Archive for the ‘Technology’ Category
A couple of months back, I tried out Apple’s MobileMe service. Basically, it’s supposed to provide a way to synchronize all your email, contacts, calendar, etc. online so you only have to worry about updating these things in one place. Sounds pretty good, right? Well, MobileMe can go to hell. I say that because one day it decided to delete all my contacts, leaving me to try and piece back together all the numbers to friends, family and co-workers. My assessment is that MobileMe sucks. Can you believe Apple charges $99 for this crappy service? Wait a sec, you’re telling me that Apple charges $99 a year for it?!?! $99 a year for MobileMe service that trashed my contact info?!?!? This is where I give MobileMe the finger.
Anyway, for the most part, I am back on track. Every now and then I will get a call or text that I have no idea who it is, since only the number is showing. Usually the voicemail they leave solves that mystery, but trying to figure out who is texting you can be more of a challenge. And I’ve come to realize some people are sensitive to the text reply of “Who’s this?”. But after a brief explanation, they calm down and everything is fine. A friend of mine told me about Google Contacts, which does everything I hoped MobileMe would do. It synchronizes your contacts to your phone, and has worked perfectly since I implemented it.
So Google Contacts works like a charm. And now I want to add more details to my contacts. I’ve always been pretty bad about keeping track of friends’ addresses, birthdays, etc. But with as well as Google Contacts is working, I’ve decided to go all out. I want to have as much info as possible about the people in my contacts list. Birthplace, favorite color, allergies, you name it! I kind of want it to come across as a list of dossiers that maybe James Bond might be handed after a meeting with M. I think that would be kind of slick. So let’s see how this turns out. Hopefully I don’t get too carried away with this. Don’t want a situation of TMI.
So I broke down and got an iPhone. It arrived yesterday and I’ve spent a decent amount of time since then trying to figure it all out. I have to say that I am damn impressed with it. I’ve always played with them at the AT&T store, but obviously you’re limited with what you can do when you’re checking out a display.
Bottom line is, it’s pretty freakin’ cool. But you all know that. Because I’m probably the last one to get one. I’m always a couple years behind.
Today is Sysadmin Day. A day for everyone from all aspects of IT to get some props for a job well done. So far today I have gotten one ‘thank you’. I guess most of the population is still in the dark regarding this glorious worldwide holiday. Not a problem. I’m not going to hold a grudge. However, I can tell you the problems the people in my building will suddenly have when trying to login after lunch is in no way related.
Anyway, to all my IT brothers and sisters out there, I wish you all a Happy Sysadmin Day. And by all means, spread the word. Maybe in the future we can come in to work on this day and be showered with gifts, desserts, and all kinds of crazy love. If not, then we will just disable their user logins.
Time for lunch…
I am into politics in the sense that I want to know what’s going on. I am no doubt liberal in some areas, but for the most part conservative. So with that in mind, I have taken every opportunity to watch the presidential debates and the coverage of the primaries. So far, I have been tuning in to CNN to get this coverage. Why? Simple: It’s the only major news network I get that streams in HD. So with that in mind, tonight’s debate made it “clearer” that I do not want Hillary Clinton to be president. HD is not kind to her. Not in the least bit. If the goal is to frighten our enemies into submission, then we can just use a close-up of Hillary from tonight’s debate as kind of a warning signal whenever terrorists start spewing American hate. Other than that, she is pretty much useless. But as scary as seeing Hillary in HD was, it makes me think that CNN might have some secret agreement with her campaign. How else could they explain this…
This is Candy Crowley, a political correspondent on CNN. And let me say I have never been so offended by the outrageous misuse of a hot girl’s name on such a non-hot being. Yikes. I almost feel like CNN deliberately put this “woman” on the air to make Hillary less hideous. Almost worked, too. Not cool, CNN. You’d think that Anderson Cooper would alert the audience by saying something along the lines of “not appropriate for children” or “graphic nature” before showing her on screen. Here’s some free advice for CNN: If you’re going to be in HD, less Big Girl, more Soledad O’Brien. Makes me anxious to see these faces whenever Fox News goes HD in my area.
Sometimes technology has a funny way of rearing it’s ugly head. It’s very ugly, nightmare inducing head. Sweet dreams.
Quick side note: The debate was pretty good. Very entertaining attacks on each other. I they may have talked about an issue or two.
So last week I got AT&T to come out to my house and install their digital cable and internet package. They call it “U-Verse.” Which has led me to rename my old cable/internet service from Time-Warner to “U-Suck”.
Check this out. I got AT&T’s biggest package for cable. This is over 300 channels (most of which I’ve never heard of) and free HD for a year. That includes all the premium channels. With U-Suck, I only had HBO. I also got the fastest internet option from U-Verse. I would have inconsistent internet service with U-Suck, but in their slight defense I will say that it did improve in recent months. The bottom line is I am getting so much more now, and I’m saving $30 a month doing it.
Here’s something else. I had the U-Suck HD service. And while I don’t have a flat screen plasma, I do have an HD television. But I always thought to myself that HD just wasn’t worth it. Or that my TV wasn’t that great. To the point that I had started shopping for a new HD set. Well, in comes U-Verse. I couldn’t believe how much better the HD from U-Verse was compared to what U-Suck had! HUGE difference.
Since this service from AT&T is pretty new, I know there will be some growing pains with the service. But I’m willing to deal with that. I get to save some money and tell Time-Warner where to stick it. That is a great trade off in my opinion. You suck, U-Suck.
So I’ve been messing with this Joost application the past month. Since it is still in beta testing, you had to get an invitation in order to download and use it. I’m not sure if that is still the case, but I got my invite from the lovely and tech savvy Natali Del Conte, the host of the podcast show TeXtra. Thanks, Natali! If I ever have an invite to pass along, I will send it your way. With that being said, my buddy Nick is about to host a poker tournament. I might be able to send an invite your way. Watch the TeXtra podcast here. It’s a great resource for the latest in technology, if you’re into that sort of thing.
Now let me try to describe Joost. Basically, it’s archived television programs running on a P2P network. Kind of like those “on demand” channels your cable or satellite provider offers. So it’s not like you’re watching breaking news or any type of live television like that. It runs pretty smoothly, has an easy to use interface, and the video quality is excellent. There is a nice selection of channels to choose from. National Geographic has it’s own channel, as well as Comedy Central, MTV, and the more obscure Soccer Channel, just to name a couple. And the programs range from past CNN news segments, to old Ben Stiller shows, to old school Transformers and G.I Joe cartoons. They even have some music channels. So far, it is indeed very cool. Download it here.
I highly recommend you find someone to send you an invitation to Joost. If you want one, and if I can figure out how, let me know and I will send one your way. Be aware that you may not want to use Joost at work, since I imagine it can be very distracting and keep you from actual work. I’m only imagining that. That is only my imagination. Sometimes it runs wild. Crazy imagination of mine…
If you can read this, then somewhere, somehow, a Systems Administrator is to thank. And for that reason, the last Friday of every July has been dubbed as Sysadmin Day. Hmmm. So today is the 8th annual SysAdmin Day, isn’t it? Maybe you should go find your IT people and shake their hands. Give them a pat on the back. Make out with them.
What is a Sysadmin? According to sysadminday.com, it’s someone who takes care of computer systems, phones, network, servers, backups, desktops, etc. So with that in mind, I salute anyone of these fine folks who handle the day to day headaches users cause them. Leading myself to personally invest in Extra-Strength Advil.
So far today, no one is showing me or Horbi much love. I haven’t heard from Brian, but no one usually shows him love anyway. I’d like to think it’s because very few people know about the significance of this glorious day. So get the word out. It’s in your best interest. Trust me.
Your IT department can do so much for you. I would imagine that the ones that remember to take care of their IT folks on this day would surely jump to the front of the line when it comes to taking care of their issues. Just a thought. And IT teams have great memories, so if you do (or don’t) show them some appreciation, they’ll remember.
Free advice: Don’t bite the hand that feeds you.
Happy SysAdmin Day, brothers!
This gentleman has invented something. Something crazy. Crazy as in awesome! He has rigged a car to run on water.
Can you imagine? If this concept gets some serious consideration? How it will change the world? No more dependency on foreign oil. No more insane gas prices. I only wish somoene would have thought about this sooner. But better late than never.