Friday, October 27, 2006

Firefox 2 Review

Mozilla just came out with the next generation of their web browser: Firefox 2. I've downloaded it and been playing around with the different features. I'm not an extreme user, which means I haven't pushed it to it's limits, so this is more for the average user. For starters, I love the tab browsing. I downloaded IE 7 once it came out in beta because of the tab features (ironically, I just updated that too and it's now freaking out) and really like it. Below are some items I have noticed

Tab Browsing
You can put the tabs in any order you like. As a person who likes order, this is really nice. I can open my emails and move them all the way over to the side. I can do this even after I open some other pages. You can't do that in IE 7 (yet - I imagine). To close a tab you used to have to go all the way to the right of the browser, which was a pain. Now they're within each tab - it's clean and convenient.

One of my favorite features is Adblock. Lets back up a step first. With Firefox you can download extensions. Some of them are fun and others are useful. One really useful extension is Adblock which does exactly as its name implies. It blocks flash (or animated) ads. So when you visit Yahoo! they aren't there. What's even better is that because of the way the extension works they don't even get downloaded, thus speeding up your browsing experience. IE has a wanna bee version of this, but it isn't near as cool because you have to select the ads you want it to block.

Google's Web Accelerator
Unfortunately, Google's Web Accelerator doesn't work anymore. I enjoyed seeing how much of my life I'm saving. Of course, I did notice that it took me 3 weeks to save 1 hour and then I was saving at least an hour once a week. So, I'm not sure how accurate it was, but the placebo affects were great. I'm sure Google is working on fixing this as I'm writing.

Spelling check
Okay, this is my absolute favorite feature. There is a built in spelling checker. When I spell something wrong (like on this post), a dotted red line appears under the word. It's doesn't auto-correct it like Word so I can go back and try again (Side question: Do you ever feel that Word is so good it actually makes you dumber because you don't have to catch your spelling errors?). If I can't get it, I can right click and a list of options come up. This feature works anywhere there is a text box. I bet Microsoft wished they had thought of this one first.

No Random Cursor
Before Firefox 2, the browser had a cursor problem. You see, when I read something, I like to highlight where I read because often I get distracted and have to look away. By highlighting the lines as I read, I can easily find my spot and continue. When I used to click on the text, the cursor would show up indicating I could type something there. I tried writing something a couple of times and it didn't work. Now all it did was annoy me by blinking. To make matters worse, the cursor didn't appear in text areas where I was supposed to type! This is still the case in many text areas, but at least the cursor doesn't blink at me any more.

Cool Looks
The browser just plain looks cool. Sometimes, that's all it takes.

That's my review. I think it is worth the try. If you want, you can learn more and download Firefox 2 at this site:
Let me know how it works out.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Addition to Mt. Saint Helen's

Here are some more beautiful pictures from our hike near Mt. Saint Helen's!

Beautiful nature and good friends, what more could you want?

Lots of Love, Jessi

First one...and Fish

Hi everyone!

It seems like I disappeared for the past few weeks being so busy with school, but I am still here! School just got a little easier because instead of taking University classes and teaching I will just be teaching for the next month. I am teaching a unit I developed myself on food chains and ecosystems! It will be a lot of fun! I usually work with 1st and 2nd grade but will be with 4th and 5th graders for the unit. They are much bigger, but still very exciting to work with!

Also some other exciting news...In the midst of business I recently got some new pets! I recieved a couple of free goldfish, whom I lovingly named Dr. Seuss and Sam.

Here is a picture of them...they are so cute! Sam is on the left and Dr. Seuss is on the right.

Lot's of Love, Jessi

Monday, October 23, 2006

My Top Must See Movies of All Time (and Space)

I thought about doing a Top 10 list, but this proved to be too difficult for me. So instead, below are some of my top movies that you should watch. If there's one here you have not seen, treat it as your duty to watch it. If you've seen all of these and need more, let me know and I'll hook you up. Enjoy.

I would have to say it's the music that's great.

Beauty and the Beast
I think my attraction to this movie are the SAT words used in the songs.

The Matrix
Awesome story, awesome moves. It's a good things they came out with more because I wasn't ready for it to end.

Gone with the Wind
Thanks Mom for introducing me to the finer things in life.

Ferris Beuller's Day OffSinging in the Rain
Excellent music. You'll be humming the tunes for weeks.

Jurassic Park
Besides the fact that these graphics were revolutionary, the movie's awesome.

Star Wars: Episode 6, Return of the Jedi
It all comes down to this. Wow. Make sure to watch Episode 4 and 5 first though.

The classic guy flick. Freedom!!

Superman the Movie
Come on. A super movie has to make it on this super list.

Fiddler on the Roof
You'll laugh, you'll cry and you'll forget you're watching a musical.

An Affair to Remember
The classic chick flick. Everyone should watch this (then follow up with Sleepless in Seattle).

Top Gun
I've watched this plenty of times to confirm that this is by far the best movie that you must watch.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Mt. St. Helen's Trip

Earlier this year Jessi and I took a trip up to Mt. St. Helen's with a friend of ours. As you'll see it was a beautiful place. We hope you enjoy the photos.

These photos are stored using Picasa. Please let us know if this doesn't work for you.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Birthday Facts

It was my birthday this week. I turned the big 2-3. Thank you to everyone who sent me birthday wishes - I really enjoyed them. My brother sent me these stats and I thought they were fun. So, now I'm sharing them with you! I hope you like it.

Congratulations for making it this far, but there is still fun to come:
now, in 2 short years you will be able to rent a car!
in 12 short years you can run for president!
in 42 years you can retire from a lame job that didn't make you enough money to retire before then!
but right now your doing pretty well as far as privileges are concerned.

Thanks everyone for your birthday wishes.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Mom and Grandma Visit

October 2006

My mom and grandma came to visit me this weekend. It was a blast! I played in a concert Friday night (I play saxophone) and they got to hear our music. The band played excellently and it really came off well. I'm glad they got to see it. Then we went to a football game on Saturday. My team didn't do so well, but it was fun getting to visit with them. My mom really gets into the game and shouts and makes all sorts of hoopla. It's great! We finished the night with a trip to the movie theater. It's a very interesting set up where you go in and order food. Then, during the movie they deliver it to you. The best part is that even though people are in there eating food you can't really hear it (that's my favorite part). We watched the movie "Invincible" and it is a good one. I highly recommend seeing it.

On Sunday we went to church, ate a nice brunch and relaxed. Did you know that turtles are really expensive? We were looking into them (as a pet) and decided they're just out of your price range. The nice part is that they live for about 75 years - talk about a lifetime friend! Well, that was my weekend, and now it's back to homework...

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Leading the Revolution Review

Book by Gary Hamel

I like this book. It challenged the way I thought about business innovation. It points out that it's not about making small changes to the existing product mix, but coming up with completely new ways to serve customer wants and desires. Some of the examples are amazing ideas - and it even predicts the iPod. At the time it was written (2000), there was no service that offered mp3s and downloadable music (I don't even know if downloadable is a word, but I like it). Hamel went as far to say that whoever figures it out first will gain huge market share. Well, it seems that Apple proved him right with 80% of the market. Not bad.

More importantly, Hamel gets you excited to want to experiment and shake up your workplace. As a budding professional, this really got me going. I know I'll still have to learn the ropes, but I can't wait to start discovering places to dramatically increase value by changing the way my company views the market place (high aspirations? I hope not). If you're not content with your job, I recommend reading this book because it will help to give you a greater purpose to go in every day. It's inspiring and easy to read. I hope you enjoy it.

You can check it out for yourself at Amazon:
Leading the Revolution

Friday, October 13, 2006

Gmail Review

I've been using Gmail for a little while now, and I have to say it has my seal of approval. Google has done a great job of holding true to their original intent of starting Gmail - having so much space you never have to delete anything. As someone who receives buckets of email, it's nice to know it will always be there. Previous to Gmail, my account only allowed 100mb of space. It was getting to point where I had to completely clean out my box every other week. Not only was this a waste of my time, but I would bang my head against the wall when someone else referenced the email and I couldn't go back.

Now don't worry, I'm not completely in love with the program. There's one item I would fix. Well, not really fix, but add. As a visual person, it would be nice if Gmail had a way to highlight my messages with different colors. That way I could quickly tell who it was from or which account it went to. I realize they already have this with their label and filter system, but I'm a visual person. I suppose knowing Google, if that slows the program down one fraction of a second, and demand for it isn't huge, it'll never happen.

That's okay. I still use and like the program. I enjoy chatting with my family and friends and look forward to seeing what they put out next.