Robert Aitchison


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Porno from the past results in "Kentucky Fired Teacher"
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Mon 08 of May, 2006 21:16 PDT  (9129 Reads)
Rant

I came across this one today. A science teacher in Kentucky was fired after it was discovered that she had appeared in an adult film 11 years ago.

It doesn't matter that since that time she has, as she put it, turned her life around. She served in the U.S. Army, went to college and has been teaching for two years.

According to the school superintendent she was fired because her presence would be "distracting" to students who had seen the film or knew about it.

Personally I don't have a problem with porn and wouldn't have a problem with someone being my kids teacher if they made pornos on every other weekend. What matters is how good of a teacher they are. Obviously you don't want anything inappropriate going on in the classroom setting but that falls into the "duh" category.

It seems like she should have grounds for an wrongful termination suit but who know what the laws are like in KY. Now that I think about it maybe they are just mad because she made a porno with people she wasn't related to :-)


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Dude, I'm not getting a Dell??
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Wed 03 of May, 2006 19:48 PDT  (10508 Reads)
Computers

It's worse than that, I'm getting an HP (Compaq) server! For those who know me this seems pretty hard to swallow but it's the truth, I can hardly believe it myself.

For years I've been a Dell advocate, in fact for about 7 years every computer I've bought for personal use has been a Dell. I always liked that you could get a Dell customized any way you wanted on their web site and I liked their adherence to industry standards.

By the same token, I've never liked Compaq, with the exception of their excellent Fibre Channel technology (which they acquired when they bought Digital in the 1990's) I have consistently avoided them because their systems have been overpriced and overly proprietary. Compaq never used off the shelf components if they could build something themselves. I have more than a few horror stories about getting no support from Compaq when there is even a single non-Compaq device installed in the system, the best example of which is when they refused to help a customer of mine with a failing hard drive because there was a Digiboard modem card installed in the server. Compaq was purchased by HP a few years ago, HP decided to abandon their own excellent NetServer line and stick with Compaq's (admittedly more popular) ProLiant line, re branded as HP Proliant. I even created a "Compaq Sucks" group on eGroups before they were bought by Yahoo!

But here I find myself making the decision to buy an HP ProLiant? server to replace the old Dell Poweredge 2400 server at my parents work (in fact this web site is hosted on that server right now).

I wanted to by a Dell, I tried to buy a Dell, but in the end I couldn't, because they refused to sell me the server configuration I wanted, because it wasn't in their "cookie cutter" configuration list.


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Conquering the 20x20
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Tue 02 of May, 2006 18:58 PDT  (5926 Reads)
Cool!

I suspect a good lot of you instantly knew what this was going to be about as soon as you saw that headline. For some of the rest of you this will be shocking & disturbing.

It all revolves around the ultimate, the one, the only, In-N-Out burgers, a fast food chain that mainly exists in California but has begun to branch out to neighboring states.

If you don't know what In-N-Out? is about it would be hard to explain it. I can refer you to Wikipedia's entry as well as other sources but you really need to eat there to understand. In truth everyone should eat at In-N-Out? at least once in their lives.

This is a story of one man with a dream, a contest, a deathwish if you will, to best the legendary 20x20. He succeeded what few have attempted and lived to tell the tale.


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ABC starts streaming TV episodes for free
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Mon 01 of May, 2006 18:57 PDT  (5999 Reads)
Cool!

There has been a lot of activity in the past couple years around video services on the Internet. As broadband becomes more commonplaces and as bandwidth increases you are seeing more and pore applications of deliverying viewo over the web becoming practical.

Some people are trying to make money from it already, as iTunes tries to get you to pay for TV episodes for your iPod. Some are free, like YouTube.

ABC is jumping into the fray with streaming episodes of their current TV lineup. This offering is free however the episodes contain commercials (IMO completely reasonable considering the price). Several shows from their current lineup are represented including my favorite new show since Battlestar Glactica, Commander in Chief.

IMO the video quality is decent, and you can move around to different places in an eposde.

As a TiVo user I don't think this is as useful to me as it is to someone without TiVo, who could use to to catch up on an episode of one of their favorits shows that they may have missed.

While we're talking about video, I came across a hillarious short video a couple weeks ago that wasn't really worthy of it's own entry. I present to you WHEEEE!


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Wii WTF?
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Thu 27 of April, 2006 21:16 PDT  (7770 Reads)
WTF

I don't normally talk about video games but this one is just too strange.

The "next generation" consoles are either coming or already here. Microsoft has released the XBOX 360, Sony is gearing up the Playstation 3 and Nintindo, they were there too with the Revolution.

Nintendo for a while dominated the console video game market, they had the NES and the SNES as well as the N64, all of which were extremely popular. When the PS2 and original XBOX came out they both had superior graphics to Nintendos Gamecube but the Gamecube was priced lower and was regarded as having gameplay at least equal to the fancier, more expensive rivals.

Moving forwoard it didn't look to change. The XBOX 360 and PS3 rached up the graphics and horsepower and while few expected the Revolution to match the raw power of Microsoft or Sony lots of people were (are) looking forward to what Revolution had to offer.

Then came the news today, the name of Nintendos new console is not revolution but Wii (apparently pronounced "we"). Wii, are you serious?? What the heck kind of name is Wii??


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Congratulations Brian & Jennie
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Tue 25 of April, 2006 18:33 PDT  (7050 Reads)
Cool!

This weekend we went to Palm Springs (well, specifically Cathedral City) to attend the wedding of Brian and Jennie.

For those that don't know, Brian was my boss at my last job, I've known him for close to 10 years.

The location choice for the wedding was interesting, they had the wedding at the Doral Desert Princess Country Club (you can't throw a rock in Palm Springs without hitting a Country Club).

The wedding itself was outdoors and it was very windy, though the ceremony was nice and the wind provided a cooling breeze.

The reception was also good, the food was excellent by wedding standards, the band was quite loud though.

It was also kind of a mini reunion for current and ex Clark Consulting/Clark Bardes/CRG employees. In addition to Brian there was Amy and Eric, Rich was the best man and Anna was a groomswoman and she brought her boyfriend Andy.

I took a bunch of pictures (over 150 of them), most of them came out quite badly. I definitely need a new camera. Here is a picture of the group (minus Amy who left before this was taken).

(left to right) Andy, Anna, Rich, Brian, Me, Jennie, Tove & Eric

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I done been robbed!!
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Thu 20 of April, 2006 22:34 PDT  (16792 Reads)
MeMeMe!

Yesterday was NOT a very good day. As I was getting ready to leave for work Tove (who left just a minute before) came back to tell me that my car had been broken into and trashed.

Sure enough it was true, overnight my car rear passenger window had been broken & ripped out, my negative battery leads had been cut and my year old Pioneer AVIC-N1 had been stolen.

Piecing together what I believe to be the sequnece of events, it seems they broke the window, several people have volunteered they probably used a spark plug to do this. Once the window was shattered they were able to rip the entire window.out of the car (held together by tint) and dump it on the curb lawn. Then they crawled inside the car to pop the hood, once they had the hood open they cut (hacked) the leads for the negative battery terminal, presumably to disable my non-existant alarm. Then they opened the car and removed the system.

On the bright side, they were trying to be quiet so they didn't do as much smashing as they could have, they appear to have used a screwdriver to take apart the dash leaving it almost intact.

More info and pictures of the horror below.


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Mail sizes have gotten out of control
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Mon 17 of April, 2006 18:46 PDT  (75328 Reads)
Rant

For those of you that don't know me professionally, I'm kind of an E-Mail? nut. I've been running my own mail server for almost 7 years, as an IT professional I have specialized in Microsoft Exchange and messaging in general.

I'm pretty hard core about E-Mail?, I'm definitely a pack rat, keeping every E-Mail? I possibly could ever need. As an example last year I wanted to buy a couple technical books, I price checked Bookpool, a site I bought books from many years ago (specifically in 1997) and found them to be the cheapest. I figured they still had my account in their system but couldn't remember what I was using for a password back then. I was able to find a specific E-Mail? from 1997 that had my account information in less than 5 minutes, which allowed me to access and use my Bookpool account.

I'm also a big believer in less is more, when it comes to E-Mail? that means keep your messages small and to the point. Don't include stuff you don't need (like lengthy signatures, large graphics, unnecessary (or unnecessarily large) screen shots or even fonts & colors unless it adds value to the E-Mail?.

As someone who started out with Dial-Up Internet access (actually to be more specific I started out with BBSs and 300 baud modems) I had it ingrained into me that every kilobyte counts. I'm not hard core enough to use something like PINE as an E-Mail? client but I'm definitely on the miserly side.


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Either have an Easter egg hunt, or don't
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Thu 13 of April, 2006 22:12 PDT  (15712 Reads)
Rant

Yesterday we were driving by a local park and saw a sign promoting an upcoming event, a Spring Egg Hunt.

Now being a non-Christian in a largely Christian society I'm definitely for trying to be inclusive wherever possible. I'm one of the people who believes in Holiday Parties instead of Christmas Parties but people should be able to keep their traditions unmolested.

An Easter Egg Hunt is just that, an event that is linked to Easter. It does happen to be a secular activity, and not a religious one it is still an inseparable part of Easter.

Governments annd Organizations are running scared, they are afraid to piss off the ACLU, which has an agenda to banish all evidence of religion from public eye. If they government is too afraid of a BS lawsuit to call an Easter Egg Hunt and Easter Egg Hunt, they should skip the event altogether.


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Happy Passover
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Wed 12 of April, 2006 22:38 PDT  (8053 Reads)
Judaism

Tonight at sundown Passover started, for the next 8 days that means no chametz, this means no bread or bread products.

Honestly it's not one of my favorite holidays, prmarily because there are so many reminders of the hypocracy of the Orthodox controlled commonly accepted "laws" of kashrut.

Can't have corn syrup, because corn can be used to make bread, unless of course someone paid an Orthodox rabbi to certify that the corn syrup used isn't infact bread. Cookies are bad unless you cook them really really fast, and pay another Orthodox rabbi, in which case they are fine too. I apply a common sense rule to decide if something is OK for passover, if it looks leavened, than I don't eat it, regardless of who was or wasn't paid to say it was OK, if it doesn't look leavened than I do.

On the bright side, I always look forward to the Seder.



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Remember N.W.A.? Here's T.W.A. (Tiggers With Attitude)
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Tue 11 of April, 2006 18:22 PDT  (7470 Reads)
Cool!

I'm not even ashamed to admit that BITD I used to listen to, among other things, hardcore rap music. As well as the more tame (and socially acceptable) DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince, Rob Base & DJ Ez Rock or Run-DMC I also listened to Eazy-E, Naughty by Nature and N.W.A..

Now here's something completely different. I bring you T.W.A., these guys are hardcore or something, I guess instead of a "drive by" they might do a "bounce by".

Thanks to Fark for the story.



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Yes more wire hangers!
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Mon 10 of April, 2006 18:48 PDT  (3300 Reads)
MeMeMe!

So our addition is still not completely done, though it is without a doubt mostly done. This past weekend we were working on, among other things hanging up pictures, clocks and such to try to restore a sense of normalcy.

One of the things we were hanging was Davids Cub Scout Shadow Box. Now this thing is huge and weighs at least 5 pounds (a lot for something you hang on the wall) The question is how do you hang it.

We used a heavy duty picture hanging hook nailed into a stud, as far as how to secure it to the box, I improvised (rigged) a unque solution. I unspooled about 12 feet of .0020" stainless steel lockwire, put both ends in the chuck of a drill and the loop at the halfway point around a screwdriver. A few seconds of running the drill and I have created a double strand piece of stainless steel cable. Repeat the process to double it again and I created a decent length of MacGyverised? picture hanging wire.

I figure the wire has over 400,000 PSI of tensile strength, not sure how that converts into pounds but it's probably sufficient to hold up the shadow box. Originally I tried a double strand, but I found that it stretched too much and also was very painful if you were trying to lift the box by the wire. In general I was surprised by how much stretch the stainless steel wire had in it. I guess when you are working with shorter lengths you don't notice these things.

I learned to lockwire in the Navy and it's an interesting skill, I even use it occasionally more than 10 years after my EAOS, one of the few that I can make that statment about.


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Kid turns in knife at school, faces expulsion
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Tue 04 of April, 2006 21:36 PDT  (4453 Reads)
Rant

In another example of "zero-tolerance" policies & atmospheres going awry I bring you (via Digg) this story.

Basically a 14 year old boy forgot he had a swiss army knife in his pocket, he realized that he had the knife on the bus and did the most responsible thing possible, he turned it in to the school office as soon as he got there.

What does he get for his act of responsibility? The maximum 10 day suspension and recommendation for expulsion.

When I was in high school I was cleaning out my backpack and realized that I had not just a knife, but an honest to god switchblade in my backpack and had been carrying it around for several weeks at least. Of course I never told anyone so I didn't get in trouble (I suppose it's never too late for things the be put on my "permanent record")


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MADDOX is releasing a book - go pre order it!
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Mon 03 of April, 2006 18:48 PDT  (3044 Reads)
Cool!

I've talked about Maddox before, he operates the best page in the universe, I've been reading his site for years and aspire to be more like him in almost everything I do.

In any case, He's written a book and it will be released in June. You can pre-order it now.


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How to fix the Immigration problem once and for all
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Thu 30 of March, 2006 20:44 PDT  (3623 Reads)
Politics

Like Tommy Shaw, I can fix all the worlds problems without even trying, unlike Tommy I most certainly don't have enough time on my hands, which is why I haven't had an update in a few days. In the past I've brought you solutions to our dependence on foreign oil, the US Presidential Election system and thrown in for good measure an explanation as to why the invasion of Iraq was necessary. Today I will solve the immigration issue once and for all.

As I mentioned in my last article, there is a lot of discussion going on right now about Immigration, some people think we need to increase security at the border, other think we need to give amnesty to the hoards of illegal immigrants already inside our country, still others think we should round them all up and send them back to their own country.

The premise of my plan is simple, raise or eliminate the quotas we have set on immigration, make it possible for anyone who wants to come to this country, who's not a criminal, to come to this country. After you've removed any excuses for people to come into this country illegally increase border security drastically up to and including deadly force.

Like many of my solutions, this plan isn't likely to be acceptable to many people on either side of the issue, and can be used as proof that I will never be elected to public office, but this will solve the problem and will in fact be a fair solution.

Details below...


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Ay Carrumba!
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Mon 27 of March, 2006 22:20 PDT  (4043 Reads)
Politics

Today was interesting, we had an Exchange server die at about 6:00 a.m. (well, actually it died at about 9:00 p.m. last night but users didn't report problems until 6:00) so I ended up working from home trying to recover the thing. (FTR chock up another server failure to single point of failure RAID controllers)

About 10:00 or 11:00 I heard a ruckus outside. Can I describe the ruckus you ask? Why yes, yes I can. It turned out to be a few hundred high school aged kids marching down the street (with the lead group carrying a Mexican flag).

It seems they all walked out of El Camino Real High School, whcih is generally a very good school, using supposed anger over a porposed immigration reform bill as an excuse to cut school. I heard about these so-called protests in the nastier areas of L.A. in the past week, but I sort of figured that people who lived in this area were better than that.

Of course my first instinct was to go out and heckle/yell at/mock the hooligans, but I thought better of it, after all they would certianly know where I live.

Tove's school had a riot of sorts on their hands, complete with rock & bottle throwing, I guess we should be happy there was no flamable projectiles involed

If either of our kids tried anything like this, heads would definitely roll, but then again I don't think that it's likely that they would get involved in this level of asshatery,


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Jordan's first Autocross
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Sun 26 of March, 2006 21:53 PDT  (3171 Reads)
Cars

So today we actually went autocrossing today, and by we I don't just mean me and David but Jordan too. This was his fist time ever racing.

Jordan, being Jordan, has taken a complete different approach to autocrossing than David did. Where David was a little bit afraid and needed a year or so to get used to the idea Jordan has been raring to go for more than a year. Of course Jordan turned 8 in December but we weren't able to go racing in January or February due to work schedule or Illness so this was his first time out.

His first run was a good, clean run, about 90 seconds, on his second run he was driving WAY to hard and spun out no less than four times, on his third he missed an entire section of the course and was headed straight for the finish, oh and he plowed into a wall of cones at the finish as well.

He had a good time and it was really cool for me to see him go, of course it makes autocross days all the more busy with three drivers driving two vehicles.



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Video games of the past compared to today
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Fri 24 of March, 2006 23:19 PDT  (3865 Reads)
Cool!

I came across this the other day, it's a comparison of some modern video games for the XBOX against some classic Nintendo games from the 1980s.

The differences in the graphics are simply astounding, I know when I was playing thise games I never would have dreamed that video games could get to that level. Makes you think about where video games will be in another 20 years.

Of course another interesting thing that was pointed out, that the classic games are just as fun, if not more fun to play than many of their modern counterparts. It goes to show that graphics aren't everything.


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You know you live in SoCal if...
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Thu 23 of March, 2006 21:13 PDT  (2964 Reads)
Cool!

Everyone's seen these lists, ususally forwarded in an E-Mail?, here is another one, a handy guide to help you determine if you live in Southern California.

As usual there are a few funny ones in here, and more than a few true ones. Some of my favorites are It's barely sprinkling rain and there's a report on every news station: "STORM WATCH", You drive next to a Rolls Royce and don't notice and You think that Venice is a beach

Complete list below


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The TiVo Governor has granted a stay of execution on your lifetime
By: Robert Aitchison  on: Wed 22 of March, 2006 20:58 PDT  (2987 Reads)
Cool!

This is great news, TiVo has extended the deadline for getting lifetime service from 3/16 (already in the past) to 4/15. This means you can still go out and get a TiVo and get the lifetime service.

You do have to call TiVo to activate, this isn't available with online activation, obviously if you have bought a TiVo with the new "bundled service" plans you won't be able to convert it to lifetime as you are already in a 1, 2 or 3 year contract.

As I said when the initial announcement was made I think the whole thing would have gone over much better (annoyed less people) if TiVo had just given more advance notice. The new date brings the deadline out over a month after the initial announcement and a full 30 days after the original cutoff.

Kudos to TiVo for the extension, thanks to the Unofficial TiVo Blog for the news tip.

Insert obligatory plea for you to use me as a referrer if you activate a new TiVo here


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