A few years back I visited japan, where I picked up a ultra light and thin sharp mebius laptop with a 30gb hd, 512mb ram and a 750mhz piii. It has been sitting in a bag since then as I am mostly a mac / unix user and I have only used it a couple of times to do some random PC stuff. The other day I noticed that PC-BSD had reached its 1.0 mark and today I decided to download it and check it out. The first run through of the install didn't work, but I tweaked some BIOS settings and it booted right up. PCBSD is really easy to install and has a nice GUI installer that anybody can use. Everything works great and I now have FreeBSD running on my Mebius laptop! I threw in a wireless card and everything worked as it should and I now have a nice little portable computer for tasks around the house when I don't want to sit in front of my desk. I set up OpenVPN and got that working in the simple mode after a little bit of toying around. Cool deal.
So I finally got myself some DSL... it has been a few years. Recently I have used a "borrowed" wireless connection, Verizon EVDO, and a cable modem and now I am back on with the nice low-latency DSL. I have a 6mb/768k connection from Speakeasy and so far it rocks, although due to some line noise I don't get the full 6, more like 4.8 or so. Last night I set up the server that is supposed to be my mythTV system as a firewall because for some reason the other 2 systems I had wouldn't POST, I think it has something to do with the power outages we had a few months ago, but they were old systems anyhow, and I have bid on a couple old cheap systems on ebay that will work just fine for the job. I set up the firewall using pf on FreeBSD, with a separate interface for the wireless bridge (which is a bridge to nowhere if you don't connect to the VPN). Everything is working great and I finally have my Vonage box active again, yay.
Penelope and I had planned on going backpacking this weekend on Catalina Island this weekend, but when we got there the town of Avalon was so beautiful we just decided to get a hotel room and hang out. The other problem was that the route I had planned ended up being on a paved road and our campground was a bit further then we wanted to hike in one day with heavy packs, plus I was midway through a cold, which I have just now kicked.
We checked in to the Hotel Villa Portofino, a hotel right across the main drag from the water, dropped off out bags and hit the bar. We had a few drinks and then we decided to rent a golf cart and take it around Avalon, which despite sounding cheesy was actually quite fun. After the golf cart ride we bought some tickets to see Harry Potter in the Casino which isn't actually a gambling hall, the italian word casino actually meant a place of entertainment, back when the building was built by Mr Wrigley.
The Casino is amazingly beautiful and before the movie we were treated to 45 minutes of organ music on a really grand organ, a type of which only 3 exist in the world today. The bass and acoustics of the theatre are really amazing and we really enjoyed both the organ show and the movie.
The next day we hiked over to the botanical gardens and the Wrigley monument and then we headed back in to town to take part in tour of the casino which was really interesting. I took a whole bunch of photos of the whole trip and I will be uploading them soon once I am a bit less busy.