Back with my Mac

It turns out that the AppleCare's 'Next Day' service with DHL took two days. When I posted the previous entry: DHL to the Rescue ... Maybe, the package was actually still in Houston. Go figure ...

The repair slip (all of which was of no charge to be because of my trusty AppleCare Warranty), indicated that a few components were switched out. Indeed, it does feel a bit different, but the second I cracked open the computer and turned it on, it started to buzz again, albeit, not as loudly. I was disappointed, but at the same time, I am extremely glad I got my computer back safely. It came with a free carboard box and foam packaging as well, which is always a plus.

Edit: Check out the box from yesterday's POTD.

DHL to the Rescue ... Maybe

I have no idea where the Bethel Grove came from, and I don't know if the computer will arrive. I do not know what to expect, but I'm still hoping for the best. I have called both Apple and DHL about this decrepency but the address is right: 14850.

I will wait it out.

I Have F--king Internet

For the longest time I was unable to get Internet through my router at this house. I decided to leave it plugged in and when I came back to the iPod touch, it work worked! What the hell!?

Liberated

Living without a computer or Internet is quite liberating. I recommend you try it. Especially when you are most busy.

Disconnect

Upon arriving at Cornell once again, I realized the severity of the circumstances that result from the lack of a portable and personal computer. My Internet time will be severely reduced. (Maybe this is a good thing.) POTD seems unlikely now, and pending updates to the website is delayed.

So sad ...

The Near-Future of POTD

A simple post:

Because I am without a computer, I might not be able to post daily. I will definitely still shoot and select a POTD for everyday, but posting it to the blog and to Flickr might be a problem. And even if I were to get a computer to use (which I probably will via the computer labs), I might not have the opportunity to edit, touch-up, and enhance the photos I will be taking. Definitely no Aperture and no Lightroom (not sure of this one), but there will definitely be Photoshop.

Please excuse me. I will see.

Canon vs Nikon

After going shooting with Ricky and his Canon 30D in Central Park, I am torn in my decision of usability, brand, and gadget philosophy. My goal is to figure out and decide which brand (Canon or Nikon) is most like Apple and which I can put my trust in. I have found good reasons for why Canon is more like Apple, but as I continue to think, I have also found good reasons for why Nikon is more like Apple. I guess figuring out the more Apple-esque brand is just my way of rationalizing my intuition's decision.

Basically, I have gotten too used to the functionality of my Nikon D40, and when I tried holding and shooting with the Canon 30D, it was extremely awkward to use, and doing the most rudimentary operations seemed to take additional steps than on the D40. This might be a simple thing of getting used to, but I am unsure.

I am surprised to find myself lean toward Nikon's system of doing things now.

[C]: Very pretty and has a huge amount of support from many Canon DSLR-using friends.

[N]: More exterior buttons and less pretty, but it is extremely usable. It has a smaller market share than that of Canon. (But then again, so does Apple.) Nikon users, I find, are more "weird" than Canon users. (But then again, so was Apple back in the day.) Nikon focuses primarily on optics and cameras, while Canon does printers, scanners, calculators, etc. (Apple was always a computer-focused company, though it has just recently expanded to music and phones.)

Mac-less

After the Apple Store visit, my first time to the new-ish West 14th Street Apple Store, I was somewhat disappointed that they will not replace it for me right off the bat. I was fortunate (or unfortunate) that they took it for a repair.

That means I will be computer-less for the better part of two weeks. And that I will have a better Mac than when I left it ... hopefully.

As a result, POTD will be limited, and blog posts will be limited as well. How sad ...

Update on Getting Home

Left campus at 6:00 pm. It took two hours to get to Binghamton, when it usually takes about 1 hour. And after waiting there for a little bit, we were on our way. After about 10 minutes of heading south, we discovered smoke and a terrible gas odor. The driver pulled over and tried to fix it but he could not locate its source.

We headed back to Binghamton, and after idling for about half hour, the driver came back with another bus. We were on our way in a fully air conditioned, and higher-class bus. Ignoring the "stinky" bus, this is arguably the best Shortline experience because of the nicer bus.

Being already past 9 pm when we left Binghamton, I easily slept the whole way through. I arrived at Port Authority at 1:00 am and got on the train at 1:15 am. Home an hour later. Goddamnit.

ONE MORE THING: THE STRIKE IS ON ...

Trying to Get Home

When I was double checking the bus schedule today, I came across news that there is a possible (and likely) strike. I am saddened by this news. Immediately, I called the Short Line Bus people and they said they had no news until 5:00pm today. I will be guaranteed safe passage home tonight though, since the strike takes into effect midnight tonight.

The problem is coming back to school. I phoned home to see what we should do, and my dad will drive me up if there is indeed a strike. We are hoping for the best.

Preparation for the Trip to the Apple Store

I will do a final back up of my entire computer via SuperDuper! and Time Machine right now. Afterwards, I will not modify anything on my computer so that the back ups are as up-to-date as possible. I will limit my computer use to web-based applications and services only for now. (Same goes for the iPod touch, of course. No more syncing is to be done until after the Apple Store visit.)

Now's the best time to put Google to the test. Haha.

Appointment Scheduled

My appointment with the genius bar is scheduled. It should be fun. While I am very proficient with speaking with AppleCare consultants over the phone, it will be my first time speaking with an Apple Genius in person.

I'll keep you posted.

MacBook Pro is Sick

There is something wrong with my power systems again. So far, I have replaced two batteries and a power adapter.

Now, for some reason unknown, the computer's fans spin up like crazy whenever the battery is in, and goes back to normal when the battery is taken out. This is the case with the power adapter plugged in or taken out (of course with both battery and cable out, there is no power).

I have phoned the Apple people and they had me reset the SMC but that did not help. Now, I have stumped the nice man on the phone (his name was Jason), and I will probably have to take this in to an Apple Store. I will be going home Thursday night, so the timing is just right. It sucks to have to deal with this during my time at home, but it has to get done, and Friday is the most opportune time to do so. There is a chance I might lose my computer for a little bit. I would then have to resort to using the iPod touch or a lab computer for my fill of the daily Internet.

Oh boy ...

(Photo courtesy of a guy from Australia)

Trying Out the Blogger Dashboard Widget

I hope this works! Only text though.

First Day of Classes

1. Today was quite entertaining and nice actually. Two introductory lectures in the morning, and then the afternoon class was cancelled. I played frisbee in the rain.

2. Today, I spent over $300 in the Cornell store for two textbooks and one lab manual. Because I am homeless for now, ordering online is not possible. I would've saved about $20. I do not think it was really worth the trouble.

3. Today was Coop registration. We were the first in line and just checked it out. A few forms were filled out and bills were paid.

Behind in Work Already

Tomorrow starts the first day of Coop classes, having just had my last final last Wednesday. It just never ends (and I don't really want it to). Growing up sucks.

So far, I have promised to post a bunch of entries I have in the queue. And I have promised to get my photos processed and online really soon. But because most of my resources are still packed in the boxes and bags (and I do not intend to unpack just to repack at the end of next week), there is little that I can do.

... I lied. I have backed up copies of a few older albums on the iPod. I'll get to it when I have time, or when I am bored. I promise!

It is weird getting ready for the first day of class again. Packing up my things and getting ready a new folder and notebook for the semester feels weird, especially doing so for the summer. It should be interesting though; it should be fun.

Living Quarters

I have officially left my dorm room in Cascadilla and have moved into the house I will be staying at from May 17 to May 31. Then I will be moving again and living in a new place from June 1 to August 19.

I do not feel like unpacking because it will all be repacked and moved in two weeks. As a result, I don't feel like doing anything at all right now. My parents came up to help me move and bring about 40% of my things back home. We had an expensive lunch at Hai-Hong. They just left about a half hour ago.

This is the state of my room having nothing unpacked or cleaned with only the refrigerator currently plugged in and operational.


Today's POTD, from Cascadilla:

Delays

Immediately after finals, I went to have some fun with friends. Had a full day of work yesterday, during which I worked on two Flickr sets: Touring Los Angeles and First Days in Taiwan. Now, on Friday and Saturday, I would have to have moved out and moved into the temporary new place (for two weeks).

Posts to come. Sorry for the delay.

Examples of My Fleeting Memory

1. Mony tells me about my half-birthday a week ago, and I forgot it already. She reminded me on the Facebook today. Thanks, Mony!

2. I called my sister. And while it was dialing, I had to go back to check it was her that I called and not someone else.

3. I e-mail someone a link and when I check back later for his response, I had forgotten what it was that I had sent him.

4. Same with AIM, less than 3 minutes from the e-mail incident.

---

There are more but I forgot them. I intend to add to this list with more descriptive examples. But I fear I will probably forget.

Camera Bean Bag

I wanted to go out shooting at night again, but learning from my mistakes from before, I realized that I need a tripod to get the proper shots. Attempting to be resourceful in my dorm room, I made a bean bag instead. It is bascially a large grocery store plastic bag, with about 4 cups of rice in it. It is held together by staples and tape. I didn't intend for it to be a permanent solution, but it seems to hold together pretty well. Heh.

Photos are below. I took these with the D40 so I used the Sony as an example.

I Choose You, Obama

After recent events, especially the latest contests in Indiana and North Carolina, it is nearly certain that Barack Obama will win the Democratic nomination. As the preliminary campaigns continue, I find that Hillary Clinton has gotten more and more weary and her demeanor has changed for the worse. The message she sends out remains mysterious and inconsistent, and the arguments she uses for why she is a better candidate has gotten ludicrous and misleading. It is unfortunate that she, having the Clinton name, was once the forerunner in the democratic race. Now, she has gradually lost the momentum that one needs to to enact any sort of "change" in politics.

Obama appears to be favored by the younger generation. And from my selfish point of view, this is a good thing. This year's election has draw a crowd of many new and young voters, which is indicative of the importance 2008's election. It definitely is. While his experience is questionable, Obama has got what it takes to win over voters and the American public. This is what matters most. I am not sure if I am being sucked into the Obama-hype that is being portrayed by all the media, but to me, he has an inspiring story to tell, and he has the vision that I think will bring the United States into the future in terms of dealing with education, universal healthcare, global climate change, the working class and the economy.

The philosophy of his entire campaign is much inline with what I personally believe. It is well-organized and well-presented. Plus, Obama's campaign has a kick-ass logo, and it is the most Apple-esque of the three.

Things will definitely change, come January 2009. But in order to enact change, we must first believe in ourselves and believe that it is not just a dream but that we can make it happen. I, for one, would join Obama supporters and say, "Yes, we can."

More on CNN.com

Jeremy Horn from tpgblog.com (which I found via Digg) reviews the top three online news sites, Yahoo! News, CNN, and MSNBC.

Of course, my recent turn to CNN.com is a result of me finding it to be Apple-esque.

Finals Schedule

Today marks Day One of finals at Cornell. I had Macroeconomics tonight, from 7:00 pm to 9:30 pm.

My schedule is as follows:
1. Macroeconomics (Wed, May.07.08)
2. Linear Algebra (Fri, May.09.08)
3. M225 Design (Tues, May.13.08)
4. Dynamics (Tues, May.13.08)
5. M212 Materials (Wed, May.14.08)

On Procrastination

The best time to do something you don't want to do is when you have something you don't want to do that is worse and far more distasteful.

Apple Adapter Arrives

My MacBook Pro adapter has arrived!

The nice thing I remembered was that Apple came out with a different/newer/smaller power adapter for the MacBook Pro, after issues with the older bigger ones. They were considered very huge after the smallish size from the PowerBook G4 days. An AppleInsider article from October 2007 talks about the issue.

I am happy to say that I now have a smaller power adapter. This makes me so happy ...

CNN

Having not read a newspaper in a long, long time, I have been catching up with my news via NBC and ABC podcasts. Online, though, I used to turn to Google News. Now, I'm starting to really like CNN.com. It has a iPhone optimized website as well. It's really nice.

Now, I just have to follow it long enough for me to determine the integrity of the news reporting and if it has any biases I should know or care about.

Hmm ... Maybe I'm starting to get used to red-and-white color theme that is all over Cornell.

I Am Craving Green Tea Ice Cream

Sleeping in Class

Now that this semester is coming to a close, and today being the first Monday after classes end, I'm beginning to miss the good times we had during our engineering classes on Tuesdays and Thursdays. As I had written in a previous post, this has been my worst semester so far. I have been falling behind in a lot of my work from day to day, and week to week.

But I have noticed an interesting thing this semester. I have noticed more people sleeping in class than ever before. Either that, or people didn't come to class at all. It has become somewhat of a habit (tradition?) amongst us MechEs. Lipson, Ruina, and Boedo are each aware that people sleep in his respective lecture. I am guilty of this sometimes. I find it all amusing. It is funny how some can even fall asleep at the front of the room. At the back of the room (where I tend to sit), nearly everyone is either on his/her computer or asleep.

Taylor doesn't want me to mention his name or to say that he was caught by Ruina sleeping in the second row during the last Dynamics lecture. Jonathan probably doesn't want me to remind us that he nearly jumped out of his seat when he woke up in M212 a while ago. Yes, yes. Good times were had.

*Note: This photo was taken from Google Images.

Without a Computer

Yesterday afternoon, I discovered that my Apple MacBook Pro power adapter had melted and frayed on the end with the MagSafe adapter. Immediately, I telephoned AppleCare not knowing if they were even open on Saturdays. I was surprised to get an answer. Because this was a safety issue, the lady on the phone (Sarah) told me hot to use it and transferred me to a product specialist (Devin), who then had me follow a safety script that included questions like, Did I feel any discomfort or get injured by the product, and Was any personal property damaged as a result of this problem.

It was interesting. All in all, Apple will replace it for me for free. This makes it the third time I had contacted Apple and had the successfully replace parts for me for free. (Two separate battery incidents prior to this one.) My $400 AppleCare extended warranty is really paying off! Alas, I am without a computer to use as the MBP's battery life sucks. A lot.

I take it as a sign for me to really start studying and to stop procrastinating by going online. Unfortunately, I have with me an iPod touch, and it is more than adequate to get me to my music, movies, e-mail, calendar, and Internet. I do not know if that is a good thing or a bad one. Heh.

All Quiet on the Blog Front

It has been hectic around here. Not really, but yesterday was Slope Day, and we had a formal dinner gathering at Xa Xa's Cucina in the Commons. It was far, but fun. I will upload the few photos I have from last night in due time.

Today, I started cleaning my room, and packing my clothes and supplies. This might be how I procrastinate; it is what I do.

How goes the studying for finals? Mine is not going well ...