soon the big day arrives…


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An interesting problem –

For some reason this morning Java decided that it didn’t like my printer. I can live with that. They really haven’t been on speaking terms for a long time. But suddenly they aren’t talking at all. Which I guess in the long run may be somewhat of a problem. There are a number of Internet applications that leverage variations of Java for printing services. The inability to communicate between the two is an issue that I have to fix, when I have time of course.

I ended up fixing it by upgrading my Java stack which bothers me.

Tomorrow is the first thanksgiving in more than 20 years that I won’t be cooking anything. My beloved wife, whose favorite line has to be “I wonder what my husband is making for dinner” will be making the turkey. Lukas will be making the side dishes. I can’t say how happy I am not to have to worry about preparing the food.

.doc

phone swapping, a great hobby


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I am swapping between phones for the next couple of weeks. Windows phone 7 was a disappointment, but 7.5 (mango) is much better and actually usable. The Android phone is usable but sucks batteries like there is no tomorrow – you have to charge it two or three times a day. So for the next couple of weeks I am swapping back and forth. It only takes me a minute to remember which goes where and what applications to be used but once I make the swap things roll.

Both phones have value adds – the Samsung screen is simply amazing and the android application store is well beyond description. I am always a little afraid of the free application metaphor (as there really isn’t anyone responsible for the application) but overall my experience has been pretty good.

What I would really like to see is a simple and easy way to use the different phones for their different strengths but I don’t see that happening in the near term. Oh well.

Strengths of each (so far)

Android:

  • Apps
  • Screen

Windows Phone 7

  • email client (which is really amazing)
  • battery life (much improved)

will post more about this personal shoot out when I get ahold of an iphone.

.doc

Family time, it is a gift…


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Within 1000 feet of our house I have seen deer. We heard Coyote’s last night as we were watching TV. I have seen woodchucks and raccoons all living in harmony with the world around them. There are a lot of small wooded areas and places that the animals can hide from the ever expanding rush of humanity it really is kind of nice.

We had wildlife in Indiana although no deer. They are such majestic creatures. I suspect that is the value of Bambi. For those of us who watched the movie and saw “spirit of the wilderness” deer are creatures of beauty.

Barb and I realized this am that our family tradition of Thanksgiving movies may be in jeopardy. With Netflix/blockbuster we find ourselves very picky about what we see in the theaters. There is a certain freedom in watching some of these movies at home. I just don’t see any great movies out right now, perhaps a couple are planning a Wednesday release that will save the day.

This is our first thanksgiving in many years with no travel. It’s a long drive back to see the family (10 hours) so we are camping out at home to make turkey and enjoy family time.

.doc

Short Sunday conversation…


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Is it fair to say I have corrupted my children by teaching them to like sushi? Last night I told the bean she could choose where we went for dinner (since it was her bday and all that) she choose the sushi place in the Kentlands. 5 years ago if I had suggested sushi my family would have had my head on a silver platter. Now all the kids love it.

Last night we feasted on spicy tuna rolls, eel, shrimp and California rolls as well as the Chef’s specialty which was a Salmon and Roe roll that simply was amazing (I ate too many of those). We also got fish roe, which the boys tried and pronounced it a little salty but tasty. I’ve been making them watch the show bizarre foods with Andrew Zimern (sp). The man simply is amazing – helping reintroduce a number of foods into our diet that we’ve forgotten about. Since watching that show a few times the boys are more willing to try new things as is Jackie. Although due to the beans love of beef, she is now dead set of vacationing in Argentina.

We ended the birthday celebration with cake at home. And I got to watch my first live IU basketball game of the year. In 1976 my dad and I listed to the Maui classic which was then broadcast late at night on the IU radio network. It was a great bonding opportunity and I still to this day love watching IU basketball games. Last night it was fun to see the team really seem to come together. It looks like it will be a good year this year.

I am playing around with the gotomypc product for the next few days, seeing if in fact it may be useful. You never really know – I am trying to build a simple set of demos for a training class I am building so it may be useful.

,doc

A few end of week wrapup things


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Update Poloza this morning

  • Windows 7.5.1 update for Windows Phone 7
  • Office for the Macintosh update
  • OS 5.0.1 for Ipod Touch and Ipad2
  • Update for Kindle Fire (keyboard update)

What did we do in the days before automated updates of installed applications? Oh yeah we found out about the update later and realized all the problems we had been having were fixed months before.

Updates are easier now than in the past. I remember the first windows phone updates when you had to completely wipe the phone. Backups and restores made things a little painful at that point. Apple has done a good job minimizing that pain.

I still need to figure out a way to have all these screens active at the same time – it heats up the corner of my office pretty bad. I would love a solution for the problem of laptops, displays and switches. I have a great device (Connectpro) that allows you to share four computers and one monitor (with USB mouse and keyboard) but there are other displays in my office that don’t really have video out and my netbook (only 32 bit machine left in the entire house other than Jacqueline’s) doesn’t connect to a monitor.

Last thought of the day today. The Bean is 19 today. It seems scary to me that she was a tiny baby 19 years ago. The second worst week of my life was the week we watched Barney in the Children’s hospital because she had a life threatening infection. I can’t hear the Barney song to this day without remembering that horrible week.

Still I have to say she is an awesome kid (oops adult) and I am proud of her.

.doc

Is it wrong to pre-loosen your holiday attire?


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The long and winding road. Yesterday for the first time in more than 15 years  a Macintosh computer entered our house. The quality of the apple produce is high and the time was right.

I published an interesting blog yesterday on my more technical blog – The emperor’s new private cloud. It came to me (the idea) while at a meeting based on a conversation with a co-worker.

I passed 1.8 million steps since June yesterday. I wonder how many more steps I would have had I not lost my fitbit for a month – at least 100,000 more. Its funny how that becomes important.

I did try the free trial of fitbit deluxe or plus whatever they call it. Overall I would say it doesn’t add much to what I am doing anyway so I didn’t sign up for the rest of the service.

I am slowly but surely filling my fire with all my kindle books. I also got the Steve jobs book, I am excited for my holiday reading because for the first time in over 20 years I don’t have to cook on thanksgiving.

Is it rude to pre-loosen your holiday attire?

.doc

Another Shameless Review = The new KINDLE Fire


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Ohh ohh ohh I’m on fire!

Got the new Kindle fire. I love devices you can pop out of the box and after ten minutes are using them as if they were always something you used. The Kindle fire is such a device. Light weight and with a fantastic screen the device is my new favorite reading tool. Well now that I am doing the review its actually more than a reading tool. It’s a multimedia experience device.

What I love

  • Size
  • Ease of use
  • screen
  • Amazon Prime steamed movies
  • Amazon webstore streamed music
  • Audible Books
  • Wait – Netflix streamed movies
  • Hulu

What I like

  • Touch screen
  • clarity of ink on page (easy to read)

What needs to improve

  • 3g connection
  • more storage

First off I have only been using the device for three days so in fairness I haven’t put it through its full sahkes. I have also bene a kindle user for a long time, so there is a little bias there.

I am a huge fan of the Android Application Store on Amazon (as they check applications for issues etc) so I am not bothered by the less quality of applications available today.

Overall I find the device an easy to use tool. Now I need to sit down, and read for awhile.

.doc