free wifi at the southwest terminal in san jose

the san jose southwest terminals now have little benches with power outlets (both standard outlets as well as usb power outlets!) throughout the terminal. they also provide free wifi throughout the terminal which is how i’m blogging now while waiting for my flight. that is pretty cool.

speed of the connection is pretty good. i wonder if this is just a pilot program before they go to some kind of pay service. that would be a shame, but i guess that’s one way that the airports make their money.

i’m sort of surprised that we haven’t started boarding yet. i considered briefly doing some work before the flight is ready to leave, but i think i’m going to dust off the DS and try to play it some. i haven’t touched the thing since forever.

cindy called me outraged at how far away i’m staying from the wedding. it is true that i will be far away from long beach. i hadn’t really considered just how far i would be. it’s ok, though, i want to go visit warren and check out the house, the projector, and his sound setup. tomorrow, i will amble over to the area, hang out before the wedding, and get ready at the wedding site. it should be ok. half of my luggage comprised of my camera gear and shoes. stupid bulky shoes!

i got stopped at the security gate and they unpacked my camera gear and tested each piece of my camera stuff, for what i presume to be explosives. they didn’t find anything. then i packed all the stuff back up and here i am waiting for the flight.

linux rants – selinux and photography on linux

in my heart, i know that selinux is a good thing. deep in my heart. really deep. while trying to debug some issues at work, i ran into an selinux issue and trying to understand how the whole system works is just a little frustrating to me. i just don’t get it.

while i was doing research on selinux, i happened to stumble across a blog about linux photography. i made the statement about 5 years ago that i didn’t think that linux was really ready to compete with windows or macs in mainstream use. i still believe this to be true. there have been enormous leaps and bounds made in KDE that really make XWindows look pretty good. i will admit that much to be true. and yes, firefox and thunderbird have both been ported to linux, so the two main programs that i use to access the internet exist.

but here’s what doesn’t exist: anything photography-related. the gimp project has been a pretty ambitious, popular, and successful solution to image manipulation on linux. it’s true that it has made great strides in the past few years. but there’s just no way that gimp can compete at adobe’s level. photoshop is such a powerful tool and it just has so many resources behind it, that using anything else just feels like i’m restricted from doing what i really want to do. i know, diehards are going to say that you can do anything in gimp that you can in photoshop, but the question is how much easier is it to do in photoshop than gimp?

people who do their entire workflow in linux are, in my opinion, masochistic. how many programs do you need to use to convert an image from a raw image (that is, if you even can!) to a finished image? my entire workflow usually is done with just photoshop and an image browser. linux is still a ways away, but it is good to see that there is still development being done and strides are being made. maybe it’ll be another 5 years before it gets there, but once it does, having an open source/free solution would be pretty amazing. add-on is buggy

it has been irritating me for a while now that the add-on that i use in firefox has been buggy. not all of the tags that i have show up. what’s worse is that this appears to be a known issue and has been a known issue for weeks now! i just downgraded from the latest version to the latest known working version, but the fact that the team can’t figure out what is wrong is disheartening.

i love the idea of having my bookmarks accessible at anytime at any place, but if can’t get their act together, it may be time to start looking for a better solution…one that, at least, you know, works!

the blog about work and other things

so it’s now my…third week into the new job? i think that’s right. work has been pretty busy. it seems that there is more work that needs to be done than there are hours in the day. what concerns me is that my co-workers generally get into the office before i do (and i’m not slouching! i get in around 9:30) and they are still there when i leave at around 7.

i’m not complaining yet, i still have a lot to learn and i think that once i don’t need to ask anymore questions, i’ll be happier. i’ve been stuck fixing legacy code, though, and that’s been grueling. having to read other people’s code and fix things is something that i haven’t had to do in a while now. but it’s fun work. i have been so busy lately that i haven’t really had the opportunity to IM people or even keep up with my blogs.

this weekend, christi and i are going to go to the outside lands concert. it should be pretty fun. i wish that i could have attended the jack johnson portion of the concert though, but alas, i have volleyball. if it were any other night, i would skip it, but i’m captain of the team and it is playoffs. speaking of which, last week was the first week where we went 4-0. this is of particular note because i think this may double our win count for the season…in one day. yeah, it’s just been one of those seasons.

going home and watching a movie on the projector just brings me so much joy, i can’t even begin to describe how great it is. now that i’ve got most of the kinks worked out, i think that i will have a movie night soon and invite some friends over. i am still frustrated by the lack of blu-ray titles and how slowly they are being distributed. i’m also frustrated by just how much these titles cost. the initial shock has been overcome, though, and i’m looking to build a library of blu-ray titles. i’m trying to be selective, though, so that i only pick titles that really do have good replay value. i suspect that memento might be one of those movies, but i’ve rented it on netflix.

speaking of renting movies, i need to fill out my free blockbuster membership. the projector comes with a free one year subscription to blockbuster video rentals. if i time things out corrently, i should always have a movie to watch every day. the big question now will be whether or not there will be enough titles to watch once the movies start coming in.

on the puppy front, the pups that we are fostering are doing quite well. they have an affinity for sucking on each other when they get hungry and i suspect that they are drinking each other’s urine. this doesn’t seem to bother them very much, but it absolutely enrages christi. we’ve been trying to keep a watchful eye on them so that once they start looking for food, we’ll feed them. these guys are growing fast. they started off as lumps of fur and just recently they have started to walk. it’s insane now just how quick they are growing. pictures of the puppies can be found at the link. christi and i are thinking about adopting one of these guys, so after they are all grown up, one of them is probably going to stay with us.

potty training, behavior training, and all around teaching the puppy to behave well is going to be a challenge. christi is very good at training the pups, though, so hopefully i’ll be able to learn from her and help out.

i’ve had my eye on an iphone for a while now. i suspect that there will be an iphone in my future soon. once the iphone comes, i may have learn how to develop for the iphone. that may mean a new computer purchase in the near future. i’ve been thinking about maybe getting an imac mini, but i may just hackintosh it in the beginning. we’ll see.

google, you do it right

i’m blogging from the kripsy kreme in mountain view getting wifi courtesy of googlewifi. google, you sure know where to put your wifi hotspots. krispy kreme gets great coverage and i thank you for that. it’s too bad that krispy kreme is more accommodating to wireless users. i guess i’ll just have to see how long my batteries will last me.

it is freezing here in krispy kreme. freezing, i tell you. so this is the second time that i’ve been to krispy kreme and i was not offered a free sample. what’s up with that?

i’m doing some work now, waiting for a database to crank out some results. i don’t know how muc longer i will be able to stick it out here, it’s too cold to be comfortable. i wonder if that is a strategy for krispy kreme. the one thing that i find rather disturbing is that half the tables here are dirty. you’d think that they would spend a little more time with upkeep around here.

travel arrangements

i have booked tickets for cindy’s wedding at the end of this month. i have been trying to decide for a long time whether or not i should fly or drive down there. i think that the cost difference between the two still makes it more economical to drive, but the time sink AND the fact that i’d be doing the drive solo made me reconsider.

i’m going to be staying with warren and viki while i’m down in LA. i will finally be able to check out warren’s projector setup. it’s only been a zillion years since he first got it set up. i’m also very interesting in checking out his audio solution. he spent quite a bit of money on his speakers, so i’d like to see how much of a difference it makes. i’m sure that it will be quite noticeable.

ps3 and twonky on d-link dns-323

i bit the bullet and purchased a license for the twonky server on the d-link dns-323 nas. i’ve tried other solutions, but none were as reliable as the twonky server, i’m sad to say. it really upsets me that there isn’t a good open source solution, but i guess we’re talking about a pretty limited platform, so i shouldn’t really be complaining.

full video streaming works just fine on the ps3 with the twonky server, i’m happy to report. i did have some issues getting it to work with the twonky server version 4.4.6, so i downgraded to 4.4.5 and all seems to be working well. not sure exactly what is going on there…

so right now, to make the ps3 truly perfect, these are the things that i wish it had:

  • samba support (!! this seems like it’d be an easy thing to add, what is the deal here?)
  • mkv support. i want my hi-def downloaded tv shows to play on the ps3 natively!
  • tv tuner support (i would be willing to pay a fair amount for a very good solution here)
  • DVR support with tv tuning

    i think that’s about it.

  • ps3 and saving multiple settings

    the problem with using the ps3 as my blu-ray player, though i suspect that this particular problem is not specific to just the ps3, is that i am currently splitting the signal between two displays. one display is my older samsung DLP tv. it’s a 720p/1080i capable tv player. the newer player is the projector, a 1080p/24 capable projector.

    the problem is when i set the ps3 to the optimal settings for my projector (1080p/24) and then i turn everything off, come back to it the next day and want to watch something on my DLP tv, the signal is not supported by the tv because it can only do 1080i. this means that every time i switch between the projector and the tv, i need to change the settings on the ps3. what an incredible pain in the butt.

    now, if only there could be some kind of way to automatically get this to all work, my life would be vastly simplified.

    epson home cinema 1080 ub and the elite cinetension2

    i have installed the projector and screen. it has been a multi-day process. the screen came in earlier last week and so i asked paul to help me install it. the screen install could have gone a little more smoothly, but we managed to get it to install fine. the first problem is that the elite cinetension2 only came with masonry and sheet rock bolts. paul and i decided that we would want to ceiling mount the screen instead of wall mounting it. the screen is supposed to fall in front of the mantle which means that the screen needed to be off the wall by about 8 inches. we ran to lowe’s to get some lag bolts and started the install of the screen.

    if we had read the directions a little more the install may have gone more smoothly, but with a little encouragement the screen was installed. the motorized screen is fantastic. the biggest priority for me for this screen is to make sure that it isn’t an eyesore. projector screens come in all sorts of styles. there are pull down screens that you suspend from the ceiling and then you just pull it down. these are the screens that you commonly see in offices. this was originally the kind of screen that i thought i was going to get. it’s a pain to have to pull up and down the screen though and i was hoping for something a little more elegant.

    then there are pull up screens. these screens are usually used because you want to have a portable solution. the screen has some kind of base and you pull the screen up from the base to the final height. this wasn’t going to work for me because of the footprint it leaves on the ground.

    the screen that i ended up getting was a motorized, tab-tensioned screen. it’s fantastic. push a button, the screen goes down. push another button, the screen goes up. the tab tensioned screen adds some tension to the screen so that it will stay flat. it’s a nice perk. i hear that for my size screen it isn’t as big of an issue, but the motorized model comes tab tensioned, so i just went with it.

    the projector mount i ended up getting was a little less than ideal, but with a little work, the peerless mount ended up working pretty well once i had a cable management solution. the weight of the cables tilted the projector causing a less than ideal image on the screen.

    the projector itself, out of the box, is fantastic. i’m not sure what calibrating is going to do, but it looks like there are a ton of options, nay, an overwhelming number of options for projector calibration. warren was drooling at all of the options, but i was a little intimidated by it all.

    still, overall, the new projector setup is fantastic. i guess it’s time for a movie night soon.