Geek My Ride!!
By John Van Horn
PT's expert on computer security and communications, Auri Rahimzadeh, has published a new book, and once you get past the title, it's a lot of fun. "Geek My Ride" is a self-help book for those who wish to turn their car into a moving computer and media center.
The title is, of course, a takeoff on the MTV reality series "Pimp My Ride," where unsuspecting vehicles are turned into moving bordellos. Auri, however, takes a bit of a different approach. He gives you the tools to do the job yourself. Not bordellos, but media rooms.
As they say on the cover, if your automotive high tech goes far beyond a backseat DVD player with a drop-down screen, this book is for you. Want a gaming PC, Internet access, satellite TV, video conferencing? This book is the place to go.
You can add these and half a dozen geek toys to your ride with these step-by-step instructions, complete lists of tools and equipment, advice on handling power and temperature issues, even essential physics.
This is a book for people who want to do things but have no clue. It brings up things such as problems with the car warranty and how to be sure you aren't voiding it (check with the dealer). How about power? Did you know that if you stick something in the cigarette-lighter socket and turn off the key, that on some cars the lighter is still "hot" and you can run down the car battery?
Of course, there's the CD player and the hard drive. Some drives are built to take a lot of punishment (such as those in laptops) and some are not. Which ones do you think are best for a car? What about parts? You can get them on eBay, or may have a lot of them just lying around the house. (My guess is that there are more lying around Auri's than mine, but who knows.) Did you know that you can take a broken laptop and use many of the parts in "geeking" your ride?
This book has pictures, diagrams, and even drawings of the right tools to use. Auri has done a great job with this one.
Most impressive is the foreword. Seems Auri has worked alongside Apple cofounder Steve Wozniak.
Wozniak describes his cars and the electronics that are in them. This geek has a Hummer with satellite TV, Internet access and Wi-Fi, and all kinds of servers and iPod-style music systems. He buys cars based on the electronics that are built in. Remember when you bought a car because you liked the color? Those days are history.
Wozniak believes the work done by Auri in "Geek My Ride" can enable the layman to bring his car online and in real-time and under budget. What better recommendation can you get than that?
If you are even considering installing something more than a CD player in your car, "Geek My Ride" is the place to go. It's available on Amazon.com and at most places where Computer Geek books are sold.
Article Abstract from August, 2005