Category Archives: Michael Rogers

A Leap of Faith

I recently worked on a post regarding the changes to Celtx and how one could get and keep their original offline versions of software so those who have invested into the platform could maintain it.  But as I have been also posting about I have been slowly getting back into my filmmaking side and exploring ways to proceed into it.  But it has been sometimes since the days of past where I could pull up my favourite editor and whittle away the hours tapping away on a keyboard but more one my issues with that later. 

It has occurred to me that the software I once used is no longer supported in fact the guy who wrote has dropped off the face of the earth.  The other collaborative tool I used was Celtx and it has changed significantly since I last used it.  Final Draft has gone under 2 revisions (and it still is pretty much the same software) and I have never touched Movie Magic.

But there are other players, free, not so free and the outright bizarre.  I am not going to look into each and do a massive review, but the one thing I will be looking is the leap of faith people take and then find their product has gone, not supported, shut down or a shadow of themselves.  What does one do when this happens?  I look a new player in the landscape in general but not to the field is Adobe with their Adobe Story.  A script writing platform, which is web based only, offer a free and a premium version for a subscription cost and provide some cloud storage.

Its premium version has scheduling and production reports (the full suite I do not know), can export into Excel, which I am presuming allows for budgeting but it is the lack of offline versioning that makes it tricky.  If you decide to take the leap, since “I will be using Premiere and After Effects” then why not.  It speaks of integration but I have yet to try it and I think I will when I go the whole hog, when I have spoke with some people to determine what collaboration I can get I will look further into this and provide a more end to end up date on it.  But, that said, I am trying it for one project, but for those who go the whole hog, web only, documents in the cloud and the service shuts down, they can, it is in their terms of service, they would burn a lot of bridges if they did that but it is a reality.  What then?  My friend and I had 26 different scripts and that equated to about 290 or so files including all of the different versions and this was on Celtx.  They stopped providing the software to use the old system and were unrepentant about it, but through some diligence and searching I found their last version, installed, hope it worked and downloaded them all.  My issue is now it is all in the format of the software that is no longer supported.

I have scripts in Final Draft, which is still available but I have to find my licence for it.  I have them in Sophocles formats and so on.  Each one, has their pros and cons and not one can provide me with everything I want.

Another one I found out recently was Fade In, not long ago there was Movie Outline and I still get spam mails from there about their product which I believe started as an outline and pre-script tool and progressed into a fully fledged application.  There is of course Final Draft, Celtx and Movie Magic Screenwriter.

So for those uninitiated I have just shown 6 different screenwriting applications all providing one thing in common, if not more, they all write screenplays.  Their costs vary and being in Australia it is even worse for some.

Product Price
Adobe Story Free ($9.99/month Story Plus)
Celtx Free ($9.99/month Standard, $19.99/month Premium)
Fade In $49.95
Movie Magic $160.00
Movie Outline $199.95
Final Draft $249.99 (AU$319.64)

It is an interesting cost difference for software that does very much the same thing as what I am using now, or what Microsoft Word does.  I know there will be people who argue it, but to devote so much of your time writing, creating stories only to be bound to a product or worse be left with manually converting scripts because you selected product is now gone.  Not to mention actual cost investment.

Some of these packages aren’t cheap, Final Draft likes it prices high because if you look at their testimonials page we have so many Hollywood screenwriters endorsing their use.  I remember a post did a while back regarding George RR Martin and what he uses for his writing, and old DOS machine. Which he gets to work it enables him to write his books and then export it and send it to the publisher for editing and finally publishing.  Does anyone of these products enable you to write a BETTER script, no, since that is up to you.  If I pay the money for Final Draft and more academy award winning screenwriters use it does that statistically mean I will receive an academy award one day or at leats have a statistical chance to get one.  Well one thing I can say is statistics do not take into account other than actual numbers and under those I would say yes, there is a statistical chance if I use it I will get one.  But the reality is, I have an equal chance of getting an award for screenwriting using ANY of the above products.

So which do I use, which platform do I decide to sink my teeth or my money into.  Well the biggest draws at the moment are Adobe Story or Celtx for one main reason, collaboration.  I can, with my friend sit down with the application open, and run through at different locations and use Skype and update the script.  My friend has been my First AD and chances are will remain to, while I direct as he is the best one I have worked with and his work ethic is second to none.  But I am looking at it from a project by project aspect and it isn’t an easy choice but at least Story enables importing Final Draft which I do have documents of floating around but the Celtx offering still enables so much more than script writing and as a pre-production took, like the Sophocles product I used to use, it is a stand out.

I am wary of a leap of faith again and I might keep my options often and export and keep backups of all my version in a nice open format that I can use anywhere depending on the situation and what happens to my platform of choice, like Celtx and Sophocles of past.

Then There is Nothing

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Now like a blot from the blue, ideas and words, pictures, scenes shots and stars all came into my head, mixed around and come out in the semblance of an idea for a feature film.  Often this was the case and as in the case in the past was, I could direct my thoughts, postulate on the goings on and happenings of the world I am creating.  Then as quickly as many of these things flooded in, gone. 

I woke yesterday to find the previous night there were no dream, no images, any hope of grabbing and idea and riding it within my mind just slipped out of grasp or failed to reach it.  It went as quickly as as they had previously came and was like a light switch (not like ones in my house however they seem to stay on, forever),

But hope was not lost, this morning though the images of the past have returned and are in a foggy and faded distances I can see them at the least.  Is this a cause from the medication as now it has been two months and I still feel the withdrawals from it, the spinning head failure for refresh the losing my way in thought or even failing to know which day of the week it is.  But a quick look at my watch confirmed it was Monday, though on the Monday it was fine.  It was on the Tuesday when things in terms of ideas dried up and cause some worry.

One of the things that has come from the time, albeit brief, when I was on a roll coming up with the ideas was I wanted to direct this into a film.  As during the time I was making my short films I would see scenes on the street of what I was writing, I could see how it would look from moving the camera (a virtual one) and then still get a good shot. 

I will be the first to put up my hand and say my short films we not great.  They were not meant to be great.  They were meant to be exercises in shooting a film.  My first we simple my second included some more moving camera, others included mixture shots by shooting the scene from multiple angles with the actors at different times, my last included some green screen and compositing, not great, but it was a learning part which I needed.  After that my next was to learn the long form.

So there is much I need to learn in the process of filmmaking but at the same time I need to also learn more about me, my mind and how I can adapt to the situation when I am hip deep in making a film and I find my brain has switched off and will not come back for a few days.  I can’t just shut up shop, but at the same time I can’t try and plough though hoping that everything is OK.

It might mean I need to document things a little more, make sure I have everything written, drawn pre-vizzed and typed out.  As pouring all my thoughts onto the page, into an image, into a photo will not only make my transition from a blank mind back into the fray much more seamless but also if there is someone who I can trust to take my vision into reality and use the assets created will make it much easier.  There are two people that I believe I can count on in my creative endeavours if the my mind decided to just come up with as much as a government policy convention, I can sit with them and know that these two will remain faithful to the vision.

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A very poor attempt at a storyboard.

A Long Time Coming

Last night, was the first time in a VERY long time where I came up with a story idea that I feel is fairly decent and would be turned into a very good script.  The second element of my amazement is with this story it is also one that would be EASY to film.  Could I be getting my film mojo back, I will wait until I say “Action” on the first shot before I write anything to the extent of having my mojo back.

What makes this more refreshing than some of the ideas I have come up with before and there have been a couple is, the tone of it.  It seems to have a very real aspect from within, not anything I have done, want to do, but it is also a product of the nature of the mind having been altered chemically and its need to accommodate the changes in chemistry to make up any shortfall, as a consequence I have come up with a VERY dark and VERY disturbing story that for someone who might know me might be very curious where it has come from.

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Much is unknown about the mind of humans less about any one person.  Like the ocean and there is many areas that show everything from the surface and others are so deep, covered by the darkness that lurks and hides things that are sometimes best to remain hidden.

That said I will expand on this story as I feel I have the first 1 ½ to 2 acts of the story very briefly outlined.  And I know with the help of my writing friend, I will have the last part finished and be on my way to writing the script.  More and more elements are coming together there is a spark which show the light, I will speak with another friend who is an actor if she would be interested in playing a part in it. 

I am a long way from ever getting things together but I feel I am a lot closer to that than I have ever been in a very long time.

A Change for the Better or no Change at All

This is a rambling from my mind, my mind has been hit very hard of the last few years.  I have been on a mix of heavy pain killers as my back was causing issues.  I was taking various mixes of anti-depressants which lead me from being incredibly tired and lethargic to not have a consistent train of thought.  Since then I have had 2 operations, one for a complete ankle reconstruction the other for a neuro stimulator implant device.  This has had some massive affects on my life.  I now do not get back pain to the same extent I had before, a win, but  the device gives me sometimes massive head-aches.  These are, well terrible, they are migraine like but I believe worse as the device is what causes them.

So, the other issue I have had recently is the my creativity and thought process.  My thought process in these times has sporadic to put it mildly.

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Above shows a crude chart, the numbers on the left side represents any particular thought be it about dinner for tonight my current work, the weather, anything, each number represents a thought that can entered my head.  Then there is the time and I can concentrate on any one things for only short bursts before not through any reason I can find my mind loses track of the thought, it disappears amongst the many neurons that are firing and forever will it not return.

This alone has been the reason why my posts of late have reduced, I was able to focus, save come back and save over a period and then post it but lately it is the coming back that is getting more and more difficult.  Then there is the creativity side of it.

I used to be a creative type, some might disagree with it but having many a story written, feature film scripts, novels etc… each showed I had a depth in many areas for creativity.  Then, Pfft, gone.  Unsure why, how when, it was a process that happened for some reason and I find it returns for even shorter periods than my normal thought processes, it requires obviously a different side of my mind.  But right now as I am writing this I am struggling to stay on my task of keeping things together enough to form the sentences to make sense since I feel I could type words but not have structure to it and have not sense at all.

I am now coming off the drugs the anti-depressants at the moment and this is causing more issues.  As I feel it further constrains my thinking or other physical abilities as all my processing is just trying to keep my mind running, like a computer running at 100% CPU usage, and I need to speak to someone but I have to wait until there is a gap in the processing before I can and when there is I jump in but it has taken too long and I find I have run out of the processing power and therefore it will come out in fits and bursts as the mind is too bust controlling other things other elements other processes that I need to speak.

You can imagine in a business where I need to work on solutions to complex business process problems where I need to use my mind in many different ways, logically, conceptually, creatively (to a lesser extent), draw on all my history of programming, architecture and so on and have all of this needed on a whim when someone asks me, “Tell me how I can best do this…” Recently I was asked to appraise someone’s proposal (it wasn’t really but I won’t get into that) for a solution for recording time and attendance in a system in many systems that aren’t linked together in any form and they proposed to have this implemented by the middle of February, this was also dealing with systems I only have the fleeting understanding of to begin with.

So, I have my mind, needing time to process things I normally do, what everyone does, the random thought changing processes that come into play, “Why was it foggy on the morning of 9th September 1998 and why did I leave my lights on””?” then I will need to concentrate hard on my work, then there is the withdrawals of the anti-depressants.  Which are terrible.  I have been slowly coming down off them for almost a month, to the Dr. request is was 100mg, 50mg, 25mg 12.5mg over the 4 weeks then stop.  I did that and I am still feeling the side effects of these drugs not in my system.

Dizzy spells these are terrible, I will be siting down and simply moving my eyes from one screen to the next and my mind, will have this bizarre feeling of being delayed in updating what I am physically seeing.  There is the vagueness, which is no knowing anything, not thinking anything the true moment when someone says what are you thinking I can say, nothing, there is not a thought in my mind, light is entering my eyes and that is it nothing else.  Right now I am trying SO hard to type this.

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My mind sees this, a lightening strike something quick and massive as all of above all at the same time being muddled and confusing and compounding as my mind is also trying to form words, words to articulate what I want to say only to find the harder I try and focus and more distorted the image becomes and therefore the words that I want to come out with might come out, and come out again, then it might repeat and this might be fine for a Herald Sun reporter (not a journalist), but when I am trying to describe what I am going through in words and images it is difficult.

So that is me right now, I want to achieve so much, there are times when I have a spring in my step ready to take on the world and others times I am sitting there looking blankly with nothing happening other than the simple involuntary actions taken by my body.

My Perspective

Might be curious to know one of the biggest things that is leading to my depression is the inability to be in control of my own destiny.  I am now a father and since getting married and having children I feel that these decisions that I would do, what I could do have been taken from me.  This might seem the same for anyone who has a family, priorities change, but the issue was before if I didn’t like my job I could quit and find a new one, now, I am scrutinised with regards to my job why did I quit, why do I want to quit.  It isn’t a matter of being unhappy where I am, well not enough of a reason to say I am unhappy where I am I want to find a better job.

Herein lies the dilemma, I want to find a job where I am making a difference, giving people enjoyment or making their life easier with their daily task.   As in my jobs where I get unhappy with my ole it is often due to changes in this, recently I have have had a software product I was working on, it was running, well, people were using it and it was making their life easier.  I was finding ways to improve it, to enable the best from it.  A choice made in November to completely remove this product from use at the site with no forethought, no consultation, just a new manager coming in stamping their authority and showing they are the boss decided to can the software and role back to the use of 70 plus Access Databases and even more pieces of paper and Excel spread sheets.

This was taken from me, I was not able to provide the input or anything, I am not in a state of limbo with development in I do not know my worth as a developer when I am writing software to facilitate communication as opposed to making life easier.  My film work was always fun when I knew people liked what I did, they were enjoying what I created.  The development of my film, which I had put so much effort into was taken from me when the people whom I trusted, stopped working thought their time was better spent elsewhere.  This is OK, but in the same reality I see this as being a betrayal as it happened, once again with coming to me, talking about it that they want to go at it alone, or whatever reason they wanted but it was the lack of consultation that I felt left me high and dry.

So now having children, and a wife who isn’t working means my income is the sole source of income further create strain on many aspects as there is even more focus on me my job, not the happiness factor it is a money issue, we need you to work, we need you to work in IT and we need you to work as a programmer as we need you to earn at least $X so I can’t just quit and become some dude in a check-out, not that I want to, but they are meaningless benign jobs that earn money but in the end provide no true fulfilment in the greater good, my greater good.

This endless cycle of wanting my work to mean something, have it mean something only to have my work forcibly taken from me.  All my work as an IT programmer has been like this, all the major projects I worked on have been work I have been proud of, but they are now not being used, for any number of reasons.  To pour so much blood, sweat and tears into creating artistic masterpieces only to see them used a fire kindling. (I know my work is no masterpiece but it is a crude but apt analogy).

I feel right now I have done my dash, I have written all the words physically inside me to describe this, but I still feel like I have undersold it or the contrasting one of over done it.  People can look at this, say, well that is life, we don’t get to make choices for the better we have to do what we have to do.  I have my boys and they are the most important thing in life, in my life to make them happy and healthy, but surely to make them happy would be for me to be happy myself and if I am happy with my life then I can be a better father, which I feel I am not.  I feel like I am a terrible father that I do things or do not do things more to the point with my men that I should.  Conscious effort to not be like my father in my boys upbringing only to find that I am in some ways.  Coming down off the medication makes this a larger blurrier line than before.

Having no choice, feeling out of control with where I am heading and feeling all along that I am wanting the best for my kids and I can’t do that. I need to work to give them a roof over their head, food in their bellies.  Yet a happy father and a dad who is there when they need them would be more important making them happier.  I have to wrap this post up, one it is terribly long, 2, I am starting to lose my way in the writing as I am starting to get vague in my mind 3, I am sure there was one when I started at 1. 

A Strange Oort Cloud Object

SpaceSo many theories have come and gone about the coming of the 4 horsemen.  Some fantastical and some potentially plausible, depending on your belief and understanding.  But one recent theory has me intrigued and has me in search of more information.  But first I will put some context in it on perhaps where these theories might have come from and the possibility of links to others, if I can.

Nibiru

This is supposed to be a planetary object that is meant to come into the solar system that will either hit earth or be a near miss.  The orbit is contrary to the orbit of other objects within the solar system (which in itself is not strange).  This bizarre orbit is not the area which is not unreal, Pluto (a planet in my books still) was thought to have been capture by the Sun.

Simply put, a planetary body supposedly the size of the Earth orbiting our sun (albeit in a very contrary way to all other planets) would have been seen, would cause all kinds of other disturbances within our solar system including knocking asteroids in the asteroid belt and even hitting objects in the Kuiper Belt.  The theory of a hit or a near miss in 2012 never eventuated but because it hasn’t been seen one might postulate that it is still not proof it doesn’t exists as there are billions of billions of objects within the known universe that we have no seen but theory suggests it is there.  But this end of the world scenario has been theorised but has never materialised.

So going on about this Nibiru since this seems like the most plausible scenario on the scale of plausible of not plausible to potentially having plausibility.

Firstly why has not much in the main science spoken about this? Most of the comments come from what is called pseudoscience, even if some of these scientists are reputable.  It also doesn’t help the debate when conspiracy theorists jump onto this bandwagon and yell cover-up as to why only information from the fringe is emerging.

So let us look at the information we have;

Images, yes some have emerged from sources unsure that show and object with what seems to be satellites.  Those with some understanding states this object is a Brown Dwarf Star with its own system of planets orbiting.

So this is an image, enhanced, taken from an observatory in Antarctica.  This is an image in the infrared, the red blob is meant to be the brown dwarf, more often only visible in the infrared spectrum as they emit heat but very little light.

The position of this is 0°02’37.77” arc-degrees, Right Ascension 9h47m56.32s.

When things start to go strange is when the believers start looking at this with several pairs of rose coloured glasses, enough smoking of the wacky tobaccy and state that one of the celestial bodies orbiting this brown dwarf houses and civilisation that settled earth as a form of slave labour, in the subsequent 3600 years since their last visit we have expanded in size and have broken our so called shackles.  This race is called the Anunnaki, they are a technologically and supposedly morally superior race of beings to which we are their slaves.

Now I am willing to accept there is a lot about the universe that is not know.  I am even willing to look at the evidence about there being another object out there beyond the Kuiper belt affecting the orbit of the outer edge planets.   But the moment we start going into this realm of another civilisation on another planet orbiting close to their brown dwarf star then I need a little more than some theories out there.

I have some theories about the universe which are mine, I am not a astrophysicist nor a scholar nor mathematician of any kind and my theories are based on information I have read and seen, they are not unbelievable nor are they backed up by any basis either, they are mine.  I am one who requires a lot of convincing and will often sway when there is evidence presented.

Nemesis

Some scientists believe an object is out there an unseen twin to our sun, a Brown Dwarf which correlates to some information in the Nibiru camp.  But they do not believe that this object enters our solar system but merely orbits the sun, tugs on the orbits of Neptune and Uranus and every 26 million years (give or take) will disturb objects in the Oort Cloud and this send these sometimes massive objects into the centre of the solar system.

This theory has gained some momentum based on the theory of mass extinction events happening every 26 million years or so.  This option sounds plausible, most systems in the universe are binary systems and the fact that we are in the select few of non-normal systems and happen to have life and happen to have intelligent life, seems hard to swallow.  But the idea of there being a twin star, yet unseen orbiting far out from our sun doesn’t seem too far fetched.

So astrophysicists will continue scanning the heavens in search for this wondering where this object might be, why, well if it disturbs objects out in the far reaches of our solar system, these objects come into the path of the earth like Feb 15 2013 over Russia, seen, photographed, videoed and heard by people in the region.  This was one of the largest such objects in recent times but was smaller than the one that shook Tunguska June 30 1908.

So it seems like a good thing since this object that crashes back in 2013 was nothing compared to the size of the object that brought about the extinction of the Dinosaurs or the other events that brought the eras of the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods to the abrupt ends.  And since there is a massive object (90377 Sedna) which some also call a dwarf planet and Sedna is about half the size of Pluto and if knocked from its orbit would cause a massive problem if it crossed into our orbit.  Hence the search for something that might cause some issues. 

The Oort Cloud is just as unknown as the Universe

That is the truth, the Oort Cloud a cloud of the remaining particles, gases and dust not formed into planets, comets, asteroids and other stellar objects orbiting our Sun it is a almost spherical cloud about 1 light years or about 60,000AU1 , scientists can guess the items in it, they would be making sure they mark the ones that can cause problems.  This floats around in space, orbiting our sun, very slowly.  It is said that the objects there can be perturbed by the gravitational forces of the Milky Way itself.  Though there is no data to support this theory but they need an explanation how comets from the Oort cloud change their trajectory around the sun.

Scientists are trying to look at these bizarre trajectories of these ex-Oort cloud objects to determine a possible cause, but I believe they are still looking, and certainly the believes of any theory of an extra planet/twin star brings those believers back into the fray and scream cover-up again since they believe it is simple to explain why these objects have been shifted from the original and safe orbit around the sun.

But because something is not known doesn’t mean someone is covering information up.  A lot of science is the search for truth, so scientists out there are searching for this truth.  To them claim that the government is making or forcing the scientists to clam up about this mystery in the depths of our solar system is odd in deed as it would see that more data would come out, likes of Edward Snowden aren’t alone in their need to release information they feel the world should know. 

Let us Assume…

OK, let us look at this with some defined context.  Suppose there is a brown dwarf star out there orbiting our sun, it is about the size of 8 times earth mass, we will hold it there for now.  Since there is various theories on when this sucker orbits the sun 3600 years or 26 million depends on how far out since Sedna takes 11,400 to get around does show the gravitational influence the sun can have on celestial bodies.

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  1. It is thought that at its furthest point this star is about 3 light years from the sun, but it is also about 1 light year to Proxima Centauri (our closest star).  Knowing that Proxima Centauri is about one-seventh the size and one-eighth the mass of our Sun but is also at its furthest point three-quarters closer to Proxima Centauri than our sun you would think that there might be some tug from the closest star certainly enough for it to shift. 

But I will say that Proxima Centauri is our closest star now but hasn’t and won’t be ours in the past or future.  So this tug might be nothing.

Where am I going with this?  I am getting there, well I hope I am.  So, this body then decides (well, you know what I mean) swing by our neighbour hood.  Some might say we should be able to see it by now if it is going to swing by the place, well brown dwarfs are hard to see, they give off almost no visible light so spotting one, not iluminated and not silohetted becomes a tough job.

NOW, the government (puts its cover-up hat on) and determines that it isn’t in the publics best interest to know about this coming brown dwarf.  That it will not hit Earth but the magnetic field this object would have would possibly cause a reign of destruction onto the planet and the seas swelled, tectonic plates shifted, lava flowed land was lost into the seas, forever.

Why would they?  What possible explanation could they have for not letting us know there is an object, 8 times bigger than us about to cruise past and say hello?  That anyone who was planning on releasing information out there, publish papers in peer reviewed journals have said to have been killed.  There is only ONE reason I can possibly think of. 

Panic.  Often when the end of the world talk hits the air it is coming from the mouths of those who are not seen as credible sources.  They are not getting up with panels of experts or the UN science teams.  They aren’t broadcasting from major radio or TV stations they are more often confined to themselves or a select few, releasing podcasts and administering web sites about the impending doom.  So when they talk we hear but we don’t listen and even if they say something slightly credible, the number of boy who cried wolf scenarios that has come out from these people, we are loath to believe anything they say.  BUT, if the government comes out, the President or Prime Minister emerges to a pack media contingent, microphones, phones, tablets and notepads at the ready to take down the titbits about to come forth, then we listen, then we take notice and understand that things are bad. 

But is not telling us early going to create a panic when there is no denying it and the possibility of doom is looking as sure as the Pope’s convictions as a Catholic.  People will be rushing out buying supplies for the end, building bomb shelters hoping this means that the holy man Jesus will come down, take a select few and leave the rest to burn in the impending devastation that will come.  People will profiteer, selling new products assured of survival beyond the apocalypse despite the fact that would not ever help you survive crossing a quiet street let along this cataclysm.

So is it a cover-up, in the way to stop the panic now and create a worse panic later are they deliberately sending out the “scientitians” saying there is no Nibiru, there is no Nemesis, there is Planet-X and we are still unable to find the green sheep.

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So, where do I sit, I have provided all of this information provides pieces here and there, given even a possibly plausible reason (albeit not a very good one) why misinformation might be spoon fed to us by the governments.  What is my stand on it? 

Ifs, Buts and Maybes

We have infrared telescopes trained into space looking at the the universe presented before is.  This is a place of mystery to say the least.  We live in a galaxy with over a billion stars and certainly when you look at this image from the Hubble Space Telescope;

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You realise that this small area of sky gives us a glimpse of that wonder.  We are a young species, about 6000 years old, we have advanced so quickly in that time from the moments we burnt our fingers lighting a fire to burning our fingers on the hot fires of industry to burning our fingers on our friends iPhone as the battery is about to explode.

Out there, there are forces beyond our reckoning even for the super smart boffins pondering the ever evolving equations might say what a black hole can do but we don’t really know, they are equations on paper that tell us about it do nothing telling us what it feels like.   Words sometimes fail to adequately express situations, the feelings I have for my boys, the feeling I have when I gaze up in wonder the feeling I have while peeing in a pool and the warm euphoria sweeps over me. 

I believe there is something out there, it is disturbing things and might orbit our Sun.  This might be Nibiru or it might be Nemesis, since I am only looking at information I can get from documentaries, the internet and second and third hand talks at the pub, mean that I am still sitting firmly on the fence as to what it is. The ever violent nature of the universe tells me we can’t predict all possible outcomes, we can’t protect ourselves 100% of the time and that sometimes it is best to just take what we have and enjoy the moment.  Because IF there is something out there that will cause havoc, what can we possibly do to stop it.  Nothing.  If Sedna was coming towards us and even if we knew when it was going to hit, an object slightly smaller than our moon, we could not do anything to stop it.  Bruce Willis will be too old and in the words from Robert Loggia (General William Grey) from Independence Day said “And turn one dangerous falling object into many.”

It is out there, in space, our end and it will not come out of the blue, we will know it is coming and we will scuttle like ants with their nest disturbed trying to delay the inevitable.  But I want to enjoy my time with my family before I worry about the end and if it comes, we will worry about it then.

  1. An AU or Astronomical Unit is a unit defined as the distance from the Earth to the Sun (the mean distance since our orbit is slightly elliptical.  This is about 150,000,000km in in length.  This is only a guess but I am thinking that AUs were made to help measure the distances to the planets before things start getting measured in light years.
  2. FOX, Mem (2004). Where is the Green Sheep? Australia: Penguin Australia – ISBN: 9780670041497.

Addendum

It might sound like I believe in the theories of Planet X but in some part I do.  But I will be asking my beautiful wife if I can get a Telescope for my birthday.  I will then look at the stars and find the things I would like to see with my naked eye.  I will also like to target the position to be that of where this object might come and see for myself.

I would like to take some pictures of it myself and see what I can show.  The universe has always fascinated me, learning about the strange goings on around the place, Jupiter my favourite planet, biggest in our system but a minnow in the universal ring, but its magnetic field 4 times larger than our Sun, Whaaaa?  Questions, what drives it, Venus, shrouded in mystery and Sulphuric Acid Rain, extreme heat and pressure so intense it has crushed everything we have ever sent to the surface, more than 10 atmospheres.  Triton with geysers like Earth but eject liquid nitrogen high into the air and it falls back as rain on the surface. 

File:Triton moon mosaic Voyager 2 (large).jpg

This is only in our Solar System, what awaits for us outside it, or still within.  I will forever be learning of the universe and all we learn about the new things we find.  And if a day comes, in my life time space flight becomes a reality for more than the super rich I would like to see it. 

Time Alone or a Time Together, Certainly Time Missed

orbz-life-iconIt has been a few weeks since I last posted, not out of wanting to but today I felt I should include something, not to address a reason why but to perhaps just take stock and provide some, insights, if you will, into things.  My grandfather recently passed.  It was a very sudden event, I get a phone call telling me he has had a massive heart attack, but seems stable if not aware of his surroundings.  Just over an hour later I got another call telling me he went to sleep and never woke up.

Out of everything that has happened I am thankful that my two grandparents (one grandfather I barely new my other grandmother I never knew, she died when my mum was 3 (or there about)), one was my mother’s father the other was my father’s mother, they both passed while asleep and pretty much without too much of a warning that things were coming.

But the death of my pop, was more of a shock for one of a few reasons.  I was planning to go up and see him and the family at Christmas 2013.  With my new family, 2 adults and 2 children and flight prices in Australia is pretty much like everything, EXPENSIVE, it was going to cost 4 Adult tickets to travel to Brisbane from Melbourne which was well in excess of AU$2000.  I spoke to my mother and we both didn’t think it was going to cost that much and decided we could put things off until they call come later in 2014. 

So now, they will be coming later in the year, but they will be without my pop.  There is a massive amount of regret I am feeling.  Why did I worry about the cost?  I could have physically afforded it, it wasn’t as if I was going to go without food or not have money to the house or bills, but I thought I guess nothing like this would happen, or more correctly I didn’t look at this as a possibility.  Often when making plans, one doesn’t take death into account.  “I should go see someone just in case they die.”.  But a lot of choices I make in the future, this might be in the back of my mind, when faced with the choice of seeing one of my family or worrying about some financial problems down the track (if that might happen) I will possibly take the prior.

Do events like this always need to happen for anything of such to change a tact of policy, perhaps.  I know if I had decided to pay the AU$2000+ in flights to Brisbane that Christmas, my Grandfather would have seen Isaac, but would have I felt better when getting the news about his death.  Was it not so much the fact I didn’t go at Christmas but just that I will miss a good man, we were not terribly close but since I was closer to him than my other Grandfather there is something missing.

Death comes to all and it is something that we all have to deal with as friends and family are taken from this world.  The one thing that I can take from this is;

So often in these moments we look at the person and miss the fact they aren’t there any more.  I know I will miss the bad jokes he would love to indulge us with or regale the tails of story from Readers Digest.  He loved playing Rummy Cub and any card game and was a very handy man, having built many things for my mum, as a child and also as an adult. 

He fought in World War II in Papua New Guinea and despite the many attempts to have him tell the stories of his time in war from what I knew, he never once told anyone, I could be wrong, but something happened during that time that he does not to share or relive in his mind.

He saw the death of 2 wives, 4 brothers and he always still liked to put a smile on peoples faces.  No matter where he resided he was always befriending people and did so with ease and was certainly popular with the ladies, even up in the last weeks before his passing.  He wanted to be a better father for my mum but all in all, the tales learnt and passed to me I see that though he thought he could have been one I don’t think he was disappointed with the way his son and daughter turned out and then subsequently his grandchildren whom he saw grow into adult hood and also bring him great grand children. 

My oldest son Elliott met his great grandfather a few times and he was known as GG to him.  My youngest still knows of GG and has only spoken with him.  Considering all I know about him, I couldn’t have wished for a better grandfather and certainly there was no better great grandfather for my two young men. 

You have now the infinite of space and time to come and go as you please but I know despite the tantalising nature of that is you will be happy to just watch over us and catch up with your Brothers and your first wife Agnes, whom you have not seen in some 60 odd years.  Your life will live on, always.

He is a man who will be missed, but no because of him not being here but because of the joy he could bring to others. 

Brand loyalty in the PC World

Hardware-Chip-iconWe have seen it in so many areas of life.  Coke v Pepsi, PlayStation v XBOX (Nintendo is as Nintendo does as are their fans).  Like footy teams we pick it, we stick to it and we will hopefully never let our belief waver that we have picked the wrong side by providing any number of logical and very much unorthodox arguments over the choice of one said team over another.

I was looking at PC part prices as I wanton to do and I saw a special for an AMD Radeon card.  If someone was close to me they would have heard me mumble I will never buy and AMD card again.  It dawned on me on this loyalty and if I was rightly justified in my belief.  I have used AMD hardware before, so I believe I have a valid reason for not wanting to go down that path again.  Though to the fan boys out there it would seem petty and because I wasn’t going to show it love, then I deserve not have have the love returned.

Why no AMD?  I have used three AMD devices in the, a CPU from the old days and 2 video cards, one being a desktop the other being a laptop.  Back in the days with the CPU, PC parts were VERY expensive and one was looking for the next upgrade without the least expense.  I was looking to upgrade my current Intel 486 DX2-66 this lead me to the AMD Am5x86 chip. 

It sat into the slot on my motherboard, which was handy, didn’t need to worry upgrading that part, it gave Pentium performance and was cheaper than Pentium which at that time was having Floating Point issues and also required a different motherboard than I had.

Why did Intel name their new processor the Pentium instead of 586?  Because on a Pentium when you add 100 to 486 you get 585.99999999999999. 

So I did it.  I drop what little cash I had, put the chip in, using careful levering of the old chip out and the new one in.  I turned it on, I knew at worst I would have to re-install my Operating system, which was Windows 95 at the time but I was hoping for it to work.  And…

It did, until…

I am wanton to rebuild my PC from time to time, by that I mean, perform a clean install.  There are a couple of reasons one being I find that a clean machine is a lean and mean machine, the other is also about backing up and making sure I have access to all my data offline, since I am often performing a low-level format of the disk during this process.  Must scrub clean all that nasty pornography so the police don’t find it.

So, I decided that this day was the day I needed to perform my re-install.  Found all the disks, Windows 3.11, MS DOS 6.22 and my Windows 95 upgrade disc, I got it and Office 95 for free, I still have the box of Windows 95 Smile yes cool and nerdy.

The path was, Install DOS, Install Win95, when prompted for upgrade use the Windows 3.11 disk when prompted.  All was good, install DOS, first problem.  DOS installer wasn’t working as expected.  These were also the days when the Internet was not common on all PCs and I did have it on my Windows 95 machine but, well it was not even running DOS yet so no good.  One just had to plod through the issues and get it working.

I will not go through this problem but suffice to say, 3 days later I got Windows 95 running.  Phew.  First time I had issues.  Before with my old Intel chip, I had done 2 re-installs without issue.  So, this put me off.  There was also a problem my friend had with a Cyrix Processor.  So, since I had no issues with Intel CPUs, I have stuck with them.

Intel 486DX2-66, Pentium II, Pentium III, Pentium 4 HT, Pentium Core2 Quad, i7, I have not has issues with any of these processors and my first foray into overclocking happened in the Pentium III when I overclocked my Pentium III from 450MHz to 550MHz a 22% gain in performance not too bad.

My next test into AMD was the AMD Radeon 5770HD with 1GB of DDR5 VRAM, it was a great bang for buck card with the research I had done.  Lots of recommendations on it.  It wasn’t too expensive and it was a considerable bump in performance from my NVIDIA 9400GT.  When I got this there were a couple of games I played regularly, in that I mean I come back to them frequently, I still do now, so any system I have needs to run these games.  One is The Movies, by Lionhead Studios, Age Of Empires II by Ensemble Studios and Knights of the Old Republic by BioWare. 

The Movies gave me hope since it would come up with an ATI logo when starting which meant that ATI supplied them cards and it did.  Age of Empires, it is solid and works, I can even run it in a Virtual Machine.  Knights of the Old Republic was the issue.  Upon looking around the internet, there were workarounds for this issue, it related to the OpenGL drivers for the ATI Cards.  I needed to copy the OpenGL driver into same folder as the game. 

That was strike 2, I shouldn’t need to do that.  I didn’t have to do that on my NVIDIA card why should I on an AMD one.  So, one last chance to impress.  Not long after that I was in the market for a laptop.  I saw in the paper a sale on, I went there, my Wife didn’t want to come in happy doing word puzzles in the car, I went in and game out with a brand spanking new HP DV7 laptop.  It was faster than my Intel Core2Quad at home as it had an i7 in the guts as well as an Intel 3000 HD video card and an AMD 6770M 1GB DDR5 chips as well.

It was a nice machine, nice and quick, I upgraded the HDD in it as there were 2x 750GB 5400rpm drives in it, I made them 7200rpm drives.  Performance wise it is nice, I can overclock it, it gets a little warm but I use it mainly for playing SWTOR while I am away from home and it did the job until a driver update from HP went awry and SWTOR stopped playing.  Putting this at a driver issue from HP I though I would go get the Mobility driver from AMD…. NO.  I can’t do that as I need to download the verification tool, which I did and it told me it isn’t compatible.  Thankfully, I was able to get SWTOR running again, I rollback the driver and it worked, but performance (which was the reason for me upgrading) was terrible.

One might think this is HPs fault, and that is what AMD say.  We let companies use our hardware but we are not responsible for the way they are implemented or the drivers they supply.  The other issue is also they do not provide a fall back either.  Which is poor service on AMDs part.

HP Driver Release – 2011-11-18 , Version 8.882.2.3000

AMD Driver Release – 2013-12-18, Version 13.12

Yes a large difference between the driver versions.  Now NVIDIA devices in notebooks, work with NVIDIA drivers, no issues.  But to Install Reference Drivers, Install New drivers, re-install reference drivers, update driver from Device Manager.  To do this just to get the driver working and at proper performance it bad not only from HP but also from AMD who simple washed their hands of the matter.

Strike 3 Thumbs down

So, this experience has put me squarely into NVIDIAs camp and Intel’s camp and I might pay more for it but I haven’t had issues.  I have also maintained loyalty on Seagate drivers as I have had some issues with WD devices.  Strange how these problems can create loyalty in one brand or another.

Beat the Heat

Hardware-Chip-icon

Last night was a strange, it was about 12 months ago, nearly to the day that I upgraded my PC. Intel Core i7 (mine is the 3770K) with 32GB G.Skill DDR3 RAM, GTX760 OC Video Card, Sabertooth Z77 Motherboard all siting inside a Silverstone Raven RV03 case.  The weather was hot last time I did this and now, I bought a new part for this computer and it is reaching 43°C (109.4°F & 316°K) so it seems about right that I am doing it again with hot temperatures coming around.

But it is the hot temperatures is why I am getting this particular part.  Backstory – I like to play games, which I am sure many of you might know, I play them on my PC and I live in Australia.  These combinations mean, my PC runs a little on the warm side as the ambient temperatures are often hotter, and in summer it is more the case with the ambient temperature even higher than normal.  Suffice to say, playing games I then see a warning (by games I mean, SWTOR) telling me the CPU is over 70°C (158°F & 343.15°K), this from my understanding is hot.  Hot, it is the temperature at which if a Barista made my coffee and the milk hit that temperature I would return it as it would be burnt.  But these 70°C temps were going to get worse when the air outside the case was hotter than it was when I was first reading these temperatures.

If you run your CPU at high temperatures constantly it will reduce its life span.  CPUs will not run forever and the more stress they are p[physically put under then it will shorten their lives.  Also a note to understand something about the way CPUs are made.

CPUs are made on wafer of semiconductor material (usually Silicon crystal).  This material, when made can be of varying quality.  The better the quality the better the ability to withstand higher temperatures.  The wafers that perform the best go into Intel’s best CPUs their Extreme Editions, ones that weren’t quite as good start making up the lower end processors.  I say weren’t so good is to state that it couldn’t cope at the higher end of the spectrum but did well at lower ends, so they can run it at a lower speed and it will perform very well.

The K CPUs, the ones capable of overclocking use a better wafer than a normal unlocked CPU.  Meaning my 3770K has a better wafer than the stock 3770, simply because they have designated this to be overclockable and must still be stable if it is overclocked (to a point, which I am sure Intel will not tell us which point this is).  But, if they fill their quota of top line and they have wafers that are considered top left over they would go and make the next one down and the next one down and so on.

So, what were my options?  I had very good airflow into my case, I had 6 fans on the case alone, 2 exhaust and 4 intake.  But my CPU was still hit 70°C+, which I thought was hot.  Is, well, Intel don’t say what is too hot, hot enough for the CPU to begin throttling.  But it is wise to push the CPU to its maximum safe temperature just to find where it will throttle, unless you have the ability possibly not, I have seen that the i7 will go has high as 100°C before it will internally throttle, so, if this is a mark of the CPU causing itself to cool down by reducing the load, 70°C is not too bad, but it means my overclocking ability is limited.

So, I could add a massive heat-sink and fan to the CPU like this.  But this seemed very gaudy to me and if you look at where my CPU sits on my motherboard there isn’t a lot of room as that Thermal Amour as they call it, comes up high around the edges and might prevent it from working, or fitting.  So I decided to go for liquid cooling, it works for the car which gets far hotter than any CPU so why not use the same technology that has been around for ages, but this time for a new application.  So time to hit the internet.  There are lots of different systems around.  Closed loop, refillable, double radiators, different liquids coolants, all so much.  Intel released one, which I thought was not too bad, but then in the end I decided to go with;

When I was looking at this, it crossed my mind a couple of times and the Corsair Link software was what caught my eye.  Plugs into a USB header on the motherboard and then enable you to control the speed of the fans based on certain parameters.

I then dropped the cash on the Corsair H80i.  I felt this could do the job, provided that ability for me to control the fan speeds (therefore the cooling) and enabled me to help overclock the CPU a little more than I have.

So, I get home (sorry for the no unboxing video, why do people want to show the unboxing, when this this become something that people want to see, anyway, I digress).  So, I looked at the radiator, the 2 fans, the pump and brackets and I felt I have bit of more than I could chew.

So I removed the rear exhaust fan and find that when I attached both fans to the radiator, I do not have the room as the motherboard gets in the way.  I looked more into it, the top exhaust fan, starting to run into the CPU which means the curving of the pipes is a little higher than I would like, which means more pressure on the joints.  I had to leave it be.  Come back after dinner.

I think more, remove one of the HUGE intake fans at the bottom of the case.  There is room there for the Radiator and fans, it lines up nicely with the CPU and there are holes there for attaching it.  I decide to have my dinner.  My youngest has decided to help, he inserted some various screwdriver heads between the memory slots, though a circuit tested would look good stuck into the PCIe x16 slot.  So with the all cards removed, some fans disconnected I decided to unplug the bottom fan (after removing the various additions added by my son.

BUT, looking more and more at this change is making me uncomfortable.  Simply put, I am losing one of the massive fans, which I am sure pull a lot of air and direct it to the CPU (currently).  I have no other place to put it (the fan that is).   After more looking at the situation and thinking more, I realised that I could not fit, anywhere in its entirety, both fans and the radiator.  I was starting to look at this situation as needing more than more to solve it.  Not wanting to give up, I realised that I could mount it in an unorthodox way, and looking more into it I realised the top exhaust fan, could be removed, have the radiator and one fan on the inside and then mount the second fan on the outside of the case. 

I proceeded to do this, checking the direction of the fan flow, since it talks about better cooling is with air intake.  So I did this, both aligned correctly I also took the grill that prevented fat fingers getting into the fan blades onto the outside fan, attached that to the radiator.

Attached the back plate to the underside of the motherboard.  I then screwed this in (mind you I don’t have big hands but there wasn’t a lot of space for me to screw these in), but I managed.  I removed the CPUs heat sink and fan and realised a possible reason for the high heat, there was some small areas where air could sit between the CPU and the base of the heat sink. 

Air isn’t a great conductor of hear, so what can happen is the heat in those pockets gets far hotter than the rest, this heat is transferred into the heat sink but also back to the processor.  For this transfer to happen it needs very high temperatures.  So it is a bad cycle.  So, I applied the pump to the top of the CPU, attached to mounting bracket and screwed it down, making sure I work on opposite corners.   One thing I didn’t realise was just how big, or think it was.  The pictures are deceptive and though it tells you the thickness of it, you can perform some calculations to determine its size, but nothing beats seeing physically how big it is.  This is the size of it, on the side.  Fans are black radiator is grey.

image

 

This is as accurate as I can get it for the screen.  Based on a typical 96 pixels/inch for screen resolution, those running a higher DPI would not see this accuracy of this.

image

Same with this this is it front on.  So, you can see the space.  So if you are looking into water cooling, understand the size of the rans and radiator in the images is deceptive.  And this is a single radiator those with doubles I am sure take up more room.  But as with me, I didn’t have enough room all inside the case, but, a mix between inside and outside I was able to get it in.

I plugged everything back in, turned it on, it worked.  Surprised smile

NOTE.  Water coolers will NEVER cool the CPU down to anything below ambient air temperature.  Why, because the air being sucked through the radiator is at this temperature and it cannot therefore cool the liquid down to below that temperature.  If you want colder cooling you will need to look into Phase Change cooling  This is a silly name, certainly meant to sound way cooler than it is.  This operates like an air conditioner, the difference here is instead of blowing cold air out, it uses the same process but in an enclosed loop.  It uses a combination of pressure and heat transferral to change the refrigerant (the liquid) into a gas then back to a liquid.  It is called Phase change as it is meant to describe the phase change from liquid to gas.

So I ran up a game, but I couldn’t run up a game that I have seen the 70°C warning (as they were down with a patch) so I still tried a game, Lord of the Rings Online.  Considering the ambient air temperature inside the house which was about 35°C, the fact that I managed to get a max of 50°C from it means it is working.

I have not taken the time to set up my temperature profiles yet.  But also note the link on the site for the software (and you need to download it.  If you are running Windows 8 or 8.1, don’t get it, instead use the following link.

Corsair Link Software Update BETA Version 2.5.5145

This takes you to their forum page with a download for the software.  The version of the software on their site, Corsair Link Installer RC v2.4.5110 will not work with Windows 8.  Please do not download this, use the beta version from the link above.

Cooling

A note on cooling in general.  NEVER let anyone person tell you that the stock CPU fan is no good.  All tests carried out in the labs in the CPU makers are done using the stock CPU fan and heat sink.  If you do not plan to overclock, or cause your CPU to run at 100% for a long time chances are you will not need anything more than the stock CPU heat sink and fan.

Well if you think your CPU is running hot you can get applications that enable you to read the temperature of the CPU you can download some software called CoreTemp and for GPU you can use GPU-Z .  The CoreTemp will provide information about the CPU and will provide a per Core temperature reading.  It will also show the MAX temp of the CPU before throttling will occur. 

Laptops will always be hotter than Desktops, but that are also harder to cool down.  Cooling pads help as it enables the air under the laptop to remain cooler, sucking in cooler air will result in a cooler inside.  But you will know if things get heated since the air from the CPU and GPU (if available) will be blowing out and those vents can be hot to touch. 

Without adding extra features like water/liquid cooling or additional fans look at what you have.  If you have only 2 fans, CPU and power supply then maybe an extra one can help.  But it will do nothing if the airflow is restricted.  Keep it off the floor (hot air rises so you don’t want it too high), but high enough not to suck in the crap from the floor like dust.

imageIf you only have a CPU fan then there is a way that you can help keep it cooler (but you sacrifice noise by doing so, and potentially battery life (if a laptop).

Go into power settings, Control Panel | System and Security | Power Options.  Then the active plan (the one selected radio button), click Change plan settings and the following dialog will be displayed.

Under Processor power management you can set the cooling or the power state (Max or Min values of how much processing power to use, self throttling)

Active cooling will keep the fan running at max to cool the processor.

Passive will keep the fan at a lower speed and will speed it up as the load increases.  If the load doesn’t increase the fan won’t. 

Self Throttling, it is the max state, setting it to a % of total.  If you set it to 75% it is a total CPU.  If you have a 4 core CPU, it will not disable 1 core and have the others max at 100%, if you set it at 75% it will run all cores at that value.

Disabling Cores – Silly if you ask me, but possible and from the BIOS.  I would not recommend this, but if you system is running hot and you want to make sure that it doesn’t break before its time, then this might help (especially if you don’t need the power), only surfing the web or looking at emails.  Watching HD movies you need the grunt, leave the cores alone.

Cleaning

Cleaning you PC out will help, dust can block airflow and prevent the maximum cooling to happen.  This is prevalent on the CPU heat sink, if you suck in dust it will land on the CPU as the fan blows onto the heat sink.  If that is starting to crude up; as you can see with this stop Intel CPU fan and heat sink, the dust is blocking up the gaps between the fins of the heat sink.  This prevents the air circulating through the fins and cooling down the CPU.

This one might need to have the fan removed to be cleaned, but you can get air kits that help the process, make sure a protective mask is used as this dust will go everywhere. 

Filters can help decrease the dust inside PCs, and not restrict airflow.  very fine netting used for curtain sheer to diffuse the light coming from windows is good if fine enough.  A test,. blow through it, if it is too hard to blow through then your fans will unable to suck air throughout it. 

To find out where air is coming into your case, use a tissue.  Hold it against open areas, or areas that have access and hold it gently to the corner.  If it is drawn into the case, then air is coming in.  The more visible the movement the greater the airflow.  The greatest airflow should benefit from using that filter type material.

Regular cleaning can help massively with the cooling ability of your PC and if it is running cooling it will last longer. 

Fans on the case can help, adding a fan to the inside of the case (if room) can bring cooler air into the case or push it out.  But, if air is getting pushed into the case then it needs to be pushed out of the case, either through vents or sucked out by fans.

So, Cool PCs are Clean PCs and Clean PCs are cool.  But, more air flow, colder air, all of them help, but there is lots you can do without spending money.

Iconic Meanings

This is a quick post about some of the information I will be posting about.  If I am writing about one of the languages I know I will be heading it with an icon representing the file icon within Windows Explorer.  Below is the list and the details for them.

ASM

Assembly Language

This is one of the languages I first dealt within my life as a programmer, it is the one I know the second most about.  I have already put some posts up there about assembly but I plan on expanding my understanding of it, showing ways it can be used and as far as RAW power, nothing other than direct machine op/micro-op codes can be beaten.

cpp-159

C++

This bad boy of the programming scene should need no introductions.  C++ has been the go to language for developing high performance applications or systems where lower level kernel programming was required.  Everything from games to Smart Phone applications have been developed using this, and much of Windows was written using C++ (though some still use assembly). 

cs-1616

C#

The new kid on the block but certainly has become a favourite in many circles and seems to be the default language for using the .NET framework with.  It has the versatility and ability to get down and dirty if needed but has some very high level inclusion that you see in what that call “Kiddy1” languages.

vb-179

Visual Basic

I have been using Visual Basic since version 3 (yikes has it been that long) it might be a language I don’t program much in any more, but not because C# is better.  I will have a fondness in my heart for Visual Basic always and will always include information and advancements on VB.

sqlServer

SQL

Last and not least is SQL.  A language I struggled with in my uni days, possibly being bombarded with Z Specification Language before learning SQL made my mind numb.  But know, I am able to write nice, high performance SQL Code and know what I am writing.

So, these will show items that are specific for the languages.  There might be posts that I cover a great deal of different languages.  I am still tossing up if I use the icon for the main language or include all of them.  I will work it out.  But it will be clear what I am addressing for these languages.

I also write about a great many things.  SWTOR being one I write a great many things about.  So, I will also use this icon scheme where I can for other topics I talk about.  But it will be on a post by post basis.

Will I also go back and change the icons I have done for previous posts, the answer is?  Yes.

  1. “Kiddy” languages is a reference I have heard to what people used to call Basic, then Visual Basic.  It wasn’t object oriented or wasn’t this or that, it couldn’t do this, or do that.  It was a language often seen by the elitist programmers who exclusively dealt with Cobol, Fortran, C++ that VB was not a real programming language.  But the ever expansion of what could be done in VB was growing with each release and the popularity of Visual Basic grew as it become the most popular language for business applications (which one would say was market share). 

    It now has full Object Oriented set it can still be used procedurally if required, the bringing in of these new paradigms didn’t change the way the language was written.  I would say long from the origins of BASIC, Visual Basic has become a mainstay and certainly has deserved its place to line up with C# and C++ as a language usable with the .NET Framework.

2014, It Has Started

GFI264-Calendar2013 is now behind us.  2013 was certainly my most prolific year of posting and I would like to wish all followers a very happy new year for 2014.  With that said I am hoping that 2014 will improve my posting again, with my goal to get more information out there when I can.

Throughout last year I started a great many posts than I ever posted online, I am sure that I am not the only one.  Even now as I write this, in the morning of my first day back at work since the Christmas break I am loath to post this, as it is a nonsensical post that is more a dump of my current thoughts than anything.

So I figured I will start getting more into more of the same.  Expanding the information on SWTOR and perhaps include LOTRO as well as I get more and more into the game.  I will expand more on the comparisons between SWTOR, WOW and LOTRO and more from an acronym perspective.  More programming tips as well.  I have a document floating around which has a number of good tips I have gathered throughout the years I might include them and more.

I am also looking at a few beginning posts on learning new languages (computer programming languages).  I will also expand on some current posts about my sporting favourites or baseball and rugby league. 

A change of theme will also come into play, am still trying to find that perfect one that somehow explains me, in more ways than one but is also readable and provides the information I intend to display there without causing too much strain on the eye.  Well that is the goal.

I will maintain my style of writing, this is because it is more to do with the way the information  dump from my head into my fingers and then to the keyboard.  To change it to a more formal style would just take me longer to write blogs, and some of them as people know can be lengthy and to increase the time I take to write those posts will only increase the time it takes for you to read them.

So, the time has come, a goal to post more often about more things in the hopes to make things in the world of tech easier, to provide information about subjects which I have little information about and wish to impart more (and learn more too) and also there might be the occasional post about information I have no clue about.

Have a great new year to those readers and various weblings.