Greetings and salutations. Quixjote.com is my first domain that I ever purchased for mainstream use. It holds a special place in my heart. Primarily I use quixjote.com to update my rants blog which you can find At Quixjote's Rants Blog. Other than that I hope you enjoy your stay.

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TV, Movies and Video Games

Note: This article is targeted towards people that purchase Video Games, Cable TV / Direct TV, etc... (Especially in HD)

How much do you spend a year in Video Games? How about in Television/Movies?

In our area, Frontier (Verizon) FIOS TV is increasing their rates by 40% within the next couple pay periods. This has me looking at alternatives, since with Internet I am already averaging $104 per month. After communication taxes and such, I was informed by the lovely CS department that I would probably be looking at a bill of $135-$150 per month after the hike.

So, I was curious... If I got rid of TV itself, what would I pay? Well, for just Internet would cost $70 per month for my 20 Megabit service.

Most TV shows now are usually available on internet sources shortly after airing, sites like Hulu will often play new shows, and if you have Hulu Plus, you have an even greater range of shows that you have access to.  Hulu is also great for some older movies as well (Sometimes you get some good newer movies, but not as often).

If you like to watch newer movies you can always use a service like Netflix. For both online and dvd availability, the service is only $10/mo.

If you want local stations on TV you can always try a pair of rabbit ears with an HD converter. Granted if you are like me and live in a signal pit, this may not be the best option for you.

For video games, there is GameFly.  Also sub $10.

So to cover video games, TV and Movies, you are looking at less than $30 a month.

For me, this means that for just under $100 per month, I not only get the 1-2 shows that I watch, but I also upgrade my service for unlimited movies and games as well. All for LESS than I currently pay for just TV/Internet.

Worth a little patience for some of them to arrive in the mail!

Savings Before Rate Hike: ~4%
Savings After Rate Hike: ~16% to 33%

I think on this one I will hit my goal of saving 10% this year ;)

Doomsday Defense Review

Doomsday Defense (DD) is more than your average Tower Defense game. In addition to the waves of Player Vs Environment (PvE), DD also has some fun Player Vs Player (PvP) options. Although this game is free to play, it is currently only available through FaceBook.

When you first load the game and agree that you are going to share your life with everyone else, you will get the choice of what race you wish to be. Each race has it's own benefits and abilities, like the Spirits Towers having higher chance of 3x damage.

How would I rate this game:

Ease of use: 3/5
Enjoyability: 4/5
Addictiveness: 4/5
Lifespan: 3/5
Performance: 4/5
Cost: 3/5
Graphics: 3/5
OVERALL: 6.8/10 - D

While this game is fun to play in own right, there are many things with the game that could still be improved. I do not feel that there is any one aspect of this game that would get a 100% A rating right now in it's current stage, as it feels like I am generally playing an incomplete beta version of the game.

Even though there is a "Tutorial" system in place and some quests to try to help you through the game, it is not as user friendly initially as it could have been. There was a general sense that in order to play this game you had to have played similar games before. The dual leveling ability for towers is at first, kinda confusing... then confusing again when you get your first few fails trying to upgrade the base towers and they fall back down to a +4 rating.

Even though there is a lot of potential to PvP in this game, at a certain point, it seems like the game would become very repetitious. With lack of customization of your own PvP map there seems only a finite number of possibilities for how you can defend your castle, or to invade other castles. There also does not appear to be any major form of award system for achieving higher levels or beating so many players.

The graphics remind me much of a late SNES game. Not bad, but not great. Definitely sprite material. Also with some of the way that graphics overlap within the game, chests that drop can be difficult to retrieve, until you come back to a certain screen and the chests move to a more accessible location. At least the chests do not just disappear.

While the game IS free to play, there are a few items that you can ONLY get with real money. Such as the enhanced Gem that provides almost 100% chance to upgrade base towers past +4. If you only spend $20 in the game though, it comes out to about $2.25 per base tower level enhancement. (Allowing you to get 1 tower to level 9, and one to 8).

Initially, as you are leveling your massive army, this game IS very addictive though. If you enjoy games like Travian and Desktop Defense, than at least for a while you would enjoy this game.

I am interested to see how this game progresses and if it receives any major content upgrades. I feel that this game could have a lot of potential, but it feels like it was released too early.


Want to contribute a Game Review or Guide? Email them to articles@quixjote.net for review.

Free Money is a Pocket Away

Before I continue on my posts about saving money, lets take a look at how much people are LOOKING for money.  It is rather humbling.  Using a search phrase cataloger suggested by Google, we find the common searches with "Money" below.

SuggestionsMonthly Volume Google Yahoo! Live Ask
cnn money 43,073 26,962 9,864 4,603 1,644
free money 2,456,250 1,537,500 562,500 262,500 93,750

free webkinz
money cheats

105 66 24 11 4
mad money 238,346 149,194 54,583 25,472 9,097
money converter 146,196 91,512 33,480 15,624 5,580
money exchange 496,211 310,605 113,636 53,030 18,939
money gram 124,555 77,966 28,524 13,311 4,754
money talks 11,026 6,902 2,525 1,178 421
msn money 249,262 156,027 57,083 26,639 9,514
unclaimed money 2,109 1,320 483 225 81

Free Money has almost 2.5M hits? Really? Let me take this moment to say one thing: I do not look for free money. I do not want free money.

Even if money is donated to me on this site, or on www.quixjote.net, I do not consider it free money.  I work hard to get content on my site that would be, at bare minimum, refreshing or enlightening to people. If anything I would probably fall in the money talks section.

I will say this though: If people are looking for free money, MOST (I know there are some circumstances where this is not the case) of them can have extra $$ each month if they go through all my money savings posts. I follow most of my own advice to at least some degree, while others is not always work to follow from a convenience standpoint.

As Americans, lets make a stand now to better ourselves financially. I know each of us, if we just use common sense can save at least 10% of what we spent last year.  Anyone else want to take that challenge?

Prove to me, no... Prove to yourselves that you want to do something about the shitty state of our economy this year.

My challenge to anyone that reads this: Use the share button at the top of the site and share this site with your friends and family, and encouraging them to do the same. I will keep posting articles and ideas along the way. If anyone has their own Money making/ Money saving articles that they want to share or want me to post for them, let me know at advertising@quixjote.net. Lets start really raising awareness of what we do financially as a whole, and increase our own financial responsibility in the process. Don't just "like" it, DO IT!

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Lady GaGa


So I spoke to my good friend today about what he could possibly use as a new topic for his rant website, and he suggested that I write the rant myself, so here I go. Hope you guys can enjoy it.

Let’s start with HOW I came up with this idea. For starters, I am one of those that is guilty of trolling around the celebrity gossip sites and came across this new post about Lady GaGa. **waits for the boo’s and jeers**

Anyway, anytime I happen to see this woman or read anything about her, it automatically causes a lip curl and a mild headache. It’s not that I don’t find SOME of her songs catchy (I particularly enjoyed Telephone for some ungodly reason) it is just that, her attire and whole demeanor just completely takes away from the obvious issues she has.

For example, though her music is indeed catchy and some of her lyrics are nicely written, her voice is just….  Not exactly mediocre, but not the greatest thing to hit since ___ (pick your own musical inspiration). There are times during her music that her voice is quite beautiful and artistically done, but I find myself cringing through most of the songs because of the fact that there is no pizzazz or something extra special to make you go WOW.

Like I said she has talent ENOUGH to write decent music and her voice, while can leave quite a few things to be desired is good enough to make a catchy song (which is what you need now a days right?)

But this goes to show how low our expectations have become for entertainers as far as the music and talent front is concerned. WE want to be shocked by what they will pull next or what ridiculous outfit they will wear. We are more eager to hear about their latest exploit or newest trip to rehab as opposed to new albums or music they have written. While, thats ALWAYS been in the industry, there was at least talent to back it up (Ozzy osbourne for example or Jim Morrison just to name a few.)

So this brings up the next obvious question: Have we become so desensitized to talent that we need outrageous antics like blood being thrown on us during an award ceremony or wearing an absolutely horrendous meat dress? (Can you imagine the stink of that thing if the meat was indeed REAL?) It is scary to think that there are people out there that consider this woman as a musical genius, an inspiration, and an advocate to all that are strange or mistreated because they are different.

I understand, not all of us can be music majors or be musical geniuses like Beethoven (totally different kind of music but you cannot argue the beauty in his music) or the awesome guitar riffs of the great Randy Rhoades or Steve Vai. But can we all go back and listen to the music of the past and realize how much has changed? Rock certainly has, and pop music…. I won’t even go there. What is sad is the fact that this Lady GaGa has such avid followers and fans that if they ever read this they would behead me.

In a way, by writing this, I feel even MORE depressed on the state society has become. Well, I think I will go eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich now.

This post was contributed by Araceli Chapa. This Post is Un-Altered and is still in it's original state. As such, the views expressed here may or may not be the same views as Candice Siegfried. To submit your own articles, send them to advertising@quixjote.net

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Tech Talk - CSS custom Attributes

Being a nerd, I will occasionally post some tech jargon here. Today, I will cover some basics on CSS custom attributes. Specifically:

[attr~="value"]{background-color: red;}

<div attr="value">SOME TEXT</div>

will produce


I was chatting with another programming buddy of mine just a little bit ago and he was working on some rounded corners for his page. I noticed how he was making them change colors and such by changing the whole class using Javascript, so I asked him why he was not just using custom css tag attributes.

Personally, I love using custom attributes with the method above because I can create a string of attributes and make use of my own shorthand for CSS.

One thing that I have found using this method though is that if you have two conflicting attributes, the first one takes priority.

A small example of how I might make use of something like this:

  [css~="font1"]{font: 12pt arial;}
  [css~="bkc000"]{background-color: #000;}
  [css~="textceee"]{color: #eee;}
  [css~="w200"]{width: 200px;}
  [css~="smShadow"]{-moz-box-shadow: 2px 2px 2px #ccc;
    -webkit-box-shadow: 2px 2px 2px #ccc;
    box-shadow: 2px 2px 2px #ccc;}
<div css="font1 bkc000 textcee w200 smShadow">Shadowed Box 200 Pixles Wide with Black background and almost white 12pt Arial Text</div>

Would Produce:

Shadowed Box 200 Pixles Wide with Black background and almost white 12pt Arial Text

Keeping in mind that things like shadows and rounded corners may not work correctly in IE right now.

Please note that this method is not idea for most common day applications. Especially if you have a lot of static content or things that do not change on the page with Javascript or Ajax, then you are probably going to do just fine with using CSS classes.

A fridge that cooks too!

So I got home today.  It was a very off day to begin with, but apparently the day was not done playing it's jokes on me. Apparently my fridge's door had been open most of the day and the appliance bulbs inside had been on all day. Of course I just now find out that the bulbs inside of the fridge are primarily 60W Bulbs. Of course when you are only using the fridge for a few seconds, it is not an issue, but when it is cracked open just enough for the lights to be on... it becomes a small oven instead.

According to the temp on the door it was over 80 degrees F in the fridge.  Of course all the perishables had to be thrown out. The milk looked like it was ready to explode.

So Steve and I turned off the cooling unit on the fridge and emptied it. Steve put the frozen goods in the chest freezer and we went through what we could save.  Some of the things were still good, like condiments and some of the veggies, but most had to be thrown out.

I then went to the store and got $50 worth of staple style food. Okay, not all of it was, I also got little ice-cream cups, but ended up replacing a majority of basic foods anyway.

I guess the fridge was happy for the break. For a while now when the condenser had been working, the fridge had been very loud. Now after letting the fridge pretty much be off and thaw completely out, the condenser is quiet again.

With as cold as it is this evening, we just packaged up the good food and stuff into air tight containers and placed them outside. If anything some of them may freeze slightly as it is supposed to get down to 28 tonight.

Good time as any I guess to get started on some new recipes and working more with scratch ingredients for cooking.

Gun Safety

So I am on my way to a client this morning to do some programming when I hear about a 12 year old that gets shot in the head by his 13 year old friend that was trying to scare him. Apparently he thought the gun was unloaded. You can check out a printed version at 1190Kex.com.

Now, I may not be the best with guns, but even at a young age I understood that guns, true GUNS should not be pointed at people, unless you intend to KILL them. There are talks right now about if any charges are going to be pressed against the 13 yr old. Personally I feel that he should at least do community service and have to talk to some classes about gun safety.

The good news is that his friend is expected to survive the incident.

Oh wait, it gets better! Apparently the father left the gun out, propped up in a corner after he took his son duck hunting the day before. For that, shame on the dad. He should have to go through some gun safety classes himself at least.

People, take responsibility for your actions. Adults and teens alike.

Energy Tip 7 - Full of Gas

Has anyone else been watching as Gasoline Prices creep upwards? There have been mixed speculations as to how far the price of gasoline will go this year. IF the markets don't do anything screwy this year, than by this time next year we should only see an average price of $3.35/Gallon for regular unleaded. By this time in 2013: $3.60/Gallon.  This is only if you follow the historical data of Oregon's Gasoline prices since about June of 2009.

So, without going and buying a full electric vehicle or a Prius... What can you do to help keep that wallet padded?

Well, simply put: reduce the amount that you drive. How you do this is up to you, but the less that you drive, the less you have to spend on gasoline. In the PDX area, you can get a monthly Bus ticket for $88. For the Yamhil County Transit it is only $30 for unlimited use. If you are willing to work out  a little, you can save a lot.

Sure, you may spend a bit more time in transit by taking the public transit, but that is time that you can use doing other things as well. No one says you have to just sit there being bored.

Other things you can do to limit the amount you drive: If the stores you go to are only a few blocks apart, walk between them instead of driving just to make your car closer.

Aside from driving less, make sure to keep your vehicle well maintained. Keeping things up to date on your vehicle will keep things running better and longer, thus (hopefully) reducing the number of times that you need to head to the pump.

When you go grocery shopping, if staple food items are on sale, stock up! If you need to buy a small air-tight container to keep the food fresh, but if you can start a small storage area for food that you can go to instead of needing to always go out to the store any time you need stuff, then you will have saved yourself the cost of the time, and the cost of the fuel needed to get those few things you would have needed to get.

Also, if you are weird like me and like the taste of it, get powdered milk instead of fresh. It's great in coffee and in baking, and doesn't need to be refrigerated until it is mixed together!

Lastly, it is just about awareness. You will only start making a difference in your vehicle usage if you are aware of anything extra that you do in your vehicle.

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Google's Decision

Well, I heard back from Google! After only 5 days I got the response! It is always nice to see a speedy response to an issue, especially when it involves money.

From Google's AdSense TeamHello,

Thank you for your appeal. We appreciate the additional information you've provided, as well as your continued interest in the AdSense program. However, after thoroughly re-reviewing your account data and taking your feedback into consideration, our specialists have confirmed that we're unable to reinstate your AdSense account.

As a reminder, if you have any questions or concerns about your account, the actions we've taken, or invalid activity in general, you can find more information by visiting

Well, there it is. I am disappointed by the decision, but it IS their call, and the call was against me. This means that unless they decide to change their mind, I am blacklisted from the AdSense program.

So what does this mean beyond Google? It means that I need to start looking for other advertising means.  The almost $75 that I would have made from Google I will not be seeing.  I am currently checking out BuySellAds as a viable option.  The only thing I ask right now is that if you are currently reading my blog, please encourage others to start reading as well.

Buy Sell Ads (BSA) suggests 100,000 impressions a month, and I am not sure how close I get to that at the moment as all I see are basic visit stats. By building the reading base though I know that I would/will be a valuable asset for them, as they would be for me!

By the end of Feb. it would be nice to see even 4x the current number of readers that we have currently seen.  Currently we are seeing about 220 visitors a day, so if each visitor is even reading 10 of the articles, that would bring the impressions up to at least 50k impressions from my best guess.

Also, do not forget that if you want to advertise on here as well, let me know! As you all have seen there are many options to advertise on my site.

Energy Tip 6 - Dimbat

DimmersI thought about this article the other day when I was over at my Grandmother's house. I looked up at her lights and saw that there were quite a few cobwebs in the cans of her vaulted ceiling. The bulbs were off at the moment so I could see that they were just the generic Sylvania 65W Bulbs. I had forgotten that her lights were all on dimmers in the main room.

Since the 70's, most of the switch dimmers have switched over to electronic dimers. Before this point the most common dimmer was the electric rheostat dimmer, which other than dimming the bulb, did not offer any electric savings. In fact, all they did was change the electricity into heat.

The electronic dimmers however, have enormous savings potential. Especially if you are like me and don't always need the light to be at maximum output, you can save a lot, both in usage, and in bulb costs. Basically what the newer dimmers do is increases the delay in the amount of time that the current is actually getting to the light bulb. This happens so fast however that (especially on an incandescent bulb) we do not even notice it.

What does this mean? Well for incandescent bulbs, it means that (according to who you read or follow) if you dim the lights by 25% you will save roughly 20% of the electricity, and increase the life of the bulb by up to a factor of 4, especially if your dimmer goes from off-dim-on.  This would explain why cobwebs have been able to form in my Grandmother's lights.

Unfortunately, Compact Florescent Bulbs do not all take advantage of dimming, and those that do, do not do so very well, and can even cause life shortage in CFL bulbs. Newer LED bulbs have been showing some promise with dimming though, having close to the full dimming range as incandescent bulbs.

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