Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Classic DOS Games: Commander Keen Episode One: Marooned on Mars

Oh yeah, now we're talking.

This game (and its entire series) are available as a pack on Steam for $4.99 outside of a sale.  That's right, 5 classic DOS games for $5.  Go get it now.  It's ok, I'll wait.

Monday, December 27, 2010

The Future of Wallpaper Updates

Since I'm taking in wallpapers at a much slower rate than I was, the updates are naturally becoming less and less frequent as well as smaller in size.

I've had some ideas as to how to keep them alive, but as I've previously mentioned, making each one is a giant hassle.

My ideas (well, my idea, I only had one) was to change them from wallpapers I use from series I've seen or am currently watching, to simply wallpapers from currently airing and recent series, whether or not I've been watching the series or use the wallpapers I post.  The trouble with doing that is having to go out of my way to obtain wallpapers from a series I'm not even interested in.  I'd have to use a second Picasa account to hold them since I want my main one to be for wallpapers I actually use (and the other random pictures posted on this blog).

What I really want to do is just stop doing them altogether and simply recommend that you make use of the RSS feed for my Picasa account to see new wallpapers as I add them.  That way I can go on my merry little way and add wallpapers as I find them, and you can just ignore the ones you don't want.  I'm also half tempted to look through the blogger gadgets thing and see if there's something I can stick in the sidebar to show thumbnails of the last few images I added to the account.

So, yeah. (I use the phrase "So, yeah." a lot on this blog, don't I?)

Edit: Well, there is indeed a gadget to show recently added pictures on a Picasa account, but it's not showing mine.  Maybe it has a hidden unconfigurable timeframe that it only looks inside for pictures.  Being that the dates on my albums are used solely to force them to be sorted alphabetically, that won't work.  I should try uploading an image just to see what happens.

Edit 2: Okay, I uploaded a random picture of Stocking from Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt that I found that happens to be 1600x1200, and it's not showing up.

Edit 3: Yeah, it's most likely got a hidden unconfigurable date threshhold.  The RSS feed for my Picasa account is fucked up since I messed with the album dates so they would sort alphabetically.  Each picture has its own upload date, but Picasa seems to cheerfully ignore that.  Useless.

Edit 4: I might as well link you to the image I uploaded.  Here you go.  Slightly NSFW, but when was the last time anyone cared about that?

Sunday, December 26, 2010

[subfiXT] Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt - 13

That was a hell of an episode.  Can't wait for more.

So I don't have to host as many redundant files, I'm going to remove all the single episode archives after a month or so.  Posts will be updated when that happens.

Just to recap for anyone who's just now discovering this: I got annoyed with various things in the Crunchyroll subtitles for Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt.  Fortunately, there are groups who rip the subs off of Crunchyroll and mux them to better raws.  Because of this, I was able to patch away all of my subtitle concerns, as well as fix a few errors in the subtitles while I was at it.

By now you're probably like "I know, I know, tell me how I can use these patches already!".  Download Underwater's releases of Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt.  Once all downloads have finished, for the easiest way possible to get my fixes, download the "All xdelta patches" archive from the links below.  Extract the archive into the directory you downloaded Underwater's P&S to, run "patch all.bat", and when it finishes, you'll have the fixed files.  Episodes 1 and 10 don't need any patching, so don't delete those, but you're free to delete the originals of 2 through 9 and 11 through 13.

A list of everything my patches change in the subtitles is included in the readme.txt file found in the archive.  Also, please reply to this post with constructive feedback.  My aim wasn't to improve translation accuracy so much as fix the occasional typo/omission and the things that annoyed me.

All xdelta patches | Episode 13 patch | All ass files | Episode 13 ass file


So yeah, Christmas.  Honestly, I didn't get much, but I didn't ask for much either.  I got some stuff I asked for that was both for pleasure and practicality, as well as things I didn't ask for but will enjoy anyway, so I guess I can't complain.
  • Various gift cards in varying money amounts despite me not asking for gift cards (I'd much prefer cash or a prepaid debit card)
  • A prepaid debit card (haven't actually received yet, my mom got confused somehow with the options presented to her)
  • Commander Keen 5-pack on Steam (haven't received yet, mom said to bug her about it) (She actually looked at the prices on Steam and said "I'll just buy you your entire wishlist." Win.)
  • Scott Pilgrim volumes 1-6 (sadly not the movie also, I'd love to re-watch it alone, as opposed to in a room of possibly non-sober people that see no reason to not talk during the fucking movie)
  • New warm fuzzy slippers, since the soles of my old ones were getting all crusty
  • Fluxx 4.0 and Zombie Fluxx 1.1
Now that that list is out of the way... a completely different subject.  You'll find that I'll be doing this a lot in this post.

I've been remuxing the Exiled-Destiny release of Lucky Star I mentioned a while back.  So far, only to change the default languages.  I need to do some experimentation to get chapters in.  The first barrier is figuring out where to put the chapters on the first episode, and the second barrier is seeing how reusable those timecodes are.  Then it's "how easily can I get all that into mkvmerge".  If I'm going to release my remuxes as patches, I don't plan on releasing them until after chapters are in.  I'm using a slightly different tag for this one ([remuXT] instead of [subfiXT] since I'm not really editing the subtitles at all).

For whatever reason I started playing around with redstone in Minecraft.  After building all the basic gates (not, and, or), I set out on an epic quest to make an xor gate, which failed horribly.  Then I found a video on YouTube of someone showing how to make an xor gate and his solution was a lot simpler than the one I'd been failing to get working.  I then proceeded to try and wire up some double doors with an xor gate and switches on both sides so that whenever the switches were different the doors would be open (this is what an xor gate does, it outputs high if only one of its two inputs is high, and low if they're the same).

Because I'm a n00b or something I couldn't get it working on both switches, only one of them.  Space was somewhat of a concern since I was basically mining out a hole in the ground to hold the circuit, and I kept having to modify it so I could pass one redstone wire over another without them connecting.  After trying a ton of slightly different setups and never getting both switches working, I said "fuck it", picked up all my redstone, filled in the hole, and removed the switches and doors.  Maybe I need to get a demo of it working somewhere, but in my singleplayer world I lack the secure space to run redstone wherever I need it.

Having gotten Fluxx, a game which is completely awesome and easily extensible, I started brainstorming and ended up with a semi-complete Minecraft expansion for Zombie Fluxx.  It still needs a bit of tweaking, mostly in the "interactions with existing Zombie Fluxx rules, actions, keepers, and goals" area, but in terms of interactions with itself it's pretty solid.  I used Zombie Fluxx as a base so I wouldn't have to create my own Zombie cards.  I simply add Skeletons, Spiders, and Creepers.  Adding Creepers is fun because it introduces ambiguity: Zombie Fluxx has a card type called "Creeper" that generally prevents you from winning and has some condition for moving around from player to player, as well as maybe some other condition that negatively affects your gameplay.  So I have a Creeper that's a Creeper.  All of my card descriptions currently say "Creeper (card type)" whenever necessary, since I know of no better way of disambiguating them.

I finally watched Suzumiya Haruhi no Shoushitsu.  It relates pretty heavily to the Bamboo Leaf Rhapsody episode from the second season.  Overall it was a really good movie and seeing the settings and characters in 720p was definitely better than watching a.f.k.'s 704x396 xvid/mp3 avi encodes.  I think I'd gotten used to seeing the color bleed or something, because it's really a lot sharper encoded in h264.  The added resolution only contributes, as a 704x396 h264 would invariably look better than xvid.  I re-watched Bamboo Leaf Rhapsody after the movie just to remind myself of what happened in it, since I'd mostly forgotten, and I understood bits of the movie a bit better after that.

It was actually snowing most of the day on Christmas here.  It didn't really accumulate until night time.  Of course, I didn't go outside at all so it doesn't really matter.  As long as the weather is decent enough for me to get to MAGFest, I'm fine.

In the store a couple weeks ago I saw the José Olé Taquitos next to the TGI Friday's section and upon main ingredient comparison determined that they were about the same thing as TGI Friday's Chicken Quesadilla Rolls, except a lot cheaper.  I grabbed a box thinking "hey, if they taste good enough, might as well save some money!".  Long story short, I'm getting José Olé Taquitos from now on.

Ending this post here.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

[subfiXT] Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt - 12

What an eventful episode.  Episode 13 (the last episode!) should be interesting.

While making the patch I discovered that I somehow fucked up the batch files for episode 11.  They're fixed now.  Sorry 'bout that.

Don't expect the next patch until Saturday afternoon.  Since Saturday's Christmas and all...

All xdelta patches | Episode 12 patch | All ass files | Episode 12 ass file

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Winter Anime Season

There's always so much indecision about what to watch, and something I would have been interested in always slips under my radar...  I guess it shows how usable these charts are for determining what you want to watch.  Oh and the chart comes from The Cart Driver.

There's some things I'll probably check out, but as for stuff I know I'm watching, guaranteed, there isn't much.  It's mostly DVD/BD specials.  In fact, it's entirely DVD/BD specials.

Monday, December 13, 2010


RELATED FUCKING POSTS: http://xt-8147.blogspot.com/2009/06/sleep-at-last.html

This time it was the valve under the kitchen sink.  You know, in my post about the last one I mentioned that the plumber said these fucking valves were ticking time bombs, right?  That's exactly what I told my dad.  His response: He got two valves replaced.  The one that had to be emergency-replaced, and the one on my toilet.  The plumber recommended replacement for the entire house.

We can go on like this if you want, dad.  It'll be the most expensive game of "I FUCKING TOLD YOU SO" ever.

Water's off, parents asleep, and the best part is both my parents need to shower when they get up.  Sucks to be them.

I've got two hours until my mom gets up, until then I get to dry the kitchen floor.

Further edits as events unfold.

Edit 1: well, dad made a temporary fix involving duct tape.  When they leave for work I'm going to turn the water off again just so I don't have to fucking worry and can get some goddamn sleep.

Edit 2: for whatever reason the plumber can't get here until Thursday.  So this duct tape fix has to last until whenever in the afternoon they feel like showing up.  At least this time my dad's going to spring for the full-house replacement.

Edit 3: and yes I already dropped the "aren't you glad I haven't moved out yet?" bomb.  If I hadn't been here, water would have been spewing into the kitchen (and leaking through into the basement... our house was constructed awesomely like that) for around 2.5 hours before anyone would have noticed.  So basically I saved us a ton of money by still living here and being awake at 2 AM.  Now to get my dad to realize that.

Edit 4: and then to find a job that pays well enough that I can move out so I never have to deal with my dad ever again.

Edit 5: the plumber showed up today and replaced the broken valve.  Apparently the other ones are a different size or something and couldn't be replaced today.

Edit 6 (December 27th): apparently the estimate the plumber gave for replacing all the other valves was unreasonable, and my dad, being an engineer and noticing it would be far cheaper to do it himself, is going to do it himself.  All an engineer needs to do anything is proper tools, the materials, and a general understanding of how it's done.  Pretty much why most engineers stay single longer, since love is not a system that one can learn and operate within.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

[subfiXT] Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt - 11

This episode introduced a new annoyance.  Fortunately there's only two more episodes left, so the probability we'll see it again is rather small.  Panty calls Stocking "Sto-chan" a couple times, and crunchyroll fagged it up to "Stockers".

Fun fact: this episode was the first one that I remembered to load up Aegisub and s/Stockin'/Stocking/g before watching.

All xdelta patches | Episode 11 patch | All ass files | Episode 11 ass file

Monday, December 6, 2010

Dr. Oetker Ristorante Pizza

I wouldn't have even bothered with this, but we got a checkout coupon and I figured "why the hell not?"

Looking at the varieties that Giant carries, I picked the one that looked the best on its picture: the Pizza Generosa.  The Mozzarella one just didn't look right, and who the fuck puts spinach on pizza?

Just looking at the package, it's kind of strange.  There's an upside down fork stuck into the middle of the slice of pizza.  To make it even more strange, the perspective is off.  Nobody stabs a piece of pizza with a fork to eat it.  Nobody.

Anyway, now that I'm done nitpicking about the box...  This may be the first frozen pizza I've found that has a reasonable oven cooking time, of 10-12 minutes at 425.  The directions actually specifically say to leave the pizza in the freezer while the oven is preheating.  Most instructions leave that part up to the person following them.  They use some weird symbols for different oven types, I'm not entirely sure what they're supposed to represent.  The most prominent one says 425, so that's the one I used.

The Pizza Generosa variety has pepperoni, various different colors of bell peppers, and onions.  All of their varieties appear to be thin crust, sadly, which may be contributing to the reasonable bake time.

Looking at the serving size, it appears as though they're six-piece people.  The serving size is a third of the pizza.  The pizza itself is quite small, only measuring 9.5 inches in diameter.

If there is tomato sauce on this pizza, it's undetectable.  The rest of the toppings seem good though.

Overall, I don't know if I'd get it again (I haven't been eating a lot of frozen pizza lately), but it's not too bad.

Sunday, December 5, 2010


It's about time I posted about the indie game that's taking the internet by storm: Minecraft!

Yeah, it really looks like that.

[subfiXT] Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt - 10

Easiest release ever.

No changes required, episode doesn't need patching.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Wikia sucks

In case anyone reading this doesn't know, Wikia is continuing a long-standing tradition among "web 2.0" websites: Completely changing their look and feel without any community consultation and ignoring all feedback.  In most cases the site is still usable, but with Wikia, it's clear that the change is all about the ads.

A lot of wikis are leaving Wikia because of this, and two of them happen to be GuildWiki and PvXwiki.  They've completed their moves, so I went through all my previous Guild Wars posts and updated all the links to point to the new sites.  Since Wikia staff are a bunch of dicks, the old sites still exist, but those versions should be less maintained and may completely change to fit the new style.

Wikia's method of running their site has always been a bit strange to me.  They've always been focused on adding all these stupid social networking features, like forums, blogs, user avatars, and transforming the watchlist into a "following" list that becomes public unless you turn it off.  Last I checked, a wiki was a collaborative documentation platform, not a social networking platform.

They went wrong with the new layout in a few ways.  First off, they forced it on everyone.  No exceptions, except if you're Uncyclopedia.  What, do they sleep with the people in charge?  Second, the new layout has a fixed content width that can't be changed at all.  The worst part is that the fixed width is a mere 680 pixels.  Remember when display resolutions were that small?  Yeah, didn't think so.  The third thing is the ads.  They float all over the place, overlapping page content, and generally being as obtrusive as possible.  I haven't experienced them myself due to the wonders of AdBlock Plus, but I've seen the screenshots.  The fourth and final thing is that they sprang this on everyone with relatively little time for any individual wiki that had issue with it to raise their issue only to have all their ideas shot down.

Now, any user can edit the site CSS via their userspace, after all, this is still MediaWiki.  In fact, that was their proposed solution when people rightly bitched about the tiny width.  So basically, a wiki's only recourse is to redesign every single page to conform to the new width and ad layout, and hope it still looks decent when overridden by user CSS.  Users can also set their skin to Monobook, the old MediaWiki default skin, which is far superior to any skin Wikia has shat out over the years.  But again, you can't have your wiki set to Monobook unless you're Uncyclopedia.

I'm too lazy to start up MSPaint to make a simple Venn diagram, so just imagine this.  There are two circles, one labelled Wikia, and the other labelled Common Sense.  The two don't overlap.