Tag Archives: Neverwinter Nights

Gaming, Photo Album, and Search Engines

I’ve been secretly working on a photo browser script for this site from scratch. I’ve completed two of the three parts to this project: augmentation of viewimage.php with extended image information (file details, dimensions, EXIF, hits, keywords), and an updater script that creates thumbnails and links images in the photo album directory with an image database, which holds some of the extended information. The only part left is the actual image browser frontend, which I expect to finish within the next week. Woot. 8)

Since my last post, I’ve been keeping an eye on how the search engines have been crawling, indexing, and caching my site. Google and Yahoo! seem to be getting the idea now–slowly phasing out nonexistent pages and indexing existing pages, eventually with a correct cache (although the caches just send you back to my site). I’ve begun doubting my usage of frames. In the near future, I may start examining DHTML and other alternatives. At least the search engines are cooperating now.

As for my recent gaming trends, I’ve been mostly playing Company of Heroes lately. I’ve pretty much given up on NWN2 near the beginning of Act 3. My Ranger 15/Rogue 1/Shadow Thief 2 character isn’t all that interesting and the story has been way too convoluted. But as for COH, I finished the campaign last week. Then a couple days ago, I discovered the goodness of skirmishes. My favorite tactic is to use a camouflaged sniper to direct artillery fire and then overwhelm the enemy with armor superiority.

Since Kaylen doesn’t like the wargames, we played a few crazy sessions of Super Mario 3 on Snes9x this weekend. To alleviate some of the tedium, I whipped up some memory cheats for infinite lives: addresses 7E0736 and 7E0737 set to 99 (63h) for Mario and Luigi respectively (All-Stars version). Also over the weekend, I discovered a user mod that I had been hoping would be made: Classic Doom for Doom 3. The levels are designed really well–true to the original layouts with upgraded art and decor to up the realism. However, some of the continuity-breaking attributes of Doom 3 persist: more agile/tougher monsters, weapon effectiveness, and monster teleports (I know Doom had these, but they were kinda scarce comparatively). Still, it’s a lot of fun romping around these new renditions of a classic game.

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What’s been going on

So the fall semester of school is finally over with–oh, when will it end. I managed to pass all of my classes, albeit busting my ass to do so. Next semester, I’m trying for a lighter after-school (homework) workload, so I can finally get to all these projects I’ve been meaning to do. Or at least the ones I don’t get started over break. Those include my alarm program (still some bugs to work out and polishing); calculator RPG (working on the combat system); a program to convert Trillian logs to HTML (just an idea right now, but something I’ve been meaning to do); the links, photo album, and feature archive sections of this site (probably more coding from scratch in PHP), and fixing up dad’s old computer for a local server.

I’d really like to use Linux for the server, but I’m unsure of what distro, filesystem, and other settings to use to give it the best interoperability with the Windows machines. There’s also concerns about what upgrades I can manage to spend on it. It’s a five year old Pentium 3-based machine, desperately needing an upgrade from a 10GB hard drive if it’s to be a media server. I’m also thinking about using it as a testbed, especially for this site. As I said, it’s a project on its own.

Kaylen has been staying with me for the last week. It’s been a good time for the most part. We’ve been trying for 100% completion on Lego Star Wars II (currently at about 85%). That game is surprisingly fun for how simple it is. I’ve also been back at Red Orchestra since the last free weekend. I’ve been playing offline with a cracked steam dll since then, but I really wanna buy it and make Kaylen drive tanks while I man the gun. 😉

I’ve been trying to play NWN2, but that’s been an ordeal. I was getting locks in the game with the Catalyst 4.12 drivers that I’ve been so adamant about for two years. So I tried just upgrading to the newest version of Catalyst (6.12). That did better with the locking, but then I would get some BSODs on Windows startup. After much fuss with safe-mode and restore points, I finally got the old 4.12 drivers installed back. I hear people saying all the time that the WinXP system restore feature is crap and a waste of drive space, but that shit is really useful. But, I digress. No NWN2 for me, I suppose. I really need a new system.

Kaylen and I were cleaning out my room yesterday, and I had decided to finally get rid of a majority of my box collection. But before I threw out the hardware boxes, I snapped a pic for memorabilia’s sake. The pictured Diamond Viper II and SBLive! were the first video and sound cards I bought. I still have the SBLive in my rig, but it’s soon to be replaced by an X-Fi, courtesy of Santa.

Boxes from my first Sound, Video, and TV cards.

Boxes from my first Sound, Video, and TV cards.

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