Tech Web

Happy 10th Birthday A Little Blog!

Back on November 4th, 2002 I made my first blog post. Ten years later, it’s still going strong.

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Yes, my posting rhythm could, at best, be described as indiscriminate… but it is true that A Little Blog has been providing the net with mediocre content for a full decade. Given my unshakable dedication to drivel of questionable value published at random intervals, I know you’re as shocked as I am that the lame stream media isn’t joining with me to herald this momentous occasion.

Have no fear! While the press has decided to ignore this event, the Internet is not. Accolades have been pouring in from all corners of the ‘net, from readers just like you!

Well, perhaps not just like you. Probably not even remotely like you, unless you happen to be a spammer with only the most tenuous grasp of the English language.

“Beats” writes:

I am gonna watch out for brussels. I’ll appreciate in case you continue this in future.

Praise from "white office desks hutch"

Nice blog right here! Also your web site a lot up very fast!

A nice thank you from "Dubai Escorts":

Thank you for making the sincere attempt to speak about this on . I feel very strong about it and would like to read more. If it’s OK, as you achieve extra extensive wisdom, may you mind including extra articles similar to this one with additional info? It will be extraordinarily useful and helpful for me and my friends.

"Unfongorn" has been won over by my logic:

Undeniably believe that which you stated.

Existential light bulb humor is always welcome too, this one comes from "cheap customizable basketball jerseys"

How many doctors should it choose to use twist inside a bulb? That relies in whether or not it features medical health insurance.

"Stephanie Almasi" knows indistinct pseudo praise is the way to my heart:

It’s nearly impossible to find well-informed people about this subject, but you sound like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks

It’s not all comments from left field, some of the commenters are just regular people too, just ask them. For those who want to know what normal visitors think, check out this rave from "Jodee Halman":

Good write-up. I’m a normal visitor of your website and appreciate you taking the time to maintain the nice site. I will be a regular visitor for a long time.

I have no idea, however, what "Prace licencjackie" is trying to tell me:

Thanks for enabling me to get in mint condition belief about laptop systems. I as well possess the belief that one of the best ways to swear your laptop in perfect condition is by via a remorselessly synthetic defense, or else maybe case, that will tally greater than the highest of one’s computer.

So, here’s to another decade of intermittent posts of questionable quality. For you spammers out there, please, keep commenting. I found about 1% of your comments 100% hilarious (but the spam filter lets 0% through to the normal regular readers, so you can count on privacy for your thoughts).


Internets is kerbusted

Well, not just the wonderful system of pipes… no TV or phone either. Since we get all our digital from Comcast, in addition to no you tube, there’s no boob tube.

And then there was that thing with mirror earlier tonight. You know what that means… seven more years of low bandwidth on a small cell screen.

Broken mirror


I think met net presence is spread too thin

I realize that it’s incredibly important for absolutely everyone to know what’s going on in my life… I’m concerned that the plummeting DOW is due to my lack of blog posts. It’s now clear I need to hire a personal assistant to act as my PR rep and keep all the important place on the net up to date.  To that ends I’m compiling a list of all the places I share info so my new slave can keep all in order.

Here’s my current accounting:


Social networks:


Linking / News /Reviews

Picture Sharing

  • SmugMug
  • flickr (long since abandoned… but it’s still there)


Net Travel

Getting logged into Hotel Internet with Vista & IE 7

When Paula and I were trying to get logged into Courtyard’s Internet connection on Saturday we couldn’t get connected, the browser just spun it’s wheels then gave us a “page cannot be displayed” message.  The behavior was the same on both my laptop and Paula’s. 

The typical experience signing onto a commercial network is turn on your computer, open a web browser, request a page and you are magically redirected to a sign-in/sign-up page.  The redirect works in some cases (the Westin most recently) and not in others (Marriott).  For some reason some implementations work with Vista and some don’t.  I asked the hotel tech support to log me on from their end but then played with Paula’s computer to try to get hers logged in.

The solution ended up being fairly simple, I turned off protected mode in IE, logged into the hotel Internet, then turned protected mode back on again.

I suppose if you’re stuck in a hotel right now unable to log onto the hotel network you can’t read this.  Ah, the irony.


Feeling a lot less congested today

Speed test two

I spoke to BT today and they had me re-run the speed test.  It’s way better than it was a little over two weeks ago (2543 kb/s vs. 649 kb/s).  I still have no idea if it was contention, line noise or what. I suppose I now know who to call if the issue comes back (and that they’re responsive).

Design Net

Web 2.0 illustrated and explained

Web 2.0 isn’t a technology, it’s a concept: enhance the software (programs) with wetware (humans). WikiPedia, YouTube, Flickr and the like are thriving because the users are part of the equation; creating, editing, organizing and managing the content.

Michael Wesch, a professor of cultural anthropology at KSU created a fantastic video which artfully illustrates Web 2.0.  It’s a fantastic romp through today’s digital landscape… but I’ll warn today’s TV generation… some reading is required.

 Via information aesthetics


I’m doing the math… and I think I’m getting short-changed

My DSL speed seems like it’s been going downhill, so I ran a speed test.

The rate I should be getting? 3072 kbp/s download, 384 kbp/s upload.  Now I have to sit on hold.  What a great way to spend the weekend.

Before you ask, I tried multiple tests on servers in Ireland, England and the US.  Reported download speed ranged from 175 kbps to 972 kpbs (upload was consistently around 300 kbps). 

“All of our agents are currently on calls.  Please hold and your call will be answered in rotation.”  GAH!

Net Video Games

A long way from home


Moving from California to a… well… less warm island can make one long for sunnier climates, Mexican food and definitely makes one miss their friends.  Thank goodness for cheap calls via VOIP, friends with blogs and the wonder that is Xbox live.  Last weekend we had a great time playing a very long-distance game of Ghost Recon. Ah… technology… ain’t it grand?


My favorite podcast

There is a whole mess of entertaining podcasts out there and one can spend hours finding entertaining ones. I have a list of my top podcasts but there definitely is one that sits at the top of my list. But before I go on, I’ll give a brief explanation of what a podcast is.

A podcast is a lot like a radio show you can listen to whenever you choose. Technically it’s little more than a blog post with an audio file attached, but the combination of software and hardware out there has made it very easy to get into subscribing to a large number of progarams. A huge benefit of blogging software is it provides a simple mechanism to an author to publish their work and for readers, a simple mechanism to know when there is new work to be found (last time I talked about blog reading software or “RSS Readers” was 2004 , I think I’ll need to share my findings on that later). But I digress, for more details I point you to Wikipedia for a detailed description.

Back to my original point, my absolute favorite podcast. If you are a regular listener of NPR on the weekends you may have had the occasion to listen “Wait wait… don’t tell me!”. It’s a news quiz with a panel made up of a rotating cast of humorists, authors and comedians. Think of it as one part daily show, one part Ben Stein and four parts high-larious. The absolute best way to get a feeling for it is to listen to the show (which you can do with or without being a podcasting geek). Recently they put out a “best of” show which is a great way to get an introduction to the flavor. Just go to the show page for July 8th, 2006 and click the “listen to the whole show” link. One bit of advice: when it asks you what media player you want to use, don’t select Real Player, it’s evil (and I don’t say that just because Microsoft makes the other choice, I say it because I honestly think the Real Player is crap).

For those of you who use an RSS reader or a Podcast aggregator to download programs automatically, be sure to check out the rest of NPR’s podcasts, they have a lot of quality programming available.

Net Sites

Get Fuzzy Unofficial RSS feed

Many thanks to Patrick for pointing me to the unofficial Get Fuzzy feed.  I can now get my daily dose delivered right to my desk.