Archive for the ‘Computers’ Category

Comcast internet woes

Saturday, August 8th, 2009

For the past week or so I’ve been having troubles with my comcast high speed Internet. It will go diwn then come back up a few minutes later Friday night, the 7th, it got really bad. Today it has been down more than it has been up. I’ll watch the modem, motorola sb5101, status page and it just won’t lock on to a signal. Occasionally it will get one and work for a few, then right back down.

So I called 1800COMCAST. The lady had me power cycle everything, which I had of course done already but I play a long with her script. She says she is running a test and can’t connect to my modem. Well, if she could, I probably wouldn’t be calling. She asks me if I own the modem and I explain that I got it from the previous cable company before comcast took over. Then she tells me that the failure to get a signal is a sign that my modem is dieing and that I need a new one. Sigh. Oh, they’re more than willing to rent me one for a monthly fee if they send a truck. I don’t buy it at all and play a long to get the call ended. Seems that was all she was interested in too. I offered to read stuff about the signals and such, but she just wanted to tell me to get a new modem and get on to the next call. Must have to keep the call center stats up?

Now what? I imagine things will behave as temps decrease, but that’s a pain to have to wait for afterdark to have reliable Internet service.

At least I have my iPhone to get my fix and whine. Oh yea, Comcast, your online chat help thing doesn’t work in the iPhone. Maybe that should be integrated with your app?

Typing this on my new iPhone

Friday, June 19th, 2009

I am typing this on my new iPhone 3GS! I am using the wordpress app for the iPhone. The device is certainly pretty cool. It was pretty easy to activate with At&t -just download iTunes, sync, and I was on my way. I think I’ll have fun with this thing.

Microsoft says to reformat

Wednesday, April 5th, 2006

This article at eWeek quotes a security manager from Microsoft who essentially says that saving a Windows install from a bad malware infection is becoming near impossible. He mentions malware that self repairs — you remove it then refresh the directory and it is back again. He recommended using Spybot to help keep systems clean and has urged businesses to come up with quick, efficient ways of backing up data and reinstalling a system.

That’s great.. businesses can afford a dedicated staff to keep their computers running, but what about home users? They’re pretty well screwed when they get an infection.. The standard advice of running Spybot and Ad-Aware may no longer be enough.. “Hope you kept backups, because you need to reformat,” may become the advice of the day.

Sure am glad I use Gentoo, but maybe mom will be getting a Mac next..

Webhost upgrade

Thursday, June 30th, 2005

The webhost FINALLY got around to upgrading the webserver from a single P3-1GHZ to a dual Opteron 246. Bout damn time. Only a month and a half from when I initially complained (and I had been having problems before that) to when they finally upgrade the server. Hopefully things will run smoothly now, and I can actually use my site that I’ve been paying for.

Computers Chase the Checkered Flag

Friday, June 18th, 2004

Computers Chase the Checkered Flag, an article in the NY Times, talks about all the computing power in an average F1 car. Data is transmitted from the car to the team computers as the car whizzes by the pits at 200mph. Teams are able to monitor potential problems in real time and predict failures.

Estimates say that teams will spend in excess of $2.8 billion this year to run all the races, with top teams spending around $400 million each.

AMD is excepted to announce that it will build a computer roughly as fast as the 10th most powerful machine in the world for Sauber which will be used for aerodynamic testing.

Seems like F1 racing is becoming more of a battle between engineers than a battle between drivers.

HowStuffWorks has an article about the technology behind CART cars. Budgets and technology in CART isn’t quite as large as F1, but still an interesting read.

Google’s image ads

Friday, May 14th, 2004

Hmmm.. One reason I never minded the Google ads was because they were all text based. Now that they can do images, I’m not so sure I like em. One thing I like about the regular text ads is that it seems some webmasters are able to customize the display of the ads so that they fit in with the page design. With random images popping up, that just isn’t possible. The image ads will stand out and be pretty damn obvious, while the text ads fit right in with the design.

Oh well. Google’s going public. I guess they gotta find ways of keeping shareholders happy.

Hope you have a fast computer

Wednesday, May 5th, 2004

Preliminary system requirements for Microsoft’s next OS, Longhorn, have apparently been leaked. The “average” computer should have something along the lines of a dual-core 4GHz processor, 2GB of RAM, up to a terabyte of storage, and a graphics card that runs 3x as fast as the ones on the market today. Wow. And that’s just average. I guess that MS expecting that Longhorn will take a while to come out, or that technology is going to keep advancing at a rapid pace.

Battlefield Vietnam

Monday, March 29th, 2004

Last weekend I bought Battlefield Vietnam. I hadn’t played Battlefield 1942 too much, so it was kinda a gamble as to whether I would like it or not. I’m glad I bought it, because I love it! I generally suck at video games, but I love hopping on a big server and running around shooting people. Adding to the fun is the fact that I can drive tanks, APCs, jeeps, helicopters, planes, and even a scooter!

The one thing I dislike about the game is the M60 on the US side. It’s like a BFG from “other” games. It’s insanely accurate, has a high rate of fire, and very deadly. The gunner also either gets a grenade launcher or a LAW. The LAW and M60 combo is deadly against the enemy, almost unfair. Hopefully EA will fix the problem in a patch.

One of my favorite things to do is play as a sniper and set myself up a little ways from the enemy base.. Guys will spawn then stand around waiting for a helicopter to appear, making it incredibly easy to get headshots on them and drop em like flies. Gotta be kinda demoralizing to just be standing around and suddenly drop dead.. even moreso when I manage to get a guy twice in a row.

I’ll have to put up some of my screenshots sometime soon…

ATI Radeon 9800 PRO (more)

Tuesday, March 2nd, 2004

I’ve been using my ATI Radeon 9800 PRO for a little over a week now. I’m loving it. Not a big benchmark fan, so I haven’t bothered overclocking it. I’m mainly playing America’s Army and I can play with all the details cranked up and still get a decent FPS of ~50-70. Lovely.

But ATI’s drivers in Linux absolutely SUCK. I get some terrible distortion while playing AA after about a minute in a map. Game is absolutely beautiful in Windows, so I find myself booting over just to play that game. I’ve found a couple other people with the same problem, so I guess it really is a driver issue. I’ve tried two different versions of the driver (3.2.8 and 3.7.0) and get the same problem.

And GameVE continues to cause problems for me. They issued a refund, but it was only a partial refund. I’ve tried calling them a couple times but can’t get ahold of the manager. I emailed them and asked about it, but no reply yet. In the meantime, I’ve filed complaints with the BBB, California Attorney General, Marasco and Nesselbush and the Federal Trade Commission. They sold me a used, old, defective product and advertised it as brand new. Now they’re hassling me about giving me my money back. So screw em.

ATI Radeon 9800 PRO

Friday, February 20th, 2004

Got my new video card today. Finally. It works A-OK! Sapphire (ATI) Radeon 9800 PRO. I’m pretty happy with it.

Getting it going in Gentoo was pretty easy.

emerge -C nvidia-kernel
emerge -C nvidia-glx
opengl-update xfree
emerge ati-drivers
opengl-update ati

That will create an XF86Config-4 file for the card. I said “no” to using the internal AGP, opting to use the kernel’s instead. agpgart and the nvidia_agp interface were built as modules. In /etc/modules/autoload.d I load nvidia_agp and fglrx at boot time.

America’s Army is raising hell in Linux though. I’ll play SF_Hospital for about a minute and then the screen will become corrupt. Pretty nasty. But I can play it just fine in Windows.. I guess ATI’s Linux drivers really do suck.

Windows NT & 2000 source code leaked

Thursday, February 12th, 2004

Windows 2000 & Windows NT 4 Source Code Leaked according to That site is down at the moment, so I linked to the Slashdot discussion of it. Should be interesting…

Computer Woes

Tuesday, February 10th, 2004

So after I returned that card to Newegg, I ordered another one from What a nightmare. That place sucks. They sent me a used, old, defective card that they had advertised as new, and then I had to argue with the manager there to get him to refund my money. He kept wanting me to try another card from him, after the garbage that he sent me in the first place. It was a BGF GeForce FX 5900, and he blamed the problem on BFG. Said that they sent him the cards just like that. Sure, I believe that.

How many manufs keep new merchandis right next to defective, returned merchandise? How many would sent those defective cards out?

Now, if a store got a rush of orders for a certain card and took more orders than they had cards, what do you think they would do? Hmm… ship out some returned cards and pray that they work? Hmm…

I think sucks. I’ll never do business with them again.