How to find Church Guitar Chords Online

Update 2017-08-12: Added “Converting PDF to HTML” with links to PDF to HTML conversion sites for when the only chords you can find are PDF but you still want native browser display.

Update 2016-07-02: Check out webrix.co.uk. I just came across them doing a search for Praise To The Lord Almighty. They have a clean look and easy method to change keys. They only have a few songs but it looks like a good start.

Update 2016-04-01: Ultimate-Guitar.com print versions no longer save properly from a browser when you’ve transposed at all. Chordie.com also has problems printing since their last site redesign. These were my two go-to places for chords :( I find I’m falling back to TraditionalMusic.co.uk, GuitarHymnBook.com, guitarvideochords.com, andĀ gospelguitartabs.com for hymn chords these days. It’s really whatever is turning up in my google searches besides Ultimate-Guitar.com and Chordie.com. On the bright side, I’m more frequently finding my own stash of chords while searching! :)

Update 2016-03-17: Added section about viewing music on a Hipstreet Phoenix tablet rather than print outs.

Update 2015-08-15: I’m now storing my chords for things like Sunday services, VBS, etc., over here: http://www.selah.ca/chords/. There’s a search, too, although Google seems a little slow on indexing that part of the site.

Update 2015-05-23: Added How to Print section

Update 2015-04-11: Added some tip sections about preferred chord layout and alternate version cautions.

How to find Church Guitar Chords Online

For the past half year I’ve been part of a small church where most of our music comes from the hymnal. They’re very, very nice people, though, and are happy to have myself and another man playing guitar in the front pews. We really enjoy it but it takes some effort to work with the piano players and their music so that we can find guitar chords to play from. This took me down the path of finding guitar chords for hymns and worship songs online. Here’s my tips for finding them…

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Logitech G27 900 Degrees Steering Across Racing Games

Update 2015-03-22: Mind blowing update here for G27 owners! I’ve just come across a thread, via a question I posed on the iRacing forums, about how to reset the G27 wheel when it glitches in a session and feels like it goes back to the default 200deg rotation. A friendly iRacing member provided the link and…well you just have to go there yourself right now! Here’s what it boils down to: There are undocumented codes for the buttons on the shifter for setting degrees of rotation and one of them is the 900deg setting which you’ll need to reset to if the wheel happens to glitch. Here’s a pic from that thread to help explain:

G27_UDG_miniYou press 1+2 and then one of the T,S,O,X buttons. Here’s my take on what each does: 1+2+T=240deg, 1+2+S=450deg, 1+2+O=630deg, 1+2+X=900deg.I think what they were trying to accomplish is shortcuts for cars with different steering ratios like 240deg for open wheel cars, 450deg for GT cars, 630deg for drift cars, and 900deg for street cars.

Update 2014-08-03: Okay, while I’m not at the point where I want to research every car’s steering ratio, I might be okay with researching types of cars. :) Here’s what I want: I want to use 540 degree wheel rotation (ie. setup in Logitech Profiler) but I want to make it feel like sort of realistic in-game via the use of steering lock settings. For example, F1 steering (540 degrees-ish with 13:1 steering ratio) should feel dramatically more twitchy than a road sports car such as a Porsche(900 degrees-ish with 15:1 steering ratio). So, here’s the list of car types, their wheel rotation, steering ratio, and steering lock: Family: 1080deg wheel rotation, 20:1 ratio, 27 lock; Sports: 900deg wheel rotation, 15:1, 30 lock; Drift/Rally: 720deg wheel rotation, 15:1, 24 lock; GT/Touring: 540deg wheel rotation, 15:1 ratio, 18 lock; F1/Formula: 540deg wheel rotation, 13:1 ratio, 21 lock. For the 540s you have what you need but for the rest we’d need to calculate it: Check this chart (backup link) out instead, from a Live For Speed Forums thread, that lays them all out nicely.

Update 2014-07-26 – 3: Handy online tool for calculating steering locks from wheel rotation and steering ratios. Also, some good reading on wheel rotation/steering ratio/steering locks.

Update 2014-07-26 – 2: I prefer realism in sim racing when I can get it, but I’m also not yet at the point where I want to research every car’s wheel rotation and steering ratio just to set that up in game to get a realistic feel. So I’ve settled on a GT-style 540degree wheel rotation and 18degree steering lock for 15:1 steering ratio. iRacing appears to be the only game I have so far that automatically applies a 900degree setup to real-world wheel rotation and steering ratio in each car they have. For all other games you have to set it manually and often that means every time you get into a car you have to load your custom setup file. After googling a lot, I find most people are happy with a middle-ground GT-style 540degree wheel rotation with 15:1 steering ratio which needs an 18degree steering lock setup. This is a generalization, not all GT cars use those numbers, but what you get in the end is one wheel setup for all racing sims where you get a consistent car turn feel across different car types.

Update 2014-07-26: Understanding SimBin Steering Sensitivity: The following applies to RaceRoom Racing Experience, Race 07, GTR 2, and I assume all SimBin racing games. I finally understand what they’ve done with steering sensitivity. 50 is linear, but either side of 50 is not linear-but-different-ratio as I expected. I finally got it when I was really looking at the steering meter. If I turn the wheel 90deg three times it goes from nothing to full. At 50 each 90deg takes up the same amount of space – so each 90deg physical wheel turn actually represents 90deg virtual wheel turning (broken animations aside). But, at 100 the first 90deg takes up the most, the second 90deg takes up less, and the third 90deg takes up even less – so each 90deg physical wheel turn may not actually represent 90deg car turning. At 0 it’s the other way around. So I choose 50 for steering sensitivity in SimBin titles to ensure that all degree ranges on my wheel rotation act and feel the same way.

Update 2014-07-19: I finally got 900 degrees in Race 07. It is, in fact, the same method as RaceRoom Racing Experience (Set it in the Logitech Profiler and then set the Steering Lock in the Car Setup) but apparently the steering wheel animation won’t be correct if you do that. That would have been okay except there’s no default steering lock like RaceRoom Racing Experience has so you have to set it on every car. I guess that’s technically correct but more hassle than I wanted so I went back to Logitech Profiler default degrees for Race 07. I wish these games would just do the ‘auto-magic’ thing like iRacing does.

Update 2014-07-08: I finally got 900degrees in RaceRoom Racing Experience: (1) Set it in the Profiler, (2) set it in R3E under Vehicle Settings > Wheel Animation (remember this is only animation it has no effect on how it feels), (3) go in to Control > Advanced Settings and set Steering Lock between 28 and 32. You need to google about steering lock and the ratio between that and the rotational degrees of your steering device. I just found the 28-32 metric after reading some discussions. For 540 degrees I’ve seen recommendations of 18-22. I believe the same steering lock applies for Race 07 but I haven’t tried it yet.

Logitech G27 900 Degrees Steering Across Racing Games

race07-3I loved the way iRacing was so easy to setup for the 900 degree turning ability of the Logitech G27 so I tried RaceRoom Racing Experience and Race 07 and was very disappointed there was no way to get that linear steering working when the G27 was setup for 900 degrees. Well, it’s not a real fix, but it’s here’s a decent work-around…

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Beautiful Vistas Gone Bad in Lord of the Rings Online

Lord of the Rings Online (LotRO) is a massively multiplayer online game based in J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle-Earth. I started playing sometime in 2009 and was happy with the decent graphics but delighted by the beautiful artistry put into the game. The vast landscapes, in beautiful shades, crafted with majestic features, was pure enjoyment in itself. But something changed…

I can tell you exactly what changed down to the specific graphics options in the game and it’s very simple: Object Draw Distance and Landscape Draw Distance were nerfed.

I have a system that can push the game 50fps on maximum graphics settings.

For those familiar with LOTRO, I have two versions of each video, starting with Distant Imposters Off and the other version will be Distant Imposter On. Distant Imposters is a hack in the game to prevent having to render 3D object models after a certain distance away. You might expect if Distant Imposters were off that you would get 3D objects to your maximum view distance. This is not the case. Instead, what you get is no 3D objects after a certain distance. You get a barren wasteland of ugly.

In the video above, note how the forest below the player pops in bit by bit. It should already be loaded in from the top of the hill. Additionally, there’s a rocky hill on the right of the player, at the foot of the hill, in full-screen you can notice the muddy texture that should be hi-res. Yes, a hi-res texture does pop in – far too late.

Here’s the same video with Distant Imposters On. An improvement, but the pop-in is still completely jarring.

In this video, note the forest popping in out of nowhere as the player runs down into the little valley and then comes up on the side.

The same video with Distant Imposters On.

Watch the textures of the cliffs in the far background. They are horribly muddy. Watch as one section pops in to a new hi-res texture while the rest of the cliff, very nearby, still has lo-res textures. Brutal.

The same video with Distant Imposters On.

The problems shown in these videos are standard throughout Lord of the Rings Online.

My real issue with these graphics problems is that Lord of the Rings Online is such a beautiful game that it really takes you out of the immersion of the game. A large part of the enjoyment of the game is the beautiful vistas which have been ruined by these graphics changes. I thought I would get over it but every time I play I notice the problems.

So, dear Turbine, please reconsider what you’re doing to the graphics engine.

If you’re interested in more examples of these issues, see my youtube videos.

Pando Media Booster settings? Check your Control Panel.

Stuck using Pando Media Booster to download some software? Don’t worry, you can uninstall it after it’s done. And if you need to change its settings, go to your Control Panel and it should be there. You’ll be able to change its max upload speed and whether or not it launches when windows starts. While Pando Media Booster is ill-conceived software and quite suspicious, it doesn’t appear to be malware. Once you’re done with it, throw it away.

Stuck using Pando Media Booster to download some software? Don’t worry, you can uninstall it after it’s done. And if you need to change its settings, go to your Control Panel and it should be there. You’ll be able to change its max upload speed and whether or not it launches when windows starts.

While Pando Media Booster is ill-conceived software and quite suspicious, it doesn’t appear to be malware. Once you’re done with it, throw it away.

Word to the wise: Limiting your upload to a fraction of your total upload bandwidth appears to actually improve your download speed! Probably because Pando saturates your upload to the point that it starts causing problems for its downloading. Dear me…

Accidental Death in MMOs

I was a big fan of The Lord of the Rings Online and played for about a year and a half from ’97 to 99′ or so. As in many MMOs, there’s a certain amount of regard for players who can survive many levels without dying. On the other hand many players consider those players “care bears”, a derogatory term for someone who avoids danger to stay alive. One thing that has always bugged in me LOTRO is “real-life-happens accidental death”.

I was a big fan of The Lord of the Rings Online and played for about a year and a half from 2009 to 2010. As in many MMOs, there’s a certain amount of regard for players who can survive many levels without dying. On the other hand many players consider those players “care bears“, a derogatory term for someone who avoids danger to stay alive. Regardless, one thing that has always bugged in me LOTRO is “real-life-happens accidental death”.

“Real-life-happens accidental death” occurs when someone interrupts you, while in game, and you leave the game without thinking if your character is safe – you come back to find your character has died.

Seeing as I ended my LOTRO time in Spring 2009 or so, it might seem strange I’m talking about this now, but here’s what happened: I keep having urges to try it out again. LOTRO is a game with beautiful visuals and relatively engaging characters and gameplay. But there was always the endless grind that kept me from re-activating my account. So, as it happens, Turbine recently announced they were going free-to-play in Fall 2010, and I suddenly had an urge to try the game out again.

I booted up the game, selected my character, was somewhat annoyed my usual name had already been taken, played through the intro, leveled up my character to max before I left the intro instance, thirteen levels or so, and proceeded to die because I left my computer forĀ  a “real-life-happens” moment – somewhat knocked at the door – and I was dead.

This was all in the span of four hours of intense, focused gameplay but, having stayed away from the game for a year because I couldn’t stand the grind, there was no way I was going to put myself through even the intro again witth the chance of repeating that same kind of accidental death. I canceled my subscription on the same day I had renewed it.

So, it all got me thinking. Dying is frustrating when it’s not by your choice. So much so that people lose a lot of their passion for the game the first time they die. They might come back but that drive is no longer as intense as it was. Eventually they fade away along with their subscription fees. Shouldn’t the game companies think of at least some safe guards on accidental deaths?

An MMO is a game. A game is not real life no matter how much we want it to be. So some features to accommodate a real life while playing the MMO would go a long way to retaining long term players.

How about this: What if, when first attacked, if I am non-responsive and proceed to be non-responsive, a feature kicks in which assumes I’m idle and causes enemies to ignore me? Or maybe it teleports me to the nearest safe spot. Or something.

How about something more creative: What if suddenly some key NPCs come to my rescue (running from over the next hill or teleporting in) and prevent me from dying. Then they run back off into the distance and disappear.

Anything is better than enduring a “real-life-happens accidental death.” You have to accommodate your players who live in real life. It’s costing these companies real money.