Sunday, September 3, 2017

Resume gaming?

After almost a year of not playing any games on my desktop PC, I decided to resume gaming. But I don't have the urge to play games as I used to. Probably it is because my PC is getting old. Well, it is only about two years old and it is working perfectly well.

Or probably because the Internet in my apartment is pathetic.

Or maybe both.

One thing I noticed, which I had noticed when I was playing games before as well, is that the PC run pretty hot in the small shoebox sized case. There is nothing much I can do about it though. I want to keep my overclocks, which is conservative because I care about the power consumption, but they are not helping the situation either way. Funnily though, the video card, which is the biggest power eater inside the case, never hits 80C. The CPU, on the other hand, loves to hit 85C while using Handbrake.

I don't think the video card is causing the CPU to run hot because the fans of the video card do not spin when I'm not gaming; which means there is no way that it dumping hot air into the case has anything to do with it. Besides, the CPU cooler is my 6 years old Antec Kuhler 620, which is mounted at the front of the case pulling cool air in from the outside of the case. So I don't think the GPU would affect the CPU temps at all.

Too bad I cannot test it. The display I am using needs a Dual-Link DVI port and my CPU's integrated GPU cannot drive it.

But I wonder if the effectiveness of the coolant inside the water cooler has noticeably deteriorated over time. I didn't even use the cooler for about 3 years and I switched to this when migrated my PC to my current case in 2015. In that span, I had 3 coolers which I used for more than a month.

Now that I have settled down in Australia, I was thinking of upsizing my PC back to ATX size, to give me more cooling and expansions capabilities. But that would be an expensive upgrade.

Exciting things at the new job

At uni, I studied to become an Electronic Engineer. I joined a software company after that and I worked as a Software Engineer for more than 5 years in Japan. After that, I moved to Australia and got a job as an Embedded Software Engineer. Finally, I ended up as React JS Software developer!

I love what I do. It is really challenging and exciting. That is not to say that the work I did before was not challenging. It sure was, but it was not exciting.

Why I call the work I do is exciting is because I am working with a modern technology stack, which is something I always wanted to do. So little of the technologies I used to work with is currently being used in the product we are developing.

Here are some of those technologies we are currently using in our project.

  • React Native
  • React A-Frame / A-Frame VR / THREE.js
  • Redux
  • GraphQL
  • Feathers.js
  • Styled Components

Those are cutting edge technologies used in the front-end market. Funny thing is that I had no experience with any of the above technologies before I joined the company. I knew about Redux and that's about it. Of course, I knew about React from the previous project but we used a very limited set of technologies in that project. I should still be thankful to the CEO and lead software engineer for believing in me.

And top of that, I am working on a brand spanking new Mac Book Pro 13" with Touch Bar. The dongle life is real though. I have two 27" displays attached with USB Type-C to HDMI adapters, a Corsair K70 Lux RGB and a Steelseries mouse attached via a USB Type-C to USB-A dock. Ans we have a multitude of Samsung Galaxy S6, S7 and Google Pixel XL phones and Gear VR, Google, Google Daydream and Google Cardboard HMDs for testing.

I won't talk about the app that we are building because it is not released to the public yet. When it is released, I sure will post something about it here.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Installed Control Center on my Metabox laptops - count up to the first freeze begins...

There was something I forgot to write in my posts regarding the random freezes on my Metabox laptop. That is, I posted about this on the Whirlpool forums. One thing that I was specifically asking for was about where I can download all the drivers from. Kris from Kong Computers (that's the store I bought the laptop from) had come across that thread and he informed me via email that he contacted Metabox about this and he gave me two links to download what I wanted. One of the links was to the full suite of drivers for my laptops. It was a 2.5GB-ish download. The other one was for the latest Control Center software (version 5.0001.1.33). Oddly though, the full suite had a slightly older version of Control Center software.

I was quite confident that the laptop was working well so far without a freeze, so I decided to give a shot at this latest version of Control Center. Of course, I created a restore point before installing it.

The setup went without a hiccup. The Flexikey app got installed along with it as well. Finally, I was able to get rid of the dreaded blue backlighting (I won't who's idea it was to use blue as the default backlighting colour!) and this time I settled with white. It's not perfectly white, especially on the bottom most row you can see blue and green tints, but it is useable.

I did not double click the Control Center software though. That probably is a bad idea.

Later on, I set up ThrottleStop using this guide. I don't need Control Center to do that for me. ThrottleStop is was more powerful.

So, the count up till the first freeze begins. Fingers crossed.

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