Thursday, March 29, 2007

I am totally losing it. Too much documentation update work to get done today, but at least I'm not getting interrupted very much. I was just updating the record of document changes and I was going to add a comment "made formatting more consistent", but I wanted to use a more active verb, so I came up with "consistentalized formatting." Wow. What does that even mean? I typed it in and just started at it for a solid minute trying to make my brain accept the attrocity I'd just brought into existance as an actual word. Thankfully, it's not, and all the bells and whistles started going off almost before I'd even finished typing it. I know it's possible to turn virtually any adjective into a verb, but the abomination above is hardly the way to do it. On the other hand, maybe consistentalize is a perfectly cromulent word and I should set about embiggening its usage...

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Yay new apartment! We got the keys and parking passes and all that other good stuff yesterday and are now in the dreaded moving process. I like unpacking because it appeals to my engineer brain of how things fit together. The packing part should do that too, but that part just sucks because nothing ever fits together. As I told my mom the other day, it's like trying to do a jigsaw puzzle, except someone mixed up all the pieces to a hundred different puzzles and then threw away all the boxes, and you have to make one big puzzle using every piece. Okay, so that's a pretty terrible metaphor, but it made sense at the time. Anyway, the moving part is no fun because it involves manual labor. Boo! Fortunately, we're trading help with Ben and I think a couple cousins are going to be helping us as well, so hopefully it should go fairly fast. Our new apartment is awesome so far though, we get a free permanent visitor pass and can get temporary passes for free! Emily and I are already (predictably) arguing about where to put furniture, and there isn't even any furniture in the place yet! I'm sure once we get it all in there it will be painfully obvious what we do and do not have room for and where things need to go and then we can just get rid of stuff. Hopefully someone will come claim my dining room table before Saturday (it's going to the dumpster otherwise). I'm personally less concerned about furniture than I am about all the other stuff that has to find a place to reside. *shrug* I'm sure it will all work out somehow.

Monday, March 26, 2007

You can tell emo is 100% played out when the lead article on WebMD about teen slang contains the word. I didn't read the article, but I'm sure it's about how to tell if your kid is actually depressed or just into the music (and subsequent "fashion statement") that hit its peak of popularity something like 5 years ago. (I'm so old...) Dear parents: If you're so out of touch with your kids and with modern popular culture to the point where you need WebMD to explain what emo means, you have much more serious issues. And to all the future I-told-you-soers: Feel free to file away this statement to throw back at me in 20 years when I don't know what the hell my own kids are saying half the time myself. That said, I fully expect to adminster musical justice the way Henry Rollins outlined. You can never go wrong with Zepplin and Sabbath. Or Benny Goodman, Duke Ellington, and Louis Armstrong for that matter. Bring it on future kids!

Thursday, March 22, 2007

So Apple TV started shipping yesterday. I'm intrigued, of course, because the ability to play high quality digital content from my computer on my TV has always been an admirable goal to achieve. Certainly, Apple is not the only company who makes a product that allows digital media stored on your comptuer to be viewed on your TV. In fact, Microsoft has an entire version of their OS designed to run a dedicated media center computer. I will applaud the optial audio output, component video output and HDMI connector options. The ability to sync wirelessly is certainly useful for those who have computers in different rooms from TVs, but I'm supremely glad they didn't make the classic iMac blunder (claiming that floppys were obsolete and not including a drive for them) and do away with a standard RJ45 jack. My two biggest issues with this new Apple product are hard drive size and multiple user support. A 40 gig HD seems woefully shortsighted. Especially for something that syncs automatically. What happens when it fills up - does it delete older things from its cache, do you have to do it manually? I have 20 gigs of MP3s on my computer and I've only ripped half the CDs I own. I have several gigs of digital photos. And now where are all these videos supposed to go? It's not hard to see that 40 gigs is going to fill up very quickly, especially as more and more high resolution video becomes available. I know Apple was trying to meet a $300 cost point and had to find a drive that would meet that, but with a 200G SATA disk available for around $50, why wouldn't you find a way to integrate a higher capacity drive? At the very least, I hope Apple has a plan to upgrade storage capacity of their production units periodically. Secondly, how does this little box handle having 2+ computers up and running with iTunes, each with their own set of digital media? Surely Apple doesn't expect the consumer to shell out $300 per collection of media or that each household will only have a single computer. Now, it's entirely possible that Apple TV already handles multiple users seamlessly, but I've seen nothing in the press releases or on their website even addressing the issue. And even if it does, it brings us back to the first problem (multiple users are going to swamp a 40 gig drive in no time). Let's say mom and dad have a computer, 17 year old Billy has his own computer, and his kid sister Jane has a box full of horrible Hillary Duff movies and correspondingly horrible records. Mom and dad (mostly mom) want to watch the love-of-mush movie they downloaded (let's assume they're even remotely computer-savvy), Billy wants to watch his music videos with his friends, and Jane wants to do sing along with the worst music on earth. Wouldn't it be nice if they could all sync their iTunes libraries and then watch or listen to whatever they wanted in thw family room? Maybe even *gasp* together as a family! This is something that Nintendo is capitalizing on big time with their slick Wii ads showing an entire family playing video games together (and usually the teen male losing). Anyway, certainly I'm interested in the capabilities of Apple TV, especially when you consider its small footprint and high-def output for a much lower price than any comparable competitor, but I also see a lot of drawbacks that I haven't seen addressed at all. Perhaps a more thorough Googleing is required.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Yay Kimi! In his opening F1 race with Ferarri, Kimi Raikkonen not only grabbed pole position, but also won the race by a solid margin. I'm excited for the new Formula One season which kicked off tonight in Australia. Well, tomorrow in Australia. Or whatever. Stupid time difference. Anyway, yay Formula One and yay Kimi, now I'll have something to watch all summer until football starts up again.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

No, this post is not about basketball. I just had the weirdest flashback to freshman year of college. There's a lot of empty offices between mine and the elevator as people are being shifted around. And for some bizarre reason, I was just walking back to my office and shut the door behind me because I had to make a personal call (even though there's no one even within ear shot of my office at the moment), and I could swear I was back in Fitten. Maybe it's the oversized office doors. Maybe it's the dark hallways, brown carpets, painted doorframes, and sand-colored walls. I dunno. It was just a very bizarre deja vu. Oh, and also, why is Texas A&M trying to blow a 13 point halftime lead and lose to Penn? Okay, I lied. ;)

Commence the Madness! It's 12:00, brackets are locked, and games are tipping off. No matter how much I second (or third) guess my last minute pick changes, there's nothing to do now but wait and see how it pans out. I was having a really hard time with a couple sections of my bracket because the teams are so evenly matched. The Elite 8 will almost certainly be made up of Florida or Maryland and Wisconsin, Notre Dame, Oregon, or GT from the Midwest, Kansas and UCLA, Pitt, or Duke from the West, UNC or Texas and Georgetown from the East, and Ohio State and Texas A&M or Memphis from the South. What this means is that a few teams have much easier paths, notably Kansas (if they get past either Nova or Kentucky), Georgetown (who won't play anyone even close to their own level until they get to East Rutherford), and Ohio State (same deal as G'town). This makes it hard not to like the Hoyas, Jayhawks, or Buckeyes to make it to Atlanta with fresh players. Meanwhile, Team Lightswitch (who, to their credit, still manage to win when playing halfheartedly) could drop their second round game to Zona or Purdue or lose to a hot Maryland team. It's hard to see the Gators, not making the Final Four, but they have a few potential surprises in store. In the bottom half of the Midwest, Oregon/ND is a 3-point shootout that will obliterate GT if it manages to pull upsets on UNLV and Wisconsin. Injured and fading Badgers seem to be trying to bail out, but the question is to who. If Florida makes Elite 8, they'll face one of 4 teams coming off difficult games and should cruise. In the West, Duke (yes, Duke) could knock off Pitt or UCLA to draw Kansas where they'd ultimately get stomped. After watching Pitt fall apart when Aaron Gray is denied the ball, a Duke matchup is intriguing because McRoberts is the superior player and has more supporting players around him. An injured UCLA can still be serious trouble though too. But UCLA/Duke/Pitt all kill each other and no one can match up with Kansas by then. East, Texas/UNC is everyone's intriguing matchup to see how Hansbrough responds to a vastly superior inside presensce (answer: not well). If UNC doesn't flop against Marquette/Michigan State, they won't stand a chance against Texas who has a cakewalk until that point. Someone tell me they don't want to see Durant square off against Hibbert to get to Atlanta. After a challege with UNC, Texas is drained when they face the Hoyas who haven't even broken a sweat yet. In the South, Louisville may prove more tricky than expected but Texas A&M seems like too good a team to fold to the likes of Rick Pitino. Memphis looks good on paper, but they haven't played anyone, and Texas A&M will tear them apart. Ohio State/A&M is probably one of the tougher late-round picks because they're so evenly matched. I think the edge probably goes to Ohio State simply because they'll be fresher. Other interesting matchup: VT/Illinois. They're pratically the same team. Winner is a coin-toss, but will probably make the Sweet 16.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Damnation! My NCAA bracket gets more and more screwed up by the minute. Zoey and Sonja helped me make my picks last night in what basically amounted to a Ouija board technique of them sitting on, chewing on, and sniffing at various teams on my paper bracket while I tried to make my picks. Now I find out that several of my picks may have to be revised because UCLA's Collison sprained his ankle (though he's "probable" for Thursday), Villanova's Nardi reaggravated his previously-sprained ankle during practice (but claims he's going to play rival-wildcats Kentucky come hell or highwater), and Marquette's McNeal is still nursing an injured thumb (will likely miss the Michigan State game). How is UCLA supposed to get far enough to lose to Florida in the Final Four without one of their star players? Now I might have to have them lose to Pitt in the Sweet 16 instead. And with Marquette missing a major scorer, their win over Michigan State seems less likely and over UNC seems nearly impossible. I wanted to see UNC go down in flames early, but I guess now I'll have to wait until Texas gets a hold of them. After Durant bodyslams Hansbrough a couple times, the 'Horns will roll to an easy victory, it's just too bad that Marquette won't be able to take UNC out instead. As for 'Nova, how are they supposed to pull the Wildcat vs Wildcat "upset" of Kentucky and then go on to pressure (but ultimately lose to) Kansas? Time to revise my bracket... I swear, if anyone tells me that something happened to Hibbert, GT3, Ewing Jr, or Green (unless it's Taurean, but then only in the final game), I'm just going to cry. There's no way I want to change my Georgetown winning it all (over the Gators) pick. Yes, I know it's an outside shot, but making the safe pick is for losers.

"Scientists, scientists, please. Looking for some order. Some order, please, with the eyes forward and the hands neatly folded and the paying attention... PI IS EXACTLY THREE! Very sorry it had to come to that, but now that I have your attention," happy pi day! May I suggest you help yourself to a nice slice of the cherry variety that none other than Mr. Stevens has assembled for you? Also, this article is somewhat interesting in that it asserts pi actually is exactly three (and some other absurdities like negative circumference) in an alternately constructed universe. It's hardly scholarly, but it was pretty entertaining. Since I'm playing poker tonight, Emily and I celbrated pi day yesterday with some peanut butter creme pie from Wegmans. It was kind of messy, but darn tasty. Oh wait, that's CalTort's slogan... Mmmm... Now I'm really hungry and lunch is still a couple hours away.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

It's been a busy past week. I actually did get some things packed, but I feel like I'm not making much progress. I am running out of stuf fin my fridge, which is good news, to a point. I don't like having nothing but the carb-heavy foods in my pantry around the apartment. *shrug* I took all my posters and stuff down, so my apartment looks emptier than it really is. Still lots to do before moving begins(exactly two weeks until then!).
Saturday I helped my dad put together his christmas present workbench. I'm actually very impressed at the amount of work he's put into getting the basement organized. Now he'll have his own little workshop area that he can mess up. It's even painted and the shelves are organized. I know my mother is the impetus behind the sudden organizational streak in my father, but he seems genuinely into it, and he's doing a fine job.
The weather's finally nice, though I'm heard rumors it's supposed to get cold again this weekend. Whatever. It's almost April which means it's almost time for it to stay warm for a while. I'm definitely ready to put my cords away until next winter.
Sunday Emily joined the family for a trip downtown to see Cats. In truth, Emily was already downtown at the Food and Wine Festival just up the street, so she met us at the Warner. Oh! And also, my family wasn't late! Another seemingly remarkable feat! In all fairness, they were on-time for the movie when we went to see Breach a few weeks ago, and last time the 4 of us went to Grandma's together we all left right on time. I'm very much in awe. Bever Standard Time is rapidly approaching synchronicity with real time. I'm not really sure I even know my parents anymore! Anyway, Cats was fun. I've never seen it before, although I halfway knew a couple songs. We had pretty good seats, so it was cool to be able to see the various costumes. I caught myself on several occasions paying more attention to the "extras" on stage who were just milling about and acting very much like I've seen real cats behave than to the person(s) actually singing.
I haven't been sleeping well recently, and it's certainly not for lack of trying. I think there's just too much going on at work and at home that my mind simply doesn't want to shutdown at night. Hopefully sometime in mid-April things will start to settle down a little. Maybe I'll just start taking 3 day weekends every week. I've got the vacation time to do it. It certainly would allow me to get more done at home. Maybe I'll have to float that by my manager tomorrow an dsee if that's kosher or not.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Worst sentence fragment I've ever written: if it is in... How difficult is that to read? Yikes.

Dammit, I left my chapstick at home. And my nose is really running today so I know my lips are going to be really dry. Grrr...

Monday, March 05, 2007

Mmmm, blueberry muffin. =) I got tired of eating granola bars for breakfast every morning, so last night I made some blueberry muffins. Nothing fancy, they're just Jiffy, but man are they tasty. Besides making muffins, I had a productive weekend. I threw out 4 bags of stuff and I gave away or sold a bunch of other things, and I have people coming over this week to get some other stuff. I've packed a few things up and I'm trying to set a goal of packing one box a day so that by the time the end of the month rolls around, I'll be ready to go. Saturday we had movie night in. We were hoping to rent Casino Royale since neither of us had seen it yet, but it's not available yet. We got Inside Man instead and really enjoyed it. Even knowing the eventual outcome (you're told at the beginning) didn't help in figuring out how it was arrived upon. Pieces start to come together throughout the whole movie, but it doesn't all click into place until the very end. I highly recommend the film. Sunday we went to go visit our new chinchilla baby that we're getting from Kelly. Isn't she cute? Kelly's got a whole room full of chinnies that all wanted to play with us yesterday (except for a few grumpy ones). We took my camera, but were so preoccupied with playing with all the fuzzy things that we totally forgot about it until we had already left. She's not weaned yet, but she'll be coming home with us after we move into our new place.
In sports news, congrats to Tech basketball for closing out the regular season with two big wins. Mario put on a great show for his final home game, and Javaris just gets better and better every game. I'm sure people are putting us in the NCAA tournament because we beat UNC and BC to close the season. I think you can make a case for it, and we do have one of the better profiles among other at-large candidates, but our away/neutral record is attrocious and there's no such thing as a home game in the tournament. While I would like to see us in the NCAA and make another amazing title run, I'm also terrified of an embarassing first round blow out. Frankly, I think we're better suited to the NIT this year. We're only losing one senior, and as dominating a defender as Mario is, we're going to have a very solid and experienced team next year without him. If we can win a couple more road games next year while having the same home success rate, we certainly have a shot at an ACC title and maybe another Sweet 16 appearance. But until the consistency of the team improves, I'd feel a whole lot better about an NIT bid.

Friday, March 02, 2007

I just wrote what will hopefully be my last check to my apartment complex! Yay! My rent until my move out day is covered, so as long as they don't decide that I've done an abnormally irrepairable amount of damage that is inconsistent with a tenant of 2.75 years, I should be out of there scott free on April 1st with no additional expense. *crosses fingers*

Can I just say how dissapointed I've been recently with TV sports coverage? It seems like at least once a week a game I'm watching has some sort of severe technical difficulty. Last night I wanted to watch UNC@GT, but ESPN2 lost the feed, and switched right on over to some other game without (as far as I know) any kind of announcement. The reason I don't know is because I started listening to Wes Durham call the game on's web stream. Wendesday night, the feed for the Duke/Maryland game got dropped with only a couple minutes left in a very close game. Instead of switching to another game, they aired audio of Dicky V trying to do a play by play. I almost threw my TV out the window. Having to listen to him is bad enough when I can at least see what's going on in the game. But having to rely solely on that abomination of a commentator to give me the entire scope of what's going on in a game should prove once and for all that the "man" is something even less than worthless. He actually lowers the worth of of those around him in what I'm going to start calling the Dicky V Blackhole, something akin to the Cone of Ignorance or Vortex of Apathy. And then something I was watching a couple weeks ago on CBS lost their HD feed and dropped into a grotesquelly-pixelated, 540 interlaced lines of awfulness. I know that my grandparents generation were amazed simply by moving pictures on a box and that my parents generation was amazed by colored pictures. My generation was awed by cable being able to deliver hundreds of channels. But once you can consistently deliver something, having it fail is completely unacceptable. Dear ESPN, CBS, ABC, et al - if you're going to a game, perhaps you should bring a backup transmitter, an engineer who knows how your gear works so (s)he can fix it on the fly, and for my sanity and eardrums' sake, an announcer who can actually call a game instead of babble incessantly about anything even peripherally related to the game of basketball but nothing about the actual game in progress. In case I haven't made myself clear, I hate Dick Vitale. Kind of like how I hate Lee Corso, but I rarely have to listen to Lee during an actual football game, and at least Lee doesn't have volume control issues (Dicky V is only equipped with Loud and not even an Off switch). I meant for this post to be about technology, which it kind of was. It's just hard to get past the complete and utter annoyance of someone who ends ever sentence with "Baby!" and then repeats himself two or three times.

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  • I'm Rev. Adam
  • From Oakton, Virginia, United States
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