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Journal keith_nt4's Journal: Vacation: Day 13

Lucky, lucky 13. Ok so I haven't started on a lot of the things I've set out for but I've made plans to. For whatever that's worth. A good sign though I'm writing in this journal for the second time.

But lets see what haven't I started on? Haven't strated the A+ book I wanted to get through, haven't started reviewing excel/access books, haven't worked on my LiteStep web site, and have all but stopped on my game programming book. But at least I started that one.

What have I done? I did learn a lot about my LEAF router. Wasn't easy either. I also did learn some good game stuff.

And today I signed up for the retail version of a game I spent months beta testing (pre-release software is tested in a development phase known as beta, which is usually preceded by the alpha stage. The game is Neocron. An 'online-only RPG'. Really what that means is the servers are online 24/7 so the world doesn't go away when you quit playing. I developed some good relationships with a few people. Some which haven't even been playing since july but i still talk to them through instant messaging. It was rather frustrating trying to report bugs and what-not due to the lack of communication from the company developing the game. But when the servers were we made our own fun.

Kinda got off point there didn't I? Well I activated my account. I have six weeks free. Online RPGs such as this one usually charge a subscription fee per month to keep it going. And by that I mean they all charge a fee ranging anywhere from $10 to $15 but usually you get 4 weeks free with the cost of buying the game and in this case since it was just released two on top of that. It has kind of a learning curve but if you were to find some good people to venture and chat with you can have a lot of fun. Which I suppose is true of all such online-only RPGs but I happened to fall in with this one.

Yesterday I also managed to squeeze Windows 2000 pro onto a 200mhz machine with only 32 megs of ram. For those who don't speek in such terms that's about like windows95 on a 486 with 8 megs of ram. Ok perhaps that's no better. It's like a tiny pick up truck trying to tow a really large cargo truck. I may be able to do it but it'll be very very slow and won't do it very well. On top of this I'm running what's called a dedicated server for this game (I think I mentioned before) called Neverwinter Nights. Windows (the 9x series too not just NT derivatives) has this thing called a page file. Basically it's the computer pretending part of the hard drive is actually RAM. The game server can't run without using up part of the page file so as long as the server is running even if it's not in use the hard drive just sits there and accesses. Which isn't good.

I have to connect this computer to my main comptuer through a serial port. This is because this puny 200mhz machine can't take network cards. But finally connecting windows 2000 to xp via the "dial up" has managed to put it on the network. Sort of. I actually want it connected to the leaf firewall/router/dhcp server and not my machine but there's not much i can do at the moment.

So obviously I haven't done too much so far this vacation. I would like to set out some sort of schedule for myself. For example do a chapter of the game programming book, followed by a chapter of the A+ book, followed by, perhaps if I feel like it a pages from lord of the rings which i would like to finish reading. Then finally I'll play some games and work on my router. At least I'll have accomplished something this way.

Also today a friend of mine who lives many miles away finally got an instant messenger account and we started talking. She wants me to go to some ski place several hundred miles away and snowboard for a few days. I was hesitating because, well you've seen how I spend my days. Ok perhaps that's an argument in favor of going. I still think I'd like to work on finding a job which is hard to do while pretending to know how to snow board and trying not to break my neck. And i'm hesitating...well there's a lot of reasons i'm hesitating, it's complicated. Actually this friend of mine, she's a lesbian. I realize to you enlightened city people this is no big deal. And it's not to me either really it's just that i grew up in a really small, more conservative that average town and am not accustomed to that sort of thing. Actually she grew up there too. But she likes to talk about sex, which, how is a normal health adult male of at the age of 24 supposed to react to that? And sometimes she acts a little bizarely. Which I usually shrug off with a "must be a lesbian thing". And another minor note, we seem to be polar oppisites, personality-wise. She's wild, crazy, stay-up-all-night-drinking while i'm stay up late because of a bad habit to do so and go to bed. Yet some how she still seems to want to be around me. Am I really so charismatic even lesbians seem to graviate toward me? Why hasn't this applied to other people? Sometimes i really wonder what she sees in me she keep e-mailing. I mean i do have some kind of a sense of humor, you only see once you get to know me. But man. So I chatted with her for what must have been close to an hour. She must really need someone to snowboard with...

Speaking of long chat sessions. Let me recount my days of yore on the old AOL. Back in the good old days of verison 2.0 when you paid a subscription by the hour (and where I lived made a long-distance phone call just to connect). Wasn't a whole lot I could do at the time. I only had a 386 with 4 megs of memory running windows 3.1. I did happen to have some quite memorable chat sessions a few times and form some close relationships with some penpals. I remember once staying up quite well into the morning chatting with another a guy and this women for hours and hours in this private room. For some reason the three of us all had this chemistry we could make each other laugh hysterically. I really wish I'd kept the chat log so I could go back and read and post it some place. I was just so funny. My stomach was actualy aching from laughing so hard.

And to continue...

Best Pop-culture....EVER

My other favorite show is, or was, "Whose Line is it Anyway?". It seems to have lost something lately. But in it's prime it was extremely good. The phrase "the cat!" still manages to bring a smirk to my face. You can still catch re-runs on the family channel at 10pm. At least you could, I haven't checked in a while. Unfortunately family channel doesn't play all the episodes, because apparently even late at night it's still the family channel. Perhaps after a while some other cable channel will get the re-runs and they'll show all those episodes in all their unfettered glory. Till then I'll just have to keep whining and complaining...

Make it myself? But I'm a physical organic chemist!