The Haus

Thursday, September 16, 1999

New Master .Plan

I've put up a new Master .Plan, which is part one of a three part series. I'm plowing through a couple of topics near and dear and it's going to take more than one .plan to do it :-)

You Can Go to Bed Now

I just saw on Unreal Files that the UT demo will be delayed until tomorrow. Here's the news:
We have received word from Lee Sherwood with 3DFX that the UT Demo will not be available until tomorrow.. He hinted early AM, but it was only a hint..

Thresh and UT

Thresh has posted a preview of Unreal Tournament. It's a good read and worth checking out while you wait for the demo to be released.

One interesting thing that no one has really mentioned is testing UT over the Internet. There's been all kinds of reports from LAN parties and such. It remains to be seen how UT will handle the flakiness of the Internet. Q3Test handles bad-ping situations rather nicely. If UT can come close to that, it'll be a keeper. If you need to be a LPB to play, I guess I'll pass. Hopefully we'll have some solid answers soon!

The Master comments: Or need a Cray to generate decent frame rates :-)

Interesting observation

Was checking out Chaos Manor (Jerry Pournelle's personal website), and saw this rather interesting observation on NASA and beaurocracy in general. Here's an excerpt (the whole thing is in his Wednesday 9/15/99 posting):
I gather that Hurricane Floyd didn't de-NASA us. I have mixed emotions on this. Shuttle is hideously inefficient, the George Abbey Full Employment system -- it needs all those 20,000 or so people to make it work, and thus accomplishes its primary mission. The primary mission of any bureaucracy is to hire and pay bureaucrats; after that's done it may do something useful, but it will do that first. NASA and Shuttle have become more interested in the primary mission than any other purpose. God looks after fools, drunks, and the United States, according to Bismark; but apparently He didn't think it in our best interests to shift Floyd a bit left..
I think he has a point.

Bilge pump?!?

K-just read on Blue's that the NYC area is starting to have problems from Floyd. Now, if Blue gets knocked out, I don't know what I'm going to do. I mean, I LIVE for Blue's News :-)

On a personal note, yes, I lived through the dental torture. I have more coming. Yippy. :-(

More Hurricanes and UT

Well, it seems that hurricane Floyd left Raliegh relatively unscathed. All the UT team lost was part of a night's work. They are pounding on the 3dfx demo now and hopefully will soon release it and turn their attention to the D3D and OpenGL version.

Wednesday, September 15, 1999

Hurricane Floyd and UT

Epic got online just before having to evacuate due to hurricane Floyd. Hopefully, the Glide-only UT demo will still be out tomorrow. However, the OpenGL and D3D version will be pushed off until at least next week, depending on the havoc Floyd wreaks on the area. It really puts everything in perspective. We're worrying about a stupid game demo, while people could be facing losing everything. Our prayers go out for those in Floyd's path.

New Unified Drivers

Just in time, Creative has released new Unified drivers for their TNT and TNT2-based cards. You will need your serial number to download them. Thanks Blue's. I couldn't have missed them by much, I checked that site right before I made my last update and they weren't up yet.

UT Demo Alert

Nope, it's not out . . . yet. But, CliffyB updated his .plan to point out that UnrealFiles has set up a mailing list to alert you as soon as it's released. Sign up here!

Q3Test 1.09 Info

sCary posted this email from John Carmack regarding the next Q3Test:
1.09 will not have the skeletal system. We are still messing with the single player gameflow, so 1.09 is still a bit off.

NHL 2000 Released Today!

EA Sports' NHL 2000 for the PC hits the stores today. NHL 2000 Online points out that EBWorld has it for $34.95 minus a $10 rebate for total of $24.95 plus shipping, handling, and any applicable taxes. Note: I have no financial interest in EB at all, nor have I ordered anything from them. This just looks like a good deal!

Tree Demo

NVIDIA has released their tree demo that they used to show off the GeForce 256's processing power. I downloaded it and thought it would be a laugh to see how it would run on my system. The demo comes with two batch files, simple.bat and complex.bat. I used the default settings in each plus adding -640x480 to force it to run in that resolution (it defaults to 1024x768 which my crappy monitor can't handle).

My system specs are the following: Intel Celeron 400, 128M RAM, Creative Labs TNT AGP with the NVIDIA 2.08 reference drivers, all on a QDI BrillianX I motherboard. Here are the results:

simple.bat: 6.19502 fps
complex.bat: 1.44911 fps

Pretty hysterical, eh? I think at one point I actually heard my CPU and TNT chip crying. I'd like to compare these results to those from a GeForce card on my same system, but unless NVIDIA sends me a review board (yeah, right) it's not going to happen.

UT Demo with Unified?

If I get the time, I'll download the 3dfx-only version of the UT Demo (when it comes out) and try running it on my system with Creative's Unified driver. My guess is that it probably won't work very well, if at all, but it might be amusing to try. I'm a glutton for punishment.

New SoundBlaster Live! Cards

Creative has announced two new cards, the SoundBlaster Live! X-Gamer and SoundBlaster Live! MP3+. If you already own a SoundBlaster Live!, the new cards only add new software bundles. If you have a SoundBlaster Live! Value (like The Master and I do) you're not missing anything new either. The new cards just have built-in digital output, like the Live!'s daughter card. The new cards are based on the same processor so we Live!/Live! Value owners aren't out of the upgrade loop by any means. Check out this article on AGN Hardware for more information.

We don't need no stinkin' pain

Well, it's been a slow news day so far. I think that impending UT release has got everyone bottled up :-) Hopefully A.T. will be able to keep things rolling today, since I'm scheduled for a session in the rack, I mean a dental appointment, and am not entirely too sure I'm going to be coherent enough to post tonight. Here's hoping I am tho...

Umm... maybe I shoulda listened to Blue on that whole toothcare thing :-/

A.T. adds: And I caught a cold from somebody so my coherency will be inversely proportional to the number of decongestants I take. I think I'll take Dave Barry's advice and treat my cold with nature's perfect cold remedy: a homebrewed beer.

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