Archives for July 2013
Tara and I went and saw “The Wolverine” last night and off the bat, I’ll saw I was happy it wasn’t overly loud. Guessing that’s the theater, but hopefully it’s something we’ll see/hear more of in the future.
Anyway, the movie starts off with a bit of back story of Logan/Wolverine in Japan during WWII. And sadly, it also starts part of maybe the biggest issue with the movie: Japanese stereotypes. They’re not offensive in any way, but after the movie is over, we found ourselves laughing at how many there were, and it covered1. The movie largely takes place in Japan, with a fair amount of Japanese spoken (with and without subtitles, depending on if they want you to rely on another character translating). It mainly focuses around Logan hiding from his Wolverine persona, and protecting the grand-daughter of a man he saved back in WWII who had since started the equivalent of Sony, and was dying.
The movie fit the standard comic based movie, and was not a bad addition to the recent Marvel catalog, but I wouldn’t call it “good”. The last Wolverine movie was bad. This one is maybe on the plus side of okay. I’d watch it again, but I wouldn’t put it in my top list of comic movies, Marvel or not. I think it really comes down to, any comic movie based solely on one character seems difficult to pull off without being boring. Iron Man, Thor, and Captain America did a good job of this, but doing one on Wolverine would be like doing a movie based entirely on Michelangelo from the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Entertaining maybe, but not really something you could tease out a 2 hour movie from (which was how long “The Wolverine” was, which seemed a bit long).
So, in short, see it, but don’t expect something as good as Iron Man 1 (or 3), Thor, or Captain America. Expect something more like Iron Man 2. Okay, but not great.
- Seppuku, Mecha, a pachinko parlor, Samurai, Ninja, Yakuza, etc [↩]
Ever since I started doing LCD monitor, and G5 iMac repair, I’ve wanted/needed to pick up an ESR (Equivalent Series Resistance) meter. Electrolytic capacitors are the bain of pretty much all modern power supplies. Pretty much everything else in a modern power supply is invincible compared to the caps… and while I’ve been extremely lucky that every iMac and LCD monitor I’ve repaired had obviously bad capacitors (bulging), that isn’t always the case… which is where an ESR meter comes in.
I won’t get into ESR in general, but you can find info on wikipedia here, or on this site. But basically, as Electrolytic caps age, their ESR increases, and generally once it rises above it set point, the device it’s in will stop working. In many cases, you can tell when this happens due to bulging/leaking. But that isn’t always the case, and having a meter is a good idea. I purchased the Blue ESR kit made by AnaTek, based off a design by Bob Parker for $73 off eBay. The kit arrived in a standard box, and was well organized. In about an hour and a half of soldering, I had the unit up and going. Really all you need is a soldering iron, some flush cutters, and if you want to calibrate the battery low indicator, you’ll want a variable bench power supply. Other than that, it was a piece of cake. While hourly, it’s not worth the $20 saved to buy the kit, it was worth it to get the satisfaction of building a kit and having it work. The instructions are easy to follow, and the unit fired right up when I was done.
I’d highly recommend it if you spend time doing repairs. At some point I’ll buy the Blue Ring Tester kit as well, as it makes diagnosing bad transformers easier, but for now, I’ve probably spent enough on test gear for the time being.