Saturday, June 11, 2011

Shaytards - Love in its purest form

A look at a fantastic family, amazing entertainment and most importantly my second family
By: Frederik


About two years ago, while sitting in my room browsing pet videos on YouTube i came across a video called -  "How To Make a MEAN KITTY Love U!" - In this video a friend of the uploader called Shay Carl. His bright mood and positie attitude made me check out his channel. At the time he hadn't uploaded so many videos, although some of his best videos as: - "ShayCarl PWNS His wifes NOOB!" -

At the time, Shay had already started on what would eventually be a hugely successful youtube series the daily vlogs: The ShayTards. When i discovered the vlog shay had been doing it for about three months, as of today the ShayTards have existed for about 2.5 years.
Shay lives the good life in Idaho, America. Hes married to Katilette aka Mommytard, with this beautiful woman hes got four kids, two boys and two girls, from the top Sontard, Princesstard, Babytard and Rocktard

From left to right: Babytard, Sontard, Princesstard, Rocktard
The fantastic thing about these vlogs is that every day you can open up your subscription box on Youtube and watch 3-20min footage of the shaytards lives. Shay quit his job as a radio host now being paid entirely by the internet. Katilette is a stay-at-home wife taking care of the kids when Shay edits the footage of the previous day just before uploading it to Youtube. When you watch these videos you can't help but notice that every single day for the past 2.5 years they have all been in a good mood, loving and caring for each other.
Babytard on the cover on James Blunt's album art

The photo to the right, was uploaded to the internet by Shay, some years ago. One day Shay received an email by James Blunt himself asking if he could use the picture as the album art for his newest album. At first Shay didn't believe it, he just replied "sure you can". Several months later when James Blunts cd hit the streets Shay got quite the shock. 

After a couple of emails Shay had gotten backstage passes to James Blunt's nearest concert in NY. There is a vlog with footage from the concert, and a private picnic in Central Park with James Blunt himself



Babytard & James Blunt


When watching the videos you cant help feel as if you are part of a bigger thing. The sea of positive comments from fellow Shaytards beneath the video makes you feel welcome, and the countless of different fan made intros to the "show" gives a good idea of the scale of it all.

What i've told you in this post is just a fraction of the storys and "adventures" that this amazing family experience. And the best of it all, you can join them. So hit subscribe and kickback and relax.




P.S I'm going to have to warn you, the show is insanely addictive, and you will become a better person if you start
acting like the ShayTards
















The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim - Impressions

This might just be the best Elder Scrolls to date
By: Frederik



Bethesda Studios are about to do it again, with games like Morrowind, Oblivion, Fallout 3/New Vegas, Bethesda's got a pretty solid root when it comes to the gaming industry, they have more than one proven to be the absolute elite when it comes to Sandbox MMO's, and as far as i have seen Skryim is going to surpass every single Bethesda game to date.

Everything has been improved drastically, the interfaces are much more fluent, you can see every single item in 3d so even carrots you can turn and look at inside your inventory. As seen in the video below this works well, when looking for the armor that fits you, since the menues are quick and responsive and yet very simple.

One of the major changes since Oblivion is the introduction of leveling Perks, when you level up you can choose special skills, i can imagine they will be similar to the ones on Fallout 3: Lady killer - more damage to female opponents - etc.

Also one of the issues with Oblivion was that when you leveled up the entire world around you did too, to keep the game from being too easy in the end. This was a huge problem since you would not feel the slightest more powerful at any time, this has been fixed in Skyrim allowing players to return to former locations and being able to easily kill the enemies there.

But in the end my favorite addition to Skyrim is without a doubt DRAGONS.

Epic beyond imagination
Thees winged beasts of the sky, will be randomly generated in they game and they will act according to how you fight them, they won't have fixed locations where they can land or fight, anywhere you could face one of these beasts. Through out the game special dragons that are part of the story will of course have some predetermined actions.

Check out this video with gameplay from the Xbox 360

Gameplay with commentary by Todd Howard - Bethesda Game Director
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ic6dKnv3WdU

Battlefield 3

The Assassin of Activision has arrived
By: Frederik


EA-Games are bringing out the big guns to once and for all show who's boss.
Badass
With the entirely new game engine: "Frostbite" Battlefield have never looked better. There has been put huge amounts of work into every single aspect of the game, from lighting, animation, effects to story telling. 


Lead designers of Battlefield have even told Game Informer that this game has been designed to outmatch Modern Warfare 3 - Infinity Wards major blockbuster scheduled to release around the same time af Battlefield 3


This is very brave words considering the succes of the Modern Warfare franchise, but by the looks of things it might just be possible.


Take a look at this screen shot from one of the gameplay trailers. Firstly look at  the light coming from the sun and the way it is reflecting onto the body of the tanks.


Frostbite 2.0 > Cry Engine 3

Secondly look at the tanks shadows the anti aliasing - smoothness of the edges - is incredible for shadows. There is also a lot of nice looking plants on the ground giving the landscape a very realistic and nice look


If i were to pick a favorite it would without a doubt be Battlefield 3, luckily i won't have to since i'm getting both.




Videos of MW3
MW3 Reveal trailer:      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=coiTJbr9m04


Videos of BF3
"Fault Line" Gameplay:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2zw8SmsovJc
Frostbite 2 Features:     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8pNOxynC1Dc

Razer Orochi - Review and Setup Guide


A look at Razers most portable mouse yet.
By: Frederik

When i was searching the internet for reviews on the Razer Orochi one of the major reasons that i had my doubts of whenever to buy this mouse or not, was the size. Would it be too small and uncomfortable, or would it fit fine? Well i'm glad i dared to purchase it, because this is the best mouse i have ever used, and i have fairly large hands!
The Mouse in all of it's glory

The edges and curves of the mouse are all sharp and pointy giving the mouse a raw "batman'ish" look, which is cool and fits the gaming lifestyle. As seen on the pictures above and beneath the edges and the bottom of the mouse are blank black, and the top is a matt grey, very stealthy!
A look at the mouse from beneath in its wired form

The mouse also comes with a smart little protective case for gaming on the go, and a chord that can be plugged into the front of the mouse if battery life is short, or if care about milliseconds response time. 
The entire content of the box
I'm using this mouse on my 13'' Macbook Pro and it works perfectly fine both on OSX, Windows XP and Windows 7. The only downside of this mouse is the scroll wheel, it doesn't roll smoothly but moves in clicks, which is great for gaming, for example changing weapons in FPS's is really great but scrolling through your hard drive, not so great. The mouse also features, two indicator lights, one of which is the entire scroll wheel and the other positioned right between the mouse. These can of course be toggled on and off to save battery life. The smallest (positioned between the mouse buttons) will turn red when there is 25% battery life left and blink red around 10% left.

The Setup

I'm going to show you the windows way first, because if you are going to use this mouse on your mac both on OSX and Bootcamp you will need to setup the mouse for windows first, don't ask me why, but thats just how it is.

Windows

- Click the bluetooth icon in your menubar (bottom right corner)
- Click add bluetooth device.

- Press and hold the four buttons positioned on both sides of the mouse for 5 seconds until the light starts    
  flashing blue
  when its flashing let go and wait for your computer to find the mouse
- Choose the mouse
Your good to go


Mac OSX

- click the apple logo in the top right of your screen
- click system preferences
- click mouse
- press and hold the four buttons positioned on both sides of the mouse for 5 seconds until the light starts
  flashing blue
- when its flashing let go and wait for your mac to find the mouse
- when it says found Razer Orochi click continue 

And there you have it!


Crysis 2 Early Multiplayer Review


The Crysis 2 Multiplayer demo just hit Xbox live and i have been playing since
By: Frederik

Being a fairly large fan of Crysis 1 and Warhead, i was expecting this to be great, and so far it is!
This game is like Black Ops on steroids, that mated with the POV camera from Mirrors Edge! The phase is so fast and action packed i don't even know why they added a sniper class, if you sprint and press the crouch button you will slide forward, allowing you to get some extremely cool kills. Or if you find yourself in mid air, press that magic crouch button once again and you will speed towards the ground, and pound the living hell out of the earth beneath you with your scientifically empowered fist.

The Air Stamp

Crytek does a very good job making you feel like your the only person who's got a nano suit, by making your teammates shout things like "Help! I'm in trouble!" or "Oh God!" this gives the impression that they are all helpless soldiers and you are the only superhuman, who scales buildings in no time, while being invisible and extremely fast.

The Graphics are of equal magnificence, especially the lighting is beautiful, and the textures are crisp.
They do a great job with the camera, if really looks like you are a seeing this from inside the helmet, because of your visible feet when in the air and the way you hurl yourself over obstacles.
Such a beauty ain't it?
I'm also impressed of how well the controls work, having played the former Crysis on PC this seemed much more intuitive, instead of having to hold down several buttons to switch armor modes, i can easily switch and combine the armor modes, and utilize it for my advantage.

Although Crysis 2 is a great game there will always be bugs. There is often a horrible lag when jumping up in the air to avoid a enemy, you get half way up there before you suddenly die. After watching the kill cam, nothing seemed weird at all about this death, because from my opponents view he ran around me and hit me in the back, and there fore killed me. If the connectivity was a bit better and more synced this would not have happened.
Then theres the whole aiming the gun thing, it is very close to the perfection of Call of Duty's, but it still needs a little extra love to be perfect.
These bugs/lags will hopefully be fixed before release, if not.. then i'll be able to live with it.

Minecraft and why i love it

A look at this amazing indie game, and what i think of it
By: Frederik

Minecraft just hit beta stage, but i were fortunate enough to get my copy when it was still in alpha stage, so i have been on the riding this phenomenon of a popularity wave for some time, and i still am!

This game is so amazing, even though there is no storyline whatsoever, heck there isn't even any score points. And this is exactly what makes this game so popular, there is nothing you have to do, everything is up to you to decide whenever you are going to build a castle, or a village or a underwater city!

Here look at some screens from a server me and my friends have been working on.
Our medieval city - With the John Smith Texture Pack
Since there is no tutorial in Minecraft the experience can be very confusing at first, but this is in my opinion a good thing because it helps the game force you to be creative right from the beginning. When you start a new world you are tossed into a wilderness with no equipment at all, if you start walking around the game will generate more and more land, leaving you in a endless space of blocky blocks. 
As you will find out, after digging around in the dirt for a the whole day (10min) when nightfall arrives, so does zombies, skeletons, exploding zombies, and giant spiders. So building a shelter is crucial.
This is what happens if the game is set to normal, i like playing at peaceful because the whole fighting aspect of the game just isn't that fun.
So instead of fighting monsters in single player i like to build huge castles in multiplayer with my friends. 
Another important thing about Minecraft is that when you destroy a block you will receive a item, leaves give you scrubs, and stone gives you cobble stone blocks to place where ever you want. These items can then later be crafted into different items, if you cut some wood, and put it in your workbench you can turn that into planks that look different for your house or whatever you are going to build. With the knowledge of where to place the different materials in the 3x3 grid of you workbench, you will be able to build, pickaxes, shovels, boats, mine carts, buckets, fishing rods.. yeah the list goes on if you want to see everything you can obtain in the game click here

But what is it that i really love about this game?

It's the creativity and the freedom, no one is going to tell you what you can build and what you can't (unless you got a really mean friend, who forces you to help him build something lame) 
And then there is the teamwork, if you, like me, got a bunch of friends who likes to be creative and have fun, you can have a really good time playing this game together. You will need to communicate for everyone to know what it is you are going to do and how you are going to do it. And that right there is what i especially love about Minecraft, it's how easy and fun it is to create something with your friends.

The entrance to "Rapture" as seen from the port of the city 
Inside the lighthouse
The underwater glasstunnels in which you travel inside "Rapture"
Hope you enjoyed this post, and if Minecraft seems fun go get it here
Remember there is a free version too if you just wanna try it.


This was originally posted: 2011/01/24

Four of my favorite iPhone Apps

I’ve done the searching now you do the reading
By: Frederik 
Having been an owner of a lovely iPod Touch for more than 3 years, i have seen my share of Apps rise and fall, crash and burn, soar and dive, well you get the point!
I choose some of my very favorite apps but i left out ones like Skype and Angry Birds because i figured most people already know these
The objective of the game is to feed the frog-like creature “Om Nom” a piece of candy. Sounds pretty simple? Wrong! The game features loads of brain bending puzzles, and its great fun! 
Getting the piece of candy to Om Nom can be simple enough, but most of the levels contains several stars to collect, to get the 100% feeling, and this is where the fun starts. 
As any other game Cut the Rope starts with easy tutorial levels as seen on the first picture.
All you have to do is swipe your finger across the screen and you will get tree stars, wasn’t that nice of them?
Soon enough objects like these (middle picture) rotating handles will appear, and spinning them will result in shortening or lengthening the rope, this can be useful for reaching a star that are high up in the air, since you can stretch the ropes so when they are cut the candy will be launched into the air.

This game is great fun, features a couple of hours of gameplay, and its really cheap too so check it out! 

2Do is a really cool app for keeping track of anything, although the name of the app indicates that its a to do list application i does much more than just that.
This app is great for everyone, but especially for students like myself. You can make it show your upcoming tasks as a red notification in the top right corner of the app when not in use, as a quick reminder that you have homework for tomorrow, or the following week.





As seen on the middle picture and the right hand side one, it is possible to create very detailed todos, not only can you add the date, time, audio files, pictures or url’s, you can also add a location, for this 2Do uses the built in google maps that comes with any iphone, to show you any nearby 2Do’s.
It is also possible to synch 2Do with iCal but unfortunately you can’t add 2Do’s from your mac to the iPhone.
Overall the 2Do is a awesome app for keeping track of any thing from homework, to who owe you money.



As many of you might already know 2K Games released Civilization V not too long ago, it was definitely one of the major titles to be released in 2010, and it looks like they managed to fit the essential features of the game into the iPhone version.
Just as the original, Civilization Revolution is all about establishing an epic civilization from the ground up, by various means.
The various historical figures that you can play as comes with different abilities. One might choose the Aztecs and win the game by brute force, or the Queen of England and go for a diplomatic victory. Of course you can also go for a diplomatic victory as the Aztecs as well.


2K Games manages to match the humor of the characters just as the former games, the graphics are nice and there is loads of gameplay hours in this game.
Get it if, it seems like a game for you


Days Until is a brilliant application, i use it (as seen on the pictures) for just about anythink i look forward to, it is very nice to be able to see the exact number of days until this event.
Like 2Do, Days Until also shows a red notification mark, in the top right corner of the app when not in use, this is very handy, because you are able to quickly see how many days there are until the next event on your list.
Get it if you think you need it, you know what just get it, it's free.





*All photos (except "Days Until") used in this post was taken from the applications descriptions in the iPhone App store 
*This was originally posted 2011/01/23

The Pros and Cons of the iPhone 4

A short post of what i think about the iPhone 4
By: Frederik

Pros

1. Camera
A nice thing about the iPhone is the HD camera, with 5 megapixel. It can capture crisp 720p video, which is impressive for an mobile phone.
I recently read about an South Korean film director, who filmed an entire movie with an iPhone 4. And it is going to be interesting to see how it turns out.

2. Retina
The Retina display is very nice, it is 4 times better than the old iPhone's display, if compared to a iPhone 3GS the difference is easy to spot. In medical terms retina is the name of a light-sensitive tissue that lies in the back of the eye. It functions the same way film does in a camera.

3. Facetime
Facetime is an interesting function, never before have handheld video conversations had such good quality, and been so simple to use. This is a great example of what Apple does best: investigating the market, researching and improving and in the end, developing a much greater product at the time of release.

Even though the iPhone 4 is a great device, there will always be some minor problems.
Cons

1. Multitasking
Multitasking is not working very well for once, you cannot run multiple apps at the same time, if you switch from app to app one of them will pause instead of running in the background.

2. Screen lock
Unlike the iPad the iPhone 4 is missing a screen lock, this is very annoying. If you are laying in your bed watching a movie, it won't take much movement, for the iPhone to switch from standard view to landscape.

Conclusion
Overall the iPhone 4 is a very nice device and perhaps in the future Apple will fix some of the issues when the iPhone 5 arrives. I personally think the iPhone 4 is one of the best mobile devices on the market right now.


*This was originally posted 2011/01/22

What will Apple do next?

This is what i believe apple is going to release in the near future
By: Frederik
As the years have passed, Apple has risen to a level just above everyone else.
Whenever someone thinks of a mp3 player they think of iPods, and if one was to mention 10 tablets the iPad would most likely be the first thing they would mention
And even though Apples prices (as many would say) are overpriced, they still manage to sell thousands of electronics every month. If you go to Apples homepage, you will most likely see some kind of handheld on the front page, and that is exactly what i think apple will focus on. 
If we take a look at Apples upcoming OS update, called Lion we will see that right now that Apple is bringing the handheld experience into the computer.


Lets look at this new app called Launchpad which will be available when Lion hits the shelves.
So obviously Apple is taking the “pad” from the iPad indicating that this is going to be the same experience as the iPad
while the “Launch” describes the entire purpose of the app itself,
it is very important to understand that this is just another app and not a completely new design of the OS X, Launchpad arranges all your apps as shown in a fullscreen view, similar to the iPadiPhone, and the iPod Touch. From here on you can organize their position and drag them into folders.  



Apple added other features similar to the handhelds that you can read about here 

So what will Apple do next? 

We know that the next version on the iPhone is in heavy development, which it have probably been since the latest version was released. Rumors tells us that the next iPhone might be going to recharge wirelessly and that the A4 Chip from the iPad is going to be inserted in the iPhone to increase performance for games and heavy apps.


The iPad is going to get even thinner, this is of course obvious since Apple manages to shrink their products every time, but mainly because of some photos, taken at the CES 
This prototype of the iPad 2.0 was sent to the developers of the stand that the iPad is placed in. Apparently the developers wasn’t allowed to show this prototype to the public so Apple made them take it away doing the conference.
Another feature that i'm really looking forward to is the cameras, i believe that the iPad 2.0 is going to feature two cameras, a front facing and (as shown in the picture) a rear facing camera. 
I have strong beliefs that FaceTime is going to be available too, since Apples programs and devices are exceptionally good at working together, i don’t see any reason why the iPad wouldn’t get to join the fun, like the iPod Touch did.

This was some of our predictions on what will be happening in the world of Apple, whenever any of this is true, only time can tell

*This was originally posted 2011/01/192011/01/19