Archive for May, 2008

There is intelligent life after all

BBC NEWS | Europe | Vatican says aliens could exist

The Pope’s astronomer’s article in the Vatican Newspaper headlined “Aliens Are My Brother” does not rule out the fact that God also created aliens amongst the stars.

Wow, this coming from the same church that lambasted science for hundreds of years. Anyway, if NASA finds any intelligent life out there, it should be reassuring that Catholics believe that they are children of God too.

Unfortunately the ones holding the trigger when aliens land don’t exactly go to church.

The Return of PC Gaming

Macworld | Blizzcon 2008 to bring together Blizzard game fans

October 2008 will mark the entry of a PC game that’s not Scrabble or an MMO but still has the name Blizzard. Yes, fans it’s Blizzcon 08.

The two most anticipated PC games are expected to be shown if not playable! Diablo III and Starcraft II. Two franchises that drove me into many a sleepless nights whipping through the Zerg and the Undead. My Australian vacation turned into a marathon of leveling through Diablo.

I predict this event to be sold out very soon and if you’re in North America, grab a Southwest flight that lands near Anaheim and you’ll be on your way. I wish the FFXI would hold another fan fest this year.

ipod related news

It’s been a while since I did any updates on the iPod market so here goes.

Apple trademarks iPod’s design, applies for iPhone design mark – Engadget

Now that Apple has the iPod design legally bound to them, next up is the iPhone. Watch out for all those lawsuits for the knockoffs available almost everywhere.

Official: HBO programming arrives on iTunes, standard pricing be damned – Engadget

HBO has been granted a flexible pricing scheme for their content to be available on iTunes. But Apple didn’t give that option to Showtime. Hmm… Could this be a sign for NBC coming back to iTunes after their shows are made available on the UK iTunes Store this month. The plot thickens…

Microsoft surpasses 2 million Zunes sold – Digital Lifestyle – Macworld UK

Just to put it in perspective. Apple sells 3.5 Million a month. And that’s that.

How long can the Wii last?

Back in 2003, Nintendo dropped the prices of the Gamecube to the magical price point $99 I quickly went to Amazon.com and ordered one for Christmas. Early that year my cousin had showed me Animal Crossing, Metroid Prime and Pikmin. Two games that I had to have after seeing it. So I ordered it early. Unfortunately UPS lost the box but knowing how nice Amazon customer service is, they quickly sent in a replacement. It didn’t make Christmas, but it did make me happy once it got to my hands.

 

The main reason I got the Gamecube was the games. I already had a console. The PS2 which had been in my hands since 2001. The minute I saw Animal Crossing, I knew I’d like that game. And like it I did. So much that my sister took over my Gamecube.

Fast forward to this generation, the Wii is at the top of the sales chart with the PS3 at the back of the pack. But are there any games worth my time?

Don’t get me wrong. I have a Wii and I like it. I have a few games for it such as Trauma Center, Super Mario Galaxy and Zelda. I liked the novelty of the controller and the fun in Wii Sports and Wii Play. I would like to get my feet onto that Wii Fit if only just to be able to ski on it. But how long can it really last?

No HD, no 5.1 surround (I’m sorry like really good surround sound), no excitement on the “games”. I didn’t pick up Metroid when it came out on the Wii, Mario Party 8 wasn’t something that I would sit down and play (but it’s in my library), Wario Ware had a very short attention span and Mario Kart is apparently a dud (that is if you played the Gamecube version which many didn’t and the wheel is practically useless).

Let’s face it Nintendo fans, there are very few quality games on the Wii. It’s has creatively created it’s own audience and that are the casual gamers. These are people who will probably buy the Wii for Wii Sports and buy two more games in the next 12 months. And the game that is coming up for them to buy is Wii Fit. The move is good for Nintendo but not for it’s developers.

As a serious gamer myself, I am still waiting for that game changing game to change my view on the whole Wii thing. I’m still waiting for Animal Crossing, Nintendogs and Brain Age for the Wii. When these 3 games come out. I must say, the console is dead and they need to release a newer version.

Will it stop us from going to the gym?

Wii Fit – New US Trailer – English

Wii Fit is finally out in North America. I have yet to pick it up for myself. I even got a wireless Wii bar that I haven’t installed yet. Probably because I have yet to touch my Wii since last April. If it will give me accurate weight readings, I may just be sucked in to they hype.

Any thoughts?

Am I the only gamer not playing GTA 4?

I checked my Xbox live friends’ list and it turns out that I’m the only one NOT playing GTA4. It could be that my friends could also be playing on their PS3s but I think that I am one of the very few who don’t own one.

 

GTA4 could actually be described as a realistic RPG. Sims for Adults. The graphics and the behaviors are the best in any series in any console and it is absolutely ground breaking. I may just actually buy it just to be able to drive around the city and listen to the radio in the game. The environments created just suck you into the world of crime and anarchy. When you get drunk in the game, it shows. Your character will fall down if he tries to walk too fast and even the point of view is distorted. Driving a car through Liberty City is like driving through the streets of New York. The biggest turn off I got off the previous GTA games was that the car driving was just a chore to get around and driving was so detached. It was like driving a r/c that was out of control. That apparently has changed in this version.

Let’s wait and see what happens over the next few weeks.

Five months later and I want the mac book air

After spending the month of April traveling across the United States as evidenced by my flickr stream I want a mac book air.

It was the first time I saw one let alone touch one in the Apple store in Pentagon City and also in Burlingame. Let me describe how I came to that decision.

The last time I flew to the east coast was in 2002 and that was just NYC. This time around I went around the D.C. and Virginia area. Mainstream media has not been kind to US carriers in the past few months and just days before my flight the American Airlines grounded flights came out so I was a bit paranoid about my schedule. When I got my tickets from the office I was aghast that they booked me on American Airlines and the bookings didn’t give me any comfort. I planned a trip to Richmond, booked a hotel and all as well as the flight and flew AA on my return to the Bay Area. I was ok with that. But at the last minute I was hesitant in bringing my mac book pro across the country. It was five pounds of additional weight that I didn’t want to carry. I decided on packing light enough so that I wouldn’t have to check in any luggage. The net addict in me couldn’t leave it behind so I packed it in as well. I printed my boarding pass and went through security and straight to the gate. The terminal was at the far end of the airport so I felt every pound of that mac book pro rippling through my arms.

For the first time I flew Jet Blue from San Francisco to New York, took a connecting flight to Richmond, VA to visit a friend, rented a car, got lost in downtown Richmond, got stuck in the hotel due to a storm, tornado and flood watch, got driven out of the hotel by a false fire alarm. At this point my fingers were beginning to ache from the pain of lugging all my belongings across the country. I took an Amtrak train up to Washington and hauled my stuff on and off the train plus around Union Station to get to the Metro, walked another block to the get to the hotel in the pouring rain and finally checked in.

On my way back to San Francisco, I passed by Dallas, TX to find out that my flight had been canceled and had to take the tram four terminals away to my rebooked flight. I felt like I was already in Austin from walking the airport. Needless to say, the flight was overbooked. So the plane was full of passengers and carry-on luggage and miraculously I was able to fit it in.

I finally got to San Francisco despite the airline pilot just banging the plane on the ground which had to be the most uncomfortable landing on this trip so far. Is it just me or do planes always park at the end of the terminal so you’ll have to walk the stretch of the airport to get to the arrival area. All this time I was wishing for a lighter laptop.

So for the sole purpose of traveling around the world, I want a mac book air. Even if it’s just for weight.

Could this be the end of movies as we know it?

A $500 Million Week for Grand Theft Auto – New York Times

The music industry has been hit hard by the digital age and the tv and movie industry are still hanging on but it seems to be a losing battle against super fast broadband connections. The only ones that seem to be having a good year are videogames.

Halo 3, the big winner of 2007 in terms of sales outsold the entire Hollywood lineup in terms of money earned and the latest version of Grand Theft Auto seems to have done the same.

The New York Times reports that in a span of one week, the franchise has taken home $500M with 3.6M copies sold on the first day.

Sure it’s quite a wait between sequels but the overhead, depending on the franchise is either equal or smaller than that of a major motion picture.

Until pirates figure out how to completely fool game consoles, it looks like videogames will be the main choice of entertainment in this generation.

NBC makes content available on Zune marketplace

Months after NBC bailed out of iTunes they start selling their content on the Zune marketplace for also $1.99. But the difference they say is that NBC was given more options regarding their pricing.

Good for them they finally found a place that will sell their content. Now who’s going to buy it?

Learn how to cook adobo

White guy cooks chicken adobo and speaks tagalog

I just love this video. His accent is adorable but very articulate. I’m hoping that he’ll make “tinola”.