ExtremeTech web site is pretty cool, and from flipping through this magazine has info on all kinds of mods and in depth technical stuff. Just like the web site.

March 3, 2005

Copyrights Keep TV Shows off DVD

For many TV shows, costs to license the original music for DVD are prohibitively high, so rights owners replace the music with cheaper tunes, much to the irritation of avid fans. And some shows, like WKRP, which is full of music, will probably never make it to DVD because of high licensing costs.
Source: WIRED News

March 4, 2005

And you thought Star Wars fans were nuts

UPN has planned to cancel the Star Trek Enterprise series due to slumping ratings. Obviously because they have way too much money and are obviously not too charitable, three people have pledged $3 million to keep it on the air... really. No, those tsunami people should be fine. They'll be enjoying Enterprise for years to come now! That's assuming of course they can ever restore electricity and I'm thinking $3 million might just help that cause.

March 5, 2005

Xbox replacement power cord

I got my Xbox replacement cord in the mail today. It has instructions on how to use it.

No. I am not kidding.

March 6, 2005

Sci-Fi Channel Premiere: Skeleton Man Review

Credit has to be given to actors and/or actresses who star in a movie like this. To get through even a short shoot without cracking a smile on a screen has to be brutal. No one in their right mind could take a movie like this seriously. It doesn't even matter how old you are. This insipid piece of work is, almost without question, the worst thing to happen to the Sci-Fi Channel since Farscape fans started writing hate mail.

Continue reading "Sci-Fi Channel Premiere: Skeleton Man Review" »

Developers To Be Held Accountable for Gamer's Actions?

Not content with allowing legal jackals like Jack Thompson to attempt to sue the freedom of expression out of gaming companies, lawmakers in Washington State want to hold the makers and sellers of violent video games liable for the actions of idiot teenagers.

House Bill 2178 would make game developers and publishers responsible for the actions of any one under 17 who commits a crime, due in any part to playing a game. Just how a person would go about proving that the law breaking was due to a game is beyond me.

Source: Komo News, Via: Kotaku.com

This opinion piece has a point. What if you apply this same wacked idea to music and movies. But lets not stop there, what about books?

What the hell is wrong with our society that people can no longer be held responsible for their own actions?
What the hell is wrong with our government that they can no longer hold parents responsible for their own children's actions.

Open source underlying MSN?

Could open-source tools be behind Microsoft's own MSN service?

An image posted online indicates that some of Microsoft's own developers apparently prefer open-source products to build Web pages than Microsoft's own proprietary software.

Source: C|Net News.com

What? You mean that ASP and SQL Server isn't used for all Microsoft sites? Heaven forbid that LAMP be involved. My guess is that this site is outsourced and these subcontractors don't really like Microsoft's web tools. Or is the image just a hoax. Either way, its pretty funny. Especially since Microsoft has a passion for hating on Open Source.

ESRB offers new E10+ game rating

The Entertainment Software Ratings Board (ESRB) on Wednesday introduced a new video game rating category -- E10+. The new rating has been developed to help consumers more easily differentiate between games that have content appropriate for the whole family and games that are suitable for ages 10 and over, according to a statement from the organization.
Source: MacCentral

So now there is a stop gap between a 10 year old and a 13 year old, where the Teen rating kicks in. This new E10+ rating is good because Everyone is for kids 6 years and older. E10+ fits in the right spot in the middle of Everyone and Teen. I just hope that parents actually take note of this change. So what is the difference between E10+ and Teen you may ask? I am so glad you did:

Titles rated E10+ (Everyone 10 and older) have content that may be suitable for ages 10 and older. Titles in this category may contain more cartoon, fantasy or mild violence, mild language, and/or minimal suggestive themes.
Titles rated T (Teen) have content that may be suitable for ages 13 and older. Titles in this category may contain violence, suggestive themes, crude humor, minimal blood and/or infrequent use of strong language.
Source: ESRB.com

So E10+ has less drugs, sex, and violence then Teen does. Everyone just has "minimal" drugs, sex, and volence. Clear as pea soup to be sure. Regardless, kudos to the ESRB.

March 7, 2005

I, Robot DVD Review

Will Smith should be covered. He's been to the past ("Ali"), and alternate present day ("Men in Black"), did an animated film ("Shark Tale"), went to a futuristic past ("Wild Wild West"), and now he's made his way into the future. "I, Robot" is a typical summer blockbuster, filled with all sorts of fancy effects and one-liners. It's entertaining compared to other films of the same vein, just not one that's very insightful even though it could (make that should) be.

Continue reading "I, Robot DVD Review" »

Digital Bits DVD Awards

The Digital Bits have really cut down on their number of DVD reviews over time, but their always solid Bitsy Awards are dead on. This makes for a great buying guide if you fell behind last year. Oh, and you'll find what to avoid too.

Yahooligans and Classic Cartoons

Maybe classic isn't the word that will be going through your mind when you're done traveling down memory lane, but you can't pass up an opportunity to watch the Super Mario Bros. Super Show now can you? Oddly, the episodes they have include the Lou Albano segments which were cut from most of the DVD releases. Go figure. If Mario isn't your thing, check out Zelda, Inspector Gadget, and other stuff I've never heard of, all streaming and all free.

March 8, 2005

The Alamo DVD Review

If there's one thing you can always count on, it's a strong performance by Billy Bob Thorton. It never seems to matter what role he takes on, he owns each and every character he plays. Less than a year after playing a sex-a-holic Santa Claus in "Bad Santa," Thorton took it upon himself to portray an American icon. That's a role change if there ever was one. It's a real shame the movie isn't as good as his performance.

Continue reading "The Alamo DVD Review" »

Obi-Wan Buys a Car: The video

And the dealer doesn't even have a clue. Warning: Total stupidity ahead (yet strangely entertaining)!

Pirates of the Caribbean DVD Review

They don't make them like this anymore. From the production values, witty script, to the booming soundtrack by Klaus Badelt, "Pirates of the Caribbean" is an incredible, wild ride worthy of the term "new classic." Regardless of its flaws, this is a movie that will sneak right into your memory and stay there for countless reasons, not the least of which is Johnny Depp's performance.

Continue reading "Pirates of the Caribbean DVD Review" »

Veronica Guerin DVD Review

Though he is heavily looked down upon for ruining the "Batman" franchise, Joel Schumacher has done some fine work lately. Two Colin Farrell vehicles, "Phone Booth" and "Tigerland," are just as under appreciated as the director. His skills are put to good use in the excellent "Veronica Guerin," a film that not only helps the aging directors career, but Cate Blanchetts as well.

Continue reading "Veronica Guerin DVD Review" »

From NeXT to X

Most in the industry were certain that Apple would choose Be, whose operating system, BeOS, already ran on Apple's newest computers. Amongst Apple's other options were to license Solaris from Sun, NT from Microsoft, or to purchase a burgeoning software (it had dropped its hardware years before), NeXT.
Source: Macreate

For those of you who do not know this history of OS X, and how it was almost BeOS and not NeXT, or if you didn't know that Be and NeXT was involved, this is a great article. The timeline is fleshed out well, and was a good read.

March 9, 2005

Microsoft wins latest round in Eolas patent battle

Microsoft has won the latest round in its long running battle with Eolas Technologies over the ownership of the patents regarding plug-ins for browsers.
Source: PC Pro

Now Microsoft can try and claim prior art again. I really do not see how they can do that.

This has been going on for a while, and I don't see it ending anytime soon. Microsoft survived the DOJ, they will probably survive Eolas.

This has gone on so long that I have lost count on who is winning and who is losing. I just don't want to have to change the way I use the OBJECT and EMBED tags.

iPod defeats Blue Screen of Death

At Big Blue's USA PartnerWorld conference Steve Welch used software on the iPod to save the crashed ThinkPad. The software is One-touch Rescue & Recovery On Linux and is not as yet an announced IBM product.
Source: Playlist

Top 10 iTunes AppleScripts

iTunes on both the Mac and PC is a terrific application, but it has a singular advantage on the Mac—its support of Apple’s scripting language, AppleScript. Regrettably, writing AppleScripts is beyond the ken of a lot of Mac users. Fortunately, that makes not a whit of difference thanks to Doug Adams and his invaluable site, Doug’s AppleScripts for iTunes.
Source: Playlist

It is not really fair to boil down the scripts on Doug's site to 10, but the list here is pretty good. If you have not thought of extending iTunes with AppleScripts, you may find yourself wasting a lot of time. There are a great many things you can do with Doug's AppleScripts. What's more is that he is not the type of person who does not support his work. I have emailed him regarding a couple of his scripts, and he has gotten back to me fairly quickly.

Apple Dashboard Contest Winners

Apple has been running a Dashboard contest (I guess I forgot to post about it) and it has just ended. the two winners are Send SMS and WikityWidget.

Send SMS provides the ability to send a message on the spur of the moment to someone without having to launch the Address Book application. Send SMS combines the instantly available Tiger Dashboard with Short Message Service, or SMS.
WikityWidget is a personal notepad with automatic linking. Using a simple notebook-style interface, WikityWidget lets you easily jot down and organize notes with hypertext links so they're easy to find and instantly available via the Mac OS X Tiger Dashboard.
WikityWidget really sounds impressive when you read about how it works, including using SQLite and that it uses "Wiki technology." hence the name.

If you have been lucky enough to score yourself a developer key for Tiger, you already know how cool Dashboard is. For those who will have to wait until Tiger goes on sale, :P

No no, just kidding. Just like Expose has become something I use every day, Dashboard is going to be another part of the Mac OS that I will soon say "how did I live without it."

Talking about Dashboard widgets, you should check out the Widget Archive at Dashboarder.com. as well as others at Dashboard Developer.

Bloglet is back

I know at least two of you have wanted this back, as I have gotten emails about it, so the Bloglet form is back. You can use Bloglet to subscribe (or unsubscribe) to my blog. You get a daily email of updates. You will find this form on the About Us page now. I will add a link to the sidebar sometime soon.

But for now just go to the About Us portion of this site.

Sony to connect PSP to Mac, PC

Sony Pictures' vice chairman Yair Landau told attendees of the iHollywood Digital Living Room forum that his company will release software allowing its PlayStation Portable (PSP) hand-held game console to connect to Macs and PCs, according to a recent report. What's more, the device will also be able to work with Connect, Sony's music download service, offering potential competition for Apple's iPod.
Source: MacCentral

And it looks like Sony already is going to have competition on the Mac, with iPSP, a 3rd party application that transfers photos and music to your PSP.

Sony takes on iPod shuffle with new flash players

Sony has announced nine new flash-based MP3 players to compete with Apple's iPod shuffle. "The lineup includes a set of cigarette lighter-sized models, a bit more expensive than the iPod Shuffle but with a much longer advertised battery life--50 hours of playback time with a rechargeable battery compared to Apple's 12 hours. And unlike the Shuffle, the Sony players have bright, 3-line screens to display song information...
Source: MacCentral Via USA Today

If Sony cannot undercut Apple in the price department, I wonder if they will sell many at all. Sure it will sell, its got the Sony name on it. But will it dent Apple's stronghold on the MP3 player market?

It is great to see that Sony is finally embracing MP3 in their new flash based players. Their worst decision with that new Network Walkman was only supporting the ATRAC format. Sony finally saw the error of its ways, but to think they could make a proprietary format like ATRAC work in the first place...

Tiger vs. Longhorn

Relations between the users of Apple and Microsoft computers have never been particularly cordial. Windows users claim they've won the war for the desktop: all you have to do is look at the numbers and you find the most of the world using a Microsoft OS. Mac users point out a near total lack of security problems, along with a bombproof operating system that never seems to crash. (Then they sneer at the Windows masses.)
Source: Yahoo

Patrick Norton (a moment of silence for The Screen Savers please) has written this comprehensive look at what's to come from both Tiger and Longhorn. Oddly I could not find this on the ExtremeTech site, even though it is credited as such.

Allofmp3.com let off the hook

Russian online music site Allofmp3.com will continue to operate, after Russian prosecutors concluded they cannot take legal action against the music store. Finally prodded into motion by continuous lobbying by the RIAA, International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, and other copyright holders, Russian law enforcement officials began an investigtation of the service two weeks ago.
Source: ArsTechnica

Did you hear that? That was the sound of the entire world's sigh of relief. It helps when you find a loophole in a law. There has been quite a lot of ink splattering from publications such as WIRED Magazine as to the validity and legality of Allofmp3.com. If anything, this investigation has proven what most had feared: it is legal under Russian law.

Allofmp3.com offers high-quality recordings (even lossless if that's what you want) at a low price to anyone, anywhere, on any platform. If the site continues to grow in popularity, it may give the labels second thoughts about raising their prices.
So this turned into something very good for Allofmp3.com. Who would have thought of that. In some ways this investigation validates the service and gave them plenty of press.

I just wonder how long the service will last now that it has hit mainstream news.

Free tech/business Magazines

Lots to choose from. Take your pick.

Obscene Mario Bros. Flash

They don't much funnier than this. We should give you a warning that the content is extreme and potentially offensive (it really is), but all that's going to do is make all the 8 year olds want to click on it more. So, if your kids are watching this, it's not our fault. Thanks for your consideration and for not suing.

March 10, 2005

And I thought I had back problems

I don't have anything on this poor guy in this Java based physics demo. Pick "The Wall" course for maximum enjoyment. There was another version of this on a recent episode of the Screen Savers that involved boulders and it had better graphics. If anyone knows what it was called, or better yet, where to play it, do tell. A google search came up short for me.

Luxpro Corp. rips off iPod shuffle

Taiwanese company Luxpro Corp. is showing off an iPod shuffle clone called Super shuffle at this week's CeBit trade show in Hannover, Germany. From the front, the device is physically identical to Apple's iPod shuffle, straight down to the control pad and white earbuds. It touts features the iPod shuffle lacks, however, including an FM tuner and a voice recorder.
Source: Playlist

This is not your ordinary rip off, this is a RIP OFF. Apple has sued for less. This should be a fun lawsuit.

Hoosiers Collector's Edition DVD Review

You can count the number of memorable basketball movies on one hand. Thankfully, for every piece of dredge like "The Fish that Saved Pittsburgh," we get something like "Hoosiers." ESPN ranked it as the #1 sports film of all time, and it's tough to argue that call.

Continue reading "Hoosiers Collector's Edition DVD Review" »

March 11, 2005

Apple joins Blu-ray Board of Directors

In a joint release, Apple Computer and the Blu-ray Disc Association announced on Thursday that Apple would become a member of the consortium's Board of Directors. The Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA) is responsible for establishing format standards and promoting and further developing business opportunities for Blu-ray Disc.
Source: MacCentral

It looks like Apple might be taking sides in this upcoming war between Blue-ray and HD-DVD. This should be fun. HD isn't even settled yet. Lets just face it, there will be two standards. I mean we live with DVD+ and - R formats.

First Gamefly experience: Not good

I'm still not sold on online video/game rentals. There's nothing inconvenient about running down the video store unless you don't have one close to your home. The biggest discrepancy though is in selection. For a gamer, portables are out of reach. Unless you have a specialty store in your area, you're out of luck. That's where Gamefly.com comes in.

Continue reading "First Gamefly experience: Not good" »

Ladder 49 DVD Review

Why are there so few firefighting films? So many movies take the route of showing the police force in action with the firefighters in the background. It's not that the police are any less worthy, it just seems like people who run into burning buildings deserve a bit more credit then they get. "Ladder 49" is probably one of the most personal, heartfelt, and emotional films ever done on the subject, choosing to ignore the all out action of some its predecessors. The movie is better because of it.

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March 12, 2005

EGM's Obligatory April Fools Joke

Some store employees are forever going to hate them for this one.

New Bugs Bunny Speaks Out

Well, we should get it out of the way now. This is not work safe and if you have small children, sensitive ears, or you're not a fan of naughty language, don't click. If that's the case, you probably shouldn't be on the internet either, but I digress.

Anyway, by now you've likely heard of how Warner Brothers is butchering the Looney Tunes into some stupid futuristic fantasy where all the famous characters have super powers. To see one persons interpretation on just how EXTREME things are going to get, you need to see this gut-bustingly funny flash.

Dog Soldiers DVD Review

How many times can you say you've seen a man in a movie have his innards ripped out? A few times maybe? Ok, how many times have you seen that same man have a hungry dog take a small string of his still connected intestines while he's still alive and try to eat them? That's one of the many highlights for gore and horror fans in the totally surprising "Dog Soldiers," one of the best werewolf movies in years.

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March 13, 2005

Nikon Coolscan V ED for Student Publications

I have bought two Nikon Coolscan V ED film scanners for Student Publications. This has been a long time coming. We have a couple SprintScan 35s that we bought off of eBay years ago. The SprintScan is SCSI, and we now only have one SCSI capable Mac in The BG News currently. And one more in The KEY Yearbook. Not to mention that OS X does not really like SCSI. Add to that the fact that Polaroid does not even make OS X drivers, and you can start to see my headache with the SprintScan 35.

Continue reading "Nikon Coolscan V ED for Student Publications" »

Sci-Fi Channel Original Mansquito Review

So, let's look at what humans have been turned into over the years. Human-like Alligators made an appearance in the "Alligator People," John Agar fought against "The Mole People," man turns into giant mutant-thing in "War of the Colossal Beast," and now we have man turned radioactive mosquito in the hideously titled "Mansquito." Nothing more than standard Sci-Fi Channel fare, this is a basic creature feature that's only going to be enjoyed by those who found any of the above-mentioned films enjoyable or those looking for a few laughs.

Continue reading "Sci-Fi Channel Original Mansquito Review" »

BG women hold off Kent State for MAC title

CLEVELAND - Mountain? Climbed. Demons? Exorcised.

Championship? Won.

Bowling Green State University claimed its first Mid-American Conference women's basketball tournament title since 1994 with a thrilling 81-75 victory over Kent State at Gund Arena yesterday.

Source: Toledo Blade

I could not believe they won Friday. Now they get to go to the NCAA tourny. Good job Lady Falcons! Now I just hope they make it past their first game.

Titan A.E. DVD Review

You hear it all the time. "I don't read reviews; I make up my own mind." Well, a lot of good that does. If more people took the time to read reviews from critics, they would discover films like this. A box office bomb but a critical success, "Titan A.E." is a magical ride, on par with most of the stuff Disney has pumped out over the years. Actually, it's probably better.

Continue reading "Titan A.E. DVD Review" »

March 14, 2005

ESPN's Tilt Season Finale

Tilt has been a good series, it has kept me interested each week. The acting has not been too over the top. The amount of cameos has been unreal. It sure helps to sell the series to have real poker players like David Williams, Daniel Negreanu, and Phil Hellmuth. Throw in the humor of Norman Chad, and that faux telecast look, and Tilt has some lofty production values. Michael Madsen is always a solid actor, and plays yet another great antagonist. Good acting all around, really.

Continue reading "ESPN's Tilt Season Finale" »

March 15, 2005

Madden 2005 Nintendo DS Review

Talk about your pointless releases. Created simply to take advantage of a system launch, "Madden 2005" may have been another solid edition on the home consoles, but here on the DS, things are shaky all around. Everything here feels rushed, pieced together quickly due to a short development time and minimal experience with the console. It may be a step up from the Game Boy Advance versions; that's just not really saying very much.

Continue reading "Madden 2005 Nintendo DS Review" »

March 16, 2005

AOL: AIM Conversations Are Safe

Updated: America Online quells public criticism of changes to its AIM terms of service, insisting the controversial privacy clause does not pertain to user-to-user instant messaging communication.

America Online Inc. on Sunday moved to quell public criticism of the terms of service for its AIM service, insisting the controversial privacy clause does not pertain to user-to-user instant messaging communication.

Source: eWeek

A few days I saw a post at slashdot and about crapped my pants. I am sure I was not the only one. It did not take AOL long to change its tune, or "clarify" everything for us. Thanks AOL. You have just alienated the entire IM using world and caused more damage than you will ever know. You just lost a bus load of customers. Good job! And no, your damage control did work on everyone.

The Incredibles DVD Review

It's a real shame that most people probably don't know Brad Bird. If they did, they would know about the "Iron Giant," a completely ignored animated movie from 1999 that never got the credit it deserved. Now he's all over the place for "The Incredibles," another ride into the Pixar way of filmmaking.

Continue reading "The Incredibles DVD Review" »

March 17, 2005

Open Water DVD Review

It's not really proper to criticize a critic. Unfortunately, they really can supply false information, and in the case of "Open Water," one of them blew it badly. This is NOT the "Best shark movie since 'Jaws.'" That's the worst possible description. This isn't even a shark movie. What it is is a unique experiment, shot cheaply, and sent out for the public to consume. Everyone who has seen it should be thankful they did.

Continue reading "Open Water DVD Review" »

Titanic 4-Disc DVD Announcement

Wow. If you follow DVDs at all, you know it was coming. The first release was bare bones, this one looks incredible. How about 400 hours of footage being available for this set? The Digital Bits had a brief interview with James Cameron too. Comparisons to the "Lord of the Rings" sets look to be already relevant.

Collateral DVD Review

It can be fun to see who might have been cast in a specific role. Instead of Tom Cruise for "Collateral," the producers looked at Adam Sandler (!), Russell Crowe, Colin Farrell, and Ed Norton. They ended up deciding it had to be someone older and went with Cruise, dying his hair a bright gray and pairing him with Jamie Foxx. The choices couldn't have been more perfect.

Continue reading "Collateral DVD Review" »

March 18, 2005

Toys R Us To Have Massive Store Closings

Well, working there has been interesting and it seems like that's going to end, at least according to CNN. My store meets the "requirements" for a closure on all counts. Nothing is official though and I have yet to hear anything of the sort. It seems the land the stores are on is worth more than the stores. Ouch.

March 19, 2005

Hummer for Hire

I was at Tireman Auto today (which didn't go that well; more on that later) and saw this white stretch Hummer. Never in my life have I seen such a monstrosity. I even found their Bowling Green web site, because I know you want to rent one.

The problem at Tireman today was that I originally was going to get my oil changed, as well as an alignment, and tires rotated. I did not figure on paying for new tire rods as well. That was almost $200 and another hour and a half of time. Wonderful.

DeliciousExporter is perfect extension to Library

Until we see Delicious Library 2.0, or 1.5, or whatever the next version is, we have to look elsewhere for the most wanted feature of this award winning piece of software.

DeliciousExporter exports your library into web pages. It is a simple point and click application. But it gives you very extensive options for templates if you explore. Oh and it is free.

Its almost a given that the next version of Delicious Library will have HTML export, but until then we have DeliciousExporter, and it does a fantastic job.

You can see my movies, music, books and games. I have to update it, as I finally scanned in my entire video game collection (I know I do not come close to you Matt, but few can).

I will probably never be able to get all my music scanned in, as I have such a large digital library. But as I have bought new albums I have added them to Library. There is a very beta program to import your iTunes Library into Delicious Library, but it does not work for me. I figure that is because of the size of my music collection. Maybe we will see iTunes integration into the next major release of Delicious Library. We can all hope.

Staples Easy Rebates, Part 2

It took 18 days to get my Staples Easy Rebate check. Today I got a check for $18.00 which is exactly what I expected. Those sure were cheap packs of DVD-Rs! And it could not have been easier, or faster.

Asphalt Urban GT Nintendo DS Review

As rushed as some of the DS launch titles were, there were enough surprises in the bunch to made buying the system on day number one seem worthwhile. Two racing games made their way into the launch lineup, "Ridge Racer" and "Asphalt Urban GT." While "Ridge Racer" was basically a port, "Asphalt" is an entirely original game and it works far better than the competition.

Continue reading "Asphalt Urban GT Nintendo DS Review" »

Microsoft yielding to IE standards pressure?

After a years-long drumbeat of developer complaints, Microsoft may finally be budging on its support for standards and on key missing features in its Internet Explorer browser.
Source: C|Net News.com

If Microsoft would make a standards compliant browser, it would make my life as a web designer much easier. I could go on and on about this point. But plain and simple: If Internet Explorer adhered to web standards, I could focus on making better web sites faster and not spending at least half my time fine tuning for IE.

Will Longhorn be short on features?

Microsoft's much anticipated and frequently postponed OS may ultimately lack compelling reasons for customers to upgrade.
Source: Yahoo News

Déja Vu? Lets rewind to when XP was first announced and then shipped. Many people were asking why they should upgrade. They had Windows 2000 Professional, what did they need XP for? For the most part this is a very relevant question.

Not that I am going to be buying another PC, but I was really looking forward for the largest change of all in Longhorn: WinFS. So much for a new file system.

So I have the same question to pose now, and we will see if it is relevant in 20XX when Longhorn ships: Why should I upgrade from XP to Longhorn?

WMP 9 component exports content in QT-based apps

Popwire on Friday released Windows Media 9 Export Component, which exports content in Windows Media Viewer 9 format from any QuickTime-based application. Verified to work with QuickTime Pro 6.5.2, Final Cut Pro HD 4.5, iMovie 4.0.1 and Discreet Cleaner 6.0.2, the software features one-pass CBR and VBR encoding, 32 presets and automatic de-interlacing, with support for fractional frame rates and natural key frames. Pricing is US$29.95 and Mac OS X v10.3.5 and QuickTime 6.5.2 are required.
Source: MacCentral

This is good news. Don't look at your monitor like that! It is great news, it really is. When I worked at CTLT one of the things we had to deal with was Windows users who did not have QuickTime, or who preferred Windows Media. If this software was available at that time, we would have bought licenses for all our compression machines. Being able to create Windows Media versions of your content is very important to your audience, and this looks like a great app to do that.

Tao Feng XBox Review

When John Tobias teamed with Ed Boon for "Mortal Kombat," the fighting game arena was different. It was a small, blossoming genre with little competition. Having left Midway to create his own company, Studio Gigante, Tobias came back with another original fighter, this one caught in a sea of them. That's why "Tao Feng" fails.

Continue reading "Tao Feng XBox Review" »

March 20, 2005

Game bill picks up steam in Illinois

Called The Safe Games Illinois Act, the bill would supersede current ESRB ratings when it comes to video games with "violent and sexually explicit" content, according to that state's governor's office.

In effect, the bill would allow state officials to determine standards that would form the basis for a ratings system somewhat similar to what the ESRB currently has in effect.

Source: GameSpot

The sad thing here is the fact that this bill should not have to exist in the first place.

The Ten Greatest Moments in Video Game Violence

Since the Illinois state government wants to ban violent video games because there seems to be nothing else important to them on Earth, it's time to discuss exactly what they want to keep under wraps. What follows, in no particular order, are the 10 greatest moments of video game violence ever conceived. Each game/series will only be used once to prevent repetition (and since some of these games are so brutal, they would own the entire list). Pick a fave if you want, but you know each one of these are unforgettable and yet some idiots want this taken away from us. If you haven't figured it out, this isn't an article for the weak-stomached.

Continue reading "The Ten Greatest Moments in Video Game Violence" »

Eliminate 95% of Comment Spam

If you use Movable Type chances are you use MT-Blacklist. If you don't you should think about using it. Two days ago I added a string to MT-Blacklist that has so far blocked 531 spam comments. That is 531 blocked in 2 days. What did I block? The H1 tag. Yep, thats it. I found that the majority of comment spam I get starts with a H1 tag.

I have eliminated at least 95% of my comment spam. Any time saved cleansing comment spam from the system is such a relief. Comment spam eradication is the worst part of maintaining a blog.

I really wish that Six Apart (or anyone else) could do something significant with the problem. There have been large contributions to the effort like MT-Blacklist and MT-Moderate that make my life easier, but there needs to be even more effort to eliminate the spam. Spam takes the fun out of blogging.

I am just glad it was something as easy as adding a simple H1 string to MT-Blacklist that killed so much spam for me. I should have done it months ago.

Apple updates Keynote, Pages

Apple on Thursday updated the two apps it bundles as iWork '05. The presentation software Keynote has been updated to version 2.0.1, while Pages, Apple's new word processing application Pages has been updated to version 1.0.1.

In both cases, the updates address “isolated issues that may have affected reliability for some customers,” according to Apple. The updated version of Pages also resolves an issue related to deleting complete pages.

Source: MacCentral

I find it interesting that both Apple in its release notes and MacCentral in its article did not make a big deal about the biggest addition to Pages 2.0.1. Apple added a delete pages feature to Pages!

Hello? Bueller? Bueller? Adding this feature, which should have been included out of the box in 1.0, makes Pages that much more usable. Someone forgot that feature when they were developing Pages. Its great that they added it, even if it took a couple months. Pages is much more usable now.

Sony PSP Deals

We're less than a few days away from the launch of a new console and the Sunday ads show a ton of support, way more than the DS had. Are major coprporations fan boys at heart? Anyway, if you're planning on trying EB Games or Gamestop, don't bother. They're all pre-ordered. Instead, head to a major retailer and look for these deals:

Best Buy:
In-store coupon for $5 off ANY PSP game. Opening at 8 a.m. to start selling.

Media Play:
Absolutely nothing. Just the basic bundle and games. Everything looks like the standard pricing.

Circuit City:
PSP Bundle w/ Twisted Metal only $289.99.

Memory Stick 256 MB Pro by Sandisk, $34.99 after mail in rebates. That's a major size difference from the 32 MB one included.

Buy any 2 PSP games, get a $10 gift card instantly (excludes Twisted Metal obviously).

Toys R Us:
Nothing. Just the $249.99 bundle. This is a good thing as TRU usually packs a bunch of stuff you don't want in their new console bundles. Online, you have to get a $400 bundle and that's the only way to get it.

After cable recall, Xbox's still frying

14 million games console owners are still at risk of waking up to find their Xbox has become an ex-box. For when Microsoft issued a safety advisory for Xbox customers last month, it failed to address the underlying problem.
Source: The Register

Yahoo to step into blogosphere

SAN FRANCISCO, California (Reuters) -- Yahoo Inc. said Wednesday it will soon start invitation-only testing of its new Web log and social networking service Yahoo 360, which aims to better connect users to people they already know.

The Yahoo 360 test release will mark the first time the company provides a service to create and share Web logs, also known as blogs, in the United States. Yahoo already offers such tools in some international markets like Japan and South Korea.

Source: CNN

Psst... wanna buy some DRM-free iTMS tracks?

The name Jon Johansen should be familiar to any foe of digital rights management. Known primarily for authoring DeCSS, a tool for removing the CSS from DVDs, the Norwegian programmer seemingly spends most of his time fighting DRM implementations. Johansen has also gone after Apple and iTunes Music store in the past, writing an application that could capture the raw AAC content. He and some other programmers are at it again with the release of PyMusique, an application that allows end users to buy music from iTMS without any DRM.
Source: Ars Technica

AOL versus some guy on the Internet

You might think news about AOL changing the Terms of Service for AIM products would be about AOL changing the Terms of Service for AIM products. Not even close. It all started with this guy, who asserted the Terms of Service (TOS) change allowed AOL to use AIM conversations for...whatever purposes deemed fit by AOL.
Source: Ars Technica

So this was over a whole lot of nothing? Great.

March 21, 2005

CBS Premiere: Spring Break Shark Attack Review

Who said Sci-Fi is the only station on TV turning out B-movie schlock? Seems that CBS now wants a piece, starting with this week's feature, "Spring Break Shark Attack." The title is correct in that it features both spring break and sharks attacking people, but it fails miserably to combine both or come out with anything worthwhile.

Continue reading "CBS Premiere: Spring Break Shark Attack Review" »

Best Episode 3 Parody EVER.

This is great stuff, and it looks like it really took some time. It's a big file (a little over 30 megs) and Quicktime. People, take the time to download this. Mace Windu is hilarious.

Yahoo! acquires Flickr photo sharing service

Yahoo Corp. has acquired the Flickr photo sharing Web site and Ludicorp Research and Development Ltd., the privately held Vancouver company that runs it, according to a posting on Flickr's staff blog.
Source: MacCentral

Wow, Yahoo! is going all out - starting a blogging service in the U.S. and now Flickr. Look out Six Apart.

Shark Tale DVD Review

For as much as these movies cost to make, you would think companies would at least try and not knock-off the competition. DreamWorks went up against Pixar with "Antz," and now again with "Shark Tale." Aside from the "Shrek" series, their computer-animated films seems to be geared more towards adults, just with plots for the kids. It ends up being a confusing mish-mash that doesn't come together in the least.

Continue reading "Shark Tale DVD Review" »

iTunes Music Store locks out DRM-free purchases

Apple on Monday confirmed they have closed what's described as "a security hole" in the iTunes Music Store that allowed users to purchase songs without DRM attached. As a result of closing the hole, users of iTunes older than version 4.7 will need to upgrade in order to continue purchasing songs. This update also locks out users of PyMusique, a software application for Windows and Linux that served as an alternate interface to the iTunes Music Store.
Source: Playlist

Ahh, DVD Jon gets stopped again.

March 22, 2005

Major School Shooting

Yes, I feel bad for those that died. Yes, this is a tragedy.

But, they're going to blame it on "Doom,""The Matrix," or "Grand Theft Auto." The question is why? Why can't people realize it's all because some idiot parent decided not to watch their kid, didn't realize he was going off the deep end, and didn't do anything to stop him. Everyone will start asking "Oh my, how did this happen? I don't understand!" I'll tell you... Parents in America have become lazy idiots. It has nothing to do with games, nothing to do with some theological downfall of society, and it surely has nothing to do with him taking prescription drugs. Everything, absolutely every little piece of the puzzle, leads to the parents. There's not a single argument you can bring to the table to deny that either. Call me heartless, but this stuff has to stop and it all begins at home.

Zombie Survival Test

Can you survive an attack?

I barely made it out alive with a 65%.

1GB Memory Stick Pro Duo

If you can score one of these (Froogle) you can count yourself lucky. SanDisk is not shipping these in the mass quantity needed for the demand from us lucky PSP owners (yes, I pre-ordered one).

The best deal I could find was $108 from onsale.com. Thats a lot better then the $149 at EB Games. But if you wait a few months I would bet that price will drop well below $100. Flash memory always drops.

With all the possibilities for video, audio, and photos (not to mention the video games) of the PSP, I am sure people will be buying larger and larger Memory Stick Pro Duos.

Once the price for Memory Sticks gets low enough to compete with devices like the Creative Zen, the Sony PSP is going to have another gadget to directly compete with.

NBA Makes Minor Video Game Deal

Now this is great idea. Make the companies alternate years so they have time to do more then just update a roster.

A Unique Use of Google

GOOGLE FIGHT! I can almost see a few kids in a school yard arguing about whether Paris Hilton or George Bush would have more items turn up. And just for the record, Ken beats me simply because his name is more common. It has nothing to do with level of coolness. Of course, you all knew that already.

PyMusique author hacks Apple iTunes fix

Apple and the authors of an application that allow users to buy music from the iTunes Music Store without using iTunes itself appear to be involved in an escalating war of wits. Only a day after Apple announced a change to the iTunes Music Store that prevented users from using a third-party program called PyMusique to buy songs, one of the program's authors has made changes that restores the software's ability to work.
Source: Playlist

Will this ever end?

POPFile wins Jolt Productivity Award

... POPFile won a Jolt "Productivity Award" -- so I guess we are all award winning developers now. Cool. It's not the big award of the night, as there were 3 productivity awards in each category, but I am still thrilled.
Source: Sam Schinke

That is pretty cool. I love POPFile. I could not live without it. With 125,680 emails classified, it is 99.83% accurate.

March 23, 2005

Free Elder Scrolls 1 from Bethesda

A couple of companies have given this a shot (like Rockstar) and it's a nice gesture. Basically, they allow you to download classic/original versions of their newer titles free and legally. In this case, it's "Elder Scrolls." It may take some work to get this running on a new PC (most likley need DOSBox, a DOS emulator which they also link to), so be warned.

Mac Threats: Is Symantec Crying Wolf?

In a perfect would, people might pay for security software based on the number of attacks prevented and the severity of those threats. The bigger the threat, the harder the software works and the more it protects, the more you pay. Seems fair enough.

In the case of Mac OS X, if you paid for what you got, the price for security software would be zero. The price would thus equal the number of virus and malware threats that target Apple's Unix-based operating system.

Source: eWEEK

Opinion or not, he has a good point about the cost of Mac Anti-Virus software.

Adobe Acrobat Toolbar Worse than Malware?

Yes, it is worse then malware. But thats not the point.

If I have not gotten enough comments and traffic because of my post of this over at Blogcritics, today I was Slashdotted. And yes, all hell broke loose. The story is still on the front page of slashdot.org too, so the referral and visits numbers keep piling up.

All of my web sites (including paying customers) were down for an undetermined amount of time this afternoon. They are back up now thankfully. It must have went unnoticed because I have not received any irate emails.

Mail was down, more specificly web mail was down, and is still a little wonky. I can get POP3 mail though. Everything seems to be doing OK now. This afternoon things were not pretty though.

And let me just say this: thank god I did not turn on dynamic publishing months ago when Movable Type 3.0 came out. And thankfully I did not have any images attached to that blog post. Since I am using a static Movable Type install, it has done just fine.

Getting Slashdotted and getting hit by WIRED (for my G4TechTV/TSS interview on WIRED News) are two completely different animals. WIRED brought the visits, but not anything like Slashdot.

So thanks Slashdot. I survived. But please, it would be nice to keep this to one a month, or I will have a horrendous bandwidth bill to deal with. Luckily I have more bandwidth then I really need right now, or I would have been slammed with an overage bill today!

McGwire reveals feet of clay

The man who warmed fans' hearts and had a record-breaking season in 1998 forgot the key rule in screwing up in America when he testified Thursday.

Continue reading "McGwire reveals feet of clay"

Bad day for baseball

With a bizarre cast of characters and a lack of answers, Congress's hearings into steroids in baseball hurt the sport, but there's no one to blame but themselves.

Continue reading "Bad day for baseball"

iPSP reviews look bad

I was really looking forward to using iPSP to turn my PSP into a personal multimedia gadget. Now it looks like I would be better off doing it myself. The reviews on MacUpdate sound horrible. It looks like there are other PSP related apps in the works for the Mac though.

PSPWare looks like it might be the way to go. I will check both of them out, but am already leery of iPSP.

Sony's PSP Connect

We all know what Connect.com is right? It is Sony's iTunes Music Store (that only works on Windows). Thanks to Chris for pointing me to their new PSP Connect site.

The site does offer a nice Flash demo about putting MPEG 4 video on your PSP. You can download a .zip file that has the MP_ROOT folder, and a video file. While you could do this, Sony has taken it upon themselves to make it easier for you. Why didn't they just write a MP_ROOT folder in the Memory Stick format process?

There is free video content on the site too. They already have a number of partners lined up. It looks to me like Connect.com is going to start selling video, or at least for now give you fresh free video for your PSP. The best part being that you don't have to compress it yourself.

Tomorrow is the day

This is killing me. I have one more day to wait for my PSP and I can't take it any more. I have received three games and my accessories for my PSP and all I can do is look at them.

I haven't been this excited about a console launch since... since the Game Boy Advance. Ahh, fond memories. I ordered a GBA from Japan and had mine months before the U.S. launch. Playing Castlevania: Circle of the Moon in Japanese was a little odd, but I managed.

Importing a PSP is a lot more costly then a GBA, so I passed.

I don't remember a launch lineup as strong as this lineup for the PSP. The only bad things I have read are load times and the two-step method to shoot the ball in NBA. But then these are first generation games, and NBA is a 989 game.

Since I have an AirPort network in my apartment, it will be easy for me to use the Infrastructure mode to play games like Twisted Metal: Head On online.

With the 4.3 inch screen, I think I will be more inclined to sync my photos with my PSP then my iPod. We will see. Its all about the software. If someone designs a good User Interface to sync with the PSP and iApps, the iPod photo of mine might take a back seat for photos.

I am sure you will all know somewhat shortly after I get my hands on my PSP. The click is ticking, and yes, I am counting.

Gaming Room (almost) Goes Up In Flames

Near complete and total disaster today inside my game room. You sort of need a little backstory to really understand just how bad this could have been. In the best terms possible, everything behind my TV, as a friend once affectionately put it, is ghetto rigged. There's no better terminology.

So, by my count, there are 25 things plugged into 8 different surge protectors. Those 8 go into two industrial style power type boxes usually reserved for work/tool benches and the like where there are not enough actual outlets (like behind my entertainment center). Picked them up at Sam's Club. The cables from those run a long way along the right side of the room to an outlet above my animal aquariums. So yes, 25 different items, 8 surge protectors, one double equipped power outlet. Smart? No, not really.

Continue reading "Gaming Room (almost) Goes Up In Flames" »

March 24, 2005

Sony's PSP: A Review

Touted for all sorts of fancy multi-media capabilities, Sony's PSP is, in the end, truly only meant for one thing: Playing games. It's more then equipped to do just that. It even looks like it's ready to go with a stunning design that makes jaws drop the moment it's taken out of the box.

Continue reading "Sony's PSP: A Review" »

Ridge Racer PSP Review

For a series that has stayed so close to its roots, "Ridge Racer" has done pretty well for itself. Each entry is usually immensely playable by even the most inexperienced gamer out there, blending a line between both arcade and simulation that can keep both sides happy. The PSP premiere of the series is a spectacular, all-out assault on your senses, a perfect showcase for a new system to make it seem like a purchase was worthwhile. To top it all off, it plays insanely well too.

Continue reading "Ridge Racer PSP Review" »

March 25, 2005

Wipeout Pure PSP Review

One of the original "wow" titles for the PS One upon its release was Psygnosis' "Wipeout." Its use of 3-D was unparalled and it set the tone for the rest of the series. Now developed by Studio Liverpool, a spin-off of Sony, "Wipeout Pure" does for the PSP was the first game in the series did for the PS One. This is one of the best futuristic racers of all time, establishing the series once again to its original luster.

Continue reading "Wipeout Pure PSP Review" »

If Nintendo Won't Do It...

Leave it to Dannon. This is a great little Punch-Out knock-off. Nintendo seems content to just let this series die on the Super NES, so here's to corporate America for keeping it going! Oh and if anyone can take down the champ, let me know if there's an ending. I took everyone out until I got to him and his damn cream cheese killed me.

March 26, 2005

PSP Launch Madness

There was no problem finding a PSP in Bowling Green Thursday or Friday. The big problem was finding the games. Myself and my friend Chris pre-ordered our PSPs at 2 Play. 2 Play, like most other retailers required you to buy two games for the "bundle" that Sony is apparently insisting people buy. This is a practice I do not agree with. What if I only want to spend $300 (PSP plus one game).

Continue reading "PSP Launch Madness" »

A letter from Breaking Windows Inc. on the PSP

Dear readers,

It has come to our attention that some of you may feel we are Sony PSP fan boys due to the amount of postings on the topic. This is simply not true (*1). We love our Nintendo DS (*2). We still love playing quality titles like "Pokemon Dash" and touching that screen (*3). "Ridge Racer" on the DS is just as enjoyable as it is on the PSP (*4). Both systems have a plethora of enjoyable titles that never cease to amaze us (*5). We will resume out regular unbiased coverage of all the systems soon (*6). Until then, please know that we give no favoritism to any systems (*7).

Thank you,

Breaking Windows Inc.

Continue reading "A letter from Breaking Windows Inc. on the PSP" »

PSP, WEP, and Apple's AirPort

Setting up a PSP with an Apple Airport is a bit different then going down to the local Grounds for Thought (simple setup). The reason is those places, coffee shops, usually do not use WEP (Wireless Encryption Protocol) and in my apartment, I do.

Continue reading "PSP, WEP, and Apple's AirPort" »

Tunneling Into PSP

While the PlayStation Portable has all the hardware necessary to take the handheld system online via HotSpot and home wireless networking access points, Sony's online plans for the system are still a ways off. To do things the official way takes time and money. To do things the unofficial way, however, just takes some unauthorized trickery and a little elbow grease...
Source: IGN PSP

Not only is there a Windows Kai client, but they have Mac OSX Terminal and GUI versions as well. Grandted it's version 0.1, but its a beginning. "KaidOSXMenu" is a menu item. Amaryllis is an "Amazingly beautiful 100% Cocoa KaiUI by Maksim Rogov of Nullriver Software." You also need Amaryllis for this to work in OS X. I have not tried it yet, but it looks like you can use Amaryllis to join or host tunneled PSP, Xbox, PS2 and Game Cube games.

I am going to try PSP first, for obvious reasons. Although I must say this looks a lot easier on Windows. All the documentation I can find is for Windows. Ahh, I found Mac instructions.

Incidentally, Nullriver is where PSPWare comes from.

Top Sony exec hints at Blu-ray, HD-DVD detente

After more than a year of touting Blu-ray as the best technology to replace DVD for storing high-definition video and winning proponents including Apple, a top executive at Sony Corp., one of Blu-ray's major backers, has opened the door to the possibility of unifying the format with its arch rival, HD-DVD.
Source: MacCentral

These people play chess in mysterious ways. While I would really like to see on HD DVD format and not two separate ones, the Blu-ray spec sounded better to me.

March 27, 2005

Sci-Fi Channel Premiere: Alien Apocalypse Review

If you're about to embark on filming what you simply have to know is going to be an awful movie, you can do a few things right. It should be campy, it should be littered with horrid special effects, and if you really know what you're doing, you get Bruce Campbell. That's about the only saving grace to "Alien Apocalypse," a movie that at least tried a little bit to be entertaining unlike some of the other dredge Sci-Fi has cooked up recently.

Continue reading "Sci-Fi Channel Premiere: Alien Apocalypse Review" »

PSP to Get Battery Upgrade

It's really not that bad now (I got about 5 hours yesterday switching between "Wipeout" and "Ridge Racer"), but it seems it's a problem for most. Those who have waited could be on the receiving end of a stronger battery.

Going WAY Over the Rainbow

This poor kid is going to look back 10 years from now at this and begin to ask questions (direct link, WMV). Most notably:

Why was I wearing leather?
Why did I try to act cool while singing a "Wizard of Oz" song?
Why did someone have to put this on the internet for millions to see?
Why didn't mom tell me that I didn't look good in tight leather?
Actually, why did mom let me wear tight leather in the first place?

The PSP does more than you would think

Reports of sales may be rough, but that hasn't stopped people from making it do more then intended. Now, would someone please get some emulators going on this thing? Please?

Sony Sued for $90.7 Million for Dual Shock

Ouch. That's a ton of cash for just a controller. Plus, it claims they can no longer sell the system with the Dual Shock. That's a major, major lawsuit. This is one to keep an eye on. Will they be forced to change the design?

Sony responds to PSP dead-pixel reports

SCEA downplays widespread reports of LCD screen problems, says warranty is still in effect and defective units can be exchanged.

Soon after the PSP launched in Japan last December, reports began to surface that some units' LCD screens suffered from pixels that were either permanently light or dark. Within 24 hours of the portable's North American launch, similar complaints began to reverberate around the Internet. The locus of the complaints was, ironically, the official PlayStation forums, which was temporarily down yesterday following heavy traffic.

Source: GameSpot

Dead pixels is the number one reason I did not import at PSP. I am happy to say that my PSP does not have any dead pixels. I have checked and checked, and triple checked. No dead pixels, thankfully.

The best way to check is to put a bunch of monochromatic 480x272 px. images on your PSP. I would suggest at least: black, gray, white, red, green, and blue. Check in both the light and a fully dark room.

I figured that the manufacture's warrantee would cover dead pixels. People just like to get all up in a tissy about these things. The problem with Japanese PSP units is that SCEA will not honor the Japanese warrantee. So it was a smart choice to wait.

Wipeout Pure: The Hidden Web Browser

It seems if you have Wipeout Pure and some *nix skills, you too can browse the internet with your PSP. Wipeout Pure's browser uses system API's for text entry, and even javascript alert boxes. Some basic stuff does not work like H1 tags. The browser even has its own USER AGENT. It is all very promising stuff. Someone has Windows instructions online (with screens).

Now to go setup a DNS on my G5...

March 28, 2005

Sony loses PlayStation patent case, must pay $91M

A U.S. court ordered Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. (SCEI) to pay Immersion Corp. US$90.7 million for patent infringement of touch feedback technology used in PlayStation games consoles, said court documents...

The court also ordered a halt to U.S. sales of infringing PlayStation-brand consoles and 47 software titles as part of a patent-infringement lawsuit but put the order on-hold pending an appeal.

Source: MacCentral

I figured they would have to pay them. I didn't think they would have to pay the entire amount. Sony can still sell their infringing console and games while they appeal that part of the suit.

There has been some discussion about how Outrun in the arcades had force feedback, but the two patents that Immersion Corp. hold are rather specific if you read them thoroughly.

Microsoft licensed the technology in 2003, and I would be willing to bet that Sony will now do the same.

Wrestlemania 21 Movie Parodies

Even if you're not a pro wrestling fan, there's no denying their advertising for their "Super Bowl" this year has been fantastic. Taking classic movie moments, popping in their superstars, and tossing in a little advertising, each one of these is worth a look (though the Pulp Fiction one was highly dissapointing). Personal faves are Taxi Driver and Basic Instinct. Check them all out here and you can even vote for your favorite!

March 29, 2005

Fun With Your Birthday

One of those somewhat cheesy internet things, it's still kind of neat. Put your birthday in the little pop-up window and see stats about what happened in your life at certain ages. There's a movie one too if you look at the bottom of the screen. I was 1 when "E.T." came out. Yeah, I'm that old.

Darkstalkers PSP Review

Though people will look at what sort of processing power and how many polygons a new system can handle, some of us just appreciate the fact that someone has the guts to release a flawlessly ported 2-D fighter for a console know for 3-D capabilities. There's no arguing that Capcom picked a good one. "Darkstalkers Chronicles" is a translation of Dreamcast game, a blend of all the games in the series. On Sega's console, it worked. On the PSP, the control issues keep it from becoming great.

Continue reading "Darkstalkers PSP Review" »

Former First Lady Slams GTA

Hilary Rodham Clinton, D, NY, has taken sides. Apparently, the wrong one. In an article with the Sunday Times, the first-time senator and two-term first lady, said she wants to launch a $90 million investigation into the effects of videogames on children.
Source: IGN

Well that sounds like my tax dollars spent well. Maybe they should test the parents. The parents who buy M rated games for their kids without the knowledge of what the game is about. Her quote about having sex with prostitutes and then killing them is a very old claim. Maybe she should make her own statements.

March 30, 2005

Give me a hand!

A DS one, actually. See, we can put news on the site about other systems! Anyway, this is a creepy giveaway, but it's free. Note that if you sign up to get it, they WILL send you mail and it's really annoying. Hey, if you get a free hand, what's a little Nintendo spam?

A Letter to Senator Hilary Clinton on Video Game Violence

While browsing the internet yesterday, I stumbled across an article centering around a $90 million study you have proposed on the so-called "effects of video game violence." Please realize what a huge waste of not only taxpayer's dollars this is, but also how simple the answer is to all of this. It has nothing to do at all with the content of these rated video games, but everything to do with lackluster parenting.

Continue reading "A Letter to Senator Hilary Clinton on Video Game Violence" »

Griffin's aluminum iVault protects iPod shuffle

Griffin Technology Inc. on Tuesday introduced the iVault, an aluminum case designed for Apple's iPod shuffle.
Source: Playlist

Do you remember this from a while ago? Some guy had way too much time on his hands so he custom machined a metal iPod shuffle case? Then I read somewhere that his design was bought. I guess it was Griffin. Indeed, it is a "Full Metal Jacket." It does look great. When I saw the original I sure wanted one. Griffin's is also half the price of some of the competition, sold in Japan only.

iPod shuffle clone returns as Super Tangent

Taiwanese MP3 maker Luxpro made headlines at the CeBit trade show in Germany earlier this month when they showed off an MP3 player called the Super Shuffle that was, unmistakably, a clone of Apple's iPod shuffle. The product briefly disappeared but it's back now, as the Super Tangent. Luxpro appears to have made some changes to the Super Tangent since it was shown at CeBit as the Super Shuffle, but it's still unmistakably an iPod shuffle clone.
Source: Playlist

Yes, it is still a clone. But it is not an exact replica like the Super Shuffle was. I am guessing someone from Apple legal had a talk with them, and that is why they pulled it.

PocketMac for PSP debuts

Right on the heels of Sony's North American release of its PlayStation Portable (PSP) handheld game console, Information Appliance Associates has released PocketMac for PSP. The software enables users to synchronize music, photos and contact information between their Mac and PSP.
Source: MacCentral

Now we have iPSP, PSPWare, and PocketMac for PSP, all trading punches for Mac PSP owners. iPSP is down right unusable. PSPWare is a simple and elegant application - and works, unlike iPSP. Now PocketMac for PSP will convert your contacts into JPEG images for display on your PSP. I must investigate...

There is no demo. Forget that. It also looks as if there is no backup utility in this app. I am sticking with PSPWare.

South Park and the PSP

This thing is everywhere. On tonights episode, Kenny gets a PSP but dies and leaves his new system to Cartman in his will. BUT... when Kenny is brought back to life and put on a feeding tube, Cartman fights to have the tube removed for obvious reasons. It's a VERY touchy subject, but credit is deserved for Trey and Matt for having the all-out balls to tackle the subject of Terry Schiavo in a fantastic manner, bringing forth both sides and showcasing the husband as an idiot. Expect a ton of controversy from this one and you can catch it again Saturday night at midnight.

March 31, 2005

Longhorn could be tough sell for Microsoft

Longhorn has already survived several major delays, intense scrutiny from the industry and a radical redesign of its features.

But the toughest test for Microsoft's next release of Windows is still to come: Will anyone buy it?

Source: C|Net News.com

That is a good question. I have another one: With no WinFS in Longhorn, what makes it worth buying? It is not out yet, but it seems they have cut more features from Longhorn then they have told us about.

Untold Legends PSP Review

Instead of taking an already established franchise and porting it to the PSP, Sony Online decided to develop a completely original hack and slash adventure for the launch of their new console. A different team than the PS2 "Champions of Norrath" series developed "Untold Legends" and that's likely why it's a little rough around the edges. Still, it's engaging enough for fans of this growing genre, just not enough to draw in a new crowd.

Continue reading "Untold Legends PSP Review" »

Review: iPod Camera Connector

When Apple first announced the iPod photo, many digital photographers believed their prayers had been answered: At last, a compact storage solution that would allow you to snap pictures with a digital camera, dump the camera’s contents to the device, and then preview your pictures on that storage device. Regrettably, these dreams were dashed when it was revealed that the iPod photo would display pictures only after those pictures were processed by a computer and delivered to the device via iTunes.
Source: Playlist



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