Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Another Fatal Shark Attack

There was another fatal shark attack less than a week after the one I posted on earlier. This one was off the coast of Mexico on the pacific side. This is kind of scary to have two fatal shark attacks. The first shark attack was by a Great White. This one was by a Tiger Shark.

Web 2.0: What it stands for or what it is called?

A lot of people have been blogging lately about the Web 2.0 and how the end is coming. I too have speculated on the same thing. The one thing that frustrates me the most is that people care more about what to call it as opposed to what it is/does. The Web 2.0 phenom sparked an explosion of tech businesses that were supposed to help businesses, big and small. The reason why there is a lot of uncertainty in regards to if it is going to end soon is that a lot of businesses have values themselves on the basis of a social business model, where in money is tied to people connecting on a personal level with friends and business acquaintances. There is money to be made in this arena too, but to lump all of these businesses together under one category is over kill.

I watch the site Killer Startups and see a slew of start ups posted daily, and some are utterly worthless but still categorize their business under the web 2.0 umbrella. The umbrella won't break or fold out, but eventually the businesses that truly are Web 2.0 will get bigger and push all of the faux businesses into the rain where they will drown.

Sorry for the depressing writing style on this post, but it frustrates me that people spend sooo much time worrying about naming as opposed to focusing on the technology that sparked the name.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Friday, April 25, 2008

Fatal Shark attack about 30 miles north of San Diego

a 50-60 year old triathlete was fatally attacked in Solana beach today as reported via the Associate Press. There has been a fatal shark attack in this area since 1959, according to the International Shark Attack file.

This is kind of freaky as there has been increased activity of possible shark attacks on marina animals too with a reported seal being washed up on a la jolla beach with its head missing.

queue JAWS music.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Facebook includes chat in the browser

Facebook has included live chat within the browser so that you can now chat with your friends online. This is something that has been a long time coming and has had a bunch of applications before trying to fill the void. In my opinion it is about time. Kudos to Facebook.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

eBay is Suing Craigslist, should be other way around

eBay just filed a lawsuit against Craigslist with claims that Craigslist is trying to dilute the control eBay has over it. In my opinion Craigslist should file a counter suit because of Kijiji, a blatant eBay knock off of Craigslist. It always makes me mad when large corporations come in and start pushing around companies. Mind you Craigslist is actually a large company that reported around $20 Million dollars in revenues for last year, which comes from job postings in a few metropolitan areas. Regardless, with eBay's recent increase in fees and now this, the golden autioneer is starting to become tarnished.

LVTC is ecofriendly

With it being Earth Day I thought I'd mention that the color of LVTC helps the earth by using less energy as monitors require less energy to display black. Here is a post done by Read Write Web that talks more about Green Search Engines and how black background can help with reduce energy consumption by monitors.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Now you can get your own kid through the claw game

You know those claw games that hey have at restaurants and arcades. The game that you spend $10 to try to grab a stuffed animal. Well recently the prize was increased to a boy. Check out the video:

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Use the alias for gmail

Many times I've wanted to get another gmail account for junk filtering when I sign up for services. There is another way to do this. If you have a gmail account you can use your prefix and use This will allow you to filter out emails to this.

Ex: if your gmail is: then you can use and it will still be delivered to your gmail account.

Try it out, it will help sort out junk and keep your gmail squeaky clean.

Acqua Vista Needs to Get rid of Valet

I'm always watching the market in San Diego for pricing on condos. I currently live in Little Italy and love it there. One condo complex that I've always looked at is Acqua Vista. They have decent amenities, fair layout of condos, and are very reasonably priced. There is one reason why I will never consider buying there, Valet Parking. Not only does this inflate the HOA fees but I don't like someone else in my car, period. Recently I went to the Acqua Vista HOA site and saw a notice that sealed the deal for me:

Every owner who purchased a unit within this community did so
with the understanding that a valet system was in place, and that you had to
utilize it while it was active in the community. Therefore if you attempt to
Self Park your vehicle you will be in violation of 16.5 of the Rules and
Regulation which states the following:
Valet parking is not an option, you may not Self Park.The Board has asked
Valet Management to strictly enforce this rule and report all violators."

To think that if I want to park my own car because I don't want some kid getting in it and messing with my stuff is in violation of their HOA rules, makes me never want to live there until they get rid of it. I've talked with many other real estate aficionados in San Diego and they agree with this.

Acqua Vista, if you want your community to increase in valuation and residence, Get Rid Of Valet!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

JS Kit script

I've always been a big fan of JS kit and their easy to implement scripts. They recently came out with a new script that allows you to rate something using the thumbs up/thumbs down buttons. This is very handy because they worked into it the ability to aggregate all of the scores to see what the most popular content is on the site.

Here is a sample of the thumbs up thumbs down:

Monday, April 14, 2008

Delta gets crapier today

There was an official annoucement today by Northwest Airlines that they will be merging with Delta. Just by association with Northwest, Delta has gone down two points in my book. Hopefully the merger will be in favor of Delta and they will take over management of Northwest. My biggest hope is that Sun County won't change because it is a cool subsiderary of Delta. At the same time NWA and Sun Country both have hubs out of Minneapolis, so there may be some consolidation of assets.
I guess only time will tell.

Amazon announces persistent storage development

Today Amazon announced that they are developing persistent storage for their EC2 service. This bridges the gap for storage for EC2. Currently if you are hosting on EC2 you need to run constant backups of EC2 and store them on S3 or another storage. This persistent storage allows you to use it as a constant storage area for data including databases, files etc that can also be snapshotted and backed up to S3. This creates multiple levels of redundancy that increases reliability of EC2 as a solid hosting replacement.

This is really exciting for MindTouch as we have support for deployment on EC2 with instructions on backing up.

The best thing about EC2 for any of you that don't know about it, it is very reasonable cloud hosting.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Jumping into PHP and forms

I've been messing around with PHP lately trying to pull together an extension for Deki Wiki to easily embed forms within a page that posts to the database. This can be done fairly simply through using a basic form that posts to MySQL through a php file. It is a good learning experience for me as I haven't had a chance to dig into this type of interaction with Deki Wiki. I'll keep you updated on the progress of this endeavor as I move along.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

I'm now twittering

You may have noticed a new addition to the LVTC sidebar. That is my Twitter feed. Twitter is a micro blogging web app that allows you to give quick status notes on thoughts, where you are at, what you are doing etc. It is linked in to mobile devices so that you can twitter from anywhere. This will not decrease my Blogging rate, but you may want to read my blog more often as I'll be updating my twitter feed periodically.

Monday, April 07, 2008

New technology that I'm using

New websites and new applications come up everyday. I'd say in a given day I evaluate close to 20 new software programs/websites. Through all of this evaluation there have been some staple programs/sites that I use on a daily basis. Here they are:

  • iGoogle - It is a great starting page for aggregating email, scores, and other info, plus I heard it has a decent search engine for the web ;)
  • Blogger - You wouldn't be able to live vicariously through me without it
  • Skype - In my opinion, one of the better chat software out there...I just wish they could make a web based version of it
  • Thunderbird - Open Source email client...a lot better than Outlook
  • FireFox - Beta and stable...that's right...I'm rocking them both
  • Vmware - Enables virtualization of operating environments on your desktop...really cool
  • Putty - easy to use SSH client
  • Clipboard Fusion - An awesome clipboard scrubber to get rid of the html formatting...helps when moving data between applications
  • Texter - Awesome autofill utility that uses keywords and keys to fill content on the page...I use this about 100 times a day...saves a lot of repetitive typing.

I hope some of these apps will help you with your daily work...they definitely help me.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

MindTouch is Awesome!!

As a lot of people know I work for MindTouch, the maker of the coolest wiki Deki Wiki. I have mentioned Deki Wiki before and how cool it is but have never talked about how cool it is to work at MindTouch. We have an awesome atmosphere and great people. Also ever so often we'll luck out, like today, and get super sweet tickets to the Padres day game. I've worked for a lot of companies, big and small, and no one has ever treated me nicer than MindTouch in regards to the whole experience. If you are looking for an awesome place to work and you have a passion for technology, check out our jobs page at MindTouch. Then you will be able to Live Vicariously Through me, in person!

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

I got a car!!

With my wife going back to college and the weather always being nice in San Diego, we broke down and got a car. We got an awesome 2001 Nissan Sentra. Has a moon roof, which is sweet. Something I thought I'd add is all of the things I checked when I bought the car that some people may not know to look at when they buy.

Always check the following:

  • Exterior of the car, paint chips, fading, rust
  • Look at the glass and make sure there are no chips
  • Look at the molding around the doors and make sure it isn't torn
  • Look under the car and see if there are any holes in the muffler or if the undercarriage is rusty
  • Check all of the electronics: Lights, radio, wipers, remote entry(if avail)
  • Make sure the tires have good tread on them
  • Look behind the tires and make sure the axles look good along with the A arm, check the boots around the axle, accordion looking black rubber
  • Look at the engine: check belts, hoses, and overall shape, listen for any noises when it is running
  • Open the oil cap and look to see if it is clean inside
  • Ask if there has been any replacement or alternator, timing belt, starter, and if the oil was changed frequently...rule of thumb is change every 2k-3k miles
  • Put your hand near the exhaust and see if you feel air puffing out, this will let you know if it is blocked
  • Ask if it has passed the smog inspection
  • Check the shocks by pushing down on the bumper and releasing quick...if the car bounces more than once then the shocks are bad.
  • Make sure the AC works
  • Watch the temperature gauge when the car is running, make sure it doesn't get too hot
  • When you drive the car see if it pulls to one side of the road or the other, this can suggest alignment problems.
  • Get a background report on the car like Carfax
  • When the car is shifting(if automatic) feel if it shifts hard or soft, if hard that can suggest transmission issues
These are just a few tips to look for when looking at cars. Always make sure you give it a good thorough look of the car before you purchase. And as always, even a thorough look can't find everything.