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The Law of Equivalent Exchange

Last post 11-12-2010, 11:08 by icelava. 2 replies.
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  •  06-05-2010, 21:35 6790

    Angry [:@] The Law of Equivalent Exchange

    In Fullmetal Alchemist, the First Law of alchemy is that of Equivalent Exchange. It states that for something that is to be obtained, something else of equivalent value has to be given. This roughly keeps the balance of material existing in the world.

    So I have been operating dual monitors for a rather long time now. During that span of time, I even upgraded the pair to a higher dot-pitch model. I can say - without a doubt - it is an essential setup for any serious software developer. But as good as two monitors was, I had long been thinking of something even better - the coveted tri-monitor configuration. But until recently, such setups required twin video cards. And yes indeed, in recent times ATI with their Eyefinity range of video cards released some models sporting two DVI ports + one DisplayPort port.

    The time is now. I took the plunge and added a Dell Ultrasharp U2410 24" DisplayPort monitor into the middle. I have gained the third eye.

    the THIRD eye has been gained

    And so life is good thereafter, right? That was what I thought. I was happy for a good two weeks of triple the productivity, or triple the distraction, depending on how one views it. I had encountered some odd problems with the new DisplayPort monitor mysteriously getting disabling in Windows display settings after RDCing to it from outside, but i brushed that off as i found a usable workaround (of typing in the blind to logon). The real problem came yesterday when one of the old monitor pair just lost video output. The monitor did not complain of "no DVI signal"; it was still rightfully powered on and my mouse can "disappear" into its void space. I unplugged the DVI cable and reattached it, and all was good (albeit some Windows display realignment). This morning it totally fizzled, giving out a screechy noise each time it got reattached to display a darkened subdued image but blowing the screen into darkness again.

    But is it the monitor or the video card? Wait, did I mention I'm pressed for time to learn and prepare training materials? MUST IT HAPPEN NOW? Of course it does. Things must always break when one is trying to focus on more important issues, so that, you know, we can deliberately procrastinate. Anyway so I swapped DVI ports between the twin monitors in order to confirm: the monitor is the cranky device. At this point, the old DVI had been exchanged for a spanking DisplayPort. Ok, so they are not of equal value. But I am stuck to two eyes again.


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  •  11-10-2010, 22:14 7166 in reply to 6790

    Re: The Law of Equivalent Exchange

    Ah yes. Life's been good after I got the monitor back from the service centre, ja? After waiting bloody weeks for the necessary components to be shipped all the way from Taiwan, ja? Well, I thought so too. I thought I could put this matter to rest.

    But no, some children are downright cheeky and mischievous.  Those who do not understand the meaning of "discipline" and "behaviour". They may sit still for awhile, but their incorrigible ways soon take over again and wreck havoc around the classroom. And so this seemingly repaired monitor, decided to play the doze-off game again at the beginning of the week (must be a Monday thing). Hey, snap out of it! Don't go blank on me. Wake up and show me the desktop screen! I like to see my windows there instead of a black hole, thank you. Switch off-on, yes and stay that way.

    Then it started farting out this foul smell. Not your regular burnt plastic smell, but close to it. Argh. And there goes the screen fizzling out. Forever. Argh.

    Back to the service centre. My brother helped bring my monitor to and fro during the previous incident, so I hadn't met the folks there. But they recognised this monitor really quickly. Either I am the only person in Singapore who buys such high-res monitors, or I am the only one who keeps the electrical current running even when I switch them off. (which does not explain why the other monitor has been functioning a-ok the past two years)

    Thankfully, they had the spare capacitors on hand, replaced the one that melted down, and had it back on my lap the next day. Apparently, the technician reported the parts from Taiwan weren't that good either.


    Wished somebody could've warned me of the detrimental effects of overusing the mangekyou sharingan.

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  •  11-12-2010, 11:08 7167 in reply to 7166

    Re: The Law of Equivalent Exchange

    I wrote too soon.

    Just when I was "praising" the other monitor for "behaving" itself the past two years.

    As though in attempt to mock me, this obedient monitor of mine fizzles out in a flash tonight. Looks like I'm going to get acquainted with the ViewSonic service staff even more.

    Is it mere coincidence? That this happened so quickly in a space of a week? Just when I decided to reverse the roles of the monitors by swapping the program windows I usually place on each side?

    One has to wonder.

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