Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Final Fantasy is pretty much dead

Just a little rant this time, about one of my favorite video game series, well, pretty much ever. The Final Fantasy series seems to be lacking nowadays in everything they used to bring to the table. The decline seemed to start with XII, even that game wasn't really bad. Overall I found FFXII to be pretty enjoyable, albeit a much less satisfying experience than the previous non MMO or sequel title, FFX. XII lacked any sort of story that you could find yourself relating to, a quality that had sparked my interest in RPG's in general. Now, looking at the newer titles such as XIII and the disaster that is FFXIV, I realise that the series is on its last limb.

Thats all I can bear to say about that for now, but I plan on posting a bit more soon. I've been busy with all sorts of ventures, and my blog has been suffering because of it. Thanks for all the support of my readers, I hope you continue to read the stupid stuff I have to say, and I apologise for the neglect that is obvious In my blog currently.


Friday, June 10, 2011

Yet again, another PC speed solution

I thought I'd share another little piece of free software that I think everybody should be using: Defraggler. I myself run this program multiple times a day to prevent my harddrive from becoming anywhere near fragmented (however you should note, I'm pretty anal about my computer, and you by no means need to run it that much).

An extremely common reason that a computer slows down is having a hard drive that is highly fragmented. To put in somebody else's words that I just found on google:

A fragment is a piece. If you drop a vase on a concrete floor, you get fragmentation of the vase. Lots of little pieces. Which is pretty much what your data looks like on your hard drive after you've been using it for a few months. Ever try to stick all the little pieces of a smashed vase together again? Well, that's kinda what your computer has to do to get that file that you just tried to open. It's first got to find all those little pieces and stick them all together again, and then present this stuck together file to you.

(Article Source:

Its obvious why that would cause your computer to run waaay slower than it really should. What Defraggler does, is take all your files, and puts them back together with all the other similar fragments, effectively getting rid of the fragmentation. You can set Defraggler up to automatically do this as frequently, and as thoroughly as you want, without ever having to worry about it. This is another one of those programs that's user friendly enough for a computer illiterate, while offering a variety of options that will satisfy even the most tech savvy.

There is a program in windows that will automatically defrag your drives for you, but honestly its not very good. Defraggler works faster, works harder, all while getting the job done better. And, well, its free.

More blogs coming soon, keep the comments and follows coming! 


Thursday, June 9, 2011

Random post out of boredom

Currently listening to: 1991 by crystal castles. Just a little gem I'm not sure how I missed on my many listens of this album. And I'm loving the how ubuntu's main form of media is FLAC. Bigger files, but lossless audio is pretty awesome, and I recommend you check it out if you haven't already.

I'm currently watching Sony's press release from E3, so expect me to get bitchy about it in the next 24 hours or so. From what I've heard, Nintendo is about to get it pretty bad, but I guess we'll see when the time comes.


Wednesday, June 8, 2011

E3 2011 (Microsoft) Opinion

Well I finally had some extra time to sit down and watch E3 ( I know, I'm like 3 days late on the E3 blog posts). The only part I got to watch completely so far was Xbox's kind of embarrassing last attempt to stay alive. Don't get me wrong, I'm Pro-Microsoft all the way, and I'm not even really an xbox hater (although you could call me a Sony fan boy at times). But their press conference was like an hour and a half of "BUY THE GODDAMN KINNNNNNNEEEEECTTTT.... oh and more sequels!". I can't really compare their skits with terrible actors playing football, or a really boring woman playing golf, or even the creepy children doing god knows what to any of the other conferences yet, but if all 3 major companies are that lame, I will be severely dissapointed.

Now, I really didn't hate everything I saw from Microsoft. Truth be told I was really impressed by the advances they've made with the kinect. The ability to make your avatar look exactly like you, down to your clothes and hairstyle, was pretty cool, and they also impressed me by being able to scan random objects and play as them in game. The coolest thing was probably the addition of finger recognition. The guy doing the demo was drawing with his finger, except he was drawing in literally three dimensions (not just a 3d representation of a drawing), and when he made a gesture he could change the perspective of the camera slightly to see where he had drawn behind himself.

After watching all the kinect hubub, I thought to myself, "would I buy this?", and I had to say no. I've never been a big fan of motion gaming. Buttons allow you to do many more things, simultaneously. Its like the difference in playing gran turismo 5, or flailing your arms and stomping your foot at the screen. The selection of games looked a little lame as well, except for star wars. I love star wars. But really, why do we need more games like Wii Sports? Also, when the kinect was first announced, its capabilities were extremely exaggerated. I still haven't really seen anything that could recognize your emotions, or carry on a conversation, so who knows what this update is going to actually do. 

My final complaint ( I really don't hate MS this much, I just REALLY hated their press conference) is about what a new and revolutionary product the kinect is...

Remember this guy??

Yeah, the kinect is just a souped up version of the eye toy that sony made, which I'm sure sony ripped off from somebody else. Instead of having Dance Kinect, you had DDR where you could wave your arms and look like even more of a moron than if you were just playing DDR. OK, I'm done bitching now... Instead of just listening to me, you can check the conference out for yourself, streaming here: Microsoft E3 2011 Press Conference Video

Sorry for all the delays:

Hey guys, I'm quite sorry I haven't updated in the past couple days. Long story short, was battling with a nasty virus, and instead of denying the privileges on my system of the file in question, I accidentally denied my own privileges to do absolutely anything to the virus. Don't do that. It was a very stupid mistake caused by a rushed panic and its very annoying to have to fix. Actually, I didn't even feel like fixing it because I planned on wiping my computer anyway, so I'm now a Linux man, just for the hell of it. (sidenote: Ubuntu 11.04 is great, I used to play around with it like a year or two ago, and got bored, but this new release has kept me very satisfied). I'm figuring out a little bit more on this OS, then my blog will be 100% back up in action. Also, sorry I haven't had the time to respond to anybody who has been leaving me comments or messaging me, you guys know who you are, and I'll get back to you as soon as I can.


Monday, June 6, 2011

Another tip to revitalize your lame computer

Wow! tons of new followers and page views, thats awesome. I thought I'd celebrate with another post and another tip on a bit of freeware I use all the time. Its pretty commonly known about, but not enough people actually use it.

Ccleaner (a free program which can be downloaded from that link), has saved my computers from dwindling away for years, and offers enough versatility to satisfy everyone from the 1337 to the barely literate. It can do anything from simple clean up of clutter on your hard drive, to a full guttman when the FBI is knocking on your after you downloaded that Metallica album (however for that I recommend you use DBAN).

People try to make you pay absurd amounts of money to get rid of spyware and things of the like, while in reality the programs do a B- job at best, and actually ADD SPYWARE to your computer to make you think you need to keep paying for their product. Ccleaner does a better job then almost all of the rest, while being available 100% free. On top of just cleaning up malware and unnecessary files, Ccleaner can manage uninstallation of files, wipe over your free space, and fix registry errors. In my opinion one of the best tools you can use to keep that PC running for years.

I personally support all sorts of freeware and GNU programs so I like to give them a little credit on the interwebs. The whole point of these posts is to give credit where credit is due, while making the software more available and known.

As for all the new followers and such, Ill be re-vamping the blog soon. Meaning but not limited to, full layout redesign, logos, fun stuffs, more organization, and just a much less template-y look. I wasn't sure If i was actually going to edit the HTML, out of laziness, but I guess if there is an interest, I'll have to.  Also should be bringing more bloggers onto the team soon so I can facilitate the whole process with all the topics we hope to cover here. again, till next time


Game Reviews coming soon.

Im gonna try to review games new and old to see how they stack up against each other. just a lil teaser post to keep my 5 readers on the edge of their seats. 

Speed up your PC for free tip #1

As a computer enthusiast, people like to ask me how to fix some of their common problems. As most of you probably already know, after a bit of time, your computer tends to get a little bogged down. A slow computer can drive you absolutely crazy, and you might want to buy a new one, but why buy new when you can fix it yourself for absolutely no cost? I decided to start a little series within this blog with some tips about cleaning up, setting up, decking out, wiping out, and making your computer as bad ass as the day you got it.

As the introductory tip to this series, I'm going to go with one of the simplest, yet most effective:

Reinstalling the operating system on your computer.

Whichever operating system you choose, you're eventually going to have to reinstall it. Over time, its just going to poop out on you, and that can be one of the biggest reasons computers slow down. But, there is a way for you to start again from scratch without having to spend any cash, and if you back up your data you can keep your important files while getting rid of all of the cyber crap gumming up the works. This is not a miracle cure by any means, especially if you have a hardware problem (however I'd be willing to bet less than 10% of peoples computer issues stem from broken hardware). And it can be a little tough if you're not the most tech savvy person. In reality, if you follow the instructions, and haven't kept your computer running at 150 degrees, a simple reinstall will fix almost all speed issues and BSOD (blue screen of death) errors.

Instead of giving you a how to on reinstalls, I'll give you links to people who can explain the process much better than I:
Thats it for now, remember to leave questions or comments! I'm trying to mix up the content on this blog between beginner and advanced computer users so I'll try and get something interesting to keep my fellow nerds reading next time. till then,


Two things to keep in mind...

...if you don't want your computer to be an expensive brick. These may be obvious to most of you, but sadly, I've seen people fall for this crap far too many times. 

  1. Don't EVER delete your /system 32 folder. Its not a virus, its a folder that is vital to executing the most basic of functions on your PC. People will tell you deleting it will make your computer do this or that, when it makes your computer do nothing, ever again.
  2. Never ever ever rub magnets on your hard drive. I don't even understand why people think this would work. It completely destroys all data and turns your HDD into a $200 brick, with pretty much no way to recover anything on it. 
When people ask me what they did wrong, I almost cry.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

As if free porn weren't enough: torrenting 101

Hi all, and welcome to the first post of my blog, "compluvium". The compluvium was an opening in the roof of a roman house, over a sort of garden in the middle, which allowed rain, air, and light inside. The goal of this blog is to bring in knowledge and wisdom, how ever pomposity and arrogance will probably fly in as well. 

Ok, now that I'm done with my pretentious introduction I can get to the good stuff; This blog will mostly be about technology and other stuff. I can't promise you I'll stay on topic but I can try my hardest to keep you entertained with stories that I hear from second hand sources and facts that I believe to be true, yet are completely wrong. Today I think I'm going to talk about torrents and their usefulness. If you don't already know what they are, its worth learning (especially since you don't have to know shit about computers to use them).

First off, I have a little disclaimer, there may or may not be sarcasm in this disclaimer, however I'm obligated to make this statement: I do not recommend you use torrents to get free software or copies of other copyrighted materials such as games, movies, television shows, books, or music. Even if you can find them using torrents, everywhere, for free, and you most likely will never get caught, and you'll save tons of cash, I don't recommend you do it. Its illegal, sort of, and i agree with piracy laws, sort of. I am in no way saying that it is ok to knowingly download pirated media or software. 
Torrents can be your best friend  when trying to back up media that you already own or share files that you own with your friends and other internet users. Or, If you're a bad person, you can use torrents to download  pretty much any media or software you could imagine for free (see disclaimer above).  I won't get too technical on you, mostly because I probably couldn't explain it, but ill give you the gist of what torrenting is about. When you torrent something, you connect to a number of people and download pieces of that file directly from them. The people you connect to are called "seeders" (i'll get into seeding in a bit), and the people who are downloading that file at the same time as you are called "leechers"or alternatively "peers". The seeders and leechers are connected by several "trackers"  which is an online service that allows different bittorrent clients to communicate easier and share the files. Every seeder uses a bit of their bandwitdh to upload small bits of the files simultaneously, which actually makes the download process go faster. Thats pretty much all the glossary terms you need to know.

The first thing you need to get is a bittorrent client such as utorrent. This program can be downloaded for free from the website i just linked. If somebody wants you to pay for it, don't be an idiot. Utorrent is a program that will allow you to open torrent files, which essentially connect you to the seeders and leechers through trackers. Torrent files can be found for all sorts of things such as movies, games, and music. Its kind of like using limewire, except without all the viruses and porn. To find torrent files you can search for them on all sorts of sites such as this one, For example, say I lost my favorite brittany spears cd; instead of buying a new one, I go to the pirate bay, search for "brittany spears", find the result with the best seeder to leecher ratio (more seeders=good more leechers=bad), download the file, double click it to open it with utorrent, hit ok on the popup when i have the files i wish to download selected, and wait. After that, its all pretty easy, the file will be in your downloads directory when the bar reaches 100%. (however some things you may download, such as pc games or software may need to be cracked, which is a topic ill cover another day)

Alright, so that was great right? You're rocking out to oops i did it again once more, however your job is not done here. You gotta seed and not be a dick. All you need to do to seed something, is absolutely nothing. If you leave the file where you downloaded it to, and don't stop the torrent file after its done, it will automatically use minimal amounts of your bandwitdh to upload the files you downloaded. You don't need to seed forever, most bittorrent clients have upload/download ratios on the display for each torrent, and i usually seed until my ratio is 2/1 then stop the individual torrent. The whole point of this is not just to be a good guy (as people who download and then dont upload are total dickheads) its also to make your downloads go faster. Trackers also keep track of what your ratios are for each torrent, and if you're a good boy you get rewarded with more bandwidth on your downloads when they use that tracker, however, if you're a bad boy, you get shitty download speeds like 5/kbs a second (if this happens by accident don't be discouraged: you are always uploading while you're downloading, and you will automatically build up high ratios when your bandwidth is bottlenecked like that).

welp, I think that covers torrents. Comment me if i said something dumb or made a stupid mistake, as I'm sure I have. Even if you have more questions, hit me up. have fun out there in the swarm, but again, I didn't tell you to do anything illegal. Just covering some awesome peer to peer filesharing techniques.