F L W E E K 4 . . .
... picks have been posted! This week we feature our first ASS OF THE WEEK (me!) and also our first guest writer as introduced by Gerry earlier. Hm... it seems this week probably won't be as interesting as last week, for there are a lot of games in which everyone agrees on one particular winner. Nevertheless, check out the detailed analysis each of our staff writers put forth for each game. The NFL picks page has grown to be a massive weekly article. Just working on that has taken the steam out of me! Phew! Click!
I H A T E
S C H O O L
Just the first day of class, and I'm already hating it. I think I can speak for Rice as well when I say that UCLA's uneven terrain is a sign that Satan resides right under Pauley Pavilion. The walking! The walking! The hills! Sigh. It's even worse for me because I'm at the apartments, which is another 2 mountains away from campus.
On a brighter note, in what was the slimmest margin ever in the Beeotch Contest., Natalie Portman has emerged as Miss Rice World 2000! Sung Hi Lee wins Miss Congeniality, and if you want a pictorial of her, then swing on over to MY site! =) J/k. I'm too lazy. Here's is a victory strut. Click!
Another note, I have the pleasure of announcing a guest picker, who goes by the name of "kurupt." Don't you dare capitalize the "k" or he'll cut off your indo supply. J/k. Lame. Anyways, this guy is a sports/stats freak. If you need to know obscure RBs on the Cleveland Browns, then he's your man. Let's see how he fairs against us laymen.
Btw, here's the stats so far for the season. This is for None, who can't do the simple computations himself. j/k. =) The Week 3 record is in parentheses.
None -> 28-16 (9-5+) Locks= 3-0
Rice -> 27-17 (8-6-) Locks= 1-2
Gerry -> 27-17 (8-6+) Locks= 1-2
ASS OF THE WEEK: By virtue of losing his lock, Rice is branded Ass of the Week. All hail Rice!
I N D U S T R Y H A P
P E N I N G S
Classes start Thursday... I'll never wake up in the morning on time!! Someone wake me up!!
Anyways, holiday season is once again creeping up upon us. What a wonderful time of the year. You witness both the end, and the beginning... no school, you get to spend quality time with family and friends... and companies are rushing to get their products out of the door to compete for the market lead while taking advantage of the shopping frenzy. What can be better than this??!
Intel's gameplan has been shot in the leg, though... so delays will be experienced on the next generation motherboard chipsets and CPU's. Coppermine CPU's were always slotted for release in November, but the Camino 820 motherboard was meant to be released... this week. The delay has been caused by a bug in the RDRAM slots, which will cause instability if three are used simultaneously. It seems like 2 will be OK, but Intel still wants to hold the release back anyways.
In my opinion, I believe that to be the most wise decision anyways. What use would people have with a 133 MHz motherboard if CPU's that utilize it aren't even released yet? Sure, the AGP 4X and ATA-66 slots would be useful, but certainly not worth the extra money it would cost. Basically, when buying a new system NOW, hit the Celerons. What about the Athschlongs? They are indeed an impressive engineering achievement, but motherboard support is shoddy and only supports AGP 2X. By Jan. or Feb., the Athschlongs ought to be ripe for the pickings, as will the current 600 MHz Pentium III's. Right now, the Celerons are the most plump fruit (going along with the agricultural analogy) for the season, and would make a nice bridge until Coppermine prices begin to dip (when Williamette begins to rake in hype... late summer 2000).
So there! =) Quick shopping guide... there are an absolute wealth of information out there, though, and you can find info on almost anything in a snap. I've garnered an interest in TV tuners, since my roommate owns one on his computer. I find it very convinient and nifty, to be able to do work while watching TV without turning your head left and right constantly.
W E S T W O O D S T O
R I E S
Dig this. The dorm that I moved into just happens to be Gerry's old "pad". *Twilight Zone music in background*..... it must be a Rice World tradition. Heh heh... anyways, I have a sweet T1 connection, and I can show it off with this following screenshot:
Wow! 406.8 K/sec! At home, I'm estatic if I can get 5.2 K/sec on my 56K modem. BTW, the transfer above was to a Cal Tech T3 connection, so that may have played a factor in the inhuman speed. 166 megabytes in 7 minutes! I think I'm going to faint......
A R O U N D T H E
R I C E
Slow news day today. Nothing big happened, or at least... worth mentioning about. None's football lock of the week has been updated. This week will be interesting. Almost everyone is betting against everyone else. Expect big winners and big losers... heh heh... the standings will be in chaos!
Going to be moving into school tomorrow morning. Tonight will be my last night with a modem connection. This is going to be sweet. I'll update you guys once I move in!
N F L W E E K
Week 3 predictions have been posted, and better yet, loaded with analysis from everybody! As Gerry put it, these NFL picks are the only serial articles on Rice World, and so I do hope you guys check it out... or at least read the overall analysis. A lot of work has been put into it, so at least pretend you like it. If anything, check out the standings of the staff members and our brash locks of the week. New to next week will be a feature called "Ass of the week", awarded to the person with the crappiest record that particular week. Heh heh... if you're a football fan, what are you waiting for? Click!
H O T M A I L A N D
M I C R O S O F T
I don't know whether or not it's because it's MICROSOFT, or it's just this buggy by nature, but there has been ANOTHER security hole found in Hotmail. Damn man, there's been like, 50 since Microsoft took over the service. I swear it's just the hackers want to expose all the faults Microsoft brings with it. I never hear of any other free web-based e-mail service such as Yahoo or Excite full of bugs... sigh. You might want to seriously consider changing to another service if Hotmail can't patch up their shoddy server. Anyways, get the scoop here: Click!
D I R E C T X 7 . 0
It's out! =)
I H A T E
C O M P U T E R S
Hello folks, you may have noticed that I seem to have gone on hiatus from my Rice World duties. This is not the case though.
I just recently purchased a Voodoo 3, which has been highly touted on Rice World itself. But upon installation, it destroyed my motherboard, and were it not for Rice's handiwork and Cruise's junk heap, I would have had to offically resign from my staff writer position.
But now it's fixed, and all it cost me was 33 mhz + MMX. Worth it. I love my Voodoo card though.
Anyways, I had my STIGMATA review a quarter done before I stupidly decided to install my Voodoo card, and I just finished it. Go ahead and read it. Click!
In other news:
-> My condolences go out to my fellow Taiwanese people who were victims of the terrible earthquake. No one I knew was harmed, but I know there are a lot of people who can't say the same.
-> Jamal Anderson is out. Ouch. The Falcons will struggle to hit .500 now. The Jets too. How sad. These two teams had Super Bowl potential. Now I think my Super Bowl pick will be Jacksonville vs. Minnesota.
-> Warren Beatty is thinking about running for President. Just because he was cool in BULWORTH doesn't mean he knows how to adminster a nation. This is so Reagan-ish. But at least Reagan had political experience outside of the entertainment industry.
-> My promised album reviews are coming. I just need to get in a good mood and listen to each album all the way through. This is tougher than it seems.
-> My pictorials are starting to move into preproduction. First one is the TV Stars pictorial, suggested by None I believe. Rice mentioned adding men, to revolutionize Rice World. I couldn't go along w/ it. Call me conservative.
-> Also planning an editorial on the Rise Of The Asian Athlete. This article is shrouded in BLAIR WITCH-like mystery and secrecy.
-> BLUE STREAK was the #1 movie in America. FOR LOVE OF THE GAME was #2. Heh heh, Kevin Costner's frontal nude scene was cut out because his willy was too miniscule.
-> Anyone like animation? My newfound animation love interest is THE FAMILY GUY, which airs Thursdays @ 9 PM on FOX. The comic timing and wicked humor rivals only THE SIMPSONS. Besides these two landmarks of animation, there is also KING OF THE HILL, which is declining in my opinion. FUTURAMA, from the creator of THE SIMPSONS shows some flashes of brilliance, but more flashes of inanity.
-> Remember to vote in the final round of the Inaugural Rice World Beeotch Contest. I decided not to include Laetitia because I admit I doctored some of her votes. But still, discounting the fraudulent votes, she still woulda came in 2nd. But to avoid assassination or impeachment, I'll disqualify her.
-> Remember........ School Sucks........ School Sucks.............School Sucks..........
N A P S T E R , U . T
. , R A M , A N D D X . 7
Gerry actually informed me of a little program called Napster a few months ago, but it wasn't until today that I remember to try it out. If you haven't heard of it yet, it's a little MP3 searching program that's quite effective when it's working well. It's not a traditional search engine like oth.net or Scour (which sucks pretty hard)... it's like mIRC (online chatting program) meets search engine. Everybody online shares their songs, and defines their connection speed. If society was perfect, Napster would be a big hit. Unfortunately, we are populated with greedy pigs that intentionally state their T1 connection as 14.4's and share 0 of their songs with the rest of us. Sigh.... still, the bright side is that some do still uphold the code of honor, and with them, you can get your songs. It's a good place to get popular songs, but oth.net still holds the crown, in my opinion, as the place to get rare songs.
Epic MegaGames recently released the Unreal Tournament demo, geared towards the 3dfx crowd, because it only supports the GLide API. I'd like to state right off the bat that this demo absolutely rocks!! The bots are very flexible and configurable, so if you're a simple newbie, you can set them to novice skill and pound at them, while experts can set them at adept or skilled to maintain a good challenge. Skills such as inhuman or godlike are simply cheating on the part of the computer, so unless you enjoy getting smacked around, I don't recommend those skill level. They make for interesting 1 vs. 1's though, because you'd have to really use your brains and avoid direct combat to kill them. Anyways, they'll release another version for Direct 3D, Open GL, and all the other API's..... for those like me who have a TNT or Savage card and can't wait, you can play it on software mode (pixels) with a nifty little trick. Just use notepad or DOS and make a blank 0 kb file called glide2x.dll and stick it in the windows/system directory. I used that trick to play UT, and to tell you the truth, software still rocks! I can't wait until they release the D3D version....... if you have a powerful system (300 MHz range or above), go for it! If you have a 3dfx card, by all means, try it out!! As for the Q3A vs. UT debate, I'll hold judgement on that case until both are released in full versions. However, the preliminary nod goes to UT.
Speaking of Direct 3D, we've all been living on DirectX 6.1 for quite some time now after the flurry of DirectX releases. DirectX 7 is breathing down 6.1's neck, because Microsoft is set on releasing it this Wednesday. Keep your eyes peeled. I'll update once DX7 is released, because it features a lot of neat updates and goodies. An upgrade will be a must.
On the hardware front, RAM prices have now gone through the roof and hit the moon. They are so high now, I cannot believe my eyes and am so thankful for buying my 128 MB stick early summer when prices were at an all-time low. Be prepared to shell out 200 smackers for a good quality stick of 128 Megs... damn that's expensive! And it doesn't look good in the near future either. Now is definitely not the time to buy RAM... if you can hold off until Jan. or Feb. of 2000, that would be preferable... before then, I can't see the RAM prices falling yet. Click to see a full analysis / hypothesis on the RAM crisis.
7 . 3 E A R T H Q U A
K E @ T A I W A N
During the early morning of Tuesday, 1:47 A.M. to be exact, Taiwan experienced the largest earthquake to ever hit them. Varying reports of 7.3 to 7.8 were measured on the Richter scale, and 200 more aftershocks, some as large as 4.5, killed nearly 500 people and left 1,200 people trapped in collapsed buildings... over 2,500 were injured.
As a pure-bred Taiwan native, I was scared shitless after hearing the news. I had countless family members living there, still... those that were unable or unwilling to immigrate to America or Canada. My mother and grandma worked the phones like crazy yesterday, and fortunately, my father (who was there on a business trip) and most immediate family were unscathed. Nearly the entire island plunged into perpetual darkness due to a power failure. It has been a long time since I have been this scared... and now I understand the how the people who had relatives living in Turkey felt when the massive earthquake hit them earlier this year. Perusing the net, I found a special service setup by the Broad Media phone company, which has setup a free 5 minute phone call to Taiwan thru their internet access. Those that have family or friends in Taiwan, and cannot afford (or do not wish to, which I find ridiculous) to spend long distance phone bills, AND live in the Silicon Vally area, click!
To those generous souls (*cough* millionaire *cough* Bill Gates *ahem*), PLEASE call 1-800-HELP-NOW to contact Red Cross and ask to help donate support to the Taiwan Earthquake Relief Fund. Thank you in advance! Every penny counts......
This recent quake has revitalized my interest in the "Big One" that has yet to hit California. Experts say it's inevitable, so until it does, I strongly suggest stocking up lots of canned foods and water. I know, many of you think, "oh what the hell, I'll do it later, it's not going to hit tomorrow"... you never know. I was partial to your thoughts until the Taiwan quake, and now, I think it's definitely time to start preparing.
On totally unrelated news, due to the six eyed demon known as SCHOOL, Rice World will now be focusing less on articles / reviews, and more on news updates. That's not saying there won't ever be any more articles etc. to read, just that the ratio to news udpates to new articles won't be nearly 1:1 as it has been throughout this summer.
$ ! & @ % ^ @ #
Hey fella's... Rice World is starting to bog down now that most people have begun school. Blasted... damn summer's not long enough. Some people come tell me that they're bored and they want to go to school. I smack them with a large trout, then ship them UPS ground across the country. Dammit! Sigh... bitter bitter bitter............... on a Saturday morning too.
Well, the football picks are posted for this week. Still no analyzations though, although I hope to incorporate them next week. Heh heh... people are too busy now a days. Dammit. I shouldn't even be wasting my time doing this stupid site, but heck... Rice World is my 2nd home! The skinny on week 2! Click!
Q 2 D M 1 S T R
A T E G Y G U I D E
Wow, I almost forgot how a clean page looks like. From August 22nd thru Sept. 11th the news page has been clogged to the max with text and graphics. Heh heh, it's amazing how a little house cleaning can feel so refreshing. Anyways, the first inaugural feature article in the Gamers section is now finally complete! It was posted earlier, but it was lacking the crucial screenshots that made the strategy guide comprehensible. Now complete with all necessary screenshots, go check it out to see if it can help YOUR Quake game! Click! By the way, for those that are thinking, "What makes Wisdom so qualified for this strategy guide?", he's a ranked player capable of spanking my ass in Q2 to the moon and back. Hopefully, I will be able to post a little demo of him in action ASAP, but until then, if you still don't take my word for it, you can contact him and challenge him for a little 1 on 1..... *ahem* beat-down *cough*.......
Soon to replace the strategy guide will be my Gaming Hall of Fame article. I took the liberty of filtering out my favorite games of all time (in my so-far short life) and ranked them one by one. I'm still working on that, though, and it's starting to grow pretty big, so don't expect it for another day at the earliest. It'll be a good read, I hope. =)
Hey everybody! If you haven't noticed yet, I've tagged on a "Starting Point" button on the index page of Rice World. Be sure to vote for it as a "Starting Point Hot Site", if you haven't already! This is part of my plan to advertise Rice World and slowly expand it more to a greater amount of audience. I mean, there are millions of people surfing the web everyday, why not have them drop by once in a while? So... yeah, if you haven't voted yet, what are you waiting for? Click!
3dfx just leaked news of the FXT1 texture compressor technology, part of their next generation product. It supposedly equals and/or surpasses S3's S3TC. Well, not much competition in the compression arena, just those two so far. 3dfx has made the FXT1 code open source, further evangelizing their technology to the game developers. Combine that with the T-Buffer and absolutely INSANE fill-rates, I see 3dfx re-claiming the 3D crown from NVidia in the near future. Hey! Wait! Before you start flinging hate mail, and how the TNT2 rox0rs the Voodoo, I'd just like to point out that, even though the GeForce sports the big and buff T&L (Transformation and Lighting) triangle engine, it has a pretty below par (for something designed to be next generation, anyway...) texel fill rate: 480 MegaTexels per second, compared to S3 2K's 700+. Games, unless they are designed for T&L ground up, will not be able to take advantage of the GeForce's triangle engine, which makes fill rate the king feature that all current, and soon to be released gaming titles! For those that aren't aware, the video card life-cycle is about 6 months, and the average game takes about 1-2 years to code and publish. I think 3dfx is making a very smart move by focusing largely on fill rate and eye-candy features (T-Buffer, FXT1), for this cycle of the graphics industry. Those are features that all games can either immediately take advantage of, or upgraded quickly and simply via a small patch. By the time summer of 2000 rolls around, 3dfx will have T&L on their new graphics card to fit in with the developing industry. That's called being market saavy, folks, something they have never failed at since the days of the O.G. voodoo graphics.