Power Classic

cmd-shift-3

A few years ago at a Chicago 2600 meeting there was a Color Classic on the “take me” (garbage) table at the Neighborhood Boys and Girls Club. Naturally, 0v3rk1ll and I took it along with some other items and a PowerMacintosh. The Color Classic would boot to the dreaded Missing OS icon (question mark on a floppy disk). I assumed that it was a normal Color Classic, so I purchased an awesome new-old-stock IBM USB floppy drive off of eBay to hook up to a MacBook so I could put System 7.5.3 on floppies to reload the OS. I ended up trying out the Network Access Disc, with it in the floppy drive, the machine booted up with the Happy Mac (found OS) icon and made its way into Mac OS 9.1. I’m pretty sure the reason it was showing the Missing OS icon is because the PRAM battery is dead.

I checked the system profile, and it turns out that the Color Classic chassis actually has a PowerMacintosh 5400 in it with a 200 MHz PPC 603ev and 32 MB of physical memory. With a grin from ear to ear, I realized that one of the previous owners must have done a logic board swap on it. Score! Although OS 9.1 is “The Best Internet Operating System Ever”, it runs a little slow on this Mac so I’m considering making a backup image of the hard drive and then installing Mac OS 7.5.3 to speed things up – plus then it would be more believable that it’s a Color Classic.

Between working on this CC and digging up my collection of floppy disks (3½” AND 5¼”) I’m going through a blast from the past that I really needed. Maybe I’ll post more updates on old stuff soon. The screenshot is of the CC logged into my server with MacSSH.

0v3rk1ll’s Eee PC and RC Car

Eee PC

0v3rk1ll’s new Eee PC looks funny when compared to my 17″ Gateway P-6831FX.

Eee PC on P-6831FX

Eee PC on P-6831FX Open

Eee PC Size Comparison

The screen height on the Eee PC is less than the diameter of a CD. It makes other laptops, especially mine, look like desktop replacements. I’m fine with having my full keyboard and NVIDIA 8800M GTS though :]

RC Car

We drove to our old junior high to drive 0v3rk1ll’s RC car around.

0v3rk1ll Gremlin

He disguised himself as Gizmo from the movie Gremlins.

0v3rk1ll RC Car

0v3rk1ll’s RC car.

Youtube - 0v3rk1ll's RC Car

Click for the YouTube video of 0v3rk1ll’s RC Car.

Windows XP on the Gateway P-6831FX

This guide covers how to install Windows XP on the Gateway P-6831FX, it also works for many other laptops in the Gateway FX series.
Continue reading Windows XP on the Gateway P-6831FX

Computer Ads from 1991!

I was going through a manila envelope that contains paperwork on my older computers and I found a computer advertisement booklet from 1991. There wasn’t a MacBook Air hidden in the envelope, but there were some sweet deals on computers! *kidding*

Here they are, good for a laugh and a refined perspective on how fast the computer industry is moving.

Click Images for Full Size

1991 Computer Ad Page 1
1991 Computer Ad Page 1

 

1991 Computer Ad Page 2
1991 Computer Ad Page 2

 

1991 Computer Ad Page 3
1991 Computer Ad Page 3

 

1991 Computer Ad Page 4
1991 Computer Ad Page 4

 

1991 Computer Ad Page 5
1991 Computer Ad Page 5

LED Belt Clip

January 4th there was a Chicago Hacker meeting (Chicago 2600/DefCon 312) and an attendee handed out 1¢ BestBuy gift cards, fifteen gift cards that he put one cent on, totaling 15¢. He had the receipt to show for it too. I think it’s weird that they let him do that, the value of the special holiday gift cards had to be more than one cent, they have a watch battery in them that has to have a greater value than that.

I didn’t take pictures of the scrolling LED gift card before I transformed it into a belt clip, but here’s a set of pictures I found on Flickr of it new and then being taken apart. I thought it would make a great belt buckle so I opened it up to see what I could do with it. You may want to pop out the plastic piece that pressed the buttons so they don’t get accidentally bumped, I did this so you would have to be trying to press the buttons to actually press them. It fits the plastic shell nicely so I put it back together and just covered the front with black electrical tape. Then I set it upside-down on a cardboard box and cut off the excess electrical tape along the edges with an x-acto knife. I used a piece of cloth strap material from a small bag and folded it into a loop that would fit snugly around my belt, then I stapled it like that and melted the cut edges of the plastic-like-fabric with a lighter so it wouldn’t unravel where it was cut. I didn’t have any way to attach the belt loop to the gift card other than by taping it with thick electrical tape, so I did that. You could wrap it through the inside and screw the plastic shell shut so it would pinch the strap in place, but then the strap would be in the way of the buttons on the back of the gift card.

I like it with just “TINMAN” as the message, but I got at least three comments on it in an hour while shopping in Chicago with it displaying “Stop staring at my crotch” :]

Click below for a YouTube video of it in action:

YouTube - TinMan's LED Belt Clip

Danger To Teh Motherboard!

The past weekend I had a hardware meltdown, literally. I had recently moved my computer from the floor to up on the desk since I switched to a larger desk, this was neat because I could check the CPU temp right there, USB ports were more easily accessible, and I could actually see through the clear side-panel on my case. Why leave it on the floor when you can see in it?

I had just joined a game of tremulous and I saw a yellow light in my case, I look over at it and there’s a flame at least 5 inches high. I actually managed to exit the game and shut-down my computer from the menu despite freaking out that there was a fire in my computer, which is in my room. After the fire was out the computer still managed to function enough to properly turn off, but I didn’t want to risk anything so I opened it up. The motherboard was burned pretty bad next to where the FireWire was, it was filled with dust puppies, and there were marks from the flame on my PCI card and PCI expansion slots. I ended up picking up a new motherboard which has been working fine so far.

The new motherboard is a Biostar GeForce 6100-M9, I haven’t messed with the onboard video yet, only my GeForce 7900GT, but I plan on testing out the onboard chipset since they took the time to put it in the name of the model. 😛 On the new motherboard I had to disable AMD’s Cool’n’Quiet in the BIOS, I had booted it up and noticed that my CPU was only at 1GHz when it runs 2.2GHz stock, the default settings had Cool’n’Quiet enabled, which underclocked my CPU.

Dust Puppies FireWire
Burns TV-Tuner
Before, old mobo After, new mobo

Quick Nokia N800 Review

I finally got to installing the applet to take screenshots, so here they are:

Desktop

It runs a resolution of 800×480 which is a 5:3 display aspect ratio. I switched to this theme, the default one was much darker. On the desktop I have an RSS feed reader, Google / Wikipedia search, clock, contacts (didn’t set up my GoogleTalk or e-mail yet), and an applet that controls the media player’s “Internet Radio” section. In the upper right you can see a Bluetooth status indicator, display settings, sound settings, connection manager, a screenshot applet that shows the CPU load and memory consumption…and then magically disappears for the second that the screenshot is being taken, and a power status indicator. When the N800 is connected to a computer via USB it shows on the far left of that applet tab.

Battery

The battery outlasts my MacBook’s on normal usage and charges really quick, I’m sure that you could look into getting a longer lasting battery if you wanted, Nokia already has some accessories out for it.

Menu

Here’s a shot of the menu.

Keyboard

There’s an on-screen (virtual) keyboard that’s easy enough to use. It also supports some Bluetooth keyboards, but you can always be creative. Touching the screen with one of your fingers instead of the stylus will bring up a larger virtual keyboard that can be typed on with your fingers or thumbs.

Handwriting

After “training” it to recognize my handwriting, which is very easy and has many shortcut features, it stopped mis-guessing what I’m typing and I have it down pretty well, the word prediction is really nice too. It will remember new words that you enter that it doesn’t know yet, so in the future they are available. If you are at a password prompt it does not list word options and does not remember what you tell it in the word list, you can have it save your passwords but I’m used to not saving passwords. It displays the character for a short period of time and then changes it to an asterisk.

apt-get

Here’s some neat Linux info on it, Nokia’s Internet Tablet OS 2007 Edition is built off of Debian for an ARM CPU.

BusyBox v1.1.3 (Debian 3:1.1.3-3.osso17) Built-in shell (ash)
Enter ‘help’ for a list of built-in commands.

~ $ uname -a
Linux Nokia-N800-51 2.6.18-omap1 #2 Tue Dec 19 18:41:02 EET 2006 armv6l unknown

The Application Manager is just a GUI (Graphical User Interface) to apt-get and dpkg, which is how you install applications, from .deb files and repositories.

The built-in camera is pretty cool, and it comes in clear when you’re in a well light environment. The camera hides away in a bulge that’s on the back of the tablet, which I think is very ergonomically suitable and helps it fit the hands better. The hardware buttons are easy to use and they don’t get bumped easily, there’s even a zoom-in, zoom-out, and fullscreen button on the top of the tablet. The speakers are way better than those of any laptop I’ve ever owned, they are loud and clear. The fold-out stand is handy for setting it on a table where it is still visible and usable, who wants a tablet that lies flat on a table? Not I.

That’s the end of my quick review on the Nokia N800, now go buy one and contribute to making me some sweet apps.
=D

TinMan got a Nokia N800

w00t!

I am posting this from my new Nokia N800.

I’ve been working on a project with the Quake 3 Engine, but I will probably put it on hold to play around with the Maemo SDK (Software Development Kit) to port some apps to this. It runs Nokia’s Internet Tablet 2007 Edition (Maemo 3.0 ‘bora’) which is obviously new and there are still many apps from the 2006 catalog that haven’t been ported to 2007 (3.0) yet.

I’m callng it a night and leaving you with this: Nokia N800

TinMan got a MacBook

Today I finally got my MacBook. Its the “Ultimate” black 2GHz MacBook and it came with a free iPod nano and a printer/scanner/copier after rebate.

Being a linux junkie, I’m at home in OS X.

Here’s a generic looking screenshot that I took, I’ll be sure to post more once I customize the GUI a little, maybe ditch the ugly silver.
(click image to enlarge)

MacBook Screenie

As for hardware, 2GHz Core Duo and 512MB of RAM, yeah its got Intel graphics (which usually suck), but it runs all my games fine so far, so I’m not complaining about the Intel.
Now I can pwn noobs, and proudly say that I’m owning them via Mac or Linux, because this MacBook runs the same games I run on my Ubuntu Desktop.

Open Source game engines FTW!
~TinMac