Monday, January 31, 2005

Sunday, January 30, 2005

One small step for man...

Yesterday morning I had the opportunity to go see a presentation on ASIMO (Advanced Step in Innovative MObility), the walking robot that Honda had developed. Overall, it was a pretty cool show as they showed off ASIMO's ability to walk and turn pretty seemlessly without missing a beat or having to stop and turn. The presentor also showed off several videos about ASIMO's past and the bumps in the road that the Honda engineers had to face while developing it. It was sort of funny watching the earlier models that didn't have a head or torso walking on a tread mill, and then all of a sudden just lean too much one way and begin to fall. Luckily, all the earlier models had various harnesses attached to them, so no damage was done. The kids in the audience seem to be the most impressed by ASIMO since ASIMO, if you ignore his capabilies, pretty much looks like a really large toy. Anyways, I have some pics and a video of the event so that you guys can see what happened. Pardon the low quality of the video, as I'm currently stuck with a puny 32 meg Compactflash card at the moment >.<

ASIMO waiting for his next command.

ASIMO standing on one foot, but I was too slow to get the picture :P

ASIMO waving to the camera!

ASIMO's Brochure (Warning...940k pic)

ASIMO in action! (10 megs)

Friday, January 28, 2005

Tennis from Down Under!

For tennis fans, the beginning of the year is always a good time as the tennis world shifts its focus to Australia for the Australian Open. And this year proved to be one of the better years as there were some incredible matches played in the past two days. The highlight of the tournament so far had to be the Safin vs Federer match, and although I haven't had the chance to see the entire match, it turned out to be a great battle as the two fired shots at each other for 5 gruelling sets. But at the end, the Safinator found his way to derail the Fed Express and give himself a spot in this years men's final. And Federer, who was on a 26 match winning streak, showed that he was indeed beatable. But kudos to both players for putting on a great match that will probably be remembered for a long time.

Unfortunately, the womon's final didn't turn out to have the same dramatics as the previous two women's semi-final matches. It pitted Serena Williams again Lindsay Davenport, who both fought through tough 3 setters in their previous matches to get through. Serena started off a bit badly and tweaked her back somewhat as Davenport ran away with the first set. But Serena began finding her range in the 2nd set and the two fought to 3-3. But a loosely played game in the 2nd set by Davenport seemed to just send her into a sprial, and Serena won 9 games in a row to take the last two sets 6-3 and 6-0 in sort of an anti-climatic fashion. Davenport just couldn't buy herself any consistant shots as she sprayed error after error during those nine games! Usually, Lindsey is known for her "smooth" style of play and shotmaking, but I guess the mental aspect of the game just got to her, and she has had a tendency to go on a "hissy-fit" when she loses and just can't find the range on her shots anymore. Oh well, kudos to Serena for hanging in there!

Monday, January 24, 2005

Don't drive like these people....

Ice + Snow + Car = This

Saturday, January 22, 2005

Classic gaming.

Check out Classic Gaming to relive all those fond Nintendo memories ^^ Now only if the sound would work in those game >.<

Winter Wonderland

The January snow began to fall this week in the Northeast part of the US, and Ohio has also gotten its share of snow. Having been in Ithaca for quite a while where snow comes in dumptruck fulls, I don't really mind the 2 or so inches of snow we've gotten so far. Since I hadn't been using my digital camera for a while, I figure I go out in the afternoon and see what sort of pics I could take with it, and here are the results!

Frozen Crystal Lake

But wait...there's something swimming on the side!

There must be a hidden heater somewhere.

Is that a Duck or Penguin in disguise?

Maybe I'll have Kungfucius' Pic of the Day from now on :P

Thursday, January 20, 2005

N is for Ninja!

Here's an amusing flash-based game that I found while scouring the web. You're a ninja who has a limited lifetime, but your goals are to get to the next level without dying, and in the meantime, you collect gold to keep your life alive :P It's simple, yet sorta fun to play if you have a free 5 minutes or so, and the physics and motion are done pretty well, so take a look!

N: Ninja

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

What random object are you? o_O

You are Windex.

You are a neat freak. Quite plain and simple. If you walk into an unorganized area, you go insane. Most of your free time is spent cleaning and organizing, when you aren't having fun with you friends. Even though many are annoyed by your constant organizing, some see it as a quality of neatness, and that is something most people envy about you. The opposite sex sees you as clean-cut and pure, though you are too shy to express your true feelings for them. You keep a list of goals and priorities in your life, and in almost all cases, accomplish them. You are the over-acheiver, most intelligent in your class, and strive to do all that is in your ability. Some people may try to take advantage of you, however, so don't let them make you clean up their messes. "Just put some Windex."

Most compatible with: Toothbrush.

Click here -- What Random Object Represents Your Inner Self?

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

News from the Mac World

Steve Jobs, the CEO of Apple, did his annual MacWorld presentation which many Macheads anxiously await each year since Jobs usually presents something new or interesting in his presentation. There were many rumors about a cheap Mac on the way, and near of the presentation, Jobs finally revealed what everybody was waiting for: the Mac Mini. It's an elegantly designed 6.5 square, 2 inches high computer that literally almost fits at the palm of your hand. Although it doesn't come with a monitor (and keyboard and mouse for that matter), I think what Apple is doing is trying to just attract those PC users who would buy a mac if it were cheaper, and then let the PC user connect up their existing PC components to it. The other new hardware release is the iPod Shuffle, the newest and smallest iPod to date. Those Apple marketting people did a pretty good job trying to divert the public attention to the fact that this iPod doesn't have an LCD trying to highlight the shuffle feature and such. But the nicest part of this iPod is the price. $99 buys you a 512 meg version, and $50 more buys you a 1 giger. But the best part about the iPod shuffle page has to be the 2nd footnote at the bototm of the page :D Go find it and you'll see what I mean :D

Monday, January 10, 2005

Bye Bye Blues!

Hi all!

I hope I didn't scare anyone with my last rant :P Anyways, I guess the dreary weather had been getting to me since it was raining all week, but luckily the sun decides to show up all of Sunday, which lifted up my spirits considerably ^^

I went out to see what I could get at Bestu Buy with the gift card that my brother gave me for Christmas (for those of you who don't know where the extra U in "Bestu" comes from, it's a "tribute" to a character named Ryu from the anime Shaman King). At first, I was thinking about a new input device for my computer, either a new wireless keyboard or mouse. But when I got there, there wasn't any keyboard that felt as nice as the Microsoft Natural Keyboard that has lasted me for about 5 or so years now. However, I almost decided on picking up a wireless mouse for my laptop thinking it would come in handy. But just before I walked to the checkout counter, I walk past the cell phone section and see a couple of Bluetooth headsets for cell phones. Now, when I got my Razr, apparently it was so new that there aren't any accessories for it (not even a carrying case >.<), so I began thinking hmm, a wireless headset would be cool. As you all know, I like to find a good deal, but the Bluetooth headsets, the HS810 and HS820 by Motorola, were $99 and $79 respectively, which I found kind of expensive, so I decided to lay off the purchase for now. I figured since I really don't travel around that much to require a hands-free headset, I'll wait till the prices come down to bargin bin ranges to pick them up :P

Sunday, January 9, 2005

Weekend Blues

I just felt like a sad panda for most of the day. If I knew how to describe the feeling, I would but it's just a whole conglomerate of thoughts and stuff all intermixed together that it's just tough to explain. Anyways, I just wanted to rant for a bit before heading to bed.

Saturday, January 8, 2005

Thursday, January 6, 2005

More ninja action!

Want to see some wild uncensored ninja action??? Well, you won't see any here in this blog, but at this link, you'll be close to seeing some ninjas go wild :P

Tuesday, January 4, 2005

Oranges to Oranges, Dust to Dust...

I finally got to move back to my former office today and AWAY from all the noise of the construction at last! Yesterday, I was peeved at the fact that dust just started accumulating all over my office desk and laptop keyboard since the workers were taking off the ceiling tiles along the hallway, and behind the tiles were probably 50 years worth of dust accumulating all along the ceiling, and now the dust had more places to go >.< Luckily, the part of the building where my old office was had just finished its renovation, so before I headed back home, I moved all my stuff back to my old office and reclaimed my old desk. Unfortunately, at least for this past morning, some workers were emptying the portable bathrooms, which just happen to be located just outside my office, so there was a pretty bad lingering stink when I got into the office this morning and through part of the afternoon >.< Oh well, hopefully things'll be less hectic and noisy from now on.

Man, it's halftime right now and USC has completely taken over the Orange Bowl game against Oklahoma up 38-10. Oklahoma struck first with a TD, but USC has now managed to score 35 points with Matt Leinart doing his best Payton Manning impression as he throws for 4 touchdowns IN A HALF! But Oklahoma has been shooting themselves in the foot with 4 turnovers, giving USC great field position that translated to 24 points. Bob Stoops better be giving his Oklahoma players a great motivational speech during halftime; otherwise, it looks like it'll be another long off-season for the Sooners without a National Championship. One funny note: Ashley Simpson sang to end the half-time show, and most of the stadium seemed to be booing her after she finished her song :P

Update: USC roxored Oklahoma 55-19.

Monday, January 3, 2005

Rainy Monday

It almost seemed too appropriate that it would be raining all day in Columbus for the first day of classes here at OSU. But for me, it actually felt a bit refreshing coming back to school now and getting back into the daily grind. I have two classes this quarter: EE711 (Antennas) on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, and EE894 (Method of Moments 2, also popularly known as MoM) on Tuesdays and Thursdays. The antennas class is taught by our lab director John Volakis, who is generally a good guy but very vocal and demanding, but he seemed to give the impression that he's going to put his best effort into teaching the class. As with most first days of classes, the student attenence is huge, but I was even surprised to see around 50+ students in the antenna class, with a majority of them being undergraduate students. Since I never had an antennas class before and a good portion of electromagnetics focuses on antenna design, I figured it would probably be in my best interest to get one in :P

Cingular finally managed to finally get my brother's new phone up and running today. My mom, brother, and I got a new plan from Cingular right after Christmas since our family plan with T-Mobile expired on Christmas day, and I just couldn't pass up getting a Razr for $50 in Flushing, NY :P My brother also ended up getting a new Motorola V551 since the T-mobile coverage at Princeton, NJ where he lives is kind of spotty. Number transferring proved to be strangely easy for me and my mom; I had my number carried over in about 3 hours, and my mom's number carried over in a day. But my brother waited 3 days, and still no service for his new phone. A quick call to Cingular rep insured, and we found that there are still "bugs" in the system to carry numbers over, and the rep said that they have had problems where random numbers to be carried over would be "missing". But I'm glad to see that Cingular fixed the problem rather quickly for my brother, though he had to wait an extra 3 more days. As for me, I'm a happy panda with my new razr ^^ The extra thinness makes it more comfortable to keep in my jean pockets compared to my old Samsung S105. Also, the speakerphone feature of the phone absolutely rocks! Now I can just set the phone on speakerphone, leave it on my desk, and do other things like fold laundry while still being able to talk on the phone ^^ The reception also seems to be much better at my apartment, so another added plus to a great phone.

HL2 Fun

Apparently, the Half-Life 2 engine is rather customizable, so when you have a customizable game engine and people with some sick humor, this is the result! Ok, the results aren't that sick, but the pics are pretty darn funny ^^ I especially liked the "look hands!" pic :D

Saturday, January 1, 2005

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year to everyone out there ^^ Hopefully this new year will be good to you all ^^ I'm finally back at Columbus again after a 1.5 week hiatus, and once the 3rd rolls around, it'll be back to classes and research once again. But it was good to go home and relax for a bit and not think about school for a bit.

I didn't get that many items for Christmas since there wasn't really anything I really wanted to get. BUT...I did get this for Christmas ^^

It's small...


and bright...

in more ways than one!

Needless to say, I was happy to get one of these ^^