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Bryan Miller
Worlds are created by a spark of creativity... and destroyed by reckless ignorance.
Worlds are created by a spark of creativity... and destroyed by reckless ignorance.
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Should I Let Them Go?

By "them" I refer to all of my PC games still sitting happily on CD/DVD that have been tucked away in a corner of my house.

I'm moving soon and I've been... cough slowly ... packing my belongings for that move. Today, I was packing a lot of old PC games. How old? Money Island, Diablo II, Guild Wars, Everquest (I & II), Star Trek (25th Anniversary, Judgement Rites, Starfleet Command, Armada, and many others), etc, etc.

See, in this day of digital distribution, I can (somewhat) easily download most any of those games (legally) and play them fully updated and without the need for the old CDs. Hell, my computer hasn't had it's DVD drive active in nearly a year (it was unplugged to allow for one additional hard drive). I haven't played these games from CD in YEARS... yet... I find it very hard to let them go!

One example is my 3 Neverwinter Nights boxes (main game and two expansions). I don't NEED the CDs. I bought the game on probably a good three or four years ago now and I can download it, fully updated, any time I get the itch to play. None-the-less, I look at the boxes, and the extended CD case that I have the three CDs in that came with the last expansion (The Underdark), and... I packed them. I can't let them go.

On one hand I say to myself... "Yeah, I can download them digitally... NOW... but in 10 years, will I still be able to?", then, another part of me answers, "Ok, but would you really be playing a 20 or 30+ year old game in 10 years?"

I look at the boxes of these old games, and I think back to the days I excitedly brought them home and installed them. The hours I spent (or misspent, if you're so inclined) playing them. They are, in a way, old friends... Do I want to let them go?

Perhaps I'm just overly sentimental, and, I think I've answered the question above for myself. No... I'm not letting them go. On the day I die, my children or grandchildren can ridicule me for being an old fool, but these are my treasures.

Ok... that's my random, out of nowhere post I needed to get out just for the sake of my own thoughts. Yay!

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You can find anything... at the flea market

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Peanut and I did our first walk at Hop Brook Damn today. Little chilly, but nice and quiet.
2 Photos - View album

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Seriously... take a close look at what's going on. Only a day left.
No joke

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And now... for the public :/
I've been listening to The NoSleep Podcast for a couple years now. It's an amazingly wonderful (and horrifying) scary fiction podcast.

I wrote a desktop podcatcher specifically for this podcast which, beyond just listening to the (free) episodes, allows users to search episodes and stories by author, narrator, tags, and seasons, as well as create playlists which include whole episodes and/or just single stories.

For anyone interested, a Windows 32bit and Linux 64bit version of the application is available here:

And, if you want to venture into the horror of my source code, it can be accessed/downloaded/etc from here:

IMPORTANT: The application is completely UNOFFICIAL! I'm not working with anyone in the NoSleep team on this application. This is purely a fan work for fun!

Hope some of you enjoy!!

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This fellow has been guarding my back door now for over two weeks. Hope he's harmless. He is rather big, by my standards.

At least no pesky bugs will be entering my house via the door any time soon.

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Impressions on EMACS

So here I am, having been using Linux now, in some form, for nearly a decade and, until recently, never touching EMACS. Well... I decided to give it a shot. I was getting annoyed that I was using one IDE for one programming language, and another IDE for a different language, etc. Therefore, I decided I'd give EMACS a try and see if I could find one editor to rule them all.

My impressions?
I've only used it for Javascript so far and, purely from an editing standpoint... I like it! It did take me nearly two solid days to set it up close to comfortable for me and that emacs LISP language is... a bear, to my eyes, which makes anything other than the simplest customizations a chore. None-the-less I find it rather easy to bring up the files I want to work on and edit away. I love being able to open multiple "windows" so that I can view one document while editing another. Using a extension called NeoTree, I can bring up a tree view of my file system for quickly locating and loading files.

There's still a lot of things to learn. As I said, I've only been programming Javascript with it so far. I still need to configure keybindings and extensions for other languages to fit my needs. Over all, though, I'm liking EMACS far more than I thought I would.

#Linux   #EMACS   #Programming  

Effect Before Cause Before Effect

If time travel is possible, why has nobody come back to tell us?
Ok... take away the anthropomorphic part of the question and I'm starting to wonder if someTHING has... at the very beginning of time!

As I understand it, at the point of the Big Bang, EVERYTHING exploded into existence. All of the matter and energy we have or ever will sprang forth at that moment.

Today, we have Black Holes. Matter/Energy vacuums from which, near as we can tell, nothing can escape. Our current understanding suggests that, eventually, these Black Holes will have eaten up all matter in the universe. Adding to that scary thought, is knowing that, whatever is going on at the singularity, it's so strange we... can't... figure... it... out! Math can't tell us, and Mathematics is regularly touted as being the basis of how the entire universe works, and yet, it fails to explain the singularity.

Now, Black Holes exist. This isn't like only a decade or so ago when they existed only mathematically. We have observed them, yet we cannot explain their cores... the singularity. Math fails there. We cannot see to the singularity... what's happening?

With this mystery comes speculations. White Holes was an idea at one time. Basically, Black Holes eat the matter/energy and White Holes spew it out. Along the same lines is that Black Holes are sort of like a raw Wormhole, but one that's too gravitationally intensive to actually use (over-simplification).

What does this have to do with time travel?
What if Black Holes are BOTH wormholes and one end of a White Holes, and all of the Black Holes in the universe... every last one of them... all link up to the same exit point in space/time... the Big Bang!

What if our universe, as a collective whole, is, in fact, the original time traveler and it's been telling us this from the very first moment?

The Big Bang is the effect of billions of Black Holes gobbling up all of the matter and energy of the universe over uncountable billions/trillions/more of year.

Likewise, Black Holes are the effect of Big Bang releasing all of that matter and energy in which the universe was created.

Black Holes and the Big Bang... the largest Closed-Time-Loop we could ever imagine!


Just a random thought

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I Don't Need a Babysitter!

Look... there's one of two things happening in which Twitch has made this policy change...

1) Twitch is run by a gaggle of prudes that think it's their duty to dictate what is or is not for others to view.
2) Children are watching otherwise "adult" streams.
3) Both

You know what? I don't need nor want some service deciding what I should or should not be watching. If I want to watch someone playing an 18+ game, I should have every right to that choice for myself. 

Now, one needs to register with Twitch in order to stream, and, upon streaming, there are a number of things the streamer can set about their stream (such as Title)... so, just add an Age Gate... You know, a simple drop down that allows someone to choose a rating for their stream.

"But... but... but... children can easily get past an Age Gate!" ... Damn right, they can. Children, you see, are smart! Smarter than we adults like to give them credit for. Smarter than those dumb-ass parents for which their children are sneaking behind their backs and watching 18+ video streams. If only those parents... you know... paid attention?

The onus of responsibility for those children should NOT be placed on ME by way of limiting what I can or cannot choose to watch. Furthermore, companies need to stop being some damn Paragon of Virtue by dictating what is appropriate for full grown, able minded adults to watch.

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To the Moon and Back... In 8 Hours!

My interest was peeked when I first heard about the EmDrive. Being a Star Trek fan, it's kinda hard to ignore articles that state "NASA Confirms Warp Drive" or some such hyperbole... and I know all articles with such headings are just that... hyperbole.

When I first heard of the EmDrive, it was interesting, but, so many things still were untested... such as test in a Vacuum, but still, it had be intrigued...

And it's still around! I was so ready for an article to come out debunking the EmDrive in some way. "Propulsion confirmed to be from temperature currents" or "EmDrive failed to work in Vacuum" were both article headings I was waiting to read.

It's still quite early, though, but, it seems, the EmDrive works in Vacuum! So far, every article I read on this confirms more and more that this device is doing what it actually seems to be doing.

Don't get me wrong, I'm well aware it's not actually a "Warp Drive" in the Star Trek sense. Propulsion-wise, the highest number I've seen was it may be able to send a probe to Alpha Centauri in under 100 years at just over 9% the Speed of Light. Not Warp Drive, but incredibly significant!

As excited as I am, however... even assuming nothing is discovered to put a wrench into this discovery (which may very well happen, still), one of the first basic travel applications for the EmDrive is in it's potential ability to send people from the surface of the Earth to the surface of the Moon in just about 4 hours. Lunar colonies, and permanent population centers on other stellar bodies could be within the reach a generation from now... and that's the disheartening thing for me. Even if everything is perfect... I may never see this space exploration future I've dreamed of. I'm excited that, for the first time in my life, it's a very distinct possibility, but I'm sad I may never get the opportunity to be one of the first tourists to the Moon.

Still... I hold hope that NASA and other research agencies continue to show this engine to be what it actually appears to be. This is so exciting!!  
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