January 29, 2015

Intel Cuts The Cord With New CPU: Chip Delivers Wireless Docking, Display Tech, Enhanced Security

"Intel is driving an enterprise mobile stake in the ground with this Broadwell release. It's feeling the heat on the low end of the mobile market from ARM and is sending a signal to its enterprise customers that Intel is going to continue to innovate and add value where its competitors just can't," said Todd Swank, senior director of product marketing at Equus Computer Systems, a Minnetonka, Minn.-based system builder. 

 "We expect some interest in this chip, but where we see most interest, and hope for driving PC sales, is with the Skylake," Swank said. Skylake is Intel's successor to the Broadwell chip architecture, offering a complete redesign of the CPU, boosting performance and reducing power consumption.

Read Full Article Here:

Microsoft's Surface Business Breaks $1 Billion Mark In Quarterly Sales For First Time

Todd Swank, senior director of product marketing at Equus Computer Systems, a Minnetonka, Minn.-based system builder, agrees with the approach Microsoft is taking even though it's not a like-for-like comparison. 

"I think it's a wise strategy to go after Apple head-to-head the way that Microsoft has been doing," Swank told CRN. "The Surface revenue numbers show that it's the right strategy, and it does seem like people have gained a respect for Surface."

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January 25, 2015

Minneapolis Boat Show 2015

Minneapolis Boat Show 2015
Todd Swank's Diary Entry for January 25, 2015

On Monday night, we went to see the movie, American Sniper.  It was a good movie, but again reminded me that I never want to go to war.  That's tough stuff those guys have to deal with and critical decisions have to be made in an instant.  Interesting to see things from the perspective of the sniper, though.  I had never considered what they do for their fellow soldiers and this movie did a great job of showing how important of a role they play.  One big thumb up.

On Friday night, we had our good friends, the Relling family, over for a family game night.  One of the games we played was "Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader?"  Sadly, I discovered that I am not.

On Saturday night, we went to Smash Burger with our good friends, the Walters Family.  We got Smashed together.

Would you like fries with that shake?  

On Sunday, we went to the Minneapolis Boat Show at the convention center.  There were boats there.

We went with our good friends, the Zitzewitz and the Brown family.  They all like boats too.

We can't really use boats in Minnesota this time of year, but it's nice to go look at them to remind us that winter will be over again some day.

We keep thinking we'd like to get jet skis some day and learned about the new Sea Doo Sparks which are made of plastic and less powerful than their more expensive counterparts.  One of these years we'll have to step in there.

Until that time, we'll just have to sit around and enjoy the sharks in their Hawaiian shirts.

We also like sitting around playing with colored pieces of fake glass magically burning in front of us.  That's much better than riding around on a jet ski.

Maybe not.  Riding around on jet skis is pretty cool.

Not as cool as these guys, but pretty cool all the same.


January 21, 2015

Microsoft To Offer Windows 10 As Free Upgrade For Windows 8.1, Windows 7 Users

Todd Swank, senior director of product marketing at Equus Computer Systems, a Minneapolis-based system builder partner, said Microsoft is exploring every avenue it can to maintain market share in light of changes in how clients access apps and data. 

 "I think we’re seeing Microsoft re-writing their own rule book, which is why they’re offering Windows 10 as a free upgrade for any Windows 7 or Windows 8 user. That kind of thinking would have been considered ludicrous only five years ago," said Swank.

Read Full Article Here:

January 18, 2015

Triple Espresso in Minneapolis

Triple Espresso in Minneapolis
Todd Swank's Diary Entry for January 18, 2015

On Tuesday night, we had our Fantasy Football Awards Ceremony for Steve "Cuds" Cuddihy's league.  It was a really bad year for me thanks to my wonderful selections of Adrian Peterson and Doug Martin, so the only award for me was "Loser of the Year".   The night was going swimmingly when we were suddenly joined by former Minnesota Gopher and Minnesota North Star hockey player, Pat Micheletti.   Pat had overheard me telling the guys about Luke's heart and liver evaluations when he shared with us that he is also dealing with some health challenges currently.  He then told us who he was and that he's the current host of Wild fan line on KFAN.  Steve is a Wild season ticket holder and said he listens to Pat every night on the drive home from games.  Then we all joined hands and sang a little song together and went our separate ways.

On Friday night, we went to downtown Minneapolis to the MusicBox Theatre to see the highly caffeinated comedy, Triple Espresso.

I'd seen ads for the show for as long as I can remember, but never felt the need to go see it until 2015.  Then I felt the need.

Whenever I feel the needs to do something different, I usually call Karl Zitzewitz.  He likes to help me fill my needs.

Karl drags along his family and I drag along mine.  The boys used to like being seen with us, but it seems lately they prefer to sit away from us and on their own.  Not sure why that is.

I wasn't quite sure what to expect from the show, but was pleased to find that it was a very funny three man show that mixed comedy, music, magic, and acting to tell the story of a group of entertainers as they went from getting started in show business, rising to fame, eventually breaking up, and finally reuniting.

Since we sat in the front row, our group had plenty of opportunities to get picked on by the performers.  Karl was even asked to go on stage and be part of the show!  I wasn't supposed to take pictures during the performance, but couldn't miss getting a shot of this even if I had to sneak the camera out of my pocket.  Karl ended up being a big hit with the audience and I'm expecting he will quit his career soon and move to LA to become an actor.  That would be so cool.

Miss Sheri is always demanding to get her photo taken with the actors after shows like this, so I felt I'd better oblige.

I even followed suit and got my own picture taken with one of them so she wouldn't feel like she was alone in doing so.  I'm such a good husband.

On Saturday, the temperatures climbed into the thirties so the boys and I put on our ski clothes and headed out to the lake to go make friends with the ice fisher people.

It was a big party out there.  One of the ice fisher people told us the ice was about 15 inches which apparently is thick enough for everyone to drive their huge trucks out there now.  

This guy was nice and told me the fish weren't biting very well.  He said he and a group of his co-workers came out for the day and he was having a great time.  Based on the hat he was wearing, I'm guessing this was the highlight of his weekend.

On Saturday night, we were joined by our good friends, Mark and Heidi Wojahn, for a night of debauchery.

Apparently the Wojahns mis-understood my invitation and said they didn't come prepared for a night of debauchery, so we decided to go in the hot tub instead.  A good time was had by all!

A Video From An Old Friend of Shortarmguy

Dr. Lile is a long time friend of my blogs starting with www.shortarmguy.com.

He sent me this video this week and I thought it would be nice to share with all of you:

Below is the YouTube Link to my interview on the TV show "Real Life' scheduled to air 1/14/2015 at 7:30 pm on WHBR in Pensacola.

I discuss the miracle and the personhood of the unborn within the womb. And demonstrate the number of abortions performed each year in the State of Florida. The editing team from WHBR has done a fantastic job. Please help me by sending to friends or posting to your Facebook account.
Thank you!

In His service,

Bill Lile

January 11, 2015

Winter Time Fun Down On The Farm

Winter Time Fun Down On The Farm
Todd Swank's Diary Entry for January 11, 2015

We hadn't had a chance to visit Grandma Haack for Christmas yet, so we drove down to the farm for a January celebration.  It's always great to see her even if it was for just a short visit.

They'd been getting some snow lately so Uncle Jerry pulled out the tractor to pile it up.  We like to roll around in snow and he was ready to accommodate.

He also got out the 4 wheeler so we could drive over the snow as well.  We'd been having temperatures with windchill this week at about 30 below zero, but on Saturday it was a balmy 12 degrees.  Kind of cold on the cheeks when driving, but not too bad.

Luke had fun driving his cousin around the farm while dodging dogs which makes for an extra challenge.

Avery figured out how to leave the dogs in his dust!  Or snow flakes....I guess there really wasn't any dust that could be lifted.

All in all, it was a good day.  Even if it was cold.

I even had the chance to drive to nearby Canton, SD to see my step sister Martha and Dean.  I hadn't seen her for awhile so it was nice to get a chance to catch up on things.  She has a new dog named Charly who was awful sweet.

I also was excited to see her son, Ryan Todd.  He is doing great and was recently accepted to a school in California where he will be studying to become a diesel mechanic.  We're so proud of him!  Way to go, Ryan!

January 4, 2015

Happy New Year 2015

Happy New Year 2015
Todd Swank's Diary Entry for January 4, 2015

Life quieted down this week when my family from Texas had to go back home.  But before they did, we took them out for one more walk out on the lake.

There was ice fishing people hanging out out there so we thought we'd go check out what they were up to and if they wanted to make friends with us.  Not many of them seemed all that interested.

The dogs were excited to get some fresh air.  Even though their Texas feet had some challenges dealing with the snow and ice for too long.  Lucky Dave was there to help them get through the ordeal.

For 6 nights, the cousins did a great job of getting along with one another.

But even they were getting a little bit tired of dealing with each other's attitudes.

Avery just mainly sticks by his dad's side which is probably for the best.

We tried to get Lauren to defect from Texas and move to Minnesota to stick by Sheri's side, but she declined.

This is my brother-in-law, David, and my other brother-in-law, David.  I can never remember which one is which.

 On the walk back home, we discovered somebody had been getting creative drawing in the snow.  I'm hoping this is just a really poor attempt at drawing a bicycle.

On New Year's Eve, we had a grand old time bringing in the new year with our old friends the Zitzewitz Family and a bunch of their family and other friends.  It's a good crew to celebrate with.

Troy Brown brought some ghost pepper sauce to try on some of the wings and ribs we had for the evening.  It was a horribly unpleasant experience that lasted a lot longer than I imagined it would.  This is a picture of me shortly before I took my first bite.  I noticed Troy in the background of this shot and surmised he had taken his first bite shortly before this.