March 05, 2005

Walking Petri Dishes

Posted by Scott at 07:48 PM

Colds - All five kids have colds this weekend. The coughing, sniffling, and sneezing is everywhere. I've cleaned up the boys' noses so many times. The boys also have a case of conjunctivitis so Michelle and I have to pin them down and put special drops in their eyes. We're hoping that this passes soon, especially before school resumes next Monday. Claire has been a good trooper and can usually swallow a pill with water. The rest of the kids generally take chewables or the medicines that dissolve quickly in your mouth.

Tires - Michelle's van tires were running low and uneven on tread so I had four new tires put on along with a wheel alignment. It started as just looking into why one tire had a slow leak and escalated from there. It's always hard to feel excited about spending that kind of money about something so boring, but when one considers the van's valuable cargo, it' easier to write the check...

Basement - Michelle and I have been working on getting the basement ready for it's construction effort that starts in a few days. Some stuff is just being rearranged, other stuff is going in the trash. We've had some difficulty figuring out how we can arrange the floorplan so that the it can meets the inspector's requirements for a bedroom exit, but we think we've come up with a plan that meets his criteria. His main issue seems to be that the emergency exit path to the basement door to the outside should be completely finished, not going through any unfinished portion.

Geeky - I often like to reminisce about how far computer technology has come in the past twenty years. Just before we left Dayton I met a guy who had a one gigabyte hard drive. One gigabyte! It just seemed so obscene then. Nowadays you can buy a USB flash drive that holds that for about $100. Just a few ounces, no moving parts, very low power. Amazing.

Following up on this line of thought, I recently found the CFFA project. It stands for CompactFlash For Apple. It's a board that allows you to mount a modern day CompactFlash (CF) card (as is used in many digital cameras) as a drive on a legacy Apple II class computer. Its amazing to think that back then hard core Apple II users typically had a box of 5 1/4 inch floppy disks with their software and data. With a modern CompactFlash card you could hold every major piece of software ever put out for the Apple II line. All that stuff in a module about the size of a large stamp. Well, if nothing else a CF card is a lot quieter and more reliable than those old floppy drives!

Pope - I have friends who aren't Catholic or haven't practiced their faith in a long time who ask about why John Paul doesn't step down. Actually even though his body is running down, his mind is still very sharp, much sharper than mine. Read any of his recent writings and you'll know. I found this article at NCR entitled "The Uncomfortable Pope" which does a good job explaining his work to our society which is uncomfortable with age and infirmity.