Got our AT&T U-Verse Installed today!

Well, I was so tired of DirecTV and their HD “glitches” that I decided to give AT&T’s offering a try. 

After all, I’ve been with all the major providers so far: Comcast, then Dish Network, then most recently DirecTV.  I still had to go thru seven receivers (five Standard Definition, two High Definition)before we got one that worked, and while the programming has been fairly consistent, it still has a lot of problems.  Mostly it was lots of issues due to typical satellite “line of sight” related issues (inclement weather, birds sitting on the LNB of the dish, etc).  It didn’t help that I knew more about their services and products than their technical support people did.  Please don’t even get me started on their lack of customer service!

Anyways, I ordered the service back on the 8th, and the technician showed-up today as expected. 

Because I had wired my house for CAT6 way back in 2000, most of the work the technician would have needed to do was already done.  We used Ethernet connections to bridge all of the boxes to the new 2Wire Router (3800HGV-B), and I’m getting a good solid 25Meg download (shared between the TV Programming and my High Speed Internet).

Unfortunately, I had to give up my Static IP address that I had with my “grandfathered” DSL service, so now I’m researching Dynamic DNS (DynDNS).  I’ll probably have enough info when I’m done to write a how-to…

My MVP Award just arrived!

I was happy to take a break from some stone-laying that I was involved with today in order to sign for a package from DHL.  Ah, this must be the “gift” that Microsoft was sending me!  

I was totally unsure what the gift would actually be, so it would be fair to say that I was pleasantly surprised to find that Microsoft had sent me some very high quality items.


When I first opened the package, I was greeted with a nicely pre-mounted paper Award Certificate sitting on top of the interior box. 

The Award Certificate is mounted on a backerboard that has the pre-punched swing-out stand for display on desk or fireplace mantle, and another swing-out clasp for hanging on a wall.  Very Nice!

Once I removed this award, the box below (a box within a box) became evident, and it obvious that there was a very weighty item within.


Extracting the large gift-box within my award package, I found that it wasn’t really a box, but rather one of those 4-sided bands around top, bottom, front and back of a high-quality gift-box. 

The box was one of those impressive felt-interior boxes that the really prestigious awards come in.  It had a felt fabric latch with a pop-button at the end. Very impressive indeed.  And when you opened it, you are greeted with a very impressive etched lead crystal award.

DSCF0788The lead crystal award itself is composed of two panes of vertical crystal embedded in a thicker slab of crystal serving as the base of the award. 

The larger back pane of crystal contains an image of the world globe in the upper left corner. 

The smaller pane of crystal sits in the front, and contains the text: “We recognize and value your exceptional contributions and commitment to the technical communities worldwide.”

This award is very hefty, weighing the better part of four pounds!  However, I have to say that it is incredibly cool looking to say the least!


Also included in the package were a couple of other items befitting an awardee:

  • an MVP award card, which, when paired with the secret handshake and secret password, should get me into future MVP-related events.
  • an MVP lapel pin, so that I look even more cool at any swank business events. 

Very cool!   Thank you Microsoft!


Newly released: GPS Tuner Version 5.4j

Megalith Systems has just released version 5.4j of  GPS Tuner, their award winning “Off-road” GPS Navigation application.

This new version includes these new features:
– When installed on Magellan’s MobileMapper 6, it can take advantage of the special sensors (E-Compass, Temperature, Pressure) that this device contains.  Details can be found at:
– When installed on an HTC Diamond/Touch Pro, it can take advantage of the sensors (Light Sensor for Day/Night mode, Nav Sensor for Zooming In/Out in Map Window or in Graphs).

For all other devices:
– Fullscreen display
– Long press of EXIT button can send GPS Tuner to background (minimize)
– Optimized display of tracks and routes on VGA devices

Check out the 2 week free trial at

Microsoft presents me with the 2009 Microsoft MVP Award!

I was so totally surprised when I opened my e-mail this morning before heading off to work, and saw that Microsoft had written me to announce that they were presenting me with the 2009 Microsoft MVP Award in the “Windows Mobile Devices” category for all of my hard work helping-out at MobilitySite, the Microsoft Windows Mobile “Total Access” forums, and for my assistance helping out Megalith Systems (authors of GPS Tuner).

This award is given to exceptional technical community leaders who actively share their high quality, real world expertise with others.


Wow!   I’m honestly still in a state of shock (more than 12 hours later)…