Saturday, August 28, 2010

Setting Up Internet Connection using Windows 7 Without A Router

Quick post here. I just finished setting up internet connection sharing using Windows 7. Here are the steps on how to do it.

Note: This also applies to files/folder sharing.

1. Go to Control Panel -> Network and Internet -> Network and Sharing Center -> Set up a new connection or network (Set up a wireless, broadband, dial-up, ad hoc, or VPN connection; or set up a router or access point).

Note: The computer must have the Windows 7 OS installed. This router set-up won't work with previous operating systems.

2. Set up a temporary password for other computers to connect. I prefer WEP since this is only temporary and you don't have to generate a complex password to abide by the rules of 5 to 12 characters.

3. On the other computer, go to Control Panel -> Network and then enter the password.

Voila! Now you have a temporary internet connection sharing! Hope this quick tutorial was helpful.
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Monday, August 16, 2010

10 Things You Need To Know About LED TVs

Here's a very informative article on what is the status of the latest in the television - LED TVs. To summarize, here are the key points of the article:

- LED TVs are more expensive than LCD TVs because of the production costs. However, electricity charges are only slightly cheaper for LED TVs. Plasma TVs still cost a lot.

- IMHO, nothing still beats CRT TVs in visual quality. Plasma TVs follow in the simple practical fact that vision is better anywhere you are compared to LCD and LED TVs. If you are in the center of the TV though, vision quality is better in LCD/LED TVs.

- The potential for LED TVs is still vast and promising. Expect better quality and larger resolution of TVs in the near future.

In the meantime, don't be such a hardcore hardware specialist buying yourself the latest in TV sets. Just be practical and go get a medium-range priced television set.
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NBA Video Game Superstar Characteristics

Ever since I played NBA video games, I always wanted a career mode for players. The making of a superstar is not always in a straight path. Others take time while others are just born to be there. Here are some ideas I have in mind for superstar players in the making:

Prodigy - Since birth, this superstar has been given gifted abilities unparalleled by others. Scouts have seen him and project him to be a top 1 pick since high school and college. Taking the quick route, he'll go to the Pros once he's finished his freshmen year in NCAA.

Late Bloomer - He won't be an immediate impact but scouts have projected him to be an all-star caliber. But as he adjusts his game to the NBA, he'll start to impress everyone by exceeding their expectations. Around 3-5 years, he'll be one of the top players of the league and a franchise player.

Hardworker - Either taken from the D-League, undrafted or late draft pick, he'll work on his game. He'll be a bench player for a while playing a shooter's role or a defensive stopper, he'll become a force to reckon with once he's given playing time.

Foreign Key - A prospect from other leagues like Euroleague, he'll earn attention by grabbing awards on other leagues before making a big jump to the NBA. Adjustment will be a major factor in his transition to the NBA.
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Sunday, July 25, 2010

DotA ESWC Grand Finals 2010 Recap

EHome vs DTS Gaming

Line Up:
EH.GIGABYTE.X!! - Vengeful Spirit
EHOME.820.CN - Demon Witch
EH.GIGABYTE.lJy - Admiral Proudmoore
EH.GIGABYTE.357 - Earth Shaker

DTS)Light - Drow Ranger
DTS|Dread - Witch Doctor
DTS|Dendi - Nevermore
DTS|ArtStyle - Lightning Revenant
DTS^NS - Crystal Maiden

The ESWC DotA Grand Finals proved that EHome is clearly at its peak dominating DTS the entire game. With all of their hero picks having disabling skills, it became tough for DTS to make a comeback out of early harrasing of the top and bottom lanes.

Besides the lack of warding, the late skill addition of the Drow Ranger of Silence which may have mightily helped them against early ganking by EHome has been one of the key factors in their loss. For the most part, Earth Shaker was constantly jungling and with the help of the Vengeful Spirit, they have torn apart the top and bottom lanes. In addition to that, the Admiral Proudmoore was able to push around the Lightning Revenant at the bottom lane with the lack of help from other players. Crystal Maiden was jungling but was unable to assist most of the times coming in late or getting killed resulting in a huge level gap unlike EHome's jungler Earth Shaker.

DTS had no strength heroes to rely on to carry the game should it become a long battle with both the Drow Ranger and Lightning Revenant unsuccessful in their attempts to farm early in the game.

Eventhough the game was lopsided, DTS has managed to defend the middle lane although it is unclear if EHome did it on purpose concentrating on how to harrass other lanes and just allowing the Demon Witch to level up and rack up its disabling abilities.
The clash at around seven minutes before the game ended showed how resistance against a team full of disabling skills was futile especially playing with heroes of low HP.

Stats and Replay can be found here.
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Monday, July 12, 2010

Post Reactions: Miami Heat gets LeBron James, Chris Bosh in Free Agency

In what will probably be the most talked about offseason in NBA history, the Miami Heat has acquired three superstars in their prime to play for six years with one goal - to win multiple championships.

LeBron James and Chris Bosh joined Dwyane Wade and sacrificed signing maximum contracts to play together to perhaps challenge the two-time champion Los Angeles Lakers. One can argue that the climax falls on LeBron's decision to join the Heat, but as we fast forward and think about June next year, this is their way of taking down Kobe Bryant and the Lakers.

As much as I despise James's obsession to fame and business at the age of 25, his move to the Heat is a very wise one compared to staying in his hometown Cleveland. He made a ideal decision unminding what his handlers Maverick Carter and World Wide Wes would do and what others especially his hometown asked for of him.

Sure this decision has prompted a lot of criticism and dreams shattered especially to Cavs owner Dan Gilbert and the Cavaliers fans but hey that is what free agency is for - the right to choose the team you'd like to play with.

Dan Gilbert's provocation of anger and grief towards James was his defense mechanism of how he pampered James and his colleagues and gave them power to rule the Cavs franchise for seven years. It is not entirely James's fault to begin with. Their approach towards player acquisition to strengthen the team was more of a product of hurried decisions like choosing Antawn Jamison over Amare Stoudamire and resigning Anderson Varejao over a better player like David Lee. Believing that Mo Williams is the ideal Robin for James is also a misconception as evidenced by his crumbling to pressure as the co-captain of James.

The only thing entirely wrong for James was to announce his selection on air. He should have taken a graceful exit on his hometown by a quiet declaration of departure. But who's to blame him if he chose not to re-sign? Gilbert shouldn't have tolerated this in the first place. Anyone else should've stepped up and spoken even before his drama anthology began except for Stan Van Gundy of whom many were quick to write off.

Nevertheless, it is hard to leave the team who picked you up in the draft and made you become the special player you are now just like James. With the impending lockout on the following year to come, players, owners, management and most especially the fans can't control the player's chosen path. After all, that's why it's called free agency.
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Sunday, July 4, 2010

NBA 2010 Free Agency

As you all may know, the NBA 2010 free agency market is the most anticipated in all of NBA history. With premiere superstars threatening to unite and move to a bigger market and win a championship such as LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and Amare Stoudamire, everything has its own trickle down effects even to the last left of the free agency.


Chicago Bulls, New Jersey Nets, New York Knicks, Miami Heat - these teams are all capable of signing two or more maximum contract players and provide the big market the superstars are craving for. But what happens if LeBron James and Dwyane Wade chose to stay in their home teams just like Paul Pierce, Dirk Nowitzki and Joe Johnson has done? The key here is not to overspend to pay maximum contracts to second-tier superstars should the top crop of players resign to their respective teams. Giving max contracts to these players reek desperation for teams who will most likely make the playoffs but will regret signing these guys and making them untradeable assets such as Rudy Gay of the Memphis Grizzlies.

Rebuilding through the Draft and Trade Acquisitions

Whatever happened to drafting a potential superstar? Oklahoma City Thunder's GM Sam Presti has done a heck of a job in this NBA 2010 offseason. By moving up in the draft, they hope to finally get a true center who can complement the young core of Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and Jeff Green through Cole Aldrich. Also, along with the movements and salary cap space, they acquired three-point shooters of whom they are lacking in the past season through Morris Peterson and Daequan Cook instead of involving themselves with the drama this free agency offseason has offered the world.

The New Jersey Nets is a team with great young core players at hand. With Brook Lopez and Derrick Favors, they have a bright future with them although I still have doubts that Devin Harris, an all-star potential, injury-riddled point guard, is still in their line of thoughts when it comes to core players. With the failure to land the top pick in the draft lottery and acquiring John Wall, they have a nice consolation promising power forward in Derrick Favors. Hopefully through a couple of years, they can get someone who will be willing to step up as the leader of the team like the prospective number 1 pick of next year's draft Harrison Barnes who coincidentally is a small forward as well just like LeBron James, Kevin Durant and Carmelo Anthony. Should they fail to acquire LeBron James, they should hire New Orleans Hornets' GM Jeff Bower as their new general manager primarily of his great drafting skills which produced talents such as Marcus Thornton and Darren Collison who is performing like Chris Paul in Paul's injury-ridden season. Of course, Sam Presti is a given to recruit but he won't be leaving anytime soon.

The Chicago Bulls have also shown great flashes of drafting good young players to fit it in their system thanks to GM John Paxson. Players like Ben Gordon, Luol Deng, Tyrus Thomas, Taj Gibson, Joakim Noah and Derrick Rose were drafted by the Bulls which shows that they have real talent in drafting. The only problem with the Bulls is their way of managing their young players and their contracts once their rookie contracts begin to expire. Also, the cheap shot at hiring a rookie coach Vinny del Negro to coach a potential superstar Derrick Rose is a big no-no for them. But now, thanks in partial to the LeBron James-hype, they've acquired a great coach in Tom Thibodeau. Why credit LeBron James? Because Thibodeau's agency, Creative Artists Agency, apparently is connected to LeBron's agent, Leon Rose. Which is also the reason why the Nets acquired Avery Johnson.

Superstar Pressure

Suppose the top crop of players land in let's say Bulls or Nets, what will young talents like Brook Lopez, Derrick Favors, Joakim Noah and Derrick Rose become of? Will they successfully develop into complementary players? Will they succumb to the pressure of having to produce? Or will they ever reach their maximum potential?

An ideal example of this situation is Rajon Rondo. Rondo has been playing superb as of late and is currently the driving force that the Boston Celtics Big Three of Ray Allen, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett heavily rely upon. He took charge of handling the team of "aging" superstars. However, in his case, the Big Three were united in Celtics past their prime. This is not the case for the Bulls or the Nets because they'll be receiving talents within their prime and their young core of players are still raw especially the Nets.

Well, that was the worst case scenario - pressure to play up to the level of the superstars and then fall off from there. On the other hand, wouldn't it be nice to gamble on a potential superstar's development while he is still young allowing him to be the leader of the team just like Kevin Durant?

Having superstars acquired from free agency is a gift from the basketball gods. However, on the brighter side, failing to land one may also be a blessing in disguise for these teams especially to their young core of players. Who knows, when their free agency time arrives and the market is wide open, it'll be hard for them to leave because the team has shown great trust in them leading their respective teams just like LeBron James and Dwyane Wade who's actually inclined to staying in their home teams.
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Sunday, June 27, 2010

Nintendo launches Nintendo 3DS

At the E3 2010, Nintendo has launched its second major installment in the DS-series of handheld console - the Nintendo 3DS. The main selling point of this console is its 3D graphics production feature without having to wear specialized 3D eyeglasses at all. But beyond that, this console brings a message to Nintendo's rivals - "We are the best in this business."

While fans, critics and the media have praised them with delivering unique consoles for this generation, they began to ultimately question Nintendo if they can maintain their creativity and add one thing they've been lacking for - hardware to deliver process and graphics-hungry games. This has prompted gamers to actually buy a second current generation console aside from buying the Wii and DS.
And then came the 3DS. Creativity still there but with added incentive most fans have been craving for - a high-end hardware. The launch of the 3DS comes at the right time. With iPhone gaining popularity on profitability for game developers, Nintendo has found a way to prove that their experience in the gaming industry is always something to reckon with and that handheld gaming console is still better than an all-in-one mobile phone featuring casual gaming.

With over 70 games from over 20 publishers already assured of gaming library, this console will prove to be one of the deepest library selection and widest genre production to ever hit the market. Now, both casual and hardcore gamers are reunited to play with the same console. This has been a challenge for gaming companies such as Sony, Microsoft and even Apple too but Nintendo was the first to reconcile gamers and game developers alike.

The first release of Nintendo 3DS is on March 2011. And while I've only seen it through E3 videos and have been praising it before it hits the market, I'm making a bold prediction that this console is one of the best Nintendo has ever made.

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Saturday, June 12, 2010

Happy Google Doodle Phillippine Independence Day!

Great news! Google made a Google Doodle logo for the Philippine Independence Day! Pilipinas Mabuhay Ka! Photobucket
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Friday, May 21, 2010

Google Celebrates Pacman's 30th Anniversary

It's Pacman's 30th anniversary and what better way to appreciate it than play it on Google's main page! This is probably the first time that Google incorporated gameplay or even animation while changing its logos when a special event or anniversary occurs during that day. It's also called Google Doodles btw.

Here are some of the screenshots of Google's Pacman game.



Anyways, the official Pacman page is located here.

I'm not really sure about the Pacman implementation on Google but I'm guessing its made of python and javascript.
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Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Cannot empty the clipboard error.

If you're having problems with copying contents on the fly, chances are your clipboard is already full. Search for the rdpclip.exe under the Processes of the Task Manager then end the task. This problem may have been brought by copying contents of the clipboard to and from the host and remote desktops. If you haven't found rdpclip.exe in your host PC, search for the file in the Task Manager of the remote desktop.
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Saturday, May 8, 2010

Adobe Master Collection CS5

I just installed Adobe Master Collection CS5 in my Windows 7 OS two days ago. All in all, a total of 9GB is required to install all of the applications in the collection. I haven't fully tinkered the applications. Usually, I just play around with Adobe Photoshop for my photos and Adobe After Effects and Adobe Premiere Pro for video editing. Although one thing to take note of is that some applications are now 64-bit compatible.

Here are the list of applications included in the Master Collection CS5:

Adobe After Effects CS5
Adobe Bridge CS5
Adobe Contribute CS5
Adobe Device Central CS5
Adobe Dreamweaver CS5
Adobe Encore CS5
Adobe ExtendScript Toolkit CS5
Adobe Extension Manager CS5
Adobe Fireworks CS5
Adobe Flash Builder 4
Adobe Flash Catalyst CS5
Adobe Flash Professional CS5
Adobe Illustrator CS5
Adobe InDesign CS5
Adobe Media Encoder CS5
Adobe OnLocation CS5
Adobe Pixel Bender Toolkit 2
Adobe Photoshop CS5 (64-bit)
Adobe Premiere Pro CS5
Adobe Soundbooth CS5
Mocha for Adobe After Effects CS5
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How to Play Mafa Tower Defense

Mafa TD Queen is a custom map made in Warcraft 3. Its a game that can be played individually or cooperatively upto 11 players whose main objective is to create towers to kill the creeps coming out before it reaches the portal like many other tower defense games.

Initially you and your entire team will be given 40 lives meaning you have 40 chances of being spared and not allowing the creeps to pass by the portal to finish the game. You'll be given the chance to create a Technology Tower which can be upgraded twice to reach Level 3 and create towers to defend and later on have the chance to summon custom builders and heroes to help you with defending your base.

Currently, the most famous version being played is version 4.5 Ultra Hard which features three modes: Hard, Extra Hard and Ultra Hard. After choosing the difficulty, you can customarily type -reveal to reveal the entire map to you and your allies. Take note that the player assigned with the Red color will be in charge of the middle which is a very important position in the game and which also has the priviledge of extra money.

Here are the list of towers you can build in Mafa TD 4.5:
- Cutter Tower
- Tower of Vengeance
- Flame Tower
- Ice Tower
- Poison Tower
- Lightning Tower
- Arrow Tower
- Super Splash Tower
- Super Damage Tower
- Elfame Keep
- Gaia Tower
- NecroMonger Tower
- Gaia Shop
- Pirate Tower

Lightning tower is specifically required to upgrade your Technology Center whle Poison tower can be upgraded to Noob Furion to increase the chances of gold returned to you so you can have more money to be spent. Cutter towers are fast and often built by those allies near the base since it is a fast creep killer.

While these towers help you defend your base, chances are you need the help of these four non-hero characters that you can summon aside from your builder. Aside from building, these characters have specific purposes:
- Fujiko - is able to see invisible units.
- Pirate of the Greedy Queen - capable of building the Pirate tower and stunning ground units.
- Naga Summon Maiden - has a net and whisper capability to disable air units while stun for ground units.
- Mr. Freaks - capable of creating the portal to summon the Brilliant Goddess and other special towers specifically Gaia tower, NecroMonger tower and the Gaia Shop.

Of course, nothing beats a movable, item-equipped character who damages like a tower and upgrades your towers into specific builds. Sad thing though, you can only summon a single hero in the game. Even if you activate the food cheat in single player mode, you won't be able to summon all of them in a single game. So choose wisely.
- Queen of the Seventh Hell
- Queen of Greed
- Lich Queen
- The Brilliant Goddess

If you'd like to play cooperatively, create or join games in Garena Philippines War3 Custom Map Tree Tag rooms.
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Monday, May 3, 2010

Microsoft Certified Professional Certification

A few hours ago, I took and passed the 70-536 - Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0 - Application Development Foundation. Currently, if you pass the 70-536 exam, you'll be considered as a Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP).

This is only the first of five steps on how to become a certfied MCPDEA. Here are the list of exams you need to pass for the MCPDEA track:

70-536 - Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0 - Application Development Foundation
70-526 - Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0 - Windows-Based Client Development
70-528 - Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0 – Web-Based Client Development
70-529 - Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0 - Distributed Application Development
70-549 - Designing and Developing Enterprise Applications by Using the Microsoft .NET Framework

After passing all these exams, you'll be receiving the following titles:
MCP - Microsoft Certified Professional
MCTS - Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist
MCPD-EA - Microsoft Certified Professional Developer Enterprise Applications

Good luck and have fun studying! Of course having been certified is a plus factor but nothing beats actual work experience.
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Saturday, April 24, 2010

Dual Booting Windows XP 32-bit And Windows 7 64-bit

A month and a week ago, I installed Windows 7 on my PC on top of my Windows XP set-up. If you're wondering about the specifications of my PC, you can refer to this previous post. Installation went fast and smooth except for a few roadblocks along the way:

I wanted to install Windows 7 on a separate partition in my hard disk however I had trouble getting my 640GB hard disk to fully maximize its capacity because I thought Windows XP supports partitioning of a single hard disk into more than four. I had to repartition my hard disk because I was using four partitions, which was the maximum for Windows XP, but was only using up to 400GB of space.

After repartition was successful through Disk Management, I inserted the Windows 7 Ultimate Edition 64-bit set-up and booted my PC. Everything else was a breeze. Windows 7 asked me to point to the specific partition to where I want to run Windows 7 to since I chose to keep Windows XP in my PC. Being a blogger myself, I recorded the time of installation and to my surprise it only took me 19 minutes 22.9 seconds to install Windows 7. Considering this is my first time installing an operating system greater than the size of a CD, this is surely fast compared to installing Windows XP.

Up until now, the boot up and shutdown time for Windows 7 have been particularly fast even with these applications installed in Windows 7:

1. Visual Studio 2008 SP1
2. Windows Azure SDK - February 2010 CTP
3. uTorrent
4. Adobe Lightroom
5. Mozilla Firefox
6. Silverlight 3 SDK

Well, I guess that's it. The reason why I upgraded to Windows 7 is because I'm working with Windows Azure and since its minimum requirement is to run in Visual Studio 2008 and Windows Vista, I decided now is the time upgrade to Windows 7.
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Sunday, February 28, 2010

Future Title Contenders in the NBA

While we are two months away from the 2009-10 NBA Playoffs, let's fast forward to the future five to seven years from now on and see what teams will be having the most potential with their current lineups.

Any team with LeBron James and Dwayne Wade - With James and Wade finally in their prime during these years, they'll look to contend and head for at least a couple of years to leave the NBA with their own legacy.

Atlanta Hawks - Although five years from now, their youthful team will be almost past their prime, I guess they should still be worth looking forward to. The surprise playoff contenders three years ago will become a force to reckon with in the Eastern Conference if Joe Johnson resigns with them and they get a decent young point guard to run their offense once Mike Bibby retires. Already, they are conference contenders with their athletic young lineup growing more mature with strong playoff experiences behind them building.

Oklahoma Thunder - The trio of Kevin Durant, Jeff Green and Russell Westbrook has proven to be something to look forward to. And it's fascinating that they have built a strong chemistry and a humble team with the right attitude. Of course GM Sam Presti's youth movement wonders are yet to be put to test unlike that of the Blazers but with a wise combination of key role players and just a starting center and shooting guard/ point guard away, their guaranteed to be a force to reckon with. Dropping from the playoffs this season is near impossibility since the Blazers, Rockets and Hornets were injury-plagued but imagine having a shot at John Wall or Evans Turner and they'll likely be unstoppable in the future given they can both fill in the gaps for the Thunder quickly. Wall will be their starting point guard while Westbrook will slide to the shooting guard spot.

Portland Trailblazers - The Blazers started with the right formula for the youth movement in this era by carefully making wise decisions on draft picks. However, with Greg Oden's injury-riddled career, it's all up to Brandon Roy if he'll become a legitimate superstar in the years to come. The center position is still something that needs to be filled given Greg Oden's status but like the Thunder, they also need a point guard badly who will complement Roy. Signing Andre Miller is still a wrong move for me because it hindered the growth of Jerryd Bayless who may or may not be the future point guard they're looking for. It also served as a panic cap space filler made by GM Kevin Pritchard. Bayless is a scoring point guard and while he has shown flashes of brilliance, what Roy needs is a pass-first guard. Given a slim chance at getting John Wall, it can be an option should they continue to falter in the playoff race.

New Jersey Nets - Even with the worst NBA record this season and probably will be the worst record in the NBA history, this team has a lot of potential to look forward to espcially with Brook Lopez, Courtney Lee and Devin Harris as their core players. Should LeBron James or Dwayne Wade or Joe Johnson decide to leave their respective teams, they should consider joining the Nets especially if they get the No. 1 Draft Pick for the 2010 NBA Draft. The only problem I'm seeing here is if Lee never surpasses the slump he's currently experiencing right now given his displeasure with him being traded by the Orlando Magic and if Harris ever gets a full season without having any major injuries occuring.

Minnesota Timberwolves - GM David Kahn and Kurt Rambis are still yet to find the right roster for this team given the abundance of talented players they have. Amongst all the young teams today, they have the most important pieces which are hard to find in this league - the big men. Kevin Love, Al Jefferson and even an intriguing potential for Darko Milicic makes them an envy of other young teams. As they wait for the right go-to guy which won't be the case should Ricky Rubio decide to play with them in the next two years, they'll still be in the bubble as an eighth seed for the playoffs in the future.
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Friday, February 26, 2010

A Golden Era of Point Guards in the NBA

I saw an article in RealGM explaining in detail how to deal with trades and lineups of lottery teams when all of a sudden the projected 2010 No. 1 NBA Draft Pick John Wall falls into their hands and I was excited about the prospect.

In this article, I'll write about the great deal of abundance of quality point guards that NBA is currently experiencing. Who knows, maybe the NBA won't be able to experience this kind of abundance of competitive on-the-floor generals.

We'll start of with the veteran point guards. While they've lost a lot of they're flashy penetrations and were way past their primes, they make it up with a richer NBA court vision experience.

1. Jason Kidd (9.8 PPG, 9.2 APG, 5.2 RPG, 1.9 SPG) - I'm a Mavericks fan and while it's tough to swallow the trade for giving up Devin Harris, I must say as seasons go by, Jason Kidd has become the much needed pass-first point guard of the team. He might not be an offensive force as he once was but his brilliant court vision has led them into proper execution of the Mavs' offense.

2. Steve Nash (17.6 PPG, 11.2 APG, 3.3 RPG, 0.5 SPG) - The run and gun Suns have been kind of rejuvenated this season with Steve Nash resigning for the Suns for three more years. It also benefitted Nash's stats as well. He was one of the reasons why Shawn Marion, Joe Johnson, Quentin Richardson, Leandro Barbosa, Boris Diaw, Raja Bell and even coach Mike D'Antoni became popular and received quite hefty contracts for themselves with his penetrate, pass and shoot offensive prowess. Although, most of the players mentioned above are now in their own different teams, it is clear to see that only Joe Johnson has been stellar and others struggled to find their rhythm because they miss the run and gun system that Nash runs in the Suns. This will also be a good reason to note that maybe Amar'e Stoudamire will also struggle if he ever leaves the Suns.

3. Chauncey Billups (20.2 PPG, 6.2 APG, 3.0 RPG, 1.2 SPG) - Despite the recent injury, his career revival in his hometown Denver has been amazing. He helped quickly transform the Nuggets into title contenders in just a couple of years. His instant offense and clutch shooting have been the biggest factors along with his transformation of Carmelo Anthony into a more mature franchise player.

4. Tony Parker (16.5 PPG, 5.8 APG, 2.4 RPG, 0.6 SPG) - Parker has been a key part of the Spurs Dynasty. He's torched other teams at the latter part of his career because of his improved jump shots. He is considered as one of the best point guards during their dynasty and underrated too although he has this season fading because of his recent injuries.

5. Mike Bibby (8.7 PPG, 4.3 APG, 2.3 RPG, 0.9 SPG) - It's worth noting that while his numbers are low, he has at least stabilized and help establish Atlanta as a key playoff contender in the Eastern Conference together with Joe Johnson.

6. Andre Miller (13.7 PPG, 5.5 APG, 3.3 RPG, 1.0 SPG) - With his recent acquisition by the Blazers, it is unclear why GM Kevin Pritchard chose him to spend the $10M of cap space given Steve Blake's (who was recently traded) effective chemistry on the floor with their franchise player Brandon Roy and burgeoning scoring point guard Jerryd Bayless. But as the injuries take a toll in the Blazers, he provided a cushion for the team with his offense judging from his 52 point career high performance against the Mavs.

Starting with Chris Paul, here are some of the steady point guards that NBA teams have come to rely on:

1. Chris Paul (20.4 PPG, 11.2 APG, 4.6 RPG, 1.2 SPG) - Playing only 38 games this year and still injured, Paul has helped transform the Hornets into playoff contenders. He also revived the career of Peja Stojakovic and David West. Despite the watered down lineup of New Orleans, he is still considered as the best point guard in the NBA today that every team wants to have.

2. Deron Williams (18.4 PPG, 10.0 APG, 4.2 RPG, 1.1 SPG) - While currently, Utah's lineup is better than Paul's Hornets. It's clear that Deron is what the Jazz needed - a big physical type of point guard. Besides, his numbers are clearly almost evenly matched with Paul's.

3. Rajon Rondo (14.1 PPG, 9.8 APG, 4.4 RPG, 2.5 SPG) - With the Big Three slowing down, he has blossomed into a legitimate franchise player for the Celtics. He peaked in last year's playoffs and averaged almost triple-doubles with Garnett's absence. His defensive awareness has led him to lead the point guards in steals. Despite all these, many still question his maturity off the court and his outside shooting.

4. Derrick Rose (20.0 PPG, 5.8 APG, 3.9 RPG, 0.8 SPG) - The 2008 NBA No. 1 Draft Pick and Chicago's starting point guard has definitely become a luring factor for Wade to return to his homeland should he leave the Heat.

5. Jameer Nelson (12.1 PPG, 5.1 APG, 2.7 RPG, 0.8 SPG) - The starting point guard of the Orlando Magic became quite a sensation even getting an All-Star consideration before getting injured during their championship run last season. Despite being small, he has been the Robin of the Batman tandem with Dwight Howard although he often gets injured which is why the Magic always relies heavily on veteran backup point guards.

6. Aaron Brooks (19.4 PPG, 5.1 APG, 2.6 RPG, 0.9 SPG) - Brooks has definitely reaped in the absence of Tracy McGrady and Yao Ming on the floor for the Houston Rockets. Despite his size, his scoring instincts has made him his team's go to guy with only Luis Scola and Trevor Ariza as complementary scorers.

While Paul and the gang are definitely much more experienced on the NBA floor, these are the point guards of the future to watch out for:

1. Russell Westbrook (16.5 PPG, 7.7 APG, 5.1 RPG, 1.2 SPG) - Westbrook is following the footsteps of Paul who's following the footsteps of Kidd. Although he isn't the franchise player of their team, he is doing everything else as the complementary Robin for Durant. He is averaging almost triple doubles with only his sophomore year in the NBA. A highly underrated player especially in the competitive list of top-notch point guards in the West.

2. Tyreke Evans (20.3 PPG, 5.4 APG, 4.8 RPG, 1.5 SPG) - The top candidate to win, and almost guaranteed to, this year's Rookie of the Year award has proven to his team, the Sacramento Kings, that he is their franchise player and it was proven even more with Kevin Martin's shipping to the Rockets. What has gotten more interesting about this guy is he's a hybrid of a point guard and shooting guard and already even in his first year in the NBA, he has developed a killer instinct to close out games and still has the humility which is important during a player's early years in playing in the NBA.

3. Brandon Jennings (16.4 PPG, 6.1 APG, 3.6 RPG, 1.3 SPG) - His 55 point career high game in his early rookie career proved that he is definitely legit. Despite foregoing a year to stay and play in NCAA and instead play in the Euroleague where he can earn money, he proved that playing with real men instead of playing with ballers at his age is a valuable experience which carried over in the NBA. Since his dazzling performance, he settled down and probably has hit the rookie wall today with opponents already prepared for their game plan against him. Nevertheless, I still can see Allen Iverson in him and his somewhat erratic shots.

4. Stephen Curry (15.5 PPG, 5.3 APG, 4.2 RPG, 1.8 SPG) - Curry has been known as the scoring point guard even before coming to the NBA. His outside shooting is superb for a player who's in his first year in the NBA. Because of his small size, Monta Ellis has criticized the Golden State Warriors for picking him up and not picking a complementary player to play alongside him who is currently the franchise player of the team. But now, he's proven he can co-exist with Monta even averaging a whopping 35.2 MPG on the court which was expected of Don Nelson for his habit of overstaying quality players on the court evidenced by Monta.

5. Jonny Flynn (13.8 PPG, 4.3 APG, 2.5 RPG, 1.1 SPG) - The absence of Ricky Rubio has definitely earned him the starting point guard of the Wolves. While even he himself fancies on being together with Rubio on the court, he has been a sturdy point guard for them. Anyway, if Rubio will come in to join them, Flynn will slide on to the shooting guard spot which is quite intriguing since he also said he can do it himself.

6. Ty Lawson (9.2 PPG, 3.4 APG, 2.1 RPG, 0.8 SPG) - Despite only logging the fewest minutes, 22.0 MPG, in the top draft picks, he is almost surely to be the Nuggets' starting point guard as Billups gets ready for retirement. His speed has killed teams with older point guards in which he compensates to with his small size. He has proven to be a great backup point guard today who provides instant offense off the bench for the Nuggets which was proven when Billups got injured.

7. Darren Collison (9.8 PPG, 4.4 APG, 2.4 RPG, 0.9 SPG) - No one totally knew who he was until Chris Paul got injured. Don't be fooled by his stats here as he has proven to be a very good starting point guard for the Hornets while Paul is currently injured. Posting numbers of almost triple-doubles almost makes me disappointed that he should be starting for other teams like Indiana who badly needs an upgrade in the point guard slot.

While these players haven't played in the NBA, they're still worth mentioning here:

1. Ricky Rubio - Rubio is perhaps the most intriguing foreigh prospect to ever want to play in the NBA today. The young Spanish guard has torched players of his age with an astonishing quadruple double in the championship game of the FIBA Europe Under-16 Tournament. He is also a backup point guard in the official Spanish team and has already fought against Chris Paul, Deron Williams and Jason Kidd in the basketball championship of the Beijing Olympics 2008. Despite his very wide court vision and defensive prowess, he is still a question mark to scouts to the point of questioning whether he can fit in to the physical game that the NBA offers and handcheck fouling which is prohibited in the league in which he is very good at as an onball defender.

2. John Wall - Callipari, his head coach at University of Kentucky, has spoken glowingly of him. The projected and almost surely to be the No. 1 draft pick of the NBA 2010 Draft has even been told to not need instructions from his coach to run the offense of their team. He is often compared to Derrick Rose and what surprises me is that they say he's better than Rose.

The theory of every team getting topnotch quality point guards is coming closer to becoming true with the large number of guards more prepared to play in the NBA while centers are proving to be a rare gem these days as they often become injured or proven as not living up to their potential. The only problem for the GMs would be to find a perfect fit of core players to surround and complement them.

*Stats were take from Yahoo Sports from the 2009-10 NBA Season as of February 27, 2010.
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Sunday, February 7, 2010

Dissecting the Anatomy of Modern Programming Languages

If you're new to programming and you're having a difficulty learning the current mainstream languages, chances are, you've hit a wall and haven't gotten an idea on where to start. Hopefully this article will help you lower that wall and better understand the concepts surrounding these languages.

Having been into development as a profession for almost five years now and as an avid fan of programming languages, despite all these new languages constantly being released, there are only two core syntax you need to learn and these are the following:

- C/C++
- Basic

Having yourself enriched with the fundamentals and mastery of these two core syntax, you'll most likely achieve an ease of understanding with almost any new programming languages being released in the computing industry.

C is a very old and yet one of the most influential language of all time. Of course having limitations of its own, it has evolved into C++, hence the "plus plus" sign. With the demand for object-oriented programming style rising and a variety of flavors of operating systems and platforms coming out, Sun has developed a multi-platform language based on C++ popularly known as Java. With a syntax very much close to the heart of a lot of developers, and a nifty feature in which you can run a compiled version of your source code basically on any platform as long as you have the Java runtime installed in it, Java has been successful in the revival of the C syntax as the premiere language of choice by the developers.

Microsoft, who has been on the background with Sun's success and having been developed Visual Basic, Visual FoxPro and Visual C++, attempted to encourage developers to migrate to Microsoft products by implementing Visual J++. However, of course with Java's main advantage of running executable programs on any platform and J++ unable to bring this advantage to other platforms, it has been short-lived. But all this changed with the advent of Microsoft's .NET framework. Embracing the C++ syntax, Microsoft developed perhaps one of the most influential languages they've ever developed, the C#. C# is a language also based on the C syntax. And with the .NET framework and almost similar approach to Java, the company has finally and perhaps successfully attracted Java developers to shift into C#.

With Java being stagnant for quite some time now and programming on the internet increasingly becoming popular, some developers were not ready to jump into the C# bandwagon. Hence, PHP emerged. PHP is a server-side scripting language which is open-source meaning anyone can fork, view and modify the language itself to suit for themselves. It mostly resembles the C syntax and is quite a popular choice as it is the cheapest to maintain in terms of development costs for companies investing in the internet. And with PHP becoming a force to reckon with, of course companies have offered their own brand of server-side scripting. Sun released JSP (Java Server Pages) which resembles Java, only an implementation on the internet and Microsoft released what many of us know now as ASP.NET.

Still doubting on studying the C/C++ syntax? How about searching for Google's new programming language - Go and Microsoft's "Adobe Flash"-killer Silverlight? These two are also great grandsons of the C family and will presumably be something worth watching out for.

On the otherhand, while C has been embraced by most of the developers, many have still yearned for a syntax which is English-like and that of COBOL. BASIC was developed by a variety of companies but one of the most common was of Borland's implementation. BASIC stands for Beginner's All Purpose Symbolic Instruction Code. One of the most popular implementation of it was Microsoft's Visual Basic. With Windows becoming more and more popular as a household operating system, developers wanted a rapid application development language and Visual Basic was the right tool for them. It even evolved into developement of Macros which are small snippets of implementation of Basic into Microsoft Office products which were for the purpose of achieving automation.

Although Basic was quite frankly less popular than C, Microsoft has still been its advocate even implementing it on the web through ASP (Active Server Pages) and even on the advent of the .NET framework, they've improved the support for Basic with the implementation of Visual Basic.NET which was a popular choice for developers who were Visual Basic developers and at the same time haven't been ready enough to jump into C# during those times. Quite a handful of development tools have evolved from Basic and one of the popular ones was Mercery QuickTest Pro which was an automation tool used mainly for testing purposes.

As years go by, the emergence of a very powerful and dynamic language known as Python was released. It is an open-source language which I'd like to categorize as a mixture of C and Basic. As a friend of mine suggests, it is a cleaner version of Java, hence many developers were quick to embrace it and one of its proud customer? Google. I'd probably say it's quick to learn Python for its strict advocacy for readability but you have to give it a try for yourself and see how great and promising this is.

C/C++ and Basic. If you want to go and delve deeper into the world of programming, welcome aboard. Embrace these two syntax and you'll likely be quick to learn new programming languages surfacing every now and then. Hope this article provided quite a heck of a history to prove that these two are the foundations of modern programming languages.
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Friday, February 5, 2010

The Sims celebrates its 10th Anniversary

Just a quick look and tribute to the Sims franchise. More power to the Sims franchise and hope it goes a long way!

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Mike Wang returns to 2K Sports

Articles can be found here:

The moment I read the title of this GameSpot article, I saw images of the NBA Live franchise fading as one of my favorite video games. Clearly, if there is a definition of being a loyal gamer to NBA Live, I think I belong to that category. But this has to be one of the most disappointing moves by EA Sports.

Just when they were on the verge of righting its ship and redeeming the legend that NBA Live once was, they let Mike Wang slip away. And the reason for his leaving? OperationSports has got it covered. 'Nuff said:

"Mike: After NBA Live 10 wrapped up and we started going through the pre-production planning phase for '11, we held several meetings to discuss the future of the franchise. After going through those meetings, it became very clear that the vision I had for the game was different from where the leadership wanted to take it. I parted ways with EA shortly after and came back on-board with the NBA 2K team last November."

Definitely, the EA Sports management does not care about bringing quality back to its basketball video game franchise. Mike Wang was the lead game designer of NBA Live 10 and obviously it has gotten really good reviews and there is now a bright future for the franchise. Sure NBA Live 11 will still have Beluba's (Mike Wang) influence in the game but with his departure, what will NBA Live 12 look like? Obviously, in the last decade while being a loyal fan of NBA Live, the game has progressed very slowly. It came to a point where it needed pirating of the competitor's lead designer to radically influence the entire staff to overhaul NBA Live as it is.

This has to leave a bitter taste in my mouth. Probaby NBA Live 11 will still look good but Beluba's departure and his reasons of leaving will make me shift to NBA 2K. Even my fellow OperationSports forum posters were definitely upset about it.

So what do we expect of NBA Live on the future? Unless Mike Wang's departure didn't make a slap on the face of reality in their quality of video games and make an effort to completely turn around their games, they will continue to have just gimmicks and shallow gameplay on their video games.
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Microsoft VIP Blogger's Night


January 28, 2010 - 16/F 6750 Microsoft Office and Exchange Room - This was the first time I have attended a Microsoft event so I was excited about this one. I really didn't know what to expect in these types of events that Microsoft offers monthly. Luckily, I didn't feel like a first-timer after the dinner. Bloggers were invited as their audience and the speakers told us that this was also a first to them - bringing an audience of consumers instead of MIcrosoft technology developers attending. It was the other way around as I thought many of the bloggers knew each other before the event because they've been attending blogging events together as a fellow blogger thought of the fellow blogger attendees as "regulars". And I thought they were also developers as well who were "regulars" to Microsoft talks.

Judging from the audience, it was quite obvious that the product of showcase by Microsoft would be its latest Microsot Office release - the Office 2010 which is only in beta. Some of the features that very well interested me about their product was MS Powerpoint's ability to do on the fly photo editing ala Adobe Photoshop and video editing ala Adobe Premiere/ Windows Movie Maker. Incorporating the basics of these two make Powerpoint even more powerful with its multimedia capability. One thing which interests me most about the video feature is its ability to be embedded on the fly on the slides and actually play them without opening Windows Media Player. The only thing bothering me is why do you want to edit the video on the fly in Powerpoint when there's the built-in quite handy Windows Media Player?

Other products such as Office Web Apps and Windows Live Essentials were also promoted. Now, these products I think will definitely help the bloggers as well. You don't need to have Microsoft Office installed in your PC. You are actually editing the Office documents on the fly on your browser. What's even more good about it is the ability to share content and work on the same file simultaneously. As you all know, this feature is also similar to Google Docs and Google Pack but hey who doesn't use Microsoft Office and who doesn't want Office to go online?

Bloggers attending also received a Microsoft Office 2010 Beta installer with an Internet Explorer cap. Well, I guess that's about it. I'll definitely be looking forward to attending more Microsoft seminars. To wrap it up, I guess Microsoft has been aligning its products into what the trend is all about - going online and making the browser one of the most powerful software ever developed.
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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Windows Azure CTP extended through April 2010

Great news for developers hoping to spend more time in tinkering with the Windows Azure SDK - the CTP is extended until April 2010 if you're from these locations.

I'll be posting some tutorials on how to develop in Azure especially with its storage services such as blob, table and queue. For the meantime, this is a great opportunity to delve in to the world of cloud computing the Microsoft way as other cloud computing services such as Amazon Web Services and are already on commercial release.
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Friday, January 15, 2010

Windows Azure Pay-Per-Use to Start this February 2010

As of this writing, we only have exactly 15 days to play around with Windows Azure. Beginning February this year, Windows Azure will finally go commercial. You can read the entire article here for the pricing details.

Windows Azure is Microsoft's implementation of cloud computing. One of its notable features is its storage services which are of prime importance with regards to the cloud computing business. If you have time, you can download the Windows Azure SDK and tinker around with it which is one of its great advantage - running a local development fabric on your computer to simulate what is going to happen in the cloud.

If you have Visual Studio 2008 and an OS of Windows Vista, Server 2008 or Windows 7, you can give it a try. It's worth it. It has tutorials on how to create cloud-based applications which practically is very similar to creating web-based applications. Also worth noting would be its interoperability with PHP. It has PHP-support thru FastCGI so you can deploy a site created out of PHP into the cloud.
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Next-Gen Nintendo DS to feature Motion Sensing

According to the report, as translated by GameSpot, Iwata told the paper that the DS successor could be expected to feature a "high level of visual quality," as well as sensors to read a player's movements.

You can read the entire article here.

This is great news for the handheld gaming industry and handheld gamers as well. It is also important to note that the "high level of visual quality" is a huge step forward for Nintendo since they are the last to boost their graphical performance against Sony and Microsoft. Also, this could probably be something brought about by Microsoft's release of Zune HD which was Microsoft's answer to Apple's iPod Touch. In the meantime, iTouch and iPhone are pretty much attracting game developers with their motion sensing. Nintendo's next-gen handheld console with the new motion sensing will probably be the start of serious game development featuring games with motion sensing capabilities in the handheld industry.
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Sunday, January 3, 2010

Next-Gen Console Ideas

While Nintendo has been rumored to be working on an HD version of the Wii and Sony and Microsoft has been looking forward to adding accessories to their current generation consoles, I'm wondering, like you guys, what will we be expecting in the next-generation consoles?

Nintendo's Wii is a sure hall of famer to the short-listed best consoles ever produced. With its unique motion-sensing feature, many non-gamers jumped into console gaming. However, as a sign of aging and due to lack of future technological advances, third party developers tend to sway away from the idea that it is a console for hardcore gamers. Meanwhile, if you're a casual gamer, do you turn into Microsoft XBox 360 or Sony Playstation 3 for gaming? Graphics-wise, you'll probably jump into buying one of these consoles but fun factor? An obvious answer would be "No". That is why both these companies are now targeting the casual audience and creating accessories for them.

Now I'd like to give some ideas on how next-generation consoles are made up of?


Storage-wise, I'd say go embrace the Blu-Ray technology. Content-heavy games are always in demand for most gamers. So 25GB of pure gaming content is a necessity for the console. Graphics-wise, I'd say go for the average - way above Wii's hardware, definitely at par with PS3's graphics. Even until now, only very few games were able to maximize PS3's graphics hardware. Controller-wise, now this is something to be treated with utmost confidentiality. Wiimote must have been kept secret for the longest time for us gamers and the gaming media. Chances are, the success of the console may be heavily dependent on the controller and its capabilities. But since Wii did it with necessity, so must the next-gen console be - motion-sensing and vibration. Many of you wouldn't agree to some of the add-ons I would like to have but anyway here are some of it:

Indicators - Since all controllers now are wireless, I think it wouldn't hurt if they have some indicators when then battery is running low or providing some information about the game their playing.

Creative buttons - How many games actually use the "Select" button extensively these days? Only a few right? What if we replace some of the buttons we have been used to seeing with sensible ones.

Multi-touch screen - I think its usage would still be a concern but who knows it's just a suggestion.


There are a lot of genres for games nowadays but the gamers I think are still divided into three: social apps, casual and hardcore gamers. Social apps gamers are those who just plug in their pc, log on to Facebook or any site and play social apps. Imagine if the console you're creating is a social app-friendly and has heavy tie-ups on social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter. Top social apps developers Zynga and Playfish may be involved in the discussion as well. Homebrew games should also be encouraged as well.

Don't you think it's time to boost up campaign for creation of new franchise games for casual and hardcore gamers? I know it is hard to conceptualize games per se and build on it as a franchise but hey third party developers such as Square Enix, EA and Rockstar North. Even Nintendo has to really come up with a new set of franchise games. Mario and Zelda need major revamps, God of War and Halo must be extended more to the casual audience.

Finally, gamers are the most important part of the console business. Interaction through communities is a necessity for its continued success. Continued invention and innovation is the key towards driving that success further.
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