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PowerMac Resurrection - Part 2

Continued from powermac7500 [powermac7500, powermac7500-2] This afternoon I went up to the garage and cleaned five years of garage crud off of the PowerMac 7500 [powermac7500, powermac7500-2] that's been sitting up there. Turns out that the big-ass monitor is actually a 21 inch Raster Ops Model... read more →

PocketMirror 3.1.7 Fixes Annoyance

If you run a recent version of MS Outlook like Outlook 2003, you may have noticed a security dialog like this: This dialog prevents unsigned apps like malware and worms from accessing your address book and from sending email without your explicit permission. Programs like Chapura's PocketMirror... read more →

Micronauts Evolution

As a kid, I had the entire collection of Star Wars action figures (and still do), but I think my favorite action figure toys were actually Micronauts. These things were so cool - you could take them apart and snap pieces from different figures together. And they had a super-cool pneumatic tube tra... read more →

Ramsey's Kitchen Nightmares on BBC America

Paul, an Englishman at my office, turned me on to a brilliant reality show on BBC America called Ramsey's Kitchen Nightmares. Gordon Ramsey is a famous English chef who's called in each week to help struggling restaurants get in shape and get better business. Ramsey is also an acerbic, arro... read more →

PowerMac Resurrection?

So I have this PowerMac 7500 sitting in my garage under a giant 20" Radius CRT. I haven't booted it up in at least five years. I was planning to clean it up and sell it on eBay until I realized that they're selling for a whopping $45 - not exactly worth my time. But yesterday I stumbl... read more →

Good Eats: Pretzels from Newman's Own Organics

Newman's Own Organics, a company run by Paul Newman's daughter Nell, makes some tasty organic snacks. In particular, they make some damned fine pretzels. Unlike the boring and bland pretzels you usually find in supermarkets and vending machines, Newman's pretzels have a full, wheaty ta... read more →

Essential Palm App: Fonts4OS5

If you have a PDA that runs PalmOS 5, you probably have a high-res display of 320×320 or better. If so, it is worth your while to download and install Fonts4OS5. Fonts4OS5 lets you substitute the normal system font with any other font you choose to install. But better, you can also specify t... read more →

Upgrading Phone from T616 to T637

I've been using a Sony Ericsson T616 on AT&T Wireless for about 8 months now. The phone is great, as it is very lightweight, small enough to fit in my pocket along side a PDA , and has several features that I use, such as AIM and Yahoo IM, an IMAP email client, a small but usable camera, vo... read more →

The Definitive ThinkPad Reference Sheet

When shopping for a ThinkPad, IBM's web site can be a bit unwieldy, especially if you want to compare two models of the same series. For example, IBM makes almost 40 versions of the X40, and many are different in very subtle ways. Luckily, there is a better way to shop. Head to IBM's '... read more →

Reviews of Usenet Feed Services

Somewhere along the line when I wasn't paying attention, Comcast High-Speed Internet revealed that they outsource their usenet feed (netnews.comcast.net) to Giganews, a respected and reliable usenet feed provider. For Comcast subscribers, there is a 2GB/month download limit. I did not know tha... read more →

Del^?^?^? Backspace in XTerm VIM

Having trouble with the Backspace or Delete key when using vi or vim in XTerm? Does pressing the Backspace key echo the characters ^? instead of deleting the charater in front of the cursor? Just edit your .Xdefaults file and change or add these lines to make the keys work as you would expect them... read more →

Makita 18-Volt Cordless Drill

My current cordless drill is an old 9v Craftsman that I inherited. It works fine, but doesn't have the strength or battery life for anything beyond light duty housework. Plus, it has an old ¼ inch chuck with ratchet and key, which is small and clumsy compared to modern chucks. I want a ne... read more →

Spell Checker for IE

The pervasive automatic spell-checking in Microsoft's Office product line has had the net effect of making me a lazy… and lousy… speller. That can be a problem when I enter text in a system like my blog, which uses an HTML textarea element for input. Fortunately, there is a really ... read more →

Using DHCPD with Bind

Both Bind (named) and dhcpd can be tricky to configure. And it would seem to be natural that getting them to talk to each other for dynamic DNS updates would be convoluted. I know I thought so, and so did Matt, who provides his config files to help hapless hackers like me. In reality, if you have ... read more →

First Time on Jury Duty

Even though I seem to get called for jury duty every year, this week is the first time I've actually been selected for a jury. The jury selection process and trial so far has been a lot more interesting than I expected. Obviously, I'm under oath to not discuss the details, so I'll jus... read more →

Badi Assad - Brilliant Brazilian Musician

We saw Badi Assad at the International Guitar Night performance last night in San Francisco. Badi (pronounced 'BAH-djee') is a great guitarist and outstanding singer from Brazil, but what makes her really unique is her ability to make rhythmic and musical sounds and noises with her voice, h... read more →

SuperBowl OTA vs. Comcast DVR

Even though I have the Comcast DVR with HDTV over cable, I'm watching today's SuperBowl in HD via my trusty RCA DCT-100 and rooftop antenna. Why? The picture quality is better. Granted, the Comcast picture is good, and plenty watchable, but here are some of the differences I can see with ... read more →

WinXP Help is Actually... Helpful

When the Help item first appeared on the Windows Start Menu back in Win95 or Win98, is was a complete joke for the majority of us who actually knew how to use a computer. Ever since then, I've never bothered to click on the Help item, and have usually used PowerToys to make it go away. It turns... read more →

mplayer Plays it All

This evening, I was trying to play a bittorrent of (insert_random_video_here) on Windows XP, and Windows Media Player 10 puked on the file. It wouldn't give me any clue as to why it wouldn't play, wouldn't let me view the file's properties, nothing. I had to open the file in files... read more →

Night Vision from Lorex

If you have an outdoor security camera, like a Lorex, the Lorex VQ2120 Night Vision module is a must-have add-on. It has a whopping 68 infrared LEDs that enable a night vision range of nearly 35 feet. The Night Vision includes a Y-adapter to share the power supply with a Lorex Camera such as the L... read more →

Mandrake RPM for Motion

For some reason, the latest Mandrake RPM available for Motion [motion, motionrpm] is version 3.0.7. There are a lot of nice improvements in the most recent version, so I used the .spec file included in the latest motion build and made a Mandrake RPM. You can download it here: motion-3.1.17-1mdk.i58... read more →

Motion Capture with... Motion!

If you are considering a video security system, don't bother buying a special security video tape recorder. Instead, install Linux on an old PC, and set up a great piece of software called Motion. I installed Motion on an old K6-233 running Linux Mandrake 10.1, and configured it to capture fram... read more →