Starcraft 2 – Splitted into 3s

More news on the delayed game on Starcraft II was released from BlizzCon 2008 yesterday. Below links to a video about the announcement:

http://www.gametrailers.com/player/41531.html

Here’s a summary of what is plan for Starcraft II:

  • Starcraft II will now be in 3 separate part, a trilogy. The first game – Wings of Liberty – would be on the Terrans. Second, Heart of the Swarm on the Zergs. The Legacy of the Void, the third and final part of the trilogy will be on the Protoss.
  • Each game would contain around 26 to 30 missions in the campaigns.
  • Multiplayers will be available through each game. Each races are balanced.

However, the release date have stayed the game – for 2009. But would all three parts comes out in the same year? I highly doubt it. Probably it would take another year or so for the entire package to be fully complete.

Other Things Should Consider:

  • The release date of the other 2 game – Zerg and Protoss – might even take 2 years to be release.
  • The price. You would have to pay for the same game for 3 times?!

More Regarding The Announcement:

CNet
Joystiq
Gametrailers

Japanese Endless Peeling Banana Toy

Bored? Have nothing better to do? Craving for a banana? Fear not! The Japanese have once again release some weird, but unique gadget to satisfy your craves! Introducing the “Endless Banana” created by Epoch.

Bananas have been one of the most popular food for breakfast this year in Japan. However, with the shortage of banana being imported into the country, it is hard to satisfy those that are craving for bananas. Epoch saw this as an opportunity for a new toy to temporary satisfy these banana-craze bunch.

Every peel of the toy makes a sound. The sound are actually human voice recordings from voice actress, Saki Fujita. (It is actually a comical sound like BOING and not real peelings sounds)

So, for you banana lovers out there… go BANANA!!

via [Kilian]

Chinese Space Walk Mission

Few hours ago, China has successfully launched it’s rocket – the Shenzhou 7 up into space for the coming 3-days project. This will be the first time to have Chinese space walking. Although it is not something new to the world (where the US and Russia was its predecessor), but it is an anticipated “goal” for China.

This is a historical moment in Chinese history. Millions will be watching the mission as it broadcast. Does this reminds you of something? Doesn’t this feels like how it was 30 years ago for American?

Well, if you never had the chance of witnessing it 30 years ago (like me), you have another chance!

Chicken Soup: Good or Bad for Sickness?

As you have notice I haven’t been writing as much lately, this is largely due to the fever, cold, flu that I been having for the week. While I was lying on my bed, some questions came to my head. Thinking back, when I was still a kid and living with my parents, I was always told to avoid eating chickens, seafood, fried foods, fast foods, etc. when I am sick. I was told that it would make my sickness last long!

Question is, is it true? So with this curiousity in mind, I searched through the Internet to find an answer for myself (since I kind of want to eat chicken, although my mom told me not to).

After hours of reading and searching, I found out (well actually I knew) chicken was good for your health. Many people make chicken soup for cold remedies. Although we still don’t really know why, but research have shown it does help in some way.

Irwin Ziment, M.D., pulmonary specialist and professor at the UCLA School for Medicine, says chicken soup contains drug-like agents similar to those in modern cold medicines. For example, an amino acid released from chicken during cooking chemically resembles the drug acetylcysteine, prescribed for bronchitis and other respiratory problems.

Spices that are often added to chicken soup, such as garlic and pepper (all ancient treatments for respiratory diseases), work the same way as modern cough medicines, thinning mucus and making breathing easier.

Another theory, put forth by Stephen Rennard, M.D., chief of pulmonary medicine at the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha, is that chicken soup acts as an anti-inflammatory. The soup, he says, keeps a check on inflammatory white blood cells (neutrophils). Cold symptoms, such as coughs and congestion, are often caused by inflammation produced when neutrophils migrate to the bronchial tubes and accumulate there. — from Chet’s Day

As for why Chinese are saying it was bad for you… I guess it was some kind of “old wives’ tales”. There are many beliefs or superstition in the Chinese cultures, probably this was one of it? However, it might have to do with the ancient way of Chinese medicine? Probably it might have gone against some of the properties of the Chinese medicine and might affect it in some way?

But, it is widely proven that chicken is not bad to eat during sickness. I recommend trying some chicken soup when you are having a cold, it really does help! Some other food that is good too: ginger, garlic, lemon, and miso. These are recommended by Chinese too! Chinese congee is good too! Another one: Chinese said don’t drink cold stuff when coughing – don’t know whether it is true or not. Probably another topic for another time.

Sources:

Chet’s Day
myDr.com.au

Apple iPod Event 2008 – Summary

Although week behind, let’s take a look at what the event talked about:

iTunes 8

Apple’s music player – iTunes was introduced first during last Monday’s event. The newest version, iTunes 8 is free to be download anytime now. There are a few new features on the player, but the most important of them all was the Genius function.

Genius, is a function in iTunes that automatically creates a playlist for you.

iTunes creates a playlist of other songs from your library that go great together. Genius playlists help you discover songs in your library you never knew you had — and rediscover forgotten favorites. — Excerpt from Apple

Other changes included coverflow, new ways of organizing, view, and searching (just like iLife).

iPod Classic

The only changes to the iPod Classic was – dropping the thicker version and adding more memories to the slimmer one. Since “almost” everybody, as Steve Jobs mentioned, bought the slim version, Apple has decided to stop producing the thicker one. As for the size, the slim iPod Classic will changed from 80GB to 120GB (same price as the old).

New iPod nano

I knew I was right! They have re-design the iPod nano and now introducing the newest iPod nano chromatic. Yes, they are in colors again with more choices this time. The screen is still the same, they added the accelerometer (found in iPhones and iPod touch), they improved the interface, and added a voice recording features.

With the new accelerometer added onto the new nano, you can now shake the iPod the change songs. This feature was first introduced to the iPhone. They also implemented the Genius function, without having connected to iTunes. They are available now in stores near you for:

8 GB for $149*
16 GB for $199*

*In American Dollars

The Funnest iPod Ever – iPod touch

Here’s are the changes to the newest 2nd generation iPod touch:

  • More thinner than the first generation.
  • New designs – like a side volume control.
  • New full chrome on the back of the iPod.
  • Genius added on.
  • The ability to play more advanced games. Games like Spore, Need for Speed Undercover, etc.
  • Nike + iPod support built in – only useful when you buy the Nike shoes that is compatible with it.
  • Maps location-based service – with the Map apps, it detects the closest Wifi location and show where you are.

iPod touch is now available for:

8 GB for $229*
16 GB for $299*
32 GB for $399*

*In American Dollars

Others:

  • Apple In-Ear Headphones with Remote and Mic

Sources:
Ubergizmo
Apple

Happy Mid-Autumn Festival!

Today is the Chinese’s Mid-Autumn Festival! This is the day where Chinese have family reunion and celebrate the traditional harvest day.

This event have been celebrated by Chinese for over 3000 years – started in the Shang Dynasty. It became popular and was spread throughout many parts of Asia (East Asia to be exact). We usually eat mooncakes, lit up lanterns, and watch the moon at this time of the year. If you live in a city full of Chinese, you will usually see dragon dances going around and in the past with firecracker and fireworks – before it was banned.

Chinese traditional mooncakes looks like this:

It has a somewhat thick skin containing salt duck egg yolks lotus seed paste. For me, it is kind of greasy, which I don’t really like. Despite that I am Chinese, I don’t really like eating it at all. Well tradition is tradition, I still usually take 1/4 of it.

In other countries, it may be referred as the Moon Festival or Lantern Festival. Lanterns are another aspect of the festival. When I was a kid, we usually buy those paper folded lanterns and place a tiny candle inside litting it up. It comes with many varieties of patterns and design. Some are big and some are small, while others have unique and unusual shapes.

The festival is actually a moon worshipping event for us. Because the moon is the main attraction of the event, many of the legends that we have about it are always retold during this day. We have tales of the Houyi, the archer that shot down nine suns and his wife Chang’e – where she was eventually “floated” to the moon when she ate the pills (like Pandora in Greek mythology). The Jade Rabbit that lives on the moon making elixirs (also found in Japanese and Korean culture), and the woodcutter Wu Gan – who was punished to the moon and was to cut down the Cherry tree with his axe. However, ever chop he make, the tree recovers and spring back to life instantly.

Back in China, this day will be celebrated with fireworks and lanterns (floating on the water, in people’s hand, and floating in mid-air). This is a big day – only second to Chinese New Year! So head out and enjoy!

The not-so Anticipated Apple Event?

A week ago, it was confirmed that the next Apple Event, which occurs every year, is to held at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts Theater in San Francisco on tomorrow – September 9 at 10:00 AM (Pacific Time) when Apple sent invitations along with the tag line: “Let’s Rock”.

It was, however, reported that it would have nothing to do with the Macs, only iPods. This might not be new to people since they does this every year. There has been rumors going around on the Internet for awhile about new iPods, possible new designs, etc.

Somehow the event does not stir as much excitement that it use to have for me.

Anyways, here is what I guess the event would be about:

  1. Dropping prices for current iPod/iPhones.
    Price dropping of their iPods occurs every year. I am positive there will be some price dropping somewhere in the iPod lines this year as well.
  2. Increasing disk space for current iPods/iPhone.
    Probably a 40GB iPod Touch now? I don’t know about you, but I am a big fan of large disk spaces! (Need more space for my iPod Touch!!)
  3. New or redesigned iPods.
    It should be about time to make something new or even redesigning the iPod Nano into an iPod Nano Touch? I would not be surprise to see a smaller size Touch though. A slimmer iPod Touch or iPhone would be sexy too!
  4. New apps introduce for iPod/iPhones.
    Surely this must be some new applications for the iPod Touch and iPhone right?! Then again I don’t think people would be interested in it with jailbreaking and hacks spreading across. They might even implement some new type of security feature against this too!
  5. Changes in the iTunes store.
    Nothing much anticipated here, since I don’t use the iTunes store at all. But most likely, Apple might add more options, completely redo of the cover albums and organization, new movies, new cooperation with another entertainment company, etc.
  6. More of those compatible products?
    Remember the AppleTV and such? I am guessing probably some improvements there with the iPods? Or even a new product that goes with the iPod/iPhone lines.

Whatever they present tomorrow, it will definitely change the iPods and iPhones in someway. Hopefully they can get rid of that volume limit thingy or fix their iTunes player. I been having trouble with the iTunes for awhile now.

Hmm… I am still not excited about the event tomorrow though. Hopefully, it will turn out the other way around and blows my mind off!