August 2008 Archives

Upgrade time

| No Comments | 1 TrackBack

My cheapy ECS motherboard has been a little flaky for a while now - spontaneously rebooting if I push too much traffic through the USB ports, for example.  Anyway, yesterday it finally turned up its toes, and close inspection revealed that one of the chipset heatsinks had never been fitted properly, and the heat finally got the better of it.

Time for a new motherboard.

Of course, nobody makes MoBo's that take Socket 939 processors or DDR memory any more, so it became time for an upgrade.

As luck would have it, Fry's had some pretty decent bundles on sale for the Labor Day weekend, and I picked up a Gigabyte GA-M790X-DS4 board, Phenom 9750 Quad, and 4GB of DDR2/800.  Sweet.


| No Comments | No TrackBacks

No smoking?

| No Comments | No TrackBacks

Today was "Men's Diversity Day" at IBM Austin, an opportunity for blokes to get out of the office and do blokey things, most of which seemed to involve fire and animal flesh.  One of our ITSO residents captured this shot:


SmokinAustin.png(Photo: Klemens Poschke)

Where were you...

| No Comments | No TrackBacks
...when men from planet Earth first set foot upon the Moon?

Me, I was sitting in a classroom in Doncaster East State School in Melbourne, along with about half the school population, huddled around one of two or three small black-and-white TV's that had been brought in for the occasion.  The moonwalk was timed to occur during the US evening to maximize the viewing audience, making it around lunch time Down Under.

To this day, I can't say with any certainty that I actually saw Neil Armstrong take that historic step, because from where I sat it was nigh on impossible to discern the actual picture from all the glare and reflections off that tiny screen, but I'll never forget the experience of that moment as a nerdy 11-year-old.

Apollo Lunar Surface Journal

| No Comments | No TrackBacks
The previous post lead me to the Apollo Lunar Surface Journal, a fascinating archive of transcripts and audio/visual materials from the Apollo lunar missions.  Very cool stuff - I can see myself losing a few hours there!

Moon landing from the moon

| No Comments | No TrackBacks
Isha sent me a link to The Relativity of Simultaneity, which is an interesting piece on the effects of the finite speed of light on our perception of the sequence of events.  Of particular interest is a re-working of the conversation between the Apollo 11 astronauts and Mission Control in Houston during the final moments of the LEM's descent to the lunar surface.

Listening to the re-worked audio, it occurred to me that the creator actually has his math a little wrong.  He's delayed Mission Control's transmissions by about 1.25 seconds to allow for the time it took those words to get to the moon, but has failed to allow for the fact that the astronauts' words, as received and recorded on Earth, had actually been spoken a further 1.25 seconds earlier.  Thus to my way of thinking, he needs delay Mission Control by about 2.5 seconds rather than only 1.25.  That would make Armstrong's hesitation even more understandable, as CAPCOM's words would have arrived just as he started to speak.

I've written to the page's creator, and will update if/when he writes back.

Here goes nothing

| No Comments | No TrackBacks
Well, since I'm already maintaining a Movable Type installation for Joi and a couple of friends, I figured I may as well jump on the blogging bandwagon.  Quite apart from publishing my musings for the world to see, it could be useful as a general repository for all the random stuff I get sent or find and which is worthy of noting but doesn't deserve a place in my Bookmarks file.

So here goes nothing.  This could be good; could be a train wreck; could be abandoned and forgotten in a week.  Only time will tell.

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from August 2008 listed from newest to oldest.

September 2008 is the next archive.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.


Powered by Movable Type 4.33-en