post 328

i have the internets! yay!

post 327

the past week and a half have been very busy. it all started on wednesday the 11th. due to the need to work on some electrical equipment, we had to stay late at work and shut down our server room, all 100+ servers. so that was fun. the electrical work that was done was to prepare for our move to a new data center. that project started at 2pm on friday the 13th. normal employees had the afternoon off and again for the second time that week we shutdown all of our servers. this time we had to uncable them, unrack them, carry them to another room, rerack them, recable them, and then start them up. on friday we worked until about midnight. saturday we were in at around 8am. i ended up leaving at around 2:30am sunday morning, but some people worked continuously through the night. i returned at about 9:00am sunday and worked until everything was done, which turned out to be about 9pm.

as a sort of compensation, the company paid for an outing this past wednesday. first they got us tickets to the cubs game that afternoon. the seats were pretty decent: only ten rows back from the cubs bullpen. i made sure to have some old style, peanuts, and cracker jack, so i think i had a pretty complete cubs experience. at the game i happened to run into a bus driver who drives one of the routes i rode fairly frequently at purdue. small world, eh?

after the game the company sent us to dave & buster’s. the only way i can describe it is an adult chuck e. cheese. it is a decent restaurant, but also has a ton of arcade games. we spent a few hours there having supper and playing. the dave & busters we went to was downtown, but i found out there is one much closer to where i live. i might have to go there somewhat regularly.

i had this past friday off, so i got to do some errands. i finally got my illinois driver’s license. i stopped by fry’s to pick up some stuff to get ready for the cable install that was scheduled for the next day. i also stopped by best buy looking for a wii, but walked out with a pair of speakers for my living room.

as i said before, comcast was supposed to come saturday morning to hook up my cable. they did. they got here around 7:30am all ready to hook everything up. they talked with me for a little while and then went to look for the cable room. they came back and told me that the cable room was locked and that there was no way to get in because the building office was not yet open. i asked them why i wasn’t told that i needed to make sure that this room was accessible when i called and asked if there was anything i needed to do to prepare. they didn’t have an answer for that, but told me that i had to reschedule again. i told them to forget it and that i was calling at&t for dsl. well, at&t couldn’t get here for another two weeks, so i called comcast back and am yet again rescheduled.

post 326

oops. i lied. “linksys” is back to its former, unsecured self. i think i know what’s going on now and why my connection is so crappy. i think there are two “linksys” networks, one of which is secured and the other isn’t. i normally get the best signal from the unsecured one, so that’s what i’ve been seeing and using. the other day when the network all of a sudden went secured, the unsecured network must have been turned off leaving me only seeing the secured one. this might also explain frequent short service interruptions that i experience.

nine more days until i have cable. *sigh*

post 325

the fellow running the “linksys” wireless network wised-up yesterday and turned on security. i am again without internet access at home.

post 324

yesterday was my introduction to the mass transit systems of the greater chicago area. first i rode the metra from bensenville to chicago’s union station. the metra is the commuter rail line that hauls people between chicago and the suburbs. they use real diesel locomotives and are very similar (i’m told) to amtrak trains, except that metra doesn’t have any long-haul routes. from union station i hopped a cta bus to the place i was going. later in the evening, i also had the opportunity to ride the subway/el for the very first time, too.

the reason for all the traveling was because i went with chris and sarah and some of their friends to the taste of chicago. we figured that it wouldn’t be too crowded as it was nearing the end of its 10-day run, but it was packed. despite the large number of food vendors, i wasn’t too impressed with the selection. it seemed that there was a lot of redundancy as many of the places had plain old hamburgers, sausages, pizza, and stuff like that. i did find a place with an excellent rum battered tilapia and another place with key lime pie, so i was happy. afterwards we headed down to the south side and hung out in a bar on the university of chicago’s campus. the bar had a great atmosphere as well as a respectable beer selection: 24 on tap and 100 in bottles. i ended up crashing at chris and sarah’s place, but had to get back early this morning to meet the cable guy.

so comcast is kind of screwing me. i had called last saturday to schedule a time to have my cable (tv, internet, and voip telephone) hooked up. i told the guy that i couldn’t be around during the week for the installation, so it would have to be scheduled for the following saturday. he said that would be fine and told me the guy would be here between 8 and 10am. so today comes and i make sure that i’m here, up, and ready by 8am all excited that i’ll finally have a decent internet connection. 10am comes and goes. then 12pm. at 1:30pm i finally get fed up and call comcast. they say that they had me scheduled for 8 to 10am on tuesday, july 10. i tell the lady on the phone that this is wrong and that i told them that it had to be today because i work during the week. she offered to reschedule the appointment for saturday the 14th, but that is the day of the big datacenter move at work, so i still couldn’t be home for that. so, she told me that the only time she could schedule me would be the morning of saturday, july 21. great. so now i have to wait another two weeks before my cable gets hooked up. thanks, comcast.

post 323

happy independence day! i really didn’t do too much to celebrate it, but i did get to watch a whole slew of fireworks shows from my balcony tonight. i tried to count how many individual shows i could see, but it was hard to keep an accurate count because some would die down for a little while and then spring back up again. if i had to guess, i’d say that i was able to watch about 15 different fireworks displays at the same time from the comfort of my balcony. the most impressive of which was the one i’m guessing was in schaumburg. schaumburg is kind of a rich town and it showed tonight. their display was very exciting and lasted for a long time. it’s kind of sad that i didn’t really get to do any fireworks of my own (besides the little bit i did in june before i moved here), but i suppose that watching other people set off tens of thousands of dollars of fireworks around me was good enough.