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Rock Band patch turns the awesome up to 11

Rock Band Music Store: Rock Band Gets In-Game Music Store

In brief, here is what is coming:

* An in-game music store where one can preview songs, buy songs and whole albums, view artwork and see the difficulty of a track before you buy it.

* Expanded fan caps (the Rock band equivalent of xp) so that peopel who are stuck at Easy or Medium difficulty can see more of the game.

* More song options pervenue, so those of us who kind of suck can play more than 15 songs at the easy stages.

* Improved phoneme recognition so you can't just hum your way through the hard songs.

* "Random" song list improved. Hopefully this means our band (The Expatriates) will get hit with far fewer Rush and Iron Maiden songs.

Also, they've sold over 6 MILLION song downloads since Thanksgiving. That's huge. The patch is downloading today.

March 19, 2008

No Starch Press offering free books on bittorrent

No Starch Press Giving Away Books For Free On BitTorrent | Laughing Squid

San Francisco publisher No Starch Press has stared experimenting with giving away their books for free on BitTorrent via The Pirate Bay. Today they have seeded two of the popular titles that they publish, “Cult of Mac” (torrent) and “Cult of iPod” (torrent), both by Leander Kahney of Wired. No Starch Press founder William Pollock has posted about why he’s testing out this unique form of book distribution.

We’ll be watching to see if making the electronic versions of these books available for free has any effect whatsoever on book sales. And if there is some noticeable effect whether it’s a positive one. I hope so because I think P2P can be a very good and powerful too.

In today’s electronic world we can choose to fight a losing battle with DRM, or we can take a counter-intuitive approach and turn things on their head.

March 18, 2008

The coming wireless revolution: WiMax, internet tablets

How a WiMax iPod Touch could be a non-AT&T iPhone...

March 16, 2008

Demonoid has returned

Demonoid Tracker Moves to Ukraine | TorrentFreak

Now, a month later, the Demonoid tracker is again responding. Just over a week ago, Demonoid torrents began to work again, this time being tracked from Ukraine.

The new host of inferno.demonoid.com is the Ukrainian ISP Cocall Ltd, while the frontend of the site still remains in the US. Again, there is no official explanation for the return of the tracker, although many hope that it’s a sign that the site will be fully up and running soon.

Last December, Demonoid’s founder Deimos spoke about the future of the site: “Money is an issue, but the real problem at the moment is finding a suitable place to host the website. There has been no luck there.” Perhaps he now found his safe harbor in Ukraine?

March 12, 2008

How not to look like a newbie in Second Life: Walk a New Walk

Stop looking like a newbie: Step 3 - Get a new walk -- virtually living - a second life blog

I finally picked up a new computer and can now run much more graphically intensive applications. Apps like Second Life. I've begun to dabble and explore. But I look like a monster made of wax and I walk like a dog being held upright--sure signs of newbieness.

You might be looking less like a lump of Linden clay now, but you need to stop walking like a duck if you want to look like a seasoned Second Lifer. To get a new walk, the best thing to do is to buy an ANIMATION OVERRIDE, or AO for short. An AO will usually override the default walk, sit, stand and fly animations that come pre-loaded with Second Life. Below, I also describe another way to get a new walk, but an AO is the best imo.

To find an AO, search in the same way you did for your shape & skin. You might need to look for “animation” instead of AO if you want the widest results. The quality and price of AOs ranges widely, from about $150 - $900. AOs at the cheaper end often only include a walk override, and maybe one or two standing poses. More expensive AOs can include a variety of different walks, jumps, animated standing poses that appear to shift their weight/fidget, as well as swimming animations, different stages of flying, hovering and more. You generally get what you pay for, but watch out: some AOs have been created by amateur developers, who haven’t coded things in the best way.