September 7th, 2013

#3962: This is really well-said

A suggestion that the GOP use Obamacare as a bargaining chip. If Obama really wants war with Syria, let's make a war authorization dependent on the repeal of Obamacare. Yeah.

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Ann Barnhardt has moved to a blog format with linkable posts, and today she's posted an article about the next step in the socilization of America: government seizure of private retirement accounts.

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Power failure this morning, right about 8 AM, and I slept right through it, as did Mrs. Fungus--with the result that she didn't hit the shower until 1 PM, which is when she should be leaving for work. The only reason I know when it was? The alarm clock was blinking "4:57" when I got up, and it's a simple matter of subtraction to figure when it started blinking "12:00". (Mrs. Fungus and I went to bed around 3 AM last night. We didn't get to sleep until after 5 for various reasons, one being a fibromyalgia flare-up...but that's not the only reason. Heh.)

It seems as if 8 AM is when the power almost always fails around here. I'd say it's very reliable, even when we get a real corker of a storm; the power failure last week was an exception rather than the rule. But today the skies are partly cloudy and it's just a bit windy; the ground is dry so it obviously wasn't raining earlier and when I got up it was sunny.

In these cases, if the power fails at all, it never fails for more than a few minutes at a time...and always around 8 AM.

The fact that this is so leads me to expect that it will either fail again tomorrow morning at 8; if not then, it will fail tonight around 6 PM or so, because these good weather mini-interruptions always seem to come in pairs. That leads me to expect this is ComEd doing something with the generating capacity that requires them to cut off the Fungal Vale for a couple of minutes. Argh etc.

The alarm clock has a battery back up but--I do not really understand why--the batteries drain even when the clock has power. In other words, the clock is receiving power yet battery power is being consumed, and every alarm clock I have ever owned has worked this way. Is it really so difficult and expensive to include a couple of components to keep the battery from draining until and unless it's needed?

...it probably is, in fact. If you don't do it right the circuit will try to charge a weak battery, which can lead to all kinds of problems...and if you do build the circuit the right way, in all liklihood it's prohibitively expensive for a $10 alarm clock.

But it should not be terribly expensive to build a clock that can soldier on in the absence of AC power for five or ten minutes. Jeeze.

Anyway, I'll change the 9V battery in the alarm clock, and this will keep the electrical system in the Fungal Vale from going down for another three months or so--at which point the power to the entire freakin' town will helpfully fail to let me know it's time to change the battery again. I apologize for the inconvenience.

#3963: Spare us the gyrations. We all know it's because they're hypocrites.

Anti-war celebrities won't be protesting Obama's undeclared wars because it's just different this time, man! Bush was going to war, man, which is a much bigger deal than the punitive strikes and kinetic actions Obama's engaging in. It's a whole different ball game! Besides, we don't want to feel like we're anti-black or anything. And there is opposition! It's just not organized this time. Besides, we don't have time to organize before Obama drops the bombs. So we're totally not hypocrites just because we only make a big deal out of opposing Republicans.

Okay, let us leave total fucking leftard mode.

Obama is a Democrat; these people are giving him a pass because of that. Not his skin color, not the size or scope of the military action, not because of any reason other than Obama's party affiliation. You guys know it, we know it, so why not just admit it? You guys opposed a declared war with international support solely because you didn't like the guy running it, and that's fine; you're entitled to your opinions. You're similarly welcome to decide not to oppose Obamawar for whatever reason you like.

Of course, everyone else is entitled to regard you as the pathetic hypocrites you really are.

If it really mattered to them that Obama's proposed action is a "war crime", as Mike Farrel contends, they would be moving heaven and earth to organize a protest even if it did end up being too late. If they honestly cared about this, they would already be protesting all the kinetic actions and interventions and punitive strikes Obama has been lobbing around the world since he got into office. For fuck's sake, Obama hasn't changed any of Bush's policies! They're still doing Rendition and Club Gitmo is still open and-and-and--and these guys have been utterly silent where they were vocal when Bush was in office.

They haven't said a word about anything Obama has done militarily. And they are doing it because Obama is their guy.

...as if we needed any more evidence that leftist=hypocrite.

#3964: Oh my--now this IS interesting.

Because I had hacked up some Azumanga Daioh strips to send to Mrs. Fungus at work, I was having a gander at the enormous pile of images in my documents folder, and came across the screencap of the memory order for El-Hazard, the cheapo PC I built in October of 2011.

I came across the image, looked at it, and realized that the specs for that RAM module were "as good or better" than what's in my main box. Two years ago, that 2 GB PC6400 DDR2 DIMM cost $23 shipped.

Intrigued, I went to Crucial.com to see what was specified for my machine and got no useful answer, so I ran their system scanner to see what's installed in my system. Result?

PC5300 RAM.

According to the Wikipedia page on DDR2 RAM, PC5300 runs at a clock speed of 667 MHz. PC6400 RAM runs at 800 MHz.

And my system can use PC8500 RAM, which has a clock speed of 1066 MHz.

I didn't even notice any of that the last time I thought about RAM (and tried putting the memory from Mrs. Fungus' old computer into my machine) and especially did not notice that the current stuff is PC5300.

That explains why the #1 recommendation from Crucial.com for 4 GB costs $90: it's PC8500 memory. It also explains why the "windows performance index" for memory on the system is only 5.6; I'm using slower than optimal memory. Well, from what I can see it wouldn't make sense to put in the fastest stuff available since my processor only scores 4.8. (Attempts to find out what the scale is--1-10? 1-6? 1-infinity? What?--have been fruitless.)

Most of the subsystems in my computer score 5.9, except for main memory and the processor, which are 5.6 and 4.8 respectively; I could probably get the memory to score 5.9 if I were to install PC6400 DDR2 SDRAM. And it looks as if I could do that for less than $100 if I went with Kingston modules like the one in El-Hazard...and bump total RAM to 8 GB in the bargain.

...not that I have the money for that right now, but it's something to consider; and getting the memory upgrade for about $100 would mean I could get the system upgraded to Win 7 and be only about $200 out of pocket, which is considerably less than a new system would cost--and I'd bet dollars to doughnuts I then wouldn't need to think about a new system for another three years at least even though I continue to play WoW on the thing.

And a quick gander at Pricewatch.com shows me that 2 GB modules of the right specification are running about $26 shipped right now--which will do quite handily, when-and-if. (It's $44 per DIMM for PC8500.)

The entire reason I had rejected the idea of (eventually) doing a RAM and OS upgrade on this computer, and instead (eventually) going with an all-new machine, was because compared to the cost of a new machine it wasn't worth it: I was figuring around $240 for RAM and $130-ish for the OS, which is $370--almost $400 when a new machine would run around $550-$600 depending on the configuration. But $200-odd is reasonable, especially if I can get the memory cheap enough.

8 GB of RAM and a 64-bit OS would take care a lot of the performance issues I've been noticing of late, which have made me want a new machine.

Man, it's amazing what you can learn if you just pay attention to the details, you know?