Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Closing Time

No, its not the song from one-hit wonders Semisonic, today was Closing Day for Cassie and I on our first house.

Yes, we have finally crossed the last (financial) barrier into adulthood. I guess this means that the last social barrier (children) is the next landmark on the horizon. Granted, it's still a small speck in the distance that is quite indistinguishable through the fog of future history, but we're growing ever closer.

But overall, we are very excited about the new house and the prospect of finally owning our dwelling rather than simply renting (which you know I'm not fond of from my musical post). We closed today at 1:00 PM and we will start painting the office at 5:00 today when she gets off work. After that, we slowly move some critical items over to the new house throughout the week (refrigerator, etc) and then the big moving day is Sunday afternoon after Bible Class.

Hopefully by the end of that day, we'll be out of our current house and truly moved in to our first home (wow). Then Monday (Memorial Day) is for unpacking and getting settled down so that hopefully life can return to its normal--but slightly improved--conditions.

So, all of you who actually know us personally are invited to the new house to check it out!!

Thanks for reading,

Jorin Slaybaugh

The BlogMaverick

Mark Cuban's Web Log. Check it out...


Monday, May 23, 2005

Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 1 and SQL Server Reporting Services

After installing 3 updates on our servers (Windows Server 2003 SP1, SQL Server 2000 SP4, and Reporting Services SP2), the only big problem encountered was an annoying "The request failed with HTTP status 401: Unauthorized." error when trying to view the Report Manager Web Interface to view reports.

Regardless of the account used and the priveleges of that account, this message would be displayed. It was clearly only a function of the Report Manager because if you navigated directly to the ReportServer virtual directory, you could find the reports and run them, but browsing to the Report Manager or trying to access it from our application via Web Services failed with the 401 error mentioned previously.

Well, a full day later, I owe many thanks to this post and it's authors, who explain that a simple security change by Microsoft to prevent "man in the middle" attacks as a part of W2k3 SP1 could be ammended by a simple registry addition to get my Report Server working again.


(I wonder what the security implications of the change are? Probably not serious enough for me in the scope in which we operate and the means through which our clients have access to their reports on our server....)

Thursday, May 19, 2005

More on Music

This is sort of a follow-up post to my previous post about renting music.

After posting, listening to my music, and speaking with some other audiophiles, I realized that some music with unintelligible moaning is good and I may have been too harsh in my first post (case in point: Pearl Jam's Yellow Ledbetter and the large majority of R.E.M.'s music.)

So... I guardedly take back some of my statements. On a similar topic, it has also come to my attention in the last several days that James Taylor (a.k.a "Sweet Baby James") is a genius songwriter and performer. Now, clearly I'm no James Taylor expert, and I'm probably preaching to the choir for most of you, but I've been familiar with some of his work for years (Fire and Rain among others). However, after borrowing his greatest hits album, I've discovered the true scope of his genius. He is one of the few white artists who can actually choose the perfect words and sing with such emotion and soul that you can feel his pain--especially if you understand the pain that was his life.

In the modern day, there are few songwriters like him, however I also have recently been listening to Jack Johnson and, while he reveals nowhere near the emotion of Taylor's music and lyrics, his didactic, conversational music also invites you into his world.

So, for those of you who are interested and not familiar with one or both of these artists, you should check them out. It will be money and time well spent, I assure you.


P.S. Check back soon for a GENIUS idea I have for some aggressive (read: "well-funded") entrepreneur to use the iTunes Music Store to make more money...

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Renting Music

So, of course, downloading music has been a hot topic for years now....ever since my first year of college when Napster came out and everyone started downloading illegally. Then all hell broke loose and the RIAA started complaining about artists losing money and the feds started arresting little kids.

So now, we live in a world transformed by iPods and iTunes. (Which actually has supplanted Media Player on my computer as my primary media player app....not bad for a dedicated Microsoftie like myself.) But this last week Yahoo! introduced its Music Unlimited program where you can download as much music as you want* (note asterisk) for only $4.99 a month if you pre-pay for a year ($59.88). Anyway, this unlimited* (again, note asterisk) download is actually a over-glorified rental service where you can download any of these songs to your computer or portable device for a period of time. If you actually want to own the song, you have to pay $0.79/song to buy it. Still better than $0.99/song that iTunes charges, but only if you actually enjoy renting songs.

I'm posting about this because I just can't understand the fascination with renting songs like this. I don't have a problem with paying for songs as long as I can own them...but i don't get the renting thing.

Music isnt like movies where you only want to watch it once because you know what happens in the end or you're sick of laughing at the same punchlines. Music is emotional and instills a feeling in you each time you hear a song. I dont know how many times I have found a song in my library that i havent listened to in years like The Verve Pipe's The Freshmen or Eric Clapton's Wonderful Tonight and immediately been transported back to the first time I heard the song or some memorable experience while the song was on. Without having that song in my collection, I would never hear those songs on Internet Radio, much less traditional FM Radio.

Maybe it's because with today's music we are overrun with drippy teeny-bopper lyrics that actually contain no substance, so there is no need to listen to the song again after the initial period of infatuation with a hypnotic drum beat and unintelligible moaning (compare Britney Spears with Dave Matthews, Jack Johnson, and Coldplay).

So, what do you think? Will renting music catch on? Can someone explain to me how it actually works/expires after a given time? Would you rent music like this?