Sunday, December 30, 2007

Arnold crawling

Arnold crawling. Just days before he turns one. And what better motivator to crawl than dad's phone...

Monday, December 24, 2007

Christmas 2007

Two long days behind us. Katja was a sheep in the Christmas production at Riverview. Four services later, and tomorrow I have to do Cockburn Central. Since I have to leave early tomorrow, presents were opened tonight. Here are some pics from both events:

Unfortunately we had Arnold open his firefighting truck first. Sorry, Hanretti family, he came close, but never opened your present (though he loves his turtle pillow now).

But to make up for it, watch Katja's face with her present. Makes it all worth it. By the way, makeup still from the Christmas pageant as a sheep.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Number three on the way

Seems that I have fathered another child. Makes me happy. Slowly nearing my goal of a large family.

Will have to reconsider my aeroplane purchase strategy, though. Now need an extra seat...

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Friday, December 07, 2007

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Martial arts exhibition - with bloopers

Watch some great athletes in action.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Ballet, Tap, Jazz and Acro - the concert

26 November 2007 - a day I will remember for a long time. My daughter has had previous concerts, previous stage performances. But this one was special. The whole mood was special. She did very well.

Here is a picture of the Junior tap group.

Support Footprintz Dance Academy. They did a great job ths year. Again.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Ducks in a row

I have been wanting to share this experience with the world for some time now. It happened in August 2003, and you too will be amazed when you see these two wild ducks interact with me.

Footgirl to the rescue!

Footgirl is a new superhero in town. Her dexterity is incredible, and her foot powers are increasing daily. Watch her in action here.

But sometimes things don't go so well, even for Footgirl...

She's a lady. Lady Stephanie, that is.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Lazytown Stephanie Impersonator

My daughter dressed up as Stephanie. The real Lazytown is great.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Vulcan Technologies is open for business

Today marks the start of a new chapter in my life. Yesterday was my last working day at Rio Tinto. Today I am Director of Vulcan Technologies Pty. Ltd. Vulcan Technologies will provide consulting services to the world steel industry, and its supporting industries.

Vulcan was the Roman god of the beneficial and hindering fire, and became associated with the constructive use of fire in metalworing. So with my background in steel making, the name was very appropriate.

Website is here.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Thursday, October 25, 2007

October School holidays

Katja and I at Garden City, Booragoon. They always look after the children durin the holidays. Katja had a great time jumping, and then we had sushi at Zushi, where she saw for the first time how sushi is made. Yoghurt ice cream at a nearby shop, and thus ended a very enjoyable afternoon. Video taken with my trusty Nokia E70.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Stopped by group policy from getting into add windows components?

Use this command....

Obviously you still do need admin privileges to do the setup, but even with admin, the add windows components can still be hidden, the following command gets around that.

Useful when trying to install IIS and Frontpage extensions for Visual Studio 2003.

sysocmgr /i:sysoc.inf

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Thursday, September 27, 2007

School concert - pre primary class photos

September fun

Katja and Evelyn. Katja waiting for her friend Jayden to arrive.

Arnold. We needed some pro photos of the kids. Simple purple background, to complement Arnold's complexion, and it was a lot cheaper than paying someone. I love my S5 IS.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Latte Art

My wife enjoyed this one. ;)

Thursday, September 06, 2007

OQO 02 - feedback after a month of use

My comments on the OQO as follows:
1) Processor power - The VIA Esther 1.5GHz ULV processor runs well enough. Running two external screens starts to tax the total system capabilities, and the Intel 945 internal graphics card, together with the slow processor sometimes stutters before refreshing the screen.

Polycom PVX also complained that the processor is too small to initiate or receive video calls. Still awaiting a response from Polycom on this. I am convinced that the processor is powerful enough.

2) The five inch screen is quite small for inking on, and if you select an A4 electronic sheet in Windows Journal to write on, it is difficult to fit many words on one line. So the OQO is not nearly as good as a LE1700 for inking on.

3) Screen resolution options: Native screen resolution is standard UMPC 800x480, but you can use 1000x600, or even 1200x720 should you so desire. A nice function is to zoom in or out using dedicated zoom buttons, and thus I tend to run in native (easier to read), and zoom out if an application does not scroll properly or hide its OK/Cancel buttons(typically older applications).

4) Accessories Since this was a trial purchase, I went the whole hog, and purchased probably a bit too much.

Default package contents:
Belt clip case
Wacom pen, which stores in the belt clip case.
Charger VGA & Ethernet adapter.

Purchased accessories:
Belt clip case (I didn't know).
Docking station, including three USB ports and DVD writer. Docking station supports DVI and VGA (DVI through an extension cable supplied with docking station).
Three screen protectors
Spare Wacom pen
Double capacity battery
Spare charger to use at home/travels
Aeroplane/car charger.
Charger adapter to charge a battery only.
Tether cable since the device is so small. May walk very easily.
USB data cable Stowaway Bluetooth foldable keyboard

If there are future purchases, I would recommend the following:
Default package
Docking station
Screen protectors
Double capacity battery
Spare charger to use at home/travels
Aeroplane/car charger.
USB data cable Stowaway Bluetooth foldable keyboard

Tether cable fits the device, but does not fit the device through the docking station - thus useless.
5) How do I use the device? Device was used as my primary system for two weeks, and apart from the occasional screen refresh pause as mentioned before, worked fine. USB devices plugged in was a USB powered adapter, supporting a mouse, keyboard, electronic whiteboard and webcam.

I do not have a roaming profile, but a local one per machine. I also used the OQO as my second device. Synchronising offline content was easily achieved with Wireless on the Company Wireless network. My Outlook .pst personal folders were copied over from my primary laptop on a regular basis with the USB data cable. Then, going home, all I needed to do was open Outlook to build a current .ost, and I was away.

I have used the OQO to deliver presentations and training, without any issues. And of course lots of Oohs and Aahs from participants.

People with new, powerful machines will find the OQO too slow to use as their primary device, and in our company I see its place as a companion device for people that travel regularly.

6) Screen brightness - In full sunlight the OQO viewability is very good, whether the viewer is wearing sunglasses or not.

During all other times, I tended to lower screen brightness to optimise battery life, and full brightness is really bright.

7) Battery life With Wireless and Bluetooth switched off, I was able to obtain the quoted 3 hours (normal battery) and 6 hours (double capacity battery).

Whilst I normally Hibernate my devices, Standby works really well with the OQO, as hibernation takes up to two minutes to complete. I was hesitant to put it into the belt clip case in case hibernation fails and the device overheats.

With wireless and Bluetooth on, battery life halved - much the same as other devices.

8) Other features
Screen rotation - works well, but I tended not to use it.
Keyboard backlighting - Lifesaver at home in bed. Great feature.
Stick pointing device and mouse buttons - works very well. Great design.
Separate Num pad - Excellent.
Windows XP Tablet edition - not required. Normal Windows XP would work, although I would still purchase a Wacom pen. But you lose inking. But you still gain the portability.

9) General
I can strongly recommend the OQO 02 as a companion device for people that will appreciate its low weight.

Father's day 2007

I was given an espresso machine, and have been making some progress on my latte art. And on the spur of the moment, I took the family to Hillary's Boat Harbour. Here are some pics.

Fun in a box

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

A Musical journey - what does it mean?

Last week at our music ministry night we discussed taking the congregation on a musical journey. We have 20 minutes, we can fill that time with five songs, or three songs, and just create space for worship. But how do we create this space?

For me to articulate what I experienced last Tuesday is difficult. Suffice to say that it changed my life. And my perspective on music. Who knew that you can create so many emotions and nuances in one song. It seems I have a lot to learn. It was an inspiring night.

My apologies to you readers, as I am just not able to convey what I experienced.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

First post with my OQO Model 02.

So, it finally arrived last week, and I have been using it as my primary machine since. More on this later. By the way, I am inking this, of course.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

My first tablet post

Today I received a Motion LE 1700 tablet to play with, in preparation for our UMPC trial. of course I am inking this as we speak, which is very nice. Not quite as fast as typing (yet), but I am sure I will improve as time goes on. For those of you who have not experienced the joys of writing rather than typing, I sincerely hope you will be able to experience the pleasure of plain old pen and paper with a modern touch.

The drawing by my five-year old. We had a lot of fun, and no child should have to battle with a mouse when holding a stylus is so much easier.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Why are we different?

What sets us apart from animals? From Animal Planet, Animals did it first: Spoken language, religion, drug use and self-destruction. My colleague DM added the role of grandparents. With animals you seldom see grandparents getting involved in the raising of the young.

Anyway, back to the show, which then went on to state that there is another characteristic, our inclination to care for those less fortunate than us, extending even to other species - helping animals, especially those that suffer because of our human actions. Embracing this altruistic behaviour could see us taking much better care of our planet.

My view is very similar. We were placed here to govern. But we are not necessarily doing a splendid job. Whether global warming is caused by us or not is irrelevant. Fact is that we pollute more than we should.

But the solution is not simple. We have developing countries wanting to grow, and even introducing a carbon trading scheme will not curb the rapid growth in emissions. If we ever get a sensible carbon tax (~USD50/t), will this stop people emitting? I doubt it. Ultimately industry can pass on this extra cost to the consumer, and the world will still exist.

So what exactly is the solution? How do we find the balance between short term financial gain (which is very important to the shareholders who invested their money in companies, and expecting the highest possible return) and our responsibility to care for our planet? ANd why do they seem to be mutually exclusive? Are they? It seems that tonight I have only questions, no answers.

Time to get some sleep. Answers will come, as always.

C+C Music Factory-Things That Make You Go Hmmmm...

This is from 1990, and I just saw the video for the first time on MAX music channel courtesy of Foxtel. Anyway, guess why I like the video so much (embedding not allowed). Could it be Zelma Davis? Or the fact that it is such a funky song? Or both? It's both.