Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Jay: Speaking of Cascades…

Here’s the way things go with me:

Thinking of tasks made me synch the Blackberry, which led to my remembering the Blackberry could have its contents backed up to the computer, so I did, which reminded me I needed to fire up the external drive and catch up on backing up stuff off the computer, which made me think it was high time I backed up the contents of the web hosting accounts, which led me to see how little space was left on the AV/BB hosting, which led me to cleanup almost 120 MB of temp files before doing said backup, which reminded me of some web-related work I need to do for myself and the big client, which reminded me of the whole task list thing, which reminded me I’d though of writing a post about how cool cascading tasks would be, which reminded me of an e-mail about CotC I need to finish, which reminded me it’s a few days from annual renewal of ads we run, which made me think about how to generate more such revenue, which made me think about diversity of income streams being a Good Thing as long as there are enough or they are of sufficient size…

I am my own worst distraction.  Kind of a strange distractor, you might say.  Hmmm… Thought patterns as fractals.

05:22 PM | Totally Random • (0) CommentsPermalink

Jay: Big To-Do About Lists

Sharon’s mention of a to do list reminded me of my recent effort to use Outlook tasks.  That’s handy because they synchronize onto the Blackberry and can be viewed, modified or marked complete there, even generate reminders there, wherever I am, then synchronize back to the computer.  In the brief time I gave it a chance, I found it helped.

What occurred to me today is that I could use cascading tasks.  That is, be able to create a series of master items, each with multiple sub-items if needed, and even layered beyond that if needed.  Make it viewable flat, as if all tasks were equal, or as a hierarchy, and be able to list only what is under a given top level task at once if desired.  The top level task might not be a “task” at all, but a client or project.

No doubt I’ve described a whole slew of applications that already exist in the world and are not Outlook.  Heck, elements of it remind me of both elements of the IT task management software we created for the long defunct Marine Optical, and the document/case management software we partially created for both the big client and as a product to market to other law firms (and even outside of that field).

Anyway, I plugged the Blackberry in and synchronized it today to review my list, some of which went obsolete while I was sick and slacking, and some of which is even more urgent.  I need to add to it some tasks that have nothing to do with the client, the complexity of which is what made me think of the hierarchical format.


Duh.  I should have known Outlook would have something like categories available for further organizing tasks, providing something close to what I envision.  I wonder if categories carry over to the Blackberry, though.  When synchronizing the Outlook Express address book, it only takes contacts in the main book, not ones that have been categorized, causing me a great deal of annoyance.

05:21 PM | BusinessGeekeryTotally Random • (0) CommentsPermalink

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Jay: Daylight Costings Time

How did I miss that daylight savings time had been extended as of 2007?

Perhaps I didn’t, and it simply struck me as unimportant news until I got an e-mail from Microsoft today, pointing me to this article.  What a mess!  Made worse by the fact that the big client is in flux, though it does appear I will need to take action, including manual updates of Windows 2000, so things mesh okay during the time they are still using those machines.

Silly Congress.  What were they thinking?

09:18 PM | BusinessGeekeryNewsPoliticsStupidity • (2) CommentsPermalink

Jay: Happy Birthday

To sometime blogger, artist, and Aciddaughter Samantha Smith.

01:22 PM | Birthdays • (0) CommentsPermalink

Monday, January 29, 2007

Jay: Where Was I?

So as I was saying, I have trouble being able to pick the thread back up and continue a waiting post, as well as trouble concentrating enough to be able or willing to write with distractions.  If it is to be an important factor, as with the business blog I was trying to revive this weekend in anticipation of actually firing up the new business, as otherwise I will be all but unemployed in a few months, rather than merely about $3000 a month below where I need to be in average revenue, I guess I’ll have to start treating at least part of the writing as work to do behind a closed home office door (and I hate to close it, so I kind of ask for trouble) or at the outside office.

Anyway, I’ll try to return to the abandoned GP post in the next couple days, as it has to be done.  Today I must continue to work on billing, which I might be able to finalize the current segment of today if I focus for hours.  Meant to finish that over the weekend.

While I haven’t started and stopped any American Idol posts, and we don’t yet have any advertising on this blog, even my non-GP posts could justifiably be treated as “work” for the sake of real or potential future revenue, however speculative.  All well and good we get enough from AV and other archival or abandoned blogs to at least cover costs, but every bit counts.  Besides, it’s fun to have readers and commenters, and that just won’t happen on a combination of birthday announcements, silly quizzes, kid pictures, and increasingly rare, quickly dashed off linky or highly censored slice of life posts.  It’s a conundrum, not least because of the need for the sixth and fifth from last words of the preceding sentence.  Oh well.

Ironically, I have been left alone almost the entire time I wrote this continuation.  As I was saying, off to real work.  Well, that and seeing if Carnival of the Capitalists is up yet, as that is an every Monday duty and hosts tend to forget to tell me it’s up, so I have to go looking.  And hey, it is!

02:44 PM | BloggingBusiness • (1) CommentsPermalink

Jay: Writing, Interrupted

Does anyone else have the same hangup?

When I write anything of any length, I have major trouble completing it in anything but one uninterrupted sitting.  It’s almost impossible for me to stop and go back, say, a day later (often even moments later), entirely aside from whether the same post remains relevant after the elapsed time.

Ironically, as I write this, the squirts just sauntered in, gathered one on either side of me, and want me to stop.  So I may as well just post this as it is, even though I was planning to go on, if not at great length; figured it’d be short enough to sneak in.

02:02 PM | Blogging • (0) CommentsPermalink

Jay: Happy Birthday

To blogger Megan McArdle.

01:53 PM | Birthdays • (0) CommentsPermalink

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Jay: How to Entertain a Sadie

Dismantle a dead DVD player into its component parts while she looks on and gets to handle and explore each of the pieces, explaining to her what different things are, and showing her stuff like how the gears mesh against a toothed bar to move the laser reader.  This is enough to keep her entranced for an extended time.  Not to mention being kind of interesting to me too.  Apple, tree, etc.

Then she moved on to Play-Doh, which also works, with the added benefit of being autopilot-like.

03:43 PM | GeekeryKids • (0) CommentsPermalink

Jay: Happy Birthday

To blogger Rand Simberg, who is celebrating the big 40th in DC this weekend, and whose birthday has a sad association with Challenger.

01:57 PM | Birthdays • (0) CommentsPermalink

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Jay: First Computer

Sadie and Valerie got their first computer a few days ago, but there’s nothing new to them about it.  I brought home the machine they would use at the office, which is an ancient 386 or 486 (I forget which) with DOS, a bunch of DOS games, and a keybanger program.  So far the keybanger is all they are able to use.  Sadie doesn’t grok the idea of differences between the keys, and pressing different ones to do different things.

They’ve been having a blast with it available there, but Valerie likes to play with the control on the monitor, decreasing contrast and brightness to zero or close enough to make no difference.  Silly kid.

It also stays on all the time, with the monitor off at night, which saves us from having to reset the BIOS each time it’s turned on, and incidentally makes a nice source of white noise in their room.  They seem to sleep better with white noise.

I’d love to find something between the limited keybanger and the simplest of the games.  That doesn’t require a mouse, as the machine is mouseless.

06:22 PM | GeekeryKids • (1) CommentsPermalink

Friday, January 26, 2007

Jay: Rebooting Carnival of the Capitalists

I have put up a post at regarding the possibilty of “rebooting" Carnival of the Capitalists to improve quality and regain relevance.

Feel free to read, comment, and even link.  I could certainly be completely arbitrary, and reserve the right to ignore the feedback I get, but I’d still like to know what people think.

09:49 PM | BloggingBusiness • (0) CommentsPermalink

Jay: The Married Guy Cook on Pork

Jeff, I miss your food blogging.

Okay, that aside, let’s talk pork.  Chops, specifically.

I can take chicken, do random things to it, and almost always come out with something good to excellent, and never, so far, less than acceptably edible.

I seem to have more trouble with pork.  Usually I use it to make fried rice, in which it’s better than chicken.  I follow a recipe for something different and it’s good.

But if I try to fry pork chops whole and spice them a bit, or try to make them come out with an impromptu saucy coating, it’s not often so great.  A few nights ago I fried four pork chops and somehow made them taste as if they’d been steeped in soy sauce… without any soy sauce and with virtually no salt involved.  They were okay, but I should be able to do better.

So the question… how do you cook pork chops or pork loin, bone-in or boneless, to make them come out particularly well?  Any interesting recipes?  Simple is especially good.

If I get some good ideas, next time I see a big pack of chops on sale for $1.56/lb as I did last night, maybe I’ll bring them home and try a few of them.

02:26 PM | Food & Cooking • (3) CommentsPermalink

Jay: Glenn Asks an Easy Question

That would be a no.

02:10 PM | Totally Random • (0) CommentsPermalink

Jay: Happy Birthday

To blogger Blackfive.

01:24 PM | Birthdays • (0) CommentsPermalink

Jay: Happy Birthday

To blogger Robert the Llama Butcher.

01:23 PM | Birthdays • (0) CommentsPermalink
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