Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Second Life

John Marine | 12/13/2017 01:38:00 AM | | | | | Be the first to comment!
@SecondLife is a very popular virtual world. I joined #SecondLife to see what I can do in activities and in assets. SL is not exactly a game- it is a world outside of the real world where you can do almost anything. You are free to be you with all kinds of goods and activities to engage yourself with. You can engage in real-life experiences you may never get to experience in real life. You can dress yourself up in literally millions of clothing and avatar options. Besides entertainment, it is offered as a promotional tool, an educational tool, and much more. This blog post offers my own sort of look at Second Life.

Second Life at a Glance

Get to know Second Life.

Second Life Linden Labs
^ from: (Twitter) - Second Life- where you can live in your own world but also exist in the most popular and successful virtual world. It is no game, no social media platform, and no massively multiplayer realm.

Second Life (or SL for short) was created in 2003 by Linden Labs, based in San Francisco, California, USA. It has been developed extensively over the years as it remains one of the best online simulations of any kind. A way to think of Second Life is kind of like "The Sims," only more realistic and not as lighthearted. You can engage in activities and live lives outside of the real world in Second Life. So to say Second Life is a "game" is pretty much untrue. Second Life allows you to live a life outside of the real world. You even can express yourself in many ways you probably would not or could not do in real life. Various promotional content is offered here also. You can be part of causes and even gain an education from material offered here. People use Second Life for much more than entertainment.

Living in Second Life.

As I mentioned before, Second Life is not a game. It isn't even a social networking medium. It is instead executed literally as a world outside of our own. It is not a game because there are no goals or storyline. You aren't on Second Life to defeat a monster or save the world from disaster. You are instead in to live and interact with the world. There are even events that take place on certain days at certain times of day. As the name suggests, you are living a second life outside of the one we all live in.

Not every location in Second Life is a fun destination. People actually use Second Life for educational purposes as well. Some places have educational content you can access. I even once visited a location that was this lavish museum including beautifully-modeled 3D items and fabulous artwork. A lot of places can be quite intensive on the 3D modeling front. So you may need some places to keep loading to see them in all of their detail.

You can join Groups and even find work. You can even seek friends and love in Second Life. There is so much to do and many ways to interact with others. So take full advantage of these things and have an awesome time in Second Life!


Where you can go and what you can do depends on your Maturity settings. Most people usually have their Second Life set at General (G) or even General and Moderate (M). Some people have their Maturity settings at General (G), Moderate (M), and Adult (A). You need to be 18 years of age or older to access Adult content. Being at GMA will likely give you all there is to Second Life to access. Be warned that a lot of content may not be suitable for all audiences. And even some of the General or Moderate material may not be completely wholesome to all audiences. Visit carefully.


You do not have to be a vagabond in Second Life. With enough currency, you can be able to own land or rent land. Rates for land or houses vary based on the location. If you are a Second Life Premium member, you can get perks such as your own house for not a whole lot of money. But for the rest of us, you're best served trying to find property to rent if you want your own pad in Second Life. Such locations have payment rates for weeks. Make sure you have enough L$ to pay the landlord... or you may have to find a new place to call your own!


The currency of Second Life is Linden Dollars (L$). It is needed to access some services and purchase some goods in Second Life. You can earn L$ by taking part in certain games and activities in Second Life. Alternatively, you can pay others in L$ or receive L$ from users- just like you can give and receive money in PayPal. Some places take donations of L$. You can voluntarily donate to places in L$ through certain amounts specified or from how much you want to donate. Donations are always appreciated, but just like with my own work, are completely voluntary (meaning you don't have to do it if you don't want to).


Events in Second Life happen every day, all the time. These range from entertainment activities, to educational classes, to seminars given at certain times. Get involved with the events if you get a chance. Some events may require certain things of you. For example, some locations and events may require you to wear formal clothing for your avatar. You may also have to be of a certain age to participate in certain locations.


Material made for Second Life is all created by devoted and talented users worldwide. Making textures and meshes for all kinds of objects and places is what makes Second Life amazing. Most of your favorite 2D and 3D programs will serve you well in producing content for Second Life. In fact, I have developed interest in making Second Life material.

You can look up many different tutorials on YouTube as well as on Second Life's Wiki page.


Just like in real life, there are various rules to make sure you don't step out of line. Many environments have a zero tolerance policy regarding various forms of violence. Second Life has weapons you can equip your avatar with. Many places also have zero tolerance regarding heckling and bullying people on Second Life. Besides violence, a number of locations also have rules regarding wearing clothes. Nudity is disallowed in a some zones and in some locations. Your account can be suspended or terminated if you get reported.

Questioning Virtual Worlds?

Many people would question why we have a virtual world and why would there be so much attention to detail for such a realm? Well, Second Life isn't much more a virtual world as any other virtual world for any game or other sort of interactive media. Second Life is as much as medium of expression as the real world.

Can your computer handle Second Life? Make sure your computer meets the general requirements before playing. You otherwise may not be able to properly participate in the many different activities in the program. Allow me to offer some thoughts now on Second Life. My first impressions are coming up next...

Second Life: First Impressions

Here is a section where I explain some of my original thoughts on Second Life.

The first thing to hit me about Second Life is not so much this virtual world, but how the various areas are implemented. You nearly swear you are in a sophisticated browser instead of being part of some pre-made world. Places you visit seem more like 3D websites rather than some pre-made world. To that point, you note some locations have items such as files you can access or embedded videos you can watch. In fact, when you visit the Social Island (mostly the main hub of Second Life), you will find yourself seeing different embedded YouTube videos that you can access for more help on items. You can actually use these embedded videos and not have to worry about using a separate browser or anything. Second Life does have its own internal browser for things like the Marketplace and for searching for anything within Second Life. So you don't need to have another browser open, unless you want to have one open to look up certain things about Second Life.

Prior to Second Life, the only real environment similar to SL that I have engaged in was PlayStation Home on the PlayStation 3. I had a terrible time meeting new people, and I didn't exactly enjoy customizing many things in that program. PS Home even was slow to access often times. So when I did Second Life, it was a much better experience than almost anything I did on PS Home.

Now on to a few more impressions and thoughts.

My Second Life Experience So Far

Here are my own experiences so far.

Avatars and Outfits.

I mostly have enjoyed dressing up avatars in Second Life. I have an avatar with three different outfits going by name:

Male - a male model I've created.
I started off with a male model in Second Life. As usual, I try to make someone who is a representation of myself along with an idea of my own personality.

Female - a female model I've created.
I am essentially the same way with my female model, only I try to express feminine style as I see fit. So to this end, I try to dress up my female outfit with my own fashion cues and thoughts.

Androgynous (later called "Genderless") - a model with masculine and feminine features, but is technically genderless.
I feel this is perhaps the best platform to express fashion style. Androgyny is either masculine with feminine touches or feminine with masculine touches. I try to find a delicate balance between feminine style and masculine charm. Let's face it- there is a unique appeal to a male with feminine charm. So I emphasize feminine looks while still having somewhat of masculine charm. There are a lot more feminine touches to this outfit but with some kind of reminder this is a male model. So honestly, this outfit can either be seen as a combination of masculine and feminine, or just simply not supposed to be either completely male or female.

Experimental (also called "Sandbox") - a test model for trying various clothing and model combinations.
If I want to make complete avatars or sample clothing options, I will use my Experimental character to try out these concepts. I have interests in designing clothes and other items in Second Life. I will therefore use this model to test out different items.


I am cheap, so I try to take advantage of free goods. The first freebies I came across were with the New Resident Island. Just some mere basics were enough to get me going. I eventually learned how to buy clothing and put them on. Later, I became more adept at it and tried coming up with clothing combinations.

I had used a female avatar in Second Life. What I did was use the Female Dressing Room. That was until some Moderator directed me to the Androgynous Dressing Room. I now use that dressing room like my home or for dressing and undressing my avatars. Since I am clearly male and using a feminine avatar, I could possibly have been reported according to that Moderator.

You can purchase items even if they are offered for free. If an item is NOT for free, you will need to gain credits. The currency in Second Life is Linden Dollars (L$). You will need to gain L$ either by earning money in Second Life or buying some with your own money. To know how much Linden Dollars you want to get, you will need to go to Second Life's website.


I haven't done any voice chatting, but I have done regular chatting. Most of whom I've chatted with are mostly newcomer-friendly persons. It has been a very nice experience so far. Haven't yet dealt with any horrible people yet. One person I chatted with even paid me L$ when I mentioned I didn't have enough L$ to upload meshes (uploading meshes into Second Life costs 10 L$)! It was an unexpected, yet appreciated thing!


Second Life has a whole lot of options available to you for dressing up your avatar. Most clothing options involve setting up bases and alphas before applying meshes. Most items are usually on pictures or in some kind of 3D display. You go up to something and either buy it immediately, or you right-click on it and click on "Buy."

I have interest in developing items for Second Life. Needless to say, while I do follow feminine fashion a lot, there seems to be a whole lot of not-so-wholesome feminine fashions. Almost as if designers emphasize super-sexy and not so much chic or even "cute" fashions. I may want to try to change that.


Be mindful that Second Life include places both of the entertaining variety and of the serious variety. Not every zone is a fun place, yet you are allowed to have fun and enjoy your time touring these virtual realms.

Most of where I have visited have mostly been places that offer freebies and helpful newcomer-friendly zones. The first big favorite of mine was New Resident Island. You can score some free items to dress up your avatar as well as learn more about Second Life. There were even some helpful individuals on hand to chat with. One of the first dangers of mine was that I had a feminine avatar, and I used the female dressing room. That was until one individual directed me to the Androgynous Dressing Room of New Resident Island. I since have used the Androgynous Dressing Room to dress up my avatar. I even Landmarked and Favorited it. It is sort of my home in Second Life, though I consider myself more a vagabond in Second Life.

Nikita Freebies is a massive zone featuring all kinds of free items. Not everything is free, though. Some items along the walls and not on the clear floors cost L$. You otherwise can find a whole lot of items for customization. Those even include complete avatars and avatar accessories (such as tattoos).

Not all places are pleasant, though. I once visited a Location in Second Life that was a memorial for transgenders who were killed or committed suicide. It was really sad to look at the different transgender types who were killed and remembered. There are a bunch of candles at this memorial site in that location. You could click on those candles to view small eulogies for fallen transgenders. It was just powerful. I also visited a locale in Second Life representing the Transgender Resource Center.

I mentioned there are more serious places you can access. These can be real-life representations of certain educational and promotional locales. One of those was when I visited a Sandbox (a place for testing meshes and other items) created by the University of Texas Health Services Center at Houston. I then visited other locales such as one Place featuring the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio, Texas, USA; and I also visited one zone resembling the San Francisco Exploratorium. People actually use Second Life for conducting classes people attend. So take in these opportunities if you get a chance. I don't remember it well, but there was even some kind of airport locale that I visited from from Editor's Choice portal from the Social Island.

Recommendation: Use Firestorm!

The Second Life Viewer is good enough for all of your SL tasks. However, Firestorm works better and has more flexibility. Firestorm is an open-source launcher for Second Life and other similar open-world simulations. Only two issues I've endured with Firestorm- I sometimes access a chatting session by simply pressing any of the regular letter keys, and Firestorm can sometimes be slow to open and close (usually closing).

In case you are interested in Firestorm, learn more about it by visiting

Now let me tell what I think about Second Life with these upcoming Final Thoughts.

Second Life: Final Thoughts

Second Life means so many tings to so many people. It is not a game, but a virtual world outside of our own. It allows you to express yourself in a realm where you otherwise may not be able to express yourself in reality. It allows you to experience things virtually you may not be able to experience in real life. While visiting places in SL can be great, it also is great for advertising and promotion. The events and happenings range from entertaining ones to educational ones. It is understandable to think of Second Life as a game. But in reality, it is NOT a game. While I never understood the expression "life imitating art," Second Life imitates life. Not everything in Second Life is about entertainment. People use Second Life for educational purposes and even to offer helpful resources for dealing with life issues. It is the most complete virtual world on the market. It is certainly possible to live another life when you try Second Life. I would recommend you try it out if I have convinced you about Second Life. And with some of the different additions to be made in the future, it will get even better.

Video Preview.

This video offers a basic overview of Second Life and what it has to offer. This is what I have discussed all post long:

^ Welcome to Second Life

For More Information...

Visit the official website of Second Life at for more information on Second Life. You can visit Second Life's Wiki page for help with modding for SL. And if you want a launcher for Second Life, I recommend Firestorm, which can be procured here:

I hope you enjoyed this blog post.

That is it for this blog post about Second Life. Hopefully I have done enough to convince you about Second Life. If you love my blog(s), please Subscribe and Follow in whatever capacity. It would mean a whole lot to me. Thank you for reading! Take care and be well.

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Monday, December 4, 2017

John's Corner - November 2017 Updates

John Marine | 12/04/2017 10:30:00 PM | | | Be the first to comment!
November 2017 has been rough for me. My grandmother passed away, and I had to go to a hospital to remove some abscess removed followed by taking antibiotics to treat an infection. I made a new blog but also missed lots of time. Regardless, I am fine. I want to say I am sorry for not being so active this November blogging. I am also sorry I haven't come up with more new material to keep my blogging work relevant and active. While I an can not assure things will change with the snap of a finger, I do feel I can try to offer as much material as possible to make up for lost time. So therefore, get ready for more content as I make it available.

Oh, and welcome to "John's Corner!"
Johns Corner

About That New Blog...

If you haven't visited my new blog, it is called "John's Life Space." "John's Life Space" (or JLS) is a blog about life issues. These are issues relating to a variety of life issues. Among others- life, love, parenting, intimacy, motivation, LGBT matters, and more. Most of you may know I've used JLS to discuss life issues before. Now, though, I want to make a proper blog to help people with various issues. While not every issue discussed may be for all audiences, my hope is to provide a positive space to offer my own help people who may need support and help. "John's Life Space" is my sixth-ever blog I created on Blogger/Blogspot and is currently my fifth blog that I run. So I now run an insane five blogs at present!

On top of that, my "John's Life Space" blog is dedicated in loving memory of my grandmother.

Visit "John's Life Space" Today!

Want to visit my life issues blog? If so, today!

I may explain further about what has happened in my life while also including more content in the future. Until then, thank you for reading! Take care and be well.

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Thursday, September 21, 2017


John Marine | 9/21/2017 09:36:00 AM | | | Be the first to comment!
Survivalcraft by @CandyRufusGames, to some, is another Minecraft clone. Minecraft established itself as a quality game. Developer Kaalus of Candy Rufus Games developed Survivalcraft to offer an experience equal to or better than Minecraft. But did this developer deliver, or is it just another game trying to jock Minecraft's swagger? I will offer my own thoughts with this blog post. Come along for the ride!

NOTE: This game review is based on my past experience with it on Android years ago.


Let me tell you about Survivalcraft.

^ from: - Survivalcraft has that similar feel of a similarly-titled game, but is it better than... that game?

Survivalcraft is about what its title implies- survival and crafting. It was created by a developer named Kaalus of Candy Rufus Games. This developer has spent a good number of years and made several releases to make this game as amazing as it can be. Or at least... to the developer's liking.

You are off of a boat and set out to live as long as you can in a wild world. You can craft items and structures to build your own world. Or, you can try to survive for as long as you can with various items. Either way, the goal is survival. You even can craft things such as clothes as part of the survival process. If you think this game is interesting, you should follow the blog from the developer's website documenting on various changes to the game. The experience can be as easy as you like... or as difficult as you like.

Survivalcraft takes many of the elements that made Minecraft successful and add its own touch to it and offer its own challenges. The Survivalcraft world is quite vibrant. You have great looking skies as well as some amazing weather effects. If you absolutely hate blocky-looking entities in the realm, know that there are many detailed, but low-polygon beings that roam the land, the skies, and the water. Your crafting includes tools. In addition, you can even craft electronic systems you could only dream of in Minecraft. So needless to say, you have a lot to look forward to and a lot to do that you may not want to put down Survivalcraft.

Survivalcraft is available on a variety of platforms: Andoid, iOS, Windows Phone, and even PC. Since I'm talking so much about Minecraft here...

Survivalcraft vs. Minecraft

Many people would probably eaasily say Survivalcraft is a better-looking Minecraft. Some people who played Minecraft Pocket Edition would say Survivalcraft is what Minecraft's mobile version should have been. Those who dislike the blocky aesthetic of Minecraft would say that Survivalcraft is a welcome change graphically. Many of the various animals as well as the player model are all done with realistic looking models (compared to the blocky Minecraft models). It's my own preference, but I think Survivalcraft's colors are rather bland compared to Minecraft.

Though both games mostly pertain to a similar set of goals, the two games are NOT copies of each other. The difference between Survivalcraft and Minecraft is almost like the difference between Gran Turismo and Forza Motorsport- two similar style games with different personalities. Minecraft takes on more of a fantasy RPG feel. Survivalcraft takes on more of being at one in a living, breathing world than try to have any set storyline. There is even some gadgetry found in Survivalcraft that Minecraft's redstone systems can't better or match.

Both Minecraft and Survivalcraft offer different experiences while being very similar. So it is up to you to determine which is the better game. It is not my job to tell you which you should play over the other. That is up to you.

Survivalcraft: Final Thoughts

Survivalcraft from Candy Rufus Games is anything but a Minecraft clone. It isn't a rip-off of Minecraft. It is not a wannabe Minecraft. It is not trying to jock Minecraft's swagger. Survivalcraft is a Minecraft-style game that offers its own appeal and charm to what Minecraft started ages ago. Even if it falls short in a number of categories compared to Minecraft and lacks the name recognition, Survivalcraft is still a game to give a chance. The game remains as engaging and appealing even if it isn't completely blocky in aesthetics. You probably wish it was available on more platforms so more people can get to see what Survivalcraft brings to gaming, but it is otherwise not a bad game to play on whatever platform it is available and that you can play. Even when you can make your own impact apart from a more popular game, that alone is enough to warrant giving something a try. So if that describes you, by all means, go get Survivalcraft! Don't let the fact that this game lacks name recognition or appeal that Minecraft has. If you care anything about gaming and not always be about the biggest names, Survivalcraft is worth every bit of your time. At least try it out and see if you like it as much as or more than (the similar game).

An Additional Note...

There is a sequel to Survivalcraft called Survivalcraft 2. I have no experience with the sequel, but I may offer a review of that game if I somehow get a hold of Survivalcraft 2.

Video Preview.

I described the game all blog post long- now see it in action!

^ Survivalcraft

For More Information...

Learn more about this game from the developer's blog at You can visit that same site to download Survivalcraft for your device that is offered.

I hope you continue to enjoy my content and the range of topics I try to bring Thank you for reading! Take care and be well.

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Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Freemium Gaming

John Marine | 9/20/2017 11:00:00 PM | | Be the first to comment!
Play premier games for free! That is... until you realize you may need to pay to be fully competitive or beat the game. Welcome to "freemium" games. These are free to play, but some coin "pay to win" to beat them. Customization and boosts in most games are also the norm with freemium games. How do I feel about such games on the market? You are about to find out in my blog post regarding freemium games.

Freemium Gaming at a Glance

Real Racing 3 freemium game
^ from: - Real Racing 3, which I reviewed in my "John's Race Space" blog, is an example of a "freemium" game. Shouldn't free games REMAIN free?

I recently reviewed a "freemium" game on my racing/driving game blog, "John's Race Space"- Real Racing 3. The concept of a freemium game is for gamers to play high-quality games wihout having to purchase extra material to enhance the experience. A lot of games can be completed without having to purchase anything. However, a lot of games may require your own money whether from your hard money or from digital money. A game that is free-to-play is free; but as the saying goes, "there is no such thing as a free lunch." The experience is never completely free. If your goal is to beat a game, and if doing so means having to purchase extra material, the free game isn't entirely FREE now, is it?

Games that are offered for free are inviting. Freemium games are there so that you don't feel like you have to download a free demo to play. In a way, freemium games are reminiscent of shareware games of the 1990s for PC. Only difference is that these free games feature the full game and not entirely bound to being a glorified trial.

Understanding Freemium Games: An Analogy.

Let me give you an analogy to explain the concept of freemium games. It would be like me offering you my blog to read with and interact with. If you wanted to access some of my unique content or some exclusive content, you would have to pay to access those services. This would mean that you would have to pay credits to view certain topics I post or to access certain material, though the majority of content is offered for free.

"Pay to Win."

People call it "pay to win" in which you have to spend money on a free game to really be competitive. These are for times where to beat the core game and all of its objectives, you need to purchase extra in-game material.

How Should Freemium Gaming Be Handled?

Is it possible for games to be completely free to where you can complete the game without needing to spend money for extra content or to gain the edge? I think a free game should remain free to where you don't need to purchase extra content just to clear the base game.

You have to look at games much like some of your favorite subscription services or something. You may have to pay a one-time fee to be able to enjoy certain services or features. You may need to pay a certain subscription to be able to enjoy the content you want to use and enjoy. As unfair as it is to have to pay for things that should be free, games and such are entities and businesses. People have to come up with some sort of way to make income or revenue for their work despite the fact they are offered for free. Most of the time, a lot of the in-app purchases are non-essential material and completely optional.

A case where a game can be free to play but have to be purchased to fully enjoy it and beat it, you have to look at the model provided from the OUYA and its lineup of games. A lot of games have in-app purchases to where you can unlock the full game to be able to play and complete the full game. Again- these are not ENTIRELY free; and to beat them, you will need to make purchases. Such games are pretty much glorified game trials, only not considered trials. Another example of a "glorified demo" would be a game like "Minecraft: Story Mode." You get the first episode free, but you have to pay for playing extra episodes.

A few times, some of the in-app purchases are not in-app purchases at all- some are mostly in case you want to donate to the developer(s). I think this is the safest and most appreciative aspect of implementing in-app purchases. You get a game for free and maybe want to show your support by offering a donation. To me, this is a case where "freemium" is a great thing. You aren't paying to access extra content or gain an advantage, but you are rather making in-app purchases to simply provide a donation. Almost like giving a tip after a meal at a restaurant. And again- it is completely optional. This is perhaps the smartest way to do in-app purchases without feeling like you wanting to rip people off. You allow loyal and respectful persons to donate so you can help the developer(s) out in making more content or maybe helping their financial needs.

Now it is time I offer some final thoughts in regards to freemium gaming.

Freemium Gaming: Final Thoughts

It doesn't seem fair to have a free game and feel compelled to buy things to be competitive or access certain features. It may sound greedy to have to pay things in a "free" game to stand the best chance, but there are two schools of thought here. Some tasks can be overly difficult in trying to unlock everything. Gaming- like most other creative works- is a business. We wish we can do everything for free, but there has to be some sort of way to seek benefits and profit from our work. The sad reality goes back to an earlier statement- "there is no such thing as a free lunch." To be really competitive, people would feel gypped into having to pay for elements in a game acquired for free. If the game is free to play, why not keep it free and not have to purchase things? I see it more as a business deal. A freemium game that is great is one that doesn't REQUIRE you to purchase extra material to enjoy it or to add more material. If you want to be smart, provide the best quality game and not charge people to gain extra material. Or if you want to be smart, offer as complete a game as possible and offer the option to donate to the developer(s) for future development or to help them live happier lives. Gaming is a business no matter how you look at it. That, sadly, includes free-to-play games that aren't entirely free if you want to be competitive. It is a sad gaming reality that makes perfect sense in the grand scheme of things.

Feel free to express your thoughts here or even respond to discussion questions like this:

What do you think about "freemium" gaming? What are your favorite "freemium" games?

Thank you for reading! Take care and be well.

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Friday, September 15, 2017


John Marine | 9/15/2017 02:48:00 AM | | | | Be the first to comment!
Carry lots of people on land and on city streets or country roads. How do you do so? Of course- on a bus! You probably rode one to school as a kid. You probably went around town in one. This is a just-for-fun post about buses. I know I blogged about the Volkswagen SambaBus in the past, but this blog post is about commercial buses. This is also a post I had sitting on my hard drive long ago but never completed until now.

NOTE: While this blog post is a "Just for Fun" post, all material offered is for educational purposes.

Buses in General

From school buses to city buses, these vehicles are meant to carry around loads of people comfortably. Passengers range from students, civilians, tourists, music bands, sports teams, and more. There are many buses for many different applications. A lot of responsibility is required in carrying loads of people. Nobody wants a deranged or unattentive driver behind the wheel of a bus, let alone any other kind of commercial vehicle. You wouldn't want to bear the burden of putting multiple peoples' lives at stake with poor operation of a bus now, would you? Most buses usually go around town, but some even go cross-country. Usually Greyhound buses here in the United States are known for their long-distance bus route travel. Some people have unique looking buses as well as some buses unique to certain cultures and locations. Regardless, buses do a great job carrying and transporting people across any sort of distance.

Because buses can be a means of getting people safely across certain distances, one big advantage to bus riding is that you don't have to worry about wasting gas/petrol with your vehicle to go out and about. This blog post bears a little connection personally because my brother's biological father used to operate buses. My brother and I even had spent money on bus rides around Houston before my brother eventually got his first vehicle. Even if you have to pay to ride buses, at least you are doing somewhat a favor for most major cities by riding clean on a bus.

My time riding buses to and from school has taken me towards some shuttle buses and even some proper school buses. I knew I was going to possibly have friends of mine from my school be part of a bus route. Or maybe I would make friends with students who went to other schools. Either way, the school bus was quite the childhood memory for me. They are as much a part of my grade school past as anything.

Let's take a look at some pictures of buses. Please go to the next section.

Buses in Pictures

Here are a bunch of bus types in general. I'll try to feature as many as I can. I will try to find replacement images in case I can't use any of them (for reasons such as copyright).

School Buses.

school bus
^ from: - Time to go to school, kiddies!

A few times back in my grade school days, I missed the bus. Or the bus just didn't show up. At least you know what bus was coming when you saw something big and yellow driving through your neighborhood each weekday morning and each weekday afternoon. Manufacturers of school buses include (but are not limited to) Pioneer, Bluebird, Ford, and GMC among many others. Their job (obviously) is to carry school students to and from school. Usually there are certain bus routes that are followed so that individuals can safely go from a bus stop location to the bus.

Shuttle Buses.

shuttle bus
^ from: (best I could find) - Shuttle buses don't carry as many people, but they still are viable forms of transportation to get people to places for most places that aren't too far away.

Shuttle buses may not carry as many people as school buses or commercial buses, but shuttle buses still accomplish the task of getting across many people safely from place to place. The majority of shuttle buses usually can be seen carrying people from shuttle bus stations to airports. Some others safely take people from one place to another. A vast majority of shuttle buses are also customizable commercial vehicles. For example, you could have a Ford Transit or a Ford F-650 with a bus body attached to it to serve as a shuttle bus. They may also be commercial vans that serve as shuttle buses.

To be honest, I didn't even think about shuttle buses for this topic initially because I focused so much on bigger buses.

City Buses.

city bus
^ from: (YouTube) - Want to get around the city but don't have a car (or prefer walking)? Get on a city bus!

A number of major cities have their own bus lines. We have METRO here in Houston. These buses can even be driving advertisements with a number of promotions on them. Europe has some very stylish buses from the likes of AM General, Volvo, Mercedes-Benz, SCANIA, MAN Truck and Bus, SETRA, and more. I am not sure how some of these European offerings would fare here in the United States, but these are some stylish buses that operate in Europe. Some city buses even allow access for handicapped access. Some cities have taken on initiatives to provide cleaner and more efficient buses for use. So some buses are powered by alternative fuels or are cleaner in emissions. Some city buses may even have perks such as Wi-Fi access and more. Some city buses are of decent length while certain others have an extended section attached to a bus to allow for more people to ride. Either way, their goal is to safely carry loads of people around town on roads and highways.

Charter Buses.

charter buses
^ from: (best I could find) - Stylishly enjoy riding in style by riding in a charter bus.

Charter buses are almost the equivalent of riding in a passenger plane. These buses were designed to get people to places in style. What makes charter buses different is that they are very luxurious inside. Some even have things like televisions, Wi-Fi access, and more. Think of this more like first class bus riding. Charter buses can range from stylishly carrying people to even carrying around business and performers. They can go around town or even across the country.

Double-Decker Buses.

double decker bus
^ from: - Need to carry around MANY more people? A double-decker bus might do the job.

If a city has loads of people or if many people want to get around town, a regular bus won't do. So go double-decker! Many people will immediately think of cities like London and Hong Kong (but especially London) in regards to double-decker buses. I've never been on or seen a double-decker bus in person, but I'm pretty sure that they do the job in carrying around loads more people and with not as short of length. Double decker buses handle about double the amount of passengers as an extended bus, but they are taller than very long buses.

Tour Buses.

tour buses
^ from: - Why not take a tour by taking a ride on a tour bus?

Tour buses are not only fun to be on, but also great for tourism. These tour buses offer a fun form of transportation for entertainment.

Promotional Buses.

promotional buses
^ from: - Some buses, such as this one, are decked out in unique livery mostly for promotion or for certain music groups, businesses, and the like.

So you now have a look at buses. I may feature more content based on this post's popularity or if I want to contribute more to this topic.

Bonus Videos!

Because I love you people, how about some bonus material? I found for you some bus videos! Enjoy the following:

I actually tried to find a decent school bus video, but considering the average audience of my blog, I was unable to find a decent one. So I'll leave it up to you to find a school bus video on YouTube if you are interested: "school bus" search results on YouTube.

I also tried to find a basic video featuring shuttle buses, but the only ones I could come across are conversions of shuttle buses. However, I did find THIS video which should interest you in regards to shuttle buses:

^ Riding the Parking Spot 2 shuttle bus to Houston Hobby Airport

Time I share with you some city buses here. Dome on now- did you REALLY think I would neglect my hometown Houston-Galveston area people for this topic?

^ Houston Buses HD

^ Marathon Coach Custom Coach #1247 Prevost H3-45 Double Slide

If you want to try your hand at bus simulators, here is one for you, a trailer for a bus simulator called called Bus Simulator 17:

^ Bus Simulator 17 - Trailer (Android & iOS)

Don't ever say I never did anything for you all! :)

Bus Manufacturers

These are various manufacturers of buses. To visit their official websites to their commercial buses, you are free to take a look at these sites. They also are mostly the global hub for each link. So if you want to visit a link for your certain country or region, find them within the many featured locations from these global sites. The links all point towards commercial vehicles. Again- all material provided for educational purposes:

AM General - Commercial
Freightliner - Buses
Thomas Built Buses
GreenPower Bus
Electric Buses
Local Motors (makers of the olli autonomous shuttle bus)
Volvo - Volvo Buses
Mercedes-Benz, also Daimler Buses
MAN Truck and Bus
JBM Buses (they are NOT named after me, nor I did NOT make these buses!)

I may provide some more material in the future.

That's all for this one. Hope you enjoyed it!

What do you like most about buses? What are some of your bus memories? Are there some buses you maybe wish you could see in your city or your country?

Please have yourself a great day or night. Make sure to Subscribe and Follow my blog in some capacity if you enjoy my work. Or even get social with me across social media. Any support is welcome. Thank you for reading! Take care and be well.

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Monday, August 28, 2017

Quake 2

John Marine | 8/28/2017 02:41:00 AM | | Be the first to comment!
Quake 2 offers an enhanced experience from Quake 1. A total graphics overhaul and even more intense action were to come from id Software in this title from 1997. Hard-hitting action is guaranteed with this title. But is this action any good? Find out in my review of "Quake 2" here on "John's Blog Space!" Don't worry- I will make your time here worth your while.

Quake 2

Time to meet Quake 2.

Quake 2
^ from: - Quake 2 offers an experience much greater than Quake 1 and with better graphics and more intense game play.

Quake 2 has little to no relation to Quake 1. Whereas Quake 1 was mostly concerned with a fantasy-based setting across certain time eras, Quake 2 was more futuristic. In Quake 2, the world is in ruins after an alien race known as the Strogg killed millions of people and destroyed many cities. You are among the Space Marines to try to pay back the aliens a thousand times over by fighting the Strogg on the planet Stroggos. You are going to do so by battling intense creatures, cyborgs, and various bosses. Massive levels and a host of objectives will keep you busy as you try to defeat the Strogg. Quake 2 has been released on PC, PlayStation 1, and Nintendo 64. I think someone even made Quake 2 available for Android.

Quake 2 is a beautiful game, even for its time and even today. It was an impressive graphical overhaul compared to Quake 1. You can even take advantage of 3D accelerators to further enhance the 3D graphics. If the 3D doesn't blow you away, maybe the soundtrack provided by Sonic Mayhem will get your blood pumping. Another amazing aspect of Quake 2 was its multiplayer. As few as two and many as 32 players could play in various multiplayer games with Quake 2. Needless to say, this one will give you plenty to play and talk about.

You begin with a basic blaster pistol. Traverse through the many stages and battle a handful of nasty enemies ranging from beasts to cyborgs. You will be finding many weapons and items to help you along the way. You must also complete multiple objectives in massive levels. These massive levels are even broken up into different sections. So when you try to complete the levels, you are going to have to do a lot. Quake 2 can be modded with characters, levels, and more. I even have downloaded a few character mods for Quake 2 long ago when I played it.

Let me offer some final thoughts on Quake 2. Please go to the next section.

Quake 2: Final Thoughts

Quake 1 was a game changer with all kinds of impressive detail and content. Quake 2 took Quake 1 and made the Quake series even better. I would argue Quake 2 was perhaps one of the greatest games of the 1990s and still an amazing first-person shooter. Other first-person shooters since Q2 have looked prettier and offered more content, but there is no denying Quake 2 is an amazing game. Prepare to spend hours trying to best the Strogg aliens in intense and frenzied battle. There is very little to complain about Quake 2. It is a must-play game if you are any kind of gamer, let alone any kind of first-person shooter fan.

I wanted to add a video preview, but I was unable to find a decent one to share with you all.

If you want to buy Quake 2, let me help you! Try these items:

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Sunday, August 27, 2017


John Marine | 8/27/2017 09:14:00 PM | | Be the first to comment!
In 1996, id Software released Quake. id is no stranger to iconic titles, especially since making Wolfenstein 3D and DOOM. Unlike those aforementioned titles, Quake is pure 3D. It is also pure gold to most first-person shooter fans. While the first Quake is archaic and obsolete in today's gaming culture, it is still an incredible title and the start of an amazing franchise. This blog post offers a look at the first Quake.

Quake is a Mature-rated game. There is blood and gore in this game along with some gun violence.


Get to know Quake with this section...

^ from: - This is Quake for PC.

The story of Quake involves four Runes being held by four fierce bosses in four different time eras. The evil Shub-Nigguarth rules overall. Saving the world means going through these four different time periods as well as defeating Shub-Niggurath once all four Runes have been collected. Can you defeat Shub-Niggurath and her minions? Quake was released for both PC and even the Nintendo 64.

This game does House of Pain proud in the sense of, "if you come to battle, bring a shotgun." You also have an axe as your melee weapon. So your early weapon choices aren't basic. This game is MUCH different than most first-person shooters in that your first weapon is a shotgun. You can find more powerful weapons to give you an extra edge. Enemies range from ravenous wolves, to knights, to even the fearsome Shambler.

When you start, you must choose between three difficulty levels- Easy, Normal, and Hard. Be careful with the Hard because you have to jump over lava to access the portal. You then select one of the four different realms. Collect items such as ammo, armor, and even the VERY helpful Quad Damage. You may need to solve puzzles or do some swimming. Whatever it takes to survive, do so.

One of the cool things about Quake was the multiplayer action. Without consulting any resources in my research, I think Quake 1 allowed for as many as 16 players at once. This was pretty impressive considering a game of its age. Also cool about Quake is if you're a Trent Reznor fan. Collecting ammo for one weapon bears the Nine Inch Nails logo.

It has been so long since I remember playing Quake 1. So my little preview of the game is rather limited. Time now for a review. Next section...

Quake: Final Thoughts

If you thought Wolfenstein 3D and DOOM offered intense action, you haven't seen ANYTHING yet until you play Quake. Quake has loads of challenge and replay value. It was a game changer for sure. This game delivers some great graphics for its time. Modern first-person shooters would overwhelm Quake, but Quake is very much a game that was ahead of its time. It offers plenty of excitement and intense moments sure to keep any gamer fascinated and intrigued. Even if it is more than 20 years old, it is still a solid addition to any true gamer's game collection.

Video Preview.

Here is a sample of what Quake has to offer:

^ Quake (PC) 1080p Gameplay

I wanted to direct you to this game online, but I am unable to. So look around online to buy it if you want to get Quake. I apologize for this inconvenience.

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Die Hard Trilogy

John Marine | 8/27/2017 11:18:00 AM | | | Be the first to comment!
The first three Die Hard movies are featured in Die Hard Trilogy for PlayStation 1 and PC. You play as John McClane in three adventures in three different cities. The explosive (pun intended) action is what made the Die Hard movies iconic. In "Die Hard Trilogy," you will be involved in a handful of intense situations in trying to be the ultimate hero. This blog post takes a look at Die Hard Trilogy and the adventures you will be taking part in.

Die Hard Trilogy is a game that features gun violence, blood, and some mild language. It is rated "M" for Mature by the Electronic Software Rating Board (ESRB).

Die Hard Trilogy

So you're bad, huh? Let's see how bad you really are with these three games.

Die Hard Trilogy
^ from: (YouTube) - Die Hard Trilogy features games based on all three of the first movies of the iconic Die Hard series.

Meet John McClane of the New York Police Department (NYPD). He seems to be a person who always seems to find trouble. I rarely discuss movies because I simply just have not seen too many movies. However, I have seen "Die Hard" and "Die Harder"- both excellent movies. I seen most of "Die Hard With a Vengeance." "Die Hard Trilogy" was released in 1996 for PlayStation 1 and PC. It features three games with three different disciplines- action, shooting, and driving. Each game feels different while also providing incredible action in all three. Now is time to take a look at what each game provides.

NOTE: Some material in this post may be featured in other blog posts.

Die Hard Trilogy: Die Hard (Action).

Die Hard features plenty of action. This game is based on the 1988 movie, "Die Hard." You play as John McClane of the New York Police Department. You are sent in to rescue innocents held hostage by terrorists in Nakatomi Tower in Los Angeles. These terrorists are not only armed, but they have also rigged the tower with bombs. For John McClane to succeed, he must defeat the terrorists, save the hostages, and diffuse the bombs. A lot of work for sure. But still- John McClane is the one-man army capable of saving the day.

To win in this game, you need to defeat all of the terrorists on each floor. If you find hostages, rescue them while also making sure they don't get executed. It is recommended that you follow the hostages you saved so that they can safely escape. If they are executed (or if you accidentally kill them), you don't get credit for rescuing the hostages. Collect items like soda cans and First Aid kits to recover energy. Finding body armor also gives you an extra edge. You can also pick up other weapons for that offensive edge. Rather than your basic pistol, weapons like machine guns and shotguns with explosive shells can be found. When in a pinch, throw some grenades or something. Once you defeat all of the terrorists on one floor, a bomb will be triggered. You have 30 seconds to find the elevator shaft where the bomb is. If you reach the bomb, the level is complete. If you fail to reach the bomb, it will explode, and the game will be over.

Defeat as many terrorists as you can while limiting innocent casualties for the best scores.

Die Hard Trilogy: Die Harder (Shooting).

Based on the 1990 movie, "Die Harder," John McClane is in Washington, District of Columbia to battle terrorists whom have taken hostages at Dulles Airport. Die Harder is a shooting game. You can play this game with either a controller or a light gun. In the demo of Die Hard Trilogy, you play Die Harder. Your job isn't complete until you take out all of the terrorists while also minimizing innocent casualties. You'll have your hands full in this game. But you can handle it, right?

You have a limited number of lives to try to defeat the terrorists. When you defeat all or most of the terrorists, the level ends. The crosshairs point towards enemies in the area or items that can be collected. You have a few grenades and rockets you can use in case you are desperate taking out the terrorists. You can collect items to recover health or even gain some extra protection. You can even gain extra weapons for extra firepower. There are also certain areas where you can access bonus sections for more items and points. One last thing to remember about ANY light gun game- DON'T FORGET TO RELOAD!

To make the highest scores, try to defeat as many terrorists as possible while making sure not to kill innocents.

Die Hard Trilogy: Die Hard With a Vengeance (Driving).

This game involves driving. You return to New York City in this game based on the 1995 movie, "Die Hard With a Vengeance." You can play this game with a controller or with a steering wheel. There are bombs scattered around New York City in this game. Items you couldn't think could have bombs may be ready to blow. Obviously with this description, you know what your job is- destroy all of the bombs in the various parts of New York City. To do so, you will be driving around town making sure to find and destroy all the bombs. When all of the bombs have been destroyed in each area, you clear the level. Can you save New York City from being blown up?

Your goal in each level is to destroy all of the bombs in the area. You have only a certain amount of time to find bombs scattered across the level. You also have only a few lives to successfully clear each area of their bombs. It is very important you pay attention to the compass to try to find each bomb. Bombs are indicated by red arrows, and new cars are indicated by blue arrows. Your driving partner will even tell you to turn left or turn right to reach the bomb quicker. You must find each bomb in time before they detonate. Stationary objects aren't just rigged with bombs. Often times, vehicles can have bombs rigged to them that you must destroy. You must continually damage Bomb Cars to defeat them. Ramming into Bomb Cars will help to destroy them. Not to spoil anything, but you could be trying to destroy two bomb cars at once! Thankfully, you can find time bonuses that grant you extra time to find each bomb. So you don't like that boring car you're driving? You can find faster and more powerful machines to drive to help give you an added edge. How would you like a police car? A sports car? A dump truck? By the way, the compass shows new cars with blue arrows. If you need a little boost in your life, be sure to use a Turbo for an extra burst of speed. Sometimes, you may find an item where EMS will help you find a route to a bomb. Follow that machine to reach that bomb. Do whatever it takes to destroy all of the bombs. When all of the bombs have been defeated in the area, find the Exit to end the level. If you fail to defeat a bomb in time or if you drown in water, you will lose a life. When all lives are exhausted, the game is over.

For the best scores, try to destroy all of the bombs while also avoiding running over too many civilians.

Die Hard Trilogy: Review

All three games play very well. While none of them are graphical beauties, they do provide great action in each title. No one game is boring to play. They may be a bit frustrating at times, but never totally impossible. I played Die Hard Trilogy a long time ago and only beaten "Die Hard." You are going to be plenty busy and plenty engaged in each game. Even if you never seen any of the Die Hard movies or if you aren't a Die Hard fan, these three games in one are great.

Video Preview.

I usually like to describe and review the game BEFORE offering you a look at the game. So now that I reviewed this game, see for yourself a bit of what this game has to offer. Take a look at the following video to get a complete look at this game. Since "Die Hard Trilogy" has three games, I can only show you one of the three titles with this video preview. Have a look:

^ Die Hard Trilogy - Die Hard

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If you want to get this game, I have this item for you. So please click on these to get this game for yourself:

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Friday, August 25, 2017

Hurricane Harvey

John Marine | 8/25/2017 12:04:00 PM | | Be the first to comment!
#HurricaneHarvey is concerning. "John's Blog Space" may be about many topics, but first and foremost, it is a personal blog. So it is best I offer personal insight to help people deal with a time like this. Having said that, I want to wish all of my Houston-Galveston area people well in staying safe from Hurricane Harvey's potential wrath. Worse conditions are expected for those in the area with Corpus Christi, San Antonio, and Austin.

Initial Thoughts.

I usually look to Twitter for decent updates regarding situations like Hurricane Harvey. A lot of the material is very useful ranging from pictures to messages. Timely updates and brief messages do a great deal to keep people informed and safe.

Then... you have those who joke about the whole thing and try to offer lighthearted material. I am all in for lighthearted material, but some of the comments I've seen on Twitter are just stupid. Either stupid or having nothing to do towards offering something positive and uplifting. I try to avoid governmental issues unless I am truly educated and comfortable discussing such matters. Even still, there are those who are hateful of President Trump in the respect of possibly doing little to nothing to help provide any amount of support towards what Hurricane Harvey could bring to South and Southeast Texas (and maybe Louisiana too). Other people have made Internet memes using the head of comedian Steve Harvey to resemble Hurricane Harvey. Again- I can see the lighthearted side of this, but this is really dumb on a number of levels. This is almost as annoying as when people use crying Michael Jordan heads for sports memes.

Hurricane Alicia hit Houston back in 1983. I was born in 1983, so I was too young to remember the impacts of Alicia then. I remembered the remnants of Tropical Storm Allison hitting the Houston area in 2001 some time after I graduated from High School. My memories then were of intense rain and winds on Friday night into early Saturday morning. Also, I remember being down on Internet for about two weeks, since we used to use the University of Houston's dial-up Internet, and UH was flooded. I did a blog post regarding Hurricane Ike back in 2008. That mostly seemed like a time of intense winds more than flooding rains. We would be out of power at my house for about 12 days. As of this initial post, I have no idea what to anticipate or expect from Hurricane Harvey. All I do know is that this will not be a very fun time dealing with this situation.

Thoughts to Affected Individuals.

All of you in the Houston-Galveston area please be careful with Hurricane Harvey this weekend and into the upcoming weekdays. Say a prayer(s) and hope all will be well... or at least not as damaging. Try to stay fed, cleaned, healthy, and even entertained. Best wishes and good fortune to all of you even in the worst of circumstances. Find positive energy through negative vibes. With all of this said, take care and be well.

This will be a trying and challenging event. Try to keep yourself entertained and happy even with this incident being at its worst. I hope all of my fellow Texans- including those here in the Houston-Galveston area will be safe. I will surely try to remain hopeful myself, my family, and my friends will be okay. Even if it means some cleaning up will have to be done in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, at least I want others to be protected and well.

I will be doing my part to be well in the wake of Hurricane Harvey. I encourage my fellow Texans to do the same. It is highly uncertain what will happen around here this weekend and into the upcoming work week. Regardless, I will be trying to stay safe and take what's given to me. In the meanwhile, please help support me and my online content if you find either or both interesting and useful. Thank you for reading! Take care and be well.

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Monday, August 21, 2017

Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8-inch Tablet

John Marine | 8/21/2017 11:25:00 PM | | | | Be the first to comment!
7 inch tablet or 10 inch? Samsung provides an 8-inch tablet. An 8-inch slots in between the quality of a 10-inch, but the portability of a 7. So the Galaxy Tab A 8-inch could be what you need if you love Samsung. Should you get one if you are considering getting a tablet PC? I'll offer my thoughts to you on this tablet as I bought one some time ago.

NOTE: I bought this Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8-inch with my tablet. I was not contacted by Samsung or anybody to provide this review. This review is based on my own personal experience using this.

Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8-Inch

Get to know the Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8-inch tablet:

Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8-inch
^ from: - This is Samsung's eight-inch tablet from the ever popular Galaxy line.

The Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8-inch tablet offers you some great power. Why an eight-inch tablet? Why not seven or even ten inches? Take it from me- when I first bought the Samsung Galaxy Player 3.6 followed by the Samsung Galaxy Player 4.2, I needed something more practical and more useful to serve as my gateway to cyberspace outside of my PC. Something more practical means I had to pick up a tablet. When I had my Hisense Sero 7 Pro (a 7-inch tablet), I had that practical tablet. When the Wi-Fi went out on it, I needed to get something to replace it. An eight-inch tablet is larger than a regular seven-inch tablet, but not as massive as a ten-inch tablet. So a slightly-larger tablet would do the trick for me while still providing my daily online consumption needs.

So enter the Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8-inch tablet. It is a slightly larger tablet than your basic seven-inch tablet. It is big, but doesn't feel overwhelmingly big. It is still a tablet you can use for taking in online media or handling certain PC tasks on the go. Or just have it around to utilize a Wi-Fi network. The Galaxy Tab A 8-inch utilizes Wi-Fi, but the Galaxy Tab E 8-inch can take on connectivity from mobile carriers. To my knowledge, this tablet comes in three colors: White, Smoky Titanium, and Smoky Blue. The one I have for this review is in Smoky Titanium.

(Some) Specifications.

Unlike the previous tablet I had, this tablet is packing 16GB of storage unlike the Tab E Lite 7-inch's 8GB of storage. It also packs Android "Marshmallow." It is the first Android "Marshmallow" device I've ever used and my first time using "Marshmallow." It is also the first Android device I owned offering more than 8GB of internal storage. There is a 2 megapixel front-facing camera and a 5 megapixel rear camera. The tablet communicates only using Wi-Fi. However, and if you prefer this eight-inch tablet, you can get versions of the Galaxy Tab E 8-inch tablet with various carriers such as Verizon, Sprint, AT&T, T-Mobile, and more. A 4.2K mAh, non-removable, rechargeable battery powers this tablet. A 1.2GHz Quad Core processor powers the Galaxy Tab A 8-inch carrying 1.5GB LPDDR3 RAM. This tablet is capable of playing 1080p video with its 1024x768 resolution. It runs the full Android suite with Touchwiz. Up to a 128GB microSD card can be inserted into this device for loads more storage than the stock 16GB this device packs.

Initial Thoughts.

This tablet offers a very nice displaying experience. You can do split screen action with this tablet. You can set up half of the screen for one program, but then use another program to use. You can then multitask with this tablet nicely. The tablet isn't huge, but is a bit more troublesome than with the 7-inch Galaxy Tab E Lite I had previously. It's not that bad, though. You can still nicely hold the tablet in one hand while using your other hand to tap the screen and stuff or to use a stylus (like I do). I haven't tested the cameras, but I did play a bit trying to see how to use the front-facing camera. I could easily see myself doing video chats or video calls with this device. There is no flash with the cameras, so you're going to need a good amount of light to look fairly decent or to take decent photos. Otherwise, that's why you use a more capable smartphone or a camera for your pictures.

When you buy this device, you can get yourself some deals and some perks. For example, you can get a free eBook each month for up to one year using Kindle for Samsung when you buy this tablet. You will need to set up a Samsung account to be able to take advantage of these offers.

Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8-Inch: Final Thoughts

Samsung did great delivering a tablet that slots in between a portable 7-inch and a more than capable 10-inch. For merely the most basic of mobile device usage, this tablet will set you well. I admit I do miss some of the nice features of the Galaxy Tab E Lite when I sold it, notably the charming water ripple effect when you swipe to unlock. This is still a tablet good for mobile media consumption. You won't get anything other than Wi-Fi with the Galaxy Tab A, but you can get the Galaxy Tab E 8-inch if you want connectivity from mobile carriers. I actually didn't want to get the Galaxy Tab 8-Inch initially because it was out of my budget. With a little financial help (thanks, mom!), I got it and actually don't really regret getting this over the Galaxy Tab A 7-inch I originally wanted to get. I still wouldn't mind getting that Galaxy Tab A 7-inch to be honest. The Galaxy Tab A 8-inch is a more than suitable replacement for my Hisense Sero 7 Pro.

I didn't get into things like gaming or anything with the Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8-inch because I don't consider myself a mobile gamer. However, you can still pretty much be able to play a lot of casual mobile games with this tablet. So play your Candy Crush or whatever with this tablet proudly.

The Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8-inch retails for about $199 USD. If my review interested you, here is the tablet I reviewed, available on Amazon:

This post was about the Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8-inch. I tried to offer some resources to the Galaxy Tab E 8-inch in case you may be interested, but was unable to find any resources.

As much technology as I review and feature, it would be great if I could actually be able to either purchase more products or perhaps get certain quality material for free to expand the range of topics in my main blog. People don't get these kinds of breaks unless people legitimately see your blog as something useful and if people actually value your work enough to want to sponsor you or offer you things. I sure want to be seen as some sort of elite or some sort of quality blogger enough to get really good stuff. Money and talent aside, I care about one thing- providing quality material for the blogosphere. You being here and reading this makes me happy. Maybe I can continue to keep you interested. Subscribe and Follow my work if you enjoy it. And as always... thank you for reading! Take care and be well.

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