All posts by mateob26

Video games for spring 2019

This spring is sort of boring when it comes to most video games. Because there are not a lot of big holidays around the springtime, developers don’t always put out the big and interesting games. Plus, many of the “new games” aren’t actually new but are old games being ported to the new systems. Some of these games include: Resident Evil 1 and 4, Assassin’s Creed III, and Final Fantasy X/X-2 HD Remaster. But, there are some new games coming out, and here are a few of the most interesting.

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Mortal Kombat 11

The Mortal Kombat series has been a long running series of fighting games. They’re known for their very bloody fights that occur in the game. And because of this, most of the games are rated M. Mortal Kombat 11 was developed by Netherrealm Studios, and published by Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. The game is coming out for Nintendo Switch, Playstation 4, Xbox One, and Microsoft Windows. The current release date is set for April 23, 2019.

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Super Dragon Ball Heroes: World Mission

The Dragon Ball Heroes franchise up to this point has exclusively been in Japan. This is the first to be localized to the rest of the world. It is an action card game that creates what if characters and situations that aren’t originally used in the Dragon Ball manga or anime. So far, it is only being released on Nintendo Switch and Microsoft Windows, and is developed by Bandai Namco. It has recently been released on April 5, 2019.

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Super Meat Boy Forever

Originally, this game was made for iOS but was changed to an actual sequel to the original Super Meat Boy game. Super Meat Boy is a single player platforming game that is known for how difficult of a game it can be. The new game will now have new controls and randomly generated levels based upon the players skills in the game. The game is being developed by Team Meat, for iOS, Android, Linux, Microsoft Windows, Xbox One, Playstation 4, and the Nintendo Switch. It is set to release on the 29th of April, 2019.

Black holes

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Black holes are not just holes floating through space. Black holes are an area with massive amounts of matter squished in tiny areas. Because of all that matter stuck in a tiny area, the gravity that it releases is so strong not even light can escape. And since it even consumes light, that means that you can’t even see them. Scientist observe black holes by the effect on the surrounding area.

Black holes were predicted by Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity. According to NASA’s website, he predicted, “which showed that when a massive star dies, it leaves behind a small, dense remnant core. If the core’s mass is more than about three times the mass of the Sun, the equations showed, the force of gravity overwhelms all other forces and produces a black hole.” The first black hole was discovered in 1971.

Black holes have many weird properties to them that make them very unique. As was stated earlier, they are invisible, and they also take in all things around and tear them down to their subatomic level. According to a post on NASA’s Universe Forum, black holes also seem to slow down time around them. They are also predicted to release radiation; this radiation is known as Hawking radiation named after Stephen Hawking. Black holes leave this radiation theoretically until they completely evaporate.

Black holes are created when a large star dies. A star dies when it runs out of fuel for nuclear burning, and because of this the star collapses on itself causing a supernova.

After we are left with either a neutron star or a black hole. In order to get a black hole the core needs to be at least 3 times the mass of our sun, thus meaning if our sun went through this process it still wouldn’t make a black hole.

There are 4 main types of black holes which are: supermassive black holes, intermediate mass black hole, stellar black hole, and a micro black hole. The difference between all of these is their solar masses which can range from 5 solar masses all the way to an immeasurable amounts of mass. There is one other type of black hole, which is the most common one, which is characterized by its rotation, which is known as a Kerr black hole.

Why are battle royale games popular?

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Battle royale games have gained a lot of popularity in the past couple of years. Games such as Fortnite and Pubg have been some of the most played games in the past year. But why are battle royale games so popular?

Battle royale style games are pretty recent. The first iteration, that people consider battle royale, is the “Hunger Games” mini game in Minecraft servers, which was styled after the movie and book series The Hunger Games.

Today, according to, battle royale games have 6 defining characteristics:

  • giant maps for the player to explore
  • that you start of with nothing
  • caches and chests from which you get items from
  • a storm or barrier that forces players to get closer together
  • the last player or group standing wins the game
  • something that makes the specific battle royale game unique (or every game would be extremely similar)

Which brings me to the first point on why they are popular, which is their aspect of being unique. Games such as Fortnite are widely played because they are unique. In Fortnites’ case, it’s building system is what makes it unique, and so fun to play, because you don’t have to sit in specific areas for cover, you can build your own.

But uniqueness is not the only reason battle royale games are popular. They are also popular because its system is very easy to apply to many games. Like how recently, they released a game called Tetris 99 which uses an old and very popular popular game, Tetris, and then they made it so you had to play against 98 other people, effectively making a battle royale Tetris game.

But, not only that, battle royale games are also super popular today because many of the biggest battle royale games are free. Games like Fortnite and Apex Legends can now be played by pretty much anyone because people aren’t blocked by a hefty price for the game. So, everyone can try them, and why wouldn’t you, it’s free.

Where do people originate from

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Humans, or by their scientific name homo sapiens, belong to a group called hominids. Creatures in part of the hominids group, are the earliest known human like creatures. A trait that is commonly shared among hominids is the ability to walk on two legs or bipedalism. According to, it’s believed that hominids started to separate from other primates between 2.5 and 4 million years ago, around eastern and southern Africa.

There are many theories to why the early hominids begun to evolve. One theory was that with the expansion of the savannah, it slowly forced their homes in the forest to shrink. Because of this, it may be one of the reasons we started to rely on walking upright, on the ground, rather than continuing to climb trees.

As hominids continued to evolve, they gained more unique traits and characteristics. One of these characteristics was that their brain capacity was increasing, and then a species of hominid, homo habilis, began using tools around 2.3 million years ago.

Then, around 1 million years ago, some species of hominids, such as homo erectus, began leaving Africa and moving towards Europe and Asia. And when they arrived, they began making important advances like being able to use fire.

The first modern humans happened around 200,000 and 300,000 years ago. And the ability to use language happened around 50,000 year ago.

Later, between 70,000 and 100,000 years ago, modern humans began leaving Africa to ocupate Europe and Asia. The first humans reached Australia by around 35,000 and 65,000 years ago.

According to scientists, during the Pleistocene Ice Age, a land bridge was created, connecting Asia and North America around 13,000 years ago. It is believed that people came to America from Asia by this land bridge.

Why are Ancient Greek concepts and stories still used today

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Have you ever wondered why we still use books, stories, and information which came from people from a very long time ago?

Well, Ancient Greece brought up important ideas to the rest of the world – things like important advancements in mathematics, and creating concepts like democracy. They also created things such as theater, which is recognized all around the world today. They created their own style of architecture and art.

And, they had a religion which was called Hellenism, or Greek mythology today. The gods represented different aspects of life and nature (Poseidon is the god of the sea and earthquakes). Greek mythology has also been used today in books and movies such as Percy Jackson.

Stories from Ancient Greece are used really commonly today, but why?

Well, the first reason is because they are entertaining. For some reason it is entertaining watching Ancient Greek gods messing with the people that believe in them.

But not only are they entertaining but they can also teach you many things. The story of Orpheus and Eurydice teaches people about patience and trust in other people. Stories such as the one of Hades and Persephone teaches you about love but also teaches you about one’s greed. Stories like the Odyssey teach you about how bad it was to defy the gods of Greece, and how people back then thought that things like that would really happen to them if the did defy them. And stories like the Iliad show you events that happened back then in their perspective.

Greek stories are used today in school because they teach you lessons, show important character personality traits, and show important parts of reading. Like how in the Odyssey it shows Odysseus and how he, as the main character, gets himself and the rest of his men constantly in trouble. And this is because of his fatal flaw, he is very arrogant and prideful, and that goes on to be his downfall.

The idea of a fatal flaw is an aspect of English literature that is still relevant today. The concept of the fatal flaw can still be seen all over today’s movies, TV, and media. 

Video games to be released before the end of 2018

The latest big video games released were Pokemon Lets Go Pikachu and Eevee on November 16, 2018. As it is soon to be the end of the year, there are few video games still to be released. So, here are the last few of them.

Darksiders lll

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Darksiders lll is a hack and slash action adventure style game. It is part of the Darksiders franchise which began in 2010, with the first Darksiders. It is being developed by Gunfire Games for Xbox One, Playstation 4, and Microsoft Windows. It is based upon Fury, one of the 4 horsemen of the apocalypse. Darksiders lll is set to be released on November 27, 2018.

Just Cause 4

This is an action adventure game and is a sequel to Just Cause 3, in the Just Cause franchise. The game is being developed by Avalanche Studios. The game is set in an open world environment following the protagonist Rico Rodriguez. Just Cause 4 is being released for Xbox One, Playstation 4, and Microsoft Windows. Just Cause 4 is set to be released December 4, 2018.

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Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

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The last big video game to be released this year, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, is the successor to Super Smash Bros. for the Wii U and 3DS. It is the 5th installment to the series that debuted on the N64. It is fighting game that does not rely specifically on trying to deplete an opponent’s health, instead it is based more upon doing more damage to knock an opponent off the edge. This game is the biggest of the franchise, including not only new fighters, but every fighter that has ever been in a Super Smash Bros. game. The game includes mostly Nintendo characters but also includes some others like Sega’s Sonic, and Pac-Man. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is only being released on the Nintendo Switch, and is set to be released on December 7, 2018.


Does T.V. rot your brain?

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Most people, if they have ever looked at a T.V. for too long, have been told that it would rot their brain. But does it really rot it? Well, it turns out your brain isn’t going to rot like a fruit, but there is evidence of it being harmful to your brain when you are young.

According to an article on  watching T.V. at a young age, for prolonged amounts of time, can increase the chance of the child being more antisocial, obese and of having mental health problems. Also, “Previous studies have shown that for each additional hour of television watched in childhood, the odds of developing symptoms of depression increase by 8 percent and the odds of being convicted of a crime increase by 27 percent. And other findings suggest that for every two hours watched in one’s youth, the odds of developing type 2 diabetes increase by 20 percent.”

So, it does seem like watching too much T.V. can lead to some major problems later on in life, but in a recent study they tested pairs of siblings to see any genetic correlation between a person and T.V. The test showed that there seems to be a correlation between people’s genetics and T.V. In the article, they said, “Children with increased predisposition toward aggressive behavior may be more drawn to TV.”

“Similarly, those who are genetically inclined to depression or obesity may be more likely to spend their free time watching T.V. in the family room rather than shooting hoops on the basketball court.”

So, there’s evidence that the problems found in the original research would have happened anyway because that’s in their genetics.

The answer to the question of if T.V. rots your brain or not, seems to be that T.V. can have harmful effects on your brain if you watch it for too long at a young age, but also whatever might happen to you because of watching T.V. might happen to you anyway.

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History of home video game consoles

Video games started to slowly get more popular in the mid, and end of, the 1900’s. But originally they were played on computers, until 1972, when the world was introduced to the Odyssey, by Magnavox, the first home console video game system. Slowly though, the hype for the system died because of how basic it was.

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The next big video game console to be released was the Atari 2600, from Atari, which began the second generation of video game consoles.

But then, in 1983, due to the competition against computers, and low quality over hyped games, the video game console market crashed in America leading to the bankruptcy of many video game companies.

The video game market in America recovered with the release of the Nintendo entertainment system (NES), and the robotic operating buddy (R.O.B). To get consumers to buy the original NES, it was marketed as a toy with the inclusion of R.O.B.

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With the release of the NES, they also released many important video game franchises such as Super Mario (originally from the Donkey Kong arcade game), and Legend of Zelda just to name a few.

Then, in 1989, Sega released the Genesis to compete with Nintendo after their last console, the Sega Master System, couldn’t compete with the NES. With the Genesis being a stronger system (being 16 bit over the NES being 8 bit), having good marketing, and releasing the game Sonic the Hedgehog, Nintendo and Sega began the first console war.

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With the release of violent video game series such as Street Fighter, and Mortal Kombat Sega created the entertainment software rating board (ESRB) rating system which is still used today. Nintendo then released the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES). But the Genesis, having been released before, and for other reasons, had jump started ahead of the SNES.

With further advancements with technology the video game market was hit with the first true 3D games with the 5th generation of consoles. It began with Sega releasing its 32 bit console the Sega Saturn. It was the first video game console to use CDs instead of cartridges.

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Then there was the PlayStation which was the first console that Sony had made. It was created after a failed attempt of an add on to a Nintendo console for discs. It was cheaper than the Saturn and was the most popular console for the fifth generation.

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The last console for the 5th generation was the Nintendo 64, which hinted in its name that it was a 64 bit console. It still used cartridges, which were technologically inferior to CDs, but even so, it still had many critically acclaimed games. It wasn’t good enough to beat the PlayStation though.

During the sixth generation there were 4 big major consoles released. The PlayStation 2, the Xbox, the Nintendo Gamecube, and the Sega Dreamcast. The PlayStation 2, which was the first video game console to use dvds for games, still was on top. It was so popular it still is the best selling video game console of all time.

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The Xbox, which came from Microsoft, had some good success starting a fan base that would widely expand itself to very large numbers today. However, originally the first Xbox couldn’t compete with the PlayStation 2.

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The Dreamcast was Sega’s last attempt at a console before becoming a third party video game creator. Sega attempted things ahead of its time, such as online gaming, which did very poorly when first introduced.

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The Nintendo Gamecube was released in 2001. Though it released games loved by fans today, it couldn’t catch as much hype as its predecessors. So, the Gamecube couldn’t compete with the PlayStation 2 either.

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The seventh generation of consoles brought with it the Nintendo Wii, Xbox 360, and the PlayStation 3. The PlayStation 3, which was able to read Blu-Ray discs, had finally found competition with the other consoles.

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The Xbox 360, had similar technical capabilities compared to the PlayStation 3. The Xbox 360 also had good internet capability, which was a score for Microsoft because they were finally catching up with Sony.

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The Nintendo Wii, being the most successful console of this generation, outsold the PlayStation and the Xbox by a pretty good amount. With its innovation with the motion controlled controllers, it appealed to a non hardcore, and family friendly, demographic. It also had video games more active then ever before

The current generation of consoles, the eighth, began with the Wii U, a successor to the Wii. From bad marketing and many other reasons the Wii U was a commercial failure.

It was followed by the PlayStation 4, and the Xbox One. Both have been very successful in their own rights, and have been re-released as the Xbox One X and the PlayStation 4 Pro to support 4K resolution gameplay.

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Nintendo’s latest console, the Switch, has been one of the most innovative thus far. Being a handheld and home console hybrid it also features a controller similar to the Wii controllers, and has been very successful due to its innovativeness. Its first party support, with multiple critically acclaimed games has also helped make it popular.

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Why is social media addictive?

By: Mateo Barrera

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In recent years, social media has become increasingly more popular, with almost everyone having access to an electronic device. Because of almost everyone having an electronic, it’s really easy to get social media apps such as Instagram and Facebook because they are free.

Social media is an access point for people to get recognition from people that they know and people that they haven’t even met. But not only that, it also gives people opportunities to share their opinions to other people. Due to this, people have created a sort of addictive habit to go onto social media constantly to check others’ posts and their own.

 According to an article on The Huffington Post, the psychological reasoning behind the addiction is because  “Social media engagement has been found to trigger three key networks in the brain – the ‘mentalizing network’, the ‘the self-referential cognition network’ and the ‘reward network.’”

The use of the mentalizing network is important because one of the sections of your brain that is being used in the mentalizing network, the dorsomedial prefrontal cortex, is used to basically help us judge how people are, through looking at them, and “has been the reason we exist today.” So, the use of this section of your brain is super important.

The self referencing section of your brain is used because on social media a lot of the time you are talking about yourself, so it is clear to see why it is used.

The reward network of your brain is triggered during the use of social media because the people who post on the platforms get a sense of reward from their friends and other people liking the things that they have posted. This feeling is a lot stronger when you are a teenager because one of the sections of your brain connected with the reward system, the nucleus accumbens area, is connected to “exaggerated” feelings of pain and pleasure. And this is why it is a lot more common for teenagers to use social media than adults, or at least feel more feelings towards the things that they post.


Why are books usually better than their movie

By: Mateo Barrera

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The movie version of a book usually is made after the book has had major success. This has happened to many books including the Harry Potter series, the Percy Jackson series, and the Maze Runner series to name a few.  All of these movies have been super successful, take Harry Potter for example, which grossed 7.7 billion dollars in 2012, after The Deathly Hallows Part 2 came out. However, a lot of movie versions of books don’t quite meet the expectations of the people who read the book. Here are some of the reasons that cause that.

The characters and their actors

One of the major parts of books is giving the basic description of a character, but also letting readers imagine how the characters look. However, an actor can’t always look exactly like the character in the book. For this reason readers will often believe that the movie will be an inaccurate representation of their favorite characters.

They change the original story

In some movies they change the original story to something else, add new things that never happened in the book, or cut scenes from the original story. This can either be good or bad, but in some cases it is bad. It’s bad because sometimes people want to see their favorite scenes from a book put onto the big screen, but then it turns out it has been cut out of the movie entirely. Sometimes when they add or cut things it creates plot holes in the story.

Characters thoughts

Probably the biggest reason for a book being better is the inclusion of a character’s thoughts. Books include thoughts to make characters’ actions make more sense, add extra detail to a character’s feelings or emotions, and also to make the story continue without just missing a bunch of important things. But in a movie, the inclusion of a character’s thoughts never really happens because it can ruin the pace of a movie and the mood, and make a movie really dull and boring. Because of this, you can really only tell a character’s emotions and feelings from their facial expressions, body language, and how they speak. This makes it hard to tell how a character is truly feeling.

All of these reasons usually end up making the original book better than their movie counterparts.