Skip to main content

Father's Day 2012

Rocco's Tacos & Tequila Bar, a.k.a. the former Samba RoomFather's Day was mellow this year, just like it was last year. I called my dad, who will be 80 this year, and we spoke for a few moments. We exchanged pleasantries and give the ritual "happy father's day" greeting to one another. In all the years we've done this I've never quite gotten used to hearing the echo come back across the phone line, separated by 22 years.

Later in the morning I had brunch at a local First Watch with my wife and my oldest daughter. I set some sort of record for the hostess when I ordered three of their pancakes (with blue berries) and ate the whole stack. She warned me they were large (plate-covering) and that maybe I wanted just two. Since it was brunch I was a bit hungry and ordered three. She was impressed when I finished them off.

Outside the First Watch, the former Samba Room is evolving into Rocco's Taco's and Tequila Bar. I haven't a clue what the menu will be like, but it looks to be a fancy Tex-Mex restaurant. It'll be interesting to see how Tijuana Flats, which is just a few stores down in the same shopping center, will compete with it. Not to mention the Lime Fresh Mexican Grill just up the street next to the Whole Foods. And then there's the Moe's across the street in the smaller shopping center. Not to mention the Chipotle Mexican Grill at the intersection of Dr. Phillips and Sand Lake, just a block in the other direction from Moe's. And those are the Tex-Mex restaurants I know if in that small area. It's good to see business in the area, but I'd like to see more diversity, not the same concept with minor variations repeated over and over.

Later in the early afternoon I talked to my youngest daughter up in Tallahassee. Life seems to be OK for her. I'll head up next weekend to visit her and spend all day Saturday with her, the two of us doing little things together. It will be a crowded Saturday, but that's the way they've been since she was an undergraduate student at FSU.

I did get a father's day gift this year, a Kindle Fire. I played with it a bit as a dumb internet tablet. Since my wife ordered it from Amazon it came enrolled to her account, so when I powered it up I reset the account on the device. I was going to put mine on there but I couldn't remember my password, so I just used it as a dumb internet terminal.

I've had plenty of experience with Android-powered devices, and I found the Kindle Fire on different. With the latest release (6.3.1) of its version if Android, the overall operation of the device was smooth and fast. The screen display was outstanding, much better than the Nooks I have. That's not to say the Nooks are bad, but the Kindle Fire's color display is that much better, equal to the iPad before the iPad with Retina display was introduced.

I've yet to decide whether I'll keep the Kindle Fire or not. The biggest problem is the lack of internal storage. It only comes with 8GB, and there is no slot for a microSDHC card. So far all the tablets I've dealt with had either large internal storage (iPads with 32 or 64GB) or microSDHC card slots (all the other Android tablets and both Nooks). Amazon limited the internal storage because they expect you to keep your content in the Amazon cloud. I tend to disagree with that plan, preferring to have as much of my content local as possible, easily removable or transferable off the device. Amazon has a different vision and frankly I don't care for it. I could expend the effort and root it, but then I'm left with a very storage limited device. I'm close to simply packing it up and sending it back, preferring to wait and buy Google's rumored tablet for the same price as the Kindle Fire when it comes out. The rumored Google table will come with ICS and large internal storage/microSDHC storage, perfect for my needs. It would be a real shame to send the Kindle Fire back; the Kindle Fire is a very well built little device for the money.

Photo taken with Olympus E-P2 and M.Zuiko 45mm lens.


Popular posts from this blog

cat-in-a-box channels greta garbo

So I'm sitting at my computer, when I start to notice a racket in back. I ignore it for a while until I hear a load "thump!", as if something had been dropped on the floor, followed by a lot of loud rattling. I turn around and see Lucy in the box just having a grand old time, rolling around and rattling that box a good one. I grab the GX1 and snap a few shots before she notices me and the camera, then leaps out and back into her chair (which used to be my chair before she decided it was her chair).

Just like caring for Katie my black Lab taught me about dogs, caring for Lucy is teaching me about cats. She finds me fascinating, as I do her. And she expresses great affection and love toward me without coaxing. I try to return the affection and love, but she is a cat, and she takes a bat at me on occasion, although I think that's just her being playful. She always has her claws in when she does that.

She sits next to me during the evening in her chair while I sit in mi…

vm networking problem fixed

Over the weekend I upgraded to Windows 8.1, then discovered that networking for the virtual machines wouldn't work. Then I tried something incredibly simple and fixed the problem.

Checking the system I noticed that three VMware Windows services weren't running; VMnetDHCP, VMUSBArbService, and VMwareNatService. VMware Player allows you to install, remove, or fix an existing installation. I chose to try fixing the installation, and that fixed the problem. The services were re-installed/restarted, and the virtual machines had networking again.

Once network connectivity was established there was exactly one updated file for Ubuntu 13.10, a data file. This underscores how solid and finished the release was this time. Every other version of every other Linux installation I've ever dealt with has always been succeeded by boatloads of updates after the initial installation. But not this time.

Everything is working properly on my notebook. All's right with the world.

sony's pivotal mirrorless move

I'm a died-in-the-wool technologist, even when it comes to photography. I have always been fascinated with the technology that goes into manufacturing any camera, from the lenses (optics) through the mechanical construction, the electronics involved, and especially the chemistry of the film and the sophistication of the digital sensor. It's amazing that the camera can do all it's asked of it, regardless of manufacturer.

Of all the types of cameras that I've really taken an interest in, contemporary mirrorless (again, regardless of manufacturer) are the most interesting because of the challenging problems the scientists and engineers have had to solve in order to build a compact but highly functional camera. In particular I've followed the sensor advances over the years and watched image quality climb (especially with μ4:3rds) to exceed film and rival one another such that there's very little difference any more as you move from the smaller sensors such as 4:3r…