iPod nano

Over the last week, the iPod nano has been a gigantic topic on the Internets. I’m not going to put my 2 cents on if it’s a good move by Apple or not. All I’m going to say is that I’ve already made plans to sell my iPod mini and Shuffle in order to buy a Black nano. Those things are shit hot! It will be mine. Oh yes, it will be mine.

P.S. This is also my first post using ecto. I’m trying it out to see if it’s any better than MarsEdit. There are just some weird things MarsEdit does that I don’t like. I figured this was worth a shot.

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Ticket to Ride

Lately I’ve been wanting to get back into some sort of gaming that doesn’t involve a computer of some sort. Back in college, I used to play Warhammer 40k and Magic: The Gathering. I gave up Warhammer because it took too much time to paint my figures and get them ready, and I never had anywhere that was close by to play either.

After quitting Warhammer, I started playing Magic: The Gathering. This was right around the time the Invasion block was rotating in, so it was actually a good time to start up. I played pretty seriously for about a year or so. I went to tournaments, read online strategy guides, and bought singles on eBay. In all, I probably spent over $1000 on that game, and I had a bit of a “Come to Jesus” moment once I realized half the cards I owned weren’t valuable in the Type 2 environment any longer. That’s when I decided that this game wasn’t for me.

Don’t get me wrong, I still think the game is fun. I love the strategy involved and the different options one has when building a deck. It’s just that I don’t have the desire to dole out that much cash for a hobby. With that said, I’ve been looking into some of the more strategic, German type, board games that are out there. I played Axis & Allies some when I was in college and I always had a great time. So I started browsing around Board Game Geek just to see what’s hot.

As I was browsing over the different Geek Lists, I realized that Ticket to Ride was getting almost universal acclaim. Every review I read billed it as the perfect gateway game. The gameplay mechanics are simple, yet it still provides enough depth strategically to challenge each player. I’ve now played it 2 times offline with my wife, and 2 times online. I have to agree that this is an excellent game. It’s not bogged down by unwieldy rules interpretations, and the game flows smoothly from beginning to end. The only thing bad about this game is the fact that it’s a gateway game. It has introduced me to a whole new world of gaming. The only good thing is that this gaming hobby is nowhere near as expensive as Magic or Warhammer.

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Mac mini: 30 days and Counting

My wife and I had to finally lay our aging Wintel box to rest about a month ago. I’ve had that machine since 1999, and I have to say it served it’s purpose phenomenally. It was only the last 3 or 4 months where it gave us any trouble at all. I had to reinstall Windows 3 different times. After the 3rd time, I decided it was time to finally make the move to a Mac.

It took us awhile to finally decide which Mac we wanted to buy. In the end, we decided to go with the Mac mini 1.42 Ghz G4. Luckily they had just been “updated”, so we got the Airport and Bluetooth built-in. It was a real hard decision on whether to get the mini or the iMac G5.

I like the power and specs of the iMac, but I didn’t want to get locked into having the screen and machine all-in-one. Plus, the G5 processor has a bit of reduced life expectancy with Apple’s current move towards an all Intel based product line. I know it will take a few years for the transition to be complete, but I’ll be able to make the move to the Intel line of Macs sooner since I bought a mini.

All in all, the Mac mini is a wonderful machine. I would’ve loved to purchase a Dual G5 Power Mac, but for the size, the mini can’t be beat. Out of the box if provides enough juice for most of your basic computing tasks, Internet browsing, email, or word processing. It’s not going to blow you away. I am planning on upgrading the RAM to 1 GB and adding a 7200 RPM Hard Drive. Both of those additions should boost the performance of this machine by about 40%. I am also going to ad an internal DVD burner. I could’ve paid $100 at the start, but I would’ve been stuck with a 4x burner.Installing it myself nets me a 8x burner. That’s worth it in my book.

Mac mini 1.42 Ghz: 8.75/10

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Labor Day Trip in Doubt

My wife and are were talking about driving down to Atlanta to visit with some of our friends down there for the long weekend. We also have a friend from college who’s in a rehab hospital down there after a car accident. Now this is all in doubt because of the insane way gas prices have skyrocketed.

I don’t know about you, but I don’t really want to spend all of my money on gas for a 4-hour trip. I’d like to be able to have some fun while I’m down there. I also don’t want to get in a situation where I’m stuck somewhere without gas. I don’t think there’ll be a shortage, but you never know with the way the local news media across the country is sensationalizing these stories.

With that said, I’d like to think that I’m not going to let something like this affect my plans. This is America, and we do what we God damn please no matter what. I guess I can always rely on the old standby, the credit card.

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Is This Necessary?

I enjoy reading Lifehacker everyday. Usually there are some pretty good tips and tricks that pop up on there throughout the week. Sometimes a topic comes up that makes me think “WTF?” Do people really have problems with these sort of things?

Here’s the latest, head-scartching example. Is it that difficult to remember where you parked. I know sometimes it seems like the lot goes on for miles, but it’s common sense people. All of these tips are things I would hope most normal people would think of on their own.

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Glad I Dumped Halladay When I Had the Chance!

Roy Halladay suffers setback in recovery from broken leg

Whew, am I glad that I was able to drop him from my fantasy team when this first happened! I had a feeling he would be out longer than expected. I got an excellent pitcher in return, John Patterson of the Nationals, who’s been pitching great for the past month. I had to give up the Orioles Miguel Tejada, but I received Michael Young of the Rangers in return

All in all I think I’ve come out on top so far.

Update: Halladay is now out for the season. Boy am I glad I made this trade. Now all I have to do is sneak into the playoffs.

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Funny How Free Agency Works

Peter Boulware to work out for Ravens

I bet the Ravens are going to be laughing all the way to the bank if they re-sign Boulware. His cap number should be much more manageable now they he’s “tested” the waters. Plus, he won’t have to learn a new system.

It’s probably win/win for both parties. Boulware will get a one-year deal and a chance to prove to all of those haters out there what he’s really worth. I’m still shocked that he’s on the market.

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Absence from Blog

The past two weeks have been pretty crazy for me. Last week I was down in St. Petersburg, FL at the beach. It wasn’t too crazy down there, but I was away from all things tech. I will post some pictures when I get a chance. I will also try to post a review of my trip to Busch Gradens Florida.

This week has been insane here at work. Too much to do and not enough time to do it. Things should settle down and I’ll return to my normal activity.

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Mallow Theme

Well I finally decided on which theme to use for my blog. I liked the clean simple look of Matthew Maber’s Mallow theme the best out of the four or so I was trying to decide between. I took the purplish colors and switched them out for some cool, calming shades of blue.

I will probably do a little bit more modifying of this theme, but right now I’m still trying to learn the basics of both WordPress and CSS. I’m just glad I was able to do what I did.

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