|added Thu July 08 2004 at 10:48 PM
|My sister sends me very random stuff sometimes. I was not in the least bit surprised when I opened the box to find a "Crystal Radio" from the Smithsonian Institution. The note inside the box apologized for not being able to come up to Utah after all (it definitely didn't need an apology... I ended up staying in Canada an extra day anyway), and that mom thought I might be interested in this. Well, I definitely wouldn't have paid money for it myself, but I figured what the heck, it's already here. I might as well put it together.
The kit actually ended up turning to be rather cheap. I was mildly annoyed to find that the screws supplied were too big for one of the holes. I spent about half an hour trying to widen the hole (I didn't have any tools to do it, and I was also being distracted by the TV). I ended up giving up on that screw, because it wasn't important anyway. The official recommendation for how to ground the radio was by wrapping the ground wire around some pipes or something like that. Unfortunately (perhaps fortunately?), I don't have any piping running through my room, so I got a bit creative. I wrapped the ground wire around the ground on a plug and plugged it back into the wall. Don't tell mom. Whoops, too late.
Okay, I probably spent about an hour and a half assembling this thing (again, remember that I was being distracted by the TV), yet I was still amazed to string the antenna around the room and listen to the earpiece as I turned the tuning dial. It actually works! Absolutely no batteries... just a lot of wire (a huge wire for the antenna, and a coil of wire), a capacitor (variable capacitor, so you can tune it a little bit), a diode, and a small earpiece. I never would have thought that there was enough electricity in radio waves to power a magnetic speaker of any size. But it works!
Batteries not included... oh wait, it doesn't need any.
|added Thu July 08 2004 at 10:52 PM
For the first time in the 6 months that I've been running this site, I had somebody specifically comment on the php code mixed in on the user end of my site. Most people just complain about it being confusing, or a bug, or strange. Today, a coworker took a look at it and said that he liked it.
The humor is subtle and most people wouldn't get it (nor care to), but *somebody* gets it... and likes it.
Now back to your regularly scheduled rant and/or rave on RAndoMness.