MonthAugust 2004

Can’t Park There

Right, so.

Coming back from Wellington, car full of ex-Weta Digital servers that I’m gleefully taking back to Auckland.

The car in front of me is a bright blue hatchback, lowered, tinted windows, sticker on the rear window that says “Low Key” .. serious rice …and no licence plate at all. Contains one driver.

It’s being towed by a beaten-up white hatchback, no obvious rice. Contains one driver, one slapper in passenger seat.

Conditions. Rainy. Poor visibility.

I’m doing just slightly over 100kph.

These two cars are in front of me, and I’m not passing them. So they’re fucking hooning, for a tow job.

The dude in the white car goes slightly to the left of the lane. The blue car (being towed) simultaneously steers slightly to the right. Nothing too bad, yet. Just one of those towing things.

The driver of the blue car tries to manually correct his line to match the dude who’s towing him. The tow line is quite slack at this point. He overcorrects. Badly. His car veers quite heavily, and then his front tyres lose traction. At this point, he’s headed quite left and can’t do anything about it.

This situation lasts about 0.1 seconds before physics is demonstrated quite dramatically when the tow line straightens and that thrust vector (which is now about 30 degrees away from the way the car is actually pointing) is suddently applied by the still doing 100kph white car.

I’m actually quite surprised at this point becuse I was expecting the blue car to re-conform violently and straighten out, or maybe spin out.

But no.

The front end of the blue car dives down like it weighs NOTHING (more on this later), and the back end snaps around like a bola. Then the car is airborne. Sideways.

All this is in front of me, at 100kph, bear in mind.

By this stage, I am already on my brakes. Hard. It’s raining, so I’m trying to work out if locking the wheels and sliding to a halt will take longer than trying to fuck around with pumping the brakes. No time to think, and instinct takes over from rational thought. I lock the wheels and ride it out. Actually came to a stop several meters from anything, so it’s not so bad. And the servers are well-loaded, so no heavy frizbees to the back of our heads. Yay! Some flat spots on my tyres, but tyres are cheap compared to panelbeating, or to my life.

Anyway, this blue car dude goes sky ground sky ground a couple of times. Luckily for the other guys, the tow rope came off their hitch almost immediately upon blue car losing it. So, yeah, this guy flips sideways a couple times and ends up upside down in a ditch beside the motorway, half-supported by some farmers fence. The farmer in question immediately comes sprinting out of his house.

We pull off the road and get out to see if anyone is hurt or anything, and if emergency services need to be called.

The white car stops, and the people in it get out. The driver of the blue car hops out of the drivers door (which, again, is upside down on an angle) and climbs up the bank to the couple who got out of the towing car.

We ask if he’s okay, he says “Yeah, we’ll take care of it.”

He talks quietly to the couple for about 5 or 10 seconds, then … they all run for the white car, get in .. and fucking floor it! They did a runner!

And I’m like “Did they just do a runner?” and Annette is all “Yep.” and we’re totally confused because, fuck .. the guy left behind his WHOLE RICED UP CAR, man. And the farmer, and and the people from the car behind us who also stopped, and some other people ALL got the make, model, and plate of the white car (which were given to the cops). AND the cops, when the farmer rang them, went “Ah yeah .. we know the guy.”

What a pack of retards these drivers were.

And, to make it even better, I’m looking at the crashed car while waiting for the cops, and the engine bay is … empty.

No WONDER the damn thing cracked like a whip when the front went slightly wonky. What the hell were they doing towing an unbalanced load like that at over 100Kph?

What a pack of assholes.

This was a long journal posting/story, but an important one. And the moral of this story is: Don’t Be An Asshole.

Here We Go

No sign of my new second-hand decks and mixer yet.

I am anxious.

HOW am I supposed to become a superstar Dee-jeahhh if my gear is endlessly delayed! Dammit!

Current projects:

Work:
– Satellite based internet delivery to 65 schools
– Plus all the usual work crap like complex customer solutions, product R&D, etc.

Personal:
– Finish visuals and storyboard for short film project, have meeting with principal players in shoot to discuss
– As-yet-unnamed 80’s-only radio station installation to be completed
– Music production software to be grasped, music theory to be learned.
– Internet project for my apartment building to re-plan
– QL needs much tinkering and hardware updates to happen, soon
– Colocation contracts and work to sort out
– ISP CR and CM software to complete

I am stupidly busy. I should ditch all this tech crap and just .. like .. make models of things out of matchsticks for a hobby.

All Together Now

So – thegrort and lost_dryad are moving into my apartment building this weekend, and I just found out that Chris R and Helen are also moving into my building sometime soon – possibly next weekend. So exciting!

I … I think this actually officially makes my building a ‘hood. Kickass! I’ve always wanted one!

Our posse keeps it REAL, man! Big ups to the Hobson street massive!

[Insert fingers moving in complicated Gang Sign here]

Megatokyo – Please Insert Funny To Continue

Today, I removed Megatokyo from my favourites list.

And why?

Because it’s pretty much turned to ass. It’s not _QUITE_ gone as downhill as .. say .. Sluggy Freelance or User Friendly, but it’s up here.

You see, Piro is deliberately moving from a four-panel or one-page setup with a joke, to an ongoing story. Because he wants to be a ‘proper’ manga-ka, you see, and not just have a cool webcomic.

And so I’m sure there are still zillions of fans who’ll keep reading his stuff, and I might even drop by the site every so often myself, but I’m pretty much done with being a regular reader. Piro’s love stories are simply not that interesting. And his art is, sadly, really not good enough to compensate for a slightly crappy poorly paced story. To this day, I still have trouble telling certain female characters apart.

But I used to let all that stuff that slide past, because of the dynamic between Piro and Largo, and more importantly Piro’s Universe and Largo’s Universe, was very very compelling, and made for an awesome comic.

He really .. REALLY .. should never have let Largo leave the production team, because since he did so, the Piro/Largo dynamic has drastically faded.

So goodbye Megatokyo .. you’ve been great. I bought the first two of your books. I still make “Sad Girls in Snow” jokes with my friends.

But I expect, in time, that will fade also.

 

The Dragon Of Misery Is Kind Of A Dick

So, this evening, I was unable to get to the forums hosted by my old friend Chris. I could reach other web sites, and indeed even ping his machine, but not browse to it.

I sent him an sms stating that they were down, and then I noticed that I could reach them from a non-Woosh connection, and I postulated that Woosh (my ISP) had a bung transproxy or transproxy routing to IHUG where his machine lives.

His girlfriend, Helen, NATURALLY offered a counter-proposal which was quite compelling.

The problem was, she said, obviously that the Feng Shui around my modem was TOTALLY wrong.

Interesting …. and SO OBVIOUS.

I would put it to the test!

Here’s the modem in it’s default state:

modem1

As you can see, it’s Feng Shui is obviously “all up out of wack, yo” as we Feng Shui masters like to say. I decided to tie a red ribbon around it, and put a mirror behind it. The red ribbon attacts … good .. stuff. And the mirror distracts the Dragon of Misery by showing it its own reflection.

modem2

Results were not positive. Not only was the site still unreachable, but signal strength of the RF feed was down, and bit-error rates were up.

I had clearly angered the gods.

I decided to stop fucking around with mystic claptrap, and let the problem be solved by The Invisible Hand of The Market.

I put some positive reinforcement on one side of the modem, in the shape of money and beer. On the other side, I put A Scary Monster from Where The Wild Things Are. I then informed the modem that if it worked hard, respected the rule of law and embraced capitalism, it would get a reward. Otherwise, monsters awaited it.

modem3

No dice. My Woosh modem is some kind of pinko commie – both godless AND uninterested in capitalism.

I do not know what to do at this time. I may have to report it to the Department of Homeland Security.

Does New Zealand even have one of those?

And how spooky is the name “Department of Homeland Security”?

Thrice I Say, Oonst

If I ever release an album of dance music from down here in New Zealand, I want to call it

“Where The Hell Is Ibiza, Anyway?”

Onnst Oonst,
DJSR.

Fly, you fools!

I’ve just purchased a bunch of dual-CPU SGI 1U rack servers from Weta Digital, to use for various projects. They’re ex-LOTR renderfarm machines, which is pretty damn cool in itself, much less getting them for the excellent price I got them at.

And, I guess they’ve been well-tested and run-in. 🙂

and I will be driving down to Welly, probably on the weekend of the 28th and 29th of this month, to pick them up. There are people we’d like to visit while we’re down there, too.

Should be fun!

The Kirk Unit

and I went to the Audio Expo on sunday, which was filled with cool cool audio toys, including some very nice projectors and lots of fun DJ stuff.

We saw some awesome-looking electrostatic speakers, too. Here’s a pic:

 

75kspeakers

 

They bear an uncanny resemblance to Nomad, if you’re a fan of the original Star Trek show. You’d get plenty pissed off with your friends blowing up your stereo by posing it unsolvable illogical conundrums.

Especially, since these speakers cost … SEVENTY-FIVE THOUSAND DOLLARS.

I mean, I am the POSTER CHILD for spending money on gadgets, but DAMN, that’s an expensive stereo. It’s not even made by Apple!

Herr Doktor

Lesbyan Conspyracy takes great pleasure in announcing the addition of a new drummer to the band.

Presenting Herr Doktor Clockverk Assassin, known affectionately as “Doc Clock”…

doc-clock

The good doctor can literally rock and roll all night, but prefers not to party every day with the rest of us. He’d rather stay around the studio or the gig, preparing to rock some more! Hardcore .. truly, hardcore.

We’re delighted to have him on board.

Thank you, and goodnight Springton! There will be no encores!

 

Even More Doom

Just finished Doom 3. Lots of fun. If I may use a rather hackney’d phrase, The End Guy Was Hard.

Actually, that is not very true. The end guy was not really hard, but it did take a while to eventually pour enough BFG rounds into to hurt him, then finish him off with a Soul Cube. I likes the Soul Cube, yesssss precioussss.

The game itself… well.. graphically, impressive. There are lots of neat things you can do with dynamic light sources. Gameplay, however .. well, it’s doom. Walk into a room, zombies/demons/demon-zombies/zombie spawning demons/demons that shoot bees from their mouths so that when they scream a demon scream, bees bite you … Okay, not that last one, that’s from The Simpsons, but you get the idea. New Room. Zombies. Zombies encounter your impressive collection of weapons. New Room … and repeat. A lot.

The environment, however, was very very nicely done. That alone kept my attention from start to finish.

Fun game. Want to try multiplayer now!

I was looking forward more to HalfLife2 than I was to this game. And I still am.