Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Dead Laptop Sketch

I had my laptop boot up three times saying the time/date wasn't set. The third time I ran the little diagnostic program, which instantly said it couldn't find the hard drive. Rest of the diagnostic went fine. I figured the hard drive thing was a fluke, it found the hard drive before I ran the diagnostic right? Rebooted and that was it. It never found the hard drive either.

I heard/saw/read a joke thing once, maybe one of those lists of stupid things IT people have had to deal with. It involved a guy trying to hold what ever piece of equipment the computer couldn't find up to the monitor so the computer could see it.

I took the laptop down to Jane's Computers. He says the hard drive is fine, but the computer won't recognize any hard drive connected to it. It the connection or the motherboard. The conversation went KINDA like this:
"The man from the Monk shop said that it needed a whole new motherboard, but then pointed out that the new improved Monk Plus models were twice as powerful, had an entirely new multi-tasking, Negative Capability feature that allowed them to hold up to sixteen entirely different and contradictory ideas in memory simultaneously without generating any irritating system errors, were twice as fast and at least three times as glib, and you could have a whole new one for less than the cost of replacing the motherboard of the old model."
He didn't charge me for taking a look at it, even though I tried to offer him something just for his time. So Thumbs up to: Jane's Computers at 1725 S. Rainbow Blvd. right at Oakly Blvd. Las Vegas, NV 89146. Phone (702) 597-0600. Apparently no website though.

I went to Fry's and got a USB enclosure. Took the hard drive out of the laptop and stuck it in that. Then I thought, wait, I know the laptop is set up to try and boot from USB, I could just plug it in and boot and still a working laptop right? Nope. It starts to load windows and reboots. Googling around the Internets I see that lots of people are trying to install and boot Vista from a USB drive and it isn't easy. I was hoping that since it is already installed, which appears to be the difficult part, that I could get it to work but apparently not.

I had planned on maybe getting a new laptop in a few months. I just wanted to wait long enough for all the new stuff coming out of CES was out and slightly lower in price. I want both Windows 7 and Office 2010 on it already, no upgrading. I want small, because I have big screens on my desks that I can plug it into and small is better to carry around when I'm not at my desk. But I do kinda want something with a graphic card so I can play games when I'm out somewhere away from my desktop computer. My current laptop played WoW initially, but sometime between installs it got upset with it. Now it plays (well, before it died) but it wouldn't render the world correctly. Not that I have really even played WoW since leaving Perth, but the new expansion is coming out and I'll at least check that out.

Anyway, I'll leave you with this surprisingly video trailer for, "Office 2010: The Movie!"

...you know... this means I am going to have to install iTunes again doesn't it? $#!+!!!

Sunday, January 03, 2010

Year's End

Yeah, so I've been pretty quiet lately. Let's see if I can do a quick recount of the last month or so.

Been spending a lot of time at work, very busy doing difficult things at the moment. Nothing I can talk about since the game is unannounced, and to be fair it's just normal 'that's why they call it work' stuff and it isn't that interesting.

I've also playing a few games on the XBox 360 and PS3. Finished Demon's Souls the other night. Even managed to get through the first level, defeating a PvPer and the first boss, and then back to the Nexus with all the souls I got for defeating the final boss. I didn't really defeat the PvPer so much as not follow him into the monster spawn he thought I was stupid enough to follow him into. Shot him with some flaming arrows instead. He ran away and fell down a hole which made me giggle especially since I'm sure I had already destroyed his expensive armor with my Scraping Spear.

God of WarStarting the God of War series, not really liking the whole 'mini-game' aspect of it. Especially when I can't quite figure out what they are telling me I should be doing. "Oh, when you show the button being tapped, what you really mean is 'change the way your holding the controller so you can mash the button in some insane attempt to push it through the other side and therefor need to replace it with a new one." Took a quick peek at the God of War III demo and I like how they put the button you are supposed to press on screen where it is on the controller. I never could remember what position the four buttons are in. But it still breaks me out of the game to be watching for the button symbols to show up on screen and the game doesn't give you much of a time window to press the button before it's too late. Also don't like how they teach me I can climb up the side of the boat using this netting, but not back down the identical netting next to it and things like that.

Shadow ComplexI LOVED Shadow Complex! If you liked old school Metroid and haven't gotten this $15 game from XBox Live Arcade, you are missing out. Only two things drove me nuts, when they put two items in the same 'square' of the map. One is in the same square as a Save Room so you don't see the dot. The other removes the dot when you get the first item even though there is still something else hidden there. First one didn't get me, but I spent forever trying to get the last part of the key due to the second issue. I'll just say that when you find the mask that lets you breath underwater, keep looking around there for a part of the key. That isn't a spoiler, consider it a bug fix.

We finally got around to finishing off all the divorce stuff, so I am legally single again. I even tried dating again for almost 3 weeks, but it didn't work out so well. Somehow asking her if she had already gone to lunch ended with us breaking up. ...via text messaging even! How sad and depressing. Kind of ruined my whole Christmas break. It actually happened on New Year's Day, so 2010 isn't starting off very well.

Just got around to updating the blog to replace the Interzone and Auran links with the Jet Set Games logo. I wish I could figure out how to put a background into the posts, so that I could replace the background with the one I use for my twitter page. See how the game boxes are crowded over on the left, I can't let them go any further to the right or you wouldn't be able to read the post text in a smaller screen resolution. I tried poking around in the HTML but without an example, using the same template, to steal from I'm over my head. Also I'm still using the old templates from before Blogger upgraded them a few years ago. I'm afraid of losing all the tinkering I've already done if I upgrade.

Also did a real quick resume update, always hate defining what I do into bullet points. I wanted to convert the resume MS:Word file to a PDF, but the first converter program I found didn't keep the margins, extending it to a 3rd page and did some other odd things. I'll work on that later since I'm hopefully not sending it out again anytime soon. Though next time I do, I will definitely convert it to PDF first so it can't be altered easily. Recruitment agencies like to put their own giant logo across the top of all the pages. I understand why they want to do that, they need to remind the employer who is representing you, and I suppose it works with most resumes. The last time it was a disaster for my nicely laid out, 2-page resume. Since it also indented what I wrote, it turned into a 6-page resume, 2 pages wide by 3 pages long. It was confusing and an almost unreadable mess. They also did the same for my 2-page published title list. It was an embarrassment for them to even have sent it out like that and who knows, may have even contributed to me not getting the job. It's okay since I'm much happier where I am.

Finally, I found out that I can get a rebate on my taxes for the sales tax I paid on my car; which is great considering the tax burden I'll have this year.

Okay, that's it for now. Be safe.