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Rich Lafferty's Journal

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Flightgear, PC upgrades, and health care kooks
pinkie pie
mendel

C172 on final at KSFOPoint the first: The open-source FlightGear flight simulator is pretty darn neat.

It's no X-Plane or MS Flight Simulator, and it's still a bit rough around the edges, but it's pretty amazing to me that an open-source project could get something like this together. It took me a while to remember how things work (and to learn the C172, since I trained in a C152) but I'm flying circuits now and really only getting thrown off by the difficulty of keeping things steady with a keyboard.

I'm currently downloading the scenery files that contain Ottawa and Montreal now. I think I might have to invest in X-Plane or MSFS soon.

Point the second: I'm a bit stuck as to how to best put money into my computer, mostly because I'm not used to profiling desktops, and because I'm not really up to date on the desktop cutting-edge. It's an 800MHz Athlon, 1GB/80GB, 128MB Radeon 9000, SBLive, fast-enough Yamaha CD-RW, old 17" Compaq monitor that's in OK shape, running Linux and Win2k. I don't really have need for DVD-anything yet. Upgrading audio is tempting, but it'd also be nice to have a better game platform (especially since I'm catching the flight sim bug again). What parts of that picture strike you folks as the first bits to replace?

Point the third, mostly for substitute but also for the rest of the fans of psychoceramics out there: I received a 16-page booklet in the mail the other day:

Don't let this happen to you
Read on and find out

QUALITY OF OUR HEALTH CARE
IS SUFFERING
DUE TO NEGLECT BY OUR
HEALTH CARE PROVIDERS
NOT LACK OF MONEY
IN THE SYSTEM

I was going to scan the whole thing, which as best as I can tell is being funded by one guy, but he was helpful enough to put the whole shebang up on a website: www.healthcareneglect.com. Be sure to check out the questionnaire.


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Re: the first

Holy crap!
Man, I need to get into flying (well, back into sim-flying, and then into flyign).

Re: the second

What are you looking for, in the general sense? Radeon 9000 isn't fantastic, but if all you're doing is flight sims, probably sufficient. Really, the only thing that seems behind the times is the processor.

(Deleted comment)
Hey, wait! I have additional computers already! They're just slower, that's all.

This is how I plan to upgrade my PC:


  • wait until Doom 3 ships,
  • see what their recommended hardware is,
  • buy that. that should last me two or three years.

Though, if I buy that 15" powerbook, well, that's what I'll stick with for the near future.


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