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What have you been up to in January of 2007?

If you want to understand the blog and how it's laid out, go here.

Because the headlines span over a period of 2 months, they have been included for the Dec 2006 and Jan 2007 period together (as an SHTML include to speed up downloading).

Jan 24, 2007

Jan 24, 2007: Major computer issues left me 2 1/2 weeks without the computer. I finally have ABR MP3 encoding available along with some other changes to my music processing such as the 48-step speed system. I also received 3 very weird and suspicious phone calls. 2 decent Action Replay codes, one I've been after for over 2 years, made Super Monkey Ball 2 fun again. I got 3 new songs and upgraded the quality of 2 of them, one of which is third best making OWTLI and Winter Land pushed back further. I just about to the point where I can make games in C programming. Visions of George Game 13 are getting a bit overwhelming. My full list of songs on my site has been updated as well as my 2D game's future plans and 3D game's overview. 27 new dreams have been added to my dream journal putting me at 530 dreams. I'm also involved with Gamespot. I'm now 23 as my birthday came and went.

#2 ABR encoding at last!: For a while, I've been restricted to only constant bit rate (CBR) encoding for MP3 which is okay in some sense but I've long wanted to use ABR but couldn't find any programs that would actually work that met my needs, as follows in order of importance:

1. It must support any sample rate, not just the standard ones. This is commonly supported and it's not uncommon to have sample rates clear up to 150,000 Hz (400,000 in the case of Target Zone, quadruple the true speed (and it's upper limit)). Audacity supports this.
2. It must be able to resample the source to a standard sample rate, usually 12KHz or 16KHz. This isn't all that common but still fairly common. Audacity supports this.
3. It must not cut off any part of the song, not even a tenth of a second. Earlier, this was always a problem as it chopped off 5 or so seconds, mostly at the end. I've cropped the songs so they don't have the gaps and loop indefinitely. Audacity supports this.
4. It must be free and without the trial effects. Audacity supports this.
5. It must not convert mono to stereo. Only one program I've had did this and it just drops the quality and then some. Audacity supports this.
6. It must have a batch converter. Audacity supports this, but it's not readily apparent.

The program, dBpowerAMP was the closest I could get, combined with the Generic CLI using lame.exe. However, no matter what I did, I always kept getting errors and no file is created. It was only with the assistance at Winamp for getting a BAT file that I could use to get this. All I need is this code (credit goes to gaekwad2 on the Winamp forums for it):

for %%i in ("C:\My Documents\Songs for MP3\source files\to convert\*.wav") do "C:\My Documents\Special Programs\WAV to MP3 converter\lame\lame.exe" --abr 16 -h --resample 12 "%%i" "C:\My Documents\Songs for MP3\source files\to convert\%%~ni.mp3"

For the 16 KHz sample rate, I'd have ABR at 21 instead. 18 Kbps for ABR at 16 KHz is the point in which distortions are not detectable. Anything below that, I can hear distortions from the compression artifacts. I settled with 21 Kbps to counter any possible odd cases that may arise and since it's 2/3 of my CBR setting of 32. For the 12 KHz sample rate, my theory predicted I needed 16 Kbps (which is about 3/4 that of 21 Kbps since 12 KHz is 3/4 that of 16KHz needing 3/4 the data). 14 Kbps was the lowest I could go before hearing distortions and settled with 16 Kbps, both of which predicted correctly. By using ABR, I get the same quality with 2/3 the bit rate meaning that, instead of 128 Kbps for CD's, it'd be about 85 Kbps for ABR to approximate it. By using this, the conversion process goes about 5 times faster than Audacity. Audacity would take about 40 to 70 seconds whereas this takes but 8 to 14. I was amazed at just how fast it was. Audacity is just slow, period. It seems like many of the open source programs are rather slow. My WAV file generator program writes as fast as 55 megabytes per second generating 85 MB WAV files in 1.6 seconds and nearly 2 minutes to write a full stash of 73 WAV files for a 50 to 140% true speed range, the fastest I can get my hard drive to go. Audacity takes about 8 seconds to write the same file.
#3 C programming - just 3 things left: I'm now about ready to make my first program for download here, in C. You may recall the first program I made in January of 2005 being something very simple. Well, that's what my first program in C will be of. I only have 3 things left to figure out. The biggest one is getting the frame rate synchronized with the monitor's refresh rate without using DirectX and to work with Windows 95. It appears as if I use WaitForVerticalBlank32() for this, but it's a DirectX function. From reading other sources, it doesn't seem worthy, but this source seems to have a better answer that I have yet to try out. Having a function called upon pressing a key (such as the control key to call the jump() function to, well, jump) as well as getting the game to run in full screen mode rather than just Windowed mode. Master just these 3 things and I'm well on my way to remaking my 2D game. First is remaking the interactive animation program, the easiest program. Then it would be turning that into my 2D game (although I'd rather update much of the scenery rather than just reuse what I have (except maybe for testing), particularly the lighting with the mountains and hills). Before I add slopes and objects though, I'll need to figure out how to do collision and that pinball game I dreamed up in 2002 would be a good practice ground as it's not only simple to make, but the addictive gameplay may make it worth it. Not only that, but I also made a useful program for myself as well automating the process with the hex edittor for when I process my songs for my MP3 player.
#6 2 new codes for SMB2 - the game is now much more fun: There were 4 things I've always dreamed of having in Super Monkey Ball 2. Never having "fall out" in practice mode, having the ball rise like it does right after getting the goal (the inverted gravity), being able to roam around on the background scenery and play around with it, and being able to make my own little courses. I found the "moon jump" code which is like the ball rising thing, but it's a slow rise at 26 mph according to the game (I'm used of 500+ mph on that game and I've exceeded 4000 mph (hint: bead screen).). I was disappointed but at least I was able to view the worlds I've been wanting to see how they looked from very high up. Views like this is nothing new to me (note that this screenshot is from 2003 and the TV capture card I had was low-grade and somewhat defective, the main reason I don't like getting stuff off Ebay...):

#7 Get those visions of GG13 outta my mind!: Since the start of the year, I've been having so many visions of my 3D game, George Game 13, that I haven't worked on since September of 2005. I keep envisioning the city and desert/train worlds and I just can't get these visions out of my mind or prevent them. It may be because it's been so long since I last did anything with the game in terms of progress, but it's that UV mapping issue that gets in my way. Well, that may be a thing of the past. Nope, not with Gamestudio (throw that in the "things to no longer use" bin). The fix will be with C programming and I'm seeing even more advantages with using C than with Gamestudio. You may remember the first version of the city world that I had and the low frame rate I was getting. Sure only 60,000 polygons were visible, I was barely getting 24 fps, but from tests, that could be 150 fps with Gamestudio. With C, that can be further boosted to a monster 400 fps, at least from what I've read. A million polygons rendered in one frame while sustaining 60 fps. With Gamestudio, it's only 390,000. That is a huge boost. Although, before I can even begin making the game with C, I would need to make a modeller/level builder as well as a game engine complete with lighting, collision, texture-mapping, and other things. Unlike with Gamestudio, I'd have to fix bugs I wouldn't normally fix with Gamestudio (as, if there's a flaw with the collision system or the modeller is crashing, I'd have to fix that myself rather than someone else). I've got quite a few of the algorithms, but this, at the moment, is too advanced for me, but by the end of this year, that may be a different story. Oh how I can't wait to float-run up and down hills on an island at 700+ mph, glide from the shampoo section to the candy section reaching 300 mph along the way dodging signs, or test out the level creator, not from playing my mind game, but as a real game rendered and displayed on my real computer monitor. My 2D game will be a good first step and if I keep following the law of experience, and that my motive keeps out of negative territory, this will indeed be possible very soon (at least starting on it). With motive at -1.1 at the moment for using Gamestudio and a very high 140 with using C programming, the temptation is rather strong (but against my record high (with Battle Zone) at 3190, that's only a small fraction, but anything above 100 is extremely high and very tempting to do.
#8 Full list of my songs updated: It's been probably 2 years or so since the list of my songs has been updated and since then, I've added many more new ones and more than doubled the record for the most consecutive days of listening to the same song that I had at the time. This version is much more detailed than my previous one and lists all 81 songs I've got. 81 may not seem like much at all to you and many other music-lovers, but when you take into account that I change the speed, this is otherwise decupled to about 800 which is still rather low. Note that there are 15 other songs I want to get as well.
#9 Replacement monitor received: It was on Dec 4, 2006 that I finally got my replacement monitor, but I never realized I got it until Dec 6 since it was dropped off in a very unusual location. Usually, packages are delivered near the entrance of the house in the garage, but this was at the other entrance - the porch. The box was mistaken for something that has been discarded (as from the house cleaning that's been going on for over a year). Two days after it was delivered, I was about to get it, but I couldn't find it in the garage and it was hidden onto the stairs (and blending in very well) which made it very hard to see it. Because it was on the stairs, it was almost impossible for me to get so I had to wait even longer for my parents to come home to get it, but since I got too tired before they came home, I had to check it out when I woke up. I did indeed check out the monitor and the results have pros and cons. The only downside is that, when the monitor is rather bright, the image blurs far more than the old one did (an offset of 3 pixels instead of 1/4). But, because I hate bright, and turning down the brightness setting got rid of the blur, I resolved the issue from using my comfortable brightness setting (although a little darker than before). The clarity after fixing this was just amazing. 1920x1440 resolution as I envisioned it. I made a little image that I printed out to explain to the company the defects I'm seeing and printed it out. I included that along with my old monitor I've been wanting to replace for a while, and sent it out within a week. Of course, there was that case of having to spend an hour calibrating my monitor (trapezoid, parallelogram, side curves, and that kind of stuff), but that's a one-time thing only. I also set it so that it was running at 144 dpi. I have no intentions on returning this monitor since I see no defects at all with it and the one it has doesn't apply to me since I hate it bright.
#11 How I process my music - updated as well: A near-complete rewrite of the "how I process my music" was also made. From being able to use ABR encoding and the program to automate the process I once used the hex edittor for, my process has since changed quite a bit, even the parameters used have changed (not 11,025 Hz, but 16,000 Hz and not 24 Kbps but 32 Kbps (21 Kbps for ABR)).
#12 Winamp play counts update: Ever wonder how many play counts I have in Winamp at the moment? Yeah, you're probably expecting a few thousand plays on the new song, but see for yourself with this updated screenshot.

With SMB2 Title, 67% true speed is the best and with the equalizer settings I've got, the best frequencies are amplified. Since I have two equalizers (Winamp and the one from my sound card), I have both of them together in this screenshot. New songs, 7000 total plays - that's nothing new to me.
#13 2D game future plans and GG13 overview updated: With C programming now as the future of my 2D game instead of Lite C, I updated my 2D game's future plans list. With C, there are things that even Lite-C in Gamestudio wouldn't even offer. Dynamically altering the images (fog intensity and fog color), movement so smooth only screenshots and the color picker tool can pick out any differences between frames, ground fog much smoother than the current 54-channel system (hint: try thinking of 1000-channel fog (!)), no use for 3D hardware or even DirectX, and more. With the game as I have it today, if you change the scaling of the mountains so they're much closer or much more distant, the fog effect is much more unrealistic. With C, the fog intensity can be set based on the scaling rather than being static at what the default is. All the flexibility and the features C seems to promise just keeps cranking up my motive. Not only that, but with C, even GG13 can be made far better than what Gamestudio could offer. I read on the C programming forum that it's possible to get one million polygons rendered per frame at 60 fps with modern hardware. Gamestudio didn't even break the 750,000 mark for the highest (polygons per frame at 60 fps) I've seen with my benchmark tester. One million seems much nicer, but then again, I don't know what hardware was referred to (GeForce 7600 GT, like what I've got? Gamestudio peaks about 390,000, barely past 1/3 of a million). Seeing this and the many other advantages C gives for me along with finally resolving the issue with UV mapping that stopped my progress since September of 2005, well over a year ago, GG13's future is not Gamestudio, but C. Although I'm faced with issues like building an engine, a modeller, and that sort of stuff, I have full control. I updated my 2D game's future plans section and GG13's overview page as a result, to denote this.
#14 History with my game development now available: Ever wonder what my first attempts at game development were? They don't start in 2005 as from the first program I made or even 2004. They actually start much, much earlier. Ever wonder what the first version of my RPG game was like, around 2002 or so? Before my computer troubles began, I had this document written.
#15 Another song with a month straight? Uh oh!: Although it hasn't happened yet, it seems like the newest song added to my collection, Go Sailing Along, will get to about 33 days straight. If my theory holds true, 33 days in a row for GSA is within reach, but is still two weeks shy of my record 46 days. Parts 1, 3, and 5 are the most liked. See the updated list of my songs for more details about it, one reason I was tempted to update it. However, reaching a month straight was overshadowed by the high motive for listening to SMB2's title screen music, but still managed an impressive 12 days, barely past 1/4 of my record 46 days. It was parts 2 and 4 that were really having a big negative impact on this as well as the rather narrow good speed range of 70 to 85% true speed, causing me to want to change songs and with my temptations for SMB2's title screen music with compatibility reaching 1540, the crossover point occurred. 14 or 15 days in a row is the expected upper edge with SMB2 Title.
#16 Involvement with Gamespot: Searching for stuff on Google (action replay cheats?), I ran across Gamespot, which had a review for Bubsy 3D. I saw that you can write reviews and that I liked the system used. I wanted to write a review for that game so I looked at the registration details. I saw that I needed to be on level 3 for that for the free version but wondered what that meant. I began by searching around the forums. I later registered as a free user to see I started on level 1. I wanted to get to level 3 so I can write reviews and as soon as I was on level 3, I went at it. Just a day after, my computer became unusable and had to abandon it until my computer was working again. Since then, I've been involved, but not strongly. It's now going to level 10 that my next point of interest comes, but that ain't going to be until mid February. That's when I can upload user videos (such as the one for getting super high in Super Monkey Ball 2 posted in news item #6). The things in the paid versions are of little or no interest. Looking at the comparision chart:

• Tagging - I don't know what it is or what it's for. Affector: 1
• [censored!] blog - considering I've got one on my website (since late 2004), this wasn't of any interest. The bad p-word is censored out. I only use it to post game-related things. My website will remain my primary blog source as it is one of the two largest single parts of my website (my dream journal is the other one). Affector*: 1
• Profiles and icons - that's nothing new to forums. Affector: 1
• Forum posting - again, it's nothing new. Affector: 1
• Player reviews - writing reviews for games was my main intent for going there. Affector: 7.2
• Create a union - supposedly a place where users of common interest go. Creating one doesn't seem of much interest to me. They are optional, however, and thus not of interest. Affector: 1
• User video uploads - Although I'm not much into video downloads on the internet (due to the fact they almost always streaming, something I've always disliked), I do have some videos I'd like to put up on there. Affector: 1.8
• Colored user names** - Having seen screenshots where you get a very small palette of choices (like 10 or so), it's not worth it. Affector: 1
• Subscriber-only chat** - I'm not into chatrooms at all - I avoid them. Affector: 1
• User-created board** - The forum I've had was just getting spammed and otherwise dumped as a result of this. Although Gamespot has far more traffic than my site and would help a little there, it's of little interest. Affector: 1.1
• Game tracking - Supposedly to watch over details of certain games (such as Mario, SMB2, and others), but is of little interest. It does, however, help tell me what games I want, have, and other things and is useful there. Affector: 1.2
• Site skins** - the dark skin used with the default is all I really need and thus doesn't interest me. Affector: 1
• Prize contests** - most of the games focused are no where near any interest (double-digit negative compatibility). They tend to also focus after systems I don't have or even want. As a result, this doesn't interest me at all. Affector: 1
• Unlimited access to live event coverages** - I have yet to see anything of interest. Affector: 1
• Downloadable game guides** - what sense is there in this when I just make use of Google to do the same thing? Affector: 1
• High-res movie streams and downloads** - Because I'm not much into videos (due to them almost always being streaming), this doesn't interest me. It does have only a minor effect though. Affector: 1.1
• Exclusive betas and events*** - since most of the games are for systems I don't have and that most games nowadays are of little or no interest at all, this doesn't appeal to me. Although it's been a childhood dream of beta-testing a game, making my own games is otherwise the same and this dream is much closer to reality (The Supernatural Olympics, my first game, is an excellent example). Affector: 1.1
• Gamespot tournaments*** - As with the prize contests thing, either the games are of little or no interest, or I don't have the system and thus doesn't appeal to me at all. Affector: 1
• No intrusive ads*** - With Firefox blocking popups and that I don't mind banner ads, the ads have little effect. Affector: 1.1
• High-speed file and movie downloads*** - like with the case involving videos, this doesn't appeal to me in any measurable way. Affector: 1.1
• Free service - It's free, but for the things I wanted most, I need to wait. Affector: -1.4
• Plus service - It's $1.66 a month but I can immediately write reviews and upload videos, but ads are still present. Affector: -2.8 • Total access service - It's twice the price but don't have to wait for the good stuff either. Affector: -11 List footnotes: * Affectors tell how much of an impact on my motive there is for a particular feature. 1 is neutral and has no effect at all. Above 1, it has a positive effect making me want to get it and below 1 (negative), it deters me from getting it. Combine all the affectors and you get my motive for that service. I use the one with the highest motive. -1.6 is otherwise the same as a +0.625 when it comes to calculating things. ** This is a feature of both the paid services and not the free service. *** This is a feature of the total access service only. The free service has a motive of +11.1, the plus service at +6.7, and the total access service is at +2.3. The free service wins by an overwhelming margin. -1.4 doesn't mean multiplying by that, it means to divide by the positive counterpart, or divide by 1.4. -2.8 isn't double that of 1.4, it's more around triple as, if you multiply 1.4 three times, you'll get close to 2.8 (dividing by 1.4 three times is roughly the same as dividing by 2.8 just once). Double the price, it takes four times the compatibility/motive to counter it and with nothing in the paid versions of much interest, they stood no chance. #17 My take on the newest game systems: For those of you into games (I once was), you may be wondering about my take on the newer systems. I have almost no interest in them at all. I don't like the way you use the Wii's controller and thus seriously drops my motive. Plus, it's wireless further dropping it. Wireless means batteries and when the battery dies, all kinds of problems start. It's also the case of far too many T and M-rated games. Sports games, of which are of negative interest to me, are the most common E-rated games I've seen. This is one of the biggest reasons why I lost interest in playing games. It's either classic games (early Playstation era and before) or I make my own games and it seems that the latter will be my case. The downsides to the Wii, however, aren't enough to put it in third place, but rather second place. It's the extreme cost of the Playstation 3 that forces it into third place. As of what I have, my motive for getting the newer systems are double-digit negative. The Playstation 3 is the lowest with -90 and the Wii at a very close second with -85. The Xbox 360 at a distant first leaving the others far behind with a rather low -40 motive. This doesn't take into account what games there are, just based on price, usage, and general design. Being in the mid double-digit negative area, it may be even two years or more before I even think about getting one of them and with the Xbox 360 leading the way with more than twice the motive, it'd likely be the first one I get, if I ever do. By then, my 3D game, George Game 13, may actually be playable and I'd be hooked on it far more than almost any game I've played. Even though the Playstation 2 and Xbox have gone down a lot in price, they aren't interesting enough for me yet as it's still a -3.5 motive at best. Sure I may have once been a gamer, but I almost entirely lost interest. Only making my own games and listening to the games' music have remained strong. #18 Neighbors in loud heated argument: On Dec 27, 2006 starting at 1:55 AM (±3 minutes), while playing FF2 (again), I heard the neighbors to my west in a very heated argument that was outside. I heard a car engine being revved up very high (like 4000 or 5000 RPM or something) and the sound of the tires being spun in place causing a very loud screeching sound. The woman was screaming so loudsly that I could hear it (and the car tires sound) very well over my game with my TV volume at my usual 15. It was so loud that I found it suspicious. Not only that, but it occurred 3 times with 80% certainty (4 at 15%, 5 at 3% and 2 at 2%). I heard a voice loud enough that, over my now-muted TV, was heard moderately well and had something in the way of "get outta here". At 2:08 AM, the one left and I saw the car turn toward the east. With trees blocking my view, it's tricky to make out any details on what things are. Only 30 seconds later, I saw the first of the cops come (since my mom ended up calling them as it was disturbing to those trying to sleep). This wasn't the type with the blinking lights. The type with the blinking lights came around 2:25 AM. I watched some of the events on what was going on, but with the trees in the way, it's hard to make out any detail. About 4 or so cop cars came and some other box-like vehicle, probably an ambulence. An hour after the cops first appeared, they left. I jotted down notes just in case they may come in handy. There hasn't been anything since. #19 Christmas of 2006: On Christmas of 2005, I was told that no money was available and thought I wasn't going to get anything at all. In the end, I did end up getting stuff, much more than I was expecting. As a consequence for telling me this, I didn't get anything for anyone and I was disappointed. Christmas of 2006 seemed almost the same at the start, but given last year, I was tempted. I had to plan things around my awkward sleep-wake cycle and perform a few calculations. It turned out that I'd get two chances to go Christmas shopping. I went when I had the first chance - Dec 10. The next chance I had was on Dec 24. I wanted to go as soon as I could. Dec 24 was cutting it a bit too close for comfort. In the end, I got everyone roughly the same in dollar value in gifts, around$40. When Christmas came, I sorted out the gifts giving them to those with their name tag on it. I got one of the three things I was wanting - ten pairs of underwear. The others were 3 shirts (since I had only 2 or 3 left (technically, it's more around 15 to 25, but those are all stained - useless)), and a 300-piece puzzle. I got a puzzle last year and I haven't even opened the box yet. This would've been great around the March 2005 area where I was hooked on puzzles (and TV). Other things have since taken over such as my 2D game and 3D game. Two things I wanted but didn't get were a TV capture card (see news item #23 below) and Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 Standard. The major computer issues I had pushed these back (and then some; see news item #1 above for details).
#20 My birthday came: 22 is my unlucky number, but 23 is neutral. On Jan 10, 2007, I finally turned 23. The day was nonetheless the same as any other... with one exception. I had my computer back from the repair shop and the service fee payback was a birthday gift. Instead of being hooked with SMB2's debug system, I could at last use my computer again after 2 1/2 weeks without it.
#22 Scientific American magazine: You may recall in my November 2006 blog that I wanted to subscribe to either Astronomy or Scientific American. I decided on Scientific American and starting in early January, I got my first issues. Oddly enough, I got 4 issues in a very short time span, but still didn't get the January 2007 issue. I got those from Oct, Nov, and Dec of 2006 and the one for Feb 2007 in a time span of just two weeks. I can explain the Nov and Dec issues of 2006 since those spanned over the time I had to wait for the order to be processed. I don't understand why I ended up with the Oct 2006 issue. Since I first got it, I quickly head to any article involving astronomy, my top-most-liked field of science. When done with that, I go to my next-most interested-in article and so on until I've cleared the issue. From there, it's "GG13-ifying" it, turning the issue's design into a game related to George Game 13 (only one of the first versions before the concept of GG13 came about). So far, my compatibility has hovered around 12. Although it's nothing to my music, for books/magazines, that's rather high. I like the charts, graphs, and diagrams, things involving math.
#23 TV capture card - the next hardware upgrade: During 2002 and 2003, I had a TV capture card, but it had many defects and limitations. First, it was always full of static not present on my other TV. Second, it used that of standard definition TV, that of interlaced format rather than progressive. Third, it would only record video as 320x240 resolution maximum and at just 20 fps. Fourth, the brightness/contrast was off and could never be fully corrected. If I darken it to get the brighter colors at the right brightness and lighten it to get the darker colors back again, I'll just keep going back and forth. Fifth, colors from the Sega Genesis displayed incorrectly. Look at my screenshots of Sonic on the Oct 2006 blog, the two on the bottom. Note how far off the colors are from the bottom than that of the top? With a progressive scan type, I get screenshots like those at the top - no artifacts from the alternating scan line updates. The colors in the top two screenshots are exactly what they should be (well, close to it anyway), and those in the bottom are far off, particularly with brighter colors. For a few months now, I've been wanting a TV capture card that wouldn't have these limitations. This is the one I'm looking into but I can't tell if it has progressive scan or not. I figured I'd get it and by the time I updated my website, I'd have it available. The downside, according to the reviews, is the software provided. Of course, the driver is a definite must, otherwise the hardware wouldn't work at all (unless XP Pro SP2 has one presupplied), but why bother with it or downloading some other software when I can just practice my programming skills and write programs myself to do what I want. Yes, that means recording at 60 fps as an AVI (or BMPs within a folder if extremely long) and taking/saving screenshots as BMP images. Then, with yet another program I intend on making, sort of like a plug-in, it would reduce the frame rate of an AVI and merge the frames together to give the feel of 60 fps, but run at 15 or 20 fps. This is easier for me to do than saving screenshots, much easier. I already know the algorithm - I tested it with Gamestudio, and, even before finishing this update to my website, I already have enough knowledge with C to do so. It's just "grabbing" whatever is in the back of the video buffer that I don't know.
#24 Two mind game events - music and clouds: In recent times, starting around early January of 2007, I've had two common mind game event occurrances. The first one is where my relatives come over to visit and it's supposedly a few days into their visitation time. They get confused wondering why I haven't changed songs and wonder if I ever do. I mention something like "5 days is only a small start toward my record, try lasting for 9 times longer to get into the realm of my record" and the like. Of course, I haven't seen my relatives since my last vacation now 6 1/2 years ago. The other common event, three times as common, is where I have a ramp and I'm using a weaker version of the speed blast toward it (which allows for faster charging and better energy control, but only 400 mph instead of 760) to launch straight up (sort of like the half pipe, but sliced in half and levels out at the bottom so you have a vertical edge at the top). While I go up, I'm looking at cumulous clouds above which start rapidly "growing" since I'm approaching them at 400 mph (but decelerating at 80 mph per second). The clouds fill about 4.5° of my field of view and are about 5000 feet up. Because I only reach around 1450 feet of height, I don't get above the clouds, but they certainly get "bigger" filling up roughly 6.5° of my field of view. At the top of the climb, I begin looking down at the fairly small ground below. Upon impact, I bounce up now going 200 mph straight up making the clouds filling just 5° of my field of view, but I can still notice the changes, especially at the start of the bounce. A few bounces later, and I'm back on the ground ready for another one. I do a few speed blasts up the ramp then use the spinning board to get 1200 to 1600 mph or so straight up (or at least as straight up as possible). With that, I watch the clouds "grow" very rapidly even getting above them. At the top of a 1600 mph run, getting 16 times higher than that of the 400, the cloud I watch only fills up 1.25° of my field of view and it takes around 300 mph before any changes are noticeable and of course, several bounces later, I come to a stop ready for it again. At the top of the 1600 mph climb and when I look down at the tiny ground from 4 miles high, I can see a city just toward the upper area of my field of view, but it only takes until I reach around 150 mph before I notice anything changing since it's so far away, but once I reach 999 mph, it's fun watching the cloud just coming up extremely fast and just whizzing by and 4 seconds later, it's a bounce where I'm going up at 800 mph watching the cloud "grow" again.

Daily Events

Jan 2: A page of details for the first dream recalled for 2007. I slept for 17 hours, 2/3 of my record 25 hours. I watched TV for 3 hours. Next, after eating, I went back to the Gamecube. First it was swapping games a bunch. I tried out Sonic Mega Collection and played the "Mean Bean Machine" game. I recall in an earlier case where, in exercise mode, I reached level 30-something. I played and beat the easy and normal difficulty settings. Then it was playing Looney Tunes Back in Action and played it all the way through (not including 100% completion). After a one-hour interruption, I played the golf game in Super Monkey Ball 2 just practicing the game. I spent twice as long figuring out holes 10 through 18, the most challenging (and ridiculous in the case of holes 10 through 12) of the holes. Woke up at 1:39 AM and went to bed at 11:06 PM (±2 minutes).
Jan 3: Two consecutive dreams with a page of details - this one just a bit less. I first tried to eat but since all plates were dirty, I had to wait until dad came home causing a 6-hour delay. During this time, I was involved with Super Monkey Ball 2 for about 3 hours. I then checked Newegg for the shipment progress (on my dad's computer) and found that my processor was delivered just today while writing details on my dream. I then ran a small experiment - how rapidly does the CPU (the old one) heat up. 60°C is normal and was reached in 2 minutes. It froze at 71°C, quite a bit higher than it has, and that's idling in the BIOS without user interaction. It seems to stop at around 5 minutes of use and just before 6 minutes, it hard froze. I then called local computer service centers to see what, if anything, I could do to get the CPU temp down. I couldn't get anywhere as I'd have to drop the system to them so they could look into it but, being Monday through Friday only, this was not a possibility since I have no way of getting there short of paying \$50 for a taxi plus whatever the cost is for the service. I returned to Super Monkey Ball 2 for 10 minutes then used my dad's computer to search for the "moon jump" cheat and stuff for Action Replay. I did this about 18 months ago and only found the one with PAL (European) and never the one for NTSC (for the US). I was disappointed about that. This time, not only did I find the NTSC version, but debug stuff as well meaning coordinates and other fun stuff - yep, I'll be involved with SMB2 for quite a while longer as a result. Sure I've logged 800 or so hours' play time, but with this, it may reach or even exceed 1000 hours. Now, if only I can prevent "fallout" and have all background scenery as not passable, I could almost double the play time and would get to as close as FF2 is. I was surprised how big one coordinate unit is. Each square on the blocks is a half of a coordinate unit. 0.194 coordinate units per frame is 26 mph in the game and the speed moon jump gives which is very slow in my standards. With the "inchworms" stage, I can easily get 1300+ mph. 5000 coordinate units is 1300 mph's worth in height. Seeing the whole stage in view is nothing new - I've been doing that since 2003 or even 2002 and without cheats needed. I've also shattered my old record with speed, only with the moon jump - 5250 mph. I can only get this if I place something heavy over the B button. With Monkey Target, the source of my song, Target Zone, if you can pass 500 mph, maybe 400, you can climb infinitely high, so high that, if in the main game, 10000 mph of speed is within reach in only an hour! Also, the speed shows values above 999 mph properly, unlike the main game. So yes, I do see it as 1483 mph and not 999 as the main game would have that as. When dad came home, he did wash the plate but missed 2 spots. He was in a mega rush and couldn't do anything so I had to add another 3 hour delay until mom came home and it was another 80 minutes after that that I finally got my first bite, 20 of which from cooking and a further 50 from getting a plate and getting the dishwasher running then the last bit finishing up with SMB2. I'm still at Misty Bog. Woke up at 9:43 AM and went to bed at an unknown time (forgot to write it down).
Jan 5: SMB2, TV and eating, then SMB2 with a surprise make up the day. I first played SMB2 using the debug system and bead screen. I managed to get a successful launch of about 4000 mph with those boards to see how high I could really go with it. I don't recall the numbers, but looking at the speeds tells me 4000 is indeed correct, give or take 100. I then watched TV while eating, 3 1/2 to 4 hours total. When done, it was back to SMB2 again and was getting tired around 3:00 AM. My MP3 player's battery wasn't charged (I've noticed it's taking longer to charge, twice as long (2 to 2 1/2 hours) as it did when I first got it, but the usual 18 1/4 hours play time is still present). I then used the stage select thing with debug to find what secret test levels there were. From this, I found 4 things where I could almost fully explore the background scenery. I was disappointed that the theme park and forest worlds weren't readily available for full exploration. However, once I started messing around with stage 175 (the 15th hole in the golf game), of which was played like the main game. I got hooked with this. With the courses so large, it can take nearly 2 minutes to get to where the hole is, provided you don't use moon jump. If you think 4000 mph is fast, with moon jump, and infinite time in stage 175 (with debug), I have the potential for 10,000 and beyond. I've only gone to 2800 mph at the fastest, mainly for testing. I started with slower speeds to check how I'd get thrown around based on impacts. This will certainly add hundreds of extra hours of total play time. I also played a full 99-set game of billiards. I got 335 combo shots (19 for the COM), 61 fouls (27 for the COM), 590 shots (381 for the COM), and 57% pocket ratio (27% for the COM). Woke up at 3:23 PM and went to bed at 9:30 AM.
Jan 6: Another dream with a page of details.... I slept 17 hours again, 2/3 of my record. Because my MP3 player's battery died, I watched CNN while writing details on the dream, taking close to 3 hours to do so. I then installed the new CPU, taking nearly 50 minutes. I reseated everything but had to take a shower to go grocery shopping. I went shortly after. When I got home, I put stuff away then tested my computer. This time, it won't start up. No post, nothing on display, nothing. This is really getting on my nerves. I tried convincing my parents to allow me to drop off my computer at some computer service center, but they wouldn't let me. They had "too much to do" - yeah, you call putting tiles up too much to do? 2 weeks... oy! I'm getting very far behind on updating my site and it looks like I'll have to wait another long week. Man do I wish I had the luck for this.... Maybe my birthday barely 3 days away? I'll turn 23 then and my luck will increase some since 22 is my unlucky number afterall. 23 is neutral. I went back at SMB2 again. I've set an impressive and unusual record of being 206 million coordinate units outside the level going 1200 coordinate units per frame (1000 mph is 7.45 CU/fr) - that's faster than some stars orbitting near the galaxy center, faster, even then Mercury, but it's not quite to the Moon yet. I was trying to get an impact going straight up at a little over 100 CU/fr before impact or about 78 CU/fr going up, but faulty collision prevented the impact. Bead screen gives 30 CU/fr for comparison, of which I managed to get with this. Instead of stage 175, I'm using 174. I couldn't go any further with my record since my [censored!] parents got me at getting those tiles up. When done, I explored more of the debug options and found 2 things of interest - the collision things which highlight areas of the stage for collision detection and the other is a sound test system. Now I'm craving for the intro of Target Zone as well, something I don't have at all. Woke up at 3:43 AM and went to bed at 9:10 PM (±3 minutes).
Jan 7: SMB2 with a new record, eat, SMB2, Super Mario Sunshine, drowning the fox, and mean bean machine are the main things of the day. First it was SMB2. I set a new record with the fastest going up. Bead screen gives up to 4000, but this was 6720. Just 50% more than this and I'd have 10,000. I tried it once yesterday and the ball went right through the land as if it wasn't there. Oh well. I ate shortly after watching something about UFOs, the third time I saw the 2-hour show. I returned to SMB2. From using the debug system in SMB2, my frequent visions of George Game 13 returned again. I've slowly been gaining interest in designing George Game 13. First to get my computer working then make my first game in C. Then it's remaking my 2D game, making a modeller, a 3D engine, a simple 3D game (simpler than George Game 13), and finally I can begin making George Game 13. When that's done, or as a side task for practice, I'd work on my RPG game. Yeah, it's a long ways away yet before George Game 13 is playable in at least one of the many designs I have for it. As to Super Mario Sunshine, I tried various Action Replay codes for it. The low gravity code was nice. It made some things easier but others more difficult. I then looked up more codes and found 2 things of use. I used them and was rather disappointed, particularly one with 40 lines of code I spent almost a half hour entering. The other one had just 9. Next was drowning the fox but got bored of it. Lastly, I was playing "mean bean machine" and reached level 16 or 17 in exercise mode. I've been to 35 once. Woke up at 8:46 AM and went to bed at 12:12 AM (±1 minute).
Jan 8: I first played the original Super Monkey Ball. I realled smashed my old best score with the minigolf game. I got 8 or 9 consecutive "birdie" results with a "hole in one" slipped in here and there and often doing bad with holds 5, 8, and most especially 17 and 18. 42 is my best score, which is -12 in the game. Yep, slightly less than half my previous 86! I then left to drop my computer case off to get looked at (and other shopping after that). With 4 issues (won't boot, very high CPU temp, odd rattling sound at random times (apply 10 pounds of force on top of the case and it stops, remove it and it starts again), and the floppy drive cable connection (pin 1 is not indicated on either the motherboard nor the drive itself making it guresswork to how it's connected (and the cable is poorly designed as it doesn't have that "blank spot" others do)), it seemed worth it. I got Domino's as well. Then it was more SMB later going to SMB2 where I got 13 consecutive strikes in the bowling game (hint: pause the game for the angle selector - it's an old cheat I've known since the NES days). I tied my record for strike mode - 199 points. The only thing better is a perfect game. I tried Monkey Boat, a mini game I've always had trouble with (turning especially). I won on the beginner course, got third place on the advanced course (but often came in dead last), and I came in dead last on the expert course. I then got involved with the soccer game. Before, I'd be lucky to even score a point where, in a 5-minute game, the COM would have had 10 or so. Now 11 for me and 8 for the COM is the norm, now that I've studied the game mechanics and began exploiting the weaknesses. I'm now at Delfino Plaza on my MP3 player. The first issue of Scientific American came, the Dec 2006 issue. Woke up at 9:45 AM and went to bed at 1:57 AM.
Jan 9: Yay, a dream. Just SMB, SMB2, and TV make up the day. I first ate, finishing my pizza from Domino's. Then it was swapping between SMB and SMB2. I also called "Bill Nye" as I call my friend and had the longest-lasting phone call with him. The Nov 2006 issue of Scientific American came, a day after the Dec 2006 issue arrived. Where's the Jan 2007 issue at? The Nov issue has something about the dark ages of the universe and was the first thing I looked at with the one about malware on cell phones and "seeing with superconductors" following close behind (a second place tie). With SMB2, I have 2 new songs I want, the advanced and expert courses of monkey boat. Reprocessing World 7 and Target Zone are the others. Delfino Plaza from Super Mario Sunshine is also up there. Noki Bay is the only other moderately-liked song on Super Mario Sunshine, but a distant second. SMB doesn't have anything. My birthday came just as I was in bed, based on clock time rather than astronomical time. Complex calculations are needed for that and thus my computer is needed as, even with a calculator, it could take 3 or so hours to process everything. I haven't gotten any word about my computer yet. At the end of the day, I processed those duty checklist things for mom and finished faster than expected - gotta love copy paste. It was being cold that put me to sleep. Woke up at 12:13 PM (±2 minutes) and went to bed at 2:04 AM.
Jan 10: Nice, 1/3 page in details for a dream. It's my birthday! First it was Sonic Mega Collection then SMB2. I ate then returned to SMB2. I got my computer back and ran it. After 50 minutes, it didn't hard freeze but it ran at 75°C at this, even though they stated 60°C. Oddly enough, when I ran Windows for a bit (running updates), it went down from 77°C to only 63°C. This doesn't make sense unless monitoring the CPU temp is CPU intensive. When I started Windows, it was at 1280x1024, plus some of my start up items were missing, but fixing this is nothing new to me. I first extracted songs. Target Zone was one, which now included the intro. At 3 1/2 times true speed, still short of the upper edge of where it sounds good, you'd be reading one megabyte per second! The only other song that passes the triple speed mark is Oh What a World 2. 3 new songs have been added, one of which I call "Go Sailing Along". It's source is the expert course of SMB2's monkey boat. Despite having played SMB2 for 800 or so hours, I only first heard this song from SMB2's debug system. Although I've played monkey boat earlier, it was always the beginner course. Another is the advanced course, but this song is much less liked. Sure I like Go Sailing Along 30 times better, but GSA competes with OWTLI quite well at 1950 for compatibility. The intro part of the advanced course song is the only worthy part at 600, but the rest is down in the dumps barely passing 50. The third is SMB2's title screen. Two others were that of worlds 6 and 7. I cropped them and immediately went to GSA afterwards ranging from 70 to 80% true speed. Parts 1 and 3 are the most liked (tied) with part 5, the last one, a close second. Once done with the songs, I then checked E-mail and did my usual online stuff that I got 2 1/2 weeks behind on. 63 new messages in my E-mail's inbox is quite a bit with 1/3 of it pure junk. I went to Gamespot to check on things and write a review of Super Mario Sunshine. Before this, I added a notice on my site indicating the cause of the lengthy delay. Wanting GSA on my MP3 player, I processed it then went to bed after finishing up. Woke up at 12:35 PM and went to bed at 7:32 AM (±1 minute).
Jan 12: Boohoo, no dream recalled. I spent most of day updating my website. I processed 7 or 8 headlines then began updating the "how I process my songs" article and went on to actually process an entire song. There are now 17 screenshots. The article was replaced but the old one is still available. The beginning hours were spent checking E-mail and the forums. I ate watching TV at around 7:00 PM. Yep, I've got a long ways to go yet. GSA is now at 2140 compatibility and seems to have stopped. OWTLI is now in fifth place. Yep, about 400 plays in Winamp already.... I got the Feb 2007 Scientific American issue meaning that only Jan 2007 remains. Woke up at 3:56 PM and went to bed at 8:56 AM.
Jan 13: I first checked forums and E-mail then went on to update the future plans and FAQ area of my 2D game. I ate around 10:00 PM. I returned to add details on GG13 since it appears as if I could utilize C programming for the game. It appears as if I can get triple the polygon count than with 3DGS for the same frame rate, but experiments will verify this. For the last 5 hours of the day, I've been recreating my list of songs finishing all for Bubsy, Aero the Acrobat, Final Fantasy Origins, SMB2, and Super Mario Sunshine. There's a bit more detail than the previous one, but, supposedly, a cleaner look. I'm really hooked with GSA and the compatibility is at 2180. With that, theory predicts 33 days stright, right around 9000 plays in Winamp given my average speed and 12 hours a day (the typical). Woke up at 6:10 PM and went to bed at 8:35 AM.
Jan 14: At first it was checking the forums and E-mail. I then resumed my list of songs. I was going to eat shortly after but couldn't as the cooker tray was not washed. It was until 6:20 AM that I could eat. From there, I returned to SMB2 having posted a screenshot where I've been tossed up very high in "bead screen" and falling at or beyond 999 mph. I'm about half done with my list of songs. I'm still at GSA, now passing 1000 plays. Sure it's only been 4 days and I've listened to the 2 1/3-minute song (at my 77% true speed average) 1000 times. I'm about 12% of the way to my projected maximum. Woke up at 10:11 PM and went to bed at 1:35 PM.
Jan 15: First it was forums and E-mail then resuming the list of songs. I finished a good chunk of it by the end of the day and may finish either late tomorrow or the day after. Late in the day, I was highly involved with Gamespot over computer hardware (since I have more knowledge with computer hardware than almost any of the modern systems). I'm still at GSA, for day 5 now. My theory predicts up to 33 days so I've got 28 to go and I'm still going strong. Woke up at 9:51 PM and went to bed at 2:55 PM.
Jan 16: A water dream was recalled - I haven't had one of those in a while. First it was the forums then continuing on with my song collection. I ate after this then returned to the forums and my list of songs. By 2:00 PM, I was done and went on to check it fixing the bugs and mistakes. I went to bed right after finishing. I spent an hour browsing Newegg for TV capture cards and found only one that looked decent. I'm still at GSA - 6 days in a row already. 85% true speed doesn't seem that bad, my current speed. It almost sounds like true speed. Woke up at 12:53 AM and went to bed at 3:01 PM.
Jan 17: The day was dominated by Gamespot and updating my site. I began by checking Gamespot, which was running very slowly. I also checked my E-mail. I resumed working on my website update, mainly the blog. I also updated my history of game design a bit to utilize my new knowledge of C's potential in my 3D games. I constantly alternated between Gamespot and updating my website. I've still got my dream journal and daily entries yet, along with a few more headlines. It's now 7 days at GSA and 2000 plays in Winamp. I got the Oct 2006 issue of Scientific American while I was sleeping... for 11 hours. I also updated my site's FAQ with 3 new questions added and other changes here and there. Woke up at 3:37 AM and went to bed at 4:26 PM.
Jan 18: My blog's headlines are done to what I can do. All that remains are the dream journal and the daily entries. I ordered the TV capture card I wanted and it'd be 6 or so days until I get it, unless there's another holiday coming I don't know about. That's about how long it'll take to finish my website update. I also found something extremely useful adding my replay value to SMB2. Earlier, I complained about 26 mph for moon jump being slow. Try 60 meters per second (1 CU/fr in the games's debug menu), or 760 mph? I can now do that. I found a program to decrypt Action Replay programs (at Action Replay Central) and I used my programming knowledge and saw how to do this (along with exploiting a known flaw in SMB2). It appears as if larger numbers are big endian. Upon sorting it out in my hex edittor and inputting a value (as a float due to other studies), and setting the value, then having the program encrypt it so I can use it with Action Replay. I'm also set for another time-synchronization experiment, one of extreme precision. Instead of ±0.1 second, it's down to the sample, roughly 20,000 times as precise. The resulting precision is finer than a 32-bit float could offer! Woke up at 3:19 AM and went to bed at 6:59 PM.
Jan 19: I quickly checked the forums then went on with my experiment. -0.627804537 is the resulting offset with a margin of error of 2E-07 (which is where the 5 is), right to the edge of the precision a 32-bit float offers. After the experiment, of which I played SMB2 and laster SMB while doing it, I ate. 2 of 24 dreams have been added. I returned to Gamespot for a bit and checked my E-mail. I went back at updating my site, but needed to sort the papers to separate dreams from daily events and organize them by dates. Another check on Gamespot, then adding 2 of my 24 dreams. By 9:10 PM, I was waiting for an automatic scan from Norton to finish. Zonealarm does a full scan in 30 to 40 minutes, but NIS takes more than triple that. After 100 minutes of it starting (at 9:40 PM), it was taking too long and I had to go to bed and I did right after cancelling it and immediately turning off my computer. I wrote my log for the day while waiting. Woke up at 5:54 AM and went to bed at 9:40 PM.
Jan 20: Yay! A dream, 3/4 page details. I first checked Gamespot and stuff. I skipped level 6 in Gamespot and went to 7 - it's a known bug. I later took a shower then returned. I was hoping I could go to the grocery store, but dad had to work and mom had a bad headache. It was back at Gamespot and things but was involved with SMB2 quite a bit as well as Super Monkey Ball. From involvement with Super Monkey Ball 2, I only added one dream to my dream journal - 3 of 25 total. I really need to catch up. The daily entries go by faster than the dream journal itself. I also worked out a solution, while in the shower, for the "game demo" in my 2D game. Just two important things left! I'm still at GSA. Woke up at 6:09 AM (±1 minute) and went to bed at 11:23 PM.
Jan 21: Yay, a 6-part dream using a page of details. I first left for the grocery store then came home to eat. Once done, I checked the forums and E-mail. With that done, I alternated between the forums and working on my website update completing 15 of 26 dreams by the end of the day. I should be done on Jan 23, or Jan 24 with Jan 25 at the very latest, given my general trends. Around then, I should have the TV capture card and if I don't (or it doesn't work), it'd be figuring out the 3 things with C programming to get my 2D game working. I'm still at GSA, but getting signs of wanting to change making 33 seem out of reach, but 11 is already up there. Woke up at 10:23 AM and went to bed at 12:05 AM.
Jan 22: I first checked forums and E-mail then swapped between Gamespot and updating my dream journal. 19 of 26 dreams have been added. I ate at this point. I returned to Gamespot and updating my dream journal finishing all 26 dreams. I set up for the daily entries. I swtiched songs 3/5 of the way through the day to SMB2 Title. I was just so tempted to. I wanted it on my MP3 player so I processed it using the latest details/method. I went to bed right after this. Tomorrow, well, today after I wake up anyway, it's finishing up the daily entries and that may take all day, maybe into tomorrow. By then, I should have my TV capture card, but first, I need a backup and before that, having my website updated. Woke up at 10:50 AM and went to bed at 1:44 AM.
Jan 23: Great, now a 27th dream to add. I first ate. All but 6 pages of the daily entries are done leaving 25 days' worth left, less than half. Tomorrow, I finish, mass upload everything, fix the bugs, run a backup of my files when done, and, supposedly, install the new TV capture card. I alternated between updating the blog (even adding a new headline I forgot about - my monitor replacement), and with Gamespot. I'm still at SMB2 Title and 67% true speed on my computer really bursts through all other speeds of that song and almost even competes with OWTLI, but comes up short at 1690. Woke up at 11:59 AM and went to bed at 2:15 AM.
Jan 24: I first checked forums and E-mail and continued updating my site. I now have Jan 9 through Jan 23 left of the daily entries. I ate then went at finishing the website update. I finished just 70 seconds before midnight. I fixed the bugs I encountered then went on to backing up my files, playing SMB2 while waiting. I went on to install the TV capture card, but the TV function doesn't work at all and I was after testing out SMB2 on it. I figured this would be the case, given the reviews, but not this bad. Now it's finding useful programs that actually work. I'm still at SMB2 Title, hovering around 5000 plays. Yep, no change on the speed - 67% true speed. Woke up at 12:53 PM and went to bed at 6:54 AM.
Jan 26: Two main things occurred worth noting. The first is that I got the TV capture card working, but a new problem arose - lag, and lots of it. I press up on the control stick to change menus and the effects aren't seen on the display for another 1/4 second. See news item #2 in the Feb 2007 blog for further details. My compatibility with the card is hovering only a hair above neutral - 1.2. Second, I tackled the frame rate issue and, by using the standard clock C has, I'm able to get closer to 60 fps than Gamestudio does. However, the jerking motion is still present, probably due to the low acuracy of the timer, which rounds to the nearest 1/64 second. See news item #1 on the Feb 2007 blog for further details. With no assistance with the TV capture card and the forums dead, I took out my NES and played Blaster Master and finished it (beating the final boss). Now into programming and with far more knowledge and skill with studying game mechanics, I found the game to be a bit easier, even though it was 2 or so years since I last played the NES. When done, I wrote a review for it on Gamespot. I only watched a brief amount of TV, mostly while eating. I'm still at SMB2 Title with the same speed and EQ settings. Woke up at 3:29 PM and went to bed at 9:41 AM.
Jan 27: Goodie! 2/3 page details for the new recalled dream! I wonder where the 2-in-one-night cases have gone? 3 things make up the day. The forums made up only a small part. Playing the NES was another, and getting 3 new songs the other one. The forums is the obvious part. Playing the NES, after yesterday, was the other part. I played Felix the Cat and made it through the entire game without losing a life and without using my pausing cheat - that's a first! Even with pausing, I may have lost only one life, but I wanted to add to the challenge (and impressify the record) and did it without pausing the game. I also played Marble Madness, but it took 40+ minutes just to get the game to work, even with all that fiddling around with the cartridge. I finished the game roughly 5 times, finishing the 6th and final level. I also messed around with Metroid. I later replayed Blaster Master. When I got Marble Madness running, I got the song from the practice race level, the first one. That game reminds me of SMB2 and my mastery at SMB2 made Marble Madness look easy. I replayed Blaster Master to get the songs from areas 2 and 4. 2's intro is awesome. I was also about to get Mountains so Beautiful and Arctic Zone from Felix, but I was getting tired and forgot to eat. I also ended up forgetting to recharge my MP3 player's battery. I ate then went to bed. I'm still at SMB2 Title with the same speed and EQ settings. 4 days in a row with the same speed and EQ settings, 1/3 of my record (which is 12 days, set with Battle Zone). 67% true speed is the absolute best speed of them all. Woke up at 7:46 PM and went to bed at 11:22 AM.
Jan 28: One new song and 3 upgraded, 1 million points in Jaws (almost triple my previous record), forums, and making a sig image for Gamespot made up the day. First it was the usual - checking the forums and E-mail. Then, upon browsing Gamespot for a bit, I had an idea for my Gamespot sig image. Remember that program I had with drowning the fox? I used an expanded version of it, formatted like C would, and vividly colored with 7 colors (8 actual, but since no strings are used, there's no gray). On the side is a screenshot of the fox drowned in Hydrocity Zone Act 1. This took about 2 to 3 hours, longer since I had a hard time getting fonts within the small remaining space of 230x200 pixels and that took up 60% of the time. I realize a mistake in my program and fixing it meant another 10 minutes. The other long part was deciding on what colors to use for functions and comments. With the forums dead, I ate, watching TV. I rechecked the forums and when cleaned out, I took out the NES and played Jaws. I wanted to get 1 million points and managed to do so, but with 9 lives, 99 shells, power level 9, yeah, you get the idea. Having beaten the game 3 times, I wanted the ending theme song and got it. Recalling from yesterday, I wanted the songs from Felix and I got them as well. 3 upgraded songs and a single new one. SMB2 Title is now 5 figures in Winamp and I'm still at 67% true speed with the same EQ settings. Woke up at 10:34 PM and went to bed at 2:29 PM.
Jan 29: First I watched 2 of the 3 episodes of the show "2057", then checked the forums and E-mail. With the forums dead and since the pizza cooker tray was not thoroughly washed, out came my NES again. I first played Robin Hood to try figuring the game out. It took me a while to figure out how to keep the HP up and use food items. When I reached Sherwood Forest for the first time, I got to level 8, the highest the game went and wow was the character running fast. I contined on with little trouble but the thing I find much more difficult is figuring out what you're supposed to do next. Robin Hood and Marian are the only two recognized characters... from watching those cartoons like PeterPotamus (from Boomerang Zoo). Then it was playing Metroid and playing in the red stuff at the bottom a lot, as I've done in the past, but usually I like getting hit by enemies and avoid the stuff on the bottom (lava?). I finally got to eat after 8 or so hours at the NES. I returned to the forums and recleaned them. I went to bed 75 minutes after this. Just 10 minutes into the recleaning of the forums, I finally changed the speed for SMB2 Title from 67 to 75% true speed. Woke up at 11:55 PM and went to bed at 5:18 PM.
Jan 30: I slept for 11 hours. I first checked the forums and E-mail then ate. I returned to the forums and once recleaned, I went at my games. No more NES this time, it's now the Gamecube for, you guessed it, SMB2. That was short-lived (one hour) since I wrote a review for the remainder of the day. As to the TV capture card, if I get no new replies about it by tomorrow, I'm returning it for a different one. It's only the quarter-second lag that's problematic. See news item #2 on the Feb 2007 blog for details. I'm still at SMB2 Title, but now with signs of getting bored of it. Woke up at 5:06 AM and went to bed at 5:52 PM.
Jan 31: Hooray! I recalled a dream! 1/3 page isn't much but seems like a lot of fun, mainly the end. I first checked the forums and E-mail. I ate after a bit then returned to the forums. I was bored of SMB2 Title so I changed songs. I go 10 loops with one song, 5 in another, 60 in the next, and 100 in the next one. Having listened to 60% true speed on my MP3 player, I returned to SMB2 Title for the remainder of the day. With still no answered on the TV capture card and the lag, I RMA'ed it. I was involved with SMB2 again doing my usual - playing around with the "inch worms" stage and others in stage select (debug) later on. I was also looking into Final Fantasy Anthology since it has a game I recall an old friend laying 9 or so years ago, but no place in town has it. Supposedly about to do something for sister, I took a shower, but later never got at it. I returned to the forums briefly but being cold from the shower caused me to get tired and fall asleep. Woke up at 5:57 AM and went to bed at 5:55 PM.

Go to another time:
Earlier than 2005: Earlier than Nov 2004 | Nov 2004 (and late Oct 2004) | Dec 2004

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Year 2012: Yet to arrive....

The news entry headlines in bold are color-coded for a reason. They tell how big the event was for the headlines and how good my day was for the daily entries. From May 2006 onward, a slightly different system is used, of which has triple the precision. For dates prior to this that use color coding, from the white color, skipping two to red and so on is used. Here's what each color represents (for updates to before May of 2006):

 Extremely major event / Very good day Major event / Good day Somewhat major event / Somewhat good day Normal event / Average day Somewhat minor event / Somewhat bad day Minor event / Bad day Extremely minor event / Very bad day

Footnotes:
None