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Allright. We’ll start out with a first-ever BarretTime tech question …slash… desperate cry for help:

Actually, Chris Fenton needs your help. After constructing a 1/10th scale, cycle accurate Cray-1 supercomputer and finding a disk with Cray software on it, he’s ready to start loading the operating system. There’s one small problem, though: no one knows how to boot the thing. Chris posted a disk image for a Cray-1/X-MP with the help of the people at archive.org. Now he’s looking to the community for help – if you think you can reverse engineer the file system, Chris will pay handsomely with a miniature model of a Cray printed on his MakerBot. So if you think you’re the man, woman or child who can reverse engineer a Cray Bootloader, surf over to hackaday.com to lend your talents. Hopefully, they’ve already tried pressing the power button…

I never thought of cutting down a Cray like that – I wonder if you could get it small enough to fit into a Unibody MacBook chassis…

I’d definitely take a CrayBook Pro down to the local coffee shop… If you’re harboring your own plans for world domination that involve sourcing some new-to-you Apple hardware, you’ll want to clear your calendar for the morning of Saturday, January 21st for the Houston Area Apple Users Group, affectionately referred to as HAAUG. The event takes place at 7008 South Rice Boulevard from nine in the morning until one in the afternoon. The event is free to attend for casual swappers, but if you plan on hauling in more gear than you can carry under an arm, you’ll want to register for a dealer table. Info on that and more is available on the HAAUG site at www.haaug.org.

If you’re carrying an Android handset, you’ve actually got a little Linux with you wherever you go. Why not take the plunge and get to know the real deal this Saturday the 14th at the first Linux Users Group bi-monthly presentation of 2012. The group gets together from two to four in the afternoon for an hour and a half presentation on something Linuxy at the HAL-PC Headquarters. All are welcome; you don’t have to be a member of HAL-PC or a Linux Guru to attend. And…some of what you will learn about Linux can be applied to your Android phone.

If you *would* like to consider joining the Houston Area League of PC Users, there are two things you need to know. One: Despite being named a League, they don’t issue uniforms; superhero, bowling or otherwise. Though that doesn’t stop you from wearing your own. And two: While they do have a monthly general meeting, the Special Interest Groups are where it’s at. Surf their SIG calendar to see when you can converse and learn about topics diverse. SIGs include Database and Graphical User Interface Design, Microsoft Server, Genealogy, Computer Investing, Robotics, and even Sybex tech, if that’s your thing. For details, directions and this month’s list of events, hit www.hal-pc.org.

If you’re familiar with the Benoni, the Modern Benoni, the Modern Benoni Classical Variation, the Modern Benoni Four Pawns Attack, and, of course, the Benoni Defense, or even if you just know every word to every They Might Be Giants song ever written, you might want to consider reliving your high school chess club days by swinging by the West Gray Cafe Express at Seven O’Clock Monday night for a game of pick-up chess at the Houston Chess Bi-Weekly Meetup. Finally, a chance to relive the Glory days without worries of wedgies or lost lunch money…
Does anyone in the studio play chess? Do you have a favorite or signature opening?

My own highly explosive opening? Pawn to C4. And boom goes the dynamite.

That’s it for your week in geek, and that’s that for BarretTime.

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