In other news, I finished up my two classes for Term 6 and signed up for two more classes for Term 1 of 2003. It was tough completing the coursework on time, but I did most of it (probably got a C or B in Psychology because I backlogged myself...but if I get a C, I'll be surprised - I know I did well on the non-subjective aspects of the midterm and final exams).
December 18, 2002
December 03, 2002
I'd like to see you get anything done from a governmental perspective without handing over your social security number. You can't - don't even waste your time. Regardless of the fact that it is basically illegal to use the SSN of an individual to personally identify them for anything except their social security benefits, every computerized system that needs to personally identify you uses this little number. Sure, there are people in Congress who will want safeguards for this new 'purchase tracking' system that they want to build. But you know what, the law sure didn't help with the SSN.
Our privacy and our personal rights are stripped away daily by well-meaning folks, and while we try to do something, there is almost nothing we can do about it. It's just going to continue to get worse. I don't have an answer...I just felt the need to rant about it.
November 11, 2002
What's worse? I think someone paid big bucks to have our bathrooms upgraded...and the stall doors don't even stay shut.....I'll bet if you don't move around enough while sitiing, the automatic lights would turn off on you....and then you think to yourself...how do I know it's just a motion detector circuit and not a camera....you feel like you're being watched...
Too much automation is a bad thing. This is an example.
October 29, 2002
October 21, 2002
September 11, 2002
< >I really believe that setting up something like this will only lead to a false sense of security. If you care about what your kids are exposed to, there's only one way to enforce it - personal responsibility, and on the Internet, that means browsing WITH your children, because pornography and other 'not meant for Johny's eyes/ears'-material is likely only a click away.
August 26, 2002
What's interesting is that it's real hard to take sides on this. Microsoft can't very well just give away the Advanced Server kernel to anyone just because they have this virtual processor capability. On the other hand - if I licensed SQL Server by the processor, they wouldn't make me pay for an 8 processor license...so why is it not the same with the OS. As for Intel, they gladly informed me that Linux doesn't have any restriction on the amount of processors that the OS uses out of the box.
It's a very interesting topic. It's called hyperthreading, and Intel has some whitepapers about it (and Windows vs. Hyperthreading) right here.
August 15, 2002
You're going to want to click on that link and follow the instructions so that you don't get targeted by the next 2 or 3 worms/viruses that come out. You see, new viruses tend to utilize fairly recent vulnerabilities (weaknesses) in the software you use, but may not realize you use. In this example, the Flash player is the software that allows you to view my 'typing text' animation at the top of my page. So, if at the top of the screen, you see some text typing across, you're using Flash player software, whether you knew it or not.
I've changed the minimum version for Flash on this page. It will attempt to force download the new one. If you clicked on Yes when the install box popped up, you've already been upgraded to the new version of Flash. If you clicked no, you're still vulnerable.
August 12, 2002
July 29, 2002
July 24, 2002
July 19, 2002
July 18, 2002
Yahoo mail replaced words that could be used by hackers to run email viruses on the HTML-enabled web-based email system that they offer for free. They changed words such as 'eval' to 'review'. But that's not the half of it. The bonus piece is that they didn't bother to do searches on full words..So, if you sent a message asking for something to be evaluated - it would be delivered with the word 'reviewuated' - YUCH! I'm sure there were other words too - searches on Google for 'reviewuated' and 'reviewuate' showed some interesting results - including the editing of some resume's of Educators...exactly the place you wouldn't want such gaffes.
Oh, and no more peeps out of North American Telephone Network...congratulations on getting it right finally!
July 15, 2002
Well, no more phone calls last night. Let's see if this keeps up.
In (past) thinking about this entry - I see what led me to being such a pain in the butt. You see, it was Friday night when I looked up Jack's telephone number at home. This was after bounced email to him at the web address [failed mail delivery for you non-geeks in the audience], and failure to be able to contact their company by any after-hour telephone number. It had me incensed because they had called me around 9:45 or so (PM) after 6 or 7(?) daytime calls. I just 'knew' they were going to call me at 10:45 (they never did...guess they went home early). When they didn't call, I figured that my last request to be removed from their call list was being honored. When they just called us again tonight, all I saw was red. And I still don't know that we won't get called tonight. They've promised, but until the night is out, I just don't know.
May 17, 2002
April 09, 2002
April 01, 2002
March 16, 2002
So, I asked the Electronics employee who was selling me the game. The employee appeared to have no clue. Neither did the other two who were working in that department. Finally, he hazarded a guess and told me to just take the receipt to the Target snack bar, and they would be aware of the promotion and give me the snacks. I asked him if he was sure, and he said yes. Further prompting him to attempt to get him to rethink his answer brought no additional incentive to actually attempt to find what I was hoping he would.
I walked to the Snack Bar with the fore-knowledge that this wasn't going to work. But I figured, I needed to work within their system, and perhaps the snack bar people really were less clueless than the electronics folks. I waited in line at the snack bar, and when I got to the beginning of the line, I communicated my desire for the promotional snack pack, complete with my receipt from the purchase. The cashier walked over to the snack bar manager with my receipt in hand. The snack bar manager looked at me like I was the Purple People Eater, shaking her head vigorously no at me while surely telling the cashier that I was some kind of thief after free goods.
This just sent me over the top. Putting on my disgusted customer face and tone, I told her that in no uncertain terms that either they should get their act together, or that the folks in Electronics had better. I asked for a store manager and made it perfectly clear within a 2 mile radius that "I do not like being made to look stupid", ignoring the irony that I was most likely doing a better job than they were at that particular task.
The snack foods manager offered to walk with me to the electronics department, probably to take those fools head on if necessary, for attempting to pawn me over on her department, under the guise of "Show me, sir, where this offer is". After arriving in electronics and showing her the display sign, which she read quite clearly and carefully, she repeats the offer aloud to the electronics personnel.
The same guy that sold me the game, and sent me to her department in the first place says aloud, "It's only if you buy THAT game, sir." I quickly supress the urge to jump over their brand new cashier station and kill the #!#@#!#! idiot where he stands. "I bought that game.." "Oh you did?" -incredulous looks from both of us, his likely from the realization that I would actually do that, and mine from trying to realize just what in the hell our creator was smoking the day He created this loser.-
Food center manager speaks up - She tells Electronics that they should take the sign down, because "of the date" (I hate to repeat myself, but I'll save you the backward glance - today is 3/16 and the sign says the offer is from 3/10-3/16). They argue that it IS in fact 3/16 and that the offer includes today. Too late, her shields are at full power - she claims it means UNTIL 3/16 and walks off toward her department with me close behind. She tries to explain some nonsense to me about how the computers (she never ONCE consulted a computer during this ordeal) remove the offer on the last day, and that is why the problem exists. By now, the vindication of being right has cooled me down. We get back to the food center, and I accept the goodies with just the slightest smirky smile. All the while she is putting together a snack pack, she is on the walkie-talkie with some manager, to see if she should take (or at least copy) my receipt in return for the snacks. Of course, the receipt itself had no mention whatsoever of any such deal.
Just had to get that off my chest.