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    Now this is just cool: QR “Art”?

    2012 - 06.03

    I think I found this one because of a tweet, but it could have been Facebook.  Regardless I thought these were kinda cool, and if nothing else some interesting out of the box thinking.

    In Seoul, retailer uses 3D QR codes and the sun to deliver discounts only during its quiet times

    You can read the article for more details, but essentially it’s a combination sundial, modern art, QR code.

    I’m actually most impressed by the fact that it only works for an hour a day.  I suppose though that might not have been the hard part, not knowing enough about how sensitive QR codes are and such, it seems impressive, but it might have been harder to make a sculpture that worked for a longer period of time.  When you don’t know enough about something, you don’t know if it’s actually hard, or just seems like it should have been.

    Regardless it’s kinda neat.


    New Printer

    2012 - 05.15

    A few weeks back we bought a new printer a Brother MFC-J6910DW so far we’re very happy with it.  Setup was very straightforward and we had it working on our network from both computers in under an hour (which is essentially how long it took for us to unpack it and install the relevant software on the computers).  Some of the things which we like about it:

    • wireless connectivity to all computers
    • wireless scanning directly to a computer or flash drive
    • 35 page auto document feeder
    • 2 paper trays
    • 11×17 (Ledger) printing and scanning
    • duplex printing
    • duplex scanning (doesn’t do Ledger duplex, only goes up to legal)

    Because of the convenience of the connectivity of the new printer we’ve managed to digitize a bunch of stuff which was too large or inconvenient to scan previously, and we’ve managed to get rid of some paper.

    So if anyone needs to make use of our giant scanner/printer let us know.


    Oh, another interesting feature (required a firmware update to the printer) is that Karin can print directly from her iPhone wirelessly.

    Keeping with the Food Theme: Nandos

    2012 - 02.04

    So the one thing that we’ve had recently which I haven’t mentioned in the recent plethora of food related posts was something that Karin got for Christmas: Nando’s Sweet Apricot Peri Peri Sauce.  Strangely not listed on the Nando’s website (which although cute and amusing is ridiculously difficult to use).  Regardless it combined two things: Karin’s love for apricots and her love of Nando’s and incorporated it into “favourite dinner” (a.k.a. dinner that someone else makes for her).

    Anyway, there’s no instructions on the bottle, so went to the website to see what the recommended usage of the sauce was (which of course is how I know it wasn’t listed on the site).  Basic instructions are brown chicken pieces then add sauce and cook for another 10-12 minutes.  So that’s what we did, and had that accompanied with oregano garlic oven fries, and that might have been it.

    The heat of the sause was rated as a “medium” and we learned that medium was not too hot for us.  So we definitely learned something.  We’ll probably try some of their other sauces before we go back to this one, as we didn’t notice a strong apricot flavour.


    2012 - 02.01

    Made ribs on Monday following the recipe from the blog: Delish for Juicy Tender Oven Roasted Barbecue Baby Back Ribs.

    They turned out well.  I wouldn’t say that they are the best ribs ever or anything like that, but they are simple and not incredibly time consuming either (takes a similar amount of time as a frozen lasagne), and everything is done in the oven.

    I received some House of Q sauces for my birthday specifically the Apple Butter BBQ Sauce and the Slow Smoke Gold Sauce and Slather.  So given that I got two racks of ribs from Costco we did one each.  We liked them both, but I think for ribs we prefer the Apple Butter.  I think I’d use the Slather more for pulled pork, or something that I was putting multiple sauces on.

    Overall it was very satisfying (rounded out the menu with garlic mashed potatoes, maple carrots and Karin’s mushroom and zucchini).

    Canine Shopping Finished

    2011 - 12.20

    We’re not done all our Christmas shopping yet, and in truth it will probably be a couple more days before we are, but we have managed to finish the canine section of the list.  We think that Honey and Rocky will be pleased.

    Raspberry Ginger Ale in Cans

    2011 - 12.10

    While shopping at Save-on Wednesday we discovered that Schweppes now has Raspberry Ginger Ale in cans.  I don’t really know if this is something that was actually new, or just happened to be noticed because we were paying more attention to Ginger Ale than we normally do.

    Regardless, it really excited Karin because she only ever remembers seeing it in 2L containers, which either forced her to drink a lot of it, or to be disappointed when it went flat before she was finished.  So the cans nicely solve that problem.  The only downside is that it isn’t a diet or zero beverage which Karin almost exclusively drinks (when talking carbonation).  Needless to say we bought two 12 packs.  Should be good for a while ;-)

    Computer Setup!

    2011 - 12.02

    Spent the evening setting up a new computer for Karin’s parents, looks like everything is working.  Still need to copy some stuff and settings from the old computer, but the new one is up and working.  However, since I helped pick it out and set it up, I’m definitely in for a lot more support calls ;-)


    2011 - 11.23

    Tomorrow is the day I’ve been looking forward to for the last three months…PHONE DAY!

    My iPhone has been acting up lately: being slow, crashing out of apps, and finally the last straw: refusing to connect to Wifi, thus making me overuse my data and costs me money.  The problem is, I can’t upgrade my phone until 6 months or less from contract renewal, which is May 24 2012.  Tomorrow is November 24 2011…which means….SIX MONTHS!!!

    I’m so freaking excited.  I’ve had my iPhone at the store for the last three weeks, but I wasn’t able to pick it up.  I pre-ordered one in the middle of October and was 4000-something in line.  “Whew!” I thought.  “Plenty of time!”  The next week I was 684 in line.  Then 552.  “Ok,” I thought. “That’s going down pretty slowly.  I hope it’s not too long after the 24th that I get it!”  Then, November 1st, I received this message:

    Your Black 64GB iPhone 4S is on its way! We have shipped via UPS it to: Fido Store. It should arrive within 4 business days.  Once it gets to the store, your phone will be held for you until 11/18/2011. If you don’t pick it up by then, it may be sold to another customer.

    AUGH!  Note the date!  So, anyway, I phoned and made sure that they would hold it for me, and I went in a week ago to try and sweet talk my way into getting it early (no dice).  I did ensure that it will be held for me until tomorrow…so here’s hoping!

    Everytime I hear someone talk about Siri or see an ad for the 4s, I get even more excited.

    Also, my students are evil.  They’re trying to convince me that the iPhone 5 has been announced, and it has a HOLOGRAPHIC KEYBOARD!  And LASERS!  And it DISPENSES COKE ZERO!  My kids rule, but they give me such a bad time sometimes. Hehe.

    Most Important Sale of the Year

    2011 - 11.22

    Sure it’s almost American Thanksgiving with its associated sales and shopping hoopla, but there’s an even better sale on right now at Costco!  Martinelli’s Sparking Apple Juice (4 pack) is currently $2 off, which makes it about $6.69 (plus deposit and such), which virtually makes it 4 for the price of 1 (anywhere but Costco).  So stock up, because it’s super delicious, and much better for you than a cheap flatscreen TV.

    If you’re feeling adventurous you can check out some recipe suggestions from their website too.

    The World Illuminated Through a Windshield

    2011 - 11.17

    Regrettably today consisted largely of replacing bulbs, which was way more difficult that in needed to be in my opinion.  Replacing the taillight it was really simple to get it out, more difficult to put back in than it should have been.  Simple four petal design that you turn counterclockwise to remove and turn clockwise to lock back in place.  What they neglect to mention in the manual is that there is one specific petal which needs to match up with one particular gap.  Seems needlessly complex, but is easy enough to deal with once you’re aware that you need to line things up.

    Replacing the two headlights was a much more difficult ordeal, they really leave less than the minimum required amount of space to replace the bulb.  Probably took half an hour to replace both bulbs.  Hopefully it would be faster in the future, but much of it is fiddly rather than “difficult”.  The first main problem was that the manual didn’t actually explain how to release the metal bulb holding clip.  For the record: when you’re facing the car, push on the left hand side of the clip, push towards the front of the vehicle and then down to release the clip.  I don’t know if that’s unique to my car (2003 Pontiac Vibe AWD) or to the bulb type (9003).  With the amount of space available and the lack of visibility into what you’re actually doing, it was way more difficult to do than it felt like it should be, but in the end I was able to do it, despite bouts of doubt and frustration.

    Despite all of that, it wasn’t all bad.  I bought my dual pack of GE 9003 Nighthawk Platinum bulbs at Lordco where they were on sale for $38.99 (seems that regular there is $67.97 according to the invoice; regular price at Canadian Tire is $59.99).  In addition to being on sale, there’s also a $10 mail in rebate on them (at Lordco only) until the end of January, which means I’ll have got them for less than half their regular Canadian Tire price… so pretty pleased with that.  Canadian Tire however was about $4.25 cheaper for the taillight, so that’s where I got those, and installed all the bulbs in their parkade.

    We went out to the mall later to return some clothes and have dinner.  While we were there there was some kind of incident which involved someone being handcuffed.  It happened in the main atrium area while we were eating, Karin took a look.  When we went past later I saw that it was an older guy (rather than a young punk like I assumed it would be).

    Leaving the mall we went to the library to pick up the next half dozen books Karin needs to read in the 100 Book Challenge, some of which are even short.  I picked up Brandon Sanderson’s first book: Elantris.

    Leaving the library we decided to go for a bit of a drive up SFU to test out the new headlights… it’s kind of hard to tell how good the headlights are when you’re driving on streets with headlights.  It was snowing a little bit, but not enough to concern us at all.  Got up to the main intersection and there were some cars essentially blocking the straight through route that takes you to UniverCity that I’d planned to take, so we turned left and headed towards the main campus.  After the first turn we saw a traffic jam which involved a bunch of cars and a couple of buses, none of which were moving forward.  It wasn’t clear what the actual problem (aside from snow) was, so we turned around and headed back the way we came.  Snow 1; Headlight Testing 0.  On the bright side, the all wheel drive and all seasons are still really effective in the snow.

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