Sears need to fix their website

December 5th, 2010

For the fatwallet thread


awesome battery removal tool

June 11th, 2008

Forget the iphone sim card removal tool; this one is better:

Only $6.50 but they’re out of stock…

HP SmartStart 7.91 causes IE6 Enhanced Security Trusted Sites invalid wildcard error

January 23rd, 2008

During a new server install (Win2k3 R2 SP2) with the latest HP SmartStart 7.91, I’ve discovered an unusual behavior with Internet Explorer 6 Enhanced Security.

  1. List of Trusted Sites is empty. It should be pre-populated with Microsoft sites
  2. Adding an address to Trusted Sites fails with a “invalid wildcard” error.
  3. Default page is instead of info page about IE Enhanced Security (res://shdoclc.dll/hardAdmin.htm)

 A clean non-SmartStart assisted install does not exhibit these problems.

HP has acknowledged this issue, offered an workaround and promised to fix it in Release 7.30 but it seems 7.91 still has the bug or the bug returned. 

The workaround is simply uninstall/reinstall IE Enhanced Security from Control Panel/AddRemove Programs/Windows Components.

For more info, please read

Christmas Tree sticker shock

December 26th, 2007

A couple of Sundays ago, Salina and I wanted to go up to Apple Hill and pick our first live Christmas Tree. We had a pleasant drive, had some overpriced lunch and found a nice tree lot w/ noble firs.

Yep, nice tree lot with a not so nice price. They wanted $80 per tree, plus tips! Since we were up there, we took a short walk around the lot to get familiar w/ different species and then went back to Elk Grove and bought our tree locally.

Here’s some tips to have a successful Christmas tree outing:

  1. Know what you want - Different trees have different looks, so know what you want ahead of time. We favor Noble Firs.
  2. Find out where to go - The El Dorado County Christmas Tree Growers Association have a nice website and pamphlet for you to look over. It gives you an idea what farms grow what.
  3. Call ahead for pricing and availability - To find the best value and prevent sticker shock, call various farms which has the tree you want and ask for pricing. From there, you’ll be able to judge if it’s worth the trip to get a fresh live tree.

Removing the Help/Jump to URL backdoor to IE Kiosk

December 3rd, 2007

Internet Explore Kiosk mode locks down the application so there’s no address bar or navigation buttons. An old but little known backdoor to Kiosk mode is to use the built-in help.
While in Kiosk mode, press F1 to bring up the Help System. Right click on the Title Bar and choose “Jump to URL…”, at which you can enter a valid URI (be sure to include the URI Scheme, ie http:).
To prevent this, all you need to do is prevent read access to c:\windows\help\iexplore.chm, either by renaming/deleting it or denying read permission for the intended user. Help will fail to read iexplore.chm and will close.

First Day

October 17th, 2007

Today was my first day with the State. It’s been a long road since I was laid off. However, thanks to God working through many friends and various people, I was able to land this job with the State.

Due to changing market conditions, Platinum had to let me go at the end of June and the next step in my career began. Originally, we were targeting employment with the City and State, but it seems opportunities at the City closed but God opened the door at the State. I was able to get on a state department’s eligibility list and start looking for work.

However, I had a lot to learn on how State employment works. In order to be hired, one needs to be on the correct list. Some lists may be accepted by all departments while others are accepted by just certain departments. I submitted my application package to various departments and eventually got requests for interviews. After a few interviews, I was practically offered the job until the manager realized I may not be on the correct list. He worked with HR and came to the conclusion that he can’t hire me for the project in a timely manner but felt I was a good candidate. So he passed my package to his colleagues and soon I had another interview.

I had a good feeling about this interview as I was well prepared and we seemed to click; even at some cheesy Star Trek jokes. I was told they would let me know by “early next week”. No calls came and we were disappointed. My search continued elsewhere and the hunt continued. On a Friday evening, my phone rang and Salina had an unusual feeling about it. It was the hiring manager letting me know they’re still interested in me. We were ecstatic. He eventually made a verbal “tentative offer of employment” to me pending various HR processes. One of which was transferring me to their department’s eligibility list. This process made me nervous as qualification for the list transfer was performed independent of the department but by the State Personnel Board. After a short wait, HR notified me the list transfer was fine and we made arrangements to start working!

Special thanks:

Salina - for your support and love :O)
Mel & Dorc - your language and editing skillz
Collin - your thoughts, mock interview sessions and awesome references
Glen - inside track on how State stuff works. I owe you lunch!
Raoul - awesome letter of recommendation
Don & Cathy - opportunity to do so much at Platinum and awesome references
Darryl - awesome references and encouragement
Sam - your thoughts & looking out for opportunities for me
Russell - inside information on list transfers & HAMs

And everyone else that prayed and supported us through this.

Short trip to Portland

October 10th, 2007

Salina’s work sent her to Portland, Oregon on a business trip, so I tagged along!

Southwest was 30 minutes late due to mechanical issues earlier in the day but we got here just fine. The crew was actually quite humorous: rolling peanuts and pretzel packets down the aisle as we ascended along with various jokes. We took the light rail into town as the rain drizzled on and checked into the DoubleTree where Salina’s conference is at. Afterwards, it was time to explore the city.

Salina noted some differences in architecture and I noticed the abundance of evergreen trees. There seems to be plenty of ‘bummy’ characters around downtown Portland. Now, these aren’t the normal older homeless but more younger people (early 20’s?) doing some urban camping. And there’s SO many smokers here compared to California.

So we hung around the “Pioneer Place” area of Portland on foot, had some soup and bread at “Elephant Cafe,” bought some swiss chocolates and had dinner at Todai. And boy, are our legs tired!

Geography genius

September 24th, 2007

Compare with:

I guess Lilly is one of those people in the U.S. Americans that have maps. I guess she won’t win Ms. Teen South Carolina!

“Heroes” Graphic Novel avaliable for preorder!

September 11th, 2007

Heroes (Graphic Novel)
I just preordered mine!

And I thought only Americans weren’t good at science!

July 30th, 2007