Wednesday 30 January 2008

Skype Me on PSP

PSP™ (PlayStation®Portable) System Software Update Version 3.90 Announced

Skype™ communication features available

London, 30th January 2008 – Sony Computer Entertainment Europe (SCEE) today announced the immediate availability of the latest system software update for PSP™(PlayStation®Portable). Version 3.90 will enable all owners of the new PSP Slim & Lite*(PSP 2000 series) to make and receive phone calls, adding a whole new raft of functionality, highlighting the true portability of PSP.

Skype™ is a simple to use piece of software that allows users to make free calls over the internet to other Skype users, anywhere in the world, whilst also having the ability to make paid for calls to traditional landline and mobile phones. With the addition of these functions, alongside the ability to send and receive voicemail to over 200 million Skype users worldwide, PSP can now claim to be a highly cost effective and accessible portable communications device, alongside its entertainment credentials.

To use Skype on PSP, users simply need to upgrade to system software 3.90, register and talk, using a headset and remote control.

Also added through system software update 3.90, is the Go!Messenger icon, highlighting the commitment shown towards communications on PSP**. Go!Messenger, with the ability for video and voice chat, as well as numerous other features will be available at the end of February, and the presence of the icon not only emphasises its impending arrival but also allows users to obtain more information about the feature from a dedicated website, accessed via clicking on the icon. More information about the release of Go!Messenger will be announced soon.

*The Skype functionality is only available for the PSP Slim & Lite (PSP 2000 series) and not older versions of PSP (PSP 1000 series)

** Go! Messenger functionality will be available with all models of PSP (PSP 2000 and PSP 1000 series)

Tuesday 29 January 2008

Hasbro Masterpiece Starscream needed!

This is a request to my readers (also posted on Cloister Bell)!

If you can help me procure Hasbro’s G1 version of the amazing Masterpiece Starscream (a Wal-mart exclusive), for review, please use the contact form (right hand sidebar). You will, of course, receive a credit/link.

Transformers Masterpiece Action Figure:
Amazingly detailed Decepticon robot-to-vehicle figure
Exact replica of the character featured in the 80s hit cartoons and comics
Features interchangeable heads, hidden missile pods, an opening canopy and more
Comes with display stand

Thank you in advance.

Saturday 26 January 2008


For my birthday, last Wednesday, I received a Panasonic DMR-EZ47:

*2-in1 DVD & VHS Combi
*Full HD 1080p Up-Conversion
*DVB-T Tuner and 7 Day EPG
*HDMI with VIERA Link
*Super Multi Format - Record and Play ALL DVD Formats
*Super Easy GUI
*Dual Layer Compatible
*16X - R Compatible
*MP3, JPEG from -R
*500 Line LP Mode
*1 Sec Quick Start and Record
*VHS to DVD Refresh Dubbing

Ultimately, I decided that a built-in HDD was overkill! As it was my birthday, the sales person made the recorder multi-region and included a HDMI cable/DVD-R pack gratis! That puts shop@Panasonic on a par with the Sony Centre for customer service.

My various College and University video productions will be transfered from VHS to iTunes via this paradigm:

VHS > DVD > HandBrake > iMovie > iTunes!

Next month Apple will start shipping Time Capsule 1TB and my pre-order is in! Review to follow.

Have a great weekend... I'll be clearing out clutter from the garage! It's surprising how much junk gets accumulated!

Friday 25 January 2008

LEGO Skywalker

This link was sent in by Dave (blogger and owner of BrickPlayer)! As someone who grew up playing with LEGO and Star Wars toys, I'd have done Dave a disservice by not giving props:

Luke Skywalker LEGO Sculpture

Dave's goal in creating is to share information about: LEGO building projects, building tips/tricks, LEGO product/company news, and whatever other LEGO related topics come to mind. I wish him all the best with this endeavor and look forward to seeing more Star Wars characters and vehicles in the future!

If you have an interesting blog post/link, that is relevant, to share with my readers, please e-mail me via the contact form (right hand sidebar).

Tuesday 22 January 2008

Inside the Bloggers' Studio

‘Inside the Actors' Studio’ attracts the top film and TV actors, and interviews them in a one on one situation in front of a studio audience of drama students.

For more than twelve years, James Lipton, presenter and drama teacher, has sat down with more than 200 of the world's most accomplished artists – ranging from actors and directors to musicians and comedians — for penetrating, fascinating interviews. Lipton's studious research and enlightened curiosity has inspired his guests to open up and confess their deepest thoughts about their craft.

Each programme features the same 10 questions from James Lipton:

What is your favourite word?
What is your least favourite word?
What turns you on?
What turns you off?
What sound or noise do you love?
What sound or noise do you hate?
What is your favourite curse word?
What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?
What profession would you not like to do?
If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates?

Seb, from artsWOM (the latest in word of mouth conversation on the arts - sponsored by Sky Arts), asked me those same 10 questions as part of their now well-established line of ‘Inside the Actors’ Studio’ homages, showcasing selected UK film and TV bloggers.

Read my answers in the Inside the Bloggers’ Studio part 5 article.

Monday 21 January 2008

Link Love

My BlogRoll, despite resistance, had link detritus surgically removed at the weekend! And I'd like to introduce you to these very cool bloggers:

Christina Warren who does both Mac and PC!
Christina was on the “Coaches” panel for USA Today’s American Idol coverage and wrote about the show weekly online and for the print edition of the paper. She's also a blogger for and And co-hosts a videocast - the Squadcast, for Download Squad.

Danie Ware in her own words...
I'm a professional on- and off-line Marketeer for Forbidden Planet London as well as being a Mum, a keen cyclist and weight-trainer, an old school geek, a bit of a longhair and a social media convert. This is my professional and personal thoughts, stream-of-consciousness style.

Danie continues to ascribe me with a misbegotten 'allegiance' to another company, which goes by a similar name! I have assured her, on various occasions, that Forbidden Planet London rules, and my blog awaits sponsorship!

Wednesday 16 January 2008

Time Capsule Craft

Of all the announcements during Steve Jobs' Macworld Keynote, the all-new Time Capsule is, for me, the most enticing!

MacBook Air looks, at face value, to be style over substance and I can't justify £1200 (or more) for an expensive paper weight! In a couple of years I'll be eating my words! After all Steve Jobs foresaw, and accelerated, the demise of the 3½-inch floppy disc with the advent of the original iMac! However, £199 for a 500GB wireless hard drive/Wi-Fi base station, that works seamlessly with Time Machine in Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard, is a worthwhile investment!

With the introduction of iTunes HD movie rentals, has Apple put the final nail in the coffin of the optical format wars? Steve Jobs has been quoted as saying "Clearly, Blu-ray won, but in the new world order of instant online movie rentals, in HD, no one will care about what format is where."

iTunes HD movies are only encoded in 720p and do not contain a PCM, Dolby TrueHD, or DTS-HD Master Audio track at this time. For now Blu-ray remains my preferred HD medium!

Monday 14 January 2008

An 'air of excitement' surrounds Macworld 2008

Apple's alliance with Nike extends beyond iPod co-branding to include a new line of sneakers! I jest of course, although a pair of Air Mac would be most desirable! However, the notion of a, speculative, product called MacBook Air exudes irresistible cool! Especially when said device could be a wafer-thin laptop replete with flash drive and Blu-ray!

We won't know for certain what "2008. There's something in the air" equates to until Steve Jobs' Keynote, at Macworld 2008, tomorrow! It's safe to assume that web-enabled gadget geeks, around the globe, will be watching...

Thursday 10 January 2008

Family Guy Blue Harvest

Tyler, from Hybrid Studio, dropped me an e-mail suggesting this very cool official Family Guy Blue Harvest widget! Embed this widget into your blog, MySpace or Facebook!

The laughs come full "Force" when the Griffin clan puts a freakin’ sweet spin on the greatest sci-fi saga ever told. With Peter playing the swashbuckling Han Solo, Lois as the sexy Princess Leia, Chris as an adolescent Luke Skywalker, Brian as a well-spoken Chewbacca and Stewie finally embracing his dark side as Darth Vader, who knows what will happen? Filled with outrageous gags, spaced-out droids and more intergalactic satire than you can shake a lightsabre at, this epic spoof of Star Wars: A New Hope is a must-own for every fan of Family Guy.

You can pre-order the Family Guy Presents Blue Harvest DVD today!

Monday 7 January 2008

Tosh to Warner Bros.

As expected, Toshiba has issued a terse statement in response to Warner Bros.' exclusive backing of all-things Blu:

"Toshiba is quite surprised by Warner Bros.' decision to abandon HD DVD in favour of Blu-ray, despite the fact that there are various contracts in place between our companies concerning the support of HD DVD. As central members of the DVD Forum, we have long maintained a close partnership with Warner Bros. We worked closely together to help standardise the first-generation DVD format as well as to define and shape HD DVD as its next-generation successor.

We were particularly disappointed that this decision was made in spite of the significant momentum HD DVD has gained in the US market as well as other regions in 2007. HD DVD players and PCs have outsold Blu-ray in the US market in 2007.

We will assess the potential impact of this announcement with the other HD DVD partner companies and evaluate potential next steps. We remain firm in our belief that HD DVD is the format best suited to the wants and needs of the consumer."

It makes for predictable reading! Toshiba has a vested interest in HD DVD winning the next generation HD optical disc format war! You may have noticed the omission of Europe from Toshiba's statement! Blu-ray is the dominant format over here! It maybe worth mentioning that many Blu-ray discs are multi-region, making import of these titles easier - I was able to import Blade Runner (5-disc Ultimate Collector's Edition) for as little as £19.99. How can Toshiba stop Sony's PS3 Trojan Horse now?

Will other studios make similar announcements during this week's Consumer Electronics Show (CES)? Universal should announce Heroes on Blu-ray! Toshiba's shareholders must be quite uncomfortable!

Sunday 6 January 2008

Published Prose

Towards the end of 2007 there was a dramatic increase in the number of visitors to Generation Star Wars! This was due in part to a Google PageRank of 4, and that Generation Star Wars is listed on BlogBurst, a syndication service that makes premium blog content available to major international publishers such as Reuters, USA Today and Fox News.

USA Today was the first to syndicate one of my posts:-

Vanquishing Vista

Now it appears that Reuters is also syndicating some of my posts, giving Generation Star Wars significant exposure and introducing it to a larger readership in the process.

I have listed a couple of examples below:-

Platinum Bells
Warner Bros. Do Blu Only

Please let Reuters know what you think of the posts and this blog. Thank you.

Friday 4 January 2008

Warner Bros. Do Blu Only

The news Blu-ray supporters have been waiting for! Reuters confirms that Warner Bros. is to back the Blu-ray format exclusively!

"The window of opportunity for high-definition DVD could be missed if format confusion continues to linger. We believe that exclusively distributing in Blu-ray will further the potential for mass market success and ultimately benefit retailers, producers, and most importantly, consumers," Warner Bros. Chairman and Chief Executive Barry Meyer said in a statement.

From Michael Bay on Blu-ray/HD DVD and Transformers

Director Michael Bay posted this message on the Official Michael Bay Forums:

"Well another studio down. Maybe I was right? Blu-ray is just better. HD will die a slow death. It's what I predicted a year ago. Now with Warner's down for the count with Blu-ray. That makes it easier for Wal-Mart to push Blu-ray. And whatever Wal-Mart pushes - wins. HD better start giving out those $120 million dollars checks to stay alive. Maybe they can give me some so I can give it to my Make-A-Wish charity, just to shut me up. Have faith people Transformers will come out in Blu-ray one day..."

Personally, I can't wait for Batman Begins, The Lord of the Rings and The Matrix trilogies! Where Warner Bros. leads, other studios will, ultimately, follow! Warner Bros. will continue supporting HD DVD until May 2008. However, after that time, the studio will be exclusively Blu. To read the full article, please click here.

Incidentally, whilst on the subject of Blu-ray and Reuters. Reuters has republished a post of mine, via BlogBurst, here.

If the Blu-ray Macworld rumours are correct, this will be a great month to go Blu!

Tuesday 1 January 2008

Happy New Year

Hope you've all had a most memorable New Year's! I certainly did, including a pre-New Year's Eve party session on Scalextric! This pivotal playtime may have reignited my love of fast-moving car replicas...