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Bliss is the name of the default computer wallpaper of Windows XP, produced from the photograph of a landscape in Sonoma County, California. The image contains rolling green hills and a blue sky with cumulus and cirrus clouds. In the Dutch and Portuguese version of Windows XP, the wallpaper is named Ireland and Alentejo, respectively, despite the image being taken in California.
The photograph was taken by Charles O'Rear, a resident of St. Helena, Napa County, for digital-design company HighTurn. According to O'Rear, the photograph was not digitally enhanced or manipulated in any way. The photograph was taken on the side of the highway 12/121[map 1] with a hand held medium-format camera. The approximate location is 3101 Fremont Dr. (Sonoma Hwy.), Sonoma, CA. The coordinates for the hill are 38.250124,-122.410817. Although O'Rear's focus was on photographing winemaking in the Napa Valley, the hill in Bliss didn't have grapevines when the photograph was taken in 1996, five years before the release of Windows XP.
The photograph inspired Windows XP's $200 million advertising campaign "Yes you can", by the San Francisco division of New York City advertising company McCann-Erickson. The campaign was launched on television on ABC (America) during one of ABC Sports's Monday Night Football games of the 2001 NFL season. The television commercials included Madonna's "Ray of Light song, whose TV rights cost Microsoft about $14 million.
On November 27, 2006, artist collaboration Goldin+Senneby visited the site in Sonoma Valley where the Bliss image was taken, re-photographing the same view now full of grapevines. Their work After Microsoft was first shown in the exhibition "Paris was Yesterday" at the gallery La Vitrine in April 2007.and has later been exhibited at Galeria Vermelho, São Paulo, and 300m3 in Gothenburg.
In 2006, Sébastien Mettraux, a Swiss artist made a photograph titled "Bliss, after Bill Gates, 2006". Mettraux, who lives and works near the Vallée de Joux, explained that it was taken in Les Esserts-de-Rives, Switzerland. A local rumour said that the hill of the Windows XP wallpaper came from this area in heart of the "watch valley". It is a mistake but the photography shows that the hill is a lookalike. This photography has been showed in the festival "Images'08" in Vevey.
The game features 28 playable characters and is much less wrestling-oriented than the previous games, Def Jam Vendetta and Def Jam: Fight for NY. The game's executive producer, Kudo Tsunoda, has stated that he did not feel that wrestling and hip-hop went particularly well with each other. However, throws and environmental damage remain in the game.
Gameplay is similar to EA Chicago's Fight Night: Round 3, featuring a focus on up-close brawling, mixing up high and low attacks, blocks, throws, and parries, and using the right analog stick to deliver stronger attacks. Also, like Round 3, there is no in-game heads up display by default, encouraging the player to observe physical cues on in-game characters to determine their health, such as ripped and burned clothing, bruises, and an overall look of exhaustion of the opponent.
The developers aimed to make the music and the environment a much larger factor in the fight. The environments includes rooftops, streets, subways, gas stations, two clubs, an Atlanta neighborhood, BET's 106 and Park stage, and other locales, as opposed to the wrestling rings or arenas of the previous Def Jam titles. In addition, the producers promised massive levels of interactivity within each environment. Fighters bleed and show visible signs of their injuries as fights progress and as the player's character gets hurt.
The music actually effects the environment. The entire backdrop bumps to the beat of the background music. Different events occur on the beats of each song - some of which are dangerous. For example, a column of fire shoots up from a ruined gas station on every "bass hit" of a song's chorus. Other changes will be purely cosmetic: hubcaps on cars will spin and twinkle to the beat of each song. The developers have added more damage to a fighter's punches and kicks if they occur "to the beat" or making a rapper stronger if one of their songs is playing. By listening to the beat of the song and then timing a throw, the player can toss his opponent into an environmental hazard just as it goes off. On the Xbox 360 Console, players are also able to load up their own music (Custom Soundtracks), and the game has a form of beat detection to find the beats from any song.