Friday, August 31, 2001
Thursday, August 30, 2001
Tuesday, August 28, 2001
Monday, August 27, 2001
Set in pre-WWI Europe, each player controls the armies and navies of one of the seven great powers at the time. After a short period of negotiation or conferences, each move consists of all players writing "orders" for each of their units. All moves are implemented simultaneously and you discover which of your allies kept their word and which ones are lying, back-stabbing, blood suckers.
I remember my friends playing in high school. I never played, though. My recollection is that there was already a group of seven who knew how to play and they didn't want to wait for me to get up to speed. Or maybe they just didn't want me to join their reindeer games, but this is not the place to reanalyze high school issues...
It doesn't take long to discover the central gathering place on the 'net for a game which is a geek magnet like Diplomacy. The Diplomatic Pouch has all the answers and links that any player or wanna-be could need. I learned that:
- the game is popularly played via email and automated judges.
- you can use a web based java interface to track email games.
- if you are tired of the standard scenario, there are many variants which you can play.
- you shouldn't pay more than $40 to buy the game new or you can buy a used copy on ebay for considerably less, like I did.
Friday, August 24, 2001
You don't have to hang out with anyone you don't want to hang out with, not until you acquire co-workers, in-laws or prison time....even though I actually like my in-laws and co-workers.
Wednesday, August 22, 2001
Tuesday, August 21, 2001
Monday, August 20, 2001
I'm not sure how one would calculate 4851 degrees north of the equator... let's see, that'd be 13 times around the earth then almost half way around again, ending up around 8 degrees north of the equator from where you started. Now, 217 degrees east of Greenwich is the same as 143 degrees west of Greenwich. But, since the latitude calculation put us past the North Pole and down the other side, we're really at 37 degrees east longitude, right?
At this point, calculating the exact minutes and seconds is left to the reader, currently stranded somewhere in Ethiopia.
Friday, August 17, 2001
Wednesday, August 15, 2001
Go through a door in our laundry room and you're outside, at the bottom of a short flight of stairs. Also at the bottom of these stairs is a drain. The drain got clogged, the water went under the door into the laundry room. The water probably found the drain in the floor of this laundry room and headed that way, until it, too, got clogged. With no way to enter the sewer pipes, the water started looking for other places to go. The easiest route, it seems, is into the main (finished, carpeted) area of the basement. Ugh.
The water seeped easily through the carpet, spreading about 10 feet from the laundry room doorway. Once it found its way to the uncarpeted floors of the bathroom and furnace room, it spread more quickly.
The Great Flood of 2000 was caused by a leaky washing machine hose and compounded by lots of stuff sitting on the floor and exacerbated by our being out of town for five days. We'd (mostly) learned our lessons from that flood, so property damage from this flood is negligible. ServiceMaster came on Monday and lifted the carpeting, removed the pad, and left a bunch of floor fans blowing from the underside of the carpet. They'll return in about a week to put down new padding and wash the carpet. Then we can set up the basement again and prepare for the next flood.