Guardians of the Galaxy – the TV Show

 

Now speaking of Guardians of the Galaxy (now the Marvel guys) they’re getting their own show. While technically the show not cannon and a cartoon, it still seem to be faithful to the film. Who knows when the next sequel will be (2016 is a good guess); so if you want to see the further adventures of Star Lord, Gamora, Drax, Rocket, and of course Groot then check this show out. It just premiered so you can catch it fresh from the beginning.

 

 

 

 

The Jedi Council’s 9 Dumbest Decisions

 

Remember how I defend Hayden Christensen’s portrayal of Anakin Skywalker, and no I didn’t change my mind. Anakin ended up the way he did due to bad luck and stupidity, but the Jedi own a lot to his failure. As noble as the Guardians of the Galaxy (not the Marvel guys) are they make too many mistakes and Anakin is involved with a lot of those. Fortunately IGN did a video of some of their bigger ones between the six movies; while some are nitpicks others are legit. If the Jedi are going to build a new republic they need to avoid a lot of these mistakes.

 

 

 

 

 

This Just In (Or not): ‘THE VOID’ will allow people to get into games like never before – without limits

Untitled

 

Games have come a long way since Pong in the 1970s. From simple pixiels going back & forth to highly complex visual, audio, and storytelling masterworks, video gaming seems like it has reached it’s fullest potential. However a gentleman by the name of Ken Bretschneider doesn’t believe so. He believes that gaming can evolve further; where players aren’t just limited to controlling an avatar on a screen, but being that character, interacting with the game both physically and virtually. How? By entering ‘THE VOID’.

 

THE VOID (Vision Of Infinite Dimensions) is (or will be) immersive entertainment centers, similar to Laser tag, where the entire building will be tailor made to fit the games provided. Also like laser tag players will get equipment to use like a VR headset, a Backtop (the power source for the headset) and items associated with the game they’re playing.

 

While it may not seem like it, this combo of custom made environments and constantly improving VR tech is what will make THE VOID stand out from the pack.

 

Most people have a negative reaction when it comes to Virtual Reality. Bretschneider believes that’s due to a lack of control, because when doing some virtually (via a headset) without doing it physically is unnatural. THE VOID centers will change this and create full immersion for players. On the game floor will have real objects you can touch, different scents in the air, temperature changes and the ground shifting as you move. The technology will not only have better visual acuity but the harness of the Backtop will also double as an impact vest. Meaning if something in VR touches a player they will feel it to a certain degree. These are the small bits of the combined VR experience THE VOID has tried on various people in the past – and they stated, “We have not had a person who didn’t feel comfortable inside the environment.”

 

THE VOID does sound impressive and it seems like they’re on the right track. However ‘Evermore’, Ken Bretschneider other interactive entertainment project – opening this year, has been delayed indefinitely due to a lack of funding and the land they acquired was too close to residential properties. Evermore was an equally impressive idea that, in the end, never fully realized. Will THE VOID share the same fate or become the next step for gaming evolution – we’ll all find out next year.

 

 

 

Taxes in the 21st Century

april-15-taxes

 

As once said by Benjamin Franklin; nothing is certain – except death and taxes.
 

This saying may be now than any other time of year; tax season has arrived. This means either a complex nightmare to the average person, or a sizable paycheck to tax services.

 

One way or another, doing taxes will cost you time or money or both.

 

 

The times, they are changing, even if the taxes don’t. Available now is computer software that can help’s even the most extreme of tax- challenged individuals with simple instructions and user-friendly options. Two products in particular are known for being tax’s top dogs in software. The highly acclaimed Turbo Tax and Tax Cut backed by H&R Block.

 

 

 

 

Turbo tax was created by Chipsoft but was absorbed by a business software company called Intuit when they bought out the company in 1993. Intuit already owns many tax related computer programs but Turbo Tax quickly became one of their popular sellers.

 

The reason? They follow the old adage: “Keep it simple, stupid.”

 

 

Each and every question from beginning to end is led by the program once step at a time. Users will find no complexity here as everything is answered in either a yes, no or fill in the figure.

 

Nothing here is the luck of the draw; the program will double check the work (with the information users provided) to make sure things add-up. At anytime an error is made or found the user can go back to any part of the process and fix it without missing a beat.

 

Don’t know a ‘Sin Tax’ from a ’Surtax’? No worries, Turbo Tax have an extensive help section that not only defines tax jargon but offers tips and directions (audio and video) to assist the user.

 

 

Still lost? Turbo Tax has it covered, enter the Live Community ask your questions there.

 

 

It’s filled with tax solutions written by tax vets and other Turbo Tax users. It even has an option to use a tax professional to help users through their filing for a small payment.

 

All this, and more, plus a full guarantee protection of user’s personal information makes Turbo Tax well worth the cost. And the awards it has earned over the years.

 

 

 

 
With the successes of Turbo Tax, many other companies are putting their hat in the arena. Some with good programs, but none of them was quite a match for Turbo Tax – that is until H&R Block released Tax Cut.

 

Tax Cut has many of features of Turbo Tax such as ease of use and extensive help option. Tax Cut however has some features that are exclusive to H&R Block brand name, such as ‘Audit Support’.

 

This means if somehow the user is audited H&R Block will sent a tax agent to help them through the process with IRS. Also if there is a calculation error on their part they will pay the IRS fees + plus interest.

 

Another advantage to Tax Cut is, like Turbo Tax, users can talk to a Tax Consultant for help. However Tax Cut will provide that assistance for free for the first time.

 

Finally the boxed version of Tax Cut can be updated by the user. By doing that users can reuse the same software every year to do future taxes. Even use information from other financial programs (even Turbo Tax) that user’s have. This saves some money by not buying new tax software every year, but user must reinstall and update the program each year.

 
Tax software on paper sounds like a great idea, but is it as accessible and ‘fool-proof’ as they say.; What about the tax CPA’s who been helping people, for years – what do they think about these programs?

 

 

 

 
James W. Stone is a once such tax professional of 30 years who also happens to be a Minster as well. In his opinion he says that a person would input more information into a tax program than by paper

 

 

“It’s more precise… Certain icons won’t let you (complete the program) without answering questions first.” He also said “You’ve got to be careful because certain people can get into your computer and get your personal information and banking numbers.”

 

 

Currently, high-end tax programs have many protections to prevent malicious people from getting a user filing information. However such things have been know to happen despite the precautions.

 

Another piece of advice Stone had was to research carefully the different programs right now are vying for people attention. If someone’s going to buy particular software, research it, don’t go by reputation alone.

 

 

“Tax programs are quick and accurate, but only as smart as the person who uses them.”

 

 

Turbo Tax and Tax Cut, however, provide a basic, free, version of their software available online. These versions are federal tax only and have a few limitations, but they are great trial versions for those still on the fence. Whatever you do though get crackin, today is the last day and you don’t what the IRS to have words with you.
 

 

 

Armada 2nd annual Talk like a Pirate day (Arr)!

 

Welcome, welcome me hardies! I’m more jollier than a roger to announce Armada 2nd annual Talk like a Pirate day (Arr)! This voyage we`re nay only on th’ starboard tide but we got interestin’ posts t’ celebrate th’ occasion. But t’ start please click on th’ pic above t’ listen t’ th’ unofficial official `Talk like a Pirate` tide theme song arr…

 

 

Now that that’s ou’ o’ th’ way let’s yo-ho-ho on t’ th’ first-mate gentleman o’ fortune based post o’ th’ tide! Blow me down lads an’ lasses! Thar be many pirates an’ privateers that exist on th’ se’en sea but yet all th’ scurvy swabbies seem t’ give doubloons about be lily skinned land lovers an’ marooned bilge rats. ‘t’s enough t’ make e’en th’ most experienced sea farer toss his grog all o’er th’ deck! Well mates in order t’ remedy this, yer captain here will make ‘t be known th’ se’en best gentleman o’ fortunes on th’ seas. True heroes o’ freedom they arrr! Let’s begin!

 

 

 

 

7. Patchy the Pirate (Spongebob Squarepants)

 

 

What better way t’ continue th’ proud tradition o’ bein’ a buccanneer than by startin’ wi’ th’ young lads an’ ladies. Mainly about th’ tales o’ a underwater flotsam (or jetsam, I could nerereally tell arrr) on a nickelodeon machine, this Seafarin’ hearty known as Patchy sometimes appears t’ entertain th’ masses. He doesn’t steal coins or fine silverware, his steals th’ hearts minds o’ th’ wee ones everywhere. Don’t let yer guard down me hearties, he be a man o’ th’ sea through’n through – if ye don’t tread carefully he may run ye through!

 

 

 

 

6. Don Karnage (Tale Spin Series)

 

 

Arrr! ‘t doesn’t matter if ye be man or anthropomorphic; a buccanneer’s a buccanneer an’ Don Karnage be a buccanneer. Greedy, vain, cruel, will rob anythin’ he sees, perfectly fine qualities fer a pirate – howere Karnage be also a man o’ th’ world; able t’ speak French, Spanish, an’ Italian all at th’ same time. He be also smarter than yer average pirate as well; instead o’ pillagin’ th’ seas he takes his crew t’ th’ skies wi’ his mechanical sky ship th’ Iron Vulture. He once constructed (on th’ afts o’ his crew o’ course) a lightnin’ gun an’ terrorized an entire city – a glorious tide indeed! ‘t didn’t end well but at least they got some good booty ou’ th’ deal maties.

 

 

 

 

5. Captain Syrup (Wario land series)

 

 

The legendary lass leader o’ th’ Black Sugar Pirates (or th’ Black Sugar Gang dependin’ on who ye talk t’ matey). Thar be swashbuckler captains more infamous than th’ lass’ but none more cunnin’. Nay only does she be havin’ th’ loyalty o’ th’ lass’ crew, th’ lass’ own isle, arrr, an’ a ship; but Syrup can trick lily livered fat landlubbers t’ th’ stealin’ fer th’ lass’! An’ she has a genie! I wonder if she’s single arr…

 

 

 

 

4. Monkey D. Luffy (One Piece series)

 

 

Now th’ lad here be th’ most un-sea dog sea dog t’ ereexist period. He spends most o’ his time doin’ good, helpin’ th’ helpless, an’ takin’ down other sea dogs FER FREE!!! His crew’s nay better; composed o’ freaks, lubbers, scallywags, an’ grog blossoms. Th’ only reason they’re on this list, (let along #4 bucko) be on accoun’ o’ they’re good PR fer all Swashbuckler kind. Once fat lubbers starts t’ trust sea dogs like we’re the’r shipmates we can rob them anytime we want Arr har har har!

 

 

 

 

3. Isabela (Dragon Age series)

 

 

 

Now this swashbuckler be known as captain, thief, adventurer, hornswaggler, wench, booty hunter, crack more than a wee Jennys grog cups, betrayer, schemer, duelist, survivor, lover, heartbreaker, lucky seadog, an’ more. That’s enough t’ be a full-fledged buccanneer fer life but what make th’ lass’ number 3 be that she instigated a four voyage cold war between two peoples that erupted violently on accoun’ o’ somethin’ she stole an’ then lost. Howereonce Isabela found that item, instead o’ givin’ ‘t aft like some soft bilge rat an’ stoppin’ a bloody battle goin’ on all around th’ lass’ – she bolts, keepin’ th’ item t’ sell fer more dubloon than ye an’ I can count. We salute ye Captain Isabela.

 

 

 

2. Captain Jack Sparrow (Pirate of the Caribbean series)

 

 

 

Borne th’ lad o’ an infamous pirate lord, Captain Jack Sparrow be destined t’ become a great pirate whether he wanted t’ be or nay. He’s been in countless adventures (an’ a wee misadventures) that be havin’ already turn into legends; fought zombies an’ won, beat Davy Jones‘ in single combat, an’ found th’ fabled fountain o’ youth. Why he’s ou’ thar starboard now doin’ somethin’ incredible (if nay totally believable at times) an’ we’ll only hear th’ tale if he comes aft alive (again). Th’ only reason he’s nay th’ number one sea dog be that he’s th’ only sea dog I know who loses more ships than he steals: an’ without a ship ye’re jus’ a swabby in long clothes.

 

 

 

 

1. Captain Hook (Peter Pan and the Pirates / Peter Pan; the Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up)

 

 

 

The apex pirate o’ this or any other time, his true identity be riddled in mystery t’ this tide – Hook be nay e’en his real name. All that be known o’ this man’s past be he be Blackbeard`s boatswain (unconfirmed blige), an’ that he be th’ only man Long John Sil’er ere feared. Hook found his way into a mystical isle, arrr call ‘Neverland’ an’ be constantly at war wi’ an ageless boy who cut off his hand. Despite that run o’ bad juju, Hook’s th’ ultimate gentleman o’ fortune on accoun’ o’ he’s intelligence, fearless, tough (try losin’ an hand an’ still be gentleman o’ fortune let alone captain), educated, bloodthirsty, an’ quite th’ ladies’ man thanks t’ his looks an’ charm. Hook be th’ measurin’ stick all other gentleman o’ fortunes be judged – an’ that’s quite a stick maties. E’en defeated by that brat an’ thrown into a bung hole o’ th’ croc that ate his severed hand; he escaped, quite literary, ou’ th’ belly o’ th’ beast an’ came aft only meaner. What more can I say buckos, what can I tell ye that ye don’t already know. Captain Hook = Pirate.

Wanted! – Phoenix Wright

 

Ladies and gentleman; I would like to think gamers, game publishers, game developers, and the entire industry would work all together to make sure the best games would come out and be enjoyed by all. I would like to think that way but being reality we’re dealing with here it’s simply not true. One such series is Phoenix Wright. Now for those who haven’t looked at the court record recently; Phoenix Wright is a plucky young lawyer who gets into legal misadventures and must use logic, luck, and a little help from a slew of colorful characters (including his long dead mentor) to bring justice into the courtroom. You would think a game about pseudo court litigation would be as boring as program coding; but as it turns out not only were the games good but they spawned a legion of hardcore fans (which I am among them) worldwide. So why had Capcom stopped releasing them in the states?

 

 

The last game of the series in America was Ace Attorney Investigations starting Phoenix’s rival: Miles Edgeworth. The game did try a few new elements (one of which not starring Phoenix himself) and received mixed reviews; but at the end of the day it was Ace Attorney all the way. Well Capcom didn’t see this as an success both sociality or financially and so when Gyakuten Kenji 2 (Ace Attorney Investigations 2) came out it only came out in Japan, leaving all English speaking fans across the globe in the lurch (oh and the game sold record numbers its first week of release)… That’s bad enough, but from what I hear we’re also not getting Layton-kyōju Vs Gyakuten Saiban (Professor Layton Vs Ace Attorney – sucks to be you Prof. Layton fans) or a real to life Ace Attorney movie (Gyakuten Saiban). We almost didn’t get the manga either, but it only released in North America a couple of months ago – so that means we’re behind in how many books.

 

 

 

 

What can we do about this mass embargo of the ‘Wright’ stuff? Well, as usual, I suggest writing in. Tell Capcom that you’re a PW fan and displeased that you’re getting snubbed for one reason or another (be creative). Another good way is by using the power of money. People, I like to give all games a chance, but even I must call a spade –a spade; the only difference between Marvel Vs Capcom 3 and the upcoming Ultimate Marvel Vs Capcom 3 is Phoenix Wright. So if you don’t like Wright just stick with what you got; but if you’re a fan of both fighting and justice then by all means get the game. Then write in and tell Capcom you brought this game for Phoenix Wright; and will buy Phoenix Wright games that come our way.

 

In closing I say this: Capcom you want our money, that’s fine, we want Phoenix; you know it’s the Wright thing to do. And you’re certainly not getting it with Lost Planet 2 or Monster Hunter.

 

 

R.I.P. My Nintendo DS

 

Well it finally happened, after five years of loyal service of gaming though thick, thin, collisions, preschool cousins, and countless pockets full of who knows what – my Nintendo DS Lite Onyx Black console became unusable last month. I’ll spare you all the details, but let’s just say my ‘techbereaker’ brother had something to do with it. You know, I almost didn’t buy ol’ Blackie (please don’t get offended general public) here. Yes during that time I still had the original DS that was silver and black (called the DS Phat to some); when they announced the new and redesigned Nintendo DS Lite I said:

“Great, another play by Nintendo to get my money again; I mean they have it already but the one thing I won’t buy is repetition. I have a DS already, I don’t need another.”

However as fate would have it my original DS also suffered an accident via missed pocket slip straight down some cement stairs (and it still turned on – but the top screen was shot). So I bought a new DS Lite and I didn’t wait til I got home to play with it; found a good spot at the mall, pop in Megaman ZX, and it was over.

It was like discovering electricity.

Smooth, clear, bright, loud – it had it all baby. Since then my new DS  was tied to my hip and I played it everywhere: school, work, friends, family, everywhere. I would be playing it right now if it wasn’t broken and would electrocute me if I tried. That being said, I don’t quite miss it as much as I should. I tribute that to two factors:

The iPod touch series: Even I must admit the power of cheap games that amuse me for hours (Angry Birds anyone). Those questionable games for $15.00, I’ll think I’ll pass.

And this:

The Nintendo 3DS is only a few short months away (running gag engage)

So yes it’s sad to put a good friend into the recycling bin, but you know what? I’m going to be ok. I can game with my iTouch just enough for the 3DS to reach my hot little hands, and once that happens people it is over, the face of gaming begin all over again.

I can’t wait… 🙂

Article – Internet Security and You

Evil-Comp

It’s time once again for a non-gamer article (written by me of course); this one’s about internet security, hacker history and how to protect yourself from malicious cyber attacks. Enjoy.

___________________________________________________________

“On the Internet, the world is flat.”

Said by Mark Yanalits, an information network engineer, who is a security and malware professional. He has been in the field of Internet security for 15 years.

“You can have a conversation with someone you’ve never met, in another country just by virtue of having the right type of cell phone or browser can pull up a site from Russia, wirelessly,” Yanalits said.

The Internet is a resource, an entertainer, a bridge to other places and even our friends; but people often forget that it can be used by those for ill will as well as good. Those individuals are called hackers.

Hackers are the ones who write malicious software that turns a PC and Mac from a highly efficient machine to a twisted shell of its former self.

While hackers were always a blight on computerized civilization, at their beginnings they were nothing but cyber thrill seekers.

When the Internet was just beginning to form and where desktop computers arrived at the workplace, they interconnected with other companies in other states and countries, the stakes increased.

This marked the arrival of small hacker communities in both America and Europe; with only one purpose, to see if they actually could hack a company system.

Hacker notoriety and personal reputation gained persistence through the ’80s and ’90s

When the millennium set in, desktop computers became really powerful and complex but vulnerabilities became more and more apparent. The vulnerabilities were exploited and hackers were able to gain full control of computer systems.

During this time, the Internet had become more accessible by the masses, and complex computer commands were being simplified by new programs, applications and easy user interfaces.

“Thanks to the speed, density and reach of the Internet and the powerful yet simplified abilities of the new desktop computers; when hackers attacked they did massive damage,” Yanalits said. “You can hack into a main frame computer inside a giant organization in a few seconds”

They did just that-Yahoo, eBay, CNN and Visa were all attacked and crippled by hackers and their own systems’ flaws.

“It was a big wake up call because suddenly on the Internet you had this malicious software created for street cred but had the capability to take down marquee institutions,” Yanalits said.

If they did not do something, big companies would be taken out of commission, and out of business.

“So in turn, those companies put up huge bounties for the writers of those types of software,” Yanalits said. “What the bounties did, and what the high profile arrests did was [drive] all the ‘script kiddies’ [a hacker novice, in it for the fun] out of the business and left people who were committed to use this capability for financial gain.”

Since 2003 to the present, the Internet has only gotten faster, computers have gotten faster and programs even more complex.

This only widens the attack range for computer criminals, which are serious about what they do. In Yanalits’ experience, the type of hackers that users encounter today are smart, calculating and experienced.

“You can go walk into a bank with a hand gun, and you can try and rob the bank, and might net you $11,000/12,000. That is if you don’t get any dye pack explosions or shot by the guard, it’s still a high risk venture.”

On the other hand, criminal hackers (or people who hire them) can build malicious software, get into personal computers and steal a person’s core identity. They can use it to open multiple credit cards in their name. They can easily steal two times the money compared to an armed robbery.

“The attractiveness of being able to perpetrate a crime from a distance gives a lot of incentive to engage computer crimes using the internet, because you don’t have to take the risk of actually being there,” Yanalits said.

Yanalits warns, it not just about money for computer criminals.

“The theft now, isn’t just a theft of money; it’s the theft of anything, and anything has currency,” he said.

Da'Hackers

If that was not bad enough, a skilled hacker can turn a user’s computer into a ‘BotNet’ if they’re not careful.

A BotNet is a small piece of user hacked computer (kept small so to not draw attention to the owners), where it is groomed and tuned up by ‘BotNet herders.’

These herders combine it with thousands of other BotNet computers and rented by buyers to deliver spam or attack other computer networks

“Suddenly it’s like a herd of cattle, hundred feet wide with spaces in between, goes down a narrow channel 25 yards wide,” Yanalits said, while describing what a wave of BotNets attacking a system, effectively crashing it.

So not only can hackers possibly steal everything you have, but they can also use your computer to attack some one else.

It almost makes you want to turn the computer off for good. Do not worry! Yanalits has some solid tips to prevent hackers from getting the better of you. The first of which is to keep software updated.

“The biggest threat to a person’s computer in present time is not keeping your computer ‘patched’ with software patches, including operating systems patches, from the vender of the software you’re using.”

So computers users should check often for security updates, or enable automatic updates, of whatever they are running to make sure their computer patches are up to date.

“The second thing owners of computers have to be aware of is not to be ‘sloppy’ and add a great deal of software to computer systems. Each program carries its own set of vulnerabilities beyond the computer operating systems that you’re installing.”

Meaning if you downloaded or installed a lot of applications like various Web browsers, media players, demo files, etc, each one of them could have a security weakness that hackers can use to get in.

“The most secure home systems are the ones that try and run with the lowest amount of additional software on top of it.”

Use Web based e-mails like hotmail and Gmail, do not receive and read them on a computer with Outlook or Thunderbird. Those are also applications with a possible weakness for hackers to exploit, plus it is e-mail so it is a double whammy.

“All home machines should be behind a firewall [A software firewall like Zone Alarm or a hardware firewall like router] if people don’t have the know-how to set it up then they should either find someone to pay to help configure it or should call their internet carrier,” Yanalits said. “Keep and groom it, on a daily basis your anti viruses software, keep it on a consistence state of scanning; every day if possible.”

Never leave personal information, such as finance, or tax records, on your computer, if you do get hacked and they find your information it will only take things from bad to worse.

Also clear your Web information from your browser “Keep clearing your Internet browser caches and don’t store pages in ‘history.'”

The final and most important tip is to be skeptical and think of yourself as your ‘human firewall.’

Know what sites and links are OK, and which to avoid because now hackers will use those users as well; do not open unknown email attachments, free music offers, and random virus, etc.

“The Internet cannot be trusted, because everyone on the Internet is a ‘dog,'” Yanalits said. “You have no idea who you’re talking to on the other end. The bad software is not coming to your computer; your computer is going to it.”

Where does the time go?

Time's-flys

I know, I know, I hasn’t posted in a couple of months. But between wrapping up my collage semester and playing the massive onslaught of games this fall (only finished half of them)I just didn’t have the time. Well to make up for it; here’s a article I wrote about a local library in my area. Don’t worry, it has something to do with video games. Anyway enjoy, and stay tuned.


Dewey Decimal meets Donkey Kong

Libraries – centers of information in the world since the time before Common Era.

Providing people places of quiet learning and scholarly studying to all, free of charge.

Even with the intention of the computer and the creation of the internet, the library still remains as the undisputed.

The times though keep changing, and the Point Park University Library changes with them. Soon along with classic books like ‘Moby-Dick’, ‘Of Mice and Men’ and ‘The Death of the Salesman’ they with include the rental new age media of video games.

Its Gustave Flaubert meets Gears of War.

Phil Harrity, access service coordinator, and Liz Evans the director of the university center library were the main advocates for this new service. They were happy to provide information on the service as well.

While the details of game renting are not finalized yet; Evans and Harrity both believe it will resemble the way they rent out DVDs. The games will be on shelves, in locked cases. They will be separated by the console systems (Xbox 360, Playstation 3 and Wii) capable of playing them.

The time limit for keeping a rented game is also undetermined; however it’s leaning towards seven days. And the renter can re-rent the game (and any book or DVD) at their website up to three times.

Harrity and Evans said that at this time they don’t plan on selling any accessories (RWY wires, battery packs, extra controls, etc) nor do they plan on renting consoles to the students. The consoles especially for the reason that there are too many things that can go wrong, and it would too expensive to fix or replace.

“The day we went to ‘The Exchange’ and bought $1,300 worth of video games” Evans remembers “I’ve went home and said to my youngest: we’re bought all these video games for the library. He said that’s cool. Then I said we’re going to buy the systems and then loan them out. He looked at me and said ‘Are you crazy? Things are going to happen (to the consoles) and then what are you going to do?’”

A ‘console lab’ won’t be in the foreseeable future either; one of the factor’s for this is noise. The university center is still in part a library, having a console lab would disturb more than a few students doing research for essays and the like.

The other issue is space.
“Most people think the whole building is the library, it isn’t. We have to share space with other classes, offices, the TV studio and the auditorium. Another lab just wouldn’t fit.” said Evans

What they will provide is reading material in the form of ‘Game Informer’, video game centered magazine and Wizard, a magazine dealing with not only video games but comics, and pop culture.

Finally, and as always, they will lend an ear for students at the library; if someone want the library to stock certain item, game, book, DVD, or service they can suggest it anytime. If they are capable, they will provide.

Now all this covers the what, as for the why?

“We are doing this for the students.” Harrity said “Especially for the students who live in campus and have noting to do in the evening.”

Downtown Pittsburgh is an city that is it not known for its nightlife, most shops and services close down around 5:00 o’clock. With the renting of games (along with DVDs and books) the library staff hopes to give students more entertainment options.

Now at first, there were those who believed that video game rentals in the library weren’t such a hot idea. Over time, however those detractors soon saw how important this program is for students; in fact Harrity believes that video games will help support the rental of books and DVD.

Video games today use a lot of source material from early works of fiction. The ‘God of War’ game series takes a lot from ancient Greek and Roman history; while the ‘Call for Duty’ series closely follows the events World War II.

The way Harrity see it, if a person wants to know more about the background of a game they easily find that information in a book, DVD or online, and found in the same place they rented the game.

A one stop-shop for information and entertainment.

The library staff believes that students will have no trouble finding out about the new feature once it gets started. They expect a lot of word of mouth; but will also advertise on their website and sent out flash e-mails to all students.

What really will get the word out for them is the soon, upcoming all night game-a-thon. A collaboration of the library, the point park I.T. department, Gamestop and even the school own video game club.

The date is still undetermined, but what is guaranteed is that there will be fun to be had for all who attend. No matter if it’s rocking out to a heavy metal ballet, getting a hard fought 1st down or saving Sera from the Locust Horde.

At the end of the day what the library is doing is only following suit of other libraries. Who more and more of them are including the rental and sale of video games along with their traditional services. Why those libraries are doing it for their community is unknown, but Evans ultimately knows why Point Park University is doing it.

“The library here is for the students of Point Park, we will do whatever we can to make the student’s time here at Point Park, productive and enjoyable.”