The Haus

Sunday, August 8, 1999

Unreal Tournament Info

Here's a little nugget from this week's 10 Questions with SamHell with Epic's Cliff Bleszinski regarding the current status of Unreal Tournament and the demo of the same.
SamHell: 11. In all close is Epic to releasing a UT demo?

CliffyB: The game is done, but we are just testing and improving our net code. Make a new rev, send it to our remote testing force, test, improve, repeat.
So it's basically what we knew before. It could be released any minute or it may not be for many moons. Stay tuned.

WraithLaunch for Shogo

Wraith (the Shogo coder who never sleeps) has released v1.0 of WraithLaunch. WraithLaunch increases the size of the selection boxes for the multiplayer launcher (if you've every played Shogo or tried to set up a server, you know the boxes can be annoyingly small). I noticed a couple of minor glitches, but it does make the multiplayer wizard easier to use. Check it out!

Testing the New Shogo Anti-Cheating Rez

I was just testing Thorin's new anti-cheating rez on Satan's server. After some initial problems it was determined that Netscape had botched my first download. A subsequent download via IE worked fine. The rez is now in a ZIP file so the downloads should work fine with either browser. Get the rez here and make sure to compare the size of validate.rez with the size mentioned on that page.

There did seem to be some lagginess but I don't think the connection between my system and Satan's server is ideal. Hopefully we'll get a chance to play-test it some more tonight. We'll put the llamas out of business yet!

A Decent File Manager

One thing that Microsoft has never incorporated into Windows is a decent file manager. Windows Explorer (read: IE) is buggy, crash-prone, and ill-suited to the most basic file management tasks. It has never made sense to me that in the age of GUIs nobody has created a Windows file manager with the elegance and ease of use of good old Xtree in DOS.

I think I may have finally found a decent replacement in PowerDesk 98 from Mijenix. I just downloaded it and I'm very impressed. It allows you to have two different folders open at the same time for easy copying and moving (Hello Microsoft! Why in the world can't Windows Explorer do this?!?). It also has built in file viewers via QuickView which is integrated nicely. It can also handle .ZIPs natively. Best of all, it's dirt cheap at $29.95. To quote John Dvorak, "highly recommended."

Live!Ware CD Rant

OK, ever since Live!Ware 2.0 came out for the SoundBlaster Live! I've been trying to order the CD via Creative's website. Every time I check, the CD is out of stock. How hard is it to press CDs?!? The drivers have been out for almost three months! I also shouldn't have to boot my system with only Explorer running to get my sound card drivers to install either.

Having said that, I really like my SoundBlaster Live! Value. Playing the Half-Life demo with EAX is downright creepy (OK, creepier). If you are into MIDI files (hello, The Master) the SB Live is a real treat. I did some timedemos to determine the fps hit for using high quality sound in Q3Test and it was less than 1/4 of a fps. Pretty slick. Also, since the latest patch from LucasArts, the 3D sound in X-Wing Alliance is excellent and really adds to the feeling of "being there."

X-Wing Alliance Atmospheric Shipset

I've been playing the X-Wing series of games since the original X-Wing came out. I bought X-Wing Alliance the day it was released, although I still haven't finished it (too much Q3Test). There is an Atmospheric Shipset in the works, hoping to enable you recreate the Battle of Hoth from The Empire Strikes Back among other planet-based missions. Just a warning though, their web design is a little annoying.

The Master comments: Yeah AT, you alone haven't inflated Lucas's net value at all with your Star Wars addiction, have you?!? :-)

Another cheap shot at M$

Oh, my. User Friendly has taken another free pot-shot at Microsoft's Windows2000 Test site. The cartoon can be seen here.

Saturday, August 7, 1999

eBay online again

It's amazing to me that a company can have their primary service drop off the 'net as much as eBay, and still be worth over $80/share. Today, eBay resumed operations after a 14-hour outage. They REALLY need some redundant systems over there. Oh, and so does Microsoft. I think they both need to pick up a couple of Crays and run those darn internet sites with some REAL power :-)

Rio .mp3 player vindicated

In a rather surprising development, the Diamond Rio .mp3 player is no longer under fire from the music industry. More details can be found here. I have always been a huge fan of the MP-3 sound storage format. What I would really like to see is for the music industry to endorse MP-3 for personal use. Illegal downloading from the internet is one thing, personal use of material already owned in CD format is another thing entirely.

Cybersquatters Beware

Some good news on the 'net. Just saw an article on C-Net News on an attempted Senate ban on Cybersquatting. This practice of registering domain names and then selling them to the valid copyright holders for hundreds, and sometimes thousands of dollars, has always driven me crazy. It's a real sign of the lowminded, pigheaded greed in the world today. I REALLY hope this bill gets passed into law. Soon.

Even Newer Shogo Anti-Cheating Rez

Thorin is coming up with a new mod that hopefully will eliminate the possibility of any kind of cheating in Shogo online. The downside is that it will require all clients to download and use a rez file and to get on a server that is also running the rez. It's a small price to pay, methinks.

Of course, if Monolith would address this issue (and the lag problems too), such a rez would not be necessary. But I think we're more likely to see Bill Gates kiss Janet Reno on the lips on Larry King Live than for that to happen. This also wouldn't be a problem if there weren't so many llamas out there, but I guess there will always be that sort of person. Kinda sad, isn't it . . .

Release News (Or Lack Thereof)

I'm trying to find information giving reliable time-frames for the release of Quake 3 Arena and Unreal Tournament. Both id and Epic have been giving the "when its done" reply to any queries. Hopefully there will be some announcements at QuakeCon giving more definite information along that line. Hopefully Epic will actually release a demo of Unreal Tournament so I can find out if it will actually run decently on my TNT.

Shogo Newbies

I realize there may be some people who are picking up Shogo in the bargain bins or are looking forward to the Mac and Amiga ports and are looking for some information on the game. If so, please feel free to email me and I'll do my best to answer any questions you may have.

Past Two Days' News

Recent Headlines

January 5, 2015: It Returns!
August 10, 2007: SCO SUCKS IT DOWN!
July 5, 2007: Slackware 12.0 Released
May 20, 2007: PhpBB 3.0 RC 1 Released
February 2, 2007: DOOM3 1.31 Patch

January 27, 2007: Join the World Community Grid
January 17, 2007: Flash Player 9 for Linux
December 30, 2006: Darkness over Daggerford 1.2
December 19, 2006: Pocket Tunes 4.0 Released
December 9, 2006: WRT54G 1.01.1 Firmware OK with Linux/Mac

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