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Aug 30, 2017

Windows 98 was not designed to run with more than about 512MB of RAM. I wanted to install it on my IBM ThinkPad T42 with 2GB of RAM. It wasn't easy, but not only did I get it installed, but the OS actually recognizes the full 2GB! How? Well, someone named Mr. Rudolph Loew wrote an unofficial patch that allows Windows 95/98/ME to access the full amount of RAM without crashing:

The patch was a bit expensive at $20 + $1 "shipping and handling" (it was actually just an e-mail attachment), but I recognize that it probably took a lot of time to develop it, and there's only a small market for patches for anything related to Windows 9x these days. Also, the machine seems to be very stable even with a lot more RAM than it was designed to handle. I also installed KernelEx which allows me to run some newer software than Windows 98 was designed to handle.

I did run into a few issues while setting things up. When I installed KernelEx, the computer would enter a bootloop and get stuck. To fix this, I had to boot to DOS and uninstall and reinstall the patch, using the /M switch. Also, Office 2000 seems to have a few minor issues, such as not being able to install from the network and a broken Office Assistant. However, everything else has run smoothly, and I can now run most software designed for either Windows 98 or 2000 with more than enough RAM to handle whatever I throw at it!

Now all I need to get is a new 7200RPM hard drive and this thing should take off and fly!

Aug 5, 2017

As you might have read in my blog post from last month, The Great Movie Ride closed on August 13th, as did Ellen's Energy Adventure. However, I couldn't let one of my favorite rides out of all of the Disney parks close without riding it one last time, so I drove back down to Orlando for a few days at Disney World!

I don't have all of the photos sorted through yet, but here is one of the best photos I took while I was there:

The beginning of The Great Movie Ride

As soon as I finish sorting through the photos I took, I will post them to my Flickr page (and here too).

Even though Elly couldn't go with me, I still had a great time! I also managed to buy a Great Movie Ride t-shirt before they all sold out. Now I just wish that they would sell some of the props from the ride. There are a few I'd definitely like to own...

As for the Universe of Energy, you could kinda tell that the ride was coming to a close, and that Disney was reluctant to fix things on it. When I rode it for the last time, the middle seating section wasn't used, and in the pre-show portion, the speakers for the center screen sounded a bit distorted, almost as if a speaker was blown or a cable was loose. The ride had also been closed for maintenance for a while that day, after it was evacuated for some other technical problems. Even the very last ride was shut down early, supposedly because the battery for one of the ride vehicles was bad and they didn't want to take the time to fix it. I'm not sure if all of the ride problems were just the ride showing its age, or if Disney was just letting it go because they knew the end was coming (or some of both). It will be interesting to see what changes they make to the Universe of Energy pavilion and to the parks in general.

Jul 26, 2017

Disney recently announced the closure of The Great Movie Ride at Disney's Hollywood Studios (formerly Disney-MGM Studios). While there had been rumors going around that the ride was going to be changed, the news of a complete closure and replacement was kind of a surprise to me, seeing that they added a new witch animatronic in the Wizard of Oz scene and just did a refurb of the attraction a year and a half ago.

Great Movie Ride Image

The Great Movie Ride has always been one of my favorite rides at Disney, and I will be sad to see it go. I also wish I had taken some pictures of it when I was there back in December. I'm not sure why I didn't. It really was "A spectacular journey into the movies!"

In recent years, some people have called the attraction "outdated" and "boring" and that it "needs newer movies". While I think that some of the animatronics could have used some updates, the people that say that the movies need to be updated are completely missing the point of the ride. The Great Movie Ride's whole theme is a showcase for classic films made during Hollywood's prime. These movies all helped bring filmmaking to what it is today, and the ride does a great job of bringing these films to life.

For fans of the attraction, Martin of Martin's Videos Online posted an excellent tribute video that I will embed below. The video not only goes through the history of the attraction, but also takes you into the ride with multiple angles and crystal clear audio:

Jun 3, 2017

Betty Maciorowski

May 28, 1930 - June 3, 2017

Rest in peace, Gram. You will be missed.

Gram and my nephew Lucas, playing checkers. Photo credit: Leanne Dalziel (my sister)

Apr 13, 2017

Someone was getting rid of what I thought was a small, color TV set. It was manufactured in 1982. Turns out it's actually a black and white set. I'll use it on my desk for now until I can find a similar-sized one in color. I've never heard of the brand before (It's a Centurion).

The Alfred Hitchcock Hour