Sunday 20 July 2003

Gain and Browsers

Its done. I am now the proud owner of a Sony DE 975 receiver. She's a beauty. I wandered into the store aimed for the 695 but I noticed they had a few old models, 1 year dated, they were knocking the price off.

So I takes a peek at the back to find a whole mess of inputs. Video 1, 2, and 3 (3 is on the front), DVD/LD, TV/SAT, CD, Tape, MD/DAT, and Phono. That and four optical inputs for digital feeds. The video inputs can each come in on either normal lines or S-Video.

As for output it has standard, s-video, and composite output for the video. It has a 5.1 system for the speakers with a tight 100w per channel. It will also do a second-room output.

DTS, Dolby Digital, Dolby Pro Logic II, 32b DSP, almost a dozen theatre modes, adjustable gain *and* bandwidth for base, mid-range, and treble on each set of speakers.

And as if that weren't nice enough for you, the volume also works. (Not a feature of the wendawg's receiver.)

I'm definately very happy (and a little flushed) with the new stereo.

Not so much with browsers. This may be an old rant, but for the love of God! Can't there be a little uniformity? The clickable menus for the SLA Industries project have worked fine from the start using Mozilla in Linux.

Apparently not the case with Opera (Windows or Linux), Netscape 7.1, MSIE 6.0 ... Like what the hell?

Looking at the source for the pages (the output of my php scripts) seemed to indicate that that most browsers were trying to intelligently quote urls in anything they thought might be an anchor.

Quoting + Javascript = Dead page.

So it took me several hours to get things straightened out so at least the same stuff was breaking on all browsers. We had a little fun with Mozilla in Windows since it was eating NS settings/cache/lunch/etc. Once we got that far, it was only a short hour of screaming and hollering (ask the wendawg about my debugging techniques sometime) to get it working.

So I feel fucking pleased. Three hours of hacking through php scripts and js output such that the site works exactly as it did before. Save of course that other people get to have the same funcitonality as I do. Yay.

Now if only I could figure how to get the video channels to work as desired through the Sony...

Monday 14 July 2003

Sleep is a Cruel Hag

Its been a bit since I've jotted down my plan, but I've just been keeping busy. So far I've been doing some day-dreaming about hardware.

First is computer gear since I'm mostly familiar with what to look for. Here's the sortof template I put together for Michael:

Base Bits

So this would be the base I'd put all Michael's components into rather then the crap celeron boards that MDK got stuck with. If (or should I say when?) I get a new board like that, then I'd do quite a bit of gear shuffling to get Nikita, Dulcea, and Michael all doing their respective jobs... We'll see.

The other little bundle of copper I've been chasing is a stereo receiver. Now this I've been putting off because I know too little. After a little research online, I'm sortof understanding what I should be looking for and this sony seems to fit right about where I want it:

Sony Tuner

Ah sweet melodies...

Wednesday 9 July 2003

Nothing a Little Duct Tape Can't Fix

So today was a fun day. Let's start at the top: New office for work today. Great. I get up, roll out of bed bang on time at 05:15 (yes, in the morning). Eventualy, after rebounding off just about every wall, I manage to line myself up and stunmble out the door at 06:10. I wander down to Broadway and think

"Okay. So now I can walk to the sky train station and catch the 106 (a bus I did not need at all at the old office), but I really would like to get there early so I don't miss it. I'll bus from here to the sky train station."

*ten minutes pass*

"Fuck! I could have walked to the sky train station faster!"

*bus finaly gets me to sky train*

"Crap. Not only did I miss the bus that will get me to work nice and early, but also the one that will get me there significantly late."

*I then proceed to hike up the hill, about 15 minutes all uphill, to the new office.*

"Great. Only stupid freaking 10 minutes late."

The new office is very nice though. Large, clean, and has windows. S'all good.

So work goes as usual (plus some drilling as there is still work being done). Then I get off shift and go home. Yay. I soon roll out again and this time to visit MDK in Richmond to try to buy some cheap crappy gear.

Getting off the bus en-route, I bump into another guy and drop my 4 month old Panasonic SL-SX420 MP3 CD player.

*smash on the cement, sideh-ways*

The guy looks at me mutters sorry and looks like he's worried about it. "No sweat, bro", says I "my warranty will cover it." I did get the no-questions-asked warranty on that piece of gear, so much to this fellow's relief, I don't give a damn.

However, on my second bus out to Richmond, I fiddle with the Panasonic SL-SX420 a bit. Lo and behold, it works! I snap the cover back in place and though it is now missing a cover spring, and latch, and has a new giant crack, it turns on and plays my cd! How dope is that?

For those of you who are wondering, the Panasonic SL-SX420 plays mp3 cds, comes with headset, and is available for under 100CDN at Future Shop (where I got mine), Zellers (where Bubs got his), London Drugs (where Randy Andy got his), and many other fine retailers of personal electronics.

And now last but not least, I make it to MDK's pad with lift in his Golf TDI. Yes. TDI. Turbo Deisle Injection. Its a deisel coupe.

There I take a look at his hardware. He has three old computers. He wants one so he can install Redhat 9 (I brought the CDs). Well, between one dead main board and one sketchy one, he's got one working computer. Nice. Asshole who sold that shit to him was a co-worker. How weak is that?

Out of the deal he gets one computer (a celeron 400 w/ 128MB ram) that works and one (celeron 600) that boots maybe half the time and certainly only if you buy it dinner. And ten bucks for a 10GB HD I buy off him.

I get an hd, 250W ps, and cmos battery instead of the mainboard (and optional CPU) that I wanted. At least it only cost me ten bucks.

So if today weren't 1337 enough, I say "food!" at the top of my lungs and mdk looks at me like I'm from Mars. I clarify that I am hungry and we should go get eats. We decide on Fog and Sudds because they have Moose Drool brown ale. I htought he was lying and was very wrong. They do have Moose Drool.

Those of you who don't know what this beer I'm talking about is shouldn't be surprised that it sounds crazy. Its brewed by a micro-brewery in Missoula Montana that is a tiny little operation. I have a T-shirt for it because my dad grew up in Missoula and has family in the area he visits. We're talking about a micro brewery that basically still glues labels on by hand.

Now if that isn't a plan update, I don't know what is...

Thursday 3 July 2003

"I Cannot Comply"

Last night we went to view Terminator 3: Rise of the machines. Excellent Arnie flick with great one-liners and lots of action and stuff blowing up with the slightest provication.

I rate it: see it cheap and/or buy it on video.

Tuesday 1 July 2003

Can You Say "More Power"?

Happy Canada Day, Eh?

I went to visit my parents for Canada Day today. That was all good. Especially when I inherited Michael, my Pa's old box. Michael suffers from dead mobo. Everything else in there is good. Fine NIC, nVidia TNT2, quiet power supply and such. Just need a mobo/cpu.

So now I just have to come to a good agreement on buy a comp from MDK. Could be tricky since he wants some coin and there's really only a couple things I want from the machine. *shrug* We'll figure something out.

Michael is the most likely to be the next full-time uro server. I would like to put him in the server room at work and since we're moving offices this month, there's a bit of slack time before I have to press that issue. Mmmm... OC3

Other news? Oh yeah, I finally got Nikita's firewall counting the web traffic that she generates... Its looking a little higher then expected but stay tuned for the traffic reports.

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