Automation Lowers Energy and Labor Costs in the Produce Cooling Industry

Tech

Agriculture, Technology, and the importance of Precooling

Agriculture is a global industry and is as old as civilization itself. Technology has allowed the transport of perishable crops thousands of miles away from the farm the produce was harvested from. Today, the agriculture industry sees numerous benefits from technology, including flying drones for monitoring crops; autonomous driving tractors with GPS; and automated precooling.

  • Precooling can be understood as rapidly removing heat from perishable goods and commodities.

Precooling is an important part of the postharvest stage of agriculture. Anytime shelf life is a concern, precooling or otherwise slowing the senescence (aging) of the fruit or vegetable is critical. The moment the fruit leaves the plant, it begins to deteriorate. Studies show that product quality and shelf life can be extended dramatically by precooling.

Continue reading

Yes.Mustache’s Rocket League parody (Elton John’s Rocket Man)

Games, Music

Yes.Mustache has a new song up about Rocket League and it’s a parody of one of our favorite Elton John songs, Rocket Man.

The song plays with the themes of Rocket League all while parodying a classic rock song. My favorite part is the end when the family is trying to get Yes.Mustache’s attention and he’s just “gotta play one more game”. Rocket League is some addicting stuff. This Rocket League parody is so good, it might have you addicted too.

Xbox One HOTAS, Let’s make this happen!

Games

Some of my most immersive gaming moments on the Xbox 360 were using the Hori HOTAS flight stick. I bought the controller in a bundle with Ace Combat 6 and played the heck out of it, eventually playing on the hardest difficulty.

Few games took advantage of the Xbox 360 Hori flight stick, but eventually Apache Air Assault came along and my HOTAS got another workout as I learned to fly the Apache on “simulation” difficulty. Continue reading

A Website for HP Stream 7 Tips and Info

Tech

Do you need some info for the HP Stream 7 to help determine if you should purchase one? Maybe you already own an HP Stream 7 but want to know more about the quirks of that cheap tablet PC. A new website might handle these concerns for you.

Stream7.binghatesblogs.com specializes in information about the HP Stream 7. Whether you want to know how to power your Stream 7 while using a USB device, or learn how it does with gaming, there is some info for you an your Stream 7 there.

Yes.Mustache is music inspired by Video Games

Games, Music

YesMustache logo

We love music and video games.  Yes.Mustache is a new music project from folks who seem to feel the same way.  Yes.Mustache is a self confessed “music inspired by Video Games”.

Yes.Mustache has launched an official YouTube channel to go along with all of their new video game inspired music, as well as an official website for all those songs about video games.

We wish you the best of luck, Yes.Mustache.  In a world with so much music inspired by video games, you have a long road ahead of you.

KickBeat for Xbox One–Impressions

Game Reviews, Games

KickBeat_logo_SE

Kickbeat is a unique entry into the rhythm/music genre.  Developed by Zen Studios, it fuses elements of Guitar Hero/Rock Band, Dance Dance Revolution, and every fighting game ever made.  The result is a rhythm game where you press buttons in time with the music, and each successful button press lands an attack on a swarm of enemies.  These enemies just love to get punched and kicked to the music, because they all get into position just in time to get whacked.  I’ll try to explain how it works…

Gameplay

The gameplay area is a circle with your character standing in the middle, ready to kick people to the beat of the music.  The music starts and the enemies start to circle you.  As they circle towards one of the cardinal directions, they land on one of the face buttons. (in the case of the Xbox One version, XYBA)  You press the associated button in time with the beat and the enemy on that button gets a vicious attack knocking him out of the fight. 

Faster songs have more enemies to defeat and with higher frequencies.  There are a couple variations to the formula, including; blue enemies who attack in off-beat patterns like up beats, red enemies who attack in pairs (meaning you’ll press two buttons like X and Y), and enemies who are tied together with a yellow streak whom you defeat by pressing and holding on the first enemy and releasing on the second.

Some enemies will have a floating icon over their head with a range of powerups.  Double tapping their corresponding button will give you the knockout and the powerup.  Powerups vary between score multipliers, extra points, health, chi and more.  Then you have the option to fire off your collected chi or shield move to either double points or save yourself from a difficult section.

Difficulty

There is an old saying, “Do not think more highly of yourself than you ought.”  The saying is in reference to being prideful and treating others as if they are less than ourselves.  But I am going to use it in the context of, “just because you can beat every Guitar Hero game on Expert and love rhythm games, don’t think that you should start KickBeat on anything above Normal.”

I have a confession to make.  When I first fired up KickBeat and completed the training, I figured I was prepared for the higher difficulties.  I was sorely mistaken.  KickBeat was, at this moment, “get your face Kicked in to the beat”.  Normal is challenging enough, you should start there.

Graphics and Sounds

Graphics are hardly the focus of a rhythm game so I won’t spend much time on them, but I will say I had trouble at times identifying the colors of the enemies.  Some times it was too late before I realized that the two enemies were red and would be attacking simultaneously.  Another issue I had, though also mild and infrequent, was the enemies occasionally becoming obscured by the player character due to the odd camera angle.

Sound is a completely different story here.  Sound is key to KickBeat’s gameplay.  The sound effects are few and unimportant beyond the sound of fist meeting face.  The music however, is the reason behind the (thin) story and what engages the player.  As you get better at KickBeat, similar to Rock Band, it will begin to feel like you are playing these songs.  But instead of playing the songs with instruments, you play with your punches and kicks.  Each blow delivered to your enemies is in perfect sync with the beat, guitar riffs, vocal lines or other musical accents.

The soundtrack that you will beat enemies up to is energetic but varied.  Rap songs, metal tracks, and electronic dance tunes are available.  And the set list seems to get better as you work through the story mode.

Better late than never

KickBeat has been out on other platforms for a while, but I came late to the party.  Xbox One owners who are fans of rhythm games should rejoice at this fun fusion of fighting and music.  It’s got its quirks, but the soundtrack is hard-hitting and the game shows off it’s excellent design at the higher difficulties.

Sunset Overdrive gets an UNofficial theme song

Games, Music

 

Sunset Overdrive, the open world action game set to release this October exclusively for Xbox One, oozes style and energy.  So far, in the trailers and gameplay footage we’ve seen from the game, there hasn’t been a song that represents the style and energy we would expect from such a game.

Yes.Mustache is a musical act that observed the previously mentioned “style and energy” and has released an “Unofficial Theme Song” for Sunset Overdrive.  It’s a pop-punk styled tune that drops quite a few references to the game.

It’s a fun song.  Check it out if you like your songs on the upbeat side with a helping of wall-running and exploding mutants.

http://yesmustache.toolofgod.com/sunset-overdrive-unofficial-theme-song-released/

Zombie Driver: Ultimate Edition Review

Game Reviews, Games

My Great Capture Screen Shot 2014-07-19 07-04-25

Note: This is an updated review of Zombie Driver HD for Xbox 360, but based on the newly released Zombie Driver: Ultimate Edition for Xbox One.  Review is based on a copy of the game given to us by Exor Studios.

There may be some time in the future (whether near or far, no one knows for sure) where it will be boring to face wave after wave of various types of zombies, smashing them into pieces with your car and watching their mangled torsos roll off of the hood of your car.  Now is not that time.

While many people may be bothered by use of zombies in…everything, driving your car into innocents isn’t as accepted as it may have been when video games were less mainstream.  Most folks are ok with killing zombies, so we won’t likely see the end of the zombie killing simulator soon.  And that’s ok, because it means we get fun, if flawed, diversions like EXOR Studios’ Zombie Driver HD.

Continue reading

Baby Ultrasound Looks Like Tori Spelling

Left Field, Movies/TV

Tori_Spelling_Baby_Ultrasound

Filmmaker Scott Parejo was on facebook perusing his news feed, when a picture caught his eye.  It was a picture of an ultrasound, shared by a pregnant friend.  What should have brought to mind precious things like baby clothes and play things, instead conjured up something entirely different in his mind.

When Scott looked at the ultrasound he saw,…Tori Spelling.  He illustrated his point and now I see it too.  And so do you.  As they say, #CannotBeUnseen.

Photo credit: Scott Parejo/ultrasound tech