Multi-platform gaming with Q3, a DivX download creating a DVD sale and mind games

Yeah! Nothing’s like a good old late-night gaming session. Buddy Tor is in town, and he brought along his iBook and a copy of Quake 3 for the PowerPC platform. Surprisingly, getting Q3 ver 1.32 up and running on our Wintel computers and joining a game hosted by the Mac proved 100% effortless. I know I should not be this surprised, but I am anyway.

We were fragging away in no time, also thanks to Q3s very user friendly install procedure – copy the game from A to B and run it. Yeah! That’s the way it should be. I rocked playing against Anders and Tor on Q3DM17 – good old The Longest Yard. Me and my sturdy railgun!

Had a nice evening in other regards too, we had a lot of SingStar fun – although I am frustrated by the fact that exactly what scores information is saved where is a very foggy business. Also, SingStar 80’s seems to be the only disc to actually support profiles, and you can’t play a 4-player game using profiles and the rules from 80’s using the tracks from the other discs. You can do duets, but not 2-8 player party games. How annoying!

Big thanks to Tor and Anders for buns (I did a small part) and Lovise for the cake. Yum! And Lene for coming and bringing the usual complement of chocolate. And everyone else for being here! Holy maloney, I’ve had so much candy I feel quite… unstable. Time for bed, I think.

And, yes, we watched Serenity, the movie. And yesterday, I ordered Firefly, the series preceding the movie. That’s one example of ‘illegal file sharing’ helping the TV/movie industry sell DVDs – my first and only exposure to Firefly (the series) was through DivXs downloaded off the net.

It is incredibly ironic that in court, the downloads made in such a case would probably be converted to dollars and considered a monetary loss by the MPAA – when in fact they generated a sale, without causing the creators any financial loss whatsoever. It just makes me shake my head.

Oh, and we visited the Norwegian Museum of Technology – or Norsk Teknisk Museum, if you like. Unfortunately, we arrived rather late, so we had just two hours to spend there, which proved to be too little time. We did get to try out a “brain wave game”, though. The objective is to push a magnetically controlled orb towards your opponent by focusing on something, thereby altering your brain activity. Being calm and focused gives you low readings (good), being excited gives you high readings (bad). The readings are gathered by a headband with some metal contact points that touch your forehead.

You and the other player are seated at opposite sides of a table, there’s a long recessed field of metal where the orb moves back and forth according to the read values and a monitor showing the brain activity on the middle of the table.

The game definitely does read your brain activity. After trying once versus Anders, I played against Tor. He beat me easily the first time. The second time, I really concentrated and put everything but the orb out of my mind. I even repeated the word “orb” constantly in my head. The result: The orb crept steadily towards him and I won quite easily.

The second time around I wanted to see if this was just coincidence. An easy way to find out was to concentrate, then abruptly switch over to Singstar-mode, meaning trying to sing “I believe in a thing called love” and generally achieving a high level of excitement. That shouldn’t be very compatible with the “calm and focused” objective – and indeed, the brain activity readings spiked immediately and I was losing the game fast. However, I was able to switch back into focused mode pretty much at will, and I eventually won the game.

One word: Cool.

That’s it for today, sorry for the very long headline and winding text. It’s incredible how much you wind up typing when you eventually get down to it. Good morning!

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