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There's only one way for me to really find out how well switching from LJ to WordPress on http://bernhard.us works for blogging. Despite the momentum of LJ, I'm going to give full-time WordPress a shot.

Maybe I'll abandon it after a week, or maybe it'll be permanent, I'm not sure. Hopefully things won't be too confusing.

So, here's the deal:

1) I'm keeping my LJ account, just not posting to it. I'd like to be able to read and respond to friends-only posts made by, well, my friends :)

2) My wordpress journal is already syndicated through LJ here: cetan_feed. Just add that feed to your friends list and you'll see the updates I make to the blog. The actual address of the blog is: http://www.bernhard.us/rob/blog/

3) Feel free to reply to the feed or to add comments right to the blog. I'll be reading both and responding to both.

4) If you find all this silly and don't want to read the blog coming from bernhard.us, I completely understand.

Here's to trying.

Looks like something happened to comments during the last upgrade. I'm not sure why, but it's treating every comment as if it were spam or coming from an insecure proxy. I have no clue why :( Sorry.

This should be fixed.

Current Music: QCD: [11 -4:20] Kevn Kinney / Everything's so Different Now

7 humors | humor me
I went to login to my yahoo email account and this is the banner I see:

Look at the way she's looking at that pig...

Oh Yahoo, your image/text combos frighten me.
5 humors | humor me
My paid status on LiveJournal expires in 8 days. Ever since the infamous Duck Howling incident, I've been working on/slacking on a wordpress blog install for my bernhard.us domain with the idea that I would abandon LJ. (This also goes along with a plan to consolidate domains and unify my online presence)

And now that (for all intents and purposes) the blog is done and ready, I'm wondering if I should even bother leaving LiveJournal.

What I would gain:
1) Freedom. No mindless Abuse staff with little to no understanding of law and no asses to try and cover.

What I would lose:
1) Friends-Only Posts. Not insignificant.
2) User Icons (I could probably hack something into WP if I were not a slacker)
3) Phone posts, phonecam posts, polls, all the other silly stuff not available to free users. I hardly use these features but they still would be a loss.
4) Simplicity (aka, one-stop-shopping). I would have to still maintain a LJ account (albeit free) in order to read friends posts, add comments, etc. but all my content would be on my server and (even though it would be syndicated on LJ) people would have to leave LJ in order to comment.

Posting under a free LJ account isn't an option because I would have even less leverage with LJ staff if /another/ problem came up. Plus, a free LJ account wouldn't be a lot different than my wordpress install, except for keeping content together.

So, I guess I have 9 days to ponder this.

(As an aside, I wish WordPress currently supported OpenID [a sort-of-working-plugin is here.])

Current Music: QCD: [243 -0:34] Maximo Park / The Night I lost my head

6 humors | humor me

Yes folks, it's Scott Petersen Sliced Luncheon Meats (and other meat products)!


Yeah, it's not spelled the same, but still....

Current Music: QCD: [10 -3:42] 10 - in my bones - Groove Armada - Vertigo

4 humors | humor me

A little late with the upload, but we finally put the photos from Andy and Stephanie's wedding online. Only a few captions so far. The above photo is me demonstrating my shock and joy at discovering the Sweet Table at Italian weddings.

Current Music: QCD: [15 -0:09] Eddie From Ohio / Walk Humbly, Son

3 humors | humor me
I'm sure many of you are familiar with me going on and on about the band Eddie From Ohio. They're by far my favorite musical group of all time and for good reason. They have talent other musicians only dream about. Anyone that's seen them live will attest to this.

Last night they sent out an email to those on the mailing list about the lead singer Julie Murphy Wells. I've copied part of it below:


We're sad to report that within the last two weeks, our own Julie Murphy Wells has been diagnosed with breast cancer. Because of the aggressive nature of treatment necessary (surgery and therapy), we will be forced to cancel all of our performances for the next four weeks, at least. All the dates that are canceled are listed below.

On Thursday, September 15, Julie will undergo surgery for removal of the malignancy. While initial test results give reason to believe that the tumor is contained and hasn't spread, nothing will be definite until the surgery takes place.

At this point, Julie wishes to go public with her current illness as she could use all the prayer power she can get for her and her family. She's definitely showing her Fighting Irish colors more than she ever has, and continues to demonstrate a remarkable display of high spirits. She certainly hasn't lost her sharp sense of humor either.

She's been an inspiration to us all, and she gives us all reason to believe she's gonna kick this cancer in the seat of the pants. She's in wonderful care with a new facility in Arlington, Virginia- top professionals with incredible bedside manner. Please keep her in your thoughts and prayers.

We've set up a separate special email account if you'd like to send a note to Julie my-left-breast@hotmail.com (Yes, that was Julie's idea. We weren't kidding about that sense of humor)

Please watch our website for updates, and we'll do our best to keep folks in the loop with any developments.
Sorry, no 'abreast' puns here.

Current Music: Quintessential Player

1 humor | humor me
helloheather and I attacked the yard monsters this weekend, despite the heat. I trimmed the back bushes and she trimmed the bushes in the back flower bed. I also tried to pull up the monster crabgrass growing there. By monster, I mean crabgrass entities easily 5 foot in diameter. In fact, crabgrass isn't the right word; it was Pissed-Off-And-Looking-To-Cut-Someone-Grass. And by entities I do mean many.

I won most of the battles, but not the war.

The yard is a lot of work and helloheather and I are a bit overwhelmed with it all. We've decided to eliminate the dead-tree-turned-bird-feeder+pretty-things in the middle of the back yard (seen here: http://www.bernhard.us/photos/spring-2005/abk). I'm looking to get a tree trimming service out to pull this thing and grind the stump out as well and nice-ify our many living trees. I'm debating calling out an actual arborist to teach us how to best maintain the trees. It seems like knowing as much as possible about them would be a good thing in the long run, especially if it helps us determine which tree trimming service actually knows what they're doing and which just wants to cut stuff up.

All in all, it felt good to get out in the yard and work. Tonight we dump a bunch of lighter fluid on the clippings and have a little burn-fest.

Oh, and I found a dead ground squirrel in the yard. He's going to be on the funeral pyre.

Current Music: QCD: [9 -4:32] Tears for Fears / Secret World

6 humors | humor me
Lauren - TKO

That kid is going to be a contender. :)

(That's me taking the punch, b.t.w.)

Current Music: QCD: [2 -6:57] Lemon Jelly / Pushy

3 humors | humor me
Although Kodak announced a WiFi enabled consumer point and shoot camera back in January (and an impressive looking camera at that), the EasyShare One has yet to be released.

Nikon, however, has just announced the availability of their own WiFi enabled consumer point and shoot cameras:


The P1 and P2 both have 802.11b/g WiFi built in (as opposed to the Kodak offering which was an extra card) and, continuing the megapixel race, are 5 and 8MP respectively.
humor me

Reading between the lines of the specs and press release, you may discover that the EOS 5D is the first model in a new strategy from Canon, in the direction of full frame image sensor in many cameras to come. They have now solved many of the obstacles and production cost barriers, first and foremost related to the lowpass filter in front of the CMOS.

Current Music: QCD: [3 -6:51] Lemon Jelly / Pushy

humor me
DC this weekend was a lot of fun. United Airlines, amazingly enough, got us to Reagan-National 20 minutes early on Thursday evening and we got to O'Hare 30 minutes early on Sunday. Who ever heard of United being on-time, let alone early before?? Maybe they're padding their flight times now so it looks like they got in early?

Anyway, DC was good, bunches of photos taken, bunches of fun had, weather was nice (though humid).

Today I had lunch with my sister and my mom down at Millennium Park. Took the Holgaroid with and grabbed two photos. Starting tomorrow the weather is supposed to cool slightly, but (of course) I'll be locked in the office with AutoDesk as we migrate software products. Oh well, maybe it'll be nice next week and I can get down to the park with the camera.

Birthday dinner tonight for helloheather's dad. Should be fun.

Check out nugget's post about Google Talk if you've not had a chance:

Current Music: QCD: [2 -51:28] Sasha and John Digweed / Live @ Delta Heavy

humor me

Yep, it's true. A full-frame sensor DSLR for $3300.

Amazing. Just amazing.

In addition to this camera, the 24-105mm f/4 IS and the 430EX flash unit mentioned the other day there is a new 70-300mm IS lens (replacing the current one with better optics and, probably, a higher price). Canon also released 8 other digital cameras today:

http://www.dpreview.com/news/0508/05082205canons80.asp S80 (replacing the S70)

http://www.dpreview.com/news/0508/05082204canonsd450sd550.asp SD450 and SD550 (strangely, not replacing the SD400 and SD500, but are an addition to the line. I hope they fixed the problem with the cracking LCD screens)

http://www.dpreview.com/news/0508/05082203canonsd30.asp SD30 (replacing the SD20)

http://www.dpreview.com/news/0508/05082202canona610a620.asp A610 and A620 (replacing the A80 and A95. These cameras include DIGIC II and a faster lens at the telephoto end. Strong contenders for replacing our A80 when the time comes)

http://www.dpreview.com/news/0508/05082201canona410.asp A410 (replacing the A400)

Let's not forget the new 1D Mark II N (what a name!) which is exactly the same as the current 1D Mark II except is has: a better LCD screen, better and faster buffering, a new Picture Style setup, and (rather interesting) the ability to write different images at the same time to the CF or SD cards that are in the camera (the body accepts both card types at the same time).
humor me

I will admit that when I saw the PDF of the supposed Canon 5D digital SLR, I thought it was a fake. Why? Well, aside from the fact that 99% of the rumor "images" of new DSLRs are fakes done in Photoshop, the PDF showed not only the 5D as having a full frame CMOS sensor, but the cost being about $3500 US. The only current full frame sensor digital SLR on the market is the Canon 1Ds Mark II at a cost of $7000 for the body alone.

However, also surrounding this PDF was talk of a new L-series lens, the 24-105mm f/4 IS, and a new flash unit, the 430EX (something I would be most interested in if I decided to buy a 20D).

Well, Canon AU just announced that the lens is real. (See above link). Given the history for the Canon 5 film SLR, this lens on a full frame sensor digital SLR like the 5D would be a nice match.

So, Canon raises the bar again by drastically cutting prices. Full frame at $3500 is just /sick/. Canon has had to have made tremendous advances in yields with their CMOS production in order to get prices this low.

edit/update: changed some text.

Current Music: QCD: [4 -3:33] Sasha + John Digweed / Lost Without You (Jayn

humor me

Especially interesting is the ability to make any LJ Scrapbook image into a userpic without needing to buy more. At least I think that's how that works...

Also, get some months free if you're going to renew:
humor me

helloheather and I went to the Montrose Saloon yesterday for an afternoon and evening (noon 'till seven pm) of bluegrass, folk, rock, country, and a little a cappella.

The event was actually a benefit for a local independent radio station: WLUW. http://www.wluw.org/main.cfm. With 100 watts of power, those of us outside the city had never even heard of the station, but really we were there for the music. The lineup sounded interesting, so we went.

Our friend Dan alerted us to the show and we met him and friend/former band-mate Ellen at the bar. The venue was nice, as the Montrose Saloon has a large backyard beer garden with tables and chairs. Between the music, a few food items, and the beer, a great time was had.

Of the artists that played, I'd have to say Cornmeal were my favorite (their energy was spectacular) followed closely by REO Chuckwagon.

Photos from the event are here: http://www.bernhard.us/photos/montrose-2005

The four of us rounded the evening off with a meal at a local pizza/mexican restaurant down the street from the bar. All in all, a great day.

Current Music: QCD: [28 -5:14] Lemon Jelly - The Staunton Lick

3 humors | humor me
Just a (rather late) reminder that the evening of August 11th through the morning of August 12th and again the next evening and morning of the 13th will be peak viewing times in the Northern Hemisphere for the Perseid meteor shower.

Get your fast lenses and your high ISO film or digital sensors out for some 11am-4am shooting! :)


humor me
Up early on Saturday and helloheather and I were on the road with helloheather's mom by 7:30 to drive to Detroit.

For the most part, the drive up was uneventful. Saturday afternoon and evening were a lot of fun. I was the human jungle-gym for the two kids and learned a lot more about Texas Hold 'Em that evening.

Sunday, most of the group was heading to a Detroit Tigers game so helloheather and I headed back. We decided to stop off at Warren Dunes for the afternoon, given that 94 runs right next to it. I used to get to the dunes 3 or 4 times a summer when in college but very few times since then. It's really nice to go back. We also ate at a Mediterranean/Middle Eastern restaurant near the dunes. I had a lamb dish with a spicy sauce and yogurt. I didn't recognize the name, but I've had something similar at the Taste of Madison. It was really tasty.

The traffic report for those of us heading west around Lake Michigan was horrible sounding, so we thought we would try a different route. It was...interesting. Exiting in Gary onto Route 6/Ridge Rd put us right into the heart of some of the most economically depressed areas I've ever seen. The number of burned out buildings probably equaled the number of standing ones. Lots of cities have really rough neighborhoods sitting right next to really nice areas, and if you blink you'll miss the transition between the two. But in Gary and to the west, the transition was very slow and very noticeable. The roads improved, the sidewalks started looking usable, there were fewer abandoned cars, and by the time we got to Munster, it was full-fledged "Leave it to Beaver" land. What a crazy drive.

Current Music: QCD: [3 -4:12] Tykwer/Klimek/Heil / Running One

humor me

Current Music: QCD: [196 -2:46] Fielding / All You'll Get

2 humors | humor me

This is pretty interesting. Panasonic has put a real 16:9 aspect ratio CCD inside one of their cameras and gave it a 28mm equiv lens.

The aspect ratio is easily selectable between 16:9 wide, 3:2 and conventional 4:3 with a switch located on the lens barrel to shoot in the framing aspect that best suits the subjects’ composition or image’s purpose of use.

So, rather than cropping the existing image to 16:9, they're cropping for 3:2 and 4:3. I wonder how big a market there is of people wanting native 16:9 but it will be interesting to see it in action. The other advantage here is that the camera can record movies at 16:9 and does so at 30fps.

Two other positives with this camera: has a RAW mode and full manual control.

Current Music: QCD: [16 -6:44] The Crystal Method / Smashing Pumpkins / 197

humor me
I've been on a photo-uploading kick as of late. Prepare for saturation!

More later :)

Current Music: QCD: [3 -3:19] Thievery Corporation / The Outernationalist (

1 humor | humor me
Michael Palin has done a bit of traveling since his Monty Python days. He's had a number of 'Round the World type documentaries on the BBC that get played on PBS or Discovery or History Channels. Sometimes funny, sometimes serious, sometimes silly (like when he tells the audience that the coriolis effect is responsible for the water spinning one way in a bucket he's holding as he stands 4 feet from the equator) but certainly entertaining.

(Between him and Globe Trekker TV, my travel show needs are met :)

Last Sunday, after helloheather and I returned, I watched all of his latest documentary: Himalaya.

Well, it turns out Michael Palin has published his journals from all these travels, in their entirety, on his website:

2 humors | humor me

Re: "Demise and Decisions" posted here: http://www.livejournal.com/users/cetan/432245.html

The cool weather has given me an opportunity to do some walking again. I headed out to Lab One to see if anything had changed and to document the sign if it was still there. It was.

larger version of the image under the lj-cutCollapse )

Current Music: QCD: [13 -0:09] Beck / Emergency Exit

humor me
22/7 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pi_Approximation_Day
humor me
Before I was born, and indeed for a number of years afterward, my dad was a volunteer fireman. This meant he was "on call" when not at work and had a scanner and a special radio that would alert him when he was needed.

It turns out that the reason I arrived today, 30 years ago, was because of an emergency call. The call went out and the radio did its thing, squawking loudly and announcing that something Important Was Happening.

Well, something indeed did happen: the sudden noise in the middle of the night startled my mother and a few hours later, I made my entrance.

I only recently heard this story from my mother (or, if she had recounted it before, I had forgotten about it). For some reason, I'm not surprised that this is how it happened.

Anyway, here's the birth announcement my grandfather (dad's dad) put together and sent out. He owned an auto upholstery business for many years and it's in that theme that he created this. It's wonderful and I love it.

(click the image for larger view or click here for the full view)

Current Music: QCD: [32 -0:35] Eddie From Ohio / This Is Me

14 humors | humor me