An Alien in America

An alien's perspective on life and everything else

Archive for March, 2006


Posted by nickxyz on March 25, 2006

We cut the cord and switched to Vonage this week. While gaining a bunch of call features, we also slashed the monthly phone budget in half!

Initially, I was sceptical as to whether my broadband connection could guarantee me a somehwat equal voice quality than the traditional phone line. Especially since my Internet connection speed noticeably slows down during certain hours of the day, i.e. more users getting on and sharing the same bandwidth. Since I have activated the service however, I have not experienced the tell-tale mechanical sound that the Internet connection produces on occasion when using voice chat or listening to online radio stations. As such, so far so good.

When the first initial calls came in, I was impressed by the functionality offered by the even simplest and most inexpensive plan (which we chose). The user website is intuitive to navigate, even for my not always quite tech savy hubby. Since I am online pretty much all the time and either in email or have the user interface up, any calls (that I may have missed) are listed on the site in real time! I am wowed. Voicemails trigger an email notification instantaneously. Retrieving the voicemail is super simple. The quality of the wave file is even astonishing. And I can download it ….. 🙂

According to the user manual and the other tabs on the user site, there are so many other features that I have not had the chance yet to take a look at or play with. They sure sound interesting, like call hunt. I will report back in a few weeks …..


Posted in Techno Geek | Leave a Comment »

Weekend Warrior – Streichen

Posted by nickxyz on March 18, 2006

Seit ca 1 Woche sind wir nun am Streichen. Nach der Waschkueche ist nun der obere Gang an der Reihe. Gleicher Farbton, nur eine viel groessere Flaeche.

Fuer meinen ersten professionellen Malerauftrag, gar nicht mal so schlecht. Bewaffnet mit einem Roller, Pinsel und Farbtopf ging es Donnerstag abend an die Arbeit. Nach einem etwas entaeuschenden Anfang (hab doch tatsaechlich eine Flaeche vergessen), gab es Samstag morgen eine zweite Farbschicht. Dieses Mal ging es ohne Luecken, Farbspritzer (naja, wir koennten auch den kleinen Spritzer unterhalb des Kinns, auf dem Aermel und am Ohr vergessen) und Tropfen. Das Endresultat kann sich durchaus sehen lassen. Sogar die bessere Haelfte war von meiner kuenstlerischen Seite ueberzeugt.

Auf in’s Bauhaus. Ich brauche neue Farbe…. Schliesslich muss noch das Treppenhaus, die Kueche, das Wohnzimmer, die Schlafzimmer, …….

Posted in Home Improvement | Leave a Comment »