Q&A Session 4
February 1, 2023 at 2:15 PM (Updated on February 16, 2023 at 5:39 PM)
After another couple of years, I've opened up another question asking session. I think at this point, though, what could be answered is starting to run dry (and this place appears to be fading from visibility), so this will likely be the last one unless a lot more major stuff accumulates in the future.
The door for questions shut after February 15th, so now it's time to answer them...
Have you thought about doing an in-depth guide to introducing Linux to a new user that wants to veer away from Windows or Mac, providing instructions on the differences between how commands, programs, and settings work in Linux compared to the aforementioned? I have wanted to try out Arch for a while with the layout Chicago95 provides like you have.
It's definitely come to mind; I've mainly considered writing an introduction to the use of the Bash shell which progresses from "I've never used a command line before" to leveraging the shell's powerful scripting capabilities. One of my main concerns with writing such a guide would be the potential for missing some seriously timesaving techniques in the process, and potentially plagiarizing anything else; if there's something I need to do, I tend to learn how to do it on the spot with a quick reference handy.
From a general standpoint, the way Linux would be configured is very different from how things are done in Windows. You may as well drop the concept of a "registry" entirely (and good thing, too, because the Windows Registry is a convoluted piece of shit), as many Linux programs and components get their configurations directly from text files. Each desktop environment also comes with its own set of control panels which will have different interfaces, but can often serve the same functions regardless.
In regards to Arch Linux, well... I'd find it hard to give a proper guide on it, as I've still never bothered to learn how to install it myself. I just used a custom script that was written for me. I could probably go and try to write up a more refined installation script if I found the time to dive into this subject.
Chicago95 is just a theme for XFCE, the actual underlying GUI I use. For a distribution like Arch, XFCE is not integral, nor is any GUI, really. You can simply switch it out for another GUI, and most everything will work just fine. You can also go without any GUI at all, though it would definitely limit your options. The way it all works here could be compared to the relationship between MS-DOS and Windows before Windows 95 and NT: the GUI was a separate component, and you could easily put another one in its place, like GeoWorks Ensemble. Now try loading a better shell into some newer version of Windows. It'll be a headache.
How do you feel about Debian requiring either Firefox ESR or Epiphany? Do you think it hinders Debian in any way?
This seems to be more of an issue with one of the metapackages being used; from what I understand, it insists on at least one web browser being installed, but somehow this metapackage doesn't recognize SeaMonkey as a browser...? I guess it's supposed to be a measure to prevent screwing up things for the end user, but it does come off as seriously backwards, given we know how much Windows 98 absolutely requires its favorite web browser at all times.
What is your opinion on AI or robots affecting things like employment, production (such as art) and the economy? Do you think that one day, people will start getting laid off en masse when these things become widespread in business?
It's a very real possibility. But to confront this issue, it's necessary to consider the earliest cases of automation, dating all the way back to the 19th century. There's a ton of factories with all this machinery that tirelessly performs the work of potentially dozens of people, which would have included such mundane actions like sewing, spinning yarn, and even simple calculations. We take these for granted nowadays, but you can expect that the people once doing their spinning by hand were quite pissed that their work was no longer viable compared to what a machine could put out.
Automation is something that should be possible to embrace, as it means less of the repetitive manual labor that people have to go through to contribute to the sustenance of society. On a large scale, however, it can come with heavy prices. People that had been providing their families with stable livings with their everyday work can suddenly get displaced by such technical innovations for product assembly, accounting, material extraction, metal manufacturing, and food... and yes, that includes fishing. Don't even get me started on that.
Some workers do end up finding other positions in their field, but others end up having to go elsewhere. As it stands now, one of the biggest problems with manual production being replaced by automation is that the ability to negotiate with labor becomes lost. Such an idea proposed to address this like a "universal basic income" where everyone gets a set amount of money every month sounds great on paper, but I find it has far more sinister implications. If it turns out that your 1,000 bucks is all you're getting and nothing more, does that erode class mobility further? Could the concerned voices of those from the 19th and early 20th century suddenly be starting to have their predictions come true?
This is a gigantic subject that I would not be able to entirely take on myself, but I'll say this: such a field you mention like art cannot, and should not be replaced by artificial intelligence. In the long run, something generated entirely by a computer program cannot command a level of respect as even the most amateur piece of work done by hand.
Do you HATE the Half-Life series?
It's fine, but is quite overhyped, especially the first game. For a lot of the things Half-Life gets credit for, Unreal beat it to the punch, yet that's been downplayed a lot. Half-Life's graphics were especially falling behind by 1998 standards, which would've been excusable if not for the fact that the game manages to encounter regular frame rate dips in small corridors on a 350MHz Pentium II with an Nvidia TNT2 Model 64. That is not acceptable.
Half-Life 2 was far better than its predecessor in nearly every way conceivable; beyond the obvious technical improvements going from 1998 to 2004, it does a much better job at telling a more grappling story through its previously established anti-cutscene narrative style, it's better optimized so that a fast Pentium III (or two?) stands a chance against it, and, well, the narrower selection of weapons ended up being of great benefit to the gameplay. The first game's arsenal was bloated, hence I often had trouble figuring out which weapons would be appropriate for whatever situations. Such things like snarks often ended up being completely unused.
Have you played Blood (1997)? If so, what is your opinion on it?
I have not. I do happen to have it in my library; maybe one day I'll get around to giving it a spin on one of my older machines, but I don't find myself too compelled to play a lot of games.
ShitTok, craptocurrency, cancer culture, stain culture. This shit sucks. Do you think we should try to find a way to bring things back to the way they were in the past? Particularly the 1990's and early 2000's.
I've already been working on that since this website first came to be. We've developed superior anti-bullshit means of delivering what we want, but means that were already right there. Much like how companies like Apple convinced the populace that "smart" phones are the only way forward, it would be a matter of showing these people that there is a better way of doing things.
What are your thoughts on x86 PC Emulation (PCem, 86Box) etc?
It's still in a bad position. I've encountered a significant sum of problems in PC emulation that I've simply never encountered on real hardware. I have been leaning towards emulation over virtualization for specific purposes given Windows 9x, mostly 98, is really buggy with my Ryzen CPUs, and VMware is a bit of a clusterfuck on Linux. I'm hoping one day PC emulation will get much better so as to potentially cool off the ferocious vintage hardware market, but my problems with the emulation scene expand beyond the technical problems, if you know what I mean...
What were some of the hurdles you faced (if any) with implementing self-hosted videos on this site (e.g. additional storage costs, etc)?
Perhaps that and actually making some new videos for this site; the Hardcore Windows extras were especially a tall order to fulfill. Over time, I've also had to revise the video pages to make them more robust while the need for more features popped up.
What do you think about the alternatives to vmware, such as virtualbox and qemu? Have you made the switch? THEBaratusII kind of beat me to it but...
For virtualization, I've started favoring QEMU a lot more wherever possible. It's the ideal option for setting up a Linux box on the fly, especially one that just uses text. It's also used for my Windows 2000 domain controller. I really think QEMU could do better in regards to emulating a few more video adapters, though... an old Cirrus Logic adapter for something like Windows XP is just bad.
Is there gonna be a 3D game from you in the future?
3D, no, but I do plan on one otherwise.
After using AMD RayZen for a while. Would you still want to go back to Intel Gore series, or would you rather stay on AMD RayZen now?
It depends on which is better for multithreading, which AMD looks to still be the leader in.
Considering how usable older Windows releases such as Windows 2000 or 98 really can be, have you tried to actually use them as your main OS (after support has ended obviously)?
I have not, though I've considered the idea of running nothing but Windows 95 for a week. A lot of it would hinge on being able to get the latest version of PuTTY running on there to upkeep my site; I know someone who got it to work, and I'd really like to know how.
Are you still running Windows 7?
Only as a secondary operating system for a secondary workstation of mine, specifically to run Adobe software and a few other programs whenever needed.
Will you run Minecraft on a Coppermine Pentium 3?
Minecraft? Seriously? What is with you kids and your unending obsession for such a lousy game? I will do no such thing, but I think it's safe to assume that it would run like shit. After seeing it running on Windows 98 once from another video, I can see that it's one of the most unoptimized things I've ever seen, even worse than 200GB texture-heavy games. Is it Java, perhaps? Does it even run on that anymore?
What do you think of early Flash/Java content? Will Razorback or affiliates ever see such things?
I will not be hosting Flash or Java content on this site. People have asked me before about making a Flash-based video player, but I feel that would be far too clunky given what Razorback is supposed to be.
What are your thoughts of Linux desktop environments other than XFCE? (GNOME, KDE, Cinnamon, LXQT, LXDE, and the like.)
Cinnamon and MATE are pretty good, but I haven't bothered trying most of the others. Well, I did also use Trinity Desktop Environment, a fork of KDE 3. That one looks more fun than something I'd use on a daily basis, though. It's a really great GUI if it's something you think you'd want.
what if there were two astronauts on the moon and one of them killed the other and left them there? would that be fucked up?
Aside from replacing RTCs and capacitors, what kind of hardware and/or software failures did you have while working with old computers?
Many, though it's tough to name them. Optical drives tend to be the most likely components to go out in my experience.
What was your experiences testing FreeBSD before mintsuki helped you switching to Linux? What annoyances have you encountered while using those OSs?
It was pretty good, though reaccustoming myself to some of its differences from even Linux have thrown me off in a few places. When I gave it a test drive on a spare machine in November 2019, the software available on it hadn't quite been up to par with my needs, so I shortly set it aside after finishing one video on it. One of my larger gripes with FreeBSD, though, was that I couldn't figure out how to change the console font from that fuckin' ugly Terminus!
Is "anime is tresh" true to you? Or more generally, what is your opinion on anime-styled contents and its culture?
I never really cared for anime for the most part. The whole "anime is tresh" thing stems from a beef I've had with this one group I used to be a part of, run by a guy who made surreal videos, and one which had... problems. It's hard to describe, but I want you to put together NEETs, nihilism, shitty edgy humor, and what not. There's more to it that I can't recall, since it's been years since I had any ties to it.
I will say, though, my biggest gripe with anime is this unending obsession with these two things that come to mind: high school, and characters designed to be these goddamn dolls. I sincerely don't understand a shred of it. For one, how can anyone have such a strong attachment to high school? It wasn't as bad for me as the earlier stuff, but... come on! Imagine glorifying an institution of soul-crushing academic pressure...
It's a shame, really, because at the end of the day, anime is animation, and a studio can do some amazing things with the medium that you simply can't get out of something like live action. I guess the art direction found in the more prevalent properties from the last couple of decades look to be more driven by what's expected to sell big than anything else... to a point where it smuggles itself into things where it doesn't need to be, like with what happened to DoDonPachi from an aesthetic standpoint.
Is there a map for "Kugeeverse" a.k.a. your aquatic fiction world? Or rather, how can I enjoy your fish bits in your contents? Am I being too serious here?
I never laid out a full-fledged structure for any such lore I had been doing in the past.
Have you ever regretted making videos in general?
At least quite a few of them. Video creation turned out to be a waste of time in a lot of cases during my YouTube days.
Do you think the unix philosophy is still important today?
It's definitely something that is needed for a well-structured program with many functions; when programming, ideally you'd want one function to have as little clutter as possible. Software has gotten way more complex in the last few decades, though, so the echoed principle of "do one thing and do it well" may very well be something that's not possible when you start getting into more complex tasks.
What are your thoughts on ChatGPT, and the controversy around it?
I haven't been up to speed on ChatGPT at all, but given one name being tied to it, it at the very least doesn't sound like good news.
What do you think about RISC-V?
I don't remember much of the details that I had seen others in my old server discuss. It could be good, but I really don't know.
How much of your site is handwritten and how much is automated?
As it stands now, a lot of the pages are handled by automated scripts that work with a database to retrieve content; this includes all articles and guides. I expect the other pages for projects and resources are still going to remain largely static unless I have a compelling reason to do something fancier with them... maybe there's a few I could touch up on. But if you're talking about writing the actual code, I wrote all of it myself by hand, before in Notepad++, then in Notepadqq, and now in Vim.
Are you still using Firefox as your primary browser?
That I am; SeaMonkey ended up not working out due to very specific bloated websites I absolutely need breaking in it. I still have doubts about the future of Firefox, though, as Mozilla went rogue a long time ago and no one seems to care about browser choice anymore as they used to from the days of Windows 98 to the late 2000's.
Would exist Windows 95D in Spanish?
No. I don't speak Spanish, and I have no interest in it.
What do you think about VGA Mode X and it's abilities to bring SNES-quality graphics to MS-DOS?
I'd have to learn to program in it more to really give a solid opinion; it's definitely something I'm interested in working with in the future.
What do you think about the project lead by The 8-Bit Guy known as Commander X16?
I don't pay attention to YouTubers and their projects.
Have you tried NetBSD?
Yes, I have run it once on my Asus K7M build last year. It was pretty good.
What inspired you to create The First Cell?
The First Cell was primarily sparked by a need to program something of a much smaller scope to gain a stronger familiarity with 8086 assembly, something I plan to leverage yet further.
Do you think Windows XP would've been a little better without the activation system?
Anything would be better without DRM, really. At least now it's pretty easy to get ahold of some form of vanilla Windows XP that excludes the online activation outright, and no one will bat an eye!
What are your opinions on ARM devices nowadays? (I can't find that one article...)
I've hardly ever heard anyone talking about it these days, and after that merger with Nvidia was blocked, I'd wager it's dead as balls on the desktop. There is Apple with their new lineup of Macs, but they're the only ones that really stand a chance in an x86-dominated field, and knowing them (from experience as an ex-Mac fanboy) as the take-all assholes they are, what they do for ARM is not ever going to trickle out to any other players, which are basically irrelevant. Looks like it will be crawling back to its native habitat of telephones and Gotek floppy emulators.
How do whales enjoy computers?
What are your thoughts on FreeDOS or DR-DOS? I am thinking of choosing a better DOS OS on my old Satellite Laptop.
FreeDOS is great, but I hardly ever use it, mainly due to the fact that I stopped being concerned about loading too many copies of MS-DOS, and these days I really need networking in DOS which I'm not sure would be supported properly in other DOS incarnations. Even so, I have made use of FreeDOS in one of my past projects, but I've never used DR-DOS.
What do you think about Mastodon?
Mastodon looks like it could serve to be a legitimately better Twitter from a functional standpoint, given its mechanism allows for more isolation capabilities as opposed to Twitter's gigantic uniform linear feed that has been to the detriment of its many users.
I see people throwing around the containment zone theory in regards to Twitter potentially dying, but given Mastodon can technically allow for anyone to host their own instances which can be completely severed from any others, the theory is bullshit. Mastodon has great potential for containing the most insane people into their own fragments, leaving the rest of us largely undisturbed. Hell, it had already been working for some time before that fateful acquisition, and now that it's a lot more recognized as the other option (to the point where Twitter themselves have acknowledged its existence... they are afraid!), I think Twitter's demise should be more widely embraced.
Are you going back to make YouTube videos in the near future?
Absolutely not. I am completely done with YouTube; it means nothing to me now. I can deliver whatever crazy little videos I want to over here, exactly how I want to and without any worries. 480p60 is so trivial to serve; I hated having to arbitrarily upscale and letterbox my videos back on YouTube just to get the output I wanted. It's also so much nicer here.
Is it possible to make an unattended Windows 95 installation like you did in your video with Batch 98?
Oh yes, very much so. I had to do more brute force guesswork to determine how to automate the installation of drivers and updates when I was starting to experiment with unattended Windows 95 installations in 2019, but you might be surprised at how far you can go with it. The linked video below shows an early example of my deployment routine I had going.
Windows 95A Unattended Setup on Pentium Computer with ST32550N SCSI Hard Drive
There's plenty more details I've written about the process on a page at the Windows 95D Lite project hub as well. In fact, that project has its roots in unattended Windows 95 setup experiments.
what linux distro would you reccomend to newbies? i've been really thinking about switching to linux, but i feel it's gonna be a difficult road for me
The distributions I tend to recommend are Debian and Linux Mint. The latter provides a straightforward out of the box desktop experience that you can use to get a grip on the differences between Windows and Linux.
What is your favorite music?
If you're looking for a hard answer, it's the soundtrack for G-Darius, firm top.
But "hahahiaufieaha you only like GAME MUSIUC?????" Well, yes, that does comprise a large share of the music I listen to. I don't give a fuck about lyrics and don't really want them, and so I have a large library of tracker modules to listen to as well. Sometimes I'll load up some Eurobeat or Goa trance as well.
What do you think about modern Mozilla and the modern dystopian browser landscape?
It's hard to say. I want Mozilla to survive to keep the browser landscape in balance, but it's hard to have any feelings for them when the company is basically a complete asshole like so many others now, a far cry from their "Take back the web" days. I do not want a total Chromium monopoly, given Google's gonna be at the helm of it all, having more leverage to bend the web to their own broken interests as they have been.
Which is the strangest draem you've had lately
I hardly remember my dreams. A lot of the ones I do tend to be awful, though I did write one down that has to do with a narrow bathroom which has two sets of washing and drying machines that have nonsensical controls (not quite like what GE tried in 2006 or so).
Do you regrett being on VidLii and Vlare?
More and more. It ended up creating a lot more problems for me in the long run, and, well... it shows that you just can't rely on other people's sketchy get-togethers to solve your problems. I want a refund for Vlare Premium, can't believe they managed to break that functionality that much!
On top of that, I've looked back at some of the videos I made in 2020 and am seeing just how shitty they were compared to my works from earlier; really generic play-it-safe commentary that's so prevalent on YouTube these days infected my own works. It went against what I stood for - being daring, and trying new ideas and styles all the time.
Have you heard of the non-IBM PC releases of Windows? (PC-9800, FM-Towns, DEC Alpha, PowerPC, etc..) And which one would be your prefered alternative to the x86/IBM PC versions?
I sort of know about some of them; the idea of running Windows NT on a DEC Alpha workstation does sound at least a little bit interesting, but I don't really care all that much about these other platforms.
Have you considered porting Windows 95D Lite to the former two platforms mentioned above?
While a version of Windows 95D Lite for PC-98 sounds plausible, I don't see any reason to work on it. It wouldn't gain any traction. I know DirectX 7.0a supplies a driver file for the joystick (or something) specific to the PC-98 platform.
Have you ever made a video where you do the face reveal?
Don't be a creep.
why do we worship the eternal king OF SOY
I don't, why do you?
Why some videos and video series are available exclusively in MP4?
Some of these videos are super long and large, and it would be wasteful to distribute them in smaller formats when they'd depend on higher resolutions. I have gone halfway into making Hardcore Windows available in MPEG-1, but some just aren't gonna make the cut.
Was this entire endeavor fun?
It's really hard to say. There were definitely some really great moments I had in making things, but a lot of dread as well. For instance, I was wildly passionate with seeing to it that The 32-Bit Difference would be finished in its best form possible, though seeing it underperform was painful. Much of my prime on YouTube was expended on trying to fight against a horrible algorithm that doesn't care about actual effort, all to no avail. Building this website was much more rewarding.
What do you think about ClearType-style font antialiasing, as opposed to "Whole pixel antialiasing" (pre-Vista default Windows font rendering)?
I've never bothered trying to distinguish the two.
Since Windows surely isn't going to improve anytime soon, how's Linux going for you? As an Arch convert myself I wonder how Linux is going for you since you transitioned.
It's moving along great. See this article.
I also wonder about your take on ReactOS, a FOSS drop in replqcement to Windows, although it has yet to have any stable releases at the time of writing this.
Let's face it, ReactOS is doomed. There's no way it's going to keep up with Windows and its insanity. All that can be done at this point is for more software developers to support Linux, and be serious about it.
And now... my questions for YOU!
This got a larger turnout than I was anticipating. Nonetheless, I'm not really expecting to run another session like this, so I may as well do a little something to top this off... I'm going to ask all of you some of my own questions.
What STGs (often erroneously referred to as shmups) have you played, and which style do you tend to go for?
I've recently been starting to recall this baffling cultural phenomenon from the last decade. How did this franchise called My Little Pony successfully transform from a fever-dreamed product lineup taboo for anyone that's not little girls into a widely accepted prime symbol of masculinity? I recall it started with an ironic following, but then I guess more people discovered the 2010 show and actually liked it, and suddenly MLP avatars started popping up on every corner. As it comes back to my mind, I really want to know: how did this happen? What did it have that made it stick? (Don't tell me to watch the show, it's not happening)
What matters to you most in software, besides, you know, being able to use it? This could be anything from games to productivity suites and console applications.
Have you ever spent hours writing something, only to later feel that it didn't turn out very good and consider redoing the whole thing?
Whenever you're browsing websites that work with really old browsers, which of those browsers do you tend to lean towards using?
Do you think the pool of untapped original ideas has nearly depleted, or could there be far more out there? Is it often too difficult for most people to drill out a new idea that works, or do industries suffer from a trend of trying to replicate old success and expecting great yields?
In general, what do you think is missing in the non-essential realm of things? Is it anything that had been around previously, or something that never existed anywhere?
In any case, last week I recorded a pilot for a new podcast for Razorback, and am looking to publish it soon enough; there's just some things I need to get sorted out in order to properly accommodate it. It's more of an experiment than anything else; we'll have to see where it goes from here. Now that this is done, I'm hoping to shit that I don't end up stagnating further with some of my other things...
From after 9:04 am of 3.24.23 to around before 6 pm or so of 3.29.23, my MacBook Air M1 2020 was experiencing a big glitch where for some reason I couldn't click on anything but yet could still press keys and see proper animated gifs. The glitch stopped happening now, but it makes me wonder about getting a better laptop like soon...
Answers for AxelCuty, SuperHolo, anonymous, Mihali, thatoneracer and John
Answers for Alejandro
Answers for C0lin, xodus, Doomguy and supervitu64
Still trying to fight against my laziness...
Screw Oxford comma, just list the nouns
Answers for Lightgreen, closedgl, eliotime3000
I forgot that the backend of this comment system does not support easy editing...Disregard all those request please Anyway...
Thats mostly my thought process with my homelab. I constantly think over and over again on how to do my infrastructure differently and what I can do differently to improve it. Thats not a line of code or something but it is something that I would love to constantly improve in various places.
1) I havent played a shmup yet. I might want to give G-darius a shot one day though
62 comments on this page
Sort: Ascending | Descending
Leave a Comment