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efaardvark

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Everything posted by efaardvark

  1. efaardvark

    What anime are you watching now?

    Cells at Work. This guy has got to be the most unlucky guy alive. I'm only on episode 7 and he's already had pneumonia, influenza, an allergy attack, food poisoning, a parasitic infection, an infected scrape, heat stroke, and now he's got cancer! He needs to take better care of himself!
  2. efaardvark

    Anyone ereading manga?

    I'm a big reader and I'd like to get into e-books. I've tried a couple times and never really got hooked. Kindle is ubiquitous, and I do like their e-ink "paperwhite" display, but Amazon is way, way too restrictive with their content. I also would like a larger reader that handles full-sized content like you would find in magazines or professional journals. Ideally I'd like one that I can take notes with and/or sketch into too so I can get rid of both my book pile and my composition/note book. The best reader I've used to date (IMHO) was the ill-fated ILiad reader, if anyone remembers that. Honestly, it wasn't that great an experience, but it did have potential and did (most of) what I wanted without throwing unnecessary digital restrictions or proprietary format issues in my face. These days it would probably be one of the larger-format Oynx Boox devices. Their latest device looks pretty awesome, though quite expensive. Anyway, I'm guessing most people here might not care about most of that but I'm thinking of making another go of getting into e-reading and one of the things I would like to do with it is read manga. Just wondering if anyone here is doing that and if they have any advice on what features to look for or avoid, or if anyone has an ereader that they really love or hate. Where do you get your e-manga? TIA...
  3. efaardvark

    Anyone ereading manga?

    That is a problem, but I'll take what I can get at this point. That was the beauty of fictionwise. They had a large selection of material from different authors and genres. Not just obscure stuff either. I found a bunch of my favorites there too.. Niven, Bear, Silverberg, Spinrad, Stine, Ellison, Weber. (I'm into SF, but they also had other genres like mystery, fantasy, etc.) Even collections like magazines like Analog or anthologies where it is typically hard to get all of the authors to grant permission for e-release were there. It was a lot of fun while it lasted. I spent a small fortune there.
  4. efaardvark

    Anyone ereading manga?

    Yes, nice that they offer PDFs too, which is what I have kind of gravitated to for my own library. The old fictionwise site also had PDFs and quite a lot of my e-library is PDF as a consequence, including about 3 years of a SF magazine called Analog that I have subscribed to since I was 12. For a while that site alone made me think that ebooks were finally a thing, and I was glad to give them my money. Then they shut down. Fortunately all the stuff I bought from them is still safely stored on my NAS. (Dont try this with "your" kindle collection btw.) Anyway, yes, sites like emanga and fictionwise, and efforts like crossroads are why I keep trying this e-thing. FWIW, my favorite ebook to date is probably that Cassini picture book released a couple years ago. Sorry, not anime/manga related, but cool nevertheless.
  5. efaardvark

    Hello! New to AF!

    Welcome Raven! Hmmm... 54 here. When does this tapering off that you speak of start to kick in? Then again I still enjoy legos and video games too. Maybe it is just me. 🤔
  6. efaardvark

    Anyone ereading manga?

    I played with my mom's kindle for a while so I'm familiar with those methods. Not really interested in jumping through those sorts of hoops anymore though. If they don't want to sell what I want on the up-and-up then I'll oblige by not buying. There's plenty of content out there that does give me what I want without the hassles. Don't get me wrong... I have no problem paying for what I want, and I'd like to support the actual content creators with my $$$, but they made their choice and I can do without the toll booth operators taking their ridiculous "overhead" (usually many multiples of what the artists themselves get).
  7. Upgrading from Bionic Beaver to Cosmic Cuttlefish.  Should be a simple update but if things go horribly awry and you don't hear from me for a while you'll know what happened.

  8. efaardvark

    What anime are you watching now?

    Binged As Miss Beelzebub Likes it. Cute, but a bit too "fluffy" for me. Next is Goblin Slayer. Definitely not "fluffy".
  9. efaardvark

    Building a new gaming PC

    Got an AMD 2700X for Christmas! Yeah, my family is like that. OTOH, that's ALL they got me. Just the CPU. Yeah, my family is like that too. I can't use the AM3+ socketed motherboard or the DDR3 RAM from my old FX system, so it looks like I'm going to be spending some money. Anyone have suggestions for a nice AM4-socket MB/RAM combo? I'll be running my usual Linux (tho maybe an Arch-based distro like Manjaro rather than the Ubuntu I've got on here now) and some development stuff for work, but secondarily I want to make the new system a good place for VR and gaming as well. Extra bonus points for having a full PCIx4 channel for an NVME SSD (I compile a lot) and/or being able to run 2 GPUs so I can dedicate one to a virtual machine for testing. TIA....
  10. efaardvark

    Building a new gaming PC

    That's assuming you can get the drive connected hardware-wise in the first place. Some of this stuff is so old that even that is a problem. My current motherboard doesn't have either IDE or SCSI connectors for instance. I've had some luck with an IDE to USB adapter for the former. The SCSI is still a problem in some cases however. One of the reasons that I still have that old dual-athlon system for instance is because that RAID card is the only way I have to interface with the drives connected to it. Unfortunately it is a proprietary interface that doesn't support direct interface with the drives from the OS. (The RAID card announces itself to the OS as one huge drive, but manages the individual drives "privately". Otherwise I'd just use linux's "dd" utility to overwrite all the blocks with zeros and be done with it.) I do have a USB->SCSI adapter as well, but it is the 50-pin variety and these use the 78(?) pin LVD interface. I kind of painted myself into a corner with those drives.
  11. efaardvark

    Building a new gaming PC

    Then you would love my junk boxen. I've got an old dual athlon, ECC memory system that used to be my household server before I got my Synology NAS. I turned it off and set it aside a few years ago, but never tore it down. Still has the RAID card and drive array that was my very first experience with setting up a RAID. It has to be at least a decade old at this point. Also nearby is an "EP-MVP3G5" socket-7 motherboard ca. 1999, with ISA, PCI (original), and AGP slots. That was my do-anything system for many years. I kept it around "just in case" I needed to access some old tech, but I haven't even seen an ISA card for over a decade. I used to have a lot more but that's pretty much all I have left. I had a bin in the garage and for a long time I just threw the old stuff in there when I built a new system. It kind of took on a life of its own after a while. As I get time & energy & enthusiasm over the last few months I've been going through it all and slowly getting rid of it. One problem was/is that I didn't destroy the old drives, and I'm not sure enough of the contents to just throw them in the trash. I made copies of everything on the new system(s), but there might be things like old tax or other financial records still on the old drives. As soon as I'm sure I don't have any old media (I even have an old ZIP drive and a "PD" optical drive - both SCSI) that I want to format over and/or copy to the NAS it is all going out the door. Kind of fun going through it all one last time too.
  12. efaardvark

    Building a new gaming PC

    For anyone interested in what personal computers were like back in the last century... https://youtu.be/sewt2pqc3us
  13. From the same people who brought us New Horizons' mission to Pluto and Ultima Thule comes the Dragonfly mission to Titan...
     

     

  14. efaardvark

    Building a new gaming PC

    I agree. Hardware-wise things are pretty bulletproof these days. Virtually all the modern slots and connectors (PCIe, M.2, SATA, memory, etc.) are keyed so that you physically can't connect things wrong. There's still ways to configure things wrong, or at least non-optimally, software-wise but a modern BIOS on modern hardware pretty much won't let you do things so wrong that you let the magic smoke out. Occasionally I run into difficulties getting legacy components working but that's getting more rare every year. Pretty much anything that doesn't autoconfig correctly these days I consider to be broken. The only things you do have to be careful about are static discharges (I always wear a grounded wrist-strap) and working with the CPU. All those pins on the CPU chip are extremely susceptible to damage if mishandled so you want to be very careful when handling the chip and plugging it in or taking it out of the CPU socket. Making sure the heatsink is on securely and the fan(s) connected is also critical, though not especially hard.
  15. Any 賭ケグルイ fans in the audience?   So is Elon Musk apparently...

     

    Musk_compulsive_gambling.thumb.jpg.0720b20f895f2939b83191b606fe33d5.jpg

    1. SAO LILDOOP

      SAO LILDOOP

      I love Kakegurui, one of my fave manga series! 

  16. efaardvark

    ☆Wicked's Chat Corner!☆

    I hereby apologize to all the dwellers in alternate realms who have had to deal with my creations.
  17. efaardvark

    Do you have trouble making friends?

    I have a similar problem. I'm usually not very verbose, but don't don't get me started on certain subjects unless you have a lot of time on your hands. There's usually a lot of stuff shambling around in my head. Some bits sometimes bump into other bits and some of it winds up falling out of my mouth. Many times this will cause people nearby to involuntarily ask, "whaat??". Explaining often doesn't help, nor does the fact that while explaining I often feel the need to explain parts of the explanation.
  18.  
    Obscure and nerdy. I like it. :D
  19. efaardvark

    Do you have trouble making friends?

    All hope is not lost. For a while I was crushing on Michelle Meyrink as Jordan Cochran in Real Genius. I do think that level of chattiness would wear me out after a while though.
  20. efaardvark

    Do you have trouble making friends?

    Using prisms as a secondary mirror is (was?) pretty common. It used to be a lot easier/cheaper to make a prism than create another primary-surface mirror for the secondary. They also used to have as few supports for the secondary as possible on the theory that more supports blocked more incoming light. That big (heavy) chunk of glass sticking out on a single stick is prone to be knocked out of alignment however. Newer designs using modern manufacturing methods tend to have smaller, lighter primary-surface mirrors with more supports so they tend to stay put once you have them aligned. It shouldn't matter if the secondary is a "prisim on a stick" version or a newer mirrored type however. A laser collimator should work for either type. (In fact, Orion's youtubie on collimation shows both types. The actual device in the video has a more modern, multiple-support setup for the secondary but the diagrams show the "on a stick" type. It also shows both the "manual" method with just a collimation cap as well as using the laser collimator. Worth a watch, if you're into that sort of thing.) Tell me about it. These days there's almost as many solar installers as HVAC companies and permitting is a lot easier. But when we built our system we were the trailblazers in our area. Most people were ok with the concept (even SCE, since the state paid them for doing nothing), but the bureaucrazy was nuts. Took us a long time just to get a permit. There was no checkbox marked "solar panels" on the city's building permit application forms you see, and you can't get a permit to build unless you fill out the application form correctly. I think we wound up calling our work "roof repairs" or some such nonsense. Technically true, since we re-shingled the roof and did some patching before installing the panels, but...
  21. efaardvark

    Do you have trouble making friends?

    Yeah, collimating is a PITA. I finally broke down an got a laser collimator for my cat. With a smaller scope it probably wouldn't be necessary but the cat is big. Or at least big enough to be hard to adjust the screws while keeping an eye on the alignment. It really helps there. It gets you 95%+ there quickly and it is hard to do completely wrong. They're not too expensive either. At least not when I consider how much fiddling it lets me avoid. I think mine cost about $50. (It is a combined Cheshire/laser deal, kind of like this.) Nice size. I've been thinking of getting a smaller, portable, "tabletop" model of that sort (Dobsonian or SCT) myself. The cat I have is great, but it is heavy enough that I have to be REALLY interested in viewing to want to drag it out. (The motor housing is cast iron and weighs a ton just by itself. Then add the 2 counterweights, the legs, the battery to power it all.. oh yeah, and the telescope. ) Back when there wasn't so much light pollution and smog where I live I got more use out of it because I could just set it up in the back yard. These days I think I'd get more use out of a smaller 'scope that's portable and easier to set up. To really let the cat shine I need to pack it in the car and haul it up the mountain or over into the desert. Unfortunately that's just too much for me lately. My refractor is good for portability, but it is only a 2.5-inch aperture. I use it mostly for solar viewing. It is almost as old as I am and has seen better days too. Thinking it is time for a third option. It makes me sad to see the cat just sitting in the corner though. 👍 Solar panels are a no-brainer here in SoCal Edison territory. SCE's "tiered" rate structure starts at 18¢/kWh and goes up to over 40¢/kWh! The system on our roof we built for about 17¢/kWh, and that was 15 years ago. The system has already paid for itself and I'd like to (re)build a newer one with more modern gear and cheaper panels. (Maybe add in a charging station for my car as well... I'd love to be able to at least do the commute effectively on solar power alone.) These days I could probably do it again for about 10¢/kWh or less. We're in a great area for solar too. Makes me wonder how SCE stays in business.
  22. efaardvark

    Building a new gaming PC

    Dangit.. I *just* got my spiffy new 2700x system running, and now they've announced spiffier new CPUs, 3rd-gen Ryzens to compete with Intel's i9s.... https://www.anandtech.com/show/13829/amd-ryzen-3rd-generation-zen-2-pcie-4-eight-core Isn't that the way with electronics? Next week's toy is always faster/better than the one you bought this week. And more expensive too. Well, I'm not going to get too upset. PCI 4.0 means a new chipset too, and if they're competing with i9s... did I mention that new toys are expensive? I think I'll just enjoy the one I got for now and see what develops over the next couple years.
  23. efaardvark

    ☆Wicked's Chat Corner!☆

    This happened to me too in another thread. My entire post (which I wrote in English) was converted to French, then replied to. In French. Maybe there's a router somewhere that connects to a parallel dimension or something where we all actually speak a different language?
  24. efaardvark

    The Dreadful Customer Service of Rightstuf

    I've ordered a few things from Rightstuf over the years. Never had a problem worth noting however, and I never had to send anything back. Fortunately. I'll definitely think twice before placing another order with them after hearing your story though! As a side note, as I type this their web site seems to be having problems as well. It timed out and I had to retry a couple times before it would load. Sounds like they need to get their act together. Companies that don't communicate well with their customers don't usually last very long. Edit: I was just thinking the other day it was about time to add to my DVD collection too.
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