Sunday, 10th July 2005

Mmmm Sunday Morning Breaky:
I cooked a big breaky for Kel and I this morning. Bacon, Eggs, Tomatoes, Sausages, Mortadella, Salami, Shaved Ham, Fetta Cheese. I managed to cram all this - bar the sausages and eggs onto a roll. Mmmmmmmmmmm...

Lots of CS:Source (CounterStrike: Source a HL2 Mod). I have been getting pretty involved with this mod lately and have been playing it almost every day.

Wednesday, 06th July 2005


A new X-Ray satellite is being launched called Astro-E2. It's literally a really cool x-ray telescope. This X-Ray telescope will be much cooler than the other two that currently operate; XMM-Newton and Chandra. These two split the X-Rays through a prism. Astro-E2 will instead measure how much a detector's temperature changes every time a photon hits it. To do this it need to be bloody cold. 0.06 Kelvin! That's cold! Space is 2.7K in temperature. To achieve this, the satellite is wrapped in three layers of insulation like a big thermos to keep the XRS (X-Ray Spectrometer) cold. From the outside in, a layer of Foil insulation, A layer of solid neon at 10Kelvin and a layer of liquid helium at 1.3K surround the inside refrigerator containing the XRS. Very cool. This sat is also going to have a CCD camera and a High-Energy X-Ray detector. It's going to launch at Uchinoura Space Center, Kagoshima in Japan at 0300GMT aboard an M5 rocket.

Deep Impact :
They don't know about the impact part yet, just the plume ("I can't see shit through this smoke!") The plume of material is opaque and they can't see the crater that was left by the impactor. Some of the deep impact team are saying that the nucleus is not like a cucumber inside but a loaf of bread, others say it's like a delicate soufflé. In other words, very delicate and porous. Once they can see the base of the plume they can speculate the size of the crater, they indicate that it may be weeks before the plume has subsided enough.

Tuesday, 05th July 2005


Bullseye for Deep Impact! XMM1-Newton images of impact
"These images, taken by the Optical Monitor on board ESA's XMM-Newton observatory on 3 and 4 July 2005, show a comparison between the states of the comet before and just after impact.

The images were taken in the blue (top) and ultraviolet channels (bottom) of the instrument. The ultraviolet images show the emissions of hydroxyl ions, the direct decay product of water.

About 1.5 hours after the impact, the brightness of hydroxyl groups is increased by a factor of about five. Later, about 4.5 hours after the impact the ultraviolet emission is decreased again which indicates that the peak has passed."

Monday, 04th July 2005


Later tonight we should see results from MARSIS. It starts scanning today! We will also see the Deep Impact mission come to a head.

Scientists have discovered that when radio frequencies are projected at space dust clouds they produce Masers. Masers are Lasers with radio wavelengths. The Maser is also amplified by 5%. They theorise this phenomena could provide a handy way to amplify deep space transmissions for communication in the future. Very cool. The way they worked all this out was to watch a neutron star or pulsar called B1641-45. Pulsars emit powerful beams of radio waves from their poles. Because pulsars are always rotating, they appear to sweep around like a lighthouse beams. They observed the beam entering the cloud and also observed the maser 'output' of the cloud. They did this using a radio telescope in Parkes. Cool. Aussie Scientists discover it first again!

Work has started in the mirror lab at Steward Observatory to produce six 8.4m concave mirrors and one 8.4m 'doughnut' mirror for a new telescope in Chile. This is a massive project that will probably take 10 years to complete. They calculate this telescope will have 10 times the resolving power of Hubble and will be more powerful than any other telescope in the world. This type of telescope is called an "off axis" telescope. Mirrors are placed around the axis in a petal arrangement. In the centre is a doughnut mirror. The petals pick up the light, the light is bounced off smaller petals that are placed out on an arm. The light is reflected from the small petals to the doughnut. The doughnut reflects the light to a central mirror in the middle of the axis and in the middle of the small petals. this project is called Giant Magellan Telescope or GMT.
An Off Axis (Magellan) Telescope

Thursday, 30th June 2005

Ah. Work. Yay.

Not much happening at all really.

MARSIS boom antennas are out!
The orbiter will be going through testing or the 'commissioning phase' for 10 days. On the 4th of July it will start surveying properly. Fingers crossed for water! THAT will mean a big step and a real kick in the arse for manned flights to Mars! Very exciting.
MARSIS fully deployed.

Possible methane lake found on titan.
In a recent image of the surface of titan there is a kidney shaped dark blob. It is speculated that this is a methane lake! Pretty cool stuff. It's approximately 230km long and 70km wide. That's a lot of methane!
Methane Lake
Lake of Methane

XMM-Newton and Hubble commissioned to observe comet impact.
No, there is not going to be a comet impact earth. Scientist are going to hurl a 370kg copper projectile at the comet and measure the light and x-rays emitted at impact. The will tell the scientists about the comet including temperatures and chemical composition.

The comet they are going to observe is called 'Comet 9P/Tempel 1'. It was discovered by Ernst Wilhelm Leberecht Tempel a French astronomer in 1867. Hopefully they don't destroy the comet, I'm sure Tempel would not be impressed...
The impactor and Tempel 1

XMM-Newton is a big multi mirrored x-ray telescope. There will be over 20 major optical, x-ray and radio telescope facilities on the ground making observations. The impact is due for the early morning of the 4th of July in the early morning (EDT). Once the craft (deep impact) has dropped it's projectile it will do a flyby recording data for 14 minutes as it passes the comet.
XMM Newton
XMM1 X-Ray Telescope
Nebula M100 taken by XMM1

Sunday, 26th June 2005

A day of burning CDs and HL2. I must have more space! Hard drive space is vanishing fast!

Saturday, 25th June 2005

Weekend at last!

Off to the NVidia site. New detonators are out. Then, the new drivers need a thorough "Testing" in HL2!

Thursday, 23rd June 2005

Too busy to blog!

On sunday I bought 3 great things. Fear and Loathing in LasVegas on DVD FINALLY, Neverwinter Nights and Half-Life 2. On monday I was given a video card that was good enough to play HL2. No more GF2 MX =) Since then, most of my time at home has been used playing Half-Life 2.

Saturday, 18th June 2005

Up dull, grumpy and early. So much for brightness... The only brightness here is the bloody sun coming through my crappy barely opaque non-sun-blocking vertical drapes. Damn it! I wanted to sleep! Ah well.

9:00 AM:
It seems Josh is having some boggles with his server. I moves some stuff around and wrote a guide for him. What an incredibly exciting morning! I think it's definitely way too early to start watching alien and to have a beer. Bugger. If I woke up at bloody lunch time like I wanted to this would be no problem! However, josh wouldn't get his assistance til lunch time either. I don't think he's awake yet to get it anyway! =( Grrrrrr no win situation...

I have discovered heresy within my own home! It seems that I own Alien 1 to 4 and haven't bloody watched the fourth one! I really have NFI how I overlooked it! That is my plan today to watch all of the alien movies. Though it's not much fun watching movies by your self. I may go to Brenny's yet.

Friday, 17th June 2005


Off to the pub with another tab. Thanks to me. I fixed the pub's digital tv box and they are very happy!

Thursday, 16th June 2005


Tuesday and Wednesday. Pretty boring and very uneventful. They have been written off and will not be heard from again!!! I don't want one day box with "Work." in it. What a waste.

Very nearly collapsing and having involuntary convulsions of denial about the fact that both my trains were on time and I got seats on both! WTF?!?

It is going to be a particularly crap day today, although it's been ok so far, my sales person is off sick. So I have the crap I do plus I have to sell stuff today =) Yay! It's not so bad, only a small store. Then again, I haven't had the lunch rush yet! Although, I have had 'lunch' of sorts. Mmmmmmm cold pizza!

Mars Express! We are meer WEEKS away from discovereing wether Mars has water on it or not! The second antenna was deployed today and they are awaiting telemetry to see wether it's opened all the way. Very cool! There are some more great images on the ESA site from MARSIS too!

Monday, 13th June 2005

Queen's Birthday Holiday. Happy birthday your highness. I get a day off =)

A day of sleep, vegetation and Neverwinter Nights.

Sunday, 12th June 2005

Managed to sleep in to 11AM! What an effort that is for me, for some reason I keep waking up early. =(

Now I am divising a plan to fit all the crap I need to do into today so I can relax (read bludge) on the public holiday monday!

Saturday, 11th June 2005

Up early as usual...
Into some NWN (Neverwinter Nights).

Shopping time "Yaaaaay!" not...

Can't get much better, yummy Butter chicken, OLD, A couch to recline on and some Red Dwarf!

Custard for dinner! lol...

Friday, 10th June 2005


Thursday, 09th June 2005

Fucking trains.
I wait for my train. I wait some more for my train. The train arrives twelve minutes late and its full. I wait five minutes for the next train. Yay. Seventeen minutes!

Hrm. I read in ARN that PCs came out the day before I was born!

Wednesday, 08th June 2005


I went into work not in my uniform the same as the two previous days. I plan on sleeping or vegetating out the back.

I am just too tired and I am going home before I colapse.

Tuesday, 07th June 2005

Up early again for stock take at the other store. The one that I actually wanted to help with. We crawled though that slowly, we hadn’t created the work sheets so there was a little time wasted there. Once we had some sheets out being counted it was all good, we printed the rest and started tracking how we were going using a map of the store and a highlighter.

Lynx and I entered the counted stock quantities into the stock take software. We kept up pretty easily with the counters as they returned their sheets. He used to work in a job where he primarily did data entry so he was at home entering the reams of bloody count sheets that we had to enter.

It was about 9PM when we had entered all the figures and could attain a variance. We ended up about $10K under, but that was all good, some key parts of the store we missed. We also had one or two keying errors where we entered the wrong quantity or had double pressed a key by accident.

Once we had knocked over the first variance, correcting major errors it was about 9PM. The current figure I can’t tell you, but it is substantially less than $2K now, which is obviously a much better figure!

The fucking train… It was 9:30PM and after looking at numbers and count sheets all day I was not in the mood for any antics. The station master on platform 19 was a n00b. She was not the master of *anything* and certainly not good enough to work at central, you know, like the core station at the CENTER of the rail network.

1) She had no fucking idea. Every 5 to 10 minutes she would announce contradicting information and just general crap.
2) She could barely speak English. Yeah, champion fucking effort city rail. Would you not make it a pre-requisite of a job where you not only have to manage a platform and the attached trains approaching and departing the platform, BUT ALSO, make multiple announcements to customers about the status of said services?

Useless crappy recruiting and worthless announcements aside, the train was 20 minutes late. A 40 minute wait. Fucking terrific. I got home about 20 to 12.

5:40AM to ~11:40PM = 18h

Monday, 06th June 2005

Up early for stock take at another store… Yah, that’s smart. It will be the last time I do that unless it’s for my brother DSE store across the road where I actually know the manager. I didn’t end up going to the other store anyway and it was lucky that I arrived early, the DSE store’s stock take prep was ruined. I got there at seven and the other manager wasn’t there yet so I opened up my shop and milled about in there for a bit at like 10 past 7 because it was bloody cold. Yay.

FYI so this makes more sense:
Stock take:
We count all the products in the store and how many of each product we have. This tells us what we physically have as opposed to what the computer says we should have.

The store is divided into manageable sections called ranges. We record all the catalogue numbers that occur in each range and then enter them into the stock take software. The software then tells us any catalogue items we have not recorded and also prints us nice work sheets to record counts on.

The difference between the counted stock quantities and what we are supposed to have on hand according to the computer system.

It seems at the DSE store one of the staff got a little too ahead of themselves and deleted some ranges out of the computer that he thought were not current. It seems that they were and, well, we needed to do the bastards again. =( When the manager finally got in late at 8:30ish. So we started recording catalogue numbers in the store room first. Then the guy that deleted the ranges came in with an excel sheet of all the ranges that he had typed in at home. We imported them into the stock take software and all was good bar some scattered ranges that needed to be re-done. I left that store at 7PM. So 12h work. Got home at twenty past eight…

5:45AM to ~8:20PM = ~14h 35m

Sunday, 05th June 2005

Mum + Dads today. What a great BBQ. I should have caught up with my Aunt and Uncle but I didn't really catch up at all. I was a little nervous, I havn't seen them many years; when really, I should have.