Patapon: I normally can’t stand rhythm games, but this one is a ton of fun.
iPhone SDK: Finally! Looks great to me, but I am not happy about the ‘no background apps’ policy. I’d like 3rd party chat apps and feed readers to be able to alert me from the background. Hopefully, background capabilities are coming.
OS X Leopard’s “Alex” voice: Text to speech is normally pretty crappy. I’m glad Apple invested in a voice that speaks clearly, even if it does require 700MB of disk space!! I’m working on a simple OS X app that connects to Google Reader and reads articles aloud.
Jericho: Canceled AGAIN? Really? At least there’s still Torchwood, Doctor Who, Lost, BSG and Smallville (major spoilers in this week’s promo – be careful).
Arduino: I’m having a lot of fun with mine. An Arduino plus a series of BlinkMs is a great combination.
MacBook Air: I’ve had mine for 2 months and I love it. The combination of mobility, screen size and performance it provides makes it much more useful than the notebooks, umpcs, pdas and internet tablets I’ve used in the past. Meanwhile, the flexibility, usability and safety provided by OS X gives this machine a huge advantage over similar Windows-based laptops. It’s my main computer, now.
WaterField’s Racer-X Laptop Case: The Racer-X is perfect for me. Not too big, not too small. It stays upright do to a solid rectangular bottom, which is really nice – it makes it a little heavier but it’s worth knowing it’s not going to tip over. The Air is in a zippered into a lightly padded, secure pocket. The other zippered pocket is big enough to hold the charger, my cradlepoint PHS, a usb hub, a medium sized ora book or my Kindle, a tiny usb HD (for backups and extra storage) and some other misc stuff. It’s small enough that I have to think about what I want to keep in it, but not so small that I have to leave anything important behind. I bought the black version with leather handles. The build quality is terrific and I can see it lasting for a LONG time.
The Nintendo DS version of Geometry Wars: Galaxies shipped yesterday. I picked up mine at GameStop along with Petz Wild Animals: Dolphinz (for Samantha). I don’t know if the dolphins game is any good, but Galaxies is incredible.
Some quick thoughts:
- It uses the same control scheme that my homebrew game, Extreme Onslaught uses, but they’ve made it much more intuitive by using aiming graphics in the top screen.
- The full Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved game (the XBox 360 Live Arcade version) is included. That was a nice surprise and a wonderful fallback if you decide you don’t like the Galaxies game.
- Galaxies is fun, with a lot of variations on the normal Geometry Wars rules.
- The drones (independent ships that fly next to you and have their own weapons and powers) really add to the variety and are a blast, especially for an RType/Gradius fan like myself.
- To unlock new drones, planets and solar systems, you need to collect geoms (enemy wreckage) during normal gameplay. I don’t like that aspect of Everyday Shooter, so I was surprised that I actually enjoy doing so in Galaxies.
- I’m looking forward to trying the multi-player game types.
3 more days until it is released!
Update: Bought a Sidewinder this weekend and it is wonderful! I find myself actually using thumb buttons for once. Also, the mouse is wide and comfortable. It’s nice to see that the container for the weights and alternative feet holds the cord really well. The cord holding feature was clearly not just an afterthought – the holder has a substantial amount of additional heft beyond the mouse weights.
I’m looking forward to the new Microsoft Sidewinder mouse. Not just for gaming, but because of the optimal placement of the thumb buttons. Most mice put the thumb buttons ‘out of the way’, forcing you to reach to press them. The Sidewinder thumb buttons are positioned at your thumb’s resting position, similar to how the left and right buttons are positioned under your fingers.
I’m also looking forward to the competition this represents for logitech. I’m a huge fan of the logitech mice (I own several, including the mx510, the vx nano, and the mx revolution), but I’d love to see even more innovation.