Ricci Adams’ Musictheory.net

Oh look, it’s New Years .
“What … Again?” you say.
“I’m still recovering from the last one”

So assuming you dont actully want to just recycle last years resolutions. (Let’s face it, thay have hardly been used) and with self-improvement is always high on everyone’s list. Maybe you’re one of those people who would like to learn an instrument, Ricci Adams’ Musictheory.net is a great place to start. The content is even made available as a download for offline viewing.

From basic lessons for reading music to more advanced ear training, it’s should build a good base for anyone wanting to teach themselves an instrument.offers free flash tutorials for teaching yourself music theory.

(I am going to drag out that old favourite and learn to type properly… Mavis Beacon anyone?)

Trust No One

How to rip a DVD

How timely is this? Elliott Back has written a quick tutorial on How to rip a DVD.

Ripping a DVD to xvid or divx avi is really quite easy, if you have the right tools.

You’ll first need to download DVD decrypter and auto gordian knot (autogk). DVD decrypter allows you to rip the raw DVD video and audio data off of your disk drive, decrypt the CSS protection, and finally remove any other protection schemes, such as Macrovision. AutoGK is a package of codecs and a GUI interface that will take the raw DVD data through an AV processing pipeline to produce a single windows video file.

and the rest is in the article.

I Will Knot!

In 1996 Jools and I went to Ireland and amongst all the things we did while we were over there was fly fishing… in the rain. Now apart from getting wet, the dude who was teaching Jools also spent a great deal of time showing her how to tie knots.

I wish this site had been around then.

I Will Knot!

I quote…
“This is a site about knots: how to tie them, how to appreciate their beauty. Even the seriously knot-challenged among us can learn to tie many useful and popular knots by following along with the short, step-by-step instructional video clips on this site.

Before you begin, here are a couple quick knot-tying tips to keep in mind:

  • Get youself some nice, thick rope — don’t learn with string! String is extremely hard to control, and your knots will be so small that you won’t be able to see what is going on. About 4 feet of 1/4 to 1/2-inch thick nylon rope will do nicely for learning purposes. Any good hardware store will have this, and it is very inexpensive.
  • Once you’ve mastered how to tie a knot from the clips, trying tying it around different sort of objects, at different angles. You don’t really know a knot until you can tie it upside-down and inside-out! “

If you’ve always been enamored by words like “half-hitch” and “fisherman’s knot,” this is the tutorial for you. Oh, and it’s also good if you need to learn how to tie a few useful knots.


Create a Ghost Boot CD

Ok, lets get the geek alert out of the way. because the topic today is How to Create a Ghost 8.0 Network Boot CD.

The Information School at the University of Washington has a great page about how to do this.

You see, the problem is that the Ghost Boot is getting so large by the time you stick in a few drivers (usb, cd, network) that it gets really hard to fit it all on a single floppy, not to mention the PC’s we are seeing now without actual floppies and creating a boot CD when using Ghost 8.0 is a problem because while many CD burning applications can easily create a bootable CD from a floppy disk image, if everything doesn’t fit on a single floppy it is much more complex. At this time Symantec does not support creating Ghost Boot CD’s so you are on your own figuring out how to do this.

This is a ripper.


Do I leave it on or not.

Power SwitchOne of the things that consistently amazes me is how questions seem to arrive in little clusters. There must be a “lemming like” subconscious force that triggers people to ask the same question at around the same time (or they all only caught half of the radio show on the way to work).

The question that has been asked this time “Is it better to turn off the computer when I finish with it or can I just keep it on all the time?

Now lets face it this debate has been going on for years, saving your computer hardware and saving energy being the biggies.

Way back In “the good old days” (just last millennium) the main reason for leaving the computer on was that turning it off every night and starting it up again in the morning caused major strain on the hard drive magnetic heads that read and write information inside the drive had to start up as well, and the power surge could damage these very delicate parts (actually the real reason is that it drove you crazy waiting for the PC to fire up of morning… it was so slow). These days, modern hard drives park their heads when the computer is turned off, and when you start back up the risk of a surge causing head damage is much much less than it used to be.

On the power side, There is a surge of electricity when the computer is turned on after being shut down, but this is tiny compared to what would be consumed if the machine was left on continuously ( I know this because I pay the electricity bills).

You obviously save electricity when you shut down the computer after you are done using it, potentially around $200 a year depending on your system. On the upside, turning your machine off at night also clears the “plaque” out of memory (all those weird little memory leaks) and gives it a fresh start in the morning, which may make it appear less sluggish if you generally have a lot of programs running over the course of the day.

Let’s not overlook leaving the computer on all the time can make it more vulnerable to nasties (viruses etc.)

If you are torn between leaving it on or shutting it down, consider a third option: setting the machine to hibernate or sleep for the night. The computer uses minimal power in this state, but starts much faster than if it was started up cold in the morning.

Might be worth thinking about.

For the record: Jools workstation stays on and my workstation goes of when I goto bed and reboots at 5:30am so that all the maintenance is done when I start at it in the morning.

It Must Be Boxing Day.

It must be Boxing Day.

How do I know this?

Well Jools is on her games PC cursing at the writers of the latest Myst installment. End of Ages. It is an amazing looking game.

30th Anniversary Born To RunMe?

I am trying to listen to and watch the 30th anniversary rerelease of Bruce Springsteen’s “Born To Run” at the same time.
I have settled for listening to “Born To Run” CD.

God it still sounds good.

Jools and I met just after this album was released and it was the sound track that was playing as we got to know each other. I just finf it hard to believe that it’s been thirty years.

Time flies when you are having fun.