January 24th, 2005

Code

Tech stuff

Robert Cringely, possibly the sharpest tech industry observer, has made some very interesting predictions about the why of the Mac Mini. Is Jobs setting up a grandstanding play?


Also, the other day, I stumbled onto a web site for a favorite game of mine, Dungeon Master. It was released in 1987 (I had it on the IIgs) and it won just about every award that existed. It basically created the first-person dungeon crawl genre (later seen in a bunch of SSI products, Bards Tale, Might&Magic, etc.). The game itself stands out as one of my favorites because it was extremely well-crafted, something too-rarely seen.

Turns out there are still a lot of fans of the game! In fact, there's a Windows and Linux port as well as over a dozen clones. Check out the encyclopedia site for more info, background, and game details. Pretty good for a game that's over 15 years old!
  • Current Mood
    geeky geeky
Chef Bender

Near Death (two feet) Experience

The oddest thing just happened.

I'm standing in the kitchen, chopping some vegetables for a mirepoix. Just assembling a simple chicken dinner. Slicing up broccoli stems, which I'm using instead of celery, when...

CRASH!

The light fixture smashes on the floor without warning! Having a chefly presence of mind, I manage not to slice off my thumb when I startle.

We have had one of those hemispherical glass fixtures that fits flush with the ceiling. The glass dome is held in place by a threaded rod running from the apex up to the base plate installed in the ceiling. Now I know that sometimes the fixture creaked a few minutes after the light was turned on; I knew that this was heat expansion, but I figured it was just parts of the lamp. Examining the rod, I'm not so sure...

The threading on the rod showed some wear. Could be that this was from regular changing of the light bulbs. Or, the threaded socket might've not had a tight grip on the rod and expanded due to heat. That would explain the noise of the fixture heating up; it was the rod slipping down a thread at a time!

The glass dome fell straight down, so the rod failed cleanly. I know it went straight since it impacted the floor with the metal finial at the bottom of the rod. It left a clean half-inch wide and eighth-inch deep crater in my linoleum, just two feet from where I was standing. Wow.
  • Current Mood
    Shocked. And stunned.