computers

Software applications, general-purpose computers.

Troubleshooting Rule #3: Is it working as designed?

Sometimes you start by troubleshooting assuming something’s broken, when really it’s just not working the way you expected. Put another way, it’s “working as designed” - but you and the designer miscommunicated, or disagreed.

Some questions to ask: read more...

Ithaca Journal covers my SHIP site

The Ithaca Journal published an article about my SHIP site and the new maps I’ve been working on. Thanks, Krisy!

Here’s a direct link to the newest map, which is mainly cool because you can click on it to see details. I’ll be integrating that into the other maps soon.

Guy lives!

Guy lives!

As of last weekend, it appears I’ve started working on animation again! Woohoo! read more...

Dragon Day video up!

Everyone must check out my friend Bob Stuart’s docu-music-video on Dragon Day 2006, commissioned by the Cornell Architecture School and finally showing on their site as “The Dragon Has Its Day.” Beautiful camera work and brilliant editing. I had a small part during post in creating the subtle time shift effect around 5:10 when the ballsy loud music kicks in. Bob rocks. Go Bob!

Troubleshooting Rule #2: Is it turned on?

While troubleshooting, another embarrassing discovery is that the thing in question isn’t working because you didn’t turn it on. This rule could come first, as in some sense it’s more basic than Rule #1, but for the simple AC-powered appliance, you have to plug it in before you can turn it on, so I list it second.

Again, there are lots more useful ways to think about whether you’ve turned something on. For instance: read more...

Troubleshooting Rule #1: Is it plugged in?

The first in my series of troubleshooting rules:

A surprising number of day-to-day problems are solved when you realize that the thing just isn’t plugged in. Oops.

The obvious sense of “plugged in” is “plugged into the mains supply” - the AC wall outlet.

But there are many other useful senses to look for: read more...

Weber's Troubleshooting Rules

These rules certainly apply to electrical engineering, and software, but they are also basic enough to apply to interpersonal issues, group dynamics, etc.

  1. Is it plugged in?
  2. Is it turned on?
  3. Is it working as designed?
  4. What’s changed since it worked?
  5. What don’t you know?

Screenshot of the beginning of "The Search"

Screenshot of the beginning of "The Search"

The first screen of the game (no spoilers here).

A mini-game: The Search

I wanted to learn a bit about RPG Maker XP, a role-playing game creation toolkit that my apprentice, Jake, is using for a project. So I made this little game with one puzzle and some combat. read more...

Sump pump connection

You may recall that one of the features of my sump pump alarm was that I could theoretically hear it from bed.

It turns out that I can not only hear it from bed, I can hear it from bed while the train that woke me up is still passing through and the life companion is snoring. At almost exactly two AM. So that’s good to know. I would have been OK if that theory had never been confirmed, though.

And as I stumbled into my clothes and outside to the basement door, trying to avoid opening my eyes at all, I remembered Candace asking whether I really wanted a gadget that would read more...

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