January 30, 2004

The Giration Awards January 2004
Posted by Jess in Giration Awards

This month's winner of the first Giration Awards goes to my neighbor, Erin!


Congratulations Erin! Erin wins the first award for several reasons.

1. Not only was this picture taken at Erin's house on her birthday, but the entire reason we are fortunate to have the giration at all is because of Erin. Therefore it is only fitting that she can have the honor of being the first to win this prestigious award.

2. Upon being asked to go over to play PS2 Jeopardy at Erin's one night, she asked me if I'd bring the giration over because she missed it. Maybe because we originally bought it to give to Erin, she feels a special bond with giration?

Who am I kidding. Who DOESN'T feel a special bond with giration?

Please note how Erin wisely holds the giration at a safe distance. Look how proud her husband is!

Who will be the next to win the giration award? Could it be you? Do you have that certain 'giration-sais-quoi'? Only giration knows...

History of the giration and archives of previous winners...

Probably one of the best reasons to post your solution on the forums...
Posted by Jess in Tech Talk

...is so when later on down the road, when you FORGET what you did and need the same solution, you can go back and search the forums for the answer you so thoughtfully provided. :-)

I'm usually pretty good at posting my solution in the forum. Except this one time, I just wrote "thanks!".

Yeah Jess, thanks for NOTHING! LOL....

January 28, 2004

An alcohol conundrum?
Posted by Jess in Day to Day

Here's something to ponder...these are the silly things I wonder about on a regular basis.

When going to dinner party, it's normal and considered good practice to bring beer, or a bottle of wine, or both. So when the host asks you what you want to drink, here's the thing.

Do you go for the alcohol that the host already has, or do you open what you brought?

The first suggests that you don't want what you brought*. So does that show that you think you didn't bring anything good? The second suggests that you are rejecting what the host has provided, and do you plan on doing the same thing for dinner?

Kind of silly, really, but I've wondered, nonetheless. :-)

*Smoking Loon 2001 Merlot (California) is the best wine I've ever had for under $10, btw. And a beautiful bottle also, if you like that sort of thing.

January 26, 2004

Reboot, the party animal.
Posted by Jess in Day to Day

Sorry for the huge photos twice in one week on the page.. but I couldn't help wanting to post these.

My neighbor gave me a balloon, thinking that Reboot might want to play with it. I tell you, until that bad boy popped 15 minutes later, Reboot was just like a little child. She didn't try to chew it, rather she enjoyed holding the string down with a paw and paddling it back and forth with the other paw, just like we all did when we used to get a balloon!

The best part was when she let go of it and it floated to the ceiling. We have as an MPEG file. At first she whined, but then was smart enough to jump up and yank down the string. When it hit the ground, she then pulled down the topmost part of string so she could continue to play with it.



January 25, 2004

Southern New England Bloggers meetup
Posted by Jess in RI Stories

Had a blast on Friday night at Dave & Busters in Providence for the first ever meetup of Southern New England Bloggers!

SNE Bloggers was designed as a place to link bloggers in Southeastern MA, RI and CT.

A great time was had by all, about eight of us were there, and none of us left until about midnight. It was a pleasant surprise to see such a diverse group of people that really didn't know each other that well just enjoy each other's company. Because no matter how different we all are, you know we all have at least one thing in common: blogging!

Though there could have been more people that showed up, however, Jason decided the SNE Blogger's logo resolution degraded a bit too much if the sign was any larger. :-D

The dollar bill was added later for means of comparison.

Again, all in all, a wonderful time was had by all.

Jim, Jonathan, Jason and Tom. Not shown, Amy.

January 20, 2004

It's official... Admin 2004
Posted by Jess in Announcements

I can't say how excited I am about this. I'll be holding a session this year at the View's Admin 2004 conference in May, Best Practices to Maintain a User Environment.

Read all about it!


I have to hope it's not too late to update my bio on their site... I have more things to add to it, especially now that I have a quick website. And, thanks to the recommendations of Libby, who is a seasoned vet at these sort of things, I would like to add this site to it.

So much going on! I'm also giving a two-part seminar for the South Kingstown Parks & Recreation department in March, Combating Viruses and Spam.

I needed to get a site up quickly, so here goes: www.solaceconsulting.com. Bill Brunelle is going to help make it better. :-)

I needed a quick overview of everything I have going on, and past acknowledgements and things like that, thus the site.

Whew! This is turning out to be quite a first quarter. Did I mention I was excited?

January 19, 2004

Syberia & Uru: Ages Beyond Myst
Posted by Jess in Gaming

I've mentioned several times how much Matt and I love to play adventure computer games.

We've long discovered that two brains are better than one, and love spending quality time with furrowed brows clicking on items until we find the right one. Now that I have my laptop, it's even better. We bring out the speakers & subwoofer to the living room, put on a fire and play the night away.

We just got done playing Syberia, and just started Uru: Ages Beyond Myst.

A few notes.

Syberia was named Editor's Choice for many games sites, ie. Gamespot. Matt and I were really disappointed. Granted, the backdrops and scenery were breathtaking. The story was good, however extremely abrupt and anticlimatic at the end.

But the real disappointment lay in the game itself. It really wasn't a game, it was more click-and-walkthrough. The puzzles and conversations spoon-fed us the answers. For example, we walked into a room, and there were only two things to interact with: a card lying in plain sight on an otherwise empty desk, and a card reader right beside it. Not much guesswork there.

Then we'd talk to a character, and the character would say something like, "first you need to flip that lever over there. Then the train will go."

So needless to say, while it was beautiful to look at, I won't be recommending it to anyone.

We just started Uru last night. Here's two signs that this is going to be a good game:

1. The game starts, and the puzzles involve first figuring out what the puzzles are.

2. Within two minutes of the game starting, we have to pull out a notebook and start writing down symbols.

I'll post more on the game once it's finished. But it's looking good so far!

For more information:
Uru: Ages Beyond Myst

January 14, 2004

Computer geek + Health Club just don't mix
Posted by Jess in Geek Humor

I love a good fish out of water story. As with any consultant, the one thing we get to do is get a glimpse of many industries, verticals and office situations.

The other day was spent working onsite at a health club. Now, before I go any further, I feel I should add that my idea of working out is lifting computers. My idea of a perfectly balanced diet is ice cream (dairy), red wine (grapes/fruit), goldfish crackers (fish), and candy corn and JuJu beans (vegetables).

I was there for about 8 hours, and forgot to bring food with me. By hour eight, I would have eaten my scarf. (The only thing that stopped me was the fact that it was about 4 degrees outside, which is good, because I heard that wool is murder on the digestive system.) The computer I was working on was called smartly called "CHECKIN", at the reception desk. I was at a command prompt trying to get something going, and couldnít for the life of me figure out why I kept getting "file not found." Turns out I was typing "CHICKEN".

This should be a reminder to me to bring a snack with me no matter where I go. Though, hindsight being 20/20, I should plan ahead and bring a snack that wonít ruin diplomatic relations with my clients. I guarantee you, if I had brought a snack with me, it probably would have been a Snickers bar or something like that.

Thereís no way I could have brought out that bad boy in the middle of a health club, I would have had to shrink and huddle in a corner somewhere and open up my prize, praying not to get caught. On the other hand, maybe I could have scalped it. Itís a health club, so maybe they don't eat that stuff very often. Who knows, I bet they would all be secretly whispering to me, "c'mon, just one little bite!". The staff eats behind the counter, sure, but itís always an orange, or "Protein Dew".

Though I know we all have our professional nitpicks, itís what we do for a living. As soon as they would look at me and say "my god, look what sheís eating!", I could just as quickly come back with a "I saw you power computer down without going to Start first!".

At least they are in better shape than I am.

January 12, 2004

Don't ya hate it when things you love get trendy?
Posted by Jess in Day to Day

I just discovered this article on MSNBC today:
Martial Arts Meets Dance in Health Clubs, with a subheading of "Brazilian exercise popping up in trendy gyms". They are talking about Capoeira, Brazilian martial arts.

I think it's wonderful that the art is spreading, as no one had ever heard of it when I started taking it. I say that, but at the same time, that's exactly what's bothering me about it.

Call it fun, call it aerobic, call it rich with history, but please don't call it trendy. That implies that it's a superficial fad that no one's ever heard of before, and that it will soon disappear and probably become laughable later. I can't stand the thought of a group of people remeniscing ten years down the road over coffee one day talking about my dear Capoeira, saying, "what WERE we thinking?"

I become selfish at moments like this, selfish at things and hobbies that I hold near and dear. Maybe I hold them too near?

Some people could say the same about blogging. I'm certainly not one of the first people to ever blog, and I probably helped make someone else sick of the subject. But you'll never hear me cheapen it by labeling it a trend. Writing is special to me too, and I'll never cheapen someone else's blog by thinking that what they write about is unimportant. It's important to them.

I always root for the underdog. Ask me who my favorite team is, the answer will always be the same - the one that's currently in last place. The one no one's ever heard of before.

Maybe that's why things like this bother me so much.

January 09, 2004

A quick note about @home web servers...
Posted by Jess in Tech Talk

Note to self: Most ISP's block port 80 incoming. So, the next time I set up a web server and configure my router for port forwarding, I don't need to waste hours and hours figuring out why I'm getting "This page cannot be displayed." I've probably set up the port forwarding correctly. I've also correctly created my Internet site in Domino 6.5. I've even set up my login form correctly.

I don't need to spend hours redoing it all, and constantly dumping my cache files.

I can just change the port & URL.

Sigh. Whaddya know?

January 07, 2004

Rhode Island Stories - Intro
Posted by Jess in RI Stories

Iíve mentioned before what a great place Rhode Island is, and how our degree of separation from one another isnít the widely standardized six, itís actually one person. What better way to explain our quirks than to tell you real stories about them?

We wonít drive to the next town over for anything unless itís absolutely necessary. When we DO go out anywhere, itís only natural we will run into someone we know. Because of this, our eyes start going back and forth like a Cylon Raider no matter where we are. Itís also because of this closeness, that when asked if you are from around here, the answer is no unless you live on the same street.

For some reason that even I have yet to understand, Rhode Islanders love vanity license plates. Itís very common to see a personís initials on their plates. And the lower license plate number you have, the more important in stature you must be.

In Rhode Island, bartering is still the primary method of doing business. Itís easy, because one can get anything depending on ďwho you know.Ē But even then itís okay if you donít know someone, because the degree of separation is only one person, chances are, someone you know does.

We donít get snow very often, being so near the coast. So when the weatherman states that flurries are coming our way, the entire state feels compelled to rush to the grocery stores to buy bread and milk. Even native Rhode Islanders donít know why they do this. They just do. I believe that the weathermen are in cahoots with the radio station, who broadcasts subliminal messages over the airwaves. The DJís themselves are in cahoots with the bread and milk companies. Itís all a big marketing scam. But itís widely known enough to prompt my mother to tell me that she thinks that ďBread and MilkĒ is a great name for a Rhode Island based band. I have to agree.

I think thatís a good enough start. You get the idea. Weíre a strange bunch. But you know what? Iíve never seen a more close-knit state and couldnít imagine living anywhere else.

January 05, 2004

Happy Birthday Dear Matt...
Posted by Jess in Announcements

Happy Birthday to Matt today... who is also celebrating his last day off of work since his vacation at Christmas. :-D

Bummer for me, as I've enjoyed his company over the past two weeks while I work at home. It's going to be hard to watch him go back to work (plus, he makes GREAT coffee).

Reboot will be quite bummed again, now the house will be returned to just us ladies during the day.

Happy Birthday hubbie O' Mine!

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