October, 2006

  • Steve Clayton

    How does player matching work on XBOX Live?


    Video: Ralf and Thore race PGR


    Katie and I went to Microsoft Research in Cambridge this week where we interviewed some of the researchers up there who are doing amazing work. We'll have a whole set of videos coming to PTS-TV soon. In the meantime I thought I'd post a quick outtake of Ralf and Thore playing PGR 3 where Ralf gets creamed but he does get his own back in the Halo 2 game that followed. These guys are quite a comedy act and really ought to be on TV :)

    The guys are of course jolly clever - but what a job - they get to play games for a living as part of their research. In fact they have a special "games" room full of kit (not just Microsoft kit) and a 42" plasma and surround sound. They do have a legit reason though as inventors of TrueSkill which is used to match you with appropriate skill level players on games like Forza. In simple terms, they know that this means...and I don't!




    Check back soon for more videos including the guys having an impressive Halo 2 battle.


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  • Steve Clayton

    In an online vault, who do you trust?



    This Guardian article about BT's offer of a 2gb vault of digital storage for £5 per month got me thinking. I mean no disrespect to BT but I'm not sure that is where I'd choose to store my digital goods for long term security. What surprises me is that the innovative bods at places like Barclays, NatWest, Coutts or even Gringotts has thought about offering this. I blogged a while back about my bank providing me with identity theft and gadget cover.

    Who would you put your trust in for storage of your increasingly important virtual bits? I manage my own right now with an external drive and DVD's but if the house burnt down I'd be lost. I have some of my photos on Flickr and videos on Soapbox but nowhere near everything and I don't even know Flickr so can I trust them to manage my photos for my lifetime? Dunno...makes you wonder eh.

    Link to Guardian Unlimited Technology | Technology | BT offers online 'vault' for digital valuables

  • Steve Clayton

    Laughing at Web 2.0's peak of inflation



    Web Two Point Ohhhh

    Seems like all you need to get some news these days is to put Web 2.0 in the story and links ahoy! This cartoon from Chris Pirillo characterised it nicely for me and I also recently read the great explanation of Web 2.0 from Tim O'Reilly (who coined the term).

    I like this formulas for explaining Web 2.0 such as the one below



    You should also check out his Web 2.0 MemeMap if this area is of interest for you. It's a pretty long article but a fascinating read and something that is going more mainstream hence getting greater derision and suspicion as it goes along the Gartner hype cycle. Unsurprisingly it currently sits at "Peak of Inflated" on their now famous curve.

    "Peak of Inflated Expectations"
    In the next phase, a frenzy of publicity typically generates over-enthusiasm and unrealistic expectations. There may be some successful applications of a technology, but there are typically more failures.

    Yep, that'll be Web 2.0 then! It wasn't even on the 2005 hype cycle but it was the first topic of discussion for the 2006 cycle closely followed by AJAX and mashup.  

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  • Steve Clayton

    Channel Awards Shortlist 2006


    Software Vendor of the Year shortlist is

    • Computer Associates
    • Citrix
    • HoundDog Technology
    • Microsoft
    • Oracle
    • VMWare

    Time for Mr Noakes to dust down his DJ and prep a speech perhaps? We shall see on the night of November 23rd. Hope to see you there!

    Source: Channel Awards Shortlist 06


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  • Steve Clayton

    Excalibur in the (windows mobile) house



    Gotta have one to compete with my Treo toting friends. Coming to the UK very soon via the good people at eXpansys. It's now branded a Smartphone in the renaming shebang that our devices folks have implemented but whatever...I need one :) Now!

    See more on CNET

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