Google Earth

Thankfully, I downloaded Google Earth a few days ago (when it first was announced) because they suspended new downloads for it temporarily.

It’s hands down the coolest computer application I’ve ever seen. It’s the entire earth in 3D. It brings together satellite images, maps and lots of other stuff Google does into a single really cool interface. For major cities, it even has the buildings in 3D, so you can fly through them.

One thing that’s especially cool is the elevations are accurate, so I can go to my new property and actually check out the views (which are totally accurate) from my computer. It’s really neat.

They are working on a Macintosh version, so I’ll be even happier when that’s out.

Building A House Is A Lot Of Work

Funny I think that because it hasn’t even started yet. 🙂

But I met up with my architect and saw a new property that I liked better (and put an offer on it) on Tuesday, met with a landscape architect on Wednesday, going to Irvine to meet with the company for the home automation/smart home stuff this afternoon, starting the escrow on the new property tomorrow, etc.

Oh yeah, that reminds me, I need to go to the bank before I drive to Irvine to cash out a CD (I need to wire 5% of the purchase price tomorrow when the escrow starts).

Hopefully it will be less work later, but I have a feeling that’s not going to be the case.


Well, they rejected my offer I put in yesterday, but came back with an offer that was still pretty good, so I’m going to go into a 15 (quick huh?) escrow on the new lot tomorrow.

Anyone want to buy my old lot? 🙂

New Property

Funny how things work out… I was meeting with my architect this morning, and he showed me a lot for sale right down the street from my existing one. To make a long story short, I put an offer on the new property today, so hopefully I’ll get that and sell my old lot.

The old lot is really nice, but the new one is 10x better…

  • No other lots on either side (I wouldn’t have to look at the side of people’s houses)
  • The property itself is 3x larger
  • The useable pad is 2x larger (the old one is still one of the biggest around)
  • There is an area below the slope on the property that I could put a full-on orchard without needing to use the normal lot pad
  • The views are amazing (ocean, lake, golf course, city skyline, etc.)
  • Private driveway off the main road, so you don’t even see the road from where the house would be.

So basically I could put a big house, a 30 car garage, have a huge backyard and still maybe have room for a football field. 🙂

Weird how things happen…

RAZRberry Coming Soon

It looks like the Motorola RAZRberry is getting close to being released (the latest ETA is within the next 3 months). It’s a pretty slick phone. It’s about 1/4″ wider, .5″ taller and slightly thinner (if you can believe that) than the Motorola RAZR V3.

It’s codename is Franklin, has all the stuff the RAZR V3 has, and adds a full QWERTY keyboard, 192MB memory, a bigger/higher resolution screen and it also runs Windows Mobile 5.0.

Dan Castillero Design & Construction

Now that I’m moving forward with having my house designed and built, I just wanted to say how nice it is to have an architect that actually does everything when he says he is going to. No nagging necessary… which is a welcome change from every other architect (individual and firms) I’ve dealt with in the past.

It’s really early at this point, but it’s SO nice to not have to follow up with them on things they said they are going to do. If Dan says he will call me in 2 weeks with something (for example preliminary design ideas), I’ve found you can bet money he will call you in two weeks. Other architects I’ve worked with went something more along the lines of… “Gee, I haven’t heard from them, and it’s been 4 weeks now.” So then you call them up and they tell you they haven’t started anything because of whatever (insert random reason here). Hmmm… were you ever going to call me? 🙂

Anyway, just figured I should mention that since the little things like that often go unnoticed, and you usually only read about the bad things when researching a company.

My Mom’s Blog Sucks

You know what? I try to help a mom out… hype up her blog and drive hundreds of thousands of visitors. And what’s the thanks I get? Nothing. Her blog hasn’t been updated in 6 months.

That makes me look foolish for sending all my dedicated readers (which is like me and my sister basically.. heh) to her blog which practically could be talking about the Cold War it’s so old and outdated. Maybe if I say it sucks, it will be tough love and she will get on it.

Update… Wow, that was quick. I noticed my mom updated her blog tonight (only 30 minutes after I posted this… uhm, hey mom, how many times an hour do you read my blog?? heh). It’s a good one too… you should read it and click on the link after you read it. I fell out of my chair I was laughing so hard. Finally! A good post! 🙂

Killer Coding Ninja Monkeys

Today at ninja school, we got our first uniform. What I want to know is how am I going to strike fear into my enemies wearing something like this? It definitely doesn’t make me look like I can kick ass.

It wasn’t quite what I had expected, but I guess it’s a good first step.

Update… A little Googling and I realized that they probably got them from Think Geek. What the hell?? When do we get to assassinate people? Or at least look like we can?

Booger Sandwiches

I don’t know why I find this sticker so funny… My friend Amanda gave it to me like 7 or 8 years ago and it has been posted on my desk ever since. And to this day it still makes me laugh. So I decided to scan it and put it on my blog because I have nothing better to do.

Now you too can enjoy booger sandwiches for the introductory price of $1.00 each! 🙂

vBulletin 3.5

The Digital Point forum is now live with vBulletin 3.5 beta 1. I spent some time today and last night recoding all the little hacks I made on vB 3.0.x, and turning them into plug-ins for 3.5 (yay for the new plug-in architecture).

Along the way, I even found some bugs (some of which I fixed on my own). Hopefully it will get fixed in the distribution though so I don’t have to fix it every update. 🙂

Most of the changes are for admins and moderators (inline moderation, plug-in system, template history system with diff, etc.), but man it’s nice!

There are some cool things for end users too though, like AJAX stuff… you can double click a post to edit it “live”, pretty tricky. Also dumped vBulletin’s internal search engine for MySQL’s fulltext search engine. It also support persistent marking of read threads which is so much nicer.

Uhm… does anyone care? If you read this far, you have less of a life than me. heh

French Chateau Style Home

Until a few days ago, I had no idea what was the difference between different style homes. For example, I couldn’t tell you what’s different between a Tuscan or Italian style.

But dammit, now I know! And I also know that I like French Chateau style (which is what I’m going to have my house designed as). French style has steep roofs with slate roofing materials. It also uses a good amount of stone, but not so much it’s overwhelming. I like it. 🙂

This is a French Chateau (as an example), although this one is a little much for my tastes…

Apple Really Switching To Intel

Well, it looks like CNet and the Wall Street Journal was right. Apple is indeed switching from IBM’s PowerPC architecture to Intel processors.

I think it’s probably a good thing for the long term, but not so hot in the short term. I bet Apple hardware is going to drop now that everyone knows the PowerPC machines are going to be dropped starting next year. I bet a lot of people are going to wait to buy a new Mac now.

Training To Be A Ninja

As many of you know, I’m in the middle of fulfilling my childhood dream of becoming a ninja. At this stage of training, it’s just a lot of book work, but hopefully someday it will be all worth it.

Today we learned about the Monkey Steals The Peach move. This is where you take your opposition, and physically rip their balls off. It’s pretty effective I would imagine and I can’t wait to try it out on my fellow students.

Thanks to Boing Boing for the picture.

Apple Switching To Intel?

Apple switching to Intel processors has been an on and off rumor for more than a decade. But CNet is reporting that Apple plans on scrapping the PowerPC processors and move to Intel as soon as next year, with the official announcement coming next week at the Apple developer conference.

Personally, I find it a little hard to believe, but we’ll see I guess. Maybe Apple is using Intel as a pawn to get IBM to fix their manufacturing issues with the PowerPC chips.

It also seems like an odd time to do it because all the new gaming consoles moving from Intel to the PowerPC based architecture. If nothing else, the hundred million or so orders for PowerPC chips might be a good incentive for IBM to get on the ball with the architecture.