Monday, March 02, 2009

Tech Nerd Awakening

The first time that I visited Las Vegas was in the fall of 1997 as a fledgling technical editor for Ziff-Davis' ill-fated ComputerLife Magazine. Here it is 2009 and many Comdex(s) and God knows how many CES(s) later and I'm still making my perennial journeys to this Godforsaken place. Now, don't get me wrong, I love technology and gadgets as much as the next nerd but it's not like that's the only shit that gets me going.

So...after more than 10 years of coming to Vegas and having to watch fat guys in free t-shirts ogle booth babes, words can't describe how excited I was to attend PROJECT Las Vegas. I came to Las Vegas for DICE Summit, a veritable meeting of the minds of gaming industry decision makers and was subsequently waylaid by Kati Kim of doe san francisco. Kati needed someone to take photographs of her PROJECT Las Vegas experience and wanting to see a different side of Vegas I jumped at the chance.

After attending Comdex and CES for so many years I was blown away when we walked into the Mandalay Bay Convention Center. Aside, from all of the horribly obnoxious hipster guys (of which I've been accused of being on many occasions) I have never seen so many well dressed, gorgeous women in my life. OK, so far so good.

So, passes in hand, Kati and I entered the show and a good time was had by all. To see the photos that we took of the show, check out Kati's photo essay detailing her experience at PROJECT.


Friday, August 29, 2008

Monster Beats by Dr. Dre Headphones

My good friend, CNET's very own Jasmine France, recently lent me a set of the Monster Beats by Dr. Dre headphones to “check out.” Monster announced the Monster Beats a few months ago with the company’s biggest PR boost coming in Beijing when the entire US basketball team showed up rocking the headphones. Congrats to someone!

As headphones go they’re pretty sweet. Obviously they handle lows really well and the mids and highs are likewise solid. Lately though, I’ve been rocking a set of the Grado Labs SR80s, and while they sound plenty good, they’re uncomfortable as Hell. The Monster Beats, on the other hand, are extremely comfortable. Of course, when it comes to DJ-style headphones there’s no beating Sony’s MDR-V600 Studio Monitor Series Stereo Headphones. The cups flip around so they’re perfect for “real DJs.” Kudos aside, the MDR-V600s are an older design that don’t take modern technological innovations into consideration. For instance, the Monster Beats come with a ton of different audio adapters. There’s the standard 3.5mm plug for MP3 players and stereos. They also ship with an airline adapter. But what’s really cool is the music-playing cell phone adapter that also boasts a speaker.

While these features are all well and good, the Monster Beats are $350. That’s kind of ridiculous. Add to that that they require a battery and the noise-cancelling apparatus in the right cup rattles if you’re moving around I find myself thinking that the Monster Beats, while they sound great, represent more of an admirable first offering as opposed to something that everyone should run out and buy right now.

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Mac Conversion

Anyone who knows me, or has ever watched Attack of the Show, knows that I'm a die hard PC guy. When I say “PC guy” I pretty much mean “anti-Mac.” The thing is, I'm not simply a Windows guy, I'm also into Linux. Anyway, having left my marketing gig at ASUS I'm now a public relations account executive for a boutique agency in San Francisco called Launchsquad. Being a PC guy, on day one I was presented with my brand new Macbook. I was conflicted. Being a dyed in the wool, anti-Mac guy, I was somewhat repulsed. Then again, being a Ubuntu Linux user I was excited about the prospect of getting to know Leopard (an OS which for all intents and purposes is a direct bite of Linux). So here I am, one month into “The Great Wil O'Neal Macintosh Experiment,” and I have to admit that I kind of like the thing. Of course, I don't play PC games anymore (thanks Xbox 360).

Monday, June 09, 2008

The 10 Commandants on Using Twitter

I was just reading CNET’S Rafe Needleman’s Twitter rant. Now, Rafe makes some great points about Twitter. My favorite being this one, “Until the Twitter team can get the service working again for good, here's what they should strongly consider: Close the site. Take it offline. Put plywood over the doors and windows, as it were, with a big "We're remodeling!" sign on the front…It's not like doing this would cost Twitter revenue. It doesn't have any.”

While Rafe hit the nail on the head, he didn’t point another huge issue with Twitter: Compulsive Twitter(ers). When I first signed up for Twitter I followed everyone I knew and even had Device alerts turned on for everyone; That is, until I realized how some people like to bombard you with the most mundane detail of their lives. It’s one thing to visit a person’s blog (pull) to read about what they’re up to; It’s another thing entirely to have that person’s blog posts show up in my cell phone’s Inbox (push). Now, this all got me to thinking that someone needs to create a “Ten Commandants on Using Twitter.” Well slap me silly and call me Tammy, a simple Google search led me to a site dedicated to just that: The Ten Commandments on Using Twitter.

I consider the Ten Commandments a **must read** for anyone who uses Twitter.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Akon Calls T-Pain

Best video on the Internet(s)!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

God Bless Digital Music

In the fall of 2004 I separated from my wife of 10 years. While the separation itself wasn’t terribly contentious, I did walk out with nothing more than a backpack and all of the clothes that it could carry. In other words; in addition to my wife and two kids, I walked out on hundreds of CDs, dozens of DVDs, and God only knows how many books.

Having witnessed countless divorces degrade into petty screaming matches about who bought which CD and who liked Pearl Jam more, I resolved that my separation (and subsequent divorce) wouldn’t go down like that. Besides, I reasoned, it’s just “stuff.” And stuff can easily be replaced.

My solution was simple; with every paycheck I would replace a CD, DVD, or book, until I had sufficiently replaced my original collection. The thing is, here it is three and a half years later and I’ve yet to replace anything. According to my Philosophy Major’s understanding of basic arithmetic, that’s like 91 items! Again: FAIL!

Be that as it may, the loss of one album in particular has driven me crazy: Danny Tenaglia’s Back to Basics. For the past few years I’ve satisfied my musical needs with Rhapsody. It’s an online music-streaming site that lets you listen to thousands of albums on any broadband-equipped computer. The problem is that they don’t have Danny Tenaglia’s Back to Basics. So imagine my surprise today when I was clearing the data on an old laptop that I was planning on giving to a friend and finding hundreds of the albums that I used to have ripped to the hard drive? Baby, it’s like Kwanzaa in February!

Not really having a moral to this story I’ll say this: If you think there’s any chance in Hell that you and your old lady are about to call it quits, be a man and let her have all the CDs. Just be sure to rip em to your hard drive before you walk out the door.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

On the Download with Wil O’Neal

Check it out people; I have a new weekly column called “On the Download with Wil O’Neal” that appears on (the online version of every black person’s favorite pair of magazines). In the column I’ll answer as many of your tech questions as I can. Anyway, spread the word as your boy needs all the exposure he can get.