Archive > November 2008

Good Obamorning!

05 November 2008 » In Opinion » 1 Comment

Yes, we can. Yes, we did. And yes, we will.
I spent last night at the Digg/CurrentTV election party, surrounded by friends, having drinks and anxiously awaiting the results of this historic election. The atmosphere was electric – you could practically feel the positive energy flowing through everyone there. A few seconds before the 8 pm poll deadline, the crowd started chanting the countdown, and when it hit and Obama’s electoral vote count jumped to 297… the place went crazy, exploding into shouts, cheers, and whoops of jubilation, and I could feel myself shedding a few tears.
Never before have I been this affected by a political event or issue. I am not yet a citizen, so I cannot vote, but I am proud that people who can finally made the right choice by electing Barack Obama, the first African-American to be the President of the United States. This is a man of extraordinary moral character, intelligence, and judgement, who overcame racial prejudice, claims of inexperience, outlandish rumors and many other obstacles in this long campaign. He is an agent of change, and this is precisely what this country and its people need in these trying times.
The only thing that marred an otherwise joyful evening was the news that California Proposition 8 passed. It’s terrible that such bigotry and prejudice is still out there. The fight against it must continue. Yes, we can.


03 November 2008 » In Games, Reviews » No Comments

Recently I signed up for Raptr, partly because my friend Kevin works there and partly because I was getting back into gaming. In a basic sense, Raptr is a social service for people to keep track of what games their friends are playing. Of course, you can do it via Xbox Live already, but you have to be logged in to see who’s online and it covers only one platform. Raptr fixes it by providing a unified view over your multiple gaming identities: Wii, Xbox Live, Steam, PS3, WoW, and others. On PC and Mac, you can install Raptr client, and it will discover what games you have installed and add them to your game library (2000+ games, including Flash ones, are supported now and more are being added all the time). The client also handles patching your games.
A couple of things that I like specifically:

  • News feed – this serves as the frontend to your profile (here’s mine). The status messages are cute: “Nothing like a short game of Rock Band (360) to calm andreiz‘s frayed nerves.“, or “andreiz spent a chunk of time playing Braid (XBLA).
  • Twitter (and other social services) integration – I can have Raptr post to Twitter on my behalf when I start playing a game or unlock an achievement.

I’m far from what you would call a “hardcore” gamer, but I find it useful to see at one glance what games I have played on various platforms, and what my friends have been up to, and which games are popular in my circle or overall.
Give Raptr a try and tell me what you think.

Farewell, Outspark

01 November 2008 » In Me, Work » 1 Comment

All good things come to an end, and thus, November 5 will be my last day at Outspark. It’s been a wild, yet fulfilling ride over the last 17 months. When I was leaving Yahoo, I wanted a challenge and to be closer to the front lines of the business, and my wish definitely came true. Yes, there have been emergencies, frustrations, downtime, and a few crazily surreal moments in the true start-up fashion. But I’m very proud of what I helped build – a virtual playground for online gamers, a destination, a community, and the company that is the leader in its field. I met a lot of great people there and made good friends and I will definitely stay in touch with all of them. Outspark has a bright and interesting future.
As for me personally, it was simply time to move on. I wanted to take some time off to chill, travel, invest some effort into personal development, and reassess my future plans. My last day almost coincides with my birthday, and it feels like a good date to start this new chapter in my life.
P.S. As you noticed, the look and structure of this site has changed. If you can’t find some page you were looking for, please let me know.