Archive for the ‘Computers’ Category

Well, I thought this appropriate, since I am a big Netflix supporter and fan, but it’s absolutely amazing to see long time video stores closing.  As it stands, the closest video rental store (a Blockbuster Video) is about 4 miles away.  The closest Movie Gallery/Hollywood Video is soon to be 12 miles away from me, once the stores in Lakeville and Farmington finish liquidating.

This year has been particularily rough on the Burnsville area, as we have lost both Blockbuster Video locations (they closed last month), and (this one I missed) the nearby Savage location of Hollywood Video closed as well.

In the 80s and 90s, I lived in Prior Lake.  We had 3 movie stores in Prior Lake, all owned by the same company.  Main Avenue Video & Tanning.  In the mid 90’s, they consolidated locations into a new, bigger store located at 13&42, and in the late 90’s, that location was bought out by Video Update.  Due to mismanagement of Video Update, they were later bought during bankruptcy by Movie Gallery, which was later bought by Hollywood Video.  Also, in 1999/2000, Blockbuster Video came into town and so did Hollywood Video.  Now, all that remains is the Blockbuster Video on 13/42 in Savage.  Burnsville no longer has any video rental stores, whereas at one time they had either 3 or 4.

But that got me thinking, when was the last time I was in a video rental store?  What with Redbox charging $1 a night, and Netflix providing all you can eat plans starting at around $10 a month, it seems kinda silly to spend $4-$5 for a rental from Blockbuster.  The last time I was in a Blockbuster was in 2005 because I was a Total Access member (and not a very profitable one at that, I got 30 movies a month for $17!).  Of course, that program has since been altered (and I got a “thanks for being a customer, but goodbye” email from them).  Of course, this program is exactly why Blockbuster is struggling so badly today.  They have a DVD By Mail service simular to Netflix, but I have always gotten better service than Netflix (and the “see you later” email still leaves a bad taste in my mouth).

So, if you still have a video rental store in your neighborhood, it might be time to start saying “goodbye”.  Within the next 10 years, we can probably also start phasing out DVD by mail (or DVD in general) in favor of internet VOD.

As I type this, as a matter of fact, I am watching an episode of South Park on Netflix’s “Instant Watch” service over the Roku box.  I can do the same thing on my PS3, laptop, computer, etc.

New Look…..

Posted: April 10, 2009 in Computers

So, I thought the site could use a refreshed look.  The old theme was good and everything, but it was also getting really old.  This one is a bit darker than the last one, but to me looks a bit more modern.  What do you think?

New Version of WordPress…..

Posted: April 12, 2008 in Computers

So far, I really like the backend, but not much new on what your seeing.  It’s version 2.5, so if you have a wordpress blog, I would HIGHLY recommend the update.

They have COMPLETELY rewritten the admin/backend to look better, and make more sense.

So, its absolutely amazing how time files whe your having fun.  Its hard for me to believe that it has already been a month, and yet I am still just as excited about it as I was on day one.

Not much else to report, I’m keeping a fairly low profile in my personal life these days.  Just trying to save as much money as possible, so I can meet my new goal of July 1st for a move out date.  See, I go permanent with this company on June 13th, and I didn’t want to move out until I can stop paying this nearly $400 COBRA insurance payment every month. 

The weather here in MN has been kind of crappy, but I am hoping that next weekend it is nicer outside, so I can get my car nice and sparkily clean and get the trunk cleaned out.  Its not bad, just space I would like to take back.  In May, as part of the plan for moving out, I am going to start shopping Craigs list for furniture such as a coffee table, kitchen table, and maybe even a recliner or entertainment center.  And I’d also like to start picking up the little things like silverware, pots and pans, dishes, etc.

I’m so excited!

With that said, I am definitely still getting out and being social where I can, but after a hard week at work, it sometimes feels good to just come home on a Friday night, mix a few drinks, and turn on a good movie.  These days, I don’t seem to make it much past Midnight, and I can never seem to sleep in past 11AM either.  I guess a day job will do that to ya!

An update

Posted: March 30, 2008 in Computers, Work

So, it has been a while since my last post, and I thought I’d pop in and give an update.

The job is going very well.  Its been close to three weeks now, and I am finally getting used to the different schedule, although I am not up as late as I used to be even on the weekends.  I finally have the drive down to the right route.

Other than that, I am keeping a very low profile.  I am trying to save money for the move which will likely happen in July now.  I really wanted to move out in May, then the length of the hunt pushed it back to June, and now its really starting to look like July is going to make more sense.  By then, the temp in my temp to hire title will be gone, I will have insurance benefits and all the other benefits that come with having a permanent position.  And most importantly, I won’t have to pay for COBRA, which is about half of what my rent will be.

In other news, my computer’s power supply died this week.  I replaced it and had to rebuild the operating system from scratch, thankfully I did not lose any data!

I got a second interview!

Posted: February 29, 2008 in Computers, Work
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So out of the batch of interviews that I did this week, I got a second (well technically third if you count the phone one) interview at a company that I really liked.

They wanted to bring me in first thing Monday morning too.  The first interview went for like an hour, and felt more like I was hanging out with a buddy, so I guess that ended up being a good thing.  I’m very excited about the opprotunity, and the fact that they wanted to bring me in first thing Monday morning is also probably a very good sign.

The atmosphere is great, the pay is right around what I was looking for, the location is great, and most importantly the opprotunity for personal growth is there (they told me I would get to touch pretty much every aspect of the department).

I’m excited, and should hopefully have a concrete offer from them next week should the IT manager like me.  I of course am not counting out any other opprotunity that I am persuing, but at this point I honestly think this is the one for me. 

Blog Upgrade….

Posted: February 25, 2008 in Computers
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In an effort to keep the hackers and spammers at bay, I have upgraded to the latest version of WordPress (2.3.3).

For those of you who also use wordpress, I would highly recommend you do this upgrade, as it closes a couple of very important holes.  And if your still on an older version of wordpress (older than say, 2.1) the new versions are cool.  They even tell you when your out of date and give you a link to let you know to upgrade.  Does the same for plugins.  Cool.

Removing some old SPAM

Posted: January 3, 2008 in Computers

So, as part of moving hosts, I was forced into looking at the comments table, only to see about 15,000 SPAM comments sitting on this blog.  I KNEW they were there, they were from an old blog engine that I used before WordPress, that did not allow me to moderate comments.

As most of you know, I moderate now, and the only reason a comment doesn’t get approved is because of SPAM.  I don’t believe in censorship, provided your not just repeatedly flaming me.  But, if you made comments a while ago, I might delete it by accdent.  Sorry, there are 15,000 of them, and sometimes a legit one slips through the crack.  In better news, since changing to the new system almost two years ago, absolutely NO spam has slipped through.

New Year, New Host, New Features

Posted: January 2, 2008 in Computers

Well, as most of you have no doubt noticed over the past week or two, this blog has been down, along with all other sites that I have a hand in hosting.  Basically, the old servers crashed, best I can tell.  I tried working with the host, filed several trouble tickets, and got basically nowhere.  So, I decided that combined with the SQL server being tempramental at times, the time not being set right on the server, etc, that it was time to get a new host.

After nearly a week of the old host being down, they have finally come back up, and I am currently working on getting all old files from the old servers, and moving them over here.  MNEnergy.com (home to Energy 87.9) is back up and running, and the blog is also back up.  MNXMFan.com is slightly more complex (more tables, bigger database) so it might be another day or so before it is back up and running.

Also, you might notice some changes.  First off, yes, as of right now you are being redirected to blog.mnxmfan.com/wordpress.  This is due to the way things are setup at the moment, and might change as I am not sure how I feel about redirecting.  But with that change, we have finally been able to upgrade WordPress to the newer version.  With that brings several changes, mostly backend, but for one there is now a post calender, tags, and more fun stuff on the right hand side of the screen.

In addition, you now have the ability, through each post, to share it with whatever social network you choose.  Just click on “Share this” within any post, and a list of custom generated links opens right in your browser. 

We hope this new host, www.servmatix.com works out well for us in the future, and due to being on what appears to be better and more up to date servers, I hope to bring you all kinds of new features, along with the same boring drivel you know and love!

The year has seemingly flown right by me, as it’s quickly coming to a close.  I say quickly, because as we all know December goes by rather quickly. 

Perhaps its because of the week and a half cold that I’m just getting over, or the fact that I have been in school for around 10 hours a day this semester, but I for one welcome the end of the year.  For me it means graduation, a step upward from where I was before.  When I start the new year, I will be employable in the IT field, and with any luck, I will also have a job lined up. 

But I will also be sad to see the end of the year approach.  I will miss going to classes, or hanging out with all those people that I have met at school.  It’s been 2.5 years there, and there are some great memories, and some not so great memories.  But one thing is for sure, I am going to miss the 40+ minute commute each way to go learn some stuff with some overall great people.

But, such is life, constantly changing.  And there’s some big changes coming up in the new year.  Stay tuned!