Archive for May, 2007

Desitnaton: Ohio

Wednesday, May 30th, 2007

Ohio Trip Map
The My Maps version of my Ohio trip. It includes:

  • A mini review of Pirates 3
  • Cedar Point’s brand new coaster Maverick
  • Beth’s Wedding

Gilmore Girls Movie

Friday, May 25th, 2007

And here I thought I’d never move beyond 5 enteries in the Gilmore Girls category. According to this, the show’s original creator wants to make a made for tv Gilmore movie. I am a skeptic, but aparently she had a great ending all planned out with four magical words which she has told no one. Maybe she could just remake the 7th season? maybe she should make a web comic if she can’t get the actors; similar to what Firefly did to bridge the gap between the show and Serenity (but with the web not a book). Or, or, she could anonymously submit the script to a fan fiction site. All of these things seem equally far fetched to me; at this point it might be better to let dead dogs lie. I do want to know what those four words are and what they mean.

Eve Was Framed

Thursday, May 24th, 2007

Eve Was Framed Bumper Sticker Since I posted my other geeky car image today, I might as well knock this one out at as well. Why is that geeky? I was introduced to to Eve (and company) by the xkcd comic Alice and Bob, not, as I should have been, in some sort of security class required of me in obtaning my CS degree. If you are still confused, consult wikipedia on the topic.


Thursday, May 24th, 2007

So a guy who lives on my street’s car (direct image link here) made the front page of today. I had been saving up my pics of it, which are still on my phone for a little write up on geeky cars I’ve seen and had time to snap a picture of while driving around Boston, but looks like someone beat me to it. As is often said, Picture or it didn’t happen, so here are some pictures from my craptastic phone as per usual. Note that these are taken in winter, I’ll post some more from today when I get home. Someone on digg suggested I buy my neighbor a beer, I’d be happy to, neighbor.

MMMMPI Winter 1 MMMMPI Winter 2 MMMMPI Spring 1 MMMMPI Spring 2

Destination: New Haven

Monday, May 21st, 2007

Destination: New Haven Map On Sunday I took my first “road trip” in my new car. That is if you consider 272 mile round trip as a “road trip,” but it was long enough for me to test out some new things. The reason for the trip was to meet up with Josh to settle round one of our bet over the Yankees/Red Sox series this season. For each series or pair of series the loser buys the winner dinner. This dinner was for the first series at NY; we hadn’t started the bet before the first series at Fenway. Anyways it was a nice trip, esp once I got out of the rain in Boston. Below are the things I tested on the trip and the results:

  • M$ Streets and Trips: Verdict: Crappy
    I played around with this once before on the way home from work and had issues with route recalculation not working very well. These issues resurfaced on this trip. All was alright (not good) until I got off the highway due to traffic in New Haven. First the gps lost track, the software’s response to this was to not tell me anything and lock up. Josh had called to tell me I was early, so when the software got done locking up I tired to get it to tell me where Yale is so I could drive though it since I was there and had time. Well it couldn’t tell me, how worthless. Of course, as it turns out, Yale is spread out all over the place there, but I managed to miss all of it.

    Tonight came the next problem, the reason why I will never use this software ever again. The program recorded gps trails of exactly where I went, which are pretty high fidelity looking at the map. I want to export these traces and put them up on a my map. Well try as I might all this data remains locked up in a proprietary MS binary file format. All i need are the coordinates in text form, I can do the rest, but no I can’t get anything out the program except the screen shot above. Next time I’ll just have to use Linux to log the raw gps data for me. I know, I should have known better than to expect that I would be able to do what I want with locked down closed source software.

  • Car (2007 Honda Civic Hybrid) MPG: Verdict: Amazing
    I’ve been wanting to go on a long trip with my car to get a good sense as to what its true highway performance is. The primary, trustworthy, MPG displays an average, you can have 2 running averages at one time. I use 1 per tank, and the other has been running since I got the car. Normally the per tank average is lower than my usual to work and back real mpg. I can tell this because the average always ticks up during the week. On the weekend when I only make short in the city trips the average dips. As such I didn’t know my true highway performance until now, with a ~270 mile trip @70mph almost the whole obliterate any low readings pulling down the average. The revised 2008 mpg numbers for the 2007 Civic Hybrid are 40 (city) and 45(highway). Well I got 42.3 on my trip. I bet I could hit that 45 if i drove 60mph. Also this spring my normal millage has increased from ~34 to 38+. I will be confirming just how much plus this week by watching how much the 42.3 average drops. So far in 1 22 mile round trip to work the average is still 42.3, it went up to 42.4 for a bit. The overall average since I got the car is now ~36 up from ~32 in the winter. I’m not sure all of this can be attributed to weather, as I’m probably becoming a more efficient driver. I purposefully did not drive 75 on my trip after I noticed my mileage dropping when I tried it. In any case I am very happy that my numbers are very much in sync with the new revised EPA estimates now. I had previously been unimpressed with my mileage.


Thursday, May 17th, 2007

For the uninitiated Slashback is a /. feature that periodically redresses previous stories with clarifications, more information, or new developments.

  • Some more on the xkcd talk: at one point someone asked Randell “Where are you from on the Internet?” (see the hover text). He talked a bit about a chat room of yore (no reminiscent of the dustbowl) where he hung out, but then he let everyone know that he spent a lot of time at live journal during high school (apparently thats a frowned upon place to be from). So I got to thinking where do I come from. In 8th grade (my family didn’t get the internet until part way 7th grade (1997)) I spent a lot of my time in the wy2 (thats wonder years 2) chat room, on some IRC server I don’t recall. That seems like a good place to be from, at least its on IRC. But really before that I was from geocities., that link, of course, is long broken. I’m proud of that though, I had a website about, um, Star Trek/Sci-Fi , The Site, and later Wonder Years complete with easy to send of a 14.4 modem Real Audio clips. Where are you from?
  • For anyone missing Gilmore Girls a little bit: Kirk’s top 10 moments. Ok so I don’t really miss it like I miss a person so much as I feel the need to seek out these kinds of stories which you can only find shortly after the end of the show. I don’t remember even half of the episodes kirk lists so I will have to go back and watch each one. Feel free to drop any similar links on the comments.
  • I have been super busy this week (at home — work is normal). I don’t even know why but it feels like I’ve got no time. Its not like I’m doing lots of things. I guess I should be going ;-)

Mario Kart 64 Tournamnet #3

Wednesday, May 16th, 2007

Mario Kart on the Big Screen After Gilmore Girls (see below) I joined a BBQ in the back yard already in progress, but after that it was Mario Kart 64 Tournament time! We play a lot of Mario Kart 64 in this house; although, we have been remiss in recent weeks. As such we’ve had tourneys before, this being the 3rd. We had 7 people and well we try to maximize the number of games before anyone is eliminated, so our brackets are a little weird. My character of choice is Peach; by the way, she handles very nicely and is almost as fast a Yoshi. Heres how it went down, focusing on my performance:

Round 1.1: Kalamari Desert — 3rd palce (1 point)
Round 1.2: Sherbert Land — 3rd place (1 point)
Round 1.3: Royal Raceway — 3rd place (1 point)
Round 1 totals:
1st place 8 points
2nd palce 7 points
3rd place 3 points (me)
4th place 0 points

This put me in the losers bracket: Bowser’s Castle. As arguably the best player in the losers bracket I easily won this one to advance to round 2. 2nd place also advanced to round 2.

Round 2: Wario Stadium — 2nd place (advance to round 3 – finals). This was my big upset of Sriram, arguably one of the top 2 players in the house.

Finals: Me Vs. Brian at Rainbow Road. I hit a bomb going up the big hill and was set back early. I nearly caught up by the end of the first lap when Brian veered off at the big jump into space. This put me in 1st with 2 red shells. Brian caught up and 1 red shell was lost defending. Brian got in front and I fired the last read shell sending him over the edge; another huge stroke of luck. Flash forward to the end of the last lap, brain with a star and infinite mushroom pulls ahead, my bananas powerless to stop him. He misses the last row of boxes, I hit it, in 2nd place, and pick up and infinite mushroom. Brian, item less, attempts to ram me with Bowser, but misses, and I ride the mushroom to the win in a photo finish. The bracket:

The Bracket

Bon Voyage

Wednesday, May 16th, 2007

Gilmore Girls in HD I got HDTV over the air (yes that works) working about 20 mins before the series finale of Gilmore Girls. This is the first actual HD program I’ve watched on the TV and I was very impressed. First, I couldn’t find the adapter which turns my old rabbit ear’s screw terminal wires into a normal coax wire. I did find, in my search, the little FM radio antennas that came with my TV tuner cards. It had a coax output on it so I plugged it in. The reception on the analog stations was awful. But the HD stations came in crystal clear! That really surprised me, but I took it because I didn’t have much time. I’m very much happy with how they ended the series, these last 2 episodes have really shined, well beyond the rest of the last season.
Part of me finds it hard to believe that the show is over. I really got into it in 2003-2004 when there was a lot of drama going on in my real life and I used the show as an escape/comfort (cause what else is tv really good for?). It is also an icon in my move to not be ashamed of the kinds of entertainment I enjoy most (coming of age dramas and comedies). I’ve found that to be a stength, at time, but none more so than during the season 4 finale:

liryon: ooohh luke and lorali finally :-)
girl: …?
liryon: they kissed
girl: awww
liryon: yup
girl: :)
girl: you’re such a girl
liryon: thx
girl: :) I love you

After season 4 the show, and well the girl too, went down hill. Looks like I have to be over both now, and the tv show is the harder part, 2004 me would not have guessed that.

The TV Arrives

Tuesday, May 15th, 2007

I didn’t blog about it, but as many of you know I ordered an LC-42D72U Sharp HDTV recently. It has arrived and there are pictures to follow. I got this TV because it was one of the 2 sharp models that met all 4 of my requirements:

  • Full HD 1920x1080p resolution
  • Built in HDTV tuner
  • DVI Input
  • 37″ or larger

So far I love it! It took about an hour to get it working with Linux. I quickly realized that a lot of my media is not up to snuff. I’m already adjusting my bitrates upwards.

Tv in Box Tv off
TV loading Mythtv Tv Ready to Go

xkcd @ MIT

Tuesday, May 15th, 2007

xkcd @ MIT The xkcd guy @ MIT Last night was my first time in an MIT lecture hall, and wow was it fun. Someone was video-taping most of the talk right in front of me, but I haven’t found that video online yet. Meanwhile, there is thread where more pictures will likely show up here. Randall started his talk with an expose on what people will do when presented with a string un-obviously suspended from an out of site kite. He later returned to kites and what could be dropped from them (video). final version of the comic here. Randell seemed like he had a bit of every friend I know, who appreciates xkcd, in him.

  • Favorite Ice Cream: J.P. Licks Cake Batter — me
  • 300 character 1 line perl program to display website hits — Paul
  • Calvin and Hobbes: the best comic of its generation — everyone!
  • Expanded music tastes to Guitaur Hero 2! — Jed
  • All things related to kitties — Beth
  • Emacs user — everyone except Paul?

He started talking how he was inspired to start xkcd by MIT’s hacks page (link pending). Shortly after he said that a whole bunch of play pen balls, with the HD-DVD key on it fell from trap doors in the ceiling. The balls made /. I managed to snag one in the thrush of flying balls that followed:

xkcd ball 1 xkcd ball 2

Most of the talk was a question and answer session including “will you make me a sandwich?”. Overall it was just an hour and a half of hilarious inside joke geeky-ness. I am so glad I went, but I did feel almost unprepared for it. I am just on the outskirts of the xkcd universe, that is for sure. It was really interesting getting an inside look at the real people who live the blogosphere and drive internet culture, or at least a small part of it. Randall waxed a bit on his ideas on the nature of humor as a decision problem which I wish i could recreate here. Anyways, you all should have been there, esp those of you in Boston. On a down note I didn’t make any new xkcd friends as I had hoped I would.