Travels and Images
WEEK 2 2008
Mon- Tue- Wed-
Thur- Fri- Sat- Next Week
Picture of the Week
17 March 2002
Ago, This Week, 2002
Ago, This Week, 2003
Years Ago, this
Ago, This Week, 2005
This Week, 2006
|A Year Ago,
This Week, 2007
- OK, voice recognition dialing is done. It was easy really, not even
requiring a perusal of the manual (that being a PDF on a CD ). I
haven't tried to see if it works using the bluetooth headset yet. I did
discover that there is a USB-to-headphone adapter in the box, so I can
use my old wired headset if I want. It's not that good a fit for my ear
and the wires get tangled, but it doesn't devour the PDA battery like bluetooth. And, about half the time, the battery in the bluetooth headset itself is dead.
Which reminds me of a little discovery I made a day or so ago. A friend
called up and asked about buying a car inverter for their laptop. I
explained that you needed the wattage out of your 'ac brick' and
multiply that by about 1.5 for efficiency losses in the inverter. I
picked mine for an example:
"You just read off the ac brick the
volts and amps, mine says 5.5Amps * 19.5Volts * 1.5 = 160 Watts
required. Then you read off the car inverter it's power output, for example, my inverter is here is rated at...um...100 Watts."
Ooops. Now I know why it would shut itself down on occasion - it just
wasn't rated for the required continuous duty. Since the friend's
laptop is small and only required 70W, or 105W with the efficiency
factor, I gave them mine. Time to go get a new one...
I won 25 cents off Dad on the Green Bay game. Then I lost back it by betting against the Patriots. Heh. Which leads into another story:
I was at these same friend's house last night, for pizza and a movie. She was watching DVD's (the original Italian Job and Finding Neverland)
and he was wandering around, occasionally requesting a stop of the
video to catch up on the Patriots/Jaguars game score. Trying to head
off some marital friction I attempted to log into the NFL game updates
on his new laptop. Hmm. Dog slow. I checked the task manager: 79 tasks running in 512MB of Ram,
which was also shared by the graphics card! Some of these processes
were ACER junk, some just VISTA. But the real culprit is the memory, I
don't think you want less than a gig, and two gigs would be best. It's
almost criminal to ship Vista with 512MB - with no user processes open at all
he was running at 80%-90% of his ram, with the CPU usage spiking as it
tried to swap stuff in and out. I killed a bunch of processes
and tried to check out ram prices online, but the laptop is so new
that the model isn't listed yet at PNY and Corsair.
Then, in the middle of my web search the laptop shut down the browser and Vista started updating itself, without warning,
Microsoft arrogance again - you gotta love their attitude - "our update process is far more important than anything you, an insignificant user, might be doing".
If I'd brought my laptop along he could have logged into Slingbox and watched the game from my Dad's place. Oh well.
Friday 11 January
- working. Nice sunny weather.
Here is the promised photograph, shot in dim indoor light, of the old
and new PDA's. Despite the smaller screen the new PDA is quite usable.
Note the relative sizes of the micro-SD and the standard SD cards. Each
has the same capacity, 1GB. That's an American dime in the middle, for
a sense of scale. I'm not sure what to do with the old PDA.
I guess I could use it as an MP3 player?
This reminds me: I do need to
figure out how to use the voice dial - the nanny's in
up Sacramento have outlawed non-hands-free phones as of mid year. That
hands-free feature was broken on the old XV6600, but supposedly works
on the new model. I prefer to use the headset anyway, so it's no big
The new XV6800 and the old XV6600.
On the road, back up to Lancaster.
10 January 2008
Wednesday 9 January 2008
Orion, as visualized on YouTube. Heh. [more links over at Dean
your own vacuum tubes...
I saw a video of Iranian speedboats messing around near a US destroyer. I'm
amazed that they let them get that close, I doubt the destroyer could
depress it's 5" enough to hit a speedboat at the range they were at.
Possibly they (the American ships) have machine guns or rockets on board, bot still, to let an
unknown that close. Does nobody remember the USS Cole?
Note for the day: Pumpkin pie filling mixed with tuna will make your
cat regular, fast.
The vet wanted a stool sample and in much the same way that a watched
pot never boils, a watched cat never...you know.
Tuesday 8 January 2008
- It looks like Hillary beat Obama in NH. But it's McCain over on the
right. It's shaping up to be an interesting race.
Working on database stuff, set up a vet appointment for the cat(s) on
Friday, my friends will take them. It's been a while. I'm a bit
concerned about Phoebe's obesity, it's not healthy.
Monday 7 January 2007
- keeping busy, doing some database stuff at home. It's
how much I've forgotten :-( That said, it's coming along.
Year Resolutions for your Cat. Some my cats need to
- When it
rains, it will be raining on all sides of the house. It is not
necessary to check every door.
- When my human is typing
at the computer, their forearms are not a hammock.
- Computer and
TV screens do not exist to backlight my lovely tail.
- We will not
play "Herd of Thundering Wildebeests Stampeding Across
the Plains of the Serengeti" over any humans' bed while they're trying
Book #1 is The
Family Trade, by Charles Stross. SciFi, the
parallel/alternate worlds travel sub-genre, reasonably well done. First
in a series of books.
Sunday 6 January 2007
- a grey and grim day out. We need the rain, so no complaints. The cats
didn't seem to mind, and it wasn't particularly cold. I watched a bit
of each of the two games, but couldn't get too interested. Thought
going to see 'The Golden Compass' but my brother wasn't interested in
going. Oh well.
A good program I ran across a few weeks ago is GoodSync.
If you have lots of files and update different copies on different
computers at different times it helps you to 'synchronize' them. It
seems to work well for
me, with my tens of gigabyte data sets now on three different drives.
So far I've just used the free version, but it's probably worth buying.
While looking for the sync software I ran across ExamDiff,
what was needed, but is still pretty cool.
At work, a while back, we were talking about the Arundell Barranca. At
first nobody could understand what I was talking about. Then they
"No, you're pronouncing it wrong, it's not Arundell, it's Arundell".
Apparently, in Ventura anyways, it's Erin-dale.
Whatever the natives say is fine with me, it's their channel.
pronunciation had been learned from a book read years ago. In
a passage from the beginning of Kenneth Robert's The
Lively Lady Richard Nason has just come across the beautiful
Lady Ransome (for whom he later names his ship) picnicking in a field.
She offers him and his dog a bit of food and conversation:
"I had it in mind you
were on your way to dinner, but perhaps you don't live hereabouts at
"No, ma'am," I said, "We
live in Arundel fifteen miles from here."
She looked at me blankly.
"In a Rundle?" she asked, saying the name of our town as I had said it.
"You live in a Rundle?" Then understanding seemed to come to her.
"Lud," she cried, "What a way to pronounce it! You should know it's
Arun Del. We have an Arun Del in England, on the Arun River. You
mustn't call it as you do, 'a Rundle'!"
"Well," I said, "there's
no Arun River in Maine, and goodness knows what port you'll make if you
go around asking for Arun Del."