click links in text for more info
SUMMARY / RELATED TOPICS

Warcraft: Orcs & Humans

Warcraft: Orcs & Humans is a real-time strategy game developed and published by Blizzard Entertainment, published by Interplay Productions in Europe. It was released for MS-DOS in North America on 23 November 1994, for Mac OS in early 1996; the MS-DOS version was re-released by Sold-Out Software in 2002. Although Warcraft: Orcs & Humans is not the first RTS game to have offered multiplayer gameplay, it persuaded a wider audience that multiplayer capabilities were essential for future RTS games; the game introduced innovations in its mission design and gameplay elements, which were adopted by other RTS developers. Warcraft games emphasize skillful management of small forces, they maintain characters and storylines within a cohesive fictional universe. Sales were high, reviewers were impressed, the game won three awards and was a finalist for three others; the game's sequel, Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness, became the main rival to Command & Conquer series by Westwood Studios. This competition fostered an "RTS boom" in the mid– to late 1990s.

The game and its plot were adapted as the 2016 film Warcraft. Warcraft: Orcs & Humans is a real-time strategy game; the player takes the role of the invading Orcs. In the single player campaign mode the player works through a series of missions, the objective of which varies, but involves building a small town, harvesting resources, building an army and leading it to victory. In multiplayer games, the objective is always to destroy the enemy players' forces; some scenarios are complicated by the presence of wild monsters, but sometimes these monsters can be used as troops. The game plays in a medieval setting with fantasy elements. Both sides have melee units and ranged units, spellcasters. Gameplay of Warcraft: Orcs & Humans expands the Dune II "build base, build army, destroy enemy" paradigm to include other modes of game play; these include several new mission types, such as conquering rebels of the player's race and rebuilding besieged towns, rescuing friendly forces from an enemy camp and destroying the main enemy base, limited-forces missions, in which neither side can make further units, making efficient use of one's platoon is a key strategy element.

In one mission, the player has to kill the Orc chief's daughter. The game allows two players to compete in multiplayer contests by dialup modem or local networks, enables gamers with the MS-DOS and Macintosh version to play each other. Multiplayer and AI skirmishes that are not part of campaigns were supported by a random map generator; the game allowed spawn installations to be made. Warcraft requires players to collect resources, to produce buildings and units in order to defeat an opponent in combat. Non-combatant builders deliver the resources to the Town Center from mines, from which gold is dug, forests, where wood is chopped; as both are limited resources which become exhausted during the game, players must collect them efficiently, retain forests as defensive walls in the early game when combat forces are small. The lower-level buildings for Humans and Orcs have different sprites; the Town Hall produces units that collect resources and construct buildings. Each Farm provides food for up to four units, additional units cannot be produced until enough Farms are built.

The Barracks produces all non-magical combat units, including melee, ranged and siege units. However all except the most basic need assistance from other buildings, some of which can upgrade units; each side can construct two types of magical buildings, each of which produces one type of spellcaster and researches more advanced spells for that type. These advanced buildings can be constructed only with assistance from other buildings; the Human Cleric and Orc Necrolyte can both defend themselves by magic and see distant parts of the territory for short periods. The Cleric's other spells are protective, healing the injured and making troops invisible, while the Necrolyte raises skeletons as troops and can make other units temporarily invulnerable, at the cost of damaging them when the spell dissipates; the Human Conjurer and Orc Warlock have energy blasts, wider-range destruction spells and the ability to summon small, venomous monsters. The Conjurer can summon a water elemental; the main screen has three areas: the largest, to the right, is the part of the territory on which the player is operating.

The status details include a building's or unit's health, including its progress if being constructed, any upgrades the object has completed. The Menu control, at the bottom on the left, provides access to save game, load game and other menu functions. Most of the main map and minimap are blacked out, but the visible area expands as the player's units explore the map; the mini-map shows a summary of the whole territory, with green dots for the player's buildings and units and red dots for enemy ones. The player can click in the minimap to scroll the main map around the territory. All functions can be invoked by the mouse. Keys can invoke the game setup, some of the menu options and some gameplay functions including scrolling and pausing the game. Players can select single units by clicking, groups of up to four by shift-clicking or bandboxing. To move units, players can shift the mouse to select units on the main map, move to the unit menu to select an action, back to the main map or minimap to specify the target a

Selenic acid

Selenic acid is the inorganic compound with the formula H2SeO4. It is an oxoacid of selenium, its structure is more described as 2SeO2, it is a colorless compound. Although it has few uses, its derivative sodium selenate is used in the production of glass and animal feeds; the molecule is tetrahedral. The a Se–O bond length is 161 pm. In the solid state, it crystallizes in an orthorhombic structure, it is prepared by oxidising selenium compounds in lower oxidation states. One method involves the oxidation of selenium dioxide with hydrogen peroxide: SeO2 + H2O2 → H2SeO4Even 3% H2O2 is effective, when the mixture of powdered SeO2 in 3% H2O2 is stirred under Ultraviolet type C irradiation. Unlike the production sulfuric acid by hydration of sulfur trioxide, the hydration of selenium trioxide is an impractical method. Instead, selenic acid may be prepared by the oxidation of selenous acid with halogens, such as chlorine or bromine, or with potassium permanganate. However, using chlorine or bromine as the oxidising agent produces hydrochloric or hydrobromic acid as a side-product, which needs to be removed from the solution since they can reduce the selenic acid to selenous acid.

Another method of preparing selenic acid is by the oxidation of elemental selenium in a water suspension by chlorine: Se + 4 H2O + 3 Cl2 → H2SeO4 + 6 HClTo obtain the anhydrous acid as a crystalline solid, the resulting solution is evaporated at temperatures below 140 °C in a vacuum. Like sulfuric acid, selenic acid is a strong acid, hygroscopic and soluble in water. Concentrated solutions are viscous. Crystalline mono- and di-hydrates are known; the monohydrate melts at 26°C, the dihydrate melts at −51.7°C. Selenic acid is a stronger oxidiser than sulfuric acid, capable of liberating chlorine from chloride ions, being reduced to selenous acid in the process: H2SeO4 + 2 H+ + 2 Cl− → H2SeO3 + H2O + Cl2It decomposes above 200 °C, liberating oxygen gas and being reduced to selenous acid: 2 H2SeO4 → 2 H2SeO3 + O2Selenic acid reacts with barium salts to precipitate BaSeO4, analogous to the sulfate. In general, selenate salts are more soluble. Many selenate salts have the same crystal structure as the corresponding sulfate salts.

Treatment with fluorosulfuric acid gives selenoyl fluoride H2SeO4 + 2 HO3SF → SeO2F2 + 2 H2SO4Hot, concentrated selenic acid reacts with gold, forming a reddish-yellow solution of gold selenate: 2 Au + 6 H2SeO4 → Au23 + 3 H2SeO3 + 3 H2O Selenic acid is used as a specialized oxidizing agent

Wizard (card game)

Wizard is a trick-taking card game for three to six players designed by Ken Fisher of Toronto, Ontario in 1984. The game was first printed commercially in June 1986. A Wizard deck consists of 60 cards: a regular set of 4 Wizards and 4 Jesters; the Jesters have the lowest value the one up to thirteen, with Wizards highest in value. The game is licensed in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom and Japan, it bears many resemblances to it. The objective of the game is to bid on the number of tricks that a player will take in the subsequent round of play. Points are subtracted for an incorrect bid; the player with most points after all rounds have been played is the winner. The game is played in a number of rounds from 10 to 20, depending on the number of players and each round consists of three stages: Dealing and Playing. In the first round every player gets one card. In the subsequent rounds the number of cards is increased by one; that means that three players play 20 rounds, four players 15 rounds, five players 12 rounds and six players 10 rounds.

The top card of the remaining cards is turned over to determine the trump suit. If there are no cards left or a jester is turned, there is no trump suit, only the wizards are trump. If a wizard is turned,the dealer picks a trump suit. After looking at their cards, starting with the player to the dealer's left, each player states how many tricks he believes he will take, from zero to the number of cards dealt; this is recorded on a score pad. The player to the left of the dealer plays a card, the others follow clockwise. If a card other than a wizard or jester is played, the players have to follow suit, but it is possible to play a jester or wizard although the player has the desired suit; the Wizard beats all the first one in a trick beats all others. The jester is beaten by all others, but if all cards in a trick are jesters the first one beats the others. If a jester is played as the first card the first suit card decides. If a wizard is played as the first card every player is free to play what they want regardless of the others.

If the first card is a Jester and the second a Wizard the Wizard rule takes precedence and players are not required to follow suit. At the end of each round, each player is given a score based on his performance. For predicting the number of tricks taken a player receives 20 points plus 10 points for each trick taken. For predicting the number of tricks taken incorrectly, a player loses 10 points for each trick over or under; the German version of Wizard has a different design, with a fantasy-themed character on each card. Each character has a title such as die Priesterin printed at the top of the card. There are 2 female versions of each character; the German decks contain four non-standard suits with values from 1 to 13, four Z cards labelled either der Zauberer or die Zauberin, four N cards labelled der Narr or die Närrin. The German deck is distributed in the United States as "Fantasy Wizard", with an English box and rules; the cards are identical to the German ones, including the German abbreviations for Zauberer/Zauberin and Narr/Närrin.

The Medieval deck of cards has a themed character on each card. The characters are: Hermit, Farmer, Blacksmith, Bard, Bishop, Queen, Dragon; the cards are color-coded: Hearts, Clubs, Jesters, Wizards. Regular tournaments are held online. World Championships began in 2010; each nation is invited to send a maximum of two representatives to the annual event. World Championship locations have included: 2010: Frankfurt, Germany. Champion Germany 2011: Budapest, Hungary. Champion Austria 2012: Vienna, Austria. Champion Switzerland 2013: Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Champion Germany 2014: Athens, Greece. Champion Hungary 2015: Prague, Czech Republic. Champion Austria 2016: Budapest, Hungary. Champion Switzerland 2017: Riga, Latvia. Champion Austria 2018: Warsaw, Poland. Champion Greece 2019: Antwerp, Belgium. Champion Greece Since there are no options for which card to play when a player is only holding one card, there is a statistically correct bid for any given card; this only applies if a player has the lead, thus no information from other bids.

Since a correct bid of 1 yields 30 points, a correct bid of 0 only yields 20, a bid of 1 over time yields more points as long as the player has at least a 42.86% chance of winning the trick. The known cards are only a player's own card and the turn up, so with 58 unknowns, the odds that a hand will win in a three player game are calculated by the odds that both of the other hands lose to that player; that is, *, x=# of cards the player can beat. The calculation is similar for more players. Solving for x to yield 0.4286 or greater gives the minimum number of cards a player needs to be ahead of to justify a bid of 1. With the lead: In a 3-person game, x=39, bid 1 with an offsuit Jack or stronger. In a 4-person game, x=44, bid 1 with the 3 of trump or stronger. In a 5-person game, x=49, bid 1 with the 9 of trump or better, In a 6-person game, x=50, bid 1 with the 10 of trump or better (9 if turn-up is 10 or h

VueScan

VueScan is a computer program for image scanning of photographs, including negatives. It supports optical character recognition of text documents.. The software can be downloaded and used free of charge, but adds a watermark on scans until a license is purchased. VueScan is intended to work with a large number of image scanners, excluding specialised professional scanners such as drum scanners, on many computer operating systems if drivers for the scanner are not available for the OS; these scanners are supplied with device drivers and software to operate them, included in their price. A 2014 review considered that the reasons to purchase VueScan are to allow older scanners not supported by drivers for newer operating systems to be used in more up-to-date systems, for better scanning and processing of photographs than is afforded by manufacturers' software; the review did not report any advantages to Vuescan's processing of documents compared to other software. When compared to SilverFast, a similar program, the reviewer considered the two programs to be comparable, with support for some specific scanners better in one or the other.

Vuescan supports more scanners, with a single purchase giving access to the full range of both film and flatbed scanners, costs less. The Vuescan program can be used with its own drivers, or with drivers supplied by the scanner manufacturer, if supported by the operating system. Vuescan drivers can be used without the Vuescan program by applications software that supports scanning directly, such as Adobe Photoshop, again enabling the use of scanners without current manufacturers' drivers. VueScan enables the user to fine-tune the scanning parameters; the program uses its own independent method to interface with scanner hardware, can support many older scanners under computer operating systems for which drivers are not available, allowing old scanners to be used with newer platforms that do not otherwise support them. VueScan works with more than 2,400 different supported scanners and digital cameras on Windows, 2,100 on Mac OS X and 1,900 on Linux. VueScan is supplied as one downloadable file for each operating system, which supports the full range of scanners.

Without the purchase of a license the program runs in functional demonstration mode, identical to Professional mode, except that watermarks are superimposed on saved and printed images. Purchase of a license removes the watermark, with a standard license providing updates for one year, a professional license with some additional features; as distributed VueScan supports optical character recognition of English documents. In September 2011, VueScan co-developer Ed Hamrick said that he was selling US$3 million per year of VueScan licenses. Image Capture — alternative scanner software bundled free with Mac OS X Scanner Access Now Easyopen-source scanner API for Unix, Windows, OS/2 The VueScan Bible: Everything You Need to Know for Perfect Scanning. Official website

South Texas Independent School District

South Texas Independent School District is a magnet school district headquartered in Mercedes, Texas. STISD operates magnet schools that draw students from three counties: Cameron and Willacy. STISD covers an area of 3,643 square miles; the only all-magnet school district in the state, STISD offers students an educational alternative. STISD schools provide hands-on training in various professional career fields; because it is a magnet school district, there is no cost for students to attend, school bus transportation is free of charge. STISD schools maintain an open enrollment policy, meaning any student can attend so long as he or she resides within the tri-county area. All schools are accredited by the Texas Education Agency and Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Over 95 percent of STISD graduates continue their education at major universities or technical colleges; the district was created in 1964 by the Texas legislature to provide education to disabled youth who were excluded from public education.

It was known as Rio Grande Rehabilitation District until 1973 and renamed South Texas Independent School District in 1974. STISD started as a residential school in Edinburg, named South Texas High School. To better accommodate the students of the lower Rio Grande Valley, STISD opened another school by the same name in Harlingen in 1967. In 1982, STISD moved the Harlingen school to a new campus in San Benito. Lawmakers extended STISD’s purpose in 1983 to encourage the operation of vocational magnet schools. Soon after, South Texas High School for Health Professions opened in Mercedes in 1984, it was followed by The Science Academy of South Texas in Mercedes, in 1989. In 1993, South Texas High School in Edinburg was redirected and reopened as The Teacher Academy of South Texas. In 2003, Teacher Academy added business and technology programs and the school was renamed South Texas Business, Education & Technology Academy; that same year, South Texas High School in San Benito was redirected and reopened as South Texas Academy of Medical Technology.

In 2008, the junior high from BETA opened as South Texas Preparatory Academy. In 2012, South Texas Academy of Medical Technology was renamed South Texas Academy for Medical Professions. In 2015, a second junior high school was opened as Rising Scholars Academy of South Texas on the San Benito campus; that same year, Medical Academy was moved to a new campus in Brownsville. In 2019, BETA increased its focus on its International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme and was renamed South Texas ISD World Scholars. Though the district’s mission has evolved since 1964, STISD continues to provide educational and occupational training to students with special needs through the Half-Day Career & Technology Program offered at STISD high schools. For the 2014-2015 school year, the district reported a total enrollment of 3,394. 82.14% were Hispanic 10.49% were Asian American 5.36% were White American 1.06% were African American 0.06% were Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander 0.03% were American Indian or Alaskan Native 52.39% were Female 47.61% were Male The Half-Day Career & Technology Program began in August 1996.

Through the program, students with special needs can take the majority of their academic classes at their home high schools and take career and technology classes at STISD high schools. The purpose of the Half-Day Career & Technology Program is to teach students in a real work environment so they gain a marketable edge in the workforce; the following high schools offer the following programs: Med High: Nursing Assistant Medical Academy: Culinary Arts, Patient Care Assistant Sci Tech: Automotive Technology, Welding Until 2012 a school district in Texas could receive one of four possible rankings from the Texas Education Agency: Exemplary, Academically Acceptable, Academically Unacceptable. Until 2017 a school district in Texas could receive one of three possible rankings from the Texas Education Agency: Met Standard, Met Alternative Standard, Improvement Required. In 2018 the Texas Education Agency released a new accountability scale. A school district in Texas can receive one of five possible ratings from the Texas Education Agency: A, B, C, D, F.

Historical district TEA accountability ratings 2019: A 2018: A 2017: Met Standard 2016: Met Standard 2015: Met Standard 2014: Met Standard 2013: Met Standard 2012: No state accountability ratings were assigned in 2012. 2011: Exemplary 2010: Exemplary 2009: Exemplary 2008: Recognized 2007: Recognized 2006: Recognized 2005: Recognized 2004: Recognized The purpose of the STISD Education Foundation is to raise and invest funds for the benefit of STISD students. South Texas Independent School District

Down the Road (Mac McAnally song)

"Down the Road" is a song written and recorded by American country music artist Mac McAnally. McAnally has charted with the song on two separate occasions; the first of these two versions was released as the second single from his 1990 album Simple Life, was a minor chart single for him that year. Eighteen years McAnally re-recorded the song as a duet with Kenny Chesney on Chesney's 2008 album Lucky Old Sun; this rendition is McAnally's highest charting country hit, having reached Number One in February 2009. "Down the Road" is a mid-tempo ballad. In it, the male narrator describes his childhood love interest — a girl who lives down the road from him; the narrator proposes to marry her, only to find out the expectations her parents have of him. In the second verse, the narrator is now an adult, his daughter has a love interest who lives down the road, he explains that he has the same expectations that the parents in the first verse had, but he will still let her go down the road. According to Country Weekly magazine, McAnally was inspired to write the song one Christmas morning after thinking about what his two daughters' lives would be like in the future.

Mac McAnally's original version is the second single from his 1990 album Simple Life, his only album for Warner Bros. Records, it peaked at No. 70 on the Hot Country Songs charts. McAnally released it on his 1994 album Knots. McAnally's rendition features a music video, directed by John Lloyd Miller, it features McAnally performing the song on a porch while playing electric guitar. In 2008, Kenny Chesney covered the song on his album Lucky Old Sun. Chesney's version features guest vocals from McAnally, who sings chorus. Unlike McAnally's original, accompanied by electric guitar, Chesney's rendition is more acoustic in nature, featuring only accompaniment from two steel-string acoustic guitars and congas. According to McAnally, the song "was not supposed to be a duet", but he agreed to record it as a duet on Chesney's album. Chesney and McAnally were nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Country Collaboration with Vocals on December 2, 2009; the Chesney and McAnally duet version is set in cut time in the key of E major.

It has a moderate tempo and a main chord pattern of E-B-A-B. Chesney and McAnally's vocals range from B3-C♯5. Chesney's rendition received a "thumbs-up" rating from The 9513. Critic Jim Malec said that the song "provid him a comfortable pocket from which he can weave a tale" and added, "'Down The Road' brings together the best of Chesney with the best of McAnally, a songwriter whose greatest strength is his ability to breath life into characters that seem unquestionably real, which help us discuss life’s essential and bittersweet truths." He said that it was Chesney's "best vocal performance in years". Jacob Crogie of 411 Mania gave the Chesney version a four-out-of-five rating, saying "This re-recording is a classic example of good country! It's is acoustic based to suit the subject matter. McAnally's writing provides solid, sympathetic characters which allows the listener to connect to the song emotionally." Chesney's version of the song made its chart debut at number 59 on the country charts dated for November 1, 2008.

It fell from the charts the next week re-entered at number 38 for the week of November 15. It is McAnally's second Top 40 country chart entry, eighteen years after his previous one, the number 14 "Back Where I Come From" in 1990; the duet version reached number one on the country chart dated for February 28, 2009, giving Chesney his sixteenth Number One and McAnally his first, to date, only Number One