Tuesday, October 28, 2008

fall is here

Sunday, October 26, 2008

more endorsements

Former Reagan Solicitor General and McCain supporter

The Anchorage Daily

On another note, please, for God’s sake, vote against Initiative Measure 985.  “Relieving congestion” sounds great till you see that it’ll open up the HOV lanes to everyone at 6pm.  Last time I checked, rush hour ended at 7:30.  Not only would it make congestion worse for the Puget Sound area, but it would also render the busses a non-viable alternative by clogging the HOV lanes.  End result:  even worse congestion.  Idiots…

Lastly, Washington State has the most awesome election materials I have ever seen.  It’s actually possible to make semi-informed decisions on most issues and they do an admirable job making the process as non-partisan as possible.  Here’s the online version.

maybe i won't fly american again either

United and US Air are the airlines that I first thought I would really try to avoid. Recently I had my first experience flying American and was pretty disappointed, but I figure I could give them the benefit of the doubt. (details here)

Seems like I was pretty lucky (well... kind of). If I had taken the same flight about a week earlier, I could have had a more memorable negative experience. Read about it here.

Friday, October 24, 2008



random shortcuts?

Windows + 1: Outlook
Windows + 2: Live Writer
Windows + 3: IE
Windows + 4: Firefox
Windows + 5: Excel
Windows + 6: OneNote

ooooooooooh…..  This is the order of stuff in my QuickLaunch bar.  Interesting….

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

look at all these endorsements

Former Miss Alaska (the one who beat Palin)
American Hunters and Shooters Assoc
Katherine Schwarzenegger

Jessica Alba
Nicole Richie
50 Cent


Monday, October 20, 2008

free food

I just went to the break room to refill my tea, get a soda, and get another soda for my monitor stand.

When I got there, I saw a huge stack of boxed lunches on the counter.  There were about 20-30 of them.  As I went to grab some milk from the fridge I wondered if I should take one.  As I was taking that step, a crowd of about 10 people descended upon the break room and attacked the boxed lunches.  In the commotion I heard things like “news travel fast,” and “if it wasn’t pear salad…”

By the time I finished getting my hot water, the crowd was gone and so were all but three of the boxed lunches (all pear salad).  As I left the break room I still saw a few people hanging out in the hallway with their lunch boxes open exchanging items.

Me?  I’m still not hungry.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

cheap power!

I got my first full electricity bill a few days ago.  It was shocking.  I managed to use 310KWH over the months of August and September.  If I were still in Connecticut with their insane $0.26/KWH I would be owing almost $100!

Thankfully, Seattle City Light relies on cheap hydroelectric power.  Total charge:  $17.40, or a average cost of about $0.056/KWH – that’s generation AND delivery!

So it seems like I’m using about 5KWH a day, or about 200W being used on average.  That seems like a lot.  I think this also tells me that if I get another computer that I leave on all day it’ll double my electricity bill.  Hrm…

Oh…  I’d also like to mention that this is my first post using Windows Live Writer.  So far it’s a little slow, but it has a nice WYSIWYG and pulls in my tags.  Neat.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

easier rebuild ever

My Vista laptop has gotten so broken that I had to wipe it clean after less than three months. Three hours later, I'm almost completely back to 100%, thanks to a few neat tools and tricks.

Awesomeness #1: Net install of Windows Vista and MS Office 2007
One of the perks of working at Microsoft. I can install it all over the network and it includes scripts for installing all the updates. Sweet. I started the process at about 3pm, then went to Target to do some shopping. By the time I was back it took another half hour and it was done. Now I just need to deal with reinstalling stuff.

Awesomeness #2: Windows Easy Transfer
I knew my laptop was terminal and its condition was worsening fast. Knowing that I needed to back up my settings, I turned to Easy Transfer. Easy Transfer is hidden somewhere in accessories, but it backs up all those Control Panel settings and app settings. This way I just restored and I didn't need to bother setting all my settings again. Sweet.

Awesomeness #3: Windows Live Mesh
All my documents are backed up on Windows Live Mesh. Usually this is great so I can access my files from home, my phone, your place, wherever. Today it helped me out by having an updated backup ready to go without me having to think or worry. Love it. The other folder that I have syncing is my Favorites folder. All those links to internal sites that I've accumulated have my magically restored. Sure, there's a 5GB limit, but that's adequate (for now at least).

Awesomeness #4: Exchange Server
Where are my Outlook settings? On the server. I am set and ready to go.

And if you're wondering what caused the downfall of my laptop, I'll blame the multiple installs, uninstalls, and reinstalls of pre-release software (Windows Live Clients, IE8 betas, Google Chrome, FireFox betas) and a bunch of other crap like sketchy nVidia drivers, Apple bloatware (Bonjour), and fat applications like FireFox, IE, and Live Mesh.

interesting because the ballot is in english!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

view from the msft cafeteria at lincoln square

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

four more years!

I just checked the archives and it's been about four years since I started this blog. It's gone through several URLs, from http://paulip88.blogspot.com to http://www.paulip.com to http://blog.paulip.com.

A link to the original post:

Apparently back then I used Yahoo! Photos (which has since been axed). Scary.

Friday, October 10, 2008

worst case scenario of the day

I've already talked about the death spiral of dwindling confidence in the markets, but not here. Brief summation: People are fearful of an economic downturn and are preparing for it by cutting spending. The cuts in spending result in less commerce, which causes pushes down profits even more. Repeat... over... and over... and over.

Going another level deeper, as people hold on to their dollars, the reduces the "multiplier" effect of how many times a dollar is spent. In fat times, people spend. When it's spent, the next guy spends it... repeat... over... and over... Each time this happens, people have income. Things look good. Get one dollar and cycle it through a million hands a million times and everyone is making a million bucks! If someone holds on to that buck, everyone makes less. Right now everyone is holding on to that buck.

So the worst case scenario... WAR:
When people are doing well, people like to make money. When things go down the shitter, people get PISSED. I doubt this would directly affect us in the US that much since despite our dependence on foreign oil, we do have a solid base of agriculture, manufacturing, resources, services, and we also have a ways to fall before people really start suffering. (Then again, most Americans have no idea what it's like in the "real world," so who knows) I'm more concerned about places like China. China relies on the world economy to consume all the goods it produces. China has a huge population, all of whom directly or indirectly rely on exports to the rest of the world for their wages. So what happens when the factories start to shut down? Potentially hundreds of millions of people will be without jobs, and they will be PISSED. Continued joblessness and poverty generally leads to unrest. When this happens, well... it'll suck. How it will unfold is unclear.

If the government steps in with social welfare programs early, things will be fine. If they engage in job creation New Deal style, things would probably be fine. If they pull a Fourth Reich/Hitler type deal, things will be pretty ugly. If the country implodes, then the rest of the world would experience a boom when they help China rebuild. Or maybe they'll go back to more traditional communism?

Monday, October 06, 2008

every day gets better and better

Looks like the market is down another 7-8% today.  On the bright side, even if the market drops 8% a day, we would still always have some money left.  And we would also be losing less nominally each day.  In other words, even though everything is falling apart it would be getting better and better every day.  It's like what Novemsky liked to talk about regarding colonoscopies.  Leaving it in doesn't make it feel any better, but yet it does.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

mystery meat