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Messages - Ralf Maximus [ switch to compact view ]

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Catalyst should work, even if you don't know what model you have.  The installer figures it out automagically.

Living Room / Re: How often do you reboot your primary workstation?
« on: December 15, 2007, 08:34 PM »
Which I find incredibly annoying, as I don't know your login password. 

Leave it running next time, please.

Eek!  My monkey has a bird now!


Living Room / Re: 100,000 users!
« on: December 15, 2007, 08:32 PM »
Sorry, that's just me.  I keep forgetting my password and create new accounts a few dozen times per hour.

(congrats, mouser!)

Found Deals and Discounts / Re: Cables, etc.
« on: December 15, 2007, 08:30 PM »
CircuitCity doesn't carry them at all???

And this surprises you?  :-)

I lost all faith in Circuit City when I bought a small LCD TV for my dad and the only coaxial cable they had was Monster Cable, at $12 per foot.  Yeah, I'm going to spend half of what the TV costs on a 12 foot cable.  ("But the QUALITY is superior!" said the chirpy salesperson, who actually tried to make the sale.)

So I popped next door to Target of all places and picked one up for $8.

I can honestly say that is the finest bible-themed video game featuring a supersonic headgehog I've ever seen.

Living Room / Re: TOP 10 Theories Why Neanderthals Disappeared
« on: December 15, 2007, 08:20 PM »
Bah.  It was a silly movie.  Agonizingly slow.

But the part where Ash turns out to be a robot and tries to kill Ripley with a magazine was pretty cool.

Living Room / Re: Tell me why I have to be a PowerSlave?
« on: December 15, 2007, 08:18 PM »
Most of the computers that have failed on me did so during power-up.  It's been a rare experience that something went *poof* and quit working while I was using it.

So either the hardware's failing during shut-down (possible), has mysteriously failed while it's off (unlikely), or the stress of powering it on pushes an internal part beyond limit (probable).

And now I have jinxed every piece of equipment I own.  What's the Murphy's Law Cleansing Ritual again?

Living Room / Re: How Santa Gets Around To So Many
« on: December 15, 2007, 12:21 PM »
Time to haul out my favorite Christmas piece, The Physics of Santa.

Developer's Corner / Re: Physics in a GUI
« on: December 14, 2007, 09:24 AM »
Now with omfgvista support!

I want that on my license plate.  Alas, too many letters...

Audrey Maximus got the mug, as well as a cool signed print (like the one above) and YESTERDAY she got a cool extra-high resolution poster.  We're getting it framed in the next few weeks and it'll be in her room.

This weekend I'll gather everyone together (animals included) and take a family picture with her prize goodies for posting here.  Stay tuned...

Living Room / Re: SnowGlobe Boy
« on: December 14, 2007, 07:31 AM »
"It's Christmas time, Jenkins.  You know what that means..."


"Into the dome!"

Living Room / Re: PipeBytes: Simple Internet File Transfers
« on: December 13, 2007, 08:32 PM »
I just tested it, and I don't know if it was just me or what, but the transfer was very slow.
I started the upload from FF, and downloaded it with IE, on the same computer, and it would take about 30 min.
The file was like 30 megs, and I am using cable. I downloaded the file from the original server in less then 30 min.

I doubt the java code or whetever they use to manage the transfer is smart enough to know both of your computers are inside your firewall.  So your file is taking a tour of the internet.

When you consider what's happening -- bytes streaming up to your ISP and back down again -- a 30 minute round-trip that originally took 30 minutes to download one way is pretty good.  If you're using standard consumer-grade broadband, your upload limit is probably capped way lower than your download speed, so that'd be the limiting factor.

Of course they have limits though. I think the PipeBytes "no limit" thing is a gimmick to get attention for the time-being.

The "no limit" thing makes sense when you consider that all PipeBytes does is negotiate a peer-to-peer transfer then backs out of the process. 

My understanding  is that you are not uploading to their servers at any time.  Think of it as an easy two-computer BitTorrent session, utilizing some browser-based code to do the heavy lifting.

Thus, no reason for them to impose limits, and no worries about what you're transmitting... since the file is never on their hardware, they're never hosting it, and thus avoid prosecution for potential copyright violations.

RapidShare and other services *do* store the file, even if for a limited time.  And many of the free sites impose stupid user tricks on the experience, like making you wait for a queue position.

I'm not saying PipeBytes is wonderful; I hardly know them.  But it's certainly different than anything else I've seen out there.  Even if they're out of business in six months it's an interesting approach to a common need.

Just outta perverse curiosity, has anyone tried yanking out the USB drive when Vista's using it to ReadyBoost?  What happens to Windows?

General Software Discussion / Re: GemX - missing in action
« on: December 13, 2007, 01:49 PM »
Are you using this, Ralf?

No.  I'm trying to avoid installing new widgets if possible; they're like potato chips.  If I eat one the whole bag's suddenly gone and there'll be crumbs all over my desktop.  Or something.

Developer's Corner / Physics in a GUI
« on: December 13, 2007, 01:44 PM »
Found an interesting article at CodeProject: An experimental user interface with real physics.


let's get physical.jpg

The example is simple but compelling.  By stringing objects/icons on a clothesline thingy the user gets interesting feedback, potentially about the "weight" of the object (how large the resource) or maybe different objects have different physical attributes.  Since it's just a concept, your guess is as good as mine.

I doubt we'll have virtual clotheslines strung across our desktop anytime soon, but I'm always intrigued by new GUI paradigms. If nothing else, lift some code for particle physics to use in your own projects.

C# (.NET 3 Framework) source included.

General Software Discussion / Re: Are you testing XP SP3 RC ??
« on: December 13, 2007, 10:54 AM »
Ran SP3 RC1 on a test workstation here.  It broke eFax messenger pretty badly.  Uninstalling/reinstalling the eFax client fixed it. 

Note that while it's designated a test workstation, it's a near clone of my primary machine with all the same software, service packs, and development stuff.  The plan is if my main PC croaks, I can keep functioning until I fix it.  The only hardware difference is that it's got a single-core CPU, only two monitors, and doesn't have the nice external RAID cage.

No other problems to report.

General Software Discussion / Re: GemX - missing in action
« on: December 13, 2007, 10:21 AM »
CalendarScope also offers a freeware desktop clock that looks kind of cool.  Very customizable, from the screenshots.


Living Room / PipeBytes: Simple Internet File Transfers
« on: December 13, 2007, 10:08 AM »
Sometimes you just want to send somebody a file, period.  If you're lucky enough to have an FTP server handy, or your ISP permits emailing big files it's not too hard.  But occasionally you might find yourself using an alien computer on the wrong side of the firewall.  What then?

Enter PipeBytes.


It's an internet service accessed by going to the PipeBytes web page.  Nothing to install, and (they say) it works in most browsers on most operating systems.  It's absurdly simple and requires no registration to use -- and free to you, since it's ad supported.

To send a file, click the "Send" button and browse for it.  Attach an optional message describing what you're sending.  Hit the "Upload" button and instead of spooling your file immediately, you get a nice hypertext link and a pickup key.  Send your recipient the link + key, they login to PipeBytes and enter the key.  THAT's when your file streams to their computer.

At no time is your file stored on anyone's server, so it offers a bit more privacy than other solutions.  However, the model only supports one-time A-to-B transfers, which means it's not a broadcast mechanism or file sharing platform.  And that may be exactly what you need sometimes.

was it VisualRoute?

Oooh, VisualRoute is coooool...


I was so entranced I downloaded the free "lite" edition.  That's even cooler. 

Caveat: when running Lite for the firsttime, it notifies you that updates are available and offers to download a newer version for you.  Surprise!  The "new version" downloaded is really the 15-day trial version.  Ha ha, got you, sucker!  Luckily the 15-day limited edition installs alongside the Lite version, so it's easy to uninstall without corrupting Lite.  But still... a teeny bit deceptive, methinks.

Found Deals and Discounts / Re: PhraseExpress vs Direct Access
« on: December 12, 2007, 01:52 PM »
I like PhraseExpress, but (on my system) it caused some odd behavior.  I leave my PC running 24/7 and after 3 or 4 days systemwide keyboard response became sluggish.  Like, typing into any MS app with Intellisense caused insanely long delays.

During troubleshooting I removed PhraseExpress and the problem went away.  I was forced to conclude that was the culprit, though it might've been a conflict with AHK.  Since uninstalling PhraseExpress I haven't tried to narrow it down any further.


I have been getting occasional random sudden reboots when I click on the shortcut to launch Firefox - the app starts to load then the screen goes blank and goes through POST before restarting windows.

Sounds like Carol's Firefox is taking down Windows, not just crashing.  That's a bit more worrisome than FF failing.

Living Room / Amusing Server Error Messages
« on: December 12, 2007, 11:58 AM »
YouTube just errored on me, and here's the message:



Nein. has been stable for me.

Maybe uninstall and download a complete new package?

Disable all your add-ins temporarily?

Also, for the rest of you that have not driven a BIG TRUCK, you might wish to take this opportunity to have any questions you may have addressed.

Is it true truckers can drink 93 octane and urinate diesel, can strip down and reassemble their rigs blind-folded, and have the entire US road atlas memorized?

Actually, I'd like to hear some amusing/scary/interesting trucker anecdotes.  Of the "you wouldn't believe the things I've seen" variety.

Got any?

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