January 31, 2007: Topsy Turvy Day

I went to bed at nine last night! Boy was I tired by the time I went to bed. I went to the A&P north of the office on the way home last night and picked up a few basics. Dominica cooked Chili last night and we actually just ate at home. I got home after seven and was in bed by nine so our night was very short. Oreo was tired after two days of daycare and was more than happy to go to bed early. Dominica stayed up watching DVDs.

I worked from home for a few hours this morning. I got a good nine hours of sleep last night and feel much better today.

Today, in an email to Dominica, I used the term “pre-existing plans.” As soon as I hit the send button I realized that people rarely have instantaneous plans or after-the-fact plans. The term “plan” is somewhat inclusive of the “pre-existing” bit.

My copies of Microsoft Vista arrived today. I won’t have a chance to play with that for some time and I have no idea when I will be able to squeeze it in or on what machine I will be able to install it. Maybe I will install it to the HP d325 desktop that I keep in Geneseo. That is probably the machine where the “least impact” will be felt should the move not be so good for a while. I am sure that Vista will be the way to go down the road but moving over in the first week is always scary. Of course, that is just the first week of consumer off-the-shelf availability. Vista Business Edition – which is what I got – has been around for months now and is widely used. Still, there is a lot of opportunity for things to go wrong. But I am interested to see how it is working and whether there are any major changes to be looking for.

Here is something that Windows Vista users (or potential users) will want to know: If you use Vista with the Aero interface (the Aero interface is the only piece of Vista that anyone actually cares about and is the one piece that works for only a few small percentage of current computers) then your power consumption will increase dramatically as the CPU and the GPU will be driven hard all of the time just displaying your desktop. In a climate of constant moves towards power conservation this is a big step in the wrong direction. AMD and Intel main processors are using less and less power all of the time and all kinds of technology is coming out to make our computers more power efficient and then we go and make the desktop use the power hungry GPU (graphics processing unit) and throw all of that gain away. The upside will be that power consumption of the GPU will now be a focus for efficiency gains so we will look to companies like AMD (ATi) and nVidia to find ways to get great graphics processing without the incredibly power consumption.

In other cool computer news, Peugeot Citroen in France has chosen SUSE as their desktop and server OS and are installing 22,500 SUSE machines! That is a huge Linux installation.

I was planning on heading home on the early side but I got caught doing little work here and there until my big evening work hit and then I couldn’t leave. So it is a late night for me but that is okay – tomorrow is my work from home day and I was in on the late side this morning anyway.

Tonight’s plan is leftover chili from yesterday. Not only did we make a break yesterday and cook at home but today we are totally going crazy and eating leftovers! I can barely recognize us as the same people who lived in our apartment last week. It must be topsy-turvy day.

I didn’t get to leave the office until after eight 🙁 That is pretty late.

Today I learned about a musical instrument that I had never heard of before: the Tromba Marine. It is an extremely rare and very old musical instrument that is rumoured to sound soft of like a trumpet. I can only imagine that getting a marine trumpet today would be very expensive. I managed to find a book describing the instrument’s organology.

We ate dinner while watching a “new” show that we are trying out: Jack of All TradesJack of All Trades is a seriously quirky show starring Bruce Campbell as Jack – a spy working for Thomas Jefferson and sent to a small island in the South Pacific to thwart the international army of Napoleon.  The show borders on the bizarre but clearly falls on the bizarre side but just barely.  I read in reviews of the show how they carefully used only characters who were alive in 1801 and could have, in theory, run into each other on this small island.  However, by the second or third episode they were using long dead characters like Benjamin Franklin and Blackbeard and obviously there was no research being done at all about the time period.  From the strangeness of the show it would be a stretch to imagine anyone doing any amount of historical research for such a loose comedy.  What would be the point?  The show is tough to get into but it is so completely “out there” that it is enjoyable and you just have to love Bruce.  The show was made in 2000 for syndication and only lasted a single season.  It is hard to imagine any television stations picking up the show.

We were off to bed around ten.  Tomorrow I will be working from home.

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