Archive for January, 2007

January Randoms

WoW!

Our addictions have been renewed! The “Burning Crusade” expansion to World of Warcraft, the most successful online RPG of all time, was released last Tuesday. Lem and I, along with probably 3 or 4 thousand (best guess) of our fellow WoW geeks in front of the Sunnyvale Frys, waited for the store to open for a special midnight release of the game. It was a cold, cold winter’s night, and I prepared myself with long johns, a ski mask, gloves, and 2 jackets. Lem, on the other hand, sporting his Jack Bauer 5th season-style coat, froze after 10 minutes. But even he says it was worth the wait, because by 1:30 am, I was holding my copy of The Burning Crusade. We opted to forgo another 1 hour line to get it signed by the game developers that were there. Yes, I could have just picked up the game on the way to or from work the next day, but if I did that, I wouldn’t have been able to play the game for a couple of hours when we got back.

The cousins have also picked up the game and we’re all happily enjoying the new areas in the game. World of Warcraft is everywhere–you can’t escape it. With 8 million players worldwide, everyone knows someone who plays the game. It’s just interesting how you’re labeled a geek and social outcast if you spend time playing WoW, yet perfectly acceptable to sit in front of the TV for for the same amount of time. At least with WoW, or any game like that, you’re interacting and socializing with friends, or in my case, family, on some level.

The Burning Crusade just broke the 1-day all-time sales record:

The Burning Crusadeâ„¢ has broken the day-one sales record to become the fastest-selling PC game ever in North America and Europe, with a worldwide total of nearly 2.4 million copies sold in the first 24 hours of availability.

And now, a comic that only WoW geeks will understand.

New Hockey Season! Now With More Lem!

A new season of hockey started last week as well. Andrew and I are on the Devils again, and we lost our first game. Not too surprising, but what was surprising was that we actually were pretty close to winning this time! We tanked last season, sometimes with shutouts and losses of a 3 or more goal margin, but we only lost by 1 last game. We’re improving!

I found out long ago, that I play my best hockey in the first 5 minutes of the game. After that, it’s all downhill from there. My gameplay over the course of the game looks like one of those kiddie slides:

Hockey Level of Play

This next season will be fun because Lem’s playing too, in another league. Soon we’ll be playing on the same time, side-by-side, as brothers. We’ll have the upper hand because we’ll know what the other is thinking. His first game is today, as a matter of fact…

Poopity-poo, POOP.

Chesney and I are oh-so-close to never changing a diaper again! At least not until the next kid comes along. Caleb pooped in the potty on his own for the first time last week, and he gave me a call at work just to let me know. Wow, I’ve never been so proud. My kid is now pooping where I don’t have to clean it up–that’s a milestone! We’re going to have a party to celebrate and it’s going to be sometime around February 20th. Watch for invites.

San Francisco Invaded by Macworld

The alarm went off at 6:30 this morning, but I was already awake. In fact, I didn’t sleep well at all that night because today was the day of Steve Job’s keynote address at Macworld 2007. This year, as an Apple/FileMaker employee, I got an “Exhibitor” pass instead of the normal “Exhibit Floor,” pass like in past years, so I got to get in early.

The keynote was in Moscone East, but it was streamed live to a small audience at the Apple Theater on the showroom floor…behind black curtains. I couldn’t see the keynote, but could hear it. It was a different experience being able to hear Steve’s keynote in real-time, and hearing people around you cheer and applaud in approval. The two big announcements this year were definite crowd pleasers: the Apple TV and the iPhone. While the Apple TV doesn’t appeal to me personally, the iPhone is just unbelievable, and I can’t wait to get my hands on it.

iPhone…Finally!

The Apple iPhone
The all-new Apple iPhone

By now you have probably already seen pictures of the iPhone on the news and videos of the it in action. Seeing pictures of it and watching someone demo it live are two entirely different things. Watch some of the demo movies on the iPhone’s features and I guarantee you’ll be just as excited as we were. It is truly ahead of its time.

My 5th gen iPod, which I purchased on New Year’s Day 2006 has been one of the greatest pieces of technology that I have ever owned–I never leave home without it! I love having all my music all in one place and syncing it every day to get my daily and weekly podcasts like Digg, TWIT, and Buzz Out Loud. The podcasts keep me awake and add a little bit of sanity to my two hours of commute time every day. Life is a little more bearable. In addition to my iPod, I also carry around my phone. When I lost my phone last year, I held off on buying a new phone because of all the iPhone rumors going around, and received a hand-me-down Nokia. These two things can be rolled into one device is one less thing in my pocket.

The Apple iPhone at Macworld
It was the most popular thing at Macworld.

The iPhone is a wake-up call (pun intended) to the industry, and it hasn’t even come out yet! Just the fact that there have been rumors of this phone for years shows that the public has wanted a beautiful, easy to use phone. Two things that are have been lacking in today’s crowded mobile-phone space, and two things that Apple is pretty darned good at. When the features of the iPhone was being demo’d, there were–no joke–audible gasps of delight from everyone. The entire crowd, myself included, was thinking the same thing: why doesn’t every phone do that?

Just on the mere announcement of this thing caused a spike in Apple stock (yay!) and a drop in the the stock of Nokia, Palm, and RIMM. People want this thing and once it hits the market, it will be a success and will shake things up much in the same way the iPod did in 2001.

…of course I have been known to be wrong on occassion.

UPDATE: Phil Schiller gives a really nice demo of the actual iPhone in action. Watch it and tell me what you think.

How Hockey Fights Start

Hockey is a physical, brutal game at times and rivalries run deep. It can get pretty heated and the words that are exchanged just before a fight may surprise you (they listen in on the microphones of the players about halfway through).