Thursday, September 30, 2004

Price of Security

Have you ever thought about the price we pay for security. Maybe we avoid thinking about it so it doesn't drive us completely mad.

Being involved in the I.T. world I guess I am more aware of security but I rarely stop to think about the cost. Everything from the locks on your car doors to the firewall configured on your home network router. Time, money and resources have been thrown at making things "more secure".

In the corporate world, security certainly has priority over almost anything. It has all the momentum backing it, making things secure and securing things that are already secure but really not secure enough is a high priority. Security is certainly is a buzz word management loves throwing around.

I guess the reason why I starting thinking about the cost was something that has occurred over my lunch break. We have a nice patio on the side of our building. It is a nice sitting area with a couple of picnic tables and surrounded by landscaping. No body ever uses it and I found out why today. There are two doors that go out to the patio and both are locked with alarms on them. The work is, they don't want people going in and out for security reasons.

So in this case, the cost of security wasn't monetary, time or resources but freedom! Have the criminals and terrorists won?

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

Live from the iMac

The wireless adapter/gateway did arrive today. I must say it is a great piece of hardware. It is a D-Link DWL-810+ and is very easy to work with. I am impressed with the amount of information posted on D-Links site.

I first hooked it up to my WinXP Laptop and configured it. I followed the setup instructions and it walked me through the whole process.

I then un-plugged it and walked out to my garage where I am keeping the iMac (Yes, I still can say I don't have a Mac in my house *whew*), fired up the iMac, powered up the gateway and connected it to the ethernet port on the iMac. I am now typing from the iMac out in my Garage without having to do an ounce of configurtion on the iMac.

Check #1 item off of my list :)

Wireless Adapter for iMac

Yes, my subject line contains the word iMac. I am not a Mac type of person but my curiosity has driven me to it.

My brother and his wife recently purchased a new Dell (Yes! Another conversion to the PC) and they had their old iMac (OS 8.6) sitting around. He offered it to me and I just couldn't resist. I spend most of my time using Windows. I have tinkered with Linux a bit but just don't have the time to really get into it. Which is funny since I consider myself a notch above the average user, so if you think the average user can get a copy of it installed and running properly in the same amount of time as a Windows OS well then you're only kidding yourself. Again, another blog for another day!

I really have never gotten into the Mac OS world. I figure this is as good of a time as ever. I have the iMac and a buddy of mine is giving me a DorkLink wireless adapter that he wasn't using and had lying around. I certainly don't want to put any money into it, which is hard considering everything I have research on the Mac cost way more then anything you can get for the PC. I am even having a hard time finding a mp3 player, comparable to Winamp, for free.

The wireless adapter should be arriving today. I am excited to get it hooked up so that I can really start using and abusing the OS 8.6 environment.

Key goals:
  1. Get the adapter to recognize my default gateway and thus, out to the internet
  2. Communicate with our printer
  3. Communicate with a W2K box
  4. Communicate with a WinXP box
  5. Install some sort of remoting software like VNC

Tuesday, September 21, 2004

Successful install of SP2

I finally got to do a fresh install using my Windows XP boot CD containing SP2. I must say I am blown away! The install was very easy and I didn't even notice I updated to SP2 until I actually looked at the Properties on "MY Computer" once the install was done.

The install seems solid. SP2 certainly adds a lot more security features and warning messages when it finds that you might be at risk.

Well, back to my configuration of my fresh, clean install of XP/SP2.

Thursday, September 16, 2004

Nifty Windows Tool - Sidebar

...and it's free!

Plenty of skins and add-in components also available.

Here is a screen shot of my desktop with it.

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Great Blog!

Here is a great example of why Blogs are neat! This guy was a "guest groundskeeper" at a Seattle Mariners baseball game.

Take Me Out To the Ballgame

Virtual Server 2005

Interesting tag line that management will have a hard time arguing against.

Monday, September 13, 2004

what a day!

Kind of a good day/bad day.

I successfully used the Restore functionality in XP. It actually worked without a hitch.

I used the Restore functionality in XP. I had to revert back to last Friday. The really bad news is it even replaced some of my code files.

Sunday, September 12, 2004

Streaming Internet Radio on your Pocket PC - GSPlayer

If you have a Pocket PC with WiFi, this is a must have! Just plug your Pocket PC into your audio receiver and you now have your entire mp3 music collection and ShoutCast stations at your finger tips.

Here is a
tutorial to help you out.

Thursday, September 09, 2004

Boot CD for WinowsXP and Service Pack 2

I found an interesting tutorial on creating a boot disc containing WinXP and SP2 all on one CD. Since I am just about to re-build my machine it will come in very handy. The instructions are very good and it walks you through the whole process.

"This makes the whole Windows installation run considerably faster."


Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Reminders of hurricane pictures

All the news about the past and present Hurricanes, Frances and now Ivan, will always remind me of a couple pictures I got from a 2003 Hurricane. I can't remenber the name but I remember there was extensive damage to the east coast.

Click to see larger versions.


intraVnews - Feed Reader & RSS Aggregator for Outlook

If you are running Outlook XP or above this is certainly a plug-in you must check out. It certainly changes the way you search the net to stay informed.

I have not added many different news feeds yet but the ones I have I really enjoy. The info I am getting back without doing any work on my part is sweet. I have a few Technical feeds; Slashdot, MSDN, CNet News. ESPN feed handles my sporting needs and a couple misc. blogs I have found here and there.


  • Toast that pops up when news blogs are found.
  • Self cleanup. I have mine set to clean up blogs older then a couple days
  • Build right into Outlook. Perfect fit since I have this email client open all day anyway. Makes no sense to have another app open all day just to handle rss feeds.


  • Looks like they are charging for version 1.1. Don't get me wrong. I am all for changing money. I understand people have to eat and paying money should eliminate any thought of spyware being stuff into it. I guess this topic could be a post for another day :) On the other hand, it has been free thus far so charging now just seems like a disappointment.
  • The Toast that pops up is great but at times there are many new blogs found. It would be nice if you could scroll the Toast after it has finished collecting. Currently it just pushes its findings off the toast window once it reaches a certain number.


  • Solid 2 thumbs up if Outlook is your companies email client.

Monday, September 06, 2004

BTW...A State Tourney Team

This is this years Laker ball team. I couldn't be more proud of this bunch of guys. We gutted it out and over achieved well past *everyone's* expectations. Certainly a season and a bunch of guys I will not soon forget.

Time Entry

I just got done entering my time for last week. It is due by noon on Monday but the Boss wants it done by 8am Monday(Tuesday this week since it was Labor Day weekend). In all fairness I have no problem with that. He has to get his approval done ASAP so he can move on to bigger and better things. I just hate the process of getting it entered.

Right now we have no tie-in with our project list of what we are currently working on. So we constantly have to request that a certain project be added to our list so we can book time to it. We are getting closer to defining an app that might easy this pain a bit. We still will have to manually enter our time into a different system but a list of current and future projects coming down the pipeline would be nice.

I guess I am just bitter right now since I can't enter my time remotely. We need some sort of network install of the time entry app in order to get it to work for a VPN connection. Right now I term into dev and just enter it from there.

Live from the iPaq

Just checking out the features when posting via a PDA.

Very limited in the font/style features. No spell checking. ugh!

...but the ability to post at all is neat enough.

Sunday, September 05, 2004

Soggy ride home

A monsoon is currently going through the state of Minnesota. It was a long drove home from Camby. It was a very fun day. The kids played and we had a great meal. Steak, shrimp, scallops, garlic potatoes and corn on the cobb. Yep, never a food shortage at either of the Grandparents places.

I recently rebuilt my iPaq. I have an older one but have the expansion pack w/ a wireless card. I toyed with it on the way to Camby. It quickly became apparent why the iPaq is so limited on its mobility; battery life.


I woke up last night to the pounding noise of rain. In a panic, there is always always a question I ask myself still to this day.

Did I leave my ball mitt outside?

I guess it is something left over as a kid. Rarely did a day go by when I didn't play some catch with one of my brothers or at least throw the ball against the chicken barn wall.

I guess most people (adults) think:
- Are my car windows rolled up
- Are all the windows closed in the house
- Why did I just wash my car

What do you think about when you first hear it raining?

Heading to Cambridge today for a Labor Day picnic at the Youngs. Gatta run.

Humm...The Journey Begins

This isn't my first attempt at getting a blog going. I formerly developed my own blogging application and hosted it on my own site, I built the blogging tool to allow a friend of my to journal his experiences while spending a few months over in Australia.

The site is now dead. I just can not seem to keep up with maintaining my own personal site. I am a web developer by day and Husband/Father of 2 kids by night. Sometimes these two trades intermingle but more often then not when I pull the car into the garage at night I am looking forward to spending some time with my wife, Teri, and our son and daughter, Evan and Abby.

I have gotten the itch to start a blog again and have been looking around for either some freeware that I can install on my own host or to sign up with a free blogging service. As of now I have obviously decided to go the free service route.

The downside is that I am really tied to how decides to do things in the future. The upside is this will allow me to really focus on fulfilling my journaling itch and not worry to much about setup, config and construction of a freeware blogging tool.

Only time will tell.