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March 19, 2013

Dell Dimension 4550 Crash

OK. So now, my Dell Dimension 4550 won't boot up. Check the 4 diagnostic lights on the back of the PC. Lights are labeled A, B, C, D. A & C are Yellow. B & D are Green. So, according to this, these lights indicate a video controller failure. Hmmmm. Now, to look and see if I have a video controller that can be removed.

Now, after remove the video card, the lights have changed. I now have

Posted by Rob Kiser on March 19, 2013 at 8:06 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

March 14, 2013

Printer Ink


Posted by Rob Kiser on March 14, 2013 at 3:09 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

March 13, 2013

Verizon Math


Posted by Rob Kiser on March 13, 2013 at 12:42 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

March 5, 2013

Man Tossed Out of Pizza Restraunt in North Beach

Posted by Rob Kiser on March 5, 2013 at 11:30 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

March 4, 2013

GoPro Codec

I tried to copy two videos from my GoPro to a Windows 7 machine today. One of them would play in Windows Media Player. One of them wouldn't. So, this got me wondering what sort of Codec we're dealing with. As it turns out, GoPro creates videos as MP4 files using the CineForm 444 codec, a proprietary variation of the H.264 codec.

You can download GoPro's free Cineform software here, and then convert the video to .AVI's if you want a more standardized, user-friendly format.

On a lark, I just decided to upload the two .MP4 files that were created in the GoPro camera. So, I uploaded them to YouTube. One file was like 10 megs. The other was 160 megs. Both uploaded and, I couldn't play them in FireFox, but I could play them in Google Chrome no problem. Interesting.

Posted by Rob Kiser on March 4, 2013 at 4:34 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

SanDisk Ultra 64 GB MicroSDXC Class 10 UHS-1 Memory Card Pre-Formatted File System

I recently purchased a SanDisk Ultra 64 GB MicroSDXC Class 10 UHS-1 Memory Card. I believe that it was shipped pre-formatted, but I was unable to read or write from the MicroSDXC card using Windows XP. With Mountain Lion OSX, I was able to read the MicroSDXC card, but not write to it. Only under Windows 7 was I able to successfully read and write to the MicroSDXC card.

I'd love to know a) if this card shipped pre-formatted and b) what file system was used if it was shipped pre-formatted.

OK. According to this site, these Micro SD cards ship preformatted as the "exFAT" filing system:

Reformat into file system other than exFAT may cause instability
Only compatible with SDXC enabled device in exFAT format per SD Standard

OK. so, they're formatted as 'exFAT" filing system. Apparently, exFAT is supposed to cross over between Apple and Windows. A shared file system, as it were. Interesting.

So, OK. Fair enough. And, it's supposed to work with XP. But then, if that's the case, then why couldn't I write to it or reformat it under Windows XP? And why couldn't I reformat it or write to it with my Maxbook Air Mountain Lion OS X?

Posted by Rob Kiser on March 4, 2013 at 11:45 AM : Comments (1) | Permalink

Check Firmware Version on GoPro Hero3 Black Edition

I'm wanting some sort of unambiguous confirmation that I manually patched the firmware properly on my GoPro Hero 3 Black Edition. There's not a display screen to tell you what your firmware version is, obviously. That would take all of the fun out of it. But this guy says that this will work:

If you connect your Hero3 to a computer, open the usb drive.. and drill down to the MISC folder, there is a filed named "Version", just open it in a notepad..

Here is what is in the file.
"info version":"1.1",
"firmware version":"HD3.03.02.00",
"wifi version":"",
"wifi bootloader version":"0.2.2",
"wifi mac":"d896850c7904",
"camera type":"Hero3-Black Edition",

OK. So, here's what in my version.txt file:
"info version":"1.1",
"firmware version":"HD3.03.02.00",
"wifi version":"",
"wifi bootloader version":"0.2.2",
"wifi mac":"d896852a3cd7",
"camera type":"Hero3-Black Edition",

Does this mean that mine was updated? I'm not clear. The information on the file version.txt says it was last updated in Jan 1, 2012 at 10:26 a.m. However, according to this guy, this means that I successfully patched my GoPro Hero3 to the latest version of the firmware.

Posted by Rob Kiser on March 4, 2013 at 11:15 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink


So i'm playing with my GoPro Hero3 Black Edition WiFi remote controlled camera and ...what can I say? This thing is insane.

I'm playing with the GoPro camera. Turned off all the lights and beeping crap. So, you can't tell if it's turned on or not. I turn on my iPhone, turn on the WiFi, and connect to the wireless network that my GoPro camera is creating. Are you following this? The freaking camera creates a wireless network...I connect to it via WiFi, and now I can control the camera remotely. See what it sees on my iPhone.

A guy sits down beside me, and I turn it on, and start recording him. He has no clue. All he knows is there's a small GoPro camera pointing at him. He has no way of knowing if he's being recorded or not. I turn the camera on and take some stills. I switch it to video and record him in video mode. With audio.

It's gone way beyond Big Brother. This is not Big Brother. This is Lurking Stranger. This is something much more pervasive. The problem with Big Brother spying on you is that, in theory, they have limited budget, and there are some legal boundaries on what they can do, in theory anyway.

With the Lurking Stranger, all bets are off. You have no way of knowing who is recording your, or when, or why. But now, the technology is finally out there, so that it's going to be as common as cell phones. Little tiny video cameras filming you. Listening to you. Watching you.

Christ. This is going to be nuts. Crazy.

Posted by Rob Kiser on March 4, 2013 at 9:10 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

March 2, 2013

GoPro Hero 3 Black Edition

OK. Following the directions on this youtube video to update my GoPro manually, as some people have reported that the Java update causes problems with the camera seizing. Nice.

Put in the MicroSD 64 GB memory card. Recorded the serial number. Plugged it up to the PC via the USB cable. Battery is charging. Says you need to have two bars before you apply the update.

But, this little thing is maddening, of course. I have no idea what all of the flashing lights and beeping means. Makes me want to throw it in the river.

You have to enter a serial number, and on the camera, it's on two lines like this:


But they want you to enter it on one line, like this, apparently: HD3BB01132A3CD7

When I hook it up via USB to my XP machine, it says the drive is not formatted, and do I want to format it now? I'm not sure what the right answer is here. If it already took 4 pictures, how can the CF card not be formatted? WTF?

The user manual is here.

OK. Could not understand what was going on. I thought it needed to charge. It wouldn't turn on, and when I connect it to the PC, all it does is show USB and three flashing bars which I assumed indicated it was charging.

None of this was accurate. Actually, I believe the unit was fully charged. It's just nearly impossible to turn on. You have to have faith. To remove the battery, reinstall it, and then hold down the power button for eons and pray that it comes on. Only then will it power on.

So, mine will power on, and it appears to take pictures. Battery life indicator shows 2 bars. Camera mode (W). 12 MP. 9344. Who knows what this means. But its on now.

My memory card: SanDisk Ultra 64 GB MicroSDXC Class 10 UHS-1 Memory Card with Adapter

Finally determined that I was unable to read or format the Sandisk 64 Gig memory card using my Windows XP machine. Not clear why. However, when I hooked it up to the Macbook Air, it worked flawlessly. So, we're through with the windows setup at this point. Thanks for playing. We're moving on to the deep end of the pool.

Maddening. No one with any sense should buy this piece of shit. WAYYYY too much trouble. I mean, seriously people. WTF? Been dicking with this POS for hours. Still no closer.

There are four files we're supposed to copy over to the root on the MicroSD card:

When I try to copy them over on the MacBook Air, I get this:

"The operation can't be completed because an unexpected error occurred (error code -8058)"

I was finally able to copy these four files over after I connected it to a laptop running Windows 7. Thank God. So, I got the four files copied over that it wanted. Finally got those on there. Then, the camera pretty much started updating itself. It wasn't even connected to my laptop.

Blue light flashing...says Updating....then it beeped a few times and powered down. It appears that it has successfully updated! Woohoo!!!

Continue reading "GoPro Hero 3 Black Edition"

Posted by Rob Kiser on March 2, 2013 at 8:24 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink