The Haus

Friday, October 20, 2000

Stupid VIC-20 Tricks

A group of folks on a website called GeekHaus (nice name, guys!) decided to see if they could do the nearly unthinkable: browse the web with a Commodore VIC-20. They had to cheat a bit, but they actually got it to work! The VIC was my first computer--that's the machine on which I became a hacker. I even learned some 6502 assembly language! Ahh, memories. I kind of wish I still had that old box. Thanks Slashdot.

10/28: Q3F Beta 1F

The Shugashack is reporting that the new beta 1F version of Quake III Fortress mod (a Team Fortress clone for Q3A) on Saturday, October 28. They even posted a bunch of new screenshots for your perusal.

Half-Life Info

Blue's News got wind of the changes forthcoming in the Half-Life patch. The patch is due next week. Here's the scoop:
Half-life will be released early next week. The update contains three new Team Fortress scenarios, adjustments on two TF classes, in addition to a variety of new features and fixes.

New TF Scenarios:

Avanti challenges the offensive team to advance their flag to three successive capture points and conclude their run in the village cathedral, while the defense attempts to stall their efforts until time runs off the clock. The scenario takes place on the streets of an Italian village, with a wide variety of open spaces combined with tight corners and sniping positions.

Flag Run
Flag Run requires cooperative teamplay as some units attempt to retrieve their flags from the enemy's base while other units ward off the opposing team's attempts to the same. The scenario includes large, wide-open spaces in the center of the map with intricate base structures on either end.

Like Flag Run, Casbah challenges the opposing teams to guard and defend captured flags as they fight to retrieve their flags from enemy territory. Designed by Dave Johnston (cs_cbble, de_dust), Casbah promotes extremely fast-paced battles that can realize sharp momentum changes in no time at all.

New features and fixes include:

ToddH .plan Update

id CEO Todd Hollenshead updated his .plan with information on id's engine licensing policy and the status of the 1.25 patch for Quake III Arena:
If you're a professional or amateur game development team, you should take a look at this. It's a reference document for our technology licensing program and contains a ton of information.

1.25 info: We won't be able to finalize the 1.25 release this week, but we'll try and see if we can get it wrapped up next week. There are few remaining issues to fix and test.
In the engine licensing information, I had to laugh at the jab they took at Monolith:
And you won't have to worry about being a one-liner in one of our press releases touting our licensing prowess: we don't do engine licensing press announcements unless you want one.
. . .
The engine architect, John Carmack, is an owner of the company, so licensees don't have to worry about the technical backbone departing the company and leaving the licensees in the lurch.

Hero Worship

This afternoon I got to meet the one, the only living legend Ray Bradbury, author of The Martian Chronicles (first science fiction book I ever read), Dandelion Wine, and many more. He was speaking at a library opening in St. Cloud, Minnesota, so I took the whole family. We managed to be second in line for autographs and I got a copy of The Martian Chronicles signed for my son to read when he gets older. A once in a lifetime experience!

UT in Linux

I've been fiddling around with Unreal Tournament and Linux lately using Loki's 428 binary and 428a patch. It works surprisingly well on my system. There are a couple of pauses in gameplay occasionally that are very annoying (not sure what's causing that), but it's not a huge issue. I also downloaded UmodPack, the open-source umod installer. Once I got all the necessary Perl additions, it installed the Digital Extremes mutators and the UT Bonus Pack with no trouble at all. Much nicer than the older, flaky version.

NVIDIA Rumor Mill

Blue found two articles with rumors about NVIDIA buying up the competition. The first is that NVIDIA might buy 3dfx (I think they might have enough change in the couch cushions at NVIDIA to buy 3dfx) and the second is that NVIDIA might buy ATi (RealPlayer required). I'll believe either one when I see it. Neither would surprise me, but I think that either one would be bad for the 3D video market. Less competition is A Bad Thing.

UPDATE! says they have information refuting these claims. The first was clearly a claim from an analyst and little more, the second was from an introduction to a story about NVIDIA taking over ATi's market share. While these are interesting rumors, I think anyone with any understanding would have considered them to be little more than hearsay or innuendo. Then again, maybe I'm overestimating people.

Thursday, October 19, 2000

Who Let the Kitties Out?

My Motor City Kitties (aka the Detroit Lions) march down to Tampa and go home with a 28-14 victory in a classic Black-and-Blue division smashmouth football game. I've never been more thrilled to be 0-1 in my weekly NFL picks. Hopefully the week-and-a-half off will be enough for Charlie Batch to recover from the pummelling he took from the Bucs D-line.

Q3A: Dreamcast vs. PC

The Shugashack has a series of news items (here, here, and here) on whether or not PC users will be able to play Quake III: Arena online against Dreamcast users. It seems like PC users will have to wait until early next year when the Dreamcast-ified versions of the Q3A maps are released.

I guess it isn't a big surprise that it's going to take so long. The Dreamcast maps had to be chopped down so much because of the console's more limited resources. Such an endeavor can't be a high priority for id, since it interests very few people and will make them little money.

Intel: RAMBUS = Mistake

The Financial Times is quoting Intel chief exec, Craig Barrett, as saying that Intel's alliance with RAMBUS was a "mistake". Here's my favorite quote from the article:
Intel became disgruntled with the company's [RAMBUS's] strategy. "We hoped we were partners with a company that would concentrate on technology innovation rather than seeking to collect a toll from other companies," Mr Barrett said.
Intel now is turning its attention to DDR RAM instead. Here's to hoping that this shift in focus makes RAMBUS go down the tubes. Thanks Shugashack.

NFL: Week #8

While I'm thinking about it, I hope I'm wrong but I'm picking the Bucs to beat the Lions on tonight. I'll get to my other picks later today or later this week.

The Master comments: Eeyore has picked the Bucs as well. Now to see how week 8 works out :-)

Past Two Days' News

Recent Headlines

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