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    • Ernesto

      Easy guide to Twitch

      By Ernesto, in Software,

      An easy guide how to setup your computer to broadcast your gaming on Twitch. In less than a few minutes, you will be ready for your audience!
       
      Just follow the simple steps outlined below and a world of moving pictures and sound will open up to you!
       

      Create an account on Twitch
      http://www.twitch.tv/signup
       
      Enter your details and submit. You will have to verify your email.
       
      Done!
       
       

       
       

      A simple login screen



      Download a streaming client
      For this example we are going to use XSplit, which is the easiest to setup and get started with.
      https://www.xsplit.com/download
       
      After you have downloaded it, you can install it.
       
       

      Register an account with the streaming client
       
      You will also need an Xsplit account, so register one here:
      https://www.xsplit.com/#register
       
      You will have to confirm your email.
       
       

      Set up the streaming client
      Start your XSplit and log in with your credentials. The free version can stream in 720p as the highest, which is fine as you start out.
       
      When you are logged in, in the menu select the following:
      Broadcast -> Add Channel -> Twitch
       
      This will open up the Twitch connection wizard
       
       
       
       

      Magically simple.

      Click the button "Authorize".
       
      This will open up a page where you sign in with your twich account that you created earlier. After you have logged in, XSplit will measure your connection speeds and set things up accordingly. The defaults that XSplit sets works fine.
       

      Ready to broadcast!
      You can now start broadcasting!
       
      In the menu choose:
      Broadcast -> Twitch

    • There is a lot going on in videocard land at the moment. It is not just stronger faster, harder, bigger, better graphic cards that are being released but also software to make life easier, faster, stronger, harder, bigger, better, etc for us gamers. AMD for example is playing around with Mantle, a nifty feature where the game will directly communicate with the graphic card to make sure no power is lost and improving performance, and Nvidia has it's Shadowplay. The latter being the one I am going to promote here.
       
       
      What is Shadowplay.
       
      Shadowplay is a hardware accelerate screen recording app designed for and made by Nvidia. It is similar to Fraps (for recording) or Xsplit (for streaming). But without the performance loss! Shadowplay uses a new dedicated capture API* to achieve this. It also uses the new H.264 video encoding hardware that can be found in the newer Nvidia 600 and 700 graphics card series.
       
       
      Oh my god, that is awesome! How do I install and use this?
       
      First go to Geforce-Experience, and install the Geforce Experience if you havnt done so yet. This is Nvidia's fancy little program that will tell you when there are driver updates (including beta ones if you want), it can optimize game settings for smoothest gameplay, spam you with news you wont care about, Nvidia Shield and... Shadowplay!
       
      Once you installed the Geforce Experience you can go to Settings and the Shadowplay tab and change some settings around, hotkeys to start and end recording, location of the overlay icon, etc. It's all very self-explanatory.
       
      In the top right you have the button Shadowplay, hit it and this little window pops up;
       

       
      •The on and off button.
       
      •Below the on/off button you have an Open Folder (to view past recordings) and a Settings button.
       
      •The Mode button, which allows you to switch between; Manual, Shadow and Stream to Twitch.
       
      •Shadow Time, this is where you can set how much of your past gameplay it will record. There is a little slider you can move up and down and you will see the time and HD storage it will take go up and down with it. More on this below.
       
      •Video quality button, change the quality of the recorded video. (important when you try to stream with low uploads)
       
      •The Audio button, change what you want people to hear when listening to your stream or your video.
       
      Pick your preferable settings, start your game and start recording/streaming.
       
      Here is a nice little overview of what the Icon looks like ingame in different modes;
       

      (pictures taken from http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/)
       
       
      Shadow Mode
       
      In Shadow mode, it "shadows" your last 20minutes of gameplay (20 is the max). You can also use manual mode ofcourse to capture it. But with Shadow Mode running you wont have to worry that you can't show anyone that awesome kill/move/etc you just did. Just hit the button and the last 20 minutes are saved to your harddrive. It can dish out 1080p video's at 50mbps.
       
      And most important, with barely any performance loss. It is still in beta testing, so there might be some hickups here and there but so far it has proven to be pretty solid. Shadowplay is supported for Nvidia GTX650 cards and up. Notebook GPU's are NOT supported at this time.
       
       
       
      *An application programming interface (API) specifies how components should interact with eachother.

    • Another weekend of awesomeness is behind us, all that plowing through the ESO PvP zone Cyrodiil made us hungry for more! While being busy looking up every tiny bit of available information, I came across a list on the official page of all the press articles and youtube videos released this week.
       
      And look what we got there! - The ESO community podcast hosted by Rook and Kami from "Mostly Harmless" interviewing our own Ernesto and some other dudes about their guilds and the Elder Scrolls Online.
       
      Unfortunately Ern was late, people say he forgot the podcast while having his morning tea.
       
      Here is a link to the youtube video, starting when Ernesto arrives:

       
       
      Here's the full list of this weeks articles:
      http://elderscrollsonline.com/en/news/post/2014/02/12/hands-on-beta-impressions
       
      We'd also like to mention that Rook and Mostly Harmless has done a great job on these podcasts, they have been much more interesting to watch than our old brains thought at first! Keep up the good work Rook and Company!

    • Ernesto

      IrfanView

      By Ernesto, in Software,

      Here is a step-by-step guide on how to download, install and use IrfanView to resize and save an image in a format that is optimal for the web.
       
      Together with IrfanView we can hand in hand make the web a faster and better place!
       
       

      Download the software and the plugins
       
      Go to the page
      http://www.irfanview.com/
       
      Click on "Download" in the left side menu and download the program itself.
       
      Now click on "PlugIns" and download ALL PlugIns as one large EXE (recommended)
       
       
       

      Install the program
      Run the first file you downloaded. You can at the time of this articles writing, just press "Next", the default options are fine and at the time of this writing, there are no spyware or addons that you have to opt-out of.
       
       
       

      Install the plugins
      We are mostly only interested in one of the plugins, but for the sake of laziness, we install the entire package.
       
      Run the second file you downloaded.
       
       
       

      Open the file you want to optimize
       
      Since during installation, we went with the default alternatives, this means that image files will not automatically open with IrfanView, we have to either:
       
      * Open IrfanView and then drag/drop a picture on the program.
      * Open IrfanView and choose "File -> Open".
      * Right click an image file and chose "Open With -> IrfanView".
       
       

      Optional: Resize or crop the image
      Most of the time, an image that you post on the internet does not have to be all that big unless you really need to preserve it's crispness.
       
      In most cases, an image that you for example attach to a forum, or a blogpost, should be at the most 1000px wide.
       
      On ginnunga.org, we use 846px wide article images as the maximum.
       
      Crop
      Cropping is cutting away parts of the image to make the viewable area smaller, but preserving the resolution, the cripsness of the image.
       
      The simplest way to do this, is to just click and drag with your mouse on the image to create a selected area, then go to "Edit -> Crop Selection (CTRL+Y)"
       
      Resize
      If the image is too wide, you can resize it. You can either use the maximum pixels suggested above, or you can resize the image as a percentage of it's original style.
       
      To resize the image, you choose "Image -> Resize/Resample Image (CTRL+R)"
       
      Under the section called "Set new size" you either enter a new width in pixels, or you check the radio button for the seciont "Set new size as percentage of original" and adjust it to, let's say 50%.
       
       
       

      Saving the image - The final step
      Your image is now possibly both cropped and resized and it is time to save it in a format that is as efficient for the web as possible.
       
      To do this you select "File -> Save for Web... (Plugin)".
       
      You will now see two versions of the image:
       
      Left side
      Your original, and above that image, the filesize of the image.
       
      Right side
      A preview of how the image will look, if you save it with the current settings.
       
       
      Below the images, there are three buttons with the lables
      "JPEG", "GIF" and "PNG".
       
      We recommend the following selection:
       
      Large image (more than 100px)
      JPG
      Quality: 90%
      Meidum(4:2:0)
      Progressive (Very important)
       
      Small or image with transparency
      PNG
      Color reduction: As low as you can set it, without the preview looking different to the original. Often "Optimal 128 colors palette" might work.
      Interlaced: No, do not check this.
       
       
      SAVE.
       
      DONE.

    • Just after Eve-Online announced they are giving us a real life statue in Reykjavik. This time our brave adventures are honored in the current EverquestNext Landmark alpha. Tumble took it upon himself to honour the Ginnunga spirit by granting us a statue of a giant penis with balls.
       
      Honored we are.

       
      You can follow the adventures of team Landmark here.

    • EVE recently celebrated it's 10th birthday and there have been celebrations all over, both ingame and out in the real world. As a final act before turning the page towards the next decade CCP, the developer behind the game, are creating a monument in Reykjavik upon which every active account will be immortalized.
      Ginnunga members like Kunasha, Cupe, Sinful, Chimp and Cogency will be able to visit Iceland and find their pilots name etched into the monument.
      The statue will stand over five meters tall and will consist of two main elements facing each other through a highly polished stainless steel surface in the middle. On the left side of the model stands a dark aluminium structure with a quote from the EVE Universe and on the right a dark granite facial figure representing the players.
       
       



      The CEO of CCP Games, Hilmar Veigar Pétursson, went into further detail about the monument:
       
       
       
       
      In other news it's been two weeks since since The Bloodbath of B-R5RB where a staggering 11 trillion ISK (the ingame currency) was blown up, a sum which with good efficiency would take about 100 000 man-hours to farm or could equate to over $300.000.
      The battle, which was the most destructive in EVEs history, made a splash in media outlets such as BBC which led to a huge influx of new players.
       
      The battle took place on the anniversary of another historical EVE clash, The Battle of Asakai. That too got media coverage a year ago, and new people flocked.
       
      So, which battle attracted most new people? Luckily The Nosy Gamer crunched the numbers.
       
       



      As you can see a normal day in EVE 2014 about 3000 new characters are created. The week following B-R that number rose to 10 000, so more than 50 000 extra pilots. CCP are very secretive regarding the number of accounts, so what that really means is rather hard to determine. What's clear is that space has never been this busy and you can't fire a missile salvo without hitting a rookie pilot. Good times.

    • Not much is known about our participation and we're currently in the harsh process of deciding which of the three factions we'll represent. If you're not familiar with the three we've prepared a short unbiased presentation which might help you with the choice.
       
      This is all taken from the official wiki. (No it's not)
       
       

      All Mermaid Dominion

      Pointy ears and kittens. Great...
       
      Ebon-ass Pact






      Let's paint it black and call it a drow. Racist much?
       
      DAGGERFALL COVENANT






      Wow. Just, wow. Can't explain further, too impressed!


       
       
      As you can see we're in for a hard choice and right now we're very torn about where to go. The Elder Scrolls Online is set to launch april 4th, but expect updates leading up til the release.

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