Sunday, July 20, 2008
Thursday, August 16, 2007
It was also my birthday last weekend, and I was lucky enough to get several 360 games from H (DiRT & Forza 2 - yeah baby!), and I got a new laptop from my family!
In addition to that, I've also purchased some Hosting, so it'll be all change from here. I'm currently re-modelling this page and it will be migrated over to my new host, along with several other sites which have been hosted elsewhere.
Time to merge everything, and store it in one place.
I'm not sure if many people do read this page, but if you are reading it, I will be back soon, hopefully with some quality content.
Thank you very much, good night.
Thursday, July 12, 2007
I'm sure I've touched on Flock on my blog before. It's a modern browser built upon Firefox, but includes a ton of 'social' features. You can write blog posts from the GUI, you can view someone's flickr feed, or drag pages / pictures onto 'your shelf' which would save them for later..
I last checked out Flock at version 0.7. Its yet to reach v1 but it looked promising, however, I rely on a few Firefox add-ons to allow me to do my web-design work, and most of these add-ons would not work with flock, so I stuck with firefox until Flock progressed.
So I was naturally interested when I read on the flock blog that version 0.9 had been released. Not seeing 0.8, i was expecting a few major features to be included. I wasn't wrong.
The one thing I immediately noticed was the interface. It honestly looks like something AOL would produce. It looks far to cluttered and messy. It looks like they've tried to fit a button for every feature within the interface.
I liked flock's previous interface. It was clean, it was uncluttered. It just worked. This time though, I was immediately turned off.
However, most of the features were still there. I noticed the flickr feed (or media stream) as it's now known. That also covers YouTube too!
Flock also allows you to create blog posts within the browser.. Neat trick that! But i like Windows Live Writer, even though it takes an age to load!! Grr
Flock also includes an uploader, which uploads images somewhere. Not too sure where though as it says i need a photo account, which i have no need for. Meh!
Im glad the Shelf is there. Although it's now called 'Web Clipboard' (What's with renaming everything flock!?)
Rss Feeds seem to work nicely, but im happy with bloglines. Work's a treat that!
The other big thing with Flock 0.9 is 'My World'. A page which displays a yahoo search bar, some new bits of news from the RSS feeds, and a list of the most recent favourites added... It also shows thumbnails from your favorite media that you've starred. Handy i guess.
All in all, im quite disappointed with the way Flock has turned out. I'm not sure what's gone on with the UI but it seems very very messy and off-putting! I'll still keep an eye on Flock, to see how it progresses but I'll stick with Firefox.
Check out www.flock.com for more info!
I logged into my Gmail this morning to find an email titled 'Your Xbox Console'... This is what it said...
Your Xbox Video Game system has been shipped! You can expect to receive it in 2-5 days. Thank you for your patience and get ready to get back into the action!
Oh man, I gotta wait some more? D'oh!
If that's not enough, the E3 coverage is coming thick and fast, and I've learnt that 'Sonic the Hedgehog' (teh original!!?!) is out now on the marketplace (complete with HD & achievements ftw!! I remember standing in my local games shop looking at the box wishing I had a Sega Mega-Drive (Genesis to the stateside readers!). 400MS points ain't too bad either!
I've just gotta wait '2-5' days for the box to turn up, and I hope it still has the faceplate I forgot to remove =\ eeep!
Tuesday, July 10, 2007
I don't know about you, but when I find a site I want to visit again in Firefox, instead of adding it to my bookmarks (or tagging it on del.icio.us), I simply drag it onto my 'bookmarks toolbar'. I like my links to be on hand. I want to hit a button and go. i don't want to hit a button, wait for the bookmarks toolbar to appear, and then have to hunt through my bookmarks looking for the site I want to visit. It'd be quicker to Google it!
This is all well and good but what happens when your bookmarks toolbar fills up? Well you get those stupid little arrows at the end, which defies the point as you may as well use the bookmarks in the first place!
I Recently ran out of room at work, and then stumbled on a little trick which I'm going to share. Several of my links on my toolbar had long names, for example, the 'French Sports Club - Forum'. I could abbreviate that down to 'FSC' by right-clicking > Properties and renaming the link. OR, because it uses a favicon which is recognisable to me, I could remove the text altogether and just leave the favicon on my toolbar!
But, I soon realised that not all the links had favicons which transferred to the toolbar. For example. Facebook has a favicon. visit facebook.com and notice the white 'f' on a blue background next to the address in the address bar. That's great, but once you drag it onto your toolbar, the 'f' disappears! All that's left is a standard white rectangle which resembles a page. So what do we do with these links?
We download & Install 'Favicon Picker 2' Which allows you to specify favicons for each link from icons or images on your hard drive!
But how do you get the favicons on your hard drive. Well visit this page, enter the URL in the box, and it will soon display the favicon for the site. Right click & save the image.
Once you've done that, find the link you want to add the favicon to, right-click > properties. You'll now see a new area for the favicon. Browse to the .ico file you saved earlier and click ok! Now you've added the favicon, get rid of the text and free up a bundle of room on your toolbar!
I hope that helps you! If it does, let us know :)
Tuesday, July 03, 2007
The last 2 or 3 weeks have been so full of highs and lows, it's unbelievable. To start,
14th June (up)
My friend Jimmy & his wife (Alex) had their blessing on the 14th June.
15th June (down)
Helena & I went round to Jimmy & Alex's place to see him. That was incredibly emotional. I hadn't seen Jimmy in ages and nothing could have prepared me for what I saw. Cancer really is a horrendous disease. It still couldn't beat his fantastic sense of humour though!
16th June (up)
Helena & I jetted off on our first holiday abroad. We boarded our plane at Gatwick, and flew to Palma airport, Majorca. We hired a car, and drove right across the Island to C'an Picafort, where we stayed for a week. It was nice, very hot! Nice beach, and nice people, especially at the No.1 Bar! on Avda Josep Trias!!
17th June (down)
Jimmy sadly passed away - RIP pal, you'll never be forgotten x
22nd June (up)
At around 8pm in the evening, whilst laying on a sun-lounger on the beach in Majorca, resting in the cool breeze, I got onto one knee, and asked my beautiful girlfriend if she'd give me the honour of being my wife... She said YES! Helena has made me such a happy man over the last 4 and a half years, and things are only going to get better! Thank you angel! Here's to the rest of our lives :)
23rd June (down)
Had to fly home from Majorca. Had 7 beautiful days of sunshine. Got back to Gatwick. It was cold, it was raining and it was dark :(
24th June (up & down)
(up) Went ring shopping with Helena, and found a nice platinum ring with a diamond on top! Will add pictures soon!
(down) Got home, fancied a game of Worms on the 360 and got the Red Ring of Death! (RROD) So unfortunately, the 360 has gone BACK to Microsoft for a second time. Not happy!
25th June (down)
back to work. need I say more?
27th June (down)
Today was Jimmy's funeral. A very sad day :(
30th June (up)
Today was my cousins wedding. Congratulations to Stephen & Amie who had a wonderful wedding. Shame about the weather. It's meant to be the summer, and it spent the whole day raining! Luckily there was a marquee to keep everyone dry :)
So that's a recap of the last 2 weeks! I feel mentally exhausted, and to top it off, I've had a cold for the last couple of days and that's really not made things better!
So that's another 360 that's been sent back to Microsoft. I'll now be on my third Xbox in 10 months. That's quite poor really.
I originally got my Xbox 360 for my birthday last year, August 2006. It worked perfectly out of the box, and has done up until February time where it started freezing randomly but rarely.
Then in May, enough was enough. I sent the box back to Microsoft as it was just not working properly. 90% of the time, it'd crash within 15 minutes of playing. That was real annoying. So on the 3rd May, I sent my Xbox back to MS for repair under warranty.
On the 15th May, almost 2 weeks later, it returned, and I was ecstatic! I couldn't wait to get home and play... worms! Yeah, I'm hooked.
The little note that was in the box with my Xbox said that the motherboard had been found to be faulty and had been replaced! How nice :)
I had that Xbox for 5 weeks before it went screwy again. On the 24th June, the day after returning from holiday, I powered up Worms (last level!) and within 5 minutes, the Xbox froze. D' oh!
I Reset the Xbox, walked back to my sofa, sat down and stared in disbelief as my screen was black, and my Xbox was flashing it's 'Red Ring of Death' at me! Noooo!
So another phone-call to MS revealed another UPS label & another hunt for a box to send away. I was also informed that I'd be waiting 20(ish) days. I sent it Last Monday, which was the 25th May. It was picked up by UPS. And as far as i'm aware, that should be a quick delivery to 'Havant' Where the broken boxes go.
Alas, on Friday, 5 day's after sending the box, i receive an e-mail saying that they had received it. Maybe it's not in Havant after all.
So now I'm stuck, with no Xbox360. I plugged in my PS2 to try and get some gaming in over the weekend. I went through several games, and all where rubbish! The only one which held my concentration for more than 20 minutes was GTA:San Andreas, and even that got boring (which worries me about GTA IV!). I've got several games on my original xbox which i could play, but it's hassle setting it up! And my desktop PC is nowhere near any good for PC Gaming.
So I figure i need some next-gen gaming. What are my choices? The 360 (obv). The PS3 & the Wii. I've played the Wii, and I can pretty much agree with Matt Brett that the Wii is quite poor. I've got no interest in the PS3 as the games seem rather poor (maybe they'll get better?). Which leaves me with the 360.
Hmm. Many people are reporting an error rate of 30%. So far for me, it's a big fat 100% error rate. Yet, my brothers 360 is a launch box, and that's had no trouble!
How can i stick with a fantastic system (360) but crap hardware? I've kind of lost all faith in the Microsoft hardware. I'm pretty certain that my 360 will be going back to MS a few more times, and I'm certainly not willing to pay £80 to get it fixed each and every time!!
Why aren't Microsoft addressing the problems though? So many people have reported the problems regarding heat. From what I've read (i forget where), the heat ends up warping the motherboard which in-turn, breaks the connections and this creates a fault. There's also stories of MS installing newer more efficient heat-sinks into newly repaired 360's to curb the problem!
Let's hope that this new heat-sink idea works and my 360 doesn't have to return to "Havant" (read: Prague).
Rant over. meh