Monday, December 22, 2008

Don't Chalk up Brown's season to Lebron James

What a terrible game, season and team.

As a season ticket holder since I got my driver's license, I go to most of the games. This year was especially painful. But don't have the sick feeling that I usually have after a Brown's loss. Sometimes after a loss I would feel physically sick for a few days (no, not just hungover!)

But yesterday was so pathetic that it was almost laughable.

We had fun at the game though one girl's coke froze solid and our beers turned to slush. Really. The action on the field was a joke. How did Dorsey ever get on an NFL roster?

I am already enduring calls and e-mails from Steelers fans who say the bumblebees will be sending their CYO team to beat us, they don't need their pro team.

Maybe the Browns need to throw some chalk in the air before each game. Hey it works for Lebron. The Cavs are a pleasure to watch.

Lebron has a new video clip of the chalk-throwing ritual and fans will be given chalk at the Christmas game vs the Wizards so that they can join the King in the chalk throwing.

Buh-bye Romeo and Phil.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

CAP needs PCs

The good news is that the volunteers of Computers Assisting People (CAP) are on schedule to refurbish and donate about 600 PCs to needy schools, community centers and other non-profits in Cleveland in 2008.

The not-so-good news is that we are running out of PCs to work on. Our stack of requests remains high but our supply is dwindling. We expected a surge as people upgraded to Windows Vista but that never took place.

So we need your (and your company’s) PCs. We can use Pentium 3 and up systems. CAP is a 501c3 and will provide a receipt for your donation. You and your accountant can figure out a value.

Remember, we not only wipe the hard drive but rewrite over the entire surface with a random series of 0’s and 1’s (DoD specification) so that your data can never be recovered.

CAP volunteers then test, configure and build up components in the system and put a legal operating system on each. (CAP was one of the first Microsoft Authorized Refurbishers in the world!)

Then we give them to local non-profits so they can fulfill their missions. Often, we set the PCs up in networks so they can be shared by a community, class or group.

See a list
of the 350+ local organizations CAP has helped.

As you make upgrade plans, please consider CAP. CAP volunteers have donated over 10,000 PCs to local non-profits in our attempt to bridge the Digital Divide and make Cleveland a more productive and livable city.

Thank you,


Kenny G Holiday Show

I am listening to Mumbo Jumbo by the Tail Gators as I write this. A great, rocking, swampy tune and album.

I must admit I have never listened to an entire Kenny G CD so I can't really judge him. I can say that I respect his mastery of the saxophone and his incredible talent. But for now, it's more Gators.

But if Kenny G is more to your liking, you can win free tickets to his Holiday Show at the Palace Theatre in Playhouse Square.

He will be performing Sunday December 14th and ClevelandWomen.Com has 10 free tickets to give away.

Visit the site and enter the contest - and tell me if you like Kenny G.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Female Sexual Dysfunction

I thought that title might get your attention.

I attended the annual 2008 Cleveland Clinic Medical Innovation Summit this past week. It's always a fascinating event - especially to a layperson - and draws almost 1,000 international visitors and some huge name speakers.

I'll be posting pics/video and text on GreatLakesGeek soon but in the meantime, this cracked me up.

The topic of last year's summit was the Heart. 2009 will focus on cancer. But in 2008 the topic was Urology and Gynecology. So many of the attendees were experts in the field. At lunch and other social events, experts in particular field naturally congregated together.

I was just glad I wasn't seated at this table for lunch.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Laughter is the best medicine

This is from The Comedy Barn in Tennessee. One of the guy's laugh is so funny and infectious that you will have to laugh along.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

You know it's tough out there...

When a guy like Steve Bass gets the pink slip. Steve has been writing for PC World Magazine for well over 10 years. But recently, he and Steve Manes and others got the boot.

Steve will be OK - he just started up a new venture called TechBite - but it makes you wonder about the future of print journalism.

Read more and listen to a podcast with Steve Bass at GreatLakesGeek.Com

Monday, October 20, 2008

High School Girls

We held our 2nd annual ClevelandWomen.Com Future Leaders event for high school girls earlier this month.

About 150 girls from 13 schools - urban/suburban and public/private - attended.

The speakers were just incredible - Former Mayor Jane Campbell, Entrepreneur Cathy Horton, Dr. Celestin from the Cleveland Clinic, Maurielle Lue of Channel 5. Marlene Kobzowicz from Virginia Marti, Juliana Kascsak from US Bank and Dean Linda Eisenmann of JCU.

We captured photos and some video snippets of all the speakers - and some of the other activities. Check out the event here

Be sure to watch the short videos from Maurielle Lue. At only 24 years of age, this young reporter really spoke the girl's language.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Bone It!

It's painful watching the Browns - especially when we had such high expectations this year.

But take some good advice on dealing with disappointment in sports and in life from none other than the Bonelady.

The Bonelady is a regular columnist on our sister site, and she offers surprisingly good advice for someone wearing dog bones.

Here's her intro column and here's one after the loss to the dreaded Steelers.

Can't wait to see what she writes about the latest debacle.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

It's a Bird, it's a Plane...

There's a terrific new exhibition at the Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage. It's called Zap! Pow! Bam! The Golden Age of Comic Books, 1938-1950

By now you should know that Superman creators Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster lived in Cleveland when they created and drew the Man of Steel.

The exhibit shows that many of the comic book creators were Jewish and that many of the super hero characters they created became beloved symbols of human potential and the triumph of good over evil.

Bring the kids - there are some fun activities for them too - rides in the Batmobile, a chance to draw the Joker and others, costumes to wear and a phone call from Superman himself.

Here are some photos and more info from the show.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Fannie Lewis

“You da Man!”

Those are the words Fannie Lewis yelled to me as my sister and I left her Hough home. We had been there early one Saturday morning to do a profile of the powerful Cleveland City Council member for both and

It was very early in the morning and Fannie was still dressed in her nightgown but she was busy working the phones as people from her neighborhood called for help. Watching her work the phones was impressive. She was decisive, firm and no-nonsense but she was also compassionate.

You could tell that her life as councilwoman in Hough was a 24x7 job. And that she loved it and the people of her Ward and the city of Cleveland.

After the interview, she asked about us and our business. She congratulated me for looking after my sister and as I walked off her porch she cried, “You da Man!” I looked back, grinned and waved and as I got into the car across the street she yelled it again.

She had no higher political ambitions – she was focused on the people in her city and especially in her beloved Hough area.

In these times of political corruption and “what’s in it for me” a dedicated, caring public servant like Fannie Lewis was will be harder and harder to find.

She will be missed.

Read our profile of Counciwoman Fannie Lewis

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Cleveland Indians season

Even though the baseball season hasn't turned out like we hoped and expected, good things are still happening at Progressive Field, such as:

The Cleveland Indians Wives Association benefit for Providence House (see Pictures and Video here)

and I always get a kick out of the senior citizens band at the Tribe games. Win or lose, they make it fun. Here is a 30 second clip of Take Me out to the Ballgame from those guys. True fans.

And here are some women fans (short video) who haven't given up on the Tribe yet.

Go Tribe!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Hard Drive in Shake-o-matic paint shaker

It's sad, I know. But I am finally getting to some of my reviews and videos from the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) that was in Vegas way back in January.

I just posted a review and a video about a Solid State Drive I saw at one of the events.

Because it is solid state and has no moving parts, there are a lot of benefits - reliability, boot-up speed, less heat, less power, etc.

But the video really shows the difference between a traditional drive and an SSD. You would never even nudge a regular magnetic drive while in operation.

Of course, the drives are still very small capacity and very expensive but it's a first step.

Check it out.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Euclid Ave Construction - revisited

I haven’t written about the fiasco on Euclid Ave. for awhile. It was getting repetitious – no progress, few if any workers, blocked lanes, etc.

Just yesterday I waited (and waited) at a light at East 40th and Euclid. The several middle lanes for the bus were unused. The bike lanes were unused. But the one lane they left open for car traffic was packed.

And where a person used to be able to safely wait for the bus from the sidewalk, they now have to cross the street and walk down the middle to the bus stop.

As I waited for the light I saw two younger people jaywalk and cross Euclid to get to the bus stop. Worse, I witnessed an older woman with a cane cross at the crosswalk and laboriously make her way down to the bus stop. This is progress?

Euclid up by University Circle is still a joke. There is one lane open for traffic in each direction. That’s outrageous.

So on Monday when an emergency vehicle had to get through, all hell broke loose. I hope the delay the vehicle had to endure did not harm anyone.

On this beautiful sunny day there were zero workers between Mayfield and Chester on Euclid. 2 cops “assisting” traffic but nobody working. And that is typical.

And if you never get to, say, Playhouse Square, take a trip down just to see the mess in the streets.

Somebody should be held accountable for this.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Tim Russert

What a tragedy. Tim Russert passed away, apparently of a heart attack, at age 58 today.

Best known for hosting Meet the Press, Tim Russert is a fellow John Carroll University alumnus. In fact, he was a few years ahead of my sister Pat and they dated. We always kidded her that she made the wrong choice in marrying husband Tom, instead of Tim Russert.

I saw him speak at a benefit for Tri-C a few years back and he seemed like a very regular guy. When given a signed Cavs basketball, he showed off how he could palm it.

I reviewed his book, Big Russ and Me when it came out a few years ago. If you haven't read it yet, now's a perfect time (just before Father's Day) to check it out.

Tim was instrumental in bringing a little known band from the East Coast to JCU - a guy by the name of Bruce Springsteen and his band.

He will be missed.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Amazing new photo - Water on Mars

Even if you are not into astronomy or any kind of science, you will be amazed by the vivid colors in this photo (I believe it is the first) of water on Mars.

Check it out

Sunday, June 01, 2008

The Trash Can Icon

One of the things I like most about the PC industry is how new it is - and that I got to experience a lot of it.

In the late 1970’s, Robert X. Cringely joined the Homebrew Computer Club and met Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak. They invited him to join their new company, Apple.

That kicked off an eventful career that led to his columns in InfoWorld Magazine, the book Accidental Empires and his PBS specials.

Cringely was the keynote speaker at the recent NEOSA Best of Tech Awards and I was able to capture some audio and ask a question.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

How: Why How We Do Anything Means Business (and in Life)

I've been down on a lot of the business books that have crossed my path recently. Too many take one catchy idea that could be explained in a single chapter and surround it with a few hundred pages of padding to make up a book.

I was not optimistic when I picked up How: Why How We Do Anything Means Business (and in Life)by Dov Seidman. It sounded like similar fluff.

But it is actually a pretty solid and deep presentation.

Check out the review here.

Monday, May 19, 2008

This one's on me

With those words on the official Nine Inch Nails website, Trent Reznor announced that the new NIN album would be released for free download to the fans.

The site says, "Click HERE to get the new full-length nine inch nails record: the slip (thank you for your continued and loyal support over the years - this one's on me)

How cool!

You have several download options - mp3 is best for most - and it is all DRM free.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Free Software - 1 day only

If you've been using PCs for awhile, you probably have multi-headed Hydra-like Laplink cables somewhere. Back in the day, you needed Laplink software and those cables (serial or parallel!) to move files from PC to PC.

Laplink has been publishing great software for the last 25 years and May 15th is their 25th anniversary.

So they are giving away the full version of PCmover, the #1 selling product to automatically set up a new PC, for free for one day only.

Get the details here.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Tijuana Margarita

Monday May 5th is Cinco de Mayo and what better way to celebrate than with a nice Tijuana Margarita and some Fiesta Guacamole. Both recipes are on our sister site.

Ever wonder what Cinco de Mayo is all about?

Check it out here.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Don't tick off an engineer

Imagine the confusion when a clerk receives this check.

It's a pretty simple calculation actually but may not be evident to the person processing the check.

For thiose interested, see the amount and how it's derived here.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

So that's why road construction is so slow

Regular readers of this blog know how I've not been happy with the poor planning and lack of accomplishments with the Euclid Ave. construction.

Now I know why. Maybe the orange barrels have been partying a little too much.

The Parade after the Parade

After another fantastic St Patrick's Day Parade (see lots of pics here) I couldn't help but notice the parade after the parade.

As the last groups were lining up to start their march down Superior, I saw a line of street cleaners getting ready to start their own little parade.

Very efficient!

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Channel 19's Danielle Serino and Salsa

No, I don't mean the kind of salsa you eat with chips.

When we did a profile of WOIO news anchor Danielle Serino recently, one of the things we learned was that she is a very good salsa dancer.

Who knew?

We posted a video of her dancing (wow!) in her profile. Check it out.

I don't think I was ever able to move like that.

Progressive Field

Yep, It's Progressive Field now. The Prog, the Pro - just not (hopefully) the P to go along with the Q across the street.

They changed thousands of signs. They save the last letter on the huge sign at the corner of Ontario and Carnegie for last.

Listen to a podcast with Tribe PR VP Bobbie DiBiasio and see some more videos here.

Here's a cople minutes of the workers lifting and placing the final letter in the sign.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Cleveland Indians 2008

It's hard to believe that it has been 15 years since the Tribe played at Cleveland Municipal Stadium and then Jacobs Field opened and it is now Progressive Field.

It's even harder to believe that it's been 60 years since 1948 - the year of our last World Championship Baseball team.

The Indians came close last year and I expect their pitching to keep them in the hunt this year - even against the huge salaries of Boston, New York and even the Detroit Tigers.

Slider's back and he has 3 new characters joining him - Ketchup, Mustard and Onion. See more pics of what's new for the 2008 season.

And check out this short (1:38) video of Indians VP of PR Bobby DiBiasio getting a special greeting from Slider.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Tell us about your first. Mine was Trash

My first store-bought personal computer was a Radio Shack TRS-80 Model 1. Of course, the TRS-80 series was nicknamed Trash-80 but they were pretty good machines for the time.

It ran both a proprietary OS called TRS-DOS as well as the optional CP/M.

There were some decent apps like the Scripsit word processor and Visicalc for spreadsheets.

It was a very powerful feeling to change a variable in a spreadsheet and watch the changes ripple through an entire sheet.

Visitors to are asked to tell what their first PC was - a TRS-80? Apple II? Commodore 64? TI? Or did you not get a PC till the IBM PC came out?

Tell us about your first - Vote here.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

American Pi

Friday March 14th is Pi Day and the real celebration is at 1:59:26 p.m.

At that time, the numbers will be 31415926 and of course Pi starts off as 3.1415926.

If that's not geeky enough for you, here is how PI starts off so you can memorize and amaze/annoy your fellow geeky friends.

80348253421170679 8214
895493038196 442

continued here

Lots more good Pi info too

Monday, March 10, 2008

Hogan and Marley and Me

I finally got around to reading the best seller, Marley & Me by John Grogan. The subtitle is “Life and Love with the World’s Worst Dog.”

Actually, I listened to the audio version of the book and reader Johnny Heller does an outstanding job.

If you are a dog person, you will laugh and cry (yes, that’s a cliché but it fits) as you hear the all-too-familiar stories. Marley was a yellow lab. My current and last dog is/was a black lab. (Read Hogan’s blog) While there are some lab specific tales in the book, the human-canine relationship will be recognized by all dog owners.

Warning – just as in real life, dogs have a tragically short life span compared to humans. So the chapters leading up to Marley’s end are painful to anyone who has had to go through that experience.

But the conclusion puts it in perspective well.

People who have not had dogs will wonder how the author could put up with all the crazy activities and hassles of their pet. Dog lovers will realize that the word “pet” is a misnomer – dogs become part of the family.

As Grogan says, "Life without a dog is easier and immensely more simple." It’s a dog owner thing.

Marley & Me: Life and Love with the World's Worst Dog

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Johnson Chon and State Farm - stay away

Last summer, an older lady hit my car in our church parking lot. Nobody was hurt, we were friendly (just came out of church!) and she admitted she had a tough day and apologized.

We exchanged information and she said she had a former student who had a body shop and she asked if I would go see him for an estimate. No problem. No need for a police report or anything.

I went to her friend, he gave an estimate and he told her the damage (about $500)

She turned it over to her insurance company, State Farm. She gave me the number to call so they could have it fixed and send the check. So far so good.

Then I get a call from someone from State Farm named Johnson Chon. He had to be the rudest, loudest jerk I have ever dealt with on the phone.

Even though his client had admitted her fault, Johnson Chon tried to pin it on me. He asked, accusingly, why no police report. I explained. He demanded that I describe the church parking lot and said since there were no traffic signs; his client was not at fault. Traffic signs in a church parking lot?

He went on and on, getting louder and louder and more obnoxious. I reported this to the lady who hit me and she apologized and said she would call them.

In a few days she called back and said that Johnson Chon told her that maybe she didn’t hit my car because there was no police report and no traffic signs in the parking lot. He told her she/they shouldn’t have to pay. By this time, she was very confused and we commiserated about the badgering tactics of this jerk.

In a nutshell, she was so badgered and intimidated by this rude, obnoxious State Farm rep that she cancelled the claim with them.

So State Farm saved a few hundred dollars and cost an old lady some cash and badgered a few people into never doing business with them. And hopefully convincing others to not do business with them either.

I am sure Johnson Chon will go far.

2 wild videos

This first one is where a few hundred people suddenly freeze in place, at the same time, in New York's Grand Central Station. It freaks people out as you will see. Very well done.

The second is a wild salsa dance routine from none other than Ch 19's Danielle Serino.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Lots of Interesting Links

I was very surprised to run into an old pal the other day who said he reads my blog but didn't visit any of my web sites.

I explained to him that I very rarely post to the blog but the websites get new stuff every day.

So for those of you who didn't know, here are a couple of cool postings on some of my web sites.

On we have some great pics and video from Jim Cookinham's retirement party.

Also more from the Tech Czar, Mike DeAloia.

On we have some great pics and videos from a Chinese New Years Lion Dance at Asia Plaza as well as pics from the Cleveland Cavaliers Black Heritage Celebration and the visit to Cleveland of the Ambassador from the People's Republic of China.

The site has a great profile of Fox 8's Tim Taylor as well as the life of Jim Cookinham Both with tons of photos!

on we have new fashion and makeup experts that are getting a great response. And we have some fascinating Cleveland Women profiles about ready to post.

So as he scolded me to post more to the blog, I reminded him (and now you!) that the real action is on the websites. But I will try and do better.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Euclid Construction

We have been fortunate to have unseasonably dry and warm weather. One might expect this to positively impact the progress on Euclid Avenue repairs, no?

No, is right.

After a week at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, I returned for my daily commute to nice weather and one, count 'em, one solitary worker on Euclid between Mayfield and Chester.

So this vital stretch that covers University Circle, CWRU and University Hospitals is still torn up and limited to a couple of lanes that must be shared with emergency vehicles.

I'm not saying it's as bad as this photo where the guys block their van in but...

In addition I am less than impressed at the completed sections of Euclid. In the past, bus riders on Euclid, around 36th or 40th say, would simply go from the curb to the bus. Now they have to navigate and cross to that space-sapping and ugly island in the middle of the street. The 3 lanes of traffic each way are now down to 1 lane.

This is progress? Heads should roll.