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Archive for October, 2019

Packed parties go hand-in-hand with big conferences like Macworld and WWDC, and this year's WWDC has been no different. One of the largest parties this week (aside from Apple's own WWDC Bash tonight) was the Delicious Generation party last night at the After Modern art gallery. Although the party itself was named after (and sponsored by) the controversial new "generation" of Mac developers, the party attendance wasn't limited to such. Developers from all sides came to schmooze, have a good time (and a few too many drinks), and gossip about Leopard. HangZhou Night Net

Phill Ryu: creator, organizer, hyperactive entrepreneur

There was a laundry list of development celebrities in attendance last night, from almost every independent company to bigger ones like Apple, YouTube, Microsoft, Parallels, Google, Adobe, Elgato, the Mozilla Foundation, and more. People were anxious to talk about the newly-released Leopard beta: that reflective dock has quite a few people confused, and the translucent menu bar even moreso.

Insanely Great Tees was there giving out shirts:

Parallels' Ben Rudolph receiving a t-shirt

…and a lot of people ended up leaving with a completely new wardrobe. Almost.

Most of all, though, people were there to schmooze with each other and talk to other developers about their products.

John Casasanta chats with Sophia Teutschler

There were also demos of a number of third-party applications. Some of the demos shown to the crowd included Nocturne, Skitch, Picturesque, Pulp Motion, Mouseposé, Cha-ching, Konfabulator, and others.

All in all, the party was a success in bringing developers together and providing endless networking opportunities. Some demos had to get canned because they were Leopard-only and the group was unable to project Leopard-only features onto the wall, but overall the demos went over well. And of course, the open bar went over even better. Wil Shipley (of Delicious Library) even told me that he brought "some girls" with him, perhaps to take some of the pressure off of Sophia Teutschler of Sophiestication, Felicia Williams of YouTube, myself, and a couple of others who had popped up.

Expect some video clips from the party to show up here on Infinite Loop within the next several days. We are majorly backlogged with videos to encode over the last few days, so please be patient. Thanks!

Carlos Guerreiro of Nokia Multimedia posted a message to the GNOME mobile development list late last month to explain that Nokia is interested in pushing the Hildon framework upstream to make it an official part of the GNOME development infrastructure. HangZhou Night Net

Hildon is an open source, GTK-based user interface toolkit originally developed by Nokia for use on its mobile web tablet devices. Hildon is currently managed under the aegis of the open Maemo project, but the potential exists for broad adoption of Hildon in an expansive variety of mobile and embedded contexts beyond the scope of Maemo. Moving Hildon upstream to the GNOME project will make it easier to further harmonize Hildon and GTK while also increasing the transparency of Hildon governance and making it easier for companies, independent open source software developers, and members of the GNOME community to adapt and improve the framework.

The decision to start moving Hildon under the GNOME umbrella was largely precipitated by the recent announcement of a new mobile Linux project under active development by Intel and Canonical. Nokia always intended to make Hildon development as inclusive as possible and Intel’s interest in using Hildon on its upcoming Linux-based mobile devices created the immediate need to move Hildon to a place where it would be more universally accessible.

The process of making Hildon a more central part of the GNOME ecosystem is now well underway. In a recent blog entry, Hildon developer Lucas Rocha points out that a Hildon page has been created at the GNOME Live wiki with a roadmap, a migration plan, and page for discussing release planning. A new mailing list for Hildon development has also been created at mail.gnome.org.

Quim Gil, Nokia’s development platform product manager, also provides some insight into the upstream migration process with an informative collection of slides from a LinuxTag presentation about Maemo.

As we were promised, a new Gears patch hit today that has introduced a variety of new achievements and some much needed fixes. The achievements are based on the "Annex" update, as well as the "Hidden Fronts" map pack that was just recently released. HangZhou Night Net

The eight new achievements are fairly straightforward; five relate to the the map pack's new levels and three to the "Annex" game mode. Here's a run down of what you'll have to do to score the extra 250 points:

THIS! IS! ANNEX! – Complete 100 multiplayer matches of 3+ rounds in Annex and capture 3 objectives in each match. (40GS)Inconceivable – Win 20 rounds of multiplayer matches in Annex by fewer than 5 points. (30GS) Nub Pwn3r – Win 20 rounds of multiplayer matches in Annex by shutting out the opposing team. (30GS) You Down With E.P.I.C? – Win a multiplayer match of 3+ rounds in any game type on 6 different downloadable maps. (30GS) Green Thumb – Win 20 multiplayer matches of 3+ rounds in any game type on the Garden multiplayer map. (30GS) Mind the Gap – Win 20 multiplayer matches of 3+ rounds in any game type on the Subway multiplayer map. (30GS) All That Juice – Win 20 multiplayer matches of 3+ rounds in any game type on the Process multiplayer map. (30GS) Purdy Mouth – Win 20 multiplayer matches of 3+ rounds in any game type on the Bullet Marsh multiplayer map. (30GS)

The coyly-referenced "THIS! IS! ANNEX!" rewards a ridiculously low amount when compared to the point rewards for the other achievements, but otherwise the achievements are pretty uninspired; a sly way at tempting gamers to buy the new content. Then again, achievement whores will be happy with the fact that you can unlock these achievements easily in player matches.

As for the alleged housekeeping and exploit fixes, I spent some time tonight testing the game out to see if there were any noteworthy changes. A lot of you were quick to complain about the last update's "fix" for the Roadie Run, and you'll be happy to note that Epic has finally managed to tune the run properly; that is to say, it's pretty much back to how it was when the game shipped. The "attachment angle" to walls and objects is modest—nowhere near as bad as it was with the last patch, but still not perfect. At this point, I think it's obvious that the issue is one of an underlying design decision with the "sticky walls," rather than one that can be fixed by tweaking.

With regard to the other fixes, there's really not much to report. The Lancer was given a slight damage buff, but the rest of the house-keeping wasn't obvious during my short play-time tonight. Outside-the-map exploits, moving pick-ups and the lots of popular bugs remain intact.

The final word? A fairly boring, achievement-focused patch. At least it was free.

HangZhou Night Net

Over the last few days, the Internet has been abuzz with the discovery of three mysterious men in the hologram of the Windows Vista Business DVD. The image was first discovered by a Spanish blogger who captured the evidence with his Nikon 5700. As word spread around the web, many people contacted Microsoft to get to the bottom of the story. However, the company's public relations department refused to comment on the strange image.

While non-believers wrote the picture off as a Photoshop job, many formulated their own conspiracy theories. One Engadget reader wrote, "I'm fairly certain those guys in the holo developed some kind of awesome BBQ sauce or a dry rub that the MS folks really dug." Another person on Neowin's forums jested, "It's the Vista Police!" As it turns out, that Neowin reader had the right idea—yesterday Microsoft admitted that there was in fact a photograph of three men in the hologram.

According to Nick White of the Windows Vista Team Blog, the image is just one of many used to make counterfeiting Vista DVDs more difficult.

The photo displays members of the team who worked on the Windows Vista DVD hologram design. Microsoft’s Anti-Piracy Team designed a counterfeit-resistant digital "watermark" for the non-encoded surface of Windows Vista DVDs. The photo in question is only one of multiple images contained in the hologram design, all of whose inclusion serves to make it more difficult to replicate a Windows Vista DVD. The other images are of old master works of art that are in the public domain.

White continues on saying that, although the image is posted across the Internet, the DVDs and their packaging contain several other measures which help prevent counterfeiting. As holographic designs are already difficult to replicate, including obscure images in them adds yet another layer of security. "These security measures were never intended to be impossible to find, but rather difficult to reproduce."

If you were readying your Vista hologram conspiracy theory for Conspiracy Planet, this is probably disappointing news. Still, there has to be other secrets embedded in the DVDs. Maybe there's a hidden message in the Windows logo, or maybe there's something about the DVD's color. Just keep looking.

HangZhou Night Net

When Safari for Windows was announced, I have to admit that I was curious. Being a Windows user at work, I was one of the many that downloaded the beta. It wasn't that I was unhappy with my current browser—quite the opposite: Firefox for Windows is fantabulous on so many levels. I just wanted to see what was going on. In all honesty, I don't even use Safari in OS X, so I wasn't expecting much regardless of Apple's claims of creating the fastest browser "[email protected][email protected]!"

Needless to say I wasn't very impressed, I quit using the newly downloaded browser as soon as it showed an ugly bug where it would crash after printing. The opinion here at the Orbiting HQ didn't differ much from person to person: everyone was unmoved by Apple's port.

Today Apple released a press release reporting that there were over 1 million people who downloaded the beta software in the first 48 hours. When you first see it, the number seems like a big deal (Apple's press release helps with that impression). But what if we look at the numbers in a historical context? If we compare this release to Mozilla's debut of Firefox 1.0 back in 2004, we see that Apple's 1 million in 48 hours fails in comparison to Mozilla's 2.5 million in the same period of time. One might argue that Firefox 1.0 was a final version, and Safari is merely a public beta, and that is a very valid argument. The numbers, however, still hold some value nonetheless. I'm inclined to think that by releasing a public beta of their browser, Apple may hurt their final download numbers. Early adopters may be turned off by bugs and interface issues that Ryan touched upon in his review, resulting in their return to Firefox.