Plagued By Dumbasses

June 19, 2006

Holy Shit! Is my Inbox really at ZERO??

Filed under: Techy Tales,Work Whatnots — by gresmer @ 5:31 pm

Taras has been gushing over a book he recently read related to using MS Outlook to help you with your task management struggles.  Total Workday Control basically outlines a task management process that uses a tool you already use everyday – Outlook.  I am constantly overwhelmed by the number of things I am supposed to take care of in a day and while I have tried a number of methods to manage my workload – nothing really sticks.  Hearing how excited Taras was about this new process, I decided to give it a shot.

So, over the weekend I read the book, reconfigured Outlook to the proper specifications and emptied my Inbox.  People tend to use their Inbox to remind them of stuff they need to do but a more effective method is to convert all email into specific tasks and then get the email filed and out of your way.  You then have to manage just the task lists (and there are many tips on how to do that in the book). Today was the first day of using the new approach and it is a little weird but I think it was a successful first day.  My inbox is at ZERO, I have completed all of the tasks I absolutely had to get done today and I am contemplating leaving the office and it is only 5:30PM. (and the last 25 minutes have been spent typing this post – not actually working…shhhh don’t tell anyone) 

I still have to compile all my tasks in one place and get rid of all of the notes on my desk and in my head so that I have one complete list in Outlook, but so far so good.  There is definitely something calming about having an empty Inbox and being able to tick things off a list.  It doesn’t give me less work to do but it does put it in more manageable chunks. 

If I can make this a habit I have high hopes for the process.  I haven’t gone into a lot of details on how the workflow process is designed to work but if you want more details about it you can ask or check out the far more detailed post that Taras has on his blog.  He is probably more than a little biased because the system uses a tool from his beloved Microsoft but I will admit that this time his enthusiasm may be warranted.

[tags]Microsoft, MS Outlook, Outlook, task management, Inbox[/tags]

May 31, 2006

See? I used to be smart – really I was

Filed under: Random Ramblings,Techy Tales — by gresmer @ 10:06 pm

I was interested to know where I was sitting in the Google search results these days (well actually I had no ideas for a blog post and figured this would at least give me something to write about) and so I did a little search and I discovered two interesting things. 

First – my site is number one!!

Second – I found a listing for me on a government site.  It was actually a listing of Governor General Academic Medal recipients.  Yup, that’s right – I used to be smart and I actually earned the Bronze when I was in high school. I kinda forgot about it until I saw the search result.  It is so weird to see your name come up in places you aren’t expecting.

[tags]Google, Governor General, Academic Medal[/tags]

May 13, 2006

It’s a whole new world

Filed under: Techy Tales — by gresmer @ 2:09 am

I was planning on writing a post about my night out playing pool with some friends (which was really fun btw) but that idea went out the window when I made a startling discovery.  When I logged into my blog I found a completely changed admin section.  Sometime between last night and tonight my blog host (aka Taras) has found the time to upgrade to a newer version of WordPress.  There seems to be a whole slew of new options and I am actually quite eager to start investigating the new possibilities.  I will say though that at first glance it does seem a lot more user-friendly and less techy and I am not sure how I feel about that.  I guess the upside is that there appears to be a lot of new areas for me to explore.  Wheeeee!

[tags]Word Press, WordPress[/tags]

May 5, 2006

Oh no – the bots have arrived

Filed under: Techy Tales — by gresmer @ 9:25 pm

Taras‘ shoutbox has been plagued by spam lately and I was feeling very lucky to have escaped the onslaught. Well the bots have moved on and I am now being hit. I guess they got tired of him. Hey Taras – maybe you should put out snacks for them to see if they will return to you. Really I won’t mind them deserting me for you. I hope they tire of my quickly!

April 3, 2006

2 drives are better than one

Filed under: Techy Tales — by gresmer @ 8:45 pm

My pessimistic nature has been telling me to back-up my laptop for a while and so I did some asking around on what the best options were and I was pointed in the direction of the Buffalo LinkStation. (Thanks Taras!) It had a lot of great reviews and it fit in my budget. I opted for an NAS device instead of a standard external hard drive because I am lazy and if I had to locate the hard drive and connect it to my computer every time I wanted to back stuff up – well I just wouldn’t do it. This way I can schedule it to do all the work for me without having to remember. That works perfectly for a girl who has a memory that seems to fail her more and more every day. Hmm, what was I talking about again…oh yeah – my new gadget.

Today my new gadget arrived and in about 20 minutes it was set-up and my laptop was being backed-up. It is really light and really quite small as you can see from the picture. And now all my mucho importante (well actually mundane and boring may be a better description) data is all safe and secure. Whee!
The PackRat
[tags]Buffalo, LinkStation, NAS, hard drive[/tags]

March 30, 2006

Today I learned…

Filed under: Techy Tales — by gresmer @ 9:29 pm

I was digging around in the guts of my blog and I decided to try and make some changes to my blog theme. With some patience and some educated guesses, I successfully expanded the width of my writing area and changed the colour of the header text. I have had very little exposure to CSS so even though I know it probably doesn’t sound like much of an accomplishment, I am quite pleased with myself. I learned something new and adjusted something that has been bothering me – not a bad way to end the day.
[tags]CSS, style sheet[/tags]

March 27, 2006

If at first you don’t succeed…

Filed under: Health Highlights,Techy Tales — by gresmer @ 10:20 pm

I was unsuccessful with purchasing my heart rate monitor on eBay so today I went to SportChek to pick one up. It’s kinda nifty actually. It is the Polar F4 and it is really easy to use – at least for the basic stuff. I’m looking forward to using it to track my progress on my jogging program. The program was going really well and then last Sunday I hurt my left knee and I have been barely able to walk since. I am going to give it a try tomorrow though to see if I can continue. Taking the stairs is really painful however my regular walking stride isn’t sending shooting pain up my leg anymore so that is a good sign. I am very concerned that I may not be able to resume the jogging though. Grrrrrr! Stoopid leg!!
[tags]Polar, F4, SportChek, jogging, heart rate monitor[/tags]

March 14, 2006

Please let me introduce you to a new family member

Filed under: Techy Tales — by gresmer @ 10:11 pm

Harmony 880A while ago I was told about this wonderful gadget that I have been dreaming about ever since. The gadget that had me drooling was the Logitech Harmony 880 remote. I have been watching for sales as the remote is ridiculously expensive and finally a few weeks ago I found one. I found a site selling it for almost half its regular price. I could resist no longer and before you could find the right buttons on the 4 remotes I needed to use to watch TV, I had ordered my new gadget. It arrived a while ago but I had some things I had to finish up before my birthday and so I left my new toy in the box until I had finished my homework. I didn’t get both my homework tasks done but I did get the hardest one done so as a reward I opened the box.

This thing is awesome!! Instead of using one remote to turn on my TV, another to turn on my cable box and yet another to turn on my speakers I can now hit one button and my fabulous new friend does all that for me. It rocks!!!! I haven’t played with all the options yet but just the fact that I no longer have to shuffle 4 remotes is such a relief. Welcome to the family Harmony!
[tags]Harmony 880, Logitech, remote [/tags]

February 22, 2006

I type, therefore I am

Filed under: Techy Tales — by gresmer @ 10:40 pm

I was feeling in need of a little pick-me-up tonight so I decided to see if I was making any impact in the land of the internet. Much to my amazement I am actually moving up in the world. On Google, I am the 5th listing for “dumbasses” and I actually have 3 listings in the top 5 (including the top result) for “gwen resmer”. Sorry Mathew – you have fallen to 7th behind Taras and I. For those of you who follow my blog you will know that I have been battling Mathew for months to get to the top of the search results list. It is certainly insignificant in terms of actual impact on the world but it makes me happy anyways.

February 11, 2006

Task scheduling – cool idea!

Filed under: Techy Tales — by gresmer @ 9:13 pm

I was reading a post on Lifehacker tonight about using Windows Scheduled Tasks and they had some neat ideas. Like how about getting your computer to automatically launch all of the sites you visit each day? Or have it defrag your hard drive for you – without you having to remember to do it? Really I suppose if you know where to put what command where, there are many possibilities of what you could get your computer to take care of by itself. I think that is way cool!! I think I will look into what things I would like Fiona (my laptop) to handle on her own. On another note, I quite enjoy Lifehacker. It has a great mix of hard core geek interest and general life interest content. It appeals to the geek and the non-geek in me.
[tags]Windows, Scheduled Tasks [/tags]

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