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Monday, November 15, 2010

US School Tells American boy to take down his flag UPDATE

The story I covered several days ago gained massive national attention today.

The School finally changed their decisions that was made on veterans week when they told Cody to take down his flag from his bike when he is on campus due to some students complaining about it. The School officials reason was that they didn't want any racial tension between the students.

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When he rode from his home to school on Monday, he was followed by a parade of people on motorcycles. The group said the Pledge of Allegiance upon arriving at school.

"It means a lot to me," a tearful Alicea said after arriving at school.

You can view the entire story here along with a clip of the event:

Sunday, November 14, 2010

US Postal Service Obselete

The net loss after the end of the previous years has almost increased exponentially. Last year the US Postal Service suffered a $3.8 billion net loss, last month it was up to $8.5 billion at the end of their fiscal year in September.

The Postal Service puts the blame on the bad economy and the continuing growth of email.

Chief Financial Officer Joe Corbett said the losses were worsening despite cuts that generated cost savings of $9 billion over the past two years. Those savings came primarily from the elimination of 105,000 full-time positions -- "more than any other organization, anywhere," Corbett said.

The volume of mail each person receives continues to drop as more communications go electronic. The Postal Service delivered 170.6 billion pieces in its 2010 fiscal year, compared to 176.7 billion pieces the prior year.

"We will continue our relentless efforts to innovate and improve efficiency," Corbett said. "However, the need for changes to legislation, regulations and labor contracts has never been more obvious."

I believe they need to downsize this agency, along with many other government agencies. The US Postal Service is designed for a good-sized amount of people dependent on physical mail, but nowadays it's quite the opposite, even my old grandfather uses e-mail and billpay, and hardly has to send a letter except for holidays, where I too still send holiday cards.

As far as everything else goes, they need to downsize, cut workers, cut delivery days, cut worker benefits...etc.

Friday, November 12, 2010

US School tells American boy to take down the American Flag

Watch the featured video:

Supposedly there is this 13-year-old American school kid that was recently told by school officials to take down his flag off of his bike here in the US.

Now, Cody has been riding his bike to school for months with the flag attached to his bike, but only on Veterans day he was told to remove it. It appears that some fellow students have been making complaints about his American flag (WTF REALLY?) and therefore it was no longer allowed in school property.

Cody explains that he wants to honor not only his grandfather, Robert a US Army Veteran, but all veterans as explains that in this great country we should have the freedom to acknowledge it therefore he has the right wave his flag where ever he wants to.

Should Middle Schools totally strip away their students' Amendment rights, ESPECIALLY IF THEY ARE F&*(^ING PROMOTING THE US IN THE FIRST PLACE??? The kids were complaining about the really? you live in the country, if it really gives you a problem then suck that SH*T up and US CITIZENS shouldn't have to remove US flags to accommodate to your emotions.

Nowadays, I see kids as caring less about their country and what it stands for. Then you have this one kid that actually gives a damn and shows his pride, yet his own American School thinks otherwise.

What does that say about how the school officials feel about their own country?
What kind of example does that set up for the students for that school?
Do we really want those people head of our children's education system?

Oh and here are their emails:
Aaron Delworth - Principal -
Elise Domico - Guidance Counselor -
Kathy Wade - Principal's Secretary -
Jeannie Herrington - Receptionist -
Melissa Oei - Campus Supervisor -

Thursday, November 11, 2010


The Mafia games are probably one of the most entertaining single-player games out there in my opinion. They tend to keep me on my toes, not knowing what is going to happen next. I remember in the first game, the cars and the driving experience was the most memorable. It has a totally unique driving simulation set apart from any other game such as the Grand Theft Auto series. Perhaps it's because of the huge mass + weak horse power from the cars makes this happen; but 2K GAMES has the physics right.

Mafia II took me by surprise. You start off in Italy, fighting Mussolini's army which I did not expect at all, I thought I was going to jump right into the Italian-Mafia scene in the streets of Empire Island. It starts off slow, doing petty little thefts across town, but then it really starts to pick up when you start stealing from banks and mowing down cops in the effort to make an escape.

The look and feel of this game is perfect. The graphics are nicely done and the game-play is smooth as butter. Some scenes and buildings are reused from the 1st Mafia, but I don't mind that at all...a bit of nostalgia if you ask me.

Some of the improvements I enjoyed compared to the previous Mafia, is they finally have a waypoint-mapping system, where you won't get lost in the city, and you can finally toggle taking cover behind obstacles which really come in handy in those sticky situations.


Overall I recommend this game to anybody that what's a realistic-feel of what it is to be apart of the Mafia during the late 40s-50s.

Here's some game-play action of what it means to be a WW2 veteran and a mafia member.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Physics: Mechanics and Heat Midterm

Most of you have probably been wondering how come I haven't been updating you guys with daily posts. It's because I was shooting for a 110% on my Physics midterm.

The midterm covered:
  • Newton's Gravitational Force
  • Electric Force
  • Conservation of Momentum
  • Spring Stiffness
  • Interatomic Bond Stiffness
  • Young's Modulus
  • Kinetic Friction
  • Spring-Mass Systems
The previous exam I only received 101%. He gives two extra credit problems, so I got partial credit on one, answered one correctly and missed one question the the actual test.

Physics is so freaking awesome...and besides I'M BACK TO BLOGGING!

Monday, November 8, 2010


Probably one of the best things that came out of the Grunge era of the 90s is Post-Grunge alternative rock. Dave Grohl was one bitchin' drummer when Nirvana was alive, but afterwards his solo works circulated around in the music industry.

One thing lead to another Dave Grohl established his alternative rock band "Foo Fighters" which isn't a bad band at all. The Dave Grohl hit it off big time, touring ever since.

In my opinion Dave Grohl is probably one of the most successful and talented alternative rock musicians out there. He is a prime example of someone who will not encounter chapter 7 or chapter 11 bankruptcy in his lifetime.

But we can't forget Kurt..RIP

Sunday, November 7, 2010

A Must Watch - "Generation Zero"


So what happens when you have 40 years of liberal policies in a nation of Capitalism? FISCAL dumb can they be to put the entire bailout budget into the hands of the banks that FAILED? Capitalism - the freedom to become rich and successful with the constant possibility of becoming bankrupt.

The middle class people of the US are screwed!

Take a look at this film and see for yourself.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Gone Fishing

Hey guys, I'll be on wayyyy later today, the friends and I are renting a little skiff boat and going fishing. Should be friend, I'll keep you guys updated!

Keep it real, yo.

Friday, November 5, 2010

New Grunge

 I first heard these guys over the radio one evening...and at first I was like WHOA WAIT A MINUTE...they don't make music this cool anymore as it was the hour of playing new music. I instantly rushed home and hopped on the radio station's website to see who was that band that was playing. It turns out it was Violent Soho - some new alternative rock band, apparently with a bit of grunge revolving around their style.

Supposedly they started in '04, so I guess they aren't that new at all, just their hit single "Jesus Stole My Girlfriend" became fairly popular.

They rock those flannels, ripped jeans and dingy that's pretty cool.

Thursday, November 4, 2010


I would have to say, one of my most favorite genres of music has to be grunge.

GRUNGE MUSIC -Has a dirty guitar sound, strong riffs, and heavy drumming -Guitars usually tuned to a lower key -Commonly used guitar distortion and feedback -Draws heavily on Punk -Lyrics are typically angst-filled, angry, frustrated, sad, fearsome, and depressed

I absolutely love everything about it, especially the rebelliousness from mainstream society and not giving a F&*(^ about how you look or anybody else. Most people mistaken grunge for "emo" which gets my blood boiling.

I pretty much grew up with grunge music and fashion in the early 90s, but it hit mainstream as Nirvana went big with their NeverMind album. It faded out and most people don't even recall what grunge is.

I don't think grudge can compare to punk, since punk can never die. Grunge has died, but I still listen to the music and dress it.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

10 Year Old Gave Birth

Can you remember when you were 10 years old? I do. I was into skateboarding and doing kid stuff. Never in my right state of mind was I thinking about having intercourse with other 10-year old girls let alone at 9 years old (can't forget it takes 9 months to develop a baby).

So there's this 10 year old girl in Spain that recently gave birth to a baby, according to a Spain official.

Micaela Navarro, the Andalusia region's social affairs minister, says authorities are evaluating whether to let the mother and her family retain custody of the baby, born last week in the city of Jerez de la Frontera.

Navarro told reporters that the father of the baby is also a minor. Her department declined to give further details, such as the sex or health of the baby.

Spanish newspapers said the mother is of Romanian origin. The daily Diario de Jerez quoted medical staffers who treated the girl as saying they were told by her mother that giving birth at such a young age is common in their country. -according to the Associated Press

They certainly can get into chapter 7 or chapter 11 bankruptcy.

I don't know much about Romanian culture but I believe it's just completely wrong to letting you kids have children at that age! I can't even conceptualize any need for that to happen besides the carelessness of the parents and the 10 year old kids.

Are you smarter than a 5th grader?

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

LimeWire Shutdown for Good?

After all the lawsuits LimeWire encountered over the years, they have finally lost late last month by the RIAA.

(The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) is a trust that represents the recording industry distributors in the United States. Its members consist of record labels and distributors, which the RIAA say "create, manufacture and/or distribute approximately 85% of all legitimate sound recordings produced and sold in the United States".)

Will this stop illegal file sharing all together? Hell no.

This lawsuit will obviously hurt LimeWire in continuing with their service, especially the paying customers of LimeWire Pro.

RIAA has been fighting all kinds of lawsuits against piracy, and has been successful, but the time it took them to finally get the servers shut down, various new services arise to piraters. P2P networks and torrent sites are still alive and online of course and the individually targeting each individual site will never work.

Lately I've been able to still connect to the LimeWire ultrapeers using other P2P software such as "Cabos" which is completely free to download. I think they just put a hold on their website that is distributing their LimeWire software.

LimeWire is going to suffer chapter 7 and chapter 11 Bankruptcy.

Piracy can never be stopped.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Epic Haunted House

There is probably the best haunted maze I have ever been to that is privately owned and is located right down my block.

Here's a video of KTLA covering the location about two years has improved a lot since then.

I'm not sure if all of you are familiar with the So Cal area of the US, but there are amusement parks that transform into a horror park filled with all kinds of mazes and monsters that walk around and scare the crap out of you.

The one down the block beats all that, hands down. It incorporates so many effects and perspectives than any other "professional" maze I have seen. I was really impressed with the fact that you choose three directions when you hit the middle of the maze, leading you in two different mazes, the third one is a trick door that shoots fire at you.

The actors systematically scare you...I've seen one couple where they hid the husband away from his wife and left his wife all alone as the lights came back scary is that for the chick??? It's amazing they put so much effort into it.

Probably the one where the got me is where they had the lights turn on and off so that it's pitch black for approximately 5 seconds...and then a monster appeared in front of my face... AHH

The part I "enjoyed" most is they had a TV playing THE RING video of Samara coming out of the well, and they actually had an actor crawl out of the "TV" (it was actually a projector and a screen) but the effect isn't over yet! They had two actors play Samara...they had one actor come out the tv and dissappear somewhere and they had another Samara come out from another direction, something totally I did not expect and brought back teenage memories of first watching the movie.

I saw one fellow piss his lie

Hands down, the best haunted maze in So Cal.

Here's their myspace page:

Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Freedom of Halloween

So who enjoys the Halloween holiday?

Do you use this holiday as an excuse to partaaayyy? or to eat a huge amount of candy?

I just want to comment on today's generation of kids and how it is different from them.

Oct. 31 remains one of the calendar’s most controversial days, and plenty of schools forbid kids from marking it during school time.

Halloween has its roots in Samhaim, an ancient Celtic festival, and later in the Catholic Hallowmas period of All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day, and the Roman festival of Feralia.

But for most of the rest of us, Halloween is a secular holiday for dressing up, having fun and eating unreasonable amounts of candy.

That doesn’t stop many schools from refusing to allow Halloween fun.

Some schools say they don’t have time for Halloween frivolity. Others worry that Halloween has religious overtones and families that see negative religious images and messages in Halloween might get offended.

And then there are the schools that get semi-legal and threatening before allowing a kid dressed up as a ghost to walk through the doors: They set down a ton of rules and require parents and students to sign costume contracts.

Here’s a contract that Jeannette Jr. High School in Sterling Heights, Michigan, required its parents and students to sign :

Parent Agreement Form 2010

1. All students wearing costumes to school MUST read and understand the costume guidelines. In addition, they MUST sign the registration form provided by their FIRST HOUR teacher. They must also have this form signed by their parent and submitted to their first hour teacher by the Wednesday, October 27th deadline. If form is not submitted in a timely manner, then student is NOT allowed to dress up.

2. All costume preparations are to be completed at home. (No dressing or applying of make-up or colored hairspray once students arrive at school).

3. No masks are to be worn during the school day.


5. Costumes that promote the use of illegal substances or activities or are derogatory or disrespectful are NOT allowed.

6. Teachers may take away any accessory that is used improperly or is considered inappropriate for school.

7. School rules regarding the dress code must be followed.

8. Students who have questions about the acceptability of their costume should check with their FIRST HOUR teacher by Wednesday, October 27th.

9. Students wearing inappropriate costumes will be sent to the office to call home for a change of clothes, and/or may result in one or both of the following disciplinary consequences: Saturday school, Suspension.

10. Students who do not submit parent agreement form by the Wednesday, Oct. 27th deadline and still choose to wear a costume will also face disciplinary action as deemed appropriate by administration.

11. Costumes MUST be worn all day.

I have read and discussed with my child the Jeannette Jr. High School Halloween costume rules/guidelines. I understand that if my child violates any of the above rules, he/she will have earned Saturday school and/or suspension as a consequence. I also understand that this form must be signed and returned to my child’s 1st hour teacher, on or before Wednesday, October 27th.
(print student first and last name)
(student signature)
(print parent first and last name)
(parent signature)
-credit to Valerie Strauss of the washington post-

perhaps we are losing it? Do we really have to be this conservative ALL the time. I say kids these days should man-up and wear shit that goes against this ridiculous set of "rules". It's HALLOWEEN for shit's sake.

What was Halloween like when you were a kid?

Friday, October 29, 2010

Life is Good...unless you have chapter 7 or chapter 11 bankruptcy

This weather has just been horrible here in Southern California. I've had the worst cold/allergies these past days. I've been popping so many vitamin C pills it's not even funny and taking so much airborne. All of it has worked and now I'm feeling much better, just in time for Friday too!

This morning I went on an amazing 30 mile bike ride around my town, and it was no walk on the beach. I pushed it hard, since I haven't trained in two weeks because of the rain. (I'm a competitive cyclist)

I came across another cyclist on the path and I made an aggressive attack on him (drafting then flying by him) and that sent him after me in a chase. We kept taking turns drafting each other and trying to pull ahead for 5-10 miles...until he pulled over to answer his phone (perhaps it was a phony phone call?) I had my headphones on so I wouldn't hear anything in the first place...but that got me motivated again...I'm extremely competitive and "winning" that little race just made my day.

It appears my body hasn't decreased much in muscle efficiency and I'll be back to training starting tomorrow.

The human body is a work of art; I love life right now.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

A Bankrupt One-Way Ticket to Mars

The mission is to boldly go where no man has gone before – on a flight to Mars.
The snag is that you’d never come back.

The U.S. space agency Nasa is actively investigating the possibility of humans colonising other worlds such as the Red Planet in an ambitious project named the Hundred Years Starship.

The settlers would be sent supplies from Earth, but would go on the understanding that it would be too costly to make the return trip.

NASA Ames Director Pete Worden revealed that one of NASA’s main research centres, Ames Research Centre, has received £1million funding to start work on the project.

The research team has also received an additional $100,000 from Nasa.

‘You heard it here,” Worden said at ‘Long Conversation,’ an event in San Francisco. ‘We also hope to inveigle some billionaires to form a Hundred Year Starship fund.’

He added: ‘The human space program is now really aimed at settling other worlds. Twenty years ago you had to whisper that in dark bars and get fired.’

Worden said he has discussed the potential price tag for one-way trips to Mars with Google co-founder Larry Page, telling him such a mission could be done for $10 billion.

He said said: ‘His response was, “Can you get it down to $1 [billion] or $2billion?” So now we're starting to get a little argument over the price.’

Depending on the position of Mars in its orbit around the sun, its distance from Earth varies between 34million and 250million miles.

The most recent unmanned mission there was Nasa’s Phoenix lander, which launched in August 2007 and landed on the planet’s north polar cap in May the following year.

Experts say a nuclear-fueled rocket could shorten the journey to about four months.

Of all the planets in the solar system, Mars is the most likely to have substantial quantities of water, making it the best bet for sustaining life. But it is a forbidding place to set up home.

Temperatures plummet way below freezing in some parts. The thin atmosphere would be a problem as it is mostly carbon dioxide, so oxygen supplies are a must.

Worden also suggested that new technologies such as synthetic biology and alterations to the human genome could also be explored ahead of the mission.

And he said that he believed the mission should visit Mars’ moons first, where scientists can do extensive telerobotics exploration of the planet. He claims that humans could be on Mars' moons by 2030.

News of the Hundred Years Starship comes as new research found that a one-way human mission to Mars is technologically feasible and would be a cheaper option than bringing astronauts back.

Writing in the Journal of Cosmology, scientists Dirk Schulze-Makuch and Paul Davies, say that the envision sending four volunteer astronauts on the first mission to permanently colonise Mars.

They write: ‘A one-way human mission to Mars would not be a fixed duration project as in the Apollo program, but the first step in establishing a permanent human presence on the planet.’

The astronauts would be sent supplies from Earth on a regular basis but they would be expected to become self-sufficient on the red planet’s surface as soon as possible.

They say: There are many reasons why a human colony on Mars is a desirable goal, scientifically and politically. The strategy of one-way missions brings this goal within technological and financial feasibility.

‘Nevertheless, to attain it would require not only major international cooperation, but a return to the exploration spirit and risk-taking ethos of the great period of Earth exploration, from Columbus to Amundsen, but which has nowadays being replaced with a culture of safety and political correctness.’

They admit that the mission would come with ‘ethical considerations’ with the general public feeling that the Martian pioneers had been abandoned to their fate or sacrificed.

But they argue that these first inhabitants of Mars would be going in much the same spirit as the first white settlers of North America – travelling to a distant land, knowing that they will never return home.

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Chapter 7 or Chapter 11 Bankruptcy
They say: ‘Explorers such as Columbus, Frobisher, Scott and Amundsen, while not embarking on their voyages with the intention of staying at their destination, nevertheless took huge personal risks to explore new lands, in the knowledge that there was a significant likelihood that they would perish in the attempt.’

By Niall Firth of

I think it's  great that NASA is finally doing some exploration after all these years. I think we need to do as much as we can to explore the universe around us before the human species cease to exist. So uhh who's willing to die or struggle to survive for the rest of their life in the name of science? Any takers?

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Google! You so crazy.


Google appears close to buying the trophy 111 Eighth Ave. building, one of the largest buildings in Manhattan, The Post has learned.

The price is rumored to be tantalizingly close to $2 billion.

The 18-story Chelsea giant carries 2.9 million square feet of space and covers an entire city block -- between Eighth and Ninth avenues from 15th and 16th streets.

At that price, the sale works out to around $690 per square foot, very respectable for 2010 but far less than the $1,500 a square foot that was commonplace in the heady days of 2007.

Google has made no secret of its growth plans for the Big Apple and already rents over 550,000 square feet in the building -- considered the premier tech, entertainment, fashion, and media center in the city with tenants ranging from Nike to WebMD.

Sellers Taconic Partners, Jamestown and the New York State Common Retirement Fund had hoped to recapitalize the building. As The Post previously reported, the group has been marketing it through investment adviser Douglas Harmon of Eastdil Secured.

It is not yet clear if the current owners are bailing out or staying in with a small piece of the equity. Google declined to comment in an e-mail, while none of the other parties returned calls or e-mails.

Sources said Google officials are already searching the city's top real-estate law firms for someone to represent them in the massive purchase.

The deal could still change or fall apart. It could not be determined if a contract has been signed or if there is just a handshake.

As a former Port Authority of New York and New Jersey industrial property, 111 Eighth Ave. has numerous back-up generators, lots of electrical power, antennas, fiber optics and high-tech facilities available to tenants.

The owners modernized the building with 10-foot tall windows and a modern lobby with glowing glass disks, along with 24/7 security and a concierge. It is 98.7 percent leased and parking is available in the building, according to CoStar, a real-estate information firm.

Several sources said Google was only one of many interested bidders, including local families, real-estate investment trusts, overseas entities from Beijing, Singapore, Chile, Argentina and Israel, along with sovereign wealth funds from the Middle East and Asia.

"The world has been waiting for the right type of asset," said one source on the level of interest that was generated.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The Idea of a Universe

My take on the universe around us is that it is constantly expanding and then imploding on itself infinitely number of times. I also perceive the universe as being infinitely large and not finite as most people think it is and is totally beyond our observation. How can we even begin to accurately measure it if we are confined within it?

How many Universes are there?
Perhaps there are an infinitely number of universes and they are parallel. There was a Simpson's intro that best describes this...I'm short on time so I'll leave it as this.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Do we have free will?

I've been busy this whole weekend.
So I have this new hobby, fishing. I made an earlier post about my friend bringing me pier fishing and now I just can't get enough of it. When I was younger my parents brought me along when they fished, and I never liked it then. I came to the conclusion to never bring your kids fishing if they don't want to, they will grow up feeling like they hate fishing but in reality they haven't really indulged in it. If it wasn't for my friend and my spontaneous self, I would have still hated fishing.

So that's a little explanation of my absence over the weekend.

Now for my real post regards the question of whether us humans have free will in what we call this "universe."

I feel like I'm living a great life on a daily basis, not too routine-like more spontaneous than others, but do I and everyone else have free will? What is free will in the first place? It is the mere ability to decide our own fate, but do we have the power to do that? I don't think so. I think our fate is predetermined and easily predictable, not by us but by some higher-being(s).

I believe there is an illusion of free will, brought upon by the choices available to us. What goes through our mind when we make a choice? Is it the things our mother told us when we were just a lad? Or is it the consequences that may come about if we go through with it. We cannot do whatever we want can we? We have to conform to society's belief of "normal" and moral values.

To sum this up in a creative way there is a short story involving the idea of free will:
It's called "String Theory" as seen on by "Tesla"

Have you ever had an experience that suggested someone else was in your house, and just thought “I don’t wanna know” and left it? Sometimes, fear of the unknown just seems like the preferable option than facing a real, concrete danger. Normally it’s nothing, though. One time, the beeper function of my wireless housephone went off, when I was the only one home. It could only be called from the living room. Another time, I swear someone took some change from my desk. They’re all probably just slightly disconcerting tricks of the memory.
But what would you do when something truly suggestive happens? Would you run, or just ignore it, like I did?
Last Monday was a normal day. I got up, brushed my teeth, changed into school clothes… All little parts of my morning ritual. It seemed like it would be another totally un-noteworthy day, until I saw the strings.
There were three or four thick twine strings in my room. They criss-crossed between the walls around my bed, one attached to the door. No way would I have missed them before; I should have tripped over them. They were tied to pins in the walls, which had also not existed before ten seconds ago.
Nobody could have been in my room while I was in it, let alone set this up. It was early, and my brain wasn’t processing correctly. I simply discredited the sight, untied the strings and left for school, leaving them balled up on my desk.
It didn’t get any better later. Outside my house there were hundreds of them, tied between houses, around cars, across streets… This had to be some super elaborate prank. One of those hidden camera shows, or a comedy improv blog. They had gotten everyone else to play along too; passer-bys were tangled in them, tying them to objects they were walking towards and away from, as if they had been and were continuing to follow the course laid out for them.
I nervously continued my journey to school. On the bus, every except me was tied to the door. At school, groups of friends were tied to each other; teachers were tied to their desks and boards. Oddly enough, at this point all I could wonder was why I had been left out.
When my friend Lucy sat beside me in first period, she simply plonked her bag down on my lap and rested her chin in her hand, looking right past me to the window outside.
“Hey Lucy.”
No response.
“Come on, I didn’t expect you to be in on this too. “
She sighed and started taking books from her bag. All the books were tied to her hands. I grinned, and yanked one of the strings off a book. She didn’t seem to notice, instead simply disregarding the book completely, letting it drop to the floor without a moment’s hesitation.
“Um.” I leaned down, picking up her book and placing it back on her desk. She took no notice.
“Well, if that’s how we’re gonna play it.” I smiled, trying to look playful, but really just trying to hide my nervousness. I bundled all the strings attached to her together with one hand, then pulled them all free.
She blinked, turning to stare at me.
“Holy crap, Martin. You’re like a ninja or something.”
“I’ve been sitting here for maybe ten minutes.” I smiled again, relieved my friend had finally “noticed” me.
“Where did all these strings come from??” She gasped, seemingly noticing for the first time.
“I assumed you were all fucking with me…”
She stood up, backing into a corner. No one else in the class noticed.
“They weren’t here just a minute ago! Do you see them too??” Her tone made it clear she was genuinely scared.
“No. Didn’t you-. “ I was interrupted by my teacher slamming the door behind her. Everyone except me and Lucy murmured a good morning, and still, no one seemed to pay either of us any notice.
“People have been ignoring me all day.” I said to Lucy, before turning to our teacher. “Hey! Dumb bitch! You can’t teach for shit!”
No reaction.
“I’m getting away from all this shit.” Lucy pulled a few strings aside and left the class. I followed, and surprise-surprise, no one else noticed.
We wandered the corridors, leaving and entering classes as we saw fit. Whenever we untied a chair or book from someone else, it was like it suddenly didn’t matter to them. It didn’t exist.
I showed her the street outside; there were more strings than when I came in this morning. Twice as many. We carefully picked our way through the tangle, making our way to a nearby coffee shop. Not particularly grand, I know. But what would you do in our situation? As I said, fear of the unknown sometimes seems like the safer option. On a few occasions, I suggested we untie a few more people. Lucy was opposed to it, remembering how terrified she’d been.
In the coffee shop, we grabbed a couple of sandwiches and drinks from the fridge. We found a table, untied all strings attached to the chairs, and sat down. We both ate in silence, both of us too scared, both of us distracting ourselves by watching the strangers in the shop, oblivious to the strings.
After twenty minutes, Lucy spoke up. “Now she’s gonna take that sandwich.” She said, pointing at a woman across the shop. Sure enough, she walked to the fridge and took the plastic wrapped sandwich she was tied to. “She pays for it and leaves.” She did so, according to the prophecies of the strings. “That guy doesn’t intend to pay.” I watched as a man took his coffee and ran out of the store, the two servers just looking too exasperated to go after him.
“This is horrible.” She whimpered. “Let’s go. Please.”
Outside wasn’t much better. Everyone just followed the strings’ instructions, going about their daily lives. Lucy announced she was going home to sleep this off, and I agreed to walk her home. She only lived ten minutes away.
Away from the busier part of town there were fewer strings. It was nicer; we could pretend it wasn’t happening.
When we turned onto Lucy’s street, she stopped, her mouth falling open.
“What now?” I broke the silence, my voice sounding surprisingly small.
”Look.” She pointed outside one of her neighbours houses.
I saw it clearly, and I’ll take my memory of that moment ‘til the day I die. A little dark imp, maybe three feet tall, walking along with its knuckles on the ground, almost like a monkey. It had two bulbous yellow eyes taking up about half its face, and no mouth or any other facial features. It was holding a hammer and a ball of twine, which it was letting out behind it.
It walked quickly and quietly from the front door of the house to the mailbox. It stopped, hammered a nail into the side of the box, and tied it’s string around it. It turned to face us, and stopped when it spotted us.
My bottom fell out even further than it had already been, but it just stared with a look of surprise and curiosity. You could almost say it was the more frightened one. Suddenly, it beckoned to us with its tiny hand.
I looked at Lucy, she hadn’t moved. I looked back at the imp, which stared at me.
I halved the distance between us, and then halved it again. This wasn’t fear of the unknown anymore; it was fear of this little guy. Didn’t seem like anything to be scared of. When I was a meter away from it, it extended its hand.
“Uh. Hi.” I shook it. It nodded in approval, blinking its massive yellow eyes up at me.
“So you’re the ones in charge of the strings?” It nodded eagerly. I called Lucy over, but she stayed where she was.
“There are more of you?” Another nod. I wanted to ask it so many questions, about what it was and where it came from, but it seemed for now I was stuck with only yes or no questions.
“Do we even have free will?”
It just looked at me, almost sadly. I immediately felt sick to my stomach, and couldn’t bear looking at the little monster anymore. I grabbed Lucy, who had been listening to our exchange, and now sat on the curb with her head in her hands.
“Come on.”
We entered her house, and I made her a cup of tea. When I found her in the living room, she had untied her dog and was curled up with it, crying. I set the tea down and sat beside her.
“I’m so scared.” She whispered after a good ten minutes of sobbing. I didn’t answer. I couldn’t.
“I’m going to sleep” She mumbled suddenly, and was under within the minute. Sleep was starting to sound pretty good all of a sudden, my eyelids suddenly felt like they were being weighed down.
I collapsed to the rug, and the last thing I heard before I fell asleep was the scurrying of several sets of little feet nearby.
I felt much better the next day, as if the whole affair had been a dream. I’d probably have believed that if I hadn’t been awoken by Lucy’s mother that morning, wondering what I was doing sleeping over without permission or something.
Over breakfast, Lucy asked me why I looked so pale and nervous. I turned to her and smiled, mumbling something to her about feeling sick.
But the truth was, I was scared because I couldn’t see any strings, and was wondering whether my actions were truly my own.

Some may disagree, but that's totally okay and acceptable. What do YOU think.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Salad Fingers Nettles Episode

Here's my theory behind the Salad Fingers:
It's supposed to be set in the the future after a nuclear war when most people have died and he is one of the survivors.

The finger puppets are supposed to be friends he had that died due to the nuclear war. He has obviously gone mad and his skin is all green cause of the radiation and some of the other characters like the armless guy in this episode and the boy in the episode 'cage' are people who have been deformed because of the radiation.

What do you guys think about this crazy cartoon.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

New Cartoon by David Firth

So I recently discovered one of David Firth's latests works: "Drillbit head and the new best friend." Lately he has been doing work for the BBC.

Firth never disappoints and is now being payed to make these cartoons! It's always something you have never seen and experienced before and is best to keep an open mind.

This is episode 1 of 6.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Another Thought-Provoking Cartoon

David Firth ceases to amaze me with his out-of-this-world style.
I have seen nothing like it.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Salad Fingers

Salad Fingers - ever heard of this awesome cartoon?

I would call it a horror and creepy flash cartoon that was created by a British cartoonist, David Firth in 2004. Salad Fingers gained rapid popularity in 2005 and was ranked among the Top 10 pop culture phenomena for that year. It originally appeared on Newgrounds, where I first saw it, but then later uploaded to YouTube.

The cartoon revolves around the eponymous Salad Fingers, a schizophrenic, green thin man who inhabits a desolate world.

It doesn't stop there...the music! Oh boy the it completes the total eeriness of the cartoon.  David Firth actually uses his own music, for example when Salad Fingers gets scared the music that is played is Firth playing the guitar but slowed down and reversed.

The main character is a bald hunchbacked humanoid who speaks with a Northern accent. His long, strangely-shaped fingers are his most notable feature. Salad Fingers is shown deriving pleasure from rubbing various objects, particularly rusty metallic ones such as spoons, taps and a kettle. Salad Fingers appears to suffer from  schizophrenia, and is unable or unwilling to distinguish between living beings and inanimate objects, and is frequently found talking to various inert articles. He often assigns such objects proper names and appears to believe that they can communicate with him directly, sometimes voicing their perceived thoughts himself. He lives alone in a small shack with the number 22 on the door. His talents include playing the flute and speaking French. It is implied that the desolate world Salad Fingers inhabits is the aftermath of the "Great War", a conflict which is referenced several times in the more recent episodes. Interestingly enough, he is quite articulate.

If you haven't already I totally recommend this little flash series! I mean comon it's only 8'cha can't just watch one!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Woman comes back to life after pronounced DEAD!

An Anne Arundel County woman who police reported dead after finding her blue and not breathing in her home was actually alive. Police were called to check on Ruth Shillinglaw Johnson, 89, on Oct. 1.

According to a report, officers found her motionless on her bathroom floor, and one officer noted an odor "similar to a decomposition smell." But officers did not check for a pulse. Instead, they called Johnson's adult son and told him his mother was dead. The man said Johnson planned to donate her body to science.

A State Anatomy Board employee arriving to take the body three hours later heard Johnson take a deep breath and saw her move her arm. Johnson was rushed to a hospital. She was discharged Wednesday. Neighbors said she has been moved to a hospice. -end article

When you come upon someone and you THINK they're dead, wouldn't you check the pulse to rule out all uncertainties? Not these police officers. They made a conclusion based off of an assumption and not only declared she was dead but notified the son that she was dead. This is a very unprofessional move in my opinion.

I think these police officers should be fired. For the sake of the woman, luckily she still survived regardless of the police officer's ignorance. Perhaps she did not survive, and it was because not routinely checking the victim's pulse lead to her dead, would probably change the situation...but who would have known in the first place?

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Space tourism prices tourism possible in next few months

It's unlikely that you've heard of PJ King, despite the fact that he's about to set himself apart from most humans who've ever walked the planet. In as soon as 18 months, King could be launching into space as a paying commercial space tourist.

King, a 41-year-old Irish businessman, is one of hundreds of travelers who've signed up and trained to be among the first paying passengers aboard Virgin Galactic's trips to suborbital space -- 62 miles above the Earth.

"One of the reasons I'm doing this is precisely because I want these things to be ordinary," King said. "Part of the problem with space travel is that it is special."

King believes the $200,000 he and other passengers pay for a seat on a Virgin Galactic spacecraft will help create a new future when "flights like this are happening every week, when lots of people go, and the cost has been massively reduced due to the economics of scale."

Prices are coming down, even before space tourism has started taking off.

Russia charges private travelers $40 million to ride on its Soyuz spacecraft and spend a few days aboard the international space station. For a much shorter journey, Virgin Galactic wants $200,000 for a flight to suborbital space. But Space Adventures advertises suborbital trips for about half that price: $102,000. King says he knows people who've taken out mortgages to buy their spacecraft tickets.

The plunging prices are opening doors to consumers which have been all but closed for half a century to everyone except "right stuff" supermen and superwomen with names like John Glenn, Neil Armstrong and Sally Ride.

"I believe in this," King said. "This is not a just a bunch of rich people going into space for fun."
About 360 paying passengers have signed up to be among Virgin Galactic's first travelers, CEO George Whitesides said. After the initial launches, he expects that number to grow to thousands and tens of thousands.

"That's a fundamental shift," he said. "A whole bunch of our major assumptions about space travel are undergoing a major shift."

This past year has seen important strides toward this shift. Washington licensed Jacksonville, Florida's Cecil Field as the nation's eighth non-government spaceport in January. New Mexico's Spaceport America, where Virgin Galactic plans to permanently base its space flights, completed a nearly 2-mile spacecraft runway this month.

Virgin Galactic test-flew its spacecraft Sunday.

A firm that arranges private space travel, Space Adventures, announced private partnerships this year with Boeing and Texas-based Armadillo Aerospace, a rocket development firm headed by John Carmack, the programmer-businessman behind the famed "Doom" video games.

Boeing: Come fly to space with us King recalls the exact moment when he decided he wanted to go. When he was a youth in Ireland's countryside, far from city streetlights, the Milky Way laid out a virtual welcome mat for him.

"I remember thinking how strange it was that after man had conquered the moon, we appeared to have given up afterwards," said King, who built and sold his Clockworks International software company during the booming 1990s. "I think a lot of people imagined there would have been more progress in terms of space flight."

Virgin Galactic plans for each traveler to undergo a three-day pre-flight launch preparation program immediately before each mission. But many who've signed up, including King, have undergone centrifuge training to experience in-flight stresses stronger than gravity, known as G-forces.

"At six Gs, talking is extremely difficult," King said. "It feels like you've got a weight on your chest and your head is stuck to the back of the seat."

King refers to himself and his Virgin Galactic colleagues as astronauts, a job title Col. Buzz Aldrin, the second man to walk on the moon, is quite familiar with.

"I don't think these space tourists should be called astronauts," Aldrin said. "That term was created by the U.S. military. My suggestions would be star-traveler or starflyer."

Aldrin says he hopes his high-profile activities like competing on TV's "Dancing with the Stars" and his new iPhone app will spur continued interest in space. "In general, the private companies are more efficient ... but I think the government has its hands full trying to do exploration."

Virgin Galactic owner Sir Richard Branson and a virtual hall of fame of other wealthy business figures have invested much of their vast fortunes in hopes of gaining a toe hold in commercial space. Budget Suites owner Robert Bigelow, PayPal co-founder Elon Musk and's Jeff Bezos are all developing their own space hardware for traveling to -- or living in -- Earth orbit.

Working with NASA, their companies are developing space stations, spaceplanes, rockets and capsules for space travelers. Many of these systems are expected to be operating and deployed within the next five years.
"This is a big deal, and the American people should be excited about it," said Charles Miller, NASA's senior adviser for commercial space. "If you get the Steve Jobs and Bill Gates and Sergey Brins of American entrepreneurs working on space travel for the American people in partnership with the U.S. government, that's a good thing, which is why it was done."

NASA's shift toward the privatization of space has been planned since the Reagan administration, Miller said, and it comes as the 30-year-old shuttle program is set to end next year.

Shuttle layoffs leave some workers adrift.

At the New Mexico spaceport, about 60 miles north of Las Cruces, workers are completing a combination traveler terminal and spacecraft hangar that looks right out of TV's "The Jetsons."

Tourists will gain access to the spaceport by boarding special buses at welcome centers in the nearby towns of Truth or Consequences and Hatch, said Rick Homans, the spaceport's executive director.

Plans call for facilities accommodating about a half-million annual visitors to be finished in 18 to 24 months, including a "second-to-none" restaurant, space exhibits and simulators that replicate G-forces and weightlessness, Homans said. Spaceport officials are considering offering flights for visitors to watch Virgin Galactic spacecraft blast into suborbit from 50,000 feet.

"We want them to be able to talk to inventors, rocket scientists, to see the spaceships and to witness the technology as much as possible," Homans said. Visitors may be able to launch model rockets or walk on terrain replicating the moon or Mars.

Could these developments in space tourism lead to more practical applications, like a successor to the defunct supersonic Concorde aircraft?

Space designers imagine a network of hypersonic spaceplanes that would take off from a runway in New Mexico and land at a Tokyo spaceport 45 minutes later.

Is point-to-point hypersonic travel around the globe possible in the near future?

"We're a long way from that," Miller said. "We could do it in a decade if there was a commitment to doing it, but it is not a priority for anybody I know in the U.S. government."

By Thom Patterson, CNN

Friday, October 15, 2010

College Bans Alcoholic Energy Drink

The ban comes after 16 students having been hospitalized with at least half of dozen involving the drink known by the nicknames “liquid cocaine” and “blackout in a can,” reports CBS 2 HD’s Kathryn Brown.

Ramapo College President Peter Mercer says his administration is worried about the high alcohol drink’s emergence on campuses.

“It’s very dangerous. Students who consume it become intoxicated very quickly, and we know it’s been banned at other colleges so we didn’t wait around for toxicology reports. We just banned it right away,” Mercer says.”It concerns us that this product is on the market because it certainly contributes to it.”

The drink comes in a 23.5 ounce can and is equal to drinking three beers, a can of Red Bull and a shot of espresso. Many of the Four Loko flavors contain 12 percent alcohol by volume, making it easy for those with even the highest level of tolerance to become intoxicated.

“I’ve seen guys—very big, who can have a high tolerance for alcohol, drink one and a half of these and not remember their entire night,” says senior Sara Rahimi.
The drinks are sold in a variety of fruit flavors, packaged inside brightly-colored cans and cost only about $2.50 each.

Junior Noah Luogameno says it’s a drink that will keep you up until the early morning.
“It makes you party all night long,” Luogameno says.

Despite its prevalence on campus, most students support the ban.

“I guess I would say I support the ban because they’ve been a dangerous drink around campus lately,” says senior Rob Talalai.

Senior Ricardo Del Carmen also supports the ban.
“I think that’s the right decision because it’s also a slash energy drink so I’m pretty sure it’s gonna hype up,” Del Carmen says.

The problem isn’t limited to college campuses though. Police say a number of Mahwah high schoolers have also gotten into trouble after drinking the potent mix of energy and alcohol.

Mahwah Police Chief James Batelli says Four Loko has been found both on and off high school campuses.
“We’re finding that the liquor stores are selling a tremendous amount. We spoke with one liquor establishment who gets 10 cases a week and sells out in a couple days and can’t get any more,” says Batelli.

He and other local officials are pushing for the state’s attorney general to investigate whether the fruity-energy-drink is being improperly marketed to underage drinkers.

The attorneys general in New York, Connecticut and California are also investigating the drink.


Thursday, October 14, 2010

Shaytards Family

In regards to the previous post: It was a shock to me that these two people who work for the school and hold reputable positions can't help their own child. There must have been something wrong in that equation. Either he was not right in the head, or the parents were too overwhelming to handle, either of the case it was just wrong; but people are people and I'm not surprised something like this would happen in this world.

So let's move on to something more brighter.

The famous family that is making it big on YouTube, I'm not sure if you guys heard of the Shaytards before. I'll reveal something about myself...I watch YouTube channel everyday since they come out with a new daily VLOG.

They're a pretty large family in my opinion with two sons, and two daughters they just recently had a baby, and each of their names ends in tard i.e. "Shaytard, sontard, babytard, mommytard...etc"

I think they're the most loving family I have ever seen. Watching these videos on a daily basis makes me realize what I truly want in life: A loving and caring family.

Growing up, I was pretty much the only child. It's just my parents weren't as outgoing and spontaneous as the Mother and Father on this show. Although I'm very thankful for what I have, it just wasn't as good as growing up as a "tard".

I think we can all take note of how great a father Shay Carl is. Every video he seems to have a new and unique way of spreading the attention among all his children. He is very enthusiastic about his children and always seems to find time to play with them. (Probably because he YouTubes for a living, but that's besides the point.)

I have been following their videos for some time now and I feel like I'm part of the family, and it feels great. It's like a real-time, no scripts, authentic family that you can never predict what will happen next.

Here is the link to their channel:

Here is their latest video:

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Son Kills his Parents after Argument about his Laziness

The trial of a lazy son accused of killing his parents after they argued when they found him lying in bed with a hangover at lunchtime continued Wednesday.

Daniel Dighton, 35, stabbed his father, Barry, four times and his mother, Elizabeth, 20 times when they came home from a shopping trip in September last year.

The accused was frustrated with his parents’ attempts to help him get a job and move out of the family home, London’s Old Bailey court was told Tuesday.

His father Barry, 61, was a school principal for 20 years before retiring in 2006. His mother was an administrator at the same school.

The couple tried repeatedly to help their son have a career as a teacher and leave their home in Croydon, south London.

Dighton told his parents he found a job in Thailand as a teacher but returned home when it fell through.

An argument started when his parents came home from their shopping trip to find “their layabout of a son in bed and hungover,” prosecution attorney Crispin Aylett told the court. A routine argument became out of control and Dighton stabbed his parents, Aylett added.
Dighton denies the murder but admitted manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility. The trial continues.
 as seen on Fox News

"diminished responsibility" lol, oh guy.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Russia's Bouncy Tanks

Every May, Russia proudly marches its biggest, fiercest-looking military hardware across Red Square in a show of force one might expect from one of the biggest militaries in the world. Tanks, missile launchers and rockets worth billions of dollars thunder across the cobblestones.

But in a small field outside Moscow, two men wheel out a small package that could save the Russian military millions and prevent it from needing to deploy that fearsome arsenal. The men fire up an air pump and within minutes there stands a towering S-300 anti-aircraft missile launcher.

Russia's Defense Ministry is in talks with a private company called Rusbal to develop a range of inflatable decoy armaments they could place in battlefields to deceive the enemy about positions and lure it into attacking cheap replicas with their million-dollar rockets.

Tanks, radars and jets are part of the series, along with the S-300.

"They're light, possible to move quickly, meaning more mobile," says Viktor Talanov, Rusbal's head of marketing. "They're the full imitation in every sense: visually, heat and on radar."

Rusbal workers demonstrate with another dummy weapon, a T-80 tank.

Within three minutes, the 200 pounds of limp fabric turn into a full-size T-80, the barrel propped up with a steel bar.

One of the workers grabs the front and parks it effortlessly next to the inflated S-300.
Talanov won't say precisely how much they would sell a fake T-80 to the military for, but the commercial version is $6,000. The military version, he says, is about double, a far cry from a real T-80 (no longer produced), which can run into the millions.

From the air, the decoys look remarkably realistic. But in this day of thermal imaging and heat-seeking missiles, Rusbal has had to improve dummy technology to interest the military. They line various parts of the equipment with a thin layer of metal and install a heating system so that, for example, an inflatable truck would appear to have a warm engine when viewed through thermal imaging.

Talanov claims that in side-by-side tests conducted by the military, one can't tell the difference between the real and the fake.


Sneaky Russians.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Google Cars drives themselves

Anyone driving the twists of Highway 1 between San Francisco and Los Angeles recently may have glimpsed a Toyota Prius with a curious funnel-like cylinder on the roof. Harder to notice was that the person at the wheel was not actually driving.

The car is a project of Google which has been working in secret but in plain view on vehicles that can drive themselves, using artificial-intelligence software that can sense anything near the car and mimic the decisions made by a human driver.

With someone behind the wheel to take control if something goes awry and a technician in the passenger seat to monitor the navigation system, seven test cars have driven 1,000 miles without human intervention and more than 140,000 miles with only occasional human control. One even drove itself down Lombard Street in San Francisco, one of the steepest and curviest streets in the nation. The only accident, engineers said, was when one Google car was rear-ended while stopped at a traffic light. 

Autonomous cars are years from mass production, but technologists who have long dreamed of them believe that they can transform society as profoundly as the Internet has. 

Robot drivers react faster than humans, have 360-degree perception and do not get distracted, sleepy or intoxicated, the engineers argue. They speak in terms of lives saved and injuries avoided — more than 37,000 people died in car accidents in the United States in 2008. The engineers say the technology could double the capacity of roads by allowing cars to drive more safely while closer together. Because the robot cars would eventually be less likely to crash, they could be built lighter, reducing fuel consumption. But of course, to be truly safer, the cars must be far more reliable than, say, today’s personal computers, which crash on occasion and are frequently infected.
The Google research program using artificial intelligence to revolutionize the automobile is proof that the company’s ambitions reach beyond the search engine business. The program is also a departure from the mainstream of innovation in Silicon Valley, which has veered toward social networks and Hollywood-style digital media. 

During a half-hour drive beginning on Google’s campus 35 miles south of San Francisco last Wednesday, a Prius equipped with a variety of sensors and following a route programmed into the GPS navigation system nimbly accelerated in the entrance lane and merged into fast-moving traffic on Highway 101, the freeway through Silicon Valley.
It drove at the speed limit, which it knew because the limit for every road is included in its database, and left the freeway several exits later. The device atop the car produced a detailed map of the environment.
The car then drove in city traffic through Mountain View, stopping for lights and stop signs, as well as making announcements like “approaching a crosswalk” (to warn the human at the wheel) or “turn ahead” in a pleasant female voice. This same pleasant voice would, engineers said, alert the driver if a master control system detected anything amiss with the various sensors. 

The car can be programmed for different driving personalities — from cautious, in which it is more likely to yield to another car, to aggressive, where it is more likely to go first. 

Christopher Urmson, a Carnegie Mellon University robotics scientist, was behind the wheel but not using it. To gain control of the car he has to do one of three things: hit a red button near his right hand, touch the brake or turn the steering wheel. He did so twice, once when a bicyclist ran a red light and again when a car in front stopped and began to back into a parking space. But the car seemed likely to have prevented an accident itself.
When he returned to automated “cruise” mode, the car gave a little “whir” meant to evoke going into warp drive on “Star Trek,” and Dr. Urmson was able to rest his hands by his sides or gesticulate when talking to a passenger in the back seat. He said the cars did attract attention, but people seem to think they are just the next generation of the Street View cars that Google uses to take photographs and collect data for its maps.
The project is the brainchild of Sebastian Thrun, the 43-year-old director of the Stanford Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, a Google engineer and the co-inventor of the Street View mapping service. 

In 2005, he led a team of Stanford students and faculty members in designing the Stanley robot car, winning the second Grand Challenge of the Defense Advance Research Projects Agency, a $2 million Pentagon prize for driving autonomously over 132 miles in the California desert. 

Besides the team of 15 engineers working on the current project, Google hired more than a dozen people, each with a spotless driving record, to sit in the driver’s seat, paying $15 an hour or more. Google is using six Priuses and an Audi TT in the project. 

The Google researchers said the company did not yet have a clear plan to create a business from the experiments. Dr. Thrun is known as a passionate promoter of the potential to use robotic vehicles to make highways safer and lower the nation’s energy costs. It is a commitment shared by Larry Page, Google’s co-founder, according to several people familiar with the project.
The self-driving car initiative is an example of Google’s willingness to gamble on technology that may not pay off for years, Dr. Thrun said. Even the most optimistic predictions put the deployment of the technology more than eight years away. 

One way Google might be able to profit is to provide information and navigation services for makers of autonomous vehicles. Or, it might sell or give away the navigation technology itself, much as it offers its Android smart phone system to cellphone companies. 

But the advent of autonomous vehicles poses thorny legal issues, the Google researchers acknowledged. Under current law, a human must be in control of a car at all times, but what does that mean if the human is not really paying attention as the car crosses through, say, a school zone, figuring that the robot is driving more safely than he would? 

And in the event of an accident, who would be liable — the person behind the wheel or the maker of the software? 

“The technology is ahead of the law in many areas,” said Bernard Lu, senior staff counsel for the California Department of Motor Vehicles. “If you look at the vehicle code, there are dozens of laws pertaining to the driver of a vehicle, and they all presume to have a human being operating the vehicle.”
The Google researchers said they had carefully examined California’s motor vehicle regulations and determined that because a human driver can override any error, the experimental cars are legal. Mr. Lu agreed. 

Scientists and engineers have been designing autonomous vehicles since the mid-1960s, but crucial innovation happened in 2004 when the Pentagon’s research arm began its Grand Challenge.

The first contest ended in failure, but in 2005, Dr. Thrun’s Stanford team built the car dubbed Stanley that won a race with a rival vehicle built by a team from Carnegie Mellon University. Less than two years later, another event proved that autonomous vehicles could drive safely in urban settings.
Advances have been so encouraging that Dr. Thrun sounds like an evangelist when he speaks of robot cars. There is their potential to reduce fuel consumption by eliminating heavy-footed stop-and-go drivers and, given the reduced possibility of accidents, to ultimately build more lightweight vehicles. 

There is even the farther-off prospect of cars that do not need anyone behind the wheel. That would allow the cars to be summoned electronically, so that people could share them. Fewer cars would then be needed, reducing the need for parking spaces, which consume valuable land. 

And, of course, the cars could save humans from themselves. “Can we text twice as much while driving, without the guilt?” Dr. Thrun said in a recent talk. “Yes, we can, if only cars will drive themselves.”

by John Markoff from the NY Times

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Will google take over Television as well?

An article by Brooke Crothers

Google TV products from Sony and Logitech pack a potent brew of software and hardware that could animate even the most inveterate couch potatoes. But will they sit up and take notice?

TVs are quickly on the way to becoming hybrids that can switch freely between passive TV and PC-like interactive modes, according to Intel. Will consumers finally begin to lean forward more and lean back less? After all, this has been tried before.

"The reason we feel very confident this time around is it's less of a leap now because consumers are used to consuming Internet content," Wilfred Martis, general manager of Intel's Retail Consumer Electronics business, said in a phone interview Tuesday.

Intel is a key player in the Sony Internet TV and Logitech Revue set-top box, which was introduced yesterday, because it supplies the Atom CE4100 processor that powers the interactive side of the Google TV platform. And this is no ordinary Atom. It squeezes a lot of processing into a tiny system-on-a-chip.
"The CE 4100 combines dual 1080p video decoders, dual audio DSPs (digital signal processors), 3D graphics, display processing, and security infrastructure," said Martis. "That allows you to consume broadcast or Blu-ray content as well as all the content and applications on the Internet."

All very convincing on paper but some consumers, at least, may have beaten Google TV to the punch. Many people already use their laptop or smartphone while watching TV. And being connected to the Web on a separate device like a laptop doesn't interrupt what's being viewed on the TV screen. Martis points out, however, that viewers can use their phone to interact with a Google TV and that may tempt a number of consumers to defer to the TV for interactivity.

Or, that is, defer to the computer inside the TV. When Martis describes what the processor is doing it sounds eerily like a PC or tablet. "When you're in interactive mode, the Atom processor is handling the Android stack as well as the Google Chrome browser with a Flash plug-in in some cases," he said.
And why stop at Facebook updates or fact checking. Intel is closely watching another potential hot spot: gaming.
"If gaming becomes a killer app on these smart TV products, we'll look seriously at beefing up our graphics solutions," he said. Currently, the CE4100 uses graphics technology from Imagination Technologies. "We have alternate paths that we're exploring internally."

Intel will also bring out dual-core Atom processors and widen the data paths inside the chip in the future to address what it expects to be an explosion in Android applications for the Google TV.

"We're beefing up our interconnect speed inside the chip because at some point you'll be bringing in 1080p video, you'll be decoding another 1080p stream, you'll be generating 1080p graphics at the same time, then 3D. Imagine all of those workloads kicking in at the same time and the consumer is playing a game on top of it. It requires a lot of processing power, a lot of graphics, a lot of internal interconnect speeds, and high memory bandwidth," he said.

Will Google take over every aspect of our digital life?

Saturday, October 9, 2010

John Lennon's 70th Birthday

Did you guys notice? Today was John Lennon's birthday.
My thoughts about John Lennon is this:
He was a very determined and loving individual that believed in love and peace and wasn't afraid to live by it on a daily basis even if the rest of the world looked the other way if not oppose it.
And of course you can't forget the period of time he spent with his fellow Beatles.
Oh how he and their music will be never forgotten.
I can really relate to John Lennon, since he had a very rebellious attitude towards life.
Lennon revealed a rebellious nature and acerbic wit in his music, his writing, on film, and in interviews, and became controversial through his work as a peace activist. He moved to New York City in 1971, where his criticism of the Vietnam War resulted in a lengthy attempt by Richard Nixon's administration to deport him, while his songs were adapted as anthems by the anti-war movement. Disengaging himself from the music business in 1975 to devote time to his family, Lennon reemerged in 1980 with a comeback album, Double Fantasy, but was murdered three weeks after its release.

He scared the shit out of people with power.

What is your take on John Lennon or the Peace movement?

Do you believe in peace through isolating ourselves or peace through military strength?

Unexpected Absence

Sorry guys I was pretty much gone all yesterday, I will DOUBLE my visits today :D
I had an old friend unexpectedly invite me to some pier fishing.
shit was so cash...I was popping out with sardines, and pacific mackerel....we sold some of our fish to fishers going for spider crab and lobsters...and we used the rest to go for whatever would eat a whole sardine :D
The only thing out of the ordinary that we caught was a squid...the guy next to us was reeling in spider crabs and lobsters...I was paying attention to what he was doing and I'm going to try it next time to try my luck with such creatures ^^
So yeah Friday was cash for me, how was it for you?
How are you today?

Friday, October 8, 2010

Rubber Fist anyone?

So on Fridays I'm just going to post the most randomness thing I could come up with in the morning...nothing to think about, figure out, or even consider but just something to make you laugh, cry or to be appalled.

"slightly" used

One size definitely fits all.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Who can make the connection?

Who can tell me what this refers to.

Hint: Has to do with butterfly wings.
Winner gets five internets.

It refers to Smashing Pumpkins' "bullet with butterfly wings" song
Don't forget to click around ;D

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Are you Alive?

 This warning is for YOU

Do you guys forget the movie Fight Club that came out in '99?
I almost did.
Today some punk kid ran into me without apologizing for his clumsy behavior.
I almost just walked away like it never happened.
Then fight club kicked in.
He fought back and it was great.
I never felt so alive.
Let me refresh you on Tyler Durden's message: 

If you are reading this then this warning is for you.
Every word you read of this useless fine print is another second off your life. 
Don't you have other things to do? Is your life so empty that you honestly can't think of a better way to spend these moments?
Or are you so impressed with authority that you give respect and credence to all that claim it? Do you read everything you're supposed to read? 
Do you think every thing you're supposed to think?
Buy what you're told to want? 
Get out of your apartment.
Meet a member of the opposite sex. 
Stop the excessive shopping and masturbation.
Quit your job.
Start a fight.
Prove you're alive.
If you don't claim your humanity you will become a statistic.
You have been warned
- Tyler.  

Me and the fellow enjoyed our selves feeling alive, we shook hands and laughed as we dusted off the dirt and attended to our wounds.
Fuck, I'm so alive and life is good.
How was your day today?