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Pc Phobia
Is the PC as a gaming platform dead?

It got me wondering. I mean, I'm not spending as much time with my PC as I used to. I admit that I find myself buying more games for my console than for PC. If a game releases on multiple platforms, I will most likely get the console version, preferable for Xbox 360. To put it in short, I mostly prefer consoles to PCs. But it got me thinking - what does the future hold for computers as a gaming platform? Are we going to accustom computers with offices and consoles with homes?

I don't blam you if you are thinking the same. I mean, the PC graphics are oh-so last-generation, even if you do own a decent gaming rig. For the half that you spend on your PC, you will most likely find a top-of-the-line next generation console. And should I start about the next-gen graphics in consoles and HDTVs? Sure, that will soon change when Direct X 10 graphics cards hits Bangladesh, but come on, are you kidding me? Is anyone willing to cough up $500 just for a graphics card when you can get the wlite Xbox 360 just for $480?

Then there isn't the hassle of ensuring that your system meets the requirements to play the game, just pop the disk inside your console and start playing - even no installation required! Unlike PCs, you don't have to constantly upgrade your consoles meaning that your "investment" won't get obsolete by the next year or just six months from now.

Besides, the analog controller in consoles is more fun to play with than a standard "keyboard and mouse" setup. Couple that with rumble and motion sensing support and you know what I mean.

Then there is the achievements in X360 and PS3 - the main reason why I bother to stick with single player games on consoles - bragging to your friends of your gamerscore is a truly satisfying experience. Now why don't we see that on PCs?

Xbox Live for 360 is, I believe, one of the greatest online multiplayer experiences avaialable at the moment. I know there is multiplayer support in Pcs, but it has to be more streamline. Games for Windows Live is nothing but a flop. Look at consoles, ther are no viruses, spywares, adwares or crashes to deal with. And now you can browse the internet with consoles!

Heck, you even get to watch DVDs/HD-DVDs/Blu-Ray discs on consoles any experience "next-generation entertainment", which is expensive to do so on computers. And then you have to ensure that all your hardware is HDCP compliant or its standard definition or even no movies at all for you!

Now don't get me wrong. I've been using PCs since way-back 1995. But something needs to be done to help promote PCs as a gaming platform. The "Games for Windows Live" and "one-click game installation" in Vista is one step forward in the right direction by Microsoft. Sure, the PC is not entirely doomed and excels in certain areas. You cannot get the fast and twitchy gunplay in consoles as in PCs. And a true RTS experience is only possible on computers. But the point is that something needs to be done for this waning platform - and SOON - because consoles are quickly catching up.

By Mushfiqur Rahman

It's a sweet tale

Since the emergence of proper food in the history of mankind, the sweet portion of our tongue has definitely dominated. Thus, the creation of “Sweets” was a much fabled establishment for our dear tummies. Heck, we love sweets so much that we have settled to call our beloveds “sweetie-pie” or “sugar” or as such. Sweets are also very closely associated to victory or accomplishments (along with flowers), like for example, whenever one gets married (which is a great accomplishment) or has a kid or two, the first thing that one desires are sweets.

Consequently, Bangladesh contains a wide range of sweets to make sure that we don't run out of sweet stuff, should we run into some major fight with our “sweetie-pies.” Each district is bestowed with a certain special type of sweet unique to its own, that our fathers and fore-fathers regularly bring whenever they go on tours-de-Bangladesh. Let's start with Comilla's famous Matribhandar Roshmolai, which is one of the criterions to be identified as a proper Bangladeshi. Come on now, most well off people in this 14 crore population of ours had this delicious delight, although I am sure most dieters and other sweet-hating people will deny so. Next comes, Netrokona's Balish Mishti. Balish is definitely a good word to describe it because this gigantic piece of sweet, 8 inch by 3.5 inch in size, with the syrup oozing from all sides of it is definitely a family treat, rather than a one man serving.

Mymensingh's Muktagacha Monda and Malaikari are the next in list although you really need to use good with extra cavity-protection toothpaste to feast onto these sugary goodies. Natore's Kacha Golla is one of my favorites because they are neither too dry, nor too sweet. Holding a personal best of having 24 of them at a time (the small ones) I am sure one cannot resist having just one of these. Brahmonbaria's Chanamukhi are another packet of sweets not to miss, small in size and much like chana chocolates, although be careful when buying these sweetie-pies because fake ones are currently flooding the sweet markets.

I am sure you have heard of Tangail's Chomchom; if not, I am sure you are deaf. This intricately sweet mishti single-handedly packs a punch on your diabetic level and one should not have more than two of them at the same time without regularly checking the doctor. Tangail has another specialty with the Jamurki Peyara Chondesh which can be chomped on only and only if you have hard teeth. In case of yogurt, or as we call it “dhoi” or “dohi” in some parts, Bhola's Mohish er Dhoi and Barisal Gorunodi Dhoi top off the charts in all favors, whether tok or mishti.

Okay, okay I admit maybe this article was not that interesting. Nonetheless, all that most of our generation knows about is about Pizza Hut's pizza and KFC's (including all other millions of FC's) fried chicken. Very few actually know about the many local delicacies that we have; the sweets department is just one of them. Don't get all too excited about sweets though. Too much of these will make you break the weight machine while you will find your teeth going slowly black. So it's best to sit back, relax and enjoy these localities one at a time.

PS: I am not as fat as it may seem.

By Adnan M. S. Fakir


Kothokopon with Tahmima Anam
Author of the Golden Age

On 12th May, Tahmina Anam, the author of Golden Age, held a small reception in Maktijudha Jadughor (The Liberation Museum) to discuss about her new book, The Golden Age, with readers and potential young writers of Bangladesh.

The conference was organized by the Trustees of the Liberation Museum and moderated by Ali Zaker, the noted dramatist and actor. After a brief introduction by Mr. Zaker and an equally delightful summarisation of the book by a voluntary young reader, Ms. Anam was called to initiate the discussion with the audience and answer their questions. Upon being asked what motivated her to write about the Liberation War, she replied that she was inspired by her parents who were actively involved in the war. She said “They were involved in the birth of a nation. Surely there is nothing greater or more beautiful than that! Whatever I do in my life, I can never equal that. Through my book and studies I tried in someway to capture that greatness.” A lot of audience members shared a common confusion as to how Ms. Anam could write such a book about the war especially since she didn’t even live in Bangladesh. Ms. Anam in reply to that question said that she interviewed a vast number of people in Bangladesh who were involved in the war to get a sense of what the common people felt it was like. Since the book was a fiction, she used her imagination to guide her along the rest of the way and build her characters accordingly. Regarding the reception of her book in England, she said that she had received a fair share of criticisms and praises but was mildly surprised by the positive reaction to it. A lot of people expressed great joy that someone finally wrote a wonderful book about the Liberation War. It certainly opened a lot of people’s eyes about the plight in Bangladesh. Some audience members also asked her why she named the book The Golden Age to which she replied that the book was about the Liberation War, a time when people had hope that they were about to escape tyranny and oppression and enter the world as a free nation. They hoped that they would be able to create a wonderful world for themselves and their children and it is because of that hope that inspired the Liberation war , that inspired people to think about a new life, the year of 1971 could be aptly called the Golden Age. It was simply put, a golden time for Bangladesh.

The reception ended with a brief closing by all the chairs involved and a short tea break.

By Reggie


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