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2006 News

--12/20/06--

So here I sit in the ITC with only Steve and I here today (Jennifer is sick and the other two...are prolly slackers or something. Just kidding!) and I haven't done much this week aside from play Star Wars: Empire at War to kill a few hours. Let's see...helped Mrs. E a bit (Eskew, not Elliott), but still nothing back from her. What else have I done? A few updates for German and ECCE...oh, and I finished my Scholars Journal on Monday, Gott sei Dank!

Today is the last day that I have to be here in 2006; I'm taking off the next two days and then there's Administrative Closing. Karen and I will be voyaging to Jackson tonight, back here for Saturday and Sunday, back to Jackson Sunday afternoon and then finally coming home on January 2. Fun plans, eh? Trust me, they've been simplified in recent weeks over what we thought we could be doing.

Do you like the style of bolding important words or things that stand out? It helps the flow of reading from what I've experienced, and you can thank John C. Dvorak for the idea. At least in his magazine columns anyway - he doesn't do this in his online stuff.

That's all I can come up with...so I'll leave you with one final quote: "Diet Dr Pepper tastes just like regular Dr Pepper, except it's BETTER!" (Sequanselar will be the only one who gets it...)

Favorite Headlines of the Day
Time Magazine Insults Nation

--12/14/06--

Whew! Glad that's over!

The last few days here at the ITC have been less than fun - we have moved from our normal offices back in good old 247 to the other side of the library in faculty study rooms. This is all temporary, of course; we get to move back after 247 is renovated. Let's hope they get done on schedule (by February supposedly.) If you want to come visit me you will have to stop by 241. I will say that it isn't all bad - this office has windows and although smaller, has fewer people and less junk in it.

In other news, I finished all my finals on Tuesday so I've been free of the semester stress for almost two days now. Depsite the increase in responsibilities this semester, I feel no more stressed than I have in previous semesters. Life is good.

As always, the music never dies...even though the UTM Choral Concert was the last day of November (two full weeks ago) our Christmas musical at church was this past weekend and Rachel, Blair, Karen and I are all singing in South Fulton First United Methodist's musical this coming Sunday. (Dr. Simmons recruited us.)

Yesterday I downloaded a trial version of Adobe InDesign CS2 so I could rework my resume. Until this morning I had not touched it since the middle of the spring semester. I had to laugh when I saw that it still had me as a math major and no where was The Pacer mentioned in my list of experience. Check it out (linked in the left column.)

That's all the news I know. I'll <<try >> updating more frequently over the break, even if I have to use Webdav from Karen's house in Jackson.

--11/15/06--

I have to confess...I honestly thought I was doing better about updating my blog. Turns out I was wrong. By leaving my second most recent post up now when I post, everyone can see with ease that it has been a month (or two...or three) since my last update!

Life has once again been too busy up to this point to write much more than my weekly columns and articles, but at least has been going well. My articles actually help people and that makes it all worth the effort. I don't remember how how many, but a lot of people (students and faculty both) have thanked me or noted that the the articles on digital cameras have helped them in their process of shopping! (Check out the articles here: compacts, zooms and D-SLRs.)

I'm also learning to write shorter, newsier paragraphs. That is all.

Ok, just kidding. I got sick last week from a lack of sleep and/or Subway. I'm not sure what happened, but after having print night on Monday (in the office til 12:30 a.m.) and running a web page to cover the 2006 election (in the office til 1:30 a.m.) I was pretty much burned out on Wednesday and sick at my stomach...so after attending one and a half classes, I went home and slept the whole afternoon. It was greatly needed.

I can't think of too much else to write, unfortunately. I'm being distracted by the awesomeness of Downhere's "Great Are You" and I'm going to leave for Oneday at the BCM in a few minutes (one o'clock version of Noonday.) Let me just close this rainy day by stating that new, dry, cushioned, cotton (not necessarily white though) socks are man's real best friend.

--10/16/06--

What do you think about my latest photoshop document? Check it out: latest.jpg .

So I had too much fun thinking about how I want to rearrange my room...I am undecided. I think the bed (bottom right) should stay put, but I'm debating about my desk (upper right). There is enough room to swing it and put it against the other wall as shown in the picture (currently its length is along the top wall; I would be swinging it 90 degrees.) What are your thoughts? I'm thinking it would open my room up some more, and also force me to go through and clean it...something I've been meaning to do for a while now.

Basically, Karen isn't here and I've got two days to myself. Should I undertake such a feat? Moving the desk by myself will be difficult due to its size and semi-falling apart nature, but that doesn't bother me so much as getting it in place and realizing that I hate it.

Your thoughts are appreciated as always.

--10/14/06--

So do you think I should update my website more often? I would poll, but I know that the answer would overwhelmingly be "yes." Also, I don't want to take the time to set up a database back end and set up the php here on the front end to make a poll. I could, but I don't wanna.

So what have I been up to, you might ask? Well primarily, school. Classes are fantastic and don't require too much homework. I really love Geography 151 and 152, so I'm hoping I can stick with this whole Geography as a second major thing. German is also a lot of fun, but Chuck has gotten harder this semester. For one, he doesn't have to worry about his doctorate work (Congrats Man!) and for two, we are 222 students. 341 with both Chuck and Tim Böger, German exchange student, has been a whole lot of learning with some fun along the way. Aside from those, Comm 250 is nothing out of the ordinary, just a requirement for the more fun stuff. I don't want to do broadcasting anyway; I get nervous enough doing my weekly lab hour on WUTM, FM, 90.3 The Hawk (basically, I run the radio console and read the news twice in the hour.) Choir is sometimes frustrating, and New Pacers has gotten ever harder, as is expected. Dr. Dan's History and Film scholars class is pretty cool. We get to watch a movie every week and then compare it to the actual history, then read a little and write our thoughts on the subject. Up this week and next: The Godfather I and II, by Mario Puzo.

Thus, classes are good. They don't really keep me all that busy. Maybe a bit this week, as midterms found me having two tests and two mini papers, all centered around Wednesday and Thursday. Outside of that, my actually life is spent with all the extra curriculars. I love working for The Pacer. It has definitely been an eye opening experience, which is not necessarily a bad thing. I have learned to handle disappointing issues go to print. I have learned to put The Pacer online using our system administrator. I have learned somewhat how our back end database (myphpadmin) works and how Yeargin wrote the php front end.

I have increased my work load in recent weeks, starting a new section on technology, based on my position as Technical Editor. It's been fun so far. I know I probably added stress to Will and Elizabeth's lives, but I really thrive on both the stress and their creativitiy. When we are clicking on all cylinders and pure adrenaline (ok, sometimes caffeine too) is running before 8 o'clock Monday night, life is awesome. It's been making me think long and hard about changing to the News/Ed sequence instead of the VisComm sequence. We'll see. (I have time because most of the upper division electives I was going to take are the News Ed requirements anyway.) Anyway, if you wanna go check out my section of The Pacer, follow this link for the online version. (I can't do too much about getting you a hard copy if you aren't on UTM's campus!)

Then there is the BCM. I'm on council, of course, since I lead 714 and that has me meeting with council on Monday nights (after which Karen and I get food and then I go to The Pacer.) Tuesday nights are the actual 714 service and on Thursdays the band practices.

I'm running out of ideas and the Cardinals just won game three of the NLCS, going up 2-1 over the Mets. Detroit clenched a World Series berth, for those who missed it, winning this evening over the Oakland Athletics in four straight games. Now they get the whole week off; the World Series starts next Saturday.

--08/09/06--

Just a quick update on some site structural changes: as you might have noticed I moved the older news and Comm 100 website links over to the left. I thought they deserved a promotion.

For those of you that haven't, I would encourage you to visit the Comm 100 site to get an idea for my earlier web design skills (a year ago this fall semester.) Not the greatest, but when one considers some of the other websites that were turned in by groups, I think ours "took the prize" by default. I even went to the trouble of creating a flash version of the entire site (albeit, I used a presentation template...) and flash advertisements! I may put one up just for kicks...

If you want to make the madness stop, right click and deselect the "play" option.

--08/07/06--

Wow, I haven't updated in a while. You wouldn't believe the kind of week I had here at work last week but suffice it to say that for the first time all summer I had to make a to do list. Work for the German website, work for Mrs. Bonnie and the ECCE on PDF forms (two seperate sets of forms), work on the Skyhawk Nation template for Eric Wilson, and a Windows podcasting demo on Thursday in Crisp that required setup on both Tuesday and Wednesday afternoon (Kevin was around to help on those fortunately.)

So aside from ranting about work...anything else exciting going on?

Sure.

  • There's only one week of German left for the summer term. (Yay!)
  • I got my first computer virus on my laptop this weekend. I spent a lot of early Saturday morning on removal of the virus. It was odd that it even happened because the VirusScan On-Access caught it and popped up that that it had been deleted but somehow it installed anyway. I won't get into the boring details but it's gone now after some work, although the display has developed an occasional glitch. I'm not really sure what to do about it because it has been easy to make it stop glitching every time it has done it thus far.
  • Holiday World was fun on Saturday. Karen was burned to a crisp. Julia, Paul, Karen and I hung out the whole day and they were fun to be around. I'm still having a hard time believing that I rode The Voyager.
  • We've watched up to Live and Let Die in the Bond marathon (it has slowed down as of late: we've only watched two all week!)

Favorite Headlines of the Day
Has Steve Jobs Lost His Magic?

--07/24/06--

I changed out the Announcement section above. I'm in the long tedious process of trying to validate this site for HTML 4.01 Transitional...and both the marquee I had running and the Flickr badge are the two culprits. I've yet to start tackling the badge because it's all javascript and css in the coding and I don't want to dissect it yet. But what do you think of the announcements? I know, I know. I don't have a comment box yet. Go reply on Livejournal if you are interested. (All...three of you who check this site. I really must do RSS for this as well.)

In other news, life is currently normal. Work during the day (requiring a bit of creativity to come up with enough projects to keep me entertained) and Karen and the family at night. Recently, Karen and I have taken to watching the James Bond series, up to Goldfinger as of last night. Pretty fun to revisit the old VCR and tapes!

Favorite Headlines of the Day
New Zealand Band Almost Brings Down the House
MySpace Attacked by Flash Worm

--07/13/06--

No real update I suppose. I'm almost finished with my flickr update and it currently stands at 128 photos. I just have the Asse Mine and a few pictures from Braunschweig to post. Please feel free to click on the flickr badge on the left and give me comments!

Life is returning to normal für mich. My sleep schedule is normalizing (it took a few days. My left eye was twitching from being so tired.) My appetite wants Brotchen back...and now. We went to EW James the other day and being around the bakery was torture. Do you know how many Backerei are on the the main shopping street in Wolfenbüttel?! At least 3! Even the worst one could totally pwn EW James. (*Once again points out why living in Germany is going to be a necessity, for sanity's sake*)

Favorite Headlines of the Day
Google Must Die

--07/10/06--

Whew! I thought I would never make it back to work again! Germany was absolutely amazing, no doubt one of the best trips I've ever taken. It was a lot to take in at once with all the events we covered in just ten days, but that's why I plan to go back next year!

My flickr update is coming along slowly. I have 250 or so pictures, of which I have to choose the best ones, upload them and then desribe/name them. Taken me already most of the morning and I'm half way done. Sweet, I know. After that, I've got to get my most recent film cds on my computer and then on to flickr at some point.

Work this week promises to be less than exciting. I've got a bit of work to do on the German Program website, as Chuck gets me updates and then add some photos in to make it more vis-friendly, but other than that I plan on sitting around, photoblogging and catching up on the Cardinals news from the last two weeks. I guess I might work a bit more on this site as well, if I feel like it or get inspired.

--06/26/06--

I'm back in the office today, after a good week at Ridgecrest. I dare say it would have been better if Lifeway had not tried shoving Contemporary style on the participants so much. Anyway, enough on that.

Tomorrow I fly out of the United States to the great city of Amsterdam and eventually on to Hanover, Germany. Originally, Professor Hammond thought we would be going after the World Cup was over...but he sort of goofed in the worst possible fashion: the last game to be played in Hanover during the tournament will take place tomorrow. Nice one, Chuck. After arriving in Hanover, we will take the train to Braunschweig and eventually most of us will make our way to Wolfenbüttel (what a long day!)

As far as the site design is going, I'm liking this blog-friendly style at the moment, but one never knows how I might be inspired when I get back from Deutschland. I also added in a php photo swapper for my Hockney images above. This little piece of code gave Kevin and I fits during the second faculty workshop when we tried setting it up for the Reading Center. I ended up having to make a Flash program (that is much more complicated to edit) because we could not force the script to load both an image and text that corresponded with it. Oh well; it serves my purposes now!

--06/16/06--

I changed out my flickr badge today. I like this one, except it's static. I'll keep working on it. I am getting closer to having the free time to develop my site. The German program website is coming along nicely, if not a bit slowly. Whenever that is wrapped up, I get back from Germany (07/06/06) and the World Cup is over, I'll start the development stages at work. Wait patiently, and in the mean time, go check out flickr and livejournal.

*edit* Ok, I'm happy with this badge now. I had it using ten pics, which was overkill. I like this better, but I wish I could have...six or seven so that it's just a bit longer. Stupid multiples of five!

Favorite Headlines of the Day
Germany Takes Out Its Wallet
Knives, rifles and a whip. Are Bush's gift-givers trying to say something?
Paul McCartney Turns 64 Sunday

--05/06--

Sorry, I promise I'll have a real site up as soon as possible.
In the mean time, check here for a mock-up website made for Communications 100 class.