Saturday, June 29, 2013

Building a PC, Introduction to Series

title: 00 Building A Personal Computer, Introduction

date: 2013-06-29, 13:06:20

in_menu: false

My Ethernet Switch, Fharlanghn

One personal project I have finally decided to undertake (and one I specifically thought might be good for this blog) is the building of my own personal computer. Perhaps even more than one, in the future… but the first step is going to be just the one. I hope to be able to use it mostly for gaming, but also as a media center of sorts, so I can stop using my laptops as such.

The First step in a project like this is to define the requirements of the build: What the limitations are in terms of space and time and money, and what the capabilities I need for it to function. Therefore, I have come up with a small list of Project Requirements that I will hold myself to:

  • It must be able to Play “Skyrim Era” Games. Basically, I want a fairly modern (not cutting edge, but able to play most games) system. It should be able to play 1080p Movies without lag in video or audio. It’d be nice, also, if it could run Blender well, for 3D animation.

  • It must be able to Have at least Two Video Outputs, to allow the TV to be one, for media center purposes, and the monitor to be one, for gaming purposes. Ideally, both would be hooked up constantly, so no cables need be swapped.

  • It must be able to Run Quietly while processing large amounts of data. This is so that, when watching a movie or a show, or playing a game, the fan does not overpower (or truly, even compete with) the enjoyment of the medium.

  • It must be able to Upgrade Extremely Well. I do not want to be stuck with a complete rig in 6 months that is outdated for every new game that comes out in 12 months. I want to be able, at minimum cost, to be able to upgrade the system to perform decently with the improving hardwares (and the degrading programming practices) of the day.

  • It must Cost Somewhere around $500-$700. I do not want to devote a year to saving for this, nor do I want to spend absolutely everything I make on this. I also want it to be relatively in line with my personal philosophy of minimalism. Honestly, I also want to be able to order upgrades for the the system fairly quickly… That concept is very cool to me.

With all of these conditions met, the system will perform as I wish it to, in every way. The next step for me is to translate these from conceptual project requirements into a list of system/hardware requirements that I can use to start piecing together a list of parts. Then, I’ll have the horse as well as the cart.

Time for me to get back to work. Comments are always appreciated

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Retro LAN Games, Introduction to the Series

title: Retro LAN Games, Intro

date: 2013-06-27, 01:28:47

in_menu: false


One of the past times that me and my compatriots enjoy enacting when we want to relax and unwind (or have an exciting social gathering where we can kill, maim, conquer, and otherwise dominate each other) is the humble LAN party. There are really three ways to go with this: Current Windows Based Games, Old Windows Based Games, and Games Compatible with our Operating System of Choice, GNU/Linux.

The First one I want to talk about (mostly because I have been working with it extensively for the last few days) is the Retro LAN Party. For the Time Being, we will limit ourselves to the following:

  • The Game has to have come out in or before the Early Naughties. The tentative year I am currently using as a cut off is the year 2003 (as in, everything that came out in 2004 or later is off limits.

  • The Game must Natively Run On Windows. This means that I should not have to supply an emulator (as these generally work better on GNU/Linux) and that it will be simple to set up and get working. (NOTE: DOSbox is used in these examples because I personally have set these computers up with Windows XP. There is no MS-DOS in XP, so if You are running a DOS-heavy LAN, You may want to consider win98. Otherwise, DOSbox is fine. All Games that ran on DOS come packaged with it, anyway.)

  • The Game should run with Modest Specs. Not totally minimalistic, but at the very least, my HP Pavillion dv9000 and NVidia GeForce 8600M GS should be able to handle it. This shouldn’t be a problem, considering the first condition above.

  • The Game must be Playable Over LAN. Kinda Obvious, but it does eliminate a few types of games, notably those that are meant to be hotseat, and oddities like You Don’t Know Jack.

  • The Game must be Entertaining to Play. I am not doing this for academic reasons. This is a practical list of games which hopefully will be used to create LAN Party Rosters in the Future. They Gotta Be Fun. (That said, if a game satisfies the above, and turns out not to be fun, I will probably still talk about it, just not include it in the final list.)

I may increase or decrease these restrictions in the near future, but for now that will do. I hope that, given the amount of time I am spending on this, I will be able to eventually have a list of games that are fun to play, with reviews of each one, and a good, strong idea for public retro LAN parties.

Time for me to get back to work. Comments are always appreciated!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013


title: Maintaining Inspiration

date: 2013-06-26, 17:32:38

in_menu: false

8-bit Tree of Inspiration

The purpose of this blog is threefold. In the spirit of continuing actual work, and not meta-related, constantly repeated gigo, I will be brief.

Firstly, this blog is meant to be Scratch Paper for my Ideas and Enterprises. I want to use it to get my ideas on some kind of a decent level, and therefore there will be a LARGE amount of one-topic series. This is by design, and therefore okay. Maybe I will come back to these Ideas one day.

Secondly, this blog is meant to Consistently Update. One of the fallbacks of trying to keep finished or product-based content on my site has always been the rather iffy update schedule. In the interests of keeping what I call on the front page an Open Dialogue with my Audience, I find solace in the fact that I am committing to a 1 post a day minimum update schedule for this blog. (As I am Constantly at work doing something, but often do not bring it to a finished point for publication, the first fold seriously helps with this one.)

Thirdly and Finally, I need to have some kind of Personal Gratification for my creativity to avoid fizzling. Simply having this collection of posts may be enough, but the idea that others may eventually provide their own opinions on my musings and ideas, and perhaps even compliment a job well done, is absolutely titillating to me. Such a possibility is the reason that I am doing this. This third fold is the largest, and the impetus for the entire project.

Time for me to get back to work. Comments are always appreciated!