Club Admiralty

v7.0 - moving along, a point increase at a time

Club Admiralty Blog

A blog about life in general, in as many languages as I can manage. Ενα ιστολόγιο περι ζωής, πολυγλωσσο - σε όσες γλωσσες εχω μεράκι να γράψω.

Adieu GoWalla!

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Last week, before thanksgiving, I was out an about doing some last minute holiday (food) shopping and I thought it would be worthwhile checking in.  Since the API changes over at Foursquare, Gowalla has been unable to auto post from GoWalla, so I've been posting twice, once from each app.

Pulled out FourSquare and checked in to venues without much trouble.  Pulled out GoWalla and I was scratching my head with the most recent update - WTF?  Why is it so hard to check in using this app?  The old interface (the one on the right) was so much easier to navigate and use compared to this new one. There were other things that had drawn me to GoWalla, including the passport metaphor and the scavenger hunt type of surprises that you got every now and again for checking into places, but those have slowly been going away.

So yesterday, after much frustration with the app, and the service  not compelling enough, I deleted the app from my iPhone and iPad.  Appwise, it keeps crashing on iOS 5... and it's only usable on my iPhone 3GS because I don't have iOS5 on it yet, I am still on iOS4. Anyhow...Adieu GoWalla... you were good while you lasted...will be using FourSquare from now on...
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Να και το νέο xbox…

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Το παλιό μου xbox, πήγε κατά διαβόλου και μου έβγαλε το κόκκινο κυκλάκι της συμφοράς… Εντάξει, δεν πειράζει γιατί και δωρεάν μου το σώσανε πριν δύο χρόνια και μεταχειρισμένο ήταν όταν μου το έδωσαν. Το μόνο σπάσιμο ήταν πως μόλις είχα αγοράσει τρία παιχνίδια, μαζί και η συλλογή Metal Gear Solid HD, και δεν είχα πως τα τα παίξω.

Τέλος πάντων, όπως λένε όταν η μία πόρτα κλείνει, μια άλλη ανοίγει. Έτσι λοιπόν την «Μαύρη Παρασκευή» είδα πως τα καταστήματα είχανε διάφορες προσφορές στις παιχνιδομηχανές, και η καλύτερη προσφορά ήταν αυτή στο Best Buy: $199 για ένα xbox με 250gb σκληρό δίσκο, το Fable III και το Halo Reach, ασύρματο χειριστήριο, και τρεις μήνες xbox live. Αρκετά καλή προσφορά θα έλεγα. Αυτό που μου έκανε εντύπωση είναι το πόσο μικρότερη είναι η συσκευή η καινούργια εν συγκρίσει με το παλιό xbox και πόσο λιγότερη θορυβώδεις είναι!

Αντε…καιρός να τελειώσουμε το γκαντέμικο το alone in the dark να παίξουμε και κάτι άλλο ;-)
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GoWalla has jumped the shark...

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Yesterday, while running some pre-thanksgiving errands, I decided to check in to my local bakery while waiting for my stuff.. Checked in with Foursquare, no problem; went into GoWalla (it still crashed on iOS5 mind you, but my iPhone is on iOS4 so it still works) an I couldn't find where and how to check in...WTH??? GoWalla has gone through several "upgrades" (let's call them upgrades...they seem more like downgrades) in the past six months and the UI has really gone down the tubes.  GoWalla was my main go-to app for location check in since I could link my foursquare account and autopost there as well. Not anymore. I can't auto checkin with GoWalla and the new interface sucks (which makes checkin more laborious).

This whole "story" is also annoying...what's the "story" at the bakery?  Well, I suppose if I were on a first date there might be a story, but I was just getting some yummy noms...no big story there. GoWalla has also gone through and removed one of the things that made them different: limited availability items that you could acquire (and drop in other locations if you wished) in a scavenger-game fashion.  The thing that I really liked about GoWalla was the passport metaphor.  You get stamps for locations you visit, but you also get category badges (pins) for visiting other states, other countries and completing trails, which is pretty cool.  The pins and stamps remained, but the passport is gone...

With this iOS5 crashing bug, the worsening of the UI and getting rid of what made them unique, it seems to me that GoWalla is really headed for an implosion.  I am just wondering if I should keep using it until it implodes, or if I should free up some memory in my iPhone and call it a day.
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Red Ringed! (or Red Rung?)

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Well, I guess the inevitable happened last night.  I powered up my xbox 360, put in Alone in the Dark (I am close to the end, so I decided to just keep going) and the unit froze a few second into the game.  It has been freezing the past few days but it kept coming back. In any case. I turned it off, turned it back on again, and this time it froze on the xbox bootup screen... Turned it off and on again (like the IT crowd recommends lol) and this time around, no bootup image and red lights...oh f*ck....

Initially it seemed like four lights were on, so I unplugged the AV cable and power, re-plugged in and turned it on and nothing was coming up again...oh well.  This xbox had seen a good life, two (or so) years with me, and another so many (or more) with my friend Rob.  Luckily Black Friday looks like there are a few xbox deals around.  The main question is whether or not to get the kinect bundle.  I've only seen one game demoed (Michael Jackson's game) and I am not that much into dancing games or exercise games...although I could potentially get into them lol

Are there any other kinect games that are compelling? what do you kinect users think about it?
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Daybreak - interesting series

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The other day I finished watching the series Daybreak on Netflix. The series is only 13 episodes, so I guess it was cancelled, but at least the story was wrapped up somewhat neatly.  The idea behind the story is police-drama meets groundhog day: a day keeps repeating and repeating until something happens to stop it from repeating.

In this story the main character is framed for murdering a District Attorney. There is some major conspiracy going on in the background and each day he wakes up and it's the same day over and over again, so he gets do-overs.  Just like video games he goes on trial and error approaches, sometimes head-strong, sometimes just not giving a damn, but he puts it all together in the end (unlike a video game, any bodily injuries do stick with him at each daily reset).

The story was compelling enough to see who killed the District attorney (and why) and if the main character would come out of it clean. The series didn't end with a cliffhanger, but it did leave a hooks for a potential continuation or a possible sequel.  I don't know. It was an interesting concept, but in the end the groundhog day effect kind of wore off...
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Οτι εχετε την ευχαρίστιση

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Φοβερό σκίτσο που βρήκα στο twitter σήμερα...
Η Ελλάδα δια μέσου των Αιώνων...
Να γελάσουμε...ή να κλάψουμε;


Πηγή: twitpic

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Διαδικτυακές Διασκέψεις & Συνέδρια

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Την περασμένη εβδομάδα δύο συνεργάτες πήγαν σε μια διάσκεψη στο Ορλάντο, πιο συγκεκριμένα στην 17η διάσκεψη για ασύγχρονα δίκτυα εκμαθήσεως. Το καλό ήταν πως η δουλειά πλήρωσε ώστε εμείς στο γραφείο να έχουμε πρόσβαση τουλάχιστον στις λαϊβ παρουσιάσεις του συνεδρίου, οπότε όσοι με είδατε την περασμένη εβδομάδα να τουιτάρω μανιωδώς, με το hashtag #aln2011, τώρα ξέρετε γιατί. Τουίταρα ενώ έβλεπα τις λαϊβ παρουσιάσεις.

Το σαββατοκύριακο πήγα πίσω και παρακολούθησα κάνα δύο μαγνητοσκοπημένες παρουσιάσεις, αλλά δεν ήταν το ίδιο. Τελικά άρχισα να σκέφτομαι για το τι μου αρέσει σε τέτοιου τύπου ακαδημαϊκά και εργασιακά συνέδρια, και η απάντηση είναι «το κοινό». Αν και μερικές παρουσιάσεις είναι καλές, αρκετές είναι άστα να πάνε, με κακό powerpoint και ύλη που ήδη ξέρω. Το ωραίο με τα συνέδρια είναι πως μπορείς να μιλήσεις με συνεργάτες από άλλα μέρη, και πριν από τις παρουσιάσεις, και μετά, και στο μεσημεριανό (που σου παρέχουν) και στις διάφορες ρεσεψιόν.

Για εμάς που συμμετέχουμε διαδικτυακός, είναι οι υπόλοιποι που συμμετέχουν μέσω twitter. Εντάξει, καλό το twitter, αλλά προσωπικά μου φαίνεται πως έχεις παραπάνω ευκαιρίες για συνομιλίες από κοντά, παρά από twitter. Σε τελική ανάλυση, καλό το συνέδριο, αλλά χρειαζόταν ένα κάτι παραπάνω για εμάς στο διαδίκτυο.
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Dara O'Brien: On Video games

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Now this was pretty funny!
I kept nodding "uh-huh!!!" while watching... that damn croutch keeps getting stuck just when I want to run :-)  No jokes about metal gear and hiding in a box though...perhaps for a future skit :-)


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WIndows 8 tablets with docks!

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Microsoft, steal this idea!

I was listening to Windows Weekly the other day and Laporte and Thurott were discussing ARM based Windows 8 tablets, versus Intel desktops, and how Microsoft's strategy is windows everywhere (as opposed to some sort of fragmented windows like we have now, and which was much worse in the past).  What seems to be escaping people is the idea of the dock!

You could have an ARM based tablet that is ultra thin (think iPad), that runs on an ARM chipset, with a portable ATI or NVIDIA graphics processor that runs Windows 8 in tablet mode just fine (and perhaps some desktop apps just fine).  On that same tablet you can also have more  processor intensive applications like games, photoshop, and adobe premier - they just won't run when you are only in tablet mode.  This is where a dock comes in handy.

You could have a dock that contains a quadcore CPU, a few more GB of RAM, and a more souped up graphics card that's connected to an ethernet connection, keyboard, mouse and monitor (and perhaps has some USB and thunderbolt ports on it).  You plop the tablet into this dock and you've got a computer capable of running demanding applications that can't run in tablet mode.  Your apps travel with your, so they are not stuck in your dock, and whenever you have access to a dock capable of running your apps you can run them.  Remember, when docked you will have 2 CPUs, 2 sources of RAM, 2 sources for video cards, and potentially more storage (since you can store more stuff to an external hard drive attached to the dock).

When you're all done, just take the tablet and go! You can have a dock at work and a  dock at home, and if you're one of those traveling types, you could have docks in hotel rooms, at conference centers and presentation rooms!  I also envision cases where you have the possibility of connecting to a DVR to download your recordings onto your tablet, or just play the games on your tablet on your big screen TV (xbox portable?)

I really don't know why this tablet/dock idea doesn't immediately pop out to everyone else - I can't be the only one :-)
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Microsoft's Vision of 2010

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I came across this video on YouTube (by hearing about it on Windows Weekly) and  I have to say that it is a riot! The tablets are bulky, they still use the stylus as inefficiently as they did back in 2005 (when this video was made) and...well it's so corporate!  At least the Knowledge Navigator video by Apple was a little more "real life."

This video reminded me of the awesome motorola handset that was never available for purchase. What's shown in the video is a motorola handset that flips both ways, in landscape (to use a querty keyboard) and in portrait (like a regular flip phone).  Motorola never really released it though, even though you could get testing units on ebay...

Wondering what microsoft's new vision is ;-)


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