ORNL

It’s a pretty cool place if you didn’t already realize.

I was one of lucky few who were offered a paid internship at the ORNL Computing Facility, where I worked alongside the Computing and Facilities Director, Jim Rogers.

Although I was sitting only 20 meters from the once fastest supercomputer in the world, I didn’t do much with it. Most of my work was put into web design, CMS (Drupal) administration, and only nearing the end did I begin to do work using data from Titan.

The website in question was Drupal, something I had heard of when looking for a CMS, but I decided in favor of Joomla. I now realize I made the right decision.

Drupal, firstly, had a completely different naming scheme than Joomla, which made things very confusing in my head.

For Example:
“Modules”:
Joomla: The Items which compose non-primary content spaces (like sidebars)
Drupal: Plugins which extend the functionality of Drupal (eCommerce, security, extensions)
Honestly they should just be called ‘Plugins’ in Drupal, I mean that’s what they are.

Elsewhere it was nightmares trying to get things to work like they should, although admittedly it was almost all the modules, not Drupal’s fault.

The default template had no excuses though. It was a fixed-width non-mobile-friendly page with images where they could have used a single line of CSS to get a better or same result. After a hundred line changes or so of manual editing, I was able to correct a majority of the issues and make it usable for mobile. I’m sure there’s some free template out there that fixes this, but of hours searching my team member and I were unable to find anything suitable for our type of content. With about the same time I spent on Robosane’s template, it should have been fairly simple as Drupal’s templating system is much less complex.

Just recently I bought a Samsung 850 SSD, along with an HDD bay to replace my CD drive.

I switched the SSD to be my boot drive, and the HDD is all my old data.

My computer now boots in 4 seconds. (Not counting time to unlock the disk encryption, about 2 seconds, plus typing in my long passwords…)

My old drive has been getting old, I was struggling to pull 5 MB/s from it when I needed, and I knew it wasn’t gonna hold up for much.
Choosing an SSD to replace it was the best upgrade to my computer since I bought it.

No more I/O blocking, no more long waits on package installations, and games appear to load many times faster.
Although I still have most of my games on my HDD, having the OS on an SSD frees up I/O on the disk so I can start pulling 80 MB/s from it when needed.

Of the many things I noticed after switching drives, is that just by booting from a different drive, my HDD appears to have gained performance. I’m not sure why, possibly the deadline scheduler didn’t handle under pressure so well.

Although of course, that’s nothing compared to the just as promised 520 MB/s from the 850 SSD. If you’re buying a hard drive and don’t mind paying some 20% more for it, the performance is absolutely worth it.

TLDR; Bought an SSD, reduced time to start things by 90% and increased performance dramatically.

Yet another one of my experiences trying to get something that works on Windows to work on Ubuntu.

I’ve been using TF2center.com quite a bit recently to get in some practice matches, but it’s not as smooth a process as I want it to be. It took me awhile to get the steam:// connect links working properly, but Mumble has been manual for the most part.

What I’ve managed to do is get Mumble to at least open, but the full URL is not yet fed. Launching Mumble via a URL will only open the application, not connect you to the server you wish to be connected to, or give you a username/password.