• New Laptop Coming

    I ordered a new MacBook Pro today. I specifically, did not order the one with the retina display. On those, you cannot fix anything. The ram is soldered to the board, the storage is some special thing and the battery cannot be replaced. Additionally, it no longer has an on-board ethernet port. You have to get a dongle to convert a thunderbolt port for that. I’d also have to get another dongle to hook up my external monitor. Lastly, somewhere I read that the fancy retina display still shows reflections. The blog post I read about it, said something to the effect of, still make sure you turn that overhead light behind you off. Since that’s the kind of thing that drives me nuts, I was pretty sure that no matter how nice it looked, it probably wasn’t for me. I had intended to go to and Apple Store and see it for myself, but after looking at all the other drawbacks listed above, I just decided I didn’t care. I’ve had this current MacBook Pro for 5 1/2 years. In that time, through AppleCare, I’ve had the logic board replaced and the dvd replaced. Once AppleCare expired, I’ve replaced the hard drive a few times, the lcd screen after I cracked it, the battery about 3 or 4 times, the power supply twice and the dvd is broken again, but I don’t care. I just don’t like that I’m not able to repair something that I supposedly own. And carrying a bunch of dongles also doesn’t appeal to me. I will have to get one for the monitor (my current one was the last to actually have a dvi connector on it, which was great), but I guess I’ll live with that.

  • Start of New Flooring Installation

    Today, I started putting down the maple flooring that I bought to fix the bad areas. Here’s my first row.

  • I Love Fixing Things

    My van wouldn’t start the other day. I had recently had some hose in the steering system replaced because it had holes and since then, the car was really hard to start. I don’t think these things were related. I think it had something to do with the fact that since I have Julie’s car, I’m not driving the van very much. It can sit in my garage for weeks at a time. So, when I did go to drive it, mainly just to make sure it was still working, I found that it would not start. I turned the key and it just made some clicking noises. I’m no mechanic, but I thought that this was a battery issue, even though the radio and lights were still working. A quick check on Google confirmed this.

  • Getting There

    I spent a very short time working on the house this weekend, due to a graduation party and very hot weather. But I did manage to take out all the wood that I’m going to replace with the new maple flooring. Here’s how it looks.

  • Transit of Venus

    We had perfect weather to see the transit of Venus today. I took my telescope and solar filter down to Mark’s house and had some fun with Jack and Abby. They both have now seen the transit and know that they won’t see it again, unless they live to 117 and 113 respectively.

  • Congrats!

    Congratulations to Emily and Tori on their graduation!

  • On the Downward Slope

    I was feeling pretty good going into the 5K this morning, but thanks to the turkey below, I have now found myself on the downward slope of life.

  • Fun Weekend

    This Memorial Day weekend was quite a good one. I got the holes in my floor all patched. Now I just have to work on the section that I’m replacing with new wood. We had beautiful weather for Bike the Drive on Sunday. And today, we had a nice barbeque and birthday celebration for my Mom. Included were my brother John bringing his new motorcycle around and giving rides to all the kids and my Mom.

  • Living Room Patched

    I finished patching the holes in the living room. I’m no expert at working with wood floors, but I think I did an ok job. At least, I’m not too embarrassed to say that I did the floor. Now, I have two small areas to do in the dining room, a small area in the bedroom and then the big patch of maple. I’m getting excited because I can definitely see the progress and the end seems near.

  • Patching Continues

    I biked out to a lumber liquidators store on Friday and ordered ~80 square feet of maple flooring. I’m going to cut out the big section between the dining and living rooms and put maple in there. It will look very different, but I’m ok with that. I had wanted to use a bunch of different kinds of wood, but since you have to buy 20 square feet at a time, I would have had to buy a lot. So I decided to just go with maple.

  • Patching Begins

    Over the weekend, I finished the basic sanding (yay!) and started patching. I think it’s going to turn out ok. Here’s how it looks now.

  • Don’t Know Why This Didn’t Work Yesterday

    [~]# gem install rails -v "3.1.3"
    
  • Another Day…

    I’m getting close to finishing the first sanding layer. Here’s all I have left to do in the living room. After this, I should be able to start patching holes.

  • Chugging Along

    No work last weekend, since I was suffering with back issues. Today, I went for a run and then back to the house to work on the floor. The dining room is basically done, at least with paint/finish removal. Now I’m working on the living room. Here’s how it looked about halfway through.

  • Ransack with Nested Attributes

    In my app, I track plates which have a number of properties. They also have a location because I need to track where each plate has been. However, for the most part, what I really care about is where the plate is now, its current location. When I do my ransack search on the plates, I want to be able to have some check boxes with the possible locations. So, for example, people could search for all the plates that were annealed at a certain temperature and are located at Chicago. This means I have to search the locations for a given plate, but only for the latest location. I tried a number of different ways to do this in ransack and didn’t have much luck. I got it working how I wanted, but I’m fairly certain that this isn’t the best way to do it.

  • Ruby Enumerators

    I have a rails app that handles a lot of information about a set of experimental plates. Along with holding information about each plate, I have another table locations, that’s nested with the plates, as in plates has_many locations and locations belongs_to plates. The locations is a separate table because these plates can get shipped to different locations a lot. This is a way for us to track where all the plates are. Most importantly, we want to know which location for a give plate has the latest date, because this will tell us where the plate currently is.

  • Ransack Update

    I have an earlier post describing the way I set up a ransack search that sets up check boxes for possible search values in a given field. This was my first time using ransack and to say I had no idea what I was doing was not too far off. I’ve recently had to use it for another app and took some time looking into it again. And I think I’ve found the correct way to do a search like this.

  • More Floor Work

    Pulled a muscle in my back yesterday, so today was spent lying around making sure I didn’t make it worse. I bought the movie “The Visitor” and watched in a large number of times. Julie always says that I like sad movies and I guess she’s right. I do love that one.

  • Floor Status

    Work on sanding the floor has begun. It’s painful to my knees and back and very slow. On day 1, I rented a floor sander for a few hours to do the bulk of the work. Now, I’m trying to clean things up with my little belt sander. We’ll see how long it lasts before I burn out the motor.

  • Rails Forms with Check Boxes

    In my latest rails app, I want to compare a number of objects. My first solution was to create a new search page with a form on it.

  • Ransack Integration Test

    In my efforts to test the right stuff, I wanted to test that my basic search was working properly. I have a collection of plates that we’re storing a bunch of information on. Each plate has a unique serial number. We also have a unique id for each plate, but for our users, the serial number is what they’ll use to identify it. So I wanted to make a form that would let people search for a particular plate based on the serial number. And since this search form will be on my home controller and not the plate controller, I need to use an integration test to do this.

  • Interesting Evening

    I spent the evening poking around The National Archives. I found some neat images that I downloaded. I did a search for Theodore Roosevelt, because I’m currently reading a biography of him and I’ve been fascinated with him since I visited his birthplace a few years ago. And I searched for Thomas Edison because he’s always been one of my favorite people.

  • Dropdown Lists

    In the event that I want to make a simple dropdown list in a form in rails, I can use this:

  • IPhone Saga Continues

    I was feeling pretty full of myself after replacing the screen on my iphone. Alas, I now have new troubles. It seems that my iphone thinks that headphones are plugged in all the time. This means that I cannot take calls, listen or speak on my phone without putting it on speaker. I thought that this was related to my changing the screen, but I don’t think it is. First of all, I didn’t have this problem after I replaced the screen. It appeared about a week later. Secondly, I searched this issue online and found that lots of people have it. Just another great apple product.

  • Typical Weekend

    As I spend most weekends, I was working at my house today. I met my contractor in the morning to discuss putting in the back door. He’d rather just come back one more time to finish everything, so I have to buy my lights and then give him a call. So, I may be able to get all that done in a few weeks. Good thing I did my taxes, so I’ll have a little money to buy the lights.