Home Archive June 2004
Back to normal?
Tuesday, 31 August 2004 7:45 am

Well that marks the end of the Olympics. I'll be able to recover about 60Gb of disk space from recorded footage. It was certainly a good test of my Home Theatre PC setup. I recorded over 100hrs of Olypmics footage with very few hickups.

Deb is currently labouring with a slight cold that I think she might have passed onto me. I just feel so tired at the moment. Anyway, a couple of bowls of home made chicken soup and I am sure I will be 100% again.

Another week down
Sunday, 29 August 2004 7:12 pm

Well another week is over and I am a few mores days closer to being 33 years old. To be honest it has taken me a couple of weeks of intensive maths to realise that I am actually only 32. For some reason I would have sworn that I was a year older.

I have to take my hat off to my brother for accusing Sharon for driving into their front window. It is a very very brave move on his part. Dude, you are my hero. Really!, I promise to say nice things at your funeral.

The weekend was another food fest with Kate, a friend of Deb's, coming over for dinner on Saturday and then a wonderful Noodle Duck Broth tonight for dinner.

My internet link is current choking to death as I try to find the songs we heard on Australian Idol. I have to admit that I was tempted to vote for my favorite tonight in the hopes that they make it to next week.

Oh, and thanks to Nathan for the feedback. When are we going to see your page back?

A journey of discovery
Tuesday, 24 August 2004 4:35 pm

Well Wayne and I have been on a journey learning about Frontpage. It has actually been quite good fun as we have have been able to get Wayne's site published so that it supports Frontpage Extensions. I'm going to leave the rest up to Wayne because from this point onwards his knowledge of it is going to start outstripping mine.

My sister is in pre-wedding stress meltdown. Actually I may be wrong about that, it may be option overload instead. In any case she is getting stressed about making everything just perfect. I sort of know how she feels. With Deb and my wedding there were a dozen times that I simply thought it would never happen. From trying to find a location in which the winds were not howling to thinking we would never get everyone to a single location. Hell, we didn't even have a solid plan for if it rained. Thank the gods it didn't

Work is actually going quite well. Considering that I have been doing more programming lately than I have in months I am wondering if my mood is somehow linked to how many lines of code that I write. Weird but geeky at the same time.

Deb's course seems to be going really well and the year is racing past at a huge rate. The only really cool thing about that is that we will be at my Sisters wedding sooner that way.

A quick update
Saturday, 21 August 2004 3:30 pm

It's amazing what a little positive focus can do for your attitude at work. It would seem that my comment in an earlier post was picked up by my family who all phoned or emailed me to with thoughts of support. It really helped to get me focused back onto just doing what I do and enjoying doing it. Thanks family

Waynes has been feverishly updating his site and adding lots of new features. It is really looking quite good and a huge departure from the original site. (I took a backup copy so if you want to see it just let me know)

Hot on the heals of typing The End on her first full story Deb has embarked on the next one and already has chapter one down. She's even going to let me have a look.

Thanks to everyone for the feedback, although Libbette has me worried now because the pictures work for me. I don't know what the problem could be.

We are off to Nicky & Curts place tonight for Rib Roast and a magnum of Shiraz Viognier wine. Yummy!!!

Anyway, we did post the duck rolls recipe so check it out.

Under construction!
Wednesday, 18 August 2004 12:55 pm

It looks like Wayne has headed back to the keyboard and has his site under construction. Actually I gave him a copy of the software that I was using. It is way more powerful than the site generator that he had but takes lots more work to get things setup.

Also Deb snapped some of the cutest photos of the cats playing with their basket. Take a look and try to tell me they are not the most sickeningly cute balls of fur.

And Rajan posted a short story on his site that I absolutely LOVED. I must admit that I just flicked over to it quickly but got hooked completely by it. Left me with a shiver running up my spine.

My Mum is doing well considering all the medical tests that she has had lately. I am starting to think she is bullet proof. On the bright side she won a $300 jackpot at the pokies on the weekend which really put a smile on her face.

Any finally we have been completely absorbed in the Olympics coverage here. Unfortunately I stuffed up the recording of the overnight events and missed the 4 x 200 mtr relay. Bugger.

Real Reality TV
Monday, 16 August 2004 7:45 am

Having just spent a large portion of the weekend on my butt watching the Olympics I mused on the thought that perhaps it is actually the only Real Reality TV show.

For months now we have been watching various characters prepare for the big event. We have watched as they fell into swimming pools and have had surgery at the last moment. The commercial TV stations have jostling for exclusive rights to their stories and then playing them out like any good soap drama. The tests, the trials and the human tragedy. Needless to say I couldn't keep my eyes off of it.

Of course it helps that we have two TV screens going at the same time and swap back and forth between the various coverages as this get a little slow. I understand why Water Polo has never been very big as a spectator sport.

We had Jan & Simon over on Saturday night for dinner and then watched the opening ceremony that we had recorded. Perhaps it's just me but I remember the skirts being much shorter at the Sydney Olympics.

Anyway, I've also posted the recipe for my steamboat so check it out in the Recipe section.

Hell Boy and Steamboat
Saturday, 14 August 2004 8:12 am

We had Nicky and Curtis over last night for Steamboat. I am going to have to post the recipe for the stock because I keep telling everyone about it. Also Nicky brought over desert which was these cute little pre-packed parfait cups of Entice Triple Choc icecream. Yummy!!!

Anyway, afterwards we watched a 'preview' copy of Hell Boy. I thought it was ok for another example of comic book meets Hollywood and will definately watch it again. Unfortunately Deb and Nicky just kept laughing through it. I didn't think it was that bad really. Certainly not up to Spiderman standards but certainly better crafted than Van Helsing. (Dambed with faint praise).

I love Organiser World
Wednesday, 11 August 2004 9:42 am

A very quick update. I took my Bluetooth Headset back to Organiser World and let them know about the problem. In typical fashion of course it worked perfectly on their tests.

Luckily one of the guys asked around if anyone else had heard of any problems and someone piped up and said 'Yes'.

In any case they offered me a replacement or refund on the spot. I happy took the replacement unit (Which is now $40 more expensive than when I purchased it).

You have to love that level of service.

Of cheap tickets and company names
Tuesday, 10 August 2004 8:09 pm

We went to see The Chronicles of Riddick tonight. As a movie it was OK I guess but I really quite liked the gritty nature of the first movie 'Pitch Black' so was a little disappointed by the over the top fantasy of the sequel. Actually it was only a sequel in terms of it using the same actor and names. Not much else seemed to have been kept. (Except maybe the dash across the surface of the burning planet.) Note to self: You can survive surface temperatures of 700 degrees if you stay in the shade or douse yourself in water. Now why didn't I think of that.

Anyway, it was cheap ticket night and I got to have a couple of beers before the show so it wasn't a complete loss.

Deb is trying to register a business name so that she can do some contracting for the governement. Personally I thought that SquizzyPaws was a perfectly reasonable name for a business (the name has to appear on any invoices) but she wanted something less cat focused.

Thanks to Rajan for the Feedback. As I said Deb & I loved having you guys here and can't wait to catch up again, either here again or at your place, hopefully in the next few years. (Scary when you have to plan that far ahead)

Since learning about Rajan's various journals and blogs I have been keenly hoping that we would post some of his writing. Deb tells me that it causes all sorts of problems with publishing rights so I guess we will all have to wait for it to be published somewhere so we can get a look.

And ending on a technology related point I am pissed off because my Bluetooth Headset is playing up. I admit that I purchased one of the cheaper offerings but I have only had it a few months and the volume keeps dropping out. Oh well, lets see if the supplier with honor the warranty.

The sound of music
Monday, 9 August 2004 8:15 pm

Ok, I admit it. I'm a fan of Australian Idol. I can't help it, it sort of appeals to my sense of wanting to be more than we are.

I got so wrapped up in the music that I spent last night locating some of my favorite music on one of my favorite internet sources. (No names being mentioned here). In any case I spent the day grooving away to the sounds of 'screaming bitches' as Deb calls them.

A thanks to Wayne for the feedback on the site and to JT for letting me know about Mum. You would think they would know better in hospitals wouldn't you.

Now, if only I could get my finger out at work, take the bull by the horns and actually get some real work done I may start feeling like a valuable member of society again. Needless to say I am still feeling pretty gutted about missing out on the leadership program at work. I won't even mention my appraisal which I don't think could have been more destructive if they had actually set out to make it that way.

Oh, well. Apparently I am still feeling a little bitter about the whole process. Who would have thought it would have lasted this long?

: This update brought to you by the sounds of Avril Lavigne and her new album 'under my skin'.

Computer swap meets are WAY COOL
Sunday, 8 August 2004 2:56 pm

I am not sure if she should be encouraging me but today we went to a computer swap meet down at Springvale. It was awesome and there was a ton of really great toys and gadgets.

As you may remember the old website had a webcam which we ran for a short while. It was actually my video camera hooked up to the HTPC. It worked but was rather cumbersome.

Anyway, to cut a long story short, today I picked up a webcam from the swap meet. So the Webcam page is back up and running.

How very very cool is that. We also went to a Vietnamese restaurant for lunch and I had a bowl of beef pho. It was as good as I remember it from Sydney. Actually pho was what got me hooked on asian noodle soups.

Anyway, give us some Feedback and let us know what you think of the new site layout.

Don't adjust your vision
Saturday, 7 August 2004 7:05 pm

Yes, that is right people...don't adjust your television, ALVERS.INFO is coming to you live, fresh and updated in a new revamped format.

What do you do when the weather turns cold and the old website is starting to look a little old? Update of course.

We have spent most of Saturday morning, and a good portion of this evening, updating the site and dragging it into a whole new format.

I have been checking out other websites for a while trying to find a look that I really liked. I have been looking at using the Blog function more because it means that I can post more easily without having to be at home. Anyway, what you see is the result of a fair bit of work on our parts and quite a bit of hand coding of HTML.

The old background used to be based on my beloved pussycat's tummy fur. It was cute at the time but now I have got really tired of looking at it. Also the menu items took ages to create and edit. On top of that the underlying code was a pain in the butt.

So I have swapped a ton of javascript for a ton of CGI code. At the moment it seems like a really good idea but I am sure that I will grow to hate all the hand coding.

In any case I am missing watching Australia beat New Zealand at the rugby so I am going to run and see how it goes. Let us know what you think of the new site through the Feedback section.

1st August 2004  Well it has been a very busy week with Libbette and Rajan staying with us for a few days.  It was really great to see them again and Deb and I were wrapped that they took time out to come and see Melbourne.  It was awesome to spend some time with them and to share some great food and wine.  Deb has already suggested that it would be great to see them in the US.  So lets just see how that goes.

On the home front, Mark and Leah, some of my best mates from Brisbane, are expecting another child in the new year.  As always it was great to hear from Mark.   I have given up promising to get our butts up to Brisbane and see them again.  It will happen really it will.

So far this week as really been a focus on food and wine.  Tonight Deb made duck breasts in star anis broth with noodles.  It was pretty awesome.  Also the sun actually shone on Melbourne this weekend so Deb and I got the front garden cleaned up as well as getting a bunch of herbs back into our window garden.  You could even believe that Spring is just around the corner.

Hi also to my sister JT, I TOLD YOU that using just a few chilli flakes can really make a pasta sauce.  See, you should trust your big brother.

Work is work and I am sort of slowly building up my enthusiasm for it again.  The recent review process was pretty brutal all round and quite frankly left me feeling rather flat (maybe even pissed off) with the whole process.  Luckily I work with a bunch of people that really make coming to work worth it

Now, off to bed for a good nights sleep before the whole process starts over again.

26th July 2004  Again it has been quite a while since the last update.  I can tell you now that relaxing on the deck on the Queensland Sunshine Coast while drafting the Web Log update was a far nicer way to get to updating the site.

Overall it was a fantastic trip to Brisbane and one that Deb and I just loved.  I am still sporting a beard that I managed to grow and have not had the heart to shave it off yet.  I just look in the mirror each day and say 'There's no place like home...there no place like home...'

I wanted to say a front page 'Hi' to Libette for putting an entry in the Feedback section.  She has won a very special D&D Homepage T-shirt for simply making an entry. (Actually no...she hasn't but if we did give out t-shirts for adding to the feedback section she definitely would have one.)

I have also taken this as an opportunity to clean-up the buttons on this page.  Sorry Nathan but you at least have to update your site more often then I update this one.  I have also striped the Debcam page unit I can get a real cam setup and running all the time.  The page is still there but is not being updated.

Anyway, we have a couple of hungry pussycats to take care of so I have to run...cya!

3rd July 2004  A quick update from the road. Deb and I are currently on holidays on the coast in Queensland. I will be making the occational post in the blog so keep an eye on it for details, and hopefully pictures of what we are up too. See you there.