Monthly Archives: September 2009

Forza 3 Demo Review

Being a huge fan of the original Forza as well as Forza 2, I just had to have the newest edition. In preparation for the official release in a few weeks, I have now replaced my RROD XBOX 360 with a brand new arcade edition and have downloaded the Forza 3 demo.

It is a HUGE download, so plan on it taking a while. I was able to watch an episode of Mad Men while waiting.

Once it booted up I was amazed already wiThu the level of graphics. As soon as I had the chance, I started up a race. For the initial I chose the mini cooper S. It is dog slow. I also chose advanced mode because that is how I race: no traction control, no brake assist, no stability management; just ABS. That car sucked and the best I could do was a 4th in 3 races. Moving along…. Ferrari California. Beautiful car, and a blast to race! I was able to win that race on the first try, but it took some aggressive and creative passing strategy in the alst turn.Next it was on to the 911 GT3 R3 car. WOW. It is fast! I couldn’t keep it on the road and finished dead last.

After losing, I was able to watch a replay and notice the detail of this new game. First off, the demo track is crazy narrow with almost all decreasing radius turns. It has mountain drop offs and cliff sides to deal with. Think back to the Pacific races in the original Need For Speed. What I was most impressed with wasn’t the detail of the actual road surface (complete with cracks in pavement and bumps) but rather the uneven edges of the pavement. It is just like one of those ancient roads! I also raced with the in car view and LOVED the detailed interiors.

I also noted that the car dynamics are much more realistic. Changing to the race car, you can actually tell that it is a race car with the way that it skips over the pavement and is much more unsettled than the street cars.

Why gmail went down for the afternoon of Sept 1

Gmail is a fantastic service. Even better than gmail though, is gmail on your own domain name. I work with about a dozen domains with mail hosted on gmail. When they all suddenly went down yesterday it was a big deal to me. That is a lot of users wondering why their mail won’t load.
Google answered the question of why soon after the 100 minute outage was repaired. As it turns out, they were in the midst of a hardware upgrade and did not realize that the load on gmail was as high as it is. While the servers were all able to handle the issue, the routers handling the traffic management were overloaded. IMAP and POP service was available, but outlook sync and web access were down. Google talk and and other apps were up as well.
My response to google: durring my workday, you have been down for a little more than 2 hours in the 5 years that I have been using gmail. Good work! Kudos on constantly upgrading services and servers. Not having to host mail on normal servers makes it all worthwhile.