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July 2006 Archives

July 2, 2006

Excuse me, stewardess? I speak jive.

  • The world still loves analog watches. My old [digital] watch started inexpelicably turning on its backlight randomly (and frequently), therefore draining its battery. It’s solar-rechargable, and therefore easy to charge, but it would fully discharge about once a week (which a) requires several hours of direct, strong sunlight to recharge, and b) has never happened in the years that I have owned the watch). So it was time to replace it. I was looking for a self-time-setting digital watch (i.e., synch to the Ft. Collins radio time signal) with multiple timezone support (because I travel a lot). Not difficult requirements, I thought. But apparently only Caiso makes a whole line of radio-setting watches, and the majority of them are still analog. They have relatively few digital watches. Quite annoying. Why does our culture, who is so fascinated with all things tech, still want analog watches?
  • Ah, the joys of parenthood.
    • Kaitlyn will not hesitate to rub her nose all over your shirt, especially when she needs to clear it.
    • Kathryn will eat anything (when she’s in the mood). Anything.
    • Kaitlyn’s new favorite phrase is “No want it!”. Frequently repeated many times at high volume.
    • The munchkins’ latest trick is to talk to each other in their cribs for at least an hour (or three) after we put them down at night. They’ll rattle on about the events of the day, do silly tricks to amuse themselves (throwing toys, bouncing in the crib, playing with blankets, etc.), etc.
  • Open MPI v1.1 was released. Woo hoo!
  • Per above, I finally got a new Casio watch. It’s nearly the same model as my old watch, but slightly slimmer and with easier-to-activate buttons.
  • Sun is starting to heavily contribute to Open MPI. I think they’re going to be one of the best additions to the group yet.
  • Environmentally friendly primary explosives. Wow.
  • This morning, Outlook refused to send some outgoing mail. So I rebooted. All the pending mail then went out, but somehow I lost my desktop wallpaper. Sigh
  • My requisition for a MacBook Pro was approved today. Woo hoo — back to the land of sanity! Update 10 July: it shipped!

July 20, 2006

MacBook Pro = happiness

  • I got my new MacBook Pro. Yummy!
    • Amusingly enough, Cisco’s internal ordering tool thingy won’t ship to my home address; it’ll only ship to the local Cisco sales office. Which I figured was fine; it would guarantee that someone would be around when it was delivered. I signed up on the UPS “e-mail me updates on this tracking number…” thingy, and was shocked to get an e-mail at about 9am on the morning of the expected delivery date saying “We tried to deliver, but no one was there.” GAAAHH!! I promptly called UPS and told them to re-route the driver back; I would go to the location to accept the delivery myself.
    • But I wondered: why wasn’t anyone there to accept it? Slacker sales guys! ☺
    • Props to UPS for near-real-time updating of the notification (rather than the driver having to return to the distribution point at noon or the end of the day — I got the notification e-mail within about 15 minutes of the missed delivery).
    • So I went to the sales office (all the sales guys had arrived by then), and was there when the driver came back an hour or so later. So I got my Mac. Much, much happiness.
  • I have therefore [almost] retired my IBM Thinkpad running Windoze (that I got when I joined Cisco) and migrated entirely to my MBP. When I first got my Windoze laptop, I thought I could be open minded and be able to use Windoze and be just as productive as I could with a Mac. No so. I always felt constrained; especially since I’m a developer, I could never do any real work on my own laptop (Cygwin was a totaly dog, mainly because launching each process was sooooo slow!). So I’m really glad to have a Unix-based machine as my main working unit now.
  • I had to switch from Outlook to Entourage. Not bad, but it does have some annoying differences:
    • Minor: You cannot import my .pst files from Outlook directly; you have to upload everything from Outlook to Exchange and then download to Entourage (which took a long, long time and required shepharding so that I didn’t go over quota).
    • Minor: Overall, it seems to be a bit of a hog; typing can be a bit slow (perhaps it’s the spell checker?).
    • Minor: The ordering of messages in a thread is not consistent; they’re not always in order. I haven’t figured out why.
    • Minor: Events on the calendar display do not display the color of the free/busy status of the appoinment; you have to open the appointment and click in a sub-item to see what the free/busy status of the appointment it.
    • Minor: Dragging mails from an Exchange folder to a local folder copies them (vs. moving them). This is annoying because it typically means that you have to do 2 actions: drag and then delete.
    • Minor: Every time you exit Entourage, it wants to delete everything in the junk mail folder (what if i haven’t reviewed it yet?). There does not appear to be a setting to disable this behavior.
    • Major: To-do items are not stored on the server. This is unbelievable to me. Not only are they not backed up, they won’t appear on my Treo.
    • Major: You can’t change the accept/tenative/reject status of an appointment once you have accepted it. Wow!
  • It’s not all bad, though. I do enjoy the fact that Entourage syncs to Mac’s Addressbook and Calendar, which, in turn, I have set to sync to my .mac account (which keeps my home iMac, for example, also in sync, and therefore my bluetooth-enabled cell phone). So I really do have 1 addressbook between all my devices at home and work. Which rocks.
  • I’ve taken the time to update some Mac software that I was using. For example, based on George B.’s advice, I’m now using Darwin Ports instead of Fink. I’m using a different (and, IMHO, better) Apple-ified emacs. And Virtue Desktops ( UPDATE: someday to be likely replaced by OSX 10.5!). And Witch (which rocks).

About July 2006

This page contains all entries posted to JeffJournal in July 2006. They are listed from oldest to newest.

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