I can finally talk about the Pepper Pad!

OK, so I’ve been living under a rock for the past two weeks. Or, more specifically, basking in the ambient radiation of multiple monitors during 70- to 90-hour work weeks. We hit code freeze, started bug squashing, unveiled the Web site, launched the Pepper Keeper, and announced the Pepper Pad, a Linux-based mobile Wi-Fi device running the Pepper Keeper!

So, why am I so damn excited about the Pepper Pad? Simple. First of all, there’s a full-blown Linux distribution sitting underneath the Pepper Keeper! Second, a built-in Web browser and MP3 player for those late nights lounging around on the couch in front of the TV. Next, full Wi-Fi capabillity. Wireless access, anytime, anywhere you’re in range of an access point. If there’s no WEP key, it’ll automatically latch onto the network. If there is a WEP key, just input it and you’re off!

And that’s just the hardware. The software sitting on top of the hardware has AOL Instant Messenger and Rendezvous IM capability for text messaging and content sharing between clients. Bringing collaboration to the masses, the Pepper Keeper allows you to share any content that you’ve created with anyone on your Buddy List or in your e-mail address book! Make a change to a document, send it to a friend, have them add some content, and the changes get shared back to you! Homework, stories, reports, journals, notebooks, photo albums, scrapbooks, the list goes on!

Since the Pepper Keeper runs on any platform that supports Java (Mac OS, Windows, Linux, etc.), you can have a copy of the Pepper Keeper running on every system you have an account on and sync the contents between them! Make a change on your laptop and sync the changes with your desktop.

Let’s just say that I’m totally psyched that we’ve finally released 1.0. One of my primary needs for a long time has been simple organizer software that allowed me to keep date-based notes in an organized fashion that could be synced between multiple devices. And I can’t wait to finally get my hands on a Pepper Pad! Instant-on performance with a built-in split keyboard means zero wait time to start taking notes. Plus, it’s small…about the size and weight of a textbook. No more bulky laptops with unfolding screens. Just whip out the Pepper Pad and start transcribing notes!

Anyway, if you couldn’t tell, I’m excited. Damn excited. And it totally rocked to see news of the Pepper Keeper starting to spread around the Net. There are even some screenshots floating around!

Batten down the hatches!

Our first Winter storm of the season will be hitting us sometime tomorrow afternoon. NOAA has issued a hazardous weather outlook, a winter storm warning, and a winter storm watch for our area. I guess I’d better panic, run to the store, buy $500 worth of milk and bread, board up the windows, and create an overall unwarranted disturbance. Then, just to make sure I’m following the herd, I better go out and crash my car after the first snowflakes start falling.

mtds644e.jpg Feh. Welcome to New England. Whether we get a foot or three feet, I’m sure the media will be touting this as the storm of the century, just like they do every year. Luckily, we’re just barely into the century/millennium, so just about anything over two feet will top the record books. On the other hand, I can guarantee that this storm will be a flop because we just bought a Yard Machines MTD S644E snow thrower. So you can thank me later when the storm misses us completely.

Regardless, since I have no life whatsoever, I spent the evening preparing the yard for whatever snow we do receive. All loose debris, tools, and perimeter decorative fencing was removed from the driveway and front yard, the swings were brought in, the trellis was tipped over and laid flat on the ground, and all miscellaneous crap was cleaned up and moved out of the prospective path of the snow thrower. I even went as far as to actually test the snow thrower to make sure it was working. After all, spending all afternoon in a potential blizzard trying to fire up a motor would add insult to injury.

We’re in hot water…

One of the steam return pipes on our oil burner rusted through and blew up tonight. Feh. We have heat, but at low pressure. Hopefully the repair guys will show up early tomorrow and apply some pipe wrap to limp us through until we do a full system replacement. I’m assuming we’re looking at upwards of $10k for a full burner replacement. At least Kelly’s parents said they’d help us out when the time came.

Well, the time has come.

A shocking realization…

The past week has been horribly dry and static shocks have become more and more common. You know the scene from Office Space where Peter walks up to the front door of the facility, gingerly reaches out to the door handle, then gets a massive shock? Yeah…just like that. But worse. I actually got shocked from touching a plastic cover that was sitting on my desk!

That’s right. A hunk of plastic sitting on a pressboard desk. Oh, yeah, that conducts electricity! Fer chrissake…

Highway flaming death…

It took me half an hour to drive three miles this morning. 495, 125, and 97 are all parking lots. There are traffic jams on residential side streets! The dusting of snow we received has caused chaos and mayhem across the state. Multiple accidents SmarTraveler is reporting that there are multiple accidents on 495. Multiple accidents and traffic at a standstill on 93.

Come on. This is New Frickin’ England. We laugh at two and three foot snow dumps. But no, a measly quarter inch of snow has crippled the entire Northeast.

Feh. I’m going home. VPNs rule.