Scott's Thoughts

Best Picture

I completely agree with John Gruber about the Best Picture Oscar. Well, at least I agree with the premise that he puts forth--I haven't seen WALL-E, so I can't really comment directly about that, although it's definitely on my Netflix queue. The Oscars is a popularity contest, not among people who love movies necessarily, but of the movie-making establishment. This means that the process in inherently political more than a straight vote on the absolute merits of the movie itself.

All that said, I had even less skin in the game last night. I hadn't seen any of the movies that were nominated. Most of them came out late in the year, after Ainsley came along, making it hard for me to get to the theater. Either that, or I didn't care about the movie. Either way, not a lot for me on this year's version of the Oscars.

Shoryuken!

Back in the day, my friend Todd and I used to play Street Fighter II in just about any venue we could, usually the local 7-11 or bowling alley. Now, many years later, Street Fighter IV is out for the home systems. Despite my fond memories of SF2, I didn't pre-order SF4. The other entries in the SF series just never captured my attention like the second one did. But after reading glowing review after glowing review, and also because I was rained in for most of the weekend, I ran out and bought it. The verdict? It's marvelous. The gameplay is very similar to what I remember of SF2, but it's been completely remade with a modern aesthetic and modern specs (it looks great on an HDTV). Aside from some really hideous character fight intros, it's a pretty game, and visually arresting. The new "black splatter" theme that adorns the game and its new "focus" moves is neat. It's fun to play these classic characters on a modern system (in my case, the Xbox 360) that out-powers a handful of the original arcade machines. My only regret now is that I didn't pre-order it and also get the real arcade-style joystick, which is now sold-out everywhere. The gamepads the youngsters all use these days don't cut it for an old joystick-loving fogey like me.

GXV Unimog

This is the RV that we really need for the bike trips. No problem camping at the top of Gooseberry Mesa in this one!

(Via Squob.)

The European Airstream Bambi 422

Not that I'd trade our 25-footer for one, but Airstream has just introduced a new European-specific model, the Bambi 422.
Very cute. Apparently, it's lighter and narrower to accommodate the roads and lighter tow vehicles in Europe.

Gooseberry, Here I Come! Oh, and Moab and Fruita Too!

Dave sent an email out about this year's version of the Fall mountain biking trip about a week ago. Val and I have taken our RV (the Minnie at the time) for the last couple of years, but was figured to be down for the count because of the new baby. The trip usually starts in Vegas, moves to Gooseberry Mesa (near St. George, UT) and then on to Fruita, CO and lastly to Moab, UT. This version is no different, although it is a bit later, being at the very end of April/beginning of May.

Since joining Veodia just a year ago, I've taken a bike trip to British Columbia (North Shore, Squamish) and used the rest of my time off after the birth of my daughter. Luckily, I've recovered enough time to string together 5 weekdays off. Val was cool with bringing Ainsley along, so we're going to pull the Airstream to meet the group for part of the Fruita/Moab legs. I can't wait.

Because of the dearth of vacation time, I had written off Gooseberry. I love Gooseberry (it's certainly in my top 10 places to ride), but I've been there the last couple of years in a row and haven't been to Moab in probably 5. I used to make an annual pilgrimage to Moab, so I definitely miss it.

Then, things started falling into place for me to be able to fly out for a weekend of riding in Gooseberry. Many thanks to Dave for offering to schlep my bike out to Utah so it'll be there for the weekend and also for doing pickup/dropoff duty at the airports.

It's going to be a most excellent spring!

Renting Lenses

James Duncan Davidson, who also recently bought a D700, has a good blog post about renting lenses. I’ll have to try this before laying out cash on some of those pricey Nikkors.

New Toy


New Nikon, originally uploaded by Stmpjmpr.

Loving it so far. More soon.

Peter Moffatt – 1923 -2007

Peter Moffatt, a director of seveal classic Doctor Who episodes, died recently. He did one of my favorites as a kid, The Five Doctors.

2008 Tour de France Course Unveiled

I’m a mountain biker, but I do enjoy watching some coverage of the Tour de France when it’s going on. They just today took the wraps off of what will be the course for the 2008 edition of the race.

Ruby, Leopard and Upgrading

Today’s the release of Mac OS X 10.5 “Leopard,” and it’s a big release as far as Ruby is concerned. Ruby is finally supposed to be built-in as a framework, with Rails, RubyGems, readline support and a whole bunch of other Rubylicious goodness. You can read all the details on Mac OS X Forge. I’ve been working on updating my personal projects to work with the Rails 2.0 Preview Release, so we’ll see how customizing the installation that Apple gives us goes.

As far as getting Leopard goes, I’m not planning in waiting in line to get a t-shirt, but I’ll definitely be making a stop by the local Apple Store to get my copy at, say, 9 o’clock. You know, after the lines die down a bit and I can hopefully just walk in and grab a copy.

I usually do a clean install when I get a new OS, but I just did a clean install about 3 months ago, and I think I’m going to try the upgrade route this time and see how it goes.

Update: The official Rails blog has an entry on compiling the native C extensions for MySQL to work on Leopard.

Why is this here?

Those of you who know me know that I regularly post in a walled garden with a few close friends and also recently started a blog with my wife. Why another place here? Am I really lacking for an outlet? No, not really. But there are times when I’d like to write something viewable by the world-at-large and perhaps isn’t really relevant in a blog with Val. So, I decided to start this up. I’ll try and post here and if it doesn’t work, I’ll kill it off. We’ll see. :)

Scott Hill, elsewhere on the web: