April 2006 Entries
Jeff Atwood writes about making software “considerate,” which lists thirteen different attributes of considerate software. It’s a nice read. In the post, he writes that considerate software:
1. takes an interest
2. is deferential
3. uses common sense
4. is forthcoming
5. anticipates needs
6. is conscientious
7. doesn’t burden you with its personal problems
8. keeps you informed
9. is perceptive
10. is self-confident
11. doesn’t ask a lot of questions
12. takes responsibility
13. knows when to bend the rules
I have some favorites in there, and most of them hit a note with me because of something project related. The idea of a UI not burdening you with it's personal problems is logical, but I've never heard it phrased that way before - the analogy...
As a longtime heavy multi monitor person, I've always been a bit annoyed at the lack of gaming support. It seems that Matrox has just released a device called Matrox TripleHead2Go to help address that (and to make them piles of cash too of course). Apparently WoW support is coming in the near future, and Oblivion supports it right out of the box.
Ned Batchelder writes about QA, and how it isn't really 'quality assurance' at all.
I'm not sure how the role of Quality Assurance got its name. It's not right.
Don't get me wrong: I love QA. I think it is an important role. But you're doing it wrong if you think you are improving quality. It should be named Reality Check, or just Testing, or something like that.
Someone out there needs to get jiggy with some remix action on the last 3-4 Tool albums. The original versions are all great as soundscapes, as a 60minute journey which mixes ambient background meandering with spurts of hard rock. But sometimes in this ADHD MTV Generation X (insert as many more catchphrases as you want in here) world, I just wanna listen to some fucking guitars for 20 minutes end to end without having to put up with 40 minutes of vauge rumbling static mixed throughout it.
Do I ask for too much?
It's funny because it's true.
On an unrelated note, Gabe talking about his Macbook's performance running WoW in Windows via Bootcamp makes for an interesting read. I kind of figured that Bootcamp was going to get everything up and running but at a performance cost somewhere for whatever reason. The fact that (in the MacBook anyway, no idea about the mini) the opposite is true is quite insane.
Hidden Media is basically a PC "disguised" as furniture, obviously a good thing for media PCs (although there are some great looking hi fi style cases out there). I found the most ironic bit at the end of the article when the 'case' is photographed in situ, and you see how utterly crappy the rest of his furniture is. Wow, am I a furniture snob?
Personally, I prefer my approach - I disguise my computers by putting them in a rack and filling it with neon. It's so close to looking like a fridge (hey hang on, is that an idea...
I find some of the Lifehacker content a bit hit and miss, however occasionally they post something which makes it worth keeping on my RSS list.
The Keyboard shortcuts roundup post is one of those. Granted it's all stuff you could probably find elsewhere with some googling, but here, someones done it for you. The Windows ones are pretty weak, if you don't know most of these then you probably have a piece of fruit showing somewhere on your computer, but the Firefox list is pretty nice (especially nice as I was googling to try and find the way to give...
NVIDIA GeForce 7900 GX2 1GB Quad SLI
CAPCOM® ANNOUNCES STREET FIGHTER® II’ HYPER FIGHTING FOR XBOX LIVE® ARCADE ON XBOX 360™
Google Calendar is pretty much what it's name suggests. A Calendar, from Google.
Simplify. Organize. (And relax.) Organizing your schedule shouldn’t be a burden. That’s why we’ve created Google Calendar - our free online shareable calendar service. With Google Calendar, it’s easy to keep track of all your life’s important events - birthdays, reunions, little league games, doctor’s appointments - all in one place.
Using Google Calendar, you can add events and invitations effortlessly, share with friends and family (or keep things to yourself), and search across the web for events you might enjoy. It’s organizing made easy.
Google Calendar released
Have any of you heard of any strange geographical restrictions that have recently been placed on Xbox live?
I used to be able to play co-op GRAW with a friend, and now it seems neither of us can join each others games via invite. Also when we host public games, and search by criteria, they don't show up. Each of us can join other games easily, and we can host games which other random people join. I smell a rat somewhere.
AA Maps is a great site providing street maps and directions for New Zealand. It uses similar technology to Google Earth, and it's incredibly easy to use.
There's a few neat things in there, such as the way they handle multiple search results as markers on the map, and the type ahead narrowing selections in their text boxes. All in all, very cool, and free too.
As the title says, another year on.. yay me!
There's a current posting on EdBrill.com about some statements made by Microsoft about Notes, and it's future (which as they implied, was the scrapheap). Interestingly, it all starts off from an an article in Computerworld New Zealand.
After reading both sides of the story, it comes across as a bit of a "he said she said" argument. What I find interesting is that Microsoft picked up on a time when IBM's message on Notes wasn't very clear, and did everything they could to use that to their advantage. IBM can say what it likes, and defend it's current message until it's...
Ghost Recon (aka G.R.A.W) on the 360 was hailed as possibly "the best game on the 360 yet". Obviously at the time, there weren't really many titles out, so that claim wasn't all that amazing really, however the game is very impressive. The campaign mode is a lot fun (although frustrating in parts, especially when you're limping through a level with low health and it suddenly decides you've reached a checkpoint and autosaves, meaning you have to complete the next set of objectives starting with low health), and the multiplayer looks pretty impressive too - especially the co-op. It ends...
Paul of www.knucklesandwich.co.nz emailed me to point out I'd managed to miss the link to the Quicktime standalone installer, and he's completely right - I checked again, and it's right there.
It is _semi_ hard to find, but still, it does exist - I'm blaming the 1am Monday morning insomnia for my discrestion, and apologise to Apple ;)
Don't force me to install iTunes just because I want Quicktime. Making me download a 40mb file with both combined, and then making me install both, so I have to uninstall iTunes at the end of it is just awkward and annoying. Yes, I realise you think you have a better product, but until you address my 2-3 final gripes with it I'll be sticking with Winamp.
It all comes across as a bit arrogant really. I thought Apple were supposed to be better than this?