Tag Archives: sound

Configure ALSA for Crystal 4237B

While having wireless Internet access is very sweet, I don’t currently have working sound on my laptop (it was also somewhat problematic with SuSE too). I’ve been googing for anwers and not had a lot of luck. I did find that I need to have acpi=off when I boot up or Ubuntu won’t be able to detect the soundcard. Other than that, all I’ve found so far is that I’ll probably have to manually specify all the settings for the soundcard, as detailed in this HOWTO. If this is something that you think you can help me with than you can read some details of my laptop after the jump.
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Adagio Teas

Yunnan Jig Tea from Adagio Tea

As mentioned previously, I signed up with Adagio Teas for their Link Reward offer. Over the weekend I received an email from one of their reps, thanking me for the link and saying that my reward was on the way. Privately, I was having doubts as my track record with freebies, trial offers and rebates is extremely poor.

Then today after a pretty average day at the office, I got home to find that my doormat was hiding something. The first thought in my head was “I wonder what eBay auction Ariesna won this time?” Much to my delight, my first thought was wrong and instead I was holding a package from Adagio! I hurried inside, tossed the groceries into the fridge and cracked open the box. I was most pleased to find that an 8oz tin of yunnan jig tea and one of Adagio’s IngenuiTEA teapots. After taking the IngenuiTEA out of the box and plastic wrapping, I could feel that the plastic it’s made of has a solid feel to it; so I don’t think I’ll be accidentally breaking it any time soon. Still, if I were going to purchase one of these things, I think I would prefer the main body be made of a heavy-duty glass. *shrug* I don’t know that glass would really work any better but it would give the IngenuiTEA a better heft and feeling of quality. Still, it looks to be a quality product and it’s definitely a very clever idea. You toss your loose tea leaves into the IngenuiTEA, fill it with hot water, wait for it to brew and then set it on top your cup. The IngenuiTEA will then drain your fresh cup of tea into the cup for you; while automatically straining out the leaves. If you’re still confused; go watch the flash video on their website and it’ll all make sense.

Adagio has this to say about their yunnan jig tea:

Black tea from the Yunnan region of China. Yunnan tea is easily identified by its luscious soft leaves, and a unique peppery taste. It is a very forgiving tea; will not taste bitter when over-steeped. Yunnan tea is arguably the most underrated of Chinese varieties. If you have yet to try it, we would recommend it highly. Our ‘Yunnan Jig’ would make a great introduction.

I found it slid smoothly across the palate. When it initially hits the tongue there’s an earthy flavor to it, but swirling it around in my mouth for a bit that flavor settles down to be more smoky than earthy. After swallowing the tea, there’s a slight but distinct hint of black pepper. The first cup I made was too hot, so I threw a bit of ice in it but the tea tasted… off once it was cold. It wasn’t just being watered down; it just didn’t taste right. On the 2nd cup, I was more careful on how hot I let the water get and this time drank the tea without ice. That worked considerably better and I’d definitely recommend this to anybody who enjoys drinking black tea.

So the final verdict? Adagio seems to be a very cool company with tasty tea and a nifty gadget for brewing the tea up. Does this mean CoffeeBear.net will become TeaBear.net? No, but I’ve no doubt I’ll be buying more tea from them once this sample runs out (some of those green teas and the flavored teas sounds really good.). 🙂

Mac Mini

While I don’t own any computers from Apple (unless you want to count my iPod); I have friends that do and so I tend to follow any news about them. Today at MacWorld Expo 2005, Steve Jobs announced many things but in particular he announced 2 products that sound very interesting in deed. I’m speaking of the iPod shuffle and the Mac mini. The first interests me as my iPod is an older model with less battery life than I’m happy about (plus, I think it would make a cool birthday gift for the fiance). The second is interesting for a number of reasons:

  • It’s a Mac and it’s affordable.
  • If it’s really as quiet as they’re saying; it could make a great computer to put next to the TV, for watching video files off my server1.
  • It’s smaller than the phone on my desk at work!
  • Did I mention it’s affordable?

Of course, these products have only just been announced and aren’t available just yet. Not that I’ve got the money to buy either one right now. *sigh*

1 For the record, those video files are episodes of fan-subbed anime that haven’t been licensed in the US yet.

Review: Carbon Leaf

Not that long ago, I noticed that Amazon.com has free MP3s for download. These MP3s aren’t from any bands that I’d heard of before but free is free, right? So I started downloading song after song looking for something new to listen to and while browsing around I ran across a band called Carbon Leaf. I found them to have a nice, clean sound. By that I mean, the temp of most their songs seems to be upbeat and the lead singer actually sings vs. yelling along to the music (which I’ve found to be the case with much of the free music on Amazon). As an extra bonus to liking the band, they’ve got the entire contents of 2 of their albums up as free downloads1 and if you visit their website; there’s selected tracks off of all their other albums available as MP3s! I would not hesitate to recommend this band to anybody who likes soft/pop-like rock. 🙂

1 Those 2 albums would be “Ether-Electrified Porch Music” and “Echo Echo“.

You Know You Grew Up…

You Know You Grew Up In The 80’s or Early 90’s If:
1. You’ve ever ended a sentence with the word “SIKE”
2. You watched the Pound Puppies.

3. You can sing the rap to the “Fresh Prince of Belair” and can do the “Carlton”. I can’t sing the rap but FPoB was dope, homeboy!
4. Girls wore biker shorts under their skirts and felt stylishly sexy. I’ve no idea what it flet like but I remember seeing stupid people on TV dress this way.
5. You yearned to be a member of the Baby-sitters club and tried to start a club of your own.
6. You owned those lil’ Strawberry Shortcake pals scented dolls.
7. You know that “WOAH” comes from Joey on Blossom
8. Two words: Hammer Pants
*laugh* At the time, I thought these were the coolest pants. EVER! I wanted a pair so bad, but my Mom would never buy them for me. These days? I think I owe her a bigger Christmas gift because she never got them for me. *grin*
9. If you ever watched “Fraggle Rock”
10. You had plastic streamers on your handle bars and “spokey-dokes” or playing cards on your spokes for that incredible sound effect
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