Tech + Lifestyle

games, gear, and googleplexes (joke)

CoD Modern Warfare 2: I’ll pass, thanks

call-of-duty-modern-warfare-2-20090326051750466Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 came out today. Hordes of fans stampeded stores at midnight, grabbed their own copy, and ran home to play the damn thing. Gamers have proclaimed it their favorite shooter ever, a generic shooter, an excellent story, and a practically non-existent one. Worldwide, it’s retailing for more than most AAA games do. From the US to the UK to Australia and everywhere in between, gamers are grumbling and kicking and generally raising hell. Right before, you know, they eagerly swipe their credit cards at the checkout line.

Me? I haven’t bought it. Continue reading

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November 10, 2009 Posted by | Gaming, News, PC gaming, Personal, Tech | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

FAIL WHALE

I just got my first failwhale! Now I feel like a true Twitter user 🙂

failwhale

October 10, 2009 Posted by | Humor, Personal, Tech | , | Leave a comment

Snow Leopard Unboxing

At this point I’ve actually completely (and successfully) installed Snow Leopard. It’s just that I got sidetracked with a web design project, which led to a distinct lack of blog posting. Forgive, and enjoy:

Snow Leopard

Snow Leopard

Apple totally designed this cardboard sleeve

Apple totally designed this cardboard sleeve

Snow Leopard is better and stuff, we swear. It's like Leopard, only... in the snow.

Snow Leopard is better and stuff, we swear.

More Apple stickers? Dude, just what I wanted!

More Apple stickers? Dude, just what I wanted!

Snow Leopard is fierce.

Snow Leopard is fierce.

…yeah, that’s all I’ve got.

August 29, 2009 Posted by | Humor, Tech | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

IT IS ALIVE!

No, really. After a relatively uneventful assembly process, half an hour of cursing Dell for using non-standard parts in my old rig, an overly-eventful fighting-with-software process, and a bit of testing for stability, my rig is up and running. In fact, I’m typing on it right now. Fun, right? That’s what I thought.

In all honesty, I’m not particularly inclined to write up a large computer-building post about the assembly and install process, so I won’t. Instead, I’ll just post a few pictures I took during the build. Please forgive the image quality, my DSLR’s battery was dead and I had to use my phone.

Ahem:

comp build 003 Continue reading

August 23, 2009 Posted by | Gaming, PC gaming, Tech | Leave a comment

Summoning the Beast

“I suspect if more people understood how simple it really is to get computer components to fit together, more would try it. Getting them to work together is a dark and terrible magic.”

My thoughts exactly… sorta. I’m building a new rig this week, and while it’s always good to be careful and even a little nervous when assembling expensive components, that attitude is a little cynical for my taste. Building computers is fun. Doing mods, upgrades, repairs, is fun. I’m absurdly excited about my rig, truth be told. For your viewing pleasure, below are the parts I’ve got so far (still waiting on the case):

Processor: AMD Phenom II X3 720 BE

X3 720 BE

X3 720 BE

Continue reading

August 18, 2009 Posted by | Tech | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Death, Quietly

My iPod died yesterday.

I’m not entirely sure what time it passed, though I became aware of its demise somewhere around 8 pm. I’ve been busy moving back into my house in Oklahoma, and had plugged it into my computer to juice up. The battery on it had been absolute crap in recent weeks, so charging had been taking forever. I popped back into my room, and hit the home button to check the status of the battery.

Nothing. Continue reading

August 17, 2009 Posted by | iPhone/iPod Touch, Tech | , , | Leave a comment

Score Big with Bing

Honestly? When the Bing search engine was first released by Microsoft, all it garnered from me was a shrug. I was in China at the time, so my top priority was minimizing my bandwidth use – when you’re working at dial-up speeds, you don’t care about resource-heavy perks or the background eye-candy that Bing is so fond of. I just wanted speed.

The homepage on Bing.

The homepage on Bing.

Now that I’m back in the US, I’ve tried it out rather extensively as I order parts for my coming computer build. I’ve got to say: Bing isn’t perfect, but it’s off to a great start. Search is decent, as are the various categories that filter results. What’s great right now, though, is the cashback program. Continue reading

August 13, 2009 Posted by | Tech | , , , , | 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

Life Lessons With Brian: In Which I Teach China About The Internet

Alright China, we need to talk. No, not that talk. Judging by your population, you already know plenty about the birds and the bees. We need to have the internet talk.

You’ve been restricting my access to the internet since I got here on February 23rd. WordPress was blocked, for starters. Then a few weeks later, YouTube is inexplicably unavailable. It’s been that way for four months, China. How am I supposed to watch videos of ninja kitties or waterskiing squirrels if I can’t use YouTube? Then there was Twitter, Flickr, Hotmail, and briefly, Google. Then the most recent batch was unblocked, only for you to block Twitter again yesterday, and Facebook today. What gives? ***Update: The recent Twitter and Facebook blocks are due to riots in the Xinjiang region; current counts indicate at least 156 killed, 800 injured, and over 1,400 arrested.***

Facebook is currently blocked.

Facebook is currently blocked...

...and so is Twitter

...and so is Twitter

Continue reading

July 7, 2009 Posted by | Humor, Politics, Tech | , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

My iPod Is On Life Support

White Screen Coma

White Screen Coma

My iPod is currently in the gadget version of an intensive care unit. It’s near death, and I’ve got absolutely no idea what caused it. Everything is playing out like an episode of House, where every treatment come up with by the doctor (ahem, yours truly) only makes things worse. This is no fun.

I use my iPod on a daily basis. I need to walk somewhere? Bam, in go the earphones. I’m driving somewhere? Bam, my iPod gets plugged in, the tunes blast, and away we go. I’m studying and using my laptop would be too distracting? Out comes the iPod, in go the earphones, and Ratatat or Architecture in Helsinki or Norma Jean serenade me. Beyond the basic function of listening to music, I use my beloved iPod Touch (which is named Lisa, by the way) to play games, check email, and scratch out notes for writing ideas. It’s absolutely essential to my always-on lifestyle. Only now I can’t do any of that.

Ever so briefly, I considered turning this into some sort of admission to being too dependent on electronics, that everyone voluntarily cuts themselves off from the world with them, that we need to lose the gadgets every now and again and just appreciate life.

Screw that. Continue reading

July 6, 2009 Posted by | Personal, Tech | , , , , , | 1 Comment