Thursday, November 12, 2009

More Before and After pics

Here you go, Carlien.





With nowt but vacuum cleaner and soft paintbrush (of course not stolen from Liezel, who's doing much more interesting things this dry-dock), this has got to be one of the most satisfying and easy jobs on the ship.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Non-AV post

So, dry dock continues.

I'm not hugely productive, alas.

I just can't seem to build up momentum to get a whole lot done in a day. I suspect a large part of it may be how horribly messy AV is right now. I'll spend as much time as I need tomorrow in cleaning up.

So, other stuff.

A List Apart is a really cool website. I've done enough web design to find the articles very interesting, and was just reading some of the ones about typography. I think I need to work on my blog to make it a little more beautiful to read.

It's unfortunate, I spend just enough time on the web and doing designy things to not be comfortable using the default layouts and all that, and want to make my own, but not enough to actually be able to do it very well. So the titles & dates, on this blog, for instance.

I modified the design last year while on furlough, and, having not spent enough time to really get my brain all the way around EMs and ENs, alignment, leading and everything, used something of a hack (I think) to get the date and title of each post a little closer together.

It looks OK to me, currently. However, if I forget to put a title, then it shifts up the date do that it overlaps some of the blog text.

Not good.

So, the answer, of course, is to insert a non-breaking-space into the title block.

But blogger won't let me do that! So, instead, I'll just have to keep on remembering to put in titles.

I'll be thinking a lot about vertical rhythm of text layout, and possibly make some changes to size and stuff later. I like learning these things as it helps fill in gaps in my head.

I sometimes wish for a fuller education. But given that I'm interested in EVERYTHING, it could take a while. Someone suggested I take a Liberal Arts degree or something like that. But then that doesn't really cover physics, electronic engineering , accoustics, psycology, software design, or that. It might help my spelling, I guess.

If I get a chance (which means, a bunch of years in a stable job with enough free time), then I may try and do something like that by corrospondence. But otherwise, I have wikipedia, a list apart, google, and the other tools of the 2009 home-educator's mind...

Monday, November 09, 2009


I found out that some of our panels were modified by someone in the past to do ... interesting things.

Home built new video-patch panel. Waaay more sensible, understandable, and usable.

AV updates, mid drydock.


I think it looks a little better. Still messy, but at least understandable. Pretty much everything is plugged in now, and from preliminary tests, we appear to have somewhat better clarity in EVERYTHING, and some of the video signals are visibly higher signal-to-noise with much less interference.
We bought two new audio patch panels too, Behringer ones. Strangely, Behringer also seem to do unbalanced patch panels. Fortunately, the shop had both, and I noticed. What on earth would anyone want unbalanced patch panels for?!

I also had to butcher the two panels which we were replacing to get enough parts to fix a third panel which was very glitchy. Here are some of the internals which are slightly broken.

You can see a bit of corrosion on the top contact - even with jackplug cleaners and everything, the equipment is just plain old.

Today, hopefully, I can do the full system tests (need to borrow a oscilliscope and reference signal generators...), and then get the whole thing boxed up and leave it until the end of drydock. Then I can work on more fun projects. Videos, song composition, etc.

That's all for now, I'll post more shorter posts later, with more pictures.