The Haus

Friday, December 20, 2002

NFL Week #16

Thankfully, Joey Harrington's ticker will be fine, so we Lions fans won't have to commit ritual seppuku. On this, the penultimate week in the NFL season (we hardly knew ye!), here are my picks: Dolphins, 49ers, Eagles, Redskins, Panthers, Titans, Falcons, Saints, Packers, Colts, Chargers, Rams, Browns, Raiders, Patriots, Bucs.

The Master comments: Eeyore's picks: Dolphins, Eagles, 49ers, Packers, Falcons, Saints, Chiefs, Panthers, Redskins, Giants, Titans, Seahawks, Browns, Broncos, Patriots, Steelers.

Proper PNG Support in IE

One of the great frustrations I face as a webmaster is the incomplete PNG support in Internet Explorer, especially with alpha transparency. I know that nobody usually pays attention to these things, but despite that I signed the online petition urging Microsoft to get IE to fully support PNG. PNG allows for transparency without being limited to GIF's 256 colors and draconian licensing. The funny thing is that MS promised full PNG support . . . in IE4! Four years later, still no transparency. There is an ugly scripting hack you can use to get around it, but there's no reason anyone should have to resort to that. If the Mozilla, Netscape, Opera, and Konqueror teams can figure it out, why can't MS?

And while they're at it, they could get around to fully supporting CSS1 and CSS2 too. While I'm dreaming, I'd like a pony.

JK2 for $29

I just saw in the Best Buy flyer (no affiliation, yadda, yadda) that they have Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast on sale for $29.99 through Saturday. If you don't have the game yet, I highly recommend that you take advantage of the sale and get it. It is my nominee for Game of the Year. If you want to know why, read my review.

J.t.Qbe comments: Hmmm, Hun must not have played Morrowind. . .

A.T. Hun comments: No, I didn't, but I'm convinced that it wouldn't have mattered. JK2 is that good--one of the best games I've ever played.

J.t.Qbe comments: No, I know it wouldn't have mattered; I'm just giving you grief. Though I bet you'd like Arx Fatalis if you tried it.

DOOM Archive Reopened

Oops! Forgot to post this one yesterday. John Romero has reopened Lee Killough's DOOM archive. There's all kinds of DOOM goodies here, including early alpha and beta screenshots and demos. It's hard to believe that was almost a decade ago. It's a great site for old fogeys like me to take a trip down memory lane.

Thursday, December 19, 2002

DirectX 9.0 Released

Microsoft has released the DirectX 9.0 End-User Runtime. The usual caveats apply--it cannot be uninstalled. I never upgrade DirectX until I get a game that requires it. By that time, the early adopters have ironed out the inevitable bugs. Thanks Blue's News.

UT2K3 2166 Patch Released

Epic has released the 2166 patch for Unreal Tournament 2003. Demo recording and playback has been added. For the rest of the additions and fixes, check out the changelog. The patch is for the Windows version and weighs in at 12.3M. I assume the patch for the Linux version will be coming soon.

UPDATE! The 2166 patch for the Linux version of UT2K3 is now available as well. Get it through the auto-updater. I know I did!

Pondering the Imponderable

Continuing my series of "Things that have little to do with this website, but I find them funny nonetheless," I present to you Ray Ratto's column on, writing what the judge really should have said about Bond's 73rd home run ball. Anybody who looks for legal precedent in the All-England Summarize Proust competition is OK in my book.

Quick quiz: What was the criterion used to determine the winner of the All-England Summarize Proust competition? The first with the answer wins a free blow to the head!

The Master comments: Okay, I read that at work. I'm quite certain my co-workers think I have lost my mind. But I needed a laugh :-)

I Want My VDSL!

HardOCP linked to an article on How Stuff Works that describes VDSL technology. VDSL uses the fiber optic cables that have been run all over the place to increase the "last mile" bandwidth significantly, to the tune of 52Mbps! The top speed for cable or ADSL is about 8-10Mbps. This service is actually being tested by Qwest. Now THAT'S fast!

The Master comments: Yeah, but it's moot. That kind of last-mile throughput would kill ISPs, since there are nearly no ISPs with that much upstream bandwidth. Throughput in broadband terms almost never has anything to do with last-mile bandwidth.

MP3 Buffer Overrun in Winamp, WinXP

Winamp and Windows XP have some pretty serious buffer overrun problems with MP3s with malformed ID3v2 tags. Both could allow remote code execution. The WinXP version is more troubling, because the file wouldn't have to be played. The directory containing the file would just have to be browsed. Thankfully, there's a new version of Winamp available and a patch from Microsoft to fix those problems. Thanks Slashdot.

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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