General Ramblings comments edit

The television repairman, Jon, fixed my TV today around 11:30a or so. The problem I was seeing was some color distortion in the bottom corners of the set. It looked like some sort of magnetic disturbance, but there was nothing near that area of the case, so I couldn’t figure it out.

Jon said he’s seen this a lot. The deal is, the tube in my TV (being a 40” tube) is large enough to be affected by geomagnetic forces (i.e., the North Magnetic Pole). Which means if you place it, it gets used to facing a particular direction and the forces in a particular location. When we moved to the new place, the moving process, coupled with the fact that the TV isn’t oriented precisely the direction it used to be, caused the “purity” (as Jon calls it) to go out of alignment.

Jon did the “purity alignment” by silicone gluing some small magnets to the tube. It was a trial-and-error process, and you can’t get it 100% perfect, but it’s fixed enough now that you don’t see any distortion in the picture.

I would never have conceived that the Earth’s magnetism would affect my TV. Definitely not something they tell you in the store.

He told me lots of interesting things about TVs and such. For example, DLP (digital light processing) TVs on the assembly line can be aligned/configured via a computer-driven sensor array in about 10 - 15 seconds. My TV, being a large tube, must be aligned by a human, and each human only gets about 30 seconds to do that alignment. He also told me that manufacturers are moving away from CRT (tube) TVs and toward LCD and DLP (rear-projection) TVs. Finally, he recommended looking at the Samsung DLP TVs, particularly their 50” model, as those offer the most bang for your buck (they use the same internal components as the Mitsubishi TVs but have less troubles and are, in some cases, consumer-serivceable).

Not that I want to be buying a new TV in the near future, but if and when the time comes, I’ll have to give those a look.

downloads, coderush, net, vs comments edit

Use of context menus from within the DXCore plugin framework (used to extend Visual Studio .NET) is not very well documented within the DXCore developer documentation.

I have a need to use context menus in some planned enhancements to my CR_Documentor plugin. I got an example of generallly how it works, but nothing that compiles and actually does anything… so I wrote one myself.

Enter CR_ContextMenuDemo: Source for a compilable DXCore plugin that illustrates how context menus can be used from within the DXCore plugin framework. The source is well commented to illustrate precisely what is happening in each place. You’d be surprised how easy it is to use context menus in DXCore.

Download CR_ContextMenuDemo source

General Ramblings comments edit

I love my TV. Love it. I bought it two years ago and haven’t looked back.

Until, of course, this weekend, when, as I was sitting there having a great time watching movies, I noticed that the bottom corners of the picture look distorted, like there’s some magnetic interference or something going on there. Very slight, but once I noticed it, it stuck out like a sore thumb and I couldn’t not look at it.

I went looking for my receipt, which should accompany my warranty information. I found the user manual and the factory warranty, but no receipt. I mean, I found every receipt to almost everything I own, but no TV receipt. I’m sure I put it in some secure place I wouldn’t forget. So secure, it’s safe even from me.

This put me into panic mode. See, the TV is just out of factory warranty. For the life of me, I couldn’t remember if I had bought the extended warranty or not, and not having the receipt, I couldn’t say.

I called the place I bought the TV this morning and, sure enough, I was smart enough to go for the extended warranty. (I think I worked it in for free because the TV was such a high-ticket item.) Awesome. A huge load off my chest, because I was thinking I was going to end up with a $3000, 300-pound lump in the middle of my living room.

Today has seen a flurry of phone calls. To the store I bought the TV at, to the repair shop, to the electronics warranty firm… and I think it’s worked out now so a guy will call me on Wednesday to schedule the time to come in and check it out.

Here’s hoping for goodness. I barely slept last night between that and work stressing me out. Sometimes I’m thinking that life is just downs with a small series of ups. I really hope I’m just being pessimistic.

home comments edit

I bought my first house this year and it sorta drained the funds a bit. We’ve recovered (financially speaking) for the most part, but I’ve still got stuff like the “no interest/no payments” thing on our washer and dryer hanging over me and that has to be paid… we’re not quite back to where we were.

And then I did my taxes.

I’ve had to pay for the last three years. I mean, just bend me over. This year, I’m getting a refund. A refund. Enough to pay off that washer and dryer and maybe get a new dishwasher because the one we have sucks donkey.

A refund, I tell you! I’m stoked.

General Ramblings comments edit

Remember my request for a suicide pill last Friday? How we spent a day and a half (all of Friday and first half of Monday) coming up with a new schedule?

Yesterday at 9:30a we got to do it all again, this time in some attempt to move the project structure around to some nefarious end I have yet to fully grasp, all by 3:00p.

Well, I didn’t make that deadline (I made a SWAG at it by 5:00p and that was the end of my patience with it), because it involved - once again - re-assessing all of the requirements (there are six different requirements documents we have to look at and triage through), this time looking at different things than before due to the structure upheaval. I’m anticipating not making several other deadlines on that schedule, too, because of the lack of time allocated to developing it.

I expressed some discomfort at the process and was told “that’s what it’s like working in a product organization.” I was offended by that for two reasons: First, it implies I’ve never “worked in a product organization,” which is blatantly incorrect and further implies a lack of respect for my expertise. Second, I should dearly hope that not every product organization goes through this many reschedules on a project.

Anyway, I’m bitter today, and have been since yesterday. I barely got any sleep, I’m so pissed off. Hopefully that will pass by, I dunno, Sunday. So that I can “bitter-up” for work bright and early Monday morning.

I do know that I’m tired of trying to go the “extra mile.” I come in at 7:00a and leave at 6:00p, even if it’s not “crunch time,” helping others solve their problems and working toward a more holistic solution for problems rather than just slapping a bunch of haphazard code together. Everyone else punches in at 9 and leaves at 5. I’m thinking 7 - 3 sounds mighty fine right about now.