plonq: (Geeky Mood)

Which sci-fi crew would you best fit in with? (pics)
created with QuizFarm.com
You scored as Serenity (Firefly)

You like to live your own way and don't enjoy when anyone but a friend tries to tell you should do different. Now if only the Reavers would quit trying to skin you.


Nebuchadnezzar (The Matrix)


81%

Serenity (Firefly)


81%

Moya (Farscape)


81%

Millennium Falcon (Star Wars)


75%

Heart of Gold (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy)


69%

Babylon 5 (Babylon 5)


63%

SG-1 (Stargate)


63%

Deep Space Nine (Star Trek)


56%

Andromeda Ascendant (Andromeda)


44%

Enterprise D (Star Trek)


38%

FBI's X-Files Division (The X-Files)


38%

Galactica (Battlestar: Galactica)


31%

Bebop (Cowboy Bebop)


25%





In other news my desktop computer bit the big one last night. I have narrowed it down to either the video card, or the motherboard, or possibly both. If it is the motherboard then I am going to have a bit of a challenge ahead of me figuring out how to extract all of my music and picture files off the old RAID0 drives when I build a new system. (sigh)

Jeopardy

Aug. 16th, 2005 07:34 am
plonq: (Jolly Mood)
[livejournal.com profile] atara mentioned in her journal what happened when we were watching Jeopardy last night.

Somebody took a screencap. )
plonq: (Cheesy Mood)
Our 350W power supply finally came back from the factory.

On the plus side they didn't charge us for shipping (which I had been expecting), but that may be because the "6-8 week turnaround" turned out to be closer to 3-4 months turnaround.

On the down side, they simply sent back the same power supply with a new fan bolted in.  It stinks.  Literally.  The power supply reeks of burnt components.

I assume they tested it before they sent it out, so it's probably good to go.  I'm guessing that the burnt smell was from the old fan burning out, rather than any of the other components cooking themselves.  The power supply was working fine when we had it, aside from the fact that fan wasn't spinning and it smelled like baking electronics.  With luck the smell will blow itself out after use - though I guess it wouldn't hurt to hang a car deodorizer inside the computer case for the first while.
plonq: (Angelic Mood)
Assume         a = b
therefore      a - b = 0
additionally  2a - 2b = 0
therefore      a - b = 2a - 2b, or
             1(a - b) = 2(a - b)

Now if we factor out the (a - b) from this equation...
                1          1             1(a - b) = 2(a - b)                -----------------                    (a - b)                       1 Ergo          1 = 2



Most people spot the fallacy right away, but it's surprising how many people I've caught with this one.

I want one

Jul. 14th, 2005 09:54 am
plonq: (Happy Mood)
Add one of these to my growing list of geeky things I'd like to own.

Geeky goodness!

Preferably the one in blue.

Deviations

Jun. 28th, 2005 10:41 am
plonq: (Creative mood)
For no apparent reason I decided that I wanted to calculate the standard deviation for a column of numbers I'd gathered for somebody.  It's been years since I took any statistics courses and I couldn't remember the formula.

I applied what I could remember of the subject, and I wrote the following snippet of code:

do eStem = 1 to Elements
    Variance = Variance + ( ( Element.eStem - Mean ) ^ 2 ) / Elements )
end

Standard_Deviation = Variance / 3
do until trunc( Standard_Deviation^2, 15 ) = Variance
    Standard_Deviation = .5 * ( Standard_Deviation + ( Variance / Standard_Deviation ) )
end


(Yes, sadly this stupid language doesn't have a square root function, so I had to derive it using Newton's method.)

Only after I'd done this did it occur to me that Excel has a StdDev function that might have worked.  I tried that... and it gave me a different answer.  Huh? 

My immediate assumption was that Excel must be wrong. 

Moments later reason set in, and I realized that I had most likely left something out of my equation.  After a quick trip to Mister Internet, I revised my program slightly to read:

do eStem = 1 to Elements
    Variance = Variance + ( ( Element.eStem - Mean ) ^ 2 ) / ( Elements - 1 ) )
end


Suddenly the world is a joyous place again.  I'm not sure why I'm happy that I managed to write a program to replicate what Excel does for me automatically, but it's kind of like whittling a working automobile out of a block of pine.  It may not be practical, but at least it's yours.

[Edit: Just for giggles I expanded it to calculate the Nth root, and turned it into a self-contained little module that I can import into any future programs that I write in this language.]

Tags

Jun. 21st, 2005 07:06 am
plonq: (Intrigued mood)
Now that I have them (the latest Semagic supports them), what do I do with them?

Has anyone out there created a semi-standardized list of keywords and what to use them for?  I think they'd be a lot more useful if everyone used the same base keywords for the same basic purpose.  For example if I click on the "meme" tag, I should reasonably expect it to bring up a list of that person's memes rather than, say, ever instance where he or she has posted a goatse picture.

Of course I can merrily bounce away and create my own custom list of keywords, but I can't promise that they'll be meaningful or consistent.

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