Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Practical Ethics + Comcast

Being in a new apartment, one of the things that I had to sign up for is internet access. The only option I had was Comcast, so I called them up and place an order. After a few days, a technician came an installed the modem, and the internet has now been working for nearly 2 weeks.

I received my first bill in the mail over the weekend though, and I find myself in an unpleasant situation. Over the phone when I ordered, I was told that the internet service would cost $29.99 a month, plus $4.99 a month to rent the modem. On the bill I am being charged $6.99 for the modem.

I called up Comcast on Saturday, and asked about it. It turns out that on April 1st (no fools), the price of the modems went up, but the phone operator told me incorrectly. Now, this is obviously their fault and not mine, I should be allowed to pay what I agreed to on signing up. However, they are refusing to offer me the $4.99 price, hinting that I can take it or leave it at $6.99.

I'm not sure what to do. I'm being scammed, but at the same time, I'm only going to have the router for 3 months, so I'm being scammed all of 6 bucks total. The alternative is to return the router, and go find my own at Best Buy, for something like 80 bucks. A situation of practical vs theoretical ethics, do I let a company get away with scamming, when do so actually costs me Less than not?

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Editing Classes With JQuery

I've been working with jQuery for a while now, I used it in multiple places around my website. But in each case, I either adapted a pre-made free script, or look at a tutorial and copied it, editing by trial and error to achieve the desired effect. I don't actually Know Javascript, or how jQuery works.

I am attempting to rectify this situation. Turns out there are quite a few free textbooks on the subject, on Javascript in general and on jQuery. The jQuery website itself has quite a bit of interesting reading as well, and I went through a few of their tutorials.

From what I've gotten, the basic idea of JavaScript is, when the use interacts with a webpage, find the element in question, and do something to it. jQuery is just a library of functions, already written out in JavaScript. You link to it, and then can call the pre-made functions, without having to write them all out. One such function that I think will be very useful, hasClass. Using it, you can get a true false reading on whether an element has a certain class, say a link that gets clicked on. Only if the value is true, will you change it. I decided to test this out, along with the follow ups, addClass, and removeClass.

First I created the html document. In the head, I used the script tag to link to jQuery and then to myscript. I also used inline css to remove the outlines from links, and to see a class of c1, as bold. In the body, I created a link, giving it by default the bold class, c1.

Next I had to write the javascript to change it back and forth. I started with a ready function, which I still don't really understand the need for, except that if it's not there, the script must be placed after the link in question, in the html document, rather than in the head.

Inside this, I used a click event. Events are times that the user interacts with our webpage. As to what is click, that is any a at all, so any link in the webpage. I could specify this, but since webpage consists of a single link, it's unnecessary. Inside that click event, I have a couple things. Reactions to the click, basically, cause and effect. First, I prevent the link from doing it's default behavior (taking us to a new page), with the even.preventDefault(). Next, I have an if/else statement, which basically checks if the class is c1 or not. If it is, then I use removeClass, to remove c1, from (this). I could set it to remove something else, but (this) is a quick way to mean the element that is already being examined. Then if the link does NOT have c1, add it.

The effect achieved it that a link starts bold on page load, and when clicked, becomes unbolded. When clicked again, bold is restored ... back and forth. Useless in its own right, but certainly an interesting experiment.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Space Shuttle Launch n-1

Endeavor just launched for it's last mission, which brings our shuttle mission count to n-1. One more to go sometime this summer, as Atlantis lifts off one more time. After that, we'll be stuck hitching rides to the space station, from Russia. Bet they'd have enjoyed knowing that 30 years ago.

As I write this, the shuttle is at mock 14, and just lifted off from the fuel tank. A pretty amazing sight, as the camera view from the fuel tank shows the shuttle slowly rising up and away from it. Shuttle is completely out of view now, it's 10 minutes after launch.

It's sad that we are retiring the shuttles. They are old and outdated. And if we were just replacing them with newer, better designs, that would be fine. But we are seemingly giving up on space, for the moment. It's logical ... the cold war need is gone, and NASA is a large drain on money. But it's just ... saddening.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Living Alone - Week 1

It's really too soon to comment on what living alone feels like, because these first few days are not how the rest of the summer will be. Work starts tomorrow, and I'll have full internet in my apartment on Tuesday. Both of which will be welcome, as I've grown increasingly bored with nothing to do.

Having nothing to do is great, for a couple days. After 4 in a row, it's starting to outgrow it's welcome. I do, as of a few minutes ago, have light internet in my apartment. I call it light, because I'm sharing the wifi signal of a tenet on the floor above, and it's a pretty weak signal. Enough to connect to blogger though, obviously, as well as Facebook and Hotmail. Tuesday I'll have full highspeed from Comcast, as well as more furniture, courtesy of another trip (planned for tomorrow) to Purdue Salvage.

I'd like to give Purdue Salvage/Surplus a shoutout here, because of how great it is. I got the chair I'm currently using for 5 bucks, and the desk, for 20. I'm going to grab another table tomorrow, when the parents come up and I have access to a car.

Saturday, May 14, 2011


I love being a kid. Call me lazy, call me unambitious. The responsibilities of adulthood have never really been something I've anticipated. Don't get me wrong, I fully understand being a kid has it's drawbacks, but I still appreciate the good parts. Lack of responsibility; a more carefree life.

Growing up as a young child, I always knew that when I finally got to high school, I'd be mature; that I'd have to give up childhood. When I got to high school, I realized how silly that was, I could stay a kid until I got to college. Then when I got to college, I started out by living in a dorm with a meal plan, and really there was not much difference between it and high school. I just replaced my parents with the RAs and cooks. Responsibility, pfft.

This summer however, I'm staying in an apartment; Living on my own for the first time. It's certainly interesting. I'm moving in tomorrow, and I just got off the phone with the power and then water company, getting all the utilities turned on. And cooking, which has normally been something of a rarity for me, a break from routine, will now be every day.

I think the days of being a kid are finally gone.


Tuesday, May 10, 2011

A Lonely Chair

Ignored it sits, waiting in vain to fulfill it's purpose.


I took these several days ago at the last alumni open house for John Marshall High School, in Cleveland, OH. We went because my dad went to high school there, and wanted to see it one last time before it was torn down and rebuilt. I was in the basement was sitting on one side of an underground track, and saw this chair across from me, just sitting there, ignored by everyone walking back. Even later when someone sat down, he sat down close to it, but not on it. It just struck me as a poignant scene, so I took some photos.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Wider Blog

So a while back, I wrote a post explaining why my blog was so narrow,and why I wasn't going to change it. Well ... I changed it. The reasons or leaving it narrow, accessibility for people will smaller screens, still exist. However, I finally decided it wasn't worth it anymore, because it was narrow that I had to shrink every photo and make all youtube videos a special custom size.

Another reason that was delaying me was the template I have. I really like the way it looks, it's nice and simple. But it's also no longer offered, because it's so old, and I was hesitant to change it, fearing I wouldn't be able to get it back. However, I realized that I have the option to manually edit the html of the template, so I just went in and increased the width myself. I think it looks better, and will be easier to use in the future. Any thoughts? Yay, nay?

Edit: Finally finished resetting all the video sizes to fit the new width. I think they look better, though it seems to dominate the text.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Lack of Posting

I haven't been posting much in the past couple weeks, for which I appologize. This week is finals week, and it's been pretty intense. I'm currently half done with exams, got 2 more tomorrow before I'm free. For now, I'll leave you with this.


Sunday, May 1, 2011

Don't Believe Everything You Read

Abraham Lincoln was a wise man. He once said: "The trouble with quotes on the internet is that you can never know if they are genuine" -Abraham Lincoln, 1863.

Or so a friend of mine posted as her Facebook status today a a joke. The funny part is, she fooled someone. Below is a screen cap of the conversation, Purple is my friend, Blue is me, the rest are friends of her's.