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Need Submissions for QB Express #4!

Posted: Wed Nov 10, 2004 12:18 am
by Pete
Hey everybody -- QB Express Issue #4 is due out in less than a week, and right now I have next to nothing for it. There have been very few submissions this time around -- the fewest that I've had so far. So I definitely need YOUR help to put out another good issue this month.

Here's what I have so far:
  • *A "lost" tutorial by DarkDread on Pixel*Tile Scrolling Engines
    *Two interviews by Piptol (If I get enough submissions I will only run one this month and save the second for a future issue)
    *QBNow! Vol. 1 Chapter 5 by Neo Deus Ex Machina
    *"Bobby The QBasic Maniac" Comics by Matt2Jones
Here's what people have said they would write (but haven't submitted yet):
  • *Chaoticmass: Part 2 of his scripting tutorial
    *VonGodric: Part 2 of his GUI series
    *Relsoft: Tutorial on lens flares
    *Levi: A "Character creation tutorial"
    *Oz: A game review
Several people have expressed interest in writing articles for this magazine, including Nekrophidius, Barok, Lurah, Terry Cavanagh, Nathan1993 and a few others, but none of them have confirmed / promised an article. They just said that they eventually hoped to contribute something.

Additionally, I have not received a single good "letter to the editor" this time around that I'm planning on printing.

By now, you all should have a pretty good idea of what this magazine is about and what kind of stuff I run in it. If you have some free time, I would really appreciate it if you would send something in. I'm especially looking for reviews, rants, editorials and articles on QB history, since they seem to be especially popular. (The most popular articles in the first few issues have been the "Blast from the Past" and the "Gallery," and some of the more interesting tutorials.) But honestly, anything that you submit would be greatly appreciated. I'm also looking for news items to run in the "News Briefs" section, so let me know if you've got any announcements.

Oh, and one more thing: Issue #4 has a very high likelihood of being postoponed a day or two from its original deadline of Monday, November 15th. Over the next week, I have an absolutely tremendous amount of work to get done, especially on Monday. All day Sunday I have a TV shoot (I'm the director of photography), and on Monday I've got a major term paper due as well as a script / storyboard for a final project in one of my video production classes. I also have 7 hours of class to attend on chances are quite high that I'll end up delaying Issue #4 until Tuesday or Wednesday.

So... Help me make Issue #4 great like the first three!

Posted: Sun Nov 14, 2004 11:56 am
by m2j
I can't get anything done for this publication deadline, but I'm thinking doing newspaper column style rants about game writing and stuff like that I could send you, if you're still this stuck.

I've got a new set of BBY comics (volume 2), but they're sort of idiotic attacks at BBY critics on qbnews.... which for real reason's you may not want print, so this will be my neo-contribution.

And also - I see you've reviewed my site - Thanks! I wish I'd known sooner!


Posted: Sun Nov 14, 2004 7:32 pm
by Nodtveidt
I still plan on contributing *something*...just not quite sure what yet. After I get back from Blockbuster, I have to finish up the scripts for the GGA'04 so I can get it online and my time at this moment is a bit preoccupied. :(

Posted: Thu Nov 18, 2004 3:32 pm
by MystikShadows
What would be shown in QB History? differences in versions as in evolution? or when what version came out and so on?

Posted: Thu Nov 18, 2004 5:39 pm
by Pete
No... more like QB Community history. About all the games or trends from the online QB community in the past ten years.

The "Blast from the Past!" section is a monthly article on some aspect of QB history. It's probably the most popular section of QB Express (I've gotten the most positive responses about Blast from the Past! articles than anything else), so I figured I should get people to write some more history articles and give people what they want.

Posted: Sat Nov 20, 2004 3:30 pm
by Nodtveidt
Pete, I was going to submit an article on the GGA, but as I was starting to write it, I realized that I didn't really have enough to say about it. :( That said, I've already submitted my article for this issue (XP Straightjacket), so that's all good. :D I'll see what I can come up with for an article for QB Express #5 as well. :)

Posted: Sat Nov 20, 2004 8:40 pm
by Nodtveidt
Saturday's almost over...where's QB Express #4? :D

Posted: Sat Nov 20, 2004 9:25 pm
by MystikShadows
That's now a 2 part question....why? cause we both want to know :-)....hehe

Posted: Sat Nov 20, 2004 10:59 pm
by Nodtveidt
Perhaps Pete is still busy and whatnot...I can certainly understand how that goes. It took me almost a full week longer than planned to get the GGA'04 online...

Posted: Sat Nov 20, 2004 11:50 pm
by MystikShadows
yeah, it's what I'm assuming :-)....I know how that goes's kewl like he said I can wait even a couple more days if it's gonna make a better magazine it's worth the wait. :-)

No rush at all.

Posted: Sun Nov 21, 2004 12:27 am
by Nodtveidt
Indeed...I totally agree. :D

Posted: Sun Nov 21, 2004 3:07 pm
by Pete
Guys, I'm really sorry about the delay... but there's a very good reason for it.

My computer is broken.

It's my main computer, the computer that I had the work-in-progress version of Issue #4 on, which was nearly done. Now I can't access the issue... and I don't want to restart it from scratch.

Here's what happened. I have a one-week vacation for Thanksgiving this week, so I'm home from college until the 28th. Yesterday morning (Saturday), my dad came and picked me up. Since I had a lot of computer work to do this week, I decided to pack up my desktop PC and bring it home. Normally I would have just left it at school and used my old PC at home, but like I said, I have a lot of work to do over break: video editing, some papers to write, some research to do, I've got to design a new web site for my college TV station and release the new issue of QB Express. The computer was working flawlessly before I packed it up to bring it home.

So I got home and set up the computer and pressed the power button. Lo and behold, it was completely screwed up. The speakers made weird noises, and on the screen were random colors, shapes and letters that blinked repeatedly and sometimes switched to other patterns. I'm not sure what the problem is with it, whether it's the graphics card, the CPU or the motherboard... or something else.

This must have been caused by a loose connection or a damaged chip when I transported the tower from school to home. I have tried opening up the case and disconnecting and reconnecting most of the chips and cords with no luck. I still haven't disconnected the processor from the motherboard (since it's kinda hard to get to), but I'm gonna try that soon. I have disconnected and reconnected the graphics card and RAM chips, as well as the power supply. Just more random garbled shapes, patterns, letters and colors on the screen.

Here's my system specs, if anyone has any ideas:
  • Athlon 64 3000+ "Barton" Processor
    ASUS K8V Deluxe Motherboard
    3x - 512MB KingMax DDR-400 RAM chips - Totalling 1536MB RAM
    ATI Radeon 9800 All-In-Wonder graphics card

    Serial ATA 36GB 10,000RPM Hard Drive - Main hard drive
    3x - Serial ATA Maxtor 160GB 7200RPM Hard drives - Storage drives totalling 480GB
    LiteOn DVD+-RW Burner
    LiteOn DVD Drive
    Floppy Drive
Whenever I have turned on the computer I have had a different pattern of random shapes, colors and letters appear on the screen, and blink on and off at regular intervals. There has been only one exception: one time when I turned on the computer, nothing appeared on the screen and the POST function of the motherboard played the "System Fail CPU Test" warning on the speakers. This happened on one of the initial times I tried booting up the computer, before I opened up the computer and tried to tighten up the connections on the motherboard. This leads me to think the problem is with the CPU, or with its connection to the motherboard.

Anyway, I'm still working on my computer.

When I get my computer fixed, the new QB Express should be out within a few hours. (That's contingent on my hard drives still being functionable...)

Wish me luck -- and if you have any ideas on how to fix this, let me know.

Posted: Sun Nov 21, 2004 3:13 pm
by MystikShadows
Well to me it doesn't look like a loose CPU effect....I would have guessed your video card most likely...loose ram chips don't cause a video problem unless something shorts something else....perhaps the CPU on your videocard itself (the big chip?) to know if it's that, just change that video card with the card you have on your old puter see if that guess is that's the problem.

Posted: Sun Nov 21, 2004 4:20 pm
by Z!re
The computer worked flawlessly before you packed it..

Did you dl anything just before?, (read: Could you have gotten a virus?)

Other then that...

The speaker making noise, video screwed up...

Ok, IF the CPU was fried, then you wouldnt get anything, as everything goes through it...

The sound, can be because of a shortcircuit in the soundcard OR! Videocard (yah, i know, dunno why...)

And the screwed video display.. try reconnecting the monitor, sometimes it's that simple.. sometimes... Other then that, try replacing it, and see if that works...

If you still get nothing.. consider the motherboard...

It's a bit weird though, that you only get random textmode patterns... as it should change to GFX mode if nothing fails, and if something fails it should beep... (hooray for POST)

Posted: Sun Nov 21, 2004 5:40 pm
by Nodtveidt
Your video card became unseated and was probably damaged when you powered it on half-seated. Transporting a computer is not a trivial matter anymore; you pretty much have to rebuild the bloody thing when it arrives at its destination to make sure it's still gonna work when you turn it on. You could have done all kinds of damage to your video card, CPU, or motherboard. It's really quite pathetic how fragile computer components have become...they don't build them very solid anymore because they want to make as much money as possible out of you when stuff making stuff more susceptible to breakage like this is far more profitable for manufacturers than to make good quality products that take a beating for years.

However, it might also be a strong electromagnetic disturbance. Try moving your setup to another location in the house, or better yet, try it out in someone else's house.

Both scenarios are possible.

Posted: Sun Nov 21, 2004 6:08 pm
by MystikShadows
No kidding there Nekro...I noticed that change in more than just the cards too...The hard uncle's harddrive (less than 1 1/2 year old) just stopped on him...outlived itself so to speak. I have a good old 80 Mb drive here (27 years old that still works like new) I guess in a way we can't blame them they have to make money.....but still we're the ones paying.

Posted: Mon Nov 22, 2004 6:34 am
by Guest
Pete my man, you've got mail.

Posted: Mon Nov 22, 2004 3:17 pm
by Pete
Quick update on my computer:

No, it's not the graphics card. Last night I switched out the new graphics card (ATI Radeon 9800 All-In-Wonder) for an old card I have (nVidia GeForce 2 64MB card). It didn't fix anything. I got the message "System Fail CPU Test" again, after the graphics card showed its load screen. This time there weren't random colors, shapes, patterns and letters -- just nothing on the screen -- but had the graphics card been causing the problem, switching to the working graphics card should have fixed it.

Now I think that the problem is the CPU. I just took the CPU out of the motherboard, and I'm planning on putting it back in to see if it somehow got knocked loose. But first I need to buy a tube of that gray gel you spread on the CPU and the heat sink so that I can reinstall everything.

So that's where I'm at now. I'm hoping that the CPU isn't fried and that it just got knocked loose somehow. Wish me luck.

Posted: Mon Nov 22, 2004 3:49 pm
by MystikShadows
Already not a good sign though...but good luck anyway Pete :-).

Like you said it's not all that obvious to get the CPU...Likewise it's not obvious to shake it loose...once that lever is down, it's down for good...unless you went across 30 miles of death Valley tracks on your way there...LOL....or it felt like 30 miles hehehe...

So good luck and hope it's not the CPU...:-)

Sorry to think laterally, but...

Posted: Mon Nov 22, 2004 9:50 pm
by jake
Since you can post to this message board, you obviously have access to some kind of computer. So, Why don't you take the video card out of the working computer, and put it in the dodgy one. Or, even better, why don't you take the hard drive out of the dodgy computer and put it back into the working computer.

Hope you work it out...