Peter gent’s Blog

Do I have a serious gaming addicition?

Posted in blog, gaming by petegent on November 27, 2008

After being enthralled in call of duty 4 for a while I’ve been left to wonder if I actually have some kind of real and serious serious game addiction? no seriously ?

I mean, I just never seem to accomplish anything much. I get distracted easilly and I flitter from one thing to the next in the blink of the eye. But I’m not actually sure if it’s just restricted to games. I’m finding that now I’ve moved back home I’m kind of sitting and watching the TV for no apparent reason when I’ve got around 15 books that I should be reading.

I wonder whether my life would have been made richer if I never got involved with games at the early age of six(ish). Maybe I would have been less of a geek and more of a socialite from the start. There are plenty of alternitives out there like rock climbing, parachuting etc that I could (or maybe I feel that I should) be doing.

But, sometimes of course you get a creeping desire to play a certain game because your not sure what else to do and that strikes me as a bit of a habbit. I guess it is what it i.e. pure innocent fun but are there not a lot more productive things that I could accomplish – paint a picture, read a book. Organize my life.

I fear that in hindsight gaming has been a source of escapism for me and I kinda wish I could banish it fully.

I feel in a state of conflict between rejection and embrace of this geek yin and yang. Maybe I could just banish gaming entirely from my life or embrace it further – but where has that lead me really ?

Hmm. Back to COD4

Fighting fit: The new fitness regime

Posted in books, fitness by petegent on November 21, 2008

Hi guys!

I’ve just started a new fitness regime, based on the book

Fighting fit – The complete SAS fitness training guide.

Now that I’ve got the advert over with, lets get into the meat of the book.

Diet plan:

The fitness plan features a full diet plan and a shopping list for each week. Here’s what you’ll need in week one (assuming you’ve got literally nothing in your pantry).

 

Shopping list


Fitness plan:


Home workout (as a part of the fitness plan)


Home workout Exercises:

 

 

 

 

so ar I’m a week in and it’s been tough! I’ve only managed about 7-13 mins of jogging and I can’t really do the tricep dips and the number of pushups I can perform is inconsistent at around 20/19/19/17.

 

Anyway, give it a go and let me know your thought’s on it. I’ll be posting more pages in the upcoming weeks.

New book – Predictably irrational.

Posted in books by petegent on November 18, 2008

Some of you out there undoutably are regular viewers of kevin rose’s and alexe albreights video podcast

‘Diggnation’, which covers all of the latest tech stories.

Anyway about 2-3 episodes ago kevin pointed out a book called ‘Predictably irrational – the hidden forces that shape our decisions’ that’s all about why people do certain things under specific situations.

Anyway, I decided to pick up the book (along with about 10 others and read through them all :)).

Anyway, I’ll give you a quick review of the book when I finish it. 🙂

Changed layout!

Posted in Uncategorized by petegent on November 17, 2008

Hey guys!

I just changed the layout to a right alignment with the new orange wood graphic that I created from here and aligned to the left hand side.

The process for creating the graphic was pretty simple. I just saved a copy of the fractal pattern, mirrored it, changed the background from white to grey and tidied up the corners. The final step was to give the wood effect in gimp with some careful painting.

BeforeAfter

 

Here’s a file history for anyone interested.

Orange

 

Orange 1

 

Orange 2

Orange 3

Orange 4

Orange 6

Suggestions, comments etc on a postcard =)

Are you sitting comfortably?

Posted in blog by petegent on November 17, 2008

Howdy. Are you sitting comfortably?

Ok, good. Time for a quick update:

Work

So i’ve found a potential job. But it’s working at essex police as an ‘IT installation technician’ Kinda below my stature but I could use the money and I can always leave the job at any time.

Still it’s a slight break from the disheartening thoughts of how the hell I could do anything other than games testing FOR THE REST OF TIME!

Life:

The chilling continues and I’ve now been doing a combination of tai chi (natures anti-depression meds) and drumming lessons. Hopefully before long I’ll be abe to invent my own hybrid art of beating people up and then drumming them.

Drum chi; Perhaps?

Something of an epiphany happned today when I realized that I’m doing drum and tai chi lesons but I’m not doing such a good job of integrating them into my life. Why is it that I’m doing a lesson to learn something when I wouldn’t necessarilly do it outside of that particular time slot?

is it necessary for us to only do things at specific times or should we actively search for things to change our lives?

I guess it boils down to my general apathy with life. As depressing as that may be.

Well. Until the next update, folks.

Pete – AYSC?

Podcast of the week: Groovement

Posted in POW by petegent on November 15, 2008

heads up for a new weekly feature covering but a few of my choice mix podcasts.

First up, Groovement:</p

Empire total war. Omfg!

Posted in Uncategorized by petegent on November 10, 2008

Simply put. OMFGH. I want this game, NOW!

(and on mac)

 

Sharpes peril – New episode!

Posted in tv by petegent on November 9, 2008

Sharpes peril – New episode!

http://img.gkblogger.com/blog/imgdb/000/000/143/303_2.jpg

Woohoo! The latest swashbuckling ep that chronicals the period adventures and war stories of richard (dick) sharpe has just been aired!

It’s been around a year or two since the revival of the series after a ten year hiatus and I’m definitely glad to see it back.

Now that I’ve seen the latest episode, I’ll give ou an idea of what I think about the latest feature episode and (if you haven’t seen it) give you an idea of what the series is about.

Trailer:


Backstory

The plot centres on Richard Sharpe, a soldier that has risen through the ranks in the fields of France, Spain and Flanders, during the Napoleonic wars.

He’s joined in the latest feature TV episode by one of his long time comrades, an Irishman by the name of Patrick Harper as they continue their quest to return back home to Europe from the Indian sub continent.
In the previous episode, Sharpe went to the rescue of his long time friend and comrade in arms Patrick Harper, who went missing in action during a covert mission to uncover information about an impending revolt in India. When Sharpe finds harper and they make a plan to defect to the rebels who were surrounded by the British forces in a citadel and they manage to rescue the generals daughter and kill the treatcherous ex british officer, who was in part command of the rebel army.

Like with any bond film, the scharpe series has a distinct and familiure format. This usually consists of sean bean starting at the beginning of the feature with no inclination to take on the next big battle (there’s normally one in each ep). He’s always joined in his travels by a number of sidekicks who help him accomplish his mission and he usually encounters an equal mix of bad officers and good officers that either hinder him or help him out.

There’s usually a sharpe girl (bond girl) that comes in as the love interest and between boning the girl and killing the bad guys (frenchies, rebel indians), there is also usually some treatchery in the ranks going on between the gentleman officers who think they have god given right to lead and the men who have learnt through experience.

One of the breaks from the usual formula in this run of the series is that there are considerably less members from sharpes own rifle regiment. This is in part due to the fact that it’s just been harder to get everyone back on board again and also because of the fact that a fair few of their characters were killed in the previous series.

Overall it’s kind of a shame that there weren’t more recurring characters in the present run, as you definitely don’t get that se nse of brotherhood between sharpe and sharpes men. It also leads to a massive plot hole because the new episodes are set after the napoleonic wars where sharpe met harper and the various indian subcontinent revolutions actually occurred before the napolionic wars. I guess they had some right to dramatic license here :).


Plot.

In the latest episode, richard sharpe starts with patrick at a fancy ball looking like a period han solo at the (self titled) ‘fanciest ball in the galaxy’ and reluctently given the task of escorting the wife of a french colonel back to her husband in the field. He grudgingly accepts the mission and with patrick goes to the aid of the wife somewhere on the indian subcontinent.

When they find the girl with a detachment of engineers they are then attacked by bandits. Fighting for their lives, sharpe and his crew manage to repel the attackers and when the dust settles move out towards the safety of the nearest British colony that’s some hundreds of miles away…

Production value

As the Sharpe episodes are, essentially a series of feature length television films, you will undoutably get some sense of the on a shoestring budget that they had available.
But despite from a few bad effects (like an avalanche in the second part that ends up in a perfectly stacked set of symetrical rocks) and the fact that you’ll never see a really massive battle there is usually enough visceral action to keep you interested.

That being said it’s a terrible shame that someone like HBO hasn’t backed up the series with a better and bigger budget. Then they could have had something really epic and bloody on their hands. As opposed to the killing someone and cutting away that so often occurs.

Acting

The acting in the sharpe series is usually the best thing about the series and because it’s based upon a series of novels written by bernard cromwell. You can be sure that it’s well written.


Overall

3.5/5

What a crazy day!

Posted in Uncategorized by petegent on November 7, 2008

 

Coould’ve been the summary for today.  Here’s what happened:

8:00 – attempted to get up and failed to do so.

10:30 – managed to get out of bed, get breakfast and then do my routine streatches before doing my part of the pushups program.

Huzzah though. I actually managed to finish week four and get to 20 pushups for the first time, after trying and trying and trying for weeks and weeks on end.

1:00 – Lunch and then some casual surfing / tv watching

2:10 – Leave for the swimming pool, park the car and buy a parking ticket. Go into the pool at around 2:40 and then did around 20-25 mins of breaststroke swimming. Swore I had seen someone from college there who was working behind reception. Anyway I didn’t want to bother her so I kind of avoided her :).

p.s. – For some reason riverside wanted to charge me 25 quid just for an induction at the gym and then 40 quid a month for access to the pool and the gym. This is despite the fact that they are clearly affilirated with the county council. What a rip off!

3:40 – Left the pool and found a parking penalty ticket stuck to the front of my car. It turns out I stupidly put the ticket the wrong way up on the dashboard <slaps self>.

Start to drive to billericay but lately I’ve been having a really odd and weird feeling of niggling self doubt when driving. I consequently drove in a manner that would have not only failed my driving test but would have probably gotten me immediately guiloteened by my driving instructor. Of course, it doesn’t help when you’ve been out of the country on and off for the past 2 years and your driving at around 4pm in the pitch blackness of winter.

Excuses aside, I made my first mistake at one of the large roundabouts in town. I wanted to go straight ahead at the roundabout, so I pulled off from the starting mar when the traffic cleared, only for a cyclist to veer between the left and the right leaving me to think ‘WTFH’ and undertake him with minimal room and merge with the traffic ahead in something resembling crash and go (without any crashing, fortunately).

Summary: Dastardly!

Then some way on the road to billericay from chelmsford I drove right through a pelican crossing, whilst totally forgetting what different crossings there are in this idiosyncratic country (pelican, zebra and another to my mind. Not that I can instantly tell the difference. No pedestrians = ok, pedestrians = stop or something like that.) and then not giving way to a double decker bus on the way. As a side mention it seemed like there were literally 5-10 pelican crossings on the main road in billericay, which was definitely annoying beyond belief!

I then went down the high street, missing my correct turn off and I took a left at the round about at the end of the highstreet. I nactual fact there was a no left turn here and I ended up going down a one way street, blocking up all the traffic and getting a few beeps and yells. At this point my minds resolution was set to ‘Beat pete up and punch in face’ mode.

Summary: Dangerous! and would have lead to my summary exeution, if I happened to have had a driving instructor next to me.

THEN I finally found the road that I was supposed to be on and I drove into the car park. As the idiot I am, I also totally forgot to take the ticket at the barrier and parked up in the car parking space.I check my watch to find out its 4:45 – 15 mins late for my lesson! Arg.

Worrying about the fact that I was in a car park without a ticket or an obvious way to pay I went to the customer service place and they told me I had to buy something to get a receipt. Sooo…. I thought I might as well buy some bananas, why not?

I get to the till, only for the lady there to tell me that I had to buy 5 pounds of whatever to get free parking. ‘Gleh I thought!’ and bought the bananas anyway.

I get to my lesson at around 5:00 and I ask the guy at the reception whether or not he’s got me on the books for an appointment, to which the guy goes rather mute and tells me I’m not booked in for a drumming lesson. Eventually his father comes along and tells him that he should’ve sorted me out and pointed me to the tutor ‘Ah well I think’.

The tutor was actually decent enough to give me 15 mins anyway to get some basics down and turns out to be pretty tops in that regard. He actually turned out to be this pretty cool and very enthusiastic scottish guy.

I finished the lesson and then book another eight more for 80 pounds (too much I ask?) at 30 mins each. Leading me to wonder whether or not the school was actualy some kind of musical brothel?

Anyway, I’m back home now eating toad in the hole and wondering about what a hectic and up and down day it’s been! But thank the lord it’s finally over! Ciao!

Returned home

Posted in Uncategorized by petegent on November 5, 2008

Hey everyone.

Just writing to say that I’ve now returned home to the shire, in england. Things are quiet here, very quiet indeed. Altought that’s probably a good thing after the last two years of hectic game development based shittyness.

I’ve mostly been spending my time clearing through things and throwing out everything computer related (except for my mac of course) to I can facilitate my much needed life change

As for the ”life change” itself, I’ve been organizing myself into doing a lot of exercise (one of my goals) and stickng lots of bit’s of paper onto the walls.

Hm, perhaps I should be making a serpeate ‘change your life’ blog.

Anyway, I hope that’s enough food for thought at the moment :):)