Last year I was invited by the Max Borges Agency to attend their Tiger Direct/CompUSA (they bought the trademark and domain name) PC building competition with many of my industry buddies in television, print and online media. Jim Louderback from PC Magazine and Patrick Norton (now at Revision 3,) Tom Merritt from CNET and my old buddy Al Hernandez from Fox news were worthy competitors, along with the some 30 techsperts.
In 2008, my tower PC was built in lightning time, then I booted up Windows Vista. This was my achilles heel. The box was supposed to grab an IP address then ping a server, with sweet victory mine. What wasn't worthy was my installation of Windows Vista. It did not see the wireless adapter correctly, and therefor did not attach to the router and grab and IP. A quick reboot found the adapter and attached, but not before a hot-on-my-heels competitor pinged the server before me!
In 2009 it was supposed to be different. I was going to take the championship and donate $10k to my charity. But with the constant change in schedules that make up CES, I was unable to make it to the race in time; due to a last minute request for me to demonstrate the G4 TV "Best of the Best" winning products to the Chairmen of the major cable networks. Their demo took priority before the contest.
Fortunately I did make it over at the end, and my buddy Al won first place. Alison Haislip had fun with getting everyone psyched out over my PC building skills, and I was able to make an appearance, in the end. I guess he ended up with the big check AND the cheerleaders. Enjoy!