Genre Busting

Nostrich’s brief post about mp3 genre tags is something that I’ve been thinking about since I purchased an iPod Touch (and more so since I upgraded to iTunes 8.) Apple places too much focus on the genre tag, which has always been of dubious value. For years, the genre has been an unsorted mess in my music library. Any ID3 information I enter manually, I do so ignoring the genre tag (I never know how to classify music); and any…

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Jetpack Brontosaurus

The long awaited sequel to a local favourite, Off-Road Velociraptor Safari, is finally up on Flashbang Studios‘ new game site Blurst: Jetpack Brontosaurus. I haven’t played it a lot yet but it is quite pretty with good music and it feels like there’s a lot to experiment with and discover. There are some minor issues that I’ve noticed in the first few minutes, but it is a browser-based game (using Unity) that works on OSX (bonus!) and it is free…

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Audiosurf: What Have You Done to Whitenoise, Baby?

I miss some aspects of my desktop PC back home in Canada. The MacBook switch has been wonderful and I love it, but there are things that my PC had and could do that I have no access to anymore. I miss the other two thirds of my music library and the good speakers and headphones. I sorta miss being able to tinker around in Flash since the Mac version won’t let me use my PC serial (stupid. Lightroom 2…

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64Revolt

Malmo, Sweden’s[1] 64Revolt is going to garner the inevitable comparison to Toronto’s Crystal Castles, which would be ill deserved. Though both bands share similar chiptune-fueled hardcore aesthetics, they developed that style independently of each other. Hell, 64Revolt’s self-titled release predates Crystal Castles’ debut Alice Practice by a few months. It’s not quite a Calculus-defining level of synchronicity but the timing does reveal a certain cultural post-gamer outcropping happening now (though it’s interesting that 64Revolt’s follow-up EP has a song called…

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Musique Francais

Well, I made it. After an ordeal getting through the Chunnel I arrived in Paris on Monday evening. I’ve been here three whole days and it’s been completely gorgeous. In those three days I’ve had more sunshine than in any given three week period in London. It certainly makes for a more colourful first impression. My studio is very small but it has a good location (two doors from the Metro, and a block away from another Metro line) and…

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Kingdom of Rain

or More Complaints About the Weather After my complaint, Friday seemed promising. It was mostly cloudy, but that just means that it was also partly sunny. This isn’t much but it’s better than nothing. I’ll take what I can. I ventured down into central London in the morning and as I entered the Tube I noticed a sign: “due to a fire, all Eurostar service is cancelled.” What. The. Fuck? My anxiety shot up; I have a Eurostar train to…

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Civilization Revolutions DS

Getting Civilization Without an Underground weekly pass, and despite the perpetually miserable weather, I headed out for a walk. I didn’t take my camera bag or excessive baggage, just my iPod, jacket (I’m still not over how much I’ve needed a jacket in the summer) and an umbrella (essential gear over here.) I headed down to Shoot-Up Hill — no junkies present — and straight down Kilburn High Road until it became Maida Vale. This route went from Brent to…

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Idleness: Killed

On Friday I had a reason to head out: I made my deposit on a Paris apartment and I could now concretely book my fare to Paris. I took the train down to Finchley Road where I transfered onto the Metropolitan towards St. Pancras. I entered the Eurostar ticket booth and realized upon reaching the counter that I was in the business section. I felt out of place — nothing screams business like a black t-shirt with Batman with the…

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Idleness

Idleness has set in. I haven’t ventured into central London for a few days now. It was a long weekend, but that has little meaning when you’re not working. There was the Notting Hill Carnival but I forgot about it until it was over. There were the Olympic festivities and the outdoor parties celebrating the hand-off for the London 2012 games, but I didn’t bother. There wasn’t any reason to go down there. The weather was constantly dreary. My weekly…

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Running for High Score

I’ve started running. It’s about time. I bought running shoes a little less than two months ago, the first such shoes that I’ve owned since, oh, early high school[1], and I just now started using them for their intended purpose. It’s been a touch tough but I’ve been persevering through it. I’m not quite going by the “couch to 5k” routine but I am doing something similar in so far that I’m mostly fast walking with occasional jogs sprinkled in…

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Free Ride (Take it Easy)

For the last month, the time I’ve been living in this flat, I’ve been leeching internet off of some kind, unprotected neighbour, Mr. Belkin54g. Yesterday morning I awoke to find that my luck had run out; the preferred network was now password protected. The free ride aboard the Mooch Train was over. I was probably overzealous with the network the day before. It was a rainy day. I wasn’t heading out on my walking treks so I stayed indoors with…

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How to Lose Gamers and Alienate People

The whole Hasbro vs Scrabulous affair and lawsuit is pretty stupid. Hasbro’s citing of copyright infringement — there is none, game rules are not copyrightable — in what is, essentially, a possible trademark case comes across as nothing more than strong arming. They were caught flat-footed and couldn’t compete so they sicced their lawyers at them. But I don’t want to rant about that part of the story. What is fascinating is everything that happened after they managed to take…

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European Civilization

What I saw from the Civilization Revolutions demo, I liked. Firaxis managed to simplify the entire world building experience for a console without losing the features that made Civilization what it was. The demo sucked me in as much as any full game on the PC ever did. I was sold but, unfortunately, knowing I was leaving the XBox 360 behind I knew I couldn’t get it. There was, however, the scaled-back-but-still-Civ DS version. This was perfect. All the Civilization…

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