March 2005 Archives

Still having DSL problems

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The DSL problems continue. I was told that the BellSouth guy would be out today to look at things and instead I got a message this afternoon that my problem had been elevated to tier 2 service and a new guy would get with me and have the BellSouth guy come look it over. I'm sorely tempted to just say screw it, bit the bullet, swallow my pride, and call the cable company. I prefer DSL over cable but iff DSL is not working then cable is preferable. I can't afford a nother week of not being able to do what I need to do. So, when the guy calls tomorrow I think my response will be I'll stay with you if you can get my DSL fixed quicker than the cable company can get me on-line. I hate to do it but when fiber is essentially located in my backyard (really, not more than 500 feet from my house) and I can't keep a connection at night.

I'm also getting tired othe excuse that it is inside wiring. I know it is not inside wiring, I know it is an intermittent problem, and I know it may well be a difficult problem to solve, but solve it! I can have new cable in the house in no time and it will cost nothing to install. Cable is looking better al the time.

Other than that, we had a senior staff meeting today and reviewed some benchmarks with other universities. There is certainly room for improvement, who can't get b etter, but I think we are doing pretty good. What we really need is good, solid support from the University and the State, support which both would like to give but can't within the existing budget. Funny, we are a 127 year old institution and we can't decide what we want to be when we grow up.

Tide Change in Iraq

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Looks like at least some Iraqis are tired of the terrorist. Could this be sign of change in Iraq? Oh to have the liberals in the Presbyterian Church have to eat their words! Of course they never will.

Wasted Weekend

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Dateline: Home Study
Pretty much wasted the weekend and got nothing done I wanted to get done--especially the reading I needed to do.

Had a stressful day today making for a not all that pleasnt Easter. I've not really been in an Easter mood for many years now and I don't why. I served communion with my wife in church, and hte service was fine but something was missing. It has to be me but I don't know what.

The dishwasher is not working like it should. It does not drain completely and appears to have a proble with diveting water to the drain or back into the dishwasher. After replacing the pump assembly on our previous dishwasher, I don't work on them too much anymore--much cheaper and easier to replace them (or call someone else to work on them).

DSL is giving me more and more problems but I was told BellSouth would look at it tomorrow. Of course it will fine for them, justl ike a car never makes a noise when you get it to the shop. Hopefully the tech will look for the problem and realize that I can get DSL to work, just not all the time, and it is particularly troublesome at night. Can't blame inside wiring either. I bought new wire, put plugs on it and ran it straight from the NID, along the side of the house, in the back door, and right into the modem. Same results--worked great in the day, trouble at night.

Time for bed and I've just lost DSL again. So, unplug, let sit, plug it in again, post this, and be gone.

Today was supposed to be filled with reading a book for a paper that is due which I ordered from Amazon yesterday and had shipped overnight. But, it didn’t quite turn out that way. I did get some of the book read but not nearly as much as I had planned. However, I did get a few other things done that I have been putting off.

For the longest time the Navy has claimed they are moving to a new security paradigm for email and websites that will require the use of a SmartCard. Well the SmartCard also serves as our ID card and is a pretty cool device. Coincidentally there was an article on the Technology Review web site about it today. I’ve had the USB card reader and software for a while but have heard so many complaints and problems resulting from installing it, I put the installation off as long as I thought safe. I also needed to have a card reader for my laptop. The Navy’s solution is to move the bulky USB reader with me when I take my laptop. Well I have enough stuff to carry when I travel and the idea of another device with cable bothers me. I was able to find a supplier of a PCMCIA card reader which I installed on the laptop, again without a problem.

DSL is still not working all the time but BellSouth should be out to check things on Monday. I hope they get it fixed. We just got rid of TV Cable because of rising rates, too few channels, and not particularly good service. I’d hate to have to have cable now just for broadband. Satellite is a possibility but they limit download speeds on that and if I am paying for high-speed then I want high-speed all the time. I also like to tune into Sirius some at night and I can’t do that when DSL keeps disconnecting on me.

Weather-wise it was carppy day today. It is supposed to be the first day of spring but it was rainy and nasty. The good news is that I finished my paper for the my remaining elective class for the Naval War College degree and got it submitted. I only the grade change form to process now and all will be well. Then I can order the transcript and hopefully everything will be ready to go for a June graduation. It will be pretty cool having a degree from the Naval War College. How many people can say that?

The FITREP from my last CO came in Satuday night. He worked it up, took what I submitted and made it even better. Now, I had to get it to Millington for the Selection Board which convense tomorrow. Of course the reason for all of these trips is the damn terrorists. All mail is screeened whch means it is delayed by about two days once it is received on base. This means FedEx overnight takes three days to get where you want it. FedEx gets it there on time but then the Navy has to process it.

I have the letters in lieu of missing report already submitted, and that might be good enough for the board, but to be perferectly honest, this FITREP, from an active duty Captain, is just too good not to have the Board see it. So, I made another trip to NSA Millington today to get this report delivered. Same nice, friendly, helpful people there who took care of me. It was yet another reminder of why I do what I do--the people.

The truth is I am probably worrying a little too much about this Board meeting. It looks like the selection rate will be fairly good and I've done a lot of things in the Navy. I'm in my fourth command tour, I've completed JPME Phase I and II, I have not ticked off too many people, so even without this effort, I might be okay. But then again, everyone else is just as good too. I don't kid myself, no matter how good I think I am at something, there is always someone out there who is better and a whole bunch of people who are just as good. And it is the attention to these types of things that I think is important.

Now, it is all in the hands of the capable Selection Board. I now enter the long period of wait and see becasue the results will not be released until June. And if selected I probalby will not actually be promoted until the next June or July as a result of being fairly junior in zone.

After discovering that my usual official photo lab at NAS Meridian was no longer making Officer Photos I obtained an appointment at NSA Millington, TN. (I still like the way that base switched from and NAS to a NSA.) Given the selection board is meeting in the same place things worlked out fairly nicely. I made the appointment to have my picture made, completed the submissions sheet, and wrote a letter to President of the Selection Board last night.

This morning I got up, way too early, and drove to Millington. The closer I got, the darker the skies grew so that by the time I was in the parking lot it had started to rain. I managed to get inside and stay relatively dry and had my photo taken. I put it on the proper form and then went to give it to the selection board people. They directed me to the right place where I submitted my package and I memtioned that I was missing a FITREP. They told who to see about taking care of that.

I went to PERS-311, as directed, only to find the person I was told to see was not there. The response I got was noce to hear, and something I hear too little of on campus--just becasue he is not here does not mean everything stops, what canI do for you. I got hooked up with the right person who checked my record and confirmed what I thought, I was missing two FITREPS, one from my detaching senior that I'm trying to get, and one that covers the period from the time he detached until the end of the reporting period. My new CO plans to take care of that period with the next periodic FITREP, which he can do, but it does not look good to the Board.

The suggestion was that I submit a letter in lieu of missing report and was given the format. The guy then asked how long i was to be in town and when he found out how far I had come he said "wait a minute". He then went and talked to someone else and the next thing I knew I was sitting in front of a computer writing the needed letters. When I finished, he checked them, suggested a few changes, and said he would take a copy to be put in my official record and send a copy to the Board. Now that is what I call service.

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