Sunday, April 27, 2008

Civ by Mail

So I got together with my girlfriend and a couple of long distance friends and started the longest game of Civilization 4 ever to be recorded. We're going to play by email.

True we could play over the net, but that would require us to all be on at the same time. Email gives us all a chance to play and gives us the opportunity to really mull over our decisions in game. I'm very much looking forward to this game.

We even decided to blog our game experiences together in a new blog called CivbyMail. This excites me too because I don't get to collaborate with people all that much. Not like this anyhow.

Friday, April 25, 2008

No Freakin' Way

Not two minutes after I post about the General Lee I find the Bandit parked out front!

Now all I need is a Ghostbuster car and I'll be all set. I've seen a KITT running around town, but never got a picture. Maybe I should look out the windows around the shop more often.

Not Every Day

Occasionally I'll look out the window of the shop to see what goes on outside. A few minuets ago I was very surprised to see the General Lee was outside. Immediately I grabbed the camera and took a picture because it is just to cool to have the General Lee outside the workshop window. The whole time it was there I was very distracted from computer work. I couldn't seem to get an Acer to boot up off the CD drive until the General Lee left.

Now I have the Duke's of Hazzard theme song stuck in my head, but that's okay; I like that song.

Clicking on the image will display it in much greater detail.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

A New Money Saving Theory

This particular theory I've been practicing for some time, but I finally figured out how to articulate it correctly. I buy cheap stuff. Let me explain more.

A good example is my coffee maker. I bought it over 6 years ago, and it cost me under $20. Now it's great I can say I got so much time out of it for so little (it gets used daily), but that's not the point of buying a cheap coffee pot. The real point is to learn what coffee pots are all about. Learn how they work, how to maintain them, what features I wish my cheap coffee pot had. So that the next coffee pot I buy can actually be a more expensive, I know what I want out of it, and it will save me money because I made all my mistakes on the cheep one.

Now with the coffee pot I've been lucky. If I had broken it in the first month though, it wouldn't have been a big deal. I recently applied this same theory to a blender. The one we bought was $15 (Hey we had a coupon). So far I have learned that, with my next blender, I want mad blending power. I learned with this cheap blender what someone else I know learned on a $50 blender. When I decide to get a better blender I'll know more about what I want.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Google Lacks Ghostbuster Love

The new version of Google Earth is awesome. You can read all about the new features at their blog, or go check it out for yourself. However I am disappointed.

Photo-realistic 3D buildings are a nice improvement over the old gray shapes they called buildings. Also, the ability to click on a building and have information pop up is very slick. What disappoints me is when I head over to 14 N. Moore St. in New York, NY there is still a big gray rectangular prism. There should be a clickable photo realistic firehouse. It's only the most famous firehouse ever.

Here is a picture for you Google. Get it right in the next version. We'll talk about Dana Barrett's apartment building in the next release.

Sunday, April 13, 2008


The SCP-4700 is a cellular phone from Sanyo that can be used on the Sprint network. It is the only reason I am still a Sprint customer. The thing just won't die.

I don't remember when exactly I got it, but a good guess is sometime in 2001. They were all the rage at the time, and I ended up with it because my first phone from Sprint died after about 6 months.

Here it is, still working great after 7 or 8 years. Still on the original battery. It can still last a four day trip to Houston without the charger. It has outlasted Sprint customer service which has done nothing but go down hill. I keep thinking I'll switch services when this thing finally dies.

Now it has become an experiment to see how long it will last. I wonder if I can be the last person on the Sprint network still using this phone. Later I'll post a picture of my actual phone. The one pictured here is new, so you can imagine mine looks a little different by now.

Friday, April 11, 2008

I Have the Power

Lately I've been reading up on solar and wind power, and the more I read the more I realized how dumb I am about electricity. Being dumb about electricity I started with some basics. Basics like how a generator works. After seeing the video I thought to myself, "I have seen something like that before."

Low and behold I was right. A case fan looks just like a generator. Immediately I stripped some wires and busted out with my multimeter to discover I can indeed create electricity by spinning a case fan by hand. In fact, I could power an LED with it.

All of this thinking about electricity has helped me decide on my major at school. While English is interesting, and I still plan to write, electronics is what my heart desires.

Speaking of power, that picture was taken with my old school Sony Digital Mavica. I found a battery for it on Ebay for all of $6 after shipping. Still works great, but it's too bad it only stores pictures on a floppy disk (observe the craptacular quality).

EDIT: Hey I made a video!

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

More Work on the Demo PC at the Shop

Most of what I do lately has been work related, so it has been showing up in the Sidtek blog. All the cool stuff is labeled case mod. Unfortunately my cascading style sheet skills are lacking. For some reason almost every page of the blog looks different. Oh well, I'm sure I'll get it in order one day.

Here is my first youtube video.