The Haus

Wednesday, November 3, 1999

DVD Cracked

Slashdot also pointed me to this article in Wired telling how some folks were able to crack the supposedly uncrackable DVD encryption format. Here's a hit:
Essentially, the two European hackers who developed the DeCSS utility that copies a DVD movie disc were able to break the code because one of the product's licensees inadvertently neglected to encrypt the decryption key.
Can you say, "Oops"? I knew you could! I do not condone pirating movies, but I have to say that I love nothing more that watching the billionaire entertainment moguls sweat. The you-know-what is REALLY going to hit the fan over this one.

The Master comments: And it's REALLY stupid to claim anything is un-(word here). Examples? The UNSINKABLE Titanic (tho the builders never said that-the press did) the UNBREAKABLE RC5 encryption. UNCRACKABLE NT servers (Hell, how about SECURE NT servers? ;-). Etc. Un-anything only stands until somebody works hard enough to drop it in it's tracks :-)

Packard Bell RIP?

I saw on Slashdot that Packard Bell USA will be laying off 80% of its workforce. They cite this CNet article which also added:
Packard Bell PCs will continue to be marketed under that brand in Europe, "but you will be hard pressed to find a Packard Bell PC in the U.S." next year, he [Ron Fuchs, Packard Bell spokesman] said.
I don't like the idea of people losing their jobs. But as far as Packard Bell computers go: Goodbye to bad rubbish.

The Master comments: I second those sentiments :-)

Slave Zero

Blue is reporting that Accolade's third-person big ol' robot game, Slave Zero, has gone gold. I may have to check this one out, since I liked the giant mecha trudging through town aspect of Shogo so much.

NHL2000 update

According to Blue, EA has posted an NHL2000 update in their FTP site. I'm sure A.T. will let everyone know what's in it after he downloads it :-)

A.T. Adds: Yep, I'm downloading it now. The patch is basically the same as the previous patch, except that it also fixes the crowd chants for Calgary and Carolina and fixes a bug that caused the player and goalie boost sliders to reset to the global settings in the season, tournament, or playoff modes.

Unfortunately they didn't make a smaller patch for those who downloaded the first patch. You have to download the whole thing over again. Fortunately it is only about four megs. If you can't get through to EA, you can also download the patch from NHL 2000 Online.

John Carmack .plan update

Yet another .plan update from the mighty and powerful John Carmack :-). That damn CD check is back. Suck. Otherwise, more polish. I like the spawn time changes. Make those spawn campers work for it :-)

Tuesday, November 2, 1999

Win2K Pricing

Also on ZDNet, I noticed that the financially strapped Microsoft corporation has announced its pricing for Windows 2000: $219 for upgrades from Windows 95/98, $319 for the full version, and $149 for upgrades from Windows NT 4.0. Donations of canned goods and new or lightly used clothing have also been requested to help Microsoft's employees in this difficult time.

The Master comments: Ya know, I want to be a billion dollar beggar. You just HAVE to love Micro$oft's pricing schemes. Charge'em until they die. We'll raise the price.

More on RealJukebox

I just saw this article on ZDNet stating that RealNetworks has updated its privacy policy revealing that it has indeed been using a Globally Unique Identifier (GUID) to collect information through RealJukebox. The company will release a 67K patch to disable RealJukebox's reporting and any further downloads of the software from RealNetwork will have the reporting "feature" disabled.

Shogo Patch Update

I fired off an email to Bob Givnin, a Lith tech support guy, for clarification on what exactly would be in the new patch. It seems that he doesn't know much more than I do about it. Here's his reply:
I don't know that much about the patch, but I know that numbers 2 and 3 will be in the patch. I haven't seen or heard anything on the 3dNOW renderer, but last I heard, we were still working with AMD on it. I don't have any other info on it at this time. :-)
So there ya go. Or something.

In follow-up email Bob said they were working on updating the Shogo patch fixes page with more information.

Shogo Patch?!?

In the "you've got to be freaking kidding me" department, PlanetShogo posted the following news blurb.
I sent along a question to Monolith's tech support, about the never finishing Shogo Patch, and I got some good news back from Bob:
We're still working on the patch... we were testing it last week! I'm not sure when it's going to be released, but it's still being worked on.
Well, looks like the patch is still being worked on! PlanetShogo will post up any new information and updates on the patch, so check back.
It would be beyond cool if a patch that actually addresses some of the netcode and cheating problems would be released. They've only been working on this patch since . . . um . . . March (the 2.2 patch was released March 10)? I will be firing off an email to Bob to find out exactly what the deal is.

As always, remember that A.T. Hun's Haus of Shogo is your one-stop, full-service Shogo source!

Q3 Master Server

Graeme Devine updated his .plan with the following news for you Q3Test junkies out there:
The MOTD server and master server will be up and down over the next few days, if you don't get a response that's probably the reason why.

Napalm Announcement

3dfx will be holding a press conference at Comdex on Monday to formally announce their next chip, currently codenamed Napalm. Here's a snip:
Chief among these features will be a focus on fill-rate and the ability to achieve over one billion pixels per second. With fill-rate come benefits such as higher resolution, faster speeds, greater application complexity and the ability to display high quality 32bpp rendering at 60+ frames per second (FPS) at ultra high resolutions. All of these attributes equate to better image quality and highly realistic environments.
One billion marketing pixels per second is certainly very impressive. It will be interesting to see if they can keep a chip that fast from burning down your house. Of course, the Savage 2K was supposed to pump out 700 million marketing pixels per second until recently.

Remember that the T-Buffer will require massive fill-rate for its full-screen anti-aliasing. It seems that the NVIDIA image quality vs. 3dfx speed will continue to be the topic of debate. But if 3dfx can get decent image quality and a fully-functional OpenGL ICD, they could make things VERY interesting. I would also assume that Napalm would have to be the first 3dfx produce to fully use the AGP bus (at 4x to boot) to get this kind of fill-rate.

I like competition. It means better, cheaper products for everyone. Thanks VE via Blue.

John Carmack .plan update

Yet another Carmack .plan update today. Check it:

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