The Caffeinated Penguin

musings of a crackpot hacker

The rock

| May 28, 2005

Liz thought that I should post this.

The Ring

I'm getting married!

| May 28, 2005

I asked Liz this morning in the Botanical gardens at URI.

(She said yes).

Letter to VWofA

| May 17, 2005

Because Fiore VW are kind of a bunch of buffoons and Speedcraft has been pretty good to me, excepting one salesman who was kind of an idiot. Might provide some amusement.

Link to PDF

Oh, how the mighty have fallen

| May 16, 2005

Tonight I made Tuna Noodle Casserole. Yes, with the peas, and cream of mushroom soup and crushed potato chips on the top.

What's next? Green bean casserole with the fried onion bits?

Seriously, Liz is feeling a little under the weather and this is a comfort food for her.

And, this weekend I'm going to learn how to cast resin and metal figures and stuff. My friend Leo (who owns a gaming supply company as a side business) is having a casting day. We cast up a bunch of stuff and get to keep what we want at cost. The rest of the stuff is used for his inventory. So, in prep for this, I went to a local tire shop and took about 100lbs of used lead tire weights off their hands. Not bad. They got twice what their scrap metal buyer pays them, and I got them for about 1/4 of retail. (Kind of lets you know what the markup is, doesn't it?) So, there is a bucket of tire weights sitting in my bathroom.

Anyway, I'm looking forward to it – I've always thought that the casting stuff was cool, and while it's kind of expensive to do metal at home (good ones require a spin casting machine, which can be a few hundred to a few thousand dollars), it's much cheaper to do resin casting at home, though the raw materials are more expensive. (Resin costs more than lead; although if you want to use lead-free pewter, it starts to get pretty pricey ($8/lb in quantities of 100lb)). Plus, I'll learn to make molds with RTV (Room Temperature Vulcanizing) rubber.

Oops, looks like dinner is ready. Have a nice night all.

Late night postiness

| May 15, 2005

Liz isn't here this weekend (visiting her folks), so I've been being bad and staying up and sleeping late.

Working on my BattleTech software (Mono/GTK# is pretty cool). Doing some more video editing of the old home movies. Painting miniatures (more Battletech, right now). Modified my coffee grinder to not suck.

I'll post pics of the mechs I've painted recently, and I'll be putting up a project page of how I hacked the coffee maker. Plus, I have a pile of random pics to post and show. Some technology, some kitties.. Just general stuff..

Probably going to see Star Wars on Thursday. W00t.

Liz is supposed to go out to California in two weeks. I am less than amused. I worry about her. I mean, take a VW driver used to a standard and stick them in a shitty rental Ford Taurus (or even worse, a Focus) and then in the middle of LA traffic trying to find a place she's never been before and it kind of worries me. When I went, I was just along for the ride, plus there were plenty of people to navigate. One of my big fears (and one of the reasons my life got much less stressful) was that I would have to go out there alone. It's not the new place so much as the new car. With my current company, most of the places I'd have to go would be within driving distance (most of our clients are the north east US), so I would end up being able to take my car. Or, I would end up going at the beginning and end of a project, which would likely include my boss as well. Either way, I'm either in my car, or in an unfamiliar car but with a navigator. Both make me a lot more at ease.

iTunes + Ogg

| May 5, 2005

The latest QuickTime update breaks the Quicktime Ogg Component.

6.5.2 downgrade

Battletech software

| May 4, 2005

Okay, so here's the initial stuff I've been working on.


This basically handles all the initial weight stuff.

I'll do a project page at some point.

The interesting bit is the data-driven design: engines, chassis, etc. are all stored in .xml files, which should be editable by normal people.

For Windows people, 7-Zip should be able to uncompress it, and you'll probably need to install GTK+ for Windows.

For Mac people, you need Mono, GTK+ and X11.

Anyway, poke it, let me know what you think.

Up next: weapons.

I'll probably set up a project page soon.