“Leading with Honor” – The man behind the book

The company I work for had invited the author, Colonel Lee Ellis to speak to a large crowd of employees. I had heard of the book, but never bought it. I learned of the author from the introductory bio that was circulated and made a point of attending this corporate event.

The event was scheduled for the afternoon and I was sitting down for lunch, when I saw a familiar face looking around for a good spot to sit. There were plenty of seats, but in the military, wardrooms especially, it’s rude to leave someone hanging out to dry sitting alone.

I waved to Colonel Lee Ellis, introduced myself and motioned for him to join me. We shook hands, exchanged pleasantries and I was immediately struck with just how genuine a guy this man is. Continue reading ““Leading with Honor” – The man behind the book”

Google Express Review

Did you know about Google Express? I didn’t.

It was by shear chance I ran across it. It was the holidays for 2017 and I was late in the game searching for someplace to buy Google Home Mini’s while the price was still low. Of course, searching on Amazon was less than productive. Of course, they are going to bury their direct competitors product.

So, I Google searched and ran across a Google Site that said I could get a Walmart Discount with an order for the Google Home Mini. Following the links, it took me to Google Express.

The home page had a whole bunch of brick and mortar stores across it’s home splash page. Some I frequent, but always wished they had an online ordering presence. Could this be it?! My interest was piqued. Continue reading “Google Express Review”

Toshiba NB 505 Netbook Review

In the past year and a half, I’ve spent a solid year on the road followed by another six months of fairly regular travel with almost a week of each of those six months on the road.

First, let me disclose the full configuration. I bought the Toshiba NB505, upgraded it with an extra 1gb of ram and upgraded the Windows 7 Home basic to premium. I also bought MS Office 2010 at a discount through my employer.

Why? I anticipated using this netbook as a primary pc for everything I did. I wanted to be able to internationally video chat, stream videos, play movies, multi tasking with office suite, use a vpn and basically fill in for all the things I was historically relying on a desktop or fairly immobile laptop for.

Why did I buy a netbook? Knowing that at least a year would be spent on the road without knowing the true living conditions where I would travel, I needed light weight processing strength and long battery life.

I bought this netbook because it was in a local retailer and was a brand I’d been pleased with before.

Unfortunately so much of purchasing can boil down to opportunity and luck. Months after I bought this, I also helped three family members with their purchase of netbooks. None of those were a Toshiba. One has failed completely. Another is VERY underpowered and slow to perform screen refreshes on the internet. The last one is apparently used so infrequently that its longevity could be from lack of use alone.

With those odds at purchasing netbooks, I would only feel comfortable with recommending they buy the same thing I have. Or maybe the same brand.

Now for the review:
This is a completely subjective viewpoint based on my personal experiences and use. This configuration worked incredibly well for me.

I loved being able to pick it up and work for up to six hours without sweating if it was going to die quickly.

I bought it to do all my documentation from Powerpoints, MS Word, Adobe forms, Admin for several individuals I managed, VPN access to government web sites, streaming Netflix, Youtube, Facebooking, you name it and I probably did it, with one exception. I did not use it for gaming.

Why not? I’ve basically promised myself not to burn so many hours on a game when I could use those hours in some other relaxing and productive pursuit. So I bought a laptop that fits that bill quite nicely.

Where did I see the biggest challenges:
As with any compact netbook, the key board. Eventually I lose discipline and my fingers mis-key more often than I would on a full sized keyboard. But it wasn’t a serious drawback.

Of course, network intensive web pages during downloads can really slow down your day, but that may have been as much a factor of the bad connections I had than anything else.

But working within these limitations, I see them as all acceptable compromises.

Net: Albeit it’s not the latest bleeding edge, it’s a good little work horse I’d recommend to anyone looking for a practical lil machine.