OnePlus One – Still like it

It was a recent day on a cool brisk evening. I was out with our ten year old walking the dog after dark and, as he sometimes does, he started asking me about the stars because they were out brightly that night. So I whip out the phone and downloaded Sky Map hoping to show the relative position of the far off planets in our constellation, but it was a flop. Apparently I didn’t have a built in compass.

Then I was at a runners event with nothing but my cell phone after a run and there were stands with merchandise I wanted to buy. No plastic, no cash, no purchase. I realized I didn’t have a built in NFC chip on my phone.

And the light bulb went off, I have a phone with those features sitting in a box at home.  Continue reading “OnePlus One – Still like it”

5K a Month for a Year

In early 2017, realizing the positive health progress I was making with sobriety, I decided to set goals. I needed something to strive for. I’m not sure if everyone is like this, but I’ve come to recognize that I appreciate things more when I’m challenged. Something that comes too easily is just not very rewarding and can easily be taken for granted. Continue reading “5K a Month for a Year”

Guilt from 1983

This is personally a hard post. I’ve started this numerous times. In 1979 I signed up for the U.S. Navy. That’s how, as a scrawny 6 foot tall awkward fairly athletic young man, I found myself deployed off the coast of Beirut on board the USS Virginia in 1983 with 550 other guys. As I understood it the Russians, Iranians and Cubans were working together to incite civil war in Lebanon. Our ship and others were intended to provide necessary support if called upon. Little did we know what was to come.  Continue reading “Guilt from 1983”

U.S. Economy Realism

Let us all keep things in perspective.

Too many people in the United States credit the Oval Office with some form of omniscient control over the direction of the U.S. and world economy. As though their hand is on the throttle of a precision racing machine and, if he keeps it fueled and maintained, we’ll all have a great ride.

The fact is, the presidency can only marginally influence the economy. Capitalism and world markets have a life of their own and can throw potholes, fallen branches, bad road maintenance, have missing guard rails and the list goes on. The warning signs might be there, but they can be obscured by branches or ignored like any distracted or narrow focused driver.

Yes, the presidency can influence the economy through policies. But, like any roller coaster relationship, the president can’t control how the vast economic engine outside of his circle of influence will react to any one thing. The world market economies have a whole lot more going on than our corner of the world. War, famine, natural disasters, bad actors, electronic trading, etc. are far beyond the scope of any one government, much less any one person or world leader, to control.

The larger world reaction to anything can undermine the principals of any policy the presidency puts out.

The presidency and their administration regardless of party are playing a high stakes guessing game. Their crystal ball is more informed, but no more prescient than anyone else.

So when someone credits any one president at any time in history with the feast or famine in the markets whether transient or long lasting, take it with a serious grain of skepticism.

Rescuing PS4 DualShock Controllers

You’re racing down the hall ways of the Death Star and the Empire’s troops are closing in. You hear blaster fire and explosions echoing through the halls, but you press on because you’re mission is to help the rebellion and lives hang in the balance. The sounds are getting closer, you’re perspiring as you press forward in spite of the growing din of destruction. You rush in with your weapon raised high and…

You freeze. Literally frozen. The PS4 tells you that the DualShock controller has disconnected and you are slaughtered by multiple bad guys.

That was my grandson’s situation. And yes, he yelled frustration at the console as he scrambled for his cord to reconnect and rejoin the game.

Having a sensitive side for his frustrated little geek streak, I decided to start a project to improve the battery life and performance one way or the other. So off to search the web. Continue reading “Rescuing PS4 DualShock Controllers”

“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”

I’m not a cord cutter, but I play one with my TV

The Problem: Here’s the scenario. We have DirecTV with five boxes that includes DVR services. But only three boxes can be active at the same time. The fourth and fifth boxes can remain in the cold while three TV’s are occupied. And only so much recording can happen at one time with similar limitations.

We have a household with three adults and a 10 year old. The 10 year old believes the best way for something to happen is repeated random button smashing, because a half second delay is too much delay. He never lived in the days where dad’s used kids as remotes. “Go change it to channel 3”.

So, what’s that mean? It means that sometimes, I’m unable to watch or record what I want due to the competition of resources or the errors of button smashing that arbitrarily records or deletes things.

Continue reading “I’m not a cord cutter, but I play one with my TV”