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Completely wrong some more Tue, May 31, 2005
Following up on an earlier post, there's a term used at work called "NSN", which means National Stock Number.  My senior engineer says "NSN number", and it kills me.  He also uses the phrase "TDP package", which refers to a Tech Data Package package. #language

Good old days Tue, May 31, 2005
Remember when you used to be able to call a person and just leave a message on their answering machine/voicemail?  Nowadays, that stupid cyborg lady says something about leaving a callback number and pressing some numbers to review your message.  What's with that?  It used to be just with cell phones, but now it's every phone.  It's probably yet another byproduct of Microsofting.

Remember when SUVs used to be called Jeeps?  Yep that's right.  There was once a time when Jeep was the only car company that made anything that was a cross between a truck and a minivan, so when other car companies started making similar vehicles, we called them Jeeps. #technology

Major Minus Tue, May 31, 2005
There's a guy where I work named Joe Minus.  He's a Major in the Army.  Thus his name is Major Minus.  Why do funny things happen? #sociology

Down with U2 Thu, May 26, 2005
No I'm not saying "I'm down with U2."  I'm saying "Down with U2!  Death to U2!"  Whenever U2 comes on the radio, I make it a point to change the channel.  I refuse to listen to a band that uses their international fame to advance their political agenda.  Even if it's for a good cause.  Go ahead, Bono, find a solution to poverty.  Just don't expect me to support your cause by listening to your music.  I think it gives celebrities an unfair amount of power.  Just look at those antiwar idiots in Hollywood, like Richard Gere and Susan Sarandon.  I'm all for freedom of speech and freedom of opinion (I use those freedoms to further this propaganda!).  The thing I don't like is when people in powerful positions use their fame and media spotlight to further their points of view.  They claim, "Everybody has the right to free speech."  True.  But not everybody has a face and name that billions of people would recognize and listen to.  Not everybody can go on talk shows and spout out their political opinions.  So while I'm all for free speech, I'm also for fairness.  Powerful people shouldn't be allowed to spread their opinions just because they have fame and money.  They should be like the rest of us nobodies, blabbing our half-truths on websites with little to no traffic! #entertainment

PHP.exe error (3) Wed, May 25, 2005
If you have problems running some PHP scripts, don't give up hope.  I've been having some problems with some things, and I just recently figured out the solution.  If the script references itself, it may be doing it incorrectly.  For example, in the webadmin.php script, there's a variable called $self, and there's a little piece of code that defines it:

if (!empty($_SERVER['SCRIPT_NAME'])) {
  $self = html(basename($_SERVER['SCRIPT_NAME']));
} elseif (!empty($_SERVER['PHP_SELF'])) {
  $self = html(basename($_SERVER['PHP_SELF']));
} else {
  $self = '';
The problem occurs when I click on a link in the file and it calls .../php.exe?action=....  I'm not sure why this happens, but either way, you can fix it by defining $self = $_SERVER['PHP_SELF'];.  That way, each time the code calls itself, it calls the right thing (its file name), not some sort of php.exe thing.  I've seen this in a few other scripts, and the same fix has worked each time. #technology

PHP webadmin (1) Wed, May 25, 2005
I found this awesome script (here) that lets you delete, rename, move, copy, download, and edit files on your server without using FTP.  It's a simple script (a single file) that gives you a ton of power.  There's also an inherent danger in this because it allows anyone to access and edit your files, so you should do something to password protect it.  I would recommend putting in a password protected folder or using the password protection script I wrote about in previous post.  I have the source hosted here (renamed with a .phps extension because you can seriously do some damage to my server if it had a .php extension). #technology

Commercials Wed, May 25, 2005
One thing I enjoy very much is listening to commercials.  I always like to know how to get premium life insurance for just pennies a day, how to get prescription medication for low prices, how to turn my assets into CASH!, how to learn the secrets to natural male enhancement, when Joseph A. Bank is having their next sale, when I can pick up a luxurious fur coat from the Flemington Fur Company, how much I can save on my car insurance by switching to Geico, and where I can go to get 1.9% financing on a brand new Dodge 4x4 with a 3.6L V8 Hemi engine.  Thanks guys for always giving me what I want.  Your advertising dollars at work. #entertainment

PHP password protection (2) Wed, May 25, 2005
I found this awesome script at PHPBuddy that allows you to password protect a PHP page with some simple code.  All you need to edit is the username and password, and insert your content after the script.  It uses sessions, so it'll keep you logged in as long as there's a web browser window open.  You must close all web browser windows to log out.  View the source here. #technology

Microsofted Wed, May 25, 2005
My ballistics professor says a funny word a lot:  Microsofted.  When he's displaying his "viewgraphs" (an outdated term meaning Powerpoint slides) and something goes wrong, like that right-click menu shows up and he can't go to the next slide, or when he tries to close one file but it ends up closing all related files.  He says, "Oh no!  I've been Microsofted!" #technology

House buying Mon, May 23, 2005
Here are my lessons learned from buying a house.
  1. Don't skimp on a lawyer.  A lawyer will cost between $500-$1000.  But in the long run, that's about a half of a percent of the cost of a ~$200,000 house.
  2. Try a paperless loan.  That sounds nice, doesn't it?
  3. Add about $2000 to the estimated closing costs.
  4. Try going with a reputable mortgage lender.  More on this later, unless Quicken Loans really impresses me.
  5. Choose a lawyer and a bank that are close to where you live so you don't have to travel and make extra plans for the closing date.
  6. Set a price limit on the houses you want to look for.  Then look for houses that are about $50,000 less than your limit.  You can't afford what you think you can afford.
  7. Expect to spend an exuberant amount of money for things like home inspections, loan application, and title insurance.
  8. Don't put any money down for the down payment.  What's the point?  Your measly little savings account with $15,000 in it will lower your monthly payments by about $50.  That's stupid.  Finance 100% of the house and spend your cash on something useful, like toys from Home Depot.

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