Tall ships (porthole)

New shiny toy!

The Nyx replacement build has been in the planning for a long time. It was originally pencilled in for late 2019, and looking at my notes would have likely been a Ryzen 7 3800X build. It got deferred several times, at first because before I upgrade Nyx I want to put together a Kodi system on my Raspberry Pi (because Microsoft killed off Windows Media Center). Then because AMD announced a slightly shinier Zen 2 processor and I wanted to see if the 3800XT was worth it (reviews suggest not really). Then because I had to sort out the NAS replacement (because Firefox killed off TLS 1.0 support). Then because AMD announced even shinier Zen 3 processors and the entire computing world went bonkers over them.

I had all but settled on buying a lowly Ryzen 5 3600X as a stop-gap solution until Zen 3 was stocked again - and while the Ryzen 7's have been available for a while, what I really wanted was a Ryzen 9 5900X and those had only just started to trickle back onto the market at silly prices (£800? No thanks!). So I was gradually finalising the spec and was probably going to buy a 3600X in the next couple of weeks... then pleaseremove messaged me yesterday morning with news of a surprise stock update at an only slightly silly price. One quick order later, and this appeared today (on a Sunday, no less!)...



Now I just need to order the rest of the parts! My challenge is to build a system that outperforms pleaseremove's new monstrosity in at least one PerformanceTest category (and probably only in one - I reckon disk is the only one I've got a chance at given what's in his system!).

pleaseremove: I need commission... That's two 5900x's I have sold scan this morning
Alfa MiTo

Achievement unlocked: jump-starting my car!

Headed out to sainsbury's just now - or tried to, only to discover that my car's battery had run down over the past week and just did not want to turn over the engine.

I suspect it's a combination of very little driving, the recent cold snap, a 6 year old battery... and putting a decent amount of air into the spare tyre last weekend (I've probably not checked it since last year).

Fortunately a neighbour had a set of jumper leads, and even more fortunately this is the neighbour who's parked next to my car! Wiring up the leads was a bit of a challenge as the engine bay of a modern car is basically all plastic and we struggled to find a chunk of bare metal that was in reach of the negative lead and the crocodile clips would actually hold onto... but we found a bracket on the side of the engine, my neighbour gave his car a bit of revs, and mine reluctantly decided that yes, it would actually start the engine.

Once mine actually started it ran nicely, so I carried on to Fareham sainsbury's via Emsworth to put a bit of juice back into the battery - which seems to have worked, as when heading back home afterwards it started happily (my backup plan if I was stuck there was to call the AA).

Driving along the M27 in low gear (to recharge the battery) is a bit disconcerting with the extra revs and power. I normally climb the hill past Portsmouth in 6th gear, but drop a gear or two and the extra power means MiTo will happily keep going past 70mph if I let it!
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    accomplished accomplished
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Tall ships (porthole)

Pancakes!

Since people have been prodding me for an update, here's a pancake-themed one (as everyone's blogging about pancakes today!).

Unlike in the linked blog, I made crepe-style ones following a Delia Smith recipe I stumbled across years ago. It's nice and simple, and halving the ingredients works well and made about 4-and-a-half pancakes in a large frying pan.

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  • Current Music
    Mattias Häggström Gerdt - Death to the King [THE ANSWER - Armored Core Tribute Album -]
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    , ,
Tall ships (porthole)

More upgrades!

For about a year and a half now I've been planning an upgrade to my desktop, Nyx. It currently runs a Core 2 Quad Q6600 so an upgrade is a little overdue...

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  • Current Music
    Hillsong UNITED - Light Will Shine [Aftermath]
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Tall ships (porthole)

Snap, crackle, pop (again)

[Adam Savage voice] "Well there's your problem!"



So while cooking supper the other day the oven went snap, crackle, and pop, and the magic smoke escaped (quite spectacularly too - it coated the inside of the oven with a thin layer of soot, including over my fish'n'chips). This is what, the 4th failure - no, third, as last time I did a pre-emptive replacement. Three years seems to be about the design lifespan for this oven.

The landlord kindly dropped round a replacement earlier this week and this afternoon I set about replacing it. It's fairly straightforward, just tedious as on this model the element is screwed in from the back so replacing it requires extracting the oven and taking the back panel off - and then discovering that the screws are buried under the insulation and will disappear into the innards if you're not careful (yay magnetic screwdrivers!). But that's now sorted and the oven now works again!

Now I just need to give the inside a good clean...
  • Current Music
    Graham Kendrick - You Came From the Highest [Rumours of Angels]
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Tall ships (porthole)

Advent 2020, Christmas day!

Merry Christmas!


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B_pWTlN15bc

Right, now I've got that out of my system, let's see what was in pocket number 25...



Interesting tea, a final origami sheet (for yet another pinwheel star), two chocolate coins and a caramel chocolate. And while the Lindt calendar finished yesterday, the Thorntons one had one final chocolate in the form of an alpini praline bar! Om nom nom...

Oh, and the snowman is complete!



As is traditional, that is not the end of my Christmas chocolate - each year I buy chocolates to hang on the tree and eat over the 12 days of Christmas 😋

Christmas itself was somewhat scrambled, but after zoom church (wherein our vicar had updated his cracker jokes for 2020 - "What's Dominic Cummings' favourite song? Driving Home For Christmas") I managed to meet up with my sister for lunch (yay support bubbles!). Because neither of us fancied cooking a complete roast we shared a Chinese meal from Sainsburys as our Christmas feast, and afterwards video called our parents while we opened our presents (who'd already opened theirs at 9am!). I got a good haul of presents, including a substantial Lego kit to put together, a Garth Nix book I hadn't realised was out, a magnetic hourglass (thanks Craig!), and a lovely Zelda-themed pin badge my sister found at the delightfully named Hand Over Your Fairy Cakes. All in all, Christmas worked out surprisingly well this year.
  • Current Music
    Graham Kendrick - Earth Lies Spellbound [Rumours of Angels]
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Tall ships (porthole)

Advent 2020, day 24

Finally caught up just in time!

So here I am at long last at Christmas Eve. All the presents are wrapped, all the cards have been delivered - or at least posted - and the Christmas meal has been bought.

And the advent calendars are almost over. One is - today's the final day for the Lindt calendar - but the mystery and Thorntons calendars still have another day to go.



Today's origami: a rabbit!

The snowman is almost completed as well - it just wants one more piece from tomorrow:



That's all, until Christmas Day!

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    accomplished accomplished
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Skyward Sword

Advent 2020, day 23

Almost up-to-date!

The mystery calendar was a little light today: just a toffee penny, and the buttons from the snowman.



But that's not all! Today was our annual housegroup secret santa! Now we couldn't meet up in person (because Covid), so instead the D's kindly ordered pizza to be delivered to everyone and we'd even arranged a socially distanced secret santa - we all dropped off presents at someone's house, and then picked up our presents a day or two later (I wonder what their neighbours made of us all raiding their porch?).

Whoever got me as their secret santa knows me well, as I got this...



Yes, that's a small pillow/cushion with the Legend of Zelda crest on it! Thankyou, mystery secret santa!
  • Current Mood
    happy happy
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Tall ships (porthole)

Advent 2020, day 21

Into the final week now!



Today's origami: A fox, that hopefully will be just as cute as the mouse from last week. Meanwhile the jigsaw is taking shape - there's not much left to add to it...