Sorry for the lack of updates

I’m SMACK in the middle of moving to a new apartment. I’m literally surrounded by boxes and half built furniture, and decided to grab my laptop and do a quick update. I’ll try to be back to my regular schedule by early next week, it’s just been a busy few days planning and executing my move. Thanks for your patience!

Writing again…

For quite a while now, I have been wrapped up in technology, gaming, and so many other modern things… Stay tuned. Thursday’s on the blog may get more interesting, or perhaps I will change the theme of another day, or just do some writing on another of my websites! I have been writing more and more lately, and find a bit of a personal renaissance springing forward. I certainly do not expect to cut the cord and disappear, but I I will be getting away more, to remote areas that remind me of home, where I can find tall grass and much taller trees. Places where honking horns and ties on pavement have never once echoed. Places where a person with a pen can articulate what has what the stow away who has been hidden from sight for their own safety has wanted to say. I am still deciding how to go about this process, and maybe it won’t even end up on this site, but I thought I would mention it and measure some reactions. Let us find out what words are waiting to come out, in the near future!

Podcasts is now available for iOS devices

20120626-233208.jpg

The “podcasting app” from Apple was released yesterday. Conveniently named “Podcasts,” the app is designed to help you find new podcasts, manage subscriptions to current podcasts, and really just make the podcast listening and sorting experience a much more natural thing. Rather than digging and sorting through all of iTunes, Podcasts makes it easy for you to look through your existing podcast library, and find something new to listen to.

You can find Podcasts in the app store, as Podcasts!

How to check your hard drive for errors in Windows 7

Sometimes you might get a little worried that the data on your hard drive are getting corrupted. Occasionally, you might be compelled to run a “chkdsk” or “Check Disk” process (or, in Windows 9x terms, a scan disk!). The process is fairly simple. Here is how you do it in Windows 7, and the steps are nearly identical for Windows XP.

  1. Open up Computer (or My Computer) either from the Desktop or the Start Menu.
  2. Right Click on the drive you want to scan.
  3. Click Properties.
  4. Click the Tools tab.
  5. Click the Check now… button.
  6. Check both boxes (if you want to scan the drive itself for defects, rather than just search for corrupt files).
  7. Click Start.
  8. Click Schedule Disk Check.
  9. Click OK, then Reboot!

During the startup process, the screen will have a 10 second count down that you can interrupt if you need to – but after the count down completes the scan process will start. It takes, on average, about an hour. The screen should say that it is on Phase 1 of 5 if you are doing the full surface scan.

2011 – Shael Riley & The Double Ice Backfire – Ultimate Songs from the Pit

Shael Riley and The Double Ice Backfire did a Kickstarter fundraiser in late 2010… and even though my discs may have gotten lost in the mail somewhere along the line, Shael Riley does right by his fans and he was kind enough to toss me a download code to get the album from Bandcamp. And am I ever glad he did.

You may remember Shael Riley from the chiptune band The Grammar Club. One of Shael’s other projects has been the Double Ice Backfire, which is clearly an homage to all things Mortal Kombat, even musically. The band performed a cover of the song Sub-Zero (Chinese Ninja Warrior) (which was from an old album released when the very first Mortal Kombat game was released). The album title references The Pit (a famous level in the Mortal Kombat series) and there is even a song en titled “tip eht fo mottob” – which is a clever reference to a screen in the original arcade version of Mortal Kombat which the hint “tip eht fo mottob” – a clue to a way that you can fight the hidden character, Reptile. The song is a fun trip through the Mortal Kombat universe from Reptile’s perspective.

Not every song was equally geeky. Album opener, How to Fire a Gun is quite sincere and contains much more thought provoking lyrics: “do you believe she’ll never leave you, do you have someone to read to, do you hope you’ll never need to fire a gun?” But don’t worry, if that’s not your scene, then you can rely on songs like Hipster Hoax to bring you back to the world you’re familiar with, of pirates, ninjas, and cats.

While people waited for the album to finish, the band released several covers (many of which were commissioned by Kickstarter contributors), including Here Comes the Hot Stepper (you’d remember Ini Kamoze if your heard it!), Creep from Radio Head, Cake’s The Distance, and even Melanie by “Weird Al” Yankovic.

Head to ShaelRiley.com to listen to the covers for free, and you can head to Bandcampto buy the album for $10.