Reasons for: Linux

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Linux is one of those things that can you have a reason? Honestly, it’s a great setup.

I’ve used Linux off and on as a desktop over the years for maybe 20+ years? Mandriva Linux, Redhat, etc. all early days when my connector was a VGA adapter on a monitor the size of a small microwave. 🙂 Back then it wasn’t anything insane, it was tinkering but over the years its CLI has become my home away from home, doing a majority of my server work from the command line.

The pro’s as a desktop are fairly straightforward:

  • No Upgrade Fees: In an opensource world of amazing distros’ I could easily pick Fedora, Ubuntu, etc. and have an amazing LTS build or even a point upgrade now and again and upgrade is as simple a few commands.
  • Wide Software Library: Despite public rumor of Linux not being feature rich with great apps, let’s be honest – if you are average user who could get by with a Browser – you aren’t going to have problems with Linux – but there are apps for just about everything on you can do on the Mac/Windows side, but if you are a creature of habit, you are likely not looking to switch.
  • Choice of Window Managers: Look I love the simplicity of the Mac interface, Windows 10 is growing on me, but if you want the MOST control of what your Desktop looks like and how it functions, Linux has your back.
  • Security: Yes Mac’s are “secure” so are Windows, but Linux gives you IMO the biggest bang for your buck in managing security – however that being said if you are NOT a security person, Linux may need you learning a few things about Firewalls and such.

All in all, as a daily driver for me, it’d work. Let’s be honest doing most of my work anymore in the Browser or CLI – I don’t need a ton of apps, even the last few days I’ve literally just needed SSH, RDP, and Chrome. That’s it. Now I know if I need to do a quick image mock-up or open a spreadsheet I have plenty of options in any OS – but seriously as a daily driver, it’s a fair backup.

Why a backup? Let’s be honest, the commercial apps in both Windows and Mac that I own are specific to my needs. I didn’t just say “Oh let’s FORCE this OS to work” there are simply apps which are flipp’n amazing. No need to debate it, I love PS/ILL, Native Office is a good thing with some folks since document formats aren’t universal, and Kiwi for Gmail on any platform is simply a nice way to manage several Gmail logins.

All in all, I can make Linux Work, maybe go dual boot?

April 17+1 (New Tax Day)

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So it appears that Monopoly wasn’t far off. Bank error in my favor? Kind of lol. The IRS had some issues with their site and in turn, the 17th is now the 18th for taxes due.

I keep trying to get ahead, but this year I don’t think I’m going to wait, literally next week I’m going to find some sort of accounting software that’s a tad more robust than spreadsheets, something that can track things and it will mean a bit more leg work, but I’d much rather get more put away in savings this next year + bank more towards taxes, this year I actually didn’t come down to the wire, I had my funds already set aside, but I’d like more breathing room.

Too I’m trying to figure out how I can work Church Hosting better, I’ve considered Non-Profit, but at this point with tax law changing for 2018 taxes, non-profit giving may not be a benefit anymore, so those tithes and various causes a friend asks you to support on Facebook, will be a thing of the past, so the idea of making Church Hosting a non-profit, won’t have many benefits to getting businesses to jump on board I’d imagine. No perk for them.

But I’m praying on it, working on it. Tomorrow I’ll submit, I figured since I had a rough day (been feeling off lately) I didn’t want to push it too much, sure I have 13 minutes left before midnight, but better to wrap this tomorrow with a fresh head and just call it good. Profits growing, pretty much every year, however, I’d love to see them grow enough to add an employee, or at least employ myself as a W2’d employee.

For now, time to wrap things up, after I hit submit in the AM and e-File it all away, I’m off to coding, doc writing, and working on wrapping up some projects that have been waiting for me to wrap this, then if I can get it done before swim class, I may find something completely mindless to do – do they still have those movie theatre places? 😀 Night all.

Shutting Down Vonage

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14 years. Yowza. I hadn’t realized how long I have been with Vonage. But that all ended today.

I signed up 14 years ago while I was still living with my parents, the reason? I was doing business in Tennessee and I wanted to make it easier for locals to call, so I picked up my old 615 number and used it to talk to customers in that area.

Well fast forward 14 years and it’s been ages since I’ve actually seen the Vonage hardware. I’m not even joking, I’ve been paying monthly to keep the number safe and it was set up if the hardware wasn’t found or “offline” it’d simply route to my business line. Worked just fine. Till my business debit card changed.

It’s scary that I’m still just barely finding out months later things that were using the old card which didn’t get updated, and Vonage was one of them, so I paid my bills, called in and canceled. Now the lady told me something interesting:

You can port your number for the next 30 days.

Normally you port -> cancel, but at first, I was going to let it go, but then with the whole debit card issue, figure there might be a call or two still tied to this account, so I looked around and found NumberBarn.

Now, this ended up actually giving me more to work with overall, and for half the cost a month I actually picked up a toll-free number for the business + ported the old 615 to a parked message! Score! So for the cost of less than one month with Vonage, I got a year of the number parked, and unlimited forwarding on a toll-free number for over half the cost I was paying for the 615!

So a big win, something positive, something good. Been needing more of those lately, so a day where I don’t feel great I actually feel like I’m getting a lot accomplished. Thanks NumberBarn!

My New Friend: Trello

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For a while now a few friends have included me on Trello boards and honestly? I never got it. It was unfamiliar and at the time, I just plain and simple did not have the time to sit and sort it out?

So what’s changed? Honestly? 2018 is here, and I’m trying hard to organize a bit more. I finally decided to look at the tool that folks say help do just that, and I’ve taken time to sit down and give it a fair shake as it seemed like a favorite tool and had benefits, but now it was time to test that idea.

So I sat down and made my first board. Just a brain dump as I’d call it, just a LOT of ideas in one spot that had no organization, so went from there to sort it out into various lists to contain the cards and my big board is born. Awesome.

It’s been a process for over a week but now working on other boards from core ideas born from this dump of information, for instance just put a teaching idea from the lists to a fresh list called “Reviewed/Done” which has it’s own board now.

Honestly a great workflow, just wish IFTTT or Zapier had a link in enough to tie in Todoist into deadlines, would be great for that time management part, but will see this week and next how its deadlines option works, but for the most part going to at least work to create a flow in IFTTT for anything put in a “In Progress” list it will create some sort of daily/weekly Todoist check-in notice.

For now, I need food; I should probably put in a daily reminder for that as I keep forgetting to eat! But hopefully, this new tool will help bring some great ideas to life!

New Year, New Directions

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So here we are nearly a month down and a lot has gone on, tried a new med or two in the diabetic world, Trulicity is the latest which has had some mixed results, but I am down 10lbs in 2 weeks… so if nothing else it was great for weight loss!

I am once again sitting on the edge of “Where do I go from here?” in the realm of tech. Mac world is really not something I find myself saying “Oooo let’s go buy a new laptop!” nor desktop, nor really any Mac device, it just seems “bleh” to me, and yet the thing that really has caught my eye is Chromebook once again. Writing this post on an ASUS C200M which has Android apps which amazingly lets me do things like JuiceSSH and Slack – so very nice, may invest later this year in a more modern non-beta based Chromebook (Samsung’s Chromebook Pro maybe…)

And business-wise, still in limbo when it comes to a steady job, this past week I had the talk again about getting hired, supposed to have folks get back to me on Monday with more, and the position may be something that has grown as a few other people at the company are gone and I might be required to fill in a few more pairs of boots, so we shall see how that goes.

But things are in motion hopefully for a BIG February, the big 38 this year, and already trying to build up some hype with one of my yearly specials for FlockHosting, but too I am hoping to launch FlockHosting.com’s update as well as get something simple online for Thrust Networks before I turn 38, the two sites need facelifts, and I hope to get things rolling on them soon.

Really thinking 2018 will be a big year of change. Not just a feeling of “hope” but a feeling of desire to have some things change up, really be a big different year. I want lots of good things, many blessings and a lot of growth.

For now? Back to fixing a slew of issues for customers that happened yesterday while I was down sick. Happy 2018 all.

Carrots

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So, I have been craving carrots lately. I may be turning orange.

Aside from that, a busy week! Seems like I’d slow down only to go go go again. Even today, it was one of those days where it started off slow, then just never stopped. From it? Got some hours in for consulting gig + 3 possible projects in the coming weeks! So hopefully things pan out.

2018 may bring a full-time gig in addition to my business, and I think I’m good with that, just as long as it actually pans out, and is very solid.

Even if it isn’t there is a possible option for a new server customer too I may be getting, which would be cool, server customers slowed down this year – but hoping to really bump things up in 2018.

For now, a busy week has started winding down, take some meds and head to chill out in bed!

PS:365 – It is finished.

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An idea that was supposed to be wrapped up January 18th, 2017, went on a bit long. Such is life I suppose! You think “Oh I’ll write tonight” then you hit 2 server outages, 5 tickets, a sick kid, and a family trip all in the same 23 seconds. Foof.

I think I’m going to keep it going though – I want to keep it simple, I want to write every day because honestly, I need to keep clearing the old brain. We shall see!

For now, though the 365 posts I wanted to get out in 2016->2017 – is now done in nearly 2018 😀 Joys of life.

PS:362 – New Meds, New Site, New Year

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So the doctor’s visit went okay. Really liked the new doc, I’ve met a few over the years and I’m honestly going to see if this guy can be my GP – I honestly haven’t felt like a doc actually heard me and answered my questions, this guy heard my concerns, answered my questions, and even gave me a newer med and teamed it up with the metformin to see if we can’t get the sugar under control, and gave me a new BP med which got my body to relax so much that last night I crashed out SUPER early – 9hr 45 minutes of sleep according to the fitbit.

Working hard on FlockHosting.com and ThrustNet.com this week, hoping to create a lot simpler set of sites, nail things down and make it concise and to the point, no more wordy pages, just what I offer, to the point, keep it simple, no hard to manage designs, easy to add if I need to, and simple to remove too.

2018 is rapidly approaching. A lot of things I want to see this coming year, and with 3 posts left in my commitment to post daily for a year, I’m really missing the steady flow as I’ve been writing these past few days, helps me get things out of my head and makes it more real if that makes any sense – journal is one thing, still great for things not ready for prime time, but online blog really makes it more “out there”, something about that is therapeutic to me.

For now, back to it, got swim lessons tonight with the kiddo, and night 2 of new meds, so we shall see how the RBS (Resting Blood Sugar) looks in the AM, this morning 201, still high, but for my mornings? Actually lower than just metformin! So improvement, hoping day two is even more!

PS:352 – Job Offers that Aren’t Offers!

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Oi – I got a note from a random person who said they saw my skillset and had a position for me at their company. Exciting right? I wish it had been.

I scheduled a call, which suddenly went from being with the original person to a “director” and the “Team” role seemed honestly out of place. The language around things seemed vague, and honestly, I knew it was going to be some marketing scheme very quickly. Honestly? See it through, maybe I’ll be wrong.

I wasn’t.

The first thing he said after being 15 minutes late to the call was he wanted me to come in, they had a position and I’d be easily making an “additional” 1k-3k extra a month through various “referral sharing” and “revenue stream sharing” options. So… my skillset being great how does this work?

So I asked how my IT experience and years with a successful company helped get me this position, and he said “Oh we don’t need anyone with IT or Web Skills, we want you to come learn how to sell our product as an additional revenue stream” – so I tried to keep myself calm from both first thought anger, then really just laughing. He explained how it could make me rich beyond rich – making MUCH more than what I’m making now.

He asked me some rather personal and forward questions about my finances – and I was done being nice, and for that matter straightforward and honest. Suddenly I was a real estate owner galore, several properties I rent, cryptocurrency investor – I think I may or may not have owned an island lol after a while I just felt like selling the guy the same load of crap he fed me. Sadly? I think he was starting to believe me.

I wrapped up the call, he gave me the usual “well if I know of anyone looking for IT services… I’ll give them your number” line, and wished him well.

Would have been nice to be a real offer, a few floating around lately of projects, but a few places I’ve applied are still silent, so for now? Keep burning it up and building! For now wrapping up some customer work, then at least 30 minutes on my own work before crashing out entirely.

PS:349 – Enough is Enough.

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Tuesday was a bit of a blessing, and a little bit wake up call.

Really blessed to have customers who appreciate what I do. I really am. Doing this over 15 years I must say it can become a grind that is heartless sometimes. No passion. No joy. No love. I’m tired of customers running my business by how they want to run their business.

Today I buckled down into the billing system cleared out garbage and garbage accounts. Folks I’ve reached out to before and gotten nothing and today out of about 15 accounts I sent notice to, 1 reply and this guy was ready to help, apologetic of his overdue status. We have a call in place tomorrow to sort things out (and I have some research to do as to what’s failing so we can fix it!).

Lots of changes, and really working to get a real presence for Thrust Networks, not just a 5 year coming soon page. Really want to kick things up a notch and get it done. Just finished a server deployment for a customer, and now to fine tune two websites for another! On my way!