Tech + Lifestyle

games, gear, and googleplexes (joke)

It’s been a while, yeah?

Long story short, I’ve spent the last 3-4 months (when did I even post last?) slaving away at Robot Bomb, before falling into an inevitable pitfall: boredom. It’s a personal failing, but the truth of the matter is that I’ve got a short attention span, and tend to get tired of things quite easily. Case in point, attempting to run a multi-writer website with long-term goals probably wasn’t the best idea I’ve ever had.

*Shrug*

Life goes on, right? Something like that. Anyway, I ought to be writing here on a semi-regular basis again, though I’d still like to move to independent hosting at some point. The brief flurry of insanity that was Robot Bomb going live will probably make for good training when that happens. Until then, I’ll be making every effort to soldier on over here.

Advertisements

February 23, 2010 Posted by | Personal, State of the Blog | , | Leave a comment

Episode 5283: In which I adopt one child, but neglect the other

 

Robot Bomb

Robot Bomb!

In my desire to make sure Robot Bomb become something worthwhile, I’ve fallen into the habit of ignoring most all else, most directly evidenced in my lack of posting here on T+L, or on TouchGen, or on Indie Clauses, or on Blogcritics (save for that 3-part train wreck in which I offended fans of various bands by not loving the groups as much as they themselves do). My other big writing project right now, my first attempt at a novel, has temporarily been placed in second-class status – frankly, I only work on it two or three times per week, and only right before the deadline each Wednesday (or directly after, when I don’t finish in time).

 

Though my actions haven’t shown it of late, I have no intention of letting this blog end or fade away. Most of the reviews I write from here on out will appear on Robot Bomb, but all other content should continue to be posted here. The plan, eventually, is to move T+L to independent hosting, though I’ve yet to settle on and purchase a domain.

The main point of this post, though, is more to inform the teeming masses of Robot Bomb, not blather on about T+L. So, with that in mind…

 

Robot Bomb. Continue reading

November 7, 2009 Posted by | Humor, Personal, State of the Blog | , , , | Leave a comment

Unto Me A Child Is Born, Part Two

RBI’ve done insane amounts of thinking/brainstorming since first posting about my intentions with Robot Bomb. Here’s where I’m at:

Game Plan:

I think I know what I’m doing. Rather, I know what I’m doing, and I hope it’s correct. Anticipating the various problems and snags in this process won’t be easy, but I’m trying to foresee potential difficulties and ways around them. Thankfully, I’ve got an incredibly valuable resource in Stephen Carradini, editor-in-chief over at Independent Clauses. He’s got loads more experience running websites than I do, so I’ll probably be picking his brain on a regular basis. Continue reading

July 8, 2009 Posted by | State of the Blog, Tech | , , , | 1 Comment

Weekly Shenanigans #8

Shenanigans remind me of cliched Irish terminology and the movie Office Space. Surely, neither of those are bad things. If they are, I don’t want to be right. Anyhow, I present to you the eighth iteration of Weekly Shenanigans, that once-every-seven-days feature that you all know and love. Bastion of all things geek and nerd, purveyor of tech-news… how would you ever live without this stuff? And with that, away we go:

  • First up is an interesting (if somewhat cerebral) look at gaming terms posted onto Gamasutra entitled, “Mapping Gamer Dialect.” Intriguing, no? Click through and read up.
  • This is the POWERHAT.

    This is the POWERHAT.

    If you haven’t been reading these, you should absolutely, definitely, without any shred of doubt head over to Rock Paper Shotgun and read their newest ongoing feature – “A Fool In Morrowind,” in which Alec Meer re-discovers The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind, and all the wonderful things therein. He recounts his experiences with… things… like the hat pictured at right. Hilarity ensues. GO.

  • Anandtech recently reviewed the ASRock X-58 Extreme motherboard, priced at the sweet, sweet amount of $169. It performed around 1% lower than other boards, but such a difference is hardly noticeable to most users. Given that this is a fully-featured ATX motherboard, that price is excellent, and only matched by the micro-ATX MSI X-58M previously mentioned on Weekly Shenanigans.
  • Most weeks – not every week, but most weeks – I post something about Apple. This week is no exception. It’s almost like a mini-feature within the feature. What’s going on this week, you ask? I’ll tell you – three times over! Oh, and I’m naming this sub-feature Super-Happy-Apple-Fun-Time. It just seems appropriate. Read below, fool! Also: Don’t ask why this is two separate bullets. I don’t know. Continue reading

July 5, 2009 Posted by | Gaming, Humor, PC gaming, State of the Blog, Tech, Weekly Shenanigans | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Weekly Shenanigans #7

Ah, the ritual posting of Weekly Shenanigans. Shamelessly copying the format of RPS’ Sunday Papers since, well, seven Weekly Shenanigans ago. Enough with the reminiscing, it’s making me all weepy. Read this stuff:

  • These people should be shot for blasphemy and willful mockery of the star wars we all know and love. I don’t know what else to say on the subject. ***Update*** When I just tried to access the site for a pic, it was down for maintenance. Courage, fair reader.

June 29, 2009 Posted by | Gaming, Humor, PC gaming, State of the Blog, Tech, Weekly Shenanigans | , | 1 Comment

Weekly Shenanigans #6

Hmmm. This is going up a bit later than usual today. Then again, I got up a bit later than usual, if that’s any excuse. Anyway, I’ve got a few more links for you than usual, from all over the internet (which, as I understand it, is actually a series of tubes). Topics cover a range of things, from the funny, to the nerdgasmic, the the outrageous. It’s a carefully formulated balance of content designed to… who am I kidding. It’s a bunch of random crap I find interesting. Down the rabbit-hole with you:

  • For starters, I’m gonna go all dealicious/slickdeals/cheapass gamer on you. For reasons unknown and not entirely understood, Bioshock and Oblivion are being bundled together into a package that’s $39.99 on Xbox 360 and $29.99 on PC. Words cannot describe how wonderful a deal this is. If I didn’t already own both games, I’d be out buying right now. You, though… maybe you don’t have them yet. That’s a problem. Fix it!
  • This story is old, but (sickly) fascinating, and its title, “The Adventure of the Camera Shy Computer” really doesn’t do it justice. I would’ve preferred, “The Epileptic Computer,” or “The Big Computer That Couldn’t.” Sometimes it’s nice to know how far we’ve come.
  • Traditional Media is Dead and Dying: The RIAA has once again succeeded in making the little guy (or woman, in this case) suffer for the presumed, collective sins of the entire file-sharing community. The court handling the Jammie Thomas file-sharing case has ordered her to pay $1.92 million dollars for downloading and sharing music using the Kazaa file-sharing service. That’s $80,000 per song. Want another metric? The idiot judge on this case just ordered her to pay 240 Kias, or 1,600 new 13-inch Macbook Pros, or 38,400 new PC games, all for something that’s barely worth money in the first place – poor-quality music. You know all those gamers that were planning on attacking Valve for making them buy Left4Dead 2 as a standalone game? They should take all that energy and put it into something positive, like burying all the dinosaurs over at the RIAA. Continue reading

June 21, 2009 Posted by | Gaming, Humor, News, PC gaming, State of the Blog, Tech, Weekly Shenanigans | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Weekly Shenanigans #5

I know you all love me. You don’t have to say it, I just know.

  • Epix HD: we've got Ironman and stuff.

    Epix HD: we've got Ironman and stuff.

    This week saw mention of a new video service called Epix HD. It’s an interesting mix of internet and cable TV, brought to you by Lionsgate, Paramount, and MGM. You can view content as a regular TV channel, or access 720p video streaming online for free, providing you’ve got a cable subscription (and your provider has inked a deal with them). It will feature new movies and possibly premium TV series content, similar to HBO, but there won’t be any additional charge for access. Finally, a compelling reason to keep my cable subscription. Woot.

  • Anandtech has a great article on the iPhone 3G S hardware, breaking down what’s going into the new hardware and explaining in relatively simple terms why it’s such a vast improvement. I liked his take so much I’m using him as a source for an iPGN article I’m working on.

June 14, 2009 Posted by | Gaming, News, State of the Blog, Tech, Weekly Shenanigans | Leave a comment

Unto Me A Child Is Born

Not really, not like that. I promise I haven’t knocked up anybody, Chinese or otherwise. This is about a website, or rather, what will become a website.

Yesterday, while mucking about on the interwebs, I decided it was high time I bought my own domain name. Brianmurff.com was an obvious place to start. It’s a good name, a solid name, and I like that I own it. Don’t bother searching to it (yet); at the time of this writing, I’ve just got it redirecting to this blog. Eventually, I’ll put up a clean, snappy little website that will serve as my online resume – what I’ve written, links to my various online works, social profiles, etc. Who knows, I might even make a little video for it. That could be fun. Or disastrous.

Other than that, I went ahead and bought two others. I now own robotbomb.com and rockety.com. The latter is intended as an adjective of sorts, as in, “that’s rockety!” or, “what a rockety website!” I’ve got no idea what I’ll do with that one. In fact, I’m putting it up on auction for now, in case somebody else wants to buy it at a slight price increase.

The other one is what I’m really excited about: robotbomb.com. That’s right: Robot Bomb. Half Robot. Half Bomb. All… shiny? I haven’t quite figured out the third bit yet. Regardless, this is going to be my first shameless attempt at a Website That Makes Money. I’m thinking it’ll be a lifestyle rag with a serious geek bent to it, covering videogames (DUH), tech, music, movies, and nerd gear. Lots of product recommendations, some weekly columns, and maybe the odd video or podcast. That’s the plan, anyway. We’ll see if I can actually make anything of it.

Let me say this: I know it can be a bit of  tongue-twister at first. Robot-bomb-dot-com. Robo-bom-om. Mono-robo-mom. Bo-ro-nom-nom-nom. Rachmaninoff. You’ll get used to it. Or not, in which case it’ll become a site devoted to haiku and limericks, which are nice. Continue reading

June 10, 2009 Posted by | Humor, Personal, State of the Blog | , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Weeky Shenanigans #4 (E3/Computex Edition)

Here lies Weekly Shenanigans #4…

  • Left4Dead fans were up in arms this week after Valve announced a sequel Left4Dead 2. Most felt that the sequel was taking the place of content updates or DLC. Valve’s own Doug Lombardi took some time at E3 to talk with Rock Paper Shotgun and seems to have mollified most of the gamers that were previously sharpening their blades and planning an offensive against Valve’s headquarters.
  • By far, Nintendo’s conference at E3 was the most uninspiring. Evidently they’re content with seducing even more of the casual demographic with things like the Vitality Sensor. I’m sorry, but really?! The Vitality Sensor? That sounds like a scam whose sole demographic is men with ED. They did announce a handful of interesting games, including a new Metroid from Team Ninja. I’m not sure who thought of that combination, but they deserve the biggest cookie in the history of baking cookies. With chocolate chips, and a chewy middle that’s just ever-s0-slightly doughy. The Penny Arcade guys summed it up pretty well with this:

June 7, 2009 Posted by | Gaming, Humor, PC gaming, State of the Blog, Weekly Shenanigans | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Weekly Shenanigans #3

I don’t know what to say, other that I’m on a roll. Three weeks in a row of regularly posting a column? That’s something pretty close to a miracle for me. I’m the guy that regularly makes posts with the words, “Part One” tacked onto the end, and regularly fails to make follow-up posts. It might not be a big deal for other people, but three posts in a row is absolutely EPIC as far as I’m concerned.

Enough with the patting myself on the back, though. Let’s get down to business.

  • Not too big (extended ATX), not too small (mini-ITX). Just right.

    Not too big (extended ATX), not too small (mini-ITX). Just right.

    Anandtech recently reviewed a mATX (that’s micro ATX, for all you non-hardware geeks out there) motherboard from MSI, the X-58M. That pint-size sucker went toe-to-toe with the ASUS Rampage II Gene and came out on top in several circumstances. What’s more, it retails for $169.99, which is one of the cheapest, if not the cheapest price I’ve seen for an X-58 board. This looks like a great option if you’re not concerned with adding a bunch of discrete cards – the mobo comes with 2 PCI-e 2.0 X16 slots, a single x4 slot, and a legacy PCI slot. Overall, it’s a great option, and I might be considering it for my upcoming build. Score one for the budget team.

  • There’s an interesting article talking about graphical realism on Gamasutra. It’s plenty accessible, managing to avoid the highly-technical jargon that such pieces so often get bogged down with. Check it out. Continue reading

May 31, 2009 Posted by | Gaming, Humor, State of the Blog, Weekly Shenanigans | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment