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Moar life updates…

February 27, 2010

Alright, I have a fair bit of my life to share with you, mainly to let you know that I am not dead.

– New computer arrived a long while ago and is working beautifully. Windows 7 is awesome.
– Was hired for the position in the 2010 Games Department at Lagoon. Come play my game if you visit Lagoon!
– Everything is all planned and set for our Disneyland/Knott’s Berry Farm trip in March.
– Finally convinced my parents to buy me a cell phone. Samsung Gravity 2, if you care. Nothing special, but it’s decent enough.

Life as of Right Now…

January 13, 2010

So just some general updates on what is happening in my life right now:

First off, Facebook decided to ban me for no apparent reason. It was resolved through the power of email though. They blamed it on their security system, but they never said what the security system detected in my account that made it “disable” me.

Secondly, just last night we confirmed and purchased flight tickets and hotel rooms for a Disneyland Resort/Knott’s Berry Farm trip on the third weekend of March. Pretty psyched about that!

Thirdly, my new computer has shipped and I will be receiving it on Friday, which is like a week before it was supposed to come!

Lastly, I currently am going to go for an interview for a job at Lagoon, in the games department (so I would be the 14-year-old yelling at you to play Lucky Duck). Shocker, right? Special thanks to Jordan for getting me an early “friends and family” interview!

So that would be my life on January 13th, 2010.

Google Chrome

January 7, 2010

Hello guys! Short post today.

I have been a pretty big Firefox fan in the past. However, I needed something else to play with so I tried out Chrome, mainly because I heard it was easy to develop for.

So far, Chrome has been pretty good. It is a lot different from other browsers, and it takes some getting used to. It’s really nice looking though and just about as fast as Firefox (in most cases at least). There were only two features that it seemed to be lacking in, and I found a workaround for both of them.

1. Bookmarks can only be displayed in a new tab (kind of inconvenient for me).
Workaround: Go to a new tab. Click on “Other bookmarks,” then right-click on the menu that brings up your other bookmarks and select “Always show bookmarks bar.” This will display a bar at the top that displays whatever bookmarks you would like and the “Other bookmarks” button at all times.

2. No RSS support.
Workaround: However, Google has a Google Reader extension available for download (I’m too lazy to find the link). Simply subscribe to all of your normal RSS stuff in Google Reader and install that extension.

So, I’m probably going to keep this browser. It’s quite nice and simple, and I have looked into developing for it and it’s a lot simpler than Firefox.

How to Ring in the New Year!

January 6, 2010

Today I received a blood blister at school. I’m so nerdy, I just *had* to blog about it.

I was just getting ready for band and I was about to shut my locker, with my left hand. Then the kid next to me decided to slam his locker as hard as he could, crushing my middle finger in between our two locker doors. He even did it in oh such a perfect way that it put all it’s force on my finger nail, causing it to form a blood blister. Fun, right?

Luckily it has stopped hurting, and it didn’t really cause my finger to swell either. So I’m still able to type up a blog post about it and such.

Anyway, here are some pictures because I know you’ll love ’em:

Doesn't look too bad in this picture

Side view. It's really not too bad looking except in real life. I guess my camera has a tendency to make things look better.🙂

Look! My fingernail is crying blood!

On the pro side, I now have an excuse for flipping people off (in fact, I just flipped you guys off twice!).

There.

January 1, 2010

Happy New Years.

New Computar!

December 30, 2009

So we just purchased a new customized computer from Dell off their site today. It will take about a month to arrive, but I’m pretty content right now.

Let me give you some background. We purchased my current computer in either 2003 or 2004, I can’t remember exactly. It’s an archaic Windows XP. For you computer geeks, here’s my current specs:

System Model: Dell 2400
Processor: Intel Pentium 4 2.66 GHz (single processor)
Memory: 1.25 GB (which is amazing, it’s only supposed to support 1 GB!)
DirectX: 9.0c (the highest it can go)
Graphics card: NVIDIA GeForce 6200 256 MB (the best it can get because it does not support PCIe, just PCI)
Here’s the big nuisance, the hard drive is only 80 GB. 80 EFFING GIGABYTES.

So, yeah. Trying to run newer games like Half-Life 2: Episode 2 or Portal (both made by my favorite company) is pretty much the meaning of trying to teach old dogs new tricks.

I’ve been egging my parents to get a new computer for years. I am absolutely sure that this computer will not run Half-Life 2: Episode 3 once it comes out, because it does not meet the minimum requirements to run Left 4 Dead 2, a game by the same company with the same engine. And that kinda sucks, because I love Half-Life and I want to know what happened without reading it on the Internet later.

I’m pretty happy that we will be getting a new computer. Here’s the specs on the new one we just ordered, for comparison:

System model: Dell Inspiron 546 (with Windows 7)
Processor: AMD Phenom Quad-Core 2.8 GHz AMD Phenom II X4 820 (4 CPUs), ~2.8GHz
Memory: 6 GB
DirectX: 10 11
Graphics Card: It’s either the ATI Radeon HD3200 (integrated) or the ATI Radeon HD4350, both 512 MB
Hard drive: 640 GB
(these are mostly off the top of my head, so they could be incorrect) Updated to be correct stats

So, it’s just a tad bit better.🙂

Also, if you somehow enjoyed this post (or even if you didn’t) you should check out this hilarious related comic on The Oatmeal.

Christmas

December 26, 2009

In case you only skimmed my last post, merry belated Christmas!

I am the youngest of my family so we have no need to get up at 6:00 AM and see what Santa Claus hefted through our chimney. Once I stopped believing in Santa, I decided we had to have some new tradition to fill the empty void. So every year we do a Christmas breakfast, because we usually aren’t a big breakfast type family yet we love pancakes and hash-browns. Complete with the season drink of wassail, we gorged ourselves so that the large pile of candy we would later receive would hopefully seem unappealing (it didn’t work).

After that, we remember the true meaning of Christmas: presents. We tore through those suckers very quickly, but humanely. I received a lot of good presents this year, including (but not limited to): Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Star Trek (the new movie), a “Zits” comicbook, a 2010 [twenty ten, still!] “The Office” calendar, and a nunchuck. A nunchuck as in a little miniature catapult gun that chucks nuns (props to my sister for that!).

We also received one “big” gift this year, of our own choice. My selection was a new camera, the Panasonic Lumix ZS3. All I had was an old Aiptek MPVR, which turned out to be over-priced and half-functional (it froze half the time I tried to take video). I have decided to review it here for the sake of boredom.

For any of you tech nerds unaware of the ZS3’s specs, let me attempt to boast. The ZS3 is a nice little camera, packing 10.1 megapixels and 12x optical zoom. It is probably the best you can find that will fit in your pocket. It has a whole bunch of useless features, but unfortunately does not have too many manual controls (but enough to satisfy me!).

I’m not even sure where to begin. The camera has a very wide focal range, as I’ve had very little problems taking very close-up photos or photos of the distant mountains. The optical zoom is great, and I need it a lot (my previous camera only had 4x digital zoom). The image stabilizer works well enough, although you probably want to get a tripod if you plan on zooming while filming.

The mode dial has 6 different modes. It has a normal camera setting, as well as the “iA” mode, where the camera chooses the best settings for the scene. I have found the the iA mode works quite well actually, and it will be great once I let somebody else touch my camera who doesn’t know how to operate it well. It also features a scene setting where you can select a common scene (like parties, sports, snow, beaches, etc.) and the camera will configure the settings for it. You can also set your two most used scene settings and flip to it on the mode dial. There is also the clipboard feature, but I have not really found a use for that yet. I have also read reviews that complained of a loose mode dial, but mine is nice and tight. In fact, I have problems switching modes while holding the camera in one hand.

It also seems of good construction as well. I was a little scared because I was buying this off the Internet and didn’t have the chance to hold it in my hands, but it seems great. The metal is smooth but not slippery, and it fits great into your right hand. It does feel a bit awkward when you hold it with both hands though. The camera also looks extremely nice, especially in the black color I have. The LCD screen is very large and sharp, although it does seem to be quite a magnet for finger prints (I find myself constantly wiping it off).

The buttons seem to be well placed as well. I surprisingly don’t find myself accidentally recording a movie or reviewing pictures when I want to be taking them. It’s quite intuitive as well, I was snapping great photos in no time.

The only way the camera records HD video is through AVCHD Lite, which is not a versatile format. It can take regular SD movies with the motion JPEG (*.MOV) format, but I love the looks of the HD video. There are conversion programs for AVCHD Lite available online, but they cost a few extra bucks.

One famous trait of this camera is that it only accepts Panasonic brand batteries. I simply ordered an extra battery from Panasonic and it took three weeks to arrive (although they told me it would take about a month). Although it was twice the amount of a regular camera battery, I was still content because the camera itself was a great deal. Also, the model numbers “BCG10” and “BCG10PP” are the same battery, to clear up any confusion.

Very good close-up shots!

I’m not sure what else to review about this camera, so I guess that wraps up this review. If you have any questions about the camera I would be happy to answer them, so contact me here.