Saturday, May 16, 2009

Chicago Training - May 2009

Kentucky! It's good to be home.
Yes I am back home after spending a week in Chicago being trained by UPS and Feeding America (
Flew out of Louisville on Monday 5/11/09 and flew back yesterday Friday 5/15/09. This has been the longest time I have spent away from Arianna.

Here are some photos of my visit:
Chicago  Photos - May 2009

It was a very busy week of training in which we covered truck routing software and using mobile phone applications for drivers. Learned a lot about GPS geocodes and optimising truck routing.

Spent the week training with some very excellent people from Food Banks in Austin, Denver, and Madison, along with great people from UPS and Feeding America. Of course my own Food Bank is God's Pantry Food Bank in Lexington, KY (
During the week I ate very well at Thai, East Indian, Harry Careys, and a take out sandwich meal. Feeding America took us out on Thursday lunchtime to a place named Dick's Last Resort.
This was my 5th visit to Chicago. 4 of which were with God's Pantry.. 2 to the Operations Conference and 2 to Training Classes. In April 2008, Arianna and I visited Arizona with her mother and my parents by train going through Chicago.
Pictures of that visit to Arizona may be found here: Arizona Photos - April 2008

Ervyn, my Linux Mint Asus Eee PC netbook was with me, but very rarely used for actual internet access. The main reasons being that the hotel I stayed at, Hyatt Regency on E.Wacker, charges $13 a day for internet access, and although we had internet in the training class, time was spent learning. I did use Ervyn to play a couple of movies while waiting at the airport and in the hotel room, and for playing music and games to pass the time.

Although I love travelling (have visited 15 states in 10 years), I always love coming home. Home is definately where the heart is, and my heart is with Arianna, my house, my church and my work. That is why I said I came home to Kentucky, and not to Scotland. Scotland will always be the home of my birth and the first 32 years of my life, but home is now in Lexington, KY.

Tomorrow, Sunday 17th May 2006 will be the 10 year anniversary of being in USA. I flew into Newark airport, survived a night there, and have been here ever since, apart from 2 visits home (3 weeks in April 2006, and 2 weeks last Christmas/New Year).

While writing this blog entry I have been watching The Terminal with Tom Hanks. It is a most excellent movie, and I for one totally understand all the red tape the guy had to go through. Sometimes it does feel like you spend your time travelling (walking, train, plane, car), but it is always good to come home and just relax!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Small Computer - Big Excitement

It's going to be a long..... weekend indeed.

Not long home from work. Only worked a couple of days this week at God's Pantry Food Bank, but it definately feels like a whole lot more.

Tonight is a good relaxing night. Spending time in the computer room with Arianna, side by side and back to back!
Playing with my two Linux systems, chatting in #bglug, checking my Twitter, and of course updating this blog.
Drinking some excellent whole bean coffee out of Mr. Coffee - great purchase, listening to some great music (the Almost Famous soundtrack), and hanging around until 10pm EST for the start of the Farhaven dance in Second Life. The theme tonight is 'Creatures of the Forest.'

Will probably be online late tonight, and get up late tomorrow! *grin*
No real plans for tomorrow, apart from tidy the kitchen and the yard.

Always look forward to Sunday's, fellowshipping at Bluegrass Bible Fellowship (link on right column) and remembering my Lord Jesus Christ.

And along comes Monday, back to work, and await the coming of UPS with my new ordered "toy".
ASUS Eee PC 1000 on Amazon
Basic spec = 10-Inch Netbook (1.6 GHz Intel Atom N270 Processor, 1 GB RAM, 40 GB Solid State Drive, 20 GB Eee Storage, Linux, 6 Cell Battery) Fine Ebony
Here is a pic:

Although it is a very small computer at only 10", with a screen of 1024x600, I am so excited to be getting this highly portable machine that I can use everywhere! It even doubles as a music player, photo presenter, etc. So many uses. Write emails on the go & send later.
This one comes pre-installed with Xandros Linux. I shall try it out, but willing to change it out for Ubunto or Linux Mint as needed.
Arianna has already requested she take it on her trip to Reno, NV later this year.
I shall be making heavy use of it while in Chicago in May on my business trip.

I have not been so excited about a computer in such a long time. Roll on Monday.....

Saturday, March 21, 2009

I Linux therefore I am

On twitter, I have been pretty vocal about my newfound love for Linux.

I am running 2 PC boxes with Linux Mint 6 Felicia Xfce on each.
Here are their screenshots with links to full size:


My second box, but first to go Linux


My main box, which I recently scrubbed Windows XP Pro from.

Both systems were built by Cyberpower over 4 years ago, and run AMD 64bit processors (Linux install = 32 bit).

Making the move from Windows to Linux was one of the best decisions I ever made.
Unfortunately I still have to experience Windows at my workplace, both as a user and as IT. Oh well, experience it is.

Yes, I am a geek.