Sunday, December 30, 2007

XBOX Live Issues

As you might have noticed, XBOX Live has been having seizures over the past few days. Either Microsoft sold a lot of 360s this Christmas or the Live team started their holiday too early. Regardless, the 360 experience has been far below par over the past few days.

Per this post by Major Nelson, they are working on it. Please be aware that when XBOX Live has issues, the 1337pwn XBOX Live Friends List widget may also be affected.

Thank you for your patience. Have a happy New Year!

Friday, December 21, 2007

Merry Christmas

Have a great holiday weekend. If you see me online, feel free to pop a game invite. I'll probably be playing some Halo 3 Rocket Race this weekend.

Thank you all for the great feedback and support!

Friday, December 7, 2007

the1337pwn Gamertag

We've created a special XBOX Live account to take advantage of the "Friends of Friends" feature. Send a friend invite to the1337pwn and you'll be able to see what other 1337pwn gamers are online. It's no substitute for a widget update, but at least will make it easy for you to find like-minded gamers.

Having spent several back to back weeks on widget development, I'm actually going to play video games weekend. Given my schedule, there really hasn't been much time for substantial gaming.

When I have been able to play, Mass Effect is pretty much all consuming for me on the XBOX 360. It is by no means perfect, but sum of its parts is so darn satisfying. It's amazing that such a weird mix of genres could be so much better than the sum of its parts. Per it's reputation, user interface-wise, it can be a baffling experience and Bioware doesn't give you much guidance. Truth be told, it's going to take you 6-8 hours of gameplay to comprehend the depth of the game. Once you crest that learning curve, the fun truly begins.

Happy Frags!

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

XBOX Live is again amongst the living

It looks like Microsoft has got things up and running again. Data is now updating normally. Your 1337pwn XBOX Live Friends widget should now refresh properly.

XBOX Live Stability

XBOX Live is not a pillar of stability this evening. You can continue to expect big delays when it comes to status updates and gamertag information. Requests for data from Microsoft are timing out. It's beyond our control. Hopefully, things will get back to normal soon.

Thank you for your patience.

Dashboard Update

There's a new Dashboard Update out there and it includes major changes to the 360 user experience. Despite the dramatic update, your 1337pwn XBOX Live Friends widget will continue to work properly. Unfortunately, for the short-term, you can expect slower than normal status refreshes as Microsoft works out the XBOX Live deployment kinks.

UPDATE: Microsoft is working on the XBOX Live stability issues and slowness. They're indicating that stability should improve during the next 48 hours.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Weekend Debug

As you can tell from my prior post, we were pretty frustrated with the differences between Tiger and Leopard dashboard behavior. I spent some time on the phone with one of the folks helping us test a new version of the widget on Tiger. It's not there yet, but that community support makes the effort worthwhile. I really appreciate all of the support emails and the folks that helped us test out various Tiger-friendly candidates. And despite my vent, I must say that Dashcode is pretty darn cool -- we couldn't have developed the widget so quickly without it.

Frankly, we're missing such a strong development tool for the Windows version of the 1337pwn XBOX Live Friends Widget. I've seen some of the other XBOX Yahoo/Konfabulator Widgets and applications out there. Given this sampling, I strongly feel that we can bring something better to the table. Unlike the other guys, we don't screen scrape data at the client. On the server side, we've built "a better mousetrap" with the support via the Microsoft XBOX Community Developer Program. Our goal for the Windows version is the same as the MacOS widget -- build something that just works.

Of course, developing a solid Windows application takes time and a lot more testing. There will most certainly be a Beta to work out the kinks. We'll keep you posted as the Windows version nears release.

Thank you all for your support!

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Tiger Issues

It looks like v2.5 has issues on some configurations of MacOS 10.4 Tiger. Fortunately, someone local to us can reproduce the problem, so we're going to spend some time with it. If you're running Tiger, please stick with v2.1 of the 1337pwn XBOX Live Friends widget until we get things resolved.

Thank you for your patience.

Apple's developer documentation instructs that widgets built on Leopard will also run on Tiger. When 1337pwn had a simpler widget, this certainly held true. Now that the widget has grown more sophisticated, we're bumping in to areas where that just isn't the case. At a minimum, we could degrade the widget features for Tiger, but the Dashboard classes, Dashcode, and SDK provide no reliable mechanism to determine the platform version.

As developers, we are frustrated to be bumping in to these issues. Unfortunately, we are now forced to treat Tiger and Leopard Dashboards as two different platforms despite Apple claiming that it is a single platform.