Saturday, 30 December 2006

The Twitter Machine

John Chow included my review of his blog. Thanks John. Does this mean that I'm now a fully-fledged Chowderhead? Congratulations to the winning entry, submitted by Jennifer Lynn of Broken-Ass Student, which was well deserved.

Maury McCown, over at RAILhead Design, is adding the finishes touches to his TwitterPost application (for Mac OS X). Twitter (direct link to my page), for those of you not in the know (myself included until recently), is a global community of friends and strangers answering one simple question: What are you doing?

This is my final post for 2006. See you in 2007.

Wednesday, 27 December 2006

Sleigh Ride

Part two of my Review of the Year.

*Album - Future Sex / Love Sounds. Justin Timberlake (aided and abetted by Timbaland) finally puts to rest any doubts as to the identity of the new King of Pop! Runners up: The Sound Of Girls Aloud: Greatest Hits (Girls Aloud) and Loose (Nelly Furtado).

*Single - Promiscuous. Nelly Furtado's stellar follow-up to Maneater needs no introduction! Runners up: Fergalicious (Fergie) and Rock Steady (All Saints).

*Movie - Adrift. An unrelenting study of fair-weather friendship set against the backdrop of the ocean. Runners up: Superman Returns and Pirates Of The Caribbean 2: Dead Man's Chest.

*DVD - Dungeons & Dragons. Runners up: Doctor Who - The Complete Series 2 Box Set and Lost - The Complete Second Series.

*Television Drama - Battlestar Galactica. Last year's winner recaptures the number one spot with the coolness of a Cylon agent! Runners up: Bones and Lost.

*Television Sci-Fi - Doctor Who. No change. Runners up: Battlestar Galactica and Torchwood.

*Merchandise - Doctor Who - Tardis Electronic Playset. Character Options continues to produce products worthy of everyone's favourite Time Lord! Runners up: Marvel Legends and Star Wars Transformers.

Saturday, 23 December 2006

Oh Happy Day

A few weeks ago, I was reading Darren Rowse's ProBlogger post - Increase AdSense Earnings with Competitive Ad Filter - and, as Fortuna (AKA Lady Luck) was on my side, followed a link from this post - New Google Ad Placements - to John Chow dot Com! John Chow was extolling the virtues of using the Competitive Ad Filter to increase AdSense earnings.

Prior to this, the name John Chow meant nothing to me! However, John has clearly masterminded the art of near-transparent monetisation and is prepared to share his considerable and, by extension, invaluable knowledge with others.

Since adopting the Competitive Ad Filter (using, my earnings have increased from a few cents to dollars per day! I certainly have much to learn from John Chow and am now an avid reader of his blog.

You could do worse than read both John Chow and Darren Rowse's online money-making musings.

Friday, 22 December 2006

Stay Another Day

Still stumped for last minute gift ideas? Why not send Gift Certificates to family and friends?

Wednesday, 20 December 2006

The Spirit of Christmas

While I finalise the second (and last) part of my Review of the Year. Here's Google Zeitgeist 2006, which Darren Rowse, at ProBlogger, has highlighted for his readers. - Top Searches in 2006

1. bebo
2. myspace
3. world cup
4. metacafe
5. radioblog
6. wikipedia
7. video
8. rebelde
9. mininova
10. wiki

Google News - Top Searches in 2006

1. paris hilton
2. orlando bloom
3. cancer
4. podcasting
5. hurricane katrina
6. bankruptcy
7. martina hingis
8. autism
9. 2006 nfl draft
10. celebrity big brother 2006

I hope to break the top ten by the end of next year!

Tuesday, 19 December 2006

Stop The Cavalry

Where has the year gone? Wasn't it only yesterday that I posted this?

Read on for the first part of my Review of the Year. And the prizes go to:

*E-Commerce - aStore by Amazon. Amazon's new aStore format has impressed me (as has your willingness to purchase from the links) and I hope that this store concept is developed further. An urgent request to Amazon's Associates team - please add RSS as soon as practicable. Runners up: ReviewMe and PayPerPost.

*Web - MySpace. Now that the dust is settling around RSS, I'm hard-pressed to recommend any significant web-based product this year! That's my tenuous excuse out of the way. Social networking websites (and bookmarking) are all the rage, and it would be churlish to ignore their profound dominance. Runners up: RSS and Facebook.

*Buzz Word - Wi-Fi. Wires are so passé. No logo, no go. Runners up: RSS and VoiP.

*Application - Adobe Photoshop CS3 Beta. Why? Well, the all-new UI has to be seen to be believed and the significant speed gains can't be ignored (even on my ageing LCD iMac G4). Runners up: Firefox 2 and iTunes 7.

*Gadget (formerly Console) - Wii. It's garnered acreages of coverage both here and elsewhere. Nintendo has delivered a revolution with Wii and the only flies in the ointment are product availability and the replacement remote strap fiasco. Both will be addressed in the New Year. Runners up: Nintendo DS Lite and iPod Shuffle.

*Video Game - The Legend of Zelda: The Twilight Princess (Wii). Hyrule rendered in lush panoramic 16:9. Runners up: Rayman Raving Rabbids (Wii) and Killzone Liberation (PSP).

Stay tuned for Best Album, DVD, Movie, Television series and much more.

Saturday, 16 December 2006

Requiem of December

Last week The Power of Love (performed by Frankie Goes To Hollywood) was on heavy radio rotation. The song was officially licensed for use during the end titles of December Duet, my 1996 video major project at Bournemouth University, and it's only appropriate to repost the following audio clips for those who may have missed them the first time around:

Opening narration (performed by Bob Sessions) (MP3)
Soundtrack suite Part 1 (MP3)
Soundtrack suite Part 2 (MP3)

Those of you with a keen ear will hear fragments of The Power of Love, arguably one of the greatest ballads ever written, interpolated in Part 1! It's worth noting that this was more an act of serendipity than calculated design! The composers were unaware that I had elected to use a commercial pop song; an oversight that I never intend to repeat.

The source material is taken from TDK SA (Type II) cassette tape (Dolby HX PRO B NR) and is subject to the inherent limitations of the medium i.e. reduced fidelity.

Wednesday, 13 December 2006

Passion for Fashion!

As I've noted previously. A lot of you are buying products from both my Amazon and associate links. Thank you once again for supporting my passion for blogging in this way. Please don't underestimate its significance.

Because Bratz are an ever-popular holiday gift with readers, I've decided to add another aStore.

Bratz Shop

David Rowan, editor of the Jewish Chronicle and a Times columnist, wrote this compelling article; The Times Magazine: How Bratz beat Barbie.

There are lots of bargains available online, but please note that the last day to place orders for delivery before Christmas is December 22nd (by Express Delivery).

Monday, 11 December 2006

Wii Play

Wii arrived this afternoon. Looking forward to some retro-goodness (via Virtual Console) from this coming Friday.

UK Virtual Console releases, December 15:

Urban Champion (NES)
Solomon's Keys (NES)
Pinball (NES)
Columns (Mega Drive)
Gunstar Heroes (Mega Drive)
Ristar (Mega Drive)
Dr. Robotonik's Mean Bean Machine(Mega Drive)
Alien Crush (Turbografx)

UK Virtual Console releases, December 22:

Donkey Kong Jr. (NES)
Soccer (NES)
Tennis (NES)
Space Harrier II (Mega Drive)
Toe Jam & Earl (Mega Drive)
Military Madness (Turbografx)

UK Virtual Console releases, December 29:

Baseball (NES)
Ice Hockey (NES)
SimCity (SNES)
Super Probotector (SNES)
Super Castlevania IV (SNES)
R-TYPE (Turbografx)

Saturday, 9 December 2006

Wii-Envy You

Following the launch of the Wii across Europe at midnight last night, Nintendo UK has reported that 50,000 units of the console were sold in just 12 hours!

That equates to one sale every second, according to Nintendo - much to the satisfaction of UK boss David Yarnton.

"We are delighted with the amazing response to Wii and that people of all ages and gaming experience are embracing the way that we are turning the industry on its head," he commented.

"With so many units sold it is great to see that people will be enjoying Wii with their families this Christmas."

The official launch took place at HMV's flagship Oxford Street store, where 17 year old Londoner Marwan Elgamal became the first British gamer to pick up a Wii. Other shops opening at midnight included the GAME store down the road, which saw even longer queues and also sold all of its stock.

PC World Ipswich witnessed a queue of onlookers who wanted to participate in Wii Play! The glorious Gears of War point-of-sale wasn't enough to diminish Wii-envy!

Tuesday, 5 December 2006

Nintendo's Post-Christmas Crackers

Wii will not be with me until next week! That's OK as I'm too penny-pinching to pay for First Class delivery!

GAME (UK retailer) employees are purportedly alleging that there's going to be significant hardware and software shortages pre-Christmas, and are banning software and accessories-only pre-orders! Nintendo Wii Fanboy is seeking confirmation on this story.

Zelda is the only Nintendo franchise represented in the UK launch. However, Mario Galaxy and Metroid Prime 3: Corruption are not too far behind! In homage to the latter, the rest of this post will be of particular interest to video game merchandise hunters!

With the instantly recognizable bulky round orange shoulder pieces, Samus Aran’s Varia Suit has served the interstellar bounty huntress well. Her Varia suit, with the ability to resist even the most extreme of temperatures, has helped Samus on her quest of aiding the Galactic Federation in defeating the Space Pirates and eradication of the deadly Metroids.

First 4 Figures is extremely proud to present Samus Aran’s Varia Suit, the first collectible statue in First 4 Figures’ highly anticipated suit series based on Retro Studios’ Metroid Prime game trilogy.

First 4 Figures has used the official game files in order to create an extremely accurate recreation of the Varia suit, with pose inspiration taken from official Metroid Prime Varia Suit artwork.

The suit series will include, but not limited to, Samus Aran’s Light Suit, Dark Suit and Phazon suit.

Cast in high quality poly-stone, the statue is hand finished and hand painted with metallic paints to give an authentic representation of the suits.

Comes packed in a foam interior full colored box with a card of authenticity.