Stuff in my head

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I Built My Own Computer

So I built my own computer. From parts, obviously, so I guess I should say assembled but whatever. Anyway, it’s a desktop computer and the cool thing about desktops, especially ones you built yourself, is that you can upgrade them!

My current specs are:

  • 8Gb Ram
  • Intel Core i5 (quad core)
  • 128Gb Hard Drive (Solid State)

With all that ram and the quad cores on top of solid state memory, the machine is pretty fast. I actually put it together a few months back and am thinking about doing a little tinkering.

At the time I was quite busy and gaming was the last thing on my mind and I had no interest in it at all. However, since then, I have cut back on work hours and developed a small interest in gaming, which started out because I found there were games you could play online, free! Games such as BattleForge.

The thing about these games is they are taxing on a standard graphics card. In fact, I don’t even have a graphics card, it’s built into the Intel Core i5. But there is room on the motherboard for a graphics card and I’d be really interested in seeing the difference in how these online games run with upgraded graphics.

I’m also pondering upgrading my CPU to the i7 version but I think the first thing, seeing as the CPU doesn’t seem to be working very hard at all at the moment, is to get the graphics card. Don’t you love technology!

I realise it’s not the best in the world but I do love my computer and how smooth it runs. Anyone else proud of their computer? What are your specs?


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Great Lessons to Be Learnt From These Age Specific Quotes

I came across a page of 100 quotes applying to different ages we pass through as we grow older and hopefully, wiser. Here are a few of my favorites from the page:

  • People who say they sleep like a baby usually don’t have one.
    Leo J. Burke
  • A characteristic of the normal child is he doesn’t act that way very often.
  • Nature gives us twelve years to develop a love for our children before turning them into teenagers.
    William Galvin (paraphrased)
  • Middle age is when your age starts to show around your middle.
    Bob Hope
  • The really frightening thing about middle age is the knowledge that you’ll grow out of it.
    Doris Day
  • Men do not quit playing because they grow old; they grow old because they quit playing.
    Oliver Wendell Holmes

See the rest here.

Oh, and the lessons to be learnt? Enjoy life because it flies by!

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Do Kids Learn Anything at School?

Ok, obviously they do. They learn math, science, history, geography, etc, etc. But I have been reading some stuff that ignited a spark that has been smoldering in the back of my mind for some time; that schools aren’t so much education facilities as they are worker factories.

Kids don’t really learn all that much at school. Seriously, beyond the ability to read, write and do some basic sums, what else did you “learn” at school that you still have with you and use to this day. Most of what school is about is the ability to study, remember and pass a test. And once you have passed the test, you are generally free to forget everything and move on with the next subject.

If you want to turn your kid into a great worker, send them to the worker factory, a.k.a. school. Here’s a few minutes of George Carlin (R.I.P.), the late and great thinking man’s comedian as he breaks the school system down for you.


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Teaching Kids the Right Way – Things I want to teach my kids

I was bumbling around and found a site Penelope Trunk’s site, specifically this post about motivation. I thought it was a good one. Of course, there are things I agree with and things I don’t. The article talks about letting kids learn what they want to learn. A fantastic concept but one that I think, in reality, isn’t going to work all the time. Surely there are things you want to teach your children that they don’t want to learn.

Reading more posts in the Home Schooling section of that site gives some great ideas that I would love to bring to my children and their learning. But still, I don’t think I can afford to home school them, as great as that sounds and as terrible as schools are starting to look, once you have your eyes opened.

Let kids learn what they want to learn. Look to see what interests them and how they start to learn about it and yourself learn from that. How do your kids learn? Use that.

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Handling Regret – Things I want to teach my kids

I’m sitting here trying to get some work done and from out of nowhere a memory I am ashamed of burst into my head. Other times when this memory has burst into my head, I have had physical reactions to the memory. My cheeks and ears burned red and my head dropped down in shameful regret.

This regretful action wasn’t anything illegal. It was something I said at a party when I was new to alcohol that caused the other person, who came up to introduce himself to me, to stand there speechless for a moment then having nothing else to say, to walk away and never speak to me again. It wasn’t offensive, racist, sexist or bad what I said, but it put a wall up and when I remember the moment I regret it.

Today however, instead of looking down and reliving the personal shame, I looked up and shook my head at how young and stupid I was. And this is something I want to eventually teach my kids (I don’t have children as of yet).

You will do stupid stuff. You will do things you regret. But don’t relive every failure and shame yourself into thinking you are a lesser person. Learn from these failures. Laugh at the stupidity and realise you have learnt how not to do something and that next time you will have more success.


Hotmail/ Not Opening

I have an outlook account, previously known as hotmail, as well as a gmail account. There is no doubt which one is better. email sucks. I thought the “upgrade” from hotmail to outlook was ok – a nice and clean interface but lately the site itself has been having issues!

When I go to, the site won’t even load. From various different computers that in the past have been fine loading the page, I now can’t even get to the login page. I’m guessing something is wrong with the site’s ability to be accessed (IP issues or something, I’m not an internet guru), at least temporarily. And if it’s not something wrong with the site’s connection, then something wrong with the site’s design because while the outlook login page won’t load, visiting any other website is without issue.

Anyone else having this problem lately?

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Population Control

It’s something not many people are willing to consider. Population control. I’m that age where peers are starting to have families and I am surprised by how many of them aren’t willing to consider that they don’t live in the same world as their parents. That there might be too many people in this world. That we possibly need to think a bit harder before we commit ourselves to the family image of having two or three children.

If you are about to start a family yourself, consider not having so many children. One of the biggest arguments for not having less children is that we don’t want to raise a single child – the “only child syndrome” sucks. Brothers and sisters are great. No one said acting responsibly was easy. But we are getting to the point where having a large family is selfish on a global level. We all want to enjoy the joys of our own family but we need to consider every single new child. Babies don’t die any more. Neither do we – at least not as quickly as we used to. Almost every child these days survives to adulthood (compared to 100 or so years ago) and every adult lives longer and longer.

The world population was estimated to pass 7 billion on Halloween of 2011 (or there abouts – there are different dates put forward and all with a margin of error of about 12 months). That is a lot of people. Less than two years later and the world has increased another eighth of a billion. Very roughly that’s 280 million new people but only 155 million died in that period. You might call me callous for saying “only” before saying “155 million died” but death is natural and should be balanced with new life. Currently, death is losing.

Here’s some stats from wikipedia:

  • 7 billion – 2011 (12 years to go from 6b to 7b)
  • 6 billion – 1999 (12 years to go from 5b to 6b)
  • 5 billion – 1987 (13 years to go from 4b to 5b)
  • 4 billion – 1974 (14 years to go from 3b to 4b)
  • 3 billlion – 1960 (33 years to go from 2b to 3b)
  • 2 billion – 1927 (123 years to go from 1b to 2b)
  • 1 billion – 1804

In my lifetime, the world population has increased 2 billion.

In my parents lifetime, the world population has more than doubled, increasing more than 4 billion.

My grandparents are dead but were they to live to 100, they would see the world population increase 8 fold. By the time people in their 20’s and 30’s now are reaching the end of their natural lives, we may see the world population double again. I hope not.

Can the world handle it? I don’t think it can handle much more! The worst of it will be put on poorer nations as their water is used to grow food which is shipped to richer nations. But it will also affect richer nations as the poorer and middle class struggle to afford good food. I expect everyone in richer nations will still be able to eat, but whether they are still able to get clean, drinkable water and healthy food with fresh fruit and vegetables in their diet will be another thing. Even today, fresh fruit and vegetables are almost becoming something of a luxury. Clean drinkable water is something not everyone has in their house and many only drink water from a bottle. More people means more consumption means more pollution.

Can the economy handle it? The economy we live in requires constantly more input. More people to support the increase in consumption and production our economies need to be considered prosperous. Greater technology to increase production to support more people. More people means less land per person so real estate prices skyrocket and people complain that they can’t buy a house to house their family. What do you expect? Land doesn’t grow.

And the point that I was getting to is that despite our out of control population growth, no one seems willing to address it. No one considers that this is a problem and that we need to consider much more carefully how many children we have. Please don’t tell me that your town or city needs more kids. We live globally. We live on the globe. And we only have one to share between us all.