Ξ December 28th, 2006 | → 2 Comments | ∇ Uncategorized |
Today was really cold, I don’t think it broke 30 even during the day. Last night was a bit rough, at around 7pm the lights flickered a few times and the pulses got more frequent and closer together over the next hour, followed finally by a total power outage. Luckily it was out less that 2 hours, and as it was the room was starting to get a bit cold. It would have been very unpleasant if it hadn’t come back. The safehouses don’t have any insulation and are just concrete walls, so the temperature drops pretty quick.
The up side to it being really cold is I’m not as worried about replacing my blister inducing boots. My tried and true Nike shoes handle ice just fine and are more than warm enough for the little bit of time I’m outside. They just get soaked when tromping through the slush. Now as long as I can stay upright on the solid sheet of ice that covers 75% of the base and the way to the safehouse I’ll be fine. I’ve watched several people take some hard spills (amazingly not Tera… yet), and nearly taken a couple myself. It’s good training for doing a contract down in Antarctica that I keep thinking about but probably will never end up doing. Raytheon and now ITT have or had contracts down there, who knows, maybe it’s an omen and I should think about checking it out one day.
I spent tonight sorting out finances. I finally rolled over all my IRA’s from Van Kampen who’s website really sucks, and seems to charge an arm and a leg for everything to Vanguard, who has a very functional website and seems to be highly rated. The money over here is defiantly noticeable and I’ve finally started investing it a bit with Vanguard. MaPS still has yet to return an E-mail for well over a week (3-4+ weeks if you count their contact us web form). You’d think they’d treat a customer who’s been with them for over 2 decades now a little bit better. Well, if that’s how they are gonna show their loyalty to me, I’m seriously thinking about taking my loyalty and $$$ elsewhere.
We’ve finally got a good Internet connection, I just need to hammer out a few more bugs in the WiFi link I’ve setup across the block or so to Casino House. I’ll probably start fiddling with VOIP here soon. For those that don’t know what Voice over IP is, basically I’ll be able to send and receive phone calls over the internet and finally get a phone I’d actually use for other than local calls. Vonage & Skype are the most recognized names, although not necessarily the best service. For the most part you can make free person to person calls anywhere in the world if your both using the same VOIP provider, and cheap long distance elsewhere. Something to think about if you have a broadband connection.
Speaking of phones, my new HTC TyTN cell phone showed up Christmas morning. It’s a “smartphone” and has a PDA built in, really spiffy. Among it’s cool features is not needing to be plugged in to work, unlike certain parantel units with a cell phone and deader than a doornail battery dating back to about the dawn of time. While on the topic of ancient hardware, I just realized my phone has a CPU that’s 200-400 times faster, has 100x the memory, 100x the storage space which runs infinitely faster (floppy disk compared to integrated flash, not even counting the micro SD slot I’ll be filling) of my first computer an Apple 2gs. All that while using probably 10% of the power. Ain’t progress grand, also shows why in the IT industry if your not constantly learning, your becoming as obsolete.
Well, I’ve rambled on enough for one night. I’m sure certain relative types will complain it’s not nearly enough, but I’m done for now.