Thursday, August 23, 2012

I am not a cat person

But this is one of the coolest things I have seen in a while:

Monday, August 20, 2012

RIP Tony Scott

Tony Scott directed one of my favorite films, True Romance, and by doing so made Reservoir Dogs possible. He chose to end his life rather than suffer the slow, painful and degrading death due to inoperable brain cancer.

Rest in peace.

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

I Screamed

For ice cream! Ice cream sandwich that is! **Warning, all computery type talk ahead**

I had a bit of a nerdgasm yesterday when I read online that Ice Cream Sandwich was available for me. For those slightly less nerdly, Ice Cream Sandwich is the nickname for version 4 of the Android Operating System. It has been available on certain smart phones and tablet devices for a while, but yesterday the company that makes my Android Tablet (Toshiba) released a version for my tablet.

This was not all good news. Most users got a notification on their actual devices that they could connect to the Toshiba update location and download the new OS and have in installed automatically. This option was not available to me. Being a nerd, I "rooted" my tablet the day I received it. It's called "rooting" because you are giving yourself "root" access to the device, derived from the unix meaning of root access, meaning total access.

Basically when you run the stock version of the operating system on these devices, you are at the mercy of the manufacturer. If they want you to have certain applications on your device, you cannot delete them. If they don't want you using certain features of the device or running certain applications, they will block your ability to use them. They aren't overly restrictive, but it's annoying that they are using up your precious memory space with programs you may not want, and it's even more annoying that you are not free to do whatever you like with a device you purchased.

When you have root access, you can delete or install whatever you like. You have unrestricted access to all the features and workings of your device. This is good and bad, you could potentially break something, which is also not impossible with a stock device but a bit less likely, and you lose access to the approved update mechanism, which gets you the latest improvements and updates. And this improvement and update was something I really wanted.

Luckily for me the people who develop hacked ROMs for my tablet were really on the ball and had a rooted version of the new operating system an hour after the official version was released. AN HOUR! To say these folks were looking forward to this release is a vast understatement.

So last night was spent backing up and downloading and installing and restoring and all kinds of nerd fun. I am really liking the new OS so far. The greatest improvement is in the speed of browsing the internet and the smoothness of video playback. Since those are two of the three things I do the most on my tablet, I'd call that a tremendous improvement.

I haven't run into any bugs or significant interface changes that have bothered me. It's slightly less intuitive than it was, which is strange, but interfaces change all the time.

Thursday, August 02, 2012


I love my coworkers with all my heart. I really really do. But sometimes they say things I just cannot fathom.

I was reading a story online about Mitt Romney's IRA account, mentioning that I've read stories that explain how it's possible to have over a hundred million dollars in the account that you are legally prohibited from putting more than six thousand dollars a year into, but I still suspect something shady must have gone on. And my coworker asked "well, how many years has he been contributing?"

$100,000,000 divided by $6,000 equals 16,666 years. Maybe he started working really really young.

At lunch today, while telling me that the best movie he's ever seen is "Transformers 2" another coworker asked me "What's 'Citizen Kane,' is that the black-and-white movie that's supposed to be about the holocaust?"

After explaining that he's talking about 'Schindler's List' and asking him about other Stephen Spielberg movies he said 'Saving Private Ryan' was not very good and 'Jaws' sucked, but if they remade it today with decent effects, it would be a lot better. "They could show from inside the shark, ripping a guy into pieces." Yes, that's exactly what 'Jaws' was missing.

The subject of 'Citizen Kane' came up because they wanted to know what was considered the best movie ever made, and I told them that a lot of people feel like 'The Godfather' was the best movie ever made. Neither of them had seen it, but one of them said "If they do a remake with modern effects, I'll probably watch that."

My coworkers usually spend lunch time with their faces buried in their smart phones. Via this we found out that 'Transformers 4' was going to happen, but they were both disappointed that Shia Labeouf was not going to be involved. When we were discussing what films they thought were good movies and why, the word 'story' was never involved. The acronyms CGI and ILM were constant, however.

I'm beginning to understand why new movies aren't quite as good as I expect them to be. I'm not the desired audience, and the desired audience doesn't want what I want. At all.