Quake Live Beta

I received an unsolicited email a few days ago from id Software requesting that I join their beta program for Quake Live.  I haven’t played Quake since since 1999, but remember playing quite a bit of Quake 3 Arena–especially capture the flag.

In order to beta test, you first create an id Software user account, and then you have to create a second beta tester account just for Quake Live.   Both accounts require you to go through a registration/authentication email loop.

The gameplay is quite good, it feels just like Quake 3 Arena with a number of the original maps available for play.  The most impressive thing is that the game runs smoothly within a browser tab.  You can easily change game settings, including resolution changes on the fly, with a brief loading routine by the app.

Continue reading Quake Live Beta

November Song of the Month

I’m going to try and start identifying songs of the month.  I think that these will be from artists that have released something new, for instance, a new album or perhaps a new remix of an old song.November’s song of the month was released in late October of this year by the Kaiser Chiefs.  This band is totally awesome.  I’ve seen them twice now, and this new album, Off With Their Heads is an absolute must have, must rock out to album.

The song I’ve selected for November 2008 is Never Miss a Beat, which clowns on the disinterested, apathetic youth of today.  The chorus is an early turn-off, repeating, “its cool to know nothing.” but the bridge is what saves the song where vocalist Ricky Wilson begs the listener, “Take a look at the kids on the street, no they never miss a beat.”

Buy Never Miss a Beat from Amazon for 99 cents.  Bonus: Pick up You Want History for more excellence.

A "New Chapter" on Climate Change

Barack Obama recorded a video that was shown today at the Governors’ global climate summit currently taking place in California at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.  I am so happy and proud that my President is pledging these commitments in such a clear and outspoken manner.My favorite part:  

 “…I promise you this: When I am President, any governor who’s willing to promote clean energy will have a partner in the White House. Any company that’s willing to invest in clean energy will have an ally in Washington. And any nation that’s willing to join the cause of combating climate change will have an ally in the United States of America.”     

Video after the jump. Continue reading A "New Chapter" on Climate Change

Strong Conversational Variation via Gmail Yields Interesting Contextual Advertisements

chicken coop poultry houseI was emailing with a friend of mine in an exchange over some travel plans and the coming holiday.  Normally, I block all advertisements in Firefox using Adblock, but I had whitelisted Gmail for some reason recently and so I was seeing the contextual advertising displayed on the right side of the web page.

Since I rarely see advertisements, I hardly ever investigate contextual advertising.  But given the sheer variety of products and services, I had to check out some of these:

Fixing a Broken Badger 5 Plus Insinkerator Garbage Disposal

Badger 5 plus garbage disposal broken help

My Badger 5 Plus garbage disposal seized up a few weeks ago after some mango peels made their way down into the drain. The disposal simply made this humming noise when it was on.  It sounded like the motor was going but the blades were not turning.

At first, I was ambivalent.  “Maybe it will fix itself” I thought.  But it didn’t.  And then the sink stopped draining.  So, I did the horror-movie thing and reached down into the bog of coffee grounds, lettuce and bloated cereal flakes to check if the blades were moving. Continue reading Fixing a Broken Badger 5 Plus Insinkerator Garbage Disposal

My Journey With Barack Obama

Despite my passions for software, live music and clean technology, which I regularly blog about here, I’m privately a civic minded person.  This post serves as a record of the effort I’ve put in for Senator Barack Obama and concludes with an endorsement of the man as our next President of the United States.  The journey begins over two years ago.

Peering into my Gmail history for the keyword ‘obama,’ I can see the first time I talked about him was in a chat session with my friend Ala on 10/16/06 at 10:35 AM PST:

me: goodmorning
Ala: good morning
me: how are you this morning?
Ala: fine, and you?
me: fine.   obama huh?
Ala: made the cover of Time

And that’s how it started.

In November of 2006, I did phone banking in Portland for the Oregon Democrats, and took to the street like a crazy person, holding up my Vote sign on Burnside. About 11 months later, I was living in Boston, starting work on my MBA at Babson College.  Politics are a little more interesting for Democrats on the East coast and by then I was looking to get a bit closer to the candidate, in an email to my brother on 10/19/07 I wrote:

Continue reading My Journey With Barack Obama