Archive

November 23rd 2012, 10:58 pm PT

From One Major to Another

Posts about celebrities passing away are not something I typically cover, but this time it’s different. Let me explain.

Today, an iconic actor named Larry Hagman died. For those of you who don’t recognize that name, take a look at his lengthy filmography. He is often remembered for his role as JR on the TV series “Dallas.” I, however, know him a different way.

I am often asked where my gamertag comes from. It’s a pretty simple story really. A few years ago our TiVo recommended an episode of “I Dream Of Jeannie” starring. Larry Hagman, At the time I was trying to come up with  a Gamertag and I was stumped but watching Hagman play this cool astronaut named Major Nelson, inspired my new gamertag. It had to be Major Nelson.

So while I may have borrowed the name of his character, Larry Hagman, he is in fact, the real Major Nelson.

November 23rd 2012 at 10:58 pm | Random | 22 comments

October 31st 2012, 8:01 pm PT

Disney buys Lucas Films

Pretty big news this week and the Disney Parks folks put their special spin on it.

Disney Parks nailed it with this one…

October 31st 2012 at 8:01 pm | Random | 14 comments

October 31st 2012, 7:45 pm PT

The greatest airline safety instruction video ever?

I think so

..and whatever a Skycouch is…I want one.

THIS is how you get people to watch safety videos.

October 31st 2012 at 7:45 pm | Random | 5 comments

August 23rd 2012, 9:01 am PT

New Microsoft logo

After 25 years, I’d say it was time for an refresh. Above is the new one that you’ll start seeing pop up over the next few months. Back story and more on the Microsoft Blog.

August 23rd 2012 at 9:01 am | Industry, Random | 62 comments

June 10th 2012, 11:38 am PT

Join us for a Prometheus G+ Video Hangout tonight

If you are looking for something to do tonight for an hour, join me, e and Stepto as we discuss (and try to decipher)  the movie Prometheus tonight (Sunday 10 June) at 10p ET/7p PT (what time is that in your time zone?) I’ll set up a Google Plus Video Hangout where we will go over the plot points and discuss what this movie meant to us as fans of the Alien franchise. It goes without saying that this discussion will be filled with spoilers. We are going to openly go over characters, plot points etc. in depth.

Do not join us if you have not seen the film!

Once we are live, I’ll post a link on Twitter or you can just add me to a circle and you’ll see the Hangout pop up in your feed.

 

 

 

   
   

Edit: If you missed the live hangout, here is the archive:

June 10th 2012 at 11:38 am | Random | 12 comments

July 10th 2011, 7:50 pm PT

Back from Alaska

After a week on an Alaskan cruise, it is now time to come to face with the reality that my vacation is now over. A few of you asked about the trip, and specifically what ship and itinerary I was on. I thought I’d share that with you now and maybe it will help you make your own decisions if you wish to see if Alaska (or cruising) is for you.

CEL_7N_SawyerGlacier_IN_May20

My wife and I sailed on the Celebrity Infinity out of Seattle. We choose the one-week itinerary that included Ketchikan, Tracy Arm Fjord, Juneau; Skagway, Alaska Inside Passage and Victoria, British Columbia. They offer quite a few different options, but this one worked for our timing. The highlight of the trip was Tracy Arm.  Waking up at 6am and stepping out onto the deck into the middle of a fjord was spectacular. I can’t say enough about the raw natural beauty of the area, but check out some of my photos to get a taste of what it was like. See for yourself here.  Following that we went on a whale watch in Juneau. We saw over 40 Killer Whales and dozen’s of Humpback whales in just a couple of hours In Skaway, we spend the morning heading up to the White Pass region via the White Pass and Yukon Route Railroad. This was a nice side trip where we learned about the history of the Klondike Gold Rush and the engineering accomplishment that is the Railroad.

 

The ports of call were fine, however they were too much of a tourist trap for my taste. As we pulled into each port, we were greeted by jewelry store after jewelry store. It turns out that many of these are owned by conglomerates that simply follow the cruise ship season. That means once the cruises season wraps up in Alaska in September, the stores pack up and head to Mexico or the Caribbean for the Winter Season. Next Spring, they’ll head back to Alaska. Apparently when you are on a cruise, you have an uncontrollable urge to purchase jewelry. My wife and I, however, never suffered from this enigma.

If you do make the trek to Alaska, try to go off the beaten path and find a shop that is locally owned and operated and trades in Alaskan made products to help directly support the local economy.

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A quick note about the Infinity. If you are planning on taking her on a cruise, do so after December 3rd 2011. That is when it’s headed in for a three-week refurb which is sorely needed. The staff on board was fantastic (and as it turns out they’re Xbox fans) but the ship has quite a few nautical miles under her and is now ready for a remodel.  Also, if you like to stay highly connected, then you’ll need to seriously alter your habits regardless of what cruise you go on. While many of the cruise ships offer internet access while at sea, it is not cheap. I restricted myself to only signing in for about 15-minutes each day during the cruise to check mail (and post a few Tweets.)  As you can imagine, using satellite technology as your primary connectivity comes at a steep cost: .75 a minute . With that type of rate, you need to have a regimented strategy for going on line and getting work done as quickly as possible and then signing off.

In summary, if you have the chance to go to Alaska . . go. You won’t regret it.  If you have any questions about the ship, post them in the comments and I’ll do my best to answer them.

We now return to our regular scheduled talk about gaming.

July 10th 2011 at 7:50 pm | Random | 30 comments

June 30th 2011, 10:58 am PT

Major Nelson out for a week

I wanted to let you know that I am headed out of town this week for vacation/holiday. I’ll be sailing the high seas on a cruise, so my online time will be limited. That means a few things:

  • The updates here on the blog will be sparse until I return. In the meantime, litheon may jump in and make a post or two as needed.
  • Will I be Tweeting? Probably a little bit through out the week, but much less than normal.
  • I won’t be reading or responding to email until I return.
  • No podcasts for Sunday July 3rd or the 10th. We’ll record a show when I return and get that posted as quickly as possible since we’ll probably have a lot to discuss by then.

If you need help with your Xbox 360 or Xbox LIVE, be sure to ask our award winning Twitter Support team @xboxsupport They’re ready to help.

That’s pretty much what’s up. Enjoy your gaming and I’ll be back soon.

             

June 30th 2011 at 10:58 am | Random | 38 comments

June 28th 2011, 4:44 pm PT

What’s up with my Twitter picture?

Last week I decided to update my Twitter profile with a new picture. Little did I know it would cause a great deal of confusion and concern, but then I realized posting a photo of yourself on fire with no context will do that .

Let me use this post to bring everyone up to speed.

First you’ll need to watch the below video, which I did for Inside Xbox for the release of the Xbox LIVE Arcade game Splosion Man.

As you saw, I was set on fire for the video. None of that was CG or Photoshop.

Now, and I can’t stress this enough, it was a carefully controlled stunt done specifically for this video. Using the top stunt coordinators in the Northwest, the entire video was shot under the strictest of safety precautions.

Now that you’ve seen the video above, here for the first time, are some behind the scenes photos that show what went into the setting up of the flaming shot.

So, as you can see the picture of me with my hair on fire was part of a stunt. That’s it. Plain and simple.

No one was hurt, burned or damaged. But I got a nice Twitter profile picture out of it.

June 28th 2011 at 4:44 pm | Random | 25 comments

March 15th 2011, 1:28 am PT

Homework before you play Homefront

I was perusing Netflix a few weeks ago, and came across the The Vice Guide to Travel. This is from the strange dudes behind Vice Magazine (which should tell you something right there.) What I want you to do is go straight to episode 8, VICE Guide to North Korea. This 60-minute episode will provide you with a rare glimpse of life inside North Korea which is different to say the least. The section with the Mass Gymnastic demonstration (Mass Games) alone is indescribable. For another angle on the Mass Games, watch A State Of Mind (Netflix link) from the BBC.  If you are looking forward to Homefront releasing this week, then watching one or both of these programs may give you a bit of the backstory that sets the stage for the story in Homefront.

 

You Tube preview of Vice Guide to North Korea
Direct Netflix link to VICE Guide to North Korea

Direct Netflix link to A State Of Mind

 

I know Netflix is not available in all Xbox LIVE regions, so do a search at your local video provider to see if they carry them. If you watch it, let me know what you think.

March 15th 2011 at 1:28 am | Random | 16 comments

January 27th 2011, 2:06 am PT

A preview of my experience with the Nissan LEAF

 

 

Nissan LEAFEarlier this week, Nissan let me borrow one or their Nissan LEAF electric cars. While some may argue that the exterior design is not the most pleasing to the eye, it’s what you can’t see that will really turn heads. The car has almost every conceivable high tech gadget and gizmo packed into the car: GPS, Bluetooth, LED headlamps, back up camera etc.

 

What I found most interesting was the always on, always connected aspect of the car. The LEAF has a Telematics system that Nissan calls Carwings. IMG_0007This system can upload and download data about the cars performance and energy savings, as well as update the GPS database with the location of charging stations in your area (very helpful.)  You can also use this connectivity to query the status of the car, as well as send it commands like start charging or turn on the heat via your mobile phone.

 

Driving under 100% battery power is a little different from gasoline power. First off, you have all of 100% of your torque from the moment you step on the accelerator. If you’ve ever played with a slot car, you know that means: A LOT of power right off a dead stop. It’s pretty impressive how fast you can go when you need to, like merging into fast moving traffic. Fortunately, when you hit the brake, the LEAF is designed to capture that power with the regenerative brake and send it back to the battery. Second: I did find myself having a little ‘Distance Anxiety’ when I was driving around. Since charging up a battery can take a lot longer than filling up a tank of gas….you drive around and wonder (hope?) that you’ll make it home.

 

The Nissan LEAF tries to calm your fears by giving you real-time feedback on your remaining battery power, as well as showing you via the GPS Map what your current range is. It helps.

 

There are plenty of reviews posted for the LEAF, but I thought you’d enjoy a closer look inside through some videos and pictures I’ve posted. If you have any questions, feel free to post them in the comments and I’ll try and answer them.

 

Listen to the show this weekend where we’ll talk more about the experience with the LEAF.

 

See my video and pictures of the Nissan LEAF

January 27th 2011 at 2:06 am | Random | 39 comments

January 22nd 2011, 7:22 pm PT

Voicemail spam

 

I received this voicemail on my mobile phone last night. How many red flags pop up for you when you hear it ?

 

A ‘certified non-profit agency’ wants to ‘consolidate my credit cards’ ? Riiiiiight.

 

Click the player below to hear the voicemail.

 

 

Download the audio file here->  Voicemail spam

 

Comments? Questions? Email me

   

January 22nd 2011 at 7:22 pm | Random | 31 comments

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