Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


decay & ruin
Biosphere II
dead malls
Irving housing

got that wrong

appropriate tech
Arduino μcontrollers
Backwoods Home
Fractal antenna

fun social media stuff

(nobody does!)

Like my brownhouse:
   another gravitational attractor
Tuesday, May 5 2009

When Ray and Nancy stayed here this past weekend, Nancy gave me her old Mac G4 tower (manufactured in 2000), which had a blown power supply. I was thinking "Sweet, I'll get this working and install the most primitive Mac OS it will take." So I did some research online to see what I had to do to an ATX power supply to make it work on a Mac tower. It turns out that Macs from this period have closely approached the standard PC design. They have PCI and AGP ports, their motherboards have almost the same holes in the same places, and their power supplies are nearly pin-compatible (they have two more pins than an ATX power supply from the same period, and most of the common pins are in the exact same position). So I spliced the 22 pin Mac cable onto an ATX power supply and attempted to boot up the Macintosh. But I got nothing; the monitor didn't even flicker. It had been a huge waste of time. Not all is lost, however. I might end up putting together a PC in that tower case (a John Hodgman in Justin Long clothing) at some point down the road, although this will probably involve another date with Mr. Reciprocating Saw.

It's easy to get sucked in by essentially-useless household tech projects such as reviving an obsolete Macintosh built around an obsolete processor, so later I escaped the gravitational pull of laboratory tech with another gravitational attractor, my ongoing greenhouse project. Today I sheathed more of the outside styrofoam in quarter-inch Wonderboard. My focus today was the southwest corner, which has a stepped arrangement as the south-facing glass leans northward along the side of a concrete block wall over 80 inches in height. I cut little rectangles to accommodate all the various parts of these "steps" (the treads, the risers) as well as the stepped shape along the west wall, most of which will end up being buried. The weather was cloudy and fairly cool today (not rising above the mid-50s), so when I fiberglass-taped and Portland-cement-spackled the many seams between my Wonderboard pieces, I didn't have to worry about them immediately drying out. And there weren't many little black biting flies preserved for all eternity in tiny limestone tombs.

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