Caffeine As A Crutch

•June 3, 2009 • Leave a Comment

I wonder sometimes how bad I really am addicted to caffeine. I pretty much compare myself to someone who goes to Alcoholics Anonymous but still takes a drink every night after the meeting. I started drinking heavy amounts of Dr. Pepper and Mt. Dew in High School. Back then I had 2 part time jobs as well as going to school, so the caffeine helped me make it through the day. My mom tried to get me to quit drinking so much soda, that she started buying me the Sam’s Choice brand of cola from Wal-Mart. Soon after, I’d go back, drinking a little bit less, but nevertheless, still addicted. I even tried the Caffeine-free versions of the same stuff. It just doesn’t taste the same!

College brought me into a serious relationship and 3 part time jobs at one point. It was almost impossible to function without caffeine. Sometime between getting engaged and married, my (now) wife pushed for me to quit caffeine after I experienced some strange health problems. Strangely, it was also around this same time I started drinking exclusively Diet drinks, as my wife is diabetic. Reluctantly I stopped drinking, cold turkey. It was rough.

At first I was actually ok, minus the bad headaches. I started drinking water, gatorade, lemonade… but it was getting to be hard to think and move. My sleeping habits were already bad, which probably didn’t help the situation any. It got so bad that coworkers found me nodding off at my desk. I was getting up late everyday, dozing off throughout the entire day. I would periodically get up to go the restroom to sit on the toilet and “rest my eyes”.

So, without my wife’s knowledge I began drinking Dr. Pepper and Coke again. My job is gracious enough to stock a fridge every month. Its amazing what caffeine can do to get you going and focused in the morning, keep you wide eyed during the day, and stay fresh until you head to bed. Some people might have suggested coffee to me, but I’m not a coffee drinker. So, I stay on the stuff that rots my teeth, and probably my stomach.

I’m probably not the only one who is addicted to caffeine. I really do believe it is a serious drug, and while legal, can still pose unofficial risks to someones well-being. I don’t know if I’ll ever really quit, maybe someday. Are you addicted to caffeine? How bad is it for you?

Firefox 3.5 beta

•May 18, 2009 • Leave a Comment

I’ve been running Firefox 3.5 beta 4, off and on, for two weeks now. I’ve been continually impressed with the speed at which things run. Pages seem to load faster, the UI seems faster, and even the pages themselves seem to run faster. I know the guys at Mozilla and the great community that surrounds them have been working hard to keep Mozilla at or above pace with the other major browsers. So, it really seems like while not too much is noticible for the average user, the underlying browser code seems much more (lets use a techie word here…) “spiffy”. ;-)

I’ve really been keeping any eye on memory used by Firefox. I knew Firefox 3 has been reported to have some memory leaks, but I didn’t really notice it until running it after FF 3.5b4. After going back to Firefox 3 (to use a few specific extensions), I really noticed FF 3 starting to drag its feet. I guess I was pushing some kind of max tab limit, but it would continually be chomping away at whatever available memory existed. Almost like pac man. Anyway, I’ve noticed HUGE improvements in Firefox’s memory usage and handling. It compares and (most of the time) beats Safari in total memory use, which speaks volumes to me.

I mentioned before about needing some extensions. Only a few of my more “developer-centric” extensions are able to be used at the moment. I just downloaded an alpha version of Firebug, which every developer using Firefox needs, so I will see how that goes. But I know once FF 3.5 gets closer to release the add-on developers will be doing what they do best.

I’d probably give this test run an A- for being on par with a .5 release!

Death of the 800×600

•May 4, 2009 • Leave a Comment

I’ve been watching the visitor related stats for sometime now, coming to one of the sites at work. When we first set off on the new design we focused mainly on the crowd with 1024×768 screen resolution. Looking at the stats from back then we still had a few people with 800×600, but within the past month less than 1% of users visiting our site use 800×600. Is this the death of 800×600?

Obviously, this is only one site. This site has more of a techie type focus anyway, so the reality may be a bit skewed towards those with better monitors and hardware all together. I mean, over 44% of our visitors are using Firefox. What does that tell you?

Although, while looking at a one sample of the browser usage trends, Firefox has over 46% usage during the month of March (2009). So maybe there is some accuracy to this.

As a web developer, I’m hoping for decreased usage in Internet Explorer 6.0. So far we are still seeing a large percentage of users in this arena.

Anyway, I just thought it was interesting to see 800×600 users be less than 1%.

Welcome Here.

•April 28, 2009 • 1 Comment

Welcome to this blog. This is my first post.

I won’t reveal my name. This is a place for me to get excited, get angry, and hopefully get some stuff off my chest.

Like it or don’t, comment or don’t, read this or… don’t.

 
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