Thursday, October 26, 2006

A haze of maize

We had some family in town last week. I thought they might enjoy the pics I took when we took a field trip down to Thanksgiving Point and the Cornbelly's corn maze. They had more than the maze and it was a lot of fun. We especially had fun meeting some new family members that we hadn't had the chance to meet before. Welcome to the family Ryan and Nicholas!

Here's Farmer Joe (Austin) and his wife Betty (Nicholas).

Ryan acted as navigator through the corn maze. In real life he navigates nuclear submarines around the world for the US Navy. He taught us all about how to find your way around under water, but in a corn maze? Not so much. Don't quit your day job Ryan! ;)

Lots of corn. The maze was in the design of the forthcoming Utah state quarter.

The event we went to had something called a 'pillow jump'. Kind of like a giant balloon you can jump on. Very cool. KJ got some major air here. However, he paid for it when he landed on his toes and bent them backwards. His next few marching band field shows were very painful :(

Shelby had a great time on the 'pillow' too. No injuries :)

Nicholas may be a 'handful' but he is a very cute handful ;)

Austin got the hang of the 'pillow' once he made his way to the top. Bouncy bouncy fun fun fun fun.

Nicholas making eyes for the camera.

Tersta, Ryan, Austin and Nicholas.
What a great family! We enjoyed their visit and look forward to seeing them again at Thanksgiving!


For those 'Studio 60' fans out there here's an oldy but a goody.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Time after time

HERE is a cool clock. Check it out. A unique way of looking at time. The page is scalable so you can reduce your browser window down very small and actually use it as a clock.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Underdog! Underdog!

Speed of lightning, roar of thunder
Fighting all who rob or plunder
Underdog. Underdog!

Anyone remember the saturday morning cartoon from a couple of decades ago? Underdog, underdog.
I was reminded of that cartoon today when I read this article that M$ is restricting their Windows Vista user licenses for people running Windows Vista under virtualization. What is that you ask? Parallels, and others, allow a Mac user to run OSX and Windows on the same machine at the same time. Very handy. You now only need to buy one machine to run both.
Well, this is a direct attack at Mac users who run Windows OS on their Macs using programs like Parallels. M$ is restricting use of their OS software to their most expensive versions, meaning it will cost a user approx. $400 to run Vista on a Mac running under Parallels instead of the cheaper 'home' version for about $100-200. There is no technical reason for this. It is purely financial and shows us yet again the atitude that the Big M has.
Kind of funny to me that M$ is so worried about virtualization on a computer system that only has a 2.7% worldwide market share. Hmm, underdog indeed.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Dumb and Dumberer

The latest 'stupid' hair brained educational study on video games is out. This one suggests that kids should be playing video games in school to improve their education.

Give me a freakin break.

I've heard it all before. "Playing video games helps their hand eye coordination so they can be better fighter pilots and surgeons." Now this study is saying video games can help in their decision making. Because as you kill aliens in Half Life 2 you are constantly making decisions.
At least there was one sane person quoted in this article.
“This is really silly,” says Chester E. Finn, president of the Thomas B. Fordham Foundation, a K-12 education research group in Washington. “Are they next going to propose government-funded studies of the educational value of comic books, reality TV shows and instant messaging?”
The day that my kids are playing Half Life 2 in school to 'improve their decision making' is the day that I walk into the school guns a blazing.
Now wouldn't that be ironic?

Shiny Red Apple

I guess the title should read, "Shiny White Apple" since Apple Computer's logo has been white for some time now. Nevertheless, Apple is shining right now. After financials were released yesterday it is evident that things are going very well. Apple shipped more Mac computers last quarter than they ever have in one quarter in their history. Some are reporting their market share is now up to 6.1%.
Apple sold 1.6 million Mac computers last quarter. If they had sold only 38,000 more they would have overtaken Gateway computers for the 3rd spot among all computer makers. A lot of people would say 6.1% of a market is negligible but I think 1.6 million computers and 4+ billion dollars in only 3 months is nothing to sneeze at. Go Apple.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Need FedEx

Here is just one example of the pics on this page I saw today. These people need FedEx really bad.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Battle over Galactica

It seems the writers and studios battles are starting to heat up in time for the writers guild contract negotiations to begin next year. The latest battle is over Battlestar Galactica webisodes. The writers want residuals (money) for their work and the studios claim the webisodes are "promotional content" and refuse to pay. The studio swiped the 10 webisodes that are in the can and the writers guild has advised against creating any more web content until the brouhaha is over. Winners? No one yet. Losers? All of us BSG fans. Of course some of 'us' are too busy watching hockey to bother with BSG.

Friday, October 13, 2006

The Next Darwin Award Winner

Check this out. Put this is one or both of the following catagories.

1. People with too much time on their hands.
2. Next candidate for the Darwin Awards.

Graph Paper

I saw this on DIGG this morning. It's a cool idea.
Print your own graph paper. Just select the type and measurements and voila! It creates a PDF that you can print as many sheets as you need. Great for home projects and kids homework.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Up Periscope!

Here is another cool product I noticed lately. I love to share these!
This one is for those of us lucky people that have MacBooks with built in iSight cameras. It's a mirror system that redirects the camera so you don't have to physically turn your laptop around to show what is in front of you. I have actually had to do this a number of times in meetings when we were using Skype to connect to a colleague. The Huckelberry iSight Periscope would have come in really handy!

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

The Departed


I am mostly avoiding R rated movies lately but when I saw previews for Martin Scorcese's THE DEPARTED, I got excited and decided to see it.
The cast is amazing. Jack Nicholson, Leo DiCaprio, Martin Sheen etc.
The story was great. I really liked how it flowed and liked the twists even though they were predictable. Scorcese used the predictability to actually heighten the suspense. That worked really well. The performances were great. All the way around. DiCaprio finally looks grown up and played a grown up part. Nicholson was AMAZING. That guy could do Dial soap commercials and make them interesting.
However. You knew that was coming. Yes, there is a 'however'. The violence was excessive. Yah, yah, I know that the organized crime underworld is violent and there are killings etc. But, this was just too much. I'd have to watch it over again but I believe every character that got killed in this film was shot in the head. Even Martin Sheen being thrown off of a building had his head pop and cover DiCaprio with blood. I feel it actually got in the way of this film. Could have been soooo much better if the violence was ratcheted back a smidge. Even the profanity didn't bother me so much and I have become more sensitive to that in recent years.
Oh, and the only character left at the end of this one is the cameraman. Everybody else is dead. Everybody. I started to look around the theatre and wonder if someone was coming for me next.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Rink Atlas

Here's a fun site for my hockey loving friends. You may already be using this but if not check it out! It is an atlas of ice hockey rinks around the U.S. So, if you happen to be travelling and you're looking for a hockey rink to get some ice time on this is the perfect tool to use.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

What, no Tigers?

We took the chance recently to take Shelby to see the circus. It's been since she was a baby that we last went and thinking back we don't think she was with us that time. I can't believe how excited I was to take my little girl to the circus. It was a great night.
Days later she is still calling it, "The Greatest Show on Earth."
They have a very cool thing now called a 'preshow'. You can go to the arena an hour early and they let you down on the show floor to mingle with the performers and the animals. Shelby's eyes lit up as they brought out an elephant and it walked within feet of where we were standing. I think it overwhelmed her because she started yelling at me to stop taking pictures.
Here are some pictures from our special night.

Watching an elephant paint a masterpiece. Wow. I was thinking the whole time, "how can I get a deal to sell these as prints on Inspiripics ?"

Watching the circus again but this time through Shelby's eyes was priceless. I can't even manage to get too upset that they didn't even have any tigers or lions in this version of the circus. It was definitely not the circus of my memories. It was very different. That however is overcome by knowing that my daughter will most likely treasure this memory forever. I am so glad Michelle and I took her and spent the evening focusing on her. Every child should get a chance to go to the circus.
I challenge each of you to find a charity in your local area that works to provide underprivileged kids tickets to the circus and donate enough to send a child. I am committing to do it. Let me know who you found to donate to.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Zune to the Moon

I've been reading a lot about the Zune lately. For those of you who don't know, the Zune is Microsoft's lame attempt to cash in on the success Apple has forged for 5 years with the iPod.
There is a lot of buzz about the Zune. There are a lot of media types touting the Zune's spec list and calling it an iPod killer. I know MS pretty well and this doesn't 'feel' like something they're going to succeed with. At least not right away. Maybe over several years they can build a decent business with it. But like the Xbox it will cost them billions of dollars to buy their way into the market. Anyway, I read THIS article on Wired today and it is the best article I've seen so far that shows why the Zune will NOT kill the iPod. At least not anytime zune ;)