About the author.

Welcome to The blog of whall

Come on in and stay a while… laugh a little. Maybe even think. Read more...

Hi, This is Wayne. This is my site, my stuff, my blog, blahblahblah. The site itself is powered by WordPress and the Scary Little theme. I thought it was cool, and I still do.

It’s been almost a month since my last MISC posting.  MISC me much?

Land’s End giveaway!

The ever-so-hawt-avatar BlondeBlogger is giving away a choice of three really cool items from Land’s End: Cashmere Tee Sweater, Men’s Regular Down Vest, and Sleeping Bag Sets.  There are several ways to enter the contest, and I’m doing all four (4)!  

There’s only one downside to this contest.  Unfortunately, if you choose the prize on the far left, you only get the Tee Sweater.  You do not (I repeat – DO NOT) get the camera or the Blonde.  It took me 2 hours of searching the fine print, six phone calls to Land’s End, and a fax to my state Senator to find out this disappointing news.

Good luck to everyone who is me!

Estate Planning

Dan was a single guy living at home with his father and working in the family business.

When he found out he was going to inherit a fortune when his sickly father died, he decided he needed a wife with which to share his fortune.

One evening at an investment meeting he spotted the most beautiful woman he had ever seen.

Her natural beauty took his breath away. “I may look like just an ordinary man,” he said to her, “but in just a few years, my father will die, and I’ll inherit 20 million dollars.”‘

Impressed, the woman obtained his business card and five days later, she became his stepmother.

The lesson: Women are so much better at estate planning than men.

Best of LOLcats

Yes, many of you MISC’ed these a lot.  I’m here to deliver a steady dose of LOLcats – in fact, I checked and by far the highest search term that got people to my blog this last month was LOLcats.

I will leave analysis of the other terms to the imagination of the reader.









This series has gone from weekly to weakly. I’m thinking maybe Nintendo should buy it from me and make it Wiikly.

Sign of the political times

Listening to the news today, I heard tell of everyday citizens having the little political signs they put out in their yard damaged, broken, vandalized, and stolen.

My first reaction was shock — primarily because I still expect people to be civil.  I love disagreement and conflict (hint: it’s how we grow), but when it escalates to property damage, that’s beyond sad; it makes me mad.

One story was about a woman here in Austin who had her Obama/Biden signs stolen and decided to spray-paint her lawn with a custom sign.

Another caller lamented how one morning he went outside and found his McCain/Palin signs vandalized, torn up and kind-of left as a “oh yeah?!?!?” message.

More and more stories popped up with McCain/Palin signs being damaged and Obama signs going missing.  Who am I sharing my city with?  A bunch of vandals and thieves?

Then I started thinking… hmm, the Obama signs aren’t being damaged like the McCain ones are.  The Obama lawn signs are just going missing.  Isn’t that a bit weird?

And then I got it!  It’s not Obama haters that are taking the signs at all!  It must be other Obama supporters!

Yeah!  The democrats are so confident that they’ll win next week that they’re starting early on their ideology of taking from those who have and giving it to those who don’t.

I’m hoping the lady’s own words will be reviewed in her own mind, and apply the same mentality to other things in life, like, oh, I don’t know…. taxation, maybe?

They might think it’s extreme, but I think it’s extreme to come into my yard and take something that belongs to me, so I wanted to express myself.

Technical fun

I’m on vacation from work this week.  This means I’m helping some friends with some technical projects that I’ve having a ton of fun with.  For me, fun usually means gadgets, fiddling with new systems, or learning something new with software.

Here are some of the things I’ve been playing with:


I’m a PC.  I’m a Unix.  I’m a toaster.  Whatever.  But the last time I was a Mac, it was late 80’s and early 90’s with a Mac IIc, a IISE, IIcx and the like.  I thought that this time around, my getting used to the mac with it’s unix base would be easy.  However, some of the things I took for granted with my decades with a PC/Unix system have created frustration with working with the Mac.

I am borrowing a MacBook Pro that’s definitely a sweet machine.  Leopard 10.5.3.  4GB ram.  2.6Ghz dual core.  I have some specific things to hammer out, like pointing Time Machine over a network.

But the things that are slowing me down are things related to efficiency.  I’m a keyboard person.  I don’t like using the mouse unless I have to, so the lack of a built-in right-click mouse button is insane for me.  I don’t know how to lock the screen fast (like windows+L) when I want to walk away.  How do I run an app from the keyboard?  How can I browse or search my files?  The mouse just slows me down for most of the things I do all day.

I want to be able to do everything with the keyboard, and I’m having trouble making the time to learn it all.  Oh, and where’s the page-down key?  ARGH.

I’m not expecting the mac to be a windows box – but I do want to know how to do the things Mac-style.  So that’s something I’m working on.  Marty and Dave have been answering my probably-annoying tweets and that’s helpful.


I got to know zeroshell some – it’s an all-in-one open source appliance that does DNS, DHCP, LDAP, RADIUS, VPN, firewall, QoS, vlan routing, Wireless integration, load balancing, HTTP Proxy, certificates and Kerberos.  I set up two of them on a network for redundancy and I’m really liking the web-admin console for DNS.

I have it running in a virtual environment – it’s literally a fully functioning operating system on a CD.  I just mount the ISO file in VMWare ESXi (also free), tell it to boot from it, give it some disk space to use, and it just works.  Very lightweight, very usable.  Sure, it’s beta but still.


Another open source tool I’m playing with in a virtual environment is FreeNAS – a network attached storage appliance.   The idea is that you can bring up a virtual machine with a lot of disk space, and it can service files to all your computers in whatever format you want – Windows-style SMB/CIFS, Apple-style AFP, NFS, FTP, RSYNC, iSCSI and others.  I still don’t have it working with Time Machine, but I do have it working with the macintoshes as a storage device. 

Evidently there’s a tweak for the Mac called the Flux Capacitor that allows the mac to see non-local hard drives as Time Machine backup targets, but it’s not working for me yet.  That’s another thing that bugged me about the Mac.  It seemed that it was just a simple command-line, but I had to download a 400KB “application” that ran that one-liner for me?  or am I misunderstanding the app?

Best of LOLcats



11:45 am
Post Meta :

I’m stuffed.


They say “imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.”  They usually say that when they copy your stuff.

But in this case, it’s true! I’m flattered!  NYCWD gave a “nod of the blog” my way when he created a non-cereal-wednesday video called Night In The Life, or NITL.  Although, for some reason, the links he made to my vlog series don’t seem to work in my browser, I checked the source and the link to me is there nonetheless.  I confirmed that the link works in IE 7 but not in Google Chrome.  Weird.

The video is pretty good too – informative AND entertaining.  I should work on the informative part, and probably the entertaining aspect too.

Here it is for your viewing pleasure:

Get WHALL soon

One of my favoritetest bloggers I haven’t met yet but I’m certain I’ll find a way to before I die is Janna.  Evidently, she’s so cool she actually has three blogs, not just one.  She has Jannaverse, Jantics and Jantrails.  Right now I only read the first one listed because it has more of her name in it.  OVer time, I’m sure I’ll ease into the other forms of Jannaddiction.

I was NOT feeling well last week, and actually ended up with strep.

So what does Janna do?  Make fun of me?  Kick me while I’m down?  Declare me unfit to be qualified to run as President because I’m not a natural-born citizen?  No!

She makes and then sends me a “get whall soon” card.  

Ahhhh.  and Awwwww.  

Wait a second.  I look sick in all of those pictures.

Best of LOLcats






Wow… Sixty WEEKS of stuff you don’t want to MISC. Actually, I guess that should be stuff you *didn’t* want to MISC, because when I post it *now*, it’s present tense, but now that it’s over, it’s past. Or is that passed? (Pssst: I think I might get pissed tonight at pool) (btw, “pissed” is the british term for drinking). (PS: it’s not offensive unless you take it that way).

heh, I just PS’ed.

Vacationing Vicariously

Good ol’ Dave from Blogography has been in Hawaii for the past, oh, forever or so, making everyone both happy and jealous with his photos.  

How he finds time to photograph, upload the photographs, write blog entries, *and* vacation is, well… just like me.  Yes, I admit, I’m a horrible vacationer, but aren’t vacations supposed to be good for the individual?

Yes, I *like* having my laptop on vacations.  Yes, I *like* my blackberry.   I *like* my gadgets.  To, me it’s relaxing to just play with my technology instead of have to work with it.

However, I suppose there are times where I wish I had a week or so without a laptop, without the blackberry, without a phone at all, and just a neat little emergency button in case something big happened, like getting an ingrown toenail or if I was like super hungry or something.

Anyway, go and check out his eleven days in Hawaii and look at the amazing photos.

  • Day 10 has a great picture of a river that looks like a fish to me
  • Day 8’s Lava Tube picture is mesmerizing
  • Day 3‘s sky picture is awesome!
  • Day 2 has jellyfish


Astronomy Picture of Day (APOD)

Speaking of photos….

A bunch of you have Ipods or Zunes or some kind of MP3 player. But many of us who have been around the Internet forever know about APODS (Astronomy Picture Of the Day)

Here’s today’s APOD:

(click to enlarge)

Isn’t that a great picture?

Every single day, this NASA web site displays a different image from somewhere in the universe, complete with a professional astronomer’s written explanation, which usually contains links to more fascinating information.

Best of LOLcats


Bonus! There’s a cool little Ninja cat in the youtube video below. I first saw this as a related video to the Spider-Puppy video I saw on Avitable’s site, but ICHC also showed it.


A couple of weeks ago, I asked you to put your hands in the ay-yer.  I think I only counted 12 people doing so.  Now, I don’t know if it’s that you can’t hear me, or if you’re just “not interested” but a slightly better attitude would be appreciated.  

Sycophants of the world, UNITE!


Because I TOLD YOU TO!

A very useful engine

Many of you know that Thomas the Tank Engine is a “very useful engine”. Jaden loves Thomas movies, action figures, train sets, computer games, and I blogged last year about the Day Out With Thomas, which he and I both loved immensely.

But this post isn’t about Thomas, as much as it’s about a “very useful computer gadget”

sata ide adapter

co-worker of mine picked up a couple of these at Altex and I must say, it’s gotta win some kind of product award. It’s incredible!

For those of you who do computer support, you’ve  probably run into the problem where a hard drive won’t boot. It still spins up, and it still has data, but it just won’t boot for this reason or that reason, usually a problem with Windows.

In the past, we’ve just used some special hardware to try to slave or mount the drive on a desktop machine with ribbon cables and room for extra drives. This was easy with desktop drives, but we had to get a special adapter for the laptop drives. It wasn’t pretty, but it did the job.

Then came along SATA, the way-faster and way-simpler connector but made it harder for us to do the drive slaving. We had to use a SATA desktop or one of the cool combo units Dell sold for a while that had both EIDE and SATA. But still, it was a pain, and generally involved “open heart surgery” on the PC we used as the diagnostic system.

This adapter he picked up allows for just a simple USB connection and it supports all desktop/laptop PC drives – desktop IDE, desktop SATA, laptop IDE and laptop SATA.   When connecting IDE, you don’t even need a separate power adapter!  For SATA, there is a separate power cable you have to plug in, but still, all of this beats doing it manually.  Best of all, since it’s USB, you don’t have to open up any PC’s.

Plus, it’s all hot-swappable.  With our old way of doing things, we’d have to shut down and reboot every time we disconnected or connected a drive.

Kudos, VANTEC!

Marching Band is still cool

Caitlin, our eldest, joined “the big time” this year by reaching freshman high school age. Now she’s with the Big Time band, the Cedar Park Timberwolves. This band is something else, lemme tell ya.

Last night was the “LISD Festival of Bands” where all the Leander Independent School District bands (middle school and high school) perform to a very populated football stadium.  I shot some video that I might upload at some point.  Let me know if interested.

Last year, the marching band put on a show called “Pursuit of Happiness” and even ended the show with a winking smiley face:

The official videos of this year’s band are still secure and for staff/band/family, so if you want to see them, get in touch with me directly and I’ll send a link.


Best of LOLCats


Happy Labor Day!

PS: do the unemployed celebrate Labor Day? 

Don’t forget – LOLcats are at the end.  This week I have two semi-long stories.  They didn’t start off that way.. in fact, they started off empty.

Crucial contradition

Does my pinky look fat to you? 

My parents had an older laptop that wasn’t suitable for use within their business anymore, but probably would be fine for internet browsing, email, chat and homework, so I wanted to see if it would work for my 14yr-old daughter.  It’s an older (> 4yr old) Sony Vaio (Vaio’s are so cool!).

So far, it’s proven to be an excellent laptop for student use.  The CPU is fast enough, it has decent battery life, it has wireless, etc.  It has 512MB ram on it, so I wanted to see about upgrading it.  The online manual says it can go to a gig, which should be plenty good enough (and in all frankness, the 512MB really is good enough , but if it’s only $15-20 I’d like to get the upgrade).

So I go to crucial’s site and have it auto scan the system.  And I’m confronted with a contradiction:

sony vaio crucial ram tester upgrade

On the one hand, it says my system already has the maximum amount installed.  Then it says I have 512MB installed with a capacity of 1024MB.  Then it says I have 0 available memory slots.  I CAN’T TAKE IT!

FAIL.   So I’ll have to dig into the manuals and figure out what I really can do.

The second thing I wanted to mention about the laptop is that I could probably never use it, at least for any length of time.  They keyboard is so incredibly hard for me to use!  The shift key is miniscule and all the keys I use frequently (end/home/pgup/pgdn) require the use of a function key.

sony vaio laptop keyboard is too small shift fn function key

As I was using it to run updates, install anti-virus, anti-spyware, etc, I found my pinky constantly hitting the up-arrow button instead of shift. 

I had no idea my pinky was so fat!

Wayne: 1;  1 and 1: 0

Once again I feel compelled to write about 1&1, my ISP.  I’ve done it before, and it’s not always a good thing.  Just now I realized that LAST Labor Day, they screwed up as well (complete with a WHALL LOLcat photo).

On Sunday, I got an email from the President of our Astrological Society asking if our website was down and sure enough, I checked and there was the dreaded Internal Server Error – 500.  After a bit of troubleshooting (it’s what I’m really good at), I determined that Apache, the web service software, was running fine, but PHP, the “scripting brains” behind WordPress and many other types of web sites, was not. 

Since this is a hosted service and not a dedicated server, I have extremely limited privileges on the machine.  All I can do is call them up and beg for them to look at it.  After a phone call that basically verified that the person answering the phone doesn’t know what they’re talking about, I at least got them to do, quote “reset the web service.”  Ah, is that what the kids are calling it these days?  He said to call back in 30-40 minutes because that’s how long it took (Wha???).  I was increasingly frustrated but it’s all I could do.

An hour later, nothing was fixed so I called back in.  This time the guy had a different answer that was even more absurd than the first.  He put me on hold for a bit and then came back and said “is it working now for you?”  I verified that it was and asked what the deal was.  He said “there were too many processes running on the server you were on, so we killed a few and it’s working.”  I had assumed he meant someone else’s hosting package because I don’t run anything but wordpress and drupal, and it’s all web-based.

Then the next day I got a twitter letting my know my blog was down.  Same problem: Internal Server Error 500.  I was mobile, so I emailed 1&1 support letting them know the problem was back; here’s my case number from yesterday, please fix it, and tell me what is causing it a second time in a row.

The response from 1&1 is so bad it’s laughable.

We have checked further your issue here. We need to ask more information form you. What website application are you using when you build your blog site? Is it thru wordpress or thru your 1and1 blog?  If your answer is wordpress you need to upload .htaccess file to the home directory file, yet make it sure that you have back up file for your existing .htaccess file. After which you need to parse the php to php 5.

All you techno-neophytes out there – don’t worry if you don’t understand the above paragraph.  The paragraph makes no sense, AND it’s completely wrong.

I called in to support and let them know that the email response I received was inaccurate and unacceptable.  After talking with them for a while (and holding forever), the guy told me that I had too many processes running.  Specifically, he said I had too many PHP connections open.  So naturally I wanted to know – “how many connections?  What’s the limit?  How do they know they’re mine?  How can I determine this myself so I prevent the problem in the future?

He had no answers at all.  He just kept talking himself into a hole, using terms he had no business using.  I wish I could have recorded the conversation.

I also responded to the email:

I just called in and got a completely different answer than what you just put in the ticket. Your response portrays a significant lack of knowledge on the service you provide.  Please escalate this to the next level and explain to me how I’m using too many processes. Is it a load average issue? Inodes? Number of running processes? Ram consumed? Is there some quota that I’m subjected to that I’m exceeding? I need my hosting service to work and I need to know what arbitrary limitation has been placed upon my package recently that is causing this issue.

And guess what response I got…. yup, completely unrelated gibberish

We thank you for providing us the necessary informations. As we have checked on the websites whall.org/blog and astrologyaustin.org , we can see that both websites are working fine. We have also checked on the server where your websites are being hosted an it is also working fine.  Please try to clear the cache and cookies of the web browser that your using or use another web browser.

I almost wish the hosting package wasn’t so inexpensive, or that the cost of transferring 100+ domains wasn’t so prohibitively costly.  I’d consider switching if otherwise.

Best of LOLcats

I want you all to know that I’m not so closed-minded that LOLcats has to be restricted to cats. 

lolcats omg that dress ick dog


lolcats surprise eggs dude not yet

lolcats make da voices stop



What’s that you say? You say you don’t understand what’s happening with the world when whall does a weekly post *two* weeks in a row?!!? My My My, that *is* groundbreaking.

Some of you may wonder why I put the weekly LOLcat summary down at the end of each of these series posts. I’d like to be able to say that I do it because I’m saving the best for last, but in reality, it’s to honor those who have so publically shown their disdain for my LOLcat addiction. I don’t want them to have to wade through photos that make them puke in order to get to stuff they might actually want to read.

You know, it’s like how the milk and dairy products are always at the very back of the grocery store. They want you to have to walk through the endcaps, kiosks, specials, advertising, guy-with-headphones-bopping-while-putting-away-boxes, unruly kids with horrible parents, and have time to listen to their subliminal-advertising-laden musak.

I care about you, so you don’t have to do all that.

Hot blogger nomination

Look, I’m not going to beg.

Ok, maybe I will a little.

Hear me out.

I was nominated by a special blond republican out there as a hot male blogger. I’m guessing it was a typo, but I believe there are no coincidences. Coincidentally, she’s been nominated as a hot female blogger (listed as “BlondeBlogger).

Here’s what I figure.

  • There are about 300 million people in the US.
  • About half of the population is female, so that leaves 150 million or so males.
  • About 80 million of those males are retired, and by definition, no longer “hot”, so that leaves 70 million.
  • Approximately 40 million are kids, and what are you, a perv? That leaves 30 million.
  • ~20 million are employed by the federal government, so they are automatically disqualified due to the tax implications. That leaves 10 million.
  • There are about 1.2 million people in prisons, and unless the rules have changed, those people aren’t blogging, leaving 8.8 million.
  • According to a recent study, the blogosphere has stalled at 15.5 million blogs. Extrapolate that to the population and it means 5% of the population has a blog. Half of that are males, so 2.5% is the number we can use. That leaves 220,000 eligible male bloggers.
  • At any given time, there are 188,000 people in hospitals, and unless they’re getting plastic surgery, they’re not hot. That leaves 32,000.
  • There are 133 guys nominated, meaning only the top half of a percent of all bloggers even get a CHANCE at winning.
  • Most of those 133 probably won’t go to the lengths I will to advertise, plead, beg and guilt others into voting.
  • I have the most compassionate, understanding and blind tasteful readership in the world. You guys KNOW what you’re doing. You know quality when you see it.

That’s right. I am not above flattery to reach my goals. Go and vote for whall.

You’ll have to scroll down a bit to find me. But isn’t everything worthwhile worth the effort?



I just realized that some of you might not know how hot I actually am.  So here’s my submission to help you make your choice.

whall's submission to hot blogger calendar contest.  What do you mean, it's photoshopped?!??!?!

Update #2:

The whall hot blogger committee has released a new voting button and poster

hot blogger calendar vote for change lolz we can believe in whall

WordPress 2.6.1 upgrade

I keep getting the bug to upgrade. So maybe by the time you read this, I’ll have upgraded from WordPress 2.3.3 to 2.6.1.

Sometimes I gamble like that. Like as I write this, it’s 11pm on a Sunday night. I *could* upgrade, and maybe it’ll only take 10 minutes. Or everything might go horrible and I spend 3 hours recovering it. But it seems so cool to just do it!

So, if you’re reading this and you can’t access my blog…. (haha, got you there.)

Would someone dare me already!??!!

Accomplishments this week

I wanted to point out some of the things that I consider feathers in my cap for this past week that you may have missed.

Dragon’s Tarragon

Speaking of accomplishments, a recent recipe posted by Dragon caught my eye, then dragged it down and pulled in my nose, mouth, tongue and stomach and held it hostage so that I was unable to think anymore until I tried it out.

Let me tell you – mmmmm-MMMMM!

Here’s the setup: we had made dinner plans for Friday night with some good friends of ours. A coworker bestowed a bottle of his favorite wine – a red zinfandel called Elyse – after helping him with some voip and networking at his home. Always looking to take advantage of friends, I snagged it close to my body and said GIMMEGIMMEGIMME! and ran back to work.

I really wanted to try this recipe, so I went shopping to get the supplies. I’ll be completely honest and say I didn’t even know what a shallot was. I thought he wrote movie reviews and wore big mustaches. Evidently they turn translucent when they simmer. Who knew?

So I called up my mom while at the store and asked about shallots, then also asked if there was a difference between whipping cream and whipped cream. Hey, shut up. I know the difference between a gerund and a past tense verb, but I can’t assume every chef paid attention in English class. They were probably dreaming of doughnuts anyway.

With the help of one of the friends, we cooked an amazing dinner. We did these steaks out on the grill, made the sauce, added some steamed Alaskan King Crab, corn on the cob (also steamed), green beans, and poured the wine. We made some garlic butter sauce for dipping the crab in, and we were four people sitting in heaven.

The wine definitely helped accentuate our enjoyment of the meal. Just to add ecstasy to an already perfect evening, we had some gourmet cheesecake bites (turtle, raspberry swirl and NY Style).

Afterwards, we cleaned up and played a few rounds of Pinochle. The men lost to the women 1-2. 

I took some photos of our meal on our friend’s iPhone and will post them in the comments if I can.  Thank you Dragon!  Great job!

Best of LOLcats

8:27 am
Post Meta :

Yeah, it’s been… oh, more than a month since my last installment of this weakly weekly series. I’m sorry. It’s beyond my control. You could paypal me though. I’m not above bribery for writing more.

Riding the bus

If you’ve been following my tweets or utterz, like I told you to, you’d know I started riding the bus to work when I can. I’m targeting 4 days per week because there are always those times when errands or schedules mandate mobility.

My initial impetus is cash savings. You see, I’m a greedy white male conservative that only cares about the green in my wallet, right? The greener my wallet, the happier I am. If the earth is green, I’m fine with that, but it’s not like I’m going to mess up my day to save the earth. My electric bill at home shot up over the last few months from low $200’s to mid $400s. I needz mah dough, yo. I’ve been riding about two weeks and I definitely noticed NOT filling up the car.

What am I saving? Well, according to Google, the most efficient route from home to work is exactly 10.0 miles. Times two makes it 20 miles. My car gets 15-18 mpg (I think, I should check that out, but according to my calculations of miles driven per tank, that’s about right), so at $4/gallon, I would spend about $5 a day in gas. However, that “most efficient route” is full of traffic, and there’s way too much stop-n-go idling. Not only does it take forever, it decreases the usable gas mileage. There’s another route that’s 12 miles that is a little better. The fastest way to work is to use the toll road, but it jumps up to 18 miles one-way, which effectively doubles my usage of gas (estimating). 36 miles at 15mpg is > 2 gallons per day. I’m guessing right now that I’m actually saving somewhere between $80-120 a month by riding the bus. The bus costs $1 per day for unlimited riding, less if I buy a monthly pass.

There have been other benefits, such as additional “quiet time” or “organizing time”. I can work on my blackberry or my laptop while someone else takes care of the driving, the signaling, the cutting people off, and yelling at other drivers. Since the actual time it takes to get to work is longer, I have plenty of time to go over the previous day’s missed emails, catch up on blogs, write a blog if I feel extra sparky, or (gasp) even do something that might be called work. But although commute time increases, productivity increases with it.

When I drive to work, about the only thing I do with my time is call into utterz. Don’t get me wrong – I love utterz and still make time to call in, but I want to be able to do more. About the only thing that would optimize my time on the bus even more would be fold-out desks or table surfaces. A laptop on a lap isn’t that comfortable.

Another benefit is the adoption of patience. Yes, patience. I’ll let that idea sink in for a little bit. Ya done yet? WHY NOT! DON’T YOU UNDERSTAND PATIENCE!?!?!? COME ON, NOW! TELL ME YOU UNDERSTAND PATIENCE! I AIN’T GOT ALL DAY!

There’s something about being on someone else’s schedule, having to be there early (5-10mins is the recommended window), and taking things s-l-o-w. You get more time for YOU. You notice the weather, the other citizens milling about, the trash on the ground, (pick it up, please), and you get to explore your thoughts. You reflect on the day so far. You have time to plan for the day ahead. The interruptions lessen because it’s just you and the bench. Or you and the bus seat. If I need some calm meditation time, I can close my eyes and center my thoughts. I drive out the low hum of the bus and the high whine of the engines. I halt my incessant wondering of “where’s he going when he gets off the bus?” and “does she have kids?” and “what’s his greatest accomplishment in life so far?” I open my mind for the Universe to send me signals and answers to the subconscious questions I’ve built up over the previous 24 hours.

So far, the Universe hasn’t answered back with the winning lottery numbers. But I’ll keep listening.

I’ll be there’s an 11 in there somewhere, too.

Best of LOLcats

I have one reader who mainly comes here just for the LOLcats. I think we all know who she is, but I’m too lazy to do an intervention. My favorite this week is a tie between the zombies one and the OMG LOLcat dog.

(btw, send your mycoke codes to Avi)

Hey you.  Glad you stopped by.  I’ve missed you.  No, I’m not talking to them. I’m talking to YOU.  Yes, you.

Utterz mania

I’ve acquired the start of a new addiction.  You may have seen on my twitter updates that I’ve done a number of utterz this past week or so.  Instead of trying to explain what Utterz is, just go and check it out if you feel like it.  I won’t be offended if you don’t.

I’ve gotten into the habit of holding down the “U” key on my blackberry, which is the way you autodial on a blackberry.  I dial in, it recognizes me from my Caller ID, and away I go.  Sometimes I start uttering what’s on my mind, and other times I just start listening to utterz.

I like that I can utter and save it (private) so I can publish it at a later time.  I also just like listening to utterz and replying when I feel like it.  Sometimes I think I’m helpful, like when someone is talking about DNS exploits or how it’s hard to keep track of all their logins on all the blogs everywhere.  Other times I’m just annoying and silly.  Today me and Jaden along with my nephew played “going to Granddaddy’s“, a memory game in the car.

There are a few things I wish Utterz would do:

  1. I wish the u.tag stuff worked for me.  I try to tag things from sms or from email on my blackberry and it always bounces.  I think it’s seeing +1512blahblahblah and bombing
  2. I wish I could listen to utterz in my area, like utterz from my zip code or the surrounding town.  It would be one of the “timelines” they offer.
  3. I wish I could tag my utterz with my voice.
  4. I wish it used speech-to-text to auto-dictate what I said, kind of like how twitterphone can do, but for my utterz. 
  5. Then I wish it would email me the result of the auto-dictation and wait for my approval or edits, and THEN post it.

SharePoint upgrade was awesome

As I mentioned last week, we had a big SharePoint upgrade Monday night.  It definitely was a success – I love SharePoint 2007!  We had a few issues during the upgrade, and we ran into some permissions snafu’s during the week but by and large it was all cool, bro.

Some of the things I still can’t get over how cool they are:

Email alert improvements

Now the alerts not only tell you something’s been added, changed or deleted, but it actually tells you WHAT changed in the item

moss 2007 email alerts tell you what changed

Outlook can connect to Lists as Tasks

You can actually have outlook connect up to certain list types so you can – get this – actually keep track of tasks that you have scattered all over on web sites everywhere


Yes, yes, yes, “workflow” still is a nebulous concept, but just trust me, it’s cool.  You can easily program up things for the server to do when certain things happen.  That’s about as detailed as I can get without an example.

And I’ll probably blog a full example at some point, like a helpdesk.

Recycle Bin

What a fantastic feature this is.  Users.  Recovering from their own mistakes.



Best of LOLcats

hey, I coulda made that one!











Some of you might want to MISC this week’s Stuff.  I’ll have to check my horoscope, but I bet something’s transiting that has me sluggish, tired, cranky and short with people.  Either that, or it was something I ate.  DON’T YOU JUDGE ME! Oh wait, that was me being cranky and short with people again. 

Happy 4th

We had a pretty darn decent Fourth of July.  Georgetown’s San Gabriel Park hosted the SERTOMA Fourth of July Celebration and we had a great time.

I have no idea who “SERTOMA” is other than it’s some creative mashup of “SERvice TO MANkind” but they put on a good show.  Hopefully it’s not, like, “To Serve Man.”

Did anyone else notice some “new” fireworks this year?  I’m talking about the ones that blow up like normal, turn colors like normal, and then fire off secondary pieces like normal… except for these new ones, the secondary pieces seem alive?  These secondary pieces look like tadpoles avoiding a predator, and it was COOL.

Here’s a 3min video of the Guinness Book of World Records Largest Fireworks show.

Caitlin turned 14

Yup, it’s my daughter’s second anniversary at being a teenager.  Smith and Wesson’s stock went up solely on this news alone.

Interesting Shortcut found on accident

Just now, I accidentally hit CTRL-ALT-LEFT ARROW on my keyboard.  All of a sudden, my entire desktop rotated 90 degrees.  At first I thought “WHOA, Not again! the World has tilted!” but then I realized it was just my laptop screen.  The fact that my drink didn’t spill was the first clue.

It took me a few tries, but then learned CTRL-ALT-UP ARROW fixed it to be normal portrait orientation.

Looks like this is a Vista thing vs a Video Driver thing.  I’m always thrilled to hear about more keyboard shortcuts.

What keyboard shortcuts do you rely on?

SharePoint 2007 upgrade

Tonight we’re doing our upgrade from SharePoint 2003 to SharePoint (MOSS) 2007.  It’s a project many weeks in the making and I’m hoping it goes well.  For those of you who don’t know what MOSS is – it’s Microsoft’s Intranet platform.  It’s like a blog, wiki, online spreadsheet, collaboration headquarters and search engine for your company.  SharePoint 2003 was cool but 2007 is way cooler.

Some of the NEW features we’re most looking forward to are:

  • Recycle Bin
  • Workflow abilities
  • Per-item security settings

Best of LOLcats









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