Archive for March, 2003

Clean Dishes

I spent the majority of this past weekend attempting to install a new dishwasher. It was like wrestling a manatee in olive oil. Four trips to Home Depot later, much talk of telflon tape, ferrule rings, wire caps, pipe cutters and several curse words later, I believe it is in and working. We’ll see if a gush of water bursts through the wall this evening. It was an experience, but not a way I’d like to spend another weekend. Especially when spring is in the air around here.

Special note: The next time a salesman who is about to sell you something says “oh yeah, it’s so easy. Just three wires and this kit and in 20 minutes you’ll be up and running” — just laugh and very carefully register that as remember to call someone to install this.

CSS background-image fun

Lots of talk today in regards to using CSS background-image to show an image for CSS-enabled browsers, and text for non-styled viewers. Zeldman posts about his own ideas for using background-image and its drawbacks, while Doug Bowman pulls together some great info on the subject.

One method that I think works well is using a background image while hiding an alternate, lo-fi version of that image as I do here on this site (ie, one that has no transparency so that it won’t look like trash in a non-styled view). If sufficient alt text is provided, then non-styled viewers would get one graphic with descriptive text that should satisfy browsers and devices that do not show images.

Hiding the image with display: none; may run into the same issues with screen readers skipping the image, but one might even overlap a lo-fi image without even having to hide it, provided the two images were equal size and non-transparent — similar to the method that Doug touched on earlier today.

Big Mac address

So, McDonald’s has gotten desparate and has begun offering free Wi-Fi access in some of their “restaurants”. Here’s a screenshot of the login screen. I haven’t eaten at a McDonald’s in years, but beside that I have two questions: Who would want to get french freedom fry grease all over their laptop? And who would want to hang out in a McDonald’s for longer than it takes to consume its disgusting food?

Freedom fries. A whole different ridiculous topic that I won’t bother commenting on.

iPod battery life

OSXFAQ has some tips on getting the most out of your iPod battery. I had been wondering why my battery was always dead. I know now that it froze to death, every morning on the 10+ minute walk to the train. Yet another reason to loath this horribly cold winter we’ve had in the Northeast.

Roogle: RSS search engine

It was only a matter of time. Roogle is a new search engine that uses RSS feeds for indexing. Good idea, and a narrow focus. It’ll be useful to search weblogs exclusively for different things. Roogle needs a new name, but it’s nice to see they already realize that.

The elusive triple bounce

Today, while playing Bucket Ball I attempted and made the elusive triple bounce shot in a regulation match to win. Not only was this the first time a triple bounce shot was made ever, but I repeated myself later on in the day with another triple bounce to win the match. What a good day it was.

A bearable walk home, phantom cars

Last night was the first pleasant walk home from the train in probably 5 months. It must have been 42 degrees at least. Also, for the second time this week I’ve managed to walk by an empty car precisely at the moment that it starts up on its own — almost as if by magic. I realize that there are fancy, remote starters that can do this, but to just walk by a car and have it start… well, I start to think I have special powers or something.