January 7, 2009: Liesl’s First News Appearance

It isn’t much of an appearance but a photo of Liesl was used in a NowPublic article about a website about Cute Things Falling Asleep which has become so popular as to be mentioned on CNN (although one must argue that CNN is not popular enough to be mentioned on Cute Things Falling Asleep while SGL’s standards are lower and both were mentioned here.)

Oreo woke me up at seven this morning needing an emergency trip outside.  Nothing like waking up and immediately having to run outside in your pajamas in bare feet to take the dog out to pee while all of the neighbours are getting onto the road to head to the train station.

Work was fairly busy today.  Nothing unexpected.

It is all ice and rain here in Peekskill today.  Oreo is not happy.  Taking him for a walk involves a treacherous slide down to the driveway.  The grass is so laden with ice that it is difficult to walk anywhere safely and it hurts our little boy’s feet.  We are very glad that we do not have to drive anywhere today.

I put in a lot of time working on getting stuff converted to h.264 today and to getting things working with the AppleTV.  As far as I can tell, though, the AppleTV and/or iTunes is completely overwhelmed by the volume of content that I am attempting to pump through it (which is not that much, in reality) and it simply cannot handle it as the menus on the AppleTV just will not update to display the new content.  It is very depressing.  So much work has gone into this solution just to find out now that the system fails silently without any errors, warnings, notices or anything.  Another great Apple product – missing interface components and no means of repairing the problem that we cannot even identify.

So, since Apple can’t make iTunes function properly or reliably, we are looking into other solutions.  The first thing to try is a UPnP AV Mediaserver solution such as TVersity which will make the h.264 collection visible to the PS3, XBOX360 and any other device that supports the protocol.  We are going to get this to work one way or another.

I got TVersity installed today and the PS3 is able to see our media without any problem but when I go to actually play something it fails.  We aren’t sure what the problem is but I do not have time to look into it today.  I am hoping that the issue is not with the media but just with the speed at which we are currently able to deliver data to the PS3 (the SAN device that I use is insanely slow so that could be the problem – it is designed for large, cheap near-line storage and not for high-speed access.)

I got to play a tiny bit of Oblivion and Final Fantasy III today but very little.  Dominica did not get to play anything at all.  She has been working her way through Blue Dragon which is a very large game, three DVDs, for the XBOX 360.

This evening we continued watching the third season of Dr. Who via Netflix.  Tomorrow Dominica has a doctor’s appointment at two as a follow up to her surgery just to see how everything is going.  Hopefully the weather will be good for her to drive.  It would be very impractical for me to drive her down to the appointment since it would mean packing up Liesl and Oreo twice and doing twice as much driving and pulling me away from work in the middle of the afternoon for an hour or more.  It would be so much, in fact, that we would never get out of the car but would just drive around or sit somewhere while she was at the appointment and wait for her to finish since getting them both in and out of the car would take so long.

We finally ordered our new LCD television for the living room today.  We got a Samsung 52″ LCD.  Nothing fancy, pretty much the bottom of the line but it will work fine for our purposes.  It will be much, much bigger than our current 32″ Westinghouse and should be brighter, have better constrast and has twice the resolution (1080p rather than 720p.)  We expect it to really make the living room a lot more comfortable for us.  For example, because of the low contrast, small size and low resolution I find myself standing directly in front of the current television to be able to see small items on the ground in Fable.  Hopefully with the new screen I will be able to stay in my chair.  We are hoping that it will be delivered next week.  We were able to pay for the entire television, including tax, from our refund money from Eleven80 and still be able to put over $100 into our investments from the refund money (refund of our initial deposit that we made when we signed the contract in August or September of 2006.)

The old, 32″ LCD then is going to move up to our bedroom for the time being where it is going to be mounted onto the wall opposite the bed so that we can watch stuff from bed just like we used to be able to do when we lived at Eleven80.  We got used to having that setup very quickly and now we really miss it.  It will really be great for Dominica who is stuck rocking Liesl a lot up in the bedroom but has nothing to do but to stare at the wall.  Eventually we plan to get a nice, large LCD for our bedroom too and then the 32″ will move into the nursery as a guest television (we constantly have guests staying in the nursery) and then eventually to be Liesl’s own television once she is a little older and watching stuff.

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