Saturday, February 27, 2010

Peyton Manning the Greatest!!?>!!?!>?!?!!!

You people make me sick, whoever you are.

You can feel sad for Peyton because he's not feeling so saintly after the Super Bowl, but he's not the greatest QB of all time.  (F-Word, I assign you the task of unearthing all the mind-numbing and spirit crushing statistics along with the professional commentaries which corroborate my conclusion).

Sheesh, I figured that putting Elway first on the list would have been a big enough hint.

Maybe you'll get it right next time.

Getting the [Tax Man and FAFSA] Off Our Back

Okay, so our situation wasn't this bad (i.e., see the image at the left), and I don't want to make light of any serious POW suffering, but I swear, some rogue nations must use personal tax preparation as a means of torture and interrogation.

Forget water-boarding, W's got nothing on Uncle Sam.

I won't go into all the disturbing details (you can thank me later), but let's just say I can see why people pay accountants to do this stuff for them.

Here's the silver lining:  If you're as wealthy as we are, you may qualify for the Freedom version of TurboTax.  Just Google it and you'll find it pretty quickly.  (F-Word, I hope you enjoyed this obvious plug for my favorite enterprise.)

So as painful as the overall experience was, I can't complain too much since we had a tax genius on our side because we're wealthy enough to afford it.

"What about FAFSA?" you chirp.

Don't get me started.  FAFSA preparation should have been outlawed at the Geneva convention and I'm sure the UN human rights people will be condemning it soon enough.  In the mean time, stay as far away from this evil as is humanly possible.

Phantom/Abb Tabs in Chrome: Too Cool for School

If you've ever read more than two of my posts, then chances are you've encountered some dribble of mine about how awesome Google is and Chrome in particular.

Well, time for some more.

For some time now, I've relished Chrome's excellent pinned tabs functionality.  However, about two weeks ago, this browsing gem suddenly disappeared.  (Remember, I'm on the developer branch of Chrome, so I'm "living on the edge.")   To make a long story much much shorter, pinned tabs were temporarily disabled to make room for PHANTOM TABS!

Phantom tabs are also known as app tabs.

So what in the world is a phantom/app tab?  Have a look.

In essence, a phantom tab pins certain applications ("Web pages") in place so that they're always there (in your browser, to the left).  You'll note that I have over eight pinned tabs.  Since some tabs can take up a lot of RAM, etc., and also because you just might not want to use them every second of every day, if you "close out" of the pinned tab, instead of going away completely, it will simply become a phantom tab.

What this all means is that your favorite app/Web page will be ready whenever you want, but it won't take up any system resources if you don't have it open.  So it's a lot like the Windows 7 taskbar (notice how some of the icons in my taskbar are in use and others are not).

Chrome OS starting to make a lot more sense now??

Don't forget I'm on the dev channel of Chrome, so you'll need to set that up if you want to experience phantom tabs before they're rolled out to the masses.

Anyway.  F-Word, if you know an attorney that works for Google, have him give me a call, I think it'd be a match forged in the fires of mount doom:  A match to rule all others!


Friday, February 26, 2010

Demised Premises??

I'm reading for Property and I just HAD to post on this legal "term of art."

Will a Realtor (or maybe an attorney, I guess) out there please explain why on earth the property I rent is called "demised."  Yes, I know my place is pretty old and a little suspect downstairs, but demised?

In case you forgot, here's the usual use of the word demise:

The demise of something or someone is their end or death. N-SING usu with poss formal

  • ...the demise of the reform movement.

  • Smoking, rather than genetics, was the cause of his early demise.|en&q=demise&hl=en&aq=f

So, in the words of one of my professors, someone needs to "splain.'


Sunday, February 21, 2010

Today's Spiritual Message: Going Offline (Practically)

I've been meaning to continue sharing what I feel are uplifting, spiritual messages each Sunday.  Now that my wife and I have sworn to drink the blood of anyone or anything that keeps our daughter up past 7:30, the posts should be more regular.  (Translation:  we just put her on a strict, regular routine.)

If you're a regular C.A. follower, then you're probably my brother.  If you're not, you probably still know me well enough to know I'm a goon for Gmail, Chrome, Google in general, and being online 28/7.  (Yes, the extra four hours is meant to show absolute dependence.)  In fact, for a long time (too long), I maintained an email notifier in both my browser and on my desktop.

Can you say email paranoia?

There's priding myself on responding to emails quickly, and then there's just being obsessive.

My wife and I have found that we often jump at the sound of an email and run over to the computer screen, frothing at the mouth.  Why?  How many emails require a response within five seconds?

In a move that will most likely cause one of my law school colleagues to literally wet himself if and when he finds out, I've (well, we've, actually) decided to remove both of my email notifiers and only check my email about twice a day.

Yes, I've decided to finally take the advice of the 4-Hour Workweek author, Timothy Ferriss.  More productivity, less distractions.  If anyone needs me in a hurry, you can call me.


I don't aspire to own a crack-berry (or at least be an email addict), I don't aspire to tweet all day, and I don't aspire to perusing old chums' walls all day.  In short, I aim to avoid and lessen my somewhat ostensible online addiction.

My wife and I have found we feel very liberated and much freer to be with each other and take care of things we need to get done.
Has your jaw returned to its normal position yet?  Well hold on because I'm not done yet.

Another thing my wife and I have discovered is how much filth there is on every day Web sites (big surprise here, right?).  We felt sick and tired of skimming "news pages" only to find them laden with bikini clad women and other kinds of salacious nonsense.

The solution?  We've decided to block all images by default and only unblock the sites we whole-heartedly trust.

Sound a little overboard?  I don't think so.  There's a lot of sleaze out there, and we found we didn't have to go looking for it in order for it to come to us.  Yes, many pages seem rather dull without a solitary image, but my fidelity to my wife and maintaining a happy marriage hold a much higher value to me.

Okay, you can put your jaw back in place now, I'm done.

Fancy a Trip to the Dungeons?

If you've never been down to the basements below our apartments, you have no idea what you're missing.  but since no one in his right mind would ever want to be there physically, especially at 11:00 PM when a fuse blows, I'll just show you.

Been meaning to put this up for a while.  Hope you enjoyed it.

Isn't my wife a fantastic photographer?  (Remember you can hover over and click on the bottom right hand corner for an album view.)

Happy 200th Post!!!

Yes, for all one of you faithful C.A. followers, it's been a year and a half since I first talked about being cultured and some of my fun English class experiences.  200 posts later, I'm in law school, bleeding out my existence and my future earnings all in the name of placing the letters J-D somewhere near my name.

On a somewhat more pleasant note, here's to persevering!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Chrome Extensions: Love at First Bite

First of all, if you're not using Google Chrome yet and you have a choice (I realize some of you work goons are still forced to use IE 6 . . .) what's wrong with you?

Second, if you're not using Chrome extensions yet, you need to.

I'm currently packing 10 extensions under the hood, each of which is super awesome.

If you're like me, you probably have a two second attention span, so I'll just tell you about five I think you'll be interested in.

1.  AdBlock.  Hands down, this extension is a must.  Have you ever realized how many Web pages have highly bothersome video adds all over the place?  Here's the Men's Warehouse dude challenge:  Try this extension out for at least a week.  You're gonna like the way your Web pages look, I guarantee it.
2. Google Mail Checker Plus.  Gives a very quick and robust preview for your email.
3. Cooliris.  If you search Google Images a lot, this is a huge time saver:  I especially recommend that you make a special search engine in your Chrome address bar as I've explained in a previous post.
4. Google Voice (by Google).  Dead useful if you use Google Voice.  If you do, this is seriously a must, check it out.
5. Google Dictionary (by Google).  Surprisingly useful, this extension lets you define a word simply by double clicking on it and adds an amazingly potent app in your address bar.  Even if you don't use Chrome, check out the dictionary, it's impressive and very straightforward:

Again, if you're not using Chrome yet, do yourself a very big favor and start, and make sure you install some useful extensions:

As always, let me know if I can help with anything (I'm probably more geeky than most of my scant readership).

Why I'm a Social Media Agnostic (on the whole)

This (for the most part) is why I don't Twitter, Facebook, or, now, Buzz:

Sorry about the incidental VZ promotion. I actually have a bare-bones T-Mobile plan . . .

(Yes, I realize that this very blog post could be considered "social media";  I think of it as ranting.)

Monday, February 8, 2010

Here's to the Saints

I'll be the first to admit that I didn't watch a second of the Super Bowl but I hear it was a good one.

Who knew that after 43 years the Saints would win the Super Bowl in their first ever appearance?  I didn't.  But then again, I've been somewhat of a sports agnostic for quite some time now so I suppose my opinion doesn't really count for beans anyway.

That notwithstanding, congrats to the Saints on their first Super Bowl victory.  I imagine it must have been bedlam in the streets of New Orleans . . .

(By the way, I think the Stanley Cup is hands down the best professional championship trophy.)