Lottery Post Journal

Rudy

Last night I saw one of the most amazing speeches I have ever seen a politician give.  Rudy Giuliani was the closing speech at the Republican convention, and totally blew away all expectations.

I think the most amazing thing was the range of emotion that he went through as he hit different parts of the speech.

There was seriousness, humor, graciousness, biting criticism of Kerry (but never meanness or over-the-top criticism), recounting of memories, and great stories.

The speech lasted a long 40 minutes, but it was mesmerizing, never losing your attention.

What a tremendous resource for Republicans to have in their camp.  It's no wonder he's one of the most sought-after politicians in America.

Windows XP Service Pack 2

I installed this upgrade to Windows XP Friday night on one of my PCs.  Installation, including download time (cable modem), was about an hour and a half.

One of the first things you notice is the new security features, including firewall and popup blocker for Internet Explorer.  Both seem very well integrated.

So far no problems, and I'd recommend anyone who uses XP do the update.  If you're a dial-up user, you should be prepared to setup your computer to do the download and update overnight.  Better yet, sign up for a cable modem!  (DSL is the second-best choice.)

Good Morning Start

How to start the morning with a positive attitude.

  1. Open a new file in your PC.
  2. Name it "John Kerry."
  3. Send it to the trash.
  4. Empty the trash.
  5. Your PC will ask you, "do you really want to get rid of John Kerry?"
  6. Answer calmly, "yes," and press the mouse button firmly.

Now, don't you feel better..?????????

Predictions Update

I have added the ability to sort predictions by game type when viewing predictions for a state.

Next up is I'm going to try to add a feature to filter out "All States" predictions from those predictions shown for a state.

Hopefully these two things will help a couple of people who have told me that the predictions page is "useless".

Great mod to my Vette today

Today I had a new exhaust system installed on my Vette, that I'd been wanting to do for a long time.  It's a Borla Stinger cat-back system, and I also installed a Magnaflow x-pipe.  This thing makes my car really sound awesome!

Here's a pic of the final result from the back.  I'll post some more detailed pics in the future on my personal home page.

'Served Together' Definition

Man, if this doesn't just say it all...

Wickedly cool feature!

Whew!  I just finished programming that last major feature for the new memberships.

The last feature is a LotteryPost.com e-mail address for Platinum members.

Once you become a Platinum member, you just go into Control Panel, select E-mail Settings, and then enter what you want your new e-mail address to be.  For example, if you enter lotterywinner, your new address would be lotterywinner@lotterypost.com.

You will be able to change your e-mail address as many times as you like.  Changes are instantly active.

I think this new feature will be a nice elite designation for those who upgrade to Platinum.  A real "feather in the cap."

For the techie-heads out there, this took a bit of effort to get the Web server to talk to the e-mail server to add and change addresses.  Now they're both using SOAP to talk XML.

The last step before launch is to create all the administration stuff necessary to track payments and membership levels.  It's all stuff that no one but I will see, but it will make everything work.

Poster Ranking

Just checked off one of my little to-do items: Top 100, Top 50, and Top 25 posters now have special graphics next to their posts.  Kind of like a seniority thing.

Platinum Search Finished ... Again

After more thoroughly testing the new search feature, I decided to add some more features that let you specify the amount of numbers to match in each row, plus the amount of bonus numbers to match, if the game includes bonus numbers.

I also added a feature so that if you're not a platinum member, you can still use a date-range-limited version of the search tool to try it out.  Basically, all of the features are intact, but it limits all searches to the month of April, 2004.

Now only two things left until I can launch the new memberships:

  1. A feature that will give all Platinum members a Lottery Post e-mail address (membername@lotterypost.com), and,
  2. Some internal accounting and administration features to track payments and memberships, and to "turn on" certain features when people upgrade their memberships.

I'll probably also need to write a bunch of description and instructions pages to describe all the new features and what you get when you upgrade.

It's getting closer!

Platinum Search Finished

After a marathon programming effort tonight, I think I'm finished with a search feature for Platinum members.  It has some features I've never seen on any lottery site, so it should be pretty exciting.

It's now 3:00 AM, and I think I'm going to collapse, so this is going to be a short entry.

The completion of the Platinum Search brings us much closer to launching the Gold and Platinum memberships, so this is a big step.

Bunny in the Tank

I love this one!

WOW ... veterans speak about John Kerry

Holy mackerel, a new TV ad was just posted online that crushes everything John Kerry said about his Vietnam record.

The ad contains lots of people from that famous photo that Kerry likes to display, and everyone in the photo says he's lying about his record and unfit for command.  One guy even says that he's lying about his purple heart - because he's the one who treated him!

http://humaneventsonline.com.edgesuite.net/unfit_video_wmv.html

I'm sure the democrats are going to pull out the tired old "right-wing conspiracy" thing again.  But all this lying stuff totally fits with Kerry's constant flip-flopping and weasel attitude.

The guy even loses popularity after the Democratic convention!  Every single candidate in history got a popularity bounce after the convention - except him!

I don't think it's even going to be close in November.  I think Bush will win in a landslide.

Spam University

For those looking to retrain for another line of work....

http://www.j-walk.com/other/spamu/

Check out the campus!

Platinum Stats Page

I just finished the new Statistics page that will be available for Platinum members.  I am really happy with the way it turned out - very easy to use, and still contains a good amount of powerful features.  It works with all games that people can post predictions for, which is also pretty cool.

I'm sure there will be room for improvement, and there will be additional stats pages, but for "version 1.0" I think it's good.

Next up is the search page for results (another Platinum feature).  Once that's finished, I have a couple more relatively minor programming tasks, and then I should be ready to launch the Gold and Platinum membership levels.

Can't wait...

Couple kicked off Miami-New York flight because of T-shirt

I just saw this news story, and it gave me hope that there is still a bit of sanity and morals left in the world.  I'll be more inclined to fly American Airlines because of their courage to act against morons like this. 

If tradition holds, I'm sure the ACLU will file a lawsuit aganst American.


MIAMI - A couple returning home from a Costa Rican vacation was ejected from an American Airlines flight because the man was wearing a T-shirt depicting a bare breast.

Oscar Arela and his girlfriend, Tala Tow, were removed from Flight 952 on Saturday after he refused to change the shirt or turn it inside out at Miami International Airport. The flight left 90 minutes late without them.

The couple, making a connecting flight from Costa Rica, said nobody on the earlier flight objected to the shirt and claimed the airline violated their constitutional right to free speech.

"It's a picture of a man and woman, and the woman's breast is showing," Tow said. "The flight attendant basically walked up to us and yelled, 'You have to take off that shirt right now.'"

American spokesman Tim Wagner said Sunday that crew members acted properly.

"The description I heard was a picture of a graphic of a naked man and woman pernorming a sexual act," he said. "We as an airline are in the service business, and we have the same latitude as a restaurant that says proper attire is required."

Tow said four Miami-Dade police officers and three federal security agents escorted her and Arela off the flight. She said the T-shirt image was reproduced from a Venezuelan record label.

Wagner said the couple could legally be barred from the flight even though they committed no crime. The airline gave them a refund. He did not know if they booked another flight.

"I'd like to figure out how a T-shirt that offends one member of the crew somehow impacts the safety of the flight or the ability of the flight to continue to New York," said Howard Simon, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Florida. "If they want to permit this kind of action by flight attendants, then they better have a clear policy that is announced in advance and made known to passengers in advance."