Saturday, April 26, 2008

The Glass Bridge

Today was such a nice an sunny day. I walked Jaani around here for a while, then I went to go have dinner with Ev. She cooked some sort of shrimp and vegetable stir fry. It was good, and then after dinner we took the dogs for a walk on the glass bridge. They don't call it that because it's made of glass or anything, but actually because it has all kinds of glass sculptures, and one end of it leads to the entrance to the Tacoma Museum of Glass. Below is a link to my album for the event.

Tacoma Glass

When we were walking over the bridge, I took a couple of videos. They just show the sculptures that are on the bridge...

This first video is of the Ceiling inside part of the bridge. The ceiling is made of a single glass pane, with all kinds of glass objects above the ceiling, with natural light from the sun shining through it all. It looks kind of flat from the pictures above and the video below, but I assure you that all the sculptures themselves are 3D, and they are all just laid out in a neat way.

The next video is a wall that is set up as a display for glass sculptures. It is over the rail road tracks, which is actually the perfect spot because then you cannot see the train as it passes underneath.

I know my commentary is completely awful, but I was trying not to talk because it always just sounds so stupid and dumb. anyway, that's what I was up to all day... or at least part of the day.

However, now it is late, and I must get to bed.



Friday, April 18, 2008

Zune Social made it to my blog!

Talk about bringing work home with me, I put my personal Zune card on my blog. It always brings a chill to my spine when I bring Microsoft and Google social services so close together, but I feel it is appropriate.

I have to admit, I do sort of like the concept with Zune Social. The only thing that is really new about it is adding a device that requires the Zune software in order to update it (like I-pod), then they created a Social Network, and have the software used for the device update your profile with listening data.

The thing that is actually a little unique is that they created a flash object that can be linked to a profile, then embedded into any page.

So... it's over on the right with everything else.

It's times like this when I wonder at what point will my blog start to get really slow because of all the crap I seem to keep adding... hmm. Food for thought...

anyway, that's all folks!



Thursday, April 17, 2008

Twitter on the blog.

I have decided to try a new method of keeping my blog filled with new content at all times, but without putting too much time into it.

Solution (maybe): Twitter.

A handy new(ish) concept of a micro-blog. In this case, a micro-blog on my blog.

You may have noticed the new gadget on the right hand of the screen. That is my twitter feed. It is a small service that I can quickly update using either: text message, IM, or going to the actual web site. The idea really made an impact on me when I heard that some (American) guy in China was arrested for taking pictures of the protests in Tibet, and he was taken to a jail where he was not allowed to make a phone call, or talk to anyone... he was completely trapped. Except, he was able to get out one text message to his twitter feed that said "ARRESTED" before they took his phone away. The people tracking his feed saw the message and his mother took the appropriate action to have him transported to the US Embassy. He has sense come home, and has a new found love for his mom.

So it just goes to show, I have a way to leave a message in the case of some emergency when I have phone reception, but can't make a call to anyone. It's a good thing.

Plus, when my mother comes to my blog, the idea is that I will at least update the twitter feed often.

So, other than that. I have been enjoying my work. We are in crunch mode for the next two weeks. That's nice because it means I will get a nice awesome pay check the next couple of weeks. I know it will be enough to cover rent and utilities, and every stupid cost I have at the moment. So, a few certain people should be happy that I don't need any money! It makes me happy to think about.

Other than that. I confirmed that I will get vacation pay while I'm away in Michigan. I will actually be able to collect the money just before I leave, then I will take 2 weeks off. I have recently heard hat my manager is happy about it because at that point we will be right in between launches. Which in short means there isn't a lot of work at that time anyway, but they will need me when the next launch comes around and I have the best over all understanding of the features I own than anyone else on the test team. Which is a really good power position because I can see major applications for my area of the project on Microsoft's Surface platform. I have to say, of all the things at Microsoft I could work on, this project excites me the most.

Anyway, talk to you all later. That's my little update for now.



Sunday, April 13, 2008

A little longer than I planned.

well, I guess the title refers to two things, my blog and my trip to Michigan. The first part is because I have been busy setting everything up at home so I can take a picture of what everything looks like all set up, I've been busy at work with a deadline fast approaching, and we are starting to schedule everything for our next big deadline.

The second part is because my vacation will take 2 weeks in stead of one. My calendar is updated here: . This is exciting for me to come home... June 26th is the first day I'll be in Michigan. I will be getting in at 1:30 in the morning, so I am sure Scott is the lucky person who will be getting me, however I sent him an invite to be part of my ride home. I am still waiting for him to confirm. Anyway, I will return home on July 8th at about 1:30... or 3:30 depending... I have a connecting flight from Flint to Detroit Metro on my way home, so I guess I can choose between the two.

So, now the only thing I need to do is call North West and ask about their policy concerning bringing Jaani on the plane, and to see if they will change the way they handle checked baggage. with a little luck everything will go as planned, but even if I need to, I can just pay for Jaani. It's much better than the alternative.

anyway... there is an update... I will leave you with a view from my new apartment. The picture was taken yesterday. It was such a nice day!!!! It was sunny, upper 70's, and it was just in time for me to go buy a fan before they go up in price.

Jaani and I spent the whole day on the trail... 'cept for a couple hours we went over to grand view park; yes the view was very grand.
So, this is a picture of my view out of my living room. You can see the hills on the west end of the valley. there are a lot of houses out there..

I guess the trees block the view a little bit, but it's actually kind of nice because the people just across the street can't see in my apartment window if I just leave the blinds open all the way. On the other side of the houses is Renton High School. The nice part about that is that they have a large field that is almost completely fenced in. Nobody has said anything about me taking Jaani over there yet. When you lean just slightly over my balcony and look off to the right, this is the view you see.

You can see the rest of a small neighborhood, and Renton Municipal Airport is over there a couple blocks down. It's nice because most of the planes take off and land from the other side of the airport, and the Boeing plant is far enough away/out of view so that I can barely hear it when they fire up the big planes. Most of the planes at the airport are small one engine personal aircraft, there are a few larger planes, but they are for the sea-plane tours.

So, there is a teaser picture of my apartment. I will start posting interior pictures once I finish actually cleaning everything up. (Right now half of my stuff is still sitting on top of the tables and counters.

so, that's it for now.



Monday, April 7, 2008

Internet at Home!!!

I wasn't feeling very well, so I skipped out of work a little early today. I came home and had a little scare because Qwest actually shipped my router to apartment 311 (instead of 312) which was due to a typo I corrected with one of the people on Friday. For a second I thought I would come home and not have internet... however, after a few minutes of fussing around with putting Windows on a machine to run the Qwest software and create a PPPoE account to connect my router, I was online!

Now, I will not have to deal with the frustration of another lonely weekend without my Internet connection. It was all too ironic that I found out last night I could connect to a WiFi hotspot downstairs in the party room, but I wasn't too concerned. I now have my connection from the convenience of my bedroom. Which brings me here.

This weekend was kinda boring and lonely. I realized this is the first time in 3 years I have lived alone. No room mates or family to be found. I like the feeling, it is just a lot more annoying without Internet. No Email, chat, message boards, streaming videos... nothing, but now that changed.

I also went out and got a phone\answering machine over the weekend. Today I found out my phone works too! Which is nice because people can... well, call my house to leave a message for me in stead of calling my cell phone. Actually though, I have a few friends who don't have cell phones... which is really shocking, but some people just don't keep up with these things. So, they can call my local number. That should be good. Plus, there actually have been a few times that I wanted to send a fax. I have a computer and a fax machine, so now I can do that any time I need.

So, that's a quick update. I am hungry, and I want to go make some food. maybe I'll reheat my food from last night... who knows... but that's all for now.



Thursday, April 3, 2008

Internet comming soon!

I called Qwest yesterday... they will be here on Monday. I am getting a local phone number which will be good if I need to send\recieve a fax... or call 911... plus this weekend I will get a phone with an answering machine attached to it from Fry's.

So, mom, that means I have a new phone number for you. I'll email it to you or something.

Other than that... I have been showing up to work a little early each day to handle my normal internet activity. Basically just to update my blog and to pay my bills. That sort of stuff. but things are going good.

Every week I have more and more money in my bank account. I broke the $1500 mark when this pay check came in. Plus I payed off one of my credit cards that I was using for money while I was "on my 100 day break." So I am now at the point where I can afford to pay 2 months rent using only my savings and my over draft protection account. I think I'm going to spend a little money this weekend though. I need to go grocery shopping, plus I need a lamp to brighten up my living room. I know I had a couple other things too... like a top sheet for my bed and one more trash can... mostly small stuff. I think the lamp, phone, and groceries will be the big expenses.

So... that's my story, and I'm sticking to it!

I am getting really settled in here at work. I take the bus to and from work every morning. With a Zune, it shure makes the ride a lot better. I have been watching this hour and a half interview with Bill Gates and Steve Jobs on a review of the past two decades. They are just getting the the late 90s. I should finish it on the ride home today... I think. I watched it on the way home yesterday, and the way to work today. I also have been watching the best of you tube podcast. it's great! that with attack of the show... NBC nightly news... 28GB of music... the ride just flies by. The walk between the bus station and my home is really short. Then, once I get to work, I can take a shuttle from the transit station to by building, but I have been walking because it has just been so sunny and nice out this week. Although I need to leave here before 5 if I want a ride to the bus station from work.

Jaani is forcing me to go on two walks every day. I take him outside and he just fights me to go to the trail... (He actually won't go until I get to a certain patch of grass in a park 1 1/2 blocks away.) Then after work we usually walk down the trail for a while, then over to Jet City for some coffee.

I just remembered I still haven't uploaded the pictures of my apartment. I guess at this point I'll wait until I have everything unpacked and put away. I still have half my stuff packed. Plus there is a little bit of stuff left in the Van; which I just found the hose hook up that I can connect my hose to and clean the cars. I might just have to do that this weekend.

so. Things are good. I'm getting back on my feet again after the break, and I should be able to keep saving. I will have internet at home on Monday (I hope.) So that should make things a little better.

So, I'll call that an update. I gotta get back to work.



Tuesday, April 1, 2008

The moving is done!

The move is finally done!  I have cleared out my old apartment, we vacuumed, cleaned the carpet, and turned in the keys.  I really hope that Evelyn changed her address with her work and everyone.  I know she still hasn’t turned in a change of address to the post office yet. 


Anyway, everything is in the new apartment, I got through the move with only minor injuries (5 paper/cardboard cuts, 3 bruises, and sore muscles.)  Now I just have to unpack everything.  I started with some of the basic stuff.  For the time being it is nice because I can use the Astro as a storage area in the garage until I find room for the stuff that is already in my apartment (like my bike…)  Now all I have to do is find permanent and reliable internet access. 


It turns out the same person who doesn’t know how to secure their internet access also doesn’t know how to reset a router.  I have figured out that they use Comcast, the only think I can’t do in reset the router myself.


I have been thinking about it, and I think that just getting Qwest DSL should do the trick.  Either that or Comcast.  Either way I will pay at least $30 a month for internet, but at least with Qwest I get a local phone number.  With Comcast they have a really nice deal if I want internet, phone, and Cable, but I don’t know if I really want all that.


Anyway… I must get back to work.  I just wanted to  write an update to let everyone know I am finally moved in, but I need to find more reliable internet access for home.






Steven Farnell

Volt at Microsoft