Random Thursday

Busy weekend ahead; you’ll understand why if you have the patience to read what follows.

  • I’ll admit it: most of my clients are, well, better off than me financially. I’m used to dealing with very successful entrepreneurs, artists, execs, etc. Even so, I rarely feel any sort of envy; that’s just not my nature, plus we’re hardly underprivileged in an absolute sense. But yesterday was an exception as I walked into a 12-floor downtown office and saw the following: (1) a 15″ MacBook Pro; (2) a 20″ Intel iMac; and (3) an Apple 30″ Cinema HD Display. The notebook computer was equipped so that it was able to drive that big honkin’ monitor without a hitch. Father, forgive me, for I have violated the Tenth Commandment.
  • Did I mention that this was an oil service company’s office? (That will probably be meaningful only to those local folks who think that Macs have no place doing “real work.”)
  • Tomorrow’s my wedding anniversary, followed two days later by MLB‘s birthday. As a result, I spent 30 minutes in the Hallmark store trying to figure out why I should pay some yahoo $1.95 to say something I could say better, albeit with worse handwriting. Wedding anniversary cards are the worst. I felt like I’d drunk a gallon of white Karo by the time I left.
  • And, yes, I did buy cards. I choose my battles pretty carefully.
  • I’m starting to get the itch for an XM Radio subscription. Any advice?
  • Need or want to send huge email attachments but your ISP won’t let you? A free service called Pando will let you send attachments up to one gigabyte in size, regardless of whichever old and busted internet provider you’re using. It’s currently in beta but the Wall Street Journal’s Technology Editor, Walter Mossberg, says it already works remarkably well. Your mileage will vary depending on your connection speed, but in any event the service effectively removes the limitations on email attachment size.
  • I’ve added some new Abbye pics to the random display in the right column. Feel free to reload this page until they come up. 😉 Or, you could just hack the urls, if you’re into that sort of thing.
  • “Firefox: The Blogger Reader’s Choice” — According to this article, Firefox adoption has again gathered steam and is now being used by almost 13% of web surfers. However, a recent analysis of visitor stats by the blog directory Blog Flux shows that Firefox usage among the readers of its registered members is closer to 25%. The Blog Flux stats are derived from 20 million page views per month, so the population is big enough to be credible. IE continues to have a depressing 64% usage, however.

Be careful out there today. If Pogo were here he’d point out that Friday the 13th falls on a Thursday this month.


  1. Happy coming anniversary!

    I’m starting to get the itch for an XM Radio subscription. Any advice?

    Bear in mind that “XM Ready” does not mean, you know, able to receive XM radio signals and convert them into sound.
    I bought a new car radio a while back, partly because it was “XM Ready” (but mostly because it played MP3 CDs, and my car radio only played tapes) – I figured I’d try XM out and see if I liked it.
    It turns out that “XM Ready” means “able to control an XM receiver, which you’ll have to buy separately from this radio.” Needless to say, I didn’t do that part.
    Advice: do more homework than I did.

  2. Happy impending anniversary!
    I would think that handmade cards would get more points than Hallmark ones, but it’s good you have some kind of card for each occasion. 🙂
    All I can say about XM is that from Tim’s brief research into the whole thing is that if you want sports you’re better off with XM, but if you want music, you’re better off with Sirius. Beyond that? We have Sirius stations through our TV dish and enjoy them with great frequency, but I can’t imagine that helps you any. 🙂

  3. “I’m starting to get the itch for an XM Radio subscription. Any advice?”
    Yes. Get it. I really love mine. But you can only listen to it in the car unless they have one of those receivers that you can carry around with you.
    And Happy Anniversary!!

  4. Thanks for the HAs, guys, as well as for the XM tips. I would definitely be getting a portable receiver with a car adapter kit.
    I wish Apple would go ahead a cut a deal with either XM or Sirius and put the satellite radio capability into a ‘pod.

  5. We love our XM Radios, have them in all of our trucks (mine came equipped, but the boys and Steve drive :):) non-GMs so we got them the Roady’s. They’re fancier than mine, the songs and stock tickers scroll across. Best Buy will install for a small fee (and usually, the Best Buy ones come with a promo to further reduce your price at XM).
    PS – for a present for MLB (she could have the one for the office), multiple accts bring the monthly price down. Also, you get a deal for paying annually.

  6. Becky told me that you were considering getting a satellite radio. I have XM mainly to listen to sports and news. I don’t have an adapter I just have it in my truck. I got sick of listening to the same old dribble every morning on the way to work on standard radio in our area so I went with satellite radio. I like to show up to work as if I am up on all the latest, or at least pretend like I know what is going on. The soundbites I hear on the radio get me through the day. If you like baseball, XM is defintely the way to go. For Howard Stern (ugh)fans, go with Sirius. I can’t tell that much of a difference in music. We have Sirius music on our DISH in the house.

  7. Be sure to add POTC/Dead Man’s Chest to your weekend celebrations. There is somewhat of a love story in there. Your 2 ticket purchases will help to skyrocket this film into an even greater blockbuster. Many are anxiously awaiting your insightful review.

  8. If you buy a receiver like the XM Roady or Sky-Fi, you can get the optional home docking station that allows you to move the receiver from your car to your home without having to buy a second radio. However, much like the printer companies and the fees they charge for toner cartredges, the price financially-strapped Delphi charges for the home docking stations is usually a little out of line for what the product actually costs them to produce.
    As for Firefox, while I’ve been using it on my eMac running 10.3 since I got the computer at the office, it’s taken to the nasty habit of freezing up the computer at times and completely erasing the histories in the URL address window when rebooted. I’ve tried dumping all the current Firefox directories (Mac OSX has a problem with Adobe programs such as Photoshop and In-Design that occassionally require hunting down and killing off the program’s library files to solve) and installing the latest version of Firefox from the Mozilla site, but that only seems to have lessened the problem, not cured it (I could simply go with Safari, but I hate the lack of a drop-down option in the URL address window — whose stupid idea was it to copy Internet Explorer on that feature?)

  9. Janie, I’m thinking that my wife would take whatever we get to her office (assuming she can play it through the Bose iPod boombox-thingie she has), and I would use it when she’s not. I don’t listen to anything during the day…my attention span’s too short.
    Mark, I gave up a long time ago trying to sound knowledgeable about anything, so XM isn’t going to help me there. And, actually, I don’t listen to talk radio either. It’s all about the music for me.
    Becky, we’re planning to go to the 12:30 pm matinee tomorrow. I’ll try to develop some insight beforehand, but don’t hold your breath.
    John, you mean that Delphi actually applies a markup to their product? *gasp* 😉
    Have you upgraded to 10.3.9? It seems a lot more stable that 10.3 was. I also have kept with Firefox 1.0.7 because I heard horror stories about 1.5. But I’m still getting a lot of freezes, especially on Flash sites. I’ve never had that lost-the-history problem though, and it’s certainly never frozen the whole computer.

  10. Is the tenth commandment “Thou shall not covet thy neighbour’s wife”? 😉
    Am checking out Pando now. I always need to send larger files than they let me.
    Pogo! Gosh pogo! I haven’t thought about pogo in a long time…
    You’re full of interesting bits and pieces you know, like one of those kaleidoscope thingies.

  11. “You’re full of interesting bits and pieces you know, like one of those kaleidoscope thingies.”
    Gosh. What a neat and complimentary thing to say about someone.

  12. Mis_nomer, I think the world would be a good deal better off if more people quoted Pogo. And I’ll be really embarrassed if I did get the wrong commandment in there! 😉
    Janie, I was just thinking the same thing…I’m quite flattered.

  13. See, that’s what I’m talking about Mis_Nomer…that is a very artistic (poetic) image…the “kaleidoscope thingie.” Very fitting too.
    Happy pre-Anniversary and Happy Birthday to YLB!

  14. Happy anniversary to you and YLB. And, there’s no guarantee that satellite radio will work for YLB at the office.
    I have one of the Roady XT’s that I move between car and office. Mine works fine, but antenna placement’s pretty critical.
    I run the XT through a line jack into my Bose Wave radio and it’s great.
    As for the music, the line-up’s fine with me.

  15. Gwynne, thanks very much…and even more for the generous pledge! 😉
    Kelly, she’s mentioned other co-workers who are able to get a good signal at the office, so perhaps it will just be a matter of putting the antenna in the right place. I’m glad to hear that the line-out/line-in setup works well; I was counting on that.
    It sounds like the Roady XT is the portable of choice…

  16. That’s what I’ve got in the car, while my old Sky-Fi is now the home portable unit, after I decided to suck it up and pay the $7 for a second subscription (XM and Sirius market their radios mainly in the big urban areas, but you really don’t appreciate it until you take a ride to Presidio and back and find your radio options become a bit sparse once you get south of I-10).
    As for OX 10.3.9, it’s running on the eMac, along with Firefox which is not as buggy as the original 1.5, but still hasn’t solved the freeze up problem. Meanwhile, I’m seeing what Netscape 8.1 does on my HP laptop with XP home on it. It’s basically Firefox with an IE emulator for websites enamoured with Mr. Gates Active X crap, plus a security center. So far, it’s done all right, but the security stuff does make it slow loading at times.

  17. John, if you’re driving to Presidio, radio station coverage is the least of your problems. 😉
    Does XELO still broadcast from somewhere down there? Or am I thinking of something else?
    I have not kept up with Netscape, which was my browser of choice for years; didn’t realize it was up to version 8.

  18. …and even more for the generous pledge!
    Eric, there was no way to so indicate, but I figured you would know that the second pledge is in response to Beth’s Blogathon efforts. You two (and Jimmy) can figure out how to split the Thank You letter from MFH after the ‘thon is over. 😉

  19. Eric:
    I don’t go to Presidio that often, but it was a trip down there in 2003 that finally made me decide to go over to Best Buy in Midland and pick up a Sky-Fi. Ihave no regreats, though thanks to the increase in stations without a corresponding increase in bandwidth (and a lost legal battle with Clear Channel), the sound quality isn’t what it was on most stations a couple of years ago.
    XELO I believe is still out of Chihuahua. Ojinaga has a couple of local stations, but for some reason, they’ve never bee part of my car radio presets. 🙂
    AOL farmed out the latest version of Netscape to a Canadian company to put the Internet Explorer emulator over Firefox, and the security center so that if you hit a rogue Active X site while in IE mode, the browser doesn’t kill your computer the way IE does (So far Netscape hasn’t produced an OSX version of their Series 8.x browser, and I wouldn’t be suprised if the skip the thing entirely and go directly to the Intel-based Macs, given how clueless AOL is about why they bought Netscape in the first place).

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