The Wireless HomeWritten by Mark Donovan
It was only a few years ago that Real Estate agents and Builders were promoting “Wired” feature as a must have when buying a new home. Wired meant that home not only had cable running throughout it, but also Cat-5 wire. Cat-5 wire consists of four pairs of wire that are sheathed into one bundle, and is used for interconnecting multiple computers and computer peripherals throughout home. Electricians went to great length to run Cat-5 throughout new homes, and homebuyers paid a handsome premium for it. Now latest buzz from Computer and Networking world is, “Unwire Your Home”, as Computer/Internet world rapidly moves to wireless interconnections.
Most of leading Personal Computer (PC) providers are major players in this paradigm shift. They are selling new technology from leading networking equipment companies that enable homeowners to wirelessly connect their Personal Computers to their Home Entertainment centers. Through a Wireless Media Adapter, connected via standard cables to Home Entertainment Center, and a Wireless Router connected to PC, homeowners can enjoy their digital photographs and MP3 music collection on their Televisions and play their MP3 music collection through their stereo system. Photographs and music stored on PC are wirelessly transmitted anywhere within home to their Home Entertainment Center.
Spring Home Projects in Northern New EnglandWritten by Mark Donovan
As I sit on a plane in route from Chicago to Boston this evening, I realize I have been staring out into dark abyss contemplating arrival of spring. Spring is a time of anticipation and renewed life. A time when snow finally abates and Robins return to rebuild their nests. And a time when Tulips and Daffodils emerge from ground and bloom, if ever so briefly. It is also a time for voracious Black Fly that we northern dwellers know only too well. For me, however, it is a time to shift into a higher gear; there are outdoor projects that have accumulated over winter months and there is traditional spring tasks that every homeowner is compelled to do.
There are two main questions I debate as I compile my spring “To-Do” list: What to do and when to do it?
As always with a non-vinyl sided house, there is painting. Over years, I have come to conclusion it is best to paint a portion of house each year; one year clapboards, another year trim, and maybe in third year shutters. I am sure professional painter would beg to differ with my advice, but hey, not all of us can justify professional painter every 3-5 years, nor can we dedicate an entire week or two of our spring painting whole house. I have found it best to do spring painting as soon as whether gets above 50 degrees. Any sooner, it is too cold for paint. Any later, and one has to contend with other flying insect, hornet.
Another important job, but not so large in effort, is preparing lawn for spring rains. First there is raking. Then there is application of first stage of four-stage fertilizer process, you know, one that halts Crab grass in July and August. Usually every other year there is additional task of spreading pest control to prevent grubs and moles. Based on product recommendations and when I actually have time, I do these tasks in mid May.