Some people should not be in the computer profession…

May 27, 2009

A friend of mine pointed me to this little question at one of the online forums:

hi all,

IntTemp = Int((255 * Rnd()) + 1)

I used above ASP.NET code.

Problem is in ” Rnd() ”
Rnd() value is changing everytime.

What is the alternative for Rnd()? OR How will stop Rnd() value changes at everytime?

What’s wrong with this picture?? I’ll tellĀ  you what’s wrong… the guy should be flippin’ burgers or conducting audits. He shouldn’t be coding! Of course Rnd() is changing everytime… that’s a distinct characteristic of a Random number generator. If it didn’t change, it would be a bug.

That ranks up there with one of the systems admins I work with who couldn’t operate a microwave oven. And they control the servers that handle 13 million users? Perhaps, we need a command line on the microwave oven… they can’t handle a gui interface. Perhaps, make the microwave oven scriptable.

Oh well… that’s my personal laugh for the day!

Kids will be kids… and some parents will be MORONS!

May 24, 2009

I was in Stone Road Mall today, spending some time with my youngest son, Joshua, when we were on our way to the food court when this little kid with an ice cream cone walks into me and his cone rubs on my jacket sleeve. I’m looking at my jacket and while not overly happy, I inspect my sleeve and the dad just goes, “oh well, get a cloth and wipe it off…”. I’m like looking at him thinking, “you idiot”. The mom tries to make good of the situation and hands me a serviette to wipe my sleeve off and the dad is like, “what can you do… kids will be kids”.

I replied back, “parents should be parents!”, which was met with a “what am I supposed to you”. I told him, “try WATCHING your kid”. Too bad I didn’t say to try to teaching your kid to say sorry, MORON! Even more so, try apologizing yourself on behalf of the kid rather than to act like an apathetic ass!

Almost wanted to wipe my sleeve on his t-shirt and go “oh well”. However, I didn’t want to set a bad example for Joshua. For once, I really wanted to be the better person and walking away was the hardest thing to do. I don’t know if I handled it right, but I know that something inside wanted to beat some sense into that idiot of a dad. Heck, the kid was simply being a kid. It’s the dad that pissed me off! I truly hope that the kid takes after his mom when he grows up, rather than become the subject of a useless angry rant of a blog post of someone else (who wants to believe the best in people, and finds that he simply can’t at times) when his kids bumps into them with some food.

At this time, I don’t know who needs more prayer… him for teaching his kid to grow up to be a moron like him, or me for believing that he is doing so and ranting about it!

Turn that @#$*& DOWN!!

May 21, 2009

Now I remember why I hardly bought any CD’s between 2000 and 2007. They sound like total crap! My car proves this very well. Yesterday, I decided to listen to Rush’s Vapour Trails on my morning drive into work and Kiss’ Psycho Circus on the way home. Both were mastered in that era under some muppet in the recording industry who believed that louder is better, telling the mastering engineer to crank the limiter up to where it all sounds like mush! There was way too much low end on those CD’s that were totally rattling my speakers to the point where I had to turn down the bass. Hell, the kick was obscuring the entire the song. I couldn’t hear any bass guitar. Heck, I couldn’t hear any vocals either. Then there was this sibilant treble that was just killing my ears to the point where I just turned it down. Talk about ruining the total experience!! I was bummed because after listening to them in the car, I listened to them again on my iPod with headphones and I started hearing that crap.

In contrast, I put on my ol’ David Lee Roth collection, which were done in the 80’s and 90’s, in the car and it sounded beautiful, no matter how I had the tone and volume controls. I totally enjoyed the ride and was able to turn it up the way I like it. It didn’t feel like mush and there were enough dynamics that I could get a huge snap out of the kick the pushes the bass guitar, rather than obscures it. Not to mention that the guitars are totally cutting through everything. And the vocals had presence on them. Even some of the lesser known songs sounded like hits by comparison. Even more so is that it sounds like that on my iPod. I was feeling excited because it just sounded the way I wanted it to sound.

It definitely makes me think as to how I want my CD’s to sound now. I’m at the point where I may back things off a couple of db on the limiter, only because I want to hear everything. I don’t want louder… I want better. I think it’s time to ease back on the compression and let the dynamics shine through. Who cares if it’s not as loud as Joe Blow’s CD… you can turn up the volume if you want it louder. Not to mention that I want it to sound the same on my iPod as well as my car… just like my pre-millenium mastered CD’s.

And the record companies think that louder is better… my rear!

All I really have is all I really need

May 10, 2009

This morning, God spoke to me about the Widow at the Synagogue giving up her last two coins. Sometimes, it takes a friend to help me realize that some of the things that I am looking for is unnecessary. In my Birthday Wishes blog post, I expressed my reading inadequacies compared to Joelle’s, with the possibility that I was misleading myself into believing that I would establish a greater understanding, of God in particular. My friend pointed out to me that God reaches us in ways that are unique to us. Yes, I don’t have the patience to read the Bible. What I did discover is that I have the patience to have the Bible read to me. Not only the patience, but I find that I can absorb it in far greater measures than I can with reading. My eyes and mind wander off with reading. I stay focused when listening. This point was proven this weekend when our nephew was over at our place and Joelle read the first 5 chapters of John to him. I was able to sit and absorb those entire five chapters. I didn’t move from my seat. I didn’t wander mentally. I was there, as I closed my eyes and shut off all visual distractions and just listened. It was great.

I often feel inadequate when I go to church… or at least I feel that I am made to feel inadequate because I never take my printed Bible with me, and I’m always feeling questioned by the pastor when he says things aloud like, “for those that didn’t bring their Bible” or “what is your Bible sitting on the shelf for” or something else along that vein. I don’t bring my Bible because I feel that I do much better hearing it from pastor. Just like I do much better listening to when Joelle reads it to me. This reminded me of the Widow because I’m made to feel like I’m inadequate because what I do come with is something that is almost taken for granted by them.

I come with my ears and my listening mind. Those are my two coins. However, they are the most valuable coins that I have ever owned and given. I giveĀ  my ears and attention to the pastor. I soak in the vibrations and let it touch my soul and make it resonate, just as music makes it resonate. I pick things up that way. That’s far greater to me than any printed word.

It doesn’t mean that I don’t need the Bible. Quite the contrary. What I probably don’t need is to pain myself unnaturally by trying to look at words on the page to get the message. I can use my strengths and listen to the Word being read to me and learn that way. After all, long before there was the Gutenberg press, people spoke the Bible to each other. I can definitely study and experience God in this way and not feel as if I am missing something. I don’t need anything more than what I already have to get the experiences that I desire. I have the Bible in my iTunes library and on my iPod. That’s all I really need.

And don’t get me wrong… I do read. But, I still don’t have the patience for it. And when my favourite magazines start shipping out their articles in audio format, I will immediately change my subscriptions to them. Fortunately, Sound on Sound does have audio examples on their web site to help me digest the printed word a little better, and for that I am wholly grateful.

My Birthday Wish

May 8, 2009

As I turn 46 tomorrow (May 9), I have some birthday wishes. The things I wish for are not things that anyone can buy me. In a way, they go much deeper than that. The one thing that I am grateful for is the fact that I have been able to surpass my dad’s age by a few years already. Unfortunately, he only made it to 42 and never saw his grandchildren. I have been blessed with seeing 3 grandchildren. My first wish is to be able to see more grandchildren. I know it will happen one day. Just to be able to hold them and talk to them and tell them I love them. I already do, and they’re not even here yet. I love all my grandchildren. I can’t wait to go to Calgary with Joelle and see Cassidy and Connor at Christmas. Being a few thousand miles away is heartbreaking at times. It’s gonna feel like home when we go out there.

My next wish is to be able to see Joshua grow up and be a man. Despite the fact that I feel like I am living with myself, which I have enough trouble with, and that his Aspergers can be a real test to parenthood, especially when a parent has Aspergers, Josh is such a part of my life that I could never imagine my life without him now. I know that despite my disposition, there are things that I can offer him. I want to see him happy, and hopefully married with children of his own. I wish that he finds a patient, understanding and strong woman… just like I am fortunate to have.

I also wish to have a greater understanding of God. I’ll admit that I am often jealous of Joelle’s insight when it comes to God and the Bible… but it’s really my own fault. I don’t have a whole lot of patience to read. Heck, I’m even that way with the things I love, like audio production books and magazines. My reading skills are rather pathetic. My vocabulary stinks. It’s amazing that I have been able to write some of the songs that I have. It was more likely that God, Himself, wrote it, rather than me. However, it affects my reading skills and I lose my place wherever I am reading. I don’t see how I can improve my focus long enough to read a chapter or two of the Bible at a time. But, I wish I could. Something inside wants to know more about God on a deeper level. I know He does more than exist.

And my final wish goes beyond my understanding of God, life and everything in between. I want to experience life… and I mean really experience life. I want to not just live… I want to be alive. I want to be full of life. I want to experience God, Jesus, life, and everything else that goes along with it. I want to feel it on such a deep level. I don’t want it just to scratch my skin. I want it to penetrate into my soul. I don’t just want to reach out with my fingers. I want to reach out with my spirit. Everything that is me wants to reach out and touch all of God’s creations and I want to enjoy His creations and miracles on a level that far surpasses my physical being. I want to experience life on this level so that when I do experience death, I will be able to take these life experiences with me and thank God for His grace in letting me experience it. I know that I will have to stand in His court one day and I’m sure He’ll ask me if I lived… I want to be able to shout out YES! with great joy. Isn’t this the same life with joy that God promised everyone who confesses Jesus as their Saviour? I am saved… now I want to do more than just know I am saved. I have willingly lost my life to Jesus and have been reborn… I want to LIVE this reborn life! I want to experience this reborn life! I don’t want to merely exist! I want my soul to sing… that’s living.

Those are my wishes for my birthday.

We Don’t Have Time… We Make Time

May 7, 2009

This is a lesson that I have learned a long time ago. We are not blessed with a lot of time on this earth. We have to make the best of what we have. Life is full of distractions that all want a piece of our time. Let’s face it, we all the the same excuse not to do something: I can’t find the time. And then we wonder why we’re stressed out, and why we always feel like we’re missing out on things. A classic example is a friend of mine at work who is mentally exhausted and is under stress. I advised her to go for a run or a bike ride, as well as simply breathe. The response back was, “I will if I can find the time”.

We don’t have time… we make time.

I had to make a conscious decision to make time to ride my bike, and try to reach my goal of 20Km in 30 minutes. There were a lot of things that want to get in my way, including things that I want to do. However, I have to put my health first because if I don’t have that, everything else is moot. There’s a line I love from The Ten Commandments when Moses was accused by Ramses and Seti for giving the slaves one day in seven to rest and raided the temple granaries. Charlton Heston comes back and says, “Cities are made with bricks and bricks are made by slaves. The strong make many, the weak make few… and the dead make NONE!”

I know I am not productive when I am thinking about work 24/7. I actually do better work when I step away and ride my bike, play guitar, mix some music or take some pictures. Anything that takes my mind off of things for a while. The problem will still be there when I get back… and when I do get back, I have had the ability to think through and fix the problem. More time never helped. Time away did. But, I have learned that I have had to make that time. Leaving for home when it is time to go is a conscious decision. I have had to lose any guilty feelings about it, as my health and that of my family comes before work. Otherwise, work won’t matter.

I don’t know if I have lived half my life, or most of my life. Only God knows that. What I do know is that I am probably not going to be saying on my deathbed, “I wish got more work done at the office…”

Welcome to my meltdown…

May 1, 2009

Yes… it’s Friday and the beginning of the month. However, that doesn’t matter, as I have always said that Fridays are an adjective and not an attitude. My proof: meltdowns don’t know the day of the week. Further proof: I’m living through a meltdown at the moment and I’m in such an emotionally fragile state that I feel like I am walking on emotional eggshells at the moment. It’s like hearing the ticking of a time bomb waiting for it to go off.

I’ve been already cycling through all my meltdown mood swings and feel all of my thoughts running through my mind like a hurricane. If anything, I’m trying to hold it all together, especially while I am at work. After all, we don’t talk about our feelings here. And, if we do, no one really understands an aspie so they either treat you like some freakin’ emotional basket case or they avoid you altogether in order that they don’t feel like they are going to upset you and possibly think you’re gonna go postal or something.

Like I said, all I need to do is hold it all together. Just keep my mind focused, and programming is often a great way for me to do that. Guitar would be better, but I don’t have one with me while I am in the office (funny how there was one in Trapeze that I could just grab and play if I really needed to), so I will simply have to make do. At the moment, it’s simply emotional survival mechanisms. Fortunately, I do have my iPod that I can bury myself into and get to programming, until I can get home. The worst part is that I have to try to hold it all together while I am driving. So many things are happening that it feels like one big blurry moment, and just getting through it is all I want to do.

It’s funny how my technical side wants to analyze every moment of this meltdown, though. I think I am looking for a pattern… I’m so used to patterns in almost everything I do, including web development. I think I want to find the pattern so I can try to break it. Perhaps, I can rewire the aspie mind, and use those meltdowns for positive change.

Even funnier is the thought of this is getting exciting…

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