odo trick – I [heart] OCD

One of my “borderline” traits is my fascination with numbers, especially numerical readouts (this also partially explains my fascination with pachinko and the like). Some numbers and patterns just mean a lot to me, although my commemoration of odometer milestones I know is at least shared by some of my friends. Some people just don’t get it though – I remember when I stopped my S-13 Silvia on a busy highway median to photograph reaching the 111,111 kilometer mark (sub trip odometer 1,111), the person I was with totally DID NOT understand why I thought it was so special, so I told him to get the fuck out of my car and he immediately got hit by a big truck and died. OK, maybe that last part was just wishful thinking, but what a fucking killjoy, you know?
So with that in mind, I present to you the first big milestone for my new (used) car:

Odometer otakus should note that I have synchronized the sub-trip recorder to within 0.3 meters of the main readout.
This is going to be something special.
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I finally got around to taking a pic of my new audio setup, but I didn’t take it during the right time of day, unfortunately:

I was so happy with the work my guy did, I let him put a sticker on the box – it’s in Comic Sans!
The sub box is located in front of the amp, a simple vented design for a 12″ driver I bought cheaply in Japan and have used for over 5 years now. I can’t recommend the polymer/silicon/carbon substrate construction for speaker cones enough, and it’s a damn shame the only factory making them burned down last year. The speaker points forward, as I tried pointing both forward and back, but due to the dampened trunk lid, excess reverb prevented a rear-pointing layout. Speaking of dampening, the entire rear third of the car has been soundproofed with bitumen sheets. The rest will be done when I have the time.
All I have to say is, I’m lucky to be in Thailand because I could never afford to have all this stuff done in the states or Japan. I just happened to find, through a long string of coincidences, a local workshop whose owner speaks English really well and is more into car audio than I am, which is pretty rare. What’s even more rare is that his shop is A) fast B) cheap and C) extremely competent – it’s like being on a different plane of reality, where shit that isn’t supposed to exist does. I plan to take full advantage of this most advantageous situation.

TF-DVD7100 Region Free hack

The TF-DVD7100 (or TFDVD7100) was marketed under different brands in different countries, including the PRISM and COBY brands. Depending on the firmware, the following region hack can be performed by either remote or from the main unit’s controls.

  1. Press SETUP button
  2. Press FF button
  3. Press FR button
  4. Press NEXT CHAPTER button
  5. Press PREVIOUS CHAPTER button (a “Language Setting” or similarly labeled code will appear near the top of the screen.)
  6. Press the RIGHT ARROW button until code changes to 255
  7. Press ENTER button
  8. Press SETUP button to finish

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Posted here for posterity.

Gmail for Domains – Small Bug

As I mentioned previously, I have my j(at)cosmicbuddha.com address set to forward all mail to my cosmicbuddha(at)gmail.com address. Spam sent to the first address is not forwarded; I am OK with this. However, I have noticed that messages sent from cosmicbuddha(at)gmail.com to j(at)cosmicbuddha.com are not getting forwarded to cosmicbuddha(at)gmail.com. I do not understand why, because emails sent from cosmicbuddha(at)gmail.com to cosmicbuddha(at)gmail.com do appear; emails sent from j(at)cosmicbuddha.com to cosmicbuddha(at)gmail.com do appear; emails sent from third parties to j(at)cosmicbuddha.com are forwarded to cosmicbuddha(at)gmail.com.
Is this because I’m fucking with the time-space continuum, or what?
UPDATE: My Account status on the Dashboard (Gmail for Domains control panel) is still updating. Maybe that has something to do with it.
All this forwarding business is tempting me to tempt fate with an infinite loop – to set both addresses in question to forward to each other. Should I do it?
ANOTHER UPDATE: Getting. Hard. To. Resist. What the hell? You only live once, right?
POSSIBLY FINAL UPDATE: Well, that was anticlimactic. I expected both mailboxes to instantly fill and throw the Google superkryptoniteleviathanserver cluster off just a bit, yet the net result of sending a test message to either e-mail address was one received message in each account (exactly as it should be). Props Google, you proactively foiled my plans for infinite loopty-looping.

Dyson

Although this will possibly incur the wrath of a million brand loyal housewives brandishing curtain brush attachments, I must speak my mind: “The vacuum cleaner that doesn’t lose suction” is the worst slogan of a successful company I have heard in recent memory.

  • It is immediately apparent to all that see this tagline that what Dyson is actually trying to convey is that his products “suck harder than a $600 hooker” (which conveniently implies all the other cleaners in this price range are whores as well).
  • By the same logic, Long Dong Silver was “the actor who never lost fuction.”
  • A quick search online shows around a 70% approval rating from Dyson owners. Less than I would have thought from all the hype. Or maybe more, actually.
  • One cool thing about Dyson – I saw on a TV show where he got the idea for a transparent dust reservoir. He was in a product planning meeting and saw one of his team members blow his nose, then look at what he had blown into the tissue before crumpling it up – “see,” he said, “everybody likes looking at what they cleaned up.” That fucking rocks.
  • This middle-of-the-night rant was brought to you courtesy of Justin, “the guy who never scratches when playing pocket pool.”

Bloglines Tip

Are you using Bloglines to read this entry?
Hit the “M” key.
Cool, yes?
(via the Bloglines blog)

Random Keitai Thoughts

This is just wrong.
It was very refreshing to carry around a no-nonsense phone for a couple weeks. No camera, no egg-spaceship styling, no blinky blink LED distractions. I bought the cheapest Nokia with plan for unlimited usage from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, and it worked just fine except for the interface, which was from like 1972 or something. It took like five presses of various buttons just to see numbers I received calls from!
The best thing about GSM phones, though, are the size. I remember when my Docomo phones were that small! I’m telling you, I’d choose a non-camera phone in a second if it were a viable option for AU…

In the red corner, the 600lb. gorilla known as Digital

So much for all the camera snobs saying digital cameras would never catch up to film. Nikon is throwing in the cellulose towel.
The title “Nikon prepares to strengthen digital line-up for 2006” is almost ironic. This is somehow sad news, even though I was the earliest convert to digital I knew. Even before then, my idea of a fun camera was a thirty year old Asahi Pentax. Spending money on developing black and white film in Japan has always sucked major balls. None of the preceding sentences were really linked, and yet this is a paragraph.
Goodbye, film.
Interesting fact: My company owns the term, “dejicame.” Pretty cool.
(via Jim O’Connell on the Japan Photography Mailing List)

Quick Reviews 2005/5/23

Monday, oh Monday, thou art an unwelcome punch in the face.
Some quick reviews just for the hell of it:
MUSIC:
– AUDIOSLAVE, Out of Exile: 7.98/10 stars || awesome guitar; chris cornell remains god.
– GORILLAZ, Demon Days : 7.14/10 stars || nice beats but lost some funky cheese?
MOVIES:
– REVENGE OF THE SITH: 5.95/10 stars || reaffirmed that papa vader is, indeed, a big raging asshole.
– HAROLD & KUMAR GO TO WHITE CASTLE: 6.23/10 stars || bonus points for the “twinkie” reference (banana, anyone?) and cameo by the patron saint of bloggers, neil patrick harris
TV:
– THE WEST WING SEASON 4: 8.16/10 stars || even dems hate frogs
– THE SHIELD SEASON 4: 8.79/10 stars || not even halfway through the season but kicking serious ass
MY NEIGHBORS:
– CRAZY OLD LONELY LADY: 6.54/10 stars || makes like ZERO noise next door; makes me worry that she’s dead sometimes, but otherwise seems really nice
– LITTLE SHITS NEXT DOOR: 1.02/10 stars || learn how to say “konnichiwa” back to the nice gaijin already you spoiled little brats

Unknown Hard

If WinXP has an aneurism during re-installation and defaults to the Blue Screen of Death, with the dreaded error 000021a and the mysteriously simple descriptor: “Unknown Hard”, slap the monitor and the keyboard around a few times (I’ll give you hard, bitch!) and kick the minitower around until you smell smoke.
Alternatively, insert the WinXP install CD again and set the boot order in BIOS to optical drive first, hard drive second, then reboot and try, try again.
Bill Gates can be a real asshole sometimes.

I blame it all on Portishead

I placed a down payment on a theremin yesterday. I have no idea what it will end up looking like, but this is for the best, I feel. For this particular instrument (which I have never played before BTW), not knowing how it will turn out creates a certain excitement I could never attain by simply ordering online or through a music catalog. This was only made possible by hiring an otaku to do the job. Kasama-san is a nice guy, a most skilled bassist, Taro’s business partner (they sell antique condensers, specialized mic shields, and other maniac music shit), and one of the most functional denki-otakus I have ever met.
When I found a loose circuit board connection to input RCA connector jacks inside my 500 watt amp, I used what tricks I could to keep it working temporarily. Unwilling to be without decent sound in my car for even a short time, I never even considered having it fixed at a professional shop since they generally take forever just to tell you (approximately) how badly you will get raped for repairs. I looked around for a decent replacement instead, but couldn’t find a good deal before the connection got a lot worse and basically made my amp unuseable. So I turned to Kasama-san, who I knew at the time as a tinkerer of guitar amps, and he replaced the part I needed on the board for a pittance – so I tipped him well. The skills he possesses are very special in our modern world of cheap throwaway electronics. Like some of the engineers at work, he can read the circuits on a PCB like a roadmap, and tell you where you can find shortcuts, bypasses, and hidden paths, among other things. This is a very valuable skill.
Anyways. Theremin of unknown specification and design will be mine in a couple of weeks, and I take great comfort in knowing that the creator has spent countless hours worrying about each subcomponent, optimizing it as a whole system, and tweaking it to perfection with the cold twisted love of electronica.