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Archive for November, 2009

Lifehacker’s 61 Free Apps

by on Nov.30, 2009, under Uncategorized

thankyouLifehacker has posted their 61 Free Apps We’re Most Thankful For. (continue reading…)

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Acer AspireRevo: Signs of Life

by on Nov.25, 2009, under Uncategorized

After a rough start, I’ve been successfully running XBMC Live on my Revo.  The instructions on Lifehacker.com either aren’t complete, or they glossed over problems they surely must have had since the software and hardware they used is identical to mine.  First the good news … DVD ISOs and VOBs play great, and that was my main goal.  The bad news is that MP3’s played too fast, and video files like avi, flv, wmv are playing way too fast.

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Acer AspireRevo with XBMC: Bad Start

by on Nov.13, 2009, under Uncategorized

Acer_revoI picked up the new Acer AspireRevo AR1600-U910H with the intention of installing XBMC on it as a HTPC.  A writeup about this model and XBMC on Lifehacker.com made it look easy as pie.  So far, I’ve run into a roadblock at every turn.  [Updates with some solutions]

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Multiple Dropbox Accounts

by on Nov.08, 2009, under Uncategorized

dropbox-transparentDropbox, previously written about here, has a limitation that you can only have one account at a time.  But a workaround has been developed that lets you have as many open accounts as you want.

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Paranormal Activity Movie

by on Nov.08, 2009, under Uncategorized

ouija_boardDid you enjoy the first Blair Witch Project movie?  If you thought it had anything going for it, you’ll like Paranormal Activity better.  Blair Witch made the woods creepy.  Paranormal Activity makes your house and every creak and bump in the night creepy.  Trailer and plot summary after the jump.  No spoilers that aren’t shown in the trailer.

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XBMC Live

by on Nov.07, 2009, under Uncategorized

xbmc_liveXBMC, the media center program originally designed to run on the original Xbox video game system, has been running on an old Xbox of mine for the last year or so.  I find myself not using it as much as I’d like though because the machine’s a bit noisy and big to hide around the TV.  Other drawbacks are that it doesn’t allow for HD video, and downloading updates for it practically require a meeting in a dark alley and knowing the secret handshake.

A new article at Lifehacker.com has detailed how to install XBMC on a tiny, silent, Acer AspireRevo with HDMI output.  And given that its for a computer rather than a proprietary video game system, updates are readily available.  I gave it a try on my existing desktop computer with XBMC Live.

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Modulating Thermostat Firmware Glitch

by on Nov.04, 2009, under Uncategorized

Rheem thermostatLast winter I had an old Rheem gas furnace and air conditioner replaced with what amounts to Rheem’s top of the line air-source heat pump system.  Its a dual fuel heat pump with a modulating gas burner and variable speed fan.  To make that part of the system work required a modulating thermostat and the one Rheem sells is made by White Rodgers (Emerson).  Rheem’s model number is RHC-TST411MDMS.  White Rodgers and Emerson refer to it as “Big Blue” under several different variations.  That stat added $300 to the cost and had a stupid programming glitch in it that came to light with the daylight savings time switch last weekend. [Problem resolved, see updates]

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How The Other Half Lives

by on Nov.03, 2009, under Uncategorized

expensive houseAn interesting project I hope to be involved in has crossed my desk.  Its not every day around here where somebody wants to build a 12,000 sq.ft. home, yet an email arrived from a German architectural firm looking for someone local to perform structural and MEP (mechanical, electrical, plumbing) engineering on such a home.  I won’t be posting any images of the real thing, and I don’t yet know who the owner is, but the photo is similar to the style and here are the specs.

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