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Thought of the Day April 25, 2010

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Via Lamebook

Brian Blessed The Voice of TomTom? April 1, 2010

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We’re not going to lie, BWT loves Brian Blessed.  He is a god among men.  Did you know his ribcage is apparently twice the size of a normal man’s?  He’s like a bear, only less hairy!  Plus there’s that unmistakable booming voice.

And now that voice is the centre of an online Facebook petition – to turn it into a satnav speaker option.

The social networking group, which has been running for only a few weeks, currently has over 8,000 members.  Richard Gardner, the founder, contacted TomTom about getting Brian on board.  The satnav manufacturer promises that if the group gains 25,000 members in total, they’ll enter into negotiations with the big jolly bearded one.

So what are you waiting for?  GO JOIN!

Top Tips in FarmVille March 26, 2010

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Okay, we’re honestly going to shut up about FarmVille sometime soon… But not quite yet!

The chaps over at Kotaku sat down with the game’s developers, Zynga, and walked away with some handy hints and tips.

They include using the new comment box to keep in touch with your neighbours, timing the growth of your crops, and managing your plot space.

More here.

“I posed as a girl of 14 on Facebook. What followed will sicken you” March 12, 2010

Posted by bitchwantstea in News, Tech / Science.
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Has the Daily Mail finally met its match?

Facebook, the social networking site behemoth, has threatened to sue the paper after it wrongly alleged that 14-year-old girls who create a profile could be approached “within seconds” by older men who “wanted to perform a sex act” in front of them.

The paper apologised in print and online for the error, insisting it had been introduced by editors at the paper despite being told it was wrong.

But Facebook is still gunning for blood.  The company is considering legal action and looking at the “brand damage that has been done”.

Facebook staff also claimed that attempts to add a comment to the piece, as readers are able to do, were repeatedly blocked by the Daily Mail.

We can’t see the Mail wriggling out of this one too easily…

FarmVille Hits 80 Million Users February 23, 2010

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… We like to think it was partly because of BWT professing our love for the Facebook farming game.

To put this into perspective, there are currently around 400 million users on Facebook.  That means approximately 5% of Facebook spams you with really annoying ‘ZOMG I FOUND A PINK RABBIT AREN’T I GREATZ LOLZ!!11″ status updates.

FarmVille’s parent company, Zynga, was recently valued at 1 billion dollars.  Now that’s a lot of eggplants.

Sarah Palin vs Family Guy February 18, 2010

Posted by bitchwantstea in Film / TV, Politics.
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Former governor of Alaska Sarah Palin has hit out at popular television show Family Guy for “mocking” her son, who has Down’s syndrome.

In the program, Chris – the Griffin family’s son – bringing home a girlfriend with Down’s syndrome.  When quizzed by his parents about her family, she states that her mother used to be Alaskan governor.

Palin in turn responded on Facebook, saying the episode “felt like another kick in the gut.”  She also provided a statement from her oldest daughter Bristol, who wrote, “Shouldn’t we be willing to say that some things just are not funny? Are there any limits to what some people will do or say in regards to my little brother or others in the special needs community?”

However, some accuse Palin of double-standards, after American conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh repeatedly used the word “retard” in a pejorative manner on his show.  Palin chided the incident, but later on Fox News Sunday dismissed it as satire.

The animation’s creator said the show was “an equal opportunity offender”, which “used biting satire as the foundation of its humour.”

What do you think, BWT readers?  Has Family Guy crossed the line?  And if so, where should the line be drawn?

Conquering The World – On Facebook February 4, 2010

Posted by bitchwantstea in Tech / Science.
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Bad news for you Civilization videogame fans out there.

The Facebook version of the fiendishly addictive empire-building series won’t be making its debut until June at the earliest, when the game will be entering into one of its final stages of development.

The aim of the game is to build and maintain the richest, smartest, or just plain coolest settlement on the planet – whether it’s by diplomacy (e.g. listening to the needs of your people, making peace with fellow civilizations), force (pretty much blowing the shit out of anyone who disagrees) or both.  It’s also CRAZILY ADDICTIVE.

Instalments of the franchise have already appeared on PC and consoles, and the Facebook version was first mentioned back in October.

Boo!  Hurry up Civilization!

FarmVille – IT’S ABOUT DAMN TIME! January 26, 2010

Posted by bitchwantstea in Bizarre, Tech / Science.
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Here at BWT, we’ve already documented our obsession with social networking games.  We can’t get enough of them.  If we’re not posting inane updates on here, then we’re either feeding our virtual fish, running our virtual restaurant, or shooting our virtual friends in the face.

But even if you’re not a fan of these games, you’ve still probably heard of the most popular social networking title around – FarmVille.  You tend to your crops, nurture your animals, buy shiny stuff and, erm… that’s pretty much it.  Trust us, it’s more addictive than chocolate coated with crack.

But not everyone loves FarmVille as much as us, as this tongue-in-cheek advertisement (below) shows.

“FARMVILLE CASH!  Worth as much as real money – AFTER IT’S ACCIDENTALLY DROPPED INTO A VOLCANO!”

The $5 Glass of Water December 30, 2009

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Restaurant City

The BBC has just announced virtual transactions in gaming could be worth five billion dollars in the next five years.

This should come as no surprise if you’re a Restaurant City addict, like us.  It’s three o’clock in the morning, you’re tired, and – goddamnit – you just have to buy those vanilla sticks to complete your perfect virtual dessert…  Even if it means parting with some very real cash.

Sounds ridiculous?  Microtransactions are serious business, accounting for an unspecified but undoubtedly large chunk of Playfish’s (the creators of Restaurant City) bank balance.  Unlike your typical boxed game product, flash games like Restaurant City are free – but if you want to get ahead, it often means opening your wallet.  The key is not only giving you incentives to buy – such as in-game items you can only purchase with real money – but also making the transactions small and as unnoticeable as possible.  A few dollars here, a few dollars there…  Putting down five dollars for a mushroom shaped seat (hey, it looked cute, okay?) might not seem like much, when you add up these small transactions over several months, across millions of players, you end up with a lot of $$$.

Even if we manage to burn everything that comes within a five mile radius of our oven in real life, in Restaurant City, our tuna fish cakes will always be perfect.