Mister Eclectic (howeird) wrote,
Mister Eclectic
howeird

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Recovering

No news from CNN is good news. If things needed immediate attention they would have called or emailed. So my engineers will have time to test the patch before we send it.

Which means I was able to sleep in. Goodie.

Got up in time for the last minute of the first half of the first playoff game. At halftime I went to Fry's, in search of an nVidia tuner/capture card by PNY on which I had been waiting for the price to drop. Lo and behold they had it on special, $30 less than what I was willing to pay, plus a rebate coupon.

Got it home, uninstalled my ATI all-in-wonder bomb (it would make my screen go blank and stop recording video) and popped in the nVidia.

It worked pretty well as a standard display card, nice and fast (128Mb memory) but when I brought up the setups, it said it needed more power. The quick start guide did not mention that you need to plug a power connector into this puppy, and the idiot design people made the connector black (standard is white) so it was hard to see if you're not looking for it. Hard to see even if you are looking for it.

Got that solved, then tried to bring up the TV app, and it said I didn't have a TV tuner on this card. Found and killed some hold-over ATI drivers, and this time it didn't complain, but it didn't show me a TV image either. Downloaded updated drivers, and now I have video. Really crappy video. I'll need to check my cable connections. I figure I can make up about half what I paid by selling the ATI card on eBay. Maybe more. Will play with it first, to make sure it doesn't blow anything up.

Somewhere in there I decided it was best to use the daylight to install the programmable thermostat. This apartment, for all its luxuries, has the stupidest heating scheme I have ever seen. The livingroom has a motel-style AC/Heat unit which blows whatever temperature air you dial, until you turn it off. No thermostat, no auto-off, no timer. The dining nook, which is where the catbox is located, has a baseboard heater. Neither of the bathrooms have heaters, and instead of infrared lamps, they have el cheapo pink fluorescents built into the exhaust fan mounting. The two bedrooms have baseboard heaters controlled by a mechanical dial thermostat both of which are off by about 10°, and neither of which can I read without my reading glasses.

I keep forgetting to turn the heat down when I leave for work, and electric baseboard heat is expensive, so I went in search of a programmable thermostat. None of the hardware/home repair stores carry them. Orchard Supply carries about 20 models for the 24-volt gas and central heating furnaces, but nothing for a 220V control. Home Despot only has a handful of 24V ones, ditto Ace. So I went online and found just the thing from Air-n-Water made by Honeywell. I had actually ordered it in early December, but the bozos at Fedex Ground left the package at my front door, which is pretty much the same as handing it to the first person who goes by. The Air-n-Water folks filed a claim and sent a replacement pretty soon after I reported the package missing. UPS has also lost packages for me this way too.

Installing the thermostat was a bit of an adventure. I managed to get the connections wrong four times before taking out my voltmeter/ohmmeter and discovering that the clever lads who wired the apartment had abandoned the usual red or white = hot, black = return and instead made the black pair Hot & return for one side and the white pair hot & return for the other side.

Lots of running up and down the stairs to turn the circuit breakers on and off.

And somewhere between failure and success I watched most of the Patriots/Colts game.

Time for dinner. My cold is still hanging on, but I've had enough soup for one week. On the other hand, the teapot is still on.
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