jason thurber's blog

globally-scoped ramblings

Archive for January, 2004

Sleep Deprivation

with 21 comments

It’s been a while since I really deprived myself of a full night’s sleep. In fact, the last time I remember really feeling like I was going to die from lack of sleep was over a year ago when I was visiting some friends in New York.

We had an early morning flight back to Cali, and needed to be at the airport by 5:30 (or some similarly ungodly time). I decided to stay up all night playing PS2 games on the 15’x8′ screen we had build for his LCD Projector during the requisite “Morons at Home Depot” project. I lasted until about 3am, when my resolve faltered and I decided to “grab a couple of hours sleep”. I did exactly that, grabbing an hour of very light sleep, then heading to JFK at 4:45. At which point I felt like I was going to die!

We were literally the first people at the airport, the first ones in line waiting for security to open, and being the first one thru security (lucky me) I got my shoes thoroughly checked for whatever it is they were checking shoes for that day. An hour later there were way too many kids running around waiting for the flight, so I decided to go buy earplugs at the gift shop. I asked, “I’d like two sets of earplugs, how much are they?”. And was told, absolutely straight-faced, “$8.99 per pair” (mind you, these are those cheap foam earplugs that they sell for 25cents at KMart). I politely expressed my surprise by saying something to the effect of “Holy shit!”. I then asked how much for a bottle of NyQuil. I was told, “$6.” “Excellent”, says I, and proceeded to buy the pharmaceutical equivalent of earplugs. I took the recommended adult dose (two big slugs), fell asleep in the lobby 15 minutes later, woke up to board the plane, fell asleep as soon as I was in my seat, woke up after being repeatedly poked to verify that I was “qualified” to perform the tasks required by my lofty position as an emergency exit row attendant. I said “Huh, yeah…” then fell asleep again. (As an aside, I could not have managed to walk to the bathroom unaided, much less assist anyone out of a plane…). I woke up several hours later to eat, then slept until we touched down in Oakland. That may be the most enjoyable flight I’ve ever taken.

All of this is by way of leading up to a story about my poor time management skills, and how they lead to me sleeping thru much of this Sunday.

I woke up early on Saturday, went for a ride with Dad up to Alice’s Restaurant. Lazed around for a few hours, then went to REI and the Apple Store (which was out of copies of iLife ’04). I’d gotten a call from Scott that morning, and knew he wanted to go to Sacramento on Sunday. I’d also gotten a call from some college friends who wanted to meet in Walnut Creek for dinner and drinks that (Saturday) night. I caught a ride up to Walnut Creek, drank to much wine and ate too many egg rolls and ended up getting home at 1:30. I slept until 4am (that’s 2.5 hours if you’re counting) and drove up to Scott’s house (arriving at 5am). It’s curious that 70 mph felt really fast until I was half-way thru my cup of coffee. An hour later we were waiting for McDonald’s to open in Vallejo (McDonalds not being open is an excellent way to discern that you’re up too early). We drove up to Sac, unloaded a bunch of stuff into a storage locker and drove back to the Bay Area (getting back around 11am). If you’re curious, this is what 5am looks like:
Picture of Truck

Anyway, on the way back I started to get goose pimples, which is an excellent indicator that you’ve had too much coffee and not enough sleep. What is the point of my story you may well ask? Nothing. If you have further questions please note that it’s under the “pointless” category. I think you’ll agree it’s well placed…

Written by jthurber

January 19th, 2004 at 1:55 pm

Posted in pointless

Minor iPod Emergency

with 21 comments

Well, it’s been a very iPod-centric day for me.

I manually sync’d some new music and an interview with Bruce Sterling (for more on my overall iPod “strategy” you can read this earlier post). I then walked out to the car, plugged the iPod into it’s Belkin Auto Adapter and tried to find the book I was listening to yesterday…

My only playlist was the “On-the-go” playlist, which was empty
so I rebooted it (Menu and Play buttons together)…
no music magically appeared under Playlists or Browse.
So I drove to work listening to the radio and talking on the phone, thinking that some quality time connected to the Powerbook might heal my sick iPod. But, nothing worked!

So I went out at lunch and bought a 120GB External Drive, backed up the (invisible) contents of the iPod using PodManager (which I bought, upon reflection I should have learned to use rsync), erased the iPod using DiskUtility, re-installed using the iPod Installer 2.1 and connected it to Scott’s 17 to wake it up (’cause the 12 wasn’t seeing it) and dropped the contents of the backup onto the iPod icon in iTunes…

I’m now waiting for 4142 songs to be copied across! Thank God it’s over Firewire instead of USB 1.1!

What have I learned:

  • Don’t trust the iPod as a stable place to store music and books
  • I need more semi-portable, backup-type, storage (problem solved with the 120GB drive… at least for a while)
  • Anything having to do with music or video is a HUGE time-sink, especially when it stops working
  • I probably could have gotten away with deleting the iTunesDB file from the iPod_Control/iTunes folder of the iPod, but I’m an idiot and had already wiped it by the time I found that advice on Google
  • Written by jthurber

    January 7th, 2004 at 6:11 pm

    Posted in mild-rantings