Wednesday, June 23, 2010

EP!C (fail) Vancouver, sustainable living expo

I apologize getting this to you so late, but go ahead and just avoid Vancouver EP!C 2011 cause even if its twice as good as 2010 its still gonna suck.

This expo was amazing if you don't really care about sustainable living and want to see Lush, Toyota, The Toy Company (lead free rubber ducks can be snapped up for 50 bucks! yah), Sage, and a bunch of other "who-gives-a-shit" stores/brands that are were all A) very well established at offering stuff thats been around most my life B) have no real reason to be at a convention about sustainability. Sadly over 90 percent of the convention was this garbage. I wish I was kidding. I actually walked the entire area and expected a whole other convention room that was the good stuff.

All that is being sustained is the ability to fool idiots to keep supporting your unimaginative corporate asses. What the crap does scented oils, bath bombs and toyotas have to do with the average person doing what they can to promote sustainability? I don't even mind big businesses, but be applicable dammit!

Oh there was a device that carbonate beverages at home, wow welcome to the 1980's bitch! I had that shit in Perth, Australia (the most isolated city in the whole world, we had sweet-fuck-all, but we had that over 20 years ago) what is wrong with you people? this needed large stalls in two different areas? did you think we are too weak to make to the next row of stalls? I made it to the old guy who was selling RESP's. whats that? Educations Savings Funds. fuck me!

I appreciate the fair trade area, but please! you think the Granolas and Hipsters there never heard of Ten Thousand Villages? just garbage. there was nothing in that whole area people can't find almost anywhere in Vancouver.

"I'm going to save the world by using bath bombs and a buying coffee that doesn't use slave babies to stoke its fires/test driving a hybrid camry"

I was desperately looking for something new, innovative, remotely interesting. Here it was: an electric buggy (read: not a car), a wooden hanging rack (sadly the coolest thing there), a guy from sears canada showing appliances, a place that sold you reclaimed hard wood floors for shit loads of cash, a place with memory foam pillows/mattresses that aren't made of polar bear cubs (300 bucks per pillow). place that made shirts with bamboo in it (I got so desperate, actually bought one, I had loads of cash on me that day/ a chequebook and nothing but crap for sale). thats about it. All this stuff is great, but *yawn* where is the new interesting stuff? I actually spoke to all these vendors and most were surprised at your lack of sustainable products, services and information. here's some of the stuff the vendors actually said

"I was expecting more sustainability products, I just did a show in toronto and it full of new products" - this from the sears appliance guy, even he knew it sucked

"I'm actually really disappointed with vendors here this year" - some building code company.

I didn't go the Eat Vancouver, but Im sure it wasn't 90% non food, non food related items, so they win and on a side note the building housing the event wasn't bad.

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modnation racers, still loading.

Still enjoying modnation quite a bit, the online play is great and tho its not perfect, whats good is real good..

I have one suggestion for UFG, please do something about the loading screen.. this is the only game that you need, a laptop, ds or something to occupy your time while its loading. (redonkulous!)

Back in the PS1 days I remember Namco put Galaga into the loading screen for Ridge Racer.. this was a great idea.

Please put some kind of interactive something in the loading screen. pong, super sprint, pac man, something-anything that will make me not want to throw my gamepad at the screen and then make me smash said pad into my face.

maybe randomize it since we have to see the loading screen so often.

I assure you fans of your game will appreciate the gesture, we know trimming down load times to something acceptable may not be around the corner.

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Friday, May 28, 2010

modnation racers for PS3

I love you modnation racers, I love me a good kart racing game and this is on its way to be a top contender.

Pillow talk aside, here are the things UFG need to fix asap.

1. Holy loadnation losers, players sure feel like crap waiting at loading screens, man I miss cartridges right about now.

2. I had this problem and looked on the forums and it seems common. quit out of a waiting room and you cant connect to modspot when you get out of it.. (work around, go into custom corner then exit, seems to work for me, and PSN is on the whole time)
3. lots of people, but where are all the races?
4. I can't seem to find a way to switch or choose which modspot server I can go to.
5. Not me but many others seem to get disconnected or cannot even connect (advise, make sure your PSN is working in general before you take on this beast, there's a lot of ports that need opening)

I'm sure there's more. but now the good, the gameplay I have been playing, kicks ass, clean online play with quite a few racers. I like the XP system and the creations made by the nation (tracks, characters and karts) are nothing short of hella dope! (I even got a great looking space ghost, gundam. pretty much any cool character you can think of is there including Mario in HD!) Oh,

One more gripe.

the AI is too damn good, or that one AI racer you need to take out is somehow half a lap ahead of the rest of the pack. Im sure I'll get there with invested hours, but now because of UFG's "AI/Default difficulty" choice, my child is forced to listen to a series of cuss words from his dad most evenings. thanks for that.

the costumes and custom cars (some for sale or promo) are nice and all but with the level of quality the players are making, who would pay for such a thing? then again I waste money all manner of crap. oh logitech wilife, and countless action figures, why did I buy you?

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Tuesday, July 10, 2007

so fun.

so cool!!!! ---hmm... not so cool. his body is all missng n stuff. and the other guy is missing his face. or is it just me?

this is a fun site. go play:

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

xbox 360 drive repair - unplayable disc

This is NOT a review.. more a testament to my mad skillz

File this under "Unplayable Disc" or "this disc is unreadable" or "xbox is making terrible grinding noise and crapping in my eye". A little bird I know has an Xbox360 and started getting unreadable errors and then started getting unhappy grinding noises from the system. I opened up his 360, and took apart the dvd drive, there I noticed a magnet that sits on top of the spindle assembly was loose and was in fact stuck to the lid of the drive. (in top right area of photo)

You have to glue the magnet back to the spindle, shiny side up, use just a little bit of glue since too much glue will cause an unwanted space and not hold the disc securely (I used an epoxy). We put it back together and voila, no grinding and no more bad reads. Just make sure you hold the magnet in place until the glue is dry and if the magnet sticks out higher than the plastic of the spindle assembly, you're using too much glue dude.

I would usually slag M$ but really, I feel bad for them.. hitachi were the bitches who didnt put the magnet in securely.

oh and dont touch the drive while the disk is spinning, dont tilt it, dont lift it.. just dont touch it.


Friday, August 11, 2006

Suse 10.0 ATI Graphics Driver - ATI Incorporated

Note: This is not a music review. Just so's you know.

Historically, NVidia was always the company that a Linux fanboy would rely on to get a graphics card that worked with Linux. Not that they worked really well (they didn't), or that all the features were ported (they weren't), or that they came with a reasonably open license (not so!), but at least you could plug in your card, rebuild your kernel, and be on your way. Of course when you needed to update your kernel there was a good chance you'd be screwed, but we were all used to that.

Hell, for the official distros there was often a script in place to make this a lot easier. All in all, not a bad way to live.

ATI is a relative newcomer to the Linux scene, and here at work I've been forced to use a PC with an ATI graphics card in it. I was pleased to find an install tool on ATI's web site that was supposed to make the driver installation a one-click affair. Unfortunately it didn't really live up to my expectations.

None of the features have been ported, it seems, except for OpenGL acceleration at depths up to and including 16 bits per pixel. The install process, which varies depending on what minor version of what distribution you're using, involves dropping to runlevel 3 and running two different command-line tools to reconfigure your X server. At least, that's what you have to do on SuSE 10.0. But that's fine, I can live with all of that.

What I just can't get over is the limitation that OpenGL acceleration is only available on display :0.0. WTF? I am reasonably certain that NVidia's driver will give you hardware acceleration on all local displays. This may seem like a small beef, but it's really ridiculous. I like to have one login session active for my root user, and one active for myself. I can switch between them by hitting ctrl-alt-, which sort of puts a barrier to me doing stupid things as root when I don't mean to. But now I have to make sure that I log in as myself first, or else I get no OpenGL direct rendering goodness. Piece of crap. If you're from the Windows world, think of this like only the first person who logs in gets to play Halflife.

What I'm trying to say here is that Linux fanboys should still stick with NVidia. ATI gets nothing but a big "fuck you!" from me. (For this, plus the fact that they haven't got a V4L driver for their capture cards, but that's a whole 'nother story)

Sufjan Stevens - Illinois

No picture because Blogger is fuxx0red

This album is catchy like you wouldn't believe. I was a little hesitant about it at first, it struck me as a bunch of airy-fairy fluff, but I got past that and now I'm really enjoying it. It's obvious that Stevens put a lot of effort into producing this work, with the many and varied instruments he plays. Apparently he's on a quest to write an album for each of the 50 states. It's an ambitious project and I'm looking forward to seeing where he goes with it.

There are a lot of really moving songs on this album. Casimir Pulaski Day, for instance, is a beautiful song about... well, I suppose it's about God and death. I'm not sure what The Predatory Wasp of the Palisades is about, but it's another great song. John Wayne Gacy, Jr. is a chilling track that I just can't bring myself to listen to very often: being creeped out is not something I look forward to in a piece of music, but it's definitely powerful.

Overall an excellent album. It kind of falls apart for me towards the end (after They Are Night Zombies!!!, really) but even the tracks I'm not as fond of, I can still respect them on one level because it's all just good music. 4 starts / 5 endings.

P.S. I tried to get tickets to Stevens' concert here in Vancouver on 10/14, by way of compensating him for the music I stole, but it was sold out. Oh, well.

P.P.S. Man, talk about disillusionment. Apparently Stevens referenced some Woody Guthrie lyrics on one of his songs, and the Guthrie estate made him pay royalties. Jesus. Stick a fork in folk music, 'cause it's done. I mean, here's a guy, strongly religious, writing songs about America, could practically be Woody Guthrie raised from the dead, and he has to pay to sing "This Land is Your Land".

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Beastie Boys - Ill Communication

Ill Communication is an excellent album with a couple of low spots. In fact, if I could take two or three tracks off this disc, I think it'd be the first album I've reviewed here to get 5 stars. Sure Shot, Sabotage and Futterman's Rule are probably the highlights for me, Tough Guy and Heart Attack Man are the low points. Futterman's Rule in particular is one of those songs that I just never would've heard if I hadn't listened to the whole disc, and I still don't know how to classify it. It's good though. Sabotage was one of the first songs I ever had on MP3, I remember listening to it on the long, long weekend shifts at Dowco Internet.

I have a bit of a problem with Get it Together... maybe I'm just a square but it seems to me that white guys probably shouldn't go around dropping the n-bomb. All social implications aside, you just can't pull it off.

Anyways, this disc is just chok-a-blok full of phat beats and mad rhythms (that is what the kids are saying these days, isn't it?) and I strongly recommend it. 4 chicken fingers / 5 french fries.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

The National - Alligator

I don't know what it is about this album that caused me not to like it too much. I think it was a bunch of little things, any of which I could tolerate on their own, but in combination they just ... well, they add up to an album that doesn't really do anything for me. For one thing, the lead singer sounds like he's got a belly full of valium and a mouth full of cotton balls. If you're trying to convince me that you're "lit up", maybe you'd better not do it in a monotone that would make Brad Roberts proud.

I found the lyrics to be a bit repetitive on a lot of these songs, Abel and Looking for Astronauts and Mr. November in particular. Again, a minor gripe, but it grates on me after a while.

Secret Meeting, the first track on the Album, was probably the high point for me. There's something appealing about a secret meeting in the basement of my brain. Dunno why. Anyways I will probably break with tradition and keep that track, but the rest of the album's gonna go. 2 beans / 5 anthills.

Update: Yeah, OK, Secret Meeting is staying for sure... it's been bouncing around my head for the last 24 hours.

Update: How depressing was it, Russ? It was SO depressing, I had to listen to Sea Change to cheer myself up! Ho-ho! Burn!