Tuesday, December 27, 2005

It's over that quick

Christmas is now over. My how quickly it ends after so much preparation. This year I had a great Christmas. I got to see all my family and I got some wonderful presents. Most of all Ethan was old enough to understand what was going on. Seeing him get excited over his gifts was the best present of the year.

The only downside to Christmas this year was having the Spurs fall to the Pistons on Christmas Day. No biggie. The Pistons are playing great ball and they just outplayed the Spurs.

Only 2 days after today and I will be saying goodbye to my current workplace.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

The Small Market Affect

Last night the Spurs took on the Bucks up in the Bradley Center. It was one of the more painful games to watch. Andrew Bogut, the #1 draft pick who needs a little refinement, became the X-Factor of the night and turned the tide of the game.

Bogut and the rest of the Bucks got what can only be described as "Home Court Advantage". In the final minutes of the game and OT the Bucks got call after call in their favor. Tim Duncan was called for 2 fouls in that time that had him watching the remaining 2 minutes of OT from the bench. The first was a complete and utter flop by Bogut on a rebound which really set the mood for the end of the game. In OT, Duncan was called for a foul when one of the Bucks guards virtually backpeddaled into Tim in the back court. It was absurd.

The Spurs struggled in the 4th defensively and Bogut was unstoppable. They tied it up and sent it to OT. The Spurs defense stifled the Bucks offense, but a few borked possesions let the Bucks stay neck and neck. When the Spurs failed to score on the final possession of the game double OT appeared to be coming. There was .7 seconds on the clock and the Bucks lobbed in a pass to Bogut who tipped it in for the win.

All in all it was a valiant effort on the part of the Bucks, but it really pisses me off that despite being one of the largest cities in the country we are considered a small market and small market teams don't get the calls. Nevermind we have 3 rings since '99, MVPs, and a bench full of All-Stars. The fact that the Spurs have accomplished so much despite getting almost negative help from the officials every game is amazing. I have faith they can pull out another win this year, but the officiating in the NBA needs to tighten up. Blatantly ridiculous calls are becoming commonplace and it hurts the game, but it also negatively impacts the "small market" teams like the Spurs.

Did I mention that Bogut was a scrub who can't play defense? Oops, did that come out?

Tuesday, December 20, 2005


Last week I was putting a drive into one of those little 5.25" external USB enclosures and I accidently touched some exposed connectors where the power cables plugs in. Needless to say I got a little shock. It was quite embarassing. It also took a few days for my arm to feel normal again. Can we say nerve damage?


I figured my last days here at my current job would be full of bustle but it seems the exact opposite is true. While I have work to do, it is not nearly as busy as I expected. I will have plenty of consultant level work to do here well after I leave here so I am not too worried.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

9 Days Left

That's right, 9 shopping days left until Christmas and despite all the lights I am feeling rather un-festive. I am not a particularly depressed person in any regard, but there are a lot of life changes on the horizon for me. The least of which is a change in jobs. We are building a house that shold be ready in April. We want to have another baby. Like I said, lots of changes. With major life changes comes stress and lots of it.

My workload at work is suprisingly light considering I have 2 weeks left to wrap up everything. I spent the last day or so cleaning my office. It had become a veritable computer graveyard. I have done away with a lot of the junk and keep finding more stuff to toss. I guess that is a good thing.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

NBA All Star Forwards: The West

NBA.com posted a rundown of the top forwards in the West for All Star voting and I have to say that I didn't realize the voting pool was that competitive. With Elton Brandt leading the pack and Tim Duncan a few spots down I can only hope Timmy makes it on the team this year. Of course the All Star game is boring as all get out to watch so I guess it's really a moot point.

Silent Nights at the NBA?

Commissoner Stern is old school for sure. The recent changes in the NBA are no doubt to thwart the shift of the sport to a more urban image. Players are expected to wear business attire while with the team and shorts can be no longer than the knee. Certain players *cough AI cough* seem to think the Commish is targeting black players with these changes.

The NBA is a business and quite frankly I don't see a problem with any of the changes, until now. Commish wants to nix the music in a few trial games to see what it would be like. While I admit that the music is probably too loud in most cases, eliminating it completely would be silly. I hope this fails miserably and the fans send lots of hatemail to the NBA.

Kids these days...

This should be proof enough that kids these days are completely insane.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

My Take: Being a Parent

Being a parent is a funny thing. Sometimes it happens by choice and sometimes it doesn't. Either way, the fact remains that being a parent is one of the single most frustrating yet rewarding things in life. Dealing with a needy infant can get old. Dealing with a crazy toddler eradicates the patience threshold of even the most calm people. At the same time, seeing the personality of something you are responsible for being molded and changed everyday is amazing.

My son is just under 21 months old this week. The time I spend with him is a mix of chaos and wonder. Seeing him learn new things and getting to spend time doing things he enjoys doing are probably one of the highlights of my day.

I have a hard time understanding how people can choose not to have children. It is so rewarding.

Monday, December 12, 2005

A busy weekend

This was a busy weekend for me. I accepted the offer from Rackspace and I start there on January 3rd. I am still a bit nervous about the whole ordeal, but I guess that is part of taking risks and being outside your comfort zone.

On the sports front, Judson got whipped by Euless Trinity for the District 5A Div I HS state football championship. Vince Young was overshadowed by USCs Reggie Bush for the 2005 Heisman Trophy. To add insult to injury for this region of the state, the Spurs fell to the Hawks by 10. What a weekend.

Friday, December 09, 2005

New Job? Maybe

I previously mentioned that I applied at Rackspace. Yesterday I had a 3 hour stint of pretty intense interviews. I am currently waiting on a callback which the recruiter seemed pretty confident we would use to discuss my employment there. I am hopeful, but also a little nervous. I have primarily worked in small companies. Rackspace has 700+ employees. This would be a huge move for me.

R.I.P. Firewire

Ars Technica is reporting that FireWire is basically dead. I guess Apple got tired of fighting USB and it's widespread adoption. Where does that leave people with Firewire based DV equipment? Has Apple forsaken one of their core markets?

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Rat based brain can fly?

Trust me, it is stranger than it sounds.
It sounds like science fiction: a brain nurtured in a Petri dish learns to pilot a fighter plane as scientists develop a new breed of "living" computer. But in groundbreaking experiments in a Florida laboratory that is exactly what is happening.

The "brain", grown from 25,000 neural cells extracted from a single rat embryo, has been taught to fly an F-22 jet simulator by scientists at the University of Florida.

You read that right. A brain grown from a rat cell in a petri dish learned to pilot a plane. What is this world coming to...

Windows Server 2003 R2 released

Microsoft annonced today that Win2k3 Server R2 was done and ready. We shall see if there are any initial reports of trouble with the install. We won't be moving to it just yet.

Ajax Sucks?

Ajax is quite a tricky thing to get working and poses some serious problems for developers and users alike. I use it for certain things in a few of the sites I manage, but to code an entire site in it is a huge mistake. I am not alone in this line of thinking, but I wouldn't go so far as to say that it sucks.

Boomerang Skills

Talk about talent....

Speed Kills

I was just linked to a video on Google that could possibly be one of th e most impresive guitar clips I have ever seen. Apparently his name is Michael Angelo Batio and he has mad skills.

It is called Speed Kills or you can catch the cleaner version on his website.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

My Firefox Extensions & Themes

I have been a long time user of Firefox. In fact, I have been using it since it was named Phoenix. One of the best features of Firefox is it's modular support for extensions. I have used so many extensions over the past few months, but here is a list of the top ones that I use daily:

All-in-One Gestures - You just can't be without mouse gestures
BugMeNot - Fills in login forms for websites that require free registration to read a single news story
ColorZilla - Great for developers. It allows you to sample colors out of your browser window and copy their RGB or hex color code
CuteMenus 2 - Adds nice icons in all the menus
Disable Targets For Downloads - Prevents download links from opening new blank windows/tabs
Download Manager Tweak - Heavy mod to the download manager. A must have.
Fasterfox - Performance and network tweaks for Firefox.
FirefoxView - Right click in IE and select "View in Firefox" to open that page in Firefox.
Forecastfox - Weather forecasts right in your status bar
Gmail Notifier - What else?
IE View - Right click in Firefox and select "View in IE" to open that page in IE.
ListZilla - Allows you to export theme and extension lists to HTML or Text files. Great for ensuring you got all your favorite extensions.
Minimize to Tray - Self explanatory. Probably my favorite extension.
Plain Text to Link - Converts plain text urls to Links
SmoothWheel - Smooth document scrolling
Tabbrowser Preferences - Tab management
Talkback - Crash reports to Mozilla
View Rendered Source Chart - Color coded source code chart. Makes traversing a page's source much easier
Web Developer - Incredible toolbar. A must have for web developers.

Outlook 2003 Blue - My primary Firefox/Thunderbird theme. (Also available in Green and Silver)
ifox - My backup theme

Monday, December 05, 2005

New Job

Last week I applied for a new job at Rackspace. I had a brief technical phone interview on Friday to gauge my knowledge. By brief I mean insanely tough. Answering 50+ highly technical questions over the phone can be pretty daunting. Luckily I knew the majority of them and only missed probably 5 questions.

They called back this morning and I am scheduled to go over there for an in person interview on Thursday.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

A nice thing

It is a nice thing to see young people trying to make a difference in this world.

Microsoft OneCare Live Beta

Microsoft also announced today that they were releasing a free open beta of their upcoming AV software. I was in the closed beta for OneCare Live but I didn't spend much time with the software so I can't comment on it's quality.

Gmail Anti Virus

Google announced today that Gmail will be scanning incoming and outgoing messages for viruses. This is a great move on their part.

Destined for Mediocrity

The Angry Josh posted a really interesting piece of writing the other day. The piece is not his own, but something he found. That doesn't take away from the impact it can have. It talks about how we are grooming up our children to be destined for a life of mediocrity. I suggest giving it a read.