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Bill Haworth
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Bill Haworth

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The flash kinda washes out all the lights that are now lit up in the case, but that is the BIOS screen.

IT'S ALIVE! IT'S ALIVE!!!!
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Bill Haworth

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Yep, that's the way I feel - I haven't really grown up any as I've gotten older, just gotten taller and taken on more responsibilities. Of course, I haven't gotten taller in quite a while, but I am having to work harder to maintain even a modicum of weight and health (I'm not going to say "shape", because "round is a shape").
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Bill Haworth

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More progress on the new 'chine last night, all the hardware is in, just need to run cables to everything, test boot, setup BIOS, and install OS. You know, nothing major.

The funny part was yesterday, a coworker whipped out their phone to show off their latest project, restoring a 1949 Willys truck (yes, the manufacturer of the original US Army Jeep made other vehicles after WW2). Of course I whipped out my phone and showed off my computer build, and the comment was, "you know, they sell computers all ready to go." My response: "you know, they sell trucks ready to go, too." Just because my project doesn't involve engine hoists and frame straighteners doesn't mean it's any more idiotic than what you're doing with your spare time and extra cash. 

And I'm not ragging on the car guys, I still have a crapcan racing project in my garage that I need to find a home for so I can move on to other vehicle related pursuits. Interesting fact: the current average purchase price for a vehicle in the United States is somewhere around $35,000. Why, then, would you merely purchase something boring and blah when, for the same amount, you could get something like that which I've linked below? Gen 1 Camaro with an all aluminum LS engine putting out half again as much power as the original all steel mill, modern 6 speed transmission, modern brakes, suspension, wheels and tires, and the reliability and lack of worry of a modern EFI system. {hmmm} Tasty. 
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Got in a whole passle of computer parts from FedEx, UPS, and USPS, with more still coming, and most of these arrived yesterday, the 27th of April. I mentioned that I used PC Gamer's high end build, because I didn't have the time to give the current hardware a good perusing and comparison to decide what I wanted, so I didn't pay as close attention to some of the pieces. Like the case. Yes, that case, sitting behind our first grader, really is that big. It's gigantic, made to house far more computer hardware than I really need (the biggest mobo you can buy, 3 removeable media bays, 2 hot swappable full size HDD bays, 5 mini size HDD bays... it's huge), and can take so many fans that if I filled all the slots, I swear I could ride it to work.

Of course, the wife's comment after seeing the size of the case was the best: You really wanted to win the tiny penis contest, huh?

Apparently, I really did.

New 'chine started going together last night, with the mobo and CPU fully installed, and part of the CPU hydro cooler installed. Tonight after dinner - rest of the cooler, order some more fans (to fill even more fan slots), RAM, graphics card, HDDs, and wire everything in. And still plenty of room for expansion in the future - second GPU in SLI mode, more ram, more HDD space, faster CPU... this thing is going to last me a decade, at least. Just gotta remember to start pulling upgrade parts in a year or so to add into it when the current pieces hit the discount bin.
4 new photos · Album by Bill Haworth
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Bill Haworth

Self-Defense in the News  - 
 
I'm not going to argue about whether the man in the BMW should have pushed this situation so far or not, or the guys on the motorcycles are giant douche nozzles or not, but watch when the lady (wife/significant other? sister?) finally joins in and waves a gun at the bike riders. Please, if you're going to carry a firearm for self-defense, do something more than just get your CCW license as training - go take some self defense shooting classes from your local gun store, compete in IDPA/USPSA, or even go to the local range and turn some money into noise every once in a while. This lady is more of a danger to everyone but the bike guys (including the guy she's trying to help) and it's obvious she has no idea what she's doing with that thing in her hand.

What do you folks think?
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Peter Spinale's profile photoDon Landis's profile photoBradford Libby's profile photoJanella Ackerman's profile photo
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The bikers on their crotch rockets were a couple of douches! 3 on 1, not cool!
I can't say what the woman did was the correct thing to do, but I don't blame her. She was scared for the man with her.
Plus, they're giving bike riders a bad reputation. Not all bike riders drive on the shoulder to get around people. Some of us are just out for a nice ride or a poker run,lol.
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Bill Haworth

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After many issues with my home internet connection (I've been having too many of those lately, it's time for a new ISP, methinks), I finally got the latest patch downloaded and finally played a whopping 3 games last night with the new replay system. I, for one, think they did a good job with it, and while I need to sit down and map out all controls for the replays, I'm really liking it.
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+Bill Haworth the F keys maybe if you haven't already tried the numbers.
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Bill Haworth

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Dear science, has it really been that long since I've built my own desktop 'chine? I'd forgotten how completely crazy all the wires in a parts build can really be. But, besides the fan in the side panel that's not on the case (though I do have the connector on the mobo identified that it will eventually connect to), that's all the internal connections done up. Tomorrow - power test and BIOS setup and OS install. 
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Started reading Peter Clines's Ex-Heroes series, and about halfway through the first book. If you haven't read or heard about it, the story is basically a modern story where superheroes start appearing in the population, and then a couple of years later, the zombpocalypse hits. I'm liking it enough that I ordered the second book off of Amazon because my local library only has the first and third through fifth books (I'll donate #2 to them when I'm done with the series, or just buy the rest of them if I really like it, but I really do have too many books in the collection). 

It's really entertaining - some of the superheroes wander around as zombies because their power(s) wasn't enough to keep them from turning, most of the protagonists are heroes themselves and babysitting a bunch of norms in a compound in Los Angeles, and it treats the deaders as real threats (shamblers, not sprinters, but still a real threat). And the characters deal with them in a realistic manner (except for the superheroes, but I kinda like the "out there" flavor they add to the story) - they try not to shoot weapons to keep from attracting more zombies with the noise. 

Anyone else read the series? What did you think of it?
THE FOLD & EX-HEROES. Check out the brilliantly twisty, turny supernatural mystery THE FOLD and the genre-busting EX-HEROES series. THE FOLD Now in Paperback · The Fold. A brilliantly twisty, turny supernatural mystery from the author of the Ex-Heroes series and 14. The folks in Mike Erikson's ...
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Bill Haworth

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File this under "first world problems".

My main computer at home, an Alienware gaming laptop, started the long process of dying once again this past weekend. I know, I know, if I was serious about PC gaming, I wouldn't have bought a laptop in the first place, but I did for not good enough reasons, and the bill from the piper has finally come due. Thanks to a little foresight, I saved up quite a warchest for the eventuality, and with just a little help from our tax refund, I managed to future proof my PC gaming needs to the tune of 3 large. Thanks to the +PC Gamer magazine folks, I followed their high-end gaming rig build (sorry, I know the GPU folks are coming out with a new standard in June, but I need a gaming rig sooner than that) with only a few minor tweaks.

The funny thing about all this, at least to me, is that I'm getting a free copy of the new MMO The Division. Seriously, the GPU I bought comes with it as a bundle right at a moment. Now, like a lot of other PC gamers, I've been looking at The Division (okay, that takes too long to type, TD, that's all you're getting) with a little bit of interest, but not enough interest to plunk down $60 on a game that apparently has needed some serious patches and DLC to make it even close to that price tag. Guess I'll find out if the hype is worth it after I get the new computer put together later this week.

In related news, I had also been looking over stuff from the popular console MMO Destiny - hey, it's sci-fi, and a shooter, and from Bungie, the makers of Halo (which they're rumored to be finally bringing that series to PC, as well, which I think would be good) - to the point that I'd figured out exactly everything I would need to run the game for the cheapest output possible. Go with the PS3, as the console is cheap on the used market and you don't have to have a PS+ account to play Destiny, then get the Legendary Edition to get all the DLC, and finally add in a keyboard/mouse adapter, like the Xim4, because no self-respecting, FPS-loving PC gamer would attempt an FPS (even a 3rd-person MMO FPS like Destiny) with anything less than a keyboard and mouse. There's just too much loss of fidelity and control going to a gamepad for a game like that, so without the keyboard/mouse adapter, that whole plan was a no go. 

Well, with all the money I put out for the new "hawtness", I am unwilling to spend money on a console and another game. However, in my internet wanderings, I came across a multitude of articles comparing a PC free-to-play game by the name of Warframe to Destiny, and the comparisons came down in favor of Warframe over Destiny more often than not. I'd tried to get into Warframe a few years back, can't remember now what had grabbed my attention of it then, but at the time I could not make it work for anything on my computer (the Alienware gaming laptop I'm now replacing). With the new "hawtness" coming in, I think I'll try it one more time. The videos I've been watching on YouTube of gameplay have been very interesting enough that I remembered why I had tried getting into it previously, and since it's a free-to-play game as well, there's no reason not to give it a try. 

And yes, the eventual plan is to get one of the multitude of VR goggles (or as I heard on This Week in Tech, one of those toasters so it can have sex with my face) and play some simulation games (space sci-fi, modern airplanes, or car racing). Probably even build myself a DIY cockpit out of PVC pipe and have interchangeable mounts for all the different controls. Between TD and Warframe and all the other games I'm currently playing (Armored Warfare, War Thunder, MechWarrior Online, and a whole slew of stuff from Steam, GoG, and Origin), that is an investment for next year or the year after that.
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Bill Haworth

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We finally (FINALLY!!!!) got faster, (so far) more reliable internet at home. How bad was the old connection? So slow and unreliable that I'd have to wait until everyone else went to bed before jumping onto AW, and even then I'd watch my ping skyrocket from 90-130 all the way up to 3K-4K for upwards of a couple of minutes at a time. Last night, while I was downloading updates to other games (MWO, Firefall  and WarThunder... sorry, I do play other games), the wife was watching a show on Netflix while surfing Facebook, and the kiddo was surfing YouTube, I was getting pings in the 50s. And no huge lag jumps, either.

So if you played any games with me in PvE last night (IronRabbit), just realize I was cackling like a man possessed the whole time I was playing. Even when my tank was getting shot out from under me and my teammates just couldn't stop dying, I was still having fun. Managed to earn enough to unlock my last Tier 5, just got to work on unlocking the new Asian dealer (another 100K to 150K worth of damage done, something like that) and saving up the big $4M for the start of the Tier 6s. 
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I've barely been up and online long enough to read my daily webcomics and read my email, and already I am reminded why I hate April 1st.
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Finally got to see The Martian a couple of weekends back (been a mite busy, can you tell?), and while I liked the movie a lot, and loved the book even more (seriously, there are so many things glossed over in the movie that are explained so much better in the book, it's worth it... and it's not that long of a book!), something has been bugging me since we viewed the movie. They go about sending people to Mars the wrong way. They basically start by sending some supply dumps ahead of their explorer astronauts and then send said astronauts afterwards. The correct way, in my opinion, is you build up your orbiting support structure here between the Earth and the Moon (think 2001-type space stations, because anything in orbit is halfway to anywhere else in the solar system), then send teams to Mars to set up orbiting support structure there, and then you send people down to Mars.

I know, I know, way too much effort, but at least the first part of it (space stations orbiting Earth) is worth all the rest of it, if for nothing else than to be the staging area to keep Earth safe from Chixulub-level, species ending asteroids/meteors/bolides. But still, if you want to colonize and terraform Mars (what else would you be doing there?), you start by building one part of the bridge, then the next part, and so on, until you've crossed that chasm. You don't blindly fling personnel and materiel across the gulf and hope for the best.

Ah well, what do I know?
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Hey, son, I agree with you on both counts--book AND movie both worthwhile, BUT they did gloss over a lot that's in the book.  Of course, the joy in the book is that the writer had done his homework, that what someone stranded on Mars would and could face.  Do you think we'll ever make it to Mars, much less colonize it?
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Wild Bill, usagi_tetsu, Tetsu_no_Usagi, Wilhelm von Arnsburg
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William "Bill" Haworth
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Human resources clerk in the Missouri Army Guard, avid paintball player, former medieval recreator with the Society for Creative Anachronism, and generally friendly guy.
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