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Saturday - January 29, 2005

Another year

Today is Steve's 29th birthday. Happy Birthday!

Posted by jcraven at 8:49 PM | Misc

Bad Luck

Lara and I went to T.G.I. Friday's today for lunch. We had been craving our normal favorites of Orange Shrimp and Garlic Chicken. To our disappointment, they discontinued not one, but BOTH of the entrees approximately 2 weeks ago. We even chatted with the manager, but unfortunately the individual restaurants can't really do much to affect the menu. I'll probably send an email to their customer relatations department, but I don't anticipate anything being done.

This is also on the heels of Quiznos discontinuing several of my favorite subs including the BBQ Chipotle sub last month. To their credit, their owner and staff were more than willing to accommodate us, and try to create a similar sub using their existing ingredients.

Oh well.....

Posted by jcraven at 8:41 PM | Food

Friday - January 28, 2005

Old Man Winter

Well, looks like we've got some more bad weather coming.

NOAA forecast as of 12:45 PM EST FRI JAN 28 2005

Saturday...Cloudy. A chance of snow and sleet late in the afternoon. Highs in the mid 30s. Northeast winds 5 to 10 mph. Chance of precipitation 50 percent.

Saturday Night...Snow and a chance of sleet. Snow May be mixed freezing rain late. Total snow accumulations 1 to 3 inches possible. Lows around 30. Northeast winds around 5 mph. Chance of precipitation 90 percent.

Sunday...Snow mixed with some freezing rain likely early in the morning...Then changing to all rain. Little additional snow accumulation. Highs in the upper 30s. North winds 5 to 10 mph. Chance of precipitation 70 percent.

Fun times.....

Posted by jcraven at 1:05 PM | Misc

Thursday - January 27, 2005

Mac mini service manual

Check out the wonderful illustrated .pdf here. This may come in handy for taking apart or upgrading.

Posted by jcraven at 12:04 PM | Comments (1) | Tech

TiVo's bitch

So I broke down and bought a third TiVo for the bedroom from Best Buy.

So that brings the total up to three.

Philips DSR6000 (120GB drive)
DirecTV HR10-250 aka HDTiVo (250GB drive)
DirecTV R10 (80GB drive)

Reason? I got tired of trying to get the wireless AVS-5811 to work properly. Even after I RMA'd the unit, the remote repeater only worked sporadically.

Posted by jcraven at 9:10 AM | Tech

Wednesday - January 26, 2005

It's magic, or something

Nifty version of 20 Questions. I tried it a couple times. I even thought of a hard one, an iPod. It came back after 20 questions with the answer 'MP3 Player'. Pretty impressive.

Posted by jcraven at 12:56 PM | Tech

Comic Book Guy named

The elusive real name of Comic Book Guy will finally be revealed in "Simpsons" episode No. GABF02, Act 1. The blink-and-you'll-miss-it moment airs in the show after the Super Bowl on Feb. 6. In the episode, Homer inadvertently performs a wild, crowd-pleasing dance at a local carnival and is hired by several major sports figures to choreograph their victory dances. He is so successful that he gets tapped to choreograph the Super Bowl halftime show. Comic Book Guy, the snobbish know-it-all, pops up in the episode clad in a "Nerds do it Rarely" T-shirt. Since the series began in 1991, his real name has never been used.

Partial text here.

Posted by jcraven at 12:48 PM | Television

Tuesday - January 25, 2005

Movable Type 3.15 Released

Time to update..... more details here.

Posted by jcraven at 2:14 PM | Tech

Thanks everyone

Thanks to everyone for the cards and gift certificates. Already used Mom and Dad's amazon gift certificate to buy the following:

Salt Mill and matching Pepper Mill
Hard drive enclosure to make use of an IDE drive I have laying on the floor.

Posted by jcraven at 11:52 AM | Misc

Sunday - January 23, 2005

Happy Birthday to me

Today is my 26th Birthday. We're not doing anything super exciting.... just watching football. Lara made some fantastic dirt cake!

Posted by jcraven at 3:57 PM | Misc

Thursday - January 20, 2005

Mac mini has arrived!!

Took some pictures of it here. I'm impressed with Apple's shipping. It came from China, and showed up before the 22nd date that was originally announced. Glad I chose the free 5-day shipping instead of the expensive overnight option. Time to plug it up and see what it can do.....

Posted by jcraven at 2:17 PM | Tech


Build your own MP3 player. Who needs an iPod shuffle?

Posted by jcraven at 8:39 AM | Tech

Storm update

So the snow storm caught everyone off-guard. A coworker waited in traffic for 8+ hours and gave up on getting home. Over 3,000 students had to spend the night at their schools. Fun times. Here's some pictures of the traffic situation from yesterday:

Posted by jcraven at 8:13 AM | Misc

Wednesday - January 19, 2005

Mac mini on its way!

Estimated delivery date - Jan 21, 2005 by 10:30 am

weet! :-)

Posted by jcraven at 12:28 PM | Tech

Let it snow!

Bring it on.... NOAA is giving an interesting forecast for the next couple days....

Picture from the 'peak' of the storm:

Posted by jcraven at 11:32 AM | Comments (1) | Misc

Comment spam and google

I have also taken Scott's advice, and installed the MT plugin that adds the 'nofollow' attribute to comment and trackback URLS. Glad to see large companies taking initiative to get rid of this garbage....

Posted by jcraven at 11:31 AM | Comments (1) | Tech

Monday - January 17, 2005

Movie Marathon

Recently a new Hollywood Video opened down the street. They have a "Grand Opening" promotion with all movies costing only $.99 for a 5-day rental. We went on a bit of a binge and watched the following movies this weekend.

Napoleon Dynamite: This one we actually watched with Scott and Anna because Scott had it from Netflix. A pretty funny movie, but I'll probably never have the urge to watch the movie again. I think this type of movie you really have to be in the mood for.....

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban: If you've seen the other Harry Potter films, this is pretty much more of the same. The overall mood is a little more dark and menacing, but the core of the movie is still targeted to the younger audience. I do wonder though, if the younger kids watching these movies really understand the convoluted story line in each of the Harry Potter films. Maybe reading the books would also help with the confusion.

Dodge Ball: This movie is hilarious. I actually saw it originally in the theater. There's a lot of physical gags in there, but the dialogue is also great. Vince Vaughn is a perfect 'straight man' to contrast against Ben Stiller's over the top character. The DVD also has some funny outtakes, and includes the original director's ending. Apparently the director left the film for a week when the studio required him to re-write the ending after it tested poorly with audiences.

The Village: Another good (but not great) movie from M. Night Shyamalan. Some of the 'colonial' dialogue between the actors was pretty week, but once you ignore that this is a decent flick. And of course, as with each of Shyamalan's movies, there is an interesting twist at the end. I didn't figure it out even though I was looking for it the entire movie.

The Stepford Wives: I'm glad it only cost me $.99 to watch this one. The movie just wasn't terribly interesting. I don't know if the movie was really supposed to be a horror movie, or just sci-fi. It didn't really succeed at anything, and is basically totally disposable.

On a related note, Ebert and Roeper released their picks for the Worst of 2004.

Posted by jcraven at 10:42 AM | Movies & Music

Thursday - January 13, 2005


Our realtor sent us a cookie-gram from Cathy's Cookies.

If you're ever in the market to buy or sell a house, and you need assistance, give Betty Bargoil a call. She was a great help to us when buying our first house, and she's also assisted many of my coworkers. Big thanks all around.

Posted by jcraven at 12:06 PM | Misc

By popular demand.....

So my buddy Steve says, "I think your blog would really rock if it had some boobs on it".

Well here they are......

Posted by jcraven at 11:11 AM | Misc

Wednesday - January 12, 2005

Diet time once again.....

OK, so I didn't make the gym's goal of gaining <2 pounds over the holidays so I'm out 5 bucks. I went yesterday with a group of folks from work to Maggiano's. Up until then, I was eating pretty well this week. I'm going to stick to it, and start back at the gym hopefully next week.

On an unrelated note, 10 days until Mac mini ships..... :)

Posted by jcraven at 11:42 AM | Food

Tuesday - January 11, 2005


Must buy Mac mini and iPod shuffle.......

Apple's site and store are getting hammered right now......

Mac mini  iPod shuffle

UPDATE: Lara said I could get the Mac mini for my Birthday on the 23rd. Woo-hoo!!!

Posted by jcraven at 2:14 PM | Tech

Army Board Study Guide Resources

My buddy Ariel gave me a link to ArmyStudyGuide.com. Check it out if your interested.

Posted by jcraven at 12:14 PM | Misc

Live MacWorld play by play

Since there will not be a live broadcast of the keynote, the next best thing can be found at MacNN.

Posted by jcraven at 11:20 AM | Tech

Monday - January 10, 2005

MacWorld keynote tomorrow

Steve Jobs is scheduled to give his MacWorld keynote tomorrow at noon EST. Unfortunately according to reports, they are not going to broadcast the keynote live as they usually do. I'm anxiously waiting to see if they actually show the iHome/headless iMac.

Posted by jcraven at 10:58 AM | Tech

Thursday - January 6, 2005

Grrrr. DirecTV

So DirecTV had several large announcements from CES today. The biggest is here. At first, everything is happy. They're going to start offering HD local channels to the 12 top markets. Great news.

Then comes the following:
HD local programming will be received via a single dish -- slightly larger than the current standard dish -- and customers will require new HD set top boxes due to new compression technology.

What! After reading some other releases about the new compression, eventually all the HD channels will be moved over.....which renders that nice $1,000 HDTiVo basically useless. Of course it can still record OTA signals and SD DirecTV channels, but that just sucks. Also, they announced a new non-TiVo DVR, so it's questionable whether they will ever release a new HDTiVo for replacement. They will probably offer whatever generic PVR they come out with next. It's a sad day......

Full CES DirecTV press releases can be found here.

Some good news came from TiVo though. They are going to introduce a Cable card compatible TiVo. Hopefully they will offer HD recording and dual tuners. I've been a loyal customer of DirecTV ever since I got my first DirecTiVo unit, but if you take away TiVo, I will probably jump ship along with a large number of other users.

Posted by jcraven at 3:01 PM | Tech

Tuesday - January 4, 2005

Free digital prints at CVS.

Yesterday I went to CVS to use the following coupon for 10 free digital camera prints. I've never used CVS's service, but I was fairly impressed. The 4x6 pictures came out very nice. They're printed on Kodak paper, but they do have a different 'feel' from a standard print. You can do some basic cropping/editing from the kiosk which is a nice touch. Also, apparently you can upload your pictures to cvs.com, but I haven't personally tried it as I don't know if the coupon would work.

Posted by jcraven at 10:37 AM | Comments (1) | Deals