Monthly Archives: February 2005

You are browsing the site archives by month.

mac software purchases

It’s been a month since i bought my g4 ibook, and I have been happy with it so far.

I have not done any battery metrics with it, but the battery life has been impressive. I can charge it up, leave it unplugged for 3-4 days, turn it on and have a couple of hours of life on it. I’m pretty sure my toshiba won’t even boot if left unplugged for four days. I may try that later.

I have not yet tried to do any development on it, so there’s at least one program I have not picked up yet.

So far here’s the list of software I’ve purchased.

iLife ’05 upgrade
Mac Journal 3.0
NetNewsWire/MarsEdit ( right now Ranchero software has deal going where the license for NetNewsWire will also work on MarsEdit. Two nice products for $39.95 )
CopyWrite 2.1.8

I will probably add TextMate to the list at some point, but I need to play with it some more.
I may also pick up VoodooPad as well.

The nice thing is that all of these products are $40 or under.

I have yet to pick up Office for Mac yet. I just don’t know if I want to.

I am also staying away from graphics programs for now as well. I think my 12″ screen is going to a bit cramped for graphics, especially when I have a nice 22″ monitor 10 feet away from where I am typing this. Plus, the graphics apps are the ones with the $500-$700 price tags.

The only product I was a little disappointed with was MacJournal, and that’s only because they had a 15-day trial instead of a 30 like most companies. I like the product overall though.

So, I have spent about $125 on software and the iLife upgrade.

the day that hockey died…

So, today is officially the day that the NHL cancelled the 2004-2005 season. For those of you not keeping score, the NHL has been in a contract dispute with its players since Sept 16.

What was the big deal? Money, of course. The owners claim that they have priced themselves out of the market. In the last few years they have let salaries get out of hand to the point that the teams are losing money. The players liked making money, and they weren’t exactly dying to give it up. The players refused to give into a salary cap, until yesterday that is.

Yesterday, the NHLPA decided to propose a salary cap to the NHL, one that was much much higher than what the owners wanted. Many players, who had stood by the ‘no cap’ mantra, were confused why their reps caved. They’ve sat out for five months. If they knew there was a chance the PA would cave, then why didn’t they just work a deal last summer? The concessions made at the last minute by both sides, however, were more about saving face than any true desire to resolve things.

The really sad part of all this is that no one cared. The first time the shutout has been mentioned on any of the major news sites was late yesterday and today, when the season was on the brink of being cancelled. At that point, the press coverage was only there to cover the carnage, much like a major car accident.

Where’s the outrage of the fans? The NHL was just beginning to stir interest in American households. With the shutout, most people, not having sympathy for the wealthy players and the even wealthier owners, simply moved on. You probably remember the amount of coverage that the last baseball strike got, and that sport barely recovered from it. And, baseball, after all, is ‘America’s pastime,’ with mom and apple pie. So, what do you do with a sport that’s not even in the top 5? Imagine the outrage of fans if the NFL or the NBA or MLB tried cancelling their seasons.

It’s not that hockey isn’t a great sport. it’s an incredibly fast paced sport, and to me it’s probably the most fun to watch. It’s the only sport I’ve ever watched where a 0-0 game will keep you on the edge of your seat. It’s the only sport where you are just as elated as the players are after your team scores the winning goal in triple overtime to win the Stanley Cup. You and your friends stayed up till 2 a.m., watching every minute of the game.

You don’t get that with football. The NBA isn’t really fun to watch until the fourth quarter. And baseball? Man, if you don’t have a serious buzz going by the seventh inning stretch, I don’t know how you’d get through the rest of the game. God forbid watching 9 or more innings completely sober. And Nascar? Oh come on. Unless there’s a crash, how exciting is it to watch 40 cars run 500 laps around a track on TV?

No one wants to take salary cuts, but if the choice is taking a pay cut or risk having the company shut it doors, then the cut isn’t so bad. The company I work for has done it. I think Delta just asked its employees to take cuts in order to try salvage their company. So, why should a sports franchise be any different? I read a story about the support staff of the Stars, including the coaches, had to take major cuts during the lockout. So, why not the players?

A lot of players are going to play in Europe or in the minor leagues. They’re certainly not getting paid up to $10 million a year to play in these other leagues, so why not swallow their pride, take the cuts, and keep the NHL alive? The players say they just want to play the game that they love playing.

If you players really just wanted to play the game, then why should the money matter?

Episode III: A Lost Hope

Sadly, this trailer might be better than the actual movie…

Star Wars Trailer

After seeing the last two Star Wars movies, I’m not optimistic that this one will be much better. In spite of the fact that the Clone Wars happen, Vader is born, and a lot of Jedi are supposed to die, I worry that somehow Lucas is going to try to spin a happy ending out of all of this.

Don’t get me wrong. I think the Star Wars is a great fictional concept, and I think Lucas is amazing at creating these worlds. He just has a problem with telling the story.

There are rumors, as usual, going around that Lucas may actually let the next three movies get made. He isn’t interested in doing them, but he might turn them over to the right person.

To me, the ‘dream team’ for that job would be to get Joss Whedon to write the screenplays and let Spielberg direct them. Whedon is the main creator of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and “Angel,” and I think he would breathe some life into the Star Wars characters.

If you’re not convinced that Spielberg could do great things with Star Wars, then go rent The Terminal. To me, this was a movie with a very very weak concept, but somehow Spielberg managed to make it into a decent flick. I think he’s also made one or two other pretty decent movies…. : )

why can’t all country songs be like this?

Man, if all country songs were this funny, I might actually listen to it…

wife meets girlfriend

can’t always get what you want…

Tonight’s superbowl was just that. You can either have a superbowl that has a great game and lame commercials, or you can have a game that’s a blowout with really great commercials.

For awhile, the best thing about the superbowl was the commercials because the game was usually over by the end of the first half. The last couple of years have had great games, but the commercials had lost something.

But, this year, because of the infamous “wardrobe malfunction,” the screeners for the commercials have been extra strict. I think the edgiest commercial this year was the one for godaddy.com that parodied the “wardrobe malfunction.” I read online that the godaddy commercial had to go through several iterations before it got by the board. Yet, strangely, they still slipped in at least one commercial for Cialis.

I’d much rather see the rude crude beer commercials than anything advertising a fix for erectile dysfunction.

It’s just sad that since last year the networks have become incredibly paranoid about offending anyone about anything. But, then, it kinda reflects on the society we live in today.

Continue Reading →

What’s Up with the Thimbles?

I caught part of the State of the Union address tonight.

I usually watch them just because it’s usually interesting to hear what the President has to say. Plus, the networks usually catch one or more senators snoozing during the speech. Or, this year, there were two-three idiots who clapped when Bush was describing the very real and very scary news about when Social Security would be bankrupt.

Ok, they’ve been saying it for years, but I haven’t seen dates assigned to the social security thing before tonight. By the time I am old enough to retire, at the rate it’s going, there won’t be any Social Security. Period. And if you’re younger than I am, you’re prettymuch equally fucked.

Anyway, it’s been more fun to watch since Bush has been in office because this is a very public presentation and the Democrats have to suck up to him on TV.

What I’m curious about is why some of them had thimbles on their index fingers and were waving them at Bush. I’m assuming there’s some historical context to it, and that it was a favorable gesture.

I didn’t see all of it, but from what I did see Bush is definitely keeping himself busy for the next four years.

UPDATE: After reading an article on CNN this morning, I learned that they did not have thimbles on their fingers, but they had dipped their fingers in blue ink. Apparently, the iraqis used this last weekend as a way to prevent people from voting more than once in the elections.

Rumor has it that John Kerry had all ten of his fingers dipped in ink to show how many times he personally voted in the Iraq elections. However, he was unable to get his name on the ballot in time, where he had hoped to unleash his “I’m not Saddam” campaign. Instead, he has decided that he will try to run for prime minister of France, where he hopes his “I’m not French” campaign will capitalize on the French hatred of everything, including themselves.

think “different”…

garden_state.jpg Every once in a while, I like to catch a movie that isn’t the same ol’ same ol’. Something that’s a bit different from an action flick or comedy. Recently, I’ve come across a couple of movies that fit that description. The first, Garden State, is about an out of work actor who is forced to return home after ten years for his mom’s funeral. While there, he has to face his past, deal with his dysfunctional family, and meets someone in the course of a few days. After spending the majority of his life on medication and being “numb” to everything, he learns how to feel again and that life isn’t so bad after all. This movie starred Zach Braff, who also wrote and directed it. It’s more of a drama with comedic bits than a comedy with dramatic bits.

The movie is apparently popular at Blockbuster’s online dvd service, because I had to go through two copies before I got one that I could watch entirely.

It seems like a typical ‘coming of age’ flick, but just as you start to think that, something happens that throws you completely off. All of the characters have their quirks, and I think it’s the quirkiness that keeps you watching. I really liked Natalie Portman’s character; it’s good to see her in something other than another Star Wars flick.

eternal_sunshine.jpg Like Garden State, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is another very unusual film. In this one, Jim Carrey plays a man who wants to erase all memory of his ex-girlfriend after learning she has recently erased him. Fortunately, in this movie, there’s a doctor who can do just that. While undergoing the procedure, he watches the memories of his relationship playing back in his mind as they are being erased. About halfway through, he changes his mind and doesn’t to lose the memories. The problem is that he is unconscious, so his subconscious begins a journey to try to bury the memory of his girlfriend anywhere in his head where it might be safe.

The movie suggests that love is a bond that we simply can’t get rid of, even if we had the technology to do so. It also suggests that just because you may know the right things to say or do the right things, doesn’t necessarily mean that you can get that person to fall for you.

One of the most interesting aspects of the movie to me was how they visually took a very abstract concept and made it work. How do you visually represent memories fading? Well, have you ever had a dream that was really intense that it ‘felt’ real? You remember it vividly when you wake up, but as you go through the day details about the dream start to slip away. By then end of the day, you’ve forgotten almost all of it. Kinda like that. They used a lot of different things to ‘simulate’ that they were a) in a memory and b) what state the memory was in. As the visual fades, so do the images and even sounds.

The movie is a great film to watch. Some people may not ‘get’ it, and that may have to do with the way the story unfolds. I will say it is not a movie you can pick up halfway through – you need to see it from beginning to end. Ok, I really only wanted to see this because Kate Winslet was in it, and I was pleasantly surprised that it turned out to be such an amazing movie.