This pen has a built in receiver to detect wireless cameras that may be spying on you and is called the Security Pen.
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Monday, September 12th, 2005
Saturday, September 10th, 2005
Thursday, September 8th, 2005
Wednesday, September 7th, 2005
Sunday, September 4th, 2005
Friday, September 2nd, 2005
So yesterday I got my new BlackBerry 7100t in the mail after winning it on ebay for $135. I bought the missing sync program for it from PocketMac and got it all synced up.... sort of .... PocketMac's software didn't sync any of my calendar items. That was the first in a series of problems I have had with the 7100t. The next problem was that although it is supposed to support IMAP it really doesn't... you just get sent a copy of all your mail. When you read your mail on your Blackberry it doesn't appear as read in your inbox... same with sending and deleting. It also doesn't support IMAP folders and only checks your email every 15 minutes. The next problem came when I recieved a new email from my fiance and tried to read it but instead deleted it... the delete key is right on top of the enter key and are both pretty small. Once you delete a message it is gone forever... no trash can. The next problem is that the screen sucks in the sun despite what the product description on Blackberry's site says. And maybe I just haven't learned all the shortcuts yet but it is extremely unwieldy to get around the different menus from phone to IM to mail... lame. Bluetooth also only works for headset and hands free... no serial no syncing. I don't know how long I will keep this thing, but I am thinking the TREO 650 is the way to go.
Ok so i've RTFM and checked some shortcut lists and I have found there are easy ways to get around the bb... I'll keep delving deeper into this phone. I really want to like it, I swear!
Wednesday, August 31st, 2005
Tuesday, August 30th, 2005
I don't have a bike, although I used to mountain bike all the time and I would love to have a nice new mountain bike, but not as much as I want a street bike! Anyway there is a cool downtown 14.5 ride to benefit the American Heart Association on Sunday September 18th. If you're in Downtown LA and have a bike (eric) you should totally go check this out! You can register here by clicking on the button that says "I will be participating in the Bike ride to the Walk."
Monday, August 29th, 2005
I just got in to GTD last week, my book hasn't even arrived yet via Amazon but I have read dozens of web pages about the process and I have my @action lists / projects / goals etc and it works great... put a whole bunch of tasks in to my dead and done file so far in the last few days.
My next step is to create a nice php/mysql interface that will sync with the text lists on my home/work desktops and my blackberry (which is on its way). So far I am using a combination of tar, openssl and scp to keep my lists synced, archived and encrypted. Fun stuff!
Sunday, August 28th, 2005
When I moved back to LA after living in OC for a year I hit up two of the local LA group blogs and asked if they needed or wanted any writers. Sean from blogging.la was the first to get back to me and let me know that the site was currently maxed out as far as writers went and to get back to him later to see if anything opened up. A few weeks later Jason Toney emailed me and let me know that there was room on LAist for writers and so I wrote a handful of articles for them. A few weeks ago I checked back with Sean and he informed me that a couple of spots had opened up on b.la, and as that was the group blog I had originally wanted to write for I retired from LAist and moved on over to b.la. So after finally getting my bio together I am now writing for blogging.la. My first post about the Chinese Food Festival is here.
Thursday, August 25th, 2005
Today Penelope and I walked a few blocks to the Civic Center to hit the YMCA and meet with our trainers to get set up on the FitLinxx system. Fitlinxx keeps track of your workout routine and lets you track your progress online. All the weight machines and most of the cardio machines are linked up to the network. It is pretty high tech and is included with the membership fee. I am going to be working out at least 3 days a week and doing 30 minutes of cardio and my sets of resistance training. Fun stuff!
Wednesday, August 24th, 2005
Tuesday, August 23rd, 2005
I just logged on to the google talk jabber server:
- login: email@example.com
- password: yourpassword
My friend set up jabber and his iChat crashed and then killed all his preferences. It seems to keep crashing on him. It is sort of working. Eventually we got both text and Audio chat working in iChat even though the chart on google says voice chat doesn't work.
Well Sean seems to have gotten it working too, but when I tried to reply to his message he disappeared and now I am seeing "Jabber Error" popups when I try and talk to him... can you say buggy!
Monday, August 22nd, 2005
I will no longer be writing for the LAist group blog. It has been fun and I have enjoyed writing the articles I have written for the site. I want to thank Jason Toney for giving me the chance to write for the site and wish him and the rest of the folks on LAist the best of luck in their adventures. Here is a link to the articles I wrote.
Monday, August 15th, 2005
Wednesday, August 10th, 2005
Tuesday, August 9th, 2005
Sunday, August 7th, 2005
Today Penelope and I walked up the hill a few blocks to check out the Basquiat exhibit at MOCA. The collection is vast and supposedly the largest ever in one place. We very much enjoyed the vivid and tumultuous paintings of the young deceased artist, our favorites of the bunch being Grillo, Now's the Time (a Charlie Parker record) and the various Gray's anatomy inspired paintings, which were obviously inspired by the thick anatomy tome (even though that bit of information was unknown to us).
This continues after the fold...
Friday, August 5th, 2005
I was just wondering if the live focus feature in the Canon 20Da is a hardware change like the different IR filter is or if is purely software... you would think it would be software. You can download the 20Da firmware but it appears to be in Japanese.
It won't work because the mirror on the 20Da is semitransparent, allowing simultaneous viewing through the eyepiece and the LCD.
Thursday, August 4th, 2005
Wednesday, August 3rd, 2005
So far I have taken over 10,000 photos with my Canon EOS 20D. I really love the camera and the photos I have taken with it. Of those 10,000 photos I have thrown about 9,500 or so... having a great camera has inspired me to take many shots but only keep what is good. I think my photography has come a long way, but there is always room to improve!
Monday, August 1st, 2005
Photos and words coming soon.
So believe it or not I have been slammed at work since I got back from the con and I really haven't had any time to sort my photos and write about my experiences at DEFCON, or at the parties I attended. I just got back from the walking tour of Downtown LA focusing on the Art Deco buildings in the area. I took some photos and I'm going to both sort those and the DEFCON pics and upload tonight.... oh and another thing... if I have time tomorrow I will be releasing a few more pages of LA from an Auto.
Oh my it must be a chilly day in hell as Penelope posted two entries on her site!!! One is a review of defcon... good job sweetie!
Thursday, July 28th, 2005
Tuesday, July 26th, 2005
Monday, July 25th, 2005
This edition in the series of scans from the 1906 electric coach tour guide entitled Los Angeles From an "Auto" takes us deeper into the Old Chinese Quarter and then to the original heart of the city, when it was just a tiny Spanish pueblo. This portion of the book is less of an advertisement for the hotels of Downtown and more of a glimpse into the unique history of the City of Angels. In case you missed them, the first three sections can be found here: Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3.
Check out the google map which shows the locations of the buildings shown in the guide along with a few (soon to me many) photos of the buildings as they exist today. The engravings from this section will be posted soon thanks to the historical address finding wizardry of Eric Richardson, who has already helped find several of the addresses for the map.
UPDATE The story has been boingboinged
[oops they said 1909 instead of 1906] fixed... thanks Cory!
Saturday, July 23rd, 2005
Google maps just got even better as they have added a feature called Hybrid that combines street maps with sat footage! Check out the new feature on any Google map, like my Historical Cultural Monuments map. I am really tired from a long day of Search and Rescue training. I will write more about it soon.
UPDATE I have updated to LA from an Auto maps and the HCM maps to use the new hybrid maps. The new type isn't documented yet, but it is pretty obvious: setMapType(GHYBRIDTYPE);
Thursday, July 21st, 2005
Ok I just got an email from the Grand Performances group that puts on free concerts at the California Plaza... and next Thursday starting at 8pm the Shaolin Monks will be demonstrating kung-fu techniques! The info is not on their website, but here is the pertinent info from the email:
Wednesday, July 20th, 2005
A friend of mine who lives in the mountains near Big Bear just had hail the size of marbles. He said his neighbor's windows were broken. Crazy weather for July, but this year, almost the wettest on record ever, has been generally strange when it comes to the weather department. I especially enjoyed the wildflowers in the desert that was more like a paradise after the torrential rain that fell this year.
Tuesday, July 19th, 2005
Monday, July 18th, 2005
I have posted the third part of my scans of the 1906 electric coach tour program guide: Los Angeles From an "Auto" over on LA Voice. I am a bit embarrassed to admit that the first two portions were painstakingly converted from photo to text manually by yours truly; I have stepped into the modern age and used an OCR program to aid in the task. I added the new photos on the google map.
I spent some time today updating the HCM google-mashup and enabling it to search by either zipcode and distance or name, address and monument number. Just a note of warning, if you increase the distance searched by too much you will end up with a google map that contains hundreds of points which, in Safari at least, ends up dogging your system. Eventually I'd like the system to get the location of the current view and show the HCMs that exist on that map. Tonight I am going to add the rest of the locations from LA and possible the ones from Long Beach if I feel so inclined.
UPDATE I have reimported the database of LA HCMs and this time I changed to code to work with ranges and multiple addresses for the most part and I also imported ALL the regions of LA. I am currently geocoding all the information once again so it may be a few hours before it is all on there. I also added a link to the flick tags for each map point... thanks to the folks in the LA Historical Cultural Monuments Group!
Saturday, July 16th, 2005
Boy am I tired from a long day of training... but hey that won't stop me from going to Create:Fixate for a couple hours and taking some photos!
UPDATE Create:Fixate was packed with hipster art folks, beautiful photography and strong drinks. I will upload the photos tomorrow and post a review consisting of more than 100 words, but it won't be on here... look out for it on LAist and some more of LA From an Auto on LAvoice.org. I have more training tomorrow, and more training next weekend, then DEFCON, then 2 more weekends of training, but after that I will be eligible to be Technical Rescue instructor for SAR, I haven't really ever taught before, but I think I will enjoy it. G'night!
Friday, July 15th, 2005
Just read this post from Eric on blogdowntown about his little journey through downtown today... He took a kick ass photo of the sunset, the sun was really big and orange today. He went to the Music Center for Dance Downtown and got his dance on... looks like he had a good time.
Thursday, July 14th, 2005
So I've been playing more with google maps API and have created a page that lists all the Historical Cultural Monuments in Downtown Los Angeles and a few surrounding neighborhoods. This phase is pretty buggy and due to the raw addresses from the HCM database being nonstandard, some of the addresses are ranges. I will have to hack my code up a bit to fix the range listings... also the geocoder I am using doesn't have every address in it, so it is not very precise. The geocoding is still going so not all 600 of the locations are on the map yet, but there are still many points so be careful it may tax your system to view this page. Next I just have to integrate photos and descriptions! [If you have a slow computer try this search for "broadway"]
Wednesday, July 13th, 2005
If you are in the Downtown area tomorrow, make sure you get out on the street and check out the Art Walk... I missed it last month when we first moved in, but this time I'm going to go to every gallery I can, plus take photos and write about it. Thanks for the reminder Eric.
Tuesday, July 12th, 2005
So last night Penelope and I walked the whole 3 blocks to the Golden Gopher to meet some blogging people from the interweb. We missed the free sushi, which was proven to exist here, but we were there in time for a few stiff drinks. We met and photographed Sean Bonner, Mack Reed, Uccellina and her husband and the losanjealous crew. Uccellina's husband whose name currently escapes me just got a job in the animation department at Disney (in the magicians hat). Penelope and Uccellina talked the whole time about weddings, but I'm pretty sure she didn't feign interest!
Monday, July 11th, 2005
When I was in Japan several years ago I made it a point to try many different types of Japanese food and one of them I haven't had since I was there is Okonomiyaki. Oko is a sort of like a savory crepe but thick with the filling infused into the pancake. As you can see here it starts off as a bowl of raw eggs, oil, noodles, flour and veggies with meat, seafood or tofu and it ends up being a giant delicious pancake that you can then cover with japanese mayo, unagi sauce and bonito... mmmm bonito. The fun part about it is that you get to cook it yourself on the table in front of you somewhat like shabu shabu. The whole reason I am writing about oko is this flickr photo and I found a place in greater LA (Torrance) called Tombo that serves the greasy delicious fare. Google led me to Epinions which had a review from 2001 so I gave the number a call and a nice lady answered and she told me yes, they did still serve okonomiyaki, just not on Mondays which is the day they are closed. Photos and review coming soon!
Sunday, July 10th, 2005
Penelope is a runner. She ran cross country in college on a scholarship. She is one tuff cookie. I ran a bit in Jr. High and High School, and until recently I hadn't run more than a block in about 10 years. Penelope has been taking me jogging, we started when I was living in Fullerton on the horse trails and we made it about 15 minutes and then I was exahuseted and had to walk the rest of the way. We have been steadily increasing the runs and now as of today we are up to 40 minutes without a break.
Today we did a run in the city and we started at the lofts, went straight up 6th street into the civic center, through a maze of stairs which belong to the parking lot across from the disney concert hall and the up the stairs of the concert hall, through the garden and up on to the chandler catwalk (beautiful view from there!). We then wove through some buildings and then back down to the loft. It was a good run and I feel great now!
Penelope had a wonderful idea to organize a semi-weekly jog through downtown for the residents of our loft. We're going to make some flyers tonight and put them up throughout the building.
Posts about our return trip to the zoo and the Lotus Festival coming soon...
Thursday, July 7th, 2005
Wednesday, July 6th, 2005
Sunday, July 3rd, 2005
In the last few days there have been extremely loud, earth shaking explosions that have rattled our lofts at early hours in the morning. At first I though it was something real blowing up, but I waited for the sounds of fire engines and police cars racing to the scene of the crime, yet there was no sign of an emergency response. Penelope and I have surmised that the sounds we were feeling and hearing were part of a Hollywood production being shot somewhere near our loft. Hopefully they will wrap soon!
Monday, June 27th, 2005
As it turns out, maintaining roadside phones for stranded motorists isn't very cost effective, especially when 90% of drivers carry cell phones with them. Starting July 1st, Metro and the Los Angeles County Service Authority for Freeway Emergencies (LA SAFE) will begin a non-emergency road side assistance cell phone number (#399) for LA County highways. If you already have AAA the operator will forward you there and if not you will receive assistance from the Metro Freeway Service Patrol.