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This is the archive for July 2012

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Since my wife pre-bought got me Guildwars 2 with free beta access for Father's day this was the first beta weekend and the last before the release of the game. It turned out to be a big event at the house/LAN center. I was only able to join the fun for part of the time Friday night but it was almost non-stop for the rest throughout the weekend. I played a Asura (http://www.guildwars2.com/en/the-game/races/asura/) Necromancer (http://www.guildwars2.com/en/the-game/professions/necromancer/) I did not get to play that much but what little I did the game seemed to have a lot of potential. The interface is WoW'ish and the game has no monthly fees to play. They plan on making their money with expansions and selling in game items. Also things like realm/world changes they charge for.

Ever since I first heard about the project, I was very excited to buy and play around with a Raspberry Pi. I wanted to come up with a fun project utilizing the Raspberry. I decided to set it up as a server on the Internet and see how many years I could keep it running without a reboot. For me, setting up a server with uptimes running for years is no trick. I decided to spice it up and run it using 100% solar power that I generate at my house, with no connection to the grid (not even for backup).

Check it out at http://pi.qcontinuum.com/
QContinuum started out as an ISP (Internet Service Provider) in 1995. I was working at a research lab in Research Park at the UofU running Digital Micro VAXs. We used terminal servers for serial based terminals, scales, blood analyzers, printers, and just about everything else. When I first got on the Internet in 1994 and realized they were using terminal servers (serial connections) for IP networking I was fascinated. Besides the Internet concept was so cool the idea of sharing everything around the world. Back then the World Wide Web had not taken off and the Internet was for the most part email, newsgroups, and file sharing. Anyway I just had to be a part of it so I started my own ISP.

To start out with I never had formal computer training and did not even play on with computers until I was married. I always kept my day job through the history of QContinuum. Most of my computer experience at the time was programming in Fortran and running VMS on Micro VAXs. I knew about a little about different Unixes but every time I started reading about them the commands seemed at the time confusing and not intuitive. Someone had introduced me to Slackware Linux and I had successfully installed the floppy distro. I got Xwindows running and Mozilla which I was using to browse the Internet. At the time it was much better then Windows 3X running winsock.