Monthly Archives: June 2007

Google Desktop For Linux Released

In what will hopefully be a long line of applications for the Linux world, Google has released a version of Google Desktop for Linux. While it lacks support for widgets/gadgets, it will index just about everything on your system. OOo docs, man pages, media files, and more.

Good, now I’ll be able to install the PHP documentation and search it rather than having to visit PHP.net every time!

Hopefully we’ll get an update to Picasa in the near future, as well as a Linux version of Google Talk. Yes, I know GTalk is just jabber… it’s the GMail integration that I like most.

d3bruts1d And OverclockersClub.com – Then And Now – The Whole Damn Story

I’m tired of hearing incorrect things through the grapevine about my history with OverclockersClub.com. Every time I hear about “The Old OCC” it is usually in reference to how Matt (LinuXProX) and I screwed over the members, the advertisers, the affiliates, and the sponsors. Let me make one thing very clear, if anyone did any screwing to anyone, it most certainly was not done by me. During my time as a staff member with that site, there was one and only one person that acted as an administrator, and as such only he had anything to do with obtaining products, sponsors, etc. That person was Matt, and he is the sole person responsible for what happened at OCC.

Let’s take a little stroll down memory lane here… and in doing so, this is probably going to be one of the most lengthily post I have ever constructed. Hopefully this will clear things up for those of you who have been misinformation.

Some of this is a repost of the information found in this thread.

Back in April/May 2002 I was looking at building a new PC to replace the P3 933Mhz system that I had at the time. Searching around, I found this small website + message board that had some pretty nice information on it. I registered, posted a question or two, got help, and started helping others. Matter of fact, the first person to reply to my post was Bosco, the current head admin of OCC.

Back then, the site only had a couple of staff members. Matt (LinuXProX) who was the CEO, CFO, Owner, Admin, etc. of the site, and then there was Dave (Bosco) and Tim (Posey). All of which were cool, laid back guys. I think there might have been one other staff member at the time named Bruno… I forget if he was or not, I think he ended up getting banned because of a bad attitude (reminded me a lot of FxXP or Raven). Anyway it was this nice attitude that everyone at the site had plus the wealth of knowledge that kept me coming back day after day (hour after hour).

At the time, there were only a handful of members that were very active…. RaTeD-R, Psywar, DevilMB3017, hiph0pan0nym0usx, and a few others that have long since moved on to other things. We had a good time, and there was usually a good amount of playful banter/insults between members. No big deal.

Heck, we did stuff back then that would get you banned on most sites these days… like the time Matt was talking about GTA 3 and both Dave and I bluntly asked for a copy.

The forum has always been the most active part of the site. Back then it was far worse… there would be days and even weeks between new news posts. I started submitting news, but it’d take 2-3 days to get posted. Finally I just started flooding Matt’s email with news submissions. We’re talking about 30-50 per day. Anything and everything I could find got submitted. Finally Matt gave in, and gave me access to the Newspro system so I could post the news directly to the site. This was how I became a staff member of OverclockersClub.com.

Around July 2002 Matt and Dave started a new project. OverclockersClubCanada.com. It was to be a sister site to OverclockersClub.com, which would share the same news database but have different forums. It was, as I understood it, an attempt to bring in more people specifically targeting the Canadian populace. Because of technical difficulties (according to Dave, Matt broke it) the sites were eventually separated. Dave ran OCCC while Matt continued to run OCC.

There were a number of members who defected to OCCC, even some American members (Max you traitor!). This left Matt without anyone to do reviews for him. So he eventually turned to me, his only staff member at the time (Tim had vanished). And in November 2002 I wrote my first review which was for the Ahanix dboX Case (which sadly no longer has my name attached to it).

Personally, I think OCCC was actually a better site at the time than OCC. Though being better isn’t always “best”, and the site had to close down due to financial reasons. If I remember correctly, the cost for bandwidth killed them. The closing of OCCC wasn’t all bad. Most of the members returned to OCC, and some of the staff from there became staff for a short time with OCC. I don’t remember what happened to the others, but Bishop would become the only staff member from OCCC to remain on as staff with OCC. — Of course Bosco would come back later.

I loved OCC, there’s no doubt about that. I did what I could to try and benefit the site, which is why 90% of the products I reviewed ended up going to the members as contest prizes. Out of all of the stuff I reviewed, I kept very few things. I can happily say that I posted more news then than what has ever been posted… even the site today doesn’t post nearly as much news as I did. I’ll admit though, it was a failed attempt to make the “main” site more useful. I had thought that by posting more news, it would have caused people to start using the news comments. I was wrong, but I kept on trying.

There were a lot of other things I did back then that people did enjoy. OCC Survivor and the weekly OCC Polls were a big hit. Though not everything was good, in fact there are a few things I wish I had never suggested to Matt. I was the one responsible for the “OCC Babes” forum, which got me a lot of praise from the guys and a lot of hate from the women (especially my wife)… it was also my fault that OCC ended up with a politics forum. I wish I had never suggested the later forum, I still see it as an eyesore to the OCC community.

One of the most common misunderstanding people have about my role with OCC is they assume I was an admin for the site. This is incorrect; I never had that title or any of the abilities that would go along with such. I was simply a news editor, reviewer, and moderator. I often referred to myself as a glorified moderator. People thought I had more power than I did for the simple reason that I was the most visible… that would become even more true as time would move on.

Any change that happened to the site was approved and implemented by Matt. All I could do was make a suggestion or recommendation.

In July 2003 a really cool event took place, and I’m glad I was able to attend. The OverclockersClub.com LAN Party was held in Matt’s hometown of Birmingham, Alabama. I attended the weekend party as was able to meet several members of the site including Sykocus and Psywar. While I had a blast, thinking back on it this actually marked the beginning of the downfall of OCC.

At the time of the LAN, Matt was supposed to review a Asetek VapoChill unit. For those of you that have no idea what this is, it’s basically a refrigerator that cools your CPU. The sucker cost over a grand, and it was given to Matt to review, and he simply didn’t do it. To the best of my knowledge this was the first product he didn’t review… I am unaware of anything prior to that, but it wouldn’t surprise me if there were other products…. it certainly wasn’t the last product he failed to review.

I don’t know why he stopped reviewing products. I know he started playing Saga of Ryzom around that time, and was also doing a bit of mountain biking. My only assumption could be that he started enjoying those things more and OCC less.

It got to the point where he was no longer answering my messages in the staff forum, or anyone of my IMs to him via ICQ/YIM. Weeks and even months would go by before I’d get a message from him. It really started to piss me off, and I’m sure Max (Bishop) could attest to that. As he was the only other staff member for a while, he got to listen to me bitch and complain. Finally Matt would bring on some more moderators to help me and Max out. I was beginning to think I needed to petition congress to get help.

I have no knowledge of anything that went on behind the scenes at the time. All I know is I’d receive a package of something in the mail every few weeks, I’d review it and send it to Matt and most of the time it would end up on the site. I know a couple of guides that I wrote never were posted, the URL actually worked at the time. – One that comes to mind was a guide on how to start a PSU without a motherboard.

Eventually I just got so pissed off with the lack of communication from Matt, and the lack of ability to do anything myself that I decided if OCC was going to continue like it was, that I wanted to try and make something else… a community like OCC, but one that I could actually be responsible for and do things as needed. That’s where the idea for TechRelated.com came into play.

The irony of TechRelated.com is that the domain name was actually purchased for OverclockersClub.com. Back when Matt drew up the whole “OCC Name Change” contest, I was looking for names that I thought would work and sounded good. TechRelated.com was available, so I purchased it with the hope that Matt would use it. Needless to say Matt didn’t use it, in fact, Matt never went through with the name change… or the contest.

In early September 2005 I formally announced my resignation as an OCC staff member via a post in the staff forums. To give you an idea how bad things had gotten by this point, Matt didn’t respond to it until early October. I didn’t leave with any harsh words; I simply wished him well and went on my way.

At the end of October, I announced TechRelated.com but it wasn’t until May 2006 that I actually opened the TR Forums and allowed members to register.

During this time, Dave (Bosco) has been given the role of “Site Manager” and I suspect that Matt had already put plans in motion to sell OCC. Personally; I wish that he had sold to Dave or approached me about it, but he ended up selling to Howard Ha, owner of Neoseeker. Don’t know the guy, never had any interaction with him, but from my perspective he appears to be the man behind the curtain. With Dave running the day-to-day activities in a role similar to what I had, with the exception that he actually has the power and authority to do things.

Now during this time, some odd things start happening. Rules are created that basically say you cannot link (post or sig) to a site that is in competition to OCC. The same time, my IP is blacklisted and my email is banned. Now being on the outside here, I see this as a direct attack. How would you perceive something like this?

Finally, Dave (who actually reads this site from time to time) tells me that the rule wasn’t because of me, and also starts looking into my ban. After a month or so, things are fixed, and I can post again. My ban appears to have been something Matt did before he left.

Another thing happened during this time (mid August), which angered a lot of members. The big “OCC DB Crash”. There are two theories I have here. Personally I believe that this was sabotage done by the previous owner, or simply a big frak up by the current owners when they moved things over. Either way it was a nasty mark on OCC.

It was actually good for me, as it increase traffic to TR at the time. It’s amazing how something like that can send people running to other sites. Of course, I can see how losing 7 months worth of posts can piss people off. There is no acceptable excuse for that kind of loss.

Backing up a few months before the OCC HDD Failure there were some other things going on that irked a number of members, including me. The site had a desperate need of moderation, as almost all moderation had ceased for a while. Dave did the right thing and brought in some new staff members. While he made the right decision in doing this, I think he got some of the wrong people for the job.

A moderator needs to be a people person. Someone who can communicate clearly, and not throw insults at the members… it also needs to be someone who actually knows the rules that they are suppose to enforce. A couple of the people selected should have been on the top (I’m talking #1, #2, and #3) of the 100 worst possible choices for staff members. Matter of fact, I don’t know why they weren’t banned when they were members of the site.

The new mods did their job in cleaning up the forums, but did so in ways that ruffled feathers and just generally irked other members. They insulted members, started and participated in flame wars, and simply failed to listen to legitimate complaints and criticism.

A few members were actually banned (Overclocker16 and ClayMeow) for voicing their opinion and trying to make the site better. How stupid is that? I agreed with both of these guys, stepped in, voiced my opinion, and publicly bitch slapped a couple of the mods. The best part about it was, I didn’t get a single warning for this, wasn’t banned, and eventually the others were unbanned.

Certain staff members have held a personal grudge against me ever since this event, and I can understand why. I’d hate be embarrassed like they were. One staff member even resorted to registering on TR and doing nothing but complaining and starting threads about how much better OCC was than the rest of the world. And you know what, I allowed the threads like this. It did nothing but prove my point. Personally, if I had a staff member that had done that, I’d have fired their ass.

When you are in a staff position like that, you have to maintain a certain level of professionalism…. thankfully, there is no such need for bloggers and such.

I actually apologized to Dave via IM for ripping his staff a new one, and we had a laugh about it (see the d3bruts1d.com forums). Though certain staff members continue their grudge.

The end of March 2007 was a sad day for me. Financially I could no longer support TR. The cost in bandwidth was killing me… does this sounds familiar? lol So on 3/31/2007 TR closed its doors. And as I suspected, members gravitated back to OCC and those members received some snide comments from staff about coming back.

Me? Yes, though I had never left OCC, my posting did increase. I started posting more than the once or twice a month that I had been.

In mid May I was responding to a post, and went to look for an OCC review that I had done a long time ago. My name wasn’t on it, so I started looking at a number of other reviews that I had written. My name wasn’t on any of them, and in most cases the “written by” line had someone else’s name entirely. — Some of them even said they were written by a person that wasn’t even a registered member for a year later.

I don’t think I have to explain to anyone why this pissed me off. Seeing someone else’s name on my work absolutely infuriated me. And so, I went off on a quick rave here. After I had some time to calm down, I posted on OCC about it. I talked to Nerm about this via PM, and was informed it had to do with the new CMS that OCC was using for reviews. So, I did what I thought was the right thing to do and posted an update here on d3bruts1d.com that explained things as they had been explained to me.

Three days later, someone starts deleting my profile/signature without explaining anything to me. Since I didn’t get a warning or anything, I figured it must have been a bug or something I was doing on my part causing the stuff to be removed. So I added everything back to the way it was (and mind you had been for a very long time). I get a nastygram from one of the mods (#1 on that list I mentioned before) that basically said he was doing it, and gave me some bogus crap about how I wasn’t “Former OCC Staff” and how I had never been staff, and how d3bruts1d.com was malfeasant towards OCC.

Well we know how that whole situation played out (it still makes me snicker), and needless to say I’ve been quasi-banned from OCC. Sure, I can log in, but I get nothing more than a white page when I do.

And they’ve still not listened to me when it comes to submitting links to Digg. I tried to help them out by telling them how to play the “Digg Game” but they wouldn’t listen to me, or anyone who tried to tell them what I was saying was not for nothing.

It’s been well over a month now since my banning. I’m happily settled in at a few other communities. I hadn’t thought about posting anything in regards to OCC again until I heard through the grape vine I was being blamed for OCC’s past and current problems.

I’m sorry, but that shit doesn’t stick. OCC’s past problems are directly and 100% related to the person that owned and managed the site back then. And you know what, that wasn’t me. I was a little peon in the scheme of things. I just did what I was told, and I reviewed every product I received, with one exception.

I was supposed to review X2: The Threat and I didn’t. The game was sent to me on burnt, label-less CDs, no user manual and no box. The game was complicated to install, ran like crap, and wouldn’t work most of the time. It wasn’t something I could review and I was told not to worry about it since we really weren’t a gaming review site (not for my lack of trying though!).

I spent my time with and after OCC trying to help the site. So if it has problems now it wasn’t because of my actions. Quit trying to blame me for this stuff.

I hope this clears up everything for those of you with questions, theories, and/or concerns. And with any luck, this will be the last time I have to post anything on this subject.

Chris Benoit Is Dead

It’s been a long, long time since I’ve watched any “Professional Wrestling”. But yesterday evening I saw something on the news that I hated to hear, and it made me turn on WWE.

Chris Benoit, best known as The Rabid Wolverine or The Canadian Crippler, is dead. His wife, and son were also found dead in their Atlanta, GA home yesterday afternoon. Right now, it looks like it may have been a double murder-suicide. When I really hate to hear. Chris had always been one of my favorite wrestlers.

No one has yet to mention the “Hart Family Curse”. Nothing good ever comes to those who have anything to do with that family. While Chris wasn’t part of the family, he was trained by Stu.

Movies

Over the weekend the wife and I rented ordered a number of movies on Comcast OnDemand. I’ve really taken a liking to the service, it’s far less hassle than dealing with Blockbuster and their late fees. Speaking of Blockbuster, did you know if you return a movie late, and don’t rent another movie for a few months, you’ll get a letter from a collections agency? True story.

So, what movies did we watch?

Epic Movie – I expected the movie to suck, and it lived up to my expectations. I did enjoy some of the spoofs it was making toward Pirates of the Caribbean, X-Men, and Chronicles of Narnia.

The Fountain – I’d tell you what I thought of this one, except we stopped watching it after about 40 minutes. Does Comcast give a refund for movies that suck?

R.S.V.P. – This was on the free list (FEAR.net, I think), and was one of the better movies we watched all weekend. It’s very Hitchcockian, so if you like that kind of movie this is probably one for you… and if you need another reason, it’s got Jason Mewes in it. It’s got a couple other names in it too, but I’ll let you find them for yourself.

Turistas – This is basically a rip off of Hostel, but with a better cast and less blood. Better? Meh… it’s about the same.

There was some other movie that we watched early Sunday morning, but I had a Tequila hangover, and ended up falling asleep during the movie. I forget what the heck the name of it was, but it involved a group of friends, a graveyard, a cap near the graveyard (never a good idea), and people dying (duh!). It looked like it could have been a semi-ok movie.