Got my new monitor.

So I got my new 24″ Monitor today.  Man, it is awesome!  I never dreamed this would be so good.  There is one pixel with a problem, but it is in the top edge, so not really a problem.  NewEgg seems to have a 9 dead pixel policy, so I could not return it even if I wanted to, which I don’t!

I played Conan a little bit in it, and it is just freaking awesome!  I can not wait until I have the faster system and faster and better Video Card.  This thing will be jaw dropping.  I can not wait!  Well, obviously I *have* to wait, but I do not want to. 😉  It really is impressive how different it is at a 1920×1200.  So much real estate in the game and out.  I can have two windows open at once side by side and it has plenty of room. Really cool!  I never really thought how much better it would be, but after seeing this, Emmy is thinking how nice it looks… We will have her one as soon as we can afford it probably, and I would not blame her a bit!  Knowing me, I will be encouraging her to start. Heh.

Ordered my new System!!!

So we decided we had a bit of spare money, so finally got around to updating my 6 year old computer system.. It was so old, we just replaced it. Although, it is still working well, so I am going to keep it around to run Linux on. The new system I will start out running mainly Vista 64 for gaming. Everything important will stay on my old system and Linux. Here is the new system.

Qty. Product Description Savings Total Price
1 EVGA 123-YW-E175-A1 LGA 775 NVIDIA nForce 750i FTW SLI ATX Intel MotherboardEVGA 123-YW-E175-A1 ATX Intel Motherboard
Item #:N82E16813188026
Return Policy: Limited Non-Refundable 30-Day Return Policy

$189.99
1 Microsoft Windows Vista 64-Bit Home Premium for System Builders Single Pack DVDMicrosoft Windows Vista 64-Bit Home Premium for System Builders Single Pack DVD
Item #:N82E16832116204
Return Policy: Software Return Policy

-$15.00 Instant $109.99
$94.99
1 ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 7 Pro 92mm CPU CoolerARCTIC COOLING Freezer 7 Pro 92mm CPU Cooler
Item #:N82E16835186134
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy

-$10.00 Instant $36.99
$26.99
1 ASUS 20X DVD±R DVD Burner with LightScribe Black SATA Model DRW-2014L1TASUS 20X DVD±R DVD Burner with LightScribe Black SATA Model DRW-2014L1T
Item #:N82E16827135156
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy

-$5.00 Instant $39.99
$34.99
1 Microsoft Digital Media Pro BX1-00005 2-Tone USB + PS/2 Wired Standard KeyboardMicrosoft Digital Media Pro 2-Tone Wired Keyboard
Item #:N82E16823109137
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy

$23.99
1 EVGA 512-P3-N875-AR GeForce 9800 GTX KO 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video CardEVGA GeForce 9800 GTX KO 512-P3-N875-AR Video Card
Item #:N82E16814130348
Return Policy: Limited Non-Refundable 30-Day Return Policy

-$15.00 Instant $299.99
$284.99
1 Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 ST3500320AS 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard DriveSeagate Barracuda 7200.11 500GB 3.5″ SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive
Item #:N82E16822148288
Return Policy: Limited 30-Day Return Policy

$89.99
1 OCZ Reaper HPC 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 (PC2 8500) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model OCZ2RPR10664GKOCZ Reaper HPC 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 (PC2 8500) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory
Item #:N82E16820227289
Return Policy: Memory (Modules, USB) Return Policy

-$5.00 Instant
$25.00 Mail-in Rebate
$137.99
$132.99
1 Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 Wolfdale 3.0GHz LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor Model BX80570E8400Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 3.0GHz LGA 775 65W Processor
Item #:N82E16819115037
Return Policy: Processors (CPUs) Return Policy

$189.99
1 KDS K-24MDWB Black 24KDS K-24MDWB Black 24″ 2ms(GtoG) Widescreen LCD Monitor with HDCP support Built in Speakers
Item #:N82E16824155054
Return Policy: [LCD] Limited Non-Refundable 30-Day Return Policy

-$30.00 Instant $369.99
$339.99
1 Antec Nine Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer CaseAntec Nine Hundred Black Computer Case With Side Panel Window
Item #:N82E16811129021
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy

-$10.00 Instant
$40.00 Mail-in Rebate
$139.99
$129.99
1 ZALMAN ZM850-HP  Continuous 850W ATX12V V2.2 / EPS12V V2.91 Modular Heatpipe-Cooled SLI Power SupplyZALMAN ZM850-HP Continuous 850W Modular Heatpipe-Cooled SLI Power Supply
Item #:N82E16817379007
Return Policy: Limited 30-Day Return Policy

-$35.00 Instant $214.99
$179.99
Grand Total: $1,718.88
Add all items to your cartAdd all items to your cart»

Cimmeria

So I am now officially in my homeland, Cimmeria. I am running around and helping people do the usual chores. Everything from helping the lazy apprentice recover his saddlebags from the wolves who ate his horse, to bringing inheritance weapons back to a family from a veteran who fears he will fall in battle. The land is huge and awesome. The hills of Cimmeria are sparse and hostile to the uninitiated.

Sadly I still do not remember my entire past. I am however relearning skills. I have become adept at many skills, such as Hide, Fast Run, Recovery, climbing, bandaging and several others. I increase my proficiency in these skills every level. I also receive training in my feats every level. These are special battle skills. They seem to help a lot.

I notice myself becoming more ferocious in battle. More blood spatter, and faster deaths. The blood actually comes up in my eyes on occasion when I fight, but as any good barbarian, I love it! I have also learned to stop noticing the level on the weapon so much. It is the attributes and quality of a weapon and armor that matter, not the level.

It feels good to be back home in Cimmeria, however, I fear for my homeland, it is at war as usual, but there are many hardships I must help my people face. I can not help everyone, but it seems everyone needs two or three things done. The one person who seems to think they can help me remember who I truly am refuses to help me until I get more experience under my belt. The Kurr!

I leave now to return to my chores of earning the trust of my people back. I fear I am like a stranger to them, but I hope one day to encounter someone who remembers me from my youth and can remind me of my days of glory. If not, I am sure I will return to my path of glory shortly enough! To Battle! Join the War!

Age of Conan

So I am addicted to a new MMORPG. It is pretty awesome. The graphics are cool, even in the slimmed down settings I have to run in because my computer is like 7 years old. 🙁 I am strongly encouraged to upgrade so that the game is much more playable.

The graphics are truly amazing. Some of the battles, even in the single player missions are truly epic. I have enjoyed what I have played so far greatly. Sadly, the slow computer makes it frustrating to play for any real length of time, so I play a while, log off, play a while, log off.. I can not even move at night when the servers are real busy. It is a truly awesome game. You can read more about it in my MMORPG tab.

My one real disappointment was that I was completely unable to get it running in Linux. 🙁

Applied for a real Job.

So my mother called me up and told me the doctor she works for was looking for an IT person. She described the job to me, and I thought, why not? It is close. We been thinking it would be nice to have a retirement plan, some benefits etc. So I called them up, and they had me come in for an interview. It went pretty well I think. They actually run Linux, on some servers, which I found really cool. I was actually excited about that. They also seem to have a lot of interest in staying current with technology. One of my favorite things to do! 🙂

Now, I am just waiting to find out if I got the job. Always the worst part for someone I guess. I should hear something tomorrow. Wednesday 4/30 will tell. Wish me luck. I am not counting on it, but the job sounds like it would be perfect for me. I would really enjoy playing with the new technology and a nice network as well. I will try to remember to post and let everyone know how it works out. Wish me luck!

Busy designing a few websites

So recently I have been a bit busy.  Between getting ready for Christmas, which we mostly are,(Except some books I ordered on December 7th and still aren’t here) and designing and setting up several websites for a company that has 55+ Retirement Communities.  They are called Florida Broad Acre Trailer Lodge, Inc. and they run 3 parks.  One of them I had actually set up before, called Shadow Wood Village. I am revisiting that one, and updating it and setting it up similar to the two new ones, Bahia Vista Estates and Vista del Lago.

All of the Communities are nice.  Although, Vista del Lago is a bit smaller then I would wanna live in.  It does have a really nice small lake though.  And it is the only one of the Communities that still actually excepts RV’s.  The other two Communities are more permanent single and double wides only at this point. My favorite is the one I did first, Shadow Wood Village, but Bahia Vista in Sarasota is very nice as well.  If I were 55+ and looking for a place to retire, I would definitely look at either Bahia Vista or Shadow Wood.  Probably Shadow Wood as it is in a more affordable area.

Take a look at them and let me know what you think.  I made the logos and the themes, and wrote up everything for Bahia Vista and Vista del Lago.  I will be redoing  Shadow Wood soon with newer pictures and to be in line with the layout of the other two.

Missing Applications for Linux.

So after using Linux for a long time, I am noticing several things severely lacking that both Mac, and Windows have plenty of. Most of the apps missing as far as I am concerned are games of course. However, the other is Video related.

Recently we have been trying to find an app that will easily let my girlfriend record a video. She would like to be able to send them to family members and such. So I started looking. The main problem I have encountered is that with a Logitech Webcam with built in Mic, almost no apps in Linux will easily find them. Ekiga, a Sip Softphone comes right up and works with it, for Video and Audio, however, Camorama and about a dozen other programs. I even tried to use mencoder directly, but could not figure out how to address the mic in the webcam.

If I tried to do the same thing in either Windows or Mac, it is a matter of firing up a program, running a wizard, picking how I want the video encoded, and hitting record. Seems like there has to be a program out there to do simple vlogs. (Video Blogs) However, I can not find one. If anyone has some advice, I would love to hear it. We can record from Desktop and a Mic and it works great, as Emmy has been doing for some tutorials she is making for a customer.

So we have some things that work great for free on Linux, and other things that we just do not have a decent solution for. What other things have people found missing?

Tweaking out Ubuntu.

So I use to not like Ubuntu, but after getting used to Debian, and installing Ubuntu for a friend and a family member, I got to looking at it, and it really is not bad at all.  In fact, I have now installed it on my system as my main OS.  Pretty good for a guy who was never an Ubuntu fan.  7.10 just makes everything way to easy though.  It will automatically install almost anything. Video Drivers, winmodems, wireless card drivers, and so on.  I am really impressed.  It has a nice polished look.

In fact, this weekend, I even went back and got my brothers laptop and brought it back over to put all the little tweaks on a system I normally do.  I setup new icons, new login screen aimed at him using pictures of his birds and a nice wallpaper I made with a picture of the bird he has had the longest.  I also sped up the boot time by eliminating the usplash screen.  I just edited the spash line out of the grub stuff.  Really nice. 🙂

It is funny, I used to really like KDE, but now after using Gnome for a while and liking it, KDE seems kinda clunky to me.  Weird..  However, I am all for people using whatever makes them feel most comfortable.  After having used KDE for years, I can not really recommend people not do so.  For those used to Windows, KDE is great.

Converting people to Linux..

So the last few days I have been very busy. I have been reinstalling Windows on my mother system as it was getting pretty loaded down with spyware old programs she does not use etc. She uses Spybot, but does not really run it often enough. Not a big deal, probably a good idea to start clean every couple years.. Really speeds up the system in my opinion. Every time you install a program, it dumps junk in the registry, and that all gets loaded into the system every time you run Windows. Some programs do not do a good job of removing themselves from the registry either.

So I did her system, then her boyfriend, a real nice guy named Terry, asked me about a week ago if I could help him find a decent laptop for cheap. So I look around, and found a nice deal on geeks.com. It was a refurb, but perfect for a beginner who has no interest in the higher end games. The first thing I asked him is if he would mind me putting Linux on there so we did not have to worry about spyware, virus’ etc. He thought that was a great idea.. Then he talked to some guy at work, who said,”But Linux is a lot harder then Windows!” He asked me about it, and I assured him that once it is running, which I would make sure it was for him, it would be as easy to learn as Windows for a first operating system. It is only harder for Windows users because they have to learn something new. He is now happily running Ubuntu 7.10 Gutsy.

I was really impressed with this newest release of Ubuntu. I have not liked it in the past, but boy, they have done some cool things with it. It went on his new laptop as slick as can be. I had to connect it to the network through a wire just long enough to install the wireless drivers, after that, I unplugged, tweaked everything out, and it was working great! I spent a little while trying to make sure he has all the basics he needs on his system.. We set him up with a Gmail account and an Igoogle homepage and all the rest, and it worked great! 🙂 We even set him up with Pidgin IM with the whole family added to the list. I did forget to make it autostart, which I will have to take care of, but hopefully he will find it if he wants it. 🙂 If not, he seems like a patient guy, so it should not be a big deal. 🙂

So then I took his laptop and my mothers computer back over to them, and my brother Steve asked if I would change his system over to Ubuntu also, as he liked the way it looked and acted.  I said sure, but it would take a couple of days.  Well, he ended up watching over my shoulder for the entire time, so his system did not really get tweaked out as much as Terry’s.  I feel bad, but I hate having someone watching over my shoulder all the time.  It really would not have taken 2 days, but he wanted games running on a laptop, and Yahoo Mail with a notifier, and an Epson Stylus Printer/Scanner working, and a Creative Labs Media Player and a Digital Camera all working, and basically, as I attached everything, I then had to show him how to use it, which really took more time.  Not his fault, he was curious, but still, it is a bit frustrating for me.  Left alone, I probably could have gotten it done in a day and had it nicely laid out.  Now, I will probably end up either showing him how to do some of the things I normally would have just done later, or do them at some point when he is over with his laptop.  We will see which.  Either way, it was cool to see 2 newbies added to the Linux ranks.

Ubuntu 7.10

It is nice.  It is clean, it is polished.  It has a tool to help install proprietary drivers like the Nvidia driver.  They have done a lot to make it so people can be up and running in minutes.  It is still very brown and earthy.  I like earthy normally, but Ubuntu is just not my cup of tea.  I keep trying to like it, but there is just something about it.  Maybe it is the security setup where you have to sudo everything?  I dunno.  I could fix that I suppose and see.  So far though, I have not been able to stay with Ubuntu long enough to get around to fixing it.

I have tried Ubuntu lots of times, but there is something about it that just does not work for me.  For years I thought it was Gnome. Then I installed Debian and actually tried working with Gnome, and loved it.  So I guess it is not Gnome.  Now I have no idea what the problem is. Maybe it is the whole package.  The brown, the way they have the menu’s the security.  I dunno.  If anyone else has a similar problem, let me know.  In the meantime, I guess I will stay with Debian.  In fact, I am thinking about installing Debian Lenny to play with.  I am sure I will report on it here when I do.