(RSS 2.0 feed) Topic: Go Go Gadget

ZOMG Rejoice! It’s the Second Coming!

StarCraft II logo

OMG OMG OMG OMG! It’s true! Forget Halo 3. Hell, forget everything else in life. Blizzard has finally announced StarCraft II!

Are they going to declare this day a national holiday in Korea? When can I pre-order? Has it really only been nine years? It seems like two eternities!

Help, I think I need a tranquilliser.

Add comment 13 years, 2 months ago

Halo 3 in September? How Excitement!!

So the biggerest most monumental thing ever Halo 3 finally has a release date! Well, in the US and Europe at least — 25th and 26th respectively of September 2007. So c’mon when is the Australian release date!? At worst, we’d get it on the same day as the Europeans, right? Right?!

Anyway, I’m finally starting to get excited about Halo 3! I haven’t got into the multiplayer beta since I don’t have the time (and I don’t want to buy a copy of crackdown), but come the end of September, you’re more than likely to see me plonk down the equivalent of USD $130 to pick up a copy of Halo 3 Legendary Edition and disappearing for a few days.

Not to mention… apparently a version of Bomberman like the original (not like the Bomberman: Act Zero garbage) is coming to Xbox Live Arcade in a few months too! Now just when are we going to get Boom Boom Rocket here in Australia?

So then the only thing left… is the holy grail itself huh? Don’t worry, I’ll be watching what happens in Korea this weekend very carefully! ;)

Add comment 13 years, 2 months ago

Windows Search is Broken — Help, Anyone?!

Screenshot of Windows Search error

OK, take a look at the screenshot from my Tablet.

If I search from within an existing Windows Explorer window (using the search box in the top-right), it works fine. If I search from the Start Menu, it also displays the results in the Start Menu itself fine. Search in Outlook also works.

But if I open the Start Menu to search and then click the “See all results” link, I get 5 blank files displayed in the results area that I can’t interact with in any way. (what the above screenshot shows). If I open the Start Menu, click on Search, and then search using the search box, I also get the same error.

I’ve restored by Indexing Options to the default settings and rebuilt the database, but I still get the same thing.

I suspect some component of Windows Search just needs to be reregistered for the view in Windows Explorer to work again. At least, that would have been my guess for Windows XP. But this is Windows Vista. What gives? :cry:

(Update: I fixed it by uninstalling Nokia PC Suite. I have no idea how that could have been responsible, but it fixed it… even after a repair installation of Windows Vista failed to fix it. The most puzzling part is that I reinstalled Nokia PC Suite and it didn’t reproduce the problem.)

Add comment 13 years, 3 months ago

No Outlook, It Wasn’t Bloody Helpful!

Microsoft Outlook error message: Could not open the item. Try again. (Was this information helpful?)

Try again? Of course, when I try again to categorise multiple pieces of mail at a time, the exact same thing happens. C’mon at least give me a hint about what’s causing this error? Please?

A true abomination in user experience design from Microsoft Office Outlook 2007. To add insult to injury, I can of course submit feedback about how useful the information was. Listen mate, it couldn’t have been more fucking useless!

(To be fair, I eventually found out the problem was caused by avast! anti-virus… after like two days of painstaking troubleshooting to isolate the cause. The builds since 4.7.981 all cause the problem, so I’ve reverted to build 4.7.942 and it’s working fine again.)

(Update: Going back to 4.7.942 seemed to fix the Trillian problem, but the Outlook problem still persists. Arrrrrrgh! :evil: )

Add comment 13 years, 3 months ago

I Hope I Haven’t Jinxed My Xbox 360

You know those alarming stories you hear? How all of your friends’ Xbox 360s get the Red Ring of Death and die? (the RRoD is what is displayed on the front of the console when it is stuffed and will not start.) And that it’s contagious and extremely virulent?

Well even though my Xbox 360 has been extremely well behaved to date, I recently got cold feet and extended my Xbox 360 warranty for another 2 years for AUD $85 from EB Games. I hope I haven’t jinxed my 360…

(Before you start asking me questions, yes, as much as I’m a fanboy I definitely agree that the Xbox 360’s build quality and QA processes seem to be somewhat less than ideal. Having said that, you still shouldn’t make matters worse by getting add-ons like the Intercooler.)

Add comment 13 years, 4 months ago

OK, So I Got Sucked Into Facebook

As the title suggests, I finally signed up for a Facebook account last (Thursday) night. After all these years, yep, I finally succumbed to using at least one social networking/community tool. ;)

But you know what? Facebook is actually pretty cool… I thought it was a bit elitist for Facebook to have initially limited memberships to those who had an affiliation to a university and I’m glad that it’s now more open, but I’ve come to realise the easy way to identify other friends in your networks is really its key strength. It now also seems to be useful for those outside Australia. Oh, and it’s well implemented, with a UX that is on the whole pretty and functional.

For my Digital Media friends, I think you’re all missing out (as I don’t think any of you are on here)… it’s actually a great way of identifying any mutual friends you have with others that you had no idea about. It’s also a good way to catch friends from high school or earlier who you haven’t seen for a while!

That’s the reason I’ve finally signed up. I realised many of my friends used it, and I figured anything that truly helps me keep in touch with them is a good thing, right? (I actually think many of my non-Digital Media friends are much more into this stuff. Weird? Or maybe the geeks are just too cool for this.)

P.S. No, this does not mean I will soon have a MySpace.

Add comment 13 years, 5 months ago

Cool Ship Gifts for the Windows Vista Team

It’s apparently a Microsoft tradition for those were on the team for a product to receive a gift once the product ships. For Windows Vista, it looks like they went to some effort to make up some Very Cool Things™ for the team!

Larry Osterman has details:
Vista Ship Gifts
Vista Ship Gift, Part 2

Check them out… it would definitely be way cool as a developer to keep a cube of all the milestone builds of your product sitting on your desk as memorabilia!

(Spotted on the Windows Vista Team Blog.)

1 comment 13 years, 6 months ago

SIXAXIS Gets Sony an Emmy: WTFF?!

Sony is going to get an Emmy in Technology and Engineering for the PS3 SIXAXIS controller?!

The one controller this generation that lacks rumble (removed because Sony lost a lawsuit with Immersion)? The one that has barely changed from the PS2 variant? That is nowhere (IMHO) as comfortable to hold as the Xbox 360 controller? The one that has intermittent problems maintaining sync with the console over Bluetooth? And can’t be paired to the console without the cable? The one that has the half-assed motion sensing abilities (a Wii remote and nunchuck it ain’t)?

What. The. Fucking. Fuck?

gamesindustry.biz: Sixaxis honoured with Emmy
Engadget: SIXAXIS wins an Emmy for Technology and Engineering… wait, really?

(Update: Sony was wrong, the Emmy wasn’t for the SIXAXIS and Nintendo and Microsoft both got some recognition too.)

Add comment 13 years, 7 months ago

Jakob Nielsen on User Interfaces in Film

Usability guru Jakob Nielsen has written a good (and entertaining) critique of UI in films: Usability in the Movies — Top 10 Bloopers

Ever wondered why heroes always come across “ACCESS GRANTED” messages when they manage to hack into a system, but you never get such a message when you enter the right password for internet banking? Me neither, but it’s so obvious!

My pet technology peeve with films and TV shows though (and admittedly not a UI issue at all), is of course unlimited enhancement of images regardless of resolution.

How many times does it take before someone realises that it’s not realistic to take some grainy CCTV footage, enhance it, print out a pristine 8" × 10" print and then see the face of the villain on it, perfectly sharp and identifiable? Audiences are increasingly using digital cameras and they know it doesn’t work that way — so stop doing it in films and on TV!

(BTW, Happy New Year everyone!)

Add comment 13 years, 7 months ago

Nintendo Wii — Mixed Feelings

The Bad (yes, out of order)

On Wednesday night, I was at Westfield Parramatta shortly before midnight. There was a small number of people gathered outside the Toys ’R' Us waiting for the midnight launch of the Nintendo Wii.

At that point, I scoffed, wondered why somebody would pay $400 for a glorified, shrunk GameCube, and then went home.

People waiting outside Toys 'R' Us at Westfield Parramatta
Waiting for the Nintendo Bodily Excretion Wii

So that’s the bad. What about the good and the ugly?

Continue Reading 2 comments 13 years, 8 months ago

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