AOL Translater, Madonna's sucky 'American Life', Lawyers suck, Accessibility = Usability, KOTOR beat, John Woo's Paycheck, Tivo and Netflix

by Mike Shea on 12 August 2003

Perfect for EQers wishing to go to the other side, the AOL translator seems to work very very well.

I picked up Madonna's American Life CD. Overall it is lousy, self loathing, self absorbed crap but track 10, Die Another Day, is excellent. I find all sorts of new EQ stories popping into my head and even a video version of my favorite two stories Darkness and Light.

This article describes how lawyers kill people with their asumption that everyone is an idiot. Personal responsibility has disappeared in our country. We need lions running around the streets eating drinkers of fancy $5 fufu coffees to remind us that life can be hard. The lawyers are the problem. Everything from the destruction of the best thing to happen to music since stereo to the completely asinine movie rating system can be attributed to lawyers who care for nothing but their own fat wallets.

This article about Good Grips kitchen wares had a great line we should all remember. "Good designs for the disabled can also benefit the normally-abled". The more we pay attention to web accessibility and video games for disabilities the better our sites and games will be for everyone. Games like Everquest would be better for everyone if they simplified the interface. Its about the game, not the controls.

I got slammed with the mblast.exe virus that everyone's been talking about. Microsoft's software really is a joke. They need to open up the code and begin to sell their services instead of being personally responsible for the loss of millions of hours and millions of dollars in productivity.

This review of Doom 3 was one of the more useful I read. This may be the first FPS I play only on a console. Doom 3 on a 55" HDTV and Dolby Digital sound system is THE way to play. Down with buggy expensive virus-filled computers! Horray for consoles!

I finished Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic. It really is one of the best console role playing games since Final Fantasy 7. I must have spent two hours just customizing light sabers. There is an encounter near the last 3 hours of the game that lets you choose to be good or evil. Evil was really really evil. This let me see both the good and bad guy endings with about two extra hours of work. The melee feats are a little out of control. My main soldier / jedi guardian character with two weapon 3, flurry 3, 24 strength, jedi haste 3, and all the weapon skills was so powerful that not one creature stood up to two rounds of combat. I had five attacks a round, almost all of them successfully hitting for about 35 points of damage. No D20 creature has more than 250 hitpoints so I was just ripping through everything. This was poorly balanced. Other than that, the game is a true joy. $200 for an Xbox and $50 for this game is a great deal.

I know that every American movie John Woo has made has sucked except for Face/off but I still got excited when I heard about Paycheck, a sci-fi movie based on a novel by Philip K. Dick of Bladerunner fame. The Paycheck trailer is available.

A good article on the social sides of Tivo and Netflix had me thinking about their comparisons and comparisons to other technologies. Like mp3s, cell phones, DVDs and the Internet, Tivo and Netflix are small changes that have huge bureaucrat ic opponents who would rather we all live in their simple boxes. Music should be fixed on a single medium (CDs, Tapes, Records), movies should be watched on degrading VHS tapes, people should watch prime time TV, people should pay long distance. The fat bureaucrats hate innovation because it threatens them to make or follow those innovations rather than sit in their big leather chairs, pinching their mistresses, drinking their bourbon, smoking their $50 cigars, and living off of the inconvenience of their customers. Companies like Netflix, Tivo, Apple, Cannon, and Sony help push innovation into improving our lives while companies like the RIAA, MPAA, TV Networks, cable companies, and local phone companies try to base their business on the destruction of good technology. Vote with your dollar.

I got with 1990s technology and picked up a Nokia 6800 cell phone. The internet connectivity isn't great but it is useful. This news for a cell phone page has all the news I care about in about 16k of space. Writing pages by the byte is a little more interesting than traditional HTML. A lot of the CSS markup goes away, as do lengthy "title" attributes. Now to figure out how to blog from it.