in game advertising

Hmm… Once upon a time there was a guy with an idea. The idea simply breaks down to this:

“Sell full price games to people and get an extra revenue out of in-game advertising.”

So here we are: I just found pacific city in crackdown literally plastered with Dodge advertising. Once day it was Dell… if you’re playing in the UK you’ll probably get army ads… how sick is that.

The first game that got this kind of in-game advertising was Testdrive Unlimited. The advertising was only available in the US of A and when you bought the game there it wasn’t full-price but $20 less than a full price title – because of that in-game ads. As an european player you didn’t see any ads and you had to pay the full price.

To be clear: I don’t think in-game advertising sucks. I just think that if you’re gaining revenue from in-game advertising you should share it with the players who actually bought the game. (e.g. lower the game price).

In the case of crackdown there’s no lower price. And that sucks.

glowing … ehm … fluorescent fish

Okay now it’s getting strange.

Where do GloFish® fluorescent zebra fish come from?
GloFish® fluorescent zebra fish were originally bred to help detect environmental pollutants. By adding a natural fluorescence gene to the fish, scientists hope to one day quickly and easily determine when our waterways are contaminated. The first step in developing these pollution detecting fish was to create fish that would be fluorescent all the time. It was only recently that scientists realized the public’s interest in sharing the benefits of this research. We call this the GloFish® fluorescent fish.”

It looks like this:

Thankfully they don’t actually glow in the dark. But how sad is this: Just because we can do something does that mean we should? Ethical discussions aside – where do you think that comes from? You’re right. The same country that proudly writes “artificially flavoured” onto the soda cans…

Source: http://www.glofish.com/

YAPS progress (tuxbox, xmltv, xml settings, new gui)

So here we are back again with an progress update on the YAPS project. First of all take a look at the gorgeous new looks (thanks to Dominik):

Currently Dominik is working on the layout. He did the switch to the YAML framework and is working on the integration of new features like the advanced recording options:

Since one of the most anticipated feature was the configurability of YAPS we moved the binary configuration files to a XML based configuration structure. That’s right: you can now configure your YAPS using XML files.

In the course of XML integration several other things came up. For example a better settop box integration. For that matter we are trying to make YAPS tuxbox compatible. That means you can use any Tuxbox/Enigma/Neutrino streaming client to access a YAPS server. That means: Onscreen Display on Xbox Media Center, EPG is possible now on every compatible client (and there are some).

This, when ready, will look something like this (without the debugging information at the top):

And since EPG will be possible we started to integrate XMLtv into YAPS. XMLtv is a free tool that brings several data grabbers with it. It simply creates an XML file in which the EPG information is stored… great tool and a how-to will be available soon.

So the data structures are already in YAPS and now we’re starting to integrate it into the GUI and internal methods. Here’s what the scheme looks like in eye-candy mode:

As usual you can grab the daily build here: http://www.slow-backward.de/YAPS_daily_build.zip or just build one yourself using the great MSBuild tools and a daily sourcecode snapshot. I wrote about that here and you can get the subversion access here.

We appreciate every single user feedback we get. If you got an idea, if you want to have a feature in YAPS or anything else. Don’t hesitate and contact us.

Oh. One last note: the current source might not compile with mono. We did not abandon the mono support so I’ll keep everyone updated on that issue.

Here’s the detailed changelog:

20.03.2007

  • added XMLtv scheme and data structures

19.03.2007

  • added Tuxbox data structures for future use
  • added Tuxbox /xml/ handling path to http server
  • added CanAccessTuxbox to Authentification handling

18.03.2007

  • fixed some bugs in the recording table
  • changed all templates to make use of the skin-setting

17.03.2007

  • changed the layout based on YAML (www.yaml.de)
  • changed the default design
  • fixed some layout bugs, everything should be conform to W3C standards now
  • changed some minor issues in footer and help section
  • added new options for add recording form

15.03.2007

  • changed the settings data structures do actually do something
  • changed the multicast processor to use the multicast prefix stored in settings
  • you define the prefix like this: “239.255.2.” – YAPS now adds the last number which is the channel number (23 for example) and then the port number 50 + channel number = 5023
    this leads to the multicast adress 239.255.2.23:5023

14.03.2007

  • changed copyright notice
  • removed binary SaveSettings() functionality
  • added new setting element to Recording Data structure (createdby)
  • extended authentification data structures and HTTPAuthProcessor code to allow mapping of
  • usernames to ip adresses
  • added Authentification XML settings file
  • added new capability “CanDeleteOwnRecordings”
  • changed capabilty “CanDeleteRecordings” to “CanDeleteAllRecordings”
  • changed RemoveRecording/RemoveRecordingFile/Deleterecording behavious according to the new capabilities
  • added “CreatedBy” handling to the AddRecording HTTP Server method
  • added “%createdby%” Template Keyword for Recording-Listings

12.03.2007

  • added XML based configuration files (replacing the old binary ones)
  • changed the logfile behaviour so that when YAPS is restarted everything is appended to the logfile instead of overwritten
  • authed another client
  • fixed a bug that leads to the corruption of the xml files…

11.03.2007

  • there’s a remaining bug in the html encoding –> leads to corrupted letters in browser
  • added some todos

11.02.2007

  • fixed an encoding bug in the http server that caused firefox and other browsers to corrupt the html

Source 1: http://www.schrankmonster.de/SearchView.aspx?q=yaps
Source 2: http://www.yaml.de/
Source 3: http://wiki.godofgta.de/Ehttp_api_doku
Source 4: http://www.dbox2.info/
Source 5: http://www.tuxbox.org/
Source 6: http://xmltv.org/wiki/
Source 7: http://www.slow-backward.de/YAPS_daily_build.zip
Source 8: http://www.slow-backward.de/YAPS_daily_source.zip

Attention: no VLAN settings with Intel Network Interface Cards

When you’re using Windows Server 2003 R2 64bit Edition with SP2/IE7 you will most likely not be able to access the advanced settings of an Intel Network Interface card (Teaming, VLAN settings). Instead you get the simple dialog:

Damn it. I don’t have a solution for this right now and it does corrupt my plan using one of the servers for VLAN games….

Anyone reading this got a solution how to get the VLAN settings tabs back?