Saturday, September 27, 2008

Reasons to vote against John McCain

I do not endorse Democrats or Obama, but here are some reasons NOT to vote for John McCain and his administration:

1. [Unlike other First Ladies,] Cindy McCain won't accomplish anything during the term.
2. [Unlike other VP's,] Sarah Palin won't accomplish anything during the term.
3. McCain is an isolationist that is too stubborn to revive friendships with allied or enemy states.
4. John is ultimately a pro-life, pro-rich, pro-gun, pro-war old person (aka a Republican).
5. (Do you really need another goddamned reason?)

Voting isn't really that hard. You can even skip the lines by doing an early vote starting October 20.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Entry #0003

Boredom's in the bathroom shaking out the loose teeth
Sally's in the stirrups claiming her own destiny
And nobody nowhere understands anything
About me and all my dreams
Lost at sea

Jack it up Judy, set your heart alight
Mayfair mistress of the satellites
Misspent youth - faking up a rampage
To hold off the real slaves
Paid off and staid

Friday, September 19, 2008

Program Files: Stupid

There are a lot of problems that get under your skin with Microsoft Windows. Let me be clear at the beginning: I do not have Linux installed on any of my machines. As one of my friends once said, "Windows is a good product", and it is. When Windows 98 came out, I thought it was the apex. I slowly and begrudgingly moved to XP (I finally figured out how to turn the Start Menu back to Classic Gray). Now, I am 90% content with my OS.

But there is something that became the norm with Windows 95 (and all subsequent sequels) that all software companies seemed to adopt. I am talking about \Program Files\. Let's break down the old way, first.

Typically, when you installed a game or a piece of software, it needed a new folder. The old way was to type something simple, so it could be quickly typed in command line. Games would be installed in C:\Quake\, so they could be accessed in DOS (via "cd quake", then "quake.exe").

Microsoft decided that the root directory (C:\) had become too cluttered (C:\Windows\ is where the OS is seated). So, they developed a solution (albiet a bad one): Program Files. The horrible thing is that everyone and their dog default installs to Program Files. Without looking I probably have 40 goddamn subfolders in there. They just moved the clutter into an a different closet! Video games, chatting applications and even Microsoft products now have a place in C:\Program Files\i-cant-type-this-right-in-command-line-or-find-it-when-searching\.

Now not all honorable programs want to be in the Prog Files club. mIRC used to be good at this, but they finally caved in. Let me ask two questions: why do you need a separate folder to house third-party (and first-party) apps; and why does it have to use case-sensitive, redundant words?

Let me suggest something for anyone that has more than Solitaire on their systems: C:\games\. I have everything gaming-related here (even oldschool game files). It's easy to type and easy to find. Also, make sure you have a place for downloads (the Desktop is for rookies). I use C:\tasks\, which is easy to find and type. C:\setupfiles\ is where offline copies of all my app installs are.

Another thing about the Desktop. Don't make tons of folders there. Windows buries the Desktop in the root structure, and if you change usernames or login as someone else, expect some downtime and headache.

If you are a developer, understand the KISS principle and stop putting my files into a catchall folder like Program Files!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

XP to Vista: the Upgrade saga

I have had a free copy of Windows Vista Upgrade (Home Premium Ed.) laying around since February, 2007. I had hesitated because I didn't need it. There was nothing I desired that wasn't already possible with my XP Media Center Edition 2005 (save for DirectX 10, those stupid desktop gadgets and a reorganized Control Panel). I knew Vista because my previous job had our think tank beta-test it for a month in January, 2007. Fast-forward to now, and need to format my hard drive. It has had much wear and tear, and the list of installs/uninstalls is epic. And I had a plan: multiboot XP and Vista. But, it wasn't going to be as easy as I thought...

XP Format
First, I insert my XP disc and restart. I use the old bluescreen DOS interface (it reminds me of WordPerfect in junior high) to format and do a clean install. I partitioned my hard drive into two parts: 200 GB for XP, and 30 GB for Vista. My idea was to continue using XP, but just use Vista for web surfing and little things. I knew one day I would have to take the Vista plunge, so this was a transition test. Everything went well with the XP install (on Drive C:).

Vista Format
Next, I inserted the Vista disc and restarted. I booted from the CD and expected "good old DOS blue screen", but to my surprise Microsoft overhauled the interface, and the mouse works... Maybe this Windows has something more to offer. So I use the new GUI to select D: drive, and click "Install Now". I walk away after 5 minutes and come back in about 15. I realize the hard drive and CD-ROM aren't doing anything, so I place the mouse cursor on the progress bar (use the mouse pointer to measure if there is any progress made over time). I come back 45 min later, and realize the install hadn't moved. I hit the X button to cancel install, and this doesn't help. I have to hold down the power button and start over. I decide to boot into XP and look at some Microsoft articles...

Vista Format (II)
So, I theorize that my install failed because I'm using a Dell Upgrade of Vista, instead of a retail copy. I decide to insert the disc while XP is running, and install Vista onto D: from there. This method works, and makes progress until it freezes at "Extracting files: 27%..." I watch the 27% for about 30 minutes like an ass, and realize I have to manually power off and try again. I start another theory about my wireless internet fucking things up, because it keeps searching for an access point (and I didn't take the time to disable it). I disable the wireless card and try again. At 27%, I almost shit my pants when it hit 28%. It finally finishes and I think I am out of the woods...

Internet Setup
I am using a Netgear router and a Linksys G card to get my internet fix. The connection worked masterfully for a good 3 months, but I had major, major troubles with both XP and Vista. Before you jump to conclusions, it was human error that made me have a headache for 8 hours. The setup was fine--I just forgot the 3% of the Encryption Key (which I thought I knew by heart).

Current status
Everything is great now. I am still multibooting and mostly using XP (for surfing, downloads and gaming). Vista looks OK, but I don't know how much restriction there will be when I need to do something tricky. It should be noted that boot time for both OS's is almost exactly the same. I think 3 GB of RAM blurs the line.

Tips
If you are reading this because of Windows formatting problems, here is some advice:
1. Always install the older version of Windows first.
2. Unplug all USB shit and disable your wireless connection. You may want to remove any PCI cards (modem, etc) to prevent Device Manager from going apeshit and detecting new hardware.
3. Make a Restore Point almost immediately.
4. Install Service Packs before anything else. (Note: Vista SP1 takes an hour!)
5. Make sure the dual-boot timer is >5 seconds, so you can select which OS you want to run at system startup.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

The wrong choice for candidate

The question you should ask yourself is: "who will make the best president?"; not "who should be president". Many people believe BaraqObama is the Kwisatz Haderach--the superbeing. I saw people fucking bawling to Obama's speech at the DNC. Seriously they are going to be shocked when he inevitably fucks up in office. Don't get me wrong. I want to orgasm as much as you do when the votes are in. But, I am guessing he will call a Jewish leader Palestinian or something like that... Two-thirds of Americans will probably hate him by 2012. Machiavellian, maybe?

If Obama gets into office, what will it mean long-term? I guarantee Obama will become clinically depressed. He will sob quietly at night in the White House. The fetal position will be his preferred sleeping pose. At least the Republicans don't to listen to thousands of agendas about saving the whales, supporting gays, preventing war--you have the give them credit for that.

Mark my words: Barack will be clotheslined by D.C. politics. One man can't move mountains in a democratic republic. It is political parties, not individuals, that have the power. Before you start raising hell about those statements, think about the last 8 years, and think about groundbreaking laws and constitutional amendments throughout history. It is mostly congress and the court doing the legwork, dipshits.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Entry #0002

I'm feeling rough, I'm feeling raw, I'm in the prime of my life.
Let's make some music, make some money, find some models for wives.
I'll move to Paris, shoot some heroin, and fuck with the stars.
You man the island and the cocaine and the elegant cars.

MST3k Return thoughts

There used to be two camps when it comes to MSTies: Team Joel or Team Mike. I'm in the Michael J. Nelson camp (the 1997 Sci-Fi Channel ...