Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Is it too late for "Spring Cleaning"?

So, every so often I get in the mood where I want to take all the clutter around me and organize it a little better. (Don't say a word Erin Hern, I know what you are thinking) So as always I started on my electronics this past week while I was off on vacation leave from work. Unfortunately I haven't made very good progress yet. The plan was to get my computer into shape. Install a new system, copy over what I really needed from the old ones, then just scrap them. This is still a work in progress. Next I plan on doing the same to the wife's PC and the one in the living room we use as a video storage/player. Then while at work tonight the idea occurred to me that my daughter is finely getting to an age where she can really start learning about music. So now my goal for the next two off days is to get the studio cleaned out and back up and running. She always comes in and wants to play the drums but I haven't had them hooked up in over a year, maybe longer. So I intend on getting it going so I can start teaching her some stuff and starting to record again myself. Which I have always enjoyed doing but kinda slacked off on after all my recording buddies moved away a few years ago. I am really looking forward to the day when me and syd can spend some time just jamming away, even though I am sure the wife won't care for it much. She has never been a big fan of the studio. I do plan on posting alot of the stuff I do on the net since I have a web server just sitting around collecting dust. I should be able to at least post links to the stuff here, and maybe even the files themselves if I can figure out how. So here is to spring cleaning and new ventures, hopefully this one will be as fun as I imagine it being.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

A New Way To Live Free...

I am by no means the advocating type for anything. I don't tend to spread my ideals and way of life to other people actively. I don't take part in rallies or events meant to spread awareness for anything. Needless to say I am not the extrovert type, I am proudly and quietly the regular run of the mill introvert. But when pressed  I am not ashamed or too shy to tell you what I am thinking or how I feel. So with this post I tend to change some of that. So here goes my first big step into the world of advocating something I do feel rather strongly about in recent years.

When I first started out with computers I think I was about 13 or so. I remember my mom got us a Packard-Bell PC with Windows 95 on it. I have fond memories of America Online. Listening to those little rings and chirps as you were connecting to the outside world. We weren't the richest family growing up so we had to make do with all those free 24 hours Cd's America Online would put out in the mail. I would burn through those in just a few days. I was amazed at how it all worked and how I could find stuff way easier and faster then trying to go find a book that had what I was looking for in it. Needless to say it was love at first sight for me. Don't believe me just ask the wife or anyone else that knows me now. I am proudly the resident geek and overall computer and tech gadget go to man.

After the newness wore off of just browsing the web or playing freecell, I started to explore deeper. I remember the first time I saw source code. It was confusing as all hell but something about it perked my interests. It's like a whole different world that most people just pass by everyday and never even realize it is there. Most people that use computers today have no knowledge what so ever about how they work and most could care less. Every computer today operates on binary code which is just a bunch of ones and zeros. And they can do nothing that they are not told ahead of time how to do. This is where programming languages come in. At this current time there are more than 50 different languages one could use to tell a computer how to deal with certain things. I myself know a little of about 5 different ones. They all have different strengths and weaknesses, but that is a completely different post to itself.

Back to the original idea I was after is every computer you use has some type of software running on the hardware to get the job done. You have tons of different types of software ranging from Operating Systems, standalone applications, web apps, phone apps just to name a few. All of these has at one point a person or team of people sit down and write all the code for it to work. But overall every piece of software falls into one of two categories. Free (as in free speech) and open source or propriatary (closed source) software. Just as an example just about anything from Microsoft or Apple is closed. Which means you pay them for the right to use their software and you have no right to change or in most cases even see the source code. You have to agree to use it the way they want you to and you give all rights away to do so. If you have ever spent the time to read one of those terms of service you will see what you are really giving up to use the software. In just about all cases even though you pay for it you do not own anything.

Now to the other side of the coin, enter Open Source software. Things like Linux, FreeBSD, Unix, and a mega ton of other software fall into this side. Most of the Google apps you use to things like Android on your phone to FireFox web browser are all examples of open source.

So why should you care, I hear you asking? Well for starters most of the Open Source stuff is free. But even better you don't end up signing away your first born child for the right to use it. And to take it one step further if you wanted to you could look at and even change the software to your liking if you were so inclined.

I have been using Linux as my main operating systems for about 5 years now, and every chance I get I find a open source app to get the job done instead of using something else. This is the main reason I have an Android phone rather than an Iphone. There is usually and equal or sometimes better open source solution for every closed source one. The benefits are really beyond the scope of this post, but I would be glad to help anyone to better understand the situation if they wanted to know. My intentions for this post was just to get the word out that there is a better way then what you may be using now to free yourself from the chains that bind you to the money hungry companies. More stuff will follow in further posts to start to teach people how to take back control of the stuff you pay your hard earned money on.

Dissecting Anger

There is a short list of thing I don't like. It ranges from Non-free software (any thing Apple comes to mind here), Taxes, working over at work, and general stupidity just to name a few. The list of things I hate is even shorter. Politicians in general, debt, and one unnamed person from high school. Then I have a special list that tops them all, the "Things I Loathe" list. Although I should change to word "things" to just the singular "thing" because there is only one resident that lives in this list. Riverfest.

As a short disclaimer: I have very bias opinions about this so please do not take my views as the end all on the matter.

One weekend every year I live in a state of constant rage and overall unpleasant disposition. I can not pin it down to why I feel this way towards a simple event that I myself have not been to in years (more than 10). My wife has been on the board that organizes the event the last couple of years up until this year. And during these years is when I really started to build these feeling towards it. When I stopped going it was just because it was not very fun, the bands were never anything worth spending the time on. It was just a place to go to have something to do in this town, which offers very little in the way of entertainment. But when you see a person you care about coming home from meetings crying because everyone was arguing and blaming each other over a lackluster event you feel upset. Or seeing them run into the ground with nothing in the way of compensation. At first I just didn't like the way she was being treated and couldn't understand why she would be putting herself in that position. It may not always seem this way but if someone was to hurt her, I would be hell bent on doing everything in my power to do something about it. The same would hold true for either one of my little girls. Normally I am a pretty laid back person and I have only gotten really angry very few times in my life.

Just as a side note, I once got mad at a girl in high school and put my fist through a picture of her in a glass covered frame, through the wall panelling made of wood and into a stud inside the wall. This little outburst cost me a trip to the ER to get 10 stitches and a broken finger or two. And even looking back on it now, it was worth every second of pain that it caused. Needless to say I am not a violent person but I couldn't say I wouldn't have done the same thing to her face that night had I been close enough.

I say all that to say this, it is hard to do anything to an event other than just not go. Which is the main problem I believe in this situation. I have no real way to vent the feelings I have built up so they just sit there and fester like a rabid sore over flowing with infection. There is just no other way to say it. I try not to think about it and just let it go, but every year when the wife says she is going or helping or anything involving Riverfest, I get the feeling all rushing back and causing me not to be able to sleep eat very much or be very sociable at all. It is really screwed up that I have as little control over the matter as I do. I do not want to take it out on her or anyone else for that matter, but that is usually what happens. I do feel bad about it later but in the heat of the moment it is like a werewolf changing over and going on a killing spree. Just today I told myself I would not blow up when she came home, but I did.

Next year I plan on taking a week of vacation the week of the event and getting out of town just so I can pretend it is not happening. I know this is sad but I don't what else to do other than remove myself from the situation and hope it goes away. Because I would hate to say or god forbid do anything I could not fix with a simple "I am sorry". And if my wife wants to continue being part of it then good for her. I just don't want to be around.

Now I know most people will see this as complete craziness, and I for one would have to agree. But no matter what happens it still gets to me in a way I can't explain or do anything about. It is really frustrating. It should be over in a few hours so I only have 362 days before I have to worry about it again. And hopefully I will get some much needed sleep tonight and begin making up to the wife who I am sure I have angered over the past couple days.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Why yes I am...

There are alot of things people choose to do with their free time. From sports to collecting, from art to working out. The possibilities are endless. Even two people with the same passion don't seem to go about it the same way. And what good is living if you can't do something that brings you a little slice of happy?

So what is my "thing" you say? Why I am a gamer. Ever since my college years I have played one mmo or another. My current one is Lotro. I am not ashamed to be a thrity-something kid at heart that loves playing a game with freinds. My wife on the other hand finds it hard to see just what I see in this. And to this I say "To each his own". I find some of the things other people do as a waste of time, but hey, if they are happy good for them.

Everyone does their "thing" to get away from the daily grind. And really that's what it is for. Everyone needs a little something to make it all seem ok. Most people you see that always seem down and bitter just has not found their "thing" yet. Give them time they will get there. And nothing in the world makes someone happier than you taking a little time and supporting what they like to do. Just a little understanding and show of interest in what they do will go a long way.

Just give them a little of your time and care about what they love and they will go out of their way to do the same for you. It is a cycle that feeds itself and will only make things better.

And for times when you may not get what someone is into, just ask and listen. I am sure they would love to share it with you.

Sunday, September 18, 2011


Yes I am lazy, and NO I haven't posted in a bit. Sorry I just have been using all my time to master the art of doing NOTHING. And I think I almost got it!!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

To the Sleep Gods...

I have a small request on my wifes behalf. She really needs a bit more sleep than she has been getting lately. So if you could work out a little extra time for her to spend in dreamland that would be awesome. She does deserve it for all the stuff she puts up with. I mean she has big sister and of course little sister to deal with. Then you go and add myself and other daily tasks to the list and it really starts to add up. So maybe next time you can have it so baby sister sleeps an hour our two longer and big sis makes it all night without an issue. Thanks guys I know she will ready appreciate it alot.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Out of sync..

Sorry been out of pocket (aka. lazy) lately will get some new stuff up this weekend. Lots of ideas floating around just no time yet.