Podcasting on iTunes

Podcasting is basically radio shows made by anyone and stored in mp3 format and downloaded by people. They are called podcasts because a) they're radio-show-like (broadcast) and b) because people would copy them to their iPods and listen to them.

So, Apple has welcomed them with open arms and developed an add-on to iTunes to let you download, subscribe, and listen to Podcasts (not necessarily in that order). I heard of them long before last night though. But, it wasn't up until last night that I actually listened to one.

Please, point me in the direction of a good one!

So basically, I'm listening to a few random ones (there are 3000+ on iTunes), and I must have bad luck, because out of all the ones I tried, I didn't like any of them. I won't say "they suck", even though I think they did, but they weren't for me. I'll leave final judgement to the masses.

I did listen to Al Franken's and the guys from WDVE in Pittsburgh. They're both just clips from their live radio shows, which is fine. Jim Krenn and the guys at DVE are hilarious. I have a CD of theirs called "Former Altar Boys" and there are some skits on it that are hilarious. Tom (my old college roommate and good friend) let me borrow it, joined the Air Force, went to Iraq, and apparently forgot all about it. His Loss!! Sucker.

So please, point me in the direction of something good. Except Zatko, don't post "Microsoft News Log" or any of those. I'll mail a box of rotten eggs to your house.

I love when papers botch headlines

Philly.com "Underage driver pleads guilty in fatal homicide".

That's very redundant of you. Registration Required. [Update: DOH! they fixed it! I swear it was that though!]

Another one I saw a while ago said "Once hot biotechs lure less money". If you read it quickly and have an unclean mind like me, you would laugh your butt off too.

Here we go again

Oh Boy. When the military comes on TV and says they can whoop a certain country, that's pretty much a telling sign that there are probably plans to attack them. Like, when a wrestler comes on TV and talks trash about another wrestler, it would be pretty pointless if they never end up fighting. You don't see our military coming on and saying "We could so kick Ireland's ass." Good thing too, it's still one of my top destinations for some kind of trip, among Germany as well. Anyway, of course we can beat them, but can we beat them before they launch all of their nukes at South Korea or Japan or even, heaven forbid, the USA. God help us.

[A few minutes later] OMG, I was looking for something in Google, and this (not safe for work) happened to be a result. I must say, it's brilliant. Absolutely brilliant.

Great Message

"This update installs a permanent copy of Package Installer for Windows to enable software updates to have a significantly smaller download size. The Package Installer facilitates the install of software updates for Microsoft Windows operating systems and other Microsoft products. After you install this update, you may have to restart your system."

From my latest Windows Update. Well, WTF??!? Do I have to restart it or not? I'm not installing it because that is the dumbest thing I've ever had the displeasure of laying eyes on.

I've had it up to HERE ;) with Windows on a personal level. Sure, I'll still need one for games because of the monopoly they've created with good PC games. Or I have to stop playing PC games altogether, which I'm not ready to do. At least not until the PS3 comes out, or the PSP comes out with good games, or the Nintendo Revolution takes shape.

My gaming PC isn't even working now since I bought the new 4 port PC/Mac KVM switch. It works fine with my other Windows PC. And, it even works fine until Windows starts up on that gaming PC, then it FREEZES ALL OF THE OTHER COMPUTERS attached to the KVM. I can't make this stuff up. I have no idea. The KVM maker says the USB port is not getting enough power if it has that behavior, but it works before it gets to Windows. This would lead one to believe that either the drivers are not compatible (I tried to uninstall and get the latest from somewhere, ANYWHERE, at least two times, but Windows says they are the latest drivers), or that, although hard to believe, Windows is at fault somehow. I just bought a PCI 5 port USB card, so we'll see. I'm hoping it works because I need that computer. I didn't spend all that money on it so it can sit there and freeze my other computers. If you think I'm lying about these symptoms, I'll gladly record it before the USB card gets here.

So, I'm thinking, now that I don't really need Windows (since I have a Mac), I can install Linux on my two non-gaming PCs. This laptop actually has Linux on it. I installed it first, before Windows, which exposed a horrendous bug in Windows. Since I installed it on the first partition, Windows automatically designated the next partition E:, thus making it have no C: drive. Well, if you run into weird things happening in Windows, check to see if you have a C: drive. You can make it seem like you have a C: drive by going to start>run then type in "cmd" then type "subst C: E:". (Replace E: with whatever drive Windows is installed on). That will return it to "normal".

So, now that I'm installing Linux, you will see a much happier person behind the text on this website. I might buy you flowers if I see you. I might let you sit in my seat on the subway. I might (if you happen to be a bum) give you my change or buy that gold necklace off of you for $20, to help you get all hopped up on cocaine and liquor. Yes, these will be better times for everyone. It might even have side effects, you never know. They might lower the oil prices, stop the war in Iraq, hell, Israel and Palestine will make up and say "Dude, I'm sorry I took over your land in the 60s, but God said it's ours" to which the much more pleasant Palestinians will reply "Hey, man, I know it was yours, we were just getting comfortable, no hard feelings? We'll just go move in with Egypt, it's all good." Ahh, world peace at last.

Reuters Roll

My most read news provider is Reuters. Today, I noticed a bunch of articles worthy of a mention.

Rest in Peace, John Walton. Sure he was a multibillionaire (his family founded Wal-Mart, but he never worked there) but he died while flying an airplane because he was a thrill-seeker.

AMD is crying foul. The little guy speaks out. Now they just need energy and heat efficient processors. They are just as good otherwise. I'll continue to buy AMD, thanks.

Look out oil. France is going to try to make a fusion reactor. Read about fusion here. As you can tell, it's quite difficult and rather dangerous. So, the sheer fact that they are building an experimental one tells me that they are over the scientific hurdles and are just going to try it out. Read more on this website and this one. I look forward to that one.

Also check out their best pictures from the last 24 hours. I like browsing through them.

News Notes and the Mad Dash

There was almost a ruling that cable lines used for high speed internet are open lines, and any company can provide internet access on them. I'm happy with my service provider, they keep raising the bar. I get 10Mbps, which is enough for browsing the web, streaming a video, playing a game, and streaming radio stations on 4 computers and still have room left over for more ;) Read the article.

Last night's performance by my little brother, Beaner, was a smashing success. I created 13 videos of them performing. (There is a problem with the download page. It'll be fixed tomorrow, but in the meantime, download a file, click back on "downloads" when you're done, click another category and go back to the one you want to download from, then it should be fine.) The songs that Beaner performs are all copyrighted 2005 Brendan Connell. You can't make out what he's singing anyway, but just don't be a @#%@^@$@ and steal his very creative, very good music. He put his heart and soul into the creation of every one of them, and puts his heart and soul into each one's performance. I also have 20 pictures for your viewing pleasure, including a few of me.

I knew this would catch up with me. Every $@#%@^ time when the train is about to leave, you hear the computer voice say "Doors are closing", at which point, anyone trying to get on the train goes into a mad rush for the door. Some people make it. Others don't. This one guy kicked the door of the car that I was in. Other people seem a bit less defeated. They look up at the ceiling, sigh, and sit there and wait for the next train. These are the most entertaining 5 seconds of my day. So, today, guess who's at the top of the stairs at 69th Street terminal when the conductor says "Watch the doors, watch the doors." Yes. Me. At that point, I stepped down the first step or two without looking, only to find the janitor @#%@#^^#! sweeping the stairs, taking up the whole width of that stairwell. So I go back up the two stairs, and go down the left side. At about the 3rd step down, the computer voice comes on "Doors are closing." @$%&@$!!!! I continue running down the stairs, in the dire hopes that someone's head gets caught in the automatic doors, rendering them incapable of closing. It's not a huge stairwell, maybe 15 stairs, but that seems like eternity when you have about 2 seconds to get to the doors. At the bottom of the stairs, I was so panicked. It took all of my strength and self control to not scream like a girl. I turn and look at the closest door to me. This couple was trying to get in, so they stopped the doors from closing, but I knew there would only be a small window for escape. The doors opened all the way and started closing right away. I would have dove, but by this point I was through without even letting the door hit me on the butt. I was so slick. Thank God I didn't scream like a girl. If I had and still made it, I would be getting some weird looks.

More site updates coming soon.

A Few Site Updates

For the last day and a half, I put some pretty major work into this website. However, the only parts you'll see are in the comments section, and now a News post can have multiple categories associated with it. The thing about the last one is it's not easy at all. You need a few things.

#1 Table structure
#2 Change all your code that uses just a Subject in the news table
#3 Create a dual select box (which I needed anyway)
#4 Create a data list control to list each subject associated with that news post underneath it.

Numbers 1 and 2 were simple, but time consuming. However, numbers 3 and 4, with a new technology and very little documentation out there to go on, can be particularly daunting tasks. In the end, the amount of code written was not at all proportional to the amount of time spent on it, but that's usually the case in Computer Science and programming. You think and think and think, then the easy work begins, unless of course you're using a technology that you aren't too familiar with, like JavaServer Faces. I've written web controls in the technology before. The menu control, for instance, and the calendar control. However, unlike the menu and calendar controls, the Dual Select list is an input control, and the Data List control is an interation control, neither of which I had developed in JSF, up until this weekend.

Here is what the dual select list looks like:

And here is the short amount of JSP code that writes out all of the categories under a news post.

Now the code to "plop" a dual select list onto a page


Now I just have to go through all of my news posts and properly categorize them. I'd rather drink gravel.