Month: January 2006

  • Robbed at Gunpoint #10: What If They Steal Your Mp3s?

    When I filed my insurance claim, my first thought was, “I wish I could file a claim for the thousands of mp3s I lost too.” I wasn’t that worried really. I had lost 2 40 gig hard drive mp3 players. The two players had about 50-55 gigs of mp3s (that’s about 1300 mp3s). Although I…

  • (Note to Readers)

    Perhaps it would have been better to allow comments for my recent columns about being robbed. Unfortunately, I haven’t had time to install WordPress’s spamfilters yet, though I will do so soon. For now, though, if you want to make comments, just send them to me and I can add them manually: idiotprogrammer @fastmailbox.net For…

  • Robbed at Gunpoint #9: Finding Out about the Neighborhood

    A few years ago I was looking at some apartments and found some lovely old apartments in the Gulfton area (approximately near Bellaire and Chimney Rock). Driving around during the day, I was impressed by the neighborhood’s charm and the proximity of parks and libraries. But my parents were horrified. “The Gulfton area is a…

  • Robbed at Gunpoint #8: The Price of Carrying a Weapon

    A man at a social event, after hearing of my “incident,” launched into a speech about how I should have carried a Smith & Wesson gun precisely for this reason. What an idiot, I remember thinking. The man was liberal and reasonably educated; frankly, I was surprised to hear him express such an attitude. Doing…

  • Robbed at Gunpoint #7: Critical Moments

    After reading Michael Blowhard’s thoughts on important events, I realize now that the 45 seconds in which the teenager held a gun to my head was in fact an important event (although neither he nor I realized it at the time). At the time I was more surprised than frightened and never seriously entertained the…

  • Robbed at Gunpoint #6: Dreaming, Dreaming, Dreaming

    As ashamed as I am to admit it, even though I have no functioning credit cards and no certainty of receiving an insurance settlement, I am already eying new replacement gear. The leading contenders: Nokia 770 Internet Tablet and Marantz PMD660 .

  • Robbed at Gunpoint: #5

    After tallying up the loss, I realized that in 60 seconds I lost more than $1500 worth of crap. Honestly. I had a high end PDA and 2 high end mp3 player/recorders. Then, I realized that I had also bought accessories for the PDA: a 1 gig memory card, a leather carrying case and an…

  • Robbed at Gunpoint: #4

    A homeless man named Verne found the stolen backpack two miles away from the scene. That was where the thiefs bought gas with my credit card. Verne called to tell me the news, and I jumped for joy. I simply forgot what I had in there. When I received the backpack (emptied of the electronics),…

  • Robbed at Gunpoint: #3

    Although the actual “transaction” didn’t seem that scary, as the day went on, my senses became alert to peripheral threats. People in peripheral vision–if they turned as though to come from behind me–suddenly became a threat in my eyes. I had a similar sense of shell shock when in the middle of gunfire in the…

  • Robbed At Gunpoint: #2

    I spent all day yesterday cancelling credit cards and getting replacement ID. A good 12 hours after I reported the incident I realized I had completely forgotten to call in the corporate Amex card (which I rarely use). Although I have access to my bank account now, I have neither debit nor credit cards, so…

  • Robbed at Gunpoint: #1

    Last night I was robbed. More to follow.

  • More on Podcasting Gear

    Great site that recommends podcasting gear. Note the links on the top left, for Entry, Basic, Ultra. Really helpful! Wow, looks like it even has its own forum! Derek Miller on reducing background noise on your podcast. Here’s a continuation of the podcast from podcast veterans about audio equipment. Doug Kaye describes a noise gate…

  • What happens when Slashdot declines?

    Jason Kottke on digg vs. slashdot: But over a period of about 4 days, Slashdot has sent more than 4 times the number of visitors to kottke.org than Digg — despite a 18-hour headstart for Digg — and the aftershock for Slashdot is much larger and prolonged. It’s been four days since the Slashdotting and…

  • Ebert on Detour

    Roger Ebert on Detour: Most critics of “Detour” have taken Al’s story at face value: He was unlucky in love, he lost the good girl and was savaged by the bad girl, he was an innocent bystander who looked guilty even to himself. But the critic Andrew Britton argues a more intriguing theory in Ian…

  • Windows XP Home: Update

    Windows XP Home not to be abandoned. Whew!

  • Book Learning Vs. Experience (Or Why We all Need Weekend Projects!)

    Regular readers of my weblog are well aware of my recent interest in video production. I can’t remember if I mentioned that I had to cancel my video documentary because the relative who was to be the star of the show died in August. No matter. I  posted a 100 questions about video on various…