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November 2008

Viewing posts from November , 2008

revamped media landscape

There was a time when I was going to build myself a nice HTPC to stream all my media downloads to TV, as well as replace the usual Astro box as a PVR.

Well that plan has now gone to hell, with the acquisition of a certain piece of equipment. Let’s just say this piece plays really good looking games and is a uPNP/DLNA device. Let’s also say that it’s really expensive. 😛 For now, let’s call this the ‘media client’.

With this purchase, it looks like a HTPC is no longer necessary. Replacing Astro with a PC-based PVR doesn’t seem worth the effort too, so the idea to use MediaPortal will now be replaced with TVersity, a uPNP/DLNA media server software for Windows. With it, I can just stream stuff over to the media client, with support for on-the-fly transcoding just in case the client is anal about format.

Problem is this still needs me to set up a Windows 24/7 server to host the media. So I might use uShare as an alternative. uShare is another supported media server, but for Linux/BSD machines. That means I can continue using my BSD server for torrent downloads, and stream media directly from it.

Speaking of the BSD server, which I named Mario for some odd reason, it will have its Gnome GUI software removed with needed components migrated over to console. Gnome was becoming a pain in the butt to maintain, and I only needed it to run Azureus, which is also being replaced by TorrentFlux.

But anyway, looking forward to to the new way of things.

the old maids of lim dental surgery, pj state

Faizah and I are a little ticked with this dentist at the moment. Its staff still insists on doing things the old way, when things have already progressed beyond pen and paper.

What I’m talking about is their membership as one of our company’s panel dentist. Our system has vastly improved, with online eligibility checks available for any participating clinic. Claims can be submitted online and processed centrally by the company’s payment department.

But here we have Lim Dental Surgery, which still insists on a ‘panel selection’ letter from our office. Their staff remain stubborn, even after we repeatedly tell them that it’s no longer required. Even our own admin staff, clerks, and Welfare Department say that it’s no longer necessary.

So why does this particular clinic still do things the old way? Can’t they afford a PC and an internet connection? Or are their staff just too resistant to change? I suppose it’s usually the old people who dislike learning new things. You know, as the saying goes.

From what we can tell from their office, they’re still pretty much set doing what they’re doing right now. Yellow registration cards to keep track of patients, etc. I think the only thing that’s going on for them are the purportedly good doctors.

But it looks like Faizah and I will never know, because we’ll never set foot into that clinic ever again. And if anyone asks for a good dentist, LDS will not be mentioned, at least in any good way. Sure, you might want to stick to your old archaic ways, but that doesn’t give you the right to be rude or ignore your customers. Just another example of how this country will never be a leader in the service industry.

zombie time!

Yesterday, I purchased the Steam-delivered version of Left 4 Dead, a new zombie-apocalypse coop multiplayer game from Valve. Playing the demo for a few days just got me excited about the game, so I bought it at pre-order prices a day before release. Apparently it’s a relatively short game, but it’s got good multiplayer possibilities. You can either play one of the 4 survivors blazing their way thru to safety, or one of the ‘Boss Infected’ to make sure they don’t see the light of day. The ambiance of the maps and the directed music itself really helps you immerse in the mood, whether trying to sneak past a Witch or defending yourself against a horde of rushing infected.

Of course, you must also have the pretty spectator who’ll cling to you as you play. ^_^

The whole game is 2.86GB, currently at 50% and downloading. ETA is 7 hours 47 minutes. @_@

dying hardware

If you’ve noticed, my photo gallery is offline with a whole bunch of freaky PHP errors. Tis mainly due to me having to unplug my two 250GB drives from the server as they were constantly crashing the system every time fsck’ed. Thing is I’m not sure whether it’s one or the other or both that’s causing the problems. If I have time, I’ll probably mount it on my Windows machine to transfer the stuff out before the drives die for real.

But before that, I should probably buy some new hard drives to store said data. Fai-chan needs one herself, having only 1GB left on her machine. 😛

Another problem I have is with my stupid wireless Linksys PCI adaptor. There came a point where my PC just couldn’t start due to BSODs originating from RT2500.sys (a Ralink driver used by this card). Updating the driver to generic Ralink ones would cause erratic connections instead. Updating to SP3 didn’t help. Windows File Protection scans didn’t help either.

Once I’m settled down, I’ll probably make the switch to N. And it damned well won’t be Linksys.

long overdue update

Yup, time to get those swear words out of the main page. 😛 Sorry for the long silence, things have been pretty hectic with … stuff. Hopefully I’ll be able to blog more often after everything is settled.