April 30, 2005

Towel Anyone?
Posted by Matt in Geek Humor

Yesterday was an interesting day. At work, we just got a new storage server that holds 8.8 terabytes of data. The interesting part was it did so by having 42 hot swappable hard drives contained within it. Any other day I would have said “cool” but the significance of the 42 on opening day of The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy just gave it more meaning. Jess & I have been looking forward to the movie for a long time. We planned on going to see it opening day but we didn’t know when. There was talk at my office about an “offsite meeting” at the cinema as well as talk amongst our friends about going at night. With the offsite meeting falling through, it was going to have to be at night. Our friends, Bill & April, also wanted to go so we found a time that worked for both of us. The time of the movie was 10:10 PM so Jess & I had some time to spare.

We called in an order to D’Angelo’s for a steakbomb and a chicken stir-fry pocket and on our way to pick it up, we stopped off at Strawberries to pick up the full set of the Firefly series. Jess had been reading her daily dose of blogs and found one that had this link. In typical Jess fashion, she did her research and found out Firefly was yet another series Fox destroyed (see Greg the Bunny and Roar for a few others). That alone suggests it would be good. Anyway, we get home with the food and Firefly and get ready to watch the first episode. But there was a problem, the chicken stir-fry pocket is a steak and cheese sub. By now it is 7:00 and we don’t have time to go back and get the right order so we just dealt with it. Besides, we were looking forward to watching Firefly. The first episode ended (it was a two hour pilot) and we grabbed our towels and headed out to the movie.

We got to the theater at 9:20, got our tickets, I played Time Crisis 3 and then Jess & I sat down to wait for Bill and April. A long time ago, Bill used to operate on “BST” which was Bill Standard Time. Even though we can’t remember the last time he was late, I doubt we will ever forget BST. BST was defined as ST + log(BQ) = AT where ST = Suggested Time, BQ = Bill Quotient and AT is Arrival Time. Once again, defying BST, Bill showed up promptly at 9:30 as we agreed to, and he even made sure to point to his watch in a “See! I CAN be on time” manner.

We went to claim our seats and then Bill and I went back out to get some refreshments. I had a bunch of quarters in my pocket so what were we to do? Back to Time Crisis of course! After one game, we figured we better get back. We went to the concession stand and got what we needed (there was no line, nor was the ever one) and when we got back to the girls, we of course complained about the long wait at the counter (good cover for the video game playing). The movie began and the first 30 minutes were great. Then I fell asleep and woke up 10 minutes before it ended. It was a crazy day but you know what? Douglas Adams was right. A towel is the most massively useful item an interstellar hitchhiker can have, and it goes without saying a late night movie goer as well. It made a great pillow. No, the movie was not bad, but my battle with my eyelids was a losing one. I guess I should have checked with orders logged in the back of my head hours before the movie stating my eyes will close promptly at quarter to 11. Had I, I could have filed a petition by drinking a red bull :-) So, does anyone wanna go see movie?

By the way: That Greg the Bunny link, if you pay close attention, you will see Count Blah flipping you off :-) Or maybe it’s a little “F.U.” from the creators to Fox?

April 18, 2005

Is Infinity equal to One?
Posted by Matt in Geek Humor

Things are changing and I am happy to say that in the way of funny insults, I am finally getting an equal (no I’m not the best, just that I was better then Jess. Seems that she always becomes better then me at a lot of things, but that is another story). It used to be that Jess was always the brunt of my insults and jokes but now, the tables are turning. I must say that since Jess has started working on her own, she is much happier and as every day goes by, it just gets better. You don’t see the changes on an every day basis but then one day she just takes you completely off guard.

Last night was the perfect example. Instead of me being the initiator, she was. She laid into me because, apparently, I waved my arms about complaining that she asked me to take too many things down to the basement. With her best impersonation of a fool waving his arms around, she danced around the kitchen repeating what I had said. It was humiliating and rewarding all at once. Humiliating because I realized she was making fun of me and rewarding because “she started it”. I was more in awe then anything. So, here is my best recollection of the play by play.

I got up from the couch to go change my laundry over and picked up the wrench and tape measure to bring down to the basement (Jess had asked me to bring them down when I changed over my laundry. In my opinion, I deserve points for just remembering). Now here is when things went sour. I had the bright idea to say “Honey, is there anything else that needs to go down to the basement?” Well that just opened the door and Jess replied with “Can you bring the floor mats downstairs and put them in the wash?” So what do I do? I put down the wrench and tape measure to pick up the mats and then bring them downstairs. What did I forget? The wrench and tape measure! So I come back up from putting the mats in the wash and my clothes in the dryer. Jess comes back out to the kitchen to get a drink of water and she picks up the wrench and just holds it up. My first reaction was to be on the defensive. “You distracted me” (tried to somehow turn it around and put the blame on her but it backfired). Jess ran around the kitchen waving her arms around like a moron repeating “You distracted me”. My first reaction was humiliation because I did NOT remember flailing my arms as if I got electrocuted (It was most likely an over emphasis by Jess) but what made me smile was the realization that she was getting better at the insults.

I looked at her and said “Isn’t it fun?” With a big grin on her face she said “I got 10 years to make up for” so I poked her in the stomach. She poked me back and said “I poke you infinity.” I did the typical poke back to “infinity plus one” but then came Jess’s rebuttal poke with “I poke you infinity times infinity. In fact infinity to the infinity-ith power. And there is no beating that.” Well, what can I do, there is “no beating it”. But then it there was the revelation. I seem to remember that in school, we learned that the only number you could raise to itself and get itself was one. In true geek format, the paper was out and we were calculating... But what do you get if you raise infinity to the infinity-ith power? Infinity! Just a new one for us to ponder. Any insight?

April 07, 2005

Posted by Jess in Day to Day

Sunday night Matt and I were enjoying taking out Matt's cousin to Dave & Buster's for dinner in the Providence Place Mall. At 5:30 when we were getting ready to leave, we got a call from our neighbors. They never call my cell phone, so I needed to make sure everything was OK. "Are you anywhere near your house?" he asks.

Now. Let me interject here. Here's a great example of what NOT to say when there is absolutely NO emergency at all. So once we had established on the phone that my house was NOT burning down, not being robbed, and no one was having a medical emergency, it turns out that they had two free extra tickets to go see Duran Duran (new album tour) at the Mohegan Sun Casino Arena. Sweet!

Thanks to the lovely smallness of our big little state, we were able to leave Dave & Busters's, which is in Providence (right at the top of the state) at 5:30, drive home, let the doggie relieve herself, freshen up, drive to the Sun (CT, near Mystic), and managed to meet our neighbors outside the arena entrance at 7PM.

What a show. They all looked great. Simon has aged very, very well, and it was obvious (which they also later announced) that they were most certainly not expecting the screaming fanatical welcome they received. It was about 5 minutes of solid screaming before they could even get a word out.

They played some of their new stuff, which to be honest I hadn't heard (it was OK), but mostly all the old songs we know and love. Everyone else was holding out for Rio (the encore, as Matt correctly guessed), while being difficult as usual, all I wanted to hear was Ordinary World.

The times they are a' changing, though, which was made apparent during the slow grooves of Calendar Girls. Simon announced that he wanted to see a show of lighters. If you didn't have a lighter? "Hold up your cell phones! I want to see a sea of blue and purple!"

How cool was this? The ratio of cell phones to lighters was staggering. Looking out into the arena yielded a few speckles of small orange flames, but they were completely outnumbered by the glow of hundreds of cell phones that were held up.

I just think of what a fantastic world we live in, in which I can see one of my first music videos ever (Union of the Snake) on V66 (UHF video channel) when I was about 9 years old, and finally be able to see them live 20 years later... only to find that while the national nicotine level has drastically reduced, the radiation level has gone up considerably.

April 04, 2005

Guest Blogging: Reboot is actually even smarter than they say she is
Posted by Denise in Day to Day

Reboot is actually even smarter than they say she is, and other thoughts on being a guest at Chez Stratton.

I recently took a fairly significant leap in my life and was lucky enough to fall into a big fat safety net of love, namely a quiet road in Charlestown, aka Chez Stratton.

First, there was the rescue. It's a long story, but the bottom line is that I got to a place in my life where I felt the only way to get out of a failing marriage was to leave (as my husband said over and over in the dozens of voicemails he left me after the event) like "a thief in the night". Except that it was during the day. In any case, I rented a U-Haul, and Matt and another friend helped me clean out my stuff and start my way to my new life.

Matt and Jess took in my not insignificant pile of belongings (I promise you'll be able to walk around in your basement again by the end of April!... or maybe early May) and me with equal aplomb. After a warm welcome from Matt and Jess and an enthusiastic welcome from Reboot (replete with jumping, kisses and gifts of dog toys), I wasn't there much more than five minutes before my laptop was configured for the wireless network, I had a cup of coffee in hand and was happily plopped on the couch watching CSI.

And so started a comfortable routine. We all work pretty hard during the day, so evenings were all about relaxing (jammie pants, happily, are de rigueur at Chez Stratton).

Sometimes, I just needed to talk. I could go on and on about my misgivings about the past and my plans for the future, encouraged by the warm light of understanding in her eyes. When I had exhausted myself, Reboot would lick my face, snuggle in a little closer, and we'd both settle down for a good night's sleep.

Being somewhat cynical ("everyone needs a practice marriage" is one of my favorite sayings) and a two-time loser in the love-and-marriage game, it was a balm to my heart and soul to spend time with Matt and Jess. If you've come to doubt true love, hang with them for a while, and your faith will be restored.

You won't see it on the Travel Station or find it in the Triple-A guide, but if you are blessed as I am to count Matt and Jess among your friends, Chez Stratton, with its 5-star plus rating, will be there when you need it most.

Denise and Reboot

April 01, 2005

New IBM server guarantees 100% uptime / AltaVista adds new translation to BabelFish
Posted by Jess in Geek Humor

New IBM server guarantees 100% uptime

IBM, in a bold announcement this morning, has announced that it has finally achieved 100% server uptime, guaranteed. What is this amazing technology? Eliminate the server completely.

"If it doesn't exist, than it can't go down," explained IBM's head of development, after extensive testing. "100% uptime achieved." She agreed to this interview while simultaneously pouring champagne for a long-awaited toast of this momentous occasion. "Our clients have spoken. 99.9999% from the iSeries just isn't good enough. It was that last .000000001 percent that kept us up at night. And now we've solved it with the IBM Global Unified NoSeries.

Coming up with the idea was easy", she explained, "hearing all the same jokes over and over again wasn't." When pressed for an explanation, she argued. "Remember in 7th grade algebra, when you first discovered the 'imaginary number', and then tried using the old 'my homework's imaginary too…' line? Picture seventy-five percent of your employee base cracking the same joke simultaneously about work. Not funny."

IBM US has already put in place a migration procedure for all its 300,000 employees to move to the new server. They've all been given a GMail account for email. Their large, overhead-filled accounting packages will be replaced by PayPal, and instant messaging technologies will be replaced by AOL Instant Messenger by late afternoon.

IBM stock soared late this morning as news of the announcement spread the globe. IBM Global Unified NoSeries Express is also available for Small Businesses. This option gives users 10M Hotmail accounts instead of the roomier GMail, and instructions on how to use "Net Send" for instant messaging.

A patent is currently pending.

Corporate speak now an inter-departmental language translation option on AltaVista’s BabelFish.

This new language addition came as a result of demand from ongoing market research. The Sunnyvale, California company AltaVista had long been deciding what language to choose as it's next addition of it's impressive list of invaluable language translation features known as BabelFish.

After long boardroom meetings and thousands of dollars on market research, AltaVista employers came to the unanimous decision after they themselves needed to create the software just so they could understand the results of the market research given to them by the hired consulting company.

"Apparently they were trying to talk to us about their interpretations of the results", said one employee of AltaVista. "We knew it had taken them awhile to get back to us, so we asked why. They started going on about how they had a lot on their plate, and had been trying to keep us in the loop and ping us occasionally about it, but someone over there had dropped the ball. To this day, we still really don't know what language their research indicated we should attack next."

Now that the employees of AltaVista have built their addition to BabelFish, servers have been overloaded as harried employees rush to find out what their corporate managers have been telling them all along.

As for the outside consulting market research company that has not been identified, employees at AltaVista can finally reply to them: "FYI: we apparently aren't on the same page here, but we'll keep you on our radar screen should something come up."


Inspired by this thread over at NotesTips...

April Fool's 2004 - Blog Trackbacks Create Digital Cartel
April Fool's 2003 - C++ Under Trademark Infringement on School Grading System

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