The original Giant Pachinko Machine of Doom.
>>  The day-to-day chronicles of Baka-chan, evil genius and overlord of the Giant Pachinko Machine of Doom.
Various Miscellany - Part 4 - The fine art of bombmaki--err
 
  

05/28/08 @ 03:32:18 am, Categories: Life of Baka, 346 words, 785 views  

As I sort of implied in Part 1, I grew up around electronics. Soldering irons, Integrated Circuits, resistors… Basically, I knew what these things were before I had more than an abstract idea what electricity was.

However, I haven’t really had anything to do with electronics on that level for more than a decade. It’s always sort of been at the back of my mind, but it just never came up. The last time I remember actually soldering anything was in a Tech-Systems class in the first half of my Sophomore year in High School… We soldered up some kits that would make an annoying cricket-like sound at random intervals… I have absolutely no idea what happened to this device…

Anyway, through some strange confluence of my interests, I found myself contemplating the creation of a microcontroller-based fire control circuit for airsoft guns. (I had no experience whatsoever with microcontrollers, and had no idea what they were.) This somehow led me to LadyAda and adafruit.com I had decided I was going to buy a couple kits from there, namely a Digg button (For understanding basic microcontroller functionality, and soldering practice), an AVR programmer (More practice, and to have something to program AVR microcontrollers with.), an Arduino Diecimila (For prototyping and learning microcontroller stuff.), and some other accessories.

It was a day or so later that Comrade |Tigerhawk| instructed me to watch SYSTM (’Instructed’ is putting it lightly.) Great show. They even have a 5-parter where they build a MAME cabinet! (Although, imo they they did a lot of stuff wrong or not as well as I would.) And if you look at Episode 10, they actually do an episode about the Digg Button. (Featuring the awesome ‘LadyAda’ herself.)

I had a lot more to say on the subject, but I’ll go more in-depth when there’s a little more to show off… And I have other things I need to get to, as well, so more later. I’m going to pay for that title, I just know it… I can hear the ‘party van’ pulling up out back…

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Various Miscellany - Part 3 - Of Teams and uh...Fortresses?
 
  

05/23/08 @ 08:05:27 pm, Categories: Baka-chan on Games, 615 words, 991 views  

So, I really enjoy Team Fortress 2 a lot. Especially with my computer as awesome as it is. Back at the beginning of May, they ran the ‘Gold Rush’ free weekend, where you could play the game for free for like four days. This was a promotion for the first bit of expansion to the game since it launched.

Basically, they’re adding a ton of new class-specific achievements as well as unlockable weapons for every class. They started with the Medic, I guess because not enough people were playing medic, or just weren’t doing their goddamn jobs. (And most of the achievements REQUIRE them to do their goddamn jobs.) But they plan to extend it to all character classes, though no word has been given as to a schedule of any sort.

On top of that, they added a new map and gametype. The map is pl_goldrush or ‘Gold Rush’, and the ‘pl’ stands for the new ‘Payload’ gametype. You have one team on defense, and one attacking. The attacking team is trying to guide the payload across the map, through various checkpoints…

How it works is, on Gold Rush, the BLU team has a bigass bomb on a minecart, that they are trying to get from their end of the map, to the RED end of the map. When you have people around the cart, it moves. Simple. If there’s no one around it, it will start counting down, and when the counter reaches zero, the cart will start moving BACKWARDS. The map is also a multi-round progressive sort of thing. The BLU team has a set amount of time to get the bomb to its destination for that round, every checkpoint they push the cart through, adds time. The successive rounds take place deeper and deeper in the RED facility, until finally it reaches their base on the last map, and blows the shit out of it.

If BLU succeeds in blowing up the RED base at the end, or if at any time they fail to complete a round before running out of time, teams switch and the game starts over. I absolutely LOVE it. It’s a lot of fun.

I should also note that they added a bunch of new Payload-specific context dialogue for all character classes. The Heavy’s are by far my favorite though. “Stand by little wagon!” “Push little cart!” “NOOOO! CART GO WRONG WAY!” “LITTLE MEN STEAL OUR CART!” etc etc The comically large bomb in the mine cart also sports the Heavy’s trademark “CRY SOME MORE” scrawled across the front of it. Heh.

Now, the new Medic weapons offer a lot of interesting possibilities. For every 12 of the 36 new achievements that you complete, you get an upgrade. The first upgrade is a new syringe gun… It doesn’t get any critical hits, but every shot that hits gives you +3 health. The second upgrade is a new MediGun, instead of its Uber Charge making you and its target invulnerable for a short period, it gives your target a 100% chance of critical hits. This can be fucking DEVASTATING if used correctly. The final upgrade, is the UberSaw. This is a bonesaw that fills your Uber Charge 25% with every successful melee strike.

The upgrades can be turned on and off at any time. The only one I can really see as ever being disadvantageous though is the MediGun upgrade… I’m willing to give up syringe crits for +3 health, you survive a hell of a lot longer in firefights that way. And there’s really no downside to the UberSaw… Probably why it’s the final upgrade.

So, in closing, it’s the first of many outstanding free additions to an already outstanding game. Outstanding!

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Various Miscellany - Part 2 - 1.21 gigawatts
 
  

05/23/08 @ 07:35:36 pm, Categories: Life of Baka, 231 words, 758 views  

So, back in March, I made additional upgrades to my new quadcore rig… My quadcore rig that I still haven’t gotten around to documenting fully… Hell, I never finished writing the article about my dualcore rig from LAST year. Anyway, whatever. Here goes.

My new AMD Phenom quadcore box is built around a ridiculous ASUS motherboard that supports AM2+, can take up to 8gb of RAM (Which it has currently.), has some great passive cooling, and can SLI up to FOUR ATI CrossFireX-based graphics cards.

Well, when I built the machine, I installed a passively-cooled ATI Radeon HD 3850 from Sapphire. I slapped another in there and SLI’d them.

The other major addition to the machine, was my first widescreen LCD display… A Samsung SyncMaster 2493HM. An insanely bright 24″ panel with a resolution of 1920x1200 pixels, and a contrast ratio of 10,000:1 with dynamic contrast, or 3,000:1 normally. It’s a goddamn monster.

TF2 looks incredible on here. Photoshop, Illustrator, and Lightroom have more workspace than I know what to do with.

The title of the post is a reference to BtTF in relation to how much power it felt like my machine would need after hooking this stuff up, and not in relation to the exhaustive debate we had in #GPMoD about various aspects of temporal physics as presented in the trilogy… And btw, the soft-G pronunciation is a generally accepted alternative, just fyi.

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Various Miscellany - Part 1 - Of Trees and Acorns
 
  

05/18/08 @ 01:33:56 pm, Categories: Life of Baka, Gaijin Hero, 224 words, 1039 views  

So, there’s quite a few things I’ve forgotten to discuss lately… Like the recent additions to my rig, my current obsession with electronics, and a few other things.

First, let me just start by wishing my father a happy birthday, he turned 59 last Thursday. While some of you may know, I’m sure there’s many who do not; my father and I share an apartment. A mutually-beneficial arrangement whereby we each pay half the rent and bills, and are able to pool the rest of our income to spend on whatever stupid shit we want at the moment. He works right next door, too. So it’s really rather convenient for both of us.

The only reason this really works is that, besides being my father, he’s also one of my best friends. Many of my core interests I got directly from him; photography, computers, graphic design, gadgets, electronics, and just making stuff. I really couldn’t ask for a more perfect roommate. We watch anime together, play computer and video games together and against eachother, and as we are currently, we commonly work together on things, or at least seek eachothers’ input and advice. (Of course, the extreme similarity in personality does lead to conflict on occasion but hey, what’re ya gonna do?)

So, happy birthday, dad. Keep being awesome.

My father, is a Gaijin Hero.


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Code Geass R2 - Standing By
 
  

05/18/08 @ 12:52:54 pm, Categories: Life of Baka, Baka-chan on Anime, 66 words, 1094 views  

Okay, so I completely forgot about Code Geass this morning, I was wrapped up in everything else I was doing last night that I went to bed at a normal human hour and slept soundly through till morning. I’m downloading the raw 720p copy right now, and should have opportunity to watch it shortly… As to what had me so distracted… Well, I’ll get to that.

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Code Geass R2 - Turn 06
 
  

05/12/08 @ 06:48:34 am, Categories: Baka-chan on Anime, 335 words, 1135 views  

Wow. Both the stream AND KeyHole TV took turns shitting themselves as we all tried to watch the live stream of Geass… And now I’m hearing that there’s problems with sourcing raws, because some cappers got arrested or something… Jeez.

Anyway, last week ended with Lelouch in a pretty goddamn tight spot… You’ll never believe who ends up saving his ass. (Well, okay, you might. I guessed it too.)

So, Nunnally is now the new Governor-General of Area 11. The Black Knights stage an attack on the airship carrying her to the Tokyo settlement in the hopes that Zero can ‘rescue’ her.

Kallen’s Guren Mk.II gets a badass (If perhaps over-the-top) field upgrade when things start going all kinds of fuck-ways. Senba purchases the proverbial agricultural property… Leaving only the girl (Chiba?) and the scar-faced kid with glasses, as the remaining members of Senba’s squad. Lelouch/Zero fail on a very basic level to accomplish the mission when he hesitates in the presence of Nunnally, and Suzaku ‘rescues’ her from Zero… But really, what was Lelouch going to do? I mean, he killed and/or suicided like a dozen people in just the last several minutes! Is it going to dawn on him that Zero, and thereby, HIMSELF are not compatible with the world that Nunnally wants to create?

No conversation which starts with “So, sis… Uhm, I’m secretly Zero… And I killed hundreds of people, including a couple of our siblings in an effort to create this peaceful world you wanted…” ends well. I feel this is a fundamental flaw in the character… I mean, he’s an incredible strategist and stuff, but he can’t think far enough ahead to see that? Then again, he does seem to be heading towards becoming completely BATSHIT INSANE, so maybe he just doesn’t know the difference anymore?

Kinda makes you understand the Emperor’s response to V.V.’s assertion that he’s naive for not telling Nunnally the identity of Zero, doesn’t it? Because this shit basically PARALYZES Lelouch.

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Meditations on the Meaning of Baka-chan
 
  

05/10/08 @ 06:04:11 am, Categories: Life of Baka, Baka-chan vs. YOU, 151 words, 1002 views  

So, a lot of people out there think they know everything. (I’m one of them…only, I’m right.) And plenty of them have opinions on the nick Baka-chan. (Especially the Pioneertards. ‘zomgroffle little stupid?’) Let me start by telling you that you are quite simply wrong.

First and foremost it is a trap. As we all know, one of my favorite pastimes is being a massive asshole on the internet, and generally calling people on their stupid shit because I am quite simply stupid-shit-averse. Nothing pisses in these peoples’ Cheerios more than getting their ass handed to them by someone they think of, from the outset, as being stupid. The name Baka-chan suits that purpose nicely.

But its actual contextual source is the idiomatic expression 「馬鹿も一芸」 ‘bakamoichigei’ roughly meaning ‘even a fool has one talent’.

So yeah, I may be a fool…but at least I’m a TALENTED fool. What’s your excuse?

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Anonymous did it!
 
  

05/06/08 @ 09:45:25 pm, Categories: Baka-chan vs. The World, Baka-chan vs. YOU, 337 words, 1076 views  

So, for those of you who don’t know, some kid from Albuquerque– Nick Garza –who went to the same high school as some people affiliated with GPMoD, and through some weird coincidence ended up going to Middlebury College, disappeared in the middle of the night on February 5th, and has not been heard from since.

So, I look out the window and there’s something going on in the parking lot of the block across the river… My father said it was Fox 44 when he got back from the store, and I quickly found this

Fox, what the fuck? And seriously. I think his mom really needs to just go home and re-evaluate things. This is some pretty desperate straw-grasping shit. Kids tag shit all the time around here. There’s permanent marker and silver paint marker tags all over the place. Am I surprised you found a smiley face? No. I bet I can find ten more. (And I don’t bother with that whole ‘outside’ thing that much.)

It’s a terrible thing that happened to your son, it is. But is it going to make you feel better thinking he was slashed by some psycho, instead of the more realistic probability that he wandered out into the cold and had some terrible accident befall him? I mean, we had a horrible ice storm happen within a 72 hour period there… This shit happens. All he’d have to do is slip and hit his head, and it’s Game Over.

If you want to tilt at windmills, by all means, that’s your right. Want a nice big one to go after?

The ’smiley face killers’ are actually a more violent sub-section of the ruthless terrorist organization known as Anonymous. The murders are all over the place because members of Anonymous are all over the place. A smiley face certainly fits the profile of internet culture. Many members of Anonymous could even be other students at victims’ schools!

Feed THAT to Fox news, they’ll cream their shorts. They LIVE for that shit.

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The edge of the mirror is REALLY SHARP!
 
  

05/06/08 @ 06:34:27 pm, Categories: Baka-chan on Games, 61 words, 1478 views  

Okay, I should die for that title, I know. When I first saw the concepts for Mirror’s Edge, it blew my mind. I couldn’t wait to see more, now we’ve got some IN-GAME FOOTAGE that is just incredible. Click the logo for the HD version, courtesy of Gametrailers!


Click here for HD version.


Yes, I was so impressed I vectored the logo and made that image.

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Code Geass R2 - Turn 05
 
  

05/06/08 @ 06:24:55 pm, Categories: Baka-chan on Anime, 171 words, 1128 views  

These just keep getting later and later don’t they? There was no mms simulcast stream this week, so I had to watch it via KeyHole TV, which has really lousy motion video algorithms or something…

Anyway, the 256 captive members of The Order of The Black Knights have been rescued. Toudou and Ougi stand by Zero, allaying much of the resentment some members felt due to the actions of Zero at the end of the Black Rebellion. This episode has a lot of fan service, but in general it’s about tying up loose ends, so I expect the story to start moving a lot faster soon. Suzaku returned to school and is obviously at odds with Lelouch, what he does at the end of the episode is way below the belt though… I mean, shit! But seriously, he knows better than anyone how crafty and duplicitous Lelouch is, so he had to make absolutely certain… But wow. I can’t wait to see how that goes at the beginning of the next episode.

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what in the fuck now?
 
  

05/02/08 @ 12:24:39 am, Categories: Life of Baka, Baka-chan vs. The World, 120 words, 1061 views  

…there is a guy in the hallway taking pictures of two girls kissing on the stairs outside my apartment… I am both intrigued and disturbed by this bizarre new development.

I guess they think with the empty parking lot that no one is here. Guess again. But seriously. It’s midnight and there’s some kind of girl-on-girl photoshoot taking place outside my apartment.

The following are things it has occurred to me to do:

  1. Offer my services as a (real) photographer.

  2. Just see what the fuck is going on.

  3. Run out into the hallway half naked with my rifle.

  4. Yell “YOU DAMN KIDS, GET THE HELL OFF MY LAWN!".

At any rate, I’m far too lazy to go take a look.

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How goddamn many NERV logos do we need?
 
  

05/02/08 @ 12:00:36 am, Categories: Pretty Pictures, 49 words, 1084 views  

Wow. While watching EVA 1.01 yet again, I noticed that the NERV logo on Ayanami’s ID card is yet ANOTHER version of the NERV logo… A sort of hybrid of the old and the new. So I went ahead and recreated it as well, complete with the hologram foil effect.



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Code Geass R2 - Turn 04
 
  

05/01/08 @ 11:34:50 pm, Categories: Baka-chan on Anime, 102 words, 1077 views  

Sorry for the lateness, I again watched Geass R2 live on TBS, but I’ve been too busy to post…

Man. Turn 03 ended with a “Oh how the fuck is Lelouch going to get out of THIS one?” and I must say, I’m impressed. It was another awesome episode, with the first serious action of the series. And Lelouch proves once again that he’s just a little fucking twisted and crazy.

Also, I’d like to note that raws are coming out in 1080p (Compressed. 1440 vertical lines instead of 1920) captured from D-TBS and MBS. Keep an eye out, they don’t seem to be upsamples.

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nani sore?
A peek inside the mad, mad, mind of Baka-chan. Animator, artist, hater of stupid people, and evil genius. Look upon the undoing of all order in the universe, and tremble.
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