Monday, June 14, 2010

So Microsoft 'officially' unveiled their new motion controller - Kinect. I think I preferred Natal, but what I have seen/read about the device leaves me completely uninterested. There are a few issues with the device that Sony is also going to face with Move.

  • It is a standalone peripheral for a huge established base of Xbox 360 consoles. Publishers will not spend millions of dollars developing Kinect only games when the base is zero. They may add tacked on controls (a la WiiMote) for big titles, but core games will not be Kinect specific.
  • It looks like you have to stand the whole time, annoying, plus you have to mimic gripping things for extended periods. Go ahead pretend to hold a steering wheel for 20 minutes and see how it feels
  • The marketing is already atrocious, fake families pretending to play, games that are simplified to the point of annoyance. The best looking game is an on rails star wars that has you flailing like the Star wars Kid.
  • Too little, too late, nothing about this looks like a must have concept, there needs to be a killer app that everyone must play, and that is nowhere to be seen.
  • Where is Milo? Hyped as the true face of natal, Milo is missing but that my a good thing. The concept was creepy and boring.
  • The video chat and Minority Report controls are a gimick and will be used very rarely. Hmm will I fire up Kinect and flail my arms to get to the My Games blade or push up on my controller?
Plus the unit looks like a Sony accessory, not Microsoft, guess the rumours of the new Xbox360 design (sleek and shiny black) may be true. No sale here Microsoft.

Here is a video for a band I have never heard of (Broken Bells) but it stars Christina Hendricks, who I will watch in just about anything. Song is averagey catchy, video is actually cool with a William K Dietz vibe. There is a decided lack of Christina Hendricks cleavage which is disappointing.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

I would watch this! One of the better Funny or Die videos in a long time...love the constant mentions of how young he looks still...good stuff.

Thursday, June 03, 2010

I was faced with a challenge in my new place as far as my audio setup is concerned. At my house I had a wall behind my couch and ran cables under the floor and out vents to the speakers mounted on the wall. My new place has no wall between the living room and dining room (and they are both spacious rooms). I really had no desire to run speaker wire on the floor or ceiling, but I was sorely missing my rear channels.

Some research led me to two items that will make my living room complete (aurally at least).

The first is a wireless rear speaker solution by Rocketfish:


This is a really cool unit that has a sender unit for the audio (that plugs into your receiver) and a receiver unit that plugs into the receiver. You still have to plug in power to the receiver unit, but that is behind the couch and not a big issue.

The real bonus is that the receiver unit is actually an amplifier, so you are not sending the audio across a wireless spectrum to wireless speakers themselves...you are sending the signal to an amp which then shoots the audio signal out the speakers. Very elegant solution and not very expensive at all, plus I get to keep using my Polk Audio speakers and not low quality wireless ones.

This raised another issue of mounting the speakers. I had a wall before and now needed to raise the speakers to a proper listening level. Some research brought me to these beauties:



A great silver speaker stand pair (matches my speakers) that is adjustable and looks nice as well. They should both arrive next week and proper 5.1 surround will be mine again!!

Luckily I found my calibration mic (my receiver auto calibrates) so once the setup is ready I will calibrate and my receiver will have a feel on how to modulate and send the signals to suit the room.