Just came back from a my very first LAN event. An entire weekend of video gaming. Because it was my first time I was very open to what was going on. I talked to many gamers about why they play and why they come!
Gamers came from all walks of life; from plumbers, actors, bankers, body builders, doctors and I even talked to a receptionist! I never imagined receptionists would devote an entire weekend to LAN gaming.
I mainly played Counter Strike: Global Offensive and Left for Dead 2. The pro gamers still stick to Call of Duty 4; personally I got over that experience many years ago. It still baffles me why that old game is still the game of choice for these LAN events.
Overall, I did enjoy myself. The banter and the openness to just game with random people is funny and liberating. It is rare that I get asked to join a competitive game with other players so close to where I sit.
The organizers are already planning the next event; check out www.epiclan.co.uk/epic11
for more details.
I’m not ashamed to say I’m a comic book fan ever since I was a child and to see all these childhood heroes of mine come to screen has been a fantasy come true. After the oustanding Avengers comes Shell Head’s third outing on the big screen.
Marvel released the first official trailer today and my jaw dropped. Stark gets his butt kicked. Bring on April 2013!!!
I appreciate this may upset some Call of Duty fans but Black Ops was only a commercial hit because of it’s name. Had it been a brand new title it would not have had a fraction of it’s record breaking sales.
That is not to say it isn’t a good game, but I have always believed The Battlefield Series was a superior experience.
Battlefield 3 is the big game of 2011, and I couldn’t be happier!! I’m sure if you’re a gamer of any kind you’ll have seen the sneak previews released by EA and Dice. The hype will reach a fanatical fever level by this Autumn.
HI, I just wanted to share this video I made very quickly. I don’t often go to LAN Parties but I always carry a camera. In between games, and sometimes during, I’d grab the awesome Canon 5D Mk2 and shoot small snippets of video. I knew I’d be editing it all together but I never plan the final edit; I make up the edit as I go along.
I’m a geek and I’m proud of it, so when my mate invited me to his LAN Party I could not think of a better way to spend 15 hours other than gaming! The game of choice was Counter Strike Source. I’ll be honest, I hadn’t played it in over 18 months, but it was brilliant. My laptop of choice is the 2010 MacBook Pro 15″ which was awesome. The framerates were just silly fast; shame that laptop isn’t mine!
Surprisingly, most of the gamers brought along desktop PCs. I had imagined the majority would bring laptops as modern versions can run an oldish game like Counter Strike Source quite easily. Also, a desktop is much bulkier to carry.
There’s talk of some of the lads organising another LAN Party in the Aylesbury area, so I’ll keep my eyes open for that.
Anyway, I’m pleased with the way it came out. While looking for a soundtrack I initially went with Rock, but then wanted something a bit more dramatic. And when it comes to awesome soundtracks there is none better than Mr John Wiliams. I chose Duel of the Fates from Star Wars Episode one, a bad movie but great soundtrack.
I love editing as much as I like shooting. I shared the video on Facebook and it has received a nice response.
For your information, the Canon 5D Mark 2 was used in conjunction with the brilliant 24-105mm and majestic 50mm f1.8 lenses.
It is shocking how many people still do not have a computer backup system in place. Fair enough, when it comes to complaincency I’m terrible at business administration (my filing is way behind), but in my mind backing up critical files is something that cannot be delayed.
If you are a Windows user, Microsoft has a nice robust system imaginatively called WINDOWS BACKUP AND RESTORE. It can be automated, and your data can be backed up onto a network location. I am currently archiving an old Windows 7 PC to my Synology DS1010 NAS. I hit a small problem when my PC went to sleep in mid backup, but I started it backup again without any hitches.
For Apple users there is Apple’s TIME MACHINE. It is a very simple and elegant archiving solution. But it’s greatest trick is the ability to go back to several different versions of the same file. What that means is not only can you retrieve the latest version of, for example, your Photoshop edit but you can retrieve various versions going back as only as several months providing you have the storage space.
These two products are free, easy, automated and should give some peace of mind. I could go on and on about this, but I believe everybody knows backing up your information is important but not everyone does it.
For home users, it may not be “critical” to archive, but with so many precious photos of family and friends stored on computers these days, there is nothing worse than your computer developing a virus or hardware issues.
For professionals, it is bad business to not have a backup solution for your computers. It’s irresponsible not to invest in hardware to store important data somewhere off the main computers.
Finally, we are at the very beginning Cloud computing. Storing your valuable data on the internet, as opposed to local hard drives, will become common place so perhaps the need for regimented archiving may not be necessary. But until that time, backup your work people! Don’t make me come over there and sort you out!!
Right now in the UK, the competition to get Fibre Broadband into our homes has just begun. For a quite a while now Virgin has had the monopoly in providing very fast broadband but that has all changed as of October 2010. BT has been trialling their version of Fibre for some months and has finally become available to the general public; BT call it Infinity.
On paper BT Infinity looks like the better option; up to 40mb download and (more interestingly) up to 10mb upload. As a professional photographer who needs to upload a lot of media online having an option to upload photographs to my own websites as well as to clients is a delicious treat. Also I have been shooting High Definition video; on my bog standard ADSL line it can take hours to upload a full HD video to YouTube or for clients to preview. With a 10mb upload that does not seem as daunting.
Virgin Media Broadband has similar qualities to Infinity in terms of downloads. In fact, data suggests the download is slightly more reliable with faster average download speeds, but here is the killer for me. The maximum they offer for uploads is 5mb on their XXL package. It is not all bad news, it is well documented Virgin do not restrict the broadband speeds if the user’s usage is deemed as heavy. BT’s policy is to restrict the user’s speed (both up and down) for several hours which is unreasonable in my opinion. If a user pays for the premium of having high speed broadband, then he has the right to use the broadband as he deems fit so long as they are not knowingly breaking any laws.
According to various posts on ThinkBroadband.com, Virgin are throttling users on USENET ports as well, so if you thought you could bypass any P2P ports by using Newsgroups I’m afraid you’re out of luck. I have no information if BT do the same thing but it’s highly likely they do.
ThinkBroadband.com have a very good guide on Fibre Broadband. Click here for the link.
Once again filmed with the Canon 5D Mark2, I was asked to document our charity’s commissioning at Coventry. it was a great day, even though I was hobbling along because of a foot injury. The camera performed brilliantly. The only problem when shooting video with the Canon 5D Mk2 is the battery life. I think it would be necessary to have 2-3 batteries and a whole heap of Compact Flash cards if you wanted to film all day.
The music is called “Hungry” by Kathryn Scott.
As much as I love shooting weddings, I like to relax by taking studio shots of beautiful people. This shot is of my friend Charli Keeler. See more of Charli on my portrait photography site. Link here…
The more I use the 5D Mark 2, the more I realise how close it performs to my Nikon D3. I am very close to saying it’s a better camera than the D3.