We went down to the local commons today, to see if the lakes would be frozen. We got there in the early afternoon, and my car temperature was already reading -2 degrees Celsius! I managed to get some decent photos taken, and so did the girlfriend. Today was the first time I had to fully kit myself out in my winter attire. Once at the lake, we were able to walk across the entire expanse of frozen water, and spent a few minutes hitting ice blocks around with sticks on the ice.
Anyway, the main reason for this post was to test my new plugin for uploading mini picture galleries to blog posts. I got it from here.
I have been using Windows 2008 Server Standard as my operating system of choice at home for quite a few months now, and twice I have had to change my password due to the security policy in place by default. This setting forces you to change your password every 42 days. Anyway, up until now I had been too lazy to disable the policy. So for those of you who don’t know where to do this, here is how.
Go to Start – Run, and type in gpedit.msc
Expand the following branches by clicking the little arrow signs next to each one :
Computer Configuration – Windows Settings – Security Settings – Account Policies – and then finally, Password Policy
Select Password policy, and on the right hand side list double click (or right click – properties) on “Maximum Password Age”
Change this to setting to 0, and then click OK.
Close the Group Policy editor, and from now on you won’t have that annoying mandatory password change every month or so.
Over the past few days I have felt the need to do something slightly more creative than gaming / watching tv / eating Christmas pudding / general lazing about on holiday. I haven’t really done any 3D modeling since 2005, apart from a few odds and ends here and there. This was done after some recapping and getting back up to speed with 3D Studio Max.
I used a couple of techniques learnt from doing some recap tutorials for the mountains and rocks. I made the texture on the rocks by overlaying a photo of some old mossy type plants over a photo of some sandy rock. Bump mapping was done using the same image in high contrast black & white. Anyway, here is the current render I have. I will upload one of the first renders later, and then perhaps see if I can improve on the current render whenever I get a spare moment.
The other day I decided it was time to get another Xbox 360. My original Core unit that I bought a couple of years ago was stolen in South Africa, and since then I have not been into console gaming. After playing Rock band, Geometry wars, and seeing the new Gears of War 2 previews, the temptation was too much, and we went out and got an Xbox 360 Premium, an extra wireless controller, play and charge kit, and a few games. I was pleasantly surprised to see an HDMI connector on the back of the console, and must say that 1080p, along with optical audio (using Logitech Z5500 speakers) equals an incredible gaming experience! All I need now is my own TV! (This one belongs to our housemate).
So far we are playing :
PGR 4, Sonic, Ninja Gaiden 2, and a bunch of free demos from Xbox Live. Can’t wait to get hold of : Rockband / Rockband 2, GoW2, GTA IV, and Tomb Raider Underworld.
Here is my Gamertag for now. This should dynamically update as I get more gamerscore.