Empire Earth

On Deck?
Half Life 2

Welcome to the Machine.

[01.09.04 1648PST]
As usual, it's been more than a little while since I managed to get any updates in here. Oh well, life continues, even sans updates, right?

Wrote off my Ford Probe a couple months back. Nasty accident, and yes, everyone involved is fine, thanks for asking. Shortly thereafter I picked up another Toyota - an '89 Supra this time. Spent a couple weeks rebuilding the top end of the motor, replacing worn belts, seals, and hoses, and now she runs good as new.

Went through another round of stressfull layoffs at work, just before Christmas. Sadness all around.

Been off the bike for the last several weeks, due to sickness, snow, and lack of parts. All are soon to be fixed, so I'll be back on the trails regularly.

[06.12.03 0024PST]
Been quite some time since I posted here, I've been run off my feet. Let's see here - proud father of a new baby boy, born on the morning of March 12, 2003, 7 pounds 8 ounces, named Darren Jason Stewart.

Been riding a lot, managed to step up my skills in the cockpit a fair bit. Things that used to seem impossible now seem quite plausible, as a matter of fact many of them have been firmly conquered.

Work has been busy last few months, it's starting to peter off now, back into regular hours. We went through another couple rounds of layoffs, the stock price sucked for months, but things are starting to look up. There haven't been any layoffs for some time, the stock has been steadily recovering for a couple months, and morale at work is starting to pick up. Not that it could have gone down much farther!

I'm planning to head for the Oregon coast for a vacation last week of July, then our regular camping spree on Whidbey Island the August long weekend.

[11.30.02 0233PST]
Had to say goodbye to a bunch of friends at work today, as the company laid off a significant number of people. The extreme suckiness of all this didn't sink in until later in the day, when I was trying to send out an email to my team, telling them who was now gone. Some of the folks that are left are feeling guilty because they still have a job!

Nothing lasts forever, I guess.

'Look upon my works, ye mighty, and despair!'

[11.23.02 0244PST]
Finally got my own domain,, with some help from Mike. Forgot to post about it for over a week, too - this happened last Thursday night. So, now the slow work of migrating the entire site to the new URL begins.

Note to self: next time, code all html relevant to the web root directory, without the URLs hardcoded in.

[11.19.02 1822PST]
So, Tracy has now 'passed' all the tests for her pregnancy, which is a load off my chest. She keeps swearing that she was never worried, but I know better.

Been riding SFU on Saturdays with the Mike / Paul / Jeremy crew, which is a fair bit of fun. Plus the uphill is going to do me more good than Shore riding, that's for sure. I said a long time ago, and I'll stick with it - the Shore is tiring, sure, but it's no workout. Especially compared to stuff like Cardiac, which will kick the snot out of guys in good shape, never mind us.

Christmas is coming! And this time I have a working oven. I feel a need to bake something. But maybe I'll just make fudge. Tracy has already been working on the mincemeat treats - too bad I don't like those. Soon, however, she will make shortbread, I betcha. Now THAT I like!

[11.06.02 2024PST]
Rain finally started. I was starting to wonder if I still lived on the coast, or if I'd been whisked away to some place with a fake ocean next door without my knowledge. I noticed on the way to work that I need new windshield wiper blades. Well, on the bright side, now I finally get to see how well my nice shiny MTB tires work in the mud.

AOM has eaten some more of my time - I'm on mission 28 in the single player campaign. The real question remains - will it consume my time after I have finished the single player campaign? We shall see. Tonight, however, I feel a need to catch up on my sleep... perhaps I shall limit myself to only a single mission!

[11.05.02 1844PST]
Bleh. Nothing worthwhile to post.

Ok, ok. I've been riding, working, and sleeping. The sleeping is getting tougher with Tracy recently - carrying around a 4 month old kidlet in her belly seems to have turned her into a bed roamer at night. I keep threatening to move to the guest room, but I haven't done it yet. I am exercising my God given right to complain, so shaddup and listen.

The working is getting tougher too - we are months away from a release, but the pressure is definitely on.

Riding has been going remarkably well. I'm happy with my progression, seems like I ride a little bit more every week. I have to install the flotation devices on the bike starting this week, though, by the looks of the weather forecast.

Got my grimy mitts on Age of Mythology, by Ensemble Studios. Looks good! It might even replace UT2K2 as my current game of choice. Got a peek at the leaked Doom 3 alpha as well. It better get faster, or I'm going to be spending money on better hardware, that's for sure.

I've added a PDA to my wishlist. But, being a picky power user, I want one that I can hotsync when it's not in the cradle. I can find lots of them with internet connections, connections through wireless modems, bluetooth, and even a few that accept standard 802.11b wireless access points, but nothing that just runs a wireless connection from the base station to the PDA. Is that so uncommon? Why doesn't everyone want one?

Bleh. Like I said, nothing worthwhile to post.

P.S. - go check out Tracy's pregnacy log at

[10.20.02 1714PDT]
Had a great ride today, up on Mount Fromme. We worked our way up to halfway up the 6th switchback, hit Upper Oilcan, then Oilcan proper, turned right at the bottom and hiked up to the start of Boundary, and rode Boundary down to the bottom. Aaron didn't even break anything on this trip, and my newly repaired bike worked flawlessly. I guess I've been lax on the biek reports lately - I've blown the lever on my front Hope, and cracked both front and rear rotors to boot. Snapped the barrel adjuster on my rear derailleur, and destroyed the bearings in my RaceFace Signature FR bottom bracket. So, I cobbled together some stuff, and borrowed a front brake (Thanks Aaron!) and I'm back in business.

Strapped a turtle on Aaron's bike last week while he wasn't looking. Boy did he squeal when he spotted me! Oddly enough, he didn't crash, hurt himself, or break any parts on his bike this week. I think the turtle is good for his trail Karma.

Been working a lot recently, which explains the lack of regular posts. I just checked my log, and while it feels really nasty, it seems I'm only averaging 50 hours per week. That's not too bad, I've done way worse at one time or another. It's not going to get any easier for several months yet.

Hallowe'en is coming! I want to put together some scary stuff for my front yard. Problem is, last year nobody showed. I think I need to move to the central plains of the USA to find people who celebrate Hallowe'en like I want to.

On that note, I think I'm off to build myself a giant flying flaming pumpkin. I'll scare the neighbors kids even if they don't celebrate Hallowe'en!

[09.27.02 1141PDT]
My buddy Ray sends me this link. It causes me to cry from laughing too much, but I just CAN'T STOP READING it. So, I put it up here so my millions of loyal readers can cry alongside me. Check out the Legal Threats section.

[09.23.02 1514PDT]
Pop Quiz!

[09.16.02 1810PDT]
Well, we finally managed to drag Mike and Ian up to the north shore. Unfortunately, Ian had a hard time with it, and ended up walking his bike down a good portion of the mountain. I know what that feels like, I've definitely been there and done that - on more than one occasion! On the flip side of the coin, Mike seems to be stepping it up a notch, and has decided he really likes it! Sweet! Kinda sucks to decide you like the Shore riding just before the end of the season, though.

On other fronts, I installed SOFII, Double Helix last night, and gave that a go. Man, talk about gore! This sucker is bloodier than most movies. My mother comes over to visit last night, and I'm almost embarassed to let her watch. Almost.

Fun link of the day is here. Already, rebel forces gather for the counterstrike!

[09.03.02 1623PDT]
Just got back from Vernon, where we spent the weekend with some friends bouncing around the lake in various manners - seadoos, inner tubes, swimming, and the big powerboat driven by Bob. Had a great time, ate some great food, slept in whenever I wanted. Gotta love it.

No biking all weekend, either, which is a first in a long time! I'm still really sore, though, the tubing really kicks the snot out of your upper body.

Next weekend it's back to Lytton for another trip down the Thompson River on a raft. Hopefully this time I'll ride through the majority of the river *IN* the raft instead of relying on my lifejacket. I know the thing works, I feel no need to test it again.

[08.26.02 1723PDT]
Well, got back in the saddle and rode up a mountain yesterday, instead of joining the gravity monsters for another shuttle run. It's amazing just how fast your cardio vanishes into the woodwork when you don't use it! Even so, we challenged Ladies Only on Mt Fromme, which tore a big strip out of me on the last attempt. This time around I am pleased as puch, managed to ride virtually the entire trail. Yummy!

Went to the PNE on Saturday, spent almost 11 hours there. I really enjoyed some of the shows, we had to skip on the rides this year, as women in the early stages of pregnancy aren't supposed to do such things, and riding them with the wife still on the ground is just cruel.

[08.16.02 1522PDT]
Over the last year or so, my mountain bike riding ability level (or perhaps confidence level) has been pretty much on an even keel, which is not a good thing. Sure, I've improved a litte here and there, but only by small, barely measurable amounts. Well, no longer is this true! The last couple of days after work have been spent up on Seymour, riding lines that have given me the jitters just thinking about them from home until now! This is truly a good summer.

[08.12.02 1427PDT]
Ok, most of you are never going to believe this. It's been a hella few weeks since I posted, mostly for one big reason.

I'm having a baby. Or more precisely, Tracy is having one, but I've had some significant 'input' into the equation. OMG. I'm still stunned, and it's been a couple of weeks since I found out! I built Tracy a webpage to track her progress on, it's at Feel free to visit us over there.

Work = stress at the moment. Hopefully this will go away soon. The stress, not the pointer to work.

My biking has gotten a whole hell of a lot better recently. I've ridden the 6 footer in my backyard - 4 times, 3 of which I made it off the thing in one piece. The 4th time was the charm, though, with me getting a wee bit crunched falling off the side of it. Oopsie. Note to self: Try not to fall off any more 6 foot high skinnies.

Perseus meteor showers are on at the moment. Looks like it's time to head up into never never land where you can see the sky without all the light pollution of the city.

[07.04.02 1903PDT]
Likely off to see MIB II tonight, as Tracy is off gallivanting in the Okanagan this weekend, starting tomorrow! Leaving me alone. I don't like being alone - especially sleeping alone. Someone else in the bed is so calming. I think I shall invite lots of people over to visit while she is gone, then all I have to deal with is the nights.

Another 11 days, minimum, for me to wait for my new front triangle on my bike. Being without a bike to ride is on my current top ten list of bad things.

On the subject of Warcraft III, seems that those random missions are not that hard - only the first one was tough, and perhaps only when you are playing the orcs against the undead. Dunno... more research is required. Another thing I can use to fill in the time while Tracy is gone.

Bye for now!

[06.28.02 0954PDT]
Finished Warcraft3 - the single player campaign, anyhow. The last mission was resaonably tough! So, I figure, time to try the multiplayer missions - against the computer, of course. I fire it up, pick the first 2 player map, default settings, and the computer promptly kicks my ass around the block a couple of times. Hold on a second here! I'm quite suprised.... the reality is, the computer is pretty damn tough. Like 55 year old beef jerky tough. I did beat it, eventually, but not until I had tried it several times. Now the question is - was it a fluke, because of the map? We'll see tonight.

[06.25.02 1300PDT]
Ack... being sick sucks. Being sick while also suffering from hayfever double sucks. Being sick, suffering from hayfever, and working 11 hour days... well, you get the idea. Food tastes like sawdust. Water tastes stagnant.

On a positive note, I am finshed the Human, Undead, and Orc campaigns in Warcraft III, and a decent way through the Night Elves. I am truly looking forward to trying out some multiplayer madness soon. All shall feel my wrath! :-)

[06.14.02 0028PDT]
Well, my life is officially over. Warcraft III has gone gold, so for the next week I will be lurking online, attempting to get a 'preview' copy, and shortly thereafter I shall have my retail copy... at which point you may expect no new posts, no backyard BBQs, no phone calls, no emails... not even any instant messaging, unless I figure out a way to link my Trillian into WC3.

It was nice talking to all of you up until now...

[06.11.02 0024PDT]
Lots to report, that's for sure. Hard to believe so much happens in so little time...

Last thursday, a good friend, Bernie, had a coronary. Or at least last thursday is when I found out about it. He is grumblingly planted in the local hospital now, will be transferred soon to another hospital where he is scheduled for a triple bypass. Anyone with any spare pink clouds, send them his way, willya? He can use them right about now. I visited today at the almost-ICU ward, he looks like he's doing good.

Saturday, I went up SFU with Mike and Ian. We went up to the top, and then cruised back down Nicole's, which a mere month ago still looked really scary to me. Now I'm looking at the pole halfway down and thinking, Hey, that doesn't look so tough! I think I'm catching Darryl's eye disease - everything looks rideable now. Sadly (ya, riiight) I skipped the pole on the excuse that I didn't have any arm armour. A good ride was had by all.

Sunday. Whistler mountain bike park. HOLY! My first trip up to Whistler did not prove to be uneventful. We hammered that mountain many times - I lost count, but I'm guessing about 10-11 times. The riding up there is nothing like the shore, shed, SFU, or anything else I have ever ridden. If you like speed, big berms, speed, tabletop jumps, speed, nachos in between runs, oh, and did I mention speed, then this is the place for you, without a shodow of a doubt. Aaron let it all hang out, dropping some ridiculous stuff... I'm in the process of posting the pics. Ian kept all his bones in one piece this trip. And me... well, I pulled the same stunt that Ian did last time, when he broke his wrist, collarbone, ribs, and puctured his lung. Three good things - I wasn't going as fast as he did, I was wearing an armour jacket (Dainese ROCKS), and the rider after me managed to change direction midair and avoid landing on me. End result? I'm sore all down my right side, and I need a new helmet and some new handlebars. That's it! I'll be happy to head up there again soon.

Monday. My domain hosting service croaks... or more correctly, they purge my account because I don't have a current email address on file with them. Damn! There are close to 83000 files on my webserver, and I need to search through a good portion of them and replace all the URLs I find with my new domain name. There's a few hours gone from my day!

And it's now tomorrow, so I am heading for some sack time with my lovely wife... I'll check back in here later.

[06.08.02 1004PDT]
Ever wanted a pet computer? This little beastie looks to make one out of common household parts. Well, common for computer geeks, anyhow. I wonder how long it will take before someone hooks up desktop components and a big battery pack to one of these?

[06.04.02 1302PDT]
Busy busy busy!

What with 9-10 hour days at work, riding the mountain bike both Saturday and Sunday, and softball games on Monday and Wednesday, I seem to be running out of time. Hopefully I can emigrate to Mars soon, where the days are longer and there are more months in the year. I'm still not too sure about riding a mountain bike while wearing a pressure suit, though.

[05.31.02 1503PDT]
Well, I suppose it was only a matter of time before they figured out how to manufacture testicles. Next thing you know, they'll be giving them to women! Oh, wait, they've already done that in the WWE.

[05.29.02 1615PDT]
Today I found myself in need of some cheering up. The wonder of having a lot of good bookmarks at your disposal, is that you are never at a loss for where to go! So, some Joe Cartoon Luvin' was in order. Once again I can face the world with a smile... while thoughts of new uses for blenders bubble in my head.

[05.27.02 1747PDT]
I rode the North Shore Events 6 hour enduro race yesterday with Darryl as a team of two. OMG did that ever kick the snot out of my poor aching frame! Darryl was running about 16-17 minutes per lap, I went from 18-20. 19 laps in 6 hours! If this has proved anything, it's that I'm still not in good shape. Fastest lap recorded was 10:12. That guy is a machine!

Of course, some of my problems are due to the fact that I'm not smart enough to stay the devil off the stunts right before the race. Mike and I went to the shed and found a whack of new stuntwork out there the day before, and I just had to try a few... with no armour on, because mine is down at Roach getting repaired. I didn't think I'd need it for the race, I was of the opinion it would be mostly easy XC riding. Note to self - next time, preride the course before giving up your armour.

All in all, we did have an awesome time.

[05.21.02 1654PDT]
Today's word is Thermodynamics. In particular, the second law thereof, which essentially states that in any closed system, entropy (loosly translated as disorder) will increase. Many philosophers, visionaries, and average day to day folks have interpreted this law to mean that eventually, everything passes away, or is transmuted into a lower form. People die, artifacts crumble, mountains erode, energy degrades into heat... I could go on.

My what-if for the day, possibly the week, is thus.

What if this law is either intrinsically incorrect, or just doesn't apply to our universe? Say, for instance, that our universe doesn't qualify as a closed system? Imagine that the natural state of things is combining to form more and more complex systems. Seems like that would explain evolution, creation, nuclear fusion, and many more things, all in one fell swoop.

I wonder what else this theory could explain.

[05.20.02 0111PDT]
So, about episode II. There was a lot of good stuff in there, especially in the DLP theatre. It's not often that you go see a movie where the audience cheers! As I expected, however, there was some bad parts as well. My advice to Lucas: If you're going to write in a sappy love story, at least have the good grace to get actors who can make it halfway believable. Natalie does an ok job... the other idjit couldn't pretend to love someone if his life depended on it! Ahem... *Dave steps down off the soapbox...*

Mountain biking. What a weekend! Hit SFU with Mike on Saturday, nice ride - Mike made it all the way to the top, which I did *not* expect. I remember sucking wind in a bad way half the way up and walking the rest when I started! Then Sunday, we hit Fromme again... twice up and down Seventh Secret. Said trail rocks. A relatively small argument with a tree right after an elevated roll-in seems to have put the kaibosh on my right arm, however. Not good! I'll beat that little stunt next time.

Darryl and I are signed up for the 6 hour enduro race next weekend, as a two man team. Should be fun!

[05.17.02 1749PDT]
We are seeing Episode II in DLP at 11:10pm tonight! Woot!

[05.17.02 0023PDT]
Just a few short hours until Episode II! I decided not to try for the Thursday screenings in the hope of avoiding some of the crowds. I really want this film to be good... but I'm expecting another movie like Episode I. Soon, we will know how well Lucas has done.

Three day weekend coming up, which means one thing - lots of mountain biking! Whee!

[05.16.02 0048PDT]
We've all seen funny helpdesk call logs - you know, computer wasn't plugged in, user is trying to move the mouse with their feet, etc, etc. But when was the last time you saw it from the other end? Check out George. OMG. Do NOT read this someplace where you are going to get in trouble for giggling out loud. Thanks to Gail for this little tidbit.

[05.15.02 0252PDT]
Weblogs seem to be all the rage these days, and I have to be leading edge! Witness the fact that Mike has one. Everyone has one now! I'm a little slower than most, mind you, because I refuse on General Princicples (c) to put a 'powered by Susan' on my webpage, especially when writing the code to do it myself is an elementary process that takes virtually no time. Besides, it's a diversion that keeps me out of Dungeon Seige for an hour or so.

I was definately feeling dark, but the monochromatic has obviously gone by the wayside a wee bit.

On another subject, I just noticed the time on this post. 0252? Holy crap! I have to get up and head for work in a few hours. Shuteye is a must at this point. Perhaps I should only write another couple of lines of code. Nahh... how about I only fix a few bugs, instead?

[05.14.02 2014PDT]
Check out the nifty new graphic! I was trying to create an amalgamation between Magic and Silicon. I'm pleased as punch (Side note: wonder where that saying came from???) about the results. Between Corel and Photoshop, you can do anything. I am firmly convinced that a good working knowledge of both Corel and Photoshop should give one the ability to rule the world, if you were so inclined. Good thing (for you!) I'm not that interested in world conquest.

Dungeon Siege calls. I must return to Ehb and rescue my character from certain death at the hands of Battle Wraiths.

[05.13.02 1949PDT]
Work begins on a design for my weblog, version 0.001 alpha. We shall see what transpires over the course of the next few days. I am feeling dark, and monochromatic, for this incarnation.