Monday, 29th of December, 2003
Picture - The question of the month - how much stuff can one really put into the back of a Subaru?
Saturday, 27th of December, 2003
Friday, 26th of December, 2003
Picture - Can you fit a 27" Wega TV and DVD player into the back of my car without folding the back seat down?
Picture - Yes.
Saturday, 20th of December, 2003
Some baroque trivia (courtesy of my music friends today):
Why does everyone stand up for the Hallelujah chorus in Handel's Messiah? Because back during one of the early performances of it, King George II of England was present. Hearing the words "King of kings..." in the chorus inspiried King George to stand up in recognition of Christ, the King of all kings. And, according to the rules back then, whenever the king stood up, everyone had to stand up.
In the baroque times, they tuned organs to almost a full step up from the 415Hz A that they had back then (a half step up from the modern 440Hz) in order to save on materials for constructing pipes. In the end it adds up. My question is, why didn't they just eliminate the lowest note? That has the same effect...
Friday, 19th of December, 2003
Went out the new Best Buy store today, and they had a PS2 with the Logitech Wingman Force wheel hooked up, and Need for Speed: Underground in the machine. Sweet! I had to start the "Underground" mode from scratch. It was funny, I got to select from the following cars: Honda Civic, Peugeot 206, Mazda Miata, VW GTI, Mitsubishi Eclipse, Dodge Neon, and Toyota Celica. I chose the Miata of course, for maximum handling. The person in the game said, "Ohh! What a weak car!" Then I proceeded to bomb through 9 races winning 1st place without any contest at all. The only one I had trouble with was the drag race, but as long as I shifted at the right places, I could just edge out the GTI. The "drift" contest was hilarious. I wasn't even close to really doing anything too fancy, but I managed to win by 3X the number of points because I had RWD. Hahaha. Another funny thing is every game you get bonus points for things like near misses, clean sections, air time, etc. These points get multiplied as your "reputation" increases. You increase your "reputation" by buying decals for your car. I found that to be absolutely hilarious. The music was definitely a complete ripoff of the latest "2 Fast 2 Furious". After a few races I unlocked several tracks, unlocked a bunch of "mods" for my car and even "won a free mod". I also managed to unlock the Mitsubishi Lancer ES. Hmmm.
I found it to be entertaining, though, and I would definitely buy it if I had a PS2. The Wingman system is also just like my computer - pedals that slide everywhere. But the force feedback in the game was pretty well done - I could feel when I was drifting, etc.
Thursday, 18th of December, 2003
Picture - Someone forgot to turn the water pipes in their garage in Michigan one winter.
Tuesday, 16th of December, 2003
Picture - The new Hummer H3 has a really cool looking stereo. Oh wait, that's not the stereo, that's the engine! I sat there looking at it for a little bit thinking it was the stereo - between the knobs that look like they control something, the "OOSE"x (ripoff of BOSE perhaps), and grills where speakers could go. Owell, incidentally, the new engine is going to be an inline-5.
Picture - I went to Schnucks today and did a double-take... those are some nice looking aftermarket rims too.
Monday, 15th of December, 2003
Knoppix became useful in yet another way tonight. I'm working on this laptop that has a pretty messed up hard drive - probably some virus or something, that prevents Windows XP from installing on it without reformatting the hard drive. Problem is, there's a bunch of data that is needed off of it. On a laptop, it's not so easy to just take out out the hard drive and pop it into another computer and transfer the files off! But Knoppix made it almost as easy - just pop the CD in, boot to Linux without touching the hard drive, plug it into the network, and transfer the files over the network via smb to another computer. That's better than any Windows tool that I know of...
Saturday, 13th of December, 2003
Picture - We got snow today!
Picture - Here's something I didn't know - drifting in the snow cleans your wheels. Look at how clean they are compared to before.
Tuesday, 9th of December, 2003
Spotted on a college student's profile (You may have to know this person to find it as entertaining as it is):
"Greetings from Urbana. Go Illini.
The siege has been broken. Turkey has been eaten. Which brings us to...
Where, in 3 weeks, I have 4 finals, 1 chem test, 1 chem quiz, 1 econ in-class writing assignment (done), 1 big music assignment (done), 1 piano recital, um... let me think... no more chem lab... and a partridge in a pear tree."
Monday, 8th of December, 2003
So I'm working on a client's Compaq Presario 4550, and I'm checking inside to see what the RAM situation is. I refused to believe my RAM vendor when he said it wasn't possible to upgrade the RAM past 48MB. Well, he was right. I get in there, and there's only 1 DIMM slot with a 32MB module in it, and apparently another 16MB is on-board. I try putting in a 64MB module, and it posts 32MB total RAM. Weird. Anything higher than 64MB in there results in posting 16MB. Doh. Incidentaly, the label on the power supply says "Replace with Compaq spare power supply 75W". 75 watts? That's a disaster waiting to happen right there.
Saturday, 6th of December, 2003
Picture - You thought I had a lot of brake dust on the outside of the wheel - take a look at the inside view!
Picture - Now the wear bars on the Bridgestone Potenza RE92s are interesting - there seems to be at least 3 sets of different depths! The tallest one seems to be at 4/32nds, the shortest one at 1/32nds, and the big fat one is the federally mandated 2/32nds.
So while the wheels were off for tire rotation, I was able to take a look at this "passive four-wheel-steering" system that's apparently on all Subarus. The lateral links in the rear are of unequal length and sit at different angles under normal load, so that when the suspension compresses, the front lateral link extends farther than the rear one, inducing a slight toe-out. The other rear wheel, the inside tire of a turn, will have toe-in. No wonder my car has some over-steer tendencies - even when in neutral.
Wednesday, 3rd of December, 2003
Picture - Now isn't this a weird loading dock.
Picture - Highway ramps also in view.
I was feeling a little inspired tonight and I started playing with colors. How about this color for my menu bar?