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Archive for January, 2005

Desktop Pictures Archive

January 29th, 2005, 6:39pm by Jake

Mike & I were talking the other day about setting up a desktop pictures archive on Pyslent. I think we all have different ideas of what makes a good desktop picture, here’s how I pick mine: mostly one color, not a lot of action, and often panoramic pictures; of course, there are exceptions to every rule. I’ve uploaded 10 or 11 of my favorite ones here. Some of these are favorites that you might have seen before (I got the idea for the dolphin pictures after seeing Kelvin’s desktop picture), and others are ones you’ve probably never seen before, like the one below of Milo (Aaron’s cat). Can’t wait to see what other great desktop pictures the Pyslent crew have produced.

A Crystal Ball into My MediaCenter

January 26th, 2005, 1:05pm by Kelvin

Orb Networks has started a service in which they give subscribers remote access to their MediaCenter content. Like Gloonet, it presents users with a webpage with links to their media. When you click on something in your browser, it transcodes and streams the content as either real or wma format (Palm users, unfortunately, need not apply, although a disclaimer projects palm support as soon as it’s technically possible).


Mr. Blue Sky

January 25th, 2005, 5:03pm by Mike

I know you Californians have about one month a year where you need to pay attention to the weather, but the rest of us actually have to check the weather with some frequency to know how to dress, whether to carry umbrellas, or to decide when it’s a good time to leave work. My weather site of choice is Weather Underground, which does a good job of giving all the basic weather info. And they have a cool new feature they’re calling Zoom Satellite, which allows you to zoom in on specific places and see satellite images overlaid with radar, etc. And watch time lapses, with pictures every 15 minutes. Excellent.

Ice Ice Baby

January 23rd, 2005, 8:14pm by Mike

Depending on whether you’re watching the Weather Channel or our local stations, we’re getting hit with either “Winter Wallop” or “The Blizzard of 2005.” Either way, it’s one of the worst winter storms in Massachusetts history. According to the Weather Channel, Boston got 26 inches of snow, which seems about right looking outside. Logan Airport is closed (may reopen one runway tomorrow), public schools are closed on Monday and Tuesday, and state workers don’t have to go to work tomorrow.
While it was falling, it was definitely the hardest snowfall I’ve ever seen. There were wind gusts that shook our storm windows for most of the night, and we couldn’t see more than about 30 yards down the street at times.
So this morning I put on all my ski equipment (goggles, Turtle Fur neck thing, LL Bean snow boots, and snow pants) and wandered out to see what “blizzard conditions” were really like. It was the tail end of the storm, so most of the snow and wind had died down, but it was still about 10 degrees, with winds around 15-20 mph. I took a bunch of pictures and put them up on the web, check them out.

People Will Most Definitely Come

January 23rd, 2005, 3:53pm by Jake

To the Apple Store! Yup, I’m here in Santa Monica. I rollerbladed to Derrick’s, dumped the blades and ran along Venice Beach until I got to 3rd St. Promenade. As Mike can attest, there’s nothing more fun thank walking to your local Apple Store. I posted some more pics at a .Mac site. Kelvin’s rollerblading lessons gave me the confidence to tackle my first hill, which now seems very anticlimatic. As you can see in the pics, the mini is really small. Maybe a little too big to carry back with me, however. I’ll probably wander around a little longer, wonder if I can find anything to buy?

I sense something. A presence I’ve not felt since…

January 22nd, 2005, 7:20pm by Jake

… well, probably not since Joanie made the switch. Aaron is ready to pull the trigger on the Mac mini, but he has some reservations. I’ve come here (again) in search of help for Aaron’s switch. The cost of the Mac is no longer the main issue, as for $700 he can get a the mini w/ 512MB RAM, 40GB Drive, DVD-R, Airport Extreme (aka Wireless-G), plus iLife & Mac OS X.
There are a couple issues holding him up at this point: 1) He needs to buy new software such as MS Office; 2) Some software he uses (specifically Auctiva to schedule auctions) is PC only. MS Office can be found for less than $150, but that’s still pricey. I’m not sure if the alternatives, AppleWorks or OpenOffice/X11, are adequate. Any advice on finding a good deal or using an alternative? #2 is trickier. Either he’ll need to find a Mac equivalent, a web-based service w/ Mac support, keep a PC for this purpose only, use remote desktop (either locally or remotely I suppose), or buy VirtualPC for $100+.

This is CNN

January 21st, 2005, 8:02am by Mike

I think the headline pretty much erases any doubt.

Free Music

January 21st, 2005, 3:10am by Kelvin

Apparently, Apple is giving away a 13 song sampler on the iTMS to get new iPod owners to try their download service. I just discovered this when I had to reformat my iPod this evening, tricking iTunes into thinking I had a new iPod. (Luckily, I had all my music backed up, so worries about recovering my music.) I did a quick scan of the sampler songs, and there does not seem to be anything worth keeping… let me know soon if you disagree; otherwise, I’ll be deleting the whole album in short order.

WiFi Overload

January 20th, 2005, 1:30am by Jake

So, it turns out that Hilton does have free wireless, at least in part of the building. I have the feeling it might be for the lobby/ conference area only, but sitting next to the window I can connect. But it wasn’t easy to pick the right network; there must be over 20 wireless networks, although all but one were unusable due to a) weak signal; b) no DHCP assigned; or c) WEP. I did guess the password to one WEP network with a great signal, but didn’t get an IP for some reason. Finally, the network named “Hilton” worked when I returned from dinner. Take a look at all the WiFi networks that iStumbler found while sitting on my window sill for 10 minutes.


January 19th, 2005, 1:33pm by Mike

I redid the template for the comments pages. As an example, here’s the comments page on the Firefox entry. And here it is with the new template. I find the new one much easier to read, and more inline with the overall look of the site. Let me know if you like the new one better, and I’ll erase the old one.

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