I’m back from my little internet break. I was talking to a friend just the other day who had no idea I was even gone because he reads the site in his feed reader. I had briefly considered putting up an actual post back in September for that very reason but never got around to it, so I apologize for that.

In case you never saw it, on about September 14 I had placed a notice at the top of the page that said:

I’m going cold turkey from the Internet (other than for work, school, and FellowSites). I’ll be back on November 1. Cheers!

Sorry I didn’t say more about my break, but I really needed to just quit everything and didn’t have time to explain. The scientific community is still up in the air about whether Internet Addiction is actually a classifiable disorder, but if anyone has it, I believe I do. It got so bad a couple months ago that I needed some intervention.

So I did what I had to do. As I said in my site notice, I still used the internet for work, school, and FellowSites. Everything else, though, including my feed reader and all my social networks, I really did quit cold turkey. I’d be lying if I said there wasn’t an occasional visit to Wikipedia or, but for the most part I stayed away from everything else and didn’t touch my feed reader once during the six weeks I was “offline”.

So, here we are in the first week of November, and, as promised, I’ve cautiously returned to the interwebs. I’ve finally approved the handful of MySpace, Facebook, and LinkedIn friend requests I received during the break (thanks everyone for your patience) and caught up on reading all my close friends’ and family members’ blogs. As soon as I can figure out why Trillian is acting funny I’ll be signing back on to the major instant messaging networks. I’ve set up my feed reader again, but kept it pretty lean this go around. I don’t intend for things to get as bad as they were ever again.

When I was thinking about taking the break, a friend remarked that it can take six weeks to form a new habit. I think I succeeded in developing some new behavior patterns and intend to continue practicing them. In other words, I think my break was successful.

One thing I did miss quite a bit during my break was blogging and sharing things with all of you. I read a few good books and had a few noteworthy experiences during the break, so you can definitely look forward to more updates here in the coming days and weeks. End mark

My setup: YubNub

YubNub logo

I’ve blogged before (here and there) about keyword searches in Firefox. Keyword searches are great because they allow you to perform searches right from your address bar. Simply type your keyword (e.g. I use g for Google, a for, wp for Wikipedia, &c.) followed by search terms and you’ll be magically whisked off to your search results. You can set up your own keyword for any site by right-clicking in any search bar and choosing “Add a keyword for this search” from the context menu. By setting up my own keyword searches, I’ve completely eliminated the need for the little search box to the right of my address bar, and, in fact, have removed it from my browser altogether.

Recently I discovered a service that takes this feature to the next level. YubNub, as the service is called, bills itself as a “(social) command line for the web,” and boy does it deliver. You can try the service out right away by going to the YubNub website, but it really becomes useful if you set it up directly in your address bar. I’ve got my Firefox address bar functioning as a YubNub command line, and I’ll mention later a few ways (and what I think is the best way) to do that. But first let me tell you more about the service.

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I’ve installed Skype so my brother-in-law and I can voice-chat for free while he’s away this summer (he’s doing an internship with a big accounting firm in a different state). It’s a pretty slick little program, and the connection is clear as a bell (much better than MSN voice-chat).

I hate seeing an empty contact list, so if anyone else uses Skype, send me your screen name using my contact page and we’ll get in touch.

A New Domain

A while ago I was “talking”: about a new domain name I was excited about acquiring. Little did I know the process would take as long as it did. Apparently, expired domains don’t become publicly available until 75 days after the stated expiration date.

Fortunately, the domain did quietly expire, and, after so much waiting, I’m excited to announce that I have secured the rights to it. You may have already guessed: is now officially mine.

Since I don’t want to start a third blog (can you imagine?), I’ve decided to keep the new site all to myself. I’ve had a locked-down wiki installed here for some time now, and I’ve already moved it to its new location. From time to time I may host a few public pages there, but it will be used primarily for personal notes, uploads, and other private articles.

I’m quite pleased to finally own a completed trifecta of domain names. I can’t help but feel like everyone’s favorite video game hero after beating level 8 and collecting the third and final piece of some kind of talisman of power. Or maybe I’m just mentally unbalanced. Time will tell, I suppose.

43 Things

I think I’m officially addicted to memes.

I just found this great site called 43 Things. It’s another of those social sites like and Flickr. At 43 Things you list your long- and short-term goals and then track your own progress. You can also find other people who are working toward the same goals and enlist or offer help.

A while back I started compiling a list of 100 life goals. Last night I copied some things from that list onto 43 Things. Some of my goals are fanciful, but many are serious things I’d like to acheive.

Now to find a place to display “my 43 Things list”: here on my blog…

Google Maps — Now With Satellite

Holy cow! It’s late and I should go to bed, but the “Google Blog just announced”: that “Google Maps”: now has the ability to display satellite images in the same slick interface as it already delivers maps. Now you can have driving directions superimposed over actual images of the streets in your hometown.

In my mind, Google Maps already blew MapQuest out of the water, but this adds a whole new dimension of fun.

Delicious Crazy

If you’re subscribed to my bookmarks feed, I apologize for cluttering up your feedreader this morning. I think I added over 30 bookmarks to my list. Whew!

I just did some spring cleaning in my own feedreader — deleted a bunch of stuff, reorganized my folder hierarchy, etc. — and decided to finally compile a definitive list of the blogs I read. There’s some great stuff in there. Take a moment to peruse “my list of blogs”:


Well, I’ve gone and joined the internet craze that is Flickr. Feel free to snoop through “my photos”: So far I’ve uploaded the same ones that are available at “”:, but in time I’ll be uploading actual wedding pictures. I’ve had at least one request and I intend not to dissappoint.


I’ve also installed a WordPress extension called “Flickit”: It allows me to post my Flickr images to my blog, like the one to the left.

Anyone else using Flickr out there? I’d love to see your photos, too. Post a link in the comments below.

An Obligatory Ping

Winslow over at Winslow’s Lair is trying to “test his trackback feature”: In the interest of science, I’m sending one your way, my friend. Godspeed, little ping.