Well guys, I’m back after the exams, and I gotta say I didn’t do well at all. I had high hopes for the math exam, but that turned out to be a hair’s inch above passing mark, which was 50%. I managed to answer most of the Applied Science quiz, but I’m not very sure of some of my answers. Probably another 60% job. And I managed to answer every question in the Physics exam, but learning from the math exam, just because you answered every question doesn’t mean that you’ll get a high mark. In fact, if you found it particularly easy, you’ll probably find that you scored very badly.
I’m thinking of making a Higurashi design lately, on my xampp installation on my laptop. I think I should be revising more for all my classes while the exams aren’t here, though. The Higurashi design will of course be dark (it’s been quite a while since I was impressed so much by an anime – I listened to the soundtrack, and the music sucked, though… I still got goosebumps on some of the tracks, which is saying a lot about the anime… and not much about the music), feature rounded rectangles (oh yeah baby) and a dark title image. Plus, the CSS for the body won’t be a jumbled mess this time.
I’m typing this on Vista+Office 2007 on my Core Duo laptop. The Core Duo was introduced late 2006, so at best my computer’s as fast as a midrange rig from 2005 (excluding the graphics card, of course). There’s this old saying: What Intel giveth, Microsoft taketh away – which means that all those speed improvements you get from switching to a new architecture from Intel will be more than compensated for by code bloat in Microsoft’s next software product, whatever it may be.
The rumour was investigated here, and I gotta say it looks quite tempting to switch back to Win2K. It wasn’t such a bad OS, you know. I’m just not happy with its limited skinning abilities. At least XP can look good. I wonder how much faster Word would feel if I ran Word 2000 and stuff on this laptop. Then again, I’m typing up this blogpost on Word 2007, so I’m not anxious to switch back. According to many people, 2007 was crap, but I’d say Office 2003 would be the worst of all. All it offered was a stupid blue interface. Office XP rocks – the reason I used it on my old computer was because I knew 2003 would be just a waste of space.
Of course, according to some commenters, patches and a renewed emphasis on security has resulted in increased resource usage, which can’t be said to be automatically bad. After all, Superfetch takes up memory, right? It’s taking up memory because it’s caching, which overall makes your memory faster. It’s only when it results in your CPU idling at 30% rather than 0% that you should be worrying (my Core Duo idles around 2%, is that bad? I should switch to Debian/Arch Linux now, shouldn’t I).
I still haven’t switched to Linux on my main computer, and here’s why:
- Name one player which is not XMMS and has as much functionality as foobar2000.
- Must play Musepack, Ogg, MP3+cue, AAC, APE+cue, FLAC+cue, SPC, PSF, DTS (!), and not look horrible, like XMMS. Or Audacious. Rhythmbox sucks, it consumes a lot of CPU. I wonder if that’s a GStreamer thing.
- My music collection (which is 40GBs, which is rather huge, to the extent of being a burden, I’m thinking of rm –rf *-ing it) has Chinese and Japanese characters in the filenames. I’ll have to set up KDE or GNOME so that they can work with those filenames, but I still won’t be able to work on those files or directories in the console. What’s the matter, Windows probably can’t manage that from the console either, you say. But Linux really depends on the console, and I don’t know what kind of horrible X error might pop up in the future while I need to do something with a filename that’s from China.
- My Sakura Taisen!
- My Ever17!
- Any other Japanese games which I may want to play in the future!
- Something will feel wrong. I just hate GNOME in principle. KDE’s a little bit better, but I prefer things like fluxbox, IceWM or something. Something will feel wrong, just like that last time I installed XP on this laptop.
However, Linux does take up much less disk space. And I’m sure it takes up much less CPU and RAM, too.
In other news, I’m totally out of money on my UBC card at the moment, which means I’m thriving on a single box of cereal for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Well, I don’t quite get up in the mornings, so dinner and supper then. This can’t be good for any gym activities.
I went to a House Music Seminar today, held by DJ Feo of Paris Angel, who told us Taiwanese (event thanks to UBC Taiwanese Association, most of the people there being Taiwanese) about House, Deep, Minimal and stuff, and the different effects used by DJs to switch songs. Making the song play at the same speed and keep the pitch the same seems very simple – in fact it seems like a DJ’s life is all about sensing the crowd and turning knobs. He told us about the effects, like flangers, low pass filters (which basically cut off the bass), delay and crush, and wet and dry. Now I understand what’s going on in the Tales of Phantasia music player screen!
The DSP can go from ‘Dry’ to ‘Reverb’ to ‘Pan Delay’. DJ Feo told me that Pan Delay was an echo between the speakers, but I could hear no such thing. I still think Reverb is better. I also asked him about clipping, and he said that clipping could happen in any part of the playback process, something which was new for me. The mixer could clip, or the speakers could clip, and on professional equipment LEDs would tell them if they were going over the limit. Apparently increasing the bits from 16 to 20 would not help with clipping.
Yes, a collection of random stuff I’ve been at lately. Don’t expect much else, worrying about my grades has basically confined me to my room. And my computer. Bleh.