Thursday, January 25, 19:26 CST
Well, moving the token ring card to a different PCI slot doesn't seem to have helped anything. Sort of a long shot anyway, I guess. On the plus side, moving the sound card seems to have stopped those annoying pops and crackles.

I suppose my next move should be to read a ton of documentation on token ring stuff, and grab a more recent kernel and compile... *sigh*

Meanwhile, I can feel myself slipping back into Windows mode once again... I'm starting to expect the crashes again, unconsciously avoid the behaviors the OS punishes me for... I need to get back on Linux, and soon.

Probably won't be updating tomorrow. Looks like I'm going to a Green Day concert in Kansas City with a friend.

And speaking of music...

Ok, I don't even know where to start here. I'll write about it later.

Thursday, January 25, 0:00 CST
This little piece demonstrates why Harry Knowles is a good writer, even if his grammar, syntax, and spelling suck rocks. He says what he means, and says it well, and that's what counts. IMHO.

The Ebert piece he links demonstrates why I have respect for Ebert.

It's been a while since I linked to a /. article, but I think this one is worth it. Some of the discussion is even worth a read. Plus, I gleaned a link to Artchive, which has a *lot* of cool images.

Tuesday, January 24, 0:28 CST

Ok, I'm really back now. Honest.

I kept thinking I'll update this page when I get the network card configured under Linux. With the luck I'm having there, it may be a while. (It's a PCI token ring card. I have what I *think* should be the right driver compiled into the kernel. /dev/tr0 doesn't exist. I'm at something of a loss.)

Anyway. About the new hardware.

I love this thing. It's huge, ugly, loud, and *fast*. Ok, so I've been using equipment with all the blazing speed and power of a toaster oven for the past half decade, so I have no real basis for comparison. Who cares? I *know* this thing is fast.

On the off chance anyone cares, I'll post a complete parts list with where I bought stuff, etc., when I get around to modifying the software page.

Some general observations about do-it-yourself assembling a new system:

It was easier than I expected. Quite a bit of fun, too. It took some time, but half of it was spent fiddling around for no good reason, and looking up stuff I'll know the next time around. (Good documentation is an absolute requirement.) One should probably be careful not to wind up like one of those guys who stands around in the garage looking under a hood, under the delusion that this indicates some kind of mechanical skill (you know who you are). Still, there's something definitely cool about having at least a vague idea what most of the stuff in your system does, and where it's plugged in.

All in all, I think we're at a stage in the evolution of the PC where, given some know how and the patience, there's not much reason to buy a pre-built machine unless you need it *now*.

Moving right along (because it's late and I'm tired), here's your gratuitous linkage for the day...

A less political Bloom County with a smaller cast, religious overtones, and cat/dog humor? Ok, I'll stop trying to make futile comparisons between comic strips. Whatever it is, Sinfest is worth a read. (Those with easily bruised sensibilities be warned.)

While I'm on the subject of comics, Schlock Mercenary ain't bad, and Randym Thoughts is doing the single-panel (think Far Side, but not) thing pretty well.

BearShare - The World's Most Powerful Gnutella Client Hmm. Maybe I gave up on Gnutella too soon.

I think I've mentioned this before, but QuakeForge is pretty cool. Especially the GLQuake client at 1280x1020 with a decent set of speakers... I've been playing this game for years, but this is the first time it's actually looked *pretty*.

Ok, I need sleep now. Especially since I stayed up 'til 2 yesterday setting up and playing Quake 2 with Gurney...

Sunday, January 15, 0:05 CST

WOOHOO!

Er. Sorry.

Computer runs...

Win98 and Debian are both installed, much tweaking left to do on the Debian install and a network card to get working yet.

Thursday, January 11, 12:08 CST

Ok, so I'm done for the day, and I only have one class tomorrow. Not that this is a bad thing, slacker that I am, but if I'm only going to take 14 hours, I definitely need to get a job.

Actually, my finances being what they are, I need to get a job anyway.

Anyone feel like paying me large sums of money to do the things I do now for free?

Didn't think so.

Anyone feel like paying me to build a computer? Here pretty soon, I should actually know how...

Think I'm going to head home tomorrow, in hopes that all my essential computer stuff will have arrived by then. I'll be taking the Ancient and Venerable Gateway 2000 home, in order to install it as an e-mail/web machine, and swap the network card out into the new box (nobody tell Network Services...). All of which means I might not be updating this for a bit again.

Be sure to tune in next time for the first exciting installment of "Brennen Tries to Build a Computer".

Wednesday, January 10, 23:06 CST

Today, Brennen learns that he *really* can't draw.

Of course, I guess that's the point of taking a drawing class, isn't it?

Tuesday, January 9, 20:09 CST
Ok, so I got out of the habit of updating.

Classes so far have been fairly uneventful.

I neglected to mention some of the media I consumed over vacation...

I saw All the Pretty Horses Saturday, and... Well, I'm not quite sure what to think. I know I liked it, but I'm really unsure how to review it. I've since heard that the original cut of the film was something like 4 hours long, which goes a long ways towards explaining why the released version seemed lacking. Think I'll hold off on writing more 'til I can watch it on DVD, hopefully in something much closer to its original form.

I got around to reading Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, which was lots of fun, if flawed in predictable ways.

Some Harry Potter backlash is, of course, inevitable - and from the perspective of someone who regularly watches much, much better books languish in obscurity, it's understandable. But...

My mom is the kind of person whose last reading of fiction was when she was still reading to her kids on a regular basis. The other day, she proudly informed me that she'd finished the second Harry Potter book. Heap on all the scorn you like, that's worth something.

Sunday, January 7, 17:03 CST
Well, I'm back in the dorm. Classes start again tomorrow, a prospect which I find not exactly thrilling, but it might be good to start doing something again.

(more or less) Regular updates should be resuming here now.

I was sort of hoping to get my new machine up and running before classes started, but that'd probably be a little hard to do with only a monitor and a motherboard to work with. Hopefully all the essential stuff will have arrived by this coming weekend, so I can set to work trying not to screw things up too badly in its construction.

Er, anyway, more later...