Fractal's Fractured home

I was working in the lab late one night and suddenly to my supprize I got the urge to build a web page about what goes on here in the lab late at night. Well, lots of things go on here in the lab. There is a pile of amateur radio equipment stacked in one corner, there are two complete black and white darkrooms in another. Nestled snugly under some books is everything needed to make home brew beer and hidden in the corner are my LGB trains along with some large scale railroad notes. Most of the room is filled with computers. Old computers, new computers, borrowed computers, blue computers. My girl friend at the time (now my wife) called my first computer 'blue baby.' Blue baby is an Imsai 8080 I purchased in 1978 from the original Byte Shop in Mountain View and is sitting in a six foot rack over there next to the bookshelf. There is a token macintosh around here somewhere. I used to have a Sun microsystems sparcstation running DNS on the public side of my firewall. I have since retired it but it is sitting in a pile over somewhere. I recorded my notes on using surplus Sun Equipment for your projects that the budget minded may find useful. Mostly, there are Intel architecture machines. A few are running Microsoft operating systems. Most are running Linux.

You can read about many of my computers on my systems roster page. MPEG encoding to make vcd's was taking too long on that old k6-233 so I have been investigating other alternatives. Mozo was one attempt that failed miserably. I don't know if the tyan tiger 400 I used was just a piece of crud or if it didn't like my celeron processor or what, but that was one experiment that failed miserably. Hopefully I will get back to video editing experiments one of these days.

My first SMP computer system has its own page. Visit Wimpy's page for details on my dual celeron system and see how I managed to get a gigahertz of processing power into a 500 dollar box. Wimpy's call to fame was short lived as my dual duron box has two 1 gigahertz processors that run at 1.15 gig for just about what I paid for Wimpy.

I wrote a short discussion on PC computer cases as a result of work done to build Wimpy. This work expanded to fill its own site, casereview.org. My collected of the PC hardware performace sites that I read may be of some interest.

Sometimes I want to check the weather to see if it is safe to go outside. My notes on weather stations may be of some use to others who are similarly inclined. Anything metal that goes outside has a habit of rusting. I found that electrolytic rust removal worked pretty good for handling small rusty tools.

What's New

A recent project was a study into routers for the small home office with emphasis on throughput and power efficiency. This work culminated with the creation of Rooter Router which provides close to 100 Mbit routing from the lan to the wan in a quiet, low cost, power efficient package. Goofy Router extends access to Google WiFi within the house.

A newer project consists of investigating several Network Attached Storage alternatives. More on this to come as the work matures though one side project has come to fruition. Check out the Fractured Lab's review of the AMS Venus T4 External hard drive enclosure and see how we built a 2TB storage volume for under a grand.


Last modified: April 08 2007 16:23:09
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