5/24/2005

5-24-05 - 1

5-24-05

Everywhere I go there are people talking about wanting to get into the video game business. I try to discourage them.

New Orleans is fan freaking tastic. It's a great party town, great jazz, fun bars, you can drink on the street and wander from bar to bar, the girls are wild and showing their tits all the time, everyone is dancing and having fun, and the quarter is cool, small streets with all the people crammed together. What's more, it has the history and food and great antique shops and such which make it interesting during the day. The India House Hostel is cool; it's very social and fun. The beds are horrific and the place is generally in disarray, I've hardly slept. Some guy in bunk room kept having nightmares last night, he'd yelp in his sleep every ten minutes. My aching back!!

Met some girls from Oregon last night who were here on business trip; they bought me drinks on their expense account. A lot of the drinks are cheap here, you can get $1 beer on the street and $2 beer in bars, and not Bud Light, but decent beers like the local Abita and Sam Adams or Newcastle.

New Orleans is an olfactory experience. Bourbon street is all tourist's perfume, puke and spilled beer. The Garden District is heavy and musky, with moss and mold and magnolia. The heat and humidity are sensual.

Saw Star Wars for the 2nd time. I liked it, but it didn't really hold up for me on 2nd viewing, though Natalie Portman's performance seems even better, the fact that she's able to convey some real emotion despite the ridiculous non-acting of Hayden Christiansen. The thing that really made it drop off for me was the CG. First time I saw it the CG just blew me away - the level of detail and realism - but now some thigns really annoyed me. The background and metallic stuff is still very good for the most part, but the organic stuff sucks. I *hate* that stupid lizard thing that Obi-Wan rides, it moves so horribly, and its shaders are poor - it looks like something from Babylon 5, all shiny and gay. I *hate* that they put CG bodies on the storm troopers even when they're using human heads - it would be CHEAPER to just use a real human for the whole trooper and it would look so much better. I know there might be a consistency issue, but that sets their standard for rendering the CG guys - make them look like the real one. Yoda still bugs me, and all the bits where the humans become obvious CG in their lightsaber fights (Count Dooku becomes CG pretty badly a few times). It's amazing how good human eyes are at picking up when something is off, even if you can't figure it out in your conscience mind. A lot of times I'll see some background and think "ugh, fake CG", but I can't say exactly what makes it look wrong unless I think about it for a long time. Somehow the subconscious can tell something is wrong, but it takes the conscious mind a completely separate analytical effort to explain it - the funny bit here is that the realization it's fake and the justification are totally independent mental actions.

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