30July2004 - Whilst meandering thru the local Barnes & Ignoble bookstore a few days ago, in search of summer reading, I stumbled across a new title by Jon Krakauer. If you were here back in January 2003 (scroll down to entry for 24th), you might recall how much I enjoyed reading Into Thin Air by this same author, a true account of a tragic story about climbing Mount Everest.
I enjoyed that book and the story so much that I even read another one (The Climb: Tragic Ambitions on Everest) by a different author (the Russian: Anatoli Boukreev) who participated in the same climb, and detailed the same story from a different perspective.
So I was naturally interested to see Krakauer's new book. It's titled Under The Banner of Heaven: A Story of Violent Faith. At first, you think this book is also about mountaineering, like his other books, because there is a picture of mountains on its cover. But this book is not about climbing. Not hardly.
To be honest, I didn't think the new subject would interest me. But after skimming the first few pages, I couldn't put it down. Krakauer is a gifted writer: clear, elegant, cogent. I had never heard of his new book before, but now, it seems like everywhere I go, people see me reading it and comment, "Good book, huh?"
Just yesterday, I was baking my body at the local beach (Wood's Cove) here in Laguna, and the life guard there, a kid from Melbourne Australia, with a strong Aussie accent, struck up a conversion about it. He was a Krakauer fan who had already read it. Here is a paragraph from the Prologue:
The remainder of today's entry is blogged here: Under the Banner of Heaven: by Jon Krakauer.
28July2004 - Updated the world-famous Ghost guide, to include some batch-file wizardry, compliments of Mr. JHouston (from Buon Me Thuot, located in the DakLak Province of Viet Nam). Also updated the associated PDF files: both downloadable zipped (90-KB) and printer-friendly (145-KB) version, which has the shaded areas removed to conserve toner/ink.
The remainder of today's post is blogged here: Updated the Guide to Norton Ghost.
26July2004 - We're baaack. Ran out of clean underwear. Piles of laundry to do. Shoulders badly sun burnt. It'll take a few days for life to return to normal. I almost forget how to work this keyboard.
Returned to find several thousand emails, most of which notified me that p0rn-ers have been spamming my blog (Movable Type) while I was gone. It took 15 minutes just to download them all. Thank goodness for MT-Blacklist. These spammers spent untold hours making those entries (comments), but MT-Blacklist allowed me to [delete] them all with the click of a single [button]. Very cool program (compliments of Jay Allen).
Saw the Bourne Supremacy yesterday. Thoroughly enjoyed it. Well-made movie. It goes to the top my my Recommended list. Most enjoyable movie I've seen in a long time. The theater was packed. Lately, movies, such as i, Robot, have left me disappointed. I liked the way Bourne Supremacy assumes you have a brain, and lets you use it. It's not easy, knowing what parts of the story to leave out and what parts to keep in.
It had just the right amount of twists and turns, without getting absurd. And a great chase scene, after which the audience applauded. How many times have you seen an audience applaud after a chase scene? I also liked that the girl (Franke) wasn't drop-dead (007) gorgeous, which made the movie seem more believable and realistic.
The filmmakers cleverly present the story in a fragmented fashion to mimic Bourne's own fragmented memory, which allows the viewer to more easily relate to the main character. Critic reviews posted here (Rotten Tomatoes).
On a more techical note, I started using Dreamweaver MX 2004 (v7.0), which I use to create this site (along with the page you're reading). Beautiful, professional program. After trying the demo, I knew I had to have it (the upgrade).
On an even more geeky note, Kyle did a nice review on overclocking the 2.8GHz LGA775 P4. I especially like the way he followed thru on troubleshooting the source of the problem with the nVidia gfx card. Most reviewers would've simply left it at that and said, "We had stability problems with the 6800." Not KB.
The LGA-775 platform represents the next generation in personal computing. I traded a few emails with him, and he feels that the quality of Abit boards have surpassed those made by Asus. I've always liked Abit, even since the BH6 (my first overclocking love), and would easily get another, long as I can be assured it'll run stably.
12July2004 - Heading out on vacation. I'll leave the site up for you to peruse at your leisure.
08July2004 - Been surprisingly sad since hearing that Alex is abandoning Motherboard Monitor (see previous post). Not sure why the news is affecting me this way. Yesterday a friend asked why I looked so blue, and I actually shed a tear while telling them the story. They said, "Man, you really *are* a techie, aren't you?"
Had to laugh at myself. I mean, I am literally *crying* over this. Silly me. I was reading some of the posts from around the Net (while sulking). The one that resonates most with how I feel is by arsbernard, posted over at Ars:
The remainder of today's post is blogged here: Motherboard Monitor is No More.
06July2004 - Sad news today. Alex sent word (from the Netherlands) that, after 7½ years, he's abandoning development of Motherboard Monitor. RADIFIED is mentioned in his farewell address. Actually, he told us yesterday: a day ahead of announcing it to the public. I thought that was classy.
Still, it makes me wanna cry. You can't buy a better product, at any price. I can only wish him the best. Several touching pages of user comments posted HERE and HERE (well, all over the web, now).