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February 12, 2010

On the daddening of video games

As our generation matures, so do our pursuits. The Daddening Of Video Games - Love week - Kotaku
I can buy video game's depiction of intergalactic war, sure. Gaming portrayals of romance are a tougher sell. But there's another kind of love that's suddenly popular in games and is being done well: The love of being a dad. . . . Being a dad, however, is becoming nearly as popular in video games as health bars and shotguns and, to my playing sensibilities, nearly as successful. I believe we are now experiencing a period of video game history that high school text books will look back upon as The Daddening Of Video Games. For years, video game dads have not been us. They've primarily been non-playable characters. More specifically, they've been your dad. Your dad who is dying and hopes you can pick up his sword and fight. Your dad who is evil and is hoping you won't pick up a sword and fight. There have been glimpses of what it would be like to be a dad in video games — you were Pac-Man, after all, and therefore possibly the father of Pac-Man Jr., with all the concerns that entails? — but usually dad was some other guy. And seldom, at least in the hundreds of games I played, was I a video game dad. I was the son. I was Marcus Fenix, bold son. I was anonymous Fallout 3 hero, heroic son searching for dad. I was Solid Snake, son of someone or other, though I was often confused as to who dad actually was. . . . This week we get Bioshock 2, where you are, as the box art shows and as our review explained, a Big Daddy, trying to reacquaint yourself with the Little Sister who was put in the series' paternal Big Daddying care. You know, Big Daddys protect the Little Sisters, let them cling to their backs, etc. This week we'll also be running a review of Heavy Rain, a game I previously noted in a preview, offers an early gameplay moment of — get this — having to choose which of your two sons you're going to play with first in the backyard. These are the kinds of choices hero father Ethan Mars must face. In all three of the above cases, trust me, there are a lot of dad issues in the game. In fact, being a good dad proves to be a major theme in all three, as far as I've played in each game (which is a lot).

How To: Make Valentine's Tentacles

How to make (Valentines) Tentacles

February 11, 2010

Steak Hacks! Make steak awesome with salt

I'm going to try this technique with tofu. We'll see how it goes. Steak: How to Turn Cheap “Choice” Steak into Gucci “Prime” Steak — Recipes Steamy Kitchen

New game marries Guitar Hero to zombie killing

Wii to fret over 'Rock of the Dead' And it looks pretty sweet. "Rock of the Dead" also features the voices of Neil Patrick Harris and Felicia Day.

February 10, 2010

Closing LORAN: Pennywise and pound-foolish?

World War II-era navigation system shut down - CNN.com
Good night, Loran. In a series of small ceremonies, the U.S. Coast Guard on Monday shut down Loran-C, a navigation and timing system that has guided mariners and aviators since World War II. The death blow came last May when President Obama called the system obsolete, saying it is no longer needed in an age in which Global Positioning System devices are nearly ubiquitous in cars, planes and boats. Killing Loran-C will save the government $190 million over five years, Obama said. But supporters of Loran -- including the man known as "the father of GPS" -- say the nation's increasing reliance on GPS paradoxically has increased the importance of maintaining Loran as a backup. ... GPS is based on a constellation of at least 25 satellites; Loran is based on 24 ground stations in the United States, and others elsewhere. GPS transmits a very faint signal and is vulnerable to interference or jamming; Loran has a high-power signal which can penetrate obstacles like foliage and is harder to interrupt. GPS is powered by solar panels; Loran is tied to ground power. And while GPS operates in outer space, outside of controlled perimeters, Loran operates inside controlled perimeters in the United States. The vulnerability of GPS and the consequences of an outage became evident in 2007 during a Navy training exercise in the Port of San Diego, California. Participants unintentionally jammed GPS signals in the region, shutting down satellite navigation and cell phone service up to 10 miles inland for three hours.

February 09, 2010

A diagram of the real-world costs of losing a ship in EVE online

Diagram shows real-world cost of losing ships in EVE Online - Massively *Thanks, Jeff*