Friday, January 30, 2009

Pandemonium

Well, PHONECO's world headquarters released a press announcement concerning upcoming job reductions. Rumors had been fying for a while but the looks of stunned disbelief are... unique.

I would say priceless, but this is pretty dark all around. I have no idea if I will be here or gone come next week. HR hasn't brought a box by yet, but I completely don't trust management anyway. We got an email late this morning about the news reports (apparently it was also picked up by a local radio station as well) not necessarily concerning us, and how it is dealing mainly within other organizations and how nothing is set in stone...

BLAH BLAH BLAH.

Basically they got beat to the punch so now everyone has their head on a swivel for HR folks. It will be an intereesting next few weeks.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Monday, January 26, 2009

What I Learned About Bailouts

When I was younger I had to learn the hard way to be fiscally responsible. It was not something I was pleased with as it was a hard thing to learn with many mistakes along the way.

Eventually I got it.

The news that Citi bought a private jet after receiving bailout funds leads me to sum up the bailout with:

When people know they cannot fail, they do not fear failure and do not respect the consequences of their actions.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Thursday, January 22, 2009

BUSY!!! ARRRGH!!!!

Hey there... Remember me?

No?

Figures. I have been kind of busy lately and I am pooped. Long story short, my traveling compnaion and I (Code Named: SECRET SQUIRREL) made our original flights which is a sign of HIGH SUCCESS. Monday afternoon a problem was identified and we worked all night with the development team to identify and repair the problem. We determined there were defective CPUs which we had to replace. We replaced them, all was good.

Tuesday SECRET SQUIRREL and I caught our flight and returned to DFW. This morning I get an email from the site reporting the same problem as last time. We do a WEBEX session and confirm, yep, same problem. Same PBXs, Same CPUs.

????

So color me puzzled. We are waiting for the developers to come online so we can have them look at it. Right now I have the DATERBASE loaded and trying to break my hardware. Good luck here huh?

Obviously without getting too complex, we are now thinking there is a routine running, throwing bad data into the CPU hardware clock. The cool thing is even though this is a sucky problem, sucky problems are very interesting.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Going Home

Worked all night last night with my partner to fix a potentially major problem. It's agood feeling to work with good people and get results.

It's also a good feeling to spot a scuzzwad running a rouge AP on a college campus (PC to PC connection) named "Free Public WiFi."

I bet they freak out when he tracks them down with his analyzer.

:-)

Monday, January 19, 2009

Sunday, January 18, 2009

A Milestone

Hey all. Sorry to not have been blogging worth anything lately, but I have been a busy busy boy. I am glad to say the job which I had to go to Nashville for has completed it's first phase successfully. The reason this has me so stoked is I have been a part of (a major part of actually which makes me really happy) doing the first conversion of it's kind (I believe in the world).

I never like to give out to much info because I would like PHONECO to remain a fictitious company, but I would like to crow just a little bit. I am very proud to have helped spearhead something which should be a very good financial option for us.

Also, I get to fly home Tuesday afternoon. I am just hoping I don't get held up when then former President George Bush flys to his new home in Dallas. We'll see.

To my loving wife if you read this, I am thinking of you now and missing you. I can't wait to be home with you. To my wonderful kids, I will see you soon and can't wait to hear the laughter of all you again.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

I Think I Am Going To Puke

OK, I am so sorry to say I think I am going to barf if the world does not SHUT UP about Barack Obama. I will be so glad when the 20th gets here and he starts handing out cash, adding on to the White House basketball court (nice example when the country is in a recession) and signing executive orders to impose his will.

Way to play nice and work together.

The only thing I see is I don't have to listen to CNN and everyone bash Bush.

Of course, I guess just because Bush is out of office it won't stop being his fault. As a matter of fact I bet Tim Geithner gave the check to pay his housekeeper's taxes and Bush blew it on blow.

I need a drink.

Nashville - Day Two

I am alive and well in Nashville, but I now remember what I hate about cold weather. Being HOT and COLD at the same time.

The hotel is about three blocks from the switchroom so rather than fighting to find parking we are walking from the hotel. Today the high is 39 and will be falling all day so we set out on a nice brisk walk. The pace is fine for my companion, but the fat slob known as me is huffing and puffing when we get her and I worked up a sweat this morning...

So I am cold, but sweaty... Ewww....

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Hacker Princess

Princess Lucie my four year old is terrifying me. She has the ability to get on the computer, launch Internet Explorer (you're welcome Bill Gates) and surf "Dot Com." as she calls the internet.

Saturday she wanted to watch "Lady and the Tramp" so since she knew I had left the DVD in the PC from where she watched it the other night, she figured out how to open Media Player and was searching for the right file when I chased her away.

I also found out she can read some words. HBO has a show where one of the segments involves words being shown on the screen in a manner to indicate a common phrase. The one I caught was the word WATER which was falling down the screen which was supposed to be "Waterfall." She promptly said "Waterslide" which made perfect sense because that was the first thing that popped into my head because of the way the word was falling.

Look for her to take over the world next week while I am gone. Mayeb I should raise her allowance so I can stay on her good side.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

My Position On The Conflict In Gaza

As of this morning per an article I have read "...more than 800 people have been killed." I feel it is important as another blogger accuses Israel of using White Phosphorus in Gaza and shows a picture of "an Iraqi victim of a U.S. WP attack."

As he points out in his article this is banned under the geneva conventions for use as a direct weapon. His example shows it as being used to provide a smokescreen for advancing IDF troops. For some reason the inflammatory picture and accusation against the US and British was used. My opinion is to inflame passions and imply war crimes where there are none.


I want my stance out there because some people such as Meryl Yourish and Laurence Simon post their feelings and try to let the world see the Israeli side of things. As an American who is far removed from the conflict, I still find it difficult to understand how people can feel that Israel is doing an ything short of defending themselves when the facts are rarely disputed. Gary Berntsen lays out a brief summary of the conflictat his blog, Berntsen NSR.

Hammas shoots THOUSANDS of rockets into Israel which is an act of war giving Israel a legitimate right to defend itself. Many people have made light of the fact the rockets are unguided and not very accurate, however lets put it in perspective as a weapon of terror. Suppose someone randomly drives by your house and fire a single shot in randomly once or twice a day. Chances are VERY SLIM that you will be hurt as you are in your house, the shooter can't see you and besides bullets are very small.

I doubt you would stand for it.

Hammas also made a large spectacle out of decalring the "Truce" was over and ramping up the rocket attacks (which had never completely ceased even during the "Truce"). Israel decides OK, you want a fight, you have a fight and begins to take out Hammas members in the heavily populated Gaza Strip.

There are obviously going to be civilian causalties (although it is often difficult to distinguish between who is a civilian and who is a combatant) especially when Hammas embeds itself in civilian infrastructure to try to prevent the IDF from destroying them.

If the IDF was really trying to commit genocide or truely inflict suffering on the population of the Gaza Strip out of the close to 1.5 million people living there, do you REALLY think the IDF wold have only killed 800 people? One day of indescriminate bombing and shelling in Gaza City alone would have killed FAR MORE than that.

I only ask people to put aside their emotions and think for a few minutes.

Friday, January 09, 2009

It's On Like Donkey Kong!

OK, so I go to Nashville Monday and stay there until the 20th which provides me with much adventure to blog about (and by "Adventure" I mean sitting in the hotel room at night and surfing the web mindlessly). The BIG THING is THE WIFE challenged me to a weigh off!

Here are the rules:

We weigh Sunday night (I fly out Monday morning)
We weigh in when I get back
Whoever loses the most weight while I am out of town wins

Wins what? I don't know. All I know is I have to EAT OUT every day and night. Advantage THE WIFE. I will have access to workout equipment. Advantage ME. I will be on the road with a Japanese guy who is renoun for his drinking ability. Advantage THE WIFE.

I could be in deep trouble.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Moustaches

A guy with a moustache walked past my work area in the lab today which got me thinking about moustaches. I normally keep a goatee because THE WIFE is disturbed by the fact I look like a little kid without it.

Me personally, I think I look like John Candy (before he died of course). The picture is of him, not me.
I began to wonder about the whole facial hair thing. I get frustrated with the trimming and shaving etc... I tried growing just a moustache without the goatee but a friend pointed out I looked like the cop from the "Villiage People."

Not a good look for me.

But anyway, I digress, the whole story is I was trying to figure out a smart alec thing to say to the guy such as, "Dude, you look like you just escaped from a porno." He probably would have taken it as a compliment, so I skipped it. I didn't want this guy to think he had sex appeal. None OK. He is chick repellant.

I moved to telling him that the 'stache made him look gay. But it didn't. Lets face it, most gay men whole grow a moustache have some fine looking lip-wigs. Take Freddie Mercury for instance. The man was gay, but three things cannot be disputed:



1. Freddie ROCKED! He was without a doubt the master of the stage!
2. Freddie could sing like nobody else! Hands down!
3. Freddie had a MANLY MOUSTACHE!

Nope, no insult to gay men everywhere by comparing the wolly worm on this guy's lip with the essence of masulinity of most gay men.

I searched and finally, FINALLY figured out what it reminded me of.
An IRS auditor!

Monday, January 05, 2009

Global Warming/Cooling/Raining/Drying Etc...

So I stumble across this article which discusses how the polar ice caps are at the same level they were at in 1979. This obviously contradicts the prediction they would be gone by 2008 (paraphrasing, so don't throw a bunch of crap my way). This is also in addition to the last couple of years of predictions of "SEVERE HURRICANE SEASONS" when they have turned out to be pretty mild.

Crap like this is why I don't believe in Global Warming and when I worry it is about things I can actually do something about and what I believe to be more serious problems.

This does not mean I don't think we shouldn't be environmentally responsible, on the contrary I think it is not only environmentally good, but fiscally sound as well. My problem is people who go on about how Higher Temps=Global Warmer, Lower Temps=Global Warming, Less Rain=Global Warming, More Rain=Global Warming... For Pete's sake, TAKE A POSITION AND STICK TO IT!!!!

Please take time to read the comments to the article as one fine person tries to explain the "Complexities" of Global Warming while several other folks debunk the crap.

For Example:

If the waters in the Pacific are warmer, that leads to more evaporation. Due to temperatures then, you have more water vapor in the air, which leads to increased cloud cover, and as a result, rain on the west coast of the USA. This is very simplistic, but it DOES happen. Now, as the temperatures out there rise, you would expect the amount of water vapor to rise as well, leading to more and more wet weather, storms, etc.

More storms mean more cloud cover. If a given place is normally sunny, and has a normal temperature of around 75F, and has the number of clouds and storms increase, this will lower the temperatures(compared to the sunny days). If the change continues, what was formerly a sunny place with warmer temperatures will see a temperature DECREASE because there are more clouds.

Nice, so because it is warmer somewhere in the world, then it causes raing which makes it cooler somewhere else. How convenient. So another commenter points out:

TARGON finally discovers that warmer oceans results in more water vapor in the air, and more precipitation -- rain, sleet, and snow.

As a MOISTER global atmosphere comes into contact with the polar ice caps, the result of moist air cooling over the poles is SNOW and ICE (frozen rain).

So the result of global warming must inevitably be GROWING ICE CAPS, and LOWER OCEANS. Heat causes evaporation from the oceans. Evaporation is moist air. Moist air when it comes into contact with cool areas results in SNOW and ICE.

Don't tap dance about wind patterns. Regardless of the first path of moister air from the warmer oceans, moister air will inevitably find its way to the poles, no matter what goes on in between, no matter how long it takes.

So if global warming is occurring, the polar ice caps should be increasing, not shrinking, and the oceans should DROP not rise.

Try putting a pot of boiling water on the stove. Then put a glass of ice-cold lemonade next to it. What will happen? The water will evaporate and will condense on to the ice-cold glass.

Furthermore, the temperatures at the poles remain below freezing. If the temperature increases from -15 C to -13.5 C, it is still below the melting point at 0 C. So how the hell is a 1 degree rise going to melt the polar caps?

Ironically, the growing ice at the poles is consistent with global warming. But the result will be lower sea levels, not higher.

So, the crap coming from one group of scientists doesn't match the crap from another group of scientists.

BTW... Freezing rain was predicted for my drive into work today, they missed it.

------

Update 9:25 PM

Fine, I am an idiot (at least I admit to it). Here is a picture of ice on one of the trees from the freezing rain as I was leaving work.

Sunday, January 04, 2009

It's 4 AM I Must Be Lonely

OK, so it's almost 4AM and I am having one of those rare can't sleep nights. Oh well, who am I to complain? I have CNN on, watching the war in Israel and trying to keep up with the accusations. I guess I am a little confused, Hamas wanted a war, they now have one.

Here is your chance to drive the Jews to the sea!

NOT

I was told by the second in command of my division I will be going to Nashville on the 12th for a MAJOR PROJECT. I am cool with that as it is an opportunity for us to keep the cash flowing. If me making a few trips and showing face time helps, then hey I am all for it. It is also nice because the guys I will be working with have their crap together.

So, I am reading "Kill Bin Laden" by "Dalton Fury." Nice pseudonym. It is kind of filling in the blanks from "Jawbreaker" by Gary Berntsen. Part of it is the point of view is different, but a lot of it is the portions the CIA redacted.

Oh well. Back to the war. Sleep well everyone.