I got a sheetfed scanner in the mail today, and started doing some searches for free or open source software for use in making our home office a paperless home office. I am so tired of all the clutter in all the papers we get from creditors, and not to mention all the papers from Sarah’s schooling and Liz’s activities. I found this great software called DocsVault, which has a free home edition for download. I had searched for a few hours and really hadn’t found much of anything that cought my eye. Some expensive server based systems looked great, but were overkill for my home needs. So I came across this software and downloaded it to give it a try. I was impressed right from the start, it has everything we need for organizationl; cabinets, drawers and folders. It stores everything in an internal database and can use my sheet fed scanner. It has backup and restore capabilities built in, and can burn stright to CD/DVD or to a hard drive location. It integrate with MS Office and save documents directly to the cabinet/drawer of your choice. It has search capabilities and lots of powerful features above and beyond what I thought I could get for free. I started today scanning in papers, anything from bills, tax paperwork and all the way to the girls drawlings. Its perfect and exactly what I need to take care of my digital home needs. This should decrease the clutter and allow for better archiving and make things easier to find.
Liz got her first website lead for her digital photography yesterday (Monday). I get copies of all that stuff so I saw the message just before I went to lunch. I called her at lunch time and let her know. It is from a local person and she might be doing a photo CD this time. Its always exciting when you see your work on a website pay off. It would be nice if this became a good way for her to bring in some extra $$
Since our digital camcorder was stolen earlier this year, I most likely will NOT be doing another holiday video to send to family and friends. However, I do have a nice program called PhotoShow Gold, which can create some very nice fancy picture slideshows. I might try to get some audio recordings from the kids and from Liz and put together some nice slideshows with effects and voice overs. Perhaps by next year we will do another video, or maybe we can borrow someone else’s camcorder for this occasion. Either way, I’ll still be producing something, but not sure yet exactly what it will be.
Sadly, on Sunday morning (Aug 27th) our home was broken into while we were not home. The thieves got away with my work laptop (which is a major inconvenience). They also got Liz’s digital camera, our Mini-DV Camcorder, some jewelry and some other small items. All in all about $3,500 worth of stuff was taken. I am going to talk to my homeowners insurance company and see if there is any way it would be worth it to file a claim and try to get some of that stuff replaced. However, I think the deductible is going to be too high, but we’ll see. I’ve added some new security measures to at the very least assist in catching the people involved if this ever happens again. At least they didn’t get my Miata!!!
You will notice the albums are sorted by year, then by month or date. Some special events are individually labeled. This should make things slightly easier than before. There are now over 3,218 pictures in our gallery, dating all the way back to 2002 when Liz got her first digital camera. Soon I will also be scanning in some of Sarah’s art work for your viewing pleasure.]]>
I finally bit the bullet so to speak. For a year now we have had DirecTV for TV and Road Runner for internet access. Yesterday, I called and ordered Brighthouse service for both TV and internet. I will be getting Digital Cable, HD and DVR for less than I was paying for both DirecTV and RR. The installer will be here on Friday and I will be home that day to play with my new toys. I know that the DVR won’t be as good as the Tivo I had with DirecTV, but now that I have my DVD recorder and can easily still plan my recordings for a week in advance, I have no problems switching. I will certainly miss tivo, as its the best out there, but with cable I get more for my money at this point. Soon Verizon will be offering FIOS TV and internet in my area. When this comes out, I plan to order service with them as well, and try it for 30 days. Their services are cheaper yet, and also offer more for the money. If FIOS turns out to be as good as it sounds, I’ll likely make the switch to all Verizon FIOS. I surprise myself with this, since I can’t stand Verizon. I had cellular and home phone service with them for years, and had nothing but blunder after blunder with them. When I moved to Tampa, I got rid of Verizon and switched to Cingular, which has also turned out to have a few blunders of their own. As a side note, I turned down the higher speed increase to 10MB down on the internet now that I’ll be a digital combo customer. My goal here was to save money and get more value for what I was paying. Getting the increased speed would have cost me more than what I was paying before, so I declined that option. However over the next few months I’ll have to see how it goes, perhaps I can convince Liz to let me upgrade afterall.
Western Digital Raptor X 150GB
Western Digital’s latest 150GB Raptor has a clear cover that shows what’s going on inside and costs as much as a half-terabyte drive. Which should you choose?]]>
I got Liz a new digital camera for her birthday (ok, its for me too ;-)) Its a Kodak Z740, 5MP, 10X optical zoom, 512MB SD Card. Its nice! Takes great pictures and I’m very impressed. Check out the specs here – http://www.kodak.com/eknec/PageQuerier.jhtml;jsessionid=HCDOMY3KK2Q3ZFW4FBBHWEEW1YUEK4L4?pq-path=6547&pq-locale=en_US&_requestid=10091
I’ve posted a few of the new pics using this camera on our website in the picture gallery.