Archive for January, 2006

XBOX360

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I gone done got myself a XBOX 360 Premium (2nd generation of the manufacture after the initial hardware bugs) on eBay. Should be at home by Friday. For those paying attention, the XBOX 360 Premium retails for $399, I bought it for $510, not including shipping.

One-way mirrored windows

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I applied an 85% reflective mirror film on my downstairs windows for privacy (don’t need to shut blinds or curtains anymore). It turns out this is relatively easy to get professional results (takes about 5 minutes per windows once you get the hang of it). I bought the film online at Concord Window Films.

Here’s a before picture:

Success with Hi-Definition in Denver

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I finally got around to putting up a UHF antenna on my roof in Boulder Heights. To my pleasure and surprise, with my ChannelMaster Titan 7777 amplifier and ChannelMaster 4228 UHF 8 Bay antenna, I am able to pick up NBC and ABC without dropouts (among other, less important channels). Here’s a picture of my setup:

My ATSC tuner is the Hughes HR10-250 HD TiVo + DirecTV PVR.

For those who are in the Denver area, I’m about 45 miles from the low-power transmitters in downtown Denver (no Lookout mountain tower!). AntennaWeb.org says I’ll get nothing. I was able to get waivers to receive CBS and FOX from the Left Coast in HD, so ABC and NBC were the only holdouts. Now all my important networks are high-def.

Here’s some screenshots of high-def content in Denver:

NBC local news with a 16th street mall story:

ABC Desperate Housewives (recorded):

Planning your sick days

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http://www.52projects.com/52_projects/2006/01/2006_sick_day_c.html

This is a how-to guide on how best to plan your “sickness”.

Intel Apples

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http://www.apple.com

Announced today, these include a PowerBook and iMac, both with x86 processors from Intel. With an eye for the dramatic, Paul Otellini (Intel CEO) came on stage in the cleanroom outfit from their ads.

Update 1/16/06: Looks like MacBooks and iMacs with this Intel Duo processor and EFI might be able to boot Windows XP. Now that’s cool!

CD-Rs last 2 to 5 years

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http://computerworld.com/hardwaretopics/storage/story/0,10801,107607,00.html

Which is pretty interesting, because I have a number of 7 year old CDs that are doing just fine, thank you…

Drupal installed!

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http://www.drupal.org

Thanks to Dan C. for pushing me that way. This for my Boulder Heights website. It was significantly more complicated than the B2evolution, as I was required to enter all kinds of information and copy it around on the command line.

NetGear SC101 review

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Do not buy the SC101 from NetGear. Since I work at a hard disk company, this box seemed to make a lot of sense ($119 including shipping), but it’s still buggy as hell. I put two 500GB drives (mirrored) in the box, thinking it would be a good idea to use EMC-Dantz Retrospect to back up my striped terabyte in my desktop. It hangs every time. Unlike other NAS boxes, this is actually a SAN box (I know, I know SANDBOX, hehe). Well, the main difference between NAS and SAN is that the SC101 appears as a LOCAL drive, requires special drivers that don’t work on anything but Windows, and hangs the computer on large transfers (like a backup). It’s clear that ZETERA (the company making the drivers, etc.) has not worked out the bugs on this system. I’ll revisit this review if new drivers solve the problems I’ve been having.

Well, I guess I can use it for other stuff, but it’s been a sincere waste of time, and I’m contemplating moving to USB external storage for backups (or using a second internal terabyte to backup the first).

Hard drive with a view

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Western Digital Raptor, 150GB, 10,000 RPM, whopping $350 pricetag. Ouch.

My next computer monitor

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http://www1.us.dell.com/content/topics/topic.aspx/global/products/monitors/topics/en/monitor_3007wfp?c=us&l=en&s=gen&redirect=1

30″, 11 ms response, Dell 3007WFP 2560×1600 resolution, $2199 off the Dell website.

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