View Full Version : February 2014 Entry - Cartographer's GuildHall :D :D :D

02-07-2014, 01:17 PM
I keep imagining the guild here as like.. a real guild with a guildhall and everything! And all the forums/subforums are different rooms and stuff, so.... I'm going to try to map the guild as if it were housed, physically, in a hall.



With a twist at the end :)

Haven't got much done yet, as it just started!!

### Latest WIP ###


02-07-2014, 02:13 PM
Okay, now I actually have something discernible :P

### Latest WIP ###


02-07-2014, 11:42 PM
If no one else enters, IM GONNA WIN!! :P :P :P :P

AND I did a lot of work so I should post before bed. (The big ugly floor is gonna be a great big SURPRISE but it's gonna take a long time so I'm saving it for the end ^.^


Okay I lost the file I'd been working on, cause my computer did its' overheating thing ("Wah, I'm too hot, I will turn off all by myself!") SO I redid what I'd done already :P but it's slightly different this time, and the discrepancy annoyed me.

Here she be:

### Latest WIP ###


02-08-2014, 03:10 PM
Ya that is annoying, that happens to me sometimes, usually after half an hour without saving :P

02-08-2014, 03:31 PM
Or, yknow... overnight without saving >.<

02-08-2014, 05:35 PM
Update ! Working on furniture :P

### Latest WIP ###


02-08-2014, 07:33 PM
Overheating computer ! what are you doing with it exactly ?

It's possible to turn off the heat sensors (or increase maximum heat limit) but it's better to avoid touching that.

02-08-2014, 08:17 PM
Allow me to explain.

My "computer" is a 7 year old laptop. It has almost no free memory (of any kind) because I have an anxiety disorder and if I get rid of something I always worry I will need it and freak out and have a panic attack - so I save everything.

I sit on the laptop from the time I get up till I'm so tired I'm ready to pass out (at least since the surgery) so when I do go to bed, I forget to turn it off... or even close the lid.

I took it apart once, to clean inside it, and it stopped working. They said (way back then) that taking it apart voided the warranty (even though they told me to, to get the dust out of the fan). So, since I'm too poor to pay for anything, it's never been fixed/cleaned since I took some electrical tape to the innards.

Then, I installed new... stuff... Windows Vista, then Windows 7, etc...

So it's kind of overloaded.

Sometimes it makes bacon-frying sounds, and occassionally sparks or smoke comes out of the fan-area.

Around the same time, it will just... turn off.

Then it says "Thermal shutdown has occured" or something.

Usually, it happens every month or so. Sometimes every couple of weeks.

As for what I'm actually doing on the computer.. welll....

I usually have about 6 instances of word open, for my writing, youtube and/or spotify for music, yahoo answers (cause it's fun to laugh at people) about 6 other forums I frequent, facebook (though I don't check it often) about 4 different MMORPGs, notepad (for lists) a calculator, whatever novel I'm reading on open library, these forums, whatever reference material people link me to, all 3 email accounts' inboxes, and any WIPs I'm doing in GIMP plus a few instances of MSPaint, cause it's just easier to save and upload stuff from there.
Plus whatever subject I'm hyperfocused on at the moment... usually something obscure that requires about 8-10 webpages to be open...

So... not a LOT.

And once every week or so, I will close a window :)

Not sure if any of that gives you a clue as to why I'm overheating, but... there it be.


02-15-2014, 04:17 AM

Well, there's yer problem.

Suggestions: Will the fire breathing beast write CDs or DVDs? If so, carve you off the least-referred-to info and burn backups. Neatly labelled, logically grouped, and in multiple copies. Aim at 10-30% free space on the disk, at least. THIS IS NOT GETTING RID OF INFO. Slap down the anxiety and tell yourself firmly that you can get to the stuff any time you want. Faster than sometimes, since a reboot will be less often a part of your normal process. A stack of fifty CDs or DVDs can be had for way cheap, if one waits for a good sale.

Jack that puppy up on some kind of stand. Anything, so long as the air ports are not lying right on cloth, table, or you. I have an old laptop mostly unused because of just such overheating. But even something like my reasonably clean work laptop, if my wife tried to run Facebook games like Farmville (a surprising graphics hog) or if my kids tried to run even a modest game, the cpu or gpu (no idea if it has a separate graphics processing unit) would get blazingly hot. Hot to the point one can't leave it on one's lap w/o pain. A cheap lap desk with a bunch of holes cunningly hacked into it would get a couple of inches of free airflow, and should way cut down on the heat buildup.

Now go to the sysinternals website (google Microsoft sysinternals). It's a site run by Microsoft to offer some utilities for free that I wish they would just put in the operating systems. Install one called process explorer, answering some question or other "yes, i would like to replace my task manager". Task manager is the rudimentary view of what's boinging around in your 'puter's tinny mind at any one time - the one you can bring up with a SINGLE! control-alt-delete. Once installed, (SINGLE!) control-alt-del, choose task manager, and see the process explorer. View -> system information will give you a graphical representation of how clogged various capabilities are. If yoiu keep those visible - mine show up as tiny graphs in the system tray, bottom right, when minimized - you can get a good idea if this slowdown I'm experiencing RIGHT NOW is due to no free memory or some such. If RAM in use is peged or nearly so, one might as well start closing things, 'cause the flaming beast is about to close them for you anyway. I have locked up my drawing program, closed, oh, saaaaay the Firefox with seventy tabs open, or the Outlook that's referring to several gigabyte size mail files, and voila - I temporarily have some free memory and PhotoPlus will be responding - maybe long enough to save my work!

Now, about those scads of tabs. Watching process explorer when you have few or many open will start to give you an idea how much of a hog a many-tabbed browser can be. FF has the benefit of an extension (or is it now built in?) where for the last FF window you close it'll ask you "want to save these tabs and restore on startup?" Watch for other FF windows open - error popups, ad popups, and a download pane all count when trying to get things down to the last window with stuff you care about - only the last closing seems to offer this saving option. Again closing thattaway does NOT lose you any info so slap your inner voice of panic upside the head with a large fish, tell it to shaddup, and properly close the browser. That is, if things are getting too hot or too slow or too laggy, or whatnot. If things are hunky dory, sure, leave all seventy open so you don't lose your place in researching the third rabbit trail that came up amid the second rabbit trail that arose while pursuig the first rabit trail which.... dang. Forgot what I originally was looking for again. Probably sixteen steps back in history on tab eleven, there.

Notepad and calculator are pretty cheap, size-wise, so they don't hurt much. The MMORGs? Uhhhhh .... those are gonna play hob with your drawing package. And eat graphics power. Pick game or draw, at any one time. *Consider* offloading your music to another bit of technology while drawing. some interfaces are lightweight, others eat your CPU and bandwidth so just watch the various process explorer charts and see what seems to use up the most memory.

You CAN kill processes right from that process explorer window - just don't. Unless you have no choice, like mail is stuck, and won't respond even enough to close genteelly.

What mail client do you use? Some are hogs .... >cough< Outlook >cough<.

"Six instances of Word open for writing".... I'm gonna go out on a limb here and suggest you separate writing and formatting. Word can be final draft, and a fine job it will do. Until you get through collecting most of your raw words don't tweak the look so much - you KNOW you do :-) -- rather capture raw blocks of verbage in say Notepad. D/L a notepad replacemebt like Notepad+ or Notepad2, by the way. A teensy bit more functionality, without being even as bloated as wordpad, let alone MS Word.

If you knew me you might think I would suggest dumping MS Word and using Star Office or Libre Office (free , open source, file type compatible!) instead. No - I've found both those to actually be slower than MS Word. My experience, my circumstances, YMMV.

The sizzling and smoke thing is why your system acts underpowered. Electronic devices run on smoke. When you let the smoke out of the chips inside, said chips and hence said devices will quit. And I've NEVER been able to get the smoke back in.

Seriously, if you had ANY resources to replace stuff with, those symptoms say "please replace me before i crash and burn, taking your house with me". Since you don't, then the run-better steps above are a teensy bit of betterment. Or a large smidgen. Or sometimes a whole heapin' helpin' of ....

Speaking of incineration, while you're making multiple copies of less-used info that you're going to keep close at hand,, why dontcha likewise make backup CDs or DVDs of ALL your critical stuff? Because one day that snap crackle pop ain't gonna be rice krispies cereal, it will rather be all your lovely files singing a goodbye song as they sprint out into the vast bitbucket in the sky. Forever.

Anyhoo- you've got options. Plentyof them, and cheap or free.

02-15-2014, 09:40 AM
Another option for your word processing (especially if you cant write discs with it), you could use google docs! It automatically saves what your doing within seconds as your doing it, so if your laptop fries while youre working on something youll be able to get it back of the cloud, from any pc anywhere. Also saves your disk space on the files, plus its free - win win win!

02-15-2014, 10:54 AM
Wow, that's a whole lot of really great suggestions! (and worded so humorously! :P )

I'll try to see if I can implement at least some of them (pretty sure I won't do the notepad text thing, because I use the formatting to find/edit what I've written faster than Ctrl&F can. :P (I'm very much a creature of habit)) but i have to do something so she doesn't burn my house down! :P

I can't write discs, but I can (and do) frequently save my pics/docs/videos to google docs.. but my understanding there is very limited, I don't know how to save/restore anything else?

I didn't know I needed to prop it up. (Usually it lays on my bed/table/sofa/kitchencounterinapuddleofdishwater/wherever I am. I will look into some kind of... stand or something. Gotta be cheaper than a new laptop/house, right?

I'll also try the task manager thing.

WAIT, there's supposed to be smoke inside my computer? D: What? :P

Oh, also I guess I could log out of the MMOs when I'm busy drawing... I'd probably die less/get other people killed less that way anyway....

You really think it's going to burn my house up? D:

02-16-2014, 12:18 AM
Weeeell, say the computer chips are MADE of compressed smoke :-) and if you let the smoke out you've had it. Burn your house? If you leave it off or idling when you aren't using it, no. Could light up your kitchen table maaaaaaybe...

Improv lap desk for cooling purely by better airflow: take one deep-ish cookie sheet and rack. Not as deep as this Wear-Ever brand example:
That's a 15x10 inch roasting pan - a bit too deep, but illustrative of the rounded corners you want for something you're going to lay on your lap. Stick the rack in place with hot-melt glue or some rubbery craft glue. Run beads of the glue across the top of some of the wires of the rack, for grip. That way the (no longer) flaming electrobeast will stay put. With no holes on the actual bottom of the rig, you want the overall size bigger than the laptop in at least one direction so the air has somewhere to come and go freely. Remember the space between the arms of your favorite cartographing chair or any other size limitations. I'm picturing you trying your laptop in various cookware at WalMart :-). If it slips on your lap too much you could run more beads of the glue across the bottom surface too, as non-slip. Or do what i do to keep my mountain dulcimer in my lap - a piece of rubber-mesh keep-throw-rug-in-place stuff between object & legs. If you take it aboard the International Space Station or use it in roller coasters, substitute velcro for the glue.

Laying it on cloth is a serious problem because flexible stuff conforms to the bottom of the mapmakingmachine and practically seals the vents. Statistically I guess there's more dust going to come from cloth than from a hard surface too. Refer to the There I Fixed It section of the Cheezburger / Fail Blog website for examples of active cooling schemes :-).

Failing an appropriate cookie sheet plus rack, nesting cookie sheets would work - one deeper than the other. That would give you the delightful opportunity to put a whoooole bunch of vent holes in top and bottom both. Hammer & nail, drill & bit, punch, bullets, fireplace poker, ice axe... whatever best punches metal and relieves tension.

Failing that, there are flat plastic storage boxes that might be stiff enough. Or you could stiffen an unused pizza box. That would be really easy to put holes in.

At random points in the world, I have resorted to simply propping up the hinge-side of my laptop an inch or so with a book.

No CD/DVD writer? Yikes. Being able to back stuff up is pretty vital. Maybe a dropbox account and a friend or coworker or family member who could download your uploads and write discs for you? Or a internet cafe or library or other public-access machine? That might be harder to transfer to. Dropbox at least happens in the background.

As for the map - if you look at the NE and SW corners where you have a drop shadow -- that makes the picture look like a flat thing hovering above the ground. You need to smear the shadow a bit so it reaches all the way to the corner of the wall itself - imagine not only the (depicted) top visible layer casting shadow, but also the whole vertical edge of the corner. Other than that, it's developing some nice plausibility :-).


02-16-2014, 12:27 AM
Oh great ideas :D

(And yes, I am going to measure cookware at Walmart with my laptop... it's less crazy than some of the things I've seen while there.)

(Plus if you act like the crazy things you're doing are perfectly normal, people either don't notice or are too scared to say anything :P )

And the cloth thing makes sense.

If I have a dropbox thingie, can I just email stuff to myself and re-download when needed, or does it like... expire?

And OH that makes more sense about the shadows ^_^

I'll work on those first thing in the morning (also, I haven't updated because I've only worked on the big surprise and my other map, but I am working on this!!)

02-16-2014, 12:39 AM
Could you make cookies on your laptop ?

If you have a USB port you could save your thingies on an extrenal drive or a USB key, they are pretty cheap considering I paid my first 1 GB USB key around 30$. It's still working but the protective cap is broken :(

02-16-2014, 11:09 AM
I do have one usb port :o I'd forgotten cause I just use it to plug stuff in, but I wonder if i could?! :o

02-16-2014, 05:57 PM
Surprise!! :)

The gallery floor is a map! Hooray!


Notes about other items:

The desks/items in the classrooms are not my creations... they're cliparts edited to match the rest of the map. They also aren't staying, they are there as reference/placeholders for me to create a classroom there later. Idk if that's allowed, but it's not staying anyway, soooo....

Also I like my black office chairs, and will probably use them a LOT cause they are so easy to make! :o

So I will probably replace a lot of chairs with these/similar chairs.

The map is just blobs of color I did in another file while looking at a world map in a national geographic magazine. I know it's not real accurate, but ... I LIKE IT. Uh....

Stairs were hard >.< I will probably re-use them on other floors!

Uhhhh... okay nothing else the rest of my map is still boring...

- Max -
02-16-2014, 06:40 PM
I'm personnally not a great fan of the painting digital filter you applied on your elements. It also clashes a bit with some sharp elments like the walls, the texture floor and some elements (carpets maybe?) ine the area close to the stairs.

02-16-2014, 06:47 PM
Yeah, I think I'm going to take it off... I still have most of the original ones cause I made copies :)

I wasn't sure if people would like it or not :D

(I put the filter on the walls too, but I guess not as strongly :P )

02-17-2014, 12:13 PM
Okay I took the oil effect off the couches and stuff, and added some little stuff, and finally made my own chairs/desks for the classrooms... not finished yet but wanted to see if it look better now before continuing :)

### Latest WIP ###


I thought without the oils, it doesn't really match the backdrop texture/my trees? But maybe it does, moreso than i thought? i can't tell cause i hate the whole picture >.<