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81  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: iPods for Every Student In Michigan on: April 07, 2007, 02:57:24 AM

Quote from: Kobra on April 06, 2007, 11:36:28 PM

Yes this state is dead, dead I say!  Honestly, I have little to no hope of a recovery in this state.  Too many stupid people, a stupid government, and legions of stupid politicians ready to fill the holes.. For some more great ideas, they want to slap a 6% tax on services, a 6% junk food tax, and they want to uncap our property taxes.

So not only is the population declining by 1-2% every quarter, unemployment is rising, and businesses are closing left and right, now they want to tax anyone that is staying back to the stone age.

I don't agree with you often, but you hit this one right on the head.  Michigan whines constantly about talent leaving the state (and it's worse over here on the west side) but can't think of anything to do but raise taxes and send the governor on trips all over the world to try to bring in a few hundred jobs.

We moved back here 5 years ago so our kids could grow up near family.  But I've had enough of the pathetic job situation here.  Starting tomorrow I'm looking for a job outside the state.  Someplace where there actually are IT jobs.  If Michigan isn't dead, it's close.  Last one out, turn off the lights.
82  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Weekend Playlist: Jesus Christ the Savior is Risen Edition 6/Apr/07 on: April 06, 2007, 10:04:28 PM
Saturday I'll be playing:
-- Death March at Work to Appease The Idiot Boss
-- Revise the Resume and Update the Job Boards
-- Visual C# 2005 Express Edition
-- TurboTax

-- Happy Easter to you all.
83  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Whats your single biggest buyers remorse item? on: April 02, 2007, 04:05:52 PM
Definitely the house.  It looked like a good deal, but has turned out to be a fixer-upper.  I hate fixer-upping and don't have the money for it.  What I wouldn't give to be able to sell the place and go back to renting.
84  Non-Gaming / Trading Forum / Re: Looking for the following PS1/PS2 Games on: April 01, 2007, 12:57:56 PM
I have RAD and Wizardry: Tale of the Forsaken Land.  Either one is $25 shipped Priority, or both for $45.
85  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Weekend playlist 30/Mar/07 on: March 30, 2007, 10:01:51 PM
Not much time this weekend with upcoming business launch and job interview Monday, but I'm hoping to get in some time with Atelier Marie.
86  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: PASTE!!! on: March 30, 2007, 05:57:00 PM
/UNITS=0 -
87  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: LeanPockets Conundrum on: March 28, 2007, 03:27:57 PM
They're so full of preservatives that a single night at room temp won't affect them.

[disclaimer: personally, I've never eaten them.  So good luck.]
88  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Books Read in 2007 (Keep It Updated) on: March 26, 2007, 12:42:02 AM

Quote from: Qbe on March 15, 2007, 06:31:43 PM

I really need to dig out some decent SF one of these days soon.

While sick this week I read Douglas Preston's The Codex, about a multimillionaire who disappears mysteriously with all his treasure, sending his sons on a trek through the jungles of Honduras to find a lost Mayan tomb in order to claim their inheritance.  Not bad as a page-turner adventure story.

After that, I got Jack McDevitt's Odyssey from the library.  I can stand McDevitt about once per decade, and this one sounded somewhat interesting.  It wasn't a bad SF book, but I prefer SF a little harder than this: in typical McDevitt fashion he leaves the big questions unanswered in favor of characterization and taking pokes at social groups.  It wasn't bad, but it wasn't quite good enough (and it certainly didn't come anywhere near the original Odyssey). 
89  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Minneapolis/St. Paul here we come! on: March 17, 2007, 10:26:13 PM
There are some good Vietnamese/Cambodian restaurants there (no really, it's good food).  If Kimson on Lyndale Ave. South is still open, be sure to give it a try.  After we moved out of town, I had to stop there on my periodic trips back to the mother office and bring takeout home for my wife.
90  Non-Gaming / Trading Forum / Re: Hall of Fame Traders Look Here on: March 16, 2007, 03:45:35 PM
For round 2, if no one else has claimed Okage (PS2) I'd like to give it a try.
91  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: [DS] Need A game Recommendation For A Vacation on: March 15, 2007, 09:15:35 PM
Clubhouse Games is a lot more casual than the other games mentioned so far, but I've been having fun with it nevertheless.  Originally bought it for the cool wifi capability, but haven't gotten around to trying that yet.
92  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Books Read in 2007 (Keep It Updated) on: March 15, 2007, 06:31:43 PM
Last month I read Michael Crichton's Next and Lincoln Child's Deep Storm.  It was an interesting contrast.  Michael Crichton is a master of the page-turner, when he's not trying to whore himself to Hollywood.  Next isn't much more than candy but it's fun while it lasts.

Lincoln Child wants to be Crichton but just doesn't quite get there.  When he writes with Douglas Preston their books come very close (and I'm hoping they can finally get back to writing better Pendergast books), but on their own the two are merely average.  Deep Storm reminded me of several Crichton books: the mystery under the ocean floor (Sphere), the isolated research station (with a nuclear power source instead of Andromeda Strain's nuclear weapon), the ending which throws away all the built-up potential (Sphere, again).  At least the ending was 500% less lame than Sphere, making it only fairly lame.  It was fun, forgettable, and readable in just a few hours.

I really need to dig out some decent SF one of these days soon.
93  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: I'm On Amazon!! on: March 15, 2007, 12:19:18 PM
Cool!  I'm about to start a Rails project and could use a nice practical guide!  I hope your book does very well.
94  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Rocket to the Sun - These Actors Need to go on: March 12, 2007, 03:12:00 PM

Quote from: Knightshade Dragon on March 12, 2007, 02:52:20 PM

Quote from: EngineNo9 on March 12, 2007, 02:48:32 PM

Quote from: JLu on March 12, 2007, 02:37:06 PM

Quote from: Knightshade Dragon on March 12, 2007, 02:21:45 PM

Ok, watched "Stranger than Fiction" and I think I'll give Maggie Gylenhall a pass off the shuttle.  Still on probation, but she can exit for now.

Funny; after hearing this morning that she's Katie Holmes replacement in the new Batman movie, I was wishing she'd go away before they can start filming...  (Not that Katie Holmes was good, but I have problems with female 'love interests' who are unattractive.)

Some of us happen to think Maggie is attractive, so maybe you should be the one on the shuttle to the sun.  I said good day sir!  slywink

Sorry Engine....I'm with JLu on this one.  In the words of the Sea Captain "Yarrr....she's not attractive."

She could be my secretary anytime.
95  Non-Gaming / Trading Forum / Re: Hall of Fame Traders Look Here on: March 12, 2007, 02:26:00 PM
Wow, thanks for the great offer!  My picks would be:

1.  Way of the Samurai
2.  Phantom Crash
3.  Stubbs the Zombie

96  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Could you live without broadband? on: March 11, 2007, 09:19:18 PM
Broadband shmoadband.  That's a great deal.
97  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Name the States Game on: March 05, 2007, 04:47:22 PM

Quote from: Gwar21 on March 03, 2007, 12:10:46 AM

Stupid Michigan.

Them's fightin' words.

I got 'em all with 7:47 to spare.  In 1974 (second grade music class) we learned a song with all the states.  It got me through half of them.
98  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: How many Computers/Televisions in your house? on: February 23, 2007, 05:10:17 PM
2 TVs (living room and bedroom)
1 old iBook (wife's)

VAXstation 3100

Sparcstation 20
MicroVAX 3800
MicroVAX 3100
Compaq server (FreeBSD)
2 PC desktops (Slackware and FreeBSD)
6 older unused PCs
99  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Favorite All Time Games on: February 14, 2007, 07:22:13 PM
Some games wouldn't stand the test of time, but the experiences they gave were and are priceless.  And I can't pick just 10.  In chronological order (in which I played them, anyway):

Elite -- Back in the late 80s this was extremely fun: a space simulator with complete freedom to travel where you wanted, and the ability to be an honorable trader or a dirty smuggler outlaw.  My friends and I spent many hours becoming Elite; I don't think we ever saw any of the "missions".  And we spent many hours with a hex editor figuring out how to hack the game saves too.

Starflight -- This is another one (like Elite) that might not hold up over the decades, but it sure was fun at the time.  Digging through my Notebook O' Clues and the starmap to find the ruins of Olde Earth was a treat.

Ultima IV -- The Ultima series is probably my favorite game series, period.  I played Ultima on my friend's Apple in 1982 and have played (though not finished) every one since.  Out of them all I'd have to pick Ultima IV as my top favorite (might be VII if I'd put enough time into it).  It's gameplay was extremely addictive and fun.

Ultima Underworld -- I remember seeing the tech demo of this one at GenCon in 1992.  You could actually swim!  Didn't get to play it until 1996.  It lived up to the hype and it ate up all my free time for quite a while.

Might & Magic VI -- another great RPG series.  I loved M&M 3, and 6 was far better.  I loved the graphics and the hordes of monsters to slaughter.  Sometimes I still have dreams about wandering along the coastline near New Sorpigal.

Civilization Series -- Played 'em all.  If I had to pick a #1 favorite, it'd probably be IV. 

X-Com -- No comment necessary.

F-19 Stealth Fighter -- Microprose sure could make flight simulators.  The idea of having to fly stealthily to complete missions sounded boring to me, but I was wrong.  On one Persian Gulf mission an enemy plane detected me and I couldn't shake him.  Then I remembered Top Gun, killed my throttle and activated the airbrakes.  The enemy overflew me and I nailed him with my last Sidewinder.

Daggerfall -- Easily spent 80 hours on this one and never touched the main quest.  I had a lot more fun looting particular dungeons and saving for a house in Daggerfall. 

Wild Arms -- I was a PC-only gamer until 2002, when I bought a PSOne.  Everyone recommended FF VII as The Best RPG EVER!!!  I bought it and was severely disappointed.  It was like stepping 10 years back in time.  I tried other console RPGs but none grabbed me.  I was about to give up on the PSOne, then I tried Wild Arms.  The setting, the gameplay and especially the soundtrack really hit the spot.  It's one of the few console RPGs I've ever finished.

Shenmue -- I've already discussed how this one has changed my life, so I won't repeat it.  Still haven't finished it.

Dragon Quest VIII -- DQ VIII is my pick for best console RPG ever.  It fits my preference of gameplay over lead-you-by-the-nose story, the soundtrack is tops and it all fits together perfectly.
100  Non-Gaming / Trading Forum / Re: The Official GT Trader Feedback List (updated 11/06) on: February 06, 2007, 06:18:32 PM
+1 Simon
101  Non-Gaming / Trading Forum / Re: Free Stuff on: February 06, 2007, 06:17:49 PM
Mine arrived today too.  Many thanks!
102  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Do you smoke? on: February 06, 2007, 03:51:29 PM
Never have.  Never will. 

Though once I had to light a cig for a high school play.  I had no idea how to do it and the thing went up like a torch.
103  Non-Gaming / Trading Forum / Re: The Official GT Trader Feedback List (updated 11/06) on: January 29, 2007, 06:51:39 PM
+1 for warning for a great deal.
104  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Weekend Playlist 26/Jan/06 on: January 26, 2007, 10:17:32 PM
This evening I'm going RPG shopping to get Final Fantasy III and plan to put some time into that, along with Atelier Marie.

And maybe some Civ IV.  I'd like to watch some Mission: Impossible Season 1, but it hasn't arrived at B&N yet (so I can get the 2 for 1 deal).  Maybe tomorrow.
105  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Pick me a DS RPG on: January 25, 2007, 09:20:26 PM

Quote from: depward on January 25, 2007, 08:31:58 PM

Stay FAR, FAR away from Lunar.  Wow, just thinking about that game gave me a little throw-up in my mouth...

Wow.  That's pretty nasty.

Quote from: Kevin Grey on January 25, 2007, 08:37:50 PM

I'd say FF3 for the DS as well but it only uses one screen for much of the game. 

Well rats.  I was hoping to get some good dual-screen action.

Quote from: Dimmona on January 25, 2007, 09:11:02 PM

FF3 is probably the best RPG made for the DS, but it's only an above-average game - nothing stellar by any means (although probably the prettiest DS game).

As folks mentioned earlier, if you don't mind playing older GBA games then the FF games released on the GBA are pretty darn good.

I can handle "only above-average".  I've been playing Phantasy Star on the GBA lately and having a good time.

And I do have the GBA versions of FF 1&2 and IV.  Haven't cracked open IV yet.

Quote from: Bullwinkle on January 25, 2007, 09:12:31 PM

Magical Starsign is much better than I thought it would be, but you have to like cute.

Don't count out Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time, either (or Dragon Quest Heroes: Rocket Slime, though that may be pushing it).

I can handle cute, so I'll check out Magical Starsign.  Hadn't considered Mario & Luigi either, since I've never played a Mario game of any sort, but I'll look into it.

So far the recommendations (which I'm considering) are:

Magical Starsign
Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time

If only DQ IX would hurry up...but I don't want to wait that long.
106  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Pick me a DS RPG on: January 25, 2007, 08:18:59 PM
My final few ebay auctions will give me enough cash to buy one game for the DS, and it needs to be an RPG. 

I'd like one that'll take advantage of the touch screen and use both screens.  I generally prefer turn-based games, though an action RPG isn't out of the question.  And I like a game where I can spend time exploring and leveling if I want, or advance the story if I'm so inclined: the game isn't oppressively focused on one over the other.

I'm leaning toward FF III.  Are there any other good RPGs on the DS?  I already have a GBA with plenty of RPGs for it, so please limit recommendations to the DS.
107  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Help a fella out with a Gmail invite? on: January 25, 2007, 04:17:53 AM
108  Non-Gaming / Trading Forum / Re: The Official GT Trader Feedback List (updated 11/06) on: January 25, 2007, 01:51:51 AM
And +1 for Hereafter for being a great GT'er to deal with.
109  Non-Gaming / Trading Forum / Re: Free Stuff on: January 25, 2007, 12:55:11 AM
110  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Hillary Announces White House Run. Oh God No... on: January 20, 2007, 05:26:08 PM
Her campaign slogan will be, "Hey, at least I'll do better than Bill did.  No, really.  Stop it."
111  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: [NDS] How many dead pixels do you have? on: January 20, 2007, 05:24:09 PM
Thanks for the input.  I'd heard that the dead pixel problems were gone in the DS Lite, but this morning I was dismayed to see a few.  Unfortunately my dictionary program primarily displays white on the top screen, so it's going to get irritating fairly quickly.  Guess I'll wait till a new shipment comes in and exchange.
112  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / [NDS] How many dead pixels do you have? on: January 20, 2007, 02:47:08 PM
How many dead pixels are normal?  I have two on the top screen, right near the center.  Rather than be a complainer, I'll see if I can live with it (at least until the store gets a new shipment and I can consider an exchange).
113  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Weekend Playlist 19/Jan/06 on: January 19, 2007, 09:12:29 PM
My wife's on the way home with my new Nintendo DS (had to call 14 stores to track one down), so I foresee some Advance Wars DS and Dragon Quest Heroes Rocket Slime in the very near future, along with Atelier Marie (Dreamcast) with the help of my new DS dictionary.  I might get adventurous and go shopping for a DS RPG this weekend too.
114  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: PASTE! on: January 19, 2007, 08:14:26 PM
        foreach (keys %map) {
                ($pos, $len) = @{$map{$_}};
                $data{$_} = substr($dataline, $pos, $len);
115  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Any GTers in Rochester, Minnesota? on: January 19, 2007, 06:45:53 PM
My wife and I lived 20 miles north of Rochester for a year and my wife worked at Mayo.  Unless things have changed drastically (in Minnesota?  Ha ha) the city is probably still as dull as it ever was.  The Galleria mall (near the clinic) is small and dull; the Apache mall (south edge of town) is a typical generic mall.  There were some fairly decent restaurants along Broadway (is that the north-south street?).

You could look into the Mayo-related historical tour(s).  My wife toured the Mayo house and enjoyed it.  IIRC there are a few touristy things to do up in Red Wing, about 30-40 miles north, but otherwise just go to the Twin Cities to see the sights.
116  Non-Gaming / Trading Forum / Re: The Official GT Trader Feedback List (updated 11/06) on: January 18, 2007, 04:12:48 PM
+1 to Rubyeye.
117  Non-Gaming / Trading Forum / Re: Buy my junk! Help me get a DS! Now with more junk! on: January 16, 2007, 08:25:32 PM
Last bump before ebay.
118  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Star Trek: The Motionless Picture on: January 15, 2007, 01:49:26 AM
Even-numbered movies == good (Khan, Voyage Home, Undiscovered Country, First Contact).
Odd-numbered movies == bad (TMP, Search, V-Whatever-It-Was-Called, Generations).

After First Contact it all went to hell.
119  Non-Gaming / Trading Forum / Re: Buy my junk! Help me get a DS! Now with more junk! on: January 13, 2007, 10:50:14 PM
You're right--I didn't realize how little Media Mail costs.  I'll lower it to $2.
120  Non-Gaming / Trading Forum / Re: Buy my junk! Help me get a DS! Now with more junk! on: January 13, 2007, 01:30:27 PM
Added some stuff.
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