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The majority of online games that I play are first-person shooters (only with certain people/clans, mind you). I've played an MMORPG (Phantasy Star Online) before, but got bored with it after awhile.
So in other words... girl gamers are not always what you assume they are
Talked to Ambigore on AIM yesterday (mainly to see if he had any info about the domain registrar login). Looking back on our conversation, I get the sense that he was smiling (kindly) at the mess I'd gotten myself into...
More to come...
The server seemed to be a bit slow when I logged on, but not horrendously so. I'm currently copying over the entire site to my hard drive, and it's been going for about half an hour now, if not longer. After everything is copied, I'm going to check out the log file, which has apparently grown to a gargantuan size (794102645 bytes... DAMN!).
What I'm mainly looking for here are the bandwidth requirements. I'm thinking of hosting the Citadel on my own account (for various reasons), but I need to see how much juice it requires on a monthly basis. I also want to see what it currently has for
In any case, the Citadel is being overhauled-- the three (or more) year-old HTML is being chucked for a new, streamlined, dynamic format that requires CGI, PHP, CSS, and a host of other acronyms in addition to the aformentioned HTML. I've also done a new design to go along with all of this, using images from Advent Children. Needless to say, I have a lot of work ahead of me.
I've already started with some of the reworking: aside from the main templates (which probably still need a bit of tweaking), I looked at the source for some of the current pages in Mozilla, and copied them over to my text editor to make cut-n-paste ready drafts for the new site. Oh my... what a lot of mistakes I found. Add on top of that all of the HTML I'm chucking/altering due to the addition of a stylesheet, not to mention all the missing files (at least thirty of them), and I have quite a job to do.
Heh. I wish. Currently, the Final Fantasy Wiki holds the top spot for "Final Fantasy Wiki", but it doesn't hold the coveted "Final Fantasy" spot. Truth be told, if such a thing happens, I'd like it to occur the honest way... but I'm also intrigued by the wiki itself being one big Google-bomb waiting to happen (as Cy-Dogg has suggested) ^_~
No, the wiki's sandbox had been hit by four links from one of the nigritude ultramarine competitors. I thought it was just plain old spam at the time, and not only edited the page, but banned the IP. When I went into the FTP account to change the revision cache itself, I realized just then what it was... hey, it's that Google optimization thingie I read about on Slashdot! Did I care? Nope. Spam is spam. The source got edited anyway.
EDIT 6/03/04: It's happened again! *edits page*, *bans IP*, *edits source*
Sure, animation jobs have been going overseas for over twenty years now, but as the Korean animation industry has matured (so much so that it pumps out work that rivals much Japanese anime), the inbetweening and coloring gigs are moving to-- you guessed it-- India! Check out AWN's Career Connections if you don't believe me; seems like a whole lot of the studios hiring artists these days are in India (an even greater incentive for one to rely on their own networking skillz and mad connections... if they have them in the first place, that is).
I've already figured out a workaround, but it may be a week or two before I can get the site back up. Stay tuned...
UPDATE (Jan 1): The site's pages are back online, but the front page's counter seems to have been reset, my CGI-bin is AWOL, and there's some serious login issues for various other aspects of the site. In other words, it's not fixed yet, but at least y'all can read fanfics again
UPDATE (Jan 8): I have Plesk access again! I have FTP access again! But strangely enough, all of my email accounts have been wiped out *_* Plesk is also telling me that there are no web_users, despite the fact that all three of the subdomain sites are active, AND the files are accessible via FTP. Oh, and the permissions on some files seem to have been reset -_-
Right now I'm backing up the blog and ClawCo subdomain-- the only two parts of the site I don't have up-to-date, concrete backups of.
UPDATE (Jan 9): Email's working... and all the archived emails are still there. w00t
If all goes well, I'll be moving the site on Sunday.
UPDATE (Jan 11): I backed up a helluva lot of email yesterday and opened a new account with a different (and larger) hosting company this morning. The new nameservers have been indicated in my domain's preferences, and should take effect by tomorrow afternoon. So in short, the site is down again; but at least this time, I have some measure of control over it.
Oh, and in between backups and whatnot, I've been playing Dark Cloud 2. Very good game... I recommend it.
UPDATE (Jan 12): We're back online, baby! Once Claw's subdomain goes up and I have Horde (webmail via IMP being one of the few features from my old host that I really miss), Greymatter, and whatever assorted other scripts set up, I'll be good to go. Hopefully. Keep those digits crossed..
UPDATE (Jan 15): This should be the last update. Two Greymatter folders, one Active Guestbook, and one Horde/IMP installation (thanks again for the help, Cy-Dogg!) later, the site is almost entirely restored, with some new features to boot! The last thing I have to take care of is the matter of a counter, which I'm going to do through a third-party service this time, so I don't lose my numbers again (which were in the five-digit range when the site went down). Now to email my readers and (loose definition of a) staff sometime in the next few days, and let them know that the Blue Shinra Project is BACK!!!
UPDATE (Jan 15): Nope, guess that wasn't the last one. Everything's up and running smoothly, save for the counter (not set up yet) and the webmail (currently exploring options other than Horde/IMP)...
UPDATE (Jan 17): Site's been updated, blog entry's been written, peeps have been emailed, and by some kind of 1337-ish divine intervention, the backups for my hit counter and guestbook have been found, and promptly transferred over to their proper places. For the counter, I ended up with LiveCounter Classic again, as I couldn't find anything better within the limited amount of time I have (ahh well, not a bad counter to have ^_^). And the webmail (Uebimiau this time) is still a little buggy.
Having looked at my domain's logs last night, I found that certain people are still leeching images off of my server, despite whatever polite cease-and-desist messages I've sent them. And on top of that, a particularly large file was being hijacked by a new leecher! I promptly changed the names of the images, edited the related pages, uploaded these new jpgs and html files (while taking any old ones down)... and promptly began searching for information on how I can prevent this from happening again.
So far I've downloaded at least three CGI/Perl scripts, but none of these seem to work (or have the features I want). There's still one that I have to try out, but I'm not keeping my hopes up. On the other hand, there's also
On Monday, I bought a remix album by Puffy (aka Puffy AmiYumi), a popular Japanese pop duo (the album I got was PRMX Turbo-- it's damn good). For my own convenience, I promptly ripped the CD in iTunes. Using the few song titles listed in English, along with my knowledge of some of the Japanese-titled songs, I was able to attach names to most of the tracks, but there were a couple I was missing. I went online and Googled the group's name (with English results only, of course). One of the first links listed in my search was to CDUniverse, an online music store. I checked it out, only to see that PRMX Turbo was listed as being a Puff Daddy album! Out of curiosity, I checked out Puff Daddy's discography on the site, and saw that most of the imports listed were Puffy albums!
I emailed CDUniverse and told them of the error, and got a response from them yesterday. Now, Puffy's albums are in their rightful place, but I shudder to think what would happen if someone had Googled (or Froogled) Puff Daddy in the past and accidentally bought a Puffy CD...
I guess if there's a lesson in this, it's that the internet, as a source of knowledge and information, is very much a work in progress. We need to make sure it can be as reliable and as truthful as can be. Therefore, I say if you see a factual error online, point it out (or, if possible, fix it yourself). The 'net will be a much happier place
In other news, I'm playing the PSX version of FF7. Having only played the PC version before, the differences are stunning. Best differences: the stereo soundtrack that isn't dependant on MIDI drivers, smoother integration between FMV segments and pre-rendered/sprite-based segments, and MUCH smoother battle animations. Worst difference: the PSX version's translation (apparently, Square and Eidos cleaned up the script a bit for the PC port).
I'll be heading off to England on Tuesday (family vacation). The laptop's coming with me, so I won't be computerless, and even though I don't have wifi in the thing, I should still be able to get online (we're staying with family friends who have internet access... don't know the type of connection, though). I probably won't be spending too much time here... just checking my email and stuff.
This was my general reaction on seeing the gameplay movies of this upcoming game (see GameSpy to download 'em). Unfortunately, I doubt that my 733mHz Pentium III would be able to handle such astounding AI w00tness (I'm still coming off of the letdown I felt when I saw the system requirements for Star Wars Galaxies... [sniff sniff]). Hell, I haven't even played the first Half-Life yet... it's gathering dust in a pile of other games I have yet to play ^_^;;;
I bought a new Mac this past weekend, a fact that I've been gushing about to various friends since I've gotten it. It's a 700mHz iBook, a recently discontinued model which I managed to get at a good price (and with extra RAM for free!). Unfortunately, I haven't had a chance to mess around with it yet, as I've been busy with tidying up this place and working on that animation piece; by the way, I don't think I'll be doing any more updates to my site until the latter is done (or at least, very near completion). Wish me luck!
The first issue of Wired I ever bought was the June 1997 one, with the "101 Ways to Save Apple" cover story. I had bought the mag at Robin's in Philadelphia-- a great place to get magazines when you're on a budget, as they're all remaindered, and (as such) all 40% off the cover price. Besides Wired, I'd also pick up Res (digital filmmaking mag) and CMYK (a graphic design and illustration mag for college students) during my visits there... but I digress. Anyway, last night I picked up this back issue and started flipping through it, rereading much of the cover story, and skimming the other materials (articles and ads) throughout the rest of the issue. My, how times have changed.
The most timely ads are the one for Apple's Newton Messagepad 2000 (the Newton doesn't exist anymore, plus the layout of the ad is sooo "old Apple"), iomega's Jaz disk (worst iomega product ever; the Jaz is practically nonexistant these days), Silicon Graphics' O2 Workstation (I remember being blown away in 1998 when I saw one of these puppies in action... it was running Maya 1.0. Ahh, memories), and Compaq's Armada 7700 laptop (166 mHz Pentium processor? Were computers really that slow in 1997?).
As for the cover story, Wired recently ran a 10th Anniversary special (April 2003) covering all the hits and misses they've made in past years. Among the hits were four of the suggestions they'd made to Apple in the June 1997 issue. They were: 19. Get rid of the cables and go wireless (they did with AirPort); 50. Give Steve Jobs as much authority as he wants in new product development (which really helped Apple a lot); 59. Build a computer that doesn't crash (the G4); and 98. Testimonials. Create commercials featuring real-life people in situations where buying a Mac (or switching to a Mac) saves the day (the "Switch" campaign).
Looking back on the other suggestions, some of them also seem prophetic: 83. Develop proprietary programs that run only on Macs. Crow about them (they did this with Final Cut Pro, the sweetest editing suite since Avid); 14. Do something creative with the design of the box and separate yourselves from the pack (the iMac, aqua G3, G4, titanium PowerBook, iPod, etc. Unfortunately, there have been a lot of copycats-- Compaq's [?] rip on the new iMac was probably the worst, especially considering their commercial. Compaq's iMac competitor couldn't really hop around like that! Comparitively, in the iMac commercials [with the guy making faces at the computer], there was more of a stop-motion feel... more grounded in reality); 23. Create a new logo (still an apple, but now all shiny and plastic-y and shit. The rainbow scheme has been done away with!).
There are also some ideas that seem unthinkable six years later, the main one being the very first suggestion listed-- "Admit it. You're out of the hardware game." There's a reason Mac hardware is Mac hardware; it has to do with a tight integration between machine and software that you can't get from a PC.
On a related note... from Wired's current issue: DeLong on Apple and the law of increasing returns