Berkeley CSUA MOTD:2006:February:20 Monday <Sunday, Tuesday>
Berkeley CSUA MOTD
2006/2/20-23 [Reference/Tax] UID:41929 Activity:nil
2/20    Does anyone plan to pay the use tax for their internet purchases?
        \_ Is porn a service or good?
          \_ When it's good, it's a service!
        \_ No, but I do not fill in '0' for that line of the tax form either.
        \_ I paid $500 for the last two years, might do it again.
2006/2/20-23 [Reference/RealEstate, Computer/SW/Unix] UID:41930 Activity:nil
2/20    Has anyone bought a place in the Bay Area and gotten a one year home
        warranty. If so, who did you use? Email, website, ph # ?
        \_ We did.  American Home Warranty, I think.  Totally worthless (not
           that we paid for it (directly))  Took forever to respond, didn't
           cover the stuff hat actually broke, didn't replace stuff, just
           (sort of) repaired it.
        \_ I got a warranty from First American
           ( from our real estate agent who
           wrote that into the bid.  Took advantage of it for the central
           heating system, drainage problems, and dryer.  Response times
           were reasonable.  I can't remember exactly, but the deductible
           was $40-$45 per claim.
        \_ In my case, the seller did pay for 1-year home warranty through
           American Home Warranty (it was around $450/yr). I negotiated w/
           the seller's agent in order to get this, so it's not by default.
           I didn't renew it after it expired since *knock on woods* my
           appliances are still relatively new and the past owner was very
           anal-retentive about keeping them pristine. (we got lucky). YMMV,
           if you feel your appliances may be at their last leg when you
           inherit them, might want to look into renewing it. (or do a math
           comparison vs. buying a new one)
           \_ You can get the home warranty from the seller/seller's agent
              written into the bid, but if the market is competitive, you
              may lose the property to someone else who has offered about
              the same amount with no/fewer contingencies.  The housing
              market seems to have cooled down a bit now, though.
2006/2/20-23 [Reference/BayArea] UID:41931 Activity:nil
2/20    Ride Bike!
        Tomorrow is Martinez to San Jose, including Bear Creek Road (Mama
        Bear only), Happy Valley, Pinehurst (south fork), Redwood, Palomares,
        Calaveras.  Lots of great viewing places along there.  -tom
        \_ Today 2/22, 17-mile time trial in San Jose.  -tom
2006/2/20-23 [Politics/Domestic/Election, Politics/Domestic/President/Bush] UID:41932 Activity:nil
2/20    Just how *did* Bush win Ohio, anyway?
        \_ Swing voters thought if Kerry were elected there would be a better
           chance of mushroom clouds appearing in random American cities.
           \_ Not so much mushroom clouds, but more appeals to conservative
              voters. A good portion of the backlash is due to state scandals
              which have hit the Republicans hard.
2006/2/20-23 [Academia/Berkeley/Classes] UID:41933 Activity:low
2/20    Any recommendations on digital logic design books that would be
        appropriate for someone with solid system software background
        but no HW experience wanting to do FPGA work?  Anyone used the
        forge compiler? --jwm
        \_ What does CS150 use?
        \_ How well do you know CS150?  If you're up on that, then you just
           need a good VHDL or Verilog book.
           \_ Never took 150, I'm completely ignorant on the subject. --jwm
            \_ I never took it, I have about 0 knowledge in this area. --jwm
               \_ When I was in undergrad (92-96), cs150 was a requiredement
                  for both EECS (all options) and L&S CS.
                  \_ It was a requirement for L&S at that time, but not for
                     EECS.  I graduated from EECS in 1996, and I didn't take
                     CS150 either.  Lots of people assumed that it was
                     required without actually reading the degree
                 \_ Not everyone on the motd is/was in Berkeley CS.
               \_ It's going to be pretty difficult without 150-type knowledge.
                  You can skip a lot of things, but you need to learn how state
                  machines map into logic and timing analysis.  Yeah, and RAMs
                  too.  Then you need to learn Verilog or VHDL.  That's mostly
                  syntactical sugar, so it shouldn't be a big deal.  Then you
                  need to learn how your logic maps into an FPGA, though this
                  shouldn't be hard if you're doing non-complicated things.
                  Unfortunately, I have no books to recommend, since my texts
                  that apply to this are about 20 years old.  Mail me if you
                  have more specific questions.  Do you want to do FPGAs
                  professionally or just for some random project?  -tse
                  \- I am trying to become a Critical Intel Asset. --op
Berkeley CSUA MOTD:2006:February:20 Monday <Sunday, Tuesday>