My New Toy

Posted over 18 years ago

Today arrive my Dell Dimension E510. I toyed with getting one of the new XPS boxes but didn't want to shell out the cash. I got the Win XP Media Center edition which is quite interesting so far (I'm not quite done installing all the advertising crap that Dell feels obliged to install for me).

The machine is super quiet - insanely quiet actually. I've got 2GB RAM with a hyperthreaded 3.4GHz CPU.

The only real problem so far is the uninstallation process. I suppose this is an ideal thought but it would be nice to get a computer with just the OS installed - damned OEM agreements.

I think I will also need to get a cable in box - we'll have to see about that. In theory this machine will act just like a ReplayTV but will have to play with that.

More later...

My First Good Run!

Posted over 18 years ago

Tonight I ventured back to Seward Park for the 2.4 mile loop. I also incorporated RunningStrides with is a concept from Chris Carmichael's TrainRight website (I have no idea if they came up with this or not). Essentially you warm up (I generally do three minutes of walking/jogging) and then do a number of repititions of 100m runs at 5k pace with a one minute rest in between.

The goal as I understand it is to get your system to start the lactic acid cleansing response (lactic acid is the byproduct of anaerobic exercise - it is what makes your musceles feel "full" as you increase exertion). Your body can transport away a certain amount of lactic acid as you exercise (if you are "more aerobic" you are working "with oxygen" and therefore producing less lactic - if you are "more anaerobic" you are working "without oxygen" and producing more lactate). There is a point where you are working anaerobically enough that you begin to produce more lactic acid than your body can transport - this is the anaerobic threshold.

This may or may not have done the trick (one would think 3-4 weeks of consistent training is finally paying off) but I did a great run and felt good for the first time this year running. Based on my time I did about a 10 minute pace which is still awfully slow (I used to be a seven minute miler).

The takeaway is that I'm starting to see good results. We'll see how things progress over the next couple of weeks.

Look Into: My Favorite New PowerToy

Posted over 18 years ago

My Favorite New PowerToy

This might be worth a look - I do a lot of work on multiple computers and it is hard to keep things sync'd. Will have to play with in my free time.

Running Tour

Posted over 18 years ago

This weekend was good for getting outdoors. Friday was disappointing as the Yankees lost a heartbreaker of a game (they came back after being down 5-0 to be up 6-5 only to lose 11-7). After the game I did a little indoor running on the treadmill - still at a slow pace but I put a little incline into it.

A short aside - before running I discovered that the exercise room (extra bedroom on the upper floor - treadmill and bike training stand are here) DVD player was brokeen. Not recognizing discs. The good news is that I spent maybe $60 on this one so no big loss. The bad news is I need to replace it because Friday night comedy is just not where it's at. Take the show I struggled through - Hot Properties.

Three gals own a real estate business but sit around talking about their sex lives (Gail O'Grady is dating/engaged to someone 17 years younger and has lied about her age, Nicole Sullivan is the desperate "can't get a date" addition, and the Latin actress is divorced from a gay man and has no "gadar" - good stuff). This must have been the pilot - another woman shows up looking for a place for her and her fiance (oh, this happens in NYC) and confesses to these women she's never met that she's a virgin - they of course cannot keep a straight face (good for business I've learned). Hilarity ensues when we discover that two of the gals have slept with the previously believed virgin fiance. Ultimately the woman dumps the dude since he's been lying and looks like she's joining the firm (after one of the gals was found making out with him...). Great stuff!

OK, that was not so short but I need my DVD player if I'm going to run/ride indoors.

Anyway - I got in a bit more than 1/2 hour run at a nice brisk pace.

Saturday - the plan was to get on the road early on the Mountain Bike that I've been refitting as a commuter bike (see "soon to come" previous post). I got my fenders installed and got out on the road. Maybe 5 minutes in I realize a weird noise coming from the front tire. I stop. It blows.

Let me back up 10 minutes which is when I was looking for my portable pump in the garage. Normally I carry air canisters (CO2) in order to quickly inflate if I have a flat but that's on my road bike which is at the repair shop. So, no air. No pump. I'm walking back home. The good ol' walk of shame.

Back home I'm barely warmed up so I head down to Seward Park for a nice run. Seward is close enough that I've run there (four miles) and I ride through there all the time as Lake Washington Blvd is a bike-friendly road that takes up ultimately up to the Burke Gilman Trail on your way around Lake Washington. The path around Seward Park is about 2.5 miles.

Afterwards I drove out to Sammamish Valley Cycle to pick up my road bike which was in for the annual tune up. Good to know that I can fit the bike in the extended cab of my truck! Great folks out there - buy a bike and get free lifetime tuneups! Oh, I also bought some new tubes (wonder why). I did put road tires on the MTN bike and may have gotten too big tubes - we'll see how these work.

Saturday night I got on the bike at home (on the trainer) for a little active recovery. Active recovery is basically working out only hard enough to get your heart rate up - not enough to tax you but enough to get blood moving through your muscles to move the bad stuff away (this is the lay explanation).

Sunday was a quick run down through Dead Horse Canyon. I described this in an earlier post.

All in all a good weekend - a nice diversion through Seward versus my usual haunts. I think I need to continue to explore other parks in the Seattle area for running. Anyone have any ideas?

Chris Loves Sheep

Posted over 18 years ago

So, the hijinks began in earnest yesterday at work.

Our team is doing daily bug triages (this helps prioritize bugs in the system for you non-engineer types) and this involves several people in a conference room looking at a screen of our bug system. Logically, you are using a computer to drive this process.

Yesterday Chris was the driver. He had to, however, leave midstream to do an interview (we're hiring!) which was his mistake. He left his computer in the hands of Johanna who promptly reset his IM user name to "poopy head" with the personal message "I love sheep." I believe that Johanna was assisted by Sarah and Pete (I did not witness the incident).

So, why sheep?

First, Chris does love sheep. Second, at Pete's previous job they used to attack people that left their computer unlocked by sending an email from the computer to the department with the subject "I love sheep."

From this point forward we are now calling Chris "The Shepherd" which is much more preferable to his previous monikor as "Dough Boy."

Please post your best cranks at work!

Vampire Hunters

Posted over 18 years ago

In the interest of useless trivia I discovered tonight that the music to the Demolition Man trailer is from the Dracula soundtrack composed by Wojciech Kilar. The track is Vampire Hunters and is quite a dark anthem.

In a seemingly related note I was told today that I was the geekiest person that someone knew. I dispute this but really have nothing substantial to refute this claim with.

That being said I did score 45% on the geek test - this does not really put me in the scale of uber-geeks.

Sarah has also challenged me to put up my picture of our visit to the Star Trek exhibit at the Las Vegas Hilton (this qualifies I'm sure for something). I honestly like my picture with the Mark V torpedo as it has more historical significance in the Star Trek universe.

Note that Sarah is standing next to the Klingon.

One thing to remember from this visit is that they take pictures halfway through the tour. At the end they merge your picture into a Star Trek scene. I don't remember what my expression was but it sure was funny merged into the TOS bridge scene.

Dual Blogging

Posted over 18 years ago

Well, I figured out how to make dual blogging work with MSN Spaces and

Here is what I was after (and figured out): to post to and show it in MSN Spaces so that the gleam shows up. For those of you regulars you know that I'm primarily using so I want to post there first. The steps below allow you to accomplish this.

Both sites allow you a publishing email. In either case you must specify a special word to use in your email address as a cheap security measure.

In MSN Spaces this is under Edit My Space => Settings => E-mail Publishing. Setting this up is quite easy:

1. Check the box "Turn on e-mail publishing"
2. Email address - use the email address associated with your account
3. choose your "secret word" - the email address you publish to will be
4. choose to publish or save as drafts - I am using drafts right now just to make sure everything is hunky dory but will likely change this to live publishing in a couple of weeks.

That's it on the MSN side. You will update and the gleam should show up on your MSN Messenger when you publish to

BTW, I turned off commenting as I want these as only.

On the blogger side it's equally as easy:

1. Goto your blog
2. Click Setting => Email
3. For Blogger Send Address enter the MSN Spaces email above
4. You can select a mailto blogger address - same "secret word" security model - same rules as you can publish or save as drafts

I did do an email post the other day (geek factor - from my phone :-)) and it works like a champ. I did find I needed to re-edit the post but that may be due to the phone more than from the email. Shame on me - I should have posted this from email...

Happy Blogging!