It's very tough to find an electronic gadget these days that doesn't have a way to access your home/work network. Sitting in my living room here are the networked items within eye's view: xbox, Wii, Roku, Tivo, Treo, 2 laptops. At GCC we continue to see more and more Audio/Video/Lighting gear on the network along with our HVAC and Phone system ... truly the need for basic networking skills is becoming more and more prevalent in both workplace and home.
Well, BMW is bringing this same IP (internet protocol) technology ... to your car. And no we're not talking about trendy bluetooth connectivity stuff ... this is hard core mission critical "your car won't work without it" stuff.
There's a variety of flavors of in-car networking standards that corral the large number of embedded computers and nodes present in the modern automobile. BMW Research and Technology, an R&D division of BMW, has found Internet Protocol up to the tasks that the other standards currently perform. BMW engineers used a standard PC and connected it up to the expected gear -- ECUs, engine and chassis control systems, even a multimedia server for the entertainment system. The reasoning behind using IP versus the more specialized protocols is to anticipate future needs and requirements, as well as reducing costs. Costs drop because fewer specialized components are needed, and the new version of IPv6 is even better than the more than fine performance from IPv4. It's a little spooky to think that your fly-by-wire throttle could be trying to chat with the engine using the same technology that we use to send instant messages, but IP proved itself capable enough even for critical safety functions. - via AutoBlog
So it may not be long before your auto mechanic will be telling you the problem with your car is the result of a bad subnet mask.
We're not often doing anything down by the DMARK, but since we're here I thought I'd take a pic. This is the total opposite of what a wiring rack should look like. We purposely did this as an object lesson for others ... ummm, yeah ... that's the ticket
Genius! I love reading about the clever use of technology to improve efficiency. Some folks were thinking outside the box at UPS ...
There are "more than 95,000 big square brown trucks delivering packages every day"
...[UPS] employs what it calls a “package flow” software program, which among other hyperefficient practices involving the packing and sorting of its cargo, maps out routes for every one of its drivers, drastically reducing the number of left-hand turns they make (taking into consideration, of course, those instances where not to make the left-hand turn would result in a ridiculously circuitous route).
With this software UPS shaved "28.5 million miles off its delivery routes, which has resulted in savings of roughly three million gallons of gas and has reduced CO2 emissions by 31,000 metric tons"
Here's a collection of various items I'm just lumpin' all together ...
Church IT's Biggest Loser contest is underway, but you can still join the "fun". Currently there are 16 of us signed up ... that's $400 in the pot ... and a vendor is donating an iPod touch or Gamin GPS into the mix as well. Sign-up here to lose some mass and maybe win some cash.
What to eat? So I'm hitting the treadmill almost every day, that's been pretty easy. Problem is I don't know what to eat. For breakfast I'm eating some oatmeal and lunch I'm doing 2 open-face peanut butter sandwiches. At dinner I'm trying to eat less and pass on anything that I would guess isn't good for loosing weight. Any recommendations on foods to eat ... especially lunch and in-between meals?
SharePoint Training - last I checked we've got around 35 registered for the free SharePoint training Jan 7-11. I finally registered and reserved a hotel for Ed and I Saturday. We continue to do more experimenting with SharePoint so I'm really looking forward to this training. Don't forget we also now have discounted pricing for vendors/consultants. Registration will close soon so don't delay.
Sync Outlook and Google calendars? Goal: allow my wife to see and add to my Outlook calendar. We use Google Apps at home so I'm guessing my easiest route here is sync between outlook and google calendars. I'm playing with Calgoo Connect which, so far, has worked very well. Downside is it's not free. But it's worth $30 if I can't find something free. Any other ideas?
Church IT Roundtable IRC channel, have you checked it out yet? There's typically about 12 of us in the channel throughout the day and even late into the night. Stop by and join in the discussions or ask a question. Server = freenode.net channel = #citrt
Vista/Office2007 Deploy - as you may/may not recall we started rolling out Vista and Office 2007 this month. So far so good. Staff response has been very positive ... many commenting how they love Vista's eye candy. So far the biggest issue has been printing to our Toshiba 3510's. Sometimes the Vista print spooler just stops working and won't start again until you rip the driver out of the registry and re-add. It's not a widespread issue, but it happens enough that Ed's writing a script to automate the removal and re-add. Our Toshiba Vendor has been onsite and so far has no resolution for us. There have also been some Active Directory issues that we're still working on ... these are mainly invisible to end users though. For the most part I'm really liking Vista and I hope the soon-to-come SP1 addresses some of the annoyances/issues.
Episode 20 of the podcast has been transcribed - now you can read about the technology in place at ACS Technologies. Thanks to Dean and team for giving us an insiders "view". Maybe we can talk FTech and Shelby into doing similar?
iWorship presentation software now out of beta testing - iWorship 1.0 is now out and available for purchase. And just to clarify ... while this software was written by one of GCC's interns and we use it during services, it is not GCC developed software. So please don't email me support questions about iWorship - thanks!
There ya have it ... just some updates for your reading enjoyment :-)