30 July 2007

The Simpsons Movie

That could be the best movie I've ever seen. Definitely the funniest one I've ever seen and unquestionably the best Simspsons episode ever.

It's the only film I've ever seen where everyone in the theatre was laughing at every single joke.

And those jokes are pretty much all dead-on perfect. In particular, the jabs at Fox, moviegoers and other movies are amongst the greatest jokes of their kind ever committed to 2D animation...Or indeed, live action. Sorry Epic Movie, your brand of cheap parody doesn't cut it against this film.

I'm going to be interested to see how this film does at the Box Office. I've seen some people underestimating its potential income. I think it's a dead cert blockbuster, but that depends on whether or not people stupidly decide to watch Transformers or Harry Potter 5 instead (Both of which could have been better).

And remember: stay through the whole credits sequence.

26 July 2007

Coming up next

So, today is Rich Gallup's last On the Spot. Now, you can call me sad, but I'm kinda down. For over 2 years, I've tuned into On the Spot, The HotSpot, Tournament TV and GameSpot's Live Coverage of E3.

And so for over 2 years, I've been watching and listening to Rich Gallup. And Rich Gallup is awesome. Kind of a hero and role model in a way. And now, he's not gonna be doing any of that stuff any more.

And, again, you might think it's lame, but I'm kinda of upset.

But whatever. I'll be tuning in to On the Spot to see him off and I wish him the best of luck in Boston. If at all possible, I'm going to try and follow his future endeavors.

So long Rich, I'm gonna miss you at GameSpot.

24 July 2007

Great Scott!

I have been thinking.

Thinking about user interfaces. And eyecandy.

I've got a good one. Imagine the cursor is a small, white circle. Translucent, but more of a solid white than transparent. You can just about make out outlines and major contrast areas through it. About the size of a fingertip. The contents of the screen are recessed. There is a gap between the actual front of the screen and the contents (This gap is, of course, virtual). The cursor resides in this gap.

When you click, the cursor taps the contents of the screen where you pointed. If you're clicking a link or an icon, a puff of white explodes outwards from the edge of the cursor.

To signify special characterisitics, symbols appear within the circle. Arrows for resizing and dragging, the number of files selected if selecting multiple files for whatever reason, a chain with an arrow for a link. Things like that. For text, the circle would become a bit more see through and a line would appear, straight down the middle, splitting it.

Now imagine a user interface with physics. If you quickly grab a window and flick the mouse, letting go before you complete the motion, you toss the window in the direction gestured.

Arrows are cool, hands are cool. This is the future.

The person I quoted in the last post was Dr. Emett Brown of Back to the Future fame.

Using Safari

I got out of the habit after those security bugs were publicised, but since I've updated it a couple of times since then, "I figured...What the hell?"*

It feels great to be on holiday at last. Way laid back. I can spend my time just chilling and messing around again, at last. And as part of that, it's come to my attention that the only two apps I'm using right now are made by Apple.

iTunes 7 and Safari 3. Speaking of iTunes, I'm willing to bet iTunes 8 is due alongside OS X Leopard, or at least the next iPod refresh. This year. Think October time. Feature-wise, I think it will add a more global Video Store (TV and movies in the UK? I can but pray). It will also add support for the latest iPods. Obviously. Probably something more as well. DVD playback for example.

You heard me.

Speaking of video playback, have any of you tried Miro? It's a godsend. Between Miro and Joost, what's the point in TV? Miro is great because it allows automatic video downloading in any format. DivX and XviD nerds aren't left out in the cold with Miro.

And it can search popular video sharing sites, like YouTube, Veoh, Google Video, Revver and Daily Motion. Very nice.

I need to get down to an Apple Store soon. I want to try out a Mighty Mouse. That scroll ball intrigues me and I'm sick of wireless mice. I may also grab an Apple Keyboard if I like them enough. The USB ports interest me.

Feel Good folks,
The one and only,
Jens with a J

*If you know who I'm quoting, let everyone know in the Comments. Else, I'll tell you in the next post.

18 July 2007

Moore departs, analysts predict Black Hole to form as a result

Microsoft have lost their second gaming bigwig in as many consoles as Peter Moore departs to helm EA Sports, a role which will take him cross platform and have him lead the fight against "upstart" 2KGames.

Microsoft have tapped someone uninteresting to replace him, but this all begs the question: When are they going to swallow their pride, pull J Allard out of the zune and get him back fronting the games division? I'm sure Mattrick is good, but the company needs consistency again. Mattrick leads, J talks? It could work.

In other news, Nintendo look set to be named Best in Show at E3, largely by default. The title would have gone to Sony, but for their PR woes over this PS3 fire sale...Er..."Price Cut".

Microsoft meanwhile had a good show, but not a spectacular one. Good enough, but it could only have one with the expected price cut. Likelihood is, they want to distance the price cut from their recent warranty fiasco. Speaking of, wonder if that has anything to do with Moore's departure..?

And lastamly, a bootnote for my ongoing coverage.

iPhone Europe: T-Mobile all but confirmed for Germany, O2 again linked to UK deal

T-Mobile slipped up and posted info about the - well, the word - iPhone on their German website, making the deal all but certain.

Meanwhile, more sources close to the deal have said O2 have won the UK contract, which has fueled speculation that iPhone Europe must be 3G. O2 aint got no 2.5G son.

07 July 2007

iPhone Europe - £329.99

Amazon UK recently cocked up and revealed details of iPhone on their site. The handset was listed for £330 with a release date of December 1st.

If this holds true - with that price applying to the 8GB version - I will be absolutely delighted. That price falls some £20 of the maximum I was willing to pay for an iPhone.

And the date of release puts it at a perfect time for me to grab it near-launch.


Stick with me for extensive coverage of iPhone Europe

06 July 2007

iPhone Europe - The Reg says "Keep on dreaming motherfuckers"

The news has been flying for a week about a UK iPhone deal. Vodafone had it, then Carphone Warehouse had it, then both of them before suddenly O2 were not only back in it, they had it.

Well, I say news. Rumour really.

The Register is reporting that if any of the deals are on the table - and they probably are - they're most likely still at the "golf game" stage.

This is probably true. One interesting factoid they put forth is that Carphone Warehouse may win through, owing to their comparative lack of investment in 3G. This means it would be more politically acceptable to their shareholders for them to back an EDGE device.

Stick with Jens for extensive coverage of iPhone's European launch.

05 July 2007

New iPod Imminent

The signs all point to at least one new iPod being released soon. In fact, we suspect the Nano and the iPod are both getting updated very soon.

Here's why. When Mini was about to be killed off for Nano 1G, they gave them away with Macs. In much the same way as they're currently doing with Nanos.

iPod six is being hinted at by two things. For one, it is the subject of an hourly giveaway with Coca-Cola. For another, Play.Com just lopped £40 off the price of the 30GB version.

£40 is one hell of a discount. Seems to me like they're dumping them.

Be aware, new iPods are coming.

Very soon.

iPhone Europe - It Gets Better

It's all over the internet. It's not official, but it is everywhere.

T-Mobile have the iPhone in Germany.

O2 have it here in the UK. Let me be the first to say...Awwwwwwwwwww Yeahhhhhhhhhhhhh. O2 is the carrier I was hoping for, so as far as I'm concerned, this can only be good news.


News Wireless are sticking to their Vodafone story, backed up by some generic files in the iPhone as shipped stateside and their own unidentified sources, but owing to the unreliability of some of the other info they've posted, such as dates for the announcements and the unlikely 3G support, we can probably ignore them.

That said, they may be right that "O2" means "Carphone Warehouse" - a virtual network running on O2 is operated by the retail giant - however, even if this is the case, I imagine an O2 version is a must. Since O2 are the ones who'd have to upgrade the systems, I'm going to guess they'll want a piece of the pie.

And O2? Why not throw some iPhone love Tesco Mobile's way?

03 July 2007


Reporting a failure to load. Very odd indeed. FireFox 2 and Safari 3 Beta, both on XP, load the page halfway, then it bugs out and crashes the application. Safari displays some of the top menus on the page, then stops. Firefox displays some content, then just white.

Both applications failed to respond after this.


Update 23:35

Problem persists, but symptoms have changed slightly. No more whiteout in FireFox

iPhone Europe - NewsWireless Updates

Apparently, the reason I've yet to hear the slightly dubious, though very good, news about the European iPhone launch from Apple, Vodafone, T-Mobile or Carphone Warehouse is related to legal troubles.

Word is, Vodafone didn't want to sign the contract drafted for T-Mobile under German law (It is, presumably, a 4-way contract). They requested it be rewritten under UK law for them to sign.

So NewsWireless says.

I also got the impression NewsWireless suspected Apple wanted (Or was required to under contract to AT&T I suppose) to sell 1 Million iPhones stateside, or possibly restock AT&T's stores before they made the announcement.

I don't know about that last bit, I didn't pay too much attention after the legal bit.

They say to expect news Thursday.

I'll be waiting.

01 July 2007

iPhone Europe - 3G?

Mutterings all over the internets that Apple, Inc will unveil the details of iPhone's European launch on Monday, in partnership with Vodafone, T-Mobile and Carphone Warehouse (As a distributor, in addition to Apple's own stores since there are fewer of them in Europe)

The big news is that Apple is expected to launch iPhone in Europe with 3G. Well, yes, that's big news. But are you surprised? They kind of have to.

It's okay in the States, their mobile phone market is archaic compared to ours. We pretty much skipped 2.5G solutions. These are more common over there. Most EU networks are either 2G or 3G. And there's no way in hell iPhone could launch on 2G standards.

We can safely assume this iPhone is due out by the end of the year in Europe.

But we can speculate that a US version will not be far behind.