Posts Tagged ‘PC’

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Hey guys and girls, a slight rant or waffle if you will.

I start my days waking up and eating breakfast, showering and brushing my teeth, grooming and putting on products to make me smell nice, get dressed and then that is where your day and mine split. You go to work, I sit at home and switch on the computer. I load up the 15 or so sites for job hunting and I think of new and interesting ways to fill in application forms.

This is my second month of doing this now and I can honestly say that I have come very close to being homeless as I have accidentally spent more money on travel that I was meant to, that is if I have any money in the first place for travel. “Ummm the job center pay for travel you dickhead!” – Thank you random person that will no doubt not read my whole post but comment anyway. Yes they will pay for it, unless you cannot provide proof, or they don’t feel like it or they are having a bad day or they don’t remember to put it through the damn system. To put this into context I have the following make up this month;

£30 over draft, £25 phone bill, £323 rent.

Incoming is £134 twice in a month and £158 once.

dolestreet_1713190cSo take away that from that and you get £49. I have also rounded things up to make it easier. Now £49 for a month of food, toiletries, travel, any new items I should require, for instance new shoes for interviews, shirts, ties, you get the idea. In a world where a loaf of bread can be over £1 to buy I find myself on a diet primarily made up of pasta and something tinned, a diet that makes my body feel lack luster and dull. A body need fresh fruit and veg to function at it’s highest and it is RIGHT NOW I need to be on my “A” game. I’m all up for reducing money from not working, think it’s a good idea but they need to balance it a little. The money situation is now hindering me finding work, which in turn will probably mean I have to sponge off the state for longer, so the reduction in out of work income, in my instance, is useless as I will be taking from the state about as much as I would have been before the changes but now just over a longer time.

There are 100 jobs and 1000 people for each one looking down this way at the moment. Not so much Cardiff but Newport and Bridgend are both doing badly and they are either side of Cardiff and the competition is eminence. Cardiff is become saturated as is Bristol. I am having to look further a field to find work, which is fine, however when you consider that the closest city to me is Cardiff and is around a 8-15 mins train ride away and costs around £6 to get to and back from every single time I want to go there, it kinda makes a longer trip to a further away location either impossible or a toss up between food buying and an interview.

Ok. I get that “As of Q1 2013 UK government debt amounted to £1,377 billion, or 88.1% of total GDP” and that is bad. But you can’t make money, or in this instance get people back to work by simply making people poor. It makes it harder.Nillionaire someone having little to no money

Plus they made the changes for money in one go. so instead of gradually doing it over a year or 6 months so people flowed into work, they said HEY, 3 million people you won’t have enough money to live on unless you find work from……..

NOW GO GO GO. What the fuck did they expect?

My final ranty bit has to do with an E-mail I got yesterday from Mc Donalds. It was an email saying that I was unsuccessful in my attempt to work at one of their stores. I have a feeling it is to do with my age as the application form is not particularly taxing, with multi-choice answers for questions being presented, most of which are something along the lines of;

If an employee said something that offended you, would you, A) Beat the shit out of them. B) Put their face in the fry station or C) try and talk to them or your manager and see if something can be sorted out.

I feel that being in my 30’s now and looking for any type of job does have it’s downsides. I have traveled the world with the British Armed Forces, I’ve been back packing across Europe I’ve lived in Paris, I’ve been called all the names under the sun and I have made my mistakes. So as an employer you can expect someone of my age and up to call bullshit out. If something is wrong we will bring it up, bring it up in a polite and proper way, be that going to the manager to tell them of a leak or asking someone not to repeat something again as it is not appropriate for work etc etc. There lies the problem, they don’t want that, managers don’t want more work, they would rather employ an 18 year old who knows nothing of their rights, nothing of what is really right and wrong and will simply walk away if fired for no reason. I and many others of my “age bracket” and above simply could not and would not tolerate that.

6-things-to-consider-when-you-have-to-cut-back120412_0So to sumerise I feel that I am being put into a tared group of people that does not want to work, I want to work and I actively do everything in my power to do so, but in reality I have to pick and choose which interviews I go to some days, or ring them up and try and change the date and time to a day I am already in that city, mostly this results in me no longer being offered the interview as I am already kicking up a fuss about something that should be easy to do, a view that is sensible and reasonable but yet is something that is sometimes out of my reach to accomplish. Why employ someone when they can’t even travel 15 mins down the road on a given day? Will that person even be able to make it to work for the first month of employment? How reliable is this person if he/she cannot even commit to a simple interview without wanting to change the date and/or time.

I fully expect to not have that bottle of wine in the fridge, to eat cheaper food and to commit my days to filling in forms but when the current infrastructure put in place by the government hinders that, I can only see a prolonged usage of benefits. This money could well be spent on other things in our country, if not in employment or growth but in education, the NHS, maybe even employing someone with the balls to tell the US, “You know what? we are not joining you in this war, costs too much for no return”.

Anyway rant over of a very annoyed and increasingly stressed Phil.

 

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Hey one and all and welcome back to my blog.  This is a little catch up on me, gaming, things going on in the world and anything else I’ve been up to 🙂

So we start off this post with the news that I a now completely Linux based now. I found that I was gaming less and less with the so called triple A titles and that indie games along with a few other games worked great on Ubuntu which in my opinion is far superior to Windows 7 that I was using, plus I like the way it simply runs, uses far less sytem resources AND how much quieter my computer is when running it not to mention the fact it installs all it’s updates in one go and that’s it, nothing, nada, no more silly updates that need your computer to be switched off or restarted etc etc.

In other news I find myself wanting to get back into Minecraft after a number of months away from it, hopefully I can get into the Tekkit mod as I have heard it is a fun way to change the game up. Minecraft, and more over it’s community never cease to amaze me, their efforts in modding is superb and really brings a different dimension to the game.  In general Modding communities are awesome anyway.  An example of this is the breathtaking mod “Tiberium Essence” run through Desura for the game Command and Conquer 3 Kanes Wrath, it changes most of the units, looks and even particles in the game giving an old tired game a new lease of life.  If you have an old game you loved but feel it has gone stale then head over to Desura and/or ModDB and see if your game can be brought back into the now with their excellent mods.

Now for a little personal news. As many of you will know I am currently taking my Ex partner to court for the right to see my son.  I am unaware of where he is living and he has not seen me since 2 march 2011, well our first court date was on the 26th of June and we are a step closer to winning.  The court voted in favour of a report to be done by social services which they have to complete by 18th September this year. This decision was in favour of me and against my partners case that I should never, under any circumstances see my son again.  This news, although slightly disapointing is still a step in the right direction and one that is giving me hope for the future. At least now I have a timetable of events that “should” eventually lead up to a happier child with a far more stable up bringing.

Well in this mix-mash of tip bits I bring you to the news that HTC and Apple have finished at least one of their court battles over here in the UK with HTC coming out on top. In the seemingly never ending mobile phone war on patents world wide, HTC’s and Apple’s “slide to unlock feature”, suing and counter suing was finally decided to be basically invalid with HTC coming out as the victor. Out of the 4 patents that Apple claim had been violated 3 where not valid and the forth did not apply to HTC’s devices.  I just hope that this suing culture that the Americans seem to be slowly bringing this way does not stick and judges around the world just stat to use commen sense and start throwing these useless cases of blantent bullshit out and stop wasting time and money on it. Source – BBC News

And I think we shall end on a high (or maybe a slightly scary) note by introducing you to the technology of surrogates for those unable to move!  Yep that’s right robots surrogates have become a little step closer today as scientists have managed to make a robot move via brain waves, also the person could see through the eyes of the robot that he/she was controlling.  Previous attempts to control robots remotely have used joysticks or track pads where as this tech uses a brain being scanned by  fMRI (Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging) to monitor blood flow through the brain, this procedure can then pin-point actions such as movement.  Now I am not sure about you but this tech does give me an unsettling feeling in the pit of my stomach although I am sure (at least at first) it will be used to help those in need, and helping those in need is always the right thing to do. Source – BBC News

So hey guys and girls, a little break from typing this blog due to a catastrophic lack of common sense on my part while cocking around with the PC.  So after a few days of no PC working at all, many hours with a good friend Neil and some slightly frustrating time with Ubuntu and a wireless connection I am back up and running.

So PC is now running a partitioned, 50/50 dual boot with Win7 and Ubuntu.  To be perfectly honest the only, and I mean only reason I don’t use Ubuntu for my desktop and leave Windows out to dry is because I play PC games, mostly through Steam and that sadly does not work yet, however there are words from Gabe himself that Steam will be hitting Linux, and hitting it soon.  This in my book is an awesome step forward with Linux and gaming and also strengthens other ties Linux has with gaming, such as the very very popular Humble Indie Bundle which as of today, (please note it has just over 4 days left at the time of writing) has made over 4.2 Million USD. That’s Windows, Linux and Mac compatible, pay what you think for some games set-up, that is proving to the world it is possibly time to think a little more about Mac and Linux users.

Now I have to say I am not one of those anti Windows people, personally I don’t care what you use and what you use it for, however the ease and smoothness of use that Linux gives you after the initial faff around of getting a few bits and bobs working is sublime, if you think something should be accessed via a right click there or a slide over here or whatever then it is usually the case, as intuitive as the first Iphone was and as up-to-date as any modern PC OS it really does amaze me that Linux and in my Case Ubuntu has not got to this stage quicker.  Change is coming however and baby steps as it might be, it is steps in the right direction.

Many people forget or are not aware that Linux servers are a massive player in the world market and you possibly already use a web service running from a Linux run server. Also in September 2008 Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer admitted that 60% of web-servers run Linux versus 40% that run Windows Server.[86]. So this Linux “thing” as some put it is not going anywhere, only going to get bigger and better 🙂 

Also headlining my thoughts recently has been the release of Windows 8. A very pretty, colourful display I can see working very nicely on a tablet or large screened phone but useless as a desktop operating system.  It has made the perfectly easy aspects in Windows into a chore, for example the having of two applications or windows open side by side at the moment on Windows 7 is as easy as pulling each window to the side of the screen, one left, one right,  it automatically snaps them into a 50/50 split on the screen, alternatively you can press the Windows key and the direction you want the windows via the arrow keys, simple.  Not so simple with Windows 8 as demoed in this video. It even has restrictions on size of resolutions and limiting it to only 2!  ,

Apart from this, the whole experience of using it for me was pathetic, it failed to deliver a proper desktop experience and was confusing to use, finding an item usually easily found by start then searching via the bar at the bottom is now clumsy and all over the place.  Pictures, for example now have this annoying way of just showing you one at a time which you then scroll through, adding of items if not dragging them and dropping is more complicated and even finding an app to use from the Metro interface can be a little annoying. With all the bright colours and different shaped boxes it is easy to be stuck staring at the screen not able to see the button you want to press..  There is an easy way to change the shape etc of the boxes but this for me would just mean a wall of brightly coloured boxes all one size which still would not help me at all, however it would be lovely on a tablet with a screen as big or bigger than an Ipad as it lends itself very well to a touch screen device.  I fail to see what the hell MS were thinking with this utter tosh.  So this radical change by Microsoft in my opinion will see them push away existing customers towards Mac and Linux, especially since MS are going to put this Windows 8 OS (if you can call it that) into all new computers, so you won’t even have a choice!  I sense that companies such as Dell will do what they did with the god awful Vista and offer customers the option to have the previous Windows installed rather than the new, which in this case would be Windows 7.

So what of the rest of my time away, well as stated in a previous post I am not playing on the Xbox 360 at all and find it harder and harder not to sell the darn thing. I have actually rounded up all my games and sold them on as they were just money sitting around doing nothing and money these days is not easy to come by.  So now I am plodding through the Humble bundle on Linux and Anno 2070 and Fallout 3 on Windows side of things.  Minecraft still playing heavily in my gaming time which ironically runs the 64 bit version of Java better on Ubuntu than it does on Win7, go figure!

Sadly I have not had any new news on the job front but I continue everyday, ever alert to the call to action (Think I might be turning into Banana man!). But hey any jobs going out there in the South Wales area, that’s the original wet Welsh South Wales not the Wales anywhere else 🙂 please gimmie a shout 🙂

So many times do I hear that PC gaming is dead from people that have not stepped anywhere near a PC for anything other than social sites, catch up TV or quick gander at Youtube for years.  This seems to be a commen misconception amongst people I know, they believe that the console is king and refuse to budge on it, refuse to take note that (in my opinion) the console has almost had its day and that the current format of console gaming will have to change to survive, and to change it will have to become more like a PC.

We now live in a world with Iphones every year from Apple, a new tablet out every few, probably around 80 new Andriod phones come out a year (guessing here just so I have a number) and thats not including Win7 or android tablets, so in reality if the next generation of console were to come out, stay as is for 10 years then there would be 800 new phones out  (based on the paltry figure of 80 new handsets a year, JUST from Andriod and that figure staying at 80 for 10 years!)  It is ubsured to think that mobile gaming would not be miles ahead of consoles by that time and people, now used to buying every year or when their contract runs out (24-48 months) will not put up with this.

So it is with great pleasure that I can see gaming companies starting to come back around to the idea of the PC. Take Origin for example, it is EA’s attempt to engage in a market used to the Steam store and set up, also in recent days EA has resolved its issues with Steam to put Crysis 2 back on Steam as an Ultimate edition with an offer on its purchase to. I can only gather that it is an advertising ploy to try and make Origin more popular but it is still good news.

Namco announced today (Source Gamespy.com http://bit.ly/JTj8Gt) that Dark Souls will be coming to Steam, which now puts it on Games for Windows and the Steam client. This is a good game to sight as a turning point as Namco were pressured into creating a PC version in the first place by a petition of gamers that simply had to have it on PC. Same can be said for Alan Wake, a game that finally “came back home” for the PC after 10 years.

Also in the news, EA launched what can only be described as “tester” games for Linux, reported on OMGUbuntu it was a collection of browser games which I think was designed to test the market for gaming in the Linux environment. Very exciting stuff for Linux users and another nod in the direction of the PC. However I think we can all agree that the one of the biggest bumps to PC gaming in recent history has to be Notch and his wonderful Minecraft game, doing incredibly well on the PC even before it was out of Alpha, it has made a man with a dream a household name virtually over night, with an Xbox port reportedly recouping the costs of development in only an hour! It is a great feeling to know that PC gaming and PC gamers made that happen.

I have not even touched on the ever popular World of Warcraft or the new and hugely successful Diablo 3,  the RTS giant that is Starcraft 2 or for that matter Bioware’s Command and Conquer Generals 2, which will hopefully relaunch the franchise back into the glorious days of RTS warfare. Also worth it’s own blog post is the modding community such as ModDB for their outstanding work in bringing old games back to life and enhancing new games to their fullest potential, yet another string in the bow of the PC gamer.

And I am back yet again (4th time) to update another important bit I forgot to mention, The Humble bundle.  An amazing project that brings together a bunch of indie games, smacks them together as a bundle and then sells them on-line for PC, Mac, Linux and Andriod users to purchase for what they think is a fair price!  This has helped raise awerness of Indie games, games companies, Steam, charities and of course PC gaming.  If you’ve never been on there you should defiantly check it out. You even get the option (Via sliders) to disperse your money between charity, developers and/or the Humble Bundle business, a great and cheap, or expensive (your call) way to help charity, small developers and PC gaming.

With the advent of change in the expectations of gamers and consumers in general, and in this volatile world of ever changing global problems there is one standard that still seems to be standing tall,  and in my eyes standing taller by the day, the Humble PC, used world wide for thousands of mundane operations but bring  joy to those who really know how to use one.