New mouse

The Logitech MX1100 mouse I had started behaving unreliably on most surfaces, and would only reliably track on the vertical side of the computer case for some reason.

I decided since I had just replaced the keyboard, why not the mouse too.

I wanted something with a similar shape and weight as the MX1100 and ended up going with another Logitech mouse, the MX Master. It’s a wireless mouse that can connect using Logitech’s Unifying receiver (one of those tiny USB dongles) or via Bluetooth.

It looks similar to the MX1100, with a few changes to the buttons and scroll wheels. The top scroll wheel no longer tilts to the left or right. The tilting has been replaced with a thumb scroll wheel. The two forward/back thumb buttons are arranged behind the scroll wheel and the hidden thumb rest button is gone. I find the two forward/back buttons are somewhat awkwardly placed, and aren’t as convenient or easy to press as the MX1100 buttons were.

The battery is built into the mouse instead of the replaceable AA battery in the MX1100. A microUSB port at the front of the mouse allows for charging (charge level is indicated by three lights near the thumb rest of the mouse.

One interesting feature is that apparently the mouse can be used with three separate computers through the Logitech Unifying receiver. This isn’t something I can test out though.

So far the feel of the MX Master is similar to the MX1100 that I’m used to and is pretty comfortable to use. Should be a good mouse to use. Now to get all the buttons set up and usable in Fedora.

Three years

She’sHe not really dead. As long as we remember herhim.
– McCoy, Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan

There’s a lot of wisdom collected in Star Trek.

It’s been three years since Theresa died. A lot has happened in the past three years, but she’s never been very far from my thoughts.

The hops tower is on the way to my office, and I usually stop to see how the hops are doing. It hasn’t sprouted any hops flowers since the first year, but the hops continue to grow. One of my projects is to figure out how to assemble the hops tower photos I took from the past year into a time lapse movie.

The memories I have will stay with me, and as long as they do, a part of her will still be around.

Bought a house! (Again)

We closed on the house today! Now we’re home owners again!

Our house!
Our house!
Side and back yard
Side and back yard

Apparently, this is the day when I buy houses. 11 years ago today is when I closed on the old house.

We won’t be moving in right away. First we’re having most of the house painted starting with the laundry room. As more of the house gets painted, we’ll move a few things in a bit at a time.

First big moving day will be June 5. We’ll rent a moving truck, load it up with apartment stuff, a few things from the storage unit, and get it all moved into the house. Hopefully by then we’ll be able to have the fence installed (or at least approved by the HOA)

The next big moving day to empty out the storage unit will follow a few weeks later, but definitely before Labour Day weekend.

Looking between the neighbours’ houses offers a pretty nice view of the field next to the development. Hopefully it stays that way for a while. There are some nice sized trees that look like they’d make good antenna supports for some portable field ops. Who knows though.

Nice view between our neighbours
Nice view between our neighbours

Last little bit of house work

One week left until we close on the house! We were up there today for the final walk-through and inspection, and I got to see the floors uncovered for the first time. They look pretty good.

Wood floors down the hallway
Wood floors down the hallway

There are a few small things still left to do, and a few things got added to the punch list for the builders to fix before closing, but everything is looking really good so far.

The structured wiring panel is set up with the CAT5 (currently used for the phone lines) and CATV coax to the various rooms. I’ve got a few options on how to use this depending on whether we get a land line, or how we want to do the Magic Jack for phone around the house.

Structured wiring panel
Structured wiring panel

The gas is turned on to the house, so I got to test out the gas stove. Five burners with electronic ignition, so no pilot lights to fuss with. Really looking forward to cooking with a gas stove again.

Gas stove!
Gas stove!

Here we have the breaker box all labeled. That big one in slots 1/3 is one we’re excited about. A 50A breaker for the 220V line in the shack. We’re looking forward to putting it to use one of these days.

The breaker box label
The breaker box label

We also have several dedicated outlets in various spots, so I don’t have to worry too much about overloading circuits.

Time to start packing up the apartment!

The value of home inspections

When we were selling the old house, the realtor we worked with suggested we have a home inspection done beforehand to identify any problems with the house that might need fixing.

We did, and the home inspector (Robert Jones with Cardinal Home Inspections) found a few things that we were able to have taken care of when we were having the renovations done. Some of the problems he found had existed from when the house was built too.

We liked the work Robert did so much, that we also hired him to do inspections for the new house as well.

First we had him do a pre-slab inspection, to make sure everything was properly prepared for the slab. A few minor issues were pointed out which the builders easily took care of.

As construction progressed, we had another inspection done just before the drywall went up. Again, a few issues were pointed out that were easily taken care of by the builders.

At the final walk-through of the house today, we brought the home inspector back for another inspection. Again, a few relatively minor things were found and added to the punch list for the builder to fix before we go to closing next week. We’ll have him come back again next week before we go to the closing to have him check over the things he found today to make sure they were fixed properly.

While none of the items the home inspector found at each visit were difficult for the builder to fix at the time, some of them were things that would have been much more difficult to fix had they been found much later in the process, if they were even found at all. Those hidden problems might not have caused any issues down the road, or might have resulted in headaches later. However, since they were found and taken care of ,we don’t need to worry about them.

We were reasonably confident before that the builder would do a pretty good job with the house. Now, with the very thorough home inspections that were done, we can rest comfortably knowing that our new house is pretty solid, and that the probability of having construction related issues later on will be pretty low.

Having all the inspections done cost us some extra money, but considering how much we’re spending on the house, it was money well spent.

Now that we’ve been through all this, having home inspections done is something I highly recommend, whether you’re buying or selling, pre-existing or new construction.