Webcam As A Game Controller

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Gaming, Top Software

Where there is inspiration, there is innovation. Cam-Trax have come up with a unique technology that allows you to use your webcam as a game controller. It work’s similar to the Wii remote, only this isn’t infa-red. Their software CamSpace can detect colored objects and track their movement. That then translates to movement on the screen, depending on the configuration of the emulation. Best way to explain it is to watch how it works:

I myself decided to dig up my webcam and give this a go. Armed with a frisbee with a green strip of paper across the front, I was set to drive -- hardcore style. Whilst the reaction time could be better (however I think my computer was to blame for the lag), I spent a couple of hours playing Need For Speed: Most Wanted. It was good fun and i suggest you try it out because it costs nothing! Download it from CamSpace.Oh, incase you were woundering what my controller looked like, here you are:

controller

My Elite Steering Wheel!

 

If you give it a go, post your controller picture in your comment!

(P.S. You know, if someone was skilled enough, it’d be possible to create virtual drumkit with velocity sensitve data. Draw up a drum kit and each image reprsenting a part of drum with midi information trigged by the motion of drum sticks colliding with the cymbal/highhat/tomtom, send it to your favorite sequencer and volia. Air drumming- could be the next best thing to sliced bread ;) )

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Create Images From Web Pages

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: FireFox

screengrab

Ever tried to save complex flash displayed images or perhaps Google Maps? Unfortunately, it is not as simple as right clicking the images and clicking save as, because complex scripts are employed to display the image/media properly. So how can we overcome this problem? Luckily, there is an easier way to make a perfect copy of the page.

Using the Screengrab extension for Firefox, it adds an option whilst right clicking to either save the current view of the page or the complete page as an image. In my opinion, this will come in very handy when I have to save google maps that has directions on the page. Extension’s like this one make life just that little bit easier ;) .

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Microsoft To Provide Free Antivirus

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Windows

morro

The giant software team Microsoft has revealed that it is going to release a free antivirus software for Windows XP SP3, Vista and Seven. They plan on releasing it on July 1st, 2009. This will be a huge blow to all the 3rd party antivirus creators such as Kaspersky, Bit defender, Symantec, McAfee and other antivirus software aimed at the home user.

It is said because the antivirus software created by Micorosft, codenamed Morro, will be light on the computer’s resources as it integrates into the Windows system. For casual the internet user, and for probably for the majority of the home user base, this will be a huge benefit for them as it will be a saving for them.

Granted that it does a good job of keeping the nasties out. If it is sucessful, the other 3rd party antivirus software makers will have to do to something extraudenary or, get into the business level of computer protection. We shall hear much more about morro closer to its release date for sure.

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Xbox 360 Wireless Receiver For Windows Issues

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Gaming, Troubleshooting

xbox-360-wireless-windows

It seems that the Xbox 360 Wireless Receiver For Windows is giving major problems to the majority of PC users. Users are complaining that the device interferes with other USB devices such as the keyboard and mouse. After further investigation, it has been said that the Xbox 360 Wireless Receiver For Windows draws a lot of power, so much so that it kills (temporarily) other devices that are attached via USB.

As it stands, there is no official solution by creator Microsoft (hence are stopping production of this device) at the moment, but you can do the following:

  1. Make sure the Xbox 360 Wireless Receiver For Windows is plugged into a USB 2.0 socket. This will ensure correct power and data transfer rates are obtained.
  2. Wireless inference can be an issue too, so if your wireless mouse or keyboard is conflicting, try moving both the receiver for the mouse and keyboard to a different location and/or the Xbox 360 Wireless Receiver For Windows as well.
  3. Users have reported a greater success rate by plugging the Xbox 360 Wireless Receiver For Windows in the back of the PC USB motherboard ports.
  4. If all the above fails, buying a separate USB 2.0 hub will most defiantly solve this issue as power is drawn from the wall, not the USB socket.

If you’ve discovered a simple fix or having further issues with the Xbox 360 Wireless Receiver For Windows, post a comment here. Thanks Magnus for bringing up the issue.

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Guitar Hero World Tour Replacement Cymbals

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Gaming

Have your Guitar Hero World Tour drum cymbals cracked? Or maybe they are not registering notes properly? Simple fix would be to send them into RedOctane for warranty replacement, but what if your warranty has ran out? Or perhaps you can’t wait 2 weeks for the replacement cymbals?

Thankfully, Matt from Fnaah.com has come up with the holy-grail of do-it-yourself Guitar Hero World Tour cymbals.

Basically, the cymbals are composed of plastic dinner plates with a piezo element mounted underneath each to sense the drum hits. Add a bit of rubber to dampened the noise and some black spray paint to keep everything looking like nice and hey your set. Ingenious.

For $25, it makes it a cheap mod to do and with the guide Matt has provided, you shouldn’t have too much trouble making these cymbals up, especially if your DIY savvy.

I haven’t attempted to make these cymbals yet, but surely will in the near future as yes you guessed it, mine have cracked… again! Head on over Fnaah.com to check out Matt’s fully pictured guide to Making your own GH:WT cymbals for under $25.

diy-guitar-hero-world-tour-cymbals

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StumbleAudio: Discover New Music

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Internet

stumbleaudio

Similar to the website Stumbleupon, StumbleAudio allows you to find similar or randomly selected music with a click of a button that has over 2 million songs in its database. It’s like when you have nothing to listen to, you just hit the random button on your Mp3 Player and press play, only here you have 2 million songs to play with.

The layout is clean and easy to navigate, much like Stumbleupon. When the song plays, you will be presented with album art and a basic play/pause back /next that allows you to navigate between the album. If you wish to change artist completely, you must press the Stumble button.  There is also the option of narrowing down you search for music by genre if you wish.

Creating an account will let you store your favorite track list and keep the rating you gave them. And if you find music that you like, StumbleAudio have the option of purchasing music via the right sidebar by several re-sellers such as Itunes, Amazon, PayPlay, and Cd Baby.

So, if you’re after find new music by similar artists that you like, or want to discover something completely new, check out StumbleAudio.

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Double Kick Pedal In Guitar Hero World Tour

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Gaming

Since I have two kick pedals for my Guitar Hero World Tour drumkit because RedOctane sent me a new one with the replacement drum kit, I thought I’d try splitting the signal and attaching two kick pedals. To my surprise it works! All you need is a 3.5mm headphone splitter and a extra kick pedal. I will admit however, I’m not the first to discover this idea, it seems others have had the same idea as me.

There’s a couple of Youtube videos floating around showing their dual drum pedal setup. It does help when your playing complex drum tracks (such as System of a Down -B.Y.O.B !) on expert, even though I’m still a long way of getting 100% ;) .

If your drums have died and are still under warranty, send in the main drum unit to RedOctane, and if your lucky, they’ll send you a whole new drumkit, including the extra kick pedal. Else, you may be able to find an extra drum pedal off Ebay as others do not see the need for an extra drum pedal.

It’s also said that the next Guitar Hero: Metalica is going to have an extra hard difficulty, and will be including a extra kick drum pedal! Perhaps I could use three at once… :P .

P.S. The review on 360mididrummer will have to wait unfortuantly because I could not secure a Xbox 360 wireless receiver for Windows. I will get one though, so stay tuned!

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Download Myspace Songs

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: How To, Internet

So you’ve been browsing Myspace bands and found a really awesome song that you want to download? Some bands disable the ability to allows users to download their MP3’s, however it is still possible to download songs from their Myspace page.

Just a note: If you really enjoy the music produced by that artist, I’d recommend you buy the artists’ tracks so that he/she/ or the band can continue to produce awesome music.

Before you start, downloading these songs with Firefox will retain the filename of the song, so that you won’t have to manually enter the song name. Get Firefox 3: Spreadfirefox Affiliate Button

Here’s how to download Myspace songs:

  1. Go to File2HD.com and enter in the myspace URL of the band/artist.
  2. Tick the agreement box and set the filter to Audio.
  3. Press get files and a list of songs in MP3 format should appear.
  4. Right click on the MP3 file(s) you wish to download and select Save Link As … and click OK.

Piece of cake :D .

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