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161  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: [PC] SimCity impressions on: March 08, 2013, 04:03:33 PM
Aside from the obvious, the city sizes are a big thing that make it less appealing to me.

I want to build this and instead they're letting us build... what? Spokane? Madison?
162  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Football Manager 2013 on: March 08, 2013, 02:30:58 PM
Would the interface for this work well with touch/pen only? I have the Surface Pro and it strikes me as a game that could easily enough be played in tablet mode, and I can't possibly have enough of those.
163  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: What are you buying this week? (03/04) on: March 04, 2013, 02:24:00 PM
The most likely outcome is that I have zero spare time this week, but MLB 13 for the Vita is almost a certain pickup at some point this month. Ditto for SimCity, especially if someone posts video of it running smoothly on a Surface Pro.
164  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Microsoft Surface on: March 02, 2013, 03:03:09 PM
Random unstructured impressions before a busy weekend:

It's thicker, and heavier, than I expected, even knowing it was going to be thicker than the iPad. It feels pretty solid though - the kickstand is a really nice touch. I know a lot of folks who are super-picky about ergonomics complain that you can't really change the angle of it, but it works for me.

Mini-DisplayPort is great. I already have a cord for that kicking around for my Macbook so the thing docks right into my existing setup. The built-in display is crisp and bright, though auto-brightness is a bit wonky to say the least (I read that MS is already looking into patches for this).

Speaker is just okay, and I haven't had opportunity to try the headphones out yet.

The touchscreen is responsive, and the pen is fantastic - it acts as a pointer when it's close to the screen, which I didn't know and which is great.

It's fast, for a tablet - I threw Steam on there, and while I haven't played much of anything besides BIT.TRIP RUNNER, that ran smoothly, and even with the Type Cover controls well enough that I got through 1-11 eventually. I'm planning to use it for the foreseeable future more as a retro/adventure gaming console than anything that's going to push it, gaming-wise; it looks like I'll be able to play Sam and Max, Walking Dead, Monkey Island, and the Longest Journey series with just the pen (though I do have to tinker with the app settings to turn off the pixel scaling). Throw in Syberia and some other adventure games off of GOG, Football Manager, and maybe OOTP and I should have a lot to do without having to even set up as a laptop.

Battery life is adequate, for me - it's plugged in if I'm doing real work, and it lasted a night on my lap in front of the TV, so I don't need much more.

From a 'real work' perspective - I threw VPN on there, and was able with just a Bluetooth keyboard and the pen (day before my Type Cover arrived) VPN to my corporate network, remote desktop to a server, pull in some files via FTP, and do some work setting up applications and databases. With just this and a 3G hotspot, and especially now with the Type Cover, I can basically handle anything short of running a full HyperV environment for demos and research (and I'll do that as soon as there's an i7 model with 8GB+ of RAM).

Things I don't like - the Windows app store is crap (but I knew that already), so a lot of the stuff out there that would make the Metro part of the OS useful on a tablet is just awful. I haven't found a good Twitter client, there's a million unofficial Facebook apps that look sketchy as hell, and I haven't seen a good Google Reader client that doesn't crash. So my Metro usage consists of the touchscreen IE, my IM client (which is actually okay), and a Reddit app that's alright but prone to crashing. I'm hoping as this thing gets out in the wild in bigger numbers it'll start to see some real app support, just because the more things that are usable as a non-keyboarded tablet the more useful it'll be.

I think, just from the perspective of having a usable work laptop along with a LOT less weight than a full-size one, it's already a success - it's basically going to be my default personal machine for travel from now on, and I see it getting some time in front of the TV as a tablet as well (though I wouldn't use it for Kindle, etc - too heavy to sit and read with).
165  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Microsoft Surface on: March 01, 2013, 01:57:39 PM
Sigh... I am weak... impressions of the 128GB Pro coming soon.
166  Gaming / Portable Gaming & Apps / Re: PS Vita Impressions! Vita Digital Purchases Beating PS3 - no NA price cuts on: February 23, 2013, 01:40:57 PM

Quote from: EngineNo9 on February 22, 2013, 05:31:57 PM

Quote from: CeeKay on February 22, 2013, 05:24:46 PM

Quote from: Clanwolfer on February 22, 2013, 03:49:20 PM

Also - for anyone else with a Vita, is the PSN store just a godawful mess for anyone else lately? For the past month or so I can hardly check even new releases without retrying multiple times, let alone browse any selection, and the one thing I did buy (Pinball Arcade table pack) I had to retry 3 times. It might have been longer - hadn't touched the store in months before that.

I don't recall any issues, but I haven't really checked the Vita version since they put the store online.

I've been checking the store regularly on my Vita and haven't had any problems.  I'm assuming you've updated everything?

Latest firmware, and I've turned it off and on again. Maybe it just flat-out doesn't like my router - I'm on FIOS so it's probably not a speed thing.
167  Gaming / Portable Gaming & Apps / Re: PS Vita, Impressions! Vita Digital Purchases Setting Company Records on: February 22, 2013, 03:49:20 PM

Quote from: CeeKay on February 21, 2013, 11:57:56 PM

looks like the digital download business is doing well with the Vita:

"Digital business is the faster growing business" he said. "We do not publish numbers, but every month it's almost a new record that the purchase on Vita is higher than the PS3, because everything is available [digitally]."

That's sort of full of weasel words though. Of course you would expect a newer console with a small install base to have faster-growing sales than a console with a mature market and rumors of an impending successor. And the 'almost' means that it might not even be there.

Also - for anyone else with a Vita, is the PSN store just a godawful mess for anyone else lately? For the past month or so I can hardly check even new releases without retrying multiple times, let alone browse any selection, and the one thing I did buy (Pinball Arcade table pack) I had to retry 3 times. It might have been longer - hadn't touched the store in months before that.
168  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [USA] Who's off today? on: February 18, 2013, 02:21:54 PM
Nope. Current client switches off between President's and MLK off each year.
169  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: So How's Your Week Going to Be? 2/18 Edition on: February 18, 2013, 02:03:09 PM
Homebrew club tonight! Unfortunately none of our recent brews are ready (two in secondary, one kegged but without a way to get it easily to the club, one bottled but not fully carbonated yet). Next month should be great for that, as we'll have the equipment to bring properly carbonated draft beer in plus (with any luck) three or four new bottled varieties.

So today is just tasting and thinking up the next thing - probably ordering ingredients for an 80 Shilling ale someone wanted to try.

Work is work and we're just going to see what the rest of the week holds. Considering that last week had System Shock 2 come out, a Longest Journey sequel announced, and an awesome time at a speakeasy in a 1920s gangster costume, this week has its work cut out for it to measure up.
170  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: [PC] Don't Starve on: February 15, 2013, 05:16:16 PM
I'd love to pick this up but splitting it with someone would be even better. Anyone interested?
171  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: So How's Your Week Going to Be? on: February 11, 2013, 05:55:00 PM
Shaped like a bell curve. Slower day today (going to try out a new board game tonight, actually), but then tomorrow, Wednesday, and Thursday I have pretty significant stuff to do at client sites, so that'll likely be all-consuming. Then a slower day Friday, capped by trying out a speakeasy I've been wanting to go to for ages with a friend.
172  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Microsoft Surface on: February 11, 2013, 05:20:53 PM
It sure sounds like the Pro was only launched in name only this weekend. Places that got them only got low single-digit numbers available, and it sounds like a lot of places didn't get any of the 128GB unit. Consider that plus the delays, and maybe Microsoft is having trouble with yield or supply chain that means that we're only going to see this trickling into the wild.

Which might actually work well for them, as by the time the things are generally available, they may have their 'accessory spine' connector ready to go (or more likely, announced but not released yet). If that includes some Type Cover-type devices with a better trackpad and some built-in battery, then I'll definitely consider picking one up.
173  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: The Netflix Instant Watch recommendation thread on: February 10, 2013, 12:55:07 AM

Quote from: TheEgoWhip on February 10, 2013, 12:47:08 AM

Is anyone else watching the Netflix original show "House of Cards"?  Watched the first 5 episodes so far and they are pretty good. 

Watched the whole season and it was pretty good - but if the BBC original is still available on Instant, I would -highly- recommend watching it first (or instead). It's a much more outstanding series.
174  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Microsoft Surface on: February 08, 2013, 03:36:02 PM

Quote from: Purge on February 08, 2013, 03:09:08 PM

Quote from: Crusis on February 08, 2013, 04:24:28 AM

Maybe it was 95ish. I checked with my son and he said it wasn't 105. I removed a few apps that I don't use as soon as I got the air so I'm probably remember the newly freed space. I'd check but I returned the machine (too cramped) and got a macbook 15" retina while they were on sale at BB this weekend.

They had Surfaces on display and they were pretty cool. Loading Word on a tablet was a trip. The little flat keyboard that came with it was really hard to type on. I had to really press down to get keys to register. Overall it was nice and snappy.

I'm not willing to drop a grand sight unseen on one - I was just pointing out the space comparison slywink.

I'd love to have one, but I think I'm going to wait till G2 if at all. I used to be an early adopter - but with a kid in sports and a gf who is on disability, I'm fighting debt with whatever spare money doesn't go to meager living. Hell, I'm about to sell at least one of my consoles and sit on the cash to help with the holiday buy this fall. (720 *or* PS4 - a decade ago it would have been *and*)

Same for me - I like the idea, and I'm trying to be more involved in the MS mobile ecosystem, but I don't think based on what little buzz there is on the Pro plus middling early reviews that this is going to be a runaway success. I took the bullet on the Vita last year, someone else can early-adopt this time around. I'll get the 2nd-gen one that sheds a bit of weight and/or adds some battery life, and doesn't have noisy fan problems.

Which is a damn shame, because I want a mobile device that runs Project Pro and I'd rather have a consumer-focused device from a big name than have to go researching and learning about all the other ultrabook-tablet hybrids. Price is pretty secondary if they can actually build what I want to use, but it has to be best-in-class and it doesn't sound like the Surface is.
175  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: The Photography Thread on: February 08, 2013, 03:30:41 PM
If I'm getting the ball rolling, the rest of you are getting this golden orb spider from my recent trip to Costa Rica. This guy was just hanging out in the national park, letting me snap as many shots as I wanted of him.

176  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Help me buy a DSLR on: February 08, 2013, 01:02:06 PM
I love threads like these - photography is one of those things I'd love to spend more time on than I'm able to. Congrats on the purchase - I swapped up from a Canon XS to an XSi a few years ago and I love it.

Definitely jealous of the 18-135mm lens - one of the things I've found is that, while switching lenses while actually shooting (at home, or when I'm really set up somewhere) is not a big deal at all, switching it while actually doing travel-y things that don't revolve around photography is a pain. I actually ended up getting a Powershot G12 to carry in my DSLR case as a backup - I take wide-angle shots with that so I can leave my 55-250mm lens on my XSi for tight shots. I looked into superzoom lenses, and I probably could have gotten an okay superzoom for the same as that camera, but this gives me some added flexibility to have a RAW-capable camera with manual controls that I can carry around much more easily.

If you really want to start understanding what you're doing, I can't recommend the book 'Understanding Exposure' (by Bryan Peterson) enough. There's a Kindle version and having that on my iPad has been great for quickly brushing up on basic technique (and more importantly, why to pick the settings I do) when it's been a long time since I've had a chance to shoot anything.
177  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: <Brag> What's your Life's Greatest Achievement? </Brag> on: February 07, 2013, 08:34:21 PM
Employee of the Year at my company. Considering the quality of the folks I work with, that was a really, really, REALLY high compliment, and something I took to heart.
178  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Pick Your Apocalypse on: February 07, 2013, 12:43:41 AM
Grey goo. Just so it's completely inexorable.
179  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: What are you buying this week? (02/04) on: February 06, 2013, 04:25:16 PM
The reviews on the Surface Pro aren't exactly brutal, but they're not exactly making me want to put up with the quirks of a first-gen device either (I already took that bullet on the Vita last year, I'm good for a while). I think that puts me out for this generation unless I get my hands on one and it impressses. Battery life and usability are the big concerns - I like all the ideas, but if it's awkward on the lap, and only gets 3-4 hours battery life, that's just not there for me.
180  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: What are you buying this week? (02/04) on: February 04, 2013, 04:18:14 PM
If I can get my hands on one to try it out, and get some positive impressions overall, I'll probably be in for a Surface Pro 128GB. I've been looking forward to being able to drop one of my laptops from my work bag, and this one will let me use all the software I need for work (plus I'm looking forward to having it as a portable machine to play Good Old Games releases).

If I don't like it, or the battery life doesn't sound like it's going to be up to par, then nothing for me this week.
181  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Do you do your own Taxes? on: January 31, 2013, 10:19:27 PM
Yeah, but I hate it and I'm thinking about just having someone do it this year.
182  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: What's Your Typical Evening Like? on: January 29, 2013, 12:33:55 AM
Depends where I've had to travel to. If it's Jersey I typically get home around 730 to 830, have dinner, watch some Netflix, and crash. If it's closer to home I typically get home 630-7, have dinner, maybe watch 1-2 shows on the big TV, and then crash.

183  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: NFL 2012 -- WildCard Edition on: January 07, 2013, 12:56:12 AM

DC sports. We can't just lose, we have to look at that knee buckling for the next six months. Certainly hoping it's not structural - otherwise it's going to be a looooong 2013 season. Just run out the cap penalties, draft some folks, and spend the season developing Cousins.
184  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: NHL 2012-13 season thread. on: January 06, 2013, 12:43:46 PM
Done deal. $64.3 cap in 13-14, so Wild fans can exhale a little. Contracts kinda-sorta fixed to allow some cap circumvention but not too much. Two amnesty buyouts (bye-bye, Gomez, Redden, Kaberle!).

Now let's all hope they feel a deep and abiding sense of shame. Still have no regrets about spending my hockey budget for the year on a vacation instead.
185  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: NHL 2012-13 season thread. on: December 30, 2012, 09:44:14 PM
Sounds like the biggest sticking point left would be the cap next year. The reason this will go to the deadline is the players will probably push for the extra $2-3 million next season to cushion the escrow/salary blow this offseason. They might not hold out to $67M but they damn sure don't want it to drop straight to $60M.

My opinion? $3M for the cap next season, an extra $10M or so to 'Make Whole', and amnesty buyouts out of the owners' share and not the players' gets it done and gets everyone back on the ice - but none of that has any reason to happen before the deadline, so figure we're waiting another 7 days or so to see.
186  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: If you could have any car $100,000 USD or less, what would it be? on: December 19, 2012, 11:47:42 AM
Put me in the GT-R camp.

Or you could fit a nice Audi S6 fully loaded in under that price...
187  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Deployment on: December 11, 2012, 01:48:23 PM
Thanks very much for your service. I've got a few ex-military folks in my line of work that I know, and not one of them has been unsuccessful - though I do think they hold themselves to an unfairly high standard sometimes! I'm sure that whatever you get into you'll do well for yourself.
188  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: The Weekend Playlist -- 11/30/12 on: November 30, 2012, 11:45:44 PM
Dishonored and Spec Ops: The Line. If I get bored with those maybe I'll poke around at one of those Aussie VPNs to unlock Far Cry 3.
189  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: The Weekend Playlist - 11/21/12 Long Holiday Edition on: November 21, 2012, 02:44:08 PM
If there's time today when I won't be disturbing the preparations, I'll probably crack open Halo 4 and play the campaign. Then we've got company over so it'll be too busy for games. As for the weekend... finish off Halo 4, and maybe some Blops 2 multiplayer, or else I'll try and knock off some of my Steam backlog (X-Com is still tempting, and I've only played a few hours).
190  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: [360/PC/PS3] Borderlands 2 on: November 21, 2012, 04:31:46 AM
Just started over since they released a Mac client for me today (much more convenient than booting over to Windows). They did a really solid job on the port, it runs nice and smooth.
191  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: The Weekend Playlist - 11/16/12 - Pre U.S. Thanksgiving on: November 19, 2012, 06:20:59 PM
Knocked off the campaign mode of Blops and Blops 2, and played just a little bit of MP. Pretty good ride, especially after a bad week - nice to get some frustrations out.
192  Non-Gaming / Political / Religious Nonsense / Re: Benghazi Gate on: November 18, 2012, 11:45:38 PM
I'm actually entirely unsure what I'm meant to be mad about, and I consider myself typically pretty well-informed. That probably doesn't speak well to this having any legs as a scandal.
193  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: [360/PC/Wii U/Ps3] Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 on: November 18, 2012, 05:19:50 PM
Alright, I did something I've not done in years - picked up Black Ops and Black Ops 2 on Friday night, and did a marathon of both games the last couple days. Beat both campaigns, which were basically great for curing the crappy mood I was in with gobs of murder all over the place. Tried out MP this morning and got through the "noob gauntlet" of the Boot Camp levels. Looking forward to jumping into some games with everyone!

As for guns - I've been sticking with the MTAR with a fast-clip and ACOG or reflex, along with fast hands for now - the rest I'm playing around with until I find something I like more. I like the customization system a lot, but I haven't really been playing with any options I couldn't have done the last few games.
194  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: The Weekend Playlist - 11/16/12 - Pre U.S. Thanksgiving on: November 16, 2012, 03:47:33 PM
I was going to pick up Blops 2 and Halo 4 to play this coming week when I'm off.

But then work got busy, and two of my days off got cancelled. Now I'm having second thoughts about buying anything - less Thanksgiving time, Christmas is always busy, and in between is crunch time at work. Meh.
195  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: McAffee on the Run After Neighbor Found Shot to Death on: November 15, 2012, 03:47:28 PM
Wired: Threat Level has been in daily touch with him and posting updates. Very sad - he really sounds like he's at best mostly unhinged.
196  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [WP8] Windows Phone 8 Thread - Nokia and MS reveal new stuff today! on: November 14, 2012, 09:42:40 PM
I actually checked in one AT&T store this weekend - they weren't available yet (or had sold out quickly) but they were expecting more today.

I'm actually considering upgrading my work phone from a 3GS to a Lumia 920 - a little more "MS-friendly" and with some interesting ecosystem possibilities. Live Tiles could be really interesting to me, from the perspective of apps that could be designed with them in mind.
197  Non-Gaming / Political / Religious Nonsense / Re: What will Obama's Scandals Be? on: November 07, 2012, 04:00:09 PM
Michelle's been juicing. Also, Biden has like a half-gram stashed in his Trans-Am's door panel.
198  Gaming / Portable Gaming & Apps / Re: Zero Escape (999 sequel) [3DS/Vita] on: October 31, 2012, 11:18:22 PM
So what's the best way for a non-DS owner to catch up on the first game? Youtube? Story recaps online? Any non-DS version? Or do I just have to find someone to borrow it from?
199  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Frankenstorm! on: October 30, 2012, 09:28:33 PM
Just got power back here. My mom was okay last I talked to her, her power held out longer than mine, I think.

Only some superficial water damage. We'll see how long we have power (not uncommon for it to flick off for another hour at a time as they fix things, here), but optimistic that it's "a while".

One of our data centers for work is offline, but fortunately it's the one hosting our test environments. Plus our servers in the Battery Park building in NYC are obviously offline. Pretty manageable impact all around, and I'm thinking the 3rd floor is high enough that there shouldn't be any damage, just a question of when we'd be able to access again. Biggest thing is going to be the sites I visit in NJ, hopefully they weren't far enough south to take a pounding but the fact that a data center is out is worrying.
200  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Frankenstorm! on: October 27, 2012, 07:32:37 PM
Ready here in the southeast corner of PA (about fifteen minutes from both MD and DE). We rode out Irene just fine here, loss of power and a few books when our library roof leaked but that was it. Mostly just keeping an eye on severity - my mom lives on the Delmarva peninsula and I've got a standing offer to pick her up and let her ride it out here if it looks too bad down there.

Pretty much nobody here is panicking though - went to the store today to stock some stuff for our Halloween party, and was able to get bread and some spring water just fine. I figure it's the same as usual here - be ready to lose power for a day or three, have food and water on hand, and fresh batteries for all the camping lanterns. If the effects last any longer, I'll have to head west to find somewhere to work from anyway, so I'm not too worried about an extended power outage. And we're on a hill here, so no worries about flooding.

Mostly just rolling my eyes at one of my housemates, who believes that the annual big storm is pretty much a media fabrication since she personally has never been severely affected by one.
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