Brizzly Inline

A long time ago I discovered TweetLens on Boris Mann’s site. I was looking for a web based Twitter client that allowed me to synchronize my reading between computers. Tweetlens offered this and was pretty slick.

Tweetlens has a long list of features that I love, but recently something happened on the site, and I started having problems logging in and getting content. It was unavailable for a while, and when I could login, it seemed a lot slower for some reason. The creator of TweetLens has also moved on to other projects and put the source code up on GitHub. I took a peak at the code, but it didn’t think it was in a state where I could figure out how to install it on my own domain.

I started to look for something new.

I quickly discovered Brizzly on TechCrunch. I’ve been using Brizzly for Twitter reading for about a week now, and although I miss a couple features from Tweetlens, I don’t think I will be going back.

First off, @Brizzly just looks a lot nicer and more polished. I may not be able to mark items as read, but the site tells me when there are more tweets to download, then after I retrieve them they are highlighted in yellow.

Brizzly allows me to quickly and easily switch between multiple accounts.

I can create groups of tweeps. Handy for getting common topics together. What I also discovered is that you can add people you don’t follow to a group. There are some people I like checking in on once in a while, but they tweet too much to follow them. I have a group for people just like this.

When scrolling down through the tweet list, they have a never ending scroll feature that is just awesome. When you reach the end, the page requests the next set of tweets and displays them inline. I don’t have to click a link to refresh the list.

Their DM’s are more like IM’s which is cool too. Url’s are auto expanded for you, twit pics and youtube video’s are displayed inline, you can save draft tweets, you can mute people, and more. Read their help page for a better list of features. Also, Brizzly uses OAuth for authentication, so you never have to give them your password.

Downside is that they are still in Beta, and you need an invitation code. Mine arrived a couple days after requesting it. They also seem receptive to suggestions and bug reports which is nice.

Overall my switch to Brizzly has been a good one.

Deadbolt Brilliant

When we moved last, one of the things we did after moving in was get a locksmith in to change all the locks. The main reason I wanted this done was I wanted a keyless deadbolt.

We picked out the Schlage Plymouth model in the satin nickel finish.

This thing is simply brilliant.

No worrying about locking ourselves out of the house, or getting locked out by the kids. When walking down for swimming lessons or to get groceries, there is one less thing to carry. No need to copy keys for guests, dog walker, house cleaners, family members, neighbours, etc. Simply program in a new code. When Sox goes for a run, or takes Yoshi for a walk, she can just go and I don’t need to leave a door unlocked for her.

It is easy to use, and the keys light up so you can see in the dark. The only fault I know of is that they key is hard to use in the deadbolt (you have to get a couple things lined up properly).

I love it and highly recommend it to anyone. I just noticed that Schlage even has their own twitter account.

Daredevil Dude

This past Saturday I had a movie night at home. Sox was having a sleepout in the back yard with Sprout so I had the house to myself (mostly)

I broke out a DVD that I got for myself at Xmas. The movie was Daredevil.

I hadn’t held out any hope for the movie and was actually expecting it to be pretty lame. Shockingly I enjoyed it. I don’t know the comic storyline, but the movie plot was pretty good. They introduced the characters well enough for me to get who they were and what they did.

Ben Affleck actually did a good job in this role. I don’t see him as an action movie star, so I was anticipating a train wreck. Jennifer Garner played Elektra well, though the character didn’t get enough screen time. Colin Farrell played Bullseye really well. A very psychotic dude with lots of little idiosynchracies.

I was time well spent.

Memorial Hip

I saw the Tragically Hip last night at Memorial Centre It was a great show. I had heard a while before the show that they were going to play a bunch of older songs, and they did not dissapoint. They played some of their new ones too, including a couple new ones I don’t think I had heard before.

I had a great time at the show, and enjoyed their stage presence. Gord Downie is a freak on stage. That is all I need to say about that.

They played a lot of my favorites yet I kept wanting more. Thankfully they ended their encore with Locked in the Trunk of a Car, the song I was wanting to hear for a while.

Standing there in the arena, 38 Years Old brought me back in time. I reminisced about University days and contemplated the sequence of twists and turns that brought me to this point in my life. I love that the power of music can take me to another point in my life.

At the end of the show I was glad I went. We had floor seats, and in memorial arena that meant we were pretty damn close to the stage. It was a fun night that left me a little tired for work today, but it was definitely worth it.

Trailer Movie

Got out last night to see the Trailer Park Boys (IMDB). What a blast the movie was. It was a riot. It was what I was hoping the Trailer Park Boys movie would be like, which is to say just like the TV show, but longer.

The plot was hilarious, the jokes were great, the swearing was outrageous (I loved Bubbles’ name for a helicopter), and the drug and drinking references numerous.

It was funny to see some of the things they put in the movie just becouase they could. This includes most of the nudity.

I wouldn’t recommend the movie to anyone who hasn’t seen the show, but if you have, and like it, go see the movie. Definitely worth the price of admission, and probably best to see it with a bunch of other people.

iTunes Information

iTunes 7 was released today. I use iTunes to manage my mp3’s, and transfer files to my iPod’s. Well, a new feature of iTunes 7 is a long, loooong, overdue ability to download album art from the iTunes store. After installing the update, and letting iTunes fix my library for gapless playback, I set about turning on the album art feature.

I found the setting, but iTunes said I had to be logged in to the iTunes store to be able to use it. I don’t know why they need me to be logged in to download some images. That is more than a little weird, but I have an Apple ID, so I started to log in to the store. I started to log in, but quickly I was stopped. It wanted my credit card information. I don’t plan to buy any music off iTunes, so why do they need my credit card information? I don’t tend to just hand this info out. I should be able to (IMO) login to the iTunes store and when they need my payment info, provide it then (or be given the option of storing it on their servers).

Another consideration is that I don’t know how they are going to transfer this info to their servers. Is it transported securely or not? iTunes says they will transport it securely, but the only way I can confirm that is to start up wireshark (previously ethereal) and watch the traffic being sent to and from the Apple servers.

In the end I am not willing to hand over my credit card info just for this feature. I will stick to third party apps.

GBS Experience

As has been posted on a couple other sites I got out to see Great Big Sea on Labour Day. The tickets were a present to Sox from KaptainK. GBS isn’t my most favorite band, but I definitely like a bunch of their songs.

I really enjoyed myself. The band is a lot of fun to watch live. They are very funny, witty, clever, and their songs live are really something to be experienced. They has such energy and charisma that it is hard not to watch them when they are performing. I had a great time at the show.

At one point the lead singer Alan dedicated to Steve. I had no idea whom he was talking about, but in retrospect he was most likely talking about the death of Steve “the Croc Hunter” Irwin.

It was a great show in Centenial Square, and the best part is that it was over by 10. This is good for parents of infants. My how life has changed. I used to go to shows where the main act didn’t hit the stage until 10.

Ongoing Purchases

Last week I went to get some fenders for my new bike.  The fenders I originally bought with the bike just didn’t fit, so I bought some replacements.

Setup was pretty easy, but very, very fiddly. Getting them aligned, but not rubbing is an ongoing process. I might take them off and start over. Yesterday I was able to actually test them out. I was pretty sceptical since they don’t cover very much of the tire, but after a few minutes on the wet roads I was suitably impressed. They kept the spray off my legs and off my butt. I arrived at work still relatively dry.

The other item I bought was a new pair of Mace riding shorts. I have worn them to work a few times, and on the weekend ride. Wow. Comfortable. Love them. I got them for a steal ($50 regular $85), but even at full price they would have been worth the price. Better than the Roach Indy shorts I have been wearing for years. The Mace shorts have a lining, zip crotch, tough button closure, and belt loops. Roach Indy shorts have a velcro closure that wears out after a while.

Anyway, 2 purchases that I am happy with. Gotta love that.

Gripping Badness

Keifer props up the show

One of the shows I like to watch is 24. Every season the story is so gripping, I can’t escape it. If I should happen to miss an episode, there is always the online story guide that gives enough detail that I can get by.

Yet, nearly every episode I watch something happens that I have difficulty watching. Sometimes it is the horible acting. The blank looks on a character that seems to go on forever. Sometimes it is the pathetic and useless sub plot that goes nowhere. Remember Kim getting caught in a cougar trap? Sometimes it is just the extraneous characters that don’t add anything to the show.

Despite the badness, the show is still gripping. The story is so good, and Keifer Sutherland definitely carries the show with his acting skill. The funny part is near the end of every episode I know there is going to be a cliff hanger twist. As this twist approaches, I am always trying to guess what it will be. I never get it right.

A couple season’s ago Sox and I got a couple episodes behind near the beginning of the season. We ended up taping pretty much every single episode. I grew to love the count down timer that indicated the show was about to being. I grew to love being able to fast forward through the commercials. I was so used to that, I will still occasionally reach for the VCR remote when the commercial break starts.