Overkill : Open-arena on the EEE-pc.

Having installed hardy heron on my little EEE-pc I was very pleased to have a complete version of Ubuntu running on my little white companion. Gone are the native Xandros days where I would have to poke and pry to find a snippet of useful ( or interesting ) software in the EEE-repositories they had put online, With Ubuntu running on ‘ the little one ‘ I have the same luxury I have when using my heavier linux machines : Complete access to the Ubuntu software repositories. One of the packages I found there a while ago is called ‘ open arena ‘ This one source clone ( our should i just say ‘copy) of the immensely popular QUQKE 3 game is one of the things I tend to select when poking around in the Synaptic package manager.

Not that I’m an avid gamer anymore, but quake 3 was just one of these games I grew up with. I mean that in the sense that it was one of the first multi player fps shooters I came in contact with. There was of course Duke nuke’m 3d which we played to smithereens on the first pentium 1 systems we owned but Q3 was the first networked multi player shooter that deprived me of a lot of sleep around the turn of the century. At the time i was working a a junior sys engineer at a multimeda company that had a GAMES TESTING department. Mostly these guys would be testing boring games but, when quitting time came around the large testing room, filled with computers, would turn into a corporately sponsored lan party. The guys who thought me the game where, even then, already competing in online tournaments. So little me got to ‘play along’ being mostly cannon fodder in the beginning. I must go fragged more time then i could breathe in those first games , but gradually ( playing with the big boys ) I got better. After some time the action packed Q3 made room for the more tactical counter strike that I enjoyed to play into the wee hours as well.

The funny part of the story is
that , back then we needed ‘ high speed, fine tuned gaming machines ‘ to run the Q3. Good graphics cards, enough ram and so on. When I was playing around with my EEE-pc I decided to install ‘open-arena’ on it, and guess what ? it works like a charm on what is considered a ‘low end’ laptop these days 🙂 So when the opportunity i will give ‘sarge, bones and all the other bots a serious run for their money on the smallest computer I own.

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Low tech area ? High tech security ?

Having moved recently I find it peculiar to see how there are small but subtle differences between cities in the same region. We have moved south about 20 miles from Hasselt ( District capital of our province ) to a smaller town near the border. Where Hasselt can be described as a modern thriving city , our current place of residence might be called ‘ moderately conservative ‘ when it comes to following along in the latest trends. The fact that it IS the oldest city in the country might just have something to do with that. As a result things are not ‘that cutting edge’ around here when it comes to fashion and technology and stuff. No major computer store around every corner, no pda carrying yuppies crossing the street.. stuff like that. So as a EEE-pc wielding technology enthousiast I tend to stand out just a little.  But one of the areas where this ( dare I say ‘backwatered’) city does have an inkling of progress over Hasselt is by the way its inhabitants deal with their wifi.

In Hasselt wireless access points where abundant. Even from the comfort of our own living room I could scan and find several wifi hotspots, at least half of them unsecured. Walking into the city center it got even better : Free wifi was a guaranteed service for me. Just about every coffee shop, sandwich bar or bench that I would use would have some kind of open wifi available. Watching seesmic, using pidgin, doing some blogging .. No matter where I went .. some wireless DHCP server was waiting to give me some free wifi love.

Down here however its a different story.
True , I must do some ‘ war-walking’ through the town centre to make a good assessment of the open-wifi situation, but what i’ve seen so far is a little disconcerting.  First of all : the sheer number of wifi access points is lower then in Hasselt. This is a ‘lower tech’ area so that can be expected. BUT : Almost ALL of the wifi spots I detected are secured. So for a low tech area the ‘knowledge level’ of the owners of these hotspots is higher then in uptown Hasselt ? That is indeed a very peculiar observation.

Peculiar or not : It leaves me , Knight-‘can i have free wifi with that latte’-wise with a little bit of a problem. Am i going to have to revert to off-line life when on the move in the town centre ? Am i required to boot into Windows in order to activate my 3g UMTS card ( it doesn’t work under windows ) who will know. Talking on #freshubuntu yesterday I was informed that their are umts-cards supported under Linux but the chance they will be available here ( and work with my provider ) are slim.

Perhaps it IS time to take my rather innocent transgressions of hitching a ride on an open wifi spot a step more towards the dark side and look into a slice of AIRCRACK to gently pry my way into the net.. or would that be a walk on the dark side ?

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Now i understand Dragonbal.

I seldom just "blog" about what I encounter on the net, to prevent the site turning into yet another link-blog. Nor do i like to "Follow the Herd" and do yet another repost of items every geek has seen ten times over. But sometimes fun stuff is like .. fun stuff.  Like for example : Dragonball. I must be missing a certain part of my frontal lobe that I fail to see the secret behind this immensely popular cartoon that has been running on TV for some time now. Upon shipping the cartoon in Noah’s Digital Ark one should file it under the Manga section : Hence the fact why I cannot make heads or tails of it.


For one : THe characters of this wonderful cartoon. The first time I saw the cartoon it was dubbed in French. Back then, being only a youngster, the only French I know consisted of a way of saying " I want to fondle your boobs ". This line however, was never mentioned in the show. So I was unable to decipher what the characters where yapping on about. I was sure that in the dialog lay the secret to WHY they all looked different. Midgets, old guys, girls with a tail and cat-ears, aliens (as if the other ones where "local" to the planet) and more strange stuff.

But most of the cartoons consisted of a lot of moaning. No no .. not "that" kind of moaning. But the kind of sounds people make when they suffer of bowel-obstructions and need to really push to get mr hanky into the potty. This "moaning" preceded short but spectacular scenes of violence that where totaly oblivious to the laws of physics. Fighting scenes that sometimes took several episodes before they where completed.

And should one of our heroes (or villains) should have an unexpected appointment with their own mortality they could even lug it out in heaven.

Luckily I found THIS post explaining the painfully obvious to the painfully oblivious : The laws of Phisics : Manga style.

I quote :

#1 – Law of Metaphysical Irregularity

    The normal laws of physics do not apply.

#2 – Law of Differentiated Gravitation

    Whenever someone or something jumps, is thrown, or otherwise
    is rendered airborne, gravity is reduced by a factor of 4.

#3 – Law of Sonic Amplification, First
Law of Anime Acoustics

    In space, loud sounds, like explosions, are even louder
    because there is no air to get in the way.

And of course :

#11 – Law of Inherent Combustibility

  •  Everything explodes .. EVERY-THING. 
      Anything that explodes bulges first.
      Large cities are the most explosive substances known
      to human science. Tokyo in particular seems to be the most unstable of
      these cities, sometimes referred to as "The Matchstick City".

That explains a lot. Now I can go to bed and fall asleep with the thought that I finally understand … Dragonball..

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