Archive for December 18th, 2008

Taking “Own a Piece of Movie History” a Little Too Far?

We all know that the market for movie souvenirs is nigh-bottomless; every imaginable prop or piece of ephemera attached or connected in some way to just about any movie can, and does, get sold to fans and collectors.

Thing is, usually you wait until the movie is actually done to start getting rid of stuff, right?

Next year will, hopefully, see the release of a movie called Dark Moon Rising, some sort of supernatural love story turned horror movie, or something. I’m a little sketchy on the details, to be honest. What I do know is that you can apparently buy several reels of film from the movieexposed and undeveloped, apparently – on eBay just at the moment. Suspicious, no?

I mean, okay, I guess it’s a fairly unique “collectible”, and could have a certain cachet, even value, if the movie does well – but, come on, assuming those cans of film are what they say they are, what are the odds they’re not lost or stolen property?

Published in: 'D' for 'Dumb', Geekiness, General | on December 18th, 2008 | Comments Off on Taking “Own a Piece of Movie History” a Little Too Far?

A DIY Computer Sound Card – With Tubes

A year and a half ago, I built my own USB soundcard, combining a do-it-yourself USB DAC and a simple headphone amplifier. Quite aside from the performance – which was very good – the whole project had a pretty awesome retro appeal, at least to me: there isn’t a lot of hardware the average person can build that interfaces with a modern computer, and the whole process is a throwback to the days of Apple IIs and Ataris. Besides, it has great nerd-snob-appeal: Oooh, you modded your PC case with a window? You put a text LCD display in a drive bay? Bah; I assembled my own sound card.

Yeah, it’s nerdy; I admit it. It’s also cool. And, while the combo I build last year works very well, it’s still pretty low-end, as these things go. I could do better, I figured; I’d make another one, with a more advanced design, and better performance.

Oh yeah – and a vacuum tube.
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Published in: Geekiness, General | on December 18th, 2008 | 2 Comments »

Everybody’s Stopping Pirates… Except Us

Worldwide, the war against Somali pirates looks to be the biggest opportunity for naval forces to strut their stuff in the last fifty years, and everybody wants to get in the newspaper stories about it. China, of all countries, is joining in the fun with a pair of destroyers, which may depart before the end of the year. The same article mentions, offhand, that an attack on a Chinese merchant vessel off Somalia was thwarted yesterday… by the Malaysian Navy. While that’s true, there’s a bit more to the story than that.
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Published in: General | on December 18th, 2008 | Comments Off on Everybody’s Stopping Pirates… Except Us