Zone Doubt, a.k.a. 'Surreal Я Us'...
Joules, trusted by... dozens... to make a drama out of your crisis...
:: JAT :: WaveWrights :: Publications :: Joules... on writing [on hiatus] ::
I live to write. It's not wise to get in my way.
August 2011: the earlier posts in this blog are a mess, the result of me changing the format some time ago. I'm working to edit the entire blog from the beginning, but with over 4K posts and sodall time for such luxuries it's going to take a while... [02/09/16 - Now reached 09/10/2004][20/03/2019 - giving up. I don't have enough time to update the blog atm, let alone edit old entries!]
If you come across any words you don't recognise in this blog, take a look at the Taylorspeke Glossary in the left-hand infopane, you'll usually find a definition there.
First, a recommendation. Dive over to The Jonathan Day Fiction Site and try some of the stories. I love this author's writing - it's funny, bitingly witty, dryly incisive, chilling, and deliciously subversive by turns. Absolutely well worth a look!
Monday, October 23, 2006
Of Sounds, and Captain Jack Harkness...So there I was, Windows Media Player newly installed, old speakers plugged in (using them because PC World didn't have the ones I wanted on Friday and I didn't want to spend a fortune on more expensive ones. [happy grin] To my delight the Matrix Twins figures sit perfectly on top of them!) trying to get the things to work - because, as you probably know, I tend not to read instructions unless it's really necessary, because they make my brain hurt... It's quite cute really, a brightly coloured window pops up when you plug any of the little jacks into a socket, highlighting a little picture of the socket and asking you what you've plugged into it (no, you can't just type what you want, you have to choose from a list). So I said 'rear speakers' (because they plug into the rear of the stack, not the front) and tried playing Winamp. No sound from the speakers, just the monitor.
[growl] OK, I'm doing something wrong. Opened the Realtek audio window again and had a bit of a hunt around (discovering in the process that you can play music from a wide variety of virtual environments, including a sewer pipe, underwater, a forest - sound of the wind over the music - and a padded cell!) and finally found the bit where you specify your setup: headphones only, monitor speakers only, those plus 2 additional speakers (my setting), right the way up to 8 speaker surroundsound for the Adrians of this world...
Got the speakers working (they're not bad, much better than came with the HP machine. Can't remember now whether they're Advent or IBM, but the sound is great), and then discovered that I have 6 different volume controls: the master panel, the Realtek panel, on the speakers themselves, on the Winamp pane, on the WMP pane, and on the monitor itself (though those only affect the monitor speakers). And all but the speaker volume knobs are onscreen controls. Spoilt for choice? Oh yes. But it's possible to get exactly the volume and tone you want, so I'm very happy with it. Now I just need some decent headphones...
'Time to download MusicMatch', thought I, merrily googling the site. Frowning slightly when it said Yahoo Jukebox, but thinking it was probably me not keeping up with current events. Downloaded and hit install - and got an error message flash up too fast for me to read it, though I did see WMP mentioned. Tried to abort the installation: popup message said abort had been successful, but the bloody thing carried on installing anyway.
Reached the end, asked if I wanted to restart to finish the installation - no I bloody well didn't! Tried to boot up WMP to check what had happened, only to find it completely bollixed. And for the first time in years I hadn't set a restore point before installing.
Resigned myself to probably having to set up again from scratch and went in hunt of the restore point option - only to find that this version of XP doesn't just set an automatic restore point every three or so days (like the old machine did) and whenever you create one, but also apparently sets restore points every time you install something from the hard drive. At any rate, I was able to go back to when I closed down at whatever ungodly hour that was this morning, undo the damage and set up WMP again.
Apart from that everything has gone very smoothly today: transferred all my mp3s across (using Ken's 1gig pendrive: took four trips), installed ftp and copied across the rest of my files, and discovered that the Sonic CD burning software on here also rips mp3s (as well as offering video and audio editing and a host of other functions I haven't had time to explore yet), so I don't actually need MusicMatch anymore. Happy now.
And I disabled the CAPSLOCK button on my keyboard. No more accidental CAPSLOCK OF RAGE for me, oh no! It will have to be DELIBERATE CAPSLOCK OF RAGE in future. (The keyboard also has a nifty little zoom slider at the side, which will enlarge the type in some windows with a flick of the finger. Very handy for reading the keyboard help screen, which has been produced in something like font size -3.5...) Even my desk is beginning to look half-way normal again (if you can call having Vaako and Mathayus threatening each other with ruddy great swords and halberds normal. It is here.)
(No, we didn't get to the Organic Orchard open day - I did give Kai the choice but it's rained all day and he decided he'd rather not.)
NightSilvered is now finished and begging a slew of followup fics. Which is nice, actually, quite relaxing after all the recent stress.
And Captain Jack Harkness? [big evil grin] No spoilers for those who haven't caught Torchwood yet (we saw the first two episodes tonight and are gripped, I tell you, gripped. We think that Kai can watch the first ep when it repeats on Wednesday, but perhaps not the second. He's a bit 'yuck' about sex at the moment and I don't want to embarrass him) but I can't wait to see what fanfics that 'never again' comment produces!