From technology to politics to video games; these are the random thoughts of a geek with too much time on his hands
Zoomba's Articles » Page 3
July 25, 2008 by Zoomba

image This week saw another blow to the beleaguered US housing market with the release of foreclosure statistics for the second quarter of 2008 (April, May, June).  In that period 739,714(1) foreclosure filings were recorded.  This is a jump of 14% over Q1 2008, and up 121% over the same period in 2007.  This means that one in 171 homes received a filing.  220,000 homes were actually repossessed by banks in that period.

There’s no question that the housing implosion is not only continuing with little sign of relief, but that it is accelerating at a nearly unimaginable rate.  It’s reached a point where congress has finally decided to step in to try and hold back the flood, to give home owners more time, and to try and prop up financial institutions as hundreds of thousands of borrowers default on their loans every month.

This, combined with out-of-control fuel prices pushing the cost of virtually everything else up, is creating a perfect economic storm that could threaten everyone, even those who are on sound financial footing at the moment.

Things are definitely looking grim.

July 15, 2008 by Zoomba
It's a Master Day here it seems!  We started off with J. Aroche's promotion to Master Skinner, and continue on with a brand new Master Skin from vStyler!

Avanti for XP and Vista by vStyler is a contemporary looking skin to give your Windows User Interface a completely different look.  Using cool blues, interesting transparencies. and a cube-ish design to buttons and menus, Avanti is a unique and very usable skin.

To go along with the WindowBlinds skin, there are a bunch of free a...
July 15, 2008 by Zoomba
Of course, if you've ever used a J. Aroche skin, you already knew he was a master at his craft.  His CursorFX skins, dock icons and Icon Packs are some of the best work you'll find here at WinCustomize.  So in recognition of his immense talent and contributions to the community, we've named J. Aroche our newest Master Skinner.Yes, that last one is a Beatnik skin, his first upload to WinCustomize.

Congrats to J. Aroche on his promotion to the most elite ranks of the skinning communit...
July 14, 2008 by Zoomba
Welcome to Episode 14!  This week it's just Spencer and I again yammering on and on about random crap.  We spend the show talking about the iPhone 3G release, the new Rockstar MyColors theme, and the GUI Champs 2008. 

If you're a GUIC hopeful, give this week's show a listen.

Episode 14 - iPhone, Rockstar & GUIC

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No links this week
July 14, 2008 by Zoomba
Last week we talked about the first details surrounding the 2008 GUI Champs.  You now know the events, and when the whole competition kicks off.  Armed with that knowledge, skinners can now begin their work in earnest to make sure they have their masterpiece skin ready for the big day.  This week's question is whether or not you're going to participate in this year's competition.

Results posted next week (for real this time!)
July 14, 2008 by Zoomba
Ok, so we left the Impulse poll up for a full month (as opposed to our normal weekly schedule) to give people as much time as possible to think about switching, make the switch and then cast their vote.  The poll originally went up several days before the full launch of Impulse and has been up for the first month of it's public life.  So now, a month later we feel we have a pretty good sampling of our userbase.  Turns out that a huge number of you have already made the switch with...
July 14, 2008 by Zoomba
Welcome back to the work week!  I hope everyone had a great weekend and had some time to relax and catch up on all the nothing you can't get around to doing during the week.  Personally, I could use a weekend to just sleep I've been so busy.  But I guess that's what summer is all about; spending weekends traveling, visiting with friends, going to festivals etc.  Now that it's Monday again though it's back to the grindstone.  And to keep with our normal Monday programming...
July 11, 2008 by Zoomba
As a community of digital artists, I figured everyone might be interested in some of the graphics tools we've been releasing through Impulse, our next-generation digital distribution platform. 

We've been very fortunate to have a great partner in Corel, one of the leaders in graphic design tools.  Since the release of Impulse, we've been working to release many Corel applications.

We now have the two major Corel graphics applications available via Impulse: CorelDRAW X4 and ...
July 11, 2008 by Zoomba
Last month, Seabass of Stardock Support took the initiative and started what is intended to be a monthly newsletter covering common issues people are encountering with their software, and some simple fixes to try.  The idea is to give users more information, get problems resolved quickly and hopefully reduce the number of identical tickets support has to wade through, leaving them free to respond to other issues.

Yesterday, a new Panic Button went up, specifically focusing on Impulse iss...
July 10, 2008 by Zoomba
As part of our ongoing effort to give subscribers more bang for their buck, we added professional skins to the subscription package earlier this year.  To start things off we released Stardust, a new skin by Adni18.  Today we're ready to release another skin, and give you a hint of what's next in the pipeline.

Our second Subscriber-Only skin is Rockstar by community veteran Hippy!

Rockstar turns your desktop into concert stage with the look and feel of classic guitars, speakers a...
July 9, 2008 by Zoomba

It's summer here in the northern hemisphere, which means that the PC game releases have dried up.  Looking across the new release calendars, it's a wasteland until Space Siege comes out late August.  So for the next two months PC gamers are looing for any fix they can get to tide them over.

Of course, that two month dry spell could well be worth it considering what's on-tap for the fall.

My question is, what's everyone playing to tide theselves over, and what are you most looking forward to this fall?

July 9, 2008 by Zoomba
Summer has been in full-swing for a few weeks now, but the number of skins haven't slowed down at all it seems.  Obviously you folks aren't letting something like good weather get in the way of building and uploading some killer skins!

So if you're still skinning this summer, what's your summer project?  Is it a light and sunny skin, or prep work for the 2008 GUI Champs starting in just a few months (I just got off the phone with our first major sponsor, should have the first prize ...
July 9, 2008 by Zoomba
The last few weeks we've seen a bunch of great new WindowBlinds skins uploaded to the site.  Normally we see one every few weeks, this week alone we've had 4 either new skins, or updates to existing skins.  Every single one of these skins deserves a download and a run around the block.  So get to downloading and let the skinners know how much you enjoy and appreciate their work.

17 WindowBlinds skins in June!  Wow!
July 8, 2008 by Zoomba
Stardock is pleased to announced the release of CursorFX 2.01 today.CursorFX is an application that lets users easily change their Windowscursors to one of thousands available for download. These can rangefrom simple mouse cursors, to cursors with very detailed graphics andanimations. CursorFX also includes a powerful, yet easy to use, editorin which you can create your own cursors which you can use on your own,or share with others.

What's new in version 2.01:

Sounds on mouse event embedda...
July 8, 2008 by Zoomba
The 2008 GUI Champs kicks off this October with three major categories and $10,000 in prizes.  This year we wanted skinners to have as much time and warning as possible to put together their greatest skins.

Today I posted the first batch of contest details, go here to read all about it and toss in your $0.02, and ask any questions you have.