Tuesday, June 22, 2004

Deja Vu Tuesday

I say that because today felt and was very similar to last Tuesday, in a number of ways. Read on and see if you can spot the similarities...

This morning I did something that I haven't done in a while; I pressed the snooze button on my alarm clock. Aside from delaying my morning 8 minutes, it had no noticeable effect on my day. During my morning browsing, I found a particularly interesting post here, at the Emaculation forums. It referred to this article, which talks about how the next version of VirtualPC for Mac will feature the ability to pass DirectX rendering right through to the Mac's graphics card. In essence, this means a Mac equipped with a decent processor and a higher-end Radeon graphics card will be able to play PC DirectX games just as well as a similarly-configured Windows machine. As you can see, this virtually eliminates the biggest caveat of Macs at this point: poor gaming support. The ironic thing about this whole deal is that Microsoft now owns VirtualPC, so this new "enhancement" they've built into the latest version of their software could stand to hurt them. Curious, indeed...

After breakfast, I spent about half an hour helping mom set up Firefox on her laptop. After seeing her deal with one-too-many popups and Flash adds in IE, I figured it was time to introduce her to a vastly superior browser. It took her some time to get used the concept of "tabs" instead of individual windows, but once I showed her all the advantages of tabs (mainly thanks to the phenominal TabBrowser Extensions), she seemed to warm up to them a bit. I also showed her how Firefox automatically imported all her IE favorites, and helped her get them organized into groups for easier access. I then topped it off with the AdBlock extension to help her get rid of those nasty Yahoo! Mail Flash-based adds. I think she's going to have a much better experience now.

After we got finished with that, Mom and I read over today's Geometry lesson, which dealt with Pi even more. This time it was the almighty formula for the area of a circle. I didn't have much trouble getting through the work this afternoon, but it did take me an hour and a half to complete. For lunch today I had a burger while watching X-Play's chronicle of the Metal Gear Solid series. Everything was great...except for the naked Raiden segment. MGS fans: you know what I'm talking about. Everyone else: don't ask, you're better off not knowing. Trust me.

At around 3:00, Mom left with Sara to go out to the local Hobby Lobby and look for painting supplies. Apparently she's wanting to start painting at home some more. I finished up math and then settled in for a good, long session of CoD. I was up and down the whole time, putting in a couple of decent matches, a few terrible ones, and a single shining performance that made the whole thing worth it. Honestly, is there anything more satisfying than running as fast as you can with your entire team and completely desimating the entire opposing side, all in the first minute of a round? I think not!

But Sara had other things on her mind besides Call of Duty when she and Mom got home. I foolishly agreed to play some Unreal Tournament 2004 with her over our LAN. Her bots pummeled mine in the Onslaught rounds, which seems a bit suspicious since she was the host. In Deathmatch I was able to hold my own, but for the most part Sara was the one doing all the own-ing (which she reminded me on many occasions). I won a single, solitary round...but every other time I came in a close or distant second. I can't let myself get so out of practice like this...

This evening Dad brought home barbecue for dinner after Mom left to take Myst to fencing class. Dad and I watched Wheel of Fortune, and the beginning of tonight's Astros game, before taking Sparky (our remaining dog) out for a walk around the neighborhood. Sparky has been feeling lonely lately since losing Amos, so we're giving him a lot more attention as of late. We got back and watched the rest of the game until the girls got home around 8:00. Then the four of us watched the first episode of Babylon 5, which Dad had rented on DVD. It was...a bit rough around the edges, to put it mildly. As most shows are in the their first season or so, the actors played a bit stiff, delivering their lines with too much or too little character. And the fact that the show used 1993-era CG graphics for all the space shots didn't help much either. However, the show's concept is interesting, and a lot of people say it gets better in the later seasons. I'll reserve my judgement on this particular series until I see some more of it.

So did you spot the similarities? Hope so, because I don't feel like pointing them out...

Goodnight, folks!
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