Wednesday, May 21, 2008


We've been in Toronto for a week and a half now. We had enough time to get over the jetlag, settle in our flat and shop for food and baby stuff. We have everything now, except baby. We even visited him on the weekend and said hello to him through the surrogate's belly.

I miss my dogs so much, but other than that I'm quite happy here. The President's Choice Buffalo Hot Chicken Wings and the breaded white cheese sticks are alone worthy of immigration. It's also nice to watch American television just as soon as it airs.

Mister baby seems insistent to be born a Gemini.



Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Rosie Millard is an idiot Part 2

Just a quick update on Rosie Millard. I googled "Rosie Millard is an idiot" to see how high my blog post about her will show up. It was the first, but surprisingly it drew other interesting results... This and this.

This woman has spent mind blowing amounts of money, got into debt and declared poverty while still sitting on a real estate empire estimated in the millions. Not only she's a filthy liar and criminal, she is also a woman out of control. So there is no wonder she can't get her children to show any moderation when having to share a toy (and surely she can afford four DSes).

For her to have any complaints aimed at videogames is just so outrageous and laughable at the same time.

Happier times before Nintendo destroyed their lives forever.


Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Rosie Millard is an idiot and a crappy parent.

The Daily Mail had a new anti video games article. The interesting thing here is that it's not to do with violent content that's not unsuitable for kids, it's against any type of videogames whatsoever.

In this article Rosie Millard essentially claims that her kids were perfectly behaved until she introduced a Nintendo DS into their lives. Well, what the hell did she expect when introducing a shiny toy they can only play one at a time? If she forced them to watch TV one at a time or eat one at a time, there would be a similar outcome, if not worse. Why not just starve your kids for a day and then throw a Kitkat into the middle of the room you lunatic?

Why didn't she buy them a Nintendo Wii that they could've played together? With Wii Sports not only four people can play at once, they also get some physical exercise.

I know several families with very well behaved children who do play videogames on a regular basis. They parents manage to regulate the amount of time their children spend on videogames and ensure they don't neglect other aspects of their lives. Cutting something out of the kids' lives is easy; moderating it requires more effort and skill. The only conclusion is that Rosie Millard is a bad parent. Her kids obviously enjoy videogames and now, after getting a taste, will have to witness in frustration how their friends keep enjoying this unique form of entertainment.

Another argument Rosie Millard made, was that playing videogames was an utterly unconstructive activity. Oh, there we go. That's what this is all about. Just another angle to attack videogames by an old generation that simply doesn't understand the medium. Rosie, your children seems to enjoy it, isn't that enough? On top of that videogames improve hand-eye coordination, reading skills, problem solving, creativity and much more. But that's a subject for another post. The best answer for the Rosie Millards of the world has already been written by Richard Bartle.

The happy family, safe from the evils of Nintendo


Blue Badger Gallery

Ace Attorney on the Nintendo DS is one of my favourite game series and I should probably write about it more in the future. The Blue Badger is a very minor character from that series. To call him a character will be pushing it, as he's really nothing more than a fictional mascot.

I was fiddling with photoshop and ended up with this:
I then decided to try and create various Blue Badger versions of famous characters. These drawings were NOT done from scratch. Sadly I can't draw that well. This is mostly photoshop magic (though I know some of them lack polish and are on the border of being utterly rubbish) This is what I created so far:


Thursday, May 01, 2008

Wii Fit

OK, I had this for almost a week now and I used almost every day, so I'm more or less ready to write my take on this fitness phenomena.

Carrying the box home was a fantastic exercise. I just had to switch hands occasionally to make sure I got an even workout. This is a sturdy piece of equipment, not some rubbish toy.

It works. I found myself working quite hard and was sore the next day. In fact, I was a little sore almost every day, on the different muscles I used the previous day. It seems to give a good workout (as in tiring) to all the muscle groups, but it doesn't really give you enough direction to build your own customized programs.

It's amazing how unbalanced I am. Even when standing supposedly still during a breathing exercise the screen info showed me how much I was wobbling all over the place. But just like the visual aid in Singstar helps you correct you pitch, Wii Fit helps you improve your balance by showing you exactly what you're doing wrong. My Wii fit age varies between 34 and 41 based on what appears to be pure luck. At least now that I turned 30, I'm closer to my Wii fit age. I can get away with saying stuff like "not bad for someone in his thirties".

The aerobic and balance mini-games are fun and are perfect for parties with people taking turns. (or at least I thought so: no one wanted to play anything at my 30th birthday party, just drink and talk - I am getting old!) Hula hoops is amazingly addictive and my favourite. It's odd to find yourself controlling various mini-games by shifting your balance, but you get used to it very quickly and accept it as legitimate game controls very quickly. The yoga and strength exercises are slightly more of a proper exercise and are less "fun".

I'm no yoga expert, but the game got me really interested and even consider taking a yoga class in the future which is by itself a great achievement. I don't think there's a true replacement for a human guide. Also, the various postures are fragmented and so far I didn't see an option to flawlessly string a variety of moves into a full workout with proper warm up and cool downs. Clicking in and out of activities breaks the flaw a bit.

Also, one activity expected me to bend down and touch my toes without bending my knees and I couldn't do it so I just pushed as much as I could. The program still praised me, even though I didn't quite get it right.

It's a lot of fun and a great way to get a genuine workout that you can do on its own or mix up with gym visits, joggings or anything else. I believe that Wii Fitness alone is good enough for the average person who wants to keep fit. Obviously if you have more specific muscle building and cardio requirements, it won't be enough.

Unlocking additional exercises and mini-games by simply playing the game is a good way to encourage you to keep on playing. I hope the novelty isn't going to wear off before new software arrives for the peripheral.

Considering I'll be cooped up in flat for months after the birth of my baby, it'll be great to be able to sneak in a few minutes of exercise here and there.

I look forward to see what new software will be developed for it by Nintendo and other developers (Fit Monkey Ball please!)