Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Where in creation is Mars Hill?

Mars hill is in the midst of the Areopagus in a place otherwise known as Athens, Greece. Now that we have that settled, where does that leave us? Far away, that is where it leaves us. Why am I so interested in a hill in Greece? I’ll tell you why. We live in a society that has religious trends. Religious trends you ask? Let me explain.

9-11 happens; churches everywhere receive influxes that double and even triple their numbers for a few months. War in the Middle East happens, Even more people go to church, some just return. This only last so long and then it too dies out. Islam, Hedonism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Wicca, and Christianity are growing at rapid rates. People are creating their own religions like Scientology, and Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster ( Why? In today’s times where we are getting so technological we are impersonalized society. We are taking human interaction and throwing it to the wind. Social networking is rise with Facebook, MySpace, and YouTube. Human interaction now happens in cyberspace and people are looking for relationships. They want to feel loved and feel close and to have a relationship. They want to belong and they are turning to religion because most religions are about family and love and togetherness. They are seeking fellowship and are getting brainwashed.

Now, to that hill in Greece I was talking about earlier. Paul, a wonderful evangelist was walking through a land that was very similar to our own. The culture was awash with fear. Are we giving our due to God? They were so fearful of not offending god that they had a god and altar for everything and they would make sacrifices for everything. Make a sacrifice for food for dinner. Now make a sacrifice because I burned dinner. Make a sacrifice because my spouse didn’t like it. Make a sacrifice because my child ate too much. Make sacrifices because I need sleep now. Pray to that god for a sunny day tomorrow… nest day it is raining…Pray to the God I prayed to for sun and ask forgiveness, sacrifice my newborn to it to gain back good graces. Oh, yeah. Now I need to pray to the god of rain to thank them for it…and so on and so forth. Yeah, gets old real quick. So Paul walks in seeing all of this he is like, “Come on people! It is so much simpler than this!” A crowd begins to draw because look here is yet another god that I have been forgetting! I need to learn about this one too! And Paul says this.

It is plain to see that you Athenians take your religion seriously. When I arrived here the other day, I was fascinated with all the shrines I came across. And then I found one inscribed, ‘to the god nobody knows’. I’m here to introduce you to this God so you can worship intelligently, know who you’re dealing with.

Wow! Somebody who know about the unknown god! Wow, now I can get that promotion and that raise because I will have all of the gods on my side!

Well, not quite. Paul didn’t want to introduce yet ANOTHER god; he wanted to introduce THE GOD. Paul goes on to say that all of this running around like chickens with their heads cut off is ridiculous. End the madness! God can take care of himself! He went on to say this.

The God who made the world and everything in it, this Master of sky and land, doesn’t live in custom-made shrines or need the human race to run errands for him, as if he couldn’t take care of himself. He makes the creatures; the creatures don’t make him. Starting from scratch, he made the entire human race and made the earth hospitable, with plenty of time and space for living so we could seek after God, and not just grope around in the dark but actually find him. He doesn’t play hide-and-seek with us. He’s not remote; he’s near. We live and move in him, can’t get away from him! One of your poets said it well: ‘We’re the God-created.’ Well, if we are the God-created, it doesn’t make a lot of sense to think we could hire a sculptor to chisel a god out of stone for us, does it?

Well, well, well. What do we have here? You mean that there is only one God and he alone is responsible for everything? And he wants to have a relationship with us? You know that never works out. I mean look at that one god over there, he had a relationship with that mortal woman in stone over there and this other god got angry, and yeah, a big mess. And I can’t believe that this god doesn’t need anything from me. See this god doesn’t have a home and he goes around expecting the people to give them their very best. When they don’t he burns down their houses. But this god wants nothing from me because he created it all anyways? How cool is that. I mean, that one god ate 2 months of food having a party that one night and I don’t know if I will have enough to get through winter now. Oh, I can’t see him? What do you mean he sends his spirit to dwell in me? Does that mean I become possessed or something? No, no. That just means that he gives you help and guidance on how to lead a good life and you will be blessed from that life. Oh, ok. I think I get it now. Dear god! Please forgive me and I will sacrifice everything I have for you to forget all of these other gods I have worshiped! I bet Paul was ready to throw his hands up and shout, “I give up Lord!” But no, he goes on to say.

God overlooks it as long as you don’t know any better—but that time is past. The unknown is now known, and he’s calling for a radical life-change. He has set a day when the entire human race will be judged and everything set right. And he has already appointed the judge, confirming him before everyone by raising him from the dead.”

What? A god that forgives, I like this god. He must be a real god because he wants the best for us. He wants to bless us and loves us. I can get a hold of this. And all I have to do is follow him and I will get to live with him in the end? Wow, I am going to follow him to the end. Some were not so convinced. When Paul mentioned that god raised somebody from the dead they said to themselves that there was no way Hades was going to let one of his precious souls be resurrected to life and they turned their hearts and walked away. They are the ones to be judged in the end.

Do you know who God is? Are you following Him every day? Or are you the one who is turning your heart and saying how real can he be? Or, I can get away with this one more time, after all, he is forgiving. I mean there was only ever one perfect person and he was the Christ for heaven’s sake! I ask of you, live a Godly life and quit fooling yourselves. God loves you and awaits your true and earnest love and desire to follow Him.

All verses taken from The Message Bible. Acts 17:22-34

The Greatest Multiplayer Video Games: Mario Tennis

I'm doing a new segment on video games starting with this. I want to focus on multi player video games, because that's where the real fun is at. Social Gaming! Where else would I begin?

Mario Tennis for the N64 is one of the most fun and intense multi player games I've ever played. In my college tenure friends and I would play many many nights and we even had a room tournament. I live off-campus and I get guys telling me all the time how we should play Mario Tennis.

Anyone can pretty much pick up this game and play with it's two button and one control stick simplicity. Many may say it's Pong and well, tennis is pretty much that. Add in drop shots, lob shots, serves, and such and you've got tennis. But this is no ordinary tennis, this is Mario Tennis. Enter the characters of the Mushroom Kingdom, from Nintendo's Mario games and even a new character in Waluigi (the evil side of Luigi!). Think arcade tennis.

There are several classes of characters: All-Around, Power (serves in the 100mph plus), Speed (Quick character), Technique (Not quite sure...), and Tricky (the ability to put ridiculous curves on serves)

1 - 4 players are possible, but you really need 4 for the ultimate fun. I can crush you in one-on-one, but a doubles match takes great teamwork and timing on everyones part.

There are several ways to play multi player. One is the traditional court where things are normal for the game. The next way of play is "Rings." You play as individuals to attain a set number of rings by having shots go through the rings and the winner of that point collects all the rings the ball passed through. The other option is the "Bowser Court." This is a mode of play where power-ups exist for shots and the court actually moves and will make you slide since it is suspended form above.

Are you competitive? Do you want to win? There are so many "agh, oh man, what? that was amazing!" moments when you play. New phrases were associated with this game to describe a well played return that was difficult ("Good Get!").

One thing is, the drop shot *stars* lie!

Several Words to describe playing multi player: Frustrating and Amazing.

Too bad this isn't for more then 4 people. How could tennis pull that off anyway? For more then 4, go for Halo.

Buy a Nintendo 64 for this game alone and you won't be disappointed.

I should design programs

So I mentioned a few posts down that we need a Web 3.0 browser. Well the kind people at Mozilla, that open source group that makes Firefox, are working on a way to store documents and files and programs on your local computer. Now this seems scary, but its really not. See it creates a SQL database on your computer so that the browser can access it offline. An example of this would be to load up the stored program for compose new Gmail. You type up your e-mail, just a short little note and send it off. This would save bringing up the Gmail inbox waiting for all of your e-mails to load, clicking on compose, and finally waiting for that page to load.

The are also working on Javascript 2.0. No doubt this will make is less applicable to 1997 type web pages and closer to Web 2.0 and web 3.0 applications. Firefox 3.0 sounds like it is a stepping stone to web 3.0 and Firefox 4.0. I doubt that my vision for full applications in your browser will be there, but I do welcome cleaning up Javascript.

Man I love Mozilla.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Something to look forward to

The Prestige

The Prestige is a movie I saw in the theater, and now that it has been released on DVD, I have seen it a second time. I purchased it the other day at Wal-Mart and viewed it. I had no expectations when I saw it in the theater, I read nothing about it and I was impressed and wanted to see it again. My wife also liked this movie. The second viewing is different in the fact that I know what's going to happen so I was looking for items and parts I missed the first time around. The focus changes because I know what's going to happen.

When I first saw this film, I was very involved and guessing at what was happening. I was very "into it." It captures you and tells quite a good story, in my opinion. I had no idea about any of the twists involved, which would probably have spoiled everything. In fact, I didn't even know to look for them. The whole movie is a magic trick that you don't even realize is being performed before your eyes. "Watch closely," as the magician would say.

This is a movie about two magicians in Victorian times who are feuding each other and are very obsessive. This takes place in London, England. The look and feel is good and interesting. There are many themes and metaphors throughout. You even get David Bowie playing the inventor Tesla. You can't really corner this into any certain genre, but it could possibly be a thriller?

My only gripe is that the ending is in no way satisfying. You walk away and feel "What? that's how it ends?" There is very happy music immediately with the credits though. Hmm.

You get actors Hugh Jackman, Christian Bale, and Michael Cain for actors (woah!) and it's directed by Christopher Nolan (Momento, Batman Begins).

I don't want to spoil anything. Go out and rent it or something.

Who will "Showdown?"

In the past we have featured articles of a VS sort. Zombies vs Pirates, Flood vs the aliens from Half-Life 2. I want to know, what does the reader want to see in terms of possible future VS articles? We are going for alternate universe situations (Not Marvel vs Marvel, more like DC vs Marvel.) Classic nerds want Star Trek vs Star Wars maybe? I heard some people in Wal-Mart arguing if Star Wars or Lord of the Rings was better. "LOTR is too complicated!" I heard. Gah!

Watch The Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny and maybe you'll like that too. It influenced our idea a bit.

Monday, February 26, 2007

New Contributer, New Topics, More Experience, Same old look....and Some Special Help With WiFi

Well, the look isn't changing. Neither is the emphasis of the blog. But I can tell you one thing, I bring experience in some fields that may be good, or bad. While I will agree with Justin in the fact that group games are great...when in a smaller group, bring out the classics...yeah, the cheap ones. Chutes and Ladders, or Mouse Trap. Some of those. Great Games.

Looking for a WiFi Router/Card?
If you go to Wal-Mart, Radio Shack, Best Buy, Online etc. you may find that there are many different wireless routers and cards. All the brands, which one is for me? Stick with name brand for one. Well, they are all name brand! Well, here you go.

Good alternative to the name brand, but only good for minor Internet use and single users. If you put a heavy load on it then you are going to start experiencing some slow downs, major lagging. Cheap, effective, one step behind the power curve on latest technology. Number 3 on the list to buy.

Long time networking company tries to go end user and fails...Yes, I said fails. I have had the pleasure of testing and dealing with many Netgear routers and have always ended with one problem. They Don't Work When Hot. You may be thinking, "But I have Air Conditioning." No, the routers do not have any cooling, including passive. So the chips inside heat up and the router freezes and does not allow wireless access. Yes, the heating only seems to affect the wireless access. So if you want to spend extra money for a wireless router that does not work, go ahead. Stay in the corporate world where you belong Netgear. Number 5 on the list to buy.

Excelent large scale and Decent end user networking equipment. The only problem is that they will use 3rd party technology to allow for cheaper manufacturing and saving you a buck or two. Thus comes there problem. They sometimes will have a bad unit. Great, Durable, low user number. End-user based on hub technology so one user can hog all the bandwidth. No Wireless N yet... Number on the buy list, 2.

Expensive, just like Vaio. Good tech, but expensive. Great wireless, always up to date with current technology. Looks great, not user friendly. Number 4 on the buy list for the simple fact that they are not user friendly and they take up too much space.

Yes, I am partial to good technology. Linksys has something that none of the other end-user WiFi makers have. Cisco design and technology and research funding. Cisco, the largest network component company out there bought an already established, well known established company when they were on the brink of doing something stupid and made it even better. (more on the stupid part? email me, I'll give it to you in a short 200 pages.) Wait! When I look at Linksys on the shelve is is so confusing! Stick simple unless you are a guru. SpeedBooster is nothing more than a MIMO tech. Many companies would give MIMO a label like 22Mbps or 54Mbps. Reality is, 54Mbps is standard tech.
Anyways, stick simple unless you are a guru. Yes SpeedBooster is good, but most people will never knotice the difference. SRX200 is even better, but yet again, most people will never notice the difference. SRX200 comes in for streaming media, online wireless gaming and major downloading. One problem, these technologies are great, but are only truly effective if you have their corresponding card to go with your router. Yes you will see some difference with a regular wireless card, but you will not receive the full benefit.
Linksys also offers another item...Gigabit wireless "gaming" router. Another useful tech for the gamer or guru. Ease of use? Some of Linksys' stuff includes a "one touch setup" button. For a non secure network option, it is great. End-user ease? Excellent!
For those users who have large houses, basements, 2nd stories, and back yard patios. Linksys also sells larger antenna's for better signal reception.
Number 1 on the buy list...but remember, buy only what you need. Not something you will never use.

If you are saying, what about internal wireless cards for my laptop? Look for something Intel based and it is generally a good buy. Stay away form Proprietary technology such as Dell or HP cards. This saves you in the end run...such as you get a new laptop, of a different brand and now you have to get a new card...think smart, proprietary tech doesn't always have the best support either. (see Mark's last post on his laptop)

Keep is simple and Go with trusted reliable technology.

I just can't recomend Acer anymore.

About 2 months ago if you asked me what kind of Laptop you should buy I would tell you: Apple, Asus, Toshiba, or ACER. The last of which happens to be the brand of my laptop. Excellent specs on this machine. Core Duo, 2 gigs of memory, a near HD quality LCD, 120 gig HDD, DVD-RAM drive, ATI x1400 video card. This thing will do any game technology outside of AA4X+ or DX10.

That is until the problems started. In the middle of the night my Ethernet went down. Grrrr. Ok I still have my WiFi. No believe it or not about a week later the Wifi went out too. This is at the end of the semester and I've got a million projects due so as you can guess this is both inconvenient and impossible for me to send the computer in for warranty work. So after the semester is over I fill out the form on ACER's website. It sends me a couple e-mails and frankly the whole thing is confusing. So I call them a few days later and the tech rep walked me though making sure it was a hardware problem. He suggest that I need to call my ISP. I tell him that another computer is on the same connection and it works and my problems happened regardless of the ISP. So he told me to send it in. I did. $27.xx at the post office grrr. Heather's laptop had a problem and DELL sent a guy to her house to fix it. I don't like Dell as anyone who knows me can testify, but that made me happy.

Anyway nearly a week to get the laptop there, over a week in repair, nearly a week to return and I have my laptop back from ACER. They had to replace the motherboard. The Ethernet worked, but the wireless still had the same problems. And the big problems started.

Two days after I received my laptop back a vertical line of discolored pixels appeared. About 3 inches in from the left and about 1 inch wide. As you can imagine that is annoying. The only way to fix it is to open and close the laptop. That of course kicks it into standby mode. Grrr. Well after a week of opening and closing the lid, the root of the problem spread branches. It was cracked and the screen totaled. So, I send it back in. I have difficulties with the website again, only this time they are because of not using the same e-mail.

Over a week since I sent in my laptop I get a phone call that screen breakage is not under warranty. I explained that the problem stared after their repair and that their repairs have warranties on the work done. Irregardless the repair would cost me $600. Which as I later found out was actually $649. Still they called it $600. They even told me that I should have called them when the problems started. I'm sorry I don't want to wait on the phone for 45 min for a problem you cause, and I can't just be without my laptop for months at a time. Frustrated I said good-bye.

The next day I called them back and they decided that would drop the labor fees and charge $200 less. Now I asked my pro computer repair friend and he informed me that an LCD replacement would take him 45 min; 1 hour to be conservative. So that comes out to a grand total of $200 an hour for labor. And $449 for the LCD itself. I told them that was too much, they said that was the cost of one. Now if you do any shopping for equivalent or identical LCD monitors you can buy them for about $200-$250. On top of that I'm looking at an ACER laptop with this exact monitor (the 15.4 CrystalBrite Widscreen) for $599 so you know it doesn't cost that much. Ok lets review: thats $200 an hour for tech the messed up my computer the first time, and about a 100% mark up on product. At what point does that get ridiculous?

I talk to a supervisor and get no where. They won't even suggest where the problem started. Ok fine, just go a head and fix the Wifi which is the second thing I requested. Nope. Won't fix that unless I let them fix my screen too.

I just can't recommend Acer anymore.

Group Games

When you hang out with other guys, naturally you blow each other up in a round of Halo, Star Wars: Battlefront, or the like. Right? But what do you do when you have women in the mix that don't play, or rather, "can't play," aka, suckage, get pwned, at video games? Don't worry, we can handle the situation! The solution? Classic, or as in this article, new group games!

Do you enjoy the game Risk, yet realize that game takes way too long to play? Do you enjoy Scrabble, but other people can't spell? Battleship or Guess Who, but more than one other players are present? I've come to enjoy several group games that happen with friends. Really, when you're married, you hang out with other people who are married too, so you need games for that. I'll be going over three and only three: Apples to Apples, In A Pickle, and Pit.

Apples To Apples
Ah yes. This little game I learned how to play about a year ago. I never heard of it then, but it's gaining in popularity these days. This is a game of words, with several variations, but I'll just go over the basic game. Each player gets 7 cards, which are all english NOUNS. Every card has a little description of it or fun remark. One person sits out each turn and becomes the judge. This entails the drawing of a green card, a DESCRIPTIVE word. This card has a list of synonyms for that word also. (See picture to the left) All of the other players lay down one of their cards they think the judge will pick. Maybe the judge will pick it because it's funny, true, or appealing to them, which has nothing to do with logic. It's a fun group game and I enjoy it a lot. I don't ever win these days, but that's what you get when you play with females. Who can understand them? All my humor is lost if Kung Pow isn't funny. You play to a set number of cards. Laughs abound for some comedic moments. There is also a juniors version for kids. This is for high school and up I'd say.

In A Pickle
Another card game (In fact, all three of these
games are card games!) dealing with english words. Foreign people will struggle with these games, this one more. There IS a difference between in and on. This is a game of nouns. Each person gets five cards in their hand. There are four cards laid out like a compass (North, south, east, west or your up, down, left, right...) and that is how you begin. You take turns, going left, like every card game in existence. What you try to do is put the noun already down "in" the card you place on top of it. EXAMPLE: Turkey is the card laid down. You put a card that says Mall on top of it. A Turkey in a Mall. You could get creative, say , a Turkey in a purse, and argue for pieces of turkey in a purse. You can also go the opposite way and stick the card under the last of the stack. Say, a Bone in a Turkey. You can interrpret the words as you pretty much like, encouraging creativity. When four cards are laid as a stack, "A Pickle" begins. Everyone gets a chance to top yours or the others card with something bigger. The winner of that pickle wins the set. You play to win a predetermined amount of sets. Simple, but fun. This game WANTS you to argue with people and makes them not just make stuff up. Logic vs Wierdos! This game was only $8 or $10.

What a wierd game this is. Clearly, this was made to encourage you to become a stock broker or something like that. You have to have like 6 people or more? I don't know. You each get 9 cards and your goal is to collect a set of 9 of the same items, or "corner the market." So once the dealer starts the game, you trade with each other until someone gets a set. You can only trade up to four cards at a time. Each set is assigned a certain amount of value, from 50 to 100 points. Some versions of the game have oil, gold, gas, silver and such. There is a 'Bull' card that can be a wild card and a 'Bear' card that is worth negative 20 points or something like that. I think I have the most fun with this game when I hold my cards and don't trade, killing the purpose of the game. You play to a set amount of points, say 500. That reminds me of 500 Rummy (what a good plain ol card game.)

I recommend In a Pickle and Apples to Apples for sure. You should try these games, maybe even buy them.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

How to beat Windows

How to take down the world's most popular desktop OS in six easy steps.

Step One: Create a brand name and generate large profit.

Step Two: Build Web 2.0 style Apps such as a spreadsheet program or a world map program.

Step Three: Design a programmable Web 3.0 browser.

Step Four: Build Web 3.0 applications such as an office suite.

Step Five: Build a simple OS with the new programmable browser as its main feature. Give it away free.

Step Six: Profit!

There it is how to take down Windows in Six easy steps. Well you also need to basically rebuild the internet, but I'm sure thats minor.

Alternate method (three steps):

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Windows Vista/Office 2007 Launch Confrence

So Microsoft has been traveling the country to tout the joys of their new products. Especially Vista and Office 2007. I was able to attend the developer section of the day. Four hours of why you should write programs that force people to upgrade to our new products. My review follows.

First of all and open letter to Microsoft that they will never read.

Dear MS,

Please, please, please stop using the letter "X" in everything. DirectX, Xbox, and XAML are enough. You are done. Just because Apple monopolized the letter "i" does not mean that you need to find your own letter. Frankly, I'm surprised the Zune was not spelled Xune. Thank you.

Mark W. Lee

Ok on to the products.


The main thing that was pushed on Vista was the way it looked, and how easy it was to create product that looked good on it. You use a program in .NET 3.0 framework using the subsystem feature called WPF. It works very much like Adobe Flash, only more like an .NET program. Using standard design it sharpens the look while allowing the individual user to customize all programs that use this by changing settings on the OS rather than the individual program. Such as don't use special effects.

It looks like it makes things easier to create, and look better. Basically is just an addition to the .NET framework in order to make pretty things faster than normal. Basically it turns your programs in to Flash looking things. From what I have read WPF, however, is available for XP PS2. It seems that you can have all of the features including the rendering. There may be some features excluded.

At first I was interested in what the examples he was doing . He made web sites that looked like a windows application. Thats because they are. XAML is a IE on Windows only feature. So if you decide to use Opera or Mozilla or a Mac you will not find any benefit from these websites.

The back end also looked good except it does nothing new. It just looks better. They talk about P2P like it is something exciting and new. Just replace Peer with Node and you have the Internet at its roots. They are trying to create a framework that already exists.

Now a lot of people are saying that Vista is just copying Mac. I don't think thats as true as we think. Rather than having an operating system that looks good Vista is a framework that looks good. It helps you make pretty programs.

Security is still questionable. There are a lot of new features. Some good, some just don't seem right. There is something that really scared me though. A new way of payment. Its kinda like Paypal. Paypal is sort of like a credit card if you would. Except that they are a credit card for your credit card. Well Microsoft created something like that. Only on your computer. Just swipe your virtual card. Thats right no password, no key, no security. All I have to do is get your computer and I can buy anything. Thats what I call very dangerous. Of course it will never catch on bc it is naturally insecure and it is platform/OS/browser specific.

Verdict: It is pretty all the way through. It pretends to be secure in most places. It isn't new anywhere.

Office 2007

I like it. I like it alot. Ribbons. Tried and true design improved by long study of work habits. It might actually get me to switch from I'll tell you why later.

It looks nice to program with. It looks good. It add quite a bit to documents. It just works. They have a new document format which is more fixable if something goes bad. It also helps to make it more secure, which is good. It is also fairly simple to add features that tie into your programs written in .NET. This is nice for development. I wonder how I can tie my python programs into it.

Verdict: Good and getting better.

Finally I also managed get get some goodies. When I signed in I was given a bag full of stuff, a Livestrong style Microsoft bracelet and a survey. In the bag was a T-shirt, a light up pen, some reading stuff, a notepad and a card. What then do I do? I fill out the survey and turn it in with the card and they give me a disk and a serial number. What is the serial number to? Microsoft Office 2007. Yeah thats right. A free copy of Office 2007. Now, that is cool.

As soon as I get my lappy back I will tell you how Office 2007 is.

Call of Duty 3

I rented Call of Duty 3 the other day for Xbox 360 at this place in Moberly called 1UP Games. (Very clever, with the whole mushroom logon from Super Mario Bros.) It was a three day rental for $3 so I was happy about that. Anyways, I played it like a crazy man for those several days and I beat it on Hard difficulty after many hours.

Complaints: There are some sections of this game that take you forever to beat. It took me an hour of repeated death to beat a small section of so many levels. They make it so you pull out by the skin of your teeth on luck when you actually do pass it up. You die so many times in this game, death is a normal and acceptable part of life.

I got shot through a wall by a guy whose gun (3D model) clipped through.

The worst of all, there are parts where enemies are endless. If you sit back in cover and pick them off with your rifle, more just keep coming endlessly. If you don't advance, it's an endless stream. You never know when this is either. Sometimes also, there are parts where they do stop coming because it's part of your objective, but you don't really know. "Am I suppose to run into the open and get mowed down, or not?"

The same guns, textures, and models are taken from Call of Duty 2. The missions were cooler in that game too. This time you are saving Paris is all. You play as Canadians, Poles, Americans, and English. The ending just the previous game.

Cool Stuff: You can throw grenades back at enemies. Just pick them up and toss before explosion. Why wasn't this in Call of Duty 2? This was my most wanted feature in that game.

Multi-player is better than #2. That is to say, I played vs my wife one round and that was it.

This game looks great on the HDTV.

It can be frustrating, but I got my Moneys worth. 12 or 13 hours of play for $3? I'm sold. Way better than a movie rental.

Another WWII game? I should have been in the war. Oh wait, I would have died right away, if this game has anything to say about that.

Smoke grenades are great!

Does killing Nazis ever get old?

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Peanut Butter Mystery

Peter Pan Peanut Butter and Great Value Peanut Butter Products Beginningwith Product Code 2111 Recalled for Possible Salmonella Contamination. So, how did it happen? DUN DUN DUNNNN!

Peanut butter gone bad! Someone must have left the peanut butter in the danger temperature zone (41F - 140F). I know that thanks to my in depth Subway food knowledge. Does Subway carry peanut butter? No. Did they used to carry peanut butter cookies? Yes. Was I working when they carried those cookies and sold them? No. Maybe it was a sick joke? "haha, I made you sick, take that little children who eat peanut butter and jelly sandwhiches."

I have a feeling ConAgra Foods is going to hurt big time on this one. I mean, besides the obvious of having illness enducing peanut butter causing horrific pain, but they make Great Value Peanut Butter also?!?! Who knew Peter Pan was the same exact product. Now everyone will totally never buy either peanut butter and Jiffy Peanut Butter profits will soar. You should really buy Jiffy stock, I'm thinking.

I returned my peanut butter to Wal-Mart and got my $2.50 back. There was a whole row of containers in the return section. One someone ate all the peanut butter and still returned it... They should have let us know back last year when this was happeneing.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

The Mystery X Button - Theories

So Bungie finally released the button layout for Halo 3. Its pretty much a mix between H2 and Gears. But everyone knows this frees up the X button which used to be reload. So here are my theories as to what that button will do.

1. Sprint Its not that exciting, but a short sprint to get away from a frag would be helpful. Additionally it would make leveling in H3 more interesting as well as adding new tactics. Bungie says no. I say ok?

2. Duck and Roll The Elites could do a form of it since H1. Ok it was more of a duck and move over, but the idea is still there.

3. Yoshimitsu Style Suicide I'm a fan of the suicide grenade. When I'm simply not going to win this fight a well placed grenade just before I die is a beautiful thing. Why not just explode yourself and take out all of the baddies in the area with you. Not that great if you have any skill, but if you are fodder like me... its a valid tactic.

4. Bullet Time You can match this up with #3. It can be for multilayer and this can be for single.

5. Taunt Like an auto teabag button, or a Super Smash Brothers type biting of ones thumb. What else would be better than taunting me right before you kill me for the 50th time this game.

6. Positive Reinforcement Lets face it, I'm Cannon Fodder. A peon. I'm Robert Goulay to SNL. Sometimes I need to know I'm not a looser. Push X and hear something like "You are getting better" or "Those other guys just don't have a life." Yeah.

7. Grappling Hook It worked for Link, but could you imagine the possibilities? Your teammate is being ganked over there, but you can't get to them. Look! Up there. A high cliff.! Next thing you know you are swinging across the map picking off the baddies with well placed shots to the head. Its like Tarzan with a plasma rifle.

8. Dive If I notice that a sniper is scoping me up I think it would be a good time to get out of there. Why not dive behind that boulder? Hit X and survive to die another way.

9. Call in the Calvary! This could mean anything from a beacon that calls all sorts of people to you or an all out Zerg like Flood attack on any nearby baddies. This of course would be limited to me, simply because I suck.

10. Ok Fine Shield Grenade or Shield Grenade Activation I didn't want to say it, but ok here it is.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Ghost Rider (Movie)

I was privileged to see a screening of Ghost Rider last night. Starting off, I am a comic book fan, so a movie based off a comic book is a joyful thing to me (most of the time). This movie was ENTERTAINING. It did not contain the most amazing acting, plot, or awesomeness of other movies out there (sometimes). It was a fun movie that captured my interest. I admit, the minor villains were lame and really served no purpose. I thought the voice of Ghost Rider could have been better done and it times it felt campy. This is a 'popcorn' flick, through and through. If you are looking for something fun to watch, this is it. This is a predictable movie for sure. It doesn't try to be a serious, serious movie (blast, why did the critics make the movies important?) but has a cool hero and then some. I don't remember the villains name, besides the bad guys are Nephalim, and in this movie those are angels that fell from Heaven and are "waiting in the elements of earth until the end of days." I had read someone say "I thought I would enjoy seeing Nick Cage's head on fire (sarcasm)," and the graphics are definitely good looking. What's cooler than the "penance stare," making evil do-ers feel the anguish and pain of all of their victims, ever when they stare into Ghost Rider's eyes? Of course, this is setup for possible sequels and the legend of Ghost Rider....ride Johnny Blaze, ride.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

When did special features become so lame?

When did they become so lame? I remember getting my Special Edition of The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring. It had two, yeah two baby, disks of how they made the movie. I enjoyed that almost as much as I enjoyed the movie. I remember the joys of the special features on the Matrix. How cool was that to see how they did it. Thats what I love about special features.

Now. They are all the same. The trailer of the movie you just watched. (Why would I want to watch that?) Maybe a directors commentary. (2 hours of the movie you just watched with the lamest dub over ever.) And my personal pet peeve: The making of the movie. Movies are getting more and more high tech. I just got done watching the Illusionist. Great movie, sweet special effects, nice story. Lame special features. I really don't want to listen to that soft porn star from 7th Heaven talk about her character. Its always the same anymore: recap the movie, have the actors talk about the movie, and thats it. No one wants to watch your special features!! I'm talking to you V for Vendetta. Who was that guy who managed to argue that terrorism and killing innocent people is a valid form of warfare? I forget, maybe because I don't care.

If you will excuse me, I'm going to watch some Alias on DVD. At least their special features are worth watching.

New CDs

So..there are some new CDs coming out soon that I thought would be worth mentioning!

Bear Colony - We Came Here to Die
Comeback Kid - Broadcasting
Anberlin - Cities
The Chariot - Fiancee
The Showdown - Temptation Come My Way

So ya, most of these cds come out of the 20th of February for some reason. I haven't listened to any of this music except for the new Bear Colony, but I have enjoyed the past releases of the other bands immensely. You should check them out.

Thursday, February 8, 2007

I am a slave

If Microsoft never bought out Bungie. Would we all be playing Halo on a Mac?

I hate Windows. I suck at programming, but this is terrible. I mean these guys freaking write compilers, but they just can't seem to work them. I'm looking right now at a Windows Live Messanger notice stuck half way down on the screen. Why? I don't know. Why do I have to use windows live messenger? Because the computer I'm on needs to be reformatted before it will work. Why does it need reformatted? Windows sucks. Microsoft makes enough off of their flagship that they can loose Billions of dollars on their gaming. Awesome Microsoft working defensively again. The ship is sinking. About 2 years ago I would have never recommended a mac. Now when people ask me what kind of laptop to buy I say Toshiba, Acer, Asus or Apple. Why? MacOS is just as good as Windows.

There it is. MacOS is just as good as Windows. I have a Kodak camera. I have to install all sorts of programs just get my pictures off of it. My Mac friend just plugged it in and it just worked. I was getting blue screens and lock ups over a driver problem and he didn't even have to do anything. Stupid Windows. It just doesn't work.

Which is also what is my beef with Linux. It just doesn't work right. It just doesn't feel right. Its very stable. Its very adaptable and getting better every day, but it just doesn't work right. Whether its having to enter a password and adjust settings just to use my WiFi every time or trying to install a new program in Ubuntu in an RPM. There is a huge learning curve.

So am I going Mac.... nope. No games. Over price hardware. Difficult upgrades. Sorry good os. Not sold on the hardware. One button mouse? Why? Because its simpler.... ehh didn't you also come up with the uber complicated mighty mouse?


If I was a nerd which I am I would use Linux on PC

If I was interested in Media which I am I would use MacOS on a Mac

If I was interested in Games which I am I would use Windows on a PC


I'm a slave to Windows.

Or a multi boot system.