Thursday, December 27, 2007

Drinking the Apple Juice Part 1

Well, we drank the Apple juice this Christmas. Sure, we where like everyone else, we had a couple of iPods laying around the house. In fact, I use my iPod almost every single day. But this year for Christmas I received a MacBook and I bought my wife and iPhone. This entry off my blog will tell you a little about my experience.

First things first. My first computer was a TI 99/4a. I received it when I was around 12 years old. My second computer was during the very start of the IBM PC Clone wars. It was a Sperry PC. You may remember Sperry they made mainframes and later merged with Burroughs and became Unisys (The power of 2). Yes, that was possibly the worst post merger company slogan I can think of.

My third computer was a custom build 286 from a little computer store in South St. Louis County. My forth computer was a 386 from UltraComp in St. Louis. My fifth computer was a 486 from some guys in Kenner, LA that advertised in the Computer Shopper magazine. They used to have a parrot in their ads. The last 2 machines where really good. After that, things become a little fuzzy since I was doing IT work at the time and doing some side business with a guy who built PC's.

But my point is this. I've always been a Microsoft guy. In 2000 I purchased an Apple G4. I used it for a little Photo Shop work but it didn't really connect with me. I thought it was a little hard to use at the time and felt that it kept too much of the computer away from me. If that makes sense. You see at the time I was really in FreeBSD. As a matter of fact, I started using FreeBSD in the old 2.2 days which was around 1995. I still used Microsoft for meat and potatoes PC stuff. But every time someone needed a PC to do something, I would try to get it working with FreeBSD first. To be honest, I'm still a huge advocate of FreeBSD and run several servers at home.
This year (2007) I started having an urge for something Apple. Maybe it's because I started reading "Steve Job's Secret Diary" blog this year or maybe it's because I read the reviews of Leopard (maybe not). But this year I had a yearning for Apple. On December 25th Santa brought me what I wanted for Christmas. And for the first time in a LONG time I was really excited about a computer in the house.
Part II (The Apple experience and how it differs)

Monday, December 24, 2007

Everyone can identify on some level with this

I don't care how much money you have, how well you've done in life, what type of show you put on for others or how you would like for yourself to be perceived. This song and video hold a little bit of truth for everyone.....yes even the members of your family who drive a Lexus instead rolling in a Benz.

Merry Christmas everyone



Saturday, December 22, 2007

Christmas shopping

Kohls - the lines arent to bad.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Test message from Jo...

Test message from Jott. listen

Powered by Jott

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Update

Drive home

Friday, December 14, 2007

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Can this really be happening to me?

Today in the mail, I received a totally customized form letter for the Cambridge Who's Who. That's right CAM F'n BRIDGE!!!!! So check this out....

"It is my pleasure to inform you that you are being considered for inclusion into the 2007/2008 Cambridge Who's Who Among Executives and Professionals "Honors Edition" of the Registry."

So if I go on line and fill out the form, they will consider letting me get published in the book if I spend $189.00.

It was signed, M. Foster Editor and Chief. Nice, no first name just M. That could stand for MadeUp Foster for all I know. Anyway, I think I'm going to pass on this "honor". Keep my $189.00 and buy lottery tickets with that month. It's probably a better investment in the long run.

Please if you have ever gotten a job offer or something really cool from doing this I would love to hear about it.

Monday, December 03, 2007

RIP Evel Knievel

Everybody else is just a hack.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Questions for retailers and the media...

So, Thanksgiving is over and now the push for Christmas happens. Why is it that every year they say the Black Friday will make or break retailers? Every year they say "this could be the worst retail season in 5 years"? Why do we never really hear the news story about how great it was? Why don't they make a point of saying that since the beginning of the shopping season now happens in September, that you aren't going to get the same pop that you would have if you would have waited to start beating the consumer over the head with Christmas crap? Why doesn't anyone do a story on the fact that online retailing is probably taking the traffic away from brick and mortar?

I will tell you why....no one really cares and you have to make a story out of something. Let's face it, if a store goes out of business that only means one thing...SALE. It's sad. It's harsh. It's the truth. The retail business is tough.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Open Letter to High School "Hackers"

Dear High School "hackers",

I noticed to day that there was a story on The Post-Standard in which some high school students broke into the school computer system and changed their grades (See Article here). I would like to suggest that you use the following rules of thumb to justify doing something like this.

1. Is there a girl or guy you are trying to impress?
2. Can you do this with a 300 baud modem?

If you answered yes to those 2 questions, then you have mastered time travel and have gone back to 1982 where this kind of this is really cool and it hasn't really been done before.

If you said No to either one of those then stop what your doing and study and go rent the movie War Games.

Thank you for your consideration.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Oil

Oil is at 92 dollars. Good that i only need 10 gallons

Monday, October 22, 2007

Back from Vegas

I was in Vegas last week and had a great time. I have a few pictures on the cell phone that I will post to the blog later today.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Sorry im late

And this way im late for work.

Route 3

On the way to work.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Dinner

Panera Bread

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Cup cake

No this is not breakfast!

Friday, September 14, 2007

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Sprint speed test part 2

I was told by my Sprint rep that the card I have may not be set for EVDO Rev A. So, I downloaded the software for the laptop and sure enough, it wasn't. When I put the card in, it told me that it needed to do a firmware upgrade. So I have upgraded the card and will re-test the Sprint card tomorrow and see how it works.

Sprint PCS vs. ATT Wireless

Laptop is a Sony VAIO laoptop.


Sprint PCS using a Gateway G120 from JBM and an external antenna. Here are the throughput numbers so far using Sprint:




ATT using a built in card on a Sony VAIO laptop. Same physical location as the above test.



Monday, September 10, 2007

Open post to Sean Penn


Dude, it's OK to be passionate about a cause or anything. But you are really starting to freak the rest of us out. Come on, let's pull it together. I would like to see you enjoy yourself a little bit. Because you are turning into a scary, grumpy old guy. You don't have to be Jeff Spicoli. Just smile and go out for dinner or something.


Intense Sean Penn refrains from smoking, chastises media for interrupting

Friday, August 31, 2007

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Folks....it's hot

I'm in Phoenix this week and let me tell you it's hot. It was 111 yesterday and it suppose to be that again today. No matter how you cut it, it's hot.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Twitter and other "Micro Bloggering" applications

Is it just me or has anyone realized that things like twitter are nothing more than an updated version of the good old ".plan" file?

I used to be really involved in distributed.net . You could always use finger to check the .plan files of some of the tech guys there and find out what is going here.

Here is a link to what that looks like.

Sure, not as cool. But, it's basically the same thing. Just another example of taking a relatively old idea and making it cool again.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Work

Maintenance Window

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Monday, August 06, 2007

To bad you can't stand to listen to this guy.

He knows what he's talking about but he is so freaking annoying.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Open letter to President Bush on your approval rating

Dear President Bush,

I read this morning that your approval rating has dropped to 25% which is the lowest that it has ever been. I just wanted to tell you that I'm sticking with you. You have been my guy for this long and I'm not about to give up on you now. Let's face it, we only have a little more than a year to go in your Presidency. So let's pull things together and go out on an up note.

Sincerely,
The Packetman.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Twitter

If you read a lot of tech blogs you will realize that you are missing out on everything cool. So I have decided to play around with twitter. Twitter is one of those things that sounds so simple and you wonder why you never thought of it.

I know at work, we enjoy setting our "Note" section in Microsoft Communicator. Well twitter is a little like that. You basically put in whatever your doing or think at that moment and it's kind of neat. I don't see the reason to do it from a business reason. The other cool thing is that m.twitter.com is an interface that you can use on a mobile phone or BlackBerry.

So if you want you can check out what I'm doing here http://www.twitter.com/packetman.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Caymas Update

Well, it's back up and running. Got the power supply and installed it.

Had a strange problem where it would just hang on the boot up. So I took it over to the bench and hooked a monitor and keyboard to the box.


After looking at the boot sequence noticed that when the power supply died it upset the CMOS. So I pressed the F1 key to continue and all was good.


After it came back up, I decided to make an image of the drive. That way if it dies again I can get another hard drive and bring it back from the dead once more. So I downloaded Ghost 4 Linux and made an image.

So this box goes back into the cluster tonight and all is right with the world for now.

On another note, I'm just started a demo of the F5 FirePass box. I have had experience with the Juniper boxes and took a look at the Gartner report. Seems like FirePass has all the bells and whistles. I'm also reviewing the SSL VPN option with the Cisco ASA devices.

I will post more as I learn more.

Friday, July 06, 2007

My Caymas Saga Continues

So, 1 week to the day after I recieve the e-mail from Caymas Systems that they are no longer in business. One of my Caymas 318's died. Actually what happened was the cluster failed over and the other box hung while rebooting. So what we ended up doing was manually powering off. The problem was that powering it off with the power button on the front of the box did not work.

So I pulled the power cord out of the back of the box since the power switch did not work either.

When I tried to switch it back on, it came up to the "Booting system" prompt and sat there for 24 hours. I then pulled the power cord out of the back again. After that it wouldn't power up or spin any of the sytem fans.

"She's gone Jim!"


So, at that point I decided to do what any good computer guy would do. Cracked that sucker opened and took a look.


So at this point the non-existing warranty has been voided.


We all know that most appliances are nothing more than 1U rack mount PC's. The Caymas box is pretty much the same. It does have some cool engineering for things like the little LCD display, etc.




Over in the far left hand side is where the power suppy was. I pulled it. As luck would have it, it's a pretty standard item. The power supply is made by Sparkle Power International and the part number is FSP250-601U. I found one on-line for about $65.00 from RackMount Systems.


Here is a picture of the power supply.

So, it's been ordered. Once I get it in I will update the page and hopefully I will be able to get my second box back into service.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Changing of the guard

So yesterday at work they decided to change our cold beverage vendor from Coca-Cola to Pepsi. You can see in the picture below the changing of the guard:




Now normally I would not pay this any attention. But I was looking at the selection of beverages and noticed this:

What is the deal with that? When is the last time you saw a soda machine that is not priced in an increment of 25 cents. Not to mention the fact that soda used to cost only $1.00 now that I've switched to Pepsi it now cost 10 cents more. Or is someone taking that 10 cent cut off the top. I suspect our cafeteria people are behind this.



Wednesday, June 27, 2007

1952 all over again

Remember seeing those old commercials about the Kitchen of the Future. The lady who was WAY over dressed showing you how quickly things cooked in a new convection oven.


Here is the updated version linked over from Engadget.com




Friday, June 22, 2007

Keep running

Dont look back, it could be a train!

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Enjoying the outdoors

Summer with a classic.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

The other shoe drops for Caymas

Recieved an e-mail from Caymas systems on Friday June 8th:

"We informed you via letter on April 23, 2007 that the Assets of Caymas Systems Inc. have been assigned to be sold and Caymas thereafter to be wound down. This letter is to inform you that certain assets of Caymas have been sold. However, the buyer will not be continuing with the Caymas Product or with supporting the Caymas Product. Therefore, there will no longer be any support made available to you effective immediately. A copy of this information will also be made available to all customers via the self-service portal on the support section of the website shortly."

It was nice knowing you.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Caymas Systems, Inc. - Where are you

I (the company that I work for) use Caymas Systems NAC and I (the company that I work for) love it. In fact, they are pushing more and more traffic onto the NAC. I (as a person who work in technology) am a little concerned with Caymas Systems, Inc.

Back in April I asked support about Vista support. I was told they are working on it but could not give me a date for it's release. June 11th will make 2 months. And on June 11th I will re-open the support ticket and ask the question again.

As a company they have been having financial issues. I'm concerned and a little sad by the whole thing. If anyone from Caymas Systems is reading this....I hope everything works out for you guys. You have a great product and I have enjoyed working with you and want to continue to work with you in the future.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Monday, May 21, 2007

XM what's the deal here

First you really pissed me off by suspending Opie and Anthony. Now you have a service outage do to the loss of a Satellite down link. You guys better get your sh$t together over there.

At first I was going to cancel because of the O&A thing but I thought that June 15th would get here pretty quickly and I can listen to some CD's or something on my 2 hour commute per day. Not to mention that I bought my Dad one for Fathers day 2 years ago and I just buy him another year of service for Fathers Day. But now....I'm rethinking the whole thing.

Come on XM. You used to be the cool guys on the block. You where kicking butt and taking names. Next thing I know your in bed with Sirius and that Howard what's his name. Instead of acting like a safe heaven for your talent you start acting like every other big media company and giving in at the least little whimper from people who are too cheap to subscribe to the service.

Please, get it together. Bring O&A back and get Rock and Roll transmitting again. Please, don't turn into a "has been".

GigaOM - Sometimes, a phone is just a phone

Om has a great article. It seems that Nokia is introducing a cell phone that is a cell phone first and all that other crap second.

Check out the article here: Sometimes, a phone is just a phone

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Sunday, May 06, 2007

University of Kentucky graduation

The day that we check out is also graduation day at Rupp Arena.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Derby Day

Heading back to the track.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Kentucky Oaks finished

Races over for the day. Got soaked on the way to the bus.

Multimedia message

Multimedia message

Transportation

Get your race forms.

Ready to leave for Churchills Downs.

Today the Kentucky Oaks. First race posts at 11:30.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Lexington KY

Made it!

Trip - update

Wish we still had these.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Life in the IT Business

You know 2am is early and it's always fun to get a call at 2am. Over the years of doing this type of work I realize it's part of the business.

Hardware doesn't care what time it is. When it breaks, it breaks.

Right now is 4:15am and we have everything up and running. Just checking stuff and cleaning up the paper work. 99% of the employees will never know what happened and that's a really good thing.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Monday, April 30, 2007

Count down

3 days until PTO

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Woman gets $26,000 cell phone bill - Cingular Says "File Bankruptcy"

Her phone was stolen on vacation, and the thieves racked up an enourmous bill, what does cingular do? Make her pay it!-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-This says it all...read the fine print.



read more | digg story

7 Reasons Microsoft Loves Opensource

Popular opinion has Microsoft cursing open source at every turn. Do they really despise something they clearly benefit from? whurley's got seven reasons Bill and Co. love open source; or should. Use comments to give tell him things you'd wish they'd do. He'll address M$ with your feedback/questions. Keeping ‘mix’ truly open to the community.-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-Very interesting and quick read. Brings up some very valid points.



read more | digg story

How to: Encrypt Your VoIP

VoIP traffic flows across the Internet in unencrypted packets, which means anyone that has access to the network between sender and recipient can intercept them. Here are 5 methodologies to secure yourself against these attacks: Zfone, Built-in Encryption, Transport Layer Security and IP Security, Secure Real-Time Transfer Protocol and VPN.-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-welcome to my world.....it's not that bad



read more | digg story

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Tax Time

We finished our taxes today. Usually we have our accountant do it, but this year we waited to long so I had to do them myself. We used turbo tax online. While they made it pretty easy, I think I will be using the accountant again. But I was impressed with TurboTax online. And it was about $70.00 bucks cheaper.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Life is a freak show!

I hate Playtown! Maybe hate is to strong of a word. I always worry about getting involved in some social situation that kids can get you into. I will give the example later.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Don Imus....just my 2 cents

I like rap music, but Michelle Malkin makes a very, very valid point in the post "Imus vs. the Billboard Hot Rap Tracks Chart".

I think you have to remember this one thing.....Context is EVERYTHING!

Monday, April 09, 2007

Sony Vaio VGN-SZ381P

I hate this machine!

Friday, April 06, 2007

Quick Trip

Memphis ..... Heading back

Monday, March 26, 2007

Monday, March 19, 2007

The last momets of a camera saved on Flash

Very neat photos of the cameras last seconds.

A news photographer's camera was destroyed during the recent demolition of a MIssissippi River bridge, but the camera's Compact Flash card survived to tell the story.

Add AJAX to your site in 3 easy steps

Check out this blog entry. Here is a quick snippet:

"Hearing about AJAX constantly, but never have found time to read a lengthy, frustrating, complex tutorial? In the following post, I’m going to explain how to add AJAX functionality to your website in three easy steps."

Add Ajax to your site in 3 easy steps.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

$50 bucks the easy way

How to remove a cork from an empty while bottle without breaking it:





Friday, March 02, 2007

Very cool product for bridging a T1 to Ethernet




Asterisk PBX T1/E1 Redundancy, High Availability & Load Balancing in an economical Enterprise class solution. foneBRIDGE2 is a T1/E1 PRI-to-Ethernet Bridge. It is an integrated black-box "appliance" designed to streamline installation and enable redundant design of Asterisk based VoIP systems. foneBRIDGE2 eliminates the need to install proprietary TDM hardware cards in approved/compatible server configurations. Instead, foneBRIDGE2 terminates T1/E1 PRI lines on the trunk side and provides direct Ethernet communication to a network of Asterisk servers using native Asterisk TDMoE formats and utilities.


For the wine "lover" on our gift list

http://gizmodo.com/gadgets/gadgets/box-wine-dispenser-for-your-boxed-wine-presumably-comes-in-a-box-240532.php

You know, for when you want to show class.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Cisco is working on an IPv6 assessment tool....

Saw this press release mentioned in a go6.net newsletter and noticed that it had a mention in it about Cisco and a new tool to perform IPv6 assessments with.

Here is the Press Release.

A quick jog over to Cisco's website and search for IPv6 network I found this link for IPv6 Solution Components. A quick scan through this page has a link to Cisco IPv6 Capability Assessment. This leads you to a white paper on that subject. I then searched on IPv6 Network Assessor and found only some CCIE related reference. So I guess this tool is only available to the Federal Government at this point.

VPN lessons from Skype attacks...

Using IPv4 to tunnel IPv6 over the Internet and right some of the wrongs.

http://www.advogato.org/article/920.html

Even though it gets a little on the "preachy" side, they have a point. And oh yeah, some interesting stuff about Skype in there as well.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

VOIP, Asterisk and Cisco RTPc

Conserving VoIP bandwidth using Asterisk IAX and Cisco RTPc by ZDNet's George Ou -- One of the biggest challenges in designing a VoIP telephony system is the issue of bandwidth and usually there's not enough of it. Luckily there are ways to solve the problem with careful design and ingenuity using tools such as Cisco RTPc (Real Time Protocol header compression). Anyone looking to design a Voice over IP [...]

Monday, February 26, 2007

Sudo FAQ

Ever heard anyone recommend that you use sudo for that? Well I have and I've used sudo before. Here is a good FAQ about sudo and what it can do/how to set it up: http://polishlinux.org/first-steps/root-account/sudo-faq/

Friday, February 23, 2007

Avaya to Integrate Communications with Google Apps

Here is a press release from Avaya. Seems that they are building an alliance here with Google. Since there has been rumbles of Microsoft coming up with a PBX of there own. Are the players finally choosing up sides?

Goo-aya!!!!!!

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Quick update on basement project

So, framing is done. They are doing plumbing today and wiring tomorrow. Insulation on Friday and they start dry wall on Monday. I will post some pictures later this afternoon.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Lunch

Can you tell we eat out a lot?

Friday, February 09, 2007

Food Network

I found this blog today which breaks down where the Food Network is going wrong. You can read it here: http://blog.ruhlman.com/ . I think he's right on the money.

I remember cooking shows when they where on the Discovery Channel. Shows like, Great Chefs of New Orleans, Yan Can Cook and that crazy english guy who used to have a booze problem. Anyway. I thought it was a great little write up and I may just keep my eye on this blog from here out.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Haven't blog in a while

Quick update.

Hope to be back on the blogging trail this week. I'm working on a couple of things.

Look for some new stuff soon.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Hockey

7 rows from the ice. Lets go Blues!

Monday, January 08, 2007

Hey world....welcome to reality

I say this story posted on UPI web site. The title is: Internet under attack by zombie computers . Wow, talking about a story that's a day late and a dollar short. Zombies and bots have been around FOREVER. I mean, this stuff has been going on for more than 5 years.

Here is a good rule of thumb about technology and finance news. Once it hits the main stream press, it's very, very old news.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Happy New Year

I'm glad the new year is here. I hope everyone has a prosperous and happy 2007. To start things off with a little fun, check out this page: A Photographic History of Michael Jackson's Face.