Tuesday, November 12, 2019

You know that a camera is pretty good: when you’ve got to time pressing the shutter button to a dog blinking her eyes. Because otherwise you get a superb shot of a blinking dog.

I still remember early tablets and phones, and that feeling that a rusted barn door with a cement block glued to it could swing faster than a picture could be captured by the device.

Ahh, technological progress :-).

Monday, November 11, 2019

Watching The Outer Limits - s02e9 - Trial by Fire, I find myself wondering somewhat just what kinds of civilizations we could find out there amongst the stars.

Based on our own civilizations throughout history, I rather think there's three ways that works out.

In a perfect world, we would probably have a first contact out of Star Trek. But I don't really have that high a hope for humanity, so I expect our early associations to look more like Avatar or Enemy Mine.

In a way though, I worry that a more likely scenario given how difficult truly foreign beings are, and how fucked up we are, things would turn out more like the Earth-Minbari war in B5. Which could be summarized as a hot head meets cultural differences kicks off the near extimerination of the human race. Except I don't think the Battle of the Line would turn out so fortuitous, so much as like an ID4 assault ship firing its primary weapon.
When I consider grilled cheese a comfort food, it can be hard to decide if adulting is a little bit sad or if my cheese budget is just a lot more flexible than my mother’s, lol.

Tonight, I found myself in more need of a happy meal than a desire to cook. Plus it’sa little too soon to make pasta again, thus simple plans.

Sunday, November 10, 2019

How Steve Jobs saved Apple with the online Apple Store

Not sure if memory lane makes me feel old, or just makes me remember the shopping experience from when we bought our first WebTV back in the mid nineties. I also find the old snap of Dell’s site oddly appropriate, and appealing, as someone that experienced that era of the World Wide Web.

And with regards to our present time? Well let’s just say, Amazon is a big thing now.
I’m pretty sure if it wasn’t for my efforts to only eat one helping for dinners, I’d be passed out on the floor, rubbing my pasta filled belly, and using leftover garlic bread as a pimple while I drool the sauce.

Needless to say, I rather like pasta.

My desktop is for games

Ways to know your desktop has one true job:

  1. 80% of your storage use is installed software.
  2. 97.2% of that is your Steam library.
  3. You wouldn't own a desktop if you didn't need the huge GTX card.
  4. You wouldn't need the huge GTX card if you didn't play PC games.
Coincidentally, WinDirStat calculates my %UserProfile% is about 5% of my storage use and a bit of 7% is my non-steam games directory. Most of my user profile's use is taken up by Android SDK files, and I don't think I've even touched that in a couple years.

So, yes. I think it's pretty safe in saying that Centauri only really has one true job.

That I also use the machine for video ripping and conversion, is secondary really. Or should we say a side effect that it's the machine I have connected to a Blu-ray drive, and conversions are done on it because the only better candidates don't run HandBrake.

Most other reasons, it just happens to be the machine in front of me at the time, and even then I'm often inclined to reach for my tablet instead.

Misty being well aware of food.

Also, me remembering that if you're going to eat chili out of a can, always grab Wolf chili when it's on sale :).

Damn, hard drives are getting cheap and huge

Passing thought: damn, hard drives are getting cheap and huge.

Judging by the prices, I kind of hope that my drives keep on lasting on, because if they do, by the time the older ones die, I'll probably be able to get one drive for the same price: that fits my entire storage needs, lol.

Currently, storage around here is fairly simple but divided.

Centauri was originally a small SSD and a 1 TB HDD. Earlier this year I replaced the first SSD I ever bought with a modern 1 TB SSD, which frigging cost less than the original 120 GB SSD. With that migration: Centauri's second drive is now mostly for things I haven't bothered to move over.

Cream has its own internal storage media, but those are solid state storage for running its OS and associated trappings. It's meat and potatoes are a pair of platter drives: a 2 TB that serves as cold storage, and a 3 TB drive that serves as media storage as well as a backup of the first. Originally cold storage was a 1 TB drive that I bought at the same time as Centuari's, but it finally went the death of too many years of power on hours; and a 2 TB was the same price by then.

I suspect at some point, Centauri's now redundant hard drive will be getting swapped with the drive hanging off my Xbox. Because that drive is both too damned small for games (~320G) and too damned slow for games (~5400 rpm laptop). With Centauri's 1 TB drive now being the oldest still in use here, giving it a job where failure is not a problem but where capacity is, seems like a good plan.

The downside is of course this means actually getting off my fat arse and doing things (>_<).

I'm pretty sure if my drives just keep on trucking a few more years, drives these sizes will be free with a box of cracker jacks. Nevermind typical drive sizes being larger than their collective whole.
Willow: wtf are you doing, human?
Me: trying to take a picture of your comfy.

Saturday, November 9, 2019

Watching the 2010 version of True Grit on Hulu, I’m kind of happy it turned out as such a good film. It also reminds me that one of these days, I really should get around to reading the book.

For better or worse as the case might be, I kind of developed a soft spot for westerns along the way. Enough years were spent watching television with my mother, that there were two channels that were worth noting. TCM and Westerns. Among the side effects of that, are my taste in movies running from about the 1930s onwards to the present. Sadly though, they don’t really make a lot of westerns anymore.

Friday, November 8, 2019

Not sure what bothers me more: that I've probably owned flash media smaller than nVidia's driver updates have become, or at some point in my life, I could probably have squeezed it onto a hell-of-a-lot-of-floppies without running out.

Actually, I'm not sure I wanna know how many floppy disks I still have between home and office. That's kind of scary, given how few machines I have that even have the hardware for that.
Adobe deals with ‘painful’ early reviews of Photoshop for iPad

If I was Adobe: the thing I would fear most is the top competition on iPad OS becoming a threat on Mac over the next ten to twenty years. Much as if I were them, my biggest worry would be Adobe making rapid headway on iPadOS over the next two to five years.

Right now: Adobe is still in a fairly powerful position. Or as I like to think of it: the subscription reflects their needs of doing business, and the feelings of a clawed demon hand gripping your balls, reflects users’ dependence upon Adobe’s products. Despite much grumbling about Creative Cloud, everyone is still either looking for a non-paid option, or using Photoshop and friends in their workflows. Much as before.

But nothing ever lasts forever, and maintaining dominance isn’t always assured. Today is not tomorrow, nor is it yesterday.
Discounting the seasoning things that last next to forever between restocks, I figure this works out to about $3.50 of deliciousness.

The beef cube steaks were under $5 for a package of two, and trivially fried with a smidge of sea salt and a nice helping of black pepper. I find it rather curious how my mother usually fried these, and made brown gravy because her mother  never used it in their cooking; my relationship to black pepper is pretty much the same thing a generation forward.

Much to my surprise, I found edamame in the frozen food section, and this was about half a $1.70 bag. Steamed, tasted, and salted. If it wasn’t my first time trying it, I’d probably have mixed it into the rice. The leftover half makes me wish I bought beer.

Some leftover rice was passing time in the fridge, so a little soy sauce and beef flavored rice seasoning solves the filler. The variety bundle of furikake packets I bought basically is the gift that keeps on giving, in terms of how long the packets last. Plus rice is basically free IMHO. The 5 and 20 pound bags work out to somewhere between $1 and $1.25 a pound, even with buying a kind that I can use for onigiri.

Willow’s number one problem is having to wait until after human foods before dog treats occur. Misty just wishes all food was belong to her.

But I am still forgiven for enforcing the pecking order, that their main treats come after dinner. Which tonight amounted to a helping of canned meat/gravy yumnums, and then a regularly scheduled dog treat, lol.
The way things work around here:

Misty: stares
Me: I’m going to take a shit, not get food.
Misty: You’re thinking of giving me a treat. I know it, human.
Me: Oh, fine.
[Gets a treat]

How to generate moments of confusion in the morning:

Step 1: turn off your monitor, so you hit the power button when the desktop won’t wake by mouse clicks.

Step 2: leave your keyboard switched to your iPad, so you start typing your login password into the wrong machine when prompted.

Step 3: remember how you carried out steps 1 and 2.

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

3M Laptop Stand, Raise Screen Height to Reduce Neck Strain, Vertical Design Allows You to Bring Screen Closer, Compact Foot Print Saves Desk Space, Non-Skid Base Keeps Laptop Secure, Black (LX550)

This might actually be what I've been looking for.

Ordinarily, my workspace looks like this:

laptop | monitor | tablet

And frequently my mouse pad is closer to the monitor with my keyboard shifted a bit to the left. Making it easier to access my tablet and shift its and my position as I work.

But a 14" Latitude is kinda chunky and takes up a lot of bench space. Along with being too short and far away from my peepers to really use as a second monitor without crowding my Bluetooth keyboard. So, I've been thinking of late how nice it would be if I could open the system and elevate it closer to the vertical.

Such that the laptop would effectively be optimized for use as a secondary monitor rather than for using the keyboard and touchpad. Because let's face it: I've got externals for that, and prefer it that way when docked.

Otherwise, I may as well just shut the lid and slide it out of the way; for the time being it's mostly serving as a keeping-tabs workspace rather than a working monitor. E.g. I'll leave a terminal there that I'm waiting for a long program to finish running, or for a summary of incoming mail. And then do everything on my external monitor, that's better positioned; or on my tablet that's more portable.

So freaking tempted....

While I’m not particularly fond of Photoshop, and there are people who aren’t entirely happy with its first showing on iPad, but I like the concept.

For Adobe: they can either take the path of being a leader as iPadOS grows or be left behind as others grow with the platform. So it’s good sense for them to maximize what Photoshop can do on the platform. I’m also pretty sure their are crazy people at Adobe who would like a more desktop grade Photoshop on their iPad: just as some of their customers do.
Hamburger helper and dog slobber, need I say more?

Monday, November 4, 2019

How Gundam's Amuro Ray Changed What It Means to Be an Anime Hero

Amuro is a curious character as heros go, or more accurately perhaps, I've rarely considered him the hero of the story: so much as caught in it. Which in of itself could be considered a Gundam-trope by now, 40 years later.

Given a different circumstance to the war: I'd rather invision Amuro Ray in protest to military conflict at all, and that it's a kind of bloodied, twisted irony that he ended up one of the most notable heroes of the One Year War. And as such would still be active much later during the Londo Bell era.

A large part of Gundam's first set of story arcs centers around the fact that he's pretty much got a simple choice. He can pilot the Gundam into battle, or he can kiss his arse goodbye before the shooting even starts. That's the card they've been dealt. Really, he's kind of a dick during the earlier parts. But over the course of the series he evolves much better as a character.

I think the article's parting bit puts it more accurately than the tile. Less that the character changed what it means to be an anime hero, and more that he's a different type of protagonist to fill the role. 'Cuz let's face it, the Saturday morning go punch the villain slot isn't dead yet and it's been decades, lol.

Sunday, November 3, 2019

One positive side of my iOS change over has been the battery life.

The iPad Pro 11 works out to about a nightly charge after heavy use, and I can basically irk out two days at light use  or a medium plus light day worth of I keep an eye.

By contrast, every Android tablet I’ve had pretty much needs a nightly charge if it’s Google all the things.

The exception is my old Thor model Kindle Fire, which runs on a more “What week did I last change this thing?” pattern of life.
Assorted, recent dog photos and comfortiness.

Part of me thinks the genetics and upbringing assured that I’d be capable of eating like a proverbial horse. Part of me thinks of I wanna live to die an old fart, I should probably exercise more and eat less.

Willow on the other hand wishes she could swipe my tuna.
Duck you, autocorrect! Ducking, duck you, autocorrect!
In a more perfect world: there would be a personal coffee droid hovering a few meters from my head, like a mobile keurig that dispenses coffee, and shoots cookies like a pez dispenser.

Ahh, an idiot can dream.

Saturday, November 2, 2019

Watching Cautious Hero: The Hero Is Overpowered but Overly Cautious on Hulu, has been full of cackles. It’s not the same kind of cackling as Konosuba, but much cackling non the less.

I’m also pretty sure that the goddess will have a stroke by the end.

Friday, November 1, 2019

Comfy is the natural state around here

The negative points are pretty much why I haven’t used paper notebooks very much since my teens. Having a pile of stuff to sort, revise, and remove the cruft from: is a problem that doesn’t scale. Or as I like to remember: after about three binders, I’m pretty much done and hate dealing with heaps of folders.

Most of the advantages I sought came from having a digital file system. Typewriters never really did it for me the way text edited and word processors do. But as a consequence of funneling everything down the word hole: you lose the freedom of the page.

One of the things I’ve enjoyed about having tablets is the ability to have my tablet alongside as I work. Lean over, and swipe words into my textual notes, and then shift back to my work. Evernote also works pretty well in that it optimizes for the more word processor like nature of many of my work notes, yet makes it easy to merge disparate bits of information from external resources. Including handwriting, images, documents, scripts, etc.

Tablets open up greater ease to get off the beaten path of the word processor: while retaining the ability to keep it as simple as WordStar. Especially when you have both a stylus and a keyboard available to aide your note taking.