Friday, September 30, 2005

Day #2 of Yahoo's Unlimited Service

So far the Yahoo’s service itself is a great buy. I am a software developer so I spend a majority of most days’ heads down either coding or writing up design documents. I have downloaded a variety of Albums. The latest from Weezer is my favorite so far.

I am impressed with the ease of finding an album and downloading it. The Yahoo! Music Engine client is a bit buggy. I have had tons of error pop-up messages for a variety of different reasons. Maybe once I am familiar with the interface I will start reporting the errors I am finding.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Yahoo! Music Unlimited Subscription Service

Total: $59.88 per year

You will not be charged for this service untilOctober 06, 2005

I decided to take the plunge and check out a music download service. If things go well for the next 7 days my plan is to look further into Creative’s Zen Micro mp3 player. $60 per year ($4.99/mo) is pretty tough to beat considering the cost of CD’s at BestBuy or any other retailer plus there tax and or shipping charges.

It is still $.79 per download if I want to burn certain tracks or albums. It seems even less then that considering the X&Y Coldplay album is $9.74.

So far the process seems pretty painless. I have downloaded the client install and after a couple reboots things appear to be working. The purchase process was a few simple steps and now things seem to be setup to begin downloading.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Mentally Sweating

Odd how things occur, sometimes, just as planned. Right after I got done reading the following post on being mentally lazy, a perfect example happened right before my eyes.

A co-worker of mine, we’ll call him Stan, was working on a production defect. Of course he has BA’s, application support and management all breathing down his back while he tries to correct this defect. Sure, solving it and moving on is what everyone wants to do but understanding the issue, making the correction and moving on is an entirely different experience.

One of the things we pinpointed as causing the issue was the viewstate hidden input tag that ASP.Net loves to use and abuse. It seemed extremely large. Whether this was the correct issue to pinpoint is for another post but what caught me was what Stan thought would be a viable solution. He suggested using some sort of Http compression to compress the response back to the client. This would shrink the viewstate and everyone would be happy. The words from the Intellectual Laziness rang in my head and I expressed my concerns to Stan that yes compression might solve the issue but that would be truly treating the symptom and not the root cause. I suggested, he should be maybe investigate why the viewstate was so big and find out how to control it.

Now, I’m not poking fun at Stan or trying to make myself look good. Instead, I am coming to the realization of just how easy it is to be mentally lazy. Humans were born with the instinct to be lazy, both physically and mentally.

This post certainly reminds me to take a second look and never be scared to learn something new. Never be scared to work up a good mental lather.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

MSDN webcasts and your MP3 player

Not sure how an MSDN webcast compares to a podCast but it certainly would be a nice feature to listen to these in my off hours. I read a blog that talks about getting the webcasts and listening to them on an mp3 player.

I guess I first have to find myself an mp3 player. I am really interested in the Zen Micro by Creative. Is it worth the financial hit? So far I can’t make myself pull the trigger. The biggest feature is that it is compatible with Y!’s unlimited music subscription. The other nice feature I have setup is that my car deck currently has an aux port sitting waiting for me to plug something into its RCA jack.

I am hoping a good deal with find its way to my eyes.

Friday, September 16, 2005

The Return of Little Mac

Props to the Mjd blog for pointing out this pretty funny film on “Little Mac” from Mike Tyson’s Punch Out Nintendo game. Punch Out was one of my favorite games we played while growing up. Being Little Mac and destroying your opponent who was 3 times bigger then you was so rewarding. Just hearing the music from the game makes me chuckle.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

A Potato Cannon and a Toyota Corolla

I saw an article in one of my favorite sites today. The site is Make and it is the online version of there magazine. I follow their RSS feed and there is always something of interest going on. I dream of the day when the kids and I can take on some of these DIY tech projects.

Anyway, one of the articles posted today is on Potato guns. It is an improvement on the PVC/Hairspray version that we have all grown to love.

“It uses the ignition from a Toyota corolla to generate the spark.”

Earl Weaver Uncensored

**Disclaimer: If you have sensitive ears please do not listen to the following.

Here is a snippet of the Earl Weaver show in Baltimore while he was managing the Orioles sometime between 1968 and 1986. I have always heard and read about the filthy mouth some MLB managers have or had.

Being an amateur ball player for close to 15 years, I have heard a lot but no one puts it as plainly as Earl “bleepin” Weaver did.

Monday, September 12, 2005

Downloadable Tech Shows

More and more downloadable “Techie” shows are starting to appear. I found a list of some of them today. I have kept an eye on a couple of them like The Systm and The Broken and obviously Channel 9. So far all are very well done and very informative. I really skip the gamer shows since A) I am not a gamer B) The G4 channel is terrible and I don’t want anything remotely close to it.

Well, at least for a geek like me!

Spam comments in my blog

The comments on my last post disturb me. I knew what the comments were as soon as I saw more then one. I certainly don’t expect comments since most people don’t find anything here too inspiring and I really do not promote my blog so comments will be far and few between.

Who are these people who waste everyone’s time, including theirs. They write scripts that find new blog posts and then spam the comment section. What is the success rate? It has to be below .001%. Is it really worth it? I just don’t get it. What is the true R.O.I.?

If you are talented enough to write these scripts then getting a real job or finding a quality way to make a living really shouldn’t be that hard. Put those talents to good use, they are totally wasted right now! Come up with something cleaver. You see it almost everyday. Something new, exciting and things that make the Internet greater each day it survives.

Spam is so 2003!

Friday, September 09, 2005

Hello from Microsoft Word

Hello from Microsoft Word 2000! Yes this blog was created, spell checked, grammar checked and posted all inside of word. No copy and pasting. No other word processor program like w.bloggar was used.

This new plug-in from takes your word document and uploads it to your blog. Very cool stuff. Certainly no reason now to not consistently blog, right!?!

This is certainly of interest to me since our content management system at work does a lot of Word to HTML translation. The content is actually stored in .doc files and then rendered to a webpage using a conversion process taking the contents of the word doc and converting it into Html following some predefined templates. These templates allow you to configure what happens during this conversion process. For example, the template can be setup to strip out all bolding or font tags as it renders the content.

So on a sad note, I’ll surely say good by to w.bloggar. It has been very good to me!