Saturday, 28th of August, 2004
Went and saw The Bourne Supremacy tonight with Haley. First of all, you don't need to have seen The Bourne Identity to watch this movie. Haley hadn't seen it, and it made complete sense to her. I didn't even remember The Bourne Identity until some of the ideas were rehashed in The Bourne Supremacy, and then I really remembered what the movie was about. Furthermore, it's directed by someone else - Paul Greengrass. And the result is cinematography that is even better than The Bourne Identity, from what I remember of it. I really don't remember walking away this impressed from The Bourne Identity. The plot was good, I really enjoyed it. It has plenty of decent action, including a major car chase scene. It was also a really pretty movie, set in many different countries and cities. This is one of those movies that I want to see again - because even though I know the plot and I don't expect to pick up more details later, the action was good enough that I want to see it again.
Friday, 27th of August, 2004
Sunday, August 22
2:19 a.m., ASSAULT, PARKING LOT-After responding to check the well being of a security guard he became violent and threatened a fellow security officer. When advised to go home the suspect became combative and uncooperative. Incident resulted in the arrest of the security guard for assault 3rd degree and resisting arrest. Investigation cleared by arrest.
Thursday, 26th of August, 2004
Wednesday, 25th of August, 2004
Want to back up your personal computer? Tape backup is now completely obsolete. And optical technology can't keep up for this purpose either. Hard drives have become ridiculously cheap. All Maxtor has to do is slap "Backup" on an external USB/Firewire hard drive and bundle Dantz Retrospect Express with it, and you get a really cheap backup device. External hard drives now hold outrageous amounts of data from 40GB to 250GB. That's a lot of DVD-RWs - if you want to do automated backups larger than 4.7GB you're definitely looking at hard drive technology now. You can get this "One-Touch" backup 40GB external hard drive for $99. $300 will get you 3 hard drives, good for a decent rotation of backup sets. Tape backup solutions that automatically store sizes north of 40GB start at a thousand dollars. And that's just for the drive, then you have to buy the media.
Tape technology is not gone though, it's just moved up to where hard drives can't reach. Try the HP StorageWorks Tape Library, with a native capacity of up to 8.32 TB. That's right, 8320 GB. At $12200 though, your cost per megabyte is still pretty high...
What else is becoming obsolete in the home office? How about the ink jet printer. Finally, it appears we have crossed over some sort of threshold in color laser printing technology. You can get a Minolta 2300W USB color laser printer for $499 now, and with a $100 mail-in-rebate. This is a printer that I use, and it's super fast and produces brilliant photos. It completely smashes any inkjet printer in speed, and photos look just as good. Print about 200 photos on an inkjet printer and you'll start to discover that your "photo paper" and ink costs are starting to approach that magic $399 that would make it less costly to buy a color laser printer. If you want to print color at any sort of reasonable volume (more than like, 5 sheets a week or something), then it has now become cheaper to buy a color laser printer than waste money on ink cartridges. Don't even think about buying an inkjet for business use anymore. The only real problem now is size. This machine is enormous and weighs 61.2 pounds. Not something you want in a college dorm room.
Saturday, 21st of August, 2004
Picture - New construction - the Texans don't skimp on cosmetics for retaining walls and supporting beams.
Picture - The Interstate is below-grade, with some overhang on the side to accommodate as much road in as little space as possible.
Picture - North-bound, approaching the big "High Five" interchange that is still under construction.
Picture - "High Five" interchange detail.
Picture - The open trench that allows traffic through amidst the construction of the interchange.
Picture - one of these ramps are severely banked and look like roller coaster tracks, not roads!
Picture - Another pretty stack interchange.
Picture - Interchange detail.
Had a great time in Austin - thanks Haley's family for having me over there this week!
Friday, 20th of August, 2004
Thursday, 19th of August, 2004
Picture - Nolan tries on a modern Army helmet at Camp Mabry's Texas Military Forces Museum this afternoon.
Wednesday, 18th of August, 2004
Sunday, 15th of August, 2004
Wednesday, 11th of August, 2004
Ok, it looks like a legitimate email message. So I copy-paste the URL like I normally do, right? Wrong! The whole email message consists of one image! All that text and the link is all one big image, and the image link points to the IP 22.214.171.124, which is definitely not US Bank - it's some IP related to isdn.net. The link itself actually is somewhat malicious code - Mozilla Firefox refused to run it, but IE threw open usbank.com to make it look like you're going there, then threw up this very restrictive popup window that refused to be closed or for the focus to even be directed away from it, with the US Bank logo on it, asking for all sorts of personal information, like credit card number, PIN, etc. I couldn't even view the location bar to see where it was coming from. Definitely a big scam. It's probably going to cause many online banking customers to send away their personal information to some place that is NOT US Bank. I looked at the headers for the email, and the email originated from a Mozilla browser, sending through verizon.net. Definitely not US Bank - this is quite an elaborate and deceptive scam.
Here's the popup window that comes up asking for all the information:
All the images are broken because everyone has been hitting this site and the web server is getting bogged!
Apparently this scam is not new - it has been discussed in an ITSecurity.com article. I guess I consider myself fortunate not to have stumbled across this until now.
Tuesday, 10th of August, 2004
Monday, 9th of August, 2004
Picture - Another reason why we don't put our registration tabs on the corners of our license plates anymore...
Saturday, 7th of August, 2004
Friday, 6th of August, 2004
Picture - There was also some professional tractor pulling competition, which I've never seen before.
Wednesday, 4th of August, 2004
Picture - First stop in Chicago was Lyon & Healy Harps, Inc. where they had a showroom and a tour of their factory where they manufacture harps. Haley tries out some new harp music in a practice room.
Picture - So we were fortunate to be serenaded. I found the tour of the factory to be very cool.
Picture - Then we went to the Art Institute. Uh... Nolan, that's the Women's restroom...
Picture - After the Art Institute, we went to the Museum of Science and Industry. They had a 3500 sq-ft model train exhibit. It's supposed to be a representation of the line running between Chicago and Seattle. In Chicago, even the El Train is included.
Picture - There are tons of trains everywhere, some of them very long, with 4 locomotives.
Picture - Model suburban Chicago, with the skyline in the background.
Picture - If you wait long enough, the lights dim to simulate night time, and the lights in the buildings light up.
Picture - Another one of the most fascinating things I discovered there was found in the Blue stairway - cross sections of humans, preserved and on display!
Picture - And how about the JolleyBall - I watched for several minutes as a giant marble rolled around this machine and was carried around new paths. Wow!
Picture - We ended our day at Chinatown. Here is a full demonstration of American and Chinese culture mix - a red Camaro with a big dragon decal on the side.
Sunday, 1st of August, 2004