Thugs' Current Projects

March 18th, 2006:

Picked up a few things for some of my ongoing projects, most notably a 70meg external hard drive for my Model 4P and printer ribbons for my DMP-130, but not much else.  The 400MHz CPU card I bought for Cinq didn't work, so I'm using the original 370MHz processor from here on in.  Haven't had much inclination to play around with Cinq yet, but all in good time.  I'm going to download Solaris 10 tomorrow, so I can finally get the thing going and start working in a Unix environment again!


February 19th, 2006:

Not much happening in terms of projects right now.  We've both been busy with our own hectic lives and as such, haven't been able to devote much (if any) time to the cause.  Eventually, "Real Life" interferes with everything.  Fear not, we'll be plunking away at different things when time permits, most importantly the Documentation Project, as well as the Thugs Server Project.  I've also JUST updated The 4P Diaries for the first time in six months!  Had a few interesting acquisitions, too, but I'll write that up when I have a bit more time.


December 4th, 2005:

    The Lab is back up and running after four solid meetings (not consecutive) worth of electrical work!  The next few meetings will likely be spent reorganizing the Lab, taking stock of what we have (got a fair bit of new stuff) and generally tidying up.  Acquisitions (on my end, anyway) will likely be on the light side until the middle-to-end of January, as I have Christmas to worry about and delinquent bills to pay ;)


Aug 27th, 2005:

    There's been a fair bit of activity here at Thugs' HQ of late!  Slam has been hard at work, fighting to get the Mame Box up and running, and I've been cleaning out the office in order to begin phase one of the Documentation Project.  While I drum up funding for my three main projects, I'll be hard at work scanning and archiving some of the more uncommon (or downright extinct) manuals and info in our collection.  I'll likely start out with my Sony SMC-70G manuals, since I already have them on my desk (part of one of my projects), and because info on the SMC-70G is practically nonexistant online.

    I've also been slowly updating the website, trying for a more uniform look, where the fonts and layout are the same on each page, instead of the randomly formatted crap we had.


Aug 2nd, 2005:

    Not much, he says!!! Since last I updated, I have obtained two state of the art Berzerk arcade cabinets (CJ's NOTE: One housed the game Wardner, the other held Breakthru). Both were upgraded to Jamma standard. Unfortunately only the Wardner cabinet was in working condition. At least the BreakThru board worked. Recently, I have been working hard at replacing the monitor and packing in CJ's 1.2 GHz IBM compatible. This system is functioning with single player joystick and 5 cherry buttons, Wireless keyboard, and hopefully soon a 2 player panel, maybe even a Midnight Resistance compatible joystick.


June 26th, 2005:

    Hmmm, guess it HAS been a while since the last update, eh?  Ah well, that's what happens when life interferes and people get burnt out on computers and website development in general...

Nothing much has happened, really.  Apart from a couple of unspectacular acquisitions and a few outside repair jobs, there ain't much going on.  I'm starting a new experiment (not just a mere "project") that will test both my "power user" skills and my sanity, details can be found in my section. is still in its "paper" stage, nothing has been done hardware-wise just yet, and likely won't be until the fall.  I'm essentially taking a breather for the summer, so I can enjoy the great outdoors and do a bit of yardwork, and barbecue and so on... as well as laying down the groundwork for another project for the fall.  More on that later.

So, get out into the outside world and have a great summer!

December 19th, 2004:

    Slam and I braved the elements today, and risked going out to our favourite low-cost computer store.  It's a good thing we did, too, since I found the bargain of a lifetime.

    It was there, sitting in the electronics pile (an apt description if ever there was) at Value Village, staring right at me, screaming, "CJ! CJ! Please rescue me from this pile!".  So I picked it up, looked it over, and called Slam to show him.  He powered it up, it booted, and I am once again the proud owner of a fully functional Tandy 1000RL (20 Mb HD, 720K floppy, Tandy CM-5 monitor, but missing the keyboard and mouse).

If you've read my bio, you'd know the Tandy 1000RL was the first MS-DOS computer I owned.  I had the machine for about two years in the early 1990's and absolutely LOVED the thing.  Hell, I have a great love for Tandy computers in general.  There wasn't much on the unit I picked up today;  Deskmate was there, DOS 3.3 was there, Pkzip/unzip 1.1 were there, and a few hundred Kilobytes of text documents the previous owners left on there, so not much of interest.  That, of course, will change soon enough.  Right now, I will probably use the thing for nostalgic purposes and run some of my old favourite games, but eventually I intend to use the machine to null-modem (via Deskmate's terminal, or possibly Telemate) into a terminal server when is up and running.  Of course, that leaves the single 8-bit ISA slot empty... hmmm, what am I going to put in that?  Maybe I'll look for an Adlib card?  Only time and eBay will tell.


December 5th, 2004:

    The Lab has recently been upgraded with a new workbench to better store our equipment. The primary workbench will be expanded to better store our parts and let us leave the dedicated systems up. I have in the last 2 months gotten CJ's Indy going with IRIX, and gotten my IPC running with Solaris 2.5. Feel free to check out the site index for notes regarding the dead NVRAM solution, and tips and tricks to getting your IPC up and running.


In other news, I am currently laying the groundwork for, which will be our own PRIVATE intranet. My original intent was to set up a small network in the Lab, with nodes/terminals in my office, the design room, and the Annex. Of course, I can never do anything on a small scale, so I intend to add dial-in access, as well as provisions for serial/null-modem terminals via a MUX setup. I will be using my recently acquired Sun Sparcserver 20 as the preliminary server, which will handle all dial-in and terminal access, as well as act as the http, ftp, tftp, mail, and news server. For an OS, I'll be using Solaris 8. Once I feel the Sparcserver is adequately set up, I hope to be able to use my IBM RS/6000 based Powerserver 520H as our main/primary server. Lord knows, we have the equipment to do it... more on this as it develops.

Conceited Jerk

September 5th, 2004:

    In the last week CJ and I have finally gotten his Indy up and running. Possibly this will allow us toget the Personal Iris up as well (unable to install from CDROM to date). We've even begun working in the Annex, perhaps we'll get his car up and running. This weeks project includes building more workstation real estate and computer storage for the lab. We are now looking at systems that will be setup for dedicated purposes. We would like to keep them in place for the next project, instead of having to move them to short term storage.


August 15th, 2004:

    CJ and I have been hard at work, he's been enjoying his holidays and I've been working on my house. Today we've completed his patio, and we're continuing the cleanup in the lab.


June 16th, 2004:

    Last week's project was wiring in the CJ's guest room for internet access and setting up the rack mount hub. Of course this simplifies things for us by reducing the number of mini hubs, and allowing permanent wire ups for the different systems. Additionally, we've added more info for the IT professional or home user for another elusive piece of equipment. Feel free to check the Lattishub page.


May 28th, 2004:

    CJ and I haven't forgotten the site, but continue to work on the systems. As I have been archiving the systems to CDR's, to preserve the systems for the future, little time has been devoted to my non-IBM compatible systems.


April 16th, 2004:

Flux doesn't BEGIN to describe it... well, maybe a little... Perhaps more of an organized chaos...

Man, over the last couple of weeks, I managed to acquire a TON of new stuff (quite literally), including a dozen or so systems, hardware, software, and manuals.  Slam and I are in the process of sorting the mess out, and learning a thing or two as we go.  We'll be occupied with the reorganization of the lab for at least another couple of meetings, not only finding out what we have, but also what we'll NEED (tools, hardware, docs, etc) to make a go of everything.

Apart from categorizing and cataloguing our inventory (buy in bulk!), we're currently learning about the stuff as we go... Slam has been reading up on one of my latest acquisitions (more on that in the near future), and I've been reading up on Unix security when I'm not picking up new hardware...

Speaking of acquisitions... Through my friend (and honourary Thug) Kandi, I picked up several more boxes of manuals and books today.  I tell you, I am in Geek Heaven.  They were ALL books on X-Windows development!  Combine that with the plethora of HP-UX and AIX stuff I have, you can see the direction I will be heading...

Much as I like Windows 98SE for doing all my daily, mundane chores, there's nothing quite like Unix for really stretching one's knowledge, muscle, and imagination.

Conceited Jerk (OS, software, and head of acquisition!)

April 11th 2004:

    Once again the lab is in a state of flux. We've had to rethink our storage and lab layout, due to an influx of newer systems. We've even had to organize our parts to see what we currently possess.

Other than that, all I have been doing is testing out the newer systems to ensure all parts work, and organizing our new software and manuals. At this rate it'll be another month before I can get back to regular updates.

Slam (The Hardware Junkie)

Feb 29th 2004:

    For those that watch our site, it's been awhile since the last update. The Lab has gone through some changes. CJ and I have recently acquired a 17" Multisync Monitor for the Amigas (purchase price? less than $15 CDN), and are currently waiting on an SGI Indy and Sun IPC system (currently in shipment, an Indy for CJ and a Sparc for Slam). Other then that, we've been working on several different flavours of Linux for our different systems, and I've assembled basic IBM clone systems for our different needs. The biggest push we've done is tidied up our repair bin, including: replacing a failing Amiga 4000 power supply fan, cleaning and repairing a Sun keyboard for the Sparcstations.


January 1st 2004:

    Last nights recap for those who are curious. I got the SGI's talking to each other through tftp, enough to begin installing IRIX on my Personal Iris. Damn thing crashed part way through, but significant progress for us none the less. Hmm now that we have a reliable tftp client... I wonder if it'll act as a server for the HP Envizex. I'll add that to the project list.

to return<--
to see past projects -->