January 2003

December 2002 -- 2003 -- February 2003

January 1, 2003

Happy New Years!!!

New years is traditionally the day of the TV marathon, and Sci-Fi doesn't disappoint with an entire day of Twilight Zone goodness. "It's not a manual for how to serve people, it's a cookbook!"

And what's the turn of a new year without a ton of lists? So for your browsing pleasure, here's Stupidest and best moments of the web for 2002. I especially like the one where a cracker posts pirated mp3's on RIAA's website. There is also the top science stories of the year and review of various technology introduced during 2002.

And looking toward 2003, here's the top space mysteries that are as of yet unsolved. Dark energy, the black hole at the center of our galaxy, and even our own sun still have mysteries to unlock. Cool stuff.

And don't want to forget that it was 20 years today that the internet switched to it's current protocal scheme, TCP/IP. The "internet" is over 30 years old, but it was 20 years ago that it switched over to Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol. Yay for the internet!

And why hot pink? Cause hot pink rocks da house yo!

January 2, 2003

Today is 01-02-03.

I'm also back up in Gainesville ready to go for my 4th semester at college. I had a lot of stuff that I didn't get around to doing during the break, so I came back up extra early to have time to do it all without distractions, since NO ONE is up here yet. Just me and my very cool RA. I think I've already listed what I'm taking, but here's it again: Digital Design, Circuits 1, Intro to Computer Organization, and finally Data Structures. 15 hours, including 2 labs. Unfortunatly I've heard horror stories from two people about the insane amount of time digital design labs take up, so it looks like I'll be even busier than last semester. At least it's interesting material, as I get to make all kinds of cool stuff. I love my major! (Note that that last statment is void the night before I have any major projects due that refuse to work right)

Salon has an excellent article (as usual) about North Korea and foreign policy. Bush is so concerned about Iraq (and where are all these terrible weapons that he was so sure about at anyways...) and yet North Korea has a nice little nuclear arsenal ready to get up and running. I was never for the war in Iraq, and while yeah Hussian is one messed up fellow, he's really not worth starting a war over. Secondly, why is it ok for the US to do everything (chemical weapons, nuclear weapons, biological weapons) and not for any other country? I mean granted we're pretty sane and won't just let them loose on a whim like some crazy dictator might, but can you really blame North Korea for wanting a nuclear program? Can you really blame a country for feeling resentful that the US essentially "owns" them by requiring these inspections? Do you think American's would feel happy if China decided to require full access to all of America's weapon stores? Anyways, good article.

And now a bunch of Google news courtesy of the Google Weblog:
First a good piece on the morals of Google, which is summed up as "Don't be evil". Good idea.
Then two new types of Google searches, one for products so you can find where they sell what you want to buy, a search with quotes that shows you what other sites thought about the site you're looking at, and finally Google slideshow to view webpages like a powerpoint presentation.
And last but not least the Google Zeitgeist for 2002. All the hot topics and trends of 2002, as determined by what people searched for.

I have a slight cold today. It would be a good time to buy stock in Kleenex if you're smart.

January 4, 2003

While messing around with Windows after reinstalling it, I remembered that the Gaim peoples made a Windows port of Gaim from Linux. So I downloaded and installed, and it's now my default AIM client for windows. It has all the features I love from the Linux client, except now it's in Windows. So if you want a great AOL instant messanger client with aliases, logging, talking while on away, plugins, and lots of other features, instead of that crap AOL puts out, then give it a shot. It's well worth the download.

Went to the mall yesterday, an hour of which was spent waiting for the bus. I needed another long sleeved shirt though, and while I was there I got in a game of Pump It Up (DDR except different arrow positions) and bought Aqua Aqua, which is exactly like Wetrix for the N64. Now if only they made an updated version of Tetrisphere. Great music in that one.

I am... Lord of the Root!

For all the non-geeks of my readership, root is the superuser on a computer system that can do anything he/she wants and controls what the regular users can do. Muhahahahaha!

And while I'm linking to webcomics, Beware the Nougat Mafia!. It makes a lot of sense if you think about it.

January 6, 2003

My first day of classes for Spring 2003 is now over. It was typical first day stuff, where they just go over the syllabus and tell us how much wer'e going to suffer during the semester. Actually most of my classes wont' be too awfully bad. Comp Org looks to be pretty easy, Circuits won't be that bad, and while Digital Design will still be a lot of work, the teacher this semester is making the lab reports easier and shorter. As for the bad news, I have to buy a $150 development board for digital design, and everyone says not to take my data structures teacher as he's the hardest one you could possibly have. Instead of one assignment every two weeks, it's one every week. And his tests are supposedly a lot harder too. But I can't put it off for another semester since it's a prerequisite for so many other courses, so I"m just going to have grin and bear it. Fun fun fun.

It's finally legal for me to watch DVD's in Linux! Or well at least in Norway. Norweigen courts ruled that Jon Johansen didn't break any laws when he created DeCSS, which broke the encryption scheme on DVD's so a person can view them however they please. The Motion Picture Association of America was suing Johansen because they felt it contributed to piracy, even though the encryption does absolutly nothing to prevent copying. It only restricts playback, meaning I can't view my legally bought DVD on a non-MPAA approved player. But the judge in Norway reliezed that source code is free speech and that consumers should have the right to view the things they bought, and ruled in favor of Johansen. Unfortunatly thanks to the DMCA, it's still quite illegal in America to have intellectual freedom when it comes to computer code. But at least Norway is a start.

The speed of gravity has finally been confirmed. Gravity isn't instantanous like most people think, but it actually propgates at the speed of light. So as the article points out, if the sun disappeared, the Earth would still revolve for another 8 minutes before going off in a straight line. It's sorta cool to know such neat discoveries are still taking place today.

A new Gameboy Advanced is coming out in March, with backlit screen and flip-up LCD. I may pick this up, as I just have a Gameboy Color and there's a bunch of cool Advanced games.

January 13, 2003

Yep, back in college.

Can't say I have much to write about, at least at the moment. But people want an update so I shall deliver! I went swing dancing Friday night, went to an awesome basketball game Saturday (after waiting in line almost 5 hours, but it was worth it!), and saw My Big Fat Greek Wedding Sunday night. So all in all a very good weekend.

I'm hungry.

Girls are cool.

And finally some random Calvin and Hobbes quotes

January 14, 2003

One thing I forgot to mention was that I got in two new games from Ebay the other day: Rez and Dance Dance Revolution: Disney Mix. These were my first ever purchases from Ebay, maily because since they're discontinued and never sold well, it's the only place to find them. Anyways, Rez is incredibly awesome, and definitly a very unique gameplay experiance. And Disney Mix is really cool too, as it not only remixes old Disney songs, but has some Para Para Paradise and regular DDR songs thrown in there too. Plus has an original versus mode that isnt' on any other version of DDR out there.

What else would you expect to find at Purple.com?

As usual, The Onion is not only hillarious, but also has a great way of making a point. While North Korea is publicly developing weapons and blatently ignoring US mandates, Bush just wants to blow up Iraq cause he knows he can win. Gotta love The Onion.

January 17, 2003

I completely forgot to mention that my own personal hero, the girl who said she would eat pizza every day for a year did in fact eat pizza every day for a year. And now she's going for year two! Now how hardcore is that? I just tend to eat pizza in spurts, like having it for 6 meals in a row. That's always fun. Anyways she's keeping the log of year two on livejournal's thingy so you can keep up with her on that now. So a huge congrats to a pizza loving girl!

I suppose it's a good sign that you picked the right major when you actually have fun doing your homework. Designing a 4 bit ripple-carry adder in VHDL? Bring it on!

I am such a nerd.

And I am off to Jacksonville this the weekend, to participate in the Orange Park DDR tournament. Should hopefully have a pretty big turn-out from around the state, and there are a bunch of UF players going. And while I'm not near good enough to have a chance of winning, there are several on our team who could definitly place. And with first place getting about $100, that isn't bad at all :) And if I'm lucky, I'll also get to play the newest mix, DDR Extreme while I'm in the area. Good times, good times.

January 19, 2003

Well the tournament was a blast! About 12 of us went, and one of our guys placed 3rd in both tech and in freestyle. Friday night I got to play DDR Extreme, which is really really awesome. Unfortunatly it was also incredibly crowded around the machine, so in the 3 and a half hours we were there, I only got to play it twice. It was fun none-the-less though, and there was a 5th mix right next to it that was a lot less crowded. We stayed in the apartment of the guy who ran it (7 people on tile flooring in a small apartment living room, fun stuff), got 3 hours of sleep thanks to playing Beatmania late into the night, and then got up the next day for the tournament. That then took 11 hours to run both the tech and freestyle, so it was a long long day at the mall. I think around 40 people enterd the tech, and about 16 or so entered the freestyle, so it was a pretty good turn-out. Got large crowds too, especially for the start of the freestyle. Having 80+ people looking at you play is an interesting experiance. They were climbing on arcade machines and standing on the skeeball ramp trying to get a glimpse, looked like a madhouse.

As for how I did in the tournament, I qualified for tech which was all I was aiming for. As good as my friends think I am, I'm really not good at all compared to the kind of people competeting in tournaments. I just barely pass 9-foot songs, these guys can full combo them. And as for freestyle, I don't know how I did, but it was fun none-the-less. I did Tribal Dance on Basic Shuffle, and hopefully the video will be online at some point.

Oh, and middle-school aged kids are the most annoying things on the planet. There were several watching the tournament, and of course the mall is just a haven for teenyboppers (which is why I hate going to malls), so I was reminded constantly of why I hate middle school with a passion. If only they could see how stupid they act.... if only....

And finally an article on why FM radio stinks. XM radio sounds really cool, but having to spend $150 on a reciever is a bit pricy. Next time I need a stereo though I'd definitly get one with it in there, as most commercial radio is awful. Morning shows are the worst. I don't want to hear a DJ blather on about crap, I want to hear music!

January 24, 2003

For some really werid reason I've not been procrastinating stuff off. I've been doing my projects and labs when they're assigned, and getting them done like a week a head of time. I don't know what's come over me, I just hope it'll last. But of course it won't. I'll just enjoy my stress free living while I can :)

It's also REALLY cold outside. We had a big mass of artic air move through, and so right now is the coldest it's ever been while I've been in Florida. Walking a mile and a half to class in 9 degree windchill weather is not fun. Now if only it would snow.....

Extreme Ironing! Now how cool is this? I'm almost tempted to try it. I wonder if anyone's ever ironed while playing DDR.

This weekend should be busy, with not only homework, but the first home gymnastics meet tonight, the SHO Swing dance Saturday night, and then of course the Super Bowl on Sunday. And being from Tampa, I've gotta go for the Bucs of course! Which speaking of them, here's some interesting history that isn't well known.

January 31, 2003

I hath returned!

Bucs Win! As a Tampa resident (technically) it's pretty cool that they won. Apparently Tampa's going crazy, as they well should be, and I almost wish I was there to take part in it. I still wish the Cowboys had gotten to the Super Bowl of course, but I'm happy the Bucs won too.

Gymnastics last Friday night was really cool, they have some really good routines this year on floor. And apparently we're ranked #1 in the nation on bars, which is really cool. And while I'm talking about UF sports, our men's basketball team is awesome this year! #4 in the nation and still climbing! Hopefully it'll be an exciting post-season in the March, which reminds me that I need to start making my bracket.

Swing dancing on Saturday night was great, and it was probably the most fun I had ever had swinging (that sounds so bad doesn't it?). Can't really say why, but I just had a blast. It might have been that it was exactly one year ago that I first started, so it was like an anniversary of sorts :) And it's so much more fun that that bump'n'grind crap that people do now in clubs. I'm seriously thinking about starting to swing to rap next time I go to a club with someone that knows how to swing. I think that'd be pretty cool, as they did play Pink's "Let's Get This Party Started", and needless to say that was an interesting song to swing to.

The MPAA is at it again, once more infringing on fair use rights by b locking the sale of filtering DVD players. How dare the consumer view the DVD they bought the way that they want to! The idea of a player that automagically filters out excessive sex/violence/language is a great one, as too many times otherwise great movies have mature content that doesn't really add to the plot at all, and could have easily been filtered out with no loss to the story or characters. But of course the movie corporations don't like anything that takes control away from them (ie the whole DeCSS fiasco and why I can't view DVD's on Linux legally) and are suing to have this player blocked. Will they ever learn?

And finally some words of wisdom:
There are few things better in this life than dancing closely with a beautiful woman.

December 2002 -- 2003 -- February 2003