September, 2007

My Knees Hurt

Wed Sep 26, 2007 5:54:14 am by Dustin
Filed under General, Health, a little about life

Last week, I had a great running milestone. I past that introductory phase where ones lungs, heart, and organs hurt while exercising and entered into the phase where my muscles hurt. Why is this exciting, something still hurts doesn’t it? Well yes, but it means I have strengthened the core of my body to the point that it is no longer the weakest. This is a landmark where I could start increasing the distance I run. Hurrah all around.

Well hurrah until yesterday. I went out for my usual run; I have no desire to increase my miles for now. My knees were killing me. The pain was coming from the inside of my knees, but I cannot pin point why it is starting now. No event would have triggered this. Ugg. My only thoughts are that my legs are strengthening themselves disproportionately throughout. This could be the weights I life three days a week or the terrain. I think I will try I different location for a few days and see how I feel.

Always Lock Your Door

Tue Sep 25, 2007 9:37:54 pm by Dustin
Filed under Dealing with People, Fun, General, Household

Nuh said.

Remove The Psychology From Investing

Tue Sep 25, 2007 6:26:24 am by Dustin
Filed under Finance, General, Tools and Tricks, a little about life

At work, I get my news from a fancy tool called iGoogle. This lets me add widgety items like news headlines to my personalized Google homepage. This is also my homepage in Internet Explorer on the three computers I use regularly: work, home – laptop, and home – desktop.

I had a problem with this though. I had a widget on there for stock quotes: things I owned and some watch list items. My project at work is basically a custom website, forcing my to open and close IE frequently all day. This made me constantly aware of the price which my favorite companies were trading at.

This became worrisome over the last few weeks as prices were falling quite quickly. As a long term investor who does not time markets all this can do is make you think and think about how far they will go down. You begin to second guess your choice in these companies. Your next step is to sell, but, wait, you remind yourself you are in for the long haul.

So what did I do? Well I removed the widget, duh, allowing myself to forget the worry and move on. There is a bigger picture here than me staring at some red and green numbers instead of doing my work. Market timing, psychology/worry, and short term investing can kill not only the average investor but even those who actively manage their investments, portfolio, or fund. To avoid such murder of the mind, don’t track your portfolio on a daily basis. Weekly could be pushing it too. Your long term goals should include holding some company for many many years – 5-10 should be a low number. Knowing the stock price on a daily or weekly basis can either make you big headed or conclude you are stupid for choosing such trash.

If it is trash, the price is not going to decide this for you anyway. The numbers and news will.

How do you feel about this? Chime in time.

Online Radio Station Desires

Sun Sep 16, 2007 3:40:10 pm by Dustin
Filed under Dealing with People, Fun, General, Health, Payroll, Tools and Tricks, a little about life

If any of you live/work in or near Vancouver, WA, you may have noticed the crazy people who live there. I too have noticed these people. While I am at work, I have witnessed at least three car crashes in the last year – just on this one corner too. Also there are many people who walk down the street yelling at trees or having arguments with their other personalities or the other people they are with. (It should be noted not all persons from Vancouver are crazy. Hell I live there and no doctor has to me I am crazy – just my ex-gfs – ha I kid. Moving on.)

As you might image this is quite distracting; even if it is hilarious to listen to. A few weeks back, I had had enough and purchased some earphones to listen to music while working. This has made work much more productive and relaxing. It has also made me realize online radio stations are crap. Let me explain…

I have been using Yahoo! Music to get my music addiction at work. Go ahead and listen to Dustin’s Yahoo! Music Station. This service is mostly what I want in a radio station. I can rank my artists, songs, albums, genres, etc to build a customized play list based on my music likeness. Let me tell you, those Yahoo! servers are probably working overtime on me too since my preferences include country, oldies, grunge rock, new rock (indie, emo, etc), and classical just to name a few. I now have a very nice station customized for me with Yahoo!, but it is not enough. With this system, I have to either pay an nominal monthly fee or listen to ads.

Well dammit, I don’t want to do either. I want to listen to a station for free and not listen to ads. I am willing to look at ads, but I don’t want the Navy asking me to join anymore. I am not going to join the Navy. If I was going into the service, I would choose the Air Force so piss off. I am also not going to buy any songs from you. If I have a service from you, why can’t I just listen to it from wherever in the world I am instead of buying songs from you too. So, in summary, I want a free online radio station which I can customize to my listening needs which does not make me listen to ads.

Now, I realize these stations need to pay their bills including paying the artists each time the songs are played. There is also the threat of having these royalty prices going up potentially putting many of these services out of business. Well I ask these services to adapt and find a business model which will allow them to become free. I will even say please.

Now that my rant is over, I am on a search. I am now in desire of finding the best service out there which comes closest to these needs. There are tons of online radio stations including (off the top of my head), Pandora, Deezer, Yahoo! Music, AOL, and Live365.

Remember, although I have 50 Gb of music on my home computer, this library is not going to cut it since these services have all songs ever available with any Internet connection.

I also ask all of you out there what service you use or don’t use or how else you get your music. I am curious what creative alternatives I may have.

(Dustin was listening to The Shins while writing this post)

I Added A ‘Where I’ve Been’ Map

Sat Sep 15, 2007 12:54:08 pm by Dustin
Filed under General, a little about life

For a long while I wanted to have a ‘Where I’ve Been’ like map on this site. Not to gloat but more the track my ‘progress’. For a while I was going to make a Wordpress plugin to do all this happiness. Then a great day came when Google announced one can now embed its maps on your own site. So, I made one and now we have Dustin’s Travel Map. Take a look, and tell me what you think.

How did I do it, you ask? First I logged into my Google account and went to My Maps on Google Maps. From there I added a new map and started putting in locations. (I am sure I missed a bunch, especially on the East Coast.) Once you have the map click ‘Link to this page’ and copy the embed iFrame directly to your site. From here, every time the map is updated, the map on your site will be updated. Vualah.

I have noticed on some versions of Firefox the pins are not showing up. Sorry.