Whew, Glad that's Over With
So... What do you do when you find out you have 9 exams and 4 projects due in a period of 1 1/2 weeks?  That's right!  Procrastinate!  Nothing like waiting until 11:00pm or so to study for the 3 exams you have the next day. pwned.

     New Hard Drive
Well... the fun I had with my new 60gig hard drive and everything relating to it cannot be expressed in words.  I will, however, try my best to do so.  I only have one ata/66 cable, and since I have two ata/66 drives, the obvious solution is to put both of them on the same cable.  However, whenever I set either of my ata/66 drives to slaves, windows would NOT boot.  The load bar would get halfway across and just stop, every time.  I ended up having to put one of the drives on a separate cable, meaning it had to be ata/33.  When I finally got the new hd to work with Windows after several days of tinkering, I attempted to download Redhat Linux, but Windows must have some kind of protective code that does everything it can to give you hell when you attempt to do this, because that's what it gave me.  So, several crashes and many CD coasters later, I had valid copies of the Redhat CD's.

     New Hard Drive: The Good
Ahh, the RedHat installation went so smoothly (on the second try -- the first time the screen just went blank).  It was 100x's easier than any Windows install on my machine.  What's that you say?  Installing Windows is easy?  Hah!  Try installing it on my machine, then say that!  Anyway, all went well; Linux loaded up just fine, and everything was working the way it was supposed to.  Then I rebooted... 

     New Hard Drive: The Bad
Bad things happen when I reboot.  That is why I avoid it if it can be avoided, but I wanted to be sure that when the time came, I would be able to boot my computer.  "LI"  That's all it said.  It sat at the console with "LI" and a flashing cursor.  I guess it was for "LILO."  There was plenty of "LI" but it was a little low on the "LO."  It was then that I realized that I forgot to switch the drives around so that the new one was the primary.  Linux had attempted to install the loader on my NTFS drive.  That's bad.  I had no way to load windows, but I was able to boot Linux with a floppy at least

     New Hard Drive: The Ugly
Obviously I tried to fix the problem.  I booted off of a Windows CD and went to the recovery console.  There was a command that looked like it might help: "FIXMBR.EXE."  I figured I didn't have anything to lose, since the boot sector was already b0rked.  It turns out I had 40 gigs to lose and the name of the executable was a bit of a misnomer.  It should have been called "FUX0RHD.EXE" because that's exactly what it did.  It didn't fix the problem, but it did a fine job of creating a new one.  Now nothing would recognize the hard drive as NTFS.  Perhaps it was "fix" as in what you do to a cat.

     New Hard Drive: The Downright Cruel and Unusual
I was swapping drives around in hopes that I could get Linux to load and maybe read the NTFS drive since Windows wouldn't.  When I plugged my old drive into the ata/33 controller, my computer stopped booting at the drive detection screen saying "Press F4 to skip."  Pressing F4 did nothing.  My computer simply refused to work if one of the ata/66 drives was plugged into an ata/33 controller.  I swapped some cables around again, and this time when I booted, it said "CPU has been changed or is unusable."  Well, it certainly hadn't been changed, meaning either it was unusable or I was being lied to.  After doing a lot of tinkering with the bios settings (which kept setting the cpu clock speeds to what I did NOT set them to) I finally got the thing working at a lower clock speed.  Then a new problem arose.  Not only would my drives not work in the ata/33 controller, but now they'd stop working after about 20 seconds on the ata/66 controller (not enough time to get an OS booted).  Linux would at least give me errors about IDE time-outs and such.  Windows would just die and not tell me jack.  Basically, my computer was useless in this stage.  I think it was at this stage that I gave it a swift kick since there was definitely nothing to lose this time.  Nothing was lost.  Nothing was gained either, but there were a lot of CD's all over the floor that were once stacked up on top of the case.

     New Hard Drive: The Getting Better
Of course this all had to happen at an insanely busy time so I could only work on my computer for a few minutes each day;  I had to do all of my school work on lab computers, yucky.  I was able to finally get the thing to at least boot by updating the bios, but the ata/66 controller still didn't work.  Windows didn't like the configuration too much, so I was running straight Linux for a while.  A week or two later I randomly decided to try the ata/66 controller again, and hey!  It worked!  Now I have Windows XP installed (the ugliest OS known to man).  It randomly crashes on a regular basis, but I'm not sure if it's the ata controller causing that problem or what.  I also broke down and shelled out fifty bucks for some recovery software to get the data off of my old hard drive and I recovered everything as I wrote this update.

     Paintball II v 1.73a
Been too lazy to put forth a full release, but the scoring bug is fixed finally; It's up on the UMich servers.

     Random Thought
"I'd procrastinate, but I'm going to put that off for later."

     Malfunction of the Moment
I was watching some funny video clips from hardcore tv.  Halfway through one of them Windows Media Player paused for a second, then it fastforwarded to catch up.  It never stopped fastforwarding.  Even when I loaded different clips; they would all be over in about 2 seconds.  I even tried the other windows media player (the crappy one that doesn't let you resize and comes with a bunch of dumb skins) and it did the same thing.  Odd.  I think it's related that my sound cut out too and wouldn't work for anything anymore.  I suppose a reboot will fix it.

     Spam of the Second
"Holiday Special: Pay Nothing to Lose Weight This Season."  Hey! What a clever idea!  By paying nothing you will not obtain food, and thus loose weight and save money.  Too bad I'm not trying to lose weight.

    Link o' the Day
Like crappy but funny flash animations? Here are a bunch of them for ya.  Check out Irrational Exuberance and the original music video for the song (I think the original is more ... um... more... just watch it, you'll understand).  It inspired me to make this picture.

     My Hat Turneth Red
I made a solemn vow that upon my next reboot, I would install Linux.  After a period of six weeks, three days, and nineteen hours, the time has come.  Unlike the quick and painless deaths of blue-toned catastrophe that usually occur, the process was slow and grueling.  My machine fought bravely and diligently to stay alive, but it was futile.  It pained me to see it suffer so.  The memory management of Windows 2000, whilst greatly improved from earlier versions, was still incapable of protecting systems from the wrath of untamed memory hogging beasts.  After a violent, thrashing, thirteen hour battle, I could no longer bear to see the pain my hard drive was subjected to, and I put it to rest.  The silence that followed, one that had not been heard for many ages, was deafening.  Upon the installation of a new hard drive, Windows, fearing its soon demise, refused to boot.  Thus, my troubles have increased, but as the master of this machine, I will surely make it do my bidding.

     mIRC Theme'n
Once I found out it was possible to change the 16-color palette mIRC used (by right clicking on colors), my theme script took on a whole new depth.  My desire to make my own client has been reduced somewhat (for a while).  It isn't quite finished, but you can take a peek at what it looks like so far (that background took way too long considering I didn't even draw Misao).  I'm not sure when I'll be done, but I am going to release it sooner or later.

     Paintball II v 1.73
Ok, sometime after I finish writing this update, I'm going to release 1.73, so head over to the Digital Paint site and check it out.

     Random Thought
"A wise man once said nothing. Unfortunately, nobody heard him."

     Spam of the Second
"Attract Men with Bigger Breasts!"  Ok, personally, I don't want to attract men at all, regardless of their breast size.

    Link o' the Day
Mildly amusing: 208-key keyboard.

     Whoa, I'm 20.
As of two days ago, I'm no longer a teenager.  Scary thought.

     CCC Fall Retreat
I went to the fall retreat with Campus Crusade for Christ again this year.  It was awesome.  I had a blast.  Sooner or later I'll get some pictures posted somewhere.  I have a bunch from the table rock hike.

     New Slide Time
Axe, a dutch slider, sent me demo on Slide7: 15.6 seconds.  Nice goin'.  I'm gonna have to see if I can beat it, but I'm afraid the addiction will start again if I even touch Slide for a couple minutes...  Check out the slide rankings here.  Also, there is a nice Slide Done Quicker demo, but the link for the individual demos is broken, and I don't really have the time to mess around with it, so I'll just add this link here and leave it at that. :)

     Eva Case Design
This is a pretty late update for this, but right before I headed back to Clemson (weeks ago) I almost finished my case with the Rei and Eva-01 cut out of it.  Unfortunately, I won't be able to finish it until Christmas or some time when I go home.  I didn't bring the Dremel with me.  Actually, I don't think it's a genuine Dremel tool; it's some Craftsman rip-off.  I dunno; maybe Craftsman owns Dremel or something.  Whatever the case is, I don't have it, and thus it will be while before my case is completed.  This is what it looks like now, and it won't really change much.

     Random Thought
Today's date is a palindrome: 10-1-01.  It's also binary for 21, which is how old I will be at this time next year.  Oddly enough, last year's date on this day (10-1-00) is binary for 20, which is how old I am now.

     Spam of the Second
Amid the long list of spam, I saw these two messages in sequence: "Increase the Size of your Breasts!" "HOWEVER, YOU MUST ACT IN THE NEXT HOUR"  For some reason, I thought it was really funny at the time.  Now I just wonder what I missed out on.  What if I really had acted and enlarged my breasts within the hour..?

    Link o' the Day
Out of random curiosity, I tried loading asdf.com to see if there was something there, and lo and behold, there was!  There's nothing on aoeu.com, however (Dvorak version of "asdf").

     Laundry Days
I don't know what it is about laundry days, but for some reason they always turn out to be pretty lousy.  Take today (actually two days ago, because it took me so long to actually post this), for example.  I washed my laundry and started drying it - everything was going swell (for a laundry day).  To kill the time, I was listening to Arnold Schwarzenegger prank calls (with my headphones), and chatting on IRC - completely oblivious to that other world that envelops me, when I kicked my chair back a bit and heard an unfamiliar sound - something like "gushhhh."  "That's not good."  I looked at the floor and saw a stream of water about half an inch deep flowing in from underneath the doors to the hallway and bathroom.  "That's definitely not good."  At that point I took into consideration the possibility that perhaps the water flow I was hearing wasn't my quad mate taking a shower.  My first thought was that somebody left the shower on and it was overflowing, so I took a look in the bathroom and noticed that the entire panel above the shower was serving as a shower head.  "That's not good either!"  I grabbed my only towel left in the room (the others were in the dryer) and attempted to start cleaning up before the water reached my computer, but the firemen and police came in and told me to get out.  While waiting outside with the other residents I went on to learn that a water pipe for the sprinkler system broke (or was broken) and flooded the 3rd floor about 3 inches deep before the fire department could shut it off.  I was on the second floor.  Water goes down. :)  They wouldn't let us back into the dorm for about four hours, so I was pretty much stuck with nothing to do, and nothing to do it with.  I figured I'd work on my programming assignment, but the building with the compsci computer labs was locked, so I tried the lab in the math building, but it was also closed.  I ended up firing up a java IRC client on one of the ancient machines in the library where I continually watched for the disconnection of my client in the dorm, waiting to say, "there went my computer," but it never happened.  "That's good."  I actually ended up having a pretty good night because I went out and played Frisbee golf with some guys from Campus Crusade, and I got a fair 4 hour break of being forced to do nothing, so for a laundry day, I guess it went pretty well.  The moral of the story being: don't hang on the pipes.  Boy, I bet the people who just glanced at the heading of this and didn't bother to actually read all of this garbage I just wrote really wonder how I could have written so much about laundry.  If I wanted to inform you about my laundry, I'd just show you this.  Exciting, huh?

     Good Morning, America.  This is Your Wakeup Call.
I know I'm a little late on this issue (the past few days have been uber-crazy), but I thought I'd throw in my two and a third yen's worth on the World Trade Center tragedy.  I have an uncanny ability to find the humor in any situation, but I decided to switch off from my standard sarcastic/funny news perspective in this case (though I could come up with at least a page of jokes and silly comments) for three reasons.  First of all, it's a touchy issue; some people might be offended, especially if they were there and saw it happen or lost loved ones.  Secondly, when I tried to add something serious, nobody would take it seriously.  Lastly, the main joke I was going to make related to blaming Flight Simulator for what happened in an attempt to make fun of the Columbine incident being blamed on Doom, but MSNBC beat me to the punch line before I could write this news update (only I think they were trying to be serious)!

I'm a Christian, and I think a common question that has crossed the minds of many people relating to Christianity is, "How can you love and worship God if could let something like this happen?"  God allows us to choose what we want to do - be it good or evil.  If God were to stop these terrorists from committing this sin, he would be preventing them from choosing.  If He prevented them from choosing, why wouldn't He also prevent other people from bombing buildings and shooting classmates?  If He didn't allow this, wouldn't He also have stopped Cain from killing his brother (the first murder) and Adam and Eve from directly disobeying Him (the first sin)?  If God prevented every act of disobedience, we'd be nothing more than puppets.  We couldn't chose to love and obey God, which is what He wants; it would be forced.

There is a lot of good that has come out of this situation, though.  When was the last time you saw so many people rush to the aid of others and donate time, money, food, supplies, and blood, or risk their lives expecting nothing in return.  When was the last time you saw so many American flags waving and felt the nation so united?  When was the last time you saw practically every comedian and comic artist take a moment to say something profound?  When was the last time you saw so many people pray, or heard prayer talked about so much, even on sites like PlanetQuake, where it would normally be "out of place?"  When was the last time you saw so many people care?

This is our wake up call - a 110-story alarm clock.  Either we get up and face reality, or hit the snooze button and return a pointless little world packed so full of tasks that amount to nothing in the end that we have no time to even think about what's truly important.  We put off thinking about death and what comes afterward.  We have a good many years ahead of us... or do we?   The entire world trade center being leveled was probably the last thing on workers' minds as they headed up to their offices a few days ago.  Death often comes when it is least expected.  That's why it's so important to keep our hearts right with God at all times so that it will never catch us off guard.

We put so much faith into things that are made by other men and can be destroyed in an instant, but what about God's Word, which lasts for eternity?  If you don't already know Jesus Christ, you should get to know him while you still can.  Life is short.  If you do, then don't pass up opportunities to share with other people.  Your next opportunity could be your last.  Be bold.

     Random Thought
There ain't no doubt I love this land. God Bless the USA!

    Link o' the Day
If you have any questions or comments - jitspoe @ captured . com

     X-Lax Payne
I just got Max Payne the other day and Andy and I were checking it out.  Of course I didn’t bother to see what any of the key bindings were or read the instructions or anything, so I’m just running around pressing keys to see what they do.  This is when the funniest thing that has ever happened to me when playing a video game occurred.  I hit the shift key, which is the slow motion dive thing – course we didn’t know that.  So Mr. Payne does his slow-mo flying leap and skids off the couch, which conveniently created a nice little smoke puff right by his rear end.  At that exact moment, Calrathan messaged me.  Now a while back, I got tired of the old windows beeps and dings for message notifications, so I set up a script that randomly selects one of twenty or so fart sounds; it’s much more amusing that way.  I’ll let you piece the scene together in your imagination, but let me assure you, it was funny.  Andy, having no clue what caused it, had a simply indescribable expression on his face as he said, “WHAT?!”  A few minutes later when we stopped laughing, I explained to him the cause of the unusual event.  The toilet humor didn’t end there, however, it only got better.  Soon there was a cinematic cut scene that did a kind of flyby through the bathroom.  Of course, right on cue, Calrathan pasted a short log to me, which trigged a cataclysmic expulsion of flatulent sound effects – the final one being rather juicy.  Yes, it appeared as though that bathroom was still occupied.  Andy managed to squeeze out, “That was disgusting!” as we both practically fell on the floor laughing.

On the note of funny occurrences during video games, the second funniest thing that ever happened (a pretty close second, too), occurred when I was dinking around with Counter-Strike (a Half-Life mod).  I exploring a map, hostages in tow, when the HampsterDance song fired up from my winamp queue.  I stopped and turned around to see the hostages lined up and dancing – The HostageDance.  I was a step above them and they were doing their little thing where they frantically move their legs and bounce up and down – if you’ve played the mod, I’m sure you know what I’m talking about.  The HampsterDance song alone is pretty funny, but seeing scientists gettin’ jiggy wit it was downright hilarious.  I just stood there and laughed until the song finished.

Oh, I forgot to mention (back to Max Payne), later on in the game, I opened a locker just as I received an email.  I set my email notification sound to the Spam Song from Monty Python’s Flying Circus, “Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam, Lovely Spam! Wonderful Spam!”  While it wasn’t as funny as explosive flatulence in the bathroom, it was quite amusing.  It’s like those cartoons where someone opens a door and very… odd things happen.

     New Skies
I put together a couple more skies.  They’re in the gfx section.  Um, this news tidbit feels too short after my extremely verbose update about Max Payne… that really told pretty much nothing about Max Payne.  I can’t really think of much to add.  Hmm, they look cool?

     Random Thought
I'm one of the few people who would dream of arguing with the Babylon 5 producers about hyperspace physics, and probably the only person to dream of Babylon 5 characters lighting their farts on fire. (I might as well stick with the flatulence theme today; oh, and if my dream was accurate, you had better keep your distance if G’Kar is about to light one up!)

Someone emailed me about that last random thought.  Apparently a group of vampires is called a Coven.  I guess that was somebody else’s random thought long before mine.

     Spam of the Second
Apparently the person who spammed me asking "R.U.A. Winner" corrected the problem and sent me the corrected version ~20 times just to be certain I got the message.  Wow! I.R.A. winner!

    Link o' the Day
Hmm, I was gonna stick to a theme and post a link to an article about deodorizing underpants, but I seem to have lost it.  Oh well.  I’ll just post a link to a crappy flash animation that most of you have probably seen and I personally find quite amusing – especially the “translation” of the lyrics.  Oh, and it does contain middle fingers – just a little warning in case that offends you.  Wow, I’m being very verbose today.  I’ll just shut up and give you the link now.  And if you’re wondering what those lyrics actually are, check this out.  I don’t think it really makes any more sense in English.  In fact, I’m pretty sure it doesn’t.

     "Upgrading" Hardware
Heh, as you can see from the current POTW, I've been busy "upgrading" my mouse.  I also spray painted my monitor and keyboard black.  I'm planning to carve this into the side of my case, paint it black, and light it up.  I need to get some finer bits for the 'ol dremmel tool first though.

Ehh - not worth a whole new news update, but here is the design, and here's what I have done so far.  It's Rei and Eva Unit 01.  I wish I had one of those big laser cutting tools! :)

Well, while I was busy doing whacked out stuff, I decided to switch to the Dvorak keyboard layout.  See, QWERTY (the keyboard layout everyone uses) was designed to actually slow typists down because the old mechanical typewriters would jam.  Nowadays we don't have to worry about keyboard jams (not ones due to typing too fast anyway), but we're still stuck with the horrible layout.  Fortunately you can do what I did and go to the control panel and set your keyboard to Dvorak, which is actually designed for efficiency.  It takes a while to get used to.  I memorized the layout in a day by printing out a picture of it and taping it to my monitor (compared to the weeks/moths it took me to memorize qwerty, heh).  I'm still slow with it (some thing I read said it takes about a month to regain your old typing speed).  I don't think it'll take me that long.  Hehe - probably the fastest way to learn is IRC :)  Also, if you don't drop QWERTY completely, it'll take a lot longer to learn - that's why most people give up.

     Paintball II Update it the Works
Well, I've gone back to working on Paintball II for a while, after playing a bunch of Counter-Strike and whatnot during the school year, I came to realize that there aren't any games I find as fun as Paintball2.  So I set off to fix the plethora of bugs that were still scurrying around in the code.  You can get more info on the DigitalPaint news site.

     Random Thought
What do you call a large group of vampires?  A herd? Flock? Pack? Swarm?  Maybe just "Uh-oh, this is gonna suck!"

     Spam of the Second
"R.U.A. Winner!"  No... I'm just another victim of this stupid spam scam which looks like it was written by a 12-year-old.

     Link o' the Day
Geek Horoscopes - the church one was nice, hah!

     VWep Tutorial
I know Quake2 is kinda outdated, but I'm still having fun with it. :)  I figured there might still be some mod developers out there who would find this tutorial useful.  If not, ahh well.  At least it looks purty :).  Check it out in the Tools/Tips section.

     New Flash Art
I experimented using the pen tool with my tablet in flash instead of making lines and curving them to the shape I wanted.  I'm not sure whether or not I like the results better, but it's much more difficult and time consuming to do because the lines never turn out the way I want and I have to redo each like 10 times.  Ahh well.  You can check it out here.

     Ads Relocated
As you've probably noticed, I'm relocating the ads from the top frame to the top of each page.  The gamespy network requires this... not that you care - just thought I'd point that out if ya hadn't noticed.

     Random Thought
When used properly, keyboard springs can launch small objects several feet into the air.

     Link o' the Day
Looking for a nice pair of underpants? This might be the place for you.

     April Fools!
Dunno how many people fell for the joke, but in the spirit of April Fools, I thought I'd pretend I was shutting the Joint down.  I hope you all know I wouldn't do that even if I don't ever have time to update it.  The only way I'd shut it down completely is if I didn't have a host (and I hope the cool guys at PQ will keep me around ;).  Well, it gave me a good excuse to update anyway :)  Hmm, hope not TOO many ppl fell for it.  I want you guys to come back! ;)

     Happy New Year!
Yes, this is the first time I've updated this year.  I know - pretty pathetic (but also made my april fools joke more believable).  Hey, it's a new millennium too.  Happy New Millennium!

     Random Thought
Birds without feathers fall together.

     Link o' the Day
Thirst got ya cornered?  Then open up a can of ...  Oh, and check out the little commercial - pretty amusing.

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