Skip navigation

Category Archives: Life

General stuff that happens to me in the course of a week

Cool Shoelae Knot

Tired of tying your shoelaces the same old way: bunny goes under log, over the bridge, yada, yada, yada? Fret no more! Ian Fieggan has a wonderful site on fantastic new ways to secure those shoes and amaze your friends. (Disclaimer: Shoes are apparently required.)

Calvin and Hobbes Metling Snowmen

Well, our last big snow storm of the season has come and gone. It closed most schools around Cincinnati, which is no big surprise since the locals get scared of an inch or two. Xavier even closed for the day, but not night classes. Oh, no. Grad students must suffer through it all. Sorry for the long delay. I have been trying to balance grad school, work, finances, and guests and have been more or less successful at times. Anyway, I’m back and with lotsa stories to prove it. Peace.

I apologize for not updating for the last week. Instead, I have been forced to devote my life to that ever-demanding dominatrix: grad school. So, after a long week of studying and testing on 16th Century arguments about predestination and sacraments, I have regained my freedom. I think Toothpaste For Dinner sums up the feeling rather well:

Graduate School

Napa Valley

I just rolled back into the Cinci late this afternoon, which was shortly followed by a three-hour nap. Already, I miss the perfect weather, rolling hills, and emerald landscape of northern California. On Saturday night, Rahul and I went to visit Cathie in Napa Valley. Cathie is the link between the two of us being Rahul’s mother-in-law and one of my mom’s closest friends. That and Cathie’s daughter, Rahul’s wife, Sarah, used to baby-sit me.

Napa Valley was absolutely gorgeous. For a gift two years ago, my mom bought my dad a hot air balloon ride over the Valley at dawn. I had no clue how beautiful it was until I was able to see the untouched beauty of the vineyards for myself. Cathie, Rahul, and I drove around most of the loop inside the Valley and ended up doing a wine tasting at a local vineyard. Once it got too dark to enjoy the scenery, we ended up eating at a wonderful Mexican restaurant who’s name I cannot remember.

Yesterday, we had to drive Rahul down to the Bay Area for his flight the next morning. The journey there was absolutely breath taking. James tells me that the two hour drive is a twice daily commute for God-awful hordes of people every morning who either cannot afford to live in the Bay Area or choose not to live there. But for a newbie like me straight outta the plains of Nebraska, it was an incredible trip.

And the most geeky part: I got to drive through my first wind farm.

San Francisco Wind Farm

Well, goodbye California. Goodbye 70 degree sunny weather. Goodbye leaving the windows open and wearing summer clothes. Hello Cincinnati.

Blue Sun

70 degrees and sunny. That’s the weather here in Elk Grove, California.

And it’s wonderful. When I left Cincinnati yesterday at 4am, it was snowing. James, Rahul, and I are having our DispatchThis family retreat this week, discussing the future of our company. So far it’s been good. Christie, James’ wife, made a wonderful black bean burrito dinner last night. We moved another one of our customers over to the new system today. James and Rahul got up at 3:30am to be on site when it happened and left me at home for damage control, which meant that I slept next to my phone until 9am.

Today, we are going to check out one of our largest customers and get to walk around some of their job sites in this absolutely ridiculously wicked awesome weather.

Check out my temp here.

So, it seems as Leaving Only Footprints continues to get more and more popular, so does its images. Last month, I noticed that my visitor stats were kind of funky and discovered dozens of sites linking to just my pictures. This is called direct linking or hotlinking. Instead of hosting an image themselves, other websites and blogs simply link to the images on this site. This equates to stealing because hotlinkers use bandwidth paid for by other people. For example, in the previous month of January, I received thousands of direct links from sites. If the average image size used was 50KB, over 100MB of my bandwidth was stolen.

After doing a little research, I found this website that explains how to prevent other sites from hotlinking your images. Well, the good thing was that these other sites could no longer use my images. The bad news is that no one removed the now broken links to me on their sites so my stats are still getting messed up. Also, I noticed new people continue to hotlink to me even though the images are not showing up on their site. Not too bright.

So, I decided to follow in the footsteps of Switcheroo and Cockeyed.

Not only can I prevent my images from showing up on a hotlinker’s site, I can make any image I want show up on their site. With inspiration from Matt Kelley, J-Luv, and a poster inherited by Alicia, this is what I came up with:

Burt Reynolds Cosmo Holtinking

If they’re going to link to me, I might as well get some free advertisement with a little help from Burt Reynold’s and his famous Cosmo picture. Also, I hope that it encourages them to take down the links.

Check out what it looks like to this MySpace holtinker stealing my squirrel image before:

Hotlinking Example Before


Hotlinking Example After

Check out these other sites. I took screen shots for a permanent memorial.

Spider-Man Official Forums: Before and After
MySpace Person 1: Before and After
MySpace Person 2: Before and After
MySpace Person 3: Before and After

Sorry that I haven’t posted for a few days. I’ve been busy with work and some side projects while getting ready for this week’s impending indictments. But until I get a little more time, here’s a little news round-up:

First, Rachel’s grandparents live in Cocoa, Florida. Due to Hurricane Wilma, this was their street yesterday:

McCann's Wilma Ravaged Street

Crazy. Ok, here you go.

Vice President Cheney told Libby about Plame, not journalists.

Tropical Storm Alpha makes 2005 the biggest hurricane season on record.

With indictments looming over the White House, Senator Hutchinson (R) doesn’t believe perjury to be a crime, that is, unless your name was Clinton.

Sadly, as of today, the U.S. death toll in Iraq has hit 2,000.

A senior officer in Iraq, Lt. Col. Nick Henderson, resigns over lack of armor for his men.

And now that you’ve gotten your news fill, check out this incredible site’s compilation of the top 100 toys of the 70’s and 80’s. It is ridiculously entertaining and comprehensive.

Little Johnny Sleeping SignI just got an e-mail from Gary that an old site I helped setup got hacked and compromised the computer science server, which also reminded me to upgrade security here. So, Leaving Only Footprints might be down for a little bit in the wee hours of the night. There should be no visual changes, but if you experience any problems, please let me know.

Update(2:03am): Ok. We’re all set to go. I had some funkiness with linkages and the rss feed. Again, any troubles, please let me know.

I think my puppy has come down with something. She keeps shaking her head and scratching one of her ears. When she stayed with Scot and Cliff once, they talked about the same symptoms.

Storm Shaking Her Head

What they didn’t mention, though, was the mucus. Luckily, my lab-greyhound-some other breed mutt does not slobber. Yet, when I turned to see her shake, I saw this fly off of her towards different parts of the room:

Storm Mucus 1

Storm Mucus 2

Pretty disgusting, huh? Poor Storm.

(And, yes, I know that Scot and John probably don’t even know where to start commenting on this one.)

Egg ShellRahul, being brilliantly amused at my friends’ use of the Myers-Briggs system, found this wonderful article on discussing the top ten advantages to being an introvert. From Introvert Advantage, a site dedicated to the book “The Introvert Advantage: How to Thrive in an Extrovert World”, here they are:

The Top Ten Advantages Introverts Possess

10) Work Well With Others, Especially In One-to-One Relationships
9) Maintain Long-Term Friendships
8) Flexible
7) Independent
6) Strong Ability To Concentrate
5) Self-Reflective
4) Responsible
3) Creative, Out-of-the-Box thinking
2) Analytical Skills That Integrate Complexity
1) Studious and Smart

And to follow up, here are the misconceptions:

The Top Ten Misconceptions About Introverts

10) Party Poopers
9) Unfriendly
8) Nerds
7) Lacking Social Skills
6) Won’t Talk
5) Don’t Like People
4) Withdrawn
3) Loner
2) Shy
1) Hermit

As an INFP, I can appreciate these lists.