Tuesday, March 31, 2009

I ran out of witty titles for FC posts.

Just got Beautiful Disaster. 334,078 points, 34th on PS2.

Honestly I should have had this one sooner, but it took me forever to adjust to WT's HO/PO timing. The HO/POs are more like GH2's, which completely blows because there are HO/PO strings all over the place that I know I could hit if it had GH3's infinite front end window. I'm not trying to push them hours too early or anything, I just tend to rush a little bit. That's one of the leading causes of me dropping combo.

Now I need to go grab this one on bass. Edit: done. 200,750 points, also 34th on PS2.

Also I discovered that if I had a mic, I could probably easily voxtar Livin' on a Prayer.

Monday, March 30, 2009

World Tour bass is boring

Yawn. Another bass sightread FC. I don't normally post about these, but whatever. There's less competition for bass scores, so it looks like I'm really good ;)

The song was Aggro. 124006 points, 16th place on PS2.

Not much else to say. If you need help getting used to playing with all 5 frets and you have World Tour, try some bass songs.

Heh, I'd forgotten how much money an FC gets you in World Tour. You get several bonuses that effectively cover the same thing. 5 star performance ($75), Perfect Performance ($100), Never Red ($25), Solo Streaker ($320), Hot Start ($20), Strong Finish ($20), and Percent Notes Hit ($50). The only other money bonus I got was New High Score ($25). If I'd tried, I could have gotten Whammy Maestro in there, because hitting the whammy bar on every hold in most bass parts that have them is really easy.

Edit: Let's add Everlong onto this post about sightread bass FCs, why don't we. 218,150 points, 37th on PS2. Solo Streaker apparently scales to something, probably the length of the solo, because I got $780 for it this time around. Kinda stupid that bass gets credit for maintaining a barely audible single pitch rhythm throughout a complicated guitar solo, but hey, I'll take it.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

lol Rhythm FC

Doesn't really count for anything, but I just FCed Go That Far on Rhythm. It kinda sucks that you have to play it in practice mode, you don't get star power, etc. I'm sitting here with the practice mode screen saying "100% notes hit", "389 out of 389 notes", and "streak: 389". Practice mode keeps track of your score but it doesn't show it on the menu screen and I forgot what it was already.

The only place I ever screw up in the Rhythm part is right at the end of Bridge 2 Solo, the chord transition from RYO to GY. You thought it was going to be the 4 note chords that comprise the first 16 notes of Bridge 2 Solo, didn't you? lol.

Anyone with the PS2 version of GH3 that lives anywhere near me want to go for a co-op FC?

Thursday, March 26, 2009

It's been painted black. What now?

Finally got Paint It Black out of the way.

307850 points, 405th on PS2.

Still working my way through the easy stuff.

I'll probably be saying that once I get to the harder songs because by then they'll have become easy, but whatever.

Now I can go back to working on Kill Switch Scratch so I can FC Bulls on Parade. My best so far is a -1, missing the note just after the star power phrase in Kill Switch Scratch. It'll happen eventually. After all, this is the song I can 5* in Performance Mode. I can't say that about any of the songs I've FCed up to this point.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


First, the tech support story that started it all.

Then, I found these:


They're basically Cheetos, but without the cheese and with a lot less salt.

And finally, this:


It's a very lightly carbonated grapefruit juice soda. So lightly carbonated that I can barely even tell it's carbonated. Tastes like it'd be a good mixer if I added some vodka or rum or something. (Edit: and add Curaçao to make it blue)

All I can say is: lol

Also, enjoy looking at my DK Bongos. (that's what she said)

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

So, Facebook's new layout blows.

Before, everything was cleanly organized by the day it happened. You could look down someone's wall and see (albeit in reverse) a chronological order of events. Now I look at my wall and what do I see? Blog posts from here imported, now with the timestamp below instead of above just to make it harder to find, and random ejaculations of recent activity, completely ignoring the flow of time. I liked it better when you could see "ok, today he friended 3 people and sent one some bacon, yesterday he joined his martial arts dojo's group". Instead I see activity that happened after several blog posts being shown before them.

Some idiots don't see this as bad. If a service provider makes a habit of ignoring its users, they will become dissatisfied and leave for a service that caters more to their needs. Users of the internet are not merely dumb interfaces (different sense of the word dumb, not implying lack of intelligence but rather lack of automation), we don't exist to be advertised to, we don't accept everything thrust upon us with open arms.

Facebook's old layout was a lot cleaner too. Looking at my wall, is there any reason why I need to see my profile picture next to every single thing I post? It's at the top of the page, and larger. It doesn't need to be repeated smaller over 9000 times down the page. Having it there for other people that post on your wall or comment on your shit is nice, but there should be an option somewhere to control it.

If Facebook wants more money, and the way they make that money is through advertising (which is a shitty money-making model when 90% of the internet doesn't want to be advertised to, as evidenced by the popularity of ad blockers), then they should realize that advertising isn't merely a one-way company->consumer relationship. Without the consumer reacting favorably to the advertising, it doesn't work. If an ad gets the point across in a friendly, truthful manner, there will be a positive response to it. If it's so annoying that the user goes out of their way to block it, it's not going to work. Furthermore, companies should worry less about advertising and more about having a product that performs its function, doesn't break, and is affordable. If they ensure those three things, they would need a lot less advertising because, and I'm going out on a limb here, but humans are social creatures. When we like something, we want to tell all our friends about it. Those friends who are interested will try it out, and if they like it, they'll tell their friends. Word of mouth marketing has been so overlooked in recent decades that it's been rebranded "viral marketing" and labeled a "new" thing for gimmicky or catchy products.

Don't get me wrong, I still value functionality over form. But when the form obscures the functionality and limits its use, there's something wrong.

Advertising in general is another problem. Advertisers seem to think that consumers are required to view advertising, even if they don't want the product in question or wouldn't be influenced by an ad in the first place. So, what do those users do? They install ad blockers, they get PVRs with commercial skip, etc., so they can be in control of what they see. Advertising as a whole isn't bad, but it's become so prevalent and persistent in trying to set itself as the norm while at the same time the products being advertised are changing very little for the better. I said in the beginning of Google's text ads, that's the way to go. Text ads are way less intrusive than flashing images, fake OS windows that bounce and tell you that your PC needs to be optimized (and lol who uses their OS' default theme anyway?), flash ads that use an actionscript loophole to open popups that popup blockers didn't start blocking until recently, etc., Text ads are just as functional as image ads without being annoying: they get the word out and provide a relevant link for the interested to peruse. Plus, it's a lot less bandwidth-intensive to serve text ads. Just sayin'.

When a community is forced to install extra software to block what they don't want to see because it's everywhere, something's wrong. Advertisers whine about ad blockers potentially bankrupting companies, but they're missing the point. The users who install ad blockers are the very same users that wouldn't have clicked on the ads in the first place. They see no need to have something on their screen that's of no use to them, so they remove it with an ad blocker. It's not causing money loss, rather, it's just not causing money gain. Typical corporate greed ignoring the neutral. They'll still get money, just less of it (not like they need any more anyway, they're fucking hoarding it all. After all, it was corporate greed that drove us into this recession in the first place). The money they do get will come from customers who are loyal and thus will be repeat customers and continue giving them money for their product.

Here's an idea for the companies: Pay your executives less and put that excess money into R&D. Seriously. Once you start making the boatloads of extra money that having a quality product gets you, give your grunt workers a raise since they're the ones doing the hard work making the stuff. Your executives with two mansions in each US time zone whose private chefs light their grills with $100 bills (lol I made a rhyme) and don't think about giving any of it back to the workers that make their shit and therefore made them rich in the first place already have enough money.

Now back to Facebook, since I got side-tracked on the advertising side-rant. I'm not a part of the social networking generation. I'm new to this stuff. How I networked socially before all this social networking site bullshit came about was an amalgam of message boards, IRC chats, IMs, and email. It worked, and still does to this day. Why change what works? Well, they wanted to integrate it all together. I guess that makes sense, but all the current implementations thereof are crap. All the AJAX bloat that comes hand in hand with it that causes a page to use more memory and cpu to be rendered just so it can sit in the background and let you chat with your friends using a javascript monstrosity that doesn't have nearly the feature set of IRC definitely doesn't help. I might just be an old geezer here but I don't see social networking as something that's necessary. I'm taking part in it anyway for a variety of reasons I'll go into at a later date.

I have great privacy concerns with all this social networking. These sites are basically trying to entice their users into posting all their personal information, no matter how private, just so they can keep track of it. What legitimate purpose does that serve? Sure, it's nice to be able to look at a friend's profile and see their phone number, but why call them when you could just talk to them on the internet?

Some have said that Facebook is too restrictive with users' expression of themselves. There is a sizable group that wants it to become another Myspace, i.e. every aspect of the page is customizable so therefore there's an animated gif background, text you can't read because of the animated gif background, music you don't like on autoplay, javascript that completely re-does the navigation so you're not completely sure how to see some people's information or get to some parts of their profile, the list goes on. Facebook is fine in that respect. It doesn't need that amount of customizability. That level of customizability is a bad thing. It's why Myspace has the reputation of being a bunch of kids who don't fully understand everything but think it's neato and copy off of everyone else so that other people will perceive them as "cool". A standardized layout that doesn't change from page to page gives off a much cleaner, more professional vibe than a layout that completely changes from page to page and is hardly ever usable.

Imagine if your local newspaper (or your favorite magazine, or some other print media you read regularly) allowed all of their writers to specify their own colors and visual styles for their articles. The publication would be a mess and nobody would buy it. Web sites are the same way. When you're using some service on the internet, you should have to use their layout because it's how they ensure that their functionality is best used. If you abuse a profile exploit to paste CSS and Javascript in a profile field to completely redo the page's layout, they lose their ability to easily ensure that their service is easy to use and friendly to all users. If you want personalization, well, how about the content? That's what the internet is about. Content. Not about pretty colors, background music on autoplay, having 5 million images on one page, etc. Just make sure that the content you post on your profile is reasonably descriptive of whatever side of you that you'd like to show on the internet and there's your personalization.

Now it's partially Myspace's fault, since they allow HTML in profile fields and don't sanitize it in any way to restrict it down to just formatting tags. But they haven't done anything about it.

Now excuse me. I'm going to go back to my IRC chats or browse some (other) websites or something.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Smart quotes are stupid

For a while now, my mIRC has been using so-called "smart quotes" instead of regular ones. This annoyed me as they're quite ugly, and on top of that I didn't know why it started doing it or how to make it stop. Until I remembered that mIRC has weird keyboard shortcuts for foreign characters. For instance, ñ is Control + Shift + ~, then n. I so happened to have been playing with these a while back looking for a specific character.

So I tried Control + ', which didn't work, and Control + Shift + ", which did.

Yay, no more ugly-ass smart quotes.

Here's an image showing the difference. They're on in the first line, and off in the second (if that wasn't already obvious).

Blogger and Picasa were being fags about wanting to thumbnail it and not letting me show the full resolution image, so I had to scp it to my site. Give me a break, it's my damn content, let me show the full resolution version when it's so small. Then I had to slap style="border:none; padding:0px; margin:0px;" on it because it had all three even though I thought I had removed that from my theme a long time ago. Fucking hell, blogger. If it continues to go out of its way to annoy me (like when I tried to make the show/hide box remember its state with cookies, and discovered I could set them but not read them because it fucking filtered it out of my script), I'll have to look elsewhere for my lolblog. Is Wordpress good?

Edit #>9000: nuked the image border/padding out of the theme's css.

Also, I marathonned Initial D 4th Stage today since I couldn't remember where I'd left off. It turns out my estimate of episode 14 was correct. Central-Anime's subs are balls. I heard so much terminology go by that never made it into the subs, and so much was paraphrased, it's like they weren't even trying. I'll cut them some slack, since it's an older series (hell, the subs themselves look like slightly beefed up SRT subs, before the crazy effects-laden SSA/ASS subs we know of today took hold), and it's from when xvid/mp3 was the best anyone could do. That certainly dates it. We all thought that looked awesome back then, but now it's just blurry as hell with audio artifacts everywhere.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Apparently I can be saved.

No, this isn't a post about a wacky and/or zany run-in with religious zealots (thank Haruhi, I can't stand religious zealots).

I FCed Can't Be Saved. Yet another really easy song, but whatever.

293062 points. 101st on PS2.

I guess this is the FC I didn't get that would have been added on to the previous post.

On a completely different note, I wrote a bunch of Greasemonkey scripts for 4scrape's advanced search page to do fun things like enabling the porn only search, merging the two identical aspect ratio options into one, and providing aspect ratio selections for dual-screen wallpapers. I could waste space on the internet clogging the tubes with further explanations or I could just link to the page I set up that describes them and has screenshots and stuff.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Random FCs are fun.

Just knocked When You Were Young off the list of songs I need to FC.

279954 points. 936th on PS2. Not the best SP usage in the world, but whatever.

Why is it that the easy songs are taking me so long to FC?

I kinda feel like this post should be longer. Maybe I should FC something else. Check back and see.


Friday, March 13, 2009

I'm Mr. Fix It!

Yeah, I decided on a whim to go back to GH2 for a bit and ended up FCing Mr. Fix It finally.

215909 points.

2214th on PS2.


Also, it seems that my computer shitting bricks is more or less directly related to when I play games, like say Unreal Tournament 2004 or Guild Wars. Everything's perfectly stable up to that point. I think I'm going to have to reinstall Windows or something.

Despite not owning any version of Super Smash Bros., I managed to have a lot of fun playing Brawl last night. I was just going around being annoying with Kirby. I like Kirby because he's hard to knock out of the arena due to infinite jumps plus his down+B which turns him into a Thwomp or a weight or something random and sends him straight down. At one point we had two Kirbies both having stolen Samus' ability gangraping Samus with lasers. I don't really know a lot about the game's engine or any of its subtle mechanics it may have but it was fun nonetheless.

If I had a Wii I might actually get that game.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Odd glitch with XP's start menu

Has this ever happened to anyone else? I outlined it in red but it's pretty obvious what I'm referring to anyway.

The only way to fix it I've found is to go into the start menu properties, change the start menu to Classic Start Menu, hit Apply, then change it back to Start Menu and hit OK.

Later edit: I got annoyed with how slow Menclave is releasing Gundam 00, so I got gSS' subs of 13-22 and marathonned 'em just now.

Sunday, March 8, 2009





Check that sexy note streak.

Note streak = Notes hit = Total notes = FC yay

100% all sections w00t!

This (and another FC of mine) actually uncover a weird glitch in ScoreHero's rankings. I'm one of very fucking many people with a 361050. The score is 785th place. Yet mine and a few others, despite being exactly the same score, are 786th.

Whatever. I'm done with this song.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Back to My Name Is Jonas

I figured the only way I could ever FC the song is if I, you know, play it. Which I'd been kinda neglecting to do. So for the next few days I'll be focusing on it until I get the FC.

My best non-overstrum run is a -3. Here's the note chart, showing the star power path I'm using. Star Power highlighted in green gets picked up, notes highlighted in blue are the activations, and the three notes highlighted in red are the 3 I'm missing.

Yeah, they're during a star power activation :(

You might look at that and wonder why I'm missing those three notes in particular, so I'll tell you. I know exactly why. It's less of a "I can't hit them" problem, and more of a "I'm thinking about the hand shift that has to happen right around here and failing to hit the notes while trying to get my hand shifted" problem. Sometimes I miss at the second occurrence of this same hand shift, but most of the time I don't.

There's a few ways that hand change can happen, and I've found a couple that let me actually hit that part. For reference, the numbers 1, 2, 3, and 4 correspond to the index, middle, ring, and pinky fingers, respectively, and the single letters are the first letter of each note color.

This works, but can be on the uncomfortable side:

This also works, but I have to be thinking about it ahead of time:

This is what I'm trying to do that messes me up:

It seems weird that I miss there but at none of the other hand shifts that go up the neck, but the first one can be done at the very beginning of the 3 note chords (hitting them 1+2+3 instead of 1+3+4) and the other one just sorta happens without me even thinking about it. The shifts back down the neck aren't a problem.

I practiced the solos (actually Bridge-Solo 1-Interlude 1-Solo 2-Interlude 2 just to bring them into context) until I began hitting that change regularly, so hopefully I shouldn't be plagued by -3 runs for too much longer.

Last but not least, the note chart came from here.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

My computer is shitting bricks

Maybe it's just because I'm running on an install of Windows XP that's almost 5 years old. I know Windows' stability tends to degrade with age for some really weird reason.

That still doesn't explain what keeps happening.

This time it happened while I was playing Guild Wars. I'd previously begun the process of turning the graphics back up to see what the minimum I could run it at was, but I hadn't touched the graphics settings since logging on. All of a sudden the lag hit. At first I was sure it was a Comcast issue because my ping times were through the roof, but then it just froze. At a very slow pace I was able to get back to Windows and end it. Also killed Firefox, thinking that was the problem. But no, my computer had entered the "shit bricks" state.

There was literally no memory left, the task manager didn't show anything with an abnormally high memory usage, and the memory usage numbers didn't add up.

I dunno what caused the problem, but rebooting fixed it. I also took the opportunity on reboot to go on a startup programs cleaning crusade, wherein I went into the registry and killed a bunch of stuff from HKLM\Microsoft\Windows\Run and HKCU\Microsoft\Windows\Run that completely didn't need to be running at startup. Most of it came from Logitech's QuickCam program, which doesn't have a configuration option to make it not run at startup. I really only need it when I'm actually using the webcam, which isn't often since the webcam technically belongs to my dad and I have to go gank it whenever I want to use it.

Also my TweakUI has stopped working properly. I even reinstalled it, and it didn't magically start working again. I've made some changes to which icon should be used for a bunch of different video files (since CCCP's install process felt the need to change them for me when I updated it a while back) and I can't tell it to repair the explorer icon cache without it crashing.

Also another thing that bothers me is that every now and then I'll be typing in here and the cursor will just go away. I'll be in the middle of a sentence and I'll have to click back in the text box to keep typing. It's not just on blogger because Flash games lose mouse/keyboard focus every now and then. Sometimes it's predictable, like if I'm watching something on GameTrailers, their flash player exhibits the oddity of not going fullscreen when you hit fullscreen, but instead resizing to fit the browser window. So naturally I fullscreen Firefox before watching a video. However, when it comes time to un-fullscreen the flash player (by hitting escape), I just hear "STOP! Hammertime!" instead of it getting smaller. This only happens if I mouse over the scroll bar in Firefox while I have the player fullscreened so the mouse pointer isn't in the way. While it's funny to hear "STOP! Hammertime!" instead of what I'd actually wanted to happen happening, it gets annoying.

And if you don't understand why my browser goes "STOP! Hammertime!" when I hit escape, then you didn't read my previous post.

So I'm posting about my computer shitting bricks so that when it does it the next time I can have some idea of how often it happens.

Also I neglected to notice that my car's inspection expired at the end of February. Oops. Hope I don't get seen by a cop driving to get it inspected.