Shivering on the 49th Parallel
Monday, 27 June 2005
That song has been stuck in my head all morning... I wonder why?
Monday, 27 June 2005 05:18:18 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) | Comments [1] | Cayman#
Sunday, 26 June 2005
I found a new XP Powertoy today, it's for viewing and thumbnailing RAW image formats for Canon & Nikon cameras.
Sunday, 26 June 2005 05:51:01 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) | Comments [0] | Links | Pictures | Microsoft | WWW#
Saturday, 25 June 2005

MattyJulesWedding 211
Originally uploaded by DocJelly.

Matty & Jules got married on Wednesday, as I mentioned in an earlier post. I have the photos up on Flickr now. I upgraded to a Flickr Pro account this afternoon so they're all organized into sets. Matty's stag, The Wedding, The reception, the evening reception, a bbq the next day and just now an album of photos that I took today out at Stingray City.

The wedding was at 8am on Governor's Beach, which was nice because it wasn't unbearably hot, and there were no mosquitos, which there would have been if it was at the end of the day instead. John's sister flew down to perform the marriage, and then a local Justice of the Peace officiated and pronounced them Man and Wife.

After that we all piled down the beach to the Westin for a brunch reception. A refreshing change to usual wedding receptions! I got a brilliant idea during brunch to pool digital photos with Lana (who I think works with Jules?) who was shooting on film (and had a light meter... so pro!) and backing up with a digital(A PowerShot S60.. a girl after my own gadget-loving heart). I took those pooled photos and created a photo story with them, layed down the audio tracks and left it to render while I went to work. I borrowed a projector from work and got home around 5:30 to finish up the show and do some titles.

Seb helped me to string a rope across the pool deck between two planters and Joanne had a big California King Size white sheet, and Christine found some clothes pegs (pins? whatever). They saw us messing around with the sheet and rope and knew something was up, but not what. Once I busted out the projector and my laptop, I could see a bit of apprehension in his eyes. We dimmed the lights during one of Ratskyn's breaks and everyone took seats with a view of the screen. Everyone had a great laugh at some of the shots, and overall, it turned out pretty good.

I used Beck's new song as the intro music, and then it fades into Santana & Chad Kroger's "Why Don't You And I Get Together?" for the stag party & pre-wedding shots, and then it fades into the new Coldplay song "At The Speed of Sound" for the beach wedding shots and right after they tie the knot it segues into Jack Johnson "Banana Pancakes" and then finally to U2's In God's Country for the group photo shots. I resized the video to 320x240 and shrunk it down to 23mb, so I'll post links to it later on this week when I get it posted/hosted somewhere. Ill post a torrent of it as well if anyone out there knows what that is and wants to download it directly from me.

Saturday, 25 June 2005 17:20:15 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) | Comments [0] | Cayman | Pictures#

VancouverInternationalSalsaCongress.com
Steve-o has been working on a new website. It has the hideously long name of www.vancouverinternationalsalsacongress.com but luckily for you, you can just click it here instead of having to type it out. I don't know if it's “open to the public” yet but I guess he'll get a lot of free beta testing if it's not :D

Steve's been involved in organizing Salsa & latin dance parties for a few years now. He's the big pussycat at the front door collecting money and looking menacing in case anyone thinks they're gonna stir up some shit. I went to one of the parties nearly two years ago when I was back in Vancouver for a visit and it was pretty cool. They had the free lessons part of it early at 8:00 and 9:00 and then the lights went down and the music came up at 10:00 and there was dancing til 2am or something.

This looks to be a major step up in size and complexity from the regular dances and parties they organize. Steve does the web design for it and gets help from Jenn with the graphics side of it. This looks like it could be construed a real job, but who am I to talk? I jumped on a plane and headed for the Cayman Islands seven years ago (almost to the day, it was June 30th, 1998) to live on the beach and be a dive instructor by day and practicing to be an alcoholic at night. “It's only for a year” I told myself (and my parents) but after six years, I slid out of the water and into business clothes and took a job as a Network Administrator for one of the bigger companies down here.

If you're going to be in Vancouver in October (or you live there) click over and check out the schedule for the Salsa Congress and go get your groove on!

Saturday, 25 June 2005 17:06:39 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) | Comments [0] | Links | Travel#
Friday, 24 June 2005
My body is telling me today that I've been burning the candle at both ends this week.
Friday, 24 June 2005 15:57:21 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) | Comments [0] | Cayman | Food | Topside#
Monday, 20 June 2005

OK, so this isn't about girls.

I've been shopping for a new laptop recently. I had my eye on the Alienware Sentia, the Dell Inspiron 700m, the Acer Ferrari and the Sony Vaio S-series. I want something smaller than what I have now (Inspiron 8600, 15.4” WUXGA+) but with a widescreen, because it's better for watching movies/dvds/videos on.

I'll save the details for another post, as this one is specifically about the Dell Inspiron 700m. After a lot of reading and being scared off by lots of negative feedback, I came back to the Dell. I also checked out some online coupon/deal places and found a coupon code for $750 off. Holy crap! I spec'd out a 700m the way I wanted it, applied the coupon and wowzers, it worked! $750 off and free shipping! I saved it in my cart til I got home tonight to read the fine print.

I got home from the gym (and stopped at Calico Jacks for a few mins to say hi to everyone who's down for the wedding (bachelor party pictures to come soon as well) and then went home to shower and make dinner and buy a new laptop. As I was cooking dinner, the power went out. It came back up 45 mins later, and before you could say boo, it went back out again.

We decided to go get some ice cream, since the lights were on in town, and it was getting friggin hot in here with the a/c off and no fans going. We got home around 10:00 and I sat down to pull up my shopping cart on Dell.com and read the fine print. It showed the laptop at it's original price, so I went back to the coupon site, copied the code and went and pasted it back into the shopping cart and hit update.

I got a popup window saying the coupon had expired. The coupon was valid until Thursday the 23rd or until it was used 3000 times. I guess that means that Dell sold 3000 laptops today. Left me shit out of luck.

I should have just plonked it down on my credit card this afternoon and gotten it over with.

Monday, 20 June 2005 20:12:55 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) | Comments [2] | Tech#
Sunday, 19 June 2005


It looks like he has fangs hanging off his ass, too??
This morning started off like any other Sunday morning... hit the snooze button a few times, slowly drag my ass out of bed over a 45 min period, brush teeth, etc. Then I went down and uncovered Tweeter's cage and got her some food and fresh water. While I was in the kitchen, I happened to look down and notice that the floor seemed dirtier than usual, there was something “big” on the floor that I don't think I would have not noticed and picked up last night. It was a big creepy centipede!

And I was in bare feet! Fortunately it was dead. I went upstairs and got my camera and took a couple shots and looked at it on the screen rather than get up close and personal in case it wasnt REALLY dead. It looks like maybe he got too close to the oven (he was on the floor a few inches away from the oven) and it cooked his brain and fangly things on his head got roasted.. but looking at the way the plates are on his back, it looks like the fangly things on the right of the picture are really his posterior?? I dunno, it's pretty creepy any way it's coming at you. I'm not sure, but I think these things are fairly venomous, and here we've been walking around in there with bare feeties since forever. It HAS to be fairly recent, since they dont swim well and we had that little flood two weekends ago.

I think I'm gonna grab a book and go have some breakfast down at Coconut Joe's. Perhaps I'll go to the beach later, I'm lookin a little pasty these days. That photo shoot that was supposed to be a few weeks ago and got cancelled was tentatively re-scheduled for today, but they called at 10:30 and said it was postponed again til next weekend, so I'll try and not look so much like a tourist in those pictures :)


UPDATE: 11:30am I went back downstairs to get rid of it and it had moved.. it was still alive. yeesh they're creepy when they move. I Guillotined it with the dustpan and it “sat up” and attacked the dustpan with it's fangly things at both ends. Glad I didnt just got get some tweezers or a paper towel. Swept it up and dumped it in the bushes across the carpark.

Sunday, 19 June 2005 07:50:16 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) | Comments [0] | Cayman#
Saturday, 18 June 2005
I made it back from Kingston, Jamaica alive, in one piece and with no bullet holes.
Saturday, 18 June 2005 11:36:21 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) | Comments [0] | Cayman | Travel#
Wednesday, 15 June 2005
...You might end up administratively locking yourself out of Windows
Wednesday, 15 June 2005 19:00:52 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) | Comments [0] | Tech | Linux | Microsoft | Travel#
Monday, 13 June 2005

GeorgeTown I (scan)
Originally uploaded by Simon T.
Found this picture on FLickr tonight, just cruising around looking at photos with the "Cayman" tag.

This shot is of downtown Georgetown, looks like it was taken from upstairs at the Hard Rock or something...

Makes the harbor area look pretty cool for a change!
Monday, 13 June 2005 17:29:20 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) | Comments [0] | Cayman | Pictures#
Friday, 10 June 2005

So they caved. The NHL and NHLPA agreed on a salary cap and now just have to work out all the other little details: free agency, blah blah blah and make an announcement in the next 30 days or so that it's all over and done and we'll have hockey this fall.

There's probably lots of commentary flying around about who was the big winner and who was the big loser, etc, but in all honesty, the winners are the fans, and both sides are big losers. How much money did they throw away to cave at the end anyway???

 

Friday, 10 June 2005 12:43:51 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) | Comments [0] | Sports | Hockey#

I woke up tired, which is never a good sign. I left the house at 6:55am and made my way through the back roads of West Bay down to Morgan's Harbor and to the dyke road. There was traffic coming BACK down the Dyke rd, which means that they did actually close the barrier at the far end to stop people from cutting through there. So I turned around and followed a truck back, but he turned off and I followed him, thinking it was another way out, but it wasn't, so I turned around again, and this time missed the road and went further into the mangroves the wrong way. I came to a dead end, turned around AGAIN and retraced my tracks and found the road again, had to worm my way through more traffic (the 7:15 onward traffic) that was still trying to get down onto the dyke road not knowing it was closed.

I made it back out to the paved roads and turned onto Willie Farrington Dr at 7:20... and stopped. The entire stretch of Willie Farrington was gridlocked all the way out to West Bay Road. I sat there for about five minutes and noticed my engine temp indicator was a smidge high. I looked and made sure that the a/c was off and kept an eye on it. Within two minutes (and maybe 20m of progress) it was up to the next notch on the gauge. Not good. I increased my idle to about double, to see if it was a flow problem or leaking fluid and it didn't change after 30 seconds, so I pulled out of traffic and turned around (I was tempted to go home and ask if I could telecommute for the morning) and came down West Church Street back towards home, towards 4-way stop, and away from work. I got caught in MORE traffic, but the temp gauge started fluctuating, but never went back down to “normal” so I pulled into Centennial Towers, parked and abandoned it for the day and sat at the bus stop at 7:35.

A bus came along a couple minutes later and I climbed aboard. Buses in Cayman are an unknown gem, if you know how to work with them. They have no fixed schedule and not a clearly defined route (ie they'll take you out of their way for an extra $1). Buses cost $2 per trip and start/end at the George Town Library, and go all the way  up Seven Mile Beach, loop through West Bay, past the Turtle Farm, and then through a bunch of residential areas before coming back to 4-way stop and then back down Seven Mile Beach into town. For two dollars! You can't even get a taxi to stop for you for less than that!

So I sat on the bus playing Ridge Racer on my PSP and sweating. This particular bus didn't have A/C, or at least have it turned on. I hopped out at the corner of Eastern Ave and Shedden Rd and walked from there. I got in to work at 8:30, “right on time” even though I left 95 minutes earlier.

Now that the dyke road is closed for good, I'm going to have to sit in traffic for an hour every morning, doing nothing but idling away, not running the a/c and watching my gas mileage go into the toilet, along with the environment. That's unacceptable, so the apartment hunt will be back on in full-force again, real quick.

So here I am, at the start of my day, tired, grumpy (more grumpy than usual) AND sweaty, and with no vehicle here to do anything or go anywhere until 5:00 when I'll hitch a ride to the gym, and then catch a bus home from there.

Friday, 10 June 2005 05:42:05 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) | Comments [0] | Cayman | Rants#
Thursday, 09 June 2005

OK, so Arlene is 75mi south-southeast of Cuba, and pretty much out of any range of influencing us anymore. They stood down from the Tropical Storm Warning at 4:00 this afternoon as well.

We went out tonight, Seb and I met up with John, Matty & Kevin down at Aqua Beach. The sky was clear, the stars were out, and the wind was blowing pretty good. 25-30 knots, I'd estimate. As we left the carpark, we could hear waves smashing into shore across the street, and even saw the tops of some of the waves in my headlights.

There was a sort of haze hanging over West Bay, but what it was was a very very fine spray of water from the waves benig carried inland.

It rained while we were at Aqua Beach, and stupid me, I left the friggin windows open on the Jeep. Fortunately, the wind was coming from the South, so no rain actually got in, and I had a dry butt for the drive home.

That about wraps it up for Arlene for us, the NOAA 11pm Discussion said that Arlene actually had multiple mini-vortexes within an outer envelope of cyclonic action... is that a cool sentence or what? All those big, cool-sounding words, and it totally gives you a visual of it in your head. You can almost hear the Rube Goldberg Machine music from The Incredible Machine (or old Bugs Bunny cartoons) as you picture it.

Thursday, 09 June 2005 20:18:51 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) | Comments [0] | Cayman | Hurricane#
There's a feature in Pluck called "perches" which is a shortened name of "Persistent Searches" and can be set up to scour Google, eBay or Amazon. I have Google perches set up on my full name and my online alias.
Thursday, 09 June 2005 07:19:03 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) | Comments [0] | Cayman | Links | Underwater#

...so I have a name to attach to the feelings! sheesh. It rained HARD yesterday around lunchtime, and then was off and on for the rest of the afternoon. By the time I got home from the gym about 6:00 our carpark was already flooded almost ankle deep... I was trying to gingerly pick my way across the lot on curbs and rocks because I still had my gym shoes on, but then it started to rain again, too.

When it rains here, it isn't like the constant monotonous drizzle you see in Vancouver, it's full-on, feels like a shower, Hollywood special effects rain.

It kept raining all night last night, and through the night. I kept getting woken up by yet HARDER rain slapping our zinc roof. It's been raining hard like that for 12 hours now and I heard on the radio just now as I was getting into the shower “prepare for conditions to deteriorate further” WHAT THE???

On top of all that, traffic's going to suck this morning worse than usual, so I better pitter patter and go get at er.

 

Thursday, 09 June 2005 03:54:00 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) | Comments [0] | Cayman | Hurricane#
Wednesday, 08 June 2005
well I'm sure some people will...
Wednesday, 08 June 2005 12:04:36 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) | Comments [0] | Hurricane#
Tuesday, 07 June 2005
Im on day 2 of South Beach diet again.. Im miserable and cranky (as if you couldn't tell by my earlier post)
Tuesday, 07 June 2005 17:24:46 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) | Comments [0] | Food#
When I was a kid, my dad used to say "or comes the Revolution!" when he was trying to threaten me to do something (clean up my room, put toys away, that sort of thing) I never really knew what he was talking about with it, but I've put a spin on it and use it to describe people who are going to be lined up against the wall first "when the revolution comes".
Tuesday, 07 June 2005 06:52:28 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) | Comments [0] | Cayman | Rants#

Well it took me, what? Six months? something like that anyway. I finally got a config working that's linked up all the units in my apt building to share an internet connection. Here's some things I found out along the process:

Linksys' firmware does not support WDS very well. A WAP54G will function well as a repeater to another WAP54G or a WRT54G, but a second WAP54G will not function properly when it's a repeater pointed at another repeater.

Sveasoft's Talisman firmware (as of the time of this writing) was still too buggy to run reliably. It locked up the router and required a hard-reset about once a day. If that once a day happened while I was at work, I was stuck without my resources at home until I could get home and power-cycle it. That also meant that anyone who was trying to use the internet connection was out of luck, too.

Sveasoft's Freya firmware for the WAP54G causes a lot of WAp54s to just die during upgrade. Fortunately, I was able to rescue mine and bring it back to life. Their forums are very convoluted. Lots of questions, and no answers, and lots of questions with stale answers. Every now and then I'd find a question similar to what I was looking for, and the only reference was to “search on these terms, there's tons of topics about it already” but really there aren't.

There's no way to tell that you're actually using the Freya firmware, other than noticing that the firmware revision number is LESS than what it was when you took it out of the box, and there's an extra option under advanced settings that allows telnet access. There's no mention of WDS within the web config pages or the help files at all. I assume that when you put it into repeater mode, that's WDS, and went with that. Sveasoft has been talking about a Talisman Micro edition for the WAP54, and to “just wait for that to come out” but those messages saying “soon come” go back as far as January of 2004, and continue to this day.

Linksys' WRE54G is a piece of shit. The WRT54G is their wireless/wired router and is rock-solid. The WAP54G is an AP-only version of the WRT54G and runs a stripped-down version of the WRT's firmware on less memory. The WRE54G is a stripped down version of the WAP54G with one little antenna and no ethernet port. The theory of it works well, but in practice, it's dinky little antenna was not powerful enough to replace another WAP54 (which has dual antennas and an ethernet port for configuring/AP client mode). It's also more expensive than even a WRT54G is.

Linksys' support in India is hit-and-miss. The first time through the guy really had no clue about networking or even the products he was supposed to be supporting. He asked me to plug in the WRE54G via it's wired port and configure it that way, when that POS doesnt HAVE a wired port. When I said that, suddenly there was technical difficulties and the chat session was dropped. The second time through, last Friday night, I chatted with another tech for over an hour. She was the one who told me that pointing a repeater at another repeater was not supported and had me power-cycle everything at the end, breaking my connection and disconnecting me from the chat session. She said she was going to send me a different (older probably) firmware to try, but that never appeared, just the transcript of the chat session.

In the end, I had to buy another WRT54G. I “upgraded” both WRT54s to Sveasoft's Alchemy firmware and set them up as with a WDS link. I then configured the one WAP54 as a repeater to the far side of the WDS link, and it works. The two WRTs have their radio power turned up to 84mw (from 28mw) and the WRT in my apt has replacement high-gain antennas on it as well. It all works now, finally.

I'll get around to an updated Visio drawing and post it up later on.

Tuesday, 07 June 2005 06:27:42 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) | Comments [0] | Wireless | Linux#
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