Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Settling in without Settling

Wow. I'm liking laptops these days. Sure there are the usual tradeoffs between portability and capability but just being free of the desk is a breath of fresh air. I say this even though I really liked my old computer. (It seems weird to call it that, since it never really was that 'old'.) But to be able to sit on the sofa instead of a plastic chair, or have the computer in bed if my back is sore, well these are things I am appreciative of.

I figure I have about half of the things I need on it so far. Windows is in, but MS Office is not (I need that for work sometimes). I made a note to install Charles, a testing utility again for work and completely forgot to install a decent bit torrent client. So things are coming together, some things faster than others.

Last week my umbrella was stolen from outside my apartment door. I guess I can no longer leave it in the hall to dry off which is too bad as I had been doing that for at least three years without incident. Speaking of all wet, I see that my brother is finally among the plugged in and will hopefully be updating his blog more regularly. It's linked on the side there, just look for River Dog. You can be the judge of how much we are alike these days.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

iTripped 3.0

As it turns out, my previous computer lasted almost three years - at least if I look back I see that my previous upgrade post was made that far back. It was a good computer and I had lots of fun playing games on it. Despite running Windows Vista I never had a virus problem with it. However, one day last week it just stopped working. I suspect a failed motherboard but really, I'm so far removed from actual computer maintenance these days that I shouldn't be faking like I know what is wrong with it - other than it doesn't work.

Of course, this all happened right when we finally had decided to purchase a new refrigerator - a much needed upgrade to our kitchen. In some ways that was a good thing as it meant I was plenty busy on delivery day - even though I still managed to procrastinate until then on all of the installation jobs required. As I type this now I can say that all I have left to do is finish putting food items back in the cabinet.

But this isn't supposed to be a refrigerator post. I ended up getting an Apple laptop for my next computer and so far I have managed to turn it on, install Firefox and download some photos from my camera. This is my first blog post with it and I couldn't be happier with the keyboard as I type this. There are too many features to list on this machine and plenty of information online about it so I'll just say that this is my first laptop - Holly has had a couple now and has always appreciated the more convenient form factor.

So why get a laptop for the computer game player in the family? Well for one, computers are pretty fast these days - I'm hoping I can still play most, if not all, of the games I already have. Of course that will mean installing Windows on this machine but I'm happy to do that anyhow because it will make it more useful for me to do work. A few co-workers have earlier models of this computer and they have been able to play a wide selection of games, so I am confident that I will be able to as well.

There is a lot to learn here though. I haven't quite figured out how to upload my photos onto my blogpost yet! iPhoto seems to have hidden all the actual files for me (how helpful). I'm sure it can be done, but well, I have some learning to do I guess. I should go do that before posting to Wheezie's blog - her fans might be less tolerant of no photos.

UPDATE: As you can see, I got at least one image added, but wow, this will take some adjusting to. I'm sure there is a better way.

Sunday, April 04, 2010


Okay, it's now Sunday. The wind we had was back on last Friday. Apparently it got worse again after our ride in the rain, as evidenced by this tree along the path we were on. City works must be really busy to not have this cleared off yet.

Of course I know this is true as I was out for a ride again this morning and Stanley Park is littered with debris piles from hasty removal of branches. Roads dedicated for cars still get priority I guess. Not that I am arguing with that - as a cyclist I have a choice of roads to take, be it bike paths or actual roads. Despite what some will try to tell me, I'm legally entitled to be there. Not quite the same for cars on bike paths and for good reason.

Once again I find myself trying to blog with the Chrome browser. Once again I realize why I keep going back to Firefox. In this case I do note that things have improved in Chrome, but I still can't drag and drop uploaded photos like I can in Firefox. It does make getting the layout correct a lot easier.

So hey, note the reclaimed wood in this red building? It is the Vancouver Salt Co. building, part of the Olympic Village, freshly restored for apparently nobody to appreciate, as evidenced by the fences still segregating the village from the rest of humanity. Apparently the construction workers renovating the last touches are still scared of a terror attack, I dunno. There was a security guard in a car nearby and he informed me that the area would be fenced off for 'many months yet'.

Friday, April 02, 2010

Windy, Wet and Undaunted

Dallas and I had been planning this ride for about a week. One would think that one of us would have checked a weather forecast sometime before today, but apparently we are men. I happened to be out walking the dog earlier today and that's when I grabbed the above video, which I shot because the boats were bobbing like corks in the water. At that time I sent a text message to Dallas advising him to dress warmly. He responded with a comment about how nasty it was looking outside.

I had to preemptively play the wuss card, sending him another text asking if he was going to wimp out or not. To his credit, that was all Dallas needed to commit to this adventure. Let me explain: Dallas is registered to do the Ride to Conquer Cancer this year, and this was a training ride.

We set out at a relaxed pace headed toward Stanley Park. Both of us were slightly bothered by the rain - within the first three minutes Dallas noted that my bike actually had fenders on it and how nice that must be. Not being known for social tact, I agreed, and continued the rain gear talk while Dallas continued to get wetter and wetter. We hadn't yet arrived at the park.

Arriving at the park exposed us to the wind that has been the talk of the town today. We heard it before we felt it as it howled past the boats in the marina, advising us that once we rounded the next corner, it would be against us. We pushed onward until reaching the lighthouse, at which point our direction changed. Maybe it was my imagination but it definitely seemed like the wind lessened at that point too as if refusing to help us along.

Instead of continuing along the seawall we decided to take to the road and climb to Prospect Point. At the top we rested a bit, hoping the rain would subside (it didn't). We continued on like this for the rest of the ride, heading out of the park and along False Creek to Science World. From there we doubled back along the Kitsilano side of the creek, crossing the Cambie bridge back into downtown.

Some of you have been asking if I will be doing the Ride to Conquer Cancer this year. I'm not. But when I get the link to Dallas' donation page I'll put it up here in case you would like to help him reach his donation goals.