Dream Serious

Last night I had a long poignant dream about balancing precariously on narrow ledges. On reflection, I think playing Mario 64 in bed before I went to sleep was a bad idea.

It is snowing on and off here, but in a rather pathetic non-northern fashion. Very pretty to look at this morning, if a little less fun to walk through. Taking great care not to fall on my arse this morning.

Finally, someone has revived an old Firefox extension that I have been desperate to find ever since I moved from Opera to Firefox. Save Session remembers all your open tabs when you close Firefox, and reopens them as you left them. Which was one of the main things that I loved about Opera, and finally it is a part of the browser I truly love. I am quite glad about it, mainly cos I was starting to think I might have to try and learn how to do it myself. Which could have taken me ages.

Hmmmmmm

Nice lazy weekend, took it nice and easy with S. Bit more gardening, have moved the buried bike out of the way, to now get down to the layer containing a hoover, a rabbit hutch and numerous other random items the previous tennants tried unsuccessfully to burn and then bury. I must thank them for that if I ever meet them. I also disturbed a little tiny toad, who had a little wander then buried himself again. No idea what he was doing in our garden, unless one of our neighbours has a pond hidden somewhere.

Strange Days

Hmmmm, got to bed early last night, and wrote two short pages of stuff I was vaguely
happy with. Not like me to accomplish things now. Quite satisfying really, and
have another idea this morning. It was a nice feeling last night, sat down to write
down one litte idea, and found several things flowing out of my head one after the other.
Just goes to show that the best way to write sometimes is to stare at a piece of paper until
your head bleeds, or you start writing.

Slow of Mind

Bit tired today. Forgot to say, saw Harry Hill at the New Theatre on
Saturday night, very good standup. He is suprisingly good at improvising,
which is a side to him I haven’t seen before.

Also, figured out how to set up a search extension in Firefox to exclude something
from a search. Here is how to do it:

In windows, go to c:program filesmozilla firefox and open google.src in a
text editor or notepad.

you are looking for:

[input name=”q” user]

Change it to:

[input name=”q” value”-kelkoo”]
[input name=”q” user””]

(obv in all the above replace the [] with angle brackets)

save the file, and restart firefox. It will append the -kelkoo (or whatever else you put in there)
to searches from the google search box.

Dainty Shooting

Have played the demos in a bit more depth now on the DS. WarioWare Touched is
an outrageous game, 3-5 second bursts of stylus-shredding activity. The sheer
sense of fun and joy in it is a delight, this game isn’t going to change your
life, but it will put an unshakable smile on your face for a few hours. Metroid
Prime is interesting, the graphics are absolutely lush, there is no other way
of looking at it. But, the control is a bit weird, I am no FPS player for starters,
so this may be a factor, but I did find it tricky. Will play it some more, see
what I reckon.

Mario is now getting addictive though, that is what I have spent
the time on. Some things are easy and memorable from playing on the N64, others
need some learning and logic to progress.

Details, Suprises

Some random thoughts on the DS thus far:

The mini games on Mario are really nice, all designed to show off some
of the different control routine libraries you can use on the touch
screen. There is a very funny version of missile command, but you fire
cannonballs using a catapult, which you draw back and aim with the
stylus in one fell swoop. 8 of the mini-games are unlocked to begin with;
I read somewhere that there are something like 36 in all. Quite a mixture,
some are card games and spot the Mario, others look like they have a little
more depth to them.

Menus and letter entry are a breeze with a touch screen. I’ll
tell you something for nothing, Advance Wars will be ace on this,
speed up the the move process massively. And taking the d-pad typing out of
Animal Crossing will improve the game by about 50% alone.

Double screen is nice for gameplay. I’ll confess, in Mario so far, you
are mainly looking at the top screen, but it is useful if you are ever
lost just casting your eyes downwards slightly, and seeing your map
and your objectives. And again, some of the mini games use it so that
gameplay is across both, what you are controlling is in the bottom
screen, but what is coming towards you is in the top. That gets quite
frantic actually, may take a little getting used to in action games.

The backlighting is nice, but you need to see it without, that is
funny. I should do a couple of photos for the comparison, but so you
know, I think they will be titled “lit” and “fuck knows, I think
something is on the screen, but it may as well be turned off”

Finally, I did try out the Pictochat. You can sit in a room on your
own (which is handy for testing it out when a max of 3000 people in
the country have one). Works really well, text and drawing together. I
don’t see it being used much at all, but it is nicely done.

I’m not going to pretend I think it is a PSP beater, but
then I think going on its design spec it was never going to be. I do
think though it is bringing some much-needed innovation to the gaming
table, and I am keen to see how that gets used.

Delighted, Satisfied

Happy with my new toy. I think the biggest suprise, is how well the touch screenworks. Very easy to use, very responsive. Lot of scope for subtlety with it. I was sold on the moment I chose my save file on Mario64 DS, and the water behind it rippled to my touch. Nice

Thinking of more search extensions to write for Firefox. I might have a bash at
Companies House searches, as we use them at work, possibly Kelkoo the shopping
comparison site too. Seem to have got the knack for them. Did manage to add in
last night the permanent rss feed button down the bottom of the page. Am thinking
about the links at the top of the page, and wondering if I could generate them
in php. At the moment, they are written in html, and if I want to alter or add
anything to them, I have to change every single page. If I could paste the code
in via php (or something), I could potentially just have to change it in one place.
Not quite sure how to do it yet, need to read around the subject more.

Dashed

Didn’t get my DS yesterday. Didn’t Nintendo read my blog? Tha fools. I will now give it a bad review, and my wrath will be heard throughout the world.

Bollocks I will, I am far too much of a fanboy for that. And I do have a more
realistic view of the size of my readership than that. Also, notes to self, I need to add a link for the rss feed to the blog, and remember the downloads section