Sunday, March 25, 2007

Google Reader and Other Adventures in Cyberspace

So if you're like me, keeping up with people's blogs can be tough to remember. I may be the only person in the stone age of just typing in various URLs as they come to mind, but all of that has changed recently. Thanks to my good friend Ben, the Google evangelist, I have found the wonder that is Google Reader.

If you are one of those people who is a little behind the curve when it comes to cool new e-gadgets, you may be asking, "What the heck is Google Reader?" If you are already with the program, skip ahead to the next paragraph. Google Reader allows you to view the new posts on several blogs, news sources, etc. simultaneously in one window. It describes itself as being like an email inbox for the webpages you frequent. All you have to do (after logging in with your Google account username and password) is click "Add Subscription" and type in the URLs of your favorite blogs and news sources (I have been told these are RSS feeds, but honestly I don't know what the crap that means yet). You now have access to all of your favorite updated web content in one convenient place.

My next internet-related revelation came via a blog to which I have been recently introduced - CashMoneyJesus. The blog is interesting as a whole because it evaluates issues of faith and money. These are questions that bear asking loudly and often. Most recently, it has introduced me to the wonders of AdBlock Plus. This add-on for Mozilla Firefox (if you are still using Internet Explorer, come to the light) blocks the downloading of advertising material in many webpages. It's great. For example, when I recently visited www.nytimes.com, my ABP showed that it was blocking 27 of 97 items on the page. That's more than 1/4 of the webpage that was advertisements! Yuck.

Well, that's all the enlightenment I have to offer for now. Hopefully some of you (whoever you are) will find this stuff helpful as I have. Have a good day and Godspeed as you embark on your own Adventures in Cyberspace.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

WAUGH!

I was goofing off on MySpace (mistake #1, many of you might say). I came across a comment someone had left for a friend. It had bubble wrap to pop. I started popping. THEN, all of a sudden, this horrible, scary horror-movie face popped up on the screen, screaming! Waugh! I screamed (which added to the chaos) and am just so thankful that it's not 3 AM in the morning and glad that Kennan is still up to help me calm down.

What a dirty, low-down trick. If I ever get my hands on that person...

Anyway, WAUGH! not only describes that little shockeroo, but also life as of late.

Good WAUGH, bad WAUGH (exhausted WAUGH, too-much-sugar WAUGH, you name it)...

Good WAUGH: my inbox is down to 381 (since getting the number up from 666 to 777 seemed a daunting task, I opted to go down, instead)... Kennan passed his 2nd round of his written quals (next stop, oral quals and then 4 more years of grad school)... Easter choir practice started again (exciting, but time consuming)... more and more friends having birthdays, graduating, getting married, getting pregnant, having kids, etc. etc. (makes me feel old)... the groups at Tech and Emory continue to grow, as well as finding other discipline-specific groups to work with (great, but the nagging question is: Am I up to it?)... we got to go to the Chicago area for the annual GFM Staff Conference (so great, but rather overwhelming and exhausting-I need a vacation now!)... my awesome supervisor was in town (are you reading this, DP?)... Spring is finally here (but I know THE POLLEN is on its way!)... GT is going dancing (but will probably lose in the first or second round)...

Bad WAUGH: seeing friends lose children, marriages, parents, jobs, etc. (SO hard!)... realizing how badly I've fallen out of touch with so many friends from P-ville/college days (how do the years fly by so quickly?)... we tried to go to the Christmas Choir Reunion Party but got hopelessly lost in frickin' Sandy Springs (please don't try to tell me the suburbs are easier to get around than Midtown!)... The aforementioned evil popup (my heart is still beating so fast!)... seeing good friends struggle with budget/fundraising issues (why, O Lord, have you been so gracious to me?)... talking with a mentally-ill homeless man about Jesus (he seemed to be getting it, but then he started talking about how the sun used to be a man until he ascended and that someday we'll all have to pass through the sun to be purified)... our sleep schedule is a disaster (it's almost midnight and we're both still wide-awake)... one of the cats horked a hairball all over the dining room table (ew! ew! ew!)...

And how is everyone else? Any WAUGHs to share?