Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Look ma, I'm on the intarwebs

I don't think there has ever been a picture of me on the internet before, but there is one now!

There was an IGDA Utah chapter meeting a while back. I was one of the "industry outsiders" that was there (and the most outside probably).

Front left side is yours truly. I have a friend (shocking I know) that I talked into going with me. Tim is pictured front right. He is one of them artsy fartsy types, working at Smart Bomb Interactive here in Salt Lake. If you play Snoopy vs. The Red Baron, he worked on that game, and I think the first intro tutorial/hub level is his doing.
I don't remember any of the other's names for sure, so I won't name them, but the guys sitting next to us work for some Disney studio. The guy on the right side in the back seemed to be an "Indie" of some kind. The remaining fellow on the right was the other "outsider", but he's at least done some graphics programming and looking at getting into the industry. The guy taking the pictures is Josh Jones who I think is in charge of our chapter of the IGDA.

Bunch of really nice guys and the food was good. I even made it back in time to run the WoW instance for the evening.

You'll notice that there aren't very many people at this meeting. What gives? Rampant Coyote mentioned an "Indie" meeting a while back that had over 35 people in attendance. Only Josh was at both meetings. The game industry is so broken in so many ways. :(

Verizon Wireless disaster part 3

The third installation in the telling of the huge mistake I made in switching to Verizon Wireless.

Our flight lands in Florida and we catch a shuttle to the car rental place. We sign all the paperwork and pick up the car, inspecting it in the dark because it is late at night. I begin downloading the vzNavigator (A Verizon Wireless GPS navigation system) 30 day demo onto my phone. The download takes less than 5 minutes to complete (I get charged for every last minute rounded up). I punch in the address to the house we'll be staying at and the phone starts providing audible directions. There is also a little map with an arrow pointing the way to go. I'm thinking this is freaking awesome. We won't have to bother with finding street maps and stopping every 2 blocks to ask for directions.
For most of the trip to the house we are instructed to take main freeways. Near the end we are directed into a little subdivision. I'm thinking we're getting close when suddenly I'm facing a dead end. The street just stops. I'm seeing barricades accross my path, then a 5 foot wide mound of grass (Its obvious to me that the street has been a dead end for quite some time, but I no longer think that Verizon would really care about stuff like that.) between me and the road I'm supposed to turn left on. Oh goodie, the map hasn't been updated in a few years in seems, how useful is that?
I U-turn to try to find my own way to that road. Every time I take a path that is not part of the vzNavigator prescribed course, it re-downloads a course correction map for me (costing me more air time and probably roaming since I'm in Florida). After getting tired of hearing it telling me to go back to the dead end a few times I turn the crazy thing off.
After several minutes I eventually find my way to the street I needed to be on and turned the phone's navigator back on. Following it's directions we make it the rest of the way to the house where we wake up the rest of my family so they will unlock the door to let us in.
I used vzNavigator a couple other times on the trip. I used it to find Disney World the first day. One day we were lost on the way back to the house, so we used it to get us back on course, shutting it off again once we were directed toward the dead end street.

I wonder why calling someone who is "In" doesn't cost me, but when calling Verizon Wireless themselves, they stick it to me? Oh I know, it's because my standard of ethics and integrity is way above theirs.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

The more things change...

EBGames/GameStop was determined to not repeat the mistake they made with the XBox 360 launch, with the launch of the PS3 and the Wii. The company this time decided to wait until they knew for sure exactly how many of the consoles they would receive and how many they would be distributing to each store, before allowing pre-order sales.

I've mentioned before that a guy I work with was the last person in line for the PS3 and the first in line for the Wii. All was well with the world...or so he thought. Yesterday he found out that his GameStop does not know how many if any PS3s they are getting. Only 2 employees were allowed to have pre-orders and are now told they won't be getting a PS3. My coworker is now only hoping he gets a PS3 before Christmas, maybe before the end of the year, and certainly not at launch.

How can a company screw this up so many times in the same way? I don't know who to blame, Sony, or GameStop, or both, but someone should be fired over this PS3 thing.

Monday, November 13, 2006

A positive for games.

I'm quite certain that even after reading this, Lieberman, Clinton, Hatch, Matheson, etc. will prove that they have no comprehension skills and continue to attack video games. Why do we continue to elect the dumbest from among the people to public office?

Friday, November 10, 2006

How the election turned out.

Go read this and if you still think any good will come of the next two years, I pity you, and please don't reproduce.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

What are you doing with my money?!?!

Yesterday morning while on her run my wife ran past the same drug dude she's seen on previous days. This guy has drugs, I think my wife mentioned a bag pot. My wife being the concerned citizen she is decided that enough was enough and the guy is consistently around enough that she should do something about it. She called the drug hotline and left them her contact information.

Later that day she got pulled over by a police officer. The officer asked her why she was going to fast, and she didn't have any excuses. The officer lowered the speeding ticket to only 9 miles over.

Anyone who knows me knows how much I hate our pathetic excuse for law enforcement. They'll sit all day at a speed trap, but when our car is broken into (along with 5 others that night) and we ask what they are going to do about it, they're response was "We aren't going to finger print or anything, this isn't CSI Salt Lake."

Meanwhile, my wife still has not been contacted by the drug hotline. Apparently it's more important to generate more revenue through speeding tickets than make a simple phone call that will pull one more drug dealer out of our neighborhood.

"Protect and to serve" My ass!