As many of you know, drumming is an important part of my life, and something I thoroughly enjoy. In addition to Greenfoot and playing at my church, I’ve also joined the Wiseacres Jazz Band. Jazz drumming has been a challenge, but it’s also been a blast. Between these three groups there are numerous gigging opportunities, so I’ll make an effort to consolidate and list them on a new page on my blog called “Drum Calendar”. There’s a link for it on the top of the blog as well. Feel free to check it and see if I’ll be playing close to where you live. I’d love to see you make it out!
My new work laptop arrived at work today, so now I’m in the midst of getting everything set up and running. I’ve posted in the past about the applications I install by default. But I wanted to offer an updated listed, as things are always changing.
Personal Productivity Apps (covered by work)
- Microsoft Office 2007 Enterprise (Students can get Ultimate for Cheap at MS’s TheUltimateSteal.com)
- Microsoft Visio 2007
- Microsoft Project 2007
- Microsoft Expression 2 Suite
- Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 (Students can get both Expression and VS from MS DreamSpark)
I’ve included the list from last time, and updated what I’ve stopped/started using:
- Mozilla FireFox and the following extensions:
- Mozilla Thunderbird (for personal email)
Pidgin (for IM)
- Digsby – Awesome client, new test version uses 1/2 the memory Filezilla FTP client
- Office Communicator
- Feed Demon an outstanding desktop RSS reader which recently became free (I was paying for it prior)
Apps & Utilities:
- MS Office 2007
- FoxIt Reader a PDF alternative to the bloated Adobe Reader
- UltraVNC – The viewer on my work desktop, VNC installed on my home desktop
- Launchy – Perfect application launcher for keyboard junkies
- ObjectDock – “Sidebar” application launching
- Windows Live Writer – What I use for blogging
- MRemote – To manage multiple MS Remote Desktops/Terminal Servies, I haven’t had great results with VNC though
- MS LiveMesh
- NotePad++ – Best general purpose editor hands-down
Photos & Multimedia:
- MediaMonkey – Incredible media manager, especially if you have a large library (I paid for this one, but there is a free version).
- Last.fm – Scrobble and track what I listen to (my profile)
- TagScanner – For updating ID3 Tags
- SharePod – Managing my iPod without iTunes
- VLC Media Player – For videos, DVD’s and single-file playing
- Windows Live Photo Gallery – Easy way to manage, edit, tag and share photos (there is Flickr integration as well)
FastStone Image Viewer– On-the-fly image preview & browsing
- Paint.NET – More in-depth photo editing
- Defraggler – Disk Defragmenting
- AutoRuns – eliminate annoying startup programs
- CCleaner – Get rid of crap, cookies and temp files
- Unlocker – Gets you out of those “access denied” binds during deletions
- Process Explorer – Task manager on steroids
- Java Runtime Environment
- Tugzip – Great alternative to Winzip, not quite WinRar, but free and open-source
- Synctoy – to synchronize files between my work desktop and laptop, works great if you’re on the same network
I woke up this morning to the horrifying news that Dave Matthews Band saxophonist LeRoi Moore has passed away. Not much to say except that this is a tragedy – he went before his time. Thoughts and prayers go to him, his family and the rest of the DMB.
RIP LeRoi, thank you for all of the wonderful memories and bringing us awesome music.
This is a few days old, but still noteworthy nonetheless. A few weeks back I was saddened to hear that John Lynch asked for his release from the Broncos at the start of training camp, seeking a team where he could play a full-time role. Things remained quiet for a few weeks, but the news broke: The New England Patriots signed John Lynch.
As a Lynch fan, I’m happy he’s still playing in the NFL. He’s an amazing player, and nothing will take that away from him. As a Broncos fan, I’m definitely disappointed and actually feel a little betrayed by John.
When the story of Lynch’s release request broke, it was said he left because the Broncos weren’t playing him full time:
“[T]wo sources close to the situation said, because he is unhappy with his role. He has been working with the first-team defense in the first week of training camp but not in nickel and dime defensive packages. He has admitted that not playing significantly bothered him.”
I definitely could respect that, except for the analysis that came out about Lynch’s signing.
“Lynch can fit into packages that would allow him to play 10, 15 or 20 plays a game. Belichick is the best at figuring out ways to use veterans and not wear them out. He did the same with Junior Seau, who enjoyed his Patriots experience so much that he’d love to come back.”
So Lynch left Denver because he was unhappy about not playing full-time in nickel and dime packages, and goes to a team that will play him 20 plays a game? The knee-jerk in me wants to think that this was a hypocritical move and can’t help but feel a little betrayed.
At the same time, it very may well have been that Lynch watched the phone for full-time starter jobs and when it wasn’t ringing, decided to pursue other options. I’m also a realist, and understand that the Patriots have a better chance of winning the Super Bowl next weekend than the Broncos do – but this isn’t Junior Seau: Lynch has a Super Bowl ring with Tampa Bay. I didn’t want to see John Lynch go to a bottom-feeder team just to be able to start, but I hate to see him in a Patriot’s jersey. The only thing that would be worse would be Lynch in Raider Silver & Black.
Selfishly, I’m torn about what to do about my Lynch jersey. He’s still an active player and I want to support him as the player, but I would also like to wear the jersey of a current Bronco if I can help it. I have no idea what I’m going to do.