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Saturday, January 28, 2012

After two weeks at work...

What have I achieved? What do I think about my new job? What will happen next?

Before answering these questions I would like to briefly mention to all SWTOR-friends out there that I am playing on "The Progenitor" under the name Yokee. Add me ingame! :)


The cake is not a lie

At this company the cake is definitely not a lie. You work hard, you learn a lot and in the end when things go well there is a great feeling of accomplishment rushing through your body. To do this much and to touch so many previously unexplored areas has been eye-opening for me. When you do things your self, and succeed, life is good.

I like this job.

Monday will be a big day. The boss is back, got a newcomer starting and we will have a team building evening with the Swedish drink "Glögg" and some Rock Band with the team. Unfortunately the newcomer is a singer so... I wont be the star anymore. That sucks. Ah well, I was never really any good at singing anyway :P


SOPA/PIPA dead, but ACTA is more alive than ever

We achieved a great victory recently. Perhaps you haven't heard? SOPA and PIPA has gone down into the trash bin after our protests. But an even bigger threat is still out there and has already been accepted by 22 countries (including the United States and Sweden). I wonder if these countries took the decision with the voice of the people or with the voice of their own ego and hunger for power.


Why not ACTA? (read more at stopACTA.info)

You are considered a criminal if you, for instance, would share something you learnt at a seminar you paid to attend to. You are a thief and will be treated as such!

- Youtube will die
- Twitter will die
- Flickr will die

Good bye Sharing.


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Unwrapping my Star Wars: The Old Republic

After having a very busy but satisfying day at work (isn't it fun when so many things are happening all the time?) I finally got to bring the little paper, that now will grant me an awesome evening, to the post office to pick up a package.

This is not a normal package.

This is Star Wars: The Old Republic. The irony is that my land lord has had my mail for some time now and it took me quite some time to finally get my hands on it. Things moves slowly in Gibraltar. Especially peoples heads (I'll elaborate later in another blog post about the Tax Office of Gibraltar).


Who is Jo Starbender?

Is he a Smuggler... or a Jedi Knight? As you remember from this blog post, I wasn't sure what class I would play. Still, today, I am facing the same problem.

The Smuggler is charismatic, clever and fun to play as some kind of sidekick to the main story... but is he really meant to be a main character? Is he meant to be able to stand toe to toe with a Sith Lord or even a Bounty Hunter? No.

Since I first heard of the game I've pictured myself as the sneaky Smuggler that took care of the economic part of the war, smuggling goods back and forth to fund my guilds war efforts. Obviously I knew this wouldn't be the reality. This is not how the world of MMO-games work at the moment (with the exception of the brilliant, but complex game EVE-Online).

Well, I think that decides it. Jedi Knight it is. Simply because I wont be able to play the Smuggler as I've imagined it.


Who wants to play with me?

Although the game hasn't impressed me before I've actually given it a fair shot... I think that this will probably beat most current MMO's out there (maybe not EVE-Online). For a "hey, I need to please everyone" kind of Game, I'm confident in the developers behind the game, despite my earlier complaints during beta.

I would like to try to see if I can get all my friends into my Guild, or alternatively joining a friends guild. Playing together is always more fun.

Who wants to play in Momentum? Does anyone have a spot for me? Which server should I play on?

Until I see you in game, here's an old Star Wars classic:

Monday, January 23, 2012

SOPA/PIPA/ACTA: No more sharing!

Read about "Black March" here
That's right. The entertainment industry want to treat us all as thieves just because a few commercializes piracy (which I agree is bad). YOU ARE A THIEF TOO!

Imagine your neighbor robbing a bank. Then you both get put behind bars. You are both being punished for a crime only one person did. Do you think this is fair? Then SOPA/PIPA/ACTA is for you.

I wont bother explaining them all in detail, but you can get a pretty good picture by simply viewing the brilliant video in the end of this post.


Newsflash: Sharing is FREE marketing
Note: The facts below are not 100% accurate, but should give you a good idea

What many people in this industry STILL don't understand is that most of their products wouldn't have had a chance without sharing. Person A downloads game X. He plays it and then tells his his three best friends, B, C and D about it.

Person B then also downloads the game (and tells three of his best friends). BUT(!!) person C and D goes to the store and BUYS the game, and then tells their three best friends about the game.

Result: Per 1 person that downloads game X, you in average get: 3 people acquiring the game where 50% are downloaders and 50% are buyers. around 75% would probably have never heard about game X unless person A had downloaded it and spread the word.

The important fact here is that the game developer probably have earned money on this action, but he probably doesn't know it. You simply can't count every download as a loss. Merely an investment where the ROI not necessarily is optimal, but definitely positive enough to be profitable.

Please do let me know if you want me to elaborate. I could probably spam an entire blog post about it :P


Bye Piratebay, bye Megaupload, bye Sharing
Yes, these sites might be partly censored or even completely shut down. No more sharing, thief!

You people are probably too darn lazy to do anything about this. I bet you are sitting in your computer chair right now thinking "nah, it will never happen, someone else will fix it for me". Well it is time to wake up. There is no someone else. There is only you.

Similar things already happened in Sweden (IPRED, FRA etc.) and no one really thought it would happen... that "someone else" would fix it.

I will now ask you to do only two things:

1. Watch the video below
2. Think for yourself: What can I do to contribute?


What I have done to contribute is to change my profile pictures everywhere to the picture in the top of this post, to spread the video below and to try to in general spread the word as best as I can. You can do either more or less than me. It is up to you, no one is forcing you.

I bet you wont do shit to contribute. Care to prove me wrong?

Saturday, January 21, 2012

This is my job! (finally!)

Okay, I have probably been a little bit too careful with what I can say or not. So here we go: I am the Head of Customer Communications for a marketing company called Traffic Generation. We do many different things, many projects and lot's of interesting things to do every day. Can't wait to get back to work on Monday, especially since there will be some new cool stuff in our office. :)


Being a part of a team

It feels nice to, after six months of involuntary holiday, get back into a team of creative minds. Especially when all of us share the same ways of thought (is that how you say it?). It feels really good to be stepping up from a Community Manager role to an extremely challenging Head of Customer Communication role, where I basically decide everything myself. Huge pressure but I must say that I've learned a lot in just a few days. I am the expert, I am responsible for the results. If things goes to shit, it's on my head, but if things go well... then I will enjoy multiple mental orgasms. I like this.

Next week there will be a big chance that I will be working totally alone for a few days, since Johan probably have become a daddy by then and my boss is dealing with some important business stuff. Speaking of babies... I have a feeling that the baby will come tomorrow (Sunday the 22nd). Let's see if I'm right!


Good places to eat in Gibraltar

Since I recently have been both very impressed by some places in Gibraltar as well as LESS impressed I would like to take a moment to list the top 3 restaurants as well as my top 3 recent disappointments (going from good to bad).


Good places to eat in Gib:

1. Charlies Tavern
2. Cafe Rojo
3. Taps Bar (new!)

Motivation: Even though I would like to also include the Ocean Village Mexican place I fear that even though they have improved, they are not really qualified for the top 3.

Charlies Tavern in Ocean Village has a good mix of excellent Indian food (best in town!) with an awesome grill cuisine. Whatever you order is just awesome. The service is mixed... the guys tend to be really nice but the girl waitresses can be a bit rude at some points (blaming the customer for their mistake etc.).

Cafe Rojo in Irish Town has recently started to really impress me. Their food is done with a "feeling" so to speak. They care for their food as well as their customers. Top service, small menu but at least something really tasty for everyone.

Taps Bar is the new place behind KFC in Ocean Village that has tables with beer taps built into it. Really awesome concept and the tapas their is the best ones I've had in Gib, by far. The service is probably also the best one in Gib - you even sometimes get a ketchup smiley face on your tapa burger. Lovely little detail.


Places that nowadays SUCK!

1. Lord Nelsons
2. O'Reilly's
3. Bianca's

Motivation: Both Lord Nelson and O'Rielly's has the same owner... and you can kind of tell. Once they were both really good, mostly because of the really nice staff that both cared for their customers and could manage to deliver good food in little time. Now they have cut down on staff and hired cheap holiday party girls/guys that don't care what so ever about the customers, the service or the quality of the food. Honestly some of them look quite drunk/hung over and a little bit like they've been in a huge orgie the day before.

Bianca's just have crappy and expensive food. The only thing I like there is the Garlic Mushrooms. I must say that their dessert is quite nice, but you pay quite a bit for it and the glasses they use make it look like you get more than you actually do. Cheap illusion trick. The service is okay though.


So how is it going in Europa Universalis III?

Well, quite well actually. I've strengthened my economy A LOT recently for Sweden. Also I have colonized parts of Greenland, West Africa and the Canary Islands. I also managed to invade some North American Indians near Florida and steal some land from them. But enough goofing around with colonies when I have a more important continent to conquer: Europe!

Wish me luck!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Management at work and at home

Today was my third day at work! Wohoo! Today I learnt that my boss is made of steal, that Johan is in fact slightly retarded (and that I am too).

Side Note: I did want to write about SOPA (read more) today, the new weapon against piracy and also your privacy, but feel that I need to read up a bit more to make be completely fair. Soon you will see a dedicated blog post about this and learn the true reason behind this powerful weapon of an unworthy (and self proclaimed) world police: the USA.


Out of the ashes and into the fire!

After a few days at work I finally start to get used to the old rhythm of going up early in the morning and sitting in front of a desk spitting out ideas and creating plans and content for the current projects. I love it.

Still I want to be careful about what I work with and where I work. I can tell you that I will continue to work with the stuff I really love: Communication, Creative Thinking and close Team Work with awesome colleagues.


Europa Universalis III - A game you probably can't handle

I am also managing things at home, like the Swedish Nation in the game Europa Univeralis III: Divine Wind (Patch 5.1). It is a very complex game similar to the board game Risk, but very much more complex, where you actually have to rule the nation in every way you can imagine. Many things to keep track of, but it never gets boring bashing the Danes out of Scandinavia or challenging the Russians to the east.

The game is a few years old, true, but the constant releases of expansions keeps the game fresh and up to date. Since I played it many years ago it is almost completely different in it's details, but still got the same charm and purpose. I wonder how successful I would be colonizing North America with Swedish Colonists. Will The United States of America be with me or against me once the thirteen states gets pissed of at England and decides to go their own way? Or... should I do what Sweden does best: Staying neutral?

Who the f*ck is the Golden Horde?

Right now I have beaten Denmark and forced Norway into becoming my vassal. Hopefully I will soon be able to annex their nation.

The game is very complex and it takes a strong brain and a lot of patience to be able to handle it, but once you have gotten past that obstacle I can promise you that this is a game that you would love. Really good work Paradox Interactive. This is possibly your best product ever. Credits to my friend Sara Wendel-Örtqvist who has been working on the latest expansion of this game.

I was very inspired by this guy, an... American(?) playing as Sweden and recording everything on Youtube. Ladies and Gentlement, I give you... MindofScience3!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Is this a pointless question at a job interview?

There have been a few discussions lately about one certain classic question that almost always shows up in job interviews. If  you haven't guessed it by now: "Where are you and what would you be doing in X years?".

This question has a theoretical purpose but no practical point.

From the English "The Office" in case you went "WHOOT?!"

Theoretically it is a good question to ask

In theory this question is good to ask to find out if the candidate is ambitious or not. If he/she might threaten your own position or if the candidate simply have no ambitions what so ever. It is simply good to know what kind of person you would be dealing with.

In my opinion, the perfect answer would be: "I will be in whatever position I can do the best possible job for the company I am working in.".

Of course, that comes of a bit cheesy. I have used it myself and the person interviewing me wasn't really satisfied with the answer (even though i.m.o. she should have been since it was quite clever :P).


Practically there is (mostly) no point asking it

Most people who do interviews don't know how to process & analyze the answer or even why they are asking it in the first place. Some people might understand it though and try to analyze it, but the chance of misunderstandings and failure to understand the point of the question from either side will probably sabotage the interview more rather than doing the opposite.


The exception?

I would like to ban this question from any interview that doesn't include a very experienced person who does the interview who has complete understanding of the question and how to analyze & process the answer it. It should also only be asked to people that are being hired for position deep down in the chain of command. It would be good to know where you have your "grunts". Will they need advancement to stick around or not? To ask candidates for higher positions is useless. If they were not ambitious they wouldn't be applying for that position anyway.


Instead you might want to ask...

Instead of asking this (in my opinion) useless question, the one who gets interviewed should instead be asked: "Where do you see this company in X years and how would you have contributed to the result?". Anyone I would hire should have his/her focus on the performance of the company rather than any "gold digging" dreams of his/her own.

NOTE: This only applies if you can't make an exception like I described above.


Also, this is how you alternatively could do your interviews (how I would prefer to do it) :P

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Never again a Creative Assembly game...

Okay I've had enough. You guys have gotten more chances than you deserve. The only reason I kept buying your games was really because some of my friends work for you, but now I've truly had enough of unplayable bugs and crappy support.

This is going to be blog post of flame and heat. Prepare yourselves.


Rome: Total War - Shogun: Total War (good - horrible)

From the first game they did really well, Rome: TW (or rather Barbarian Invasion which was the most playable version of the Total War games), Creative Assembly have been going downhill when it comes to their programming. Many of their games have unplayable bugs and always have had. Once they move on to a new title they always abandon the old ones and simply stop caring about people that still plays them. Creative Assembly leaves a trail of bugs and I can still not remember a single title since Rome: TW Barbarian Invasion that has been playable all the way from the beginning to the end.

I know a Game Studio is like a family and it is hard to get people go, especially programmers since they are so hard to replace. If you want to finally create a game that is playable (okay, Shogun was an improvement but then again... the game was mostly random and had no soul), you have to let some people go and hire some new talent. Also, a change of attitude and an improvement of customer communication would be a big step in the right direction. So far I have browsed over 30 threads about problems where none has been resolved. Not even by the players (who usually are the ones that manages to fix your games).

Since the fiasco of Shogun: Total War (or Total War: Shogun), you really have to make a big change if you want to ever be able to regain the respect that players once had for you.


Talking about flame and heat!

Check out my LCHF dish: Cream & Cheese filled Meat Loaf wrapped with Crispy Bacon. This was served with a Gorgonzola Mushroom Sauce. Here's some pics!



Tuesday, January 10, 2012

One week to go!

I'm finally feeling a bit better after my roller-coaster fever. I'm glad that it wasn't the flu or anything, since I am starting my new job on Monday. I'm quite exited and have already started to write down a few ideas. Honestly I can't wait.


Getting the deposit back...

I've been trying for a week or so now to get the deposit back from my previous Land Lord. Easier said than done. Hopefully he will contact me today about it. It would feel nice to finally move on and get all that sorted. It is always kind of a hell when getting to this point. You never know what you will be charged for and not.


Starting my new job

At the same time as I don't yet know all details about what I will do, I can't wait to get there and start building up and shaping my area of the company. Very often you have to go through so many people to get anything done in the company, but now I am kind of my own boss and only need to consult the others now and then before trying something out.

The upside of working with few people and in a smaller company is that you know that the others work not for them selves but FOR THE COMPANY. The larger a company becomes, the bigger the competition gets... and that's when you get these people that just wants to boost their ego and "be right" instead of doing the right thing for the company. I remember that, in a previous company I worked, we had a html-coder-guy that cared only about his own ego than what was good for the company. He was impossible to work with and the results often resulted in bottlenecks that we later had to try to fix. So much extra work just to satisfy one persons ego.

Anyway, here's some pictures I know people wanted of our new apartment. Keep in mind that the furniture will arrive in 2-3 weeks!

Empty, but I got the essentials...
Not the most comfy bed, but the TV is close by :)

Friday, January 6, 2012

An EPIC WIN and a life indoors

Before I say anything else: DEN GLIDER IN, DEN GLIDER IN, DEN GLIDER IN I MÅL IGEEN!

Now, you might wonder what that is all about. If you still haven't figured it out after using Google Translate, please watch the video clip at the bottom of this blog post. It should clear some things up for you.


Fever, cough and long waiting time

This Tuesday I managed to get myself a fever. Yesterday my temperature returned to normal and today it is climbing back up. FML. Even more disturbing is the fact that I have been trying to update my Star Wars: The Old Republic now since... I got my fever. Every time it finishes something new pops up. Again, FML.


Empire: Total War, playable but highly disturbing

Before the Sweden Ice Hockey Finals of the Junior World Championship 2012 I felt a strong passion to fight the Russians for some reason. AND NO, I have not punched my girlfriend... I just kicked her a little (JOKE!). I resumed my previously postponed hard level game playing Sweden in Empire: Total War. I had just, after lots of struggle, beaten Denmark and was just about to reinforce my forces in Ingria, my stronghold versus the Russians.

ALTHOUGH: Even though this game is playable, the AI refuses to be logical in any way and how can Russia own a port in my recently conquered Denmark? HOW IS THAT EVEN POSSIBLE?

Enough about that, let's watch a beautiful moment of Ice Hockey History (Mika Zebanejad shooting the winning goal versus Russia):


... And yes, I have watched this clip a million times and cried each time.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Joakim's 2011

I finally got internet in the new flat. This year has started with many new things. Presents, beardcut, haircut, friends, flat, computer chair and job. But that's the future. Let's lock back on the past year, shall we?


1) The Swedish team expands... and disbands.
Read about: Johans arrival; Håkan's first party in Gib (scroll down); Pelle "caking me".

This spring I was fortunate enough to make three new friends. Håkan, Johan and Pelle. Joining the Swedish PokerStrategy.com team that would... or should have become the greatest of them all, these new guys fit right in with me and Fredrik. We had lot's of fun during our time together, but everything's got an end.

Company Party Spring 2011, Håkan being the only one missing from the picture (probably shagging some girl in a red dress)
Fortunately the death of the Swedish Team didn't mean the end of any friendships, even though both Håkan and Fredrik left Gibraltar. Johan and I are now working together once more and Pelle is taking care of the Swedish and Finnish Community now at PokerStrategy.com. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger, right?


2) A VIP party to remember
Read more: The VIP Summer Party 2011 (Swedish!!)

Pure willpower!
When summer was finally "up and running", so to speak, we got more friendly visitors from Sweden. It was no other than the Swedish VIP & Community team from PokerStrategy.com.

We partied on San Juan and also managed to time the PokerStrategy.com Beach Party 2011 quite well. Lot's and lot's of fun. We even tied for first place in the beach party contests. :)


3) Gibraltar, Spain, Italy, England, Malta and Sweden!
Read more: Barcelona, Gib Underground #1Seville, Italy, Gib Underground #2, Ronda, Dublin, London, Malta #1, Malta #2, Malta #3, Sierra Nevada (+movie), Sweden.

I've been traveling (and visited the underdark) like crazy this year. Not only to the amazing Barcelona and Sagrada Familia (wiki), but also to other amazing Spanish cities. Seville was really nice, with the Star Wars Palace, but I must say that the owner of the greatest views is definitely Ronda.

I then went to various interviews, in Dublin, London and even Malta, where the crazy, but creative friend of mine: Suzy, lives. Ironically she was in Sweden when I came to visit. How lol is that?

Next year Vlada and I will probably travel a bit as well. My current project is to get her to Sweden during the summer. :)


4) Losing one job, gaining another!
Read more: Fredrik and I leaving.

In the mid summer of 2011 something very bad happened, just like the year before when my brother (from another mother) passed away (read more here). The Swedish team had to restructure and 4 out of 5 team members was forced to leave. But it wasn't the end of the world for us. Håkan got a job at Google, Johan and I at this new company in Gib and Fredrik is being interviewed by some companies and it seems like it is going well. As they say: There is always light at the end of the tunnel!


5) Enjoying new friends and new games
Read more: My thoughts on some games

This year I have not only met new friends like Suzy, DhariDareDevil, Andy, Erik & Ellinor (and more), but I have also finally got to get my hands on a few new games. Some of the best games in a very long time has been released in a very short time. For instance, Skyrim (who would have guessed that?!), Star Wars: The Old Republic or why not Anno 2070? Good news is that more is to come. Can't wait!

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