October 28, 2006

Waste, by Phish

Filed under: Music — Cory @ 11:50 pm

Billy Breathes” is probably my favorite album of all time, and one of the best songs on there is “Waste.” Here’s a performace of “Waste” that I found on YouTube:

Incidentally, I just noticed that “Billy Breathes” was released on my 17th birthday. Once I read in The Phish Companion that “Billy Breathes” is actually a strange Rock Opera about a fish named Billy. The album made much more sense after I learned the story. :)

• • •

October 23, 2006

Give It To Me

Filed under: Technology — Cory @ 10:47 pm

Today I was reviewing the projects that were produced as part of Rails Day 2006, and I discovered giveit.to/me. This is a site where you can list any gifts that you would like to receive, and then send your private URL around to those who would like to give you gifts, for a birthday or holiday (or whatever). I’ve done something similar to this over the past few years, and always thought that I should just write a tiny app to handle it, so its good to see that someone finally did it.

There’s even a bookmarklet for adding items to your list, so thats makes it even easier. :)

• • •

October 19, 2006

Renew Your Passport, Now!

Filed under: General,Technology — Cory @ 12:31 am

Consider this a public service announcement. :)

The U.S. passport is about to change significantly, and will soon include a RFID chip. RFID chips are used in the same way that “smart tag” passes are used by toll roads, meaning that no physical contact is necessary for your information to be obtained. This doesn’t mean much when its just a toll pass, but it is a little different when the item has all of your personal identification information.

Bruce Schneier, an “internationally renowned security technologist and author” has written an article describing the situation, and lists why you should renew your passport now. Anyone with a passport, or anyone who plans to get a passport, should go read the article right now.

Before you think to yourself that I am being overly paranoid, consider this: you don’t have to be traveling to have your information stolen. It has already been proven that RFID chips can be read at a distance of 69 feet. Yes, that means that someone on a building floor 7 stories above you, or a neighbor down the street, can get everything they need to know in order to clone your passport. Yup, thats right, that has already been done as well.

Another group of security researchers has produced a video describing how terrorists could take advantage of the RFID chips in passports to target people from certain countries. If you weren’t alarmed by this point then you should go watch that 4.5 minute video.

Since your passport is good for 10 years, this is one last opportunity to secure an “old fashioned” passport that won’t allow bad guys to grab your information without you knowing. Of course, there is a website where you can get information to renew your passport. In case you have any questions, there is a FAQ to help you out.

• • •

October 7, 2006

H-Town Love

Filed under: General,Places — Cory @ 12:20 am

I’ve been in Houston for a month now, and I must say that I am already happier living here than I ever was in San Antonio.

Before moving here I was a little concerned, because it seemed that most people I talked to said that they hated Houston, and I often heard people call it the “armpit of Texas.” Apparently they either never lived in Houston, or they lived in an area other than Montrose, but either way, I no longer trust those people’s opinions.

In San Antonio if I wanted to go to a coffee shop, there were only a few options. And if I wanted to go to a coffee shop after 10 pm, there was only one option: Starbucks at the Quarry. Not exactly what I had in mind. As I type this, at midnight on a Friday night, I am at a coffee shop that is 3 blocks from my apartment, and is open till 1 am. Between here and my apartment there are (at least) 3 other coffee shops that are open until 2 am, nightly. Oh, and they all have free wireless, which seems to be everywhere in this city.

And then there are all the restaurants here. In the month I’ve been here, I’ve only eaten at a couple restaurants more than once, and I eat out every meal. I’ve already discovered more restaurants here than I did in 3 years in San Antonio.

I could go on and on with all the things I like about this city, and I haven’t even really begun to scratch the surface of what Houston has to offer. Part of my happiness here is probably due to the fact that I live in an area of town that really fits me. When I lived in New Orleans my apartment was in the “uptown” area, and I loved it. There were all sorts of places I could walk to from my apartment. When I moved to San Antonio I tried to find a similar type of area, but there just isn’t one. Broadway is about as close as it gets, but that still doesn’t really offer much. The Montrose area of Houston, however, offers even more than uptown New Orleans did, and the food here is Big-Easy-esque as well.

I also really like the apartment that I found here. The rent isn’t much more than what I was paying in San Antonio, and I like this place even better. Click on the image above to see a couple pictures that I took of the place while the movers were bringing my things in.

Oh, and I don’t have to compete for a parking space when I get to work in the mornings, so thats refreshing. ;)

• • •

October 4, 2006


Filed under: General — Cory @ 12:22 am

In keeping with my tradition of posting Google Maps mashups that I find, I present:

MappyHour – A Google Maps guide to a Happy Hour near you!

I particularly like how they changed the little balloons to pint glasses.

• • •
Powered by: WordPress • Template by: Priss