Thursday: December 13, 2012
- The Verge reviews The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and finds some unexpected issues.
Rather than the majestic grandeur presented in the first films, the new entry looks more like a Renaissance Faire recreation shot on your brother's mini-DV camera. It's most jarring in the movie's opening, where we briefly visit Frodo and Bilbo in the moments leading up to Fellowship; we know what these characters in that world should look like, and it simply feels wrong.
Wednesday: December 12, 2012
- Nirvana reuniting tonight with Paul McCartney filling in for Kurt Cobain. Wait, what?
This unexpected bit of news should make for an interesting music performance this evening. Sorry Wednesday night programming - consider my television viewing and whatever other planned activities blocked off for the night. Good on you Sandy Benefit concert, good on you. Here's to hoping for a Scentless Apprentice > Polythene Pam > Polly medley.
Monday: November 14, 2011
- A video review of the next Legend of Zelda game due out on November 20th for the Nintendo Wii.
GameTrailers sums up everything you would need to know about The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword in under ten minutes for your viewing pleasure. I've always had a real soft spot for Zelda games. This title may force me to blow the dust off of the old Nintendo Wii and hook it up via nine-hundred multi-colored component cables once again. Also, as the review demonstrates, the Wii really shows it's age with the graphics and lack of voice acting here. In the end though, it still looks like it will be an utterly fantastic Zelda game.
- Engadget's thorough review of the brand new Kindle Fire tablet from Amazon.
Engadget covers everything here from the packaging to the performance of Amazon's first real entry into the tablet field. Engadget hails the device as quite an achievement at it's current price point ($200) but they do knock the device some by saying that it can't compete with 'normal' tablets that are currently on the market in some key factors.
Thursday: August 11, 2011
- National Geographic has some stunning photos of New Zealand for your viewing pleasure.
Posting this here in case anyone needs some travel inspiration. Now I've never actually been to New Zealand but these pictures sure are pretty. Also, this destination would be a good trip for you die-hard Lord of the Rings fans out there (all of the movies were shot in New Zealand).
- Before and after renderings of Apple's Fifth Avenue cube redesign.
The new Apple cube will sport only fifteen panes of glass as opposed to the previous use of a whopping ninety panes of glass. The cost of upgrading their iconic glass cube on Fifth Avenue? Just a mere $6.6 million bucks, which in reality is actually chump change for Apple. If you're interested in the technology behind how these giant peices of glass are actually made MacRumors points to this article over on ifoAppleStore.com.
Wednesday: July 20, 2011
- Some casting news for next season of Game of Thrones for those interested.
After seeing the first season I've been hooked on this show and can't wait for season two (which will most likely surface next year). The books are also a fun read as well and I recommend them to anyone looking to pick up on their summer reading. If you are more of a summer television watcher then go watch the series, you won't be disappointed.
Monday: July 18, 2011
- Final Harry Potter movie breaks box office records worldwide.
Here in the states, Harry and friends (and enemies) took over the top spot from 'The Dark Knight' for best opening weekend. According to Box Office Mojo, the final Potter film took in $168.55 million. Christopher Nolan's second Batman grossed a robust $158.4 million when it opened in 2008. Around the world, the cumulative Potter numbers were even larger. The movie grossed about $307 million, outgrossing the previous world box office record holder, 'Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides,' by almost 20 percent.
Friday: July 15, 2011
- Ten neat Star Wars shirts for your viewing pleasure, go forth and wear The Force proudly.
Be the envy of all of your friends as you wear your Wookie of the Year t-shirt with pride and honor knowing that you've served The Republic and rid the galaxy of evil forces who came at you with robotic droids. They may have overrun your planet and caused a Jedi Master to flee into exile but in the end you can always crash with your Ewok friends on Endor and call it a day. Too much?
- National Geographic provides a top ten list for pretty much any travel idea.
Thinking of a planning a boat trip in Venice? Want to visit some famous boardwalks all across the United States? Whatever it is you happen to be looking for chances are you'll at least find a little travel inspiration with one these lists. Personally, I enjoy looking at some of these exotic beach locales (as evidenced by the chosen thumbnail).
- In the market for a new MacBook Air? You might want to wait until next week.
While most sites pointed to this week as the possible refresh of the line AllThingsD says that all said rumor mills have been off by a week. They predict that the new MacBook Air will contain Intel's Sandy Bridge processors, Thunderbolt ports, flash storage in the realm of 128 gigabytes or 256 gigabytes. Lastly, the backlit keyboard may make a triumphant return.
- App of the Week: Game Dev Story
Rarely does an iPhone game catch my attention let alone force me to become so addicted to it that I abandon posting to my newly launched website for an entire two days. That's exactly what happened when a friend suggested I try out Game Dev Story for iPhone. The concept is pretty simple, you are President of a game development studio. You make video games. You watch them sell (hopefully like hotcakes), make money, become famous. Along the way you'll also need to hire employees with various skill sets (everything ranging from writers to sound engineers) and even take your advertising dollar spend into account.
The game has some interesting play concepts. In order to make a video game you'll need to pair up given types of video games along with matching a genre to that type which may or may not be the best fit. For example, you can choose to make a racing game and have the genre be about robots. On the other hand, you can make a video game with conflicting styles like RPG and... trivia. You can also choose what platform you want to develop for your video game for. Each platform has it's audience and the game type you choose may play a part in that. In order to play with some of the bigger platforms you'll need to get a license (of which you'll need some serious cash in some instances). Based on how well the type, genre, and platform of your desired game match your staff will work on it and try to make a game to the best of their given abilities. Those abilities can also be leveled up through research data (think experience points) or you can also send them to training, which also will cost you your hard-earned money. If you're unhappy with the performance of a given employee can choose to fire them and hire some new ones. At some point, you'll even be able to design your own platform/console. As of writing, I have not gotten that far yet.
The visual design of the game looks like something you'd see right out of the classic Super Nintendo days of gaming. The graphics are cute and at times huggable, especially when you see your team do very well on a game. It's very much reminiscent of SimCity but obviously with a different setting and environment. But the game does take some direct cues from SimCity and will throw some curveballs at you every now and again. For example, when your team is working hard on your latest video game the electricity may go out. This causes the development to suffer and sets back your team. Some of your employees may ask if they can work to improve a game, when they fail your game's bug count goes up. However, if they succeed your game gets better. You can also purchase boosts and products for your employees to add polish to your games, but it'll cost you.
The strangest part about this for me is that for the life of me I could not seem to put this game down. I found myself playing it on the Subway, walking from the Subway, walking home, during dinner, etc etc. There was something very satisfying about creating a mock video game (they even let you name it) and then see how well your idea takes in terms of sales and overall popularity. I was never into the whole Tamogatchi Virtual Pets thing when they were popular back in the day, this seems to be the virtual pet that was custom-tailored for me and my video game aspirations.
Game Dev Story was created by the folks over at Kairo Park. The app is available for iPhone and Android devices and will set you back $1.99. Enjoy and best of luck in your video game creation endeavors.
Tuesday: July 12, 2011
- International teaser poster for Muppets movie reboot shows up online.
Word has it that the original title for this movie was to be called 'The Greatest Muppet Movie Ever' but the studios decided to shorten it to just 'The Muppets'. I like the previous title better. Here's to hoping this flick is more enjoyable than the Muppets Christmas Carol. Yech.
Monday: July 11, 2011
- The science behind why we tend to screw up when the pressure is on.
Article goes into some detail regarding just what our brain does under certain times when stress levels may be heightened. Continue reading over the full article over at New Scientist if you want more information about stuff like cognitive horsepower and spatial problem solving. You know, for science.
- A review of the Fujifilm FinePix F550EXR digital camera.
This is not a product plug (although it will sound like one) but I recently purchased one of these and so far I'm loving it. I've always been a big fan of Fuji's line of cameras, they last a long time and take great pictures. I've tried out some other point and shoot digicams from Canon and just have never been all that impressed. I always end up coming to back Fuji. I'll post a couple examples to the photoblog sometime this week. Two thumbs up from me if you're in the market for a new point and shoot.