Archive for July, 2005

Such Silliness

The BBC reports today that American military personnel, whether on- or off-duty, are indefinately prohibited from visiting London.

The U.S. obviously wants to play this as if they are deeply concerned about the well-being and safety of their personnel… if that’s true, then it’s rather a slap in the face to the UK, isn’t it? Uncle Sam would seem to have reservations about the ability of the Brits to prevent further attacks. Mind you, Uncle Sam hasn’t issued any sort of travel advisory for U.S. civilian travellers, yet…

Of course, it’s rather less likely that someone in the military has sprouted a clue, and, realizing that the U.S.’s Global War on Terror (GWOT) is directly responsible for the bombings in London, and as such is worried about irate Brits taking out their fear and anger on American troops.

Wait, what am I saying? American commanders caring about anyone other than themselves? Silly me…

Published in: General | on July 11th, 2005 | Comments Off on Such Silliness

Got Mayflies?

Even though it’s not the month of May… the Mayflies are out en masse, at least around here. It’ll probably be three or four days before it’s once more safe to go out at night.

Well, I mean, relatively safe, after all. This is the ghetto, we’re talking about here…

Published in: General | on July 10th, 2005 | Comments Off on Got Mayflies?

London Calling

It has to be wondered, however cynically, whether Thursday’s tragedy in London was aided, abbetted, or perpetrated by US or UK interests. It seems peculiarly convenient that, as Bush’s approval continues to fall amid growing unease that he’s utterly misguided the world in the War on Terror, and as Blair struggles to cope with a growing divide in the UK over his being Bush’s lapdog and involving Britain in what is, despite the name, essentially a US affair, a series of bombings has suddenly brought the war or terror home to the British people…

Blair seemed upset when speaking on television today; Bush just seemed his usual smirking self. Perhaps Karl Rove masterminded the whole thing to distract attention from himself? We’ll probably never know, but speculation should keep the beer industry afloat thru the next few years of economic stagnation…

Published in: General | on July 7th, 2005 | Comments Off on London Calling

Harry Potter

Never afraid to stray from the herd, Buggrit has an interesting review of Harry Potter & the Sorcerers Stone. Hey, better late than never.

What is with the money system in those books, anyway? Prime numbers? I don’t think so…

Published in: General | on July 6th, 2005 | Comments Off on Harry Potter

Computer Cooling Mysteries

I’m not into the whole overclocking thing. It’s not that I’m not technically inclined, it’s just that overclocking is increasingly becoming pointless, with overclocking being done purely for overclocking’s sake and too many people viewing their heavily-cooled, frequently unstable computers as metallic surrogates for their own shrivelled penises.

That aside, I do like a quiet computer, so I have exerted the odd bit of time and effort on fans and heatsinks and things.

Until a month ago, I was using a 1GHz Celeron with 384MB of RAM. I recently got ahold of an Athlon XP 2400+, which is AMD’s rather retardedly confusing designation for a 2GHz processor.

With stock heatsink and a tolerable mid-70s room temperature, the Celeron ran around 105 degrees Fahrenheit, and my Nvidia GeForce something-or-other video card ran at around the same temperature. Not bad at all, really.

With stock heatsink, the XP 2400+ ran at 125F idle, getting up to 135F after heavy use. Still (just) within specs, but not encouraging… in fact, the heat from the CPU and the Northbridge and it’s dinky passive heatsink were heating my poor video card in the AGP slot to 120F. Oy…

Well, I changed the passive Northbridge heatsink for a neat little heatsink-plus-fan combo, that runs at around 20db, i.e. virtually silent. CPU temp dropped five degrees, as did the video card. 130F is still pretty hot, though…

So I replaced the stock AMD cooler (thereby voiding the CPU warranty, incidentally) with some big huge monstrosity that glows bright blue… while much quieter, it only dropped the CPU temp anonther 5 degrees fahrenheit, and didn’t do diddly-squat for the video card’s temp… not that I was really expecting it to.

That was two weeks ago.

Today, I happened to glance at the temperature monitor… and the CPU is running, at nearly full duty-cycle, at 99F.

My only explanation is that the silicone grease between the CPU and (copper-cored, natch) heatsink takes some time to cure or harden or have something happen to it in order to do it’s job properly. This being the first new computer (or at least new CPU) I’ve ever used, I was evidently unaware of this phenomenon. Of course, I would seem to have spent $15 on a new heatsink and fan I didn’t really need, so this new tidbit of knowledge is not without price, literally or figuratively.

Go figure…

Published in: Geekiness, General | on July 5th, 2005 | Comments Off on Computer Cooling Mysteries