Friday, September 28, 2007

Just Foolin' Around

Remember that ten bucks that Doyle's Room gave me for just being a player of free games. Then they deceided that they did not want to cater to USA customers after the IGA was tacked onto the defense budget and signed into law. I was forced to move that ten bucks to full tilt or lose it into the ether. So I created a full tilt account and moved the sawbuck over a few months ago. On my day off today, I went to play a few free money HORSE sit and go's. Was having so much fun, I used a buck and a quarter to enter my first online tournament for pay. The picture shows that I was lucky enough to beat out forty four other players for first prize. Not nearly as much as a face to face live tournament, it was a fun feeling getting into the final six and into the money at all. Cool, a new way to pass the time while folding laundry or hunting up some lunch.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Wait a sec...

What was wrong with DoubleSec that they had to come up with TripleSec?

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Season's dead, friendships still there

Commiserating with fellow fans after the team was mathematically eliminated at the stadium club last night during the last couple innings was both painful and helpful. Talked turned to off season gatherings and e-mails and phone numbers were passed around. Sounds like a fun off season in the making. Well after the game, we were getting kicked out of the club and said our goodbyes. I noticed a group of twenty somethings going down the ramp ahead of me. They were moving slow since one of them was hopping on one foot. As I passed one of the girls asked, 'can my friend ride to the car over there on your back?' Amazingly I answered 'absolutely' and kept on walking. Three strides later, there is a leap onto my back and just as amazingly I did not stumble but proceeded to clamp my hands behind her knees and kept walking to where the first one pointed. The things a greybeard has to put up with now and then. About twenty yards through the parking lot, she exclaims that she can walk now. Then repeats it a few seconds later. I let go, she slips off, we wave and I walk towards the mini, remotely lowering the top. Motoring away, I just grinned and waved again as they piled into their sedan. Go home, Proto.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007


Dodgers are back in town for one last week. I've got the tickets, might as well go...

Monday, September 24, 2007

Cheap Web Hosting

So, I went with a cheap hosting service just to see how it would be. I must admit, that I like it a lot. To create the forms I need for my players, I've had to learn a little PHP scripting over the last week or so, but there are hundreds of good tutorials on the internet, and an online manual at So is where I've been hanging my hat. Maybe I'll have my forms working the way I want them to in another week or two.

Friday, September 21, 2007

30 years of DnD April Fool Bestiary

Jared von Hindeman came up with a list of thirty years of stupid monsters from April editions of Dungeon magazine etc. for a very weird trip down a forgotten dicey path. I think I still have some paper and pencils around somewhere with a character's statistics et al.

Does this disturb you?

Thanks Dodgers

With four straight loses to the Colorado Rockies, and thereby moving into fourth place, the chances of post season play are nil. This weekend in Arizona should cement the deal. Six more home games next Tuesday through Sunday the thirtieth. Want to go with?

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Da Tour

Click here and then on the Alyssa Milano Tab to see a tour of Dodger Stadium.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007


Stayed home ill after the tummy turned this morning. Fall weather has hit which would normally be a good thing, but my stomach thought otherwise today. Started to feel better this afternoon after fluids and toast stayed down, so I get online and start boring myself with DSL speed tests. Went to a number of different sites after a google search. Did not realize you had to be in a specific country to do some tests. Fortunately most were in the USA. Here are the results:

Flash Test:

Java Test:


:::.. test results ..:::
Download Connection is:: 345 Kbps about 0.35 Mbps (tested with 386 kB)
Download Speed is:: 42 kB/s
Upload Connection is:: 209 Kbps about 0.2 Mbps (tested with 386 kB)
Upload Speed is:: 26 kB/s
Test Time:: 2007/09/19 - 3:17pm
User Agent:: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Win 9x 4.90; en-US; rv: Gecko/20070914 Firefox/ [!]

Cute, nice to know I'm getting the cheap service I'm paying for. Maybe now I'll upgrade my audio drivers like the 'are you ready for vista' test said I should.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Argument Club

Witnessed a guy at the Stadium Club bar trying to hide the fact that his fiance's best friend was helping him buy shots and helping to hide the fact from those back at the table. The guy is also talking about how she once gave him a black eye. She was a tough little blond with a dodger cap. He was an average punk with white cap on backwards that went so well with his red buzz cut. The BFF was short brunette that had her date back at the table also. She was just trying to have fun. I start describing the scene to the couple on my right. They look to my left, and to the table way behind us near the glass and chuckle along. The two to my left down their shots, grab their beers and other drinks and head back to the table. A few minutes later, the capped blond from the table is at my left asking for her tab to be closed out. She waits for her card to be processed and is obviously steaming. She gets her card back, and is signing the slip just about the time they guy comes up to find out what is going on. She explains that she knows he was doing shots, she knows their friend was helping him cover for it, and that she is not stupid, and that he is ruining their marriage, their engagement, everything. I put my hand up to my mouth, and tell the guy on my right, 'the saga continues'. We have a nice chuckle and the white cap starts talking to me. 'What did you say?, come on, I heard you, you said the saga continues!' at which point I turn to him, raise a left eyebrow, and turn back to my drink. She then begins to tear into him again and starts to leave. Fortunately for me his attention turns back to her. I did not come to get my knuckles dirty, nor my nose broken, so I was glad his side show stopped with me and he paid more attention to the main event. I get up from my stool, find another buddy and start telling him the story. He can't believe it and asks me where they are. I point to the left of where I was sitting and goes over there to witness what finally happens. I wish I knew. I leave for a few minutes, come back, and all parties are gone. Seems a whole new crew of customers has taken over the place. Find a place to sit, watch the end of the game, and start all over again. Why am I even writing about this? dunno. Just another glimpse into the life of uncle Proto.

Monday, September 17, 2007


Wild and wooly weekends. Gotta love them. The last week was a trip to Dodger Stadium to see if the team would stand up or slide down. Ended up winning two out of three from the Padres and from the D'backs. So they are still in the hunt. Last Friday was the deadline for season ticket holders to purchase their post season tickets. I let the deadline pass. A friend I bought brunch for at the game yesterday said I could have one of theirs. If indeed the team makes it to post season play. Thirteen more games to decide that starting with a double header in Colorado tomorrow. Last Saturday and Sunday games were during the day, so instead of sitting down in the sun all afternoon, I reserved a table and pigged out on omlettes and roast beast for six innings upstairs instead. Al joined me both days. He bought Saturday and I bought on Sunday. His wife joined us on Sunday and he slipped me the fee for her brunch. I was more than willing to include her, but he insisted. Fine. He does know his red wines though, and I trusted him to make a couple of fine selections. Those were the only meals I had last weekend, for after making three trips to the buffet each day, I was stuffed. Waddled into work this morning. Some of that was the two big meals the two days before. And some of it was staying up late playing with my new website and getting the host program to receive e-mails from my game players. That's working, but the forms are not. Seems they were for Windows version of PHP and now I have to re-write them for UNIX version of PHP. Fun, fun, fun. Back to coding when I get home tonight.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

The Replicator is Near

I was sitting in the dentist office yesterday afternoon, to have some work finished up, when I pick up last June's Popular Science and start reading about Fabricating Items at Home OMG, need a replacement Lego piece? Want to create that perfect chocolate confection? Just 3-D print it! Okay, so the flashlight took about eight hours to print, still hobbyist and inventors alike will love to have one of these twenty four hundred dollar kit printers in their home shop. The days of the Star Trek Replicator are getting closer, and yes I asked if I could take the magazine home. Twenty years from now, you may just shop for patterns online, download them into your 3-D printer and produce the item in your own home.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Web Host Search

Wow, I didn't realize how inexpensive web hosting has become. There are dozens of big name companies with services for next to nothing. They are practically throwing gigabytes of storage and hundreds of e-mail address's at you for a couple of bucks a month. Picking and choosing is going to be the hardest part. I like that ones that offer up example sites too. Now to find the best deal for me...
...It was Hero's night at Dodger Stadium last night. No, not the TV show, but city and county firefighters and police and marines etc parading through the outfield before and after the national anthem. Applause rang out.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

PCMagic ain't

Argh, my dial-up ISP had their servers go down at about 1:30 PM PST Monday afternoon. Ten years of site building, down the drain. It was hard sending e-mail through them for the last month or so, and the last week I had been sending my players their turn files manually. No notice from them that they were shutting down, I bet I don't get a refund being paid up through next February either. This bites. My players game is stalled until I find a new place to host the web pages and an e-mail account that they can send turn files too. Argh!

Friday, September 7, 2007

Tenth of Two Hundred Five

Darn, almost made it to the top three to qualify for the next tournament. Oh well, it was fun having over thirty five thousand in chips in front of me for awhile. I'll win this one soon, and then the next one after that! Just watch me...

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Forty Five of a Hundred and Seven

Thought about going back to the little club, then remembered how the crowd was, and how some new IRS laws for gaming are going into effect, and decided to try to swim in a bigger tournament. It had been nearly 8 months since I played at the larger places, but as rinky dink as the small place was getting, I wanted better value for my tournament fee dollars. Boy did I get it. Printed receipts, courtesious staff, over a hundred competors and a nice prize pool that would pay down to at least eighteen places, if not twenty seven. Even saw a few folk from the smaller clubs, who blew my cover when they came over and shook my hand and talked about other places we've played at. So I'm not a rookie, but I am still unproven. I can win the small ones, and place in the money in the bigger ones, but I have never won a big event. I would wind up not winning this one either. Folded over ninety percent of my hands before the first break. Made one great call to triple up, and another call to end up chopping the pot when we both showed ace queen that paired the queen on the board. Called an all-in and had another guy overcall, ended up checking it down only to triple up the guy that was going to take me out. Yup, if I had not made that call, I may have continued further than forty fifth place. With the blinds at one and two hundred, I threw in my last five hundred. He being in the big blind only had to call three hundred more, everyone else folded and I thought I was going to collect the blinds, but no, he called and I showed my pair of nines to his queen two. Whew, I'm over a seventy to thirty favorite, until a queen hits on the flop and I become a ninety to ten dog. If I had the eight hundred to bet there that I had lost to him before, he may not have called this time, but I didn't, and he did, and I was out. No prize money for me this time. I need to find a local H.O.R.S.E. tournament since I'm having so much fun playing the free ones online. Five different poker games that change at each level of blind increases, fun fun fun. Off I go...

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Strategies for kids from Neighboring Countries

Who'd a thunk global management and risk assessment via poker?

We will begin by distributing in advance of our workshop a paper on education in
virtual worlds. We will aim our trajectory going forward as projection of a new
way of thinking embodied in the learning and understanding of a game. We will
demonstrate the teaching of the game to beginners. We will talk about why it is
a good idea to teach poker to kids. We will demonstrate transition to an integrated real and virtual Internet environment. We will introduce team play. Lastly, we will examine the critical issues surrounding poker and other games of skill in education and beyond. What are the key strategic thinking points of departure? How far should we go in promoting poker in the field of education? Should poker be taught to children on the $100 laptop? Can poker and poker strategic thinking serve as a departure point for openness on the Internet, global education, and beyond?

All this thinking is getting started at Harvard, and I thought poker was just a hobby that pays for itself.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Warm and Powerless

Just after one PM Saturday afternoon, I was highly involved in a game of Sid Meier's RailRoads! with the one portable air conditioning unit pointed at my back and the computer running the stereo sound system at movie volume. Playing on a wide screen TV is highly recommended by me. I was just thinking about getting something cool to drink when BAM, the power goes out. Not just a breaker tripping, but the whole neighborhood. I hear jets making course corrections ten miles away, and dogs communicating fervently. Oh well, hope the hard drive didn't take a dive on the less than year old computer. I quickly realized that it was hot. triple digits hot and no breeze to speak of. So in order to stay cool, filled the tub half way with cold water, grabbed a book from the headboard, grabbed a drink from the fridge, and placed them all on a wooden TV tray by the tub as I slowly slipped in. Ah, refreshing and COLD. Not moving into this quickly am I. Inch by inch, toes first, then the rest slowly dunked until cool. Dry off the hands, sip drink, and start to read. It was really quite comfortable in there. Just over fifty minutes into the book, I heard my fans come back on, for a second, then two seconds, then power's back. Finish the chapter, then get up, dry off, and reboot, making sure my two systems are okay. The old one running the VGAP game in the back room, and the new one wired into everything in my living room. All survive and it was back to gaming in front of a cool breeze once again. Amazing how much of my entertainment is electrical powered. Movies, radio, computer, yet the sun was still bright enough to read a book by. It's after one in the morning, and almost cool enough to go to sleep. Think I'll do so, and say a 'thanks for the reminder' prayer tomorrow morning.