Archive for February, 2004

Wow. Until this weekend I had forgotten how much I enjoy coding my website. I’ve had some significant changes in the works for how long now? I think the last time I touched my site’s code was August 2003! However, I think everything is done now.

I’ve been putting the finishing touches on the conversion to XHTML, the use of more CSS formatting, and the few tweaks and new features that I had planned. The new update will bring graphical emoticon support, support for attaching audio files in the document archive, new random text on the homepage, and some other new extras.

Hopefully I’ll get the new templates uploaded along with some overdue software updates very soon. Prepare to beta test, everyone.

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I’ve made some small steps of progress on my electronics project. The other day I went to Radio Shack and bought a project box to assemble the project in.

Project Box
Power Adapter in Project Box

I also sawed out the AC cord receptacle from the plastic cover in which it was embedded.

Sawed Apart
Plastic Cover Sawed Apart

Receptacle
Close-Up of Receptacle

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Perhaps you’ve seen the new Quizno’s commercials? You know… the ones with the funky-looking, singing hamsters, or whatever the heck those things are supposed to be. If you’re not sure, you can go to Quizno’s site to check them out.

Anyway, the animation on those funky-looking, singing whatever looked awfully familiar. It looked like something that I had seen on the internet before. Indeed, it looked reminiscent of the Viking Kittens, which a Google search revealed to be located at rathergood.com. Poking around, I discovered that these folks are indeed responsible for the Quizno’s commercials. In addition, I found a Flash animation in their collection that is oddly entertaining. Thus, I present to you Fearsome Stomping Laibach Kittens.

I don’t know what it is, but there’s just something hilarious about kittens in communist uniforms stomping fearsomely to the beat of eastern european industrial music.

And here’s more of the… uh… whatever they are.

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Some time ago, the original power adapter that came with my iBook had its cord yanked out a bit by a clumsy student in one of my classes. Appearing to be something of an electrical hazard, and not wanting to risk damage to my precious iBook, I bought a new adapter (which turned out to be spiffier that my old one anyway).

Now, pulling the power adapter out of my laptop bag every night to charge up my iBook for the next day, and then packing it up again the next morning gets a tad annoying. Wouldn’t it be nice if I had a power adapter that I could just leave unpacked at home, so that I could just pull out my iBook and plug in? Thus, I decided to see if I could repair my old adapter.

Of course, no one makes a power adapter that’s easy to get into. That’s probably a good thing in most cases, since something that is is easy to get into would probably fall apart given a hard enough jostle, and exposed AC current is never a good thing. In this case, however, being sealed shut meant that I had to bust the thing open. The pictures below chronicle the process. (Click a picture to enlarge it.)

Intact
Start: The Intact Power Adapter

Bottom Removed Damaged Cord
Stage 1: Bottom Cover Removed & Close-Up On Damaged Cord

Top Removed
Stage 2: Top Cover Removed

Ring Removed
Stage 3: Wire Cut & Wrapping Ring Removed

Case Opened
Stage 4: Aluminum Case Opened

Liner Removed
Stage 5: Plastic Liner Removed

Electronics 1 Electronics 2
End: The Electronics Inside

After dissecting the power adapter thoroughly, it appears that I’ll be able to repair it. I’ll just have to splice the wire back together, wrapping it in electrical tape, solder the AC connector in place, and seal the whole thing in a project box. After that, if it’s putting out the right voltage, I’ll have a fully-functional spare power adapter. Sweet!

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…but the post office managed to do it.

Broken CD

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