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10121  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: September 10, 2008, 06:55:28 PM
If you describe it as what it literally is, technically speaking, "A wimpy, underpowered, Windows XP machine with a cut-height, fixed 1024X600 resolution, soldered RAM and an 89%-of-full-size keyboard encased with smudge-attracting plastic that doesn't ship with a System or XP recovery disc," then all your techie co-workers will look sad, downcast, walk away slumped and leave you alone.  smirk

For my purposes it's fine, battery life wise. I can see where some road warriors, if they get into situations where they don't have some sort of external power supply handy, might fret.

Here's a news bit - a South African company's press release announcing they got AA1 distribution rights there:

They're hoping it'll have wide appeal in the commercial sector, which is their focus.
10122  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: September 10, 2008, 06:50:10 PM
Once he realizes how fast the 3-cell battery drains, the bloom will be off, and then he can sell it to you and get a 6-cell version!  icon_razz Though those are certainly taking their sweet times reaching retail stores.
10123  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: September 10, 2008, 06:46:23 PM
If you want a Bluetooth mouse, just remember to get one of the tiny USB Bluetooth transmitter thingies (some folks have been perturbed it doesn't have Bluetooth built in, so I thought I'd mention that).  icon_smile

Glad ya like it. Welcome to the AA1 Club!  icon_cool
10124  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: LOTRO - State of the game on: September 10, 2008, 01:44:20 PM
I returned already, in spite of my "mean people suck" experiences.  icon_neutral Had a very therapeutic fellowship with a 50 guardian and 41 hunter last night, as we worked through a few quests in Angmar.

The guardian and I exchanged stories about being "told off" by people when we thought a healing buff would be welcome, and we laughed about it. I felt better someone else had just experienced the same thing the other day.  icon_smile

I just pledged to offer no help to non-fellowed players unless they ask for it, even if that's against my usually helpful nature. If they beg for it and give me precious things, maybe I'll consider the offer. I'll be like Montoya in The Princess Bride...
Georien: Offer me money
LOTRO player: Yes
Georien: Power too! Promise that!
LOTRO player: All that I have and more. Please!
Georien: Offer me everything I ask for.
LOTRO player: Anything you want!
Georien: Sorry, chum. I can't take a chance you'll get pissed at me about it.
*walks away*
LOTRO player: No! I need a healing buff! Now I need a rez! Come back!
Apologies to William Goldman.  icon_razz
10125  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: MS Closes Ensemble on: September 10, 2008, 01:39:47 PM
Microsoft is every bit as committed to PC gaming as a whole, as it was to the MMO market!...

Oops.  Roll Eyes

I imagine the pundits will read it as:
-Microsoft sucks! (not a very original thought icon_razz)
-You can't survive as a PC-game-only developer in today's market (the idea being Halo Wars came too late to "save" them), and pundits will lump this in with Flagship Studios, Iron Lore, Westwood Studios and others though they're clearly all different situations
-If your name isn't Blizzard or Relic, you can't survive as an RTS-only dev in today's market.
-The economy sucks, everybody is suffering, across many different industries, and this is just another illustration

Because pundits must oversimplify everything. 
10126  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: Age of Conan Impressions on: September 10, 2008, 01:25:30 PM had some Funcom interview bits from Dragon*Con (about 3 pages long):

Boobies are still a large part of our philosophy [he really said that, I can't make stuff like that up-blackjack icon_lol]. Mature content, you've got two sides to the Mature coin. You've got blood and boobies, which is Mature content, and then you've got deep meaningful choices Mature content, where you've got to think about what you're choosing in the game, think about the consequences of your actions. A game that asks you to be mature adults.

And from a quest design point of view, we're attempting to put that in the game all the time. We want the quests to be meaningful to you as a player, we want to put you in a position where the choices aren't always easy. And as for boobs and blood, I mean, that's a constant, we'll continue adding that sort of stuff.
Whew, I'm sure that's reassuring to everybody who's been leaving the game.  icon_razz

"If only there were more boobs and blood, I'd still be playing Age of Conan!" is a most common refrain...  Tongue

It mentions various PVP features they're trying to get implemented, so there's that. And acknowledges some problems they've had with their GMs not acting professionally -- which probably comes with how frantically they had to grow their support staff after launch.

And there's this positive nugget:
Q: Are you bringing in any sort of transportation for low-level characters in besides running?
A: That's something that many players have mentioned, that there's too much running. That's something we are aware of, and are doing something about, but I can't give you any specific dates.
Once you have the various death "touch stones" in a zone, you pretty much end up "death teleporting" everywhere until you get a mount. The stones/platforms generally are evenly spaced throughout a zone.

I think the easy solution is just to treat those touchstones as waypoint portal points - as in a Diablo-style game - and then *boom*, low level players can skip tedious running around (unless they really need to see the sights or grind things along the way).
10127  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Ultra-portable discussion thread on: September 09, 2008, 07:49:25 PM
That would void the warranty, which certainly doesn't bother hardware junkies, but for us less hard-cores we'd just like it to come with as large a drive as possible out of the box.  icon_smile

JKOnTheRun (a neat gadgety fan site run by two guys) got a reader tip supposedly about Toshiba showing off a netbook entry of their own (all the typical stuff, including the Atom CPU and 8.9" screen) to university suppliers in a case labeled "Libretto."
10128  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: September 09, 2008, 06:04:04 PM
If you want a painfully detailed review of the Windows XP version (many review links point to the Linux/SSD version still), Brighthand obliges:
10129  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: September 09, 2008, 05:01:18 PM
There were some bits yesterday about a new 3G model going on sale later in Taiwan (no indication yet whether there are North American/Europe plans for it):
Quote from: Gizmodo
The Acer Aspire One will reportedly let you surf the web via an integrated 3G connection as well, but this will come at a $95 premium over the regular Aspire One.

Reports say that Acer was planning for 3G connectivity all along and it's just that they got around to doing it now. The upgraded Acer Aspire One netbook will go on sale this November in Taiwan, but there has been no indication as to when (and if) a 3G-equipped Acer Aspire One will make its way over to the United States and Canada.
10130  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: LOTRO - State of the game on: September 09, 2008, 05:05:59 AM
So I was having fun, and then I apparently made the aggregious mistake of doing a drive-by "buff", I think I put a 12-second Morale boost on some L47 hunter as I walked by. And he started frothing at the mouth, basically, about it halving his exp when someone does that. mad (that smiley about describes his attitude).

Is that really true? And why doesn't the game warn you in some way? I've certainly not seen anything in the skill descriptions that says "oh, never use this unless someone's on your fellowship cause you'll screw them over?" I didn't know if was more upset with this dimwit calling me names, or the game for not giving me the information to avoid inadvertently screwing other players over (I thought I was being a good citizen, nothing more). I'm used to my healer types in other games lobbing the occasional drive-by buff or heal just to be nice (never heard a complaint).

A sour ending to what had been a productive evening. I think I'm going to pull back away from the game for a while. I've started to get that "stay up too late to get one more quest done" feeling, and now the "getting too upset about things in the game" feeling, which was on top of being yelled at for my inability as Guardian to figure out which of two people I was supposed to listen to instructions from, the other night in the Great Barrows instance. I don't think I need this sort of crappy feeling from my games. icon_frown
10131  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: LOTRO - State of the game on: September 09, 2008, 03:08:26 AM
I'm slooowly progressing on my Captain's L45 Implements of War quest, but figuring out some of the mob locations making me nuts.

Hey I saw they added a new graphical character Sig feature there for the forums, which you can use at some other forums (although pic sigs can get really out of hand some places):

The actual avatars for the sig are generic, but it does grab some of your crafting stats from the actual character.

Here's a few of mine for reference... (you can also use a Monster Play character, re the Warg here)

10132  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: September 09, 2008, 02:39:17 AM
The main stumbling blocks:
-AA1 doesn't come with a system restore disc (it has a "recovery image" on a separate partition on the hard drive). You can buy a recovery CD from Acer, but I've read mixed reviews about whether it works well at doing its job (recovery). Lots of brainier types than me are doing recovery image gizmo compilation things (see the fan site forum I mention later, I can't keep track of it all).
-The AA1 has no CD/DVD-ROM drive. So far it seems USB CD/DVD-drives are inconsistent about working properly with the machine, but maybe I'm just reading about Linux version experiences.  icon_confused

For technical questions, you may want to try the fan site forum I hang out at:

There's a brief thread on XP Pro there:

Right now I'd be really hesitant to do anything like an XP Pro upgrade until you're familiar with the machine, and its various eccentricities. It would've been nice if they'd included a proper system recovery disc (or God forbid, a real copy of Windows XP), and if maybe Acer had just gone ahead and offered their own USB CD/DVD-drive that you would know, out of the box, is guaranteed to work with it.
10133  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: LOTRO - State of the game on: September 08, 2008, 09:11:50 PM
Oh yeah, agreed. I think on my first stint I was often telling my Kinship-mates that. That I enjoyed the Epic/storyline stuff so much, but in certain level ranges where you'd have to wait 5-10 levels (realistically) before you could tackle the next epic stuff, I'd fall back into what felt like a rut of harvest this, harvest that, deliver this, deliver that.

Eventually, you can get the hang of grabbing overlapping hunt/harvest quests and reduce some of that tedium, but when you get to do a quest that's interesting and has some drama and suspense that really makes you feel like you're impacting Middle Earth, having to go back to being "Boaramir, King of the Boar Body Parts Harvesters" or "Wormamir, Queen of the Slimy Worm Parts Hoarders," it feels like a let down to me, at times.  disgust icon_razz

I know that realistically the game can't be wall-to-wall Epic/storyline quests. It has to have some form of meat-n-potatoes. I guess I'd just like a little bit more sprinkling of the Epics in the level ranges where you have to wait a good while before you can tackle one again.
10134  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: September 08, 2008, 08:42:00 PM
They do Do price matching on seven other Internet retailers, fwiw:

But that's a lot of hoops to jump through.

It appears to be back in stock at some Micro Center locations btw, but you can only order the Windows versions for in-store pickup, and limited to one per customer.

A lot of locations still don't list it in stock at all, but Columbus, Ohio had 187, and Fairfax, Va. 102 when I just checked. The Houston and Philly locations had a few too.
10135  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: September 08, 2008, 08:25:56 PM
The 6-cell/160GB models are listed on the U.S. Acer site though they don't appear to be available at retail yet.

They are the top four in the list (difference is just color)

Depending on where you check online, they may be hitting the market about the last week of September.
10136  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: LOTRO - State of the game on: September 08, 2008, 03:56:38 PM
It took most of Saturday but I got my mothballed Captain to 45. I'm working on the special L45 quests that reward you with some pretty outstanding stuff, though it requires a certain amount of tedious hunting (nothing groan inducing like "kill 50 blah blah" though).

I'm definitely "re-hooked" at this point. We'll see if I can get her to 50 and be ready for the 50-60 content (I'm assuming there is some, with the level cap being lifted and all) in Moria.
10137  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: September 06, 2008, 03:08:22 PM
There aren't many cases specifically for AA1 yet. A gal at that AA1 fan site found one at a site called CarryMobile. It's a form-fitting leather case, very snazzy ($43.99), and you can use the unit without removing it from it (it actually has perforations in the area where the AA1's one cooling fan is)

Carrymobile Leather Case for Acer Aspire One - Book Type
4 different colors: black, snake-pattern black, brown, bi-color; it seems to indicate only black has been released to this point.

It opens and closes with magnetic studs, and has a few SD card slots built in. Pics:

Notice the perforations...

10138  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: LOTRO - State of the game on: September 06, 2008, 02:51:53 PM
A sour unraveling of a Great Barrows team last night with my new Guardian turned into a surprise, happy reunion with my old, mostly Australian Kinship, when I switched to my 44 Captain. It turned out they were about to tackle the Chapter that I could never get past (where Legolas the NPC aggroes everything in sight  disgust). I got a warm welcome, they were shocked to see me back.  icon_biggrin

With a L50 Guardian on team, and me trying desperately to remember the Captain's hotkeys (even worse, since they added 6-7 new Captain skills that I went ahead and picked up), we got through it.  icon_cool Some pics...

This isn't the "end boss," I used to get excited when my Fellowship would finish it, but it's not The End of the chapter.

Now, if you hadn't played your Captain since late 2007, how would you make sense of all those hotkeys?  icon_confused icon_razz
Below is her hotkey setup:

I'm never comfortable reaching for keys 6-zero on my keyboard, so I tend to throw potions and food there, and assign hotkeys to various letters my left hand can reach easily.

Finally getting to turn it in at the end.  icon_smile
10139  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: September 06, 2008, 12:52:05 AM
Yeah, Canuck, bizarre ain't it?  icon_razz I assume there's a separate "Function" key you press, and then one of those labeled keys to get F5, F6 etc.

OK I think I mentioned eyeing a $25 Init case meant for up to 10" portable DVD players at Best Buy. I picked it up today. It fits this so well, it's like it was made for it without realizing it.  icon_cool It has a second zippered compartment very suitable for the AC Adapter/recharger (and maybe a very slim DVD-ROM drive, but it might be pushing it), and a bulging exterior Velcro-sealed compartment ideal for a cordless mouse and a bit more junk. The other side has a thin Velcro-sealed pocket maybe suitable for documents or manuals. And it comes with an adjustable, padded shoulder strap too.

Here's a few pics (apologies to dialups for this sudden image craziness on my part icon_redface):

Couple top-down views, with and without the vinyl slipcase:

With nothing in the second compartment, it'll only angle back upright (90 degrees). Throw the adapter or some weight in there though and it sags back to the point you might be able to use the unit in it if you needed (albeit probably you'd have cooling concerns long-term).

Adapter fits very nicely in compartment #2.

And the cordless mouse in the unzipped compartment, which has a "bulge" that lets you put fairly bulky things in it:
10140  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: LOTRO - State of the game on: September 05, 2008, 09:41:16 PM
My Guardian's (new to me) up to about 21. I've found that while I really love the shield bashing stuff (animations, sounds etc.), the basic sword whacking leaves me cold. I wish they'd consider some day revamping some of the melee attack sounds a bit. To me, too many basically sound like somebody slapping a book against a desk edge - not very battle-like.  icon_razz

When I was attemping to tank yesterday, I realized just how big a difference AoC's "non clipping" of character models (character models don't pass through each other unless you "crouch-walk" is how I remember it) makes vs. most MMOs having character models that slip right through each other like they're ghosts. With the non-clipping, you can in theory have a "wall" of player tanks that the mobs can't physically pass through.

With character models gliding through each other like ghosts, that option's not there. I'm not saying it's worse, just different. And it took a while for me to remember I couldn't just stop something from reaching a squishy by getting between him/her and the onrushing hordes - well I should've remembered it the first time Goblins ran right through me.  icon_razz
10141  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: September 05, 2008, 08:24:16 PM
Well, you've gotta dig up my images of an AA1 keyboard then.  icon_smile

My only real complaint (and maybe I'd have it on any touchpad laptop period) is I constantly swipe the touchpad by accident while reaching for the spacebar. Which inevitably sends my cursor flying, or some random menu opening. I kind of which they'd had a "thumbstick" or maybe a trackball option. It's only really a bother so far at Panera, where I usually don't have room to my cordless mouse.

And my famous Typing Video  icon_razz

Reminder that it's bouncing all over cause it's in my lap, I couldn't otherwise find a way to set my camera in a suitable location.
10142  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got a Dell Inspiron Mini 9 (Dell's mini-notebook entry) on: September 05, 2008, 07:13:57 PM
Apparently "modability" is one of this netbook's better aspects. Engadget mentioned this jkkmobile item with some images from a Dell service manual on basically dismantiling it:
10143  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Ultra-portable discussion thread on: September 05, 2008, 06:47:29 PM
Saw an interesting bit about Microsoft backing off its hard drive size restrictions in giving permission to laptop makers to use XP instead of Vista. This is perceived as good news in the Netbook category as the manufacturers apparently now can go as big as the 160GB hard drive on the latest Acer Aspire One model, and still use Windows XP (which is friendlier to the relatively wimpy Atom CPU -- and I guess the Via that HP's Mini note uses -- and usual 1GB of RAM on these things).

MS pushed to keep XP for more netbooks
Although the Redmond, Washington-based software firm has so far insisted that systems with hard drives larger than 80GB carry Windows Vista in a bid to drive companies to the newer operating system, it has now allegedly doubled that limit to 160GB, expanding the types of PCs that qualify for the older software.
Of course, my AA1 has a 120GB hard drive, so I don't know about this supposed "rule."  icon_confused

I think HP also decided to start offering an XP version of their Mini Note (Vista was originally the Windows OS option on it).

Now I just wonder when Microsoft is going to wonder, "Hey, what's this netbook/mini-notebook all about? Lets create a netbook Zune!"  icon_razz
10144  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: September 05, 2008, 05:48:34 PM
Oh, no! The Three Amigos has an interloper!  eek

j/k, that's great. Good luck finding one right now. I hope Acer gets their supply situation in order, I'd rather see it sell briskly to people who want it, when they want it, rather than see it become some Nintendo Wii-like, "Everyone wants it, but we never have it in stock" situation.  paranoid
10145  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: September 05, 2008, 05:33:45 PM
I bought that Init case for 10" portable DVD players and it fits the AA1 Perfectly. I don't think it could fit better if it was specifically designed for it.  icon_biggrin

I'll get some photos up this evening when I get home. It has a second zippered compartment that's fairly roomy (perhaps i can fit the AC adapter in there, or a slim DVD-ROM USB unit if I get one), and a velcroed outer compartment. The case lid hinges, with the idea that you could watch a DVD player while keeping it in there; I'm not sure I'd want to keep the AA1 in there when I use it -- the hinge only goes a bit past 90 degrees so it would inhibit you from pivoting the AA1's monitor back much beyond vertical.

It comes with a padded shoulder strap. I call it my "AA1 Man Purse," but I think I could swallow my pride and drag it around with me, but not when I'm wearing high heels.  Fabulous unibrow
10146  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Ultra-portable discussion thread on: September 05, 2008, 04:05:17 PM
I've belatedly noticed the three of us are the only ones who post in these mini-notebook threads. I promise we call ourselves, "The Three Amigos" and work on developing some unique salute, preferably not involving obscene gestures.  icon_lol

I love my AA1, but if Acer did a 10" model with 3G and normal trackpad size/buttons and a 5-6 cell battery, well, I might be open to it. But it might lose its simple charms in the process.
10147  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: September 05, 2008, 04:02:07 PM
I'm surfing from Panera, albeit a bit sluggishly.  icon_razz

I'm surrounded by people with laptops, I think 4 at last count.

This time I just brought it with me in just its slipcase, wrapped in today's newspaper.

I still find myself swiping the touchpad by accident if I leave it enabled (not really enough room on this tiny table for my cordless mouse).

I'm going to make a quick run by Best Buy next door. There's a 10" DVD player case that I think might work with this. I even brought a tape measure with me. biggrin

10148  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: LOTORO Volume 2: Mines of Moria (paid, full-box expansion) on: September 05, 2008, 01:23:11 PM
Turbine set up a new forum devoted strictly to Mines of Moria:

One thing I belatedly noted:

Mines of Moria North American Product Lineup Unveiled

There doesn't actually seem to be an expansion-only box available (just a "digital upgrade," if you only want the expansion). Not necessarily a bad thing. The "complete edition" box includes all LOTRO updates since launch, so if you ever return to the game or have to restore it, it'll save some downloading time - a lot, if yer still on dialup.
10149  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / Re: LOTRO - State of the game on: September 05, 2008, 05:49:56 AM
I've gotten quite re-hooked. I have no informed opinion on its Tolkienesqueness or lack thereof (I'm eminently un-qualified). I did get to join in on a fun full (6) fellowship tonight and we knocked off three group quests in succession. Mostly had a ball.

And I shall inflict screenshots in general...

-I like this little feature that basically lets you place costume pieces on a couple special tabs without needing to have the items in inventory (fully enabled at level 20). Couple glimpses...

I forgot the name of this. Squire something, I wanna say.

Blackjack goes babe-like! A simple dress.

From our rollicking, mostly well-behaved 6-person team. My Guardian's on cusp of 21. I never really played one beyond a few levels, so this whole Tanking thing is all Greek to me here. It's actually liberating to be told "You go aggro everything!"  icon_razz
10150  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: September 05, 2008, 01:22:33 AM
I'm still befuddled by Micro Center's sudden selling out. I checked my earlier post here and they had 169 (!) of the XP version alone in stock when I bought mine, and nobody at the store was showing any interest in it at all. I think they were stunned when I actually asked to buy one.  icon_razz

Oh well. I'm writing this post on mine fwiw, while I watch tonight's NFL game.  icon_smile
10151  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Ultra-portable discussion thread on: September 04, 2008, 09:54:38 PM
This UK site today posted a head-to-head of the Asus EeePC 1000 and MSI Wind. They declined to invite the Acer Aspire One  disgust, dismissing it's "small" keyboard. Dunces.  Tongue Though I think it's fairer to pit 8.9" machines against each other, and 10" machines against each other, anyway. And comparing $599 and $449 machines to a $349 machine might be strange too.

Asus and MSI head to head
The "winner," as it were, might surprise you...
10152  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Local killing spree on: September 04, 2008, 09:43:46 PM
Actually, I work literally one block from where one of the Va.-Md.-DC sniper shootings took place.  paranoid I feel awkward every time I park in that area.

As a longtime newspaper editor/reporter I'm on record as doubting the value of comments on news stories. Most of the ones I see just deteriorate into venemous attacks on other posters' comments, fomenting hatred, and endless arguments.

This happens even when the news story is, "Betty Maple ran a successful lemonade stand to raise money for the Double Amputees Charity."
"Who cares about Betty Maple? Why don't you write about me?"
"Her lemonade sucked! I want my money back!"
"Charities! It's just welfare! People should stand on their own two feet. Er. Stumps!"
"Betty Maple is a skank!"
"Not as much as you are!"
"I'm Betty Maple's brother and I'm so gonna kick all your a**es!"

And so forth. I do good "newspaper comments threads" impressions, no?  disgust  icon_lol

Most are like a Usenet thread or an unmoderated message board, basically. icon_razz The average paper can't afford full time stuff to moderate the stuff or keep an eye on what's posted there (whether serious threats or just basic name-calling).
10153  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Cigars on: September 04, 2008, 09:34:29 PM
I've ordered, and the Stubs should be on their way to him tomorrow.  icon_smile Thanks for the suggestions and insights. I'll certainly return here if the need for cigars arises again.
10154  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: X-Coms available on Steam on: September 04, 2008, 09:14:50 PM
Um, I think you can safely skip Enforcer (X-COM as lame shooter) and Interceptor (X-COM as lame space combat title). That was from the era where the publisher was going to start slapping X-COM onto every game case in the factory.  disgust

Purists would say only the original's worth bothering with. Revisionists would claim "From the Deep" is worth bothering with and even argue about it (which I've done elswhere, and won't do here, so don't try to bait me  icon_lol) even though the Gollop brothers weren't involved, although they'll never make sense out of "throwing hand grenades under water."  saywhat Apocalypse definitely has its fans, not me among them, fwiw. I do respect that the Gollops tried to do something different with it rather than just keep re-doing UFO Defense ad nauseam. But it didn't sell, and probably that's why they got no further opportunities to work on the property, which was a shame.

I'm betting this stuff won't work on Windows Vista 64-bit, but perhaps I can get it working on my Acer Aspire One in some form, if I'm willing to try running Steam off of it. Everybody in Eastern Europe seems to have tried to re-make the game in some way in recent years, but it's like chasing a dream.  icon_neutral

For me the dream for years was the canceled "X-COM: Alliance," which was going to try to turn into a squad-based tactical shooter. I'm sure if released, it would've been another turkey bandying about the X-COM license shamelessly -- but since it didn't, we could turn it into a "might have been" legend instead.  icon_smile

I actually had quite a bit of fun with Hasbro's simplistic "E-mail X-COM" a few years ago. It's a shame they no longer run servers for it. icon_frown

I loved, adored X-COM: UFO Defense in its day (1994). I remember playing a demo off of a British PC magazine at the time (PC Format probably) on my 486SX machine, and it made such an impression on me.
10155  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Anybody got an Acer Aspire One? (yet another mini-notebook) on: September 04, 2008, 08:22:53 PM
Saw this on Reuters:
Acer seeks record notebook PC sales
Acer's PC sales are driven by its new Aspire One low-cost, mini notebook model. The world's third-biggest PC supplier expects sales of Aspire One, which competes with Asustek Computer's (2357.TW: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) Eee PC, to exceed 1 million units in September.
On the second page of the article it adds this bit on its impact on the market in Japan:
Since its August 23 launch in Japan, Aspire One has been the best-selling notebook PC in the nation, outselling all models from top Japanese PC makers such as NEC Corp (6701.T: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) and Fujitsu Ltd (6702.T: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), according to data from research firm BCN.
Go, AA1, go! The little engine that could.  icon_cool icon_biggrin
10156  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Cigars on: September 04, 2008, 07:55:02 PM

Quote from: Drazzil on September 04, 2008, 07:32:36 PM

Put simply, smoking a nub is like drinking fine wine out of a fire hose.
I have just got to try that some time...  drool
10157  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Cigars on: September 04, 2008, 07:28:21 PM
Hey, he actually gave me a link to something modest he'd apparently like (this is actually a "Nub" sampler, just under $30):

Nub Variety Sampler
This sampler includes six Nub cigars, one each of the following: 464 Cameroon, 466 Cameroon, 464 Connecticut, 464 Habano, 466 Habano and 460 Habano.
Who am I to go against a request so specific?   icon_smile These appear to be in the "medium-full" category if I'm reading it right.
10158  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Name that movie on: September 04, 2008, 06:42:00 PM
This is fun. The hard thing about most online quizzes, as far as making them challenging, is people can Google the answer in 2 milliseconds -- tougher to do with images.

How about this? One of my favorite B-movies from the 1980s. Probably more popular as a VHS tape rental than in the theaters (I'll give some hints, as it's not that well known).

10159  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Cigars on: September 04, 2008, 06:16:45 PM
My publisher gave me the OK, and probably we can do that $34.99 box mentioned in the original post here. I'm waiting to here back from the contact if he has any "body strength" preferences, or brand preferences. I could just have them send him a gift certificate but at the low end they only have $25 and $50, and I'd rather get him something in between.

I went to a Tobacco Barn at lunch. There were four shoppers smoking in there. I about passed out.  icon_lol The employees were nice, but their prices seemed steep (most things were $11 or more per cigar). And I think she'd rather I had it directly delivered through an online place if possible.
10160  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Re: Good time to by a laptop? on: September 04, 2008, 06:02:19 PM
If you're considering a Sony Vaio, be prepared to... Feel the Burn! 

Sony recalls 438,000 laptops on burn concern
Japan's Sony Corp has launched a voluntary recall of 438,000 Vaio portable computers, citing a potential hazard that could cause the machines to overheat or possibly burn a user.

It is one of the biggest computer recalls since 2006 when Dell Inc recalled 4.1 million notebook computer batteries because they could overheat and catch fire.

Sony's recall affects 72,800 computers in the United States, a Sony spokesman said on Thursday.
To be fair, I can't tell if it involves new models on the market now. icon_confused
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