Sunday, December 21, 2008


This HP Magic Giveaway has introduced me to a lot of interesting new blogs, like Geeks!, where I have found a lot of new friends. I've even learned about some Spanish language blogs, which I normally wouldn't go to, but thanks to Google's Translation page, I'm able to check them out for the contest and find some cool discussions.

On CiberPrensa, I found a great discussion about Twitter vs. RSS feeds. I've heard a lot about RSS feeds, and I'm still not entirely sure how they work. Maybe you have to have special software. Twitter, I'm using at work and some in my personal life. It is kind of fun to be able to post a quick update about something special going on. A lot of people use it as a moment-to-moment diary, which I still find kind of strange. I don't need to know that you just went to the bathroom or had a snack. I hope I can get some more Twitter followers, both for PLT and for my personal account, so I can reach more people when I have something of some kind of importance to say.

I do agree with the article, which says that it's easier to carry on a conversation via Twitter, instead of just referring people to a post or having a one-way conversation via a feed or a blog.

Here's the link to the CiberPrensa article in its original Spanish.

Here's the information on how to participate in CiberPrensa's HP Magic Giveaway. You can take part whether you have a blog or not.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Joy of Giving

HP is giving away hundreds of thousands of dollars of computer equipment this Christmas. Some of the sites that has a giveaway going on now are Stop, Drop, and Blog, Living in Theory, and Geeks Room.

My husband and I are very blessed. We both have decent jobs (so far, at least), and we’re only in debt for the house and our single car. I'm lucky enough to be working in a community theatre, which touches the lives of patrons, volunteers, and students every day. Tim and I can afford to buy Christmas gifts, go out to eat, and take very good care of our eight rescue cats. We cannot afford to buy, or at least we can’t justify buying, a laptop computer. That’s the main reason that I am trying to win one of these HP Magic packages. Also the Media Connect would be really cool to have.

I would like to give one of the computers to my in-laws, who don’t have a computer at all. Maybe it would be the desktop or maybe the HP mini would be enough for them. I figure they will mainly use it for e-mail with their three children and only granddaughter, and perhaps they’ll occasionally check out a website. They have complained that companies, organizers and the news media just assume everyone has internet access and they can’t follow the links to get more information or fill out forms. I’ll give them the printer, too, so they can print photos that are e-mailed to them. It would be so nice to be able to e-mail them information about a recall, or a promising cancer treatment (FIL has cancer), or just to send photos. They live in a small town, sort of near their oldest son, but hours away from DH and his sister.

One of the computers I will donate to Pensacola Little Theatre. It’s a non-profit organization, and I happen to work there. The computers we have are decent, but they are slow and sometimes lock-up. A laptop computer could also be used to run sound effects for the traveling shows we take to schools and the productions we do in our black box theatre. It would give a lot more control to the sound operator than trying to hit the cues just right on a portable CD player.

The fourth computer in the package, I will give to a deserving young person. I will ask around at the theatre and contact friends who work at other non-profit organizations. I would like to find a young person who does well in school, is respectful and a contributing member of his or her community, someone whose family just doesn’t have the money to provide a home computer. Not only will the gift help that person, but it might show others that being a good person can lead to rewards “just because.”

When I was a child, Christmas was all about what I got. Now, I buy for myself most of what I want. I enjoy the pleasure of watching someone else receive something special. As I said, we’re doing okay financially, but I’m not really in a position to surprise total strangers with really nice gifts, especially not something like a computer. This competition would allow me to play Santa and give someone else a very special Christmas. You can’t buy joy like that.

Toys for Christmas

If you live in modern America, religious teachings aside, Christmas is all about Santa Claus and presents. Geeks!, Chris Pirillo, and Sears are teaming up to give away bundles of Christmas toys, which you can keep or give away. Choose from a LEGO package, a Star Wars package, or a Games package. Just visit the site and comment on the giveaway and which package you'd like best -- that's one entry. Tweet about the giveaway for entry #2. Blog about it (like I'm doing right now) for entry #3. It's a random drawing. What have you got to lose? Visit the site today to sign up.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

I'm dreaming of an HP Magic Christmas.

Seriously, I keep having dreams about the various HP Magic Giveaways going on. They all have different rules and regulations for the entry, and my dreams are always the same. I'm trying to read through the blog to make sure I'm doing everything correctly to get my entry, and my cats won't leave me alone so I can concentrate, and then I wake up, and Wicket and Kali are tag-teaming on my head to wake me up for a midnight snack.

It really is a magical promotion. When it's all over, I'm going to have to find someone from HP to come speak to my chapter of the FPRA. Hopefully they'll be agreeable, because it's a really fascinating promotion and I'd love to know more about how they pulled it together.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

A Star Wars Camera! This I've gotta have!

I've never made any secret of the fact I'm a major Star Wars fan and collector. When I first saw the adorable Star Wars digital camera, I wanted it desperately. Of course, my husband points out we already have a digital camera, and the Star Wars one would not be carried around anywhere it might be damaged, so what's the point? He's very cynical about the Star Wars collection. So, now there's a chance to WIN a Star Wars Camera, thanks to the lovely folks at Sakar (the manufacturer) and MommaFindings. So, head over and check out the giveaway, but don't covet the camera too much, because it's mine!

Monday, December 08, 2008

The Holiday Season

My husband brought up a news story about a woman who was going out of her way to say "Merry Christmas" to people at stores in order to see what they replied. My mom responded that she was going to say "Merry Christmas" to people, and she doesn't care what religion they are. See, I think that's just rude. Of course, it would help if people wore buttons that indicated what holiday(s) they celebrate. If someone is wearing a Christmas Tree pin or sweater, I feel confident in saying "Merry Christmas." If someone says "Happy Holidays" to me, I appreciate the sentiment. Heck, I'm happy if my sales clerk thanks me for my business or asks me to come back again, rather than just grunting and moving on to the next customer.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Businesswomen and Bitches

Here's an interesting story about a woman who started a business and bilked a lot of moms out of their hard-earned money. Did she deliberately rip them off? Or was she just following standard business practice? The discussion is on Composite: thoughts of poetics and tech

From the same blog: a discussion of bitchiness. I think the attitude is overrated. What do you think?

Finally, is the businesswoman in the first post a bitch to be condemned or a bitch to be admired for her bitchiness?

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Cell Phones

Several of us in the office today had a good chat about the overuse of cell phones and how rude some people are. A bunch of audience members who came to see Rocky Horror at PLT were using their phones to take photos and send text messages during the performance. One person complained of people coming to her home and in the middle of the conversation, they'll answer their phone, usually for something trivial. Another person complained of getting phone calls when he's trying to have a nice dinner out. That's why not many people have my cell phone number!