Vacations - the Good and the Bad
I just finished a well-needed week-long vacation. It was nice to get away from the daily grind of the office and spend some time unwinding. Unfortunately, all things come to an end. And, typically I have to spend the same number of days digging out from under the email deluge that accumulates during the time away.
Fortunately, my time away was worthwhile. I didn't go anywhere — the baby and my wife's fewer number of vacation days obviated that — but I did get a lot accomplished. Most importantly (to me, at least), I added some more components to my PC. These upgrades included a bay-mounted LCD screen by Matrix Orbital, a side-mounted plexiglass window for my case and a blue cold-cathode light for the interior. Here's a pic of the finished product. The light can be turned on and off without opening the case by way of a switch mounted on an expansion bay cover. I purchased most of the equipment from Directron in Houston, although the expansion-cover switch came from PCMods.com. Both of these companies carry a wide variety of PC modding gear. Check them out if you get the chance.
I also added new fans with rheostats in order to create positive pressure inside the case while still maintaining good airflow and cooling. Positive pressure inside the case is advantageous as it pushes out dust instead of sucking it through every crevice. All that remains is the installation of a filter across the intake opening and I should have my dust problem under control.
I also saw The Matrix Reloaded (twice) during my vacation. It was a good flick, but I have to admit I wasn't bowled over by it. That's not to say it was a bad experience (it wasn't), but I just didn't leave the theatre raving about it. It will be interesting to see what happens in the third and final film when it is released in November.
My vacation was rounded out with a LAN Party — affectionately termed GameFest. Eight of us showed up at a friend's house Sunday and played C&C Generals, Unreal Tournament, No One Lives Forever 2 and of course lots of Desert Combat. It turned out to be a great day to spend indoors, as it was overcast and rainy much of the day. I even have a replay of one of Generals games for download here if you have the game and want to watch. Version 1.05 of Generals is required.