General Ramblings comments edit

I’ve been on allergy immunotherapy shots for about three years now to lower my susceptibility to dust, pollen, and animal allergic reaction. I went in yesterday to get tested and I’m finally done!

The doctor says it’s possible for symptoms to come back in three to five years, though, and if they do I need to go back on shots. That’s fine; not being bothered come grass season is the most awesome feeling ever. We never were able to get my skin tests down to zero reaction (except on animal allergens - I really improved there) but I can’t complain.

Minor detour/gripe: I was listening to the radio yesterday and heard a Tom Jones cover of the song “Black Betty.” Being a closet Tom Jones fan, I have several albums, but didn’t have this song. Turns out it’s on a greatest hits album. Not wanting the whole album (because I have all the songs from it on the other albums I own), I went to iTunes to see if I could just get the one song. They sell it as a “partial album” - every song except the two I don’t already have. So if I want it, I have to buy the whole album on CD. Lame, guys, really lame.

downloads, testing, net, aspnet, build comments edit

Testing ASP.NET web applications can be a painful process. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a unit testing framework that covered both the API and the web UI testing in an integrated fashion?

I put up a CodeProject article discussing how to integrate the NUnit test framework for API unit testing with the Ruby/Watir test framework for web UI testing so you can run all of your tests from one spot and see all the results aggregated. (Note: the test execution mechanism doesn’t actually involve NUnit proper, so it can be applied to other similar testing frameworks like the VS 2005 test suite - just use the VS 2005 test method/fixture attributes rather than the NUnit ones; no change to the Ruby/Watir test executor needed!)

NUnit and Ruby tests living side by
side

View the CodeProject Article

Download Paraesthesia.Test.Ruby 1.1.3.0 Installer

Download Paraesthesia.Test.Ruby 1.1.3.0 Source

Version History: 1.1.3.0: First version with release of CodeProject article.

media comments edit

I’m planning on getting an XBox 360 in a month or so and I know the PS3 is coming out some time this year, which means I’m going to be hooking up some consoles to the TV downstairs (which is the only HD TV in the house). Only one problem: The TV only has one HD input left on it, so I need an A/V switcher that supports component video and digital audio.

Good luck with that one. I found a bunch at RAM Electronics (the Audio Authority 1154A was my favorite), but all are prohibitively expensive - I don’t want to pay $200+ for a stupid A/V switch.

Luckily I found the Score System Selector Pro 2.0 at the local game store. It has six inputs, all of which support component video and three of which support digital audio. And for $100! Can’t beat that. Guess I’ll have to pick one of those up come XBox 360 time. (Well, I might wait until PS3 time, just to see if some better switcher comes out on the market or that 1154A drops in price, but the System Selector Pro 2.0 is leading the pack right now.)

General Ramblings comments edit

It’s 2006 now, a new year and a new opportunity to, um, make resolutions we won’t keep and lose weight that we’ll gain back over the end of year holiday season.

New Year’s Eve found us at Jason and Tracy’s house, as usual, though with a significantly smaller crowd than we normally see over there. Not to worry, much fun was still had by all with a rousing round of Catch Phrase played in a sort of teamless, group way that we made up on the fly. Lots of fun and I hope to repeat that with an even larger group.

Stu and Tif were there to enjoy the festivities, and when the ball dropped in New York (adjusted, of course, for west coast time) at midnight, we called Stu’s parents in England to wake them up and yell “Happy New Year” in a sort of eight-hour-delayed fashion.

The party wound down at about 3:30a and we were home in bed by 4:00a. A late night (I’m surprised Jenn made it) but a fun one.

The next morning, Stu, Tiff, Jenn, and I went to breakfast at Shari’s (at noon). That seems to be a regular thing after a party night - all of us getting up and going to breakfast. It puts a nice cap on the festivities, setting you off on the right foot again. We were IHOP people, but it seems that the IHOP near us is really busy whenever we want to go and Shari’s gets us in a little quicker, so Shari’s it is.

I made the most of the day by putting up some shelves in this closet in the spare room. We keep our board games in the top of the closet and it was getting a bit unruly with them all being stacked on top of each other - if you wanted the game on the bottom, you had a task ahead of you. Instead of fighting that, I figured we should put some shelves in. So I went to Home Depot and bought all of the stuff to put modular closet organizer shelves into the top of the closet. Here’s how it turned out:

The shelving in the game room goes
up!

Not bad, huh? I thought it would go up a little faster than it did (it took a couple of hours instead of the half hour I originally estimated) but I had drill problems (battery charger’s dead) as well as incorrect length wall anchors (I needed 4” anchors; I had 2” anchors). No biggie, though, and the shelves are great. Not cheap, but great. I may have to put some more shelves in that closet for the rest of the crap in there.

Today is clean-up day around the house. Last day of vacation before heading back to work tomorrow, too. Best make the most of it.

Happy New Year, everyone!

General Ramblings comments edit

I called iRobot customer support today regarding the charger issue I’ve had for the last couple of days. I’ve had to contact iRobot customer support before when my Roomba was doing some weird things and they sent me a whole new Roomba, no problem. This time they’re sending me a whole new charger and home base for the Roomba. The guy I spoke with, Chris, was totally nice and easy going, not condescending or annoying like many support folks you talk to. The fact that they’re just sending me a replacement unit speaks volumes, too. (Besides the fact that it sort of tells you how much profit margin must be built into these things, it also tells you that they really want their products to succeed and be used.)

Right on, iRobot. Thanks for doing support right.

One thing: If you’re going to contact them, contact them via phone. They can’t solve much via email and most times they just tell you to call them. Just so you know.

Of course, now my cordless drill battery charger is dead. I’m just having bad luck with battery chargers lately, I guess. It’d cost me $30 to replace the charger, but that’s how much the drill cost me, and since I can get a new, better drill (with two batteries included!) for $70, I guess I’ll be donating this one and getting me a new one.