Let’s have a quick updated look on how you can utilize the new Mental Ray “object_light” Material to create a realistic looking light-bulb. Essentially this material lets you create Area Lights in any shape or form you can imagine.
Modelling the Lightbulb
Create > Bezier Curve
(Surfaces) Surfaces > Revolve (Output: Polygons, General, Quads) U Type Per Span #of Isoparms, V Type: Per Span # of Isoparms, V Number: 3. Adjust the U Number to a Value of 3-6 (or Higher depending on your lamp Curve.
In the “Faces Mode” select the “Glass” and use “Extract Faces” to seperate the glass from the metallic screw
Assign a new Material, select Mental Ray material and use the material “object-light”
Now we either can plug in a different Mental Ray Light (like a blackbody) or we can simply adjust the Intensity to 1000
(for the metal Material I am simply using a default blinn)
In the next couple of days the big holiday sale is going to start. It is going to have daily deals, flash deals, catalog sales, last day sales etc. All sales have hefty rebates of up to -50% to -90% on some titles. But having so many different types of deals it is really difficult to figure out if you are really getting the game at the cheapest price.
You can not only buy games directly in the Steam Store, there are other sites like Humblebundle.com that allow you to buy bundles of games for “pay what you want” (supports charities etc.)
While the humblebundle is the most famous very many alternatives have popped up over time. To figure out what bundles are currently available simply go to: http://isthereanydeal.com/
Enhanced Steam (Browser Plugin)
However using Steam Prices is a hassle, you need to look at the game at steam, go to Steam Prices enter the game again, look if it’s a good deal etc.
The Enhanced Steam Plugin, simply adds various information to the steam website, like “Historical” Low Prices and where you can get at this moment the best deal. It retrieves its data not only from steamprices, but also from various alternative Websites like the humble store, gog, etc.
The only downside of the plugin is that it cannot be integrated directly into the steam client.
Configuring Windows services is tricky. If you do the wrong things your system will behave really strange, programs will stop working etc. However if you are desperate (you cannot upgrade your ram but you want to squeeze the last MB out of your existing) or a gamer that wants the speediest lighting fast machine (well most games will not benefit from your over optimization of your rig) or in my case want the maximum amount of ram available for rendering – go right ahead.
Fortunately other smart people have already played around and tweaked the Windows Services Configuration. Especially BlackViper provides on his website a complete guide on what you can turn off or keep without destroying your system.
While this table is very interesting, it is not very useful, because who has the time to manually configure every single service via services.msc?
Here is a quick python script to convert the table (using the copy to clipboard feature) into a working PowerShell script:
copy and paste the tap separated table in a text-file and execute following code:
filename = "Win7SP1.txt"
with open(filename) as f:
lis = [x.split("\t") for x in f]
info = [line for line in zip(*lis)]
for line in info[2:]:
fileOutName = "%s - %s.ps1" % (filename.split("."), line.replace("\n", ""))
scriptOut = open(fileOutName, "w")
for regEntry, mode in zip(info[1:], line[1:]):
mode = "Manual"
if mode.startswith("Not Installed"):
mode = "Automatic"
mode = "Disabled"
out = 'Set-Service "%s" -StartupType %s \n' % (regEntry, mode)
Note: When executing the script Errors might appear for services that are not installed on your system, these can be ignored
But does it actually work?
To answer that question I installed Win 7SP1 on a VirtualBox.
The initial base Installation was running 39Processes for all Users and was using 600MB Ram. After applying the “Safe Configuration” the system only was running 29 Processes and using 500MB.
You probably are better off upgrading your ram in the long term, however it is a small drop in the bucket for getting the absolute maximum performance out of your PC, without sacrificing functionality.
This technique is a very quick and dirty approach to creating a pile of stuff. The downside using this technique is due to the fact that particles are generally round and usually stuff is not round, causing segments of your geometry to intersect with other objects.
First you need to set up an nParticle emitter: In the nDynamics Menu select nParticles > Create nParticles > Create Emitter
Configure the “Emmiter1″ – TranslateY = 9, Rate(Particles/Sec) 20
I recently completed the course “Introduction to Linux” by the Linux Foundation on the edX Platform. Instead of paying 2500USD for the course you now can pay 250USD for a verified certificate, or simply get an honor certificate.
The course is self-paced, you can take the exam anytime and at the end of the month the certificate is going to be issued.
Unlike other edX courses most of the materials are short articles covering the core topics. There are short videos, however they are mostly useless.
Sadly the first couple of Lessons are more like Advertisements that Linux is great and that Linux is used everywhere and being able to use Linux is an important skill.
The rest of the course covers the basic operations when interacting with a Linux system.
The course briefly takes a look at the graphical interfaces of three major Linux distributions Ubuntu, CentOS and openSUSE.
As expected most of the course covers how to interact with the Console covers the basic interaction with the console, file operations, security principles, text manipulation and concluding with bash scripting.
The final exam is a 30 question multiple choice test. Sadly some questions are easier to be answered using Google than the actual course material.
People with an basic understanding of Linux could just skip the entire course and just take the exam. It’s rather straightforward.
The course is a great introduction to the Linux System. The course is designed for IT-Specialists (Programmers, Web-Developers, and Administrators etc.) that have not worked with Linux and need a quick introduction how to work with the system.
Sadly with the emphasis on using the console most users interested in using Linux as alternative to Windows/OSX will simply say “Oh god, what a hassle, I’ll stick to my current system.”
Note: Most users interacting with a computer are not aware that it is possible to interact with a computer without GUI, telling those users that sometimes you simply do not have a GUI confuses them. Most of the success of Linux as core of Android is the GUI and that users have a simple way installing programs and are not able to access any console / text only mode.