The Haus

Friday, July 21, 2000

Deus Ex Demo Add-On Released

Oops! Someone at Eidos accidentally put the Deus Ex demo add-on on their FTP server before Daily Radar posted it. It has since been pulled from Eidos' server, but not it time to keep mirror sites from springing up. You can get the add-on (32.7M) from 3D Gamers, 3D Downloads, and Gameaholic. Expect Daily Radar to have a hissy fit :) Remember, you need the full 140M demo to play this add-on. Thanks Frans.

Deus Ex Demo Add-On

In the "OK, now this makes sense category", yesterday Daily Radar announced that they would be releasing a new 32M Deus Ex demo today. Blue's News received clarification from ION Storm that this will not be a new demo but an add-on to the old one.
Several of you have seen and posted about the 32mb Deus Ex demo that Daily Radar will be releasing today. The information that Daily Radar posted on their site was incorrect. What they will be posting today is in fact a 32mb demo add-on, not a complete demo. The new add-on will add a second mission to the demo allowing gamers to play both Missions 1 & 2 of the game, and WILL require the previous 140mb demo. If you could inform your readers of this, we would greatly appreciate it.
Of course, this brings the total demo weight up to 162M *) In case you are wondering why you never see The Master at night any more, it's because he bought Deus Ex. We may never hear from him again.

The Master comments: Hehehe-and a dang fun game it is too :-) I'm STILL getting my butt kicked by mission 2, so that's a real nice release by Eidos. BTW: My wife adds that she misses me too.

A.T. Hun comments: OK, so I'm not a math major. The grand total for the demo plus add-on is 172M, not 162. Sigh.

Visor Patch Released

Well, so much for Handspring not being able to update the Visor's OS :) Today, Handspring released Handspring Updater V1.0.0 for Visor, Visor Solo, and Visor Deluxe. Here's a list of the changes:
  1. Calculator Launch Fix - This fix prevents unexpected launches of the Calculator when touching the Visor screen close to the Calculator launcher icon.
  2. Serial Modem Fix- This fix corrects an issue where a Visor may have difficulty performing a HotSync operation using a serial cradle when a modem Springboard module is installed.
  3. 8MB DRAM Memory Fix (if necessary)- This fix corrects an issue where a limited number of Visor Deluxe handhelds manufactured between January and May, 2000 can experience a "fatal error" as a result of a faulty DRAM memory chip. This fix is only installed on affected Visor Deluxe handhelds; the version info window will now display "Palm OS Software v3.1H3M". Depending on individual usage patterns there may be an impact on battery life.
I'm going to try to get a clarification on that last sentence in #3. I want to know what "patterns" will affect battery life. Thanks Visor Central.

UPDATE! Someone on Visor Central's discussion boards pointed me to this thread on which attempts to calculate the additional battery drain. Unfortunately there are two different ways that Palm/Handspring/TRG/etc. could have gotten around this problem and none of them are talking.

More on Web Standards

Ars Technica linked to this editorial asking the musical question, "Why can't we have a platform-independent web?" Here's part of his conclusion:
The point of this essay is not to discourage the use of IE, though that would be a nice turn of events. Rather, its point is to encourage those who develop Web sites to ensure that their sites work on multiple browsers and multiple operating systems before announcing them to the world. I go to great lengths to ensure that my sites work on browsers that I would never in a trillion years use myself. Can't you, dear reader, do the same?
One thing that I've made a big deal of on The Haus is platform and browser independence. This site looks pretty much the same under Win32 and Linux using IE, Netscape 4.x, or Mozilla. One of these days, I intend on downloading Opera to make sure we look OK in that too. I would like to be able to check it more often on a Mac, but I only have occasional access to one.

What REALLY ticks me off is M$ FrontPage. It creates messy, superfluous, and downright broken code. Nine times out of ten when someone's page will not display properly in Netscape is because they failed to close a TD, TR, or TABLE tag. I even saw some code that added those closing tags with the comment that they were there so the page would display in Netscape. Hello? Granted, Netscape 4.x should deal with that error better, but closing those tags IS part of the HTML standard. It's not that tough, folks.

Be a Game Developer

Brian Hook posted his thoughts on what it takes to be a successful game developer on Voodoo Extreme. And no, the phrase "I can't leave without my buddy Superfly" is not used in the article.

WaSP Blasts Netscape

Slashdot brings word that the Web Standards Project (WaSP) posted an open letter to Netscape, blasting them for taking so long to release a standards-compliant browser. Here's a snip:
How can standards advocates continue to point to your example while criticizing other browser makers? How can we demand that Microsoft "do what Netscape is doing," when, from a business perspective, "what Netscape is doing" is bleeding market share while failing to ship product? We appreciate the sacrifice you've made, but the loss of time and market share are not likely to inspire your competitors to emulate your actions.
A valid point. M$ doesn't like playing by the rules anyway. Why should they if no one is forcing them to? I'm as big a Netscape supporter as there is, but if it weren't for the fact that IE causes my computer to lock up when I have the unmitigated gall to, say, view a webpage, I would have dumped Navigator 4.x some time ago. C'mon Mozilla . . .

Thursday, July 20, 2000

OpenUT Site Update

Linux Games is reporting that the OpenUT site, the open-source Unreal Tournament site, has been updated with some new features:The OpenUT site is a great place to start if you are trying to run Unreal Tournament under Linux. You also, of course, could check out my article on installing UT under Linux. *shameless plug*

Spam == Illegal (Soon)

The U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill which will hopefully curb the tide of spam flooding into my mailbox. Here's the full word from Beta News, so I could show off my cutting and pasting skillz:
The United States House of Representatives nearly unanimously voted yesterday [July 18] to pass H.R. 3113, which bans unsolicited e-mails lest the spammer provide a return address which the consumer can use to opt-out of said mailings. In a 427 to 1 vote, the United States has finally made the move to stop the mass mailings and spamming currently polluting mail servers and inboxes everywhere. Keep checking back as the bill continues through the process.
According to a follow-up post, the one dissenting vote was cast by Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas). I think we can find it in our hearts to donate all of our spam to his mailbox. It figures that the House would wait until an election year to do something sane :)

More NVIDIA Manipulation

Kyle at HardOCP has added to his commentary on NVIDIA's strong-arm tactics with certain websites. I guess the solution for some of the smaller hardware websites is this: just don't accept freebie hardware. Maybe you won't be able to offer the same kind of content that HardOCP, AnandTech, or Tom's can, but you don't have to worry about pressure. If you are accepting free hardware (or software, or whatever) you have to expect some of this. That doesn't make it right, but you would have to be pretty naive to think its not going to happen. Thanks Shugashack.

ASUS Cheating Drivers: Update

Riva 3D contacted ASUS for clarification on their "cheating drivers" that were exposed by Riva Station yesterday (story). Here's the summary of their conversation:
  1. The Transparency Drivers are a feature that ASUS has been exploring.
  2. ASUS does not intend these drivers to enable cheating in games, but to take advantage of new technology and show the capabilities of the technology.
  3. If the drivers are released (and that's not a definite thing yet), ASUS may pursue working with developers to ensure that this feature is detectable so that online tournaments, etc., are not affected in any way.
  4. ASUS listens to the feedback, and takes your feelings seriously when considering features for their products. After all, they ARE in the business to succeed... ;)
Can you say "damage control"? I knew you could! #2 is complete and utter B.S., especially when you read ASUS' own press release in yesterday's story! #3 is almost worse because it is ADMITTING that these drivers WILL be used for cheating. Methinks I might have to dig up an ASUS email address so I can vent (logically, of course). Thanks Blue's News.

RA3 Sunday!

crt has announced that if no bugs crop up, Rocket Arena 3 for Quake III Arena will be released this Sunday! The download will be available for Win32 and Linux. The main download will be 50-60M and the soundtrack will be a seperate 60-70M download. Great news! I've been looking forward to this mod since I got Q3A! Thanks Blue.

UPDATE! The Shack posted crt's email announcing RA3's availability.

Pondering the Imponderable

Sigh. I tried to recharge my Rayovac Renewals for the first time and the charger overcharged them so they leaked. Oddly enough, it charged an old set of NiCads just fine. Guess I'll need a replacement. Or I'll just order a truckload of ProCells.

In other Visor news, I downloaded a Scorched (the classic multi-tank game of angles and power) clone called Pocket Scorch. The only problem was that I had to install the Afterburner hack to underclock my Visor, otherwise the game was unplayably fast. The enemy AI seems a little too good at the easier levels, but other than that it's a fun game.

J.t.Qbe comments: Rogelero and I spent way, way too many hours playing Scorched Earth on my old '286. Great multiplayer action. I'm gonna have to get this one!

Since I'm officially in a training class right now, I'm doing my commenting through the Lynx web browser (text only). Cool stuff!

The Master comments: Heh-well, I BUILT The Haus using Lynx on the server. I didn't have X configured at the time. I still use Lynx when testing new features since it's easy to make a change in vi, exit, lynx it, repeat.

Past Two Days' News

Recent Headlines

January 5, 2015: It Returns!
August 10, 2007: SCO SUCKS IT DOWN!
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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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