Dave Schools Subs For Phil Lesh In Guest-Filled Terrapin Crossroads Celebration [Video]

first_imgIn continuation of their 5th anniversary celebration, Terrapin Crossroads hosted Scott Law & Ross James’ Cosmic Twang for the Wednesday night show. Unfortunately venue founder and Grateful Dead bassist Phil Lesh fell sick with a cold, but recruited Widespread Panic’s Dave Schools to fill in on bass for the entire show.Scott Law & Ross James’ Cosmic Twang were also joined by keyboardist Jason Crosby, vocalist Nicki Bluhm, Cass McCombs, Barry Sless, and drummers Mark Levy and Alex Koford throughout the evening. Thanks to YouTube User MarkoVision Films, you can watch both guest-filled sets below. Setlist: Scott Law & Ross James’ Cosmic Twang | Terrapin Crossroads | San Rafael, CA | 3/8/17:Set I: Sittin’ on Top of the World (SL), Luxury Liner (NB), West L.A. Fadeaway (RJ, NB, AK), Million Dollar Bash (CM), Across the Great Divide (CM, NB), I Don’t Know You (SL, NB), Big Railroad Blues (RJ), Light Up or Leave Me Alone (AK) > New Speedway Boogie (AK) > The Other One (SL) > New Speedway Boogie (AK) > Light Up or Leave Me Alone (One Way or Another) > Light Up or Leave Me Alone (AK)Set II: China Cat Sunflower > (SL, CM) Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds > (CM) Help on the Way > (SL) Slipknot! > Franklin’s Tower (SL, JC, RJ, CM, NB), Get It While You Can (SL, NB), The Stranger (Two Souls in Communion) (CM), Grievous Angel (SL, NB)E: Sin City (SL, NB)[via JamBase][cover photo via Instagram User @stuartlevinephotography]last_img read more

The Creepiest Video Game Cults

first_img This week sees the release of an indie title we’ve been excited about for some time, The Church In The Darkness, which lets you infiltrate a Jonestown-esque cult compound and try to save your brainwashed nephew while not getting found out and forced to drink some special Kool-Aid. Cults have been a popular choice for video game antagonists for decades, from role-playing to all-out action, but not all cults are created equal. In this feature we spotlight ten made-up religions that really push the evil.The Healing ChurchFrom Software’s Bloodborne takes place in a terrifying, decaying Victorian city called Yharnam that is infested with corrupted humans and eldritch beasts that will kill you faster than you can scream. Why is that? Thank the Healing Church, who discovered the hidden Pthumerian blood in tombs beneath the city and experimented with it, resulting in the entire population becoming addicted. They claimed the blood had healing properties, luring the sick and infirm to Yharnam. Things got so terrible there that the whole city was quarantined in a dream realm to keep the Old Ones awakened by the blood from destroying the world.Get Bloodborne at AmazonUnitologyMany religions start as an attempt to find meaning in the unknown, and Dead Space‘s Unitology is no different. In the world of the gory limb-severing video game, the crash at the Chicxulub crater brought the first sign of the Markers to Earth, and although most of the scientists at the site were driven to madness, one man, Michael Altman, was able to resist. He was murdered for his troubles and dubbed the “Reluctant Prophet” by the group that would soon be called Unitologists. The cult believes that all life is prologue for the “convergence” that happens after death, when human corpses transform into ravaging Necromorphs, and their end goal is to convince all of humanity to commit suicide and be reborn.Get Dead Space at AmazonChildren Of AtomCults thrive after tragedy, so it’s not surprising that the post-apocalyptic world of Fallout 3 has some religious wingnuts. The Children of Atom, who you first meet in the ramshackle hamlet of Megaton, have built a whole belief system around the nuclear destruction that ravaged the Earth. In their doctrine, every time a nuke is detonated it creates an entire new universe, and the lingering fallout isn’t cancer – it’s “The Glow.” Members seek out heavily irradiated areas to build shrines to their deity, and stockpile and protect unexploded bombs to usher in even more glorious creation.Get Fallout 3 at AmazonThe OrderThere are few things in the gaming world that make us sadder than Konami keeping the Silent Hill series in limbo. It’s one of the survival horror genre’s keystones and the mythos behind the isolation and fear is top notch. Case in point: the Order, the malevolent cult behind so much of the series’ bad times. Founded in the early days of the American colonies, in the 1800s a quartet of pioneers entered a contract with a dark god from the Otherworld to overturn human civilization and create a new world “free of sin.” Over the years, the Order has splintered into numerous sects, each of with is creepy and abusive in its own way.Get Silent Hill at AmazonLos IlluminadosResident Evil 4 was a major turning point from the series, as Capcom moved away both from the slow-paced mounting terror of previous games as well as the long-running adversary in the Umbrella Corporation. When Leon Kennedy gets dropped into the mountains of Spain, he mets the Illuminados, the descendents of an ancient pagan group that believed forcible implantation with the Plagas parasites was the one true path to enlightenment. Led by Osmund Saddler, the group planned to kidnap the President’s daughter and infect her as a vector to seize control of the United States government and, eventually, the world. Having literal mind control parasites definitely gives them a leg up in the brainwashing game.Get Resident Evil 4 at AmazonCult Of KefkaAfter the malevolent jester ushers in the World of Ruin in Final Fantasy VI, the few survivors realize that Kefka has enough power to mess them up whenever they want so they decide to form a quasi-religious organization to worship him and hopefully keep his ego satisfied. The Cult operate out of a tower in the Serpent Trench that their leader has enchanted to forbid the usage of physical attacks within (unless you’re smart and bring Umaro), and at the top is the priceless Soul of Thamasa that lets a magic-user cast spells twice in a round. The Cult are so single-mindedly devoted to their evil master that they ignore all communication from outsiders, but rumor has it they can be raised from their trance if somebody closely related calls out to them.Get Final Fantasy Anthology at AmazonThe Mythic DawnA popular use for cults in gaming is to provide underlings for the player to smash through on their way to the Big Boss, and Oblivion‘s Mythic Dawn are a classic example. Formed to worship the demonic Mehrunes Dragon, their end goal is to bring down the sorcerous barriers that insulate Tamriel from Oblivion and let the Daedra run rampant over the land. What the point of enslaving the whole planet isn’t made clear, but this is one of the few cults on this list that you have the option of joining, but if you don’t eventually betray them you can’t, you know, finish the game. If that’s important to you.Get Oblivion at AmazonThe Order Of The Harvest Moon1996 cult classic Harvester is one of the goriest and most disturbing point-and-click adventures ever made. In it, you play an amnesiac man who wakes up in a small town and is told that all of his questions will be answered if he joins the Order of the Harvest Moon. The path to do so takes him through a series of increasingly illegal and amoral initiations. Once you’re in, you learn that the Order is actually an evil murder cult with a very terrifying mission: to transform you, the player of the game, into a serial killer by desensitizing you to brutality, pain and violence. The complicity you play in the cult’s actions is the big reason why they land in such a sweet spot on this list.Get Harvester at AmazonThe OroThe Condemned games start out pretty down to earth, with the player controlling Ethan Thomas, a FBI crime scene investigator on the hunt for a mysterious serial killer. As you progress, though, it becomes apparent that this is more than a lone nut — in fact, Metro City is under siege by a group called the Oro, an ancient cult of mutated humans who are born with an alteration of their vocal chords. Aided by metal implants, they can use their voices to plant suggestions in people’s minds and even cause physical harm. Ethan tracks the group to their lair and manages to destroy it, but in a final cutscene it’s heavily hinted that the tendrils of the Oro reach all the way up to the President of the United States.Get Condemned at AmazonTemple GateThe Outlast series is one of the shining lights in horror games right now, as they perfectly capture the feeling of helplessness and dread necessary to inspire true terror. The second game in the series puts you in the shoes of a cameraman investigating the murder of a young woman in Arizona, only to discover that the whole town of Temple Gate has been taken over by a violent, apocalyptic cult led by a man named “Papa” Sullivan Knoth. Knoth believes that your wife is pregnant with the Antichrist and pursues you in a nerve-wracking adventure that features tons of atrocity. The madness is eventually traced to a chemical leak that has driven the populace mad, but by that point it’s already too late.Get Outlast Trinity at AmazonWatch: Nintendo Reveals Portable Switch Device Called Switch LiteMore on Geek.com:PlayStation 4 Becomes Fastest Console to Sell 100 MillionHands-On: ‘Oninaki’ Is an Emotional Action RPG ExperienceReview: ‘Fantasy Strike’ Is A Fighting Game That Understands What Matters Trade In Your Nintendo Switch For a Better Battery (With a Catch)Get Used to ‘Fortnite’s’ Powerful Mech Suits Stay on targetlast_img read more

Evaluate system requirements Not all areas of you

first_imgEvaluate system requirementsNot all areas of your system may need an overhaul. If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it. Invest in areas of the system that will provide the fastest solution to problem areas, such as performance, usability, and security.I recommend you conduct a thorough architectural assessment of your current product to determine where your existing strengths lie and what areas are in greatest need. If you discover significant structural or performance problems in all layers (UI, service, and data), then a complete overhaul may be the best answer for your product.Alternatively, an incremental approach might be best if you find your core system is stable and structurally sound, or even too complex to refactor all at once. This approach will enable you to focus on specific capabilities that can be decoupled, rewritten, and integrated back safely over time.Be mindful of current customer baseWhat are your current customers willing to wait for? Are they satisfied with the product as-is or are they begging for new features immediately? Do they have the patience to wait for an entirely new package? Perhaps they are willing to pilot or try new things in beta to provide you with real-time input along the way.As a recommendation, take the pulse of your customer base to understand their frustrations or concerns with the current product. Assess their tolerance level for change during a period of transition from one product to another. Gathering specific concerns can help you evaluate if customers will react positively to rapid, incremental improvements over waiting for a completely new product.Consider the organizational impact on your teamsIncreasing the complexity of the environment your teams will need to operate in the future — such as new infrastructure, tools, and mindset — can be stressful. Have your teams obtained the training and experience needed to be successful in the cloud? Do they know how to manage a distributed microservices architecture?Incremental approaches are best for organizations that have adaptable team members, who can take on the challenges of learning new technologies while at the same time supporting the older application. On the other hand, a greenfield approach would be better for teams that you feel are less flexible and receptive to change. This approach will allow you to build up a new team with the right skills to match the technology.Determine long-term support costsAre you prepared for the possibility of supporting multiple products at the same time? With a complete overhaul, it’s likely some customers will not want to migrate to the new product or use the new features.Regardless of approach, I recommend that you have a clear sunset strategy in place to keep your customers aware of the changes coming so they can smoothly transition from the old product to new. Proactively communicate with your customer base as to their product options in the future. This way, your current customers can prepare themselves for an eventual shift to the new product. It’s safe to say that microservices architecture is no longer an emerging new trend, but a mainstream software development strategy. Microservices aren’t just ideal for developing new applications, but are also optimal when modernizing legacy applications. Writing functionality into bite-sized, reusable components is more efficient and speeds up development. It delivers code that meshes well with container technologies running in distributed, cloud environments built for scale and high performance. By 2022, 90 percent of all applications will feature microservices architectures, according to 2018 research by IDC.The merits of microservices often outweigh the merits of other development methods, yet there are other critical decisions to make during modernization projects. If the product is tied to revenues or customer care, you’ll need to consider how to best protect the application’s related revenue streams.But where to begin?Let’s consider a common scenario. Your executive team has just approved funding to modernize the platform that has been successful for your company for many years. While it’s been a profitable product, it was built with a legacy tech stack using a monolithic architecture pattern that has become fragile and unpredictable, and nearly impossible to update at the pace today’s customer’s demand. During the modernization journey, protecting the success of the product is paramount.First, you’ll need to begin by setting your modernization strategy. There are some patterns and trends that have become very well accepted and can provide a solid foundation:Leverage the cloud for dynamic and flexible storage and computing power. Cloud Platform providers like Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google Cloud Platform (GCP), and Microsoft Azure remove the burden of managing the day-to-day operations and enable teams to focus on creating new products and services.Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery (CI/CD), along with containerization tools and practices, enable engineering teams to develop and deploy changes at a rapid pace. Additionally, they enable continuous testing throughout the development cycle to ensure quality is built in from the beginning.From an application design perspective, microservices patterns have emerged fitting almost any application or service capability, and have become an extremely common approach to building out new or refactoring existing functionality.Once the basic building blocks are in place, you now must determine the best way to approach modernization that will take your company well into the future, all while minimizing any disruption to current revenue growth or customer support cycles.Greenfield: One approach is to build a new parallel product from scratch that will eventually replace the legacy application. Some call this the greenfield approach. Your organization can start fresh with an entirely new technology stack and not worry about integrating older technologies. For a groundbreaking project where innovation is vital to success, this might be the best choice. The downside of using the greenfield approach is that you must convince customers to migrate to a new platform, which entails a learning curve and initiatives. At the same time, you have to support two platforms simultaneously for an unknown time period. That’s expensive and takes more time and resources.Iterative. Another approach is the iterative one: you can incrementally re-factor capabilities and add new ones over time to the existing system. Customers don’t have to change systems or learn a new interface, and they’ll also see new updates faster. They can choose to turn a new feature on or off, giving them the ultimate flexibility. Development teams receive earlier feedback from customers on these new features and the overall costs are lower. Approaching microservices in an iterative fashion can be more complex, however, due to the necessity of blending monolithic legacy technologies with new cloud and container technologies.The basic building blocks we already mentioned can be applied to both approaches. Microservices, cloud infrastructure, CI/CD, containerization and continuous testing all fit nicely.The advice below can help guide you toward the right path for your company and product and mitigate the challenges of moving to a microservices architecture.Tips for a successful microservices modernization projectlast_img read more