I want a tiny computer

If I thought I wouldn’t game at all, I’m pretty sure my next PC would be a NUC, simply because they are so small and adorable. And you can get a full PC without any real compromises–you can have fast storage, lots of memory, a good port selection. And it can sit silently and adorably on the desk, where those ports are easy to get to.

I will likely build a new, bigger PC with a full-size video card in the near-future to replace my current, aging machine. But I might go ahead and then build a NUC as a secondary/experimental PC. I might even try a zany Hackintosh build, so I can have that Mac experience, but with a good keyboard.

Informative notes on lab PCs

Found today in a library lab sitting on top of the keyboard:

You're a bad PC, aren't you?The part that tripped me up was when I thought it said “slutty computer” and I was trying to determine how someone would reach that conclusion. Porn wallpaper? Lust moans for every Windows sound effect? DVD tray keeps sliding open? Then I read the note again and understood and was a little disappointed.


When PSUs are KIA -or- The Day the (PC) Power Died

I came home from work on Wednesday to find my PC shut off. This may not seem unusual except I keep my PC on 24/7. A quick perusal of clocks and such confirms no power outage. I brace myself for Bad PC News.

I press the power button. Nothing. I press it again. Nothing.

I jiggle the power cord, then swap it out and try another one. Nothing and nothing.

The amount of nothing is pointing toward one thing: the power supply, which has worked faithfully for over three years, has died. The only way to confirm this was to put another one in and I don’t exactly have a bunch of spares kicking around.

It wasn’t until today that I was able (or willing–picking things up after work during rush hour is a certain kind of madness) to get a replacement. I would be turfing my modular 700 watt OCZ for a modular Antec 620 watt. I felt safe getting a lower wattage PSU because I’m running two drives now instead of three, one of which is a low-energy SSD.

I pulled the PC out from under the desk and set it on the table in the living room. Both the underdesk and the inside of the PC case were resplendent with dust. Compressed air in a can was generously blasted all about and the resulting dust bunnies collected with a broom and pan. I extracted the dead PSU and noted how it resembled the head of Medusa, with its twisty cables the snakes. Having not turned to stone by gazing upon it, I set it aside and installed the new Antec power supply, plugged everything back in and hit the power switch, hoping for more than nothing.

It came on without a hitch. Hooray.

Ironically, after spending time working inside the cavernous interior of my MegaCase™ I was left with a desire to go small for my next PC, whenever I might get it. I’d like something that plays games decently but can sit on a desk, run quietly and work more like an appliance. I think this means I’m over my mid-life crisis or something.