Ramblings, opinions, and general meanderings from the Deep South

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Destination? Coastal Highway

Wow, what a week. It's been a while since I've spent time out of town for more than 2 days. The "powers" that be are trying to cancel the trip and so help me God, unless a dire and I mean DIRE emergency arises, my lardbutt will be on the way to Florida astride the Harley this weekend. If the apocalypse hits they'll find me on the side road, down on my knees praying with the rumble of an idling Harley in the background just in case that I may be able to take a trip to heaven by my favorite transportation mode.

There are techs standing by and I will have the cell phone and laptop on the bike. We'll stop every few hours to check calls, get gas, drink coffee and walk off/shake out our old age. Please understand that I'll gladly take calls and point the right person towards you to solve any problems that arise. There are 5 super qualified techs standing by so your systems will be serviced if needed.

Please don't expect me to have my laptop in hand and remote into a network if I am busy shaking hands with one of my heroes like Arlen Ness, Paul Teutul Jr. and Sr. or Mikey. I'll refer the problem to a qualified geek/tech type located in your area or remote in when back at the hotel.

This is a trip that will encompass a LOT of riding along the beach. There's salt in my blood and being near the ocean on a Harley is a double dose of magic for me. I am traveling with a life long friend and expect to see a lot of things, take a bunch of pictures, eat some nifty food and enjoy the camaraderie of people that know how to shed stress, namely motorcycle people.

And no I don't fly colors and am considered by some to be a yuppie/geek biker. After all, cell phone, laptop, palm tungsten, mp3 player, bluetooth earpieces (2) and jump drive will be on my ride. Yes, I am very much like a child with uber candy. It's all about the ride...not the destination.

"Keep your bike in good repair: motorcycle boots are not comfortable for walking."
~H.D. Murphy

Saturday, February 24, 2007

On the Road

Why a vacation? Come July of this year celebrates the last one which took place 30 years ago at the mouse house in Orlando. It's time. I have 5 techs standing by, am taking my laptop and my cell phone. I'll only be a phone call away. If you are on a monthly maintenance schedule then remoting in is not a problem. Those customers that want remote maintenance during this time period, please call or email me. The software is a no charge item and is easy to install. Do this soon, ETD is less than a week.

TIme to go study the test for the motorcycle endorsement. Later.

"We hit the sunny beaches where we occupy ourselves keeping the sun off our skin, the saltwater off our bodies, and the sand out of our belongings."
~Erma Bombeck

Friday, February 23, 2007

Hog Wild

One of my life long fantasies is being fulfilled. There's a Harley in the garage. It's beautiful. There's some sort of magic going on when it's close at hand. This is a machine with presence. When it cranks it says potato-potato in a low rumbling growl. When asked to move forward and travel it does it with authority. Riding a dragon low to the ground is a neat mind's eye image.

This is a red one as it comes out of the box. The one in the garage is black and has chrome most places that can be chrome and it's a Screaming Eagle customized unit. The seat is a pillow seat and there's a backrest plus windshield. There will be more pictures over the next few weeks as we ride to Daytona via Highway 90.

My dreams alternate between Guild Wars and being on the road. Just took the flashlight and checked on the bike. It's ready. So am I.

"Better to be dead and cool than alive and uncool."
from Harley Davidson and the Marlboro Man

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Celtic Woman II

Sat down for a while last night and watched the new Celtic Woman DVD. My limited ability to describe how this music moves me is sad, because it reaches inside and touches my very soul. Overwhelming and an emotional flight of fantasy comes to mind. Here's my favorite - Send Me a Song. Lisa Kelly rocks my gypsy soul. What a tremendous voice. She is only one of six. Here's one with all of them - Spanish Lady. And Mairead smokin' the violin is awesome - The Butterfly. Yep, I like them a lot. Please remember that I had a pet dinosaur named Pink Floyd and a pteradactyl named Jimi Hendrix. Pleasant change from my normal classic rock background music. Check it out if you like good music, yeh yeh.

"A song has a few rights the same as ordinary citizens... if it happens to feel like flying where humans cannot fly... to scale mountains that are not there, who shall stop it?"
~Charles Ives

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Cellpoint e Store - Nopoint

Saturday I posted about the lousy service from Cingular. Their retail people are rude and that "least amount of dropped calls" ad campaign is a bunch of hooey. Mudslingr commented and said that it's very possible our problem stems from the SIM cards in the phones. This bears investigation. Now, onto the other problem mentioned that day in the comments.

I don't like eBay. Never have and never will. It's too much of a crap shoot. If you make a purchase be sure and check ALL negative feedback. For instance, there's a company called Cellpoint e Store that does a fair amount of volume. They have 2% negative feedback. This means they are not taking care of 2% of their customers. A good company would make every effort to shed these unfavorable responses.

Cellpoint e Store seems content in stating such things as BAD EBAYER, NO COMMUNICATIONS, DO NOT SELL TO, HEADACHE COMING ! or Worst Ebay ever, No communications Skills , DO NOT SELL, BLOCK THIS IDIOT !!!!!! They try to offset their inability to deal with the public by making negative statements about them. My humble opinion about a company that calls customers idiots? Twerps, dweebs and basic units of barnyard material I say! Think about it; do you really want to do business with a company that calls their customers idiots?

Actually, buying online can be a problem. For instance, Newegg.com has great prices , fast delivery, and has never called a customer an idiot. On the other hand TigerDirect has problems living up to shipping dates, warranty service, etc., so I won't buy from them anymore. Good rule of thumb is "burn me once" and I am through with you. Heck this applies to the brick and mortar shops too. The Good Lord knows I'll never buy anything from a Cingular store again.

Anyway, a friend of mine has filed a dispute with PayPal about false claims made by this Cellpoint hoodoo pit e Store. They say she didn't pay, yet PayPal verifies the payment. She's tried calling and the person answering the phone says that company policy dictates that management won't talk to customers. Huh? What? Management won't talk to customers? What's this all about? Oh wait...I cleared that up when I called them barnyard material units. Folks, this is ridiculous. Why don't they stop, look into it and either ship the product or refund the money? That simple. And here's a message to Cellpoint e Store in case you catch wind of my negative review - go ahead and give me a bad rating on eBay. I don't care. Gloves off.

I will watch this as it progresses. If they do respond and correct their wrong, I'll gladly mention that here. Until then I am doing some research to see what the BBB and state authorities have to say about this company. In the meantime, caveat emptor!

"Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning."
~Bill Gates, Business @ the Speed of Thought

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Da U2ube? W00T!

What is youtube? It's a video (and sound) sharing service created by 3 ex-employees of PayPal in 2005. It was sold to Google in November 2006 for the tidy sum of 1.65 billion in stock. Some videos are hilarious (check Weird Al's White and Nerdy). Others are weird (take a look at el camino lowrider). Some are informative (have a looksee at Travelogue Germany). There is great variety and some things I find inappropriate. Beware, this is not a site to let a child wander through without guidance. Have a favorite youtube? Link to it in the comments or email it to cybersouth@gmail.com.

"The best way to cheer yourself up is to try to cheer somebody else up."
~Mark Twain

Monday, February 19, 2007

BH Web Server

The beach house network is being revamped. This is to better serve those that use Teamspeak and several other online functions. Please bear with the construction. Most of the maintenance will be done during off peak hours. A new operating system will be installed which may take 3-5 hours during a weekday. This server has run for several years without any downtime and it's time to change out some hardware. Your patience will be appreciated. Hopefully, all this will be accomplished before the end of the month.

"The man who never alters his opinion is like standing water, and breeds reptiles of the mind."
~William Blake

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Sunday, My Fav Day

Hard to believe the temperature will be in the 70s this coming Thursday. Certainly glad of it though. When July and August hits someone remind me of this dislike of cold weather.

Can anyone recommend a really good site concerning the ins and outs of Outlook Express and Outlook? There's been several problems arise lately with these two mail clients and my knowledge is limited. If the Emperor of the Known Universe title ever becomes mine, the whole world will use GMail.

Enjoy Sunday. It's a great day!

"Life be not so short but that there is always time for courtesy."
~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Saturday, February 17, 2007

One Ringy Dingy

This is probably a very stupid question; has anyone had trouble staying connected with Cingular service? If these sorry clowns have the least amount of dropped calls I pity the poor people at Cellular South, Sprint, etc. Let's face it, cellular phone technology works part time at best. The people at Cingular are prone to be hateful which means that this is, more than likely, a miserable company from top to bottom.

Let's see, didn't the Federal Government force a break up of AT&T years ago? Now they are absorbing all the baby bells again? Remember the words of Lily Tomlin's character Ernestine, "We're the phone company, we don't care!"

"Knowledge is sometimes haunted by the nightmare of past opinion."
-Billy Wobblynife

Friday, February 16, 2007

What Type of Tree Did Newton Sit Under?

Let's continue today with a pome theme. All you closet-Apple people can take a deep breath and sigh relief. This is really not an Apple smashing post. Juz the truth dudes n dudettes. Every so often I have to clarify my stance when it comes to PC versus Apple. PC wins hands down. The formula of hardware, software, speed & pricing is far superior and the selection of applications is enormous. Apple's new OSX (and above) operating system is pretty darn good because it is a worked over form of FreeBSD, a very popular opensource operating system that is FREE for anyone to use. Can we say UNIX? Apple's software selection? Here's an interesting bit of info; the best selling software for an Apple computer is Microsoft Office. Heh heh, go figure.

Apple computers are extremely over rated and the prices are ridiculous. They have the slick commercials about ease of use out of the box, but don't be taken in by a voodoo ad campaign. Most any new PC will smoke any Apple when it comes to speed. While PCs are more vulnerable to virus infections don't think that Apples don't get them. They most certainly do become infected on occasion. The spin on that is that while the mighty PC has almost a 90% market share, Apple has only 3%. Do the numbers, it's simple. Hackers (cyber terrorists) are going to attack the largest group. Hey, if you want an Apple go for it. It's your money. At least they have switched from that horribly slow Moto processor to Intel. Again, keep in mind the limitation of software.

iPods? They are okay IF you don't mind spending a buck a song. Creative's Zen line actually sounds better and can download tunes from any of the sites. Some downloads are very reasonable. Hey I'll pay 65 cents for a tune any day! While on a call yesterday one of my friends showed me a new device called a ZEON.

Bestbuy has them in stock locally for 150 bucks. If I owned an iPod the ZEON would be a MUST HAVE item. You plug your iPod in back and it plays music or video. Here's the kicker, it'll play DVDs too! Chloe Michelle put a movie in and the 7" screen reproduced a very watchable picture. This device is impressive. It suprised me that Circuit City carries over 300 mp3 player accesories, but not the ZEON. Bestbuy has a real winner on their hands with this device. N hey, it's kewl looking. Thanks Chloe Michelle for a great tip!

Let me close by saying that better a Gates Microsoft computer world than a Jobs Apple one. Remember, Bill Gates is the man responsible for PCs being in our homes today. His marketing brought prices down to affordable. So there all you Windows Nazis. Apple Nazis? Look, I am easing up some so don't bitch. Now where is that tree was I going to nap under? Later..

"If you have any trouble sounding condescending, find a Unix user to show you how it's done."
~Scott Adams

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Is it the Apocalypso?

Sometimes certain things just overwhelm me with fear. Sit down and get ready for this: I agree with Darth Jobs. Yep that's right. Ole Steviepoo has my support in his recent stance against the RIAA, et al. PCWorld has a good article about the bruhaha. Yes Mr. Apple Orchard is right. Let's completely do away with all the DRM bullsh-- and let musicians sell independently online or within an iTunes like environment without DRM. Much better plan that benefits EVERYBODY, but the music mafia. So, kudos and props out to Steve Jobs!!!!! (gosh, that just doesn't look right in print)

Now checking to make sure I've taken my morning meds and may go back to bed for more rest. (it still just doesn't look right in print!)

"The joy of music should never be interrupted by a commercial."
~Leonard Bernstein

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Bright Spot in a Feeble Mind

Valentine's Day. A day of mass chocolate consumption. Had a glass of chocolate milk for breakfast and a mocha coffee at lunch in honor of the Saint. My failed ability in relationships of the lovejones doesn't stop me from liking this holiday. Thought about my first love today. Wow, the long term synapses were afirin' mightily.

Her name was Susan Spencer and she was the prettiest thing I'd ever seen. She was shy, prone to blush and looked gorgeous in a bikini. We often met at a friend's backyard pool since her daddy didn't like my longhaired, rock n roll, punkass self. Looking back I don't blame him. Hell, my own Dad wasn't exactly crazy about me at that period in life. Thank God I was afforded some maturity and Dad's ideas about me changed.

Don't know what exactly happened, but the relationship (like most others) was destined to fail. You know, I thought about my failed marriage a lot at first. Then I decided it wasn't a failure because of my two wonderful daughters. The guilt went away. And I really care about some folks today. Selfishness and fear makes the beach house a safe harbor. Hey, am working on it!

So celebrate the day and be happy, especially if you are "in love." It's nice. And given the present divorce rate in this country the lovejones needs more celebration.

"Small dude, bow and arrow in hand, showed up with a box of chocolates. I kicked his sorry ass off the veranda after explaining my happy divorce of 15 years. He gave me the bird as he flew off with a boot print on his diaper. Then daylight magically appeared disproving the theory 'ain't no sunshine when she's gone'."
-Billy Wobblynife

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Candidates for Our Zoo?

COMCAST is apparently havings some problems locally with their high speed internet. Of course, researching or trying to troubleshoot with the people at COMCAST central is hopeless. We actually had a 5 person 'pass the buck' issue the other night and then the final installment was a lady saying the issue had to be resolved between 8 & 5.

Well, today the issue was resolved by contacting a local person and they had it fixed in a matter of minutes. They also seemed genuinely mad that we'd been jerked around for several hours. Gee, what great internet speed when it works and what a bunch of baboons from somewhere else running this piss poor managed company.

God, please let them return service to the local office where there are real human beings with intelligence unlike the rest of their Huntsville, Bala Kynwyd, etc. monkey farm. After more snooping there seems to be residual problems with email servers, web servers, etc. Hopefully, the clowns will get of out the way, eventually, and let the local techs do their jobs.

Here's an idea. Why don't you apes in the boardroom see if you can kill another great TV channel like TechTV and leave service in Mississippi to Mississippi Techs? Such a sorry legacy for a company that had humble beginnings in Tupelo, Mississippi...

"Patience my ass, I just wanna' kill something!"
~Duke Nukem

Monday, February 12, 2007

Teamspeak Manners

An issue with the Teamspeak server has arisen and must be addressed. I am fulfilling a request asked by several people. This is a tool intended to enhance the gameplay of Guild Wars. There are many channels available, so if you want to chat, please use a channel other than the ones being used by folks online and gaming.

This server is NOT a forum for political or religious debate. Nor is it a place for contention or abusive behavior. If you feel the overwhelming need to curse or drink excessively then you will be asked to leave.

Prudence is not an issue here, the issue is common sense. Everybody gets emotional sometimes and an occasional outburst is okay. And I am certainly not one to try and enforce prohibition, lol. Use your head and be nice.

I provide this service free of charge and these simple requests will be adhered to... If it angers you or hurts your feelings, tough luck. You brought such misery upon yourself. Sheesh, we all need to use a bit of intelligence and get along!

So no more political discussion, etc. This is my server, my bandwidth and my time spent setting up the service. Let's play nice now. Smooch!

“Big things are expected of us, and nothing big ever came of being small.”
~Bill Clinton

Sunday, February 11, 2007

In a Word

Use passwords. Don't use some simple terminology. Always use a combination of letters and numbers. Use some UPPeR case letters. Try to incorporate symbols, *&#@$, etc. Don't use known phrases or quotes from books like the Bible or Lord of the Rings. Try to combine things that make sense to you but not to others.

Here's a good site that explains the creation of good passwords, How to create passwords you can remember. Just please use a password. Something is better than nothing. One final note. Remember it and don't expect your technician to do this for you. His passwords are probably so complicated he has trouble just remembering the ones he has in place.

"Treat your password like your toothbrush. Don't let anybody else use it, and get a new one every six months."
~Clifford Stoll

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Recent Net Attack Et Alia

There's nothing new this morning on the root server attack this past week. The beach house is monitoring the news media for info aboutr this subject. Hope they catch them. (See post on Thursday, 02/07/2007)

Got an email about the recent problem I had with Cingular not refunding money or replacing a defective earbud. It's over. I won. Take that u biatches at Cingular beside SAM's!

Please use the comments, they are there for a reason. Talk to me!

Site changes are still underway. Due to work schedule the time frame has been extended. This is a good thing.

Bad Bob, I'll try to respond about passwords in the very near future. Meanwhile, you are exactly right; it's NOT the tech's responsibility to remember client passwords, lol, ha ha ha, heh heh heh. You are kidding , right? BTW, good to see u back in the area.

"Highway to success has available stops on the roadside."
~Billy Wobblynife

Slight Wiki Problem

FYI GuildWars participants; GuildWiki is very slow. There is nothing wrong with your computer. This happens occasionally and the good folks there will correct it. What a great site! Couldn't play the game without it!

Hmmmm, wonder if recent net attack activities have anything to do with this slow down? Nah, probably not.

"Genius is nothing but a great aptitude for patience."

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Notice Anything Unusual Lately?

There are 13 root servers that boss the internet. Before you go clicking on stuff at random to find out information about this topic let me forewarn that several government institutions have the ability to monitor your activities. Interest in this, especially right now (you'll understand in a few), is probably NOT a good thing. They can seize your equipment and even put you in jail. How did I get information? I don't care. There is nothing I need to hide on my computers. Well, my dislike of Spyware/Adware, hacker jerks, Steve Jobs, COMCAST, etc. might be misconstrued as evil. Homey don't think so...

Anyway, a few nights ago some jerks attempted the take over 2 or 3 of the root servers and may have possibly even attacked one for 12 hours. This is not a good thing. The chances of them being caught are very good. It has been determined that a main concentration of the effort originated in South Korea. One of the attacks was directed at the United States Department of Defense. Wow, now is this attacking group a bunch of "rocket scientists" or what? Have they not read Kevin Mitnick's book?!?!?! Hopefully they will send SEAL teams after them with a license to kill. Read more about all this here, here, and here.

There may be residual problems, but at least they did not come close to bringing the internet to its knees. In the meantime, read the three articles above and bear with the FBI "carnivore" type software. If you are doing nothing illegal then you have nothing to fear. Wait a minute, didn't Hitler say something like that? Yes, I know it's big brotherish, but my jets are cooled about it right now, lol.

"Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none."
~William Shakespeare

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Vista is Out

Just a short message to inform everyone that Windows Vista is on the local shelves. The price for the full version of Windows Vista Ultimate is $400.00 while the same version in upgrade format is $260.00. The other 3 versions cost less. Please don't waste your money on Home Basic, the cheapest flavor. As a matter of fact if you are running Windows 2000 or XP don't even bother with the new version for now. Give it a little while. Instead, take the time that would be spent making this purchase and do updates on your present system.

"Patience is the companion of wisdom."
~St. Augustine

Monday, February 05, 2007

Guild Wars 7, Colts n' Bears 0

Yes, I did wake up and watch about 15 minutes of the Superbowl. I like that red flag thangy the coaches can use now. Wouldn't do for me to have that ability, lol. Nice that Peyton was the winning quarterback since he is Eli's brother. You know, Eli Manning, the Ole Miss quarterback that now plays for the New York Giants. Anyway, watching the rain during the game put me back to sleep and I Googled the score a few minutes ago.

Guess it's official, I am a geek. Pro football is just not interesting anymore. Besides, all that time can be spent playing GuildWars. What a change. Superbowl Sunday used to mean a party-hardy day with the Monday morning hangover. Change is nice, sometimes.

Eric Bangeman has an interesting post over at ArsTechnica. It's about Dell being sued concerning Intel kickbacks. Gosh, Dell starts making quality products at decent prices and now this hoodoo comes along. Hopefully this will pass and they will keep making decent machines with both Intel and AMD processors. Will keep you posted on this matter.

"There are several differences between a football game and a revolution. For one thing, a football game usually lasts longer and the participants wear uniforms. Also, there are usually more casualties in a football game. The object of the game is to move a ball past the other team's goal line. This counts as six points. No points are given for lacerations, contusions, or abrasions, but then no points are deducted, either. Kicking is very important in football. In fact, some of the more enthusiastic players even kick the ball, occasionally."
~Alfred Hitchcock

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Eyelids Are Still Heavy

Nope, same feeling of exhaustion today. Work calls and then the Superbowl. Ahhhh, a chance to sleep!

"People who say they sleep like a baby usually don't have one."
~Leo J. Burke

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Eyelids Are Heavy

This is basically filler due to an overwhelming desire to sleep and rest. Sometimes it's just amazing how one can sit down to watch primetime TV and wake up the next morning with a pain in the neck from sleeping in an upright position. Besides, I think that there is sublimal info in the idiot box that makes one sleep. Usually staying awake for a DVD is not a problem, it's when the channels with commercials are activated that my mind drifts off into zzzzland. As I said this is just filler. Maybe tomorrow will be a more lucid day.

"Sleep = caffeine deficiency."
~Billy Wobblynife

Friday, February 02, 2007

TGIF Again

Weird trip to the doctor today. Seems like everyone is preoccupied with one thing or another. Hopefully the next appointment will be the last for a while.

As noted in yesterday's comments there will be 4 different versions of Windows Vista. Apparently the less expensive home basic is not even worth considering so that really makes 3. Make your decision without haste.

Later, y'all. BTW who is in the Super Bowl this year?

"I have seen women walk right past a TV set with a football game on and - this always amazes me - not stop to watch, even if the TV is showing replays of what we call a "good hit," which is a tackle that causes at least one major internal organ to actually fly out of a player's body."
~Dave Barry

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Further Vista Info

Thought I'd post a flow chart for Windows Vista sent to me by Beagle. Please click on the chart to enlarge

What do you think?

"After growing wildly for years, the field of computing appears to be reaching its infancy."
~John Pierce