DC PHP Developers Meeting

Last evening I went to the DC PHP Developers meeting. I had originally gone to the DC Tech Events website which is run by Ross M Karchner to check what time Thursday night the The DC Technology Network book group was meeting to go over “The Tipping Point” by Malcolm Gladwell.

I stayed at work late looking over general information about PHP, since I have not yet used the language. It is on my list of languages to learn along with Ruby on Rails.

The DC PHP Developers meeting was about jQuery and was presented by Joseph L. LeBlanc. It was held at the headquarters of Green Peace USA, in Chinatown. Joseph talked about using jQuery to do animations, by using the following effects:

  • fadeIn()
  • fadeOut()
  • hide()
  • show()
  • slideDown()
  • slideUp()
  • toggle()
  • slideToggle()
  • fadeTo()
  • animate()

He showed us a routine to check that the DOM was ready.

$(document).ready(function() {

// start code


or something like that. I might have missed something. Joseph has now put his jQuery presentation online and I while link to it when it’s available.

He recommended two different books about jQuery both by Karl Swedberg and Jonathan Chaffer:

He also listed a few website as references:

  1. http://docs.jquery.com
  2. http://visualjquery.com
  3. http://15daysofjquery.com
  4. http://ui.jquery.com

Once his talk was over people started asking general questions to him and to the rest of the group. One set of guys was looking for information about hosting and someone said they had used BlueHosting (for like $7.00 per month) and Simple Storage Service (S3) by Amazon for some of his client stuff. After that we talked about a bunch of things.

I even asked if people had been to either Refresh DC or BarCamp DC, the only person that had heard of either was Joesph and he had been to the BarCamp DC and not yet made a Refresh meeting. Since that was the case I made sure to explain what the events were and where to find them. Finally I talked about the new DC Technology Network and Ross’s DC Tech Events website.

Now it’s time to look over “The Tipping Point” tomorrow evenings meeting.

Semi Productive Columbus Day Weekend

This weekend was both fun and semi productive.

Friday night I did a little cheese shopping with my local cheese monger over at Rick’s Wine and Gourmet. I had stopped to pick up few cheeses for friends stopping over at my place before going to the Mount Vernon wine festival Saturday evening. I asked for some more mild cheese, since this crowd does not like the stinky and flavorful ones. I got a Gouda, truffle cheese, and another mild cheese I can not think of the name of. I also asked for some of the more stinky cheeses for a tasting I am doing for eight other friends in about ten days. My cheese monger gave me two different cheeses that had expired about a week or more ago since they could not sell it in the store. I then picked up an Epoisse for the next tasting.

I went to bed around midnight and woke up at like 5 AM for some reason and could not get back to sleep. I went to A. Litteri’s to get some fine Italian meets and then to the farmers market at Arlington Courthouse. I picked up some apples, bread, chocolate chip cookies, and a few other items.

Once I got home I showered and changed to go to the Del Ray “Arts on the Avenue”. I did not pay attention to the weather enough since when I got dressed I put on a black t-shirt with black shorts. It was really sunny and warm without a cloud in the sky. I managed to get through the whole art festival including a small snack in about two hours. Not bad considering it’s a three plus mile walk around trip and I stop a few times to visit with friends.

Once home, I got ready for my friends to come over around 5 PM, so we could leave for Mount Vernon around 5:30 PM. Some friends never made it until 5:45 PM. The rest of us ate cheese, Italian meats, and bread while we waited. After about 30 – 45 minutes myself and one of the other persons in the group had had enough of the Virginia wines. The others in the group wanted to stay until the end to get their moneys worth. I was ready to give them their $20 back to be able to go home and drink some wine at the house. We left once the wine festival had closed. I had a good time during the evening talking about wine with one of the people and we all had another bottle of wine once we got back to my place.

Sunday was mostly coffee shop to meet friends and then back for football, a short nap, dinner, and TV.

Monday morning on my day off I woke up like 30 minutes before I normally do for work and could not get back to sleep. Went to the coffee shop to see who would be there and not many people I know showed up, at least before I left. Once I got back I checked e-mail, Twitter, and then it was off to the National Gallery of Art to see the “Edward Hopper” exhibit. After spending over an hour in the Edward Hopper exhibit I spent about 45 minutes at the J.M.W. Turner exhibit. After looking at most of the pieces in that show I noticed that two-thirds to three quarters of the works came out of the Tate museum in London. I hope they left few back home for others to see.

I next got back on the metro to head up to the convention center stop so I could go by the nclud office to make sure I knew where it was for Saturday nights party. From there I walked to Chinatown for a late lunch at like 3:30 PM. After getting home I started watching a little TV and ended up with about a 45 minutes nap instead.

Once I was awake enough I went to Best Buy and Office Depot to look for a monitor for my laptop. I liked the 24″ Westinghouse that was on sale at Best Buy. I tried to see how the 32″ View-sonic looked at Office Depot but no one at the store seem to know how to get the DVD player to show a movie on the screen. All I got was a blue screen with the message that there was “No Signal!”. I guess I will have to wait until at least Wednesday night to get one, since I have wine class Tuesday night.

I then stopped at Borders bookstore and looked at few magazines. On the way home I stopped to get dinner to go. Once home ate dinner and watched the Travel Channel and then the end of the Bills vs. Cowboys game. I thought Buffalo was actually going to win the game, which would have been even better since TO missed the two point conversion. In the end it was ok.

I have to get in more practice of writing general blog posts before I start doing more technical ones. I also need to work on writing short posts.

Time for bed.

Mom Made it Home Yesterday

My mother made it home from the hospital yesterday afternoon. About 8:10 pm I got a phone call from my parents telling me my Mother had made it home. I figured that I was not going to call home until later today, so she could rest up some.

They gave her some chemo on Tuesday while still at the hospital. She said she had to call the doctor early next week to set up her appointment for the next set of chemo for her ovarian cancer that is still there in little bits and pieces in her abdomen.

She told me my aunt and uncle (my father’s sister and husband) stopped and picked up a Wegman’s whole cooked chicken for the four of them. I was not sure if my mom was allowed to eat much solid food yet, since she had intestine and bowel removed. She told me she could eat soft foods,but no steak yet even thou yesterday they gave her a pork chop. I figured that would mean no meats at all.

It was nice to talk to her even for a short time since she is in Buffalo, NY and I’m here in DC.

Posted in Mom

Pedestrians Have the Right of Way?

I always thought that pedestrians the right of way, especially when they where in the crosswalk. On the walk home from the Metro after work. These four kids walked out of the 7 – 11 parking lot and into the street stopping in the turn lane into the store. This minivan stops just stop across from them.

I figure the lady in the van is telling them they needed to cross the street at the crosswalk. She talks to them for like at least a minute, while a few cars back up behind her. By this time I have stared to cross the street, once I get most of the way past the first lane and am about to enter the second lane the lady decides to start driving without looking to see if anyone is near her let a lone in front of her. As she goes by I put up my hand and shake it at her. She keeps going so I took a swing at her car with my hand and hit the back van window. You know the ones that have the funny lack, well it opened to my surprise.

At this point she puts on the brakes on and get out of the car and starts shouting at me for hitting her car. I tell her that she should pay attention and that pedestrians have the right of way. She keeps yelling and starts swearing at me, I’m upset for almost getting hit and the adrenaline is flowing so I start back at her for a minute and then just start to leave as she tells to get my “Fat ass back there”. At this point one the kids is walking towards me and  just leave. The kid follows me for a little bit, why I don’t know.

At this point I walk across the 7 – 11 parking lot and head home. I look out of the corner of my eye and the lady is in the left hand lane waiting to make the turn. Once I get to the side street she comes up stops her car again and gets out. She starts yelling again about she can’t believe I hit her car with my hand. At his point a young woman pulls up and tells me to just get in her car, she must have seen what had happened. The first lady is still yelling that I better get in the car if I know what’s good for me. The woman that picks me up yells something at the lady, I get in the back seat of the car and we leave. I had just hopped into the back seat of the second ladies car and she asked how far away I lived and I told her just around the corner about a block away.

We ended up taking the long way to my house to make sure the first woman did not follow her and I. I had her drop me of at the front of my house in case the first lady was driving around looking for me. I asked the second woman her name and I believe she told me Kristan or Christina. I’m not sure which since I was all wound up at this point. I asked her if she lived in the neighborhood, so I might be able to do something for her. She said she lived in Arlington and just goes home that way. I thanked her and went into the house. Thanks again for the ride home, who ever you were.

After relaxing some and writing out a bill that had to be mailed I went to the post office. After mailing the bill at the post office I went to Best Buy to look for a keyboard and flat screen monitor for my laptop. My laptop key board is giving me problems. Mostly the space-bar and the right shift key. I looked around and when I went to leave and cross the street to get to my car, another woman was on her cell phone as she stopped at the stop sign in front of the crosswalk. She started to pull in front of me and then realized she was supposed to let me go.

I have been in that same crosswalk in front of the 7 – 11 before and people just drive right through. The first time was when there was a cop in his car sitting in the parking lot close to the street and he pulled out after and went after the person. Another time a girl was on her cell phone talking to someone and looking over at the passenger in her car doing like 40 mph in a 25. I just missed getting again that time. I even stopped in the road and waved my hands and she still did not notice me. For those of you that know me you know I’m not a small guy and hard to miss seeing in the middle of the road.

So please pay attention when you are in the crosswalk since cars and their drives don’t really need to stop for you if they are not paying attention or are distracted on their cell phones.

Why “PINK” for October?

Incase you are wondering why my website is now PINK it is to mark the month of October which is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. As some of you might know my mother went into the hospital about September 17. A few days later they in formed her that she had ovarian cancer. On Friday September 21, they operated and took out all the girl parts as my father said, along with some small intestine and bowel that had ovarian cancer on it. She’s doing much better now. Since, I’m here and she is they are had not been able to talk to her until today. She sounded really good and is waiting for them to chemo while she’s still at the hospital.

I know this is not the same type of cancer, but if I can help in anyway toget onemore person to be aware of this I am glad I could help. I would not ahve known about this it was not for the Twitter of Patrick Haney a friend from Boston, who by the way is not a sausage.

Pink For October was started last year by the one and only (that I know of) Matthew Oliphant as a way to promote and educate people about National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. This will be the second year in a now yearly tradition after quite a bit of participation in 2006.

How Can I Participate?

You can show your support in a number of different ways, it’s up to you

  • Make your website/blog pink for the month of October and link back to Pink For October’s website
  • Donate money to breast cancer research
  • Add Pink For October badges to your site
  • Educate yourself about breast cancer facts and share those facts with other people to spread the word

Or any combination of the above.