The miscellaneous ramblings and thoughts of Dan G. Switzer, II

Trick-or-Treat, Smell My Feet; I'm Going On A Cruise!

Well, Thursday night was "Beggar's Night" (aka "Trick or Treat Night") here in Hilliard. A decent turn out, but I think less than last year. It was real busy from like 6:15 to 6:45, but pretty did the rest of the time (5:30pm to 7:30pm.) I still have way too much candy left over. Around 6:45 I was telling kids to take handfuls of it (instead of keeping things to a couple of pieces per child.)

Anyway, Monica brought Nicholas by for in his little "Dino" outfit. That kids is down right adorable. He knew where the candy was supposed to go—he'd take some candy from the bowl and place it in his bag. He also spent a good deal of the time passing out candy between Monica, Jenn and me. At one point Monica had taken his shoes and socks off (so he'd be more comfortable,) we all made a that's stinky face and sound and he got a big kick out of it. So periodically he'd balance carefully on one foot and stick the other in the air and we'd all make a big fuss about his stinky feet—he would just laugh and laugh. Kids can be great fun at times.

While, Jenn and I both made arrangements to go on our first cruise (together) today. My parent's were able to get a special deal through a conference they're attending and we went ahead and booked the cabin next to them. It's a 7 day (from Jan 11-18) Western Caribbean cruise that starts in Tampa Bay and hits Grand Cayman, Costa Maya, Cozumel and Belize. We'll be on a Carnival Inspiration "Fun Ship." It should be a blast. I've always wanted to go on a cruise, so that's one more thing off my "to-do" list. I also would love to go on an Alaskan cruise some day. Anyway, Jenn and I are extremely excited about this trip.

Dream Theater "As I Am" Official Download

Dream Theater has released the full version of the single "As I Am" for download on their site! The full version is way better than the radio edit. I didn't care much for the song on the first couple of listens, but then I realized I kept singing the song to myself afterwards. The song has really grown on me.

Dream Theater: Train of Thought Preview...

The German version of Warner Brother's site has posted some audio samples of Dream Theater's new album, Train of Thought. I think this album is going to be pretty controversial amongst die hard Dream Theater fans. The preview sound quite a bit different from any studio work I've heard from them in the past.

A radio mix of "As I Am" is also been released to radio station (and subsequentially has made it's way on the 'net.) I didn't like the radio edit of "As I Am" much, but I did get to hear a sneak peak of the unedited album version and the full version of the song rocks. I can't wait to hear the rest of the album. The preview of "This Dying Soul" soul reminds me a bit of old Iron Maiden—especially the opening riff of the clip. I love hearing new music from my favorite bands...

Weekend at Salt Fork State Park

Jenn and I spent the weekend at Salt Fork outside of Cambridge, OH this weekend. Her parents were there camping in their new R/V and we stayed at a cabin in the park. The weather was overall excellent—it was pretty cold Friday night and rained all day Sunday—but the weather Friday and Saturday was really nice. The skies were extrodinarily clear Friday night—I really enjoyed sitting around the fire telling stories.

We saw lots of deer out Friday night. I'll post the pictures to my photoalbum soon.

Kid's Play

Ok, I feel old. This were all great games—many of the old arcade games I still prefer to the newer ones. I now understand why so many kids have attention deficit disorders.

Would today's tykes tolerate the classic games you grew up with? Kids do say the darndest things in this uncut version of an EGM article—now with a bonus game not included in the original story!

The Times They Are A-Changin'

Well, I'm sitting here at my desk on my last day. As always, it feels to odd to be leaving a place you've spent a number of years working at. I suppose I'd feel better if I was leaving on my own will, but the fact that we just moved buildings and am now in a little cubicle, makes leaving a little less painful. I'm actually a little excited and nervous about the future. I've been fortunate enough to build a number of contacts over the past 8-9 years while doing web development for/with different companies, so I'm hoping some of those contacts will pay off while contracting.

I have many good memories of my time with my soon to be ex-employer, but the last 12-18 months haven't been a cakewalk. It's really gone down hill here, so from that aspect I'm glad to get out of the environment. There's not many people I know left who want to stay—everyone is trying to get out of here as quickly as possible. I've said many times in the past 3 months that Joel (my other co-worker who was kept onboard to help shut down the all the services) that in many regards we were lucky. Unlike most people who get laid off, we had a good amount of time to try to prepare ourselves financially and we at least know what our future holds. The people who are left are all very worried about their jobs. No one feels that their jobs will be around much longer—and unfortunately their probably right. Even before the second round of layoffs, I told people here that our parent organization would slowly dissolve our company into theirs and they'd drop our name all together. We're already starting to see obvious signs of this merger—from them moving their employees to our payroll budget and them combining all of our HR resources to the fact that new literature is starting to show up with their name on it. Reminds me quite a bit of MCI/WorldCom or AOL/TimeWarner (both of which are now dropping part of their names—for obvious reasons.)

Anyway, there are still people who work here that I respect and call friends (and I few whom I am glad I don't have to work with again.) A group of us "old timers" (current and past employees) got together last night to celebrate our new stages in life. The group of us meet occasionally and we're trying to make it a regular event.


New Siding & Trip To Hocking Hills

The last several days have been very busy. The siding for my house finally came in Wednesday of last week. They were able to get the lower half of the house down on Thursday, but due to poor weather on Friday, they didn't get to finish up the siding until Saturday morning. (They started promptly at 7:30am on Saturday morning.) The outside of the house looks really good, but we noticed some of the puddy that was applied to the dry wall inside was knocked off (which chipped the paint.) They're supposed to come out to take a look at the damage and see what they can do to patch things.

Sunday we headed down to Hocking Hills for the day. The leaves are changing color quickly, and it was just a beautiful day for hiking. The weather was perfect—couldn't ask for a better day. Got lots of pictures which are posted over in my photoalbum.

ISP Change...

Well, hopefully you all are starting to show up on the new site. The DNS information is starting to propogate and I've got redirects set up for those of you who are still getting the old DNS information. Hopefully I won't run in to any mail problems. Lucky, I still have a few days to work out any kinks that may occur.

Migrating from CF v4.5/5 to CFMX v6.1

Ok, I've been migrating a lot of stuff from older version of ColdFusion (that were based on either C or C++) to ColdFusion MX v6.1 (which is based on Java.) I've run into several anomalies, which I thought I'd document here.


The <cfdirectory> tag no longer returns the ./.. rows in the query. I had several applications that used <cfdirectory> and I was manually filtering out these entries by starting on the third row of the queryset. Obviously, this caused problems in the CFMX v6.1, since those records no longer exist.


Moving ISPs...

I'm planning on moving my domains over to a new ISP starting tomorrow. If you start seeing automatic re-directs, don't worry about it—it's all part of the plan.

Officially Dating One Year Now...

Well, Jenn and I have been dating exactly a year today. It's hard to believe it's been a year already, but then again so much has happened in the past 12 months that in some regards it seems a lot longer. Anyway...

Happy Anniversary Jenn!

Half-life 2 Source Code Stolen...

It seems the source code for Half-life 2 has been making its rounds around the Internet lately.

The theft of part of its source code has delayed until April 2004 the launch of "Half Life II," the hotly anticipated alien-hunting game of Vivendi Universal Games, a company official said.

"A third of the source code was stolen," VU Games president of international operations Christophe Ramboz told daily Les Echos in its Tuesday edition. "It's serious because it forces us to delay the launch of the game by at least four months, that is to April 2004. Just the time to rewrite parts of the game."

My feeling is they're using stolen source code as an excuse for the delay to April 2004. I can't understand why they would think they need to re-write things completely just to release the game. Granted, I haven't looked at the code to see what aspects of the game are in there, but I can't see why you'd need to re-write the whole thing.

Weekend Update...

Well, I had a busy weekend. We had band practice Friday night. We were supposed to be trying out another drummer, but like the 3 previous tryouts, it didn't end up working out for scheduling reasons. The guys wants to reschedule, he just had to work. It's probably for the best anyway, as it gave Todd, Eric and I another chance to practice. I really need to force myself to practice for at least 30 minutes a night. It just seems like every time I put a ton of time into practicing, we stop playing for a month or more and then I get depressed about not playing. Anyway, I need to buckle down.

Saturday was Justin's bachelor party. We met up at BW3s around 6pm and got Justin pretty liquored up. We then proceeded to another location, but Justin was a bit too inebriated to really enjoy himself there. I ended up hanging outside of the club with Justin and until he was able to compose himself a bit and I was sure he was feeling better. It was a little after midnight, so I just decided to call it a night. About half the guys were headed home, while the other half decided to hang around the club.

Didn't do much of anything Sunday, just took the day off. I did finish Jedi Academy. It's was a cool game, but a little too short. I wish there would have been a few more missions. I liked the relatively short mission length, but another 5 missions or so would have made the game even more enjoyable—especially because the first 5 are pretty boring.


More blogging about qForms...

Christian Cantrell recently blogged on the issue of server-side and client-side validation in entry "Validation - Client or Server-side?." While he doesn't mention qForms specifically in his writings, many people commented on the usefulness of qForms and how it makes implemented the validation a cinch. Anyway, it's always good to read others viewpoints on my projects—especially when some of the comments come from people I respect. :)