Friday, May 29, 2009

This trip...

Has been unnecessarily rough. I had hoped to make it out to the Cahokia Mounds today, as my flight doesn't leave until the afternoon, but the weather has turned bad.

As it happens, I had hoped I could be going on a Hawaii trip the next couple of weeks, but that got pushed off. I'm going to be going to some of the Garden Spots of the American Southeast instead.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Idiots in security.

I was listening to this week's NPR Technology podcast and the first story was about passwords. Specifically, about idiots who had trouble with their passwords. There was a montage of idiots telling their stories about what idiots they were with passwords.

One gem came from a guy who said "I had to throw away my laptop. I couldn't figure out my password, my company couldn't help me, Apple couldn't help me."

That right there is a good example of the difference between Apple users and PC users. First off, PCs have a much higher "support" industry than Apple does, so someone somewhere could have resolved the issue, even if it came down to moving a jumper on a motherboard or enclosing the HDD and pulling the information off that way. Or they could have formatted the HDD and reload the OS. Certainly there was no reason to throw away a laptop because of password difficulties.

The guys tone also really pissed me off, as if he thought it was funny. Hell, I wish I had enough cash to throw away a Apple Laptop after some password problems!

I might be a little narrowminded in this case, as I've spent such a long time in government(either as a sailor or a contractor) that I'm used to keeping track of multiple passwords...but man, seriously? I honestly think this is not that hard.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Emotional Investment in your pet.

My cat Willy had a stroke Monday morning. He was throwing up something fierce, and stumbling around like he had no control of his hind legs. I took him to the vet who, among other things, determined that he had an enlarged heart that was probably the root cause of this problem.

I was pretty tore up about it, and as I was sitting in the waiting room at the Vet clinic I mostly stared at the floor trying not to cry. One of the things that came through my mind was how much more emotional distress Willy's condition was causing me than dealing with the '04 Tsunami cleanup during my deployment. The most emotion response that work created within me nausea and a little fear during certain events. But that fear passed rapidly and didn't really cause me distress. How is it that I'm emphasizing more with my cat than other human beings?

As of today(Thursday) Willy has recovered quite a bit, he's returned to jumping up on furniture and many of his previous mannerisms. That cat has already gone through like 8 of his lives, and it's frankly amazing this 14 year old animal has made such a recovery. He's still stumbling around a bit, and I wonder if that stumble will ever go away, but the worse appears to be over. I don't know what I would have done if the Vet had started to say stuff like "he's in a lot of pain". Probably would have done what was best for Willy, but it would have killed me a little inside.