This is my personal thoughts, opinions and musings place. I will also rant about things, especially politically-correct things that irritate me. And sci-fi. Did I mention sci-fi? There'll be lots of sci-fi stuff here. And movies, too. Mmmmm... Movies

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Of new ideas, and the problem with sci-fi

On the face of it, the latest episode of Stargate: Atlantis, Epiphany, wasn't really all that bad. It had hot babes, ascended beings, McKay going crazy, and a super-powerful, impossible to stop monster that was semi-invisible. What it didn't have, however, was an original plot.

I counted at least four plot elements from different sci-fi shows:
  1. The semi-invisible monster that was the unconscious creation of the local inhabitants - straight out of The Forbidden Planet.
  2. Facing the semi-invisible monster with a knife - straight out of Star Trek: TNG episode Darmok(I think).
  3. Being lost on a planet for several months - straight out of Stargate: SG1 episode 100 Days.
  4. A local woman trying to, and succeeding in, seduce a lost Stargate crew member - straight out of Stargate: SG1 episode 100 Days.
There might actually be more, but those are the ones I noticed on my first viewing.

Now, that's not to say that it I didn't like the episode nonetheless, I did, but I think it exemplifies a problem that's been prevalent in sci-fi, especially tv and movie sci-fi, for a very long time, that is, a complete lack of original ideas. This is one reason why all the comic books and video games are being made into movie, not matter how unsuited the story lines were to the big screen. The argument is being made that they couldn't give them the movie treatment before because the special effects were not really there, but I think it is much simpler than that: they're out of ideas, and if they couldn't remake stories written in the 30s, 40s, 50s and 60s, they'd have to quit making sci-fi.

Sci-fi, in general, is a product of its time. Star Trek TOS, taking place in the early 23rd century and created in the 1960s, uses B&W tricorders, tapes for data storage and blinking lights for computer displays. Star Trek: Enterprise, taking place a 100 years earlier and created in the beginning of the 21st century, uses full-color, graphic computer displays and personal datapads for storage. As well, in TOS, there were no female starship captains, in fact it was suggested once that men somehow kept women out of the big seat. In Enterprise, a woman was in command of a freighter, and one was preparing to take command of the newest Starfleet vessel.

I suspect that we're in for a long seige of movies and shows that are all very similar to each other in certain particulars but which differ in circumstances. Want to make a show about evil aliens eating their way across the Galaxy? Andromeda and Atlantis did that already. Want to make a show about aliens taking over human bodies as hosts? Stargate did that already, though even it probably wasn't unique in that respect.

One interesting twist that Stargate laid on the whole super-advanced-alien-ship concept was that of burning fires aboard ship. The ships are so advanced, and so powerful, that they don't even have to worry about wasting oxygen by burning it up with torches. Hell, not even the Borg did that.

I don't know what the future holds for sci-fi, but as we reach the limits of American sci-fi, I hope other countries step up to fill the void. Different countries, different ideas. The French, for instance, made the excellent The Fifth Element. It was, in many ways, a very good movie, but more importantly, it was different. Of course, you had to see it in wide-screen format to get the point at the very end, but otherwise it was an excellent movie. On the other hand, it was eight years ago, but maybe the French are up to a good sci-fi flick every ten years or so.

Here's hoping for a decade of sci-fi movie making that's not just rehashing old comic books.

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Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Oh, the banality of it all!

Once again the entertainment industry misses the mark. A year or so ago, movie theatres used to force everyone to watch “you are starving us so please don't pirate movies” clips that purportedly were made with people who really work on movies, though I have my doubts about that. Now, the funny thing about that is that they had the wrong audience. The people who were being forced to watch all that actually paid to see the movie. Twenty years ago, before the advent of the VCR, that was basically all the income they would get, what the people paid at the theatres. As well, years ago, there were no force-fed commercials on the silver screen, though I must admit that the revenues from those ads probably goes directly to the theatres.

This is why the DVD set of Stargate: SG1 Season 8 is so irritating. I paid money for the damn thing, why should I have to sit through all the warnings about piracy. And you can't turn it off or fast-forward past it, either. You have to sit there and watch it in English and French, and it runs for a good 30 seconds! What's up with that? And on top of that, they took away the director's commentary that was a part of every DVD since about Season 4(I think).

And then, on top of it all, when I buy blank DVDs for my privately-produced content that has nothing to do with movies, I have to pay a surcharge because they can't convince people to shell out $25 for a movie. I haven't bought a movie in a long time now(frankly, I've bought all the movies worth buying), and the only music CDs I've bought recently have been in $6(approximate) pile at Zeller's. I won't pay $18 for a CD with a half-dozen tracks on it, and I can't be bothered to pirate, not perhaps because of any moral restraint, but simply because I consider most modern music to be absolute and unmitigated pile of crap. But more importantly, I've got better things to do than always sit in front of a computer looking for music and then having to listen to it all. It makes it much simpler that my car's CD changer doesn't support MP3.

So what have we learnt? Despite not needing a lot of music, I'll still buy it when it's cheap enough, and despite liking movies, especially sci-fi and horror, I will not pay $25 for a DVD unless it is really, really good. Show me inexpensive(under $10) movies, and I would buy a lot more. There're probably many other people like me. Is anyone in the great ivory towers paying attention?

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Government defeated

So the crazy so-called “minority” Liberal government of Canada has been defeated. Hurray! Kick those gun-registry-lovin', feminist-suckup, Quebec-bribin' fools out of power. Of course, that's really only the first step. Need some fresh blood in the Halls of Valhala(no, wait, umm, sorry, I meant the Parliament Building). Of course, Canadians aren't likely to replace them during the upcoming elections, Canadians love their Liberals too much and dislike the so-called evil Conservatives. My fear is that the NDP will gain real power and that would be a disaster(damn reds and greens), but we'll see. We'll see.

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Monday, November 28, 2005

Ha! Must learn to spell peanut!

And it's not spelled penut!

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Penut allergies

I hadn't really realized that penut allergies can be so deadly. Something to watch out for.

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The attack of the killer fly

A few nights I did something so stupendous I was forced to re-evaluate myself in my own eyes. I went to bed at my usual random hour of the night and lay there reading when I heard a buzzing. This puzzled me at first because my ears hadn't buzzed all day(a surprising occurence). Then I finally saw: a big, HUGE!, fat fly, doing the vampire walk on my ceiling. The thing was absolutely insane. It would on my ceiling, then launch itself off and perform a number of insane and very painful-looking maneuvers that involved much bouncing off of walls and window blinds and me. Needless to say, I decided to do something about that.

So, with a trusty dish cloth in hand, I waited until it settled again on my ceiling and knocked it off. The fly vanished(I still have no idea where it went), but in the process I lost my footing and knocked down a nightstand lamp I've had for almost 8 years. The lamp, the lampshade and the bulb all became collateral damage and shade debris flew everywhere. It's amazing how much crap flies off(Heh!) a dried out lampshade when it breaks.

All, however, was not lost. During this altercation, I proved a Holywood -ism to be true. In the movies, when a lamp falls, the bulb inside invariably dies. There is a flash and the bulb goes dead. That's exactly what happened when my lamp fell. With all the other Holywood -isms like modern cars screeching when coming to a halt despite widespread use of ABS, cars exploding the moment they leave the ground and hot alien chicks always falling right in the arm of some loser, I was never really sure about that one. Now is my life complete: I have proven something to be true.

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Quote of the day

My doctor told me to stop having intimate dinners for four, unless there are three other people.

- Orson Wells

Stolen from(ahem, borrowed from) Savvy Fat Burning Food's Community Journal Blog.

Friday, November 25, 2005

The scourge of payments

After dinner last night, I went to pay the bill, and as usual, wanted to line up by the center post where all the debit card machines are. There was a bit of a lineup there, so my waitress took me over to the bartender area to pay, and lo and behold, what did I see? A shiny new wireless debit card machine. She got really pissy with me, too, when I told her I didn't want to use it, I'd wait for the regular wired ones to free up.

Now why, in the name of all that's holy, would I want to have my debit card and pin info broadcast wirelessly? The system is probably short-range and encrypted, to boot, but still. Why?

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Thursday, November 24, 2005

They blew up Betsy!

Well, OK, I don't know that her name was Betsy(it probably wasn't), but she was kinda hot, in a “beat you over the head with questions about clowns” way.

To wit.

As many(some, all, few, whatever) of you know, I'm a bit(well, OK, quite a bit) addicted to Stargate: SG1. One of my goals from earlier in the year was to get all the seasons of the show on DVD; I'm proud to say that I have accomplished that goal. That said, however, it must be admitted that I wasn't really a very big fan of Stargate: Atlantis in the first season. It looked more of the same to me, but with animals with a pedigree ruling the galaxy. And it became a soap opera almost immediately. On the other hand, the acting was great, the humour took the edge off the darkness of the underlying plot and the stories really weren't all that bad.

The second season has, in my opinion, much improved the show. Of course, they have a ship now, and that seriously improved the old show(before it becamse a Dominion War soap opera), just as it has Atlantis. There's a new character, too, one who does much to counter-balance the political correctness leanings of some of the others.

But what the show really needed was information about the Wraith, the main enemies, and the first season provided virtually none of that. Now, the Wraith are shown in a different light. Still the genocidal maniacs who eat entire planets, they're shown to be able to devise defenses to unusual attacks, as well as having some sort of societal structure. However, the fact remains that we're sadly ignorant of the more critical aspects of Wraith lives.

Does the WETH(Wraiths for Ethical Treatment of Humans) organization exist in the Pegasus galaxy? Do they try to put an end to the disgusting practice of eating one's pets? Or putting them in danger during major space battles? Do they write letters about how it's OK to blow up another hive queen's ship, but please leave your pets out of it? Do they make impassioned pleas for vegetarianism or is sucking the life out of an elm sadly unsatisfying?

Do the Wraith celebrate Wrthmas? That would be the day that the first Ancient came home from a hard day exploring some misbegotten cave on some uncharted planet and sucked the life right out of his family? On Wrthmas, do the Wraith give their pets presents? Maybe a new pair of boots or maybe a new dress. Betsy seemed well dressed and not particularly starved.

Which brings up another question. What do the pets eat? Exactly which hive ship is responsible for producing food for the pets that won't cause Mad Human disease?

If a Wraith pet owner gets really, really hungry and eats his pet, will he feel bad about it afterwards? Will his buddies on the hive ship make fun of him?

Those are the questions, and more besides, burning bright in my mind. The thought of blowing up Betsy made me feel sad, so sad.

Do you want to know more?
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Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Seaquest and the bane of free power

I hadn't fully realized before how much of a utopian pipedream the show Seaquest, DSV really was. I think it wasn't until the episode about free underwater power generation that I finally saw the show for what it was.

To understand the utopia, we have to understand what, exactly, is free power. Or, indeed, what is power. According to the NB Power website, power is the rate at which electricity is consumed. So, free power is power that costs the consumer of that electricity nothing. Trouble is, it's an impossible dream. Much like free medicine, you can only ignore the realities of the situation on the ground for so long before it starts to collapse.

Many people claim that there's an abundance of free energy out there: solar, wind, water, etc. and that we should therefore abandon fossil fuels. They are, of course, absolutely correct. The sun is our main source of free light and heat for the entire planet(for only 12 hours a day), and much of it is wasted if not collected by solar panels. Winds blows regardless of what we do and spinning turbines can make use of it.

However, though sunlight and windpower are essentially free, they're also incredibly useless. We, at our present level of technology, are consumers of electricity. Even our nuclear power plants are basically giant kettles that produce electricity the old-fashioned way, by spinning turbines. We can't use sunlight or windpower or even nuclear power directly, it must be converted into something useful.

It is that conversion that trips up any idea of free electricity. You need plants to assemble the solar panels, you need plants to manufacture the components of which those solar panels are made, you need to manufacture auxilary supplies such as nuts and bolts and the like. You need to ship the assembled panels to their final installation site at some solar farm, which means you need vehicles, fuel for those vehicles and you need roads. Once you've got it assembled, you need transmission lines(or batteries, choose your poison), you need distribution stations, etc, etc, etc. And all of this needs power of its own, and more importantly, it needs people to operate every step of the process, and people don't work for free, at least not in normal societies. And on top of it all, all this equipment, roads, supplies and people have to be replaced, repaired and educated on a continuous basis. In other words, it's a never-ending money pit.

“But we wouldn't need to rely on oil and we wouldn't have to pay for the fuel of our electricity!” people say. And that would be really great. But solar panels require huge tracts of land and wind turbines require a place where the blows in right direction at the right speed on a relatively consistent basis. The wind doesn't blow the same way everywhere at the same time, and there are many, many places in the world where the sun doesn't shine 12 hours a day. Those places need a constant supply of electricity just like the rest of the world, and since solar power can only be used half the day, the panels need to generate twice your daily requirement during the daylight hours. It might be better if the power collection and conversion happened in orbit and was somehow beamed to the surface, but that, too, involves massive engineering and human costs that I don't even want to consider at the moment.

In the Seaquest episode, they hooked up the country to underwater generators that used the tides and the electricity was going to be free, because . They even went so far as to disconnect the rest of the power grid. The lights went on, the underwater generator blew up and the lights went out. It would've been far more realistic if instead of bad engineering(isn't that always the case in ultra-socialist utopias?) turning off the lights, they had an accountant look at their books and say, “Wait a minute! How do you intend to pay for the upkeep of this station? Where will you find the money to pay the deep-sea divers who don't come cheap?”

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How much is your blog worth?


My blog is worth $11,290.80.
How much is your blog worth?

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Theatre and The Fee!

Of all the ridiculous ways to suck money out of people, why do theatre tickets carry service charges and the like? It's not as though they're doing you a favour by selling tickets to you that you could get another, more difficult though ultimately cheaper, way. What is it, exactly, that I get for that service charge?

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The Oblongs, the cartoon

There's a crazy cartoon out there called The Oblongs. It's about a family of mutants who live in the poluted part of their town. The father has no arms or legs(though apparently he's really good in bed), the wife has no hair and is a lush, one kid has ADD, another kid has a growth on her head that apparently came from bovine growth hormones, and the other two kids are actually one and a half because they're cojoined.

Their friends are no better off. One has no lower jaw, another is a sickly-looking French Goth girl and another one is so fat she usually takes up half the screen.

That said, the father is a loving though none-too-bright head of the family and the mother is the nymphoniac glue that holds the whole thing together. In one of the episodes, the ADD boy couldn't get any sleep for weeks because he was used to falling asleep to the rhythmic thumping of the parents' headboard against the wall and the mother wailing, "Oh God! Oh God!" throughout the festivities. Unfortunately, the parents couldn't get on to any hanky-panky because a stripper had stepped on the father's penis and injured it. Did I mention he has no legs and is therefore built close to ground?

This cartoon runs very late at night, thankfully. In most ways it is more disgusting than Family Guy, The Simpsons and American Dad put together. It is also much funnier, in many ways. Thank the Middle-of-the-road-Deity for PVR.

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Monday, November 21, 2005

Miss America - Out of Money

It never really occured to me to wonder where Miss America got the money for those scholarships until this story came out. It's just not the sort of thing I've usually been interested in. During my life in Canada, I think I might have watched a small part of one of their shows and that was it. But I guess, based on the story, a significant portion of their funding came from TV viewership. Which is kinda odd, come to think of it.

What, exactly, point does Miss America serve at the start of the 21st century? In an age of loving ourselves for who we are and finding the inner beauty(for lack of evidence of outer beauty) of those around us, it is, after all, a pretty discriminatory organization. Looking back a dozen or so winner, I can find no evidence of overweight or homely women winning the titles. So, right there, Miss America discards more than half the women, no matter how otherwise worthy.

Maybe, in the early 1920's, I can see Miss America serving a purpose; you could make a case that, back then, it gave certain women a leg up in the world. Can't help everyone, after all. But today? In an age where more girls attend post-secondary institutions than boys, can it be said they need a leg up?

With few exceptions, the profiles I've read are singularly unimpressive. They read as a whose who of your local telephone book, or what the girl next door could accomplish with free money if she were pretty enough and could twirl a batton on the right kind of stage. I have yet to see an accomplishment in the field of obstetrics, dentistry, child psychology, psychology, heart decease, cancer, HIV/AIDS, computer software, computer hardware, propulsion, power generation, power storage, food processing, or any of the thousands upon thousands of fields. Accomplishments in those fields are left to men and to homely women who have to make a name for themselves the old-fashioned way: by actually earning it through skill and determination. (Alert! Exaggeration for conversational effect!)

None of this, of course, means that the show should be cancelled forever and ever. But maybe the fact that the viewership has fallen off dramatically is an indication that the general population is seeing this show for what it is. Maybe it's time to move on.

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Men, clothes and the running dime

It's amazing to me how weird it feels when a coin falls through the hole in your pant pocket and rolls down the length of your leg. But, let me tell you, it's even weirder when two coins do the same thing at the same time. It even gets to be somewhat of a lottery, taking bets on which one's going to fall into my shoe and which one's going to go on the floor. If you're looking for a random number generator between zero and two, it gets no better than that.

Yes, I know, I should get it fixed.

Alone in the Dark, I was so not scared

So, yesterday, I finally watched the movie, Alone in the Dark. I'd wanted to see it when it first came out a few months ago, but was more than a little miffed when it disappeared from the theatres in two weeks flat. Now I can see why.

The only thing that made this horrific waste of an otherwise perfectly good hour and a half was Tara Reid, and she didn't even take her clothes off. It's not that she's that great an actress, it's just that she's great eye candy.

When, in the movie, they said the Abkani had opened a gate to another dimension(an evil one, imagine that; nobody opens gates to an indiferent dimension, one in which no one gives a damn about ours), I wasn't really expecting an actual gate, with an electronic lock, of all things.

The gun battle scenes were ridiculous, they didn't use the guys with snakes in their heads(heh! imagine that!) nearly as well as I thought they could've, and I still have no idea how the damn thing ended.

All in all, I give it my patented “I'm glad I didn't have to pay for it but I didn't cut my wrists over it either” rating.

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Saturday, November 19, 2005

SG1 Season IX

The new season of Stargate: SG1, Season 9, is finally upon us. It started off kinda slow, which was to be expected, considering that they're basically starting the show over again, with new characters, new enemies, hopefully new alies, and the like.

A couple things I'm a bit worried about. First, I hope it doesn't turn into a soap opera. The first three episodes of this season are basically one episode, a very long one episode. This is very similar to Season I, where the first 3 episodes were basically about the same thing. I hope they cut that out after the third episode airs. I don't mind the odd two-parter, but I don't want them one after the other.

One thing that surprised me about the second part of the S9 premier was the on-screen, full-in-yer-face burn-a-woman alive then show the charred remains sequence. Of course, they resurrected her a few moments later, but even so, it was surprising. Though, I'm not entirely sure why I'm surprised. It is running on Space, after all, and virtually every programs that airs on that station includes a violence warning. Enterprise even used to carry mature audience only warnings on some of the episodes. Maybe it's a one-off, like the full frontal nudity or the surprisingly graphic sequence of the symbiot burrowing into a person's neck in SG1 pilot, Children of the Gods. Well, only time will tell.

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Friday, November 18, 2005

Wing music

Of all the things I've seen on South Park, Wing Music has to be beyond the pale. Who could've known that the Chinese woman signing her way through the episode was based on a (supposedly) real woman. She even has her own website, plugged at the end of the episode, and she even looks somewhat like she did in South Park. Unbelievable!

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Of mice, men and keyboards

So I finally had to go out and buy myself a new keyboard and mouse; my wireless Logitech combo had finally given up the ghost. Oh, they still worked, but badly. The scroll wheel on the mouse kept actually lifting off its base, and keys on the keyboard kept sticking. How difficult could it be to buy a keyboard and mouse combo? I thought. Well, let me tell you.

First of all, it's been over three years since I've needed either a new keyboard or a new mouse, so I was completely unprepared for the way too much choice you're given at a store. And none of the choices are actually any good. I finally settled on a slightly shaped Microsoft optical keyboard and mouse combo.

Secondly, I really want to meet the moron who decided to rearrange the standard keyboard layout; I feel the overwhelming urge to slap him(or her) upside the head in protest. What was the point of rearranging the cursor control block on the keyboard? Can anyone explain that to me?

Thirdly, I miss the long-gone-by days when Keytronic keyboards, even those made in China rather than in the US, were basically indestructible and would last damn near forever. The first thing I noticed about this new keyboard is how flexible it is, and that's just bad. In fact, it's so flexible, I have to bend it every few minutes just to keep the right side of it on the desktop. Great workmanship you have there, Microsoft! Congrats! You ought to feel good about yourself. The damn thing wobbles like a bad table in a cheap restaurant; I have to put a wad of paper under one of the legs to just keep it steady.

Fourthly, the damn thing misses keystrokes. I hate that. When you blind touch-type, that really, really sucks!

Well, tomorrow this thing goes back for replacement, if the second one's going to be just as bad, it's going to get its Made-in-China ass returned. Damn, I hate getting crap in the box. And I have to learn a new keyboard layout. I double-hate hate that!

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Things you never want to hear

Overheard something in the mall today, something I didn't really want to hear: “That's my cousin's wife, but she's my cousin, too.”

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Thursday, November 17, 2005

It should be illegal, but it's not!

In October of this year, I finally gave up the wait and got a Rogers PVR(Personal Video Recorder). The damn thing is only a single-tuner(meaning you can't watch one channel while a program on another channel is recording) and is ridiculously expensive($20 per month), but dear Lord! how did I ever get along without it?

True, you can only record one program at a time, which puts a bit of a crimp on recording The Oblongs and porn at the same time, but you can watch previously-made recordings while something new is recording. You can pause your live tv feed to go to the bathroom. You can wind the current program back to catch something you just missed because some moron outside gunned his engine at the wrong time. You set future recordings directly off of the digital guide. You can tell it to delete recorded programs automatically when it needs more space. You can watch late-run movies and sick, disgusting(though much-loved) cartoons on a weeknight without being late for work next morning.

Is there anything you can't do?

I can now not worry about missing new episodes of Stargate: SG1 and Atlantis. I can wind past commercials. Dear Middle-of-the-road-Deity! I can watch TV the way I want to! I sacrificed a domain name to pay for it!

All hail PVR! Bow down before its greatness! Eliminate time-shifting!

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China, the Internet and eBay

I discovered something a while ago while browsing eBay for various things: the Chinese list a lot of crap on it. Which is kinda odd, because those people can't even read this blog. So, the question arises: should a country that floods the world with cheap crap but doesn't allow their own people to read a blogging site available worldwide be allowed to further flood the world with cheap crap on eBay?

For a long time, I thought maybe it's the language difference. I don't, after all, write in Chinese. Nor do I have such a swelled head as to think that the Chinese must read my blog. But the fact remains that since February of this year, this blog has received hits from places on this cwazy planet that not only did I not know had Internet access, but ones that I didn't even know existed. And not all of them are natively English speakers, nor do they all use a Latin-based alphabet. And in all that time that I've received hits from Taiwan, I've received none from China.

For a country that doesn't like the words 'freedom' and 'Taiwan' on an MSN-based blog, it sure is in a hurry to sell us more crap.

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Tuesday, November 15, 2005

What have I been up to?

After all these months, you may be wondering what I have been up to. Well, first of all, I rewired my home network to simplify it, and it was a stunning success. It seems that it is now more stable than before, there's a price to pay. Before I touched it, it looked something like this:
Old NetworkEvery PC had two network cards in it, one was for the local network that interconnected all my machines for print and file sharing. The other network card eventually plugged into my router for Internet access. Thus all machines had Internet and local network access, but it was a clumsy, cumbersome affair. When I first moved into my apartment, I had to drill three holes from the computer room to the living room. One was for telephone TV, since become extinct. The other two were for LAN and Internet access from the living room. This was before I had a wireless router. Once I got one of those, I simply stopped using one of the cables.

Now my network looks like this. Each machine has only one network card, and the laptop has a just a wireless one. Only one hub is now active and it connects two machines that line that far wall. My main computer is sitting right beside the router, so it connects directly in, the other two are connected through their hub, and the laptop has a wireless connection directly to the router. The two file servers are Linux boxes and they connect no problem to both the Windows LAN and the Internet, the laptop can access the Internet and the file servers wirelessly, and more importantly, I'm much happier now that when I unplug the power cord from the laptop, I can still access all the files.New NetworkOf course, there is a price to pay for all these benefits. My hub and network cards are all 10/100, meaning I can get up to 100Mbps on the wire. The wireless part of this network is now the bottleneck. Before, the file transfers from the laptop to the file servers(say, after I come back home and want to upload my pictures from the laptop) were at 100Mbps. Now, because the only connection is the wireless one, it is limited to 54Mbps. This means that if I want to get double the speed, I have to connect the laptop to the network with a wire. I guess it's not really such a big problem since I still have a wire in the living room. It's the principle of the thing, however.

One of the reasons I did all this was because I installed that 2nd server, a dual Athlon MP 1200Mhz system with 512MB RAM and 200GB of disk space. I really didn't feel like installing two network cards and pulling one more wire(the 1st wire was already in place). So, after a day of work and much swearing, I finally got it to work. Hurray!
I also got back into personal programming by writing a game called Defend. It's something of a homage to the old Trek games, but really, I only did it as a brain exercise. Currently, it is only available on Windows, but I'm planning on releasing a Linux version soon. You may download a working beta version by following the link above, but a more complete version is coming soon.
I also started cooking again, and have so far completely failed to poison myself.
On the work front, I got laid off from my job and was then immediately rehired without stepping foot outside the office.

That's been my life so far. Hope you enjoyed it.
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Resurrected

After much soul-searching, I've decided to resurrect this blog, but will post under a different User ID. Yu the Great is my new moniker, how long it lasts is anyone's guess. LOL! Welcome back, my darlings, welcome back.

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