2018: Day 34 the one where my Corsair 740 Air case showed up
Word count 90,823 + 3,317 or 94,140 of 1,000,000
Our regular FedEx driver dropped off my new Corsair Carbide Series Air 740 high airflow ATX cube case today. I’m afraid the driver knows me. That is either a good thing or a bad thing. My answer probably depends on the day. The box was much smaller than I expected. Inside the box were two styrofoam block ends and a matte black bag surrounding the case. I’m calling this new case “The Borg Cube” and it is pretty awesome. I’m going to put this old motherboard in it later today with an older graphics card. One day that motherboard will be replaced with a newer model. All off my efforts to install a motherboard and get the case setup will not get the new computer system up and running tonight. A very important piece of the puzzle is missing. This computer build has no power supply. No amount of wishes and goodwill will get it running without a power supply.
The case came pretty much fully assembled. It is sitting under my desk next to my other computer. I believe you can see what it looks like in the thumbnail. Tomorrow morning I’m going to open up the side of the case door. It is a clear plastic see through design. It has a hinge toward the back that really make it feel like a sturdy type of door. The other side of the case has a traditional sliding door with some grooves. The power supply sits on the hidden side along with some space for hard drives and cable management. After opening up the door I’m going to work on attaching an old micro ATX motherboard I found in the garage. That motherboard does not even appear to have a brand sticker on it. Oddly enough it has one graphics card slot and 3 PCI express slots. It is a short motherboard and will probably look funny in the case.
Tomorrow I should be able to install the motherboard and an older graphics card. I have a hard drive ready to install in the case. I’m going to install Ubuntu Studio on the hard drive. That is pretty much it. The motherboard already has 8 gigabytes of RAM, a CPU of some type, and a now very clean CPU fan. I used a good portion of a can of compressed air cleaning the CPU fan. It was seriously covered in a very deep grey color of dust. The computer will be mining alternative or fringe cryptocurrencies. You may have already guessed that means it will be doing nothing, but mining TurtleCoin at the moment. My other thought is that it might end up mining one whole Litecoin. In any event it will be mining whatever cryptocurrency that might make enough profit to pay for new parts. This computer build is pretty much a compilation of parts that have been assimilated from a bunch of other builds.
Getting the computer setup will just be the first step. I have an a couple old monitors, mice, and keyboards that could get it up and running. I’m probably going to use the Google remote desktop feature to keep the miner up and running on a regular basis. Depending on how hot my office gets that computer could very well end up in the basement. The basement sounds like a great place for a computer to hang out and mine cryptocurrency. Given my general feals of electrical fires I’ll probably leave the computer up in my office where it has my full attention. I’ll probably provide some updates on how well it mines and what it does. That will all have to happy after my backordered power supply arrives. Apparently the backorder is going to last a week or two and it could be closer to the middle of the month before my computer is up and running. With any luck the cryptocurrency market will have rebounded by then and mining TurtleCoin will be epic.
Not only was this week not a good week for the stock market, but also it was a rough week for cryptocurrency. It was the worst week in two years for the stock market overall. That has to have sent some shock waves throughout the investing community. Markets go up and down. Anybody that thinks the market is only going to go up has not studied history. You could say the general trend is up, but that does not mean the curve is linear. I just got done reading an article from the New York Times titled, “Stocks Fall to End a Bad Week, and a Boom Begins to Look Shaky.” That article shared some economic considerations about inflationary concerns. It was a decent article. I shared it via a Twitter today. You can catch the link on Twitter or just search for it. You may have noticed that my posts do not contain a ton of hyperlinks. My thoughts on writing include providing enough detail that references can be found independently. That means ensuring that dates, authors, and relevant title information is shared inline. If somebody really wanted to look it up, then they could find it today or years from now.
I’m sure at some point the new Gutenberg WordPress plugin will drive me toward better design, style, and hyperlinks. That new reality has not arrived yet. You will just have to wait for WordPress 5.0 to come out. It does appear that new version will force an entirely new creative design interface on the community. That pretty much means that I will need to adapt or find a new blogging tool. I used to really liked using, editing, and coding for Movable Type 2.63 (2003). For some reason that I switched to WordPress a few years ago and have been on it every since. A fair number of platforms exist. WordPress has worked out well enough for me, but this Gutenberg plugin is perplexing. My main mode of blog communication is the written word. My prose for better or worse gets written and posted with little editing or afterthought. That pretty much means that I write from start to finish and post after cutting and pasting my content into WordPress. That is how I go about it.
I settled in here after 7:30 PM to write this post in one swift writing session. Things are going well enough so far and that is ok. Peppercorn the dog is snoring. You may have guessed that our opening vignette is coming to a close. It did last over 1,000 words which is a good sign. I’m going to try to stay focused and lock on each topic that gets brought forward today. Writing high quality in depth prose is the name of the game today. It should be the name of the game very day.
Topic 1: Oh that cable television subscription
Tomorrow I’m taking the plunge. We are going to go out and return our X1 cable box and move to a pure internet only plan. Our household only has one television in the main area and it should be possible to just watch over the air content or stream content. That is pretty much the way we are going. A new TiVo box is on the way next week. We will see how that ends up going. We cut the cord on cable one other time and used TiVo. That older TiVo box is probably in the basement somewhere hanging out. It required a monthly subscription and was kind of slow. It had a great interface and search worked out very well. This new box should be faster and does not require any monthly subscription.
That was one of the key selling points that pushed me over the edge to going internet only mixed with the ability to record OTA HD content. Buying an antenna remains on my to do list. The Best Buy near my house appears to have more than 10 different antennas in stock. It could be a good option to just go look at them and figure out what antenna will work best for me. I made the mistake of asking the internet to tell me what the best indoor OTA HD antenna was. All of that searching just kept pulling me into advertisements.
All of my monthly savings from not paying the cable company for television could be spent on expanding my ever growing Blu-ray collection. That at least can be a 4K ready content option. A lot of movies these days include a 4K and HD Blu-ray disc in the box. That works for me now and in the future. A future where I upgrade my television to have a 4K experience. However, I am seriously convinced that our refurbished Sony Bravia television will last for years to come. We are probably going to keep this television until the hardware fails. That really could be years from now. The device has never been plugged in without a dedicated battery backup with voltage regulation.
Topic 2: Finding my glasses
My plan to search all over for my glasses has not worked out as expected. Maybe tomorrow I’ll have enough time to put all my laundry away and get my dresser back under control. Oddly enough I did find my long lost Pokemon Go Plus device. It was in a my favorite sport coat. The tweed one with elbow patches. Tomorrow just might be the day that I finally find my glasses. It may also be the day that I accept that they have been lost to the ages. Glasses and phones are things I do not generally lose. That is really for the best. Both of those items are fairly expensive items to lose.
Well that topic did not really pick up steam. My efforts today were going to really focus in on topics, but the juice may not have been worth the squeeze on this topic. Maybe my glasses are just not that interesting of a topic. Maybe it would have been better to debate the value of blue light filters on glasses and how that impact my computer usage. That could be a good topic to start digging into. I will admit that the blue light filter did not really seem like a good thing to do when I was buying the glasses, but it did work. That was a somewhat surprising finding from the purchase of my latest glasses.
Topic 3: Rounding out the night
It does appear that the overall traffic to my blog is increasing. I had wondered if publishing 3,000 new words each day would increase my overall traffic. Some of that is keyword driven and some of it might be people who are along for the journey. It is going to be a long journey. I’m thinking of putting in a countdown. Ok —- I built out the widget to show the countdown, but seeing it with over 300 days listed was enough to make me turn away from that plan quickly. That widget had to get deleted. It pretty much seemed daunting and a little unsettling. This is one of those goals that is better to take on one day at a time. Yeah I’m going to avoid thinking about that part of the journey and just focus on staying positive and writing one page, one paragraph, or one sentence at a time.
Rounding out the night did not finish out this blog post for the night. It seems to be happening every night. Instead of finishing out my writing secession I am pushing off the last 1,000 words to the following morning. I’m going to need to finish this blog post and then jump right a really good vignette to catch back up. My writing buffer is gone. At the rate we are going the actual blog post for each day is going to get closer and closer to real time. The idea was to try to maintain a 24 hour buffer between scheduling and publication. That was to allow some type of editing. Sure that was misguided. I have not been circling back to edit the posts in a meaningful way.
Topic 4: I’m ready for the weekend
Today the weekend has officially started. I’m still on the hunt for the best donuts in Denver. We found a place down the street that makes pretty good ones. They are never as fluffy and fresh as the donuts I remember getting as a youth. Today might just be a day that I venture out to get a couple donuts after finishing up this blog post. We do not have any real plans this weekend or anything that has to happen based on the schedule. Believe it or not that is actually great news. Sometimes a sleep weekend full of just getting things done is a great way to spend the time. My laundry pile along upstairs needs some serious attention. It is all clean laundry it is just piled. The problem started when I did not take the time to fold the first batch. You can imagine that after that the problem snowballed or in this case laundry piled up more and more. Joni actually things I have more clothes piled on the dresser at the moment than actually in the dresser. That is a sad state of affairs.
At some point today, probably after getting donuts I’m going to assemble the parts in my new computer case. Strangely enough I thought the Corsair Air 740 case was going to be bigger. It is pretty wide and had a cube like like. It simply is not thall. The storm stryker case is a full ATX case and it is much taller. You can tell from the photo that it is a little bit less wide, but a lot taller. The storm stryker case from Cooler Master is much heavier than the Corsair 740. That power supply is still on backorder.
Topic 5: Now really does not appear to be a good time to build a computer
The title of this topic really does say it all. I’m going to grind out a few words on this topic, but I think the title really does clarify things. Now is really not a very good time to build a custom computer. First, the shortage of high end graphics cards is very real. NVIDIA is going to at some point release the next generation of processing power after pascal. I will probably end up buying another reference graphics card directly from NVIDIA at that point. It looks like all the hobbyist cryptocurrency miners have just purchased up every graphics card they think they can mine with. I mean it makes sense. If you can drop an extra graphics card in your case, then set two cards mining and make $5 per day that is something people are going to do. I have been mining cryptocurrency for an entire month. Now the value of my fraction of a bitcoin has plunged 45% in the last month, but that is a story for a different blog post. Second, it seems like the new RAM is pretty highly priced. Some folks have indicated this relates to graphics cards and the high end RAM they require as well. I will have to research that one a little bit more. Third, all the higher end power supplies are sold out as well. Even driving down to Micro Center I could only get a 650 watt power supply. My future case build is going to need a power supply that is over 850 watts.
Over the course of the next year. I’m sure my new computer code named “The Borg Cube” will be getting new additions. In my mind each one of them will be an act of the Borg assimilating some technological distinctiveness into the cube. Yeah —- that last sentence might have been a little over the topic, but if you cannot write some Borg jokes before 6:00 AM then what is the point… I’m still thinking about watching Star Trek Voyager all the way through again. Canceling cable will probably open the door to an adventure like watching 172 episodes of Star Trek Voyager from start to finish. That seems like a decent enough proposition. This new computer case has a few different pieces that are interesting. I’m trying to figure all of the different part configurations that are possible. The part I need to figure out is the long-term storage configuration. It looks like the case has some slots for a few hard drives. To mine cryptocurrency having a storage array is not a requirement, but the price of drives has come down so much that setting a little bit of RAID storage seems like an exciting proposition.
You don’t have to worry about me getting sucked into the world of hard drive mining. That is probably not going to happen. It seemed like the setup was a lot more complex than getting a standard miner up and running. I’m also pretty skeptical of hard drive mining in general. The bandwidth costs scare me. Some of these folks on YouTube have huge mining storage setups with a ton of hard drive space. I mean it seems interesting. At some point along the way I do want to figure out how and why people are getting paid for hard drive space. My desire to learn and understand is probably causing trouble at this point, but hey learning about different things is a good strategy.
Dr. Nels Lindahl
Written on my Storm Stryker PC and my ASUS C101P using Google Docs
P.S. Most of this post was written on my Storm Stryker in my office chair listening to some songs from the Amazon Music Unlimited streaming music. I listened to a ton of Nirvana this week. I even ventured out into some of the live radio broadcast recordings. Maybe it is pure nostalgia, but there were pretty decent. My record collection spans a musical period of over 50 years. That speaks to my eclectic taste in music.
We made it to the donut shop. They had not even pulled all the donuts out of the boxes yet. The trays had not been fully setup. You can imagine from just that description that the donuts are not baked or fried at that location where we pick them up. Don’t judge that fact or question the freshness of the donuts. They are still pretty darn good. I had a wonderful twist donut this morning and a tall flat white espresso based drink from Starbucks. The flat white is not my go to coffee beverage of choice, but sometimes it is nice. Today for example is a relaxing day. I had a wonderful donut and a flat white to start off the day. A day that may or may not involve returning the cable box and canceling out our cable television. This could end up being a very big day.
I’m closing out the blog post today with a few thoughts on the approaching 100,000 words for the year. You can imagine that I thought it would take a lot less time to hit 100,000 words at this point it is going to happen on Day 35. By extrapolating the 35 day speed to 100,000 words over an entire year that does give me hope. 350 total days of writing at my current pace would produce 1,000,000 words within the year and I would have a slight buffer of 15 days. Maybe those 15 days could be spend resting and recovering from a big year full of marathon writing sessions. I just cut and pasted this blog post into WordPress and we are only at 3,261 words. That means we ended up falling just a little bit short of the expanded writing goal for February. You can imagine these last two sentences were designed to just tip the scale and cross the writing threshold for the day.