Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Long time no hear from...

... I know, I know, I've been away.

But, I'm here now - and things are terrific. I mean, great. I mean, not bad. I mean, well... I mean, meh.

This is life. Who ever said it had to be fun?

Friday, August 26, 2011

It's official, sports fans...

Absolutely, positively, without a doubt: I hate Windows 7.

It is everything that Apple's OS 6-9 was accused of being -- it's a blockade in the middle of what I'm trying to do.

When I have to turn off 'features', such as the firewall, in order to access my own personal, private network, I don't call that an advantage. When I have to disable 128-bit encryption in order to 'see' a NAS device, that's a pain. When I have to fight with it to simply copy and paste files from one place to another, I call that a complete and utter irritation.

If this laptop weren't purchase for me for work reasons, it would have gone back long before now. And, since I've had it for some time, I'm stuck with it, no matter what.

It's a sad state of affairs for Microsoft when their best product is still the operating system that they introduced in 2003.

So, folks, I'm saving my pennies. Oh yes, I'm saving my pennies. An Intel quad-core i7 driven Macbook Pro is in my future. Oh, yes, no question about it.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Wireless and Windows 7

I've searched the net for two days on this particular issue, and did not find the answer there. Only by fussing with router settings via a wired connection was I able to make this work.

With this laptop (a Dell Inspiron, Windows 7 64-bit, Intel Centrino Wireless N-1030 chipset), I was attempting to make a connection to a Cisco / Linksys WRT54G2 v2 Wireless G Router. No joy, over an over, no joy. I changed my laptops WiFi adapter settings, with the same result:

Wireless security failed.

Network Adapter: Intel(R) Centrino(R) Wireless-N 1030
Interface GUID: {1cb1c3dc-92fc-4304-80ea-a13fd3aceeb3}
Local MAC Address: BC:77:37:4D:4E:19
Network SSID: Justins
BSS Type: Infrastructure
Peer MAC Address: 00:22:6B:52:C9:9B
Reason: Dynamic key exchange did not succeed within configured time
Error: 0x0

I was stumped. Other posters suggested all sorts of remedies - changing wifi channels, degrading security to WEP (NOT going to do that), adjusting power options for the nic, etc. None worked.

It should be noted that a number of other devices (two smartphones, an intel-based macbook pro, another Dell laptop) were all able to connect to the wifi without issue or reconfiguration.

Prior to committing ritual seppuku, I did more digging into the router, using a wired connection, and here's where I stumbled upon what worked:

I made the adjustment to the "WPA Algorithms" setting. It was set to "AES", and I moved it to "AES+TKIP"

That did it. So, what does that mean? Is Windows 7 (or the related driver for this NIC) unable to connect using WPA2? Does Win7 require the use of TKIP instead of AES?

Who knows. I only hope that this might be helpful to the next guy down the line who might be looking for some small light in the wilderness...

Friday, August 5, 2011

Moving to this, full time.

Not that anyone is going to read this, but I decided to move OFF of Facebook, and the rest, and stick with this, at least for the short term.

I've been thinking about this since the end of the trip a few days ago: For me, at least, it seems to be true: interaction causes distraction. I'm getting less done with the things I want to, and should be doing, because I'm spending more time on the events, ideas and dreams of others. I completely understand that it is selfish. But though it might seem that way, it also feels necessary.

I'm not asking anyone else to help me, I'm not asking for society to support me. On the contrary: I'd just as soon be left to my own devices, and will seek help / advice / assistance from those who I trust.

None of this makes sense, I'm sure. My musings are predicated on too much personal thought and introspection to be rational to anyone outside of my brain. Summation: It makes sense to me, so that's what's important.

So, I'll be checking in here, now and again, posting thoughts, photos, musings. I might even post media - video or audio, as time allows.

Questions? Comments?

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Catching up, and an ending

Wednesday, 10:28 PM EST:

Listening to the radio, all we seem to get is Glen Beck, and some dude named "Savage" who see conspiracies where the rest of us only see democrats. I just don't get it.

Making good time - at this point, we're about 45 minutes west of Erie PA, about 20 minutes west of the PA boundry. Figure that we'll get to the NY state line by about 12:30 or so, if we're lucky.

All in all, it's been a smooth morning - fairly light traffic, and the one 'rush hour' we've gone through - Cleveland - was prettymuch uneventful.

RIght now, though, the road is rough. Single lane, lousy condition road, and slow going. Our nice happy itenerary and scheudle might eget blown to heck. Who knows.

More, when there's more to be had...

- - -

Thursday, 7:55 AM EST:

Well, we're home. Catching you up from yesterday:

The road home was long, but thankfully uneventful. I drove most of the way home - 11:30 or so on until we got to Shelburne around 8:30 PM. The NY Throughway was fine, not even any real congestion around the Albany area. The truck complained once we got into the Berkshires, since it had been pampered with relatively flat roads the entire trip.

Route 90, to route 7, to Route 9, to 8A (Dad wanted to go that way), and Route 2 to home. As we turned into the lower driveway at pop's house, he said "that's the most enjoyable turn of the trip." I had to agree.

For the whole trip, I'd like to say it was an adventure, but it really was so uneventful as to be almost boring. It was a lot of driving in a short amount of time, and what little sightseeing we did was from the window of the truck along the interstate.

Uneventful is good, though - we got home uninjured, the mill made the trip without damage or incident, and the truck performed flawlessly. And, most importantly, dad and I enjoyed each other's company the whole way.

So, I'm home. The day is shaping up to be a nice sunny day, not too warm, but comfortable. Looking for coffee, and going to get a start to the day.

Thanks for following this log. Until next time...

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The route home, part 2

Tuesday, 11:10 PM EST:

We're in Ohio, one more time. Stopped after a long, long afternoon, including a fabulous time stuck in traffic south of Chicago. Seems my attempt to avoid traffic in Chicagoland by going around the city pretty much failed miserably.

Hot, hot, hot. The temp in the picture was during that traffic jam. Joy.

Then, we chased, and were chased, by rain for much of the later part of the day. Not the greatest driving, and with pop driving, at night, in the rain, with high-beams in the mirrors... made for a lousy last hour of driving.

Anyway, we're here. Instead of a $100+ dollar smoker's room in the Holiday Inn Express, we got a much better deal in a farily nice, clean, room in a super 8. Free internet, breakfast, and TV comes in clear. Whee!

Tomorrow, we run, starting at 6 AM, and drive as much, and as quick as weather, traffic and our own senses will allow. For now, though, sleep is calling.

Mom, Bek, we'll be home soon.

The route home, part 1

Monday afternoon - 12:57 EST

We just stopped at a side-of-the-road gas / food / scales place to gas up. Dad bought a 1/2 gallon of chocolate milk and I grabbed a moon-pie. Neither was all that satisfying.

Made peanut butter / jelly sandwiches, which dad said was probably the most nutrious thing we've had to eat the whole trip. Last night's dinner was actually pretty good - so there' sthat. But, for the most part, he's probably right.

Let's see: Last night, we stayed at a side-of-the-road motel called (something like) the Branson Lake Lodge. The room was pretty good, but one of the two beds was broken - literally: the box spring was broken in half on one side, making the thing completely unusable. Well, half unusable. I took that one, so dad could have the other. Sleeping on one side of the bed was fine.

The rain we had last night was something -- pretty torrential for much of the night, with moderate to heavy rain the rest of the time. Someo crazy thunder-boomers, too - lighting strikes even into the morning.

We woke at about 6, I showered, and we sat in the hotel room until about 7:30, waiting. It was kinda frustrating to be just cooling our heels when all we wanted to do was hook up to the mill and get rolling. But, we had coffee, watched the weather channel, a little news, and talked a bit.

7:30 or so, we tried to check out. The guy who checked us in wasn't around, so we just left the key inside the room, and closed the door. Off we went, to the bank, and Dan met us there at 8 AM. Even after the bank manager had verified the check, over the phone, with Greenfield Savings, Dan still wasn't entirely satisfied. He wanted to issue a bill of sale with the phrase "pending clearance of funds". Yup. I'm sure Greenfield Savings Bank is going to run out of money before Dan gets paid. Not.

Anyway. we finished there, headed back to Dan's house, and proceeded to hook up the mill. Nothing tough, but several steps. Then, after getting the six blades, the rest of the hardware, and putting the plate on the thing, we were off -- 9:45 Am Departure time.

So far, the truck is getting only about 12 miles to the gallon, compared to the 17.5 - 18 we were getting on the way out. We are hauling 3,500 lbs of hardware behind us, so that's to be expected, I guess.

about an hour in, we passed by our first pretty bad accident for the trip -- single car, into the center-median, and nose first into a guard-rail. Nothing left 'cept what you'd take to Kramer's for shredding. I'm glad we passed by AFTER the ambulance had taken away the driver. Ick.

The rain stopped right aroudn then, but it's since gotten hotter, hazy like crazy, and humid. 81 degrees, and muggy. In spite of the poorer mileage, I'm going to feel a bit less guilty about running the a/c, though. It's just too darned long of a trip home to be uncomfortable.

The truck has been a pretty nice road, all things being equal. Plenty of room, room for all the food / bags / tools, and enogh elbow room for both Finns. So, it's been OK.

We expect to be in Ohio tonight -- and hopefully well into the state before we end out this day. But with the late start, who can be sure? In any case, we still expect on more long day of driving. The mill is slowing us down a bit -- but not too much.

- - -

A quick postscript: at 4:23 EST, we're about 20 minutes away from I-39 and I-80 in Illinois. Going to turn east on I 80 momentarily, and head home from there.

More Later Tonight.