Filed Under Geek | 2006-11-30, 19:57
Rahul, do I know you? Why do you keep inviting me to some names database? Your email address is email@example.com and the only google result of your name is pointed at said name database site. My name isn’t even listed in this names database. In fact, only one family member is listed for my surname. I think someone is just trying to push some google ads.
Filed Under Geek | 2006-11-30, 13:54
Yay for Partition Magic 8.0. :(
PM is such a fickle utility. In some cases it works beautifully, in other cases it’s like a plane crashing into a train when someone left a semi on the tracks. This time I was lucky though, and it was a quick fix.
I decided late one night that I should merge the two partitions I had on one of my 200gb drives. In the past I had it setup with two partitions, one for an operating system, and one for storage. Now this drive is just pure storage, so there was no point in the two partitions. So I loaded up Partition Magic 8.0 and told it to merge the partitions, putting the files from one partition into a folder on the primary partition. I then rebooted so the changes could be applied when Windows started up. Watching the percentage slowly creep I decided to get some sleep while it worked.
I woke up the next morning to see that the operation had completed 100%, but I had an error. Error #1520: External attribute header mismatch. While I have a background in computer science and know basically how file systems work, I didn’t want to have to sit down and learn the ins and outs of NTFS just to get my 40gigs of music back so I just started poking around.
At first the drive wouldn’t show in Windows. A reboot or two and it reappeared for some reason. The drive was browseable and I could see the directory that the files from the secondary partition should be in. Unfortunately when I tried to open that directory I received an “Access Denied” error message. My first step was to run “chkdsk e: /f” on the drive. Sure enough it found and fixed several errors. But still, access denied. I had assumed there was something up with the allocation table, or maybe an actual hardware issue. However, thinking it was a slim chance, I checked the permissions of the directory, and changed the ownership to myself. Boom, files are back. Rejoice.
For anyone else that runs into this, right click on the folder that Partition Magic created, select Properties, select the Permissions tab, does it say SYSTEM here? Click on the Advanced button, click on the Owner tab, select your user name and check Replace owner on subcontainers and objects. Click Apply and OK to the warnings and then wait as the new owner is applied to the files. Once it’s done, things should be fixed.
Filed Under Second Life | 2006-11-20, 14:16
I’ve been on the road for the last week, moving to San Francisco, and haven’t had a chance to jump on Second Life. That’s not such a bad thing as I might not have been able to log in yesterday even if I had the chance. The griefers are back at it, trying to ruin everyone’s experience in Linden Land. A rogue programmer decided that Second Life needed to be a bit more Sonic the Hedgehogy and people started seeing familiar spinning gold rings appearing and replicating throughout the world. The worm quickly spread and Linden Labs shut off all logins for a brief period of time while they tried to clean up the servers.
You can’t help but start to think of Snow Crash when you hear things like this. Let’s hope that this provides even more motivation for necessary security measures to limit the impact of these attacks. With educational insititutions and large businesses making their way into SL, there will be more users, more traffic, more griefers, and a much greater need for some sort of control as far as the technical side of things.
Filed Under Movies and Music | 2006-11-01, 11:33
I love films by Darren Aronofsky. Alright, well maybe love isn’t the right word for both films I’ve seen. Pi is one of my favorite films, and I can watch it over and over. Like the companion that you always enjoy conversing with and spending time with. Requiem for a Dream is an incredibly powerful movie that I have only watched once for fear that I would not be able to make it all the way through again. It is an incredibly powerful creation that depresses you, yet makes you feel happy to be alive no matter what trivial problems you have. It’s more like that one night stand that was so incredible, yet so wrong at the same time.
I’m so happy to hear that he’s coming out with a new movie and that he is again pushing some boundaries and approaching it without the typical Hollywood “let’s make millions with explosions and sexy women” attitude.
So what makes this deserving of a post on a blog dedicated to ‘geek’? Ironically it’s the fact the he has chosen not to use CGI to portray scenes from space. Using microphotography, Aronofsky has recreated space it what hopes to be a timeless manner. While the CGI of the past few years quickly gets dated, this approach seems to point back to the methods used in 2001: A Space Odyssey, a timeless film without an enourmous special effects budget.
The technique is described in an article in Wired:
Then Aronofsky’s team discovered the work of Peter Parks, a marine biologist and photographer who lives in a 400-year-old cowshed west of London. Parks and his son run a home f/x shop based on a device they call the microzoom optical bench. Bristling with digital and film cameras, lenses, and Victorian prisms, their contraption can magnify a microliter of water up to 500,000 times or fill an Imax screen with the period at the end of this sentence. Into water they sprinkle yeast, dyes, solvents, and baby oil, along with other ingredients they decline to divulge. The secret of Parks’ technique is an odd law of fluid dynamics: The less fluid you have, the more it behaves like a solid. The upshot is that Parks can make a dash of curry powder cascading toward the lens look like an onslaught of flaming meteorites. “When these images are projected on a big screen, you feel like you’re looking at infinity,” he says. “That’s because the same forces at work in the water – gravitational effects, settlement, refractive indices – are happening in outer space.
I am looking forward to this movie so much, and I hope it does live up to its expectations. It has Aronofsky behind it, a story about eternal life, space, time travel, Clint Mansell doing the score, Hugh Jackman is starring in the lead role, and people are already comparing it to 2001 and films like Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.