RossCode Picks - NFL Week XVII

posted on 12/29/05 at 07:38:48 pm by Joel Ross

Last week of the season.?A bitter sweet feeling, isn't it?

  • Denver* vs. San Diego (-10.5) (44 O/U): Basically, it's a meaningless game for both, and I expect San Diego to win, but not by more than 10.
  • New York Giants (-9) vs. Oakland (43.5 O/U): The Giants want that home field advantage. Eli Manning is much better at home than on the road, so it'd be a huge boost for them.
  • Arizona vs. Indianapolis (-6.5) (43.5 O/U): I would think that Indy could win this one without any of their main starters, but imagine they do lose. This could be the best team to enter the playoffs on a three game losing streak. Yet, it probably won't affect them when they finally step onto the field for a meaningful game.
  • Baltimore (-3) vs. Cleveland (37 O/U): Ho hum. Who will watch this one?
  • Buffalo (-1) vs. New York Jets (37 O/U): Interesting scenarios at the bottom of the NFL this year. Assume the Jets lose. They are 3-13. If Houston wins, that's three teams at 3-13. Given that the tie breaker is strength of schedule, it's hard to tell who gets the number one pick.
  • Carolina (-4) vs. Atlanta (42 O/U): Carolina needs this one badly. Atlanta is done (but don't ask Mora about it - he'll throw a mic at you).
  • Chicago vs. Minnesota (-4) (35.5 O/U): Another meaningless game.
  • Cincinnati vs. Kansas City (-7) (46 O/U): The Chiefs need this one, while Cincy wants to rest for the playoffs.
  • Detroit* vs. Pittsburgh (-13.5) (35.5 O/U): Pittsburgh needs this one and Detroit isn't all that good. Any questions?
  • Miami vs. New England (-5) (36.5 O/U): As far as I can tell, it's a meaningless game, although I'm sure Miami wants to be above .500, and New England is always a competitive team.
  • New Orleans vs. Tampa Bay (-13.5) (37.5 O/U): Here's the scoop: If Houston wins and New Orleans loses, the Saints have the inside track on that first pick based on schedule strength. It's a poor consolation prize, and it will be interesting to see what they do with it - would they take Bush when they already have McAllister? Are they sold enough on Aaron Brooks to pass up Leinert? Hmm...
  • Houston (-2) vs. San Francisco (37.5 O/U): The premeire game of the week! I bet when you looked at the schedule at the beginning of the year, this isn't one you circled, is it?
  • Tennessee vs. Jacksonville (-3.5) (38 O/U): Jacksonville cruises through the last few weeks. The only interesting part here: will Leftwich play? Knock some rust off before the season ends - do you really want to find out that Leftwich isn't ready after going down early in a playoff game?
  • Seattle vs. Green Bay (-4.5) (40 O/U): Could this be Favre's last stand? He's even commented that he's not sure Green Bay wants him back. Interesting. Given that, they still don't have the power to beat Seattle. Remember, Seattle has motivation to get Alexander a record for most TDs, so they'll play starters until then.
  • Washington (-7) vs. Philadelphia (37 O/U): Washington needs some help, but first, they have to help themselves by finishing off the Eagles. How many losses do the Eagles have in the past three seasons? 11. If they lose this one, that's one more than they have just this one season. What a turnaround!
  • St. Louis* vs. Dallas (-12.5) (43.5 O/U): Dallas needs all the help in the world, and of course, it starts with winning. St. Louis gets to play the spoiler role here, but will come up short.

After this week is over, I'll review the picks, and set up the playoffs (against my projections). See you next year!

Categories: Football


RossCode Picks - NFL Week XVI Review

posted on 12/29/05 at 07:38:35 pm by Joel Ross

I didn't actually watch any football over Christmas weekend (I don't really count watching the Lions / Saints game), so not much comments about the games, but the playoff picture is getting clearer.

  • Atlanta 24, Tampa Bay 27 (-3) (36.5 O/U) [P: $6.37, S: $0.00, O/U: $9.71, T: $16.08]: Like father, like son, right? Atlanta is eliminated from playoff contention, which kind of hurts my prediction of an Atlanta Super Bowl.
  • Buffalo 37, Cincinnati 27 (-14) (44 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: $9.35, T: ($10.65)]: Buffalo played spoiler, and made sure Cincinnati didn't have a chance at having the first week of the playoffs off.
  • Dallas 24, Carolina 20 (-4.5) (37.5 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: ($10.00), T: ($30.00)]: Steve Smith gets the boot, and with it, Carolina's chances. Yes, he barely nudged the ref, but that's still illegal, right? With it, Dallas gets a glimmer of hope to play in the post season. It's a small glimmer, but it's there.
  • Detroit 13, New Orleans 12 (-3) (37.5 O/U) [P: $19.50, S: $10.00, O/U: $9.17, T: $38.67]: Lions win! Millen's a hero! Long live Joey Harrington! Oh wait. It's New Orleans. Fire Millen!
  • Jacksonville 38 (-6), Houston* 20 (37 O/U) [P: $3.92, S: ($10.00), O/U: ($10.00), T: ($16.08)]: Jacksonvilles' racking up wins against the lower echelon of the NFL, and Houston regains it's hold on the Bush lottery.
  • New York Giants 20, Washington 35 (-3) (37 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: $9.62, T: ($10.38)]: Both teams needed this one, but Washington did more. The Giants are in the playoffs, but haven't clinched the division yet, which they want to, so they can play in Jersey for the playoffs.
  • Pittsburgh 41 (-7), Cleveland 0 (32 O/U) [P: $3.39, S: $10.00, O/U: $9.80, T: $23.19]: Pittsburgh has come storming back, now that they've gone back to grinding out their running game. Yes, they finish by playing Cleveland and Detroit, but they'll most likely be in the playoffs.
  • San Diego 7 (-1), Kansas City 20 (49.5 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: $10.00, T: ($10.00)]: In a must win for both teams, K.C. came up big. More impressive than their offense though, is their defensive play - holding the high powered Bolts offense to one touchdown.
  • San Francisco 24, St. Louis 20 (-9) (42 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: ($10.00), T: ($30.00)]: In what most would agree is a meaningless game, it definitely creates an interesting situation next week when the 49ers play Houston - especially if Houston wins!
  • Tennessee 10, Miami 24 (-5.5) (44 O/U) [P: $4.76, S: $10.00, O/U: $9.43, T: $24.20]: Miami clinched a .500 season. Did anyone see that coming? They won't be playing in a couple of weeks, but Saban has taken this team where no one expected they would go. Now, if they had a real quaterback...
  • Philadelphia 21, Arizona 27 (-1) (39 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: $9.62, T: ($10.38)]: Color me surprised at this one!
  • Indianapolis* 13, Seattle 28 (-9.5) (44.5 O/U) [P: $2.65, S: ($10.00), O/U: ($10.00), T: ($17.35)]: Even though Indy has been regarded as the best team in the league, Seattle now has a chance to finish with a better record - or at least hold the tie breaker. Odd.
  • Oakland 3, Denver 22 (-13) (42.5 O/U) [P: $1.10, S: $10.00, O/U: ($10.00), T: $1.10]: Denver got the win they needed, and clinched a week off.
  • Chicago 24 (-7), Green Bay 17 (31 O/U) [P: $3.51, S: $0.00, O/U: $9.35, T: $12.85]: A push, spread-wise, but Chicago is an interesting team this year. With Grossman, they are a much better offensive team. But how will they compare to other playoff teams, and not just the NFC North?
  • Minnesota 23, Baltimore 30 (-2.5) (35 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: $9.26, T: ($10.74)]: Minnesota needed this one, and, as usual, couldn't pull it out. It's basically typical Vikings play late in the season.
  • New England 31 (-5), New York Jets 21 (37.5 O/U) [P: $4.76, S: $10.00, O/U: $9.09, T: $23.85]: Despite how it looked on paper, and how the MNF gang treated this one (with all the highlight clips, who has time for football?!?), it turned out to be a pretty good game, with a comeback attempt by the Jets. Still, New England got the win - now, what's the status of Tedy Bruschi?

Results Summary

  • Picks (this week): 9 - 7 (56.25%) - Winnings: ($20.03): Not a great week for me.
  • Picks (season): 152 - 88 (63.33%) - Winnings: ($114.85): I'm going the wrong way!
  • Spread (this week): 5 - 9 (35.71%) - Winnings: ($40.00): Again, not a good week.
  • Spread (season): 114 - 117 (49.35%) - Winnings: ($30.00): I need a big week to finish up, so I can get back to even.
  • Over/Under (this week): 11 - 5 (68.75%) - Winnings: $54.39: Once again, over/under saves me when I don't do good picking the games.
  • Over/Under (season): 123 - 111 (52.56%) - Winnings: $62.91: I'm actually very suprised about this. Up after a?whole year.
  • Total Weekly Winnings: ($5.64): Barely down, but it's disappointing after a few good weeks.
  • Total Overall Winnings: ($81.93): I don't see me getting above 0 before the end of the season.

Picks for week 17 will follow closely.

Categories: Football


RossCode Picks - NFL Week XVI

posted on 12/23/05 at 12:08:53 am by Joel Ross

It's been a?long couple of days - both of my daughters are sick, and our youngest has been crying?for the past two days - She's slept a grand total of 8 hours in the past 36 hours. Not much when you consider that she usually gets up at 8:00 AM, naps for 4 hours during the day and is in bed by 8:30 PM. Needless to say, this has been a long couple of nights for us! But, driving around put her to sleep, so now that I have some time, why not post my Christmas picks?

  • Atlanta vs. Tampa Bay (-3) (36.5 O/U): Whoever loses here will most likely have January off this year. Not exactly what they want, but it's what they'll get.
  • Buffalo vs. Cincinnati (-14) (44 O/U): Cincy, despite winning their division, still have a lot to play for - that other first round bye would be nice, wouldn't it?
  • Dallas vs. Carolina (-4.5) (37.5 O/U): Dallas needs this one more than Carolina does, but that doesn't mean they'll get it, does it?
  • Detroit vs. New Orleans (-3) (37.5 O/U): Joey Harrington gets one last shot to prove that he can handle the (supposedly) high powered offense that Detroit has assembled, and he'll get the win. Then we'll see speculation that he's finally breaking through (think Drew Brees). Except, it's still just a win over the Saints.
  • Jacksonville (-6) vs. Houston* (37 O/U): Jacksonville will continue to slide by without Leftwich, but Houston will make it interesting.
  • New York Giants vs. Washington (-3) (37 O/U): The Giants, with a win, can clinch the NFC East. That's a big motivator, I bet.
  • Pittsburgh (-7) vs. Cleveland (32 O/U): Pittsburgh seems to be turning the ship around, and is in the hunt for a wild card birth now. They need this win. Plus, Cleveland isn't all that good.
  • San Diego (-1) vs. Kansas City (49.5 O/U): San Diego has a shot at the wild card, but they need this one!
  • San Francisco vs. St. Louis (-9) (42 O/U): San Fran doesn't even want to win this one at this point, although it's questionable whether ownership will even be willing to put the money into a Reggie Bush caliber player.
  • Tennessee vs. Miami (-5.5) (44 O/U): Miami needs a new quarterback, but if they get that, they could be a good contender next year. Next year.
  • Philadelphia vs. Arizona (-1) (39 O/U): Is Philly that bad? A dog to the lowly Cards? Ouch.
  • Indianapolis* vs. Seattle (-9.5) (44.5 O/U): This could possibly be the best non game ever. A preview of the Super Bowl, except run by second stringers!
  • Oakland vs. Denver (-13) (42.5 O/U): Denver wants that first round bye...
  • Chicago (-7) vs. Green Bay (31 O/U): What a difference a year makes!
  • Minnesota vs. Baltimore (-2.5) (35 O/U): Minnesota is still in contention for a wild card. It's a long shot, but it's still possible.
  • New England (-5) vs. New York Jets (37.5 O/U): Pennington vs. Brady. What a match up! Oh wait. That's how it looked when the schedule was made. Now, not quite so good!

Enjoy the Christmas Eve and Christmas games! See you with a review next week.

Categories: Football


RossCode Picks - NFL Week XV Review

posted on 12/21/05 at 11:22:30 am by Joel Ross

Quick post. It's the week before Christmas - a very busy week!

  • Tampa Bay 0, New England 28 (-4) (36.5 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: $9.09, T: ($10.91)]: If I was an AFC team, I would fear the Patriots right about now.
  • Kansas City 17, New York Giants 27 (-3) (45.5 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: ($10.00), T: ($30.00)]: The Giants now have the inside track on the NFC East. Given they were 6-10 last year, that's a pretty good turn around. Who caused it? Was it the excellent play?of Tiki Barber, or the immergence of Eli Manning? How about both? Manning's play relieves pressure on Barber, and he's having one of the best seasons of his career. Of course, don't forget the addition of Plaxico Burress, which gives Manning a solid threat down field.
  • Denver 28 (-9), Buffalo 17 (34.5 O/U) [P: $2.67, S: $10.00, O/U: $9.62, T: $22.28]: Since Shanahan has taken over as coach of the Broncos, no team has scored more points or ran for more yards than Denver. I'd say Shanahan's a pretty good coach.
  • Arizona 19 (-1), Houston 30 (42.5 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: ($10.00), T: ($30.00)]: The Bush bowl is on!
  • Carolina 27 (-9), New Orleans 10 (41 O/U) [P: $2.82, S: $10.00, O/U: $8.55, T: $21.36]: No surprises here, right?
  • Dallas 7, Washington 35 (-2.5) (35 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: $9.80, T: ($10.20)]: But there were here!
  • New York Jets* 20, Miami 24 (-9) (35.5 O/U) [P: $2.56, S: $10.00, O/U: $8.93, T: $21.49]: Miami is .500. Did you expect that? Give Saban a good quarterback (which he could have helped himself by throwing a few more games!), and this team could be dangerous. Maybe he could take Joey Harrington under his wing, and make him a good quarterback. He's used to dealing with younger players.
  • Pittsburgh 18 (-3), Minnesota 3 (41.5 O/U) [P: $6.41, S: $10.00, O/U: $9.35, T: $25.76]: I'll ignore the game for now. The best story out of this game: Mike Tice is mad at fans for scalping their tickets to Steeler fans. Read that again, and take in the irony of that!
  • San Diego 26, Indianapolis 17 (-9) (51 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: ($10.00), T: ($30.00)]: The dream ends. Now, Manning, Harrison, Edge, and a host of others can treat the rest of the season like the pre-season.
  • San Francisco* 9, Jacksonville 10 (-15.5) (37.5 O/U) [P: $0.71, S: $10.00, O/U: ($10.00), T: $0.71]: Jacksonville better be doing everything they can to get Leftwich back on the field. Beating the 49ers by 1 point? Yeah, play like that in the playoffs. Super Bowl here they come!
  • Seattle 28 (-7), Tennessee 24 (45.5 O/U) [P: $3.33, S: ($10.00), O/U: $9.80, T: $3.14]: Seattle was up 14-0 early in the game, then down 21-14. Then they come back to win. Consistency!
  • Cincinnati 41 (-9), Detroit 17 (44 O/U) [P: $2.90, S: $10.00, O/U: $8.70, T: $21.59]: FIRE MILLEN! FIRE MILLEN!
  • Cleveland 9, Oakland 7 (-3) (39.5 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: $10.20, T: ($9.80)]: Moss cannot be happy! The only saving grace for him is that most likely Collins won't be back next year.
  • Philadelphia 17, St. Louis 16 (-3) (44 O/U) [P: $15.90, S: $10.00, O/U: $8.70, T: $34.60]: You read it here first! Neither team is going anywhere, so it was a pretty meaningless game. Oddly, the Eagles ran the ball very well.
  • Atlanta 3, Chicago 16 (-3) (31.5 O/U) [P: $5.56, S: $10.00, O/U: ($10.00), T: $5.56]: Let the "analysts" sing the praises of Rex Grossman, but before you buy it, remember this: he only had 93 passing yards. No TDs, but one pick. And a passer rating of 47. Doesn't Orton have a rating of 60?
  • Green Bay 3, Baltimore 48 (-3.5) (33 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: $9.35, T: ($10.65)]: Wow. That hurts.

Results Summary

  • Picks (this week): 9 - 7 (56.25%) - Winnings: ($27.14): Not real good for me this week here.
  • Picks (season): 143 - 81 (63.84%) - Winnings: ($94.81): Losing ground!
  • Spread (this week): 8 - 8 (50.00%) - Winnings: $0.00: Again, not real good this week.
  • Spread (season): 109 - 108 (50.23%) - Winnings: $10.00: Still up, but barely.
  • Over/Under (this week): 11 - 5 (68.75%) - Winnings: $52.07: Given that the above two weren't good, is it a suprise that I did good here? Nope. That's the way things have been lately.
  • Over/Under (season): 112 - 106 (51.38%) - Winnings: $8.52: I've now pulled into the black in two of the three categories. Not by much, but I'm still up!
  • Total Weekly Winnings: $24.93: A decent week. If I could have picked winners better, this would have been a good week for me.
  • Total Overall Winnings: ($76.29): Still gaining ground. I do hope to be positive by the end of the year!

Look for picks on Wednesday night or Thursday morning - get it done early this week!

Categories: Football


RossCode Weekly #030

posted on 12/20/05 at 01:10:22 am by Joel Ross

RossCode Weekly #030 - Week of 12.18.2005

Intro - 0:00
Download this episode -?40:19 /?19.4 MB
Subscribe to RossCode Weekly

Oops - 1:38
iTunes doesn't have 300,000,000 downloads

Previously on RCW - 2:13
NBC to offer more shows via iTunes
Yahoo fighting naughty answers

News & Views - 3:23
Alexa opens up index
Yahoo using Movable Type for thier small business services
PubSub and CBS team up for affiliate's websites
MSNBC buying up ads online
MSN Spaces adds MetaWeblog API support
Technorati is cooking in the Kitchen
Google joins Nasdaq 100
Google advertising on PBS
Google launches music search service
Mobile-to-Mobile fund transfers
Gmail Mobile launched
DirecTV loses some cash
DVR recording to be reported in Neilsen ratings
Digital TV transition set for February of 2009

The Cold Wars - 13:41
Google gets piece of AOL
MTV and Microsoft feel the Urge
CBS and UPN will provide video to Amp'd
Amp'd launches
Sprint to show full-length movies, shows, and concerts on cell phones
Comcast to launch VoIP service
SIPPhone offers penny a minute calls
Microsoft teams with MCI for VoIP
Vonage launches WiFi VoIP phone
Vonage raises $250,000,000
Toshiba delays HD-DVD launch
HP goes dual format - supports HD-DVD
Google's interactive homepage gets an API
New OS is like WinXP
Windows Live Messenger hits beta 1
Yahoo launches podcast subscription center
Microsoft decides on feed icon: Firefox has it!
NTP Patents being thrown out left and right

The Grapevine -?27:42
Music Industry vs. Satellite Radio
Wireless iPods again!
Verizon to offer?in-flight WiFi by 2007
HD-DVD XBox in the works?
Simul-release in movie industry's future?
Yahoo to buy TiVo?
Digg to be bought by Yahoo
Google to buy Opera?

Odds & Ends?- 34:15
Video gamers make better drivers
AFL Draft goes online
Diggnation is a default podcast for TiVo
Saddam trial to be webcast
Michigan highschoolers may be required to take online class to graduate

Bonehead of the Week - 36:56
Robbing a bank by phone

Next Time - 38:21
No show for Christmas or New Years - See you next year!
CES coming up - should see lots of stuff coming out of that

Contact / Feedback
weekly @
(206) 424-4RCW (4729)

Production Notes
Background music provided by Chronos (Introvert 4) and the Podsafe Music Network.
Hosting of RossCode Weekly is provided by
Would you like to sponsor RossCode Weekly? Contact me at sponsor @

Categories: RossCode Weekly


RossCode Picks - NFL Week XV

posted on 12/14/05 at 10:01:25 pm by Joel Ross

I've been busy, busy, busy, but I have to get these out before I head out of town.

  • Tampa Bay vs. New England (-4) (36.5 O/U): This should be a good game. Both teams are playing very well right now, and this could be a good measuring stick of how the NFC stacks up against the AFC.
  • Kansas City vs. New York Giants (-3) (45.5 O/U): There's seven inter-conference match ups this week. These two teams are probably playoff teams,?but won't see each other again this year - they aren't going to the Super Bowl!
  • Denver (-9) vs. Buffalo (34.5 O/U): Buffalo is in turmoil right now. They suspended their best receiver, who's been loyal to the team for something like 10 seasons, because he stated the truth - the coaching staff isn't making good decisions right now. Instead of accepting criticism, they suspend Moulds.
  • Arizona (-1) vs. Houston (42.5 O/U): The Cardinals are a favorite, and will probably actually win. Houston needs to keep the inside track for that first pick. But if they get it, most people think they'll take Bush. Where does that leave Dominack Davis?
  • Carolina (-9) vs. New Orleans (41 O/U): Carolina looks to get back on track after losing to the Bucs - they need to, to hold onto the NFC South lead. Plus, it looks like 10 wins may not even guarantee a spot in the post season.
  • Dallas vs. Washington (-2.5) (35 O/U):
  • New York Jets* vs. Miami (-9) (35.5 O/U): The Dolfins should win, but neither team is very good - so I expect it to be close.
  • Pittsburgh (-3) vs. Minnesota (41.5 O/U): How to get a team back on track: take a treck through the NFC North! I expect Minnesota's winning streak to end this weekend, and with it, their playoff hopes.
  • San Diego vs. Indianapolis (-9) (51 O/U): Questions abound this weekend. Will the Colts play their starters? Now that San Diego is desperate, will they spoil the undefeated run of the Colts. If Indy doesn't sit their starters, and one gets injured, Dungy will be blamed for not winning the Super Bowl. If he does sit them, will they lose their edge from almost a month off between games? I think the Colts have to play all out and get to the 16-0 season.
  • San Francisco* vs. Jacksonville (-15.5) (37.5 O/U): Jacksonville should be able to skate by for the rest of the season and make the playoffs. However, they won't be putting up huge numbers.
  • Seattle (-7) vs. Tennessee (45.5 O/U): The only thing that could keep Seattle from winning this game would be a major letdown. Of course, that didn't happen when the played the 49ers, so?I doubt it will happen this week.
  • Cincinnati (-9) vs. Detroit (44 O/U): Detroit is a team in shambles, and Cincy is riding the wave. They got their wake up call against Cleveland last week, so they won't make the same mistake against Detroit. Of course, calling plays will be difficult, what with all the chants of "FIRE MILLEN!"
  • Cleveland vs. Oakland (-3) (39.5 O/U): Remember at the beginning of the season where I said I didnt' think Kerry Collins had what it took for Randy Moss? Then he had a few good weeks and everyone got on the bandwagon. Well, week five, Moss hasn't had more than 100 yards in a game. Hmm. Maybe Collins isn't the quarterback of the future for Oakland.
  • Philadelphia vs. St. Louis (-3) (44 O/U): Philly can't possibly lose out, can they?
  • Atlanta vs. Chicago (-3) (31.5 O/U): Vick is expected to play, but if there's a defense who can shut him down, it's Chicago's. Well, at least, that's the theory. I guess this weekend will prove it out.
  • Green Bay vs. Baltimore (-3.5) (33 O/U): Do you need any more incentive for the NFL to be able to change the Monday night game?

Ok. That's it. Check back next week to see how I did!

Categories: Football


Cutting The Wires A Little Bit More

posted on 12/14/05 at 12:00:35 am by Joel Ross

Last week, I was able to get a new toy: a bluetooth headset. I ended up with the?Motorola H500. I've been extremely happy with it. After charging it (it's rechargeable, so I won't be burning through AAA batteries!), it paired without issue to my cell phone.

But that's not where I stopped. I also got a?Kensington USB Bluetooth adapter for my laptop. After installing the drivers for that, I'm also able to pair my headset with my laptop, and listen to podcasts without the wires. It's nice because I can walk around the house without being tethered to my laptop.

But that's not it. I can even use it with Skype to make calls wirelessly. It was actually a lot easier to set up than I thought it would be. The sound quality is pretty good too. The only downside I've seen so far is that when I am doing a lot on the laptop (I'm currently running Outlook, two Virtual PC sessions, and Windows Media Player), there is some latency that builds up over time. Not a problem when I'm only listening, but it'd be an issue with Skype or recording RossCode Weekly, so I'm sticking with my corded mic for recording RCW.

It really isn't that much of a hassle to switch the headset between the laptop and my cell phone either. I wouldn't want to have to switch them every few minutes, but for the most part, I can leave my headset paired with the laptop most of the day (switching if I have a call I know about), pair it with my cell phone while I travel, and then re-pair it with the laptop at night. Of course, I discovered a downfall already - bluetooth eats up the cell phone battery.

All in all, I'm pretty happy with my new toy!

Note: the links in this post are affiliate links. That means I get paid if you purchase these components through these links. My recommendation of these two specific products has nothing to do with the little bit I would make. I recommend them because they work and I've been very happy with them.

Categories: General


RossCode Picks - NFL Week XIV Review

posted on 12/13/05 at 11:34:00 pm by Joel Ross

Not as good of a week as the past couple, but still, all in all, not too bad.

  • Chicago 9, Pittsburgh 21 (-6) (30.5 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: ($10.00), T: ($30.00)]: I'm sure the calls for Orton's benching will be loud and clear this week. I've only heard?a few point this out, but the reasoning a lot give is that Orton's passer rating is 60. Well, Grossman, who, by the way, hasn't played professional football in over two months, only has a career passer rating of 70. I don't think the Bears can go very far scoring less than 20 points a game, but I'm also not sure Rex Grossman is the answer to their scoring woes.
  • Cleveland 20, Cincinnati 23 (-12) (43 O/U) [P: $1.16, S: ($10.00), O/U: $0.00, T: ($8.84)]: Cincy pulls one out that they should have easily won. They're vulnerable.
  • Houston 10, Tennessee 13 (-6.5) (44.5 O/U) [P: $3.82, S: ($10.00), O/U: $9.52, T: $3.34]: Houston came dangerously close to losing their Reggie Bush advantage. Had they not missed a late field goal, they could have won in overtime, thus giving up their one game lead in the race for the first pick.
  • Indianapolis 26 (-8), Jacksonville* 18 (42 O/U) [P: $2.82, S: $0.00, O/U: $9.80, T: $12.62]: The Jags were playing the best team in football, and faced a 4th and 1 in Indy territory on thier first drive. They punted rather than going for it. Yes, punting is the safe play but you're playing the Colts. Take a chance and show your team you're willing to do what it takes to win!
  • New England 35 (-3.5), Buffalo 7 (37 O/U) [P: $5.46, S: $10.00, O/U: ($10.00), T: $5.46]: It looks like the champs are getting hot at exactly the right time.
  • Oakland 10 (-2.5), New York Jets 26 (37 O/U) [P: $12.80, S: $10.00, O/U: $9.26, T: $32.06]: The Jets look to be going for that number three slot in the draft. That means they'll most likely miss out on the best replacement options for the aging Martin and the oft-injured Pennington.
  • St. Louis* 13, Minnesota 27 (-6.5) (45 O/U) [P: $3.73, S: ($10.00), O/U: ($10.00), T: ($16.27)]: Who would have thought the Vikings would have a six game winning streak after the way they played to start the year. Interestingly, if you look at the stats of Brad Johnson, you'll notice something. They're just about the same as what Culpepper put up to start the season.
  • Tampa Bay 20, Carolina 10 (-5.5) (37 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: $9.26, T: ($10.74)]: The Bucs dominated this one. At one time, Carolina was considered one of the best in the NFC, but I'd say that's obviously not the case now.
  • New York Giants 26 (-9), Philadelphia* 23 (37 O/U) [P: $2.58, S: $10.00, O/U: $9.90, T: $22.49]: This sealed an interesting fate for last year's Super Bowl loser. The Eagles have been officially eliminated from the playoffs, making them the fifth team in a row to lose the Super Bowl and miss the playoffs the next year.
  • San Francisco 3, Seattle 41 (-15.5) (43 O/U) [P: $0.60, S: $10.00, O/U: $9.43, T: $20.03]: Does this mean that San Francisco is better than the Eagles?
  • Washington 17 (-3.5), Arizona 13 (40 O/U) [P: $5.43, S: $10.00, O/U: $9.62, T: $25.05]:
  • Baltimore 10, Denver 12 (-14) (40 O/U) [P: $0.76, S: ($10.00), O/U: ($10.00), T: ($19.24)]: Wow. What happened to Denver?
  • Kansas City 28, Dallas 31 (-3) (43.5 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: $0.00, O/U: $9.26, T: ($0.74)]:
  • Miami 23, San Diego 21 (-13.5) (44.5 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: ($10.00), T: ($30.00)]: A few weeks ago, Nick Saban got into a little bit of trouble for saying that at that point, winning and losing didn't matter. A few people in the media took that to mean that Miami might not attempt to win any games, thus giving them a better slot in the draft. Well, they have a chance to be .500 on the year. Would that shut up those critics?
  • Detroit 13, Green Bay 16 (-5.5) (36 O/U) [P: $3.85, S: ($10.00), O/U: $11.20, T: $5.05]: A wonderful Sunday night classic battle goes into overtime. All I've heard about this one was the Rogers penalty where he basically picked up the running back and threw him about five yards while out of bounds. It was on the Packers game winning drive in overtime, and it sounded like they were basically blaming Rogers for the loss. Well, I was watching that drive, and to be frank, I didn't see the Lions doing much to stop the Packers anyway. So it would have taken two or three more plays to make that 15 yards. The Pack would still have won!
  • New Orleans 17, Atlanta 36 (-10.5) (43.5 O/U) [P: $1.67, S: $10.00, O/U: ($10.00), T: $1.67]: The only thing coming out of this game is a question: How's Vick? If they lost Vick for a while, the Falcons season is probably done.

Results Summary

  • Picks (this week): 12 - 4 (75.00%) - Winnings: $4.68: 3 out of 4 I pick right, and only make less than $5.00 on what would have been a $160 bet. Ouch!
  • Picks (season): 134 - 74 (64.42%) - Winnings: ($67.67): I'm picking at almost a 65% clip, yet still down. I guess I'm just not picking the right games correctly!
  • Spread (this week): 6 - 8 (42.86%) - Winnings: ($20.00): A little bit of set back this week, after two weeks of solid gains.
  • Spread (season): 101 - 100 (50.25%) - Winnings: $10.00: But I'm still above .500, so I'm in the black.
  • Over/Under (this week): 9 - 6 (60.00%) - Winnings: $27.26: It seems that every week that I don't do great on picking games, I do good on the over/under, and this week is no different.
  • Over/Under (season): 101 - 101 (50.00%) - Winnings: ($43.55): Still down, but I did climb back to .500. With three weeks to go, I could end up positive. That would be cool!
  • Total Weekly Winnings: $11.94: All in all, not a horrible week. I could buy dinner with my winnings!
  • Total Overall Winnings: ($101.22): My goal of positive is in site!

Picks this week will be early - Wednesday instead of Thursday because I'll be in Detroit Thursday night for a wedding.

Categories: Football


RossCode Weekly #029

posted on 12/10/05 at 12:33:54 am by Joel Ross

RossCode Weekly #029 - Week of 12.11.2005

Intro - 0:00
Download this episode -?35:38 /?17.1 MB
Subscribe to RossCode Weekly

Previously on RCW - 0:59
Cable companies to offer family tiers to combat a la carte?(#028)
CNN Pipeline service launches?(#027)
Playstation 3 still on track for Spring '06?(#026)
Google calendar was expected to be announced at When 2.0?(#020)
Microsoft hit with $32,000,000 fine in Korea anti-trust case?(#024)

News & Views - 7:23
Microsoft Windows XP Embedded to run McDonalds cash registers
Windows Live Favorites MSN Search plug-in hits beta
Windows Live Local hits beta
Mobile WiMax gets IEEE?approval
TiVo adds video blogging
CBS to stream NCAA March Madness games
NBA to create digital archive of all footage
Yahoo buys

The Cold Wars - 15:15
Yahoo adds phone dialing to Yahoo Messenger
Yahoo! Answers launches
Google adds clippings and mapping to gmail
Google Transit hits beta
Amp'd to offer over the air music downloads for $.99
Panasonic starts production on 50 GB Blu-Ray disks
CBS and Verizon team up to offer mobile video content
NBC offers 11 shows on iTunes

The Grapevine - 22:56
Fox has online content plans
AOL may not sell stake
Microsoft leads AOL sweepstakes
No IE7 beta 2 until Q1 2006
Google Earth to support OS X

Odds & Ends?- 27:17
Christmas display turned off

Bonehead of the Week - 29:04
Microsoft and the XBox 360 DRM woes
XBox 360 harddrives missing 7 GB
Bellsouth removes offer to help New Orleans Police Department

Next Time - 32:11
Schedule over the holidays:
?? Next week will be late
?? No RCW for Christmas or New Years
?? Could RCW be on a new day?

Contact / Feedback -
weekly @
(206) 424-4RCW (4729)

Production Notes
Background music provided by Chronos (Introvert 4) and the Podsafe Music Network.
Hosting of RossCode Weekly is provided by
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Categories: RossCode Weekly


??: The New C# Operator

posted on 12/09/05 at 09:24:31 pm by Joel Ross

I hadn't seen this in any of the C# 2.0 feature lists, but Fritz Onion brings this little gem to light for me. There's a new operator: ?? It's a lot like the old inline if statement:

(Test) ? [True statement] : [False statement];

Well, it's different than this (less powerful), but most of the time, here's what I use the ?: operator for:

(myString == null) ? "" : myString;

Basically, it's an easy way to ensure that nulls aren't getting passed around. Better yet, I've found it very useful with databases - when a datetime field supports nulls, but you can't have a null DateTime in .NET, you can check for a null value, and then assign it a default value, like DateTime.MinValue.

Well, now you can shorten this type of code to this:

(myString ?? "");

That's it! I'm sure I'll be using this now that I know about it.

Categories: Development


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