Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Definitive Guide to Turning Your Wii Into a DVD/MP3 player (with photo storage capabilities).

So, you bitch aloud because you can't stick a Redbox DVD into your Wii. Why the hell did Nintendo make something that can read thin, plastic/metal, circular discs... but ONLY in the form of games? Those games are written on DVDs... what gives, dudes?! Why the hell can't I play CDs and DVDs on my Wii?!

The answer is: you CAN, it's just that Nintendo doesn't want you to. Seriously. They *could* include an update, or a channel, that would give your Wii DVD/CD player capabilities, without taking away any game-play functionality... buuuut they don't. They'd have to fork over $20 per Wii to The DVD Consortium (proprietary usage of "DVD" technology, and all). So I'm going to teach you how to do this for yourself. It's *not* hard.

And now, the steps! - DO NOT BE AFRAID OF THE WORDINESS OF THE STEPS, I just tried to make everything as ironclad and as clear as possible, without delving into any of the technicalities or using any shortcut lingo:

This is an SD card. There are many like it, but this one is mine.

0. Get an SD card, and a computer that you can stick the SD card into. Full size (like the one pictured above), or if you need to use a Micro-SD card, have an adapter [if you try using an SD card that doesn't work, it's probably the rare unicorn SD card that isn't FAT32 formatted, so you'll need to fix that, either by formatting, if you know how, or using a different card - but the chances of that happening are near-null]. Make sure your SD card's little switch is NOT set to LOCK for this entire process. Make sure your Wii is fully updated (to 4.3U). Do these things BEFORE you start the process.

The screen where you can find your MAC address.

1. Get your Wii's MAC address. Turn on your Wii. From the channel screen, press the button on the bottom left. It's marked "Wii." Then there will be two buttons, and the one on the right, "Wii Settings" is what you're looking for. From that screen, page over to the right with the arrow, which will bring you to the option "Internet" which is the third down from the top. From there, you'll select "console settings" and that will show you your MAC address. If you don't understand written instructions well, here's a video for reference, that makes it easy for you visual learners: http://youtu.be/UF6PjCU37xI

2. Put the SD card into your computer's card reader. Go to http://please.hackmii.com/. Select 4.3U, enter your MAC address, keep Bundle the HackMii installer option checked, and try... with all your might... to enter the CAPTCHA correctly (which is my personal Achilles heel). The red wire/blue wire thing is just flair, you can choose either option. I pick RED, myself. It's a cuter color. That letterbomb will give you a .zip file, which you should open. Once inside, put the PRIVATE folder and boot.elf onto your SD card (drag and drop). Take the SD card over to your turned-off Wii and put it in. Turn on your Wii. If you need a better set of steps, here's a Youtube video: http://youtu.be/mEB4nz1gsbE

You've got mail! And it's much better than AOL spam.
3. Go to your Wii messages. Scroll back and forth if you don't see anything, it may take a second to load. As soon as you click on the letterbomb, your Wii screen will turn black and show a bunch of text. This is good!

This will happen after you select the LetterBomb in your Wii's messages.
4. Even though you can't see the Wii hand, your Wiimote still works. Use it! Click on Continue - which is already selected. The next screen, scroll up to The Homebrew Channel, click on it. That will install the Homebrew Channel. MOST INTEGRAL PART OF ALL YOUR JOY THAT FOLLOWS. It will dump you back at the same screen. Click "exit." Homebrew will load immediately. You'll see bubbles and cute shit, but nothing else... yet. TURN OFF YOUR WII, take the SD card out, and put it back into your computer.

5. Open the following link, after your SD card is in the computer: http://www.codemii.com/wiihomebrew/homebrew_browser_v0.3.9e.zip - Unzip that file! Then, make a folder on your SD card called "Apps" - put the contents of the zip file into your Apps folder on the SD card. Take the SD card out of your computer, put it back into the Wii, and turn the Wii on.

The loading screen of Homebrew.
6. Go to the Homebrew channel (which should have installed into your first empty channel slot), and click on it. You'll have the option of using the Homebrew browser, which you didn't last time. Use it! Click Load, and you'll get the above screen. Let it do its stuff for a while and eventually it should show you this:

This is basically an app store, but everything's free!
7. Navigate over to the Media tab, and somewhere near the top of the list should be WiiMC. This is the Wii Media Center, which is currently the best (but definitely not the only) Wii app that will play all your media, including DVDs! After you install it, you can exit the Homebrew Browser and access it from the Homebrew Channel. Note: this channel will not be available on your main Wii channel screen, only through the Homebrew Channel! Now you can play DVDs, CDs, Youtube Videos (even better than the native Wii Youtube App!)... and life is beautiful. ;)

I listed a few links below so you can see the ridiculously plentiful opportunities to make your Wii into an entire media center, with all kinds of awesome. If you know about Emulators, this will run Roms for basically every obsolete console. SOOO MANY POSSIBILITIES.

Best Homebrew Applications. WATCH IT.
GREAT list of Homebrew Apps you may like!

Monday, April 22, 2013

Spanked kids are RESPECTFUL, OBEDIENT kids - Or, A Ridiculous Romanticization of the "Old School" Version of Parenting.

The caveat of physically disciplining children: if this style of discipline worked, the children would only misbehave ONCE, get spanked, and never do it again (same goes for the prison experience). If your argument is that there are many TYPES of misbehavior that need to be corrected, you're advocating hitting a child for something THEY didn't know was wrong, otherwise, if they did, the fact that they were ever hit would serve as incentive that they should never misbehave again. Nothing makes a child perfect, and using force is just fun for a sadistic parent, a shortcut to thinking, or an automated response that perpetuates the cycle of abuse the hitter was in as a child. Respect does NOT mean FEAR, otherwise we'd respect bullies, serial killers, and terrorists. Respect does not mean automatically submitting to authority, otherwise we'd respect every politician, lawmaker, and cop. We would never break a law.

Respect "is a positive feeling of esteem or deference for a person or other entity (such as a nation or a religion), and also specific actions and conduct representative of that esteem. Respect can be a specific feeling of regard for the actual qualities of the one respected (e.g., 'I have great respect for her judgment'). It can also be conduct in accord with a specific ethic of respect." So, respect is reverence, consideration, and trust. Children should not respect, revere, or trust a parent who intentionally injures them - or they're being set up to expect that in adulthood. Which, if you think about it, is pretty fucked up.

I am not advocating letting a kid do whatever they want. Dahlia doesn't get to do whatever she wants, and she's also not abused. It's possible, so don't tell me it isn't.

So fuck this "pro-old-school-parenting" nonsense that's going around on Facebook. Unless you're going to laud chopping off limbs to fight crime, don't look back nostalgically as a slave fondly recalling their chains. Break free and end the cycle of abuse. And use your BRAIN when you say ugly shit like "there's a difference between hitting and abuse" because, uhp, hitting IS abuse. If you walked up to a stranger and smacked their ass, you'd get arrested. Treat kids better than strangers, not WORSE, and we'll have a better, more peaceful, more confident, more secure world.