media, tv comments edit

I hadn’t heard back from the TV repair people on when they’d be scheduling my repair, so I just now called them.

Tuesday, February 15. Over a week from now.

Last time I pinged them earlier in the morning on Monday and they got to me in three days. Now it’s eight. Next time (if there is a next time), I’m calling every 15 minutes first thing Monday to get in.

So I wait. Hopefully the picture distortion won’t just drive me absolutely buggy in the meantime.

General Ramblings comments edit

I’m not a big fan of the SUV. Between the fact that most of the people who own them never go offroad, never haul anything, and don’t know how to drive and/or park them, and the fact that they consume natural resources like they’re going out of style, I believe the SUV is the largest atrocity ever to saunter slowly down the freeway.

To that end, here’s an excellent educational article for you: Are Small Cars A Threat To SUV Drivers?

media, tv comments edit

The television repairman, Jon, fixed my TV today around 11:30a or so. The problem I was seeing was some color distortion in the bottom corners of the set. It looked like some sort of magnetic disturbance, but there was nothing near that area of the case, so I couldn’t figure it out.

Jon said he’s seen this a lot. The deal is, the tube in my TV (being a 40” tube) is large enough to be affected by geomagnetic forces (i.e., the North Magnetic Pole). Which means if you place it, it gets used to facing a particular direction and the forces in a particular location. When we moved to the new place, the moving process, coupled with the fact that the TV isn’t oriented precisely the direction it used to be, caused the “purity” (as Jon calls it) to go out of alignment.

Jon did the “purity alignment” by silicone gluing some small magnets to the tube. It was a trial-and-error process, and you can’t get it 100% perfect, but it’s fixed enough now that you don’t see any distortion in the picture.

I would never have conceived that the Earth’s magnetism would affect my TV. Definitely not something they tell you in the store.

He told me lots of interesting things about TVs and such. For example, DLP (digital light processing) TVs on the assembly line can be aligned/configured via a computer-driven sensor array in about 10 - 15 seconds. My TV, being a large tube, must be aligned by a human, and each human only gets about 30 seconds to do that alignment. He also told me that manufacturers are moving away from CRT (tube) TVs and toward LCD and DLP (rear-projection) TVs. Finally, he recommended looking at the Samsung DLP TVs, particularly their 50” model, as those offer the most bang for your buck (they use the same internal components as the Mitsubishi TVs but have less troubles and are, in some cases, consumer-serivceable).

Not that I want to be buying a new TV in the near future, but if and when the time comes, I’ll have to give those a look.

downloads, coderush, net, vs comments edit

Use of context menus from within the DXCore plugin framework (used to extend Visual Studio .NET) is not very well documented within the DXCore developer documentation.

I have a need to use context menus in some planned enhancements to my CR_Documentor plugin. I got an example of generallly how it works, but nothing that compiles and actually does anything… so I wrote one myself.

Enter CR_ContextMenuDemo: Source for a compilable DXCore plugin that illustrates how context menus can be used from within the DXCore plugin framework. The source is well commented to illustrate precisely what is happening in each place. You’d be surprised how easy it is to use context menus in DXCore.

Download CR_ContextMenuDemo source

media, tv comments edit

I love my TV. Love it. I bought it two years ago and haven’t looked back.

Until, of course, this weekend, when, as I was sitting there having a great time watching movies, I noticed that the bottom corners of the picture look distorted, like there’s some magnetic interference or something going on there. Very slight, but once I noticed it, it stuck out like a sore thumb and I couldn’t not look at it.

I went looking for my receipt, which should accompany my warranty information. I found the user manual and the factory warranty, but no receipt. I mean, I found every receipt to almost everything I own, but no TV receipt. I’m sure I put it in some secure place I wouldn’t forget. So secure, it’s safe even from me.

This put me into panic mode. See, the TV is just out of factory warranty. For the life of me, I couldn’t remember if I had bought the extended warranty or not, and not having the receipt, I couldn’t say.

I called the place I bought the TV this morning and, sure enough, I was smart enough to go for the extended warranty. (I think I worked it in for free because the TV was such a high-ticket item.) Awesome. A huge load off my chest, because I was thinking I was going to end up with a $3000, 300-pound lump in the middle of my living room.

Today has seen a flurry of phone calls. To the store I bought the TV at, to the repair shop, to the electronics warranty firm… and I think it’s worked out now so a guy will call me on Wednesday to schedule the time to come in and check it out.

Here’s hoping for goodness. I barely slept last night between that and work stressing me out. Sometimes I’m thinking that life is just downs with a small series of ups. I really hope I’m just being pessimistic.