So, Apple’s new iMac was announced the other day with a 5K screen, or 5120 x 2880 pixels to be precise.

I was wondering how many screens of the original Sierra games would fit on it. Well, the answer is 544. Yes, 544 of those classic game’s pictures that filled up only ONE of our old PC screens back in the 80’s :)

So, how many games would that be?

All the screens of Leisure Suit Larry, Police Quest, King’s Quest, King’s Quest 2Space Quest, Space Quest 2, The Black Cauldron, most of King’s Quest 3 and a few remaining pixels of Gold Rush. FYI that’s their entire AGI catalog.

You see, the images were 320x168 pixels on screen, but their pixels were doubled horizontally as the original images were only 160x168 pixels. 

Click on the image below for the full 5120x2880 version, which immediately makes for one of the best wallpapers for your new iMac.

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And as you’re here reading this, do yourself a favor and play one of those games right now on my little sarien.net

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q42nl:

Fanbolt schrijft:

"[Carrrds is] a quick bit of filler that’s fun for everyone. It’s easy to learn, easy to play, and can create its fair share of commotion when a duel breaks out!"

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Lees de hele review hier of bezoek de Carrrds website.

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q42nl:

I was playing around in Chrome trying to see how many DOM elements the browser would give me if I had just one html tag… this one:

<link href="nojs.css" rel="stylesheet">

My experiment ended up looking like this:

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Using images from the OpenTyrian project it became a vertical scrolling shoot-‘em-up where you can fly left and right, see a wave of enemies and finally a boss ship. You can’t fire, it only works in Chrome (due to my lack of time) and it has many glitches, but I thought I’d put it online just for the fun of it.

Here it is:

nojs.handcraft2.com

Be sure to view the source :)

Allow me to briefly go over the technical details for your entertainment.

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(Heads up: this post will not answer the question above)

I’m no marketeer nor a UX specialist. But I wonder if it feels better to end-users if they get free shipping on products that have been made slightly more expensive as opposed to seeing a lower price tag but an additional shipping fee at the end.

Personally, I never like shipping cost. This is me shopping: Say there’s a product in my shopping basket worth $75. I know that, because I clicked “add to cart” where it said "This will cost you $75".

In my head there’s now a product-value binding of some sort. I don’t know the name or what it is, but for me I am going to buy a product worth of $75. And hey, I’m going to really buy it, so let’s proceed to the checkout.

"$5 Shipping"

It doesn’t add value to the product. I need to pay this in order for me to hold and use the product, but once I have it in my hands it’s worth $75.

Not $80.

What if I had been considering this product being $80 from the start? In my head that product would have a higher value, and …

"hey - BONUS! Free shipping! Thank you shop!"

I am just naively wondering what the negatives to this would be. And I can imagine a few:

  1. I would be more likely to buy a $75 product than an $80 one. If another shop has the same product for $75 I’d probably start there.
  2. Once I am searching for the product I want, added it to my basket, went through checkout and filled out my details - well, I don’t want to give up so yeah sure I’d pay that $5 just to get it.

But the mental flow of deciding you want to pay a certain amount for a product and taking that through the payment process and finding a bonus free shipping plus getting a higher-value-for-money product in your hands, wouldn’t that make users happier? 

I don’t know. I think it could. Your thoughts?

Update: Here are a few interesting related posts on pricing and psychology:

http://www.psychologyofgames.com/2013/06/the-left-digit-effect-why-game-prices-end-in-99/

http://blog.asmartbear.com/selling-ebook.html

http://sachagreif.com/the-pricing-trilogy/

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The other day I was having a discussion on twitter over something really unimportant. So where you probably ;) Both me and my friend Rahul had some arguments backing up our side of the story.

Then a mutual friend showed up and favorited one argument. Just one. (Mine. Not that it matters, but Rahul was wrong and I was right ;)). Anyway, that favorite backed up an entire side of an ongoing discussion. In one press, he picked a side and left.

I hadn’t seen a favorite being used in this particular way that much, and personally only use it for small praise or bookmarking. I thought it was an interesting idea so in the days ahead I started paying more attention to favorites done by followees, followers, mutual friends and others.

And I noticed so many more subtle uses.

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Using touch devices over a mouse and keyboard has probably been one of the biggest improvements in user interface friendliness for young children. That said, here are a few things that would really take a child’s experience with an iPad a whole step further:

1. Detect accidental touches from wrists and the lower side part of the hand. When this is active, pass the actual movement of the finger to the app as the primary movement (for the app to act on).

This does lead to the question of responsibility: shouldn’t it be the app builder to take care of these things? Well, yes and no. An app builder could always listen to the most primary movement and detect accidental secondary touches, but the overall app experience for young children would improve by making these changes on the OS level as well.

2. Be more tolerant to distinguish between a swipe and a tap. More often than not, young fingers start swiping icons on the home screen when they actually meant to tap.

3. Disable all five finger gestures, regardless its specific setting in the Settings panel. These gestures happen. And they’re never intended.

4. Lock the maximum volume to a parental controlled setting. My youngest daughter sometimes can’t hear any sounds so she turns up the volume… to the maximum, after which she gets scared and starts crying. I believe a Child Mode setting with my personal tweaking of the volume would really help.

5. Play time limitation, control and play-turn indicators. This is not just about limiting the time children should be allowed to play, as that is totally the resposibility of the parent, but it’s would be a welcome feature to just set this once so children who can’t tell the time yet know when it’s almost time to stop. And it would really be helpful if this could be used to add an indicator for when it’s someone else’s turn.

The above settings would really be helpful, IMHO.

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q42games:

Hi. We’ve been hard at work to get Quento out in the open. And today this has become a fact. Quento has just been released for FREE on the App Store and pretty soon it will become available on Android devices, the Windows 8 store and Chrome Web Store. If you like puzzle games like Sudoku, Quento is definitely for you!

For more information, visit quento.com or download it directly from the App Store.

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q42games:

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What do you think? Looks good, doesn’t it? Feels a bit like an old 1993 DOS game that’s being sold on eBay. Check the back:

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We’re gearing up to that big moment where we send our beloved game to be printed, so we can wait in agony until the delivery boy rings the bell.

Interested in some of the cards that made it to the deck? Read on…

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Last week I posted this question to StackOverflow: Detect iPad Mini in HTML5.
In short: a webpage can’t differentiate between an iPad 2 and an iPad Mini.

Today I offered a bounty of half my StackOveflow rep which made frontpage Hacker News and caused people to respond in two ways:

  1. Offer possible technical solutions
  2. Defend Apple’s Human Interface Guidelines and state that if we follow it, we shouldn’t need to be able to detect the difference at all

I find the latter a complete load of BS, so I updated the original question with some more arguments as to why I think we should be allowed to know if someone is using an iPad Mini or not.

And as I feel that’s a totally different discussion than the search for a solution, I thought I’d post my update as a separate blogpost here (so yes, the text below is an exact copy of my update on StackOverflow).

Personally, I think browsers should be able to tell the differece between an iPad Mini and an iPad 2.

The iPad mini is not only a much smaller device (9.7 inch versus 7.9 inch) but its form factor allows for a different usage. The iPad 2 is usually held with 2 hands when gaming unless you’re Chuck Norris. The mini is smaller but also much lighter and allows for gameplay where you hold it in one hand and use another to swipe or tap or whatnot. As a game designer and developer myself, I’d just like to know if it’s a mini so I can choose to provide the player with a different controlscheme if I want (for instance after A/B testing with a group of players).

Why? Well it’s a proven fact that the majority of users tend to go with the default settings, so leaving out a virtual thumbstick and putting some other tap-based control on the screen (just giving an arbitrary example here) when the player loads up the game for the first time is what I and probably other game designers would love to be able to do.

So IMHO this goes beyond the thick fingers / guidelines discussions and is just something Apple and all other vendors ought to do: allow us to uniquely identify your device and think different instead of following guidelines.

Look at how it’s advertised:

Even the first paragraph on Apple’s iPad Mini page states the big difference:

And you can hold it in one hand.”

That’s right Apple. It’s not an iPad 2. So don’t fool us into believing it is.

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q42nl:

Sass and Less are two flavors of stylesheet language extensions that offer syntactic awesomeness which should’ve been built into plain CSS in the first place. Stuff like variables, mixins and whatnot. 

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