Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Standing Desk

I'm trying out this "Standing Desk" concept. For a thorough explanation of the concept, check out this article by Gina Trapani. My job has been pretty sedentary over the past several months (not that I mind being indoors and air conditioned during the 100+ degree weather we've been having here in west Texas) and my waistline has been responding as you'd expect. In addition, my sitting posture is terrible and this may help me avoid back problems down the road.

I picked up two 12" tall shelves from Lowes yesterday evening and assembled them during lunch. One is supporting the monitors and other has the keyboard and mouse. My coworkers think I'm nuts, but that's been true for a while now.

So, I'm expecting to have sore feet for the next several days, but by next week things will hopefully be feeling normal. We'll see how it goes.

Update: Standing Desk Part II

Monday, June 6, 2011

Cutting the Cable

Over the weekend, I hooked up my HTPC with a USB cable tuner and antenna. Without a CableCARD (and who wants to deal with that hassle?) the cable tuner was only able to access the analog cable channels. Since US broadcast television went digital in 2009, over-the-air signals are actually better quality (for me, anyway). I get ABC and Fox in HDTV, and about 15 other channels in standard def.

Now running Windows Media Center (which is pretty awesome, btw) on a Windows 7 box hooked up to the TV via HDMI, I can play movies, tv shows and music from my pre-existing libraries, throw up a picture slideshow, play and record live TV via terrestrial broadcast, use Apple's Airplay from my iPhone or iPad, and access Netflix and Hulu for internet TV content. All controlled by a single remote control.

As I'm not actually paying for cable myself (corporate perks!) I'll still use cable to get my Mythbuster's fix. But the next time I move, I suspect I'll forgo cable TV entirely.