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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.

Hello and welcome once again to our International Phishing Awards show. 

I’m your host, the Amazingly Attractive and Ever So Humble whall, and today we’ll take a closer look at one of the best phishing scams we’ve ever seen.

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November
2
2011
12:21 pm
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I think it’s pretty neat that today, 11/02 2011, is known as an “eight-digit palindrome day”.   The numbers 11022011 read the same forwards as backwards, and there aren’t many days that happen like this.  I researched it for about 14 seconds and found out that someone said there are only 12 of them this century. 

I did no further fact-checking.

But I thought about that number 12.  Why are we leaving him out?  Wait, ARE we leaving him out?  Why is someone asking about leaving out 12? Who asked that?  Where was I?

After thinking and rethinking about it, I instead would like to make this post at a time that makes it one of many “twelve-digit palindrome days”.  er, “twelve-digit palindrome times”, which would be 12:21pm (eastern) on 11/02, 2011

I believe my service to the Internet and it’s peoples speaks for itself.

 

Like many folks out there, I love my iPhone.  And like many of those folks who currently have iPhones, I’m wondering if I’m going to get an iPhone 4S. 

So I reflected.  I pondered.  I daydreamed.  I checked available funds.  I went back to daydreaming.  I checked available funds again.  I quickly learned that daydreaming, while completely lacking in material gain, was actually quite inexpensive on the whole and could sustain me for a good while.  But, just in case, I checked available funds again in case anything had changed in that last 45 seconds I spent daydreaming.  I then went back to daydreaming, but this time, I was daydreaming about both the iPhone 4S and a lot more available funds. 

Mmmmm…..  Available funds….

I also noticed there were a lot of complainers online.  TONS of people twittering, blogging, facebooking that Apple dropped the ball.  THEY HAVE SOME NERVE, not giving us the iPhone 5 they never once mentioned or promised.  HOW DARE THEY reuse a winning design and make millions of accessories useful for yet another year?  I CANNOT BELIEVE they will only double my total internet download speed on the AT&T Network.    I believe OMGFAILLOL was typed very near the sacred words “Apple” and “iPhone,” which amazingly isn’t against United States law yet.

Me? As a proud iPhone 4 user, I’m actually kind of glad that the iPhone 4S would probably let me re-use my expensive Otter case.  I’m just fine with the 8MP camera upgrade and the CPU speed boost.  I’d be looking forward to the supposed extended battery life.  I’d be thrilled with the revamped dual-antenna and better call connection.  I’ve not used Siri, so I don’t know yet how much I’d care that it’s an exclusive.  All of the IOS 5 and iCloud features are pretty much the same on the iPhone 4 vs 4S as far as I know, so there’s not much to discuss there. 

So there I was, convinced that I needed to convince myself to upgrade to the iPhone 4S.  I just needed to convince myself to do it. 

But I paused. 

I had to ask myself — did I have enough experience to do an upgrade?  I know that for some, experience is an over-rated characteristic, but for me, I needed to make sure I knew enough to go through with it.

Interestingly enough, it didn’t take me very long to determine that I indeed had some history upgrading phones and music devices.

Lessee… That’s one iPhone 3G, 3 iPhone 3GS’s, 2 iPhone 4’s, a Windows 7 Samsung Focus and two portable music players.  Not shown: the Cingular 8525, the 4 or 5 Blackberry 8700C’s, or the dozen or so phones and gadgets from before I started keeping my boxes.

I needed more than just experience, however.  I needed to be able to rationalize the purchase.  I needed some sort of “hook” to make the purchase a necessity, not just a luxuy.

The wife’s 3GS is acting up.

Yeah, that’s the ticket.  Her phone is a piece of crap!  “3gs,” I said mockingly, in my head.  Over and over again, I bullied that phone in my mind.  I can’t believe my own wife has a prehistoric bundle of copper wires and duct tape that calls itself a smartphone.  The battery dies after just 30 minutes!  The docking port doesn’t always accept every cable!  Calls disconnect all the time!  IT’S A 3GS AFTER ALL. 

But, I quickly reminded myself, if *I* were to upgrade to the iPhone 4S, then I could give my iPhone 4 to her!  I could even make it sound really really good, like so good it would be on par as a 20th wedding anniversary present or something.  Boy am I smart!

Giddy from how smart I realized I was, I re-checked available funds again and my spirit sunk like the stock market after a jobs speech.  To add insult to injury, my brain decided to remind me that with one of the three phone upgrades available on my AT&T Family Plan, I can get a FREE 3GS replacement from the Apple Store to fix my wife’s phone woes.

Oh well, back to waiting for available funds.

There are three iPhone 4S’s available, and with the upgrade, they are $199 for 16GB, $299 for 32GB and $399 for 64GB.  I have the 16GB iPhone 4 now and am always bumping against the limit, so I already know I need to budget for at least the 32GB.  And with a bigger camera, I might be taking more pictures so the 64GB might be the thing to get, but with iCloud, I can store more things off-the-phone.

But it’s still 300 or 400 dollars, and that’s a lot of do-re-mi, Fasola Tea.

Here’s where you come in.

If I missed any good rationale or factors that would help convince me that this purchase is a necessity rather than a luxury, please comment below. 

If you have words of encouragement for me during these difficult times, please comment below.

If you have tips on how to deal with the time between now and when I get the funds to upgrade, please comment below.

If you happen to have any extra available funds or Apple gift cards, please comment below.

 

 

September
24
2011
11:32 pm
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Man, it’s good to finally do some technical blogging again.  Until I get my technical site up and running, I’ll do some random stuff like this.

Tonight I saw “PLAYterm” on slashdot and really loved the idea.  I’ve always learned Unix and networking tips and hints by watching masters do their magic on the command line.  While I still like reading about it (Unix Power Tools still is a favorite reference book), watching someone was amazing.

PLAYterm lets someone record their command line session and embed it into a webpage for others to watch.  The brave among us even allow for people to post comments, which could be used to give suggestions and praise or provide a chance for bullies to belittle and deconstruct.

I decided to give it a try, seeing as how I had a little hard time getting the required “ttyrec” program to work on my particular setup, which is Cygwin running on my Windows 7 laptop.  It’s basically getting 99% of linux on a windows box.  What better useful step than showing others how to get it working on their system?

PLAYterm seems to be PERFECT for someone like me who wants to document a lot of network / firewall / scripting things that I’ve collected over the years, wait, decades.

So here’s my PLAYterm-hosted tty recording of how to get ttyrec to compile on Cygwin (note: the embed code doesn’t seem to work on Google Chrome, and the display is bigger than my blog entry space will allow… so some of the right edge is cut off. Just follow the link above to see it on playterm’s site).

While Ren has been getting to know his Prius, I’ve come to know a different kind of hybrid – a hard drive kind of hybrid.

My home laptop has needed an upgrade for a while now — 250GB sounds like a lot, but with photos, videos, a large music library, tons of archived email and install/tools dating back to the late 90’s ends up taking more space.  I’ve also gotten a bit of the gaming bug, and some of the games I’ve installed are a whopping 20GB by themselves.

On a PC, having “breathing room” on your hard drive is very important.  You don’t want to fill up very much because then the system will be forced to spend time trying to find nooks and crannies to put your files, and when it has to do that, it gets very busy.  It’s like having a 2000 page phone book, see, and you put pages 1-12 in Austin, pages 13-150 in DC Area, pages 151-570 in PA, 571-844 in FL845-923 back in TX, 924-1388 in WA, 1389-1438 in Canada, 1439-1554 in NYC, 1555-1673 in Amsterdam, 1674-1899 in Utah and the rest in Mexico.  You’d get really busy trying to flip through the book, but on the bright side, you’d probably have a TON of fun visiting all those places.

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If you haven’t seen TeeFury yet, it’s quite a neat deal.  It’s a website (and twitter account, iPhone app, email list, etc) where they just sell ONE T-shirt for 24 hours.  For $9.

That whole “gone tomorrow” part?  Absolutely true.  They only sell the one shirt, for the one day, and there ain’t no going back.

If it sells out?  Tough Shirt.

If you missed it by a minute?  Noshirtforyou!

My history with Teefury

I had bought one shirt from them a while back – it was a cool Star Wars inspired design of AT-AT’s as seen behind an X-Ray from a Veterinary Clinic’s point of view.

Since Star Wars is a big part of my job, I thought it quite fitting (haha).  The fact that it’s an instant collector’s item isn’t a bad deal either, because I’m snobby like that.  I also like the weird look of recognition certain people get when they look at my shirt, then look again, then smile when they recognize the AT-AT (All Terrain Armored Transport).

The “Grab Bag”

Sometimes TeeFury does these things called “Grab Bags”.  You pay $5 a shirt for X number of shirts, and you have absolutely no idea (or control) over what you get.  You might get cool shirts; you might get “whaaaa?” shirts; you might get “ok” shirts; and if you’re like me, you wait for weeeeeeks to find out what you get.

People even post what shirts they got on the forums.  Either they’re commiserating or gloating, or a little of both.

I participated in my first Teefury Grab Bag recently and I must say, I’m quite impressed with the results.

What Did Wayne Get?

I know, you’re wondering what I got from my Grab Bag.  After all, you read my blog because you CAN’T WAIT to know what happens to me, right?

First, let’s get the stupid one out of the way.  WHAT IN THE HILTON HEAD ISLAND is this thing?

It’s a cat.  A happy cat.  riding a Motorcycle with a fish on the tank (heh, fish tank).  Plaid-looking seat.  Detailed jacket, pants, pointy boots, and WHY IS IT YELLOW?!?!?

There’s an explanation over at MyLoveForYou about an artist named Lisa Hanawalt who made a shirt called “Kitty Biker“.  I don’t mind telling you – I’m more lost than a caveman with Tourette’s trying to do open heart surgery with a chainsaw while wearing oven mitts.

At night.

While drunk.

Moving on… We come to something I still am a little lost by (doesn’t take much, I guess… maybe I was put into shock from the first shirt) but at LEAST it’s a little bit appropriate for me.  I am, after all, a strong proponent of the 2nd Amendment and the right our Founding Fathers gave us to keep and bear arms.

I googled for a while to try and find out what the name of this shirt is, but failed.  It’s probably on my receipt, which I threw away.  Anyway, here it is for your perusal.

Not bad.  Not good, either… but not bad.

Wait a second.  Is this an anti-2nd-amendment shirt?!?!?!?  I’ll have to do some more self-reflection before I actually wear this down to the next Secede Texas Rally.

The Most Appropriate Shirt Ever Shipped

Then I look at the 3rd shirt and I’m like… whoa, Keanu-style.

YES, that’s a Death Star.

YES, those are Tie-Fighters.

YES, that’s an X-Wing at the bottom.

YES, it’s Space Invaders, Star Wars-style.

YES, IT’S MINE!

Teefury, I think I love you.  I think I want to go out into the galaxy and do wild things with you and then go to Anchorhead and get our memories erased.  Copy that, Gold Leader *wink*  I’d like to take you point five past lightspeed, and it will take me a LOT longer than twelve parsecs to make the Kessel Run.

Now that I have the iPhone app installed, I don’t think I’ll be missing out on too many cool shirts in the future.

I’ve hit my head against the virtual wall (whall?) more times than I can count over the past few years on something that I suddenly “fixed” recently, and I wanted to blog it for the masses.

In short,

If you’re running WordPress or any PHP-based application on a host that has both PHP 4.0 and 5.0 installed, append the following to your .htaccess file for that application:

Options All -Indexes
AddType x-mapp-php5 .php
AddHandler x-mapp-php5 .php

As an added bonus, I also detail how to upgrade MySQL 4.0 database to MySQL 5.0 on 1 & 1 hosting (see extended entry below).

I use 1 & 1 for my internet hosting, and have since, oh, 2003 or so. For the price I pay and the service I get, I’m very happy. There have been a few glitches, to be sure, and I’ve blogged about a few of them. But overall, I’ve been a happy camper.

I mention 1 & 1 because on all their shared hosting packages, they install both PHP 4.0 and 5.0. Ever since I can remember, I’ve had the dreaded “Internal Server Error 500” on a few things on my blog, like exporting my blog to XML as a backup, or similar tasks. Sure, I can always do the manual MySQL backup because I’m a geek, but it annoyed me that I couldn’t do the XML backup. Also, some plugins just wouldn’t work right, and auto-upgrade almost NEVER worked.

This inability to auto-upgrade also frustrated some of the people I host blogs for. Yes, I host blogs. For those special few in my life (heh) I will set up, install, configure and host a wordpress blog so they don’t have to worry about it. I typically only have them pay for the domain name ($10 a year or so) and I host the site for free. I host more than a hundred domains, including personal blogs, commercial blogs, non-profit websites, and I use WordPress, Joomla, Drupal and even raw HTML (the shock and awe!), wherever appropriate. It’s not a money maker for me, and I only ask that if someone I host gets wildly popular and makes millions of dollars, that they kindly remember me on my birthday.

On every WordPress blog I hosted, the authors weren’t able to consistently install or update plugins, or perform the auto-update feature inside of WordPress. It would either give that infernal Internal Server Error 500 or it would just hang. So, they’d email me, I’d procrastinate, they’d nudge, I’d forget, they’d ask politely a fortieth time, I’d promise to do it, and then eventually I’d manually upgrade their plugins a year later.

I’m happy to say that the above .htaccess file changes have completely eradicated the auto-upgrade errors, and I can perform the XML backups all day long without a problem. Not only that, but my blog actually seems faster. In case you care, the .htaccess lines tell Apache (the web server running on the host) to use PHP 5.0 to process all the files ending in .php instead of the default of PHP 4.0.

I’d do a happy dance if there weren’t so many adoring fans surrounding me, restricting my movements.

For the big WordPress 2.9 upgrade that I’ve been putting off, I was also challenged by the fact that my personal blog as well as a few blogs I host used the older MySQL 4.0 databases instead of the newer MySQL 5.0 databases. WordPress 2.9 required a later version of 4.0 than 1 & 1 had installed, and I was wary of diving into the “upgrade MySQL 4.0 database to 5.0” process.

Until last night.

The database upgrade went quite smoothly (this post was most helpful). In fact, I got it down to a science – take the values from the wp-config.php file (database name, username, and host name) and put it into the mysqldump / mysql commands to pull from the old 4.0 database and insert into the new 5.0 database.

My steps, for those interested and the inevitable Google searches that will land here, are documented in the extended version below.

Once I upgraded my MySQL Database to 5.0 and added the .htaccess lines at the top of the post, the WordPress 2.9 auto-upgrade was a cinch. Not only that, but several of the plugins that wouldn’t auto-update updated without issue. It was so easy and fun that I upgraded a few dozen blogs and their plugins as well.

Needless to say, I was quite pleased with myself. I’m celebrating by actually taking time to blog about it so you can be pleased with me, too!

If geekiness of this nature doesn’t please you, then maybe this Tom Tom Darth Vader behind the scenes video will.

Enjoy 🙂


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Today I sent a support ticket to TechSmith, the makers of the incredibly awesome SnagIt tool.

snagit

I’ve been a user of this product for … shoot, probably 8 years now?  Love it.  LOVE it.  However, some time back, they changed this one little minor piece of functionality in the product and it aggravates me so.  SOOO much.  It’s like I can’t let go.

I’m hoping my sense of humor helps them consider putting the feature back in.

At some point in the last year or so, one of the “upgrades” brought with it the incredibly annoying behavior of completely ignoring the ESCAPE key in Snagit Editor.

Here’s one of my extremely typical tasks, done a dozen times a day:

  • PrintScreen (or CTRL-PrintScreen or ALT-PrintScreen, depending on which profile I want)
  • I review the screenshot, possibly edit it, tweak it with arrows or highlights (nothing I want to save)
  • Press CTRL-A, CTRL-C to put it in my clipboard (sometimes I just want a section of the modified screenshot)
  • Press Escape to dismiss the Snagit Editor
  • Cuss up a storm because Snagit removed this wonderful feature
  • Go and find my mouse, manage to drag the cursor all the way over to the [x] on the screen so I can close the screen, and lament the time I just wasted
  • Switch to my other application (which varies), press CTRL-V and admire my handiwork.

Please either make this an option in preference or just bring the dad-gum feature back.

Why do you sometimes REMOVE features?

What do you think? Over the top?

I will now give all of you a Sneak Peek at what *I* think the next generation of iPhone OS, 4.0 should support.*

If you didn’t know, Apple is showing off tidbits of it later today, and if I know Apple, I know they’ll listen to me and maybe fit in my wishlist before they actually release the software.**

iphone-4

Ring/Alert Profiles

This is a biggie for me.  I’m a Blackberry convert, and while there are many touchy-feely things the iPhone is superior with, Ring Profiles is something it’s completely horrible at. ***

I depend on my iPhone to serve the following functions:

  1. Mobile Phone
  2. Calendar
  3. Text message sender/receiver
  4. Alarm clock
  5. Reminders
  6. Notifier of urgent things happening
  7. Silent companion for those “special times” when sound is an enemy

Like most humans, I have a schedule.  When I go to bed, I want to be able to turn off all the sounds the iPhone makes except for text messages, phone calls and the wake up alarm.  When I’m in a meeting, I want everything to be silent, and only buzz me on text messages, phone calls, and urgent email messages.  When I’m out working in the yard, I might want everything to be extra loud because it’s harder to hear.

The point? I want to be able to name my own profiles, then customize what that profile does.  The blackberry is vastly superior for this function, as one can perform all of these actions and more.  And even better is that there’s a convenience key or two on the outside of the case that you can program to bring up whatever you want – I had mine set to “Select Ring Profile”.

This seems soooo incredibly doable.

Convenience Button Support

I want extra hardware buttons on the front, back sides, top… wherever I want, so I can assign programs or functions to them.  I want to be able to select different profiles without having to navigate here, there, then there.  I want to be able to turn wifi on/off more easily.  I want to bring up favorite apps more quickly.  I want a quick-dial button that I can assign to either immediately call a specific number or bring up my “Favorites”.

I mention this as an iPhone OS 4.0 wish-list item because I want manufacturers like Mophie to be able to come out with a hardware plug-in battery case that also has extra things on it, like programmable buttons.  Maybe a LED light on the top, or possibly a flash that “knows” when the camera is about to snap a picture, and does the flash for the iPhone.

I’m guessing that Apple’s API for docks and such only work with the iPod-type of controls, such as Volume Up/Down, Stop/Pause, Next/Previous, etc.  If Apple does indeed support this functionality such as being able to launch an app via an API command through the dock port, then maybe it’s just vendors who are not coming up with good ideas such as these.

I expect royalties if so.

GPS-aware apps and settings

The phone knows where I am, most of the time, right?

The iPhone (and iPhone Apps) should therefore let me make settings based on location.

Example: when I’m at home or work, I want wifi to be turned on by default.  I want to have to turn it off manually.  Conversely, when I’m traveling in a car, I want wifi to be turned off by default, and I should have to turn it on manually.  I don’t want battery life to be used up trying to search for wifi networks when it doesn’t make sense to me (defined by my settings).

Maybe there’d even be a GPS coordinate stored with each “Favorite hotspot” so that when the phone was near the hotspot, it knew to look for them.

I can think of soooo many applications for GPS-aware settings.

  • Reminder to stop by grocery store on way home
  • Food deals to be aware of on way home
  • Gas tracking / mileage, and pointing out where mass transit options are, if close by
  • Carpooling options for those who want to share rides (can you imagine? instead of calling a Taxi, you load iShare or something, and anyone who’s driving and also willing to provide a ride, and also going your way, would stop and pick you up… you’d do the same thing if you have a car/van)

Transcription 24×7

The government’s doing it to us already.  We should also have the benefits.

I want to be able to have everything I say recorded and transcribed in real-time.  The iPhone has a microphone; it has network connectivity.  Dragon Dictation has this as an iPhone App, but I’m thinking more along the lines of integrated with the OS.

Sound that iPhone hears is streamed to a server in real-time, which analyzes it, transcribes it, and sends it back to the iPhone.  Most text is just stored as a daily journal (and the phone recognizes some voices, and for those that it doesn’t, I should be able to tag it as “Mary” or “John” and it remembers.)

Recently spoken audio is also analyzed and used by the Google Search App, so that if I’m talking about restaurants in the area, when I pick up the iPhone, it already has contextual information based on the conversation thus far.  It might key on words such as “I wonder if…<something>” and it takes the “something” and Googles it for you.

This would work with the GPS-aware app functionality I mentioned above. I’ll give an example: During the day, I tell my wife “ok, I’ll pick up bell peppers and cilantro on the way home”.  See, the servers this stuff is uploaded to are VERY smart.  VERY high performance.  It can tell that this text is my way of adding to my own to-do list.  It might even send me a request or notify tone indicating that it picked something up as a to-do item.  Or a promise I made.

I can’t wait for the first elected official to commit to using an iPhone in this way.

Screen brightness control by an iPhone App

I like my Flashlight app.  However, to save battery, my screen brightness is usually very low, and works well for me 98% of the time.  However, when I DO need a flashlight, the flashlight app can’t change the brightness of the iPhone itself.  So it’s a crappy flashlight unless I go to Settings –> Brightness blahblahblah.

When I need a flashlight, I’m usually in a hurry.

This also underscores the ability to have a case with a built-in LED flashlight that can come on with a button.

“Smart” VPN

Another are where BlackBerry still has dominance over iPhone is in the concept of VPN and back-office connectivity for mobile devices.  In the corporate world, I want to be able to connect to work resources automatically. I don’t want to go to Settings and connect the VPN, click, find, click, whatever blahblahblah.  I just want to be able to set the iPhone so that when it tries to go to corporate resources, it. just. works.

I would think that the Exchange ActiveSync platform might be a solution to this – it’s already connecting over secure ports to do email fetch/send/sync… why not modify it to do web page fetch/sync as well?  I would think the CPU overhead of using Exchange client on the iPhone would be less than an actual VPN client, and it could be brainlessly easy to set up if the Exchange setup just allowed it by default, depending on IT/Sysadmin’s policies.

Better support for multiple email accounts/inboxes

When you have work email and personal email requiring the same entrance point (the envelope icon App), and you have to back –> back –> back –> back –> email account –> inbox to go back and forth, it gets to be a pain.

I should be able to specify certain folders/mailboxes as “favorites”, such as Email Account #1 Inbox and Email Account #2 Inbox.  Then at the top, I just hold down the favorite list, a drop-down box comes up and I can hop between them without the tap, tap, tap, tap crap.

Other miscellaneous wishes:

  • I want to see phone calls, text messages and emails all in one view
  • I want to be able to update my Exchange “Out Of Office” alerts from the iPhone
  • When typing in an email address, it should be smarter about entry.  I should be able to hit “space” and the first time, it’s an “@” sign and the second and subsequent times, it’s a period.
  • It should learn how fat or thin my thumbs are.  Make me type in a few words so it can learn where I think the “S” key is and where “L” is.  I SAID “L”, NOT BACKSPACE!!!!

And the number one item on my wishlist?

BE SILENT WHEN I SAY TO BE SILENT!!!!

Recently, I went to my daughter’s Young Artists Recital, where she and a few other top flute/piccolo players did a formal presentation of their talents.  All the winners of the 2010 Young Artists Competition were invited.  It was awesome.  She sure is good.

So.

It’s a recital.  Flute and Piano.  Kind of quiet.

We all put our phones on stun/vibrate.

Right in the middle of Caitlin’s performance, while I’m recording video from my iPhone, THE STUPID THING STARTS RINGING VERY LOUDLY WITH SONAR RINGTONE that it’s reminding me to take my vitamins, which is an iPhone Alarm item I set for twice a day.

I’m completely embarrassed.  I fumble with it to acknowledge the alert, but I think, whew, at least it was my own daughter and I didn’t ruin someone ELSE’s day.  Also, the stupid alarm stopped my video recording, so I don’t a record of the event (and by “event,” I mean my daughter playing, not me interrupting it).

So.

It’s a recital.  Flute and Piano.  Kind of quiet.

Next performer is on.  It’s Nine Minutes Later.

THE STUPID THING STARTS RINGING VERY LOUDLY WITH SONAR RINGTONE AGAIN BECAUSE I ACCIDENTALLY PRESSED SNOOZE INSTEAD OF DISMISS.

I ended up turning the iPhone off and not recording anything else.  This underscores the need for multiple profiles — there should be a “Always Be Silent” mode, a “Mostly be Silent” mode for keeping phone/txt/alarms on, and other modes.

And there you have it.

What about you?  Do you have any items on your wishlist?

* kind-of misleading titles don’t bother me
** I’m not saying I know Apple.  I said “if”.
*** Besides, I wanted to be able to have  a sentence that had two fragments that ended with propositions, because a sentence is a horrible thing to end a preposition with.

microwave-oven

But sometimes they don’t. 

Although, there may be one lurking, if we extend “ondas” to be “Hondas”.  I can just imagine tiny little Hondas on shore leave.  Little horno de microondas.  bwahahaha.

In other news, I believe I found out what was causing the extreme delay in my Windows 7 Easy Transfer problem from my last post.  I watched and watched and thinked and thunked.  I pondered.  I perused.  I fell asleep, then woke up and thought some more.

Then I decided to look at the external hard drive where my user profile was stored.  Since Windows didn’t give me any specific details during the transfer, I went ahead and canceled it and saw that it had copied some of the profile but not all of it.  The external hard drive supports USB2 and firewire, and because firewire is faster, I initially chose it for the supposed speed increase.

firewire cable

To help figure out if I had a performance issue, I set up a standard file copy from the laptop to the external drive.  When I actually checked the file transfer speeds of this external firewire drive (which you CAN see when you expand “Details”), I saw that it was getting less than 1MB/sec transfer rate.

I had mentioned that the profile itself was more than 140 GB.  GIH. GUH. BITES.  A gigabyte is a thousand megabytes, btw.  In my world, anyway.

Let’s do the math on that, shall we?

Actually, let’s not.  Math is hard.  Let’s just say it would take a LOOOOONG time at that speed.  So I connected up the USB cable, did the same copy and was able to get between 11-25MB/sec transfer rates.  Ahhh.  The sounds of packets flowing across the wires.

A bit of googling showed that other people on Vista and Windows 7 64-bit had similar firewire problems due to drivers and what-not.  So I’m sure it’ll get resolved eventually with an updated driver, but for now I can stick with USB2 and get’r done.  The laptop also has an eSATA port (which is even faster), but the data isn’t on an eSATA-capable drive at the moment. 

There was one other problem I found on the computer, but I fixed it fairly quickly:

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