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Archive for May, 2006

Sin Episode 1 Update

Doh! Last weeks patch didn’t fix the stuttering problem for me. Oh well.

We Feel Fine

This is an odd site if ever I saw one, it’s called We Feel Fine. The idea is pretty simple, they have a system that searches new blog posts for “I feel” and “I am feeling” which then parses the sentence containing it out and finds various keywords. From all the data it collects it can then graph how the interweb is feeling. On its own that’s pretty interesting, but the really cool thing is how its all represented.

WeFeelFine1 WeFeelFine2

WeFeelFine3 WeFeelFine4

There are a ton of different views, filters and metrics to look at. I’ve spent hours just trawling the various views. Apparently the blogosphere is feeling shitty right now. Me, I feel great!

Sin Emergence – Episode 1

Like most peeps I bought it via Steam and it look me three evenings on and off to finish it, which was about 6 hours. I thought it was an enjoyable, if not ground breaking, romp. The level style is very much Half Life 2 and if you were being particularly cruel, you could say its just Half Life 2 with a richer palette. But that isn’t really true.

Admittedly it has a very old school style of play. You have a limited amount of weapons (four) which equates to simple point and shoot gameplay. There aren’t any puzzles as such and it gets progressively harder as the game goes along. I found the battle up the Sintek Tower pretty intense. Its a pity that the physics aren’t put to as good a use as in HL2, but there’s scope for that to get better.

There’s a nice high tech feel to the levels and I liked how you could see bits of levels that you later on ended up going through. There were some references to the first game as well. The opening level you escape from is Sintek’s chemical labs from Sin, which I think were level six. I’ve yet to finish Sin since there are about 30 levels (!?) and I’m only a third of the way in!

There were, unfortunately, the obligatory sewer levels, which really cheeses me off. Why does nearly every FPS have them? Sewer levels smack of filler material, since architecturally there isn’t a great deal you can do with them and it means lightning can take a back seat. Fortunately, Episode 1’s sewer section was short!

It was cool to have a ton of secrets which makes a nice chance and I was chuffed to see Dopefish make an appearance. I wonder if he’ll appear in every episode?

I had a problem with stuttering to begin with which I’d not experienced with Half Life 2. There are apparently numerous causes, but mine was fixed by dropping the texture detail down a notch. Its meant to have been fixed in the patch that came out mid-last week, but I’ve yet to try it.

Overall, its good stuff. Looking forward to episode 2.

Result, Lordi won!

Lordi actually won Eurovision. They trashed everyone and were nearly 50 points ahead of Russia. Excellent! Seems like the win has gone down well in Finland. From #terrafusion:

[23:50] <Friction> Just got my about 100th sms about the win.. I heard screaming from outside and saw 5 NAKED guys running around a building (Ympyr├Ątalo in Hakaniemi, Helsinki), singing Hard Rock Hallelujah…

I did ponder about having a flutter this morning on them. I wonder what the odds were? I could have made killing. Ah well.

Race for Life photos

Photos for the Race for Life event from last Sunday at Broughton Hall are now up on SportCam. I’m not going to post Kate’s number up since she’s asked me not too :).

Its not a bad service. You can faff about and crop pictures and have them in landscape or portrait format which is nice, but the price is a bit steep and they take 3 weeks to arrive once ordered! Hope what we’ve ordered comes out ok!

Eurovision Song Contest

Yes indeedy, tonight is the Eurovision Song Contest which will be live on BBC One. We usually watch some of it just for Terry Wogan’s fantastic sarcastic comments. It should be more entertaining than usual though since Lordi, a cheerful looking heavy metal / hard rock combo, will be performing on behalf of Finland. Here they are in all their glory:

03_finland_left_2006

As you’d expect, there’s outrage at the thought of them appearing. Personally I think its excellent, and it’ll probably be the only song worth listening to!

Washing machine please?

So after the fun with the lawnmower over the last week, the washing machine decided to pack up. The poor thing was on its last legs and was one of those items we didn’t buy new when we bought our home. The door had fallen off a while back and it sounded like a force 9 gail when it got going with it rumbling felt throughout the house.

Unlike the lawnmower though, it’s my fault it broke. I left coins in my jean pockets and they managed to get stuck in the drum and stop it moving… oops. So off in search of washer I went. I had an idea of what we were after since I’d searched for one a couple of months back when the… errr… door fell off. I thought though, I’d give Amazon a try, see what they had.

It turns out they have a huge range but all with Limited Availability which is code for Discontinued and No Stock Stupid! They did however, on pretty much every washer I looked at, have an alternative. It was the snazzy Hinari WM005 Lifestyle Compact Table Top Washing Machine White. Catchy long title but thats about the only thing thats big about it. It would probably be ok for a family of squirrels to do their laundry, but not us.

The trick Amazon is missing here is a filter to remove Limited Availability items. The actual search option is pretty good otherwise, with lots of filters and wotnot.

Anyhoo in the end we went to the local Comet store to get one, which amazingly was just delivered, on time and everything!

Oh and Bal, I am not going to start a Washing category!

Kamih’s Music

Bal’s sky diving musical coding brother, Kamih, started a blog up a month back for his music. There are some really nice tracks on there. I’ve not listened to them all yet (there’s about 20 of them!), but I really like Miami and Smother.

*PAARPP* Thank you Jesus

I don’t care that its been posted everywhere, this is hilarious. The Farting Preacher!

ParpPreacher ParpPreacher2

Videos:

Turns out his real name is Robert Tilton and he was a real preacher and yes, you guessed it, he has a Wikipedia entry. Sadly the videos aren’t real but still funny me thinks.

A slowly recovering Bob

Bob seems to be doing ok with his eyes. It comes and goes, but its certainly not as bad, and it doesn’t seem to have affected his hunting skills. He went out earlier this morning (4am, woke us up specially, bless him) and when I was getting breaky at a more reasonable time (8am), Bob was sat on the patio with a bird in his mouth, crying away. Nothing unusual in that. They like leaving gifts for us. I left the kitchen door open thinking he might come in.

And he certainly did, with said bird. I cornered the little bugger and got the bird off him. He hadn’t killed it and it was still breathing slightly, so I thought I’d have to do the dirty deed and put it out of its misery (its not the first time unfortunately). It looked in a pretty bad state. So I went to throw it outside on the patio, but instead it of landing on the ground, it flew off!

But it doesn’t end there though. I got home from work tonight and Kate told me Bob was acting very strange, he was sat in the bathroom crying again. I said, I bet he could hear the birds in the loft (appears to be a nest up there). I joked to Kate that once birds had gotten into the bathroom by coming down from the loft in the outside wall cavity and then out underneath the bath.

Turns out Bob was listening because he managed to create a gap in the side of the bath and a bird magically appeared. We were alerted to this by the banging and crashing of Bob jumping about all over everything, trying to get at the bird, who sensibly was sat on a shelf up high. Bob went off sulking when we appeared and we let the unscathed bird go.

Of course Weebl doesn’t go without getting any blame. Late last night he was sat in the middle of the Close whining at the top of his voice at another cat. The neighbours were curtain twitching, watching them fight!

Pesky cats! Never a dull moment. 

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