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January 31, 2012

Phoning it in

This morning, I wake up with the new kitten chewing on my hand. He's biting, licking, kneading....like it's the most sensual hand massage you could ever imagine. And of course, the kitten is purring like a chainsaw and you begin to realize that Timmy has just been "phoning it in" this whole time.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 31, 2012 at 9:48 PM : Comments (1) | Permalink

The new kitty

Jen and I adopted a cat today. It was touch-and-go for a while, as they checked our references and cleared our records at the vet down the hill. Somehow, we qualified, which is hard to imagine. But it happened.

Timmy was furious, of course. He's been pouting all night. He's hissed and pouted and scratched and fussed ever since the new kitty came through the door. Between Timmy and the kitten, I feel like I'm about to bleed out. It's my personal belief that each new kitten should be sold with a 55 gallon drum of Neosporin.

Timmy batted me on each side of my face with a one-two punch, claws out, and connected pretty good on both sides. The kitten, of course, doesn't know what "sleep" is, and basically goes around the house like an insomniac zombie, shredding everything it can reach, and then scaling everything in the house that it can't reach.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 31, 2012 at 12:02 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

January 29, 2012

The Dakota War

Somehow I'd missed the story of the Dakota War. Apparently they're trying to figure out how best to celebrate it. I'd never even heard of it. Must have skipped that day.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 29, 2012 at 9:54 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Light Rail Money Pit

Jennifer asked me about the light rail project to connect Denver to Golden. She was like "when will they be finished with that, daddy?" I was like "well, I dunno, baby. Probably never. It's just a waste of taxpayer money to shuffle homeless people back and forth from the inner-city to the suburbs so that they can rob more people with cheap transportation."

"How much did it cost?" she asked.

"Take a guess."

"4 million dollars?"

"Ha!" I snorted. "I bet that it cost around $20 million dollars a mile. Probably more."

So when we got home I decided to look it up. The previous light-rail fiasco was called T-REX.

"Denver's T-REX (Transportation Expansion) project rebuilt interstate highways 25 and 225 and added a light-rail expansion for a total cost of $1.67 billion over five years. The cost of 17 miles of highway improvements and 19 miles of double-track light rail worked out to $19.3 million per highway lane-mile and $27.6 million per LRT track-mile."

"Costs of most LRT systems range from $15 million per mile to over $100 million per mile."

"The 12.1-mile West Rail Line light rail transit corridor will serve Denver, Lakewood, Golden and Jefferson County and is projected to be complete and ready for use by 2013."

"The cost to build the "West Corridor" light rail line is estimated to be $707 million."

So, doing the math, that's $707,000,000.00/12.1 miles = $58,429,752.06 a mile. Now, keep in mind that no one rides these things. Like, you'd be a moron to get on one of these space-age-rat-traps. They're full of homeless, drug addicts, drunks, retarded people, criminals, rapists, murderers, etc. If you ever thought, "Hmmmm. I wonder what it'd be like to ride next to people that can't afford transportation", I can tell you it's not fun.

So, they're going to spend $58 million a mile to shuttle homeless people from the inner-city ghettos of Denver to Golden. Now...keep in mind that there are gangs of blacks roaming Denver attacking people solely because they're white. And now we're going to steal seven hundred million dollars from hard working citizens so that we can spread these hate crimes from the inner-city into the suburbs? Insanity.

I explained this to Jennifer tonight, but I think it's hard for most of us to understand how much $700 million dollars is. But, it's .7 billion dollars, and I'd wager money it will be over budget, so it's probably safe to assume the final cost will be over a billion dollars. Here's a little youtube video that tries to help people understand just how much money a billion dollars truly is.

I promise you this...however many people are shuttled back and forth in that stupid light rail Rube Goldberg contraption...you could drive them back and forth in stretch limos for cheaper. I promise you that's the truth. But we'll have to wait to see how many people they're actually moving if they ever get it up and running.


Posted by Rob Kiser on January 29, 2012 at 8:16 PM : Comments (1) | Permalink

A mom and three yearlings

These deer came up to the house tonight as Jennifer and I were leaving. She tossed them a couple of pears which they loved. Thee look pretty healthy. This is the first winter for the three small deer. I'm not clear if the mom can claim all three of these does as her own. While it's common for a doe to have twins, but triplets would be very rare, I think.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 29, 2012 at 2:00 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

New Python Movie "Absolutely Anything"

Monty Python members to re-unite for a new movie titled "Absolutely Anything". Obviously, it will be sans Graham Chapman. And reportedly, Eric Idle isn't on board just yet. It's primarily a movie by Terry Jones with the other Pythons as voice actors.

http://entertainment.slashdot.org/story/12/01/28/1340231/monty-python-crew-to-reunite-for-movie

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 29, 2012 at 12:29 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

January 28, 2012

Red Wing Irish Setter Boots

I'm sad to say it but I've worn out the only pair of Red Wing Irish Setter boots I ever owned.

Growing up in Mississippi, footwear wasn't a big concern to me. By that, I mean I wore tennis shoes or occasionally boots, but it wasn't something I spent a lot of time worrying about.

When we moved to Colorado, I saw snow for the first time and wasn't sure what I should do about it. The neighbors swore by Sorels, so I bought some Sorels and figured that was that, but I could never keep my feet warm. So, I sort of struggled forward, shoulder to the wheel, and just made the best of it. I did buy a few different pairs of boots over the years, but nothing really was ever anywhere near warm enough for me.

Then, about 5 years ago, in the fall of 2006, I found myself in Idaho Falls, Idaho for the weekend with a plan to drive into Yellowstone. However, I had no clothes outside of my office clothes. So I walked into a store in Idaho Falls and said "set me up", basically. I bought a camo jacket, pants, boots, and I don't recall what else.

So, on this occasion, I told the guy "You know, my toes are always cold...what have you got that's warm so my toes won't freeze?" And he told me this..."you want two things....Gore-Tex and Thinsulate. Gore-Tex is a waterproof/breathable fabric. This will keep water out of your boots, and allow the boots to breathe so your feet won't sweat. If your feet are dry, they'll stay warm. Thinsulate is a think insulator that will keep your feet warmer and drier than duck down. Each boot says how many grams of Thinsulate are used in the boot...The more Thinsulate, the better."

Continue reading "Red Wing Irish Setter Boots"

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 28, 2012 at 6:50 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Timmy spots a fox

Last night, Timmy was peering through the front picture windows of the house in a way that makes the skin crawl on the back of your neck. Like...you know something's out there...cuz he's watchn it.

So I go outside with my Stanley 3000 HID Spotlight and didn't see anything at first. I came back in, but Jen was like..."uh...dad...there's something out there...it just ran down the driveway...." so I went back out and snapped these shots.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 28, 2012 at 12:29 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

January 26, 2012

A Pear for Sarah

I recently learned that my 15 year old niece Sarah has never eaten a pear, so I told her I'd send her one. Vote it up on Reddit.com.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 26, 2012 at 9:31 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

January 25, 2012

Kids send Lego Man above Earth's atmosphere

http://www.thestar.com/news/article/1120808--toronto-teens-send-lego-man-on-a-balloon-odyssey-24-kilometres-high?bn=1

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 25, 2012 at 11:29 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

John Hinckley's House

John Hinckley's name was in the news recently. They're always plotting to get him back out on the streets for whatever reason. IMHO, he should be locked away for life. I don't know if he's crazy or not. I don't really care. If you try to assassinate the president of the United States, I think you should be locked away for life, if not killed outright. I mean, it's not like he shot a crack dealer. He shot Ronald Reagan for Christ's sake.

In any event, the guy lived in the next town over from me and, not that it matters, but I was always sort of curious as to where exactly, he had lived. I knew he was in Evergreen, but never knew where. I asked a few people, and no one ever knew.

I finally found out the street address of where John Hinckley lived in Evergreen.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 25, 2012 at 4:44 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Critters in the hood

Here's some critters I shot recently around the hood.

Above: Coyote (Canis latrans). Canon EOS 40D with L-Series Canon f/4.0 IS USM 600mm lens. The coyotes are omnivores, and opportunistic scavengers. This one was chasing after a Northern Magpie that was scolding it. Image selection in Cam2PC. Post processing in Adobe Photoshop CS5.


Above: Fox Squirrel (Sciurus niger). Canon EOS 40D with L-Series Canon f/4.5-5.6 IS USM 400mm lens. This squirrel box was a project Jennifer dreamed up in honor of "Squirrel Appreciation Day". The squirrels are said to "hibernate" at this time of year, though their hibernation is mainly a period of less activity, as opposed to sleeping for months at a time. This time of year, they commonly move from their leaf nests into hollow tree cavities, if possible. Image selection in Cam2PC. Post processing in Adobe Photoshop CS5.


Above: Immature Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis). Note that this is an young bird as indicated by the yellow eyes and prominent tail banding. Canon EOS 40D with L-Series Canon f/4.0 IS USM 600mm lens. Image selection in Cam2PC. Post processing in Adobe Photoshop CS5.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 25, 2012 at 12:49 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

January 24, 2012

Windows 7 Blows

Now that I've got my Windows XP Pro SP3 boxes up and running properly using Windows Workgroups, I now want to get my Windows 7 laptops set up so that they can share files with the XP boxes.

Predictably, the Windows 7 the HomeGroup feature is not compatible with Vista or XP. Thanks, Microsoft. Thanks for that. If I ever see Bill Gates, I'll fillet him in the streets.

Sharing Files between Windows 7 and XP.

First make sure both machines are members of the same Workgroup which by default is named Workgroup.

http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/w7itpronetworking/thread/033c418b-1096-4df7-bfad-fd3d431f3cd5

I spent a lot of time tonight trying to get Windows 7 and Windows XP to play nice together and share files. At the end of it all, I was only marginally successful.

Basically, I did the following:

First, on my Windows 7 laptop, I did the following:
disabled IPV6 in the registry
turned off IPV6 on both network cards (wired and wireless)
renamed the laptop from ASUS_Laptop to AsusLaptop
disabled the firewall
rebooted the box
launched windows explorer

Then, on the Windows XP Pro SP3 laptop, I did the following:
installed the Microsoft_LLTD_Hotfix
disabled the firewall
rebooted the box
launched windows explorer

Note that, on the XP machine, the "Entire Network" entry frequently disappears under Windows Explorer. I can only get it back by right-clicking and selecting Explore. Only then can I navigate down the tree to My Network Places - Entire Network - Microsoft Windows Network - Workgroup.

At this point, my Windows 7 box still doesn't appear, but if I hammer in \\Asuslaptop then, miraculously, the box appears. So, I can see the 7 box from XP. But I'm still not able to see the XP box from 7. Nice, Microsoft. Nice.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 24, 2012 at 9:42 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

British Columbia vs. California, Oregon, and Washington state

After my little peregrination through British Columbia last year, I was really overwhelmed at the size and beauty of British Columbia, Canada. It was much, much larger than I'd imagined. When you look at it on a map...it's always sort of..."oh yeah...Canada's up there...hmmmm."

After driving for days and days just to get across British Columbia, I began to suspect that, in fact, British Columbia was larger than California, Oregon, and Washington combined. Tonight, I finally did the math. According to WIkipedia:

California = 163,696 square miles
Oregon = 98,381 square miles
Washington = 71,300 square miles
--------------------------------------------
Total area = 333,377 square miles

British Columbia = 357,216 square miles

So, I was right in my suspicions. British Columbia is larger than California, Oregon, and Washington combined. So if you ever plan to drive a dirt bike across B.C., you probably better take some extra gas.


Posted by Rob Kiser on January 24, 2012 at 8:44 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Swiss Spaghetti Farmers report record crop

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 24, 2012 at 6:23 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Firefox and Facebook Extremely Slow

I'm experiencing a problem with Firefox on Facebook where anything I type is just painfully slow. This problem occurs intermittently. I tried some of the fixes listed here. We'll see if that makes it any better.

Other Facebook problems

The Facebook Help Center has a troubleshooting page that lists known Facebook website problems and bugs. If you see your specific problem listed on that page, Facebook is aware of it and is working on a fix. If your problem isn't listed, follow the troubleshooting steps below.
Clear cookies and cache

Clearing your stored cookies and the Firefox cache can solve several common problems with Facebook, such as Farmville issues.

At the top of the Firefox window, click on the Firefox button, go over to the History menu and select Clear Recent History....
For Windows XP: At the top of the Firefox window, click on the Tools menu and select Clear Recent History....
In the Time Range to clear: drop-down, select Everything.
Click the arrow next to Details to display the list of items that can be cleared.
Select both Cookies and Cache.
Click Clear Now.

Check cookie settings

If you receive an error message that mentions cookies after clearing your cookies and cache:

At the top of the Firefox window, click on the Firefox button (Tools menu in Windows XP) and then click Options.
Select the Privacy panel.
Set Firefox will: to Use custom settings for history.
Make sure Accept cookies from sites is check marked.
Make sure Accept third party cookies is check marked.
Click Exceptions....
Make sure facebook.com is not listed.
If it is listed, click on its entry, then click Remove Site.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 24, 2012 at 3:56 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Breeding the next Steve Jobs

This is priceless. The dimwits at CNN are trying to figure out "How to Raise the next Steve Jobs". This would be roughly equivalent to trying to "Raise the next Secretariat". Most of it is in the genes, obviously. You can't take a farm horse to the track and "teach" it to be a racehorse. That's not reality.

But looking past the genes, the public school system is a dismal failure from start to finish. Basically, the current plan is that you shove everyone through a "no-child-left-behind" (aka "no-child-gets-ahead") public school regimen of 12 years of their life and then you wonder where the gems are.

If you honestly think that unionized public sektor employees can teach individualism to students then you're sadly mistaken.

The way to raise the next Steve Jobs is to dismantle the public school system. You have to stop trying to teach Algebra to 14 year old girls. You have to stop focusing your attention on the bottom 20% of the students, and focus your efforts on the top 20%.

If you stopped trying to teach 14 year old girls Algebra, you would be going a step in the right direction. It's not that they can't learn it. It's that there's no reason to learn it.

The correct way to raise the next Steve Jobs would be to keep them in regular school for say 1/2 of the day. Learn to interact socially. That's important.

Then, for the other half of the day, pull all of the geniuses aside and ask them what they want to work on. Help them bring ideas to fruition. Products to market. Teach them how to make things. How to start businesses. Yeah. Business school. The process of bringing a product to market.

Then you'd have some kids coming out of school ready to hit the ground running. You could easily have children that were millionaires, if you'd just get the stupid public school system out of the way.


Posted by Rob Kiser on January 24, 2012 at 1:50 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Salvaging the TK Bremen

Cool photos of a ship that ran aground in France last month.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 24, 2012 at 12:51 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Workgroup is not accessible

My sprawling home network has sort of grown hap-hazardly over the years and I find myself burdened with this ungainly nightmare of a network:
2 Wireless Routers
1 25 port switch
4 PC's running XP Pro
1 laptop running XP Pro
2 laptops running Windows 7

At some point in 2011, I realized that I could no longer browse my Workgroup in Windows Explorer. And I've just sort of ignored this problem until now and now, it's bothering me enough that I'm going to figure out what the problem is.

Now, I'll start off by saying that Microsoft Sucks and if I ever met Bill Gates in person I think I'd strangle him with my bare hands. But having said that, it's not likely that I'll ever see him in the flesh, and even so, strangling him wouldn't solve my computer problems, at least in the sort term in any event.

The message I get is this:

"Workgroup is not accessible. You might not have permission to use this network resource. Contact the administrator of this server to find out if you have access permissions. The list of servers for this network is not currently available."

So, the first thing I'll try to do is ping some of the other boxes to make sure I have TCP/IP access to them.

I've now verified that I'm able to ping the other boxes no problem. So, this isn't a problem with TCP/IP. But Microsoft Networking runs on a layer on top of TCP/IP. So now, we'll try to figure out what's wrong there.

So, I tried following the directions on this website:

You must have administrator rights to do this.
Enable the IPX/SPX protocol and follow all instructions.
To enable file and print sharing on the IPX/SPX protocol
Only perform this procedure if your home or small office computers are connected directly to the Internet through individual connections or using a DSL or cable modem connected to an Ethernet network hub.

1. Open Network Connections.
2. In Local Area Network, Right click on top of your connection and select Properties, click Install.
3. In Select Network Component Type, click Protocol, and then click Add.
4. Click NWLink IPX/SPX/NetBIOS Compatible Transport Protocol, click OK, and then click Close.
5. In Network Connections, on the Advanced menu (on top menu bar), click Advanced Settings.
6. On the Adapters and Bindings tab, under Connections, click the local area connection on which you are enabling IPX/SPX file and print sharing.
Under Bindings for Local Area Connection, under File and Printer Sharing for Microsoft Networks, clear the Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) check box, and then click OK."

Wow. I can't believe it, but that fixed it. I applied this fix to my four desktops so far, and they're all working correctly at this point. Go figure.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 24, 2012 at 12:43 AM : Comments (3) | Permalink

January 22, 2012

Microsoft Watch

Scott sent me this today. I almost wet myself laughing. I don't think Microsoft is making watches, but if they did, this is surely what it would look like. Note the BSOD(Blue Screen of Death) and the Control-Alt-Delete buttons to reboot the watch. Hilarious.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 22, 2012 at 6:08 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Judge Orders Obama to Appear in Court

This story is so good I don't know where to start. A Georgia judge has ordered Obama to appear in court to answer to a complaint that he's not a "natural-born citizen" of the United States, and therefore can't be on the ballot. Awesome.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 22, 2012 at 2:00 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

January 21, 2012

Mountain lion attacks in Hiwan Hills

Been a lot of mountain lion attacks on dogs in Evergreen recently.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 21, 2012 at 5:55 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

MAC Address Filtering and the iPhone 4S

I have two wireless networks in my house, one in my computer room and one in the bedroom. I use MAC address filtering to keep people from glomming onto my WiFi, so I had to figure out the MAC address was of my iPhone so that I could add it to my filter.

How To Find The MAC Address of Your Apple iPhone

If you have a wireless network that you secure by restricting the MAC addresses, then you will have to enter the MAC address of your Apple iPhone in order to allow it to connect to that network.

To figure out the MAC address of your iPhone, start at the home menu. Select Settings -> General -> About. Scroll down that screen and you'll see a setting called "Wi-Fi Address", that is your iPhone MAC address.

Now enter that exact address as an allowed MAC address on your wireless network. The directions on this will vary because every router's menu and interface is different so consult your router manual if you need help with this.

Once you have done this, go back to your iPhone and go to the Settings menu again. Select Wi-Fi and it should display your network in the list of available networks to connect to. Click the network name to connect.

I updated my router to include the new MAC Address filter and sure enough, I'm searching the web through my main-floor wifi network. Now I'm starting to wonder if that isn't what's wrong with my Windows 7 laptop. Doh!

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 21, 2012 at 11:47 AM : Comments (1) | Permalink

Happy "Squirrel Appreciation Day"

That's right. Jennifer has informed me that today is Squirrel Appreciation Day.

In recognition of Squirrel Appreciation Day, here's Jennifer's Songify titled, appropriately enough, Squirrels and Squirrels3.

Of course, since these audio recordings were made on the iPhone, they were locked into the iPhone with a steel grip. I emailed them to myself as attachments, and they showed up as M4A attachments, a proprietary DRM format. So I downloaded and installed this little M4A to MP3 converter to get them into a format I could live with.

I added Yahoo Media Player to this page.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 21, 2012 at 11:03 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

January 20, 2012

ɴᴇᴡ?ᴀɴ and the Non-displayable Font Characters

Back in November, I tried to get some of the special character fonts to display correctly on my computer, but I wasn't successful. I was successful, however, at documenting the problem fairly well. You can see my post here.

"...I looked at the post under Firefox, IE, Chrome, and finally on my iPhone 4S. Only with the iPhone 4S do i see "NEWMAN" in a sort of 1/2 step down font subscripted font."

"Any clue how to make these other browsers display the font correctly? I even installed Safari on my PC but it didn't display correctly there either."

The most promising post I received in reply was this:

"Go to Link (new window) and download the Deja-Vu fonts. Put them in the fonts folder in Windows. Voila! You can now read the headline! Don't know how to install fonts on a Mac or Linux, though."

OK. I finally figured out what the problem was. I had downloaded the Deja-Vu fonts as a .zip file and extracted them into the following folder C:\WINDOWS\Fonts\dejavu-fonts-ttf-2.33\ttf. Then, for whatever reason, Windows Explorer doesn't display subfolders in the c:\Windows\Fonts directory. Why? I dunno. Another reason to peel the skin off of Bill Gates like an orange.

However, this wasn't quite right. Tonight, noticed somehow that the new Deja-Vu fonts were in a subfolder and then I copied them from this location down into the c:\windows\fonts folder and I instantly could view the garbled characters in Safari and Google Chrome. They still appear garbled in IE and Safari.

I think that to fix IE 8, I have to tell IE to use the new unicode fonts in IE's Font Settings (Tools>Internet Options - General tab, Fonts tab... Times New Roman is the default for English locales).

There. That fixed it in IE 8. And I don't really care about Safari at this point.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 20, 2012 at 8:00 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Windows 7 Dynamic IPv4 Autoconfiguration Nightmare

I spent some time trying to get my Windows 7 x64 laptop connected to the internet. I ended up disabling IPV6 per these instructions.

I also may have gone kinda nuts and stripped out all of the Link-Layer Topology Discovery protocols also. I think. I'm not sure really. It was late and I was really tired. It's hard to say what I did.

I can't tell you how much I hate Windows 7. There are no words. Nothing could do it justice. If I could capture Bill Gates, I'd hold him down by the creek for days and every day, I'd just walk by and look and him and shake my head. I'd do this every day for about a week or so. And then finally, I'd come over with a rock and I'd bash his skull against a tree so that I got his attention and that I'd ask him this...."What in the fvck were you thinking when you tried to rewrite the networking protocols?"

They don't work. I mean...I mean...You can't get this fvcking computer to connect to a wireless network. There are not enough hours in the day. Not enough days in your life to fix this godforsaken computer. And it's not like I'm dumb. Or computer illiterate. I'm pretty good around a computer. Ask anyone that knows me.

It should be simple. You should turn on the computer. It should look for a network. If it finds one, it should ask for permission to connect. You should say "Sure...why not". At the most, all you should ever have to do is supply a password. But this is not the case.

The freaking nightmare that I have runs IPv4 and IPv6. I disabled IPv6, and focused on trying to get IPv4 to work. No dice. It still comes up with some crazy Autoconfiguration IPv4 address that I have no idea where it's coming from. No clue where it gets this IP address from. Certainly not from my DHCP server. And I even told it where my server was. I went into the configuration and told the stupid computer the IP address of the DHCP server. No dice.

What I'd like to do, is take it down to Bill Gates and put it in his lap and say "Here you go, genius. You've got eleven minutes to get it connected to the network." And then watch him sweat when he realized what a piece of garbage he'd foisted upon the world.

Then I'd take him down and waterboard him in the creek for days and finally leave him in the middle of the interstate, on a dark night, bound and gagged, and lay in the bushes giggling at the sound of the mail trucks flattening his carcass into beef jerky.

Update: I couldn't get my XP laptop to connect to the wireless router either. And I verified my MAC Address was in the filter. Cycling the router fixed the problem and my laptop ended up with a valid IP address.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 20, 2012 at 1:51 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

January 19, 2012

Wal-mart to let products compete for shelf space

Wal-mart is trying a radical new approach to determining what is allowed on the store shelves. The new campaign is called "Get on the Shelf"

"Get on the Shelf allows companies to bypass the sales process and compete for a spot on Walmart's website, as well as in its stores."

"For a long time, the ability to get a product into a retail store was at the sole discretion of the store buyer," said Venky Harinarayan, senior vice president of Walmart Global e-commerce. "We are removing these barriers by giving anyone a chance to launch their product at Walmart and reach millions of shoppers nationwide.""

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 19, 2012 at 1:55 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Peace Corps pulls out of Honduras

I learned today that the Peace Corps is pulling their people out of Honduras.

"The U.S. group said in late December that it was bringing home volunteers from Honduras and suspending training for new volunteers in El Salvador and Guatemala, though existing volunteers would remain in the latter two countries."

Countries with the highest murder rates in the world.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 19, 2012 at 1:41 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

January 18, 2012

Our Educational System

I just can't begin to understand why we're trying to teach 14 year old girls algebra. I mean, seriously? WTF? I have a degree in math, and I've never used it. Beyond calculating mpg or the price per ounce of groceries, the average person doesn't use math and doesn't need to spend countless hours trying to learn it.

Jennifer should be learning an art...should be learning to draw or paint or something useful. But to teach the kids math beyond what they've learned is absolutely useless. A complete waste of time and energy.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 18, 2012 at 8:48 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

My favorite pen

I travel a lot and, even with an iPhone and laptop, I sometimes need to write things down. At some point on my last project, I found a red pen in my backpack that I slowly realized was the best pen I've ever held in my hand.

I can't say where it came from. Origin is uncertain. Possibly I lifted it from the client. Possibly I picked it up at a rental car counter. There's no way of knowing. That bit of trivia is lost to the sands of time.

But this pen...omg. It's so awesome. First of all, I should mention that I hate Bic pens. They're horrible. When I try to scratch something out with them, I end up with two lines on the side of the ball colored in black or blue, and a big gaping hole down the middle. Like I can seriously see where the ink is missing in the pen's trail. So, I've always hated Bic's. Like...I'm seriously surprised they're on the market, they're so weak.

Then, you have the PaperMate. The PaperMate pen tries to fill in the blank inkless spot that Bic leaves, but overcompensates. So, when I write with a PaperMate, it always blobs up on the pen tip, and everytime I change the angle of my writing ever so slightly, everything goes to h3ll leaving big blobs of ink all over the page to smear beneath my hand, and I end up throwing the whole kit and kaboodle in the trash.

How is it 2012 and we still can't make a pen that writes better than a feather dipped in ink? How is that?

So, you have to see that I'm not sane to begin with. Probably most people carry Bics and PaperMates and their scribbled messages are either emaciated or bloated and no one notices and no one cares.

But that's not me.

Continue reading "My favorite pen"

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 18, 2012 at 12:26 PM : Comments (2) | Permalink

Kill PIPA

The Dimocrat Mike Bennett of Colorado is a co-sponsor of PIPA. You can contact the moron here and tell him to stop being a shill for Hollywood and kill the stupid bill. Like, trust me we don't need the nimrods at the FCC taking over the internet.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 18, 2012 at 10:50 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

January 17, 2012

Indonesia tries to stop people from riding train roofs

http://news.yahoo.com/photos/indonesia-tries-to-deter-train-surfers--1326818249-slideshow/people-ride-top-commuter-train-jakarta-indonesia-tuesday-photo-120540102.html

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 17, 2012 at 7:20 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

2" of snow confounds Seattle drivers

http://jalopnik.com/5876835/two-inches-of-snow-turns-seattle-drivers-into-morons

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 17, 2012 at 7:16 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

3D Imaging in WWII

http://news.yahoo.com/3-d-imaging-helped-halt-germanys-war-machine-140000769.html

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 17, 2012 at 11:49 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Juan Williams Plays the Race Card, Newt Hands Him His Lunch

http://legalinsurrection.com/2012/01/s-c-debate-moment-of-night-newt-tackles-race-card-play-slams-it-to-ground/

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 17, 2012 at 1:27 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

January 16, 2012

The 'Hundred Dollar Baby' Soundtrack

Season 2, Episode 5 of the show "It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia" is titled "Hundred Dollar Baby". The episode closes with a piano solo that makes me want to hang myself. I tried Shazam a few times, but wasn't able to get a match.

It turns out that the soundtrack was written by Ludwig van Beethoven in 1801, and dedicated to his student in 1802. The official title is something like "The Piano Sonata #14 in C-sharp minor "Quasi una fantasia", Opus 27, No.2 'Moonlight', Adagio Sostenuto", but it's commonly known as the "Moonlight Sonata". The piece has three movements, but the 2nd and 3rd movements don't really do anything for me. The first movement really strikes me though.

From Wikipedia:

"The Piano Sonata No. 14 in C-sharp minor "Quasi una fantasia", Op. 27, No. 2, popularly known as the Moonlight Sonata, is a piano sonata by Ludwig van Beethoven. Completed in 1801 and dedicated in 1802 to his pupil, Countess Giulietta Guicciardi, it is one of Beethoven's most popular compositions for the piano."

The sonata consists of three movements:
1. Adagio sostenuto
2. Allegretto
3. Presto agitato

The adagio sostenuto has made a powerful impression on many listeners; for instance, Berlioz said of it that it "is one of those poems that human language does not know how to qualify".[13] Beethoven's student Carl Czerny called it "a nocturnal scene, in which a mournful ghostly voice sounds from the distance".[14] The movement was very popular in Beethoven's day, to the point of exasperating the composer himself, who remarked to Czerny, "Surely I've written better things."

Here's a link to a youtube video of Stephen Malinowski playing the first movement of Beethoven's "Moonlight Sonata".

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 16, 2012 at 11:46 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

January 9, 2012

It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia

They're rerunning episodes of "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia" on Comedy Central. I think it's the funniest show on tv.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 9, 2012 at 10:32 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

January 8, 2012

TLC - 'On The Fly'

They were filming for a show on TLC called On The Fly tonight when i checked in for my flight to SFO. They asked me to sign a release, which i did. It's hard to imagine theyd use me though. They gave me a 'C' boarding pass, and I complained, but i didn't make an @ss of myself or anything.

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 8, 2012 at 7:20 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

January 6, 2012

Peenie Wallie Lives

Peenie Wallie is back online, baby!

Posted by Rob Kiser on January 6, 2012 at 11:49 AM : Comments (1) | Permalink