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Ryan Johnson's Web Log Err... Blog

Some Serious ASCII Love

Wow, I just found this sweet little easter egg (not sure if it's really a easter egg or what actually) in a old MacFormat magazine. Go into Applications > Utilities and open up Terminal. Then once it loads up, type "telnet" (Without the quotes of course). Then hit return and enjoy. :D Also, make sure you are connected to the internet whenever you try to do this.

Posted on June 28, 2006 at 5:13 pm
iSight Background!

Wow, I just figured out how to make my background a live video feed from my iSight camera. This also works with any other camera you have hooked up to your computer (I think), like a webcam. While this isn't very practical, it's a cool thing to show your co-workers.

The first thing you wanna do is plug in your iSight or webcam, and make sure it works using iChat AV. After you've confirmed it works, go and download MiracleSight. After double clicking on it, your system preferences should pop up. If it doesn't open your screensaver preferences in your system preferences. Make sure MiracleSight is set as your screensaver

Now for the fun part. Download this shell script from my server. Now place it anywhere you want, preferably someplace easily accessible. Once you have it where you want, open up Terminal (Applicatins > Utilities). Once Terminal loads up, drag the shell script into the main Terminal window. Hit return. Now hit F11 and see your beautiful face (hopefully).

If you have any trouble at all, feel free to leave a comment. You can also send me an email using the link above ("Send me Email").

Note: The iSight background will stop working once you quit Terminal. Also, this same trick will work with any other screensaver you might want as your background.

Posted on June 9, 2006 at 9:55 pm
Happy Mother's Day!

Just wishing a happy Mother's Day to all you mothers out there. I got my mom chocolates, and we are about to go to church. Then I'm hoping we'll go out to eat or something. After that I hope to spend a wonderful Mother's Day with my mom. :)

Posted on May 14, 2006 at 8:41 am
Search IMG Within Safari & Firefox!


Hey, I just made this little javascript code that can work inside of Safari. I got the idea from the June '06 issue of Macworld (Thanks Steve Hammond). So here is the code.


Copy and paste that into the address bar of Safari, then you can either bookmark it in your bookmarks bar or you can hit enter. You will be asked what you want to search, you enter it in and hit OK.

I also made one that will work with Firefox, and I'll try to find it now. I'll edit this post with more info soon.


EDIT: Ok, I got the FireFox one working. To do this, download this and this.

Go to your Firefox application and right click > show package contents. Then navigate to "Contents > MacOS > searchplugins". Place both of the files you donwloaded in here. Now restart Firefox and your search plugin will be in the search field.

Here is a pic in case you have trouble finding it.

Posted on May 6, 2006 at 12:32 pm
Guild Wars (PC)

You could call me cheap, but I like to think of myself as a bargain hunter. I like looking through old cheap games that were maybe all the rage a year or two ago, but are now quite cheap. That is partially the case with Guild Wars, because it still costs $40, but there is no subscription fee. After I saved up all my money, I went out and bought Guild Wars at my local game store, and I went home happy. I was sure it was worth the $40.
In case you donít know what Guild Wars is, Iíll give you a short summary. The basic gist of the game is running around the worlds, going from town to town and killing creatures. There is also a PvP (Player versus Player) portion of the game, which allows you to create a level 20 (the highest) character for you to battle in arenas. Iíll explain a little more about the story and PvP in the gameplay section.


Guild Wars is pretty similar to other MMORPGs (Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Games), except it has a very obvious story. The story goes like this. First you have to create a new character from 6 different professions. These professions are Warrior, Ranger, Monk, Elementalist, Mesmer, and Necromancer. From there you can choose the looks and height of your character along with the color of his/her starting armor. It would be very smart to read your manual about the different professions before choosing one. After that, you start out in the ďPre-GameĒ which is a tutorial area that sets you up for the main game. In the ďPre-GameĒ it begins 2 years before the main game, and everything is nice and peaceful. Asacalon City is the main town in the ďPre-Game.ĒThere you can get quests. These quests give you XP (Experience Points) once you complete them, and once you collect X number of XP, you rise to the next level. When you rise to the next level, you get more attribute points, which make skills and attacks more powerful. So after you have raised your characterís level to 3 or 4, you talk to one of the NPCs (Non-Playable Character) and you select your second profession. Then you do a quest for that profession and you are off to battle! Once you go to battle, you are sent 2 years into the future and are traveled to the destroyed Ascalon City. Here you complete a few quests, and then you go to your first mission. These missions are one long quest with a bonus, along with other players. Once you complete the mission, you gain 1,000 XP, and are moved on to another town or outpost. If you do the bonus, you get an additional 1,000 XP. So the rest of the game is pretty much completing quests and missions. The story mostly progresses from the missions, so you wonít miss anything if you donít do a certain quest. Overall, the gameplay is pretty basic; you go from enemy to enemy, attacking enemies and using skills, waiting for them to recharge. Other then that itís very much like other MMORPGs, you collect gold, spend it on armor and weapons.


The character models in Guild Wars are simply beautiful and the anti-aliasing makes them even better. Even if you have to run the game on low visual settings, they still look amazing. Iíd imagine most gaming machines will be able to run the game on high visual settings, with anti-aliasing on. Heck, my machine isnít a gaming machine, but itís fairly new and it was able to run everything on high visual settings and anti-aliasing as high as it would go. Though the character graphics are amazing, the ground textures could be a lot better. There are lots of places where there is just blocks of textures, which look horrible. This makes the experience not nearly as realistic as it should be, considering the quality of the character models. Though if you ignore the ground, it looks pretty nice. The water in most places is done beautifully too, with little ripples behind you when you run through shallow water. Overall, the graphics were top notch considering the date the game was released.


The sounds in Guild Wars are fairly good; there is a different sound depending on what terrain you are walking on. Your weapon produces a different sound depending on which enemy is being attacked. Characters also make sounds too, like when a female is knocked down, she whimpers. Also the splish splosh of walking through shallow water sounds great. I think they should have added sounds of your character randomly taunting your enemies and encouraging your allies. Maybe they thought that would be annoying, but if it was sporadic it would have been a nice feature. Overall the sound quality is fantastic, but there could have been more sounds so the player would feel more like they are actually there.


Guild Wars is a great buy if you are looking for a RPG that is playable with friends. The replay value is huge, considering how long it takes to the beat the game. After that you can create up to 3 additional characters with different professions, so itís a whole new game! Overall I would say itís well worth the $40.

Anyone looking for a fantastic RPG should definitely check out Guild Wars. With all the missions and quests to do, itíll keep you busy for a long time. Iíve been playing it for 85 hours and I havenít beaten it yet, so it should last you awhile.

Posted on April 29, 2006 at 12:54 pm
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Games Playing:
Counter Strike: Source
Call of Duty: UO
Guild Wars
Ragdoll Masters
Super Stealball
Guild Wars (PC) 4/29/2006
Ian Beck
System Details:
OS: 10.4
Processor: G4
CPU Speed: 1.26 - 1.5 GHz
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DVD: SuperDrive
Details: iSight Camera
JBL Creature Speakers
Logitech USB Headset 250
Sony Digital 8 Handycam Camcorder
Canon PowerShot A95
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