30th May 2006

Adblock for Opera 9 ?

At first, there is no equivalent like Adblock + Filterset.G in Mozilla Firefox for Opera 9 that is as comfortable and efficient.

Opera 9 block content

Opera 9 (beta 2) offers the “Block content…” option in its content menu. After pressing it you get some nice preview of what is being blocked from the site.

Basicly they use the filter.ini file in Opera’s profile folders. Its a simple list of urls that specify excludes and includes. There have been external tools like OperaAdFilter(link died) and FlashBlock . You can although use external proxy tools that control your whole web traffic for all applications so you could block icq ads and opera ads with one tool. But these tools all suffer from very basic problems. If you block some ads on a web-site the place on the web-site is simply left empty and web-sites look a bit chaotic and unfinished. Adblock in Firefox handles this a lot better. The fact that opera integrated this feature in its gui shows that the developers listened to user requests. Lets hope Opera’s “Block content…” will be as good as Firefox’s Adblock in the final version.

Update: Final Version of Opera 9 is out and i found this neat link with some up-to-date Filterset in Opera 9 format . It works pretty well so far. But you still cant edit the color of  the nasty yellow “special effect”. By the way, if you can’t find the urlfilter.ini in Mac OS X:
/Users/[username]/Library/Preferences/Opera Preferences
if its not there just go back to opera and use ‘tools – advanced – block content’ and create a sampe block. Than the file will be created.

posted in linux, mac os x, reviews, windows | 4 Comments

27th May 2006

HowTo move the address bar below the tab bar in Opera 9 beta 2

Just downloaded the Opera 9 beta 2. …. gawd Opera looks pretty ugly. Went to their skin site, but there is no decent one. All i found was this grubby forged one, with its suited name fantastic . After that i noticed that customizing Opera is not as easy as i’m used to in Firefox. For example moving the tab-bar below the address bar, which doesn’t sound hard but you got to work around a bit. On this thread i found some lil guide to solve this mystery.

– turn of the Opera default address bar with “CTRL+F8”
– right click on the main toolbar -> “customize”
– choose “Buttons” -> “Browser view”
– then you can drag the “address bar button” and drop it into the main bar at any place you like
– press “ok” to close the app. window

Maybe there are good Opera themes but hard to find.

Update: I found some sweet skin.

1. Go to this website and select the “Odyssey” skin.
2. in the “Skin selection” drop-down-menus select “All” in the left one and than “Browser skin” in the right one
3. Now set all Paddings to “0”, press “save” and “download” on bottom right

Odyssey Opera 9 skin

So there is a last “feature” to get rid of, the nasty yellow special effects glow. I’ve read that it is a system color (windows tool-tip color) but somehow thats not right. In the official opera forum they created some “Opera Standard modified” skin without the yellow glowing in the scrollbars and buttons. nontroppo has modified his Breeze skin as well to fix this “feature”. I guess in the final Opera 9 this wont be a problem anymore and you can select the special effects color within opera.

posted in linux, mac os x, windows | 10 Comments

25th May 2006

product not existent ?

Just found this lovely picture of Microsoft Intellimouse Explorer 2.0 in blue, white, lime/green, mauve/lila in this review.


But there is no way to find the white or the green (not the “night vision” model) in the web for sale. Was this just a product study ? They look really better than the sale models. So anyone got a clue what this picture was meant for ?

posted in reviews | 2 Comments

23rd May 2006

signed angle between two vectors(3d) in c/c++

I tried to realize some point-in-polygon-test in 3D for my raytracer and came upon the problem to calculate a signed angle between 2 vectors. Trying to find this in the web was not easy, somehow most people project the polygon plane and the point into 2d and do the test there. But here is the method i found:

signed_angle = atan2(  N * ( V1 x V2 ), V1 * V2  );
// where * is dot product and x is cross product
// N is the normal to the polygon
// ALL vectors: N, V1, V2 must be normalized

It worked for me.

posted in reviews | 22 Comments

14th May 2006

Advanced Warfighter – Condemned – DirectX – mouse lag – keyboard lag – input lag

I’ve been experiencing heavy keyboard and mouse lag in recent direct-x games. Searching the web i found several attempts in solving this program issues. In the old days when Half-life 1 came out it was quite easy to switch from direct-x to opengl but now-days its not that easy anymore.

One solution was to look for the windows xp keyboard filters (repeat rates, delay rates, …).

windows xp – control panel – accessibility


windows xp – control panel – keyboard

 Here you can find various settings “Ignore quick keystrokes and slow down the repeat rate”, “Slow down keyboard repeat rates” and so on. One strategy might be to decrease all repeat rates and delays to their minimums, but does it make that much sense if the game isn’t able to process your input fast enough and you even raise the input rate ? And wont the game set its own delay and repeat rates for the game input ? Well, it seems like it worked for a few people but not for me.

So i kept on searching and found another method that although worked for a few people. It seems like a few direct-x games set its own priority level above the keyboard/mouse priority level.

check with ctrl+alt+del in the process tab – right mouse button on a process – check priority

Now you can set the game priority back to normal, because some people complained that the advanced warfighter demo sets its priority itself to high. In this thread they discuss various methods of launching a game with a certain preset priority, ranging from writing your own batch (.bat) file to just use the “/NORMAL” attribute for the windows xp application link.

So, did it work for me ? No ! I just used the CPU settings “Maximum” and the Graphic Card settings “Medium” in the Condemned game settings and it was “playable”. I guess its a problem of the Post Effects in direct-x in combination with FSAA and AF. I’ve experienced a similar problem with the post fx in trackmania sunrise, but there it just had an effect on the graphic delay and didn’t cause an input rate delay.

posted in windows | 8 Comments

11th May 2006

Flyakite 3.5 – MacOSX-look for your Windows XP

Finally FlyakiteOSX 3.5 (i tried the german version) works flawlessly. In the early version i always had some bugs with the Y’z Shadow and the dock-bar, but this time everything works just from the start, without additional configuring. It is recommended to use the included “Rebuild Icon Cache” tool if you finally found or created all icons for your desktop, this will speedup the start-up.


The only tool i had to add was some look-a-like tool for apple’s Exposé. The very nice Flyakite Guide “Welcome to FlyakiteOSX v3.5” had nice suggestions for this purpose. I tried TopDesk v1.3.5 (trial) which was a very excellent tool and i was about to actually buy it, but their web-site was down and no other share-ware shop offered it. Bad luck for you Okatu Software ! So i went with Entbloess v2.7.2 . I tried that software like a year ago or so and i got this nasty flicker effects when going to the “tile all windows” view. The 2.7.2 does a very good job with its “PrintWindow” method. I got fast and smooth animations after i disabled the “Zoom previews when highlighted” option. Somehow the performance is bad with that mode when you have high quality previews. The Lucida Grande (bold) looks very good on my desktop symbols in combination with Cleartype.

Additional Links: osx-e.com  nice collections of links and articles, panther icons , more extensive guide to extend FlyakiteOSX

posted in reviews, windows | 14 Comments

11th May 2006

Windows Media Player skin – MacOSX Graphite Blue Milk

Just found this neat Windows Media Player skin (WMP10 but works on WMP9 as well).


Its the best one i found so far. If anyone has a better Graphite skin for WMP please tell me. Good looking play-list and player window is most important for me.

posted in windows | 7 Comments

11th May 2006

Spellforce 2 runtime error c++

Yak, just installed and played Spellforce 2, started to like the game and played a few levels. Next day i tried launching the game and got this nasty “Runtime Error”. So what was wrong ? I’ve heard that changing the system configuration might disturb the starforce copy protection but i didn’t change anything.


After some research in the web i found out that changing the folder attributes of “..\My Documents\SpellForce2” to “hidden“ causes this problem. What a stupid error ?! I think its pretty boldfaced to force the users having their save-game folder in their clean My Docs folder.

posted in windows | 30 Comments