The online home for Greg Leedberg, since 1995.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

A lot of stuff in the last month...

It's been too long since I've posted here!

Well, I'm back from California, for one thing. The project got called just slightly shorter than it was supposed to be (5 weeks rather than 8 weeks). I liked being out in California and having everything paid for, but it's good to be back home and working in Marlborough. I've been put back on the project I was on before I left. For me, I think that trip out to CA was beneficial. Now I know several people quite well at Raytheon. I feel much more a part of "the team" now and less of the new guy than I did before I left.

I went out to Ithaca to see my girlfriend for Labor Day weekend. That was the longest drive I've ever done on my own. It was really good to see her and be back in Ithaca, though. I miss that place. The weekend went by too fast.

I also bought a new hard drive. The full details of this are of course in the My Computers blog, but I bought a 250GB SATA drive. I really do notice the speed increase, especially in boot times. So, it was worth it. I bought an OEM drive, rather than retail, for the first time ever. Saves a lot of money. I already had the necessary cables and screws, so it wasn't worth it to pay the extra money for retail (or to get a smaller drive).

The other day I officially bought the Leedberg.org domain. I've been thinking of getting it for awhile. I already own Leedberg.com, obviously, and my new account at DreamHost I get one free domain registration, so I figured now is as good a time as ever. Right now it's just a mirror of Leedberg.com, but in the future I could spin it into a separate site if I wanted. I'm not really sure what I want to do with it. I just don't want someone else to swoop in and get it :)

Also, lately I have been looking for a second credit card. While on my drive out to Ithaca, I triggered the fraud detection in my current card, which resulted in it getting denied until I called them. It didn't prevent me from purchasing anything too urgent, but I realized that at some point in time I might need to buy something essential (gas?) and have it be accidentally denied. So, I wanted a second card. I actually absolutely love my current card: AT&T Universal MasterCard. I get 1% cashback on everything, 5% cashback on gas, groceries, and drugstores, can get my cash after just $50 has built up, I get 30 free minutes of calling card minutes per month, can add more for a pretty decent rate, 2 free directory assistance calls each month, and wireless phone insurance. Plus all the regular MasterCard/Citibank features: roadside assitance, virtual account numbers, extended warranties, etc. But I just want a secondary card in case something happens to that one in an emergency.

It was a tough decision, but I wanted a rewards card which would complement both my existing card, as well as my style of purchases. I narrowed it down basically to three: the Citibank Hilton HHonors Visa signature card, Discover Platinum Restaurant card, and Chase Amazon Visa card. I decided on the Chase card largely because of issues with the other cards. The Hilton card is nice, but all of your rewards points get tied up in Hilton points, which could be bad if you don't end up staying there a lot in the future. The Discover card is nice (5% cash back at restaurants), but having a Discover card as a back scared me, since they aren't accepted as many places as MasterCard and Visa are. And I read lots of complaints about Discover customer service. So, I'm getting the Amazon card. 3% back on Amazon purchases, 1% on everything else, $30 credit at Amazon just for getting the card. Not amazingly great as a primary card, but fine for a backup.

Well that's a lot, but that's it for now. I'm still going to try and update this more often... :)