April 18th, 2011

#2681: Didn't Harry Turtledove write a book like that?

Oleg has some pics, including this one:

...of course, in Turtledove's book the Rivington Men were supplying the Confederacy with AK-47s, not AR-15s chambered in .22LR, but WTF.

* * *

NYC spends $23,000 per student on education. A lot of school districts (particularly those of major cities) are underreporting their spending, too--lying about what they spend, lest the public get up in arms.

And we're always told that there's not enough money for education, that we need to spend more, MORE, MORE.

But why be surprised? That's the result of socializing anything; waste, fraud, abuse, and near-total incompetence. The socialized edcuational system is a failure.

* * *

Vox Day writes about "pastor" Rob Bell gutting Christianity.

The idea that there is no hell--I can see why plenty of people would find that notion attractive, but it just ain't so. If you're a Christian, you have to pay attention to the words of Jesus himself, who said there is; and if you're rejecting Jesus' words, what kind of Christian does that make you? It's a package deal--all or nothing--and you can't just pick and choose the bits you like.

The entire point of Jesus' existence is to save us from hell, to redeem us for our sins, to teach us how to find our way to God, to extol the virtues of choosing God over whatever else there may be.

The entire universe is built around choice and consequence, cause and effect; you can't avoid it. Hell is the consequence of deciding against God.

* * *

Another economic DOOM! thread at AoSHQ.

Student loan debt has topped $1 trillion, making it a bigger bundle than credit card debt. And guess what? Bankruptcy laws don't apply to student loans! That's $1 trillion of debt that cannot be defaulted upon, nor can it be paid down at any rate other than 1:1.

* * *

Doubleplusundead has a post today about an Orange County Republican moron who sent people an e-mail depicting Obamma as a chimpanzee.


Okay: you and me, we can get away with that. But a party official? Let me blockquote the post, expletives redacted:
What are you, [redacted] retarded? Do you not see that this stupid [redacted] [redacted] plays right into the MSM’s narrative about the Tea Party and conservatives in general opposing Obama because we’re somehow a bunch of RAAAAACISTS?
There's a lot more swearing at the link.

Yes, it's unfair that leftists get to depict all conservative blacks as apes and chimps without being accused of racism. Yes, it's unfair that we can't do the same thing, however tasteless it may be. But you know what? We don't need to demean their appearances that way. We don't need to because their positions are indefensible, and if we just hammer at them the right way they'll crumble like stale bread.

But when party officials do stupid crap like this, all they do is give the lefties ammunition. *sigh*

* * *

Among other things, the two papers I got yesterday had an ad for Fry's Electronics.

It used to be that I'd get a Fry's ad every week. They stopped putting it in the Sun-Times, though (I think they did that on Fridays) and I stopped seeing them. But it was in the Tribune, so I was able to have a gander at it.

They're selling an ASUS laptop with a Core i7 processor and a 17" display for $1500. *drool* It's got some pretty hefty video hardware on board, which would make for an awesome WoW machine. This week they've got the Gateway i7 desktop I like for $100 off the regular price.

2 TB hard drive for $80, but I'd bet it's a 5400 RPM drive.

I was thinking--after I've got a new system--about what I could do with old Cephiro, here. (Incidentally, the new system will be named Fiore, after the world of Fairy Tail.) This thing's motherboard can support 6 SATA drives in RAID; there really isn't any reason I couldn't buy a new case with enough drive bays to max it out on hard drives. Pack 'em together in RAID 5 (or 5+1, even) and install MS Server to make it a NAS box. That'd be pretty cool.

Well--that would mean I'd still have to find some kind of way to stream video to the DVD-R/TV/entertainment system. No matter what alternatives I think of, it all ends up costing money.

The other thing: intel likes to change socket types when it introduces new processors. I have to wonder what the upgrade path for this system looks like now; it's got a Pentium D 925 processor running at 3 GHz; what if I could upgrade to a newer/faster processor? How much difference would that make?

The Pentium D 945 runs at 3.4 GHz...and it looks like one runs about $50.

According to Wikipedia, the D 960 would run at 3.6 GHz and the D 965 would run at 3.73 GHz...and support hyperthreading.

Can my motherboard (an intel DP965LV) run that processor? Hellifino.

Besides that, I keep thinking about getting an actual CPU fan for this machine rather than have a case fan and a duct. Certainly if I put this mobo into a new case I'd need to do that. Ah, I don't know. It's been so long since I did hardware hacking that I'd need to learn just about everything all over again; all the specifications have changed.

Turn me loose in a room with a bunch of NOS Pentium stuff and I'd have machines running Doom in LAN mode within a couple hours. But this 21st century stuff? I don't know what I don't know! It's really just a matter of reaquainting myself with all the processors and socket types and stuff, but I still don't know that I want to take the time to do all that.

* * *

This is my last week off before I return to work, and it's cold and rain is predicted every day this week. How much you want to bet that next week it'll be 70 degrees and sunny all week?

UPDATE: Turns out the motherboard can accept any processor up to [whatever the pinnacle of Core 2 Extreme CPUs is]*...and it'll only cost me about $300 more than the price of that processor to buy an entire new computer with an i7 processor that's quad core. So, fuck it.

*=The information is useless to me, so I've already forgotten its model number.

#2682: Yard work and WoW!

I got the grass cut today. I'll say that much.

I got the tractor out and fueled; in the process I decided I need more clothes and put a long-sleeve thermal shirt on. So it went thermal shirt, henley, hoodie; and while I still wasn't warm I wasn't freezing to death. I was merely uncomfortable.

It's not that it was particularly cold; it's just that the wind was from the northeast and it was a fell wind, let me tell you. That and cloudy sky made for a chilly chore.

But I got the grass cut. It can rain all damn week if it wants to.

* * *

I came inside and started playing WoW. Ormus finally hit 85th, and I did some other things; finally late this afternoon I decided to farm reputation, and headed out for some lowbie dungeons.

I did Scholomance and Stratholme; and then I ducked into the Stormwind Stockade to get the last few repuation points I needed for my rep with Darnassus. Having achieved "exalted" with Darn, Ormus had five "exalted" reputations, which earned him the title of "Ambassador".

Feeling cocky, I soloed Upper Blackrock Spire (UBS). And in the process I somehow ended up soloing Lower Blackrock Spire, too. (I had no idea those two instances were connected!) I got the "Leeeeeeeeeeeeeeroy!" achievement for killing 50 rookery whelps in 15 seconds--earning Ormus the ability to run around with the name "Ormus Jenkins" over his head--and I laughed until tears came; then I got the spider and worg pup vanity pets!

Ormus is the first toon of mine which has actually managed to complete UBS, too. Every other time I've tried it--ever--the group has fallen apart before the instance was complete. For me to have a toon complete that and LBS is quite literally unprecedented.

I only had to get powerful enough to solo it. Not like it was hard or anything....

So now it's nearly 10 PM, and I'm worn out. I played WoW a lot today. Of course, this time next week I won't have much time for anything other than work, eat, sleep.

* * *

Hmm--food today was leftover pizza and leftover au-gratin-potatos-with-beef. In fact, I haven't had McDonald's for a few days now; I'm trying to remember the last time I had that and I'm drawing a blank, which means it's been a significant amount of time, for me.


* * *

Because I spent my day on WoW, there was no time for anime, and I'm too tired to push it. Besides, I'd like to continue this trend of going to bed around 9-10 PM and getting up in the morning, because next week blah blah blah, etcetera.

I didn't end up drawing anything yesterday, though, and it looks like I won't be drawing anything today, either. I noticed, though, that Chicory has just about filled up one 80-page notebook, only because I put a blank page between each layout page in order to make it easier to scan. (Having a blank page between pages keeps the next page from bleeding through.)

I'm mulling how to finish the scene where Kurata-sensei (soaking in the onsen) tells Subaru about chicory in coffee. There has to be a bit of dialogue connecting that with the bitterness of Subaru's life, and the things that make it less so for her, and I've got a bunch of different ways I can do it; the problem is I don't like any of them.

Probably the best thing is for Kurata-sensei to point out that there are good things in Subaru's life right now, and that she should think about that and figure out "what parts are chicory".

...urgh. That doesn't sound good, either. Well, I guess I'll think of something.

I really think this story is worth the angst, though. In fact, it deserves to be drawn by someone who knows WTF he's doing, and that's decidedly not me, but I'm the only artist I have available.

Oh well.