I’m back home from ACSAC, so I thought I would share with you one good (which is thanks to the ugly), and one bad.
The Good. Normally, when I come home from ACSAC, I come home with an additional present – blisters. I do a lot of walking with the conference, and I have a tendency to get blisters on my little toes with conventional shoes and socks. I’ve tried everything — moleskin, double socks, specialized shoes — nothing worked. Until now. This trip, no blisters.
What was my secret? Listening to my wife, who recommended I pick up some toe socks and get a pair of Vibram Five-Fingers. This I did — we had picked up the socks earlier, and while we were down in Escondido this summer we picked up the ugly: A pair of Trek LS Five-Fingers in Kangaroo Suede. I wore them all week with nary a comment, and more importantly, nary a blister.
I’m so impressed, I think I’m going to go out (after the first of the year) and get more socks and another pair, likely in brown. If I can find them that is (possibly here or here, but they are out of stock everywhere else, so I’m suspicious)– I’m not sure the Trek’s are made anymore; they aren’t on Vibram’s current page. I might have to do something like the V-Classic in black, the Speed XC (although I don’t like the yellow accents), or the non-lacing KSO. Alas, the biggest problem with the Vibrams are looks — they are ugly (gee, just like the Birkenstocks of old).
The Bad. We came home from the conference to find a dead DirecTivo. We have a Samsung DirecTivo SIR S4080R dating back to 2005. When we got home, it was passing through no signal; just snow. We rebooted the unit. We get the grey “Initializing…” screen, and then the “DirecTV is starting up, just a few minutes more…” and then…. nothing. It goes back to the black no signal condition. My guess is that we got a power hit that fried something (possibly the disk). We’re sending it in to Weaknees for diagnosis, but if it is gone, we lose loads of recorded programs (including everything from last week while we were away at the conference), plus the ability to record this week and likely next. In that case, we’ll contact DirecTV for a newer replacement unit. We’ll also see what we can recover from CBS Online (we might have to subscribe) and Hulu.