Thursday, January 25, 2007

Cheney Flatly Says that Congressional Resolution "won't stop us"

For those of you still unconcerned about Executive overreaching, Darth Cheney has stated that the Bush administration will flatly ignore the Congressional resolution opposing escalation of the war in Iraq. What annoys me about this is that he also said that if Congress really wants to stop the war, they'll cut the funding. Only problem with that is that the whole "oppose the war, support the troops" thing makes it politically impossible for Democrats to cut funding for the war. If they do, then the Republicans will start screaming about our fighting men and women overseas having no armor and spending their own money on necessities.

Monday, January 15, 2007

PS3 Post-Launch Malaise

News articles like this one and this one abound as the launch sales of the Wii and the PS3 begin to taper off post-holiday. I think the lack of good games for the PS3 this early in the life of the console isn't a serious problem; the new Sonic game is due out at the end of this month, which will satisfy the need for a good old fashioned platformer (the first video on this page is a good example of the gameplay). Also, Grand Theft Auto IV hits the 360 and the PS3 in October of this year, and you know Rockstar is going to take full advantage of the capacities of the next gen consoles. Their bizarre Xbox Table Tennis game and the forthcoming PS3 game L.A. Noire both look like pilot projects for the development technology being used to create GTA4. Once this title hits, I predict a surge in PS3 sales against the Wii, whether or not there's an accompanying boost in Xbox sales. I, for one, still look forward to getting my hands on a PS3.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Incredible Computer Overlay

Here an excellent video demonstrating "Augmented Reality," the practice of overlaying video of a person with interactive computer generated objects in real time. This one is particularly impressive. The person in the video is holding a computer generated television screen by a small handle, and the entire thing rotates according to his hand motions, including fine finger motions. At one point he even tosses it into the air. I think that once the technology becomes widely available, this is going to completely change the way we interact with computers. Imagine a public space like a park wired for augmented reality, where visitors wearing VR goggles with cameras in the front see the real space overlaid with the computer generated creations of the other visitors, perhaps selecting one of multiple channels, much like chat rooms, to avoid the problem of "overcrowding" the virtual space. Damn, I love the future.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

One Million Pixels Project

A friend of mine is running an experiment to see what kind of image a million people will create by selecting one pixel each. I'm curious to see how much cooperation there will be in forming a recognizable picture. The interface is pretty basic at the moment, but I'm told they're working on better ways to pinpoint the pixel you want.