Thursday, April 27, 2006

Deja vu opportunity coming

We are going to Spain and Morocco in June - the reality of that trip is just starting to hit us. We decided to break up the traveling by flying to New York the day before the flight to Madrid, to spend a day there and have Dylan see what a REALLY big city is like.

When I was a kid, growing up in upstate New York, we periodically went to New York, sometimes accompanying my father on business matters. We always stayed at the Edison Hotel, just off Times Square. I remember vividly its lobby and the amazing deli across the streey (I think is was called the 'Gaiety', and had the thickest corned-beef sandwiches I have ever seen).

I just made our reservation to stay at the Edison our night in New York. It will be a real time-warp to walk into that lobby again, after an absence of over 40 years. Maybe the reason the memory is so vivid is that a crucial scene in 'The Godfather' was filmed there (where Lucca Brazzi is killed at the bar). The first time I saw that film, I instantly recognized the Edison. Weird.

We will have limited energy to sight-see in New York, but I'd like Dylan to see, at a minimum, the Empire State Building and, maybe, the Statue of Liberty. Since it's the first stop on a big vacation, I don't want to get him burned out the first day.

Guess I'll take a closer look at the current 'New Yorker' (just arrived in my mailbox a few hours ago), and see if there are any plays that look like fun.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

It happened again last night

Karen and I were at Fred Meyer last night, picking up a few odds and ends (everything from contact lens solution to malted milk balls). I stood in one of the aisles, marveling at the sheer abundance of EVERYTHING, the multitude of calm shoppers filling their baskets with whatever they desired, the soothing PA announcements reminding shoppers not to overlook certain specials, etc.

Then the abyss opened up beneath my feet. I saw the shelves empty, having been stripped bare by fearful people, driven by panic to grab whatever they could, to survive in a civilization where hunger, deprivation, and ruthlessness rule. Think 'Mad Max goes to the Mall'.

Obsessive, ain't it?

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

What a hassle

It turned out that the client's handhelds still have the older OS on them, just like mine, so I will return the VS 2005 I bought yesterday, and it's full speed ahead with VS 2003.

Unfortunately, I had a devil of a time getting it to install, finally tracking down the problem with an issue with the Windows Installer Service. Fortunately, it was Google to the rescue - directing me to a forum where someone linked to a Microsoft tech document, explaining how to unregister and reregister that service.

Finally, hours after beginning this saga yesterday, I am about ready to launch VS and begin the actual work. As I've often said, "it's amazing that anything works."

Monday, April 24, 2006

Thanks, again, Microsoft

So, a couple of years ago, I purchased (with the help of a friend, who shall remain nameless) the Academic version of Visual Studio .NET (2003) at the PSU bookstore. I used it to do a proof-of-concept on a handheld application, that was shelved.

Now that project is to be reactivated. In the meantime, Microsoft released a new OS for the Pocket PCs (Windows Mobile 5.0) and, naturally, the SDK for that OS requires Visual Studio 2005.

With my (High School) son making the purchase this afternoon (same store), I bought the 'Academic' version of Visual Studio 2005, for a measly $60. You can buy it on eBay for anywhere from $70-$150.

This time around, though, the warnings on the box are much stronger than they were for VS 2003 ('online Registration is required to use the product'), and I am wondering if being technically out of compliance with the EULA is, aside from my troubled conscience, a potential Big Problem.

The software project is for a local non-profit. Am I silly to be intimidated by fine-print on the box, or is this a genuine concern? Is Microsoft just messing with my mind, or am I doing it to myself?

New Home

After messing around with Xanga for a couple of years, I thought it would make sense to migrate over here, where all the really neat bloggers live.