Archive for the ‘Personal’ Category

One Year Later

Monday, September 1st, 2008

It’s been one year since my last post to this blog. A lot of stuff has happened in my life, so this post will serve as a brief update for the past year.

School
I graduated from BCIT with a diploma in computer networking.

Living Situation

In September 2007 I moved from Pitt Meadows BC to Burnaby BC. During the schoolyear I was living in the BCIT Residence, and recently moved to a place near Metrotown in Burnaby. I’m living with a roomate, who still attends BCIT.

Work
The week after I finished college, I began working full time as a network technician at an ISP. In October I became a CCNA (Cisco Certified Network Associate), and later this year I will be writing the exams required to get my CCNP and CCIP certifications.

Websites
Around the beginning of the year I found that I was spending too much time working on various websites and wasn’t devoting enough time to school, so I decided to take a break until September. This would give me time to finish college, and have a nice break over the summer. Currently I am getting rid of some of my assets, and organizing the rest. Getting ready to gear up again.

Summer
Since I live so close to downtown Vancouver, I went several times to the Celebration of Lights, which is an awesome fireworks show. My friends and I also spent a lot of time at the beaches in Vancouver such as English Bay, Ambleside, Jericho, and Spanish Banks. Started playing a lot of Volleyball and Ultimate frisbee, which I enjoy a lot.

Camping
A few weekends ago, we did some camping up near Hope. We drove into the Skagit Valley, which is right on the border of Canada and the United States. I will do a longer post later with more of the details.

Birthday
My 22nd birthday was on August 5th, and some good friends of mine took me to the Keg in Vancouver for dinner. I had some steak with shrimp and lobster on top and it was delicious. It’s been a long time since I’ve had seafood like that, and I need to start going to Vancouver more often for the fresh seafood.

Angels and Airwaves
On August 7th I went to the Angels and Airwaves concert at the Commodore Ballroom. I bought my ticket in January for the concert, which was originally scheduled for March 6th. Due to scheduling issues, they moved it to August 7th 2008. Dave and I headed to Milestones for some Mojitos before the concert, and then met up with another friend in the lineup outside the Commodore. The concert was amazing, and I love the band’s music, even though I think Tom Delonge is really arrogant. If you haven’t heard of Angels and Airwaves before, checkout The Adventure, The War, and Valkyrie Missile.

Angels and Airwaves are coming to Vancouver again on October 10th 2008, this time they are playing with Weezer and Tokyo Police Club. The venue for this concert will be GM Place, and I will be buying tickets in the near future for it. Should be a good show.

Long Weekend in Victoria
Today is the last day of the Labour Day long weekend in Canada, so I went to Victoria to visit Dave Venter and get some much needed relaxation. Spent the first couple of days around the house relaxing, One of the nights Dave made some delicious ribs, and we also made several batches of Mojitos, which were pretty good. Still need to perfect the recipe though.

On Sunday we headed downtown, and had a pitcher of Sleeman Honey Brown Ale at Irish Times in Victoria. I also had a bowl of the Corn Chowder soup, which was delicious. In the evening we went back downtown and played a few games of Pool at Peacock Billiards. I’m heading to bed now, and later today I will be taking the Ferry from Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen.

I will be posting much more frequently, so stay tuned for more.

Vacationing In Colwood

Tuesday, August 28th, 2007

21st Birthday
I meant to post a few posts on various topics in the past few weeks, but I’ve been very busy with web development, and finishing off work. I’ve also been doing some work for a couple of clients. One of the posts was to celebrate my 21st birthday, which was August 5th. Happy Birthday to me! Some friends and I went to see the Bourne Ultimatum 3, which I thought was a good ending to the Bourne trilogy. After we went to Boston Pizza, then ended up at my place.

Vacation
I am currently vacationing in Colwood BC, a suburb of Victoria. It is quite nice here, my buddy Dave Venter was kind enough to let me stay at his place. We’ve been doing a lot of relaxing, and have also been working on our various websites. I’ll post pictures when I get back.

New Websites

I have launched 25 new websites in the past week. One of them is a blog. If there is one thing I hate doing, it is writing content. Once the blog gets going, I’m going to outsource it to a good writer that I know of. I’m doing a lot of social bookmarking, pinging, and other methods of promotion on these sites.

Nice Domain
A few weeks ago I purchased a PR3 domain from someone on the DigitalPoint forums for $15, and it expires in 2009. I didn’t want to let it sit there empty, but I didn’t have the time to properly develop it. I scraped a couple of articles in the niche, and then I threw up an offer from AzoogleAds. I let it sit for awhile, then I log in a couple of days ago and was surprised to see $25.55 from that site, from one conversion. I’ve been promoting this site a bit, and am thinking about how I should develop the domain. One of the previous owners of the domain did a LOT of promotion on the domain, on Digg, Reddit, as well as setting up several related blogspot blogs with content, linking to the domain. The site ranks well for the content I have on it, and I plan on developing this domain.

Affiliate Marketing
I’m not going to give much of an update in this area at the moment, I have some long-term projects that I working on that I’m keeping hush-hush, for good reason. Once I start heavily promoting them, I will be giving stat updates.

School
College starts next week, I’m not sure exactly what my living conditions will be. I will either be living in Dorms, or at home. It depends on whether I get accepted into the dorms or not, I find out Tuesday, which is when school probably starts. If I don’t get into the dorms, then I will have to commute. Public transportation will suck, and I would have to get up 2 hours earlier. All that I can say, is that it will be an interesting year.

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Lack of updates

Thursday, February 15th, 2007

Sorry for the lack of updates, there was a death in my family last weekend.

I’ll resume posting here very soon!

Updates

Friday, February 2nd, 2007

Yesterday I wrote my final exams for the Windows Server 2003 and Structured Cabling courses. Without studying, I managed to get 82% and 73% on the exams. Not incredible, but I still passed. On Monday I start

I worked on Thursday, Friday (today), and I will be working tomorrow for a few hours as well. Payday was yesterday, so I feel good. Except that most of the money is going for bills and books, but hey, that’s life I guess.

The server has been up and running well for just over a week now. I have moved over all the domains that were on the shared hosting account, except this one. I will be moving it over this weekend at some point.

My proxy sites have been back up for a few days, and have small amounts of traffic again, with no advertising. Clickthrough rate is ok, but I’m still not making much per click.

I’ve also launched a new project, it’s a website with a lot of flash based web games. I was curious to see how well these sites would do. I submitted it to Digg, and with only 10 diggs, I had over 1030 games played today. Those are the statistics from the software that I use for the site, but I think games played = hits on a page with a game on it. However, Adsense reports that I’ve had 142 pageviews on the site today. Maybe a lot of diggers use Mozilla Firefox with the Adblock Plus extension?

A lot of people were reporting Google pagerank updates recently, most of them reporting a rise in their pagerank. However, my pagerank stayed at 3. Last month I was monitoring it for a few days, and I saw it go up to 5 a couple times, but when I refreshed it went back down to 3. It is still 3 right now. When I get pagerank of 4-5 I will apply for Text Link Ads, and try to monetize this blog a bit.

I don’t like looking at Google Adsense that much, and since it doesn’t seem to work that well with the amount of traffic this blog gets every day, I think I keep it off the site. I don’t have a problem with TLA however, as they pay well (unlike Google Adsense) and I can use any money that I can get.

I would like to give a shout out to my buddy over at Venter.ca! He’s been working on his blog which is running on Wordpress, and the blog is coming along quite nicely.

It’s the weekend!

Friday, January 12th, 2007

Well, it’s friday night, and I’m glad. Time to relax, hang out with friends, and work on some of my websites.

I’ve updated the theme, what do you think? I like it. I’ve also updated the links on the right side of this page a bit, added some and removed some old ones. If you see your link there, feel free to link back!
I have a computer downstairs that I’ve been letting my younger sister use for school, msn, and web browsing for about 8-10 months. I stopped using my old laptop for school, and now she is using the laptop from time to time in our living room. It is plugged in near the couches. Last night I was lying down on the couch, transferring some files off the computer onto my desktop. I will be formatting the computer and using it as a ’sandbox’ server, as well as a fileserver. It has 2 Athlon 2000+ MP CPUs, 512MB Ram (ECC), 250GB hard drive. Each CPU has a large fan, and they make quite a bit of noise.

I plan on installing FreeNAS and using it as a file/ftp/backup server, most of the time. I am planning on formatting the 250GB hard drive as using the FAT32 filesystem, so most operating systems can use it/write to it. I will throw an old hard drive (3-5GB) into the computer to use for the FreeNAS system, as the operating system itself requires only 32MB of space.
I have another 40GB hard drive sitting here, I might use that with an external case I have, or I could use it to install other operating systems to play with. I will be getting a free copy of Windows Vista (not ultimate edition though -_-) through th MSDN Academic Alliance program, through my school.

What kind of a computer/media setup do you have at home?

First Post of 2007

Tuesday, January 2nd, 2007

I haven’t made any posts lately, but I’ve had a lot going on. This is going to be a long post, so here are the main topics in bullet form.

-Grandpa
-Xbox
-Sites Launched
-Cell Phone
-Flickr Limits

Grandpa

A few weeks ago, my mom’s dad was driving during the middle of the night. He fell asleep at the wheel, and drove into the oncoming lane and hit a semi-trailer head on. He survived, and was put into ICU in Kelowna. He has a broken hip, a few broken ribs, and some other stuff.

Xbox

The week after Christmas I was bored so I worked on my softmodded xbox a bit. To start I changed the default dashboard from evolutionX to Xbox Media Center, and uploaded a custom XBMC skin. I installed SNES and N64 emulators and some old roms including Super Mario World, Zelda: A link to the past, and Goldeneye 007. I also streamed some movies, music videos and music to my xbox using Windows Samba shares on my desktop.

Sites launched

One of my sites that I will abbrieviate simply by ‘GPTF’, has launched. I had a lot of problems with the template, but I finally compromised and got it working. The website is running CGIproxy, and I will market it on via Myspace as soon as I get hotlink protection setup in the script.

I’ve also launched three other proxy websites that I did not design, I used templates that I found online. I haven’t promoted these proxies much yet, also I may soon. They all have a custom hotlink protection script installed, so I don’t get people using my server without looking at my advertisements.

I’m getting an average of 1,000 to 2,000 hits a day on my sites, so now that I have some traffic, I need to improve my click through rate. I now have six proxy sites running, but I would like to develop some other websites so I don’t have all my eggs in one basket’.

I am currently earning between $1-3 a day with Google Adsense, although I’ve had a few $5 days.

The server that I ordered has been setup and I have transferred some of my websites over, and I will be cancelling my Hostgator account soon and transferring the rest of my domains over.

Cell phone

I was planning on purchasing a new cell phone on boxing day, however I’ve now decided that I will wait until after March 14, 2007 before switching. On that date, the mobile carriers will be required to provide wireless number portability to their customers. That means I can take my current phone number with me to another carrier when I switch. I currently use Fido as my mobile carrier, but I want to switch to a Virgin Mobile prepaid plan.

I also want to get a SkypeIn number, but they don’t have any in Canada. As soon as they get numbers in Canada, I will subcribe to both their SkypeIn and SkypeOut services. For now I am content with calling friends over Skype, PC to PC.

Flickr limits

Recently while I was uploading pictures to my flickr account, I was greeted with this notice. For now I do not think I will change to a different service, or upgrade to a pro account. I will probably upgrade to a pro account in the future, once I start taking a lot more pictures. I only upload certain pictures to my account, anyway.

Have a great year!

Update

Tuesday, December 12th, 2006

Ok, I need to do a quick update on school and my websites, so here goes.

Web Development

I had a huge spike in my Google Adsense earnings in the past few days. I’ve been running two proxy websites on the PHProxy script. I’ve had them up for three days or so now, and have done little advertising. I did sign them up for a bunch of topsites, which brought a little bit of traffic. Yesterday when I logged into my home computer remotely from school, I saw that my Google Adsense plugin for Firefox said that I had made $8.48 cents that day. I initially thought it said $0.60 cents, and I was excited about having $0.60 cents! By the end of the day I had made $9.00 even. (I made $0.52 from my other proxy site)

I had made $8.48 cents by 10:30am, PST. I’ve uploaded a screenshot of my Google Adsense earnings for the one website for the past few days, you can view it here. I had to blur out some of the statistics due to Google’s terms of service, and I blurred the name, as I will be keeping it a secret for now. The website that I made the money on looks bad - even ugly. It is the default layout for PHProxy, and is just a white page with a logo and my Google Ads.

Today I have made $0.00 using Google Adsense. I need to figure out how I got the traffic, and get some more!

School

Today was our Skills test for the CCNA level 2 course. I got a 9/10, as I placed the access control list on the wrong interface on the router. I was using an extended access control list and I placed it on the serial interface going outbound, instead of the fast ethernet interface going inbound. Extended access control lists are supposed to be placed closest to the source. Other then that I thought I did well.

We are doing final exams this week. I have a written final for Cisco tommorow, along with a Voucher exam. The voucher exam will give us a discount on writing the CCNA if we get past a certain mark the voucher exam. Thursday I have the Cisco online final exam, and a written final for ‘C’.

False Alarm

Wednesday, December 6th, 2006

Well, that was certainly embarrassing. A good lesson, but still embarrassing nonetheless. I was the one who had the credit card attached to his account. I must have clicked twice or something, as I don’t remember using my credit card on my paypal account before.

I found out that Paypal doesn’t allow you to send money from your credit card to people, and I don’t want to attach my debit account to my Paypal account. I need to find another online payment method. I wanted to tryout Google Checkout, but I attempted to activate an account with them, and they didn’t list Canada as a country. I was tired, so it might be there and I did not see it.

Edit: After calling Paypal two more times (waiting 15 minutes on hold to be disconnected, called back and waited again) I have it all sorted out. Somehow I ended up with another Paypal account that I don’t even remember having. I erased it, and was able to add my credit card to it.

Possible Credit Card Fraud

Wednesday, December 6th, 2006

I was planning on purchasing a website today, so last night I attempted to add my credit card to my paypal profile. I had not used my paypal account in at least a year or so, and when I tried to add my credit card, paypal gave me the following error:

That card number is already assigned to another Paypal account. For security purposes, each card may only be assigned to one Paypal account. If you have already opened a Paypal account, please retrieve the relevant information and log in. Otherwise, please use a different card.


If that is true, I have no idea how my credit card number got attached to someone elses paypal account. I need to go make some phone calls to Paypal and my credit card company, to find out what’s going on.

Updates

Friday, December 1st, 2006

Today I accomplished the following:

-Wrote two midterms; CCNA level 2 and ‘C’. I’m very confident about the C exam, however the only confidence that I have regarding the Cisco midterm, is that I did poorly on it. It is my fault though, I did not study for either exam.
-The other day I received an email from Google offering me a $25 Adwords credit. Since I had not signed up for AdWords yet, I signed up and got the credit and put my ad campaigns on pause. Thanks Google!
-Signed up for 7Search. Added $25 to my account, and tried to call them to speed of the process of validating my credit card. They are closed now, I will call them again tommorow to see if they are open.

-Registered six more domains. One will be for a personal website, another for a special project, and four to experiment with arbi.

-Configured Samurize to incorporate text files onto my desktop. It’s pretty sweet, since I am always using text files to store todo lists, ideas, etc. Now whenever I edit my todo.txt on my desktop, it displays the contents over my wallpaper.

-Updated the links on the right side of my page. They now reflect some of the blogs that I read daily, forums that I frequent, and other good links.

Edit:

-Also added an ‘About’ section to the top of this page.