Storypost | 2009.01.26

Living room renovation bookshelf photorealistic rendering

New lighting for the living room. You probably didn't notice, but I ms painted in a bookshelf to indicate what it'll look like sans line of sight to the light sources. Here's how it is now:

Living room lighting can lights

I've got them wired up to a motion sensor that can operate in daytime since led bulbs don't really use any power. For whatever reason the switch is still supplying 60vac in the off position, probably because of the low load. I'll figure something out.

I'm very happy about the upward facing wall mounted lights for vaulted rooms and will likely continue elsewhere. Of course halogens, hids, or even cfls would provide a fantastic indirect reading light in this formation. And wiring them requires no pre-existing outlets or fishing, you just go straight through the wall into the attic.

And while I was in the attic I spent some time protectanting the near-vent lumber both chemically and with a layer of 4 mil clear plastic that also makes moving around up there much more palatable (insulation, dust, other).

Dining room table renovation

I also installed the dining room light fixture, though I have grander plans for the next revision. What's also evident are the baseboards and pain-in-the-ass circuit that's not getting any power. I had to sort out quite a few electrical issues this weekend, most surrounding preexisting two-node outlets on switches where they still supply the neutral line for various fixtures downstream.


You going to be in the lab in the 6:00 area? Got a class at the craft center at 6:30...
Craft center? Can you make me a bong shaped like you? Anonymous

In other news I've got to be able to get a Nikonos V for not expensive. Have to.

Oh and a bit more on Fallout. It's significant release and requires significant praise and critique. First, the visuals in this game are stunning. Normally this means smooth polygons and fancy lighting effects - but as we've seen in GTA et al, pretty graphics cannot coexist with open environments. But Fallout excels at presenting a world that looks very natural and occasionally very unnatural. The scenery of the wasteland is cohesive but nonrepetitive, and you always feel under the watch of the nigh-unreachable Capitol dome. Wallowing in the carcass of civilization naturally draws you to the occasional outcropping of habitation such as the marooned carrier that houses Rivet City or Tenpenny Tower that looms over the western frontier.

But the DC in 2277 isn't exactly as I would imagine; the line between civilization and chaos is too fine. That's not to say there aren't gun battles in the towns and roving traders in the wasteland, but it's a bit too artificial to have a few islands where you're perfectly safe in a sea of constant danger. I grant that pragmatically speaking each town would need fortification, but castle walls were built beside cities, not around them. It'd be nice to stroll the Patomac, see a couple nonmutants and know that the area is at least somewhat safe and an urban area is nearby.

Most games will incessantly push you toward the end, either by offering penalties for slow play or providing constant reminders of unfulfilled objectives. Even the GTA:IV featured an endless flurry of phone calls and high maintenance associations. A harried existence does not mesh well with the world of the post-apocalypse and thankfully Fallout supports listless wandering. The pace and atmosphere lend to a distinct similarity to the arechetypal western. Yet when I saw my character in spiked armor and a white vintage motorcycle helmet I realized there is also a distinct Mad Max vibe. Finally, the omnipresent relics of pre-doomsday society suggest a bleak 1950s-meets-Clockwork Orange feel.


I thought that was a sliding wood panel.


DC never looked so good

I picked up Fallout 3 a couple days ago.

Compromising admissions

The mirrors add light and space to the bathrooms. I can get away with the panels for the sides of the upstairs bathroom and all of the downstairs. I shudder to think of how much a custom 5' x 3' is going to run me for the main, upstairs piece.

Back to work

After a morning paddle out with the bros, Jes and I went down to the cove to watch the fireworks. The bluffs above the caves were a great spot, although the people on kayaks might have had more fun.