The new Home Office is starting to take a little more shape every day but there’s still much to do and a lot of things to complete before I can consider having properly settled in. This post, however, is not about the office itself but the people who have built the new systems that are in it. The company is called Computers USA and are the home where BTO Diablo computers and BTO AngelFire servers are built to spec. They are local to me with both stores (a short drive to Brentwood or a slightly longer drive to Clayton) and I think people should support local business more. Instead of telling people that I hope to lead by example here. Don’t be fooled by the website that needs some work. These guys know what they’re talking about and really have tons of clues about what they’re doing. That’s a rare thing to find these days when it comes to computer stores that claim they can build machines with amazing specs. In my experiene most don’t but these guys certainly do! If you’re around the area here and are in need of great quality and support, definitely check out Computers USA.
As you are reading this various new parts of what I consider the infrastructure requirements of the new setup have either already arrived at its destination or are in transit. In the next few weeks a bunch more stuff will be shipped from the various different vendors and with luck most of it will be waiting for me by the time I arrive. The DLink DSR-500N has already arrived. The Honeywell HHT-149-HD is in transit. And a bunch of APC Performance SurgeArrest 11 Outlet power splitters will be arriving in the next few days. Most of the other hardware, computers, workstations, servers, monitors, cables, and just about everything else will have to wait a little longer because I first need to get the office in proper shape, which means power distribution circuits and outlets, carpet, and desks and furniture. In that order.
Great, so now I have this whole new site with a fresh layout and an more efficient way of adding stuff. Why not make use of it. There’s often too many small things that I wouldn’t want to highlight or write as a single short blog post (what, me being short?! when has that ever happened?) so here I was thinking (yes, it happens, on occasion!) why not combine those small bits into a more regular update post. I can’t predict what these (hopefully) regular updates will contain but you’ll just have to wait and see. In this post; development bits, home office bits, photography bits, and some world news that’ll make you either laugh or shake your head.
My colleague Bruce just asked me why there weren’t any pictures from my home office versions prior to what I call “version 5”. Good question. Probably because the pictures aren’t too great and I don’t actually have all that many. I can’t even find a single decent (or indecent!) image from back in the earlier days of the office. But I did find a few older ones that predate the “version 5” so I’ve given them a nice little page of their own. Don’t ask me what the specs were on the systems that were there at the time since most of these date back to, I believe, between 1999 and 2001. So yeah, these are a decade old and most of them were shot with an Olympus E-10, one of the first digital SLR’s on the market back then. For those who pay attention, yes, there were still a fewAmiga’s around at the time but even in the 1999 period I didn’t use them. A friend once said I only used those Amiga’s to keep dust of my desks and in a way he was right about that. My use of Amiga’s died off sometime around 1991-1992.
The original equipment manufacturer (OEM) of all these models is Clevo, a company with a long history in creating some of the most powerful and amazing laptops you’ll ever see. They come with a somewhat high pricetag (almost 4200 Euros / US$5900 for the above configuration) and considerable weight and bulk but you certainly get a laptop that can compete with many a desktop and workstation. Especially considering that these laptop use the Intel i7 desktop processors and will support up to 3 harddisks (or SSD’s) and up to 12GB of RAM!
Anyone using dual or multi-monitors knows it isn’t always easy to find nice high resolution background. Often we need to resort to creating our own or altering one we’ve found but isn’t quite ‘it’. The more monitors you add, the higher the resolution of your desktop becomes, the harder it is to find really high res backgrounds that will run seamlessly across your array of screens. If you have found yourself in the same situation then be sure to check out Panedia!
Finally, after several delays and minor setbacks, the new Home Office pictures are online for all to see. It’s been quite an overhaul that lasted longer than I expected and took more effort than I had hoped for, but the results are, as I suspect most will agree with, quite an improvement! Of course, there are many who recently still commented that my office is an amazing setup, but that is now the old office. The new one would then be, what, amazing to the 2nd power? It’d better because it took me 10 days to perform this overhaul and that’s not counting the weeks of waiting for equipment to arrive and new systems that had to be built by my dealer, etc. I could go into lengthy details about the delays and how there’s a huge critical difference between the Western Digital Velociraptor 300GB GLFS and HLFS harddisks but I doubt anyone is really interested in hearing about that. Hey wait, hold on, you’re already hitting the new office page before I’m done writing this. That’s not fair.
Yes, it’s almost done! I’m still waiting for new computer equipment to arrive at my dealer and decided to wait until the new office setup reflects the actual working conditions before I start shooting proper pictures and updating the site. In the meantime, here are a few shots of the new layout with the new extreme multi-monitor configuration. And before you say it… yes, it still looks like a mess.
The Home Office Overhaul (going from version 5 to version 6, as I call it) is in full swing. Except it will take a while longer before I can properly update the website to reflect the new working conditions. I’ve been at this for a few days now and it seems there’s a few more days of work ahead of me because everything just sucks up time like crazy. The first two days were spent clearing everything out and moving the most essential services running on servers from the living room. Then another day to give everything a paint job. The past two days have been cable hell.
Back in the day there were the PC zealots, a common creature often found bashing and insulting hardware by manufacturers who believed in proprietary hardware designs. And of course there were the Amiga and Atari fanatics that represented two other groups where certain sections of these different groups were always at each other’s throats about who had the better hardware. And, let’s not forget the Apple zealots. Most of these fundamentalist fanatics died out and faded into the background during the late 80’s and early 90’s as their religious sacraments that came in the form of material objects found their way into obsoleteness (or a museum, in many cases).