Let the Halo 3 Build-Up Begin.

Geeks who were around for the launch of Halo 2 and were paying close attention to the Internet around that time will have fond memories of ilovebees.com, which was far ahead of its time and a pioneering attempt at alternate reality gaming. Several groups have since tried to start up ARGs, only to have them fall apart due to lack of participation, lack of planning, or both.

Now, three messages have shown up on the Internet that appear to be the precursors to a Halo 3-influenced media campaign. Are they an ARG? Who knows.

I’m going to be paying attention, though.

The countdown is to midnight PT on Thursday.

Make Sure You Play Along, Or You’re Not an Official Geek.

John Siracusa’s annual WWDC bingo card for the year has been posted, and I’ve already got mine printed and ready to go while I keep up with the live feed at work on Monday.

In case you’re unfamiliar, this has become a tradition in the last few years with the Mac faithful. We dream about the wonderful things that are going to be announced either at WWDC or at Macworld, we get our hopes up to stratospheric levels (my big hope for Monday is a new iMac running Leopard), and then we sit over the keynote presentations like hawks, waiting for tidbits of news to make us excited.

I know of no other group in geek-dom that behaves quite like this.

The Only Thing More Unnerving Is That No One Seems to Care About It Anymore.

In case you missed it, STS-117 launched launched successfully on Friday and appears to be going quite well. I’m quite upset at myself for not paying more attention to it and forgetting that it was going up this month, and more upset that I never saw anything about it on the news or anywhere else.

It’s really a shame that we appear to have forgotten how important (and how dangerous) space travel can be – at least until something actually does go wrong, and then everyone manages to care again.

There’s some great pictures that are tagged as sts117 on flickr; I suggest checking them out.

Colossi Cast Really Big Shadows, Or: It’s Time to Clear the Backlog.

Inspired by a thread at 360 Arcadians, I’ve decided that my Xbox 360 going in for repairs was the perfect time to begin attempting to clear out my game backlog (that is, the games I own that I have not yet finished). The entire backlog is listed below.

I began with Shadow of the Colossus, which actually took me about a week of real life to get through, mostly because there were several evenings I didn’t play anything at all. I’m determined to play through only one game at a time, to make sure that I actually finish a few this time around.

Colossus was pretty good in the end. There was a period with a few of the mid-game colossi where I was pretty sure I wasn’t going to like the game as a whole, and I believe I stated that I hated the game in those circumstances, but when the 12th colossus and later rolled around, I found I was actually having fun. I still think the controls are a bit iffy and the camera is detestable, but the overall experience was a good one. The game has atmosphere by the bucketful and pushes the PS2 pretty well.

It started strong and ended strong, so I’m willing to forgive some of the sloppiness and poor enemy design in the middle few encounters. 1 through about 5 or 6 (maybe even 7) were great and introduced everything well, and the last four colossi were simply amazing to play.

For the record, the final time to completion according to my savefile (which includes watching the credits) was 9:38:09.

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The Demise of Apple is Greatly Exaggerated

From John Gruber’s Daring Fireball blog:

The iPod Juggernaut

A very insightful look at the portable music player market and Apple’s stranglehold thereof. He’s right on all points, of course: as an iPod owner and user and general Apple evangelist in my geek life, I’ve heard many of the arguments against the iPod, and this pretty much takes care of all of them in many of the same ways I’ve thought the truth must lie.

Gruber is often extremely right and very keen in his analysis of Apple and their business, and I believe this is no less so.

I’ve always just said that anyone who rips on the iPod just wishes they had one.
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That Depends on What You Mean By “Open”

From Daring Fireball:

There’s a line in The Usual Suspects where Kevin Spacey’s character Verbal Kint says, “The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist.”

The greatest trick Microsoft has gotten away with is convincing the public that the Wintel PC platform is open.

Great defense to the number-one defense Wintel PC users use to defend their platform against the Macintosh.

It’s Funny Because it’s True

If you have ever worked with a corporate mindset, been interested in marketing, or are even just a geek in general, you owe it to yourself to check out this link.

Found via digg.

I will say for the record that this is exactly what I expect when we get around to shopping for Windows Vista, seeing as how it’s going to be available in six different SKUs.