Monthly Archives: November 2009

Let’s play karaoke!

SingStar is probably the most famous karaoke game. However, it only runs on PlayStation 2 or PlayStation 3, which aren’t really cheap.

If you’re one of the millions of karaoke fans who don’t have a PlayStation, don’t worry, there is hope for you: UltraStar. It can runs on Windows, Linux and (if you’re lucky enough) MacOS X.

Once you’ve UltraStar working, you’ll need something to sing… otherwise the game will be really boring 😛 The easier way to get songs is using the “SingStar Spain”community website. There’re English websites, but due to copyright issues, they only have the TXT file used by UltraStart, so you’ll need to find the images, the music and the video by yourself.

If your Spanish is not good, don’t panic, you can use the Google Translator. It’s not perfect, but you’ll be able to manage around the web 😉

18 buttons mouse, is it too much?

Have you heard anything about the OpenOffice Mouse? Basically it’s a mouse with 18 button and they say it’ll be the most useful mouse ever.

OpenOffice Mouse

OpenOffice Mouse

I’ve a keyboard (surprised? :P), but it’s not a plain keyboard, it’s a multimedia one, which means that it has a few extra keys to control a media player, and some other things. I’ve to admit that its 13 extra buttons are useful but they’re always pissing me off. My keyboard is not the only one I’ve to use, I’ve a laptop and I’ve to use computers on campus and so on. The problem is that normally those keyboards also have multimedia keys… but in different places.

As a result I have to look to the keyboard and look for the appropriate key. In other words, I’m losing the advantage of having a fast access.

I’m just wondering, are this fancy mice really useful? Can they simplify our interaction, or are they just another well intentioned tool with a poor design? According to their web site the buttons will do different things depending on the application. As an engineer I can see why, as a user I’ll throw it away when the “Copy” button (in OpenOffice) will try to do something else on my desktop.

Apple has a very different approach, Magic Mouse. It has no buttons at all. All its surface is a multi-touchpad.

Apple Magic Mouse

Apple Magic Mouse

Honestly, which one would you prefer?

Will it be possible to resurrect this blog?

Yes, at least that’s what I hope 😉 It has been a long time since my last post, thousands of things have happened but you don’t wanna read them and I’ve not time… so it would be pointless for me to write a long post 😛

Let’s say that I’ve been graduated and I’m now undertaking a master on Human Computer Interaction at the University of York (I know, I know, I look awful, but that’s how I am).

I didn’t know but this master is bombing my mind with hundred of new ideas every single day… so I will try to post hear every couple of days with my impressions. It will be more like a place for me to clarify my own ideas rather than a useful resource for you to find answers, but hey! It’s my blog 😛

As always, I’ll be more than pleasant to hear from you so… don’t hesitate, comment!

That’s all for now, be happy 😉