Buying Coffee Online (in Canada)

It almost feels like a requirement for being a software engineer, a love affair with “the finest organic suspension ever devised.” (Bonus points if anyone recognizes that quote without asking Google.) Coffee, or at least good coffee, isn’t easy to come by here and necessitates me driving at least 45 minutes into the city (both ways) to fetch anything beyond Folgers, Maxwell House or…

Custom Build vs Alienware Aurora Gaming Desktop (Canadian version)

Model from February, 2013.
Alienware desktop model from February, 2013.

It’s been my experience over the years of building computers that in many cases you can build better or cheaper computers from scratch than you would be able to get pre-assembled from major manufactures. For me, there was also great value in getting to have the experience of assembling a PC yourself and having a sense of the “I built that” pride. Despite holding this belief I never set out to actually prove it, until now.

On the right you’ll see the Alienware Aurora Gaming Desktop with the default settings as it retails in Canada for $1,499 for the low-end model all the way to $2,999 for the ALX high-end model (see the end for a detailed comparison of all specs). The goal will be to use NCIX to build a machine with the same specs (or as close as is possible) and compare the custom build based on price.

I’m using NCIX because of their liberal price-matching policy and because they offer a PC assembly option that will let you choose the components you want and have them build it, adding a 1 year warranty to the final machine in the process. This will let us compare the result directly with Dell/Alienware for the fully built machine.

What Firefox’s 8th Birthday Means to Me

I’m not sure how many people are aware of this – but Firefox is now celebrating it’s 8th birthday. Eight years since Mozilla dubbed Firebird, Firefox and sent the little browser that could out into the world to start the next browser war. My life was profoundly changed by this project that did much to shape the future of the internet and…

Installing Drush on a Shared DreamHost Account

[box type=”note”]If you have issues with these directions, please read the alternate directions for installing on a shared host manually without using Pear. MediaTemple is one provider where you must use the alternate directions to get Drush working.[/box] One of the easiest and most convenient ways to get your hands on Drupal is on a shared hosting environment. It’s pretty much where everyone is going to start from…