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Team J.A.F.



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I Hate Keyboards

Posted by xccj , Sep 08 2007 · 31 views
News and Updates
Notice a deterioration of the grammatical quality of some of my latest posts?

Well, hopefully it hasn’t been that bad, but recently, I have been skipping keys and not capitalizing letters and silly mistakes like that. Where do I place this blame? Whose fault is it that I can’t type as well as before?

It’s the keyboard, obviously.

I have this new laptop, and thus a new laptop keyboard built into the thing. The keys are smaller than the traditional keyboard that I’m used to using. I like plenty of space to spread out my hands, and I want the individual keys to have some more thickness to them. Those styles of keyboards make it hectic for transporting, which is what laptops are great for. But my typing skills are going downhill.

Besides missing the right keys ever now and then, sometimes it goes all wacky on me while I’m typing and suddenly, instead of typing on the end of my sentence, it automatically teleports my curser and I’m typing in the middle of my paragraph! I have absolutely no idea why it does this, as I can’t connect what key I’m using at the time that makes it go wacky. I think it may have to do with the number pad, which is now embedded in the right side of the keys in the alphabet. (The numbers pad is the small keyboard with the numbers and a few select options that is so good for accountants. To prevent laptop keyboards from being too wide, they fuse that in with the letter keys too. Of course, there’s still the line of numbers above the alphabet that I’ve always used, but still…) Anyway, I’m not sure what causes the problem (or even if I’ve adequately described it here) but it’s bugging me.

I hope to get another keyboard to hook up to my laptop when it’s at my desk in my room. Until then, my grammar may be a bit off here and there… so consider this a warning. (And this blog doesn’t count… I wrote it in Word and spellchecked it and everything… so the obviously wrong things have been taken care of. Other silly mistakes are my own fault, but have probably always been apparent, so there…)

Anyway, I have nothing better to blog about. I haven’t updated my stories because (among annoying keyboards) I have somewhat of a writers block for everything and am just getting by playing games and watching movies and reading other people’s work.

Bye now.

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That Is So High School...

Posted by xccj , Sep 05 2007 · 36 views
News and Updates
I had a big paper to turn in for my course. by "turn in" I mean "e-mail", because our class is all about technology, and why use more paper when the teacher knows how to use e-mail? Anyway, since it was due "Wednesday" by class time (nine in the morning, pretty much), I spent all last night writing it up. It wasn't a great paper, but it was complete. I e-mail it, and come to class tired but glad I didn't have to write anymore on the subject. Turns out, the due date was extended, I just didn't check to see the update on the course website. I guess this mostly comes from people panicking and complaining to the professor. So he apparently gave us an extra day.

Now, I’ve had that happen to me numerous times in high School, but I thought teacher kindness ended there? Aren't they supposed to suck your blood in universities or something? Or maybe that's just English teachers... my professor is very cool. And lenient too, to an extent.

Now I'm catching up on missed sleep.

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Theme Music

Posted by xccj , Sep 03 2007 · 37 views
Thoughts
Just listening to my new Ipod and watching internet Indiana Jones trailers (turns out they're fanmade, but some are okay), and I'm thinking about how many songs I have that are themes to some sort of show or another. So, here's a quick list.
  • Back to the Future- Awesome music for time travelin'. Originally bought it to be used in a spanish parody of the movie I did for my (gosh) spanish class. Kept it 'cause it's cool.
  • Indiana Jones Theme Music: Kinda obvious, right? Although there are multiple varieties of Indy music, and only have one. I’ve been meaning to search for some others to download, whether they be free from Lucus Films or paid for through Zune (yes, I buy music on Zune but now I listen to an ipod.) Also note, I know how to enjoy orchestra music and hum it to myself, but I know nothing about composing it or otherwise making it. So if my ignorance mortifies any of you band geeks, well, I warned ya. sly.gif
  • Pirate of the Caribbean Theme Music: Not the best selection, and I can’t remember where I got it. I know it wasn’t something I got for myself… maybe somebody else gave me the song.
  • Top Gun theme music: I have it, but I don’t like it as much. I think this particular track was recorded off something else, because it’s rather broken.
  • Jurassic Park: I did another parody of that movie for my Spanish class, so I have its theme music too.
  • Star Trek Intro music: also for the Spanish project, and this fifty second long track I bought online for 99 cents. Rip off. But, of course, it is from the original star trek, so that’s a plus.
  • The Bridge of Khazad Dum- LotR: I love the traditional LotR theme music, and BoKD has the best section of it. Probably because that was the most spectacular section of the first movie, but I love listening to it over and over. It just brings all the excitement of LotR right down to it, plus a little soft section where Galdalf dies. I took this song off a CD from my friend, and I also took the track “Treason of Isengard”
  • Phantom of the Opera: One of the musicals I saw when I went to New York. There’s one, I dunno, track of it that I really like, which is like the intro music they use for the phantom himself that is just great rock. The rest of the music is more soft, but tis okay.
  • Curtains: Another musical I saw in NY, NY. This one’s not so much for the music as the lyrics, which are hilarious!
  • Les Miserables: a classical musical, or so I’ve been told. I bought a CD of the original broadway cast in New York, and some of the songs aren’t half bad.
  • Breakfast at Tiffanies: Never seen the movie, but the song rocks. Actually, I think the song came after the movie, didn’t it? Oh well.
  • Aladdin: For a while, I was craving Disney music, so I bought the Aladdin CD online.
  • Wild Again (Original Soundtrack from the movie Cocktails, by Starship, or Jefferson Starship. I dunno what their name was at that time): This is just a completely awesome song that I love to listen to. Never seen the movie, but I can’t find this song anywhere besides the movie’s original soundtrack, so I guess the two must be interchangeable.
And I think that’s most of it. Now you know some of what I’m listening to. tongue.gif

music.gif *Currently listen to Theme from Back to the Future* music.gif



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My Dorm...

Posted by xccj , Sep 02 2007 · 29 views
News and Updates
Entering week three of my college experience. Woo hoo, haven't died yet! (Although I'm sitll getting used to my laptop's keyboard) Since I have nothing better to put here, I'd thought I'd describe my dorm room.

First of all, I'm on the seventh floor. Tis high up, which doesn't bother me. What does bother me is that I'm on the wrong side of the building. On the other side, you can get an excelent view of the Seattle skyline, with bridges over Lake Washington and the Space Needle and everything. Instead, I'm stuck on the north side, facing the suburbs and a boring Safeco building. On the bright side, I have a tree right in front of the window, so i don't have to worry about sniper attacks.

I'm in a double room, so i get one side all to myself. I have a dresser (which fits all of my clothes. I brought more than I usually would for a Boy scout camping trip, but the thing still holds them nicly. It's like it was made for long term living!) I have a bed that's pretty high up, which allows me to store some drinks and a fridge underneith it. It's pretty good... the mattress could be better, but I didn't really expect a good one anyway. The problem is it is a little high to crawl into... I kinda have to make a jump to get in. Then i have a desk, complete with a lamp and laptop, which has an ethernet cord and everything. i also have a cable attached to my laptop that connects to the desk, so if somebody tried to steal my laptop, they'd have to steal my desk too! (Not fullproof, because the desk can fit through the door, but I think it might be noticable if somebody's seen carrying a desk down the hall). And I also have a fan, because heat rises and on the warmer days, the room can get pretty hot. (Not to mention it feels good after running up seven flights of stairs).

And now, the part you've all been waiting for! Which Lego's did I bring? Well, I have lewa Mata hanging of my curtain stand, I have my MOCtoran Jaller standing atop a bulleton board. (I also broad MOCtoran Matoro, Hewkii, and Nuparu, but I'm keeping them in storage right now until I have a good place to display them). On top of an outlet, kinda out of the way but still visable, is my favorite minifigure with his katana. And standing on the side of my desk, teeth glowing in the dark, is Thok. The rest of my collection is stored in canisters or boxes back in my old room. (Hopefully, they haven't been disturbed yet, but I don't know if my sister or parents will just throw them out to make space for... whatever they plan to put in my room. Geez.)

And the best part is... I have to change rooms in two weeks when my Early Fall Start session is over, so all this stuff has to get packed up and moved across campus! Woohoo!

All in all, it's pretty nice. better now that I can access BZP from my room. Now I have to start thinking about that ten page midterm for my EFS class. Bye.

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Mt. Rainier

Posted by xccj , Aug 28 2007 · 45 views
News and Updates
Man, this weekend I went on an awesome hike on Mt. Rainier. For those of you who may not know your geography of the western coast of North America, Mt. Rainier is the tallest mountain in Washington State, over 14 thousand feet tall. 'Course, Whitney in California and even Elbert in Colorado are taller, and McKinley stomps them all, but it's tall enough. And furthermore, it's a volcano.

I didn't make it to the top. But I went on an interesting hike along a nearby ridge that offered some great views (they'd probably be even better when the clouds lifted and we could actually see beyond the immediate countryside). It was an easy hike that I took along with some other new Freshmen. It was a great way to meet some new people who like to hike (and see which ones of them actually knew how to hike... alot did, but some tending to be near the back). Twice I went ahead on the trail with smaller groups and had to turn back around... once when we just made it to the bottom of the hill ("Now come on back up. We'll wait for you at the top. Hurry along"). It was great to get away from the city environment on campus, and offered some great exersise. It was a blast.

The coolest and saddest part of the trip was this monsterous glacier. It looked pretty big, but I could tell that it had shrunk compared to the valley around it, which at some point it must've carved. If global warming is real (and from my view point, it is) that glacier and others like it won't be around much longer. I hope to take a few more trips up to the mountain next summer to explore it more before things change too much.

Plus, the RAs (Resident Advisors) that drove us there and back were kinda scary on the road... tongue.gif

Anyhow, this is my blog entry. I hope whatever updates that happen around here fix BZP up, but if not, I'll drop by the library every now and then to check up on this and other blogs. Bye.

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Edit: Wha... WOOHOO! I can access the forums on my laptop now! Yay! Thanks, BZP Staff!


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Computer Down

Posted by xccj , Aug 22 2007 · 48 views
News and Updates
I do not know why, but my new laptop does not allow me to view the BZP forums. So although I've tried to sign on alot, I'm not having any luck.

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Last Blog Entry...

Posted by xccj , Aug 19 2007 · 27 views
News and Updates
I had a really cool blog idea to post, but then the BZP server was down for a couple of days, and now I have no time. Oh well, maybe later.

Anyhow, this is my last blog entry from home. I'm heading up to the University of Washington today. Hopefully the internet there will be working.

Be blogging later. Kinda want to read everybody else's new blog entries too, but I'm short on time.

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Carapar Vs Hewkii

Posted by xccj , Aug 15 2007 · 55 views
Reviews
Recent additions to my Bionicle collection include the mean Barakki, Carapar, and a new Toa Mahri, Toa Hewkii. Finally, I was able to get my hands on one of the Mahri. And despite the fact that I liked Hahli, I got Hewkii instead because he looked more interesting as a set. But how does he compare to Mr. Evil Carapar? Here’s a long, detailed review to give my thoughts on the subjects.

Canisters.

Geez, Lego, you messed up the canisters this year. Sure, Carapar’s looks cool enough, but it sits awkwardly and doesn’t hold the guy very well… when I restuffed him in, I had to remove all his limbs first. But Hewkii’s is a total mess. Cardboard and flimsy plastic? No way. If Lego’s trying to conserve on money, why are the Toa still $10?

Winner: Carapar, but it was only the lesser of the two evils.

Pieces

Carapar has the basic pieces with him… standard arms, legs, body, and so on. The leg and shoulder armor is the coolest new piece in him, but they make him too bulky. His claws offer to be interesting new weapons, but not in the set-up he’s given. Meanwhile, Hewkii has three different types of silvery armor/weaponry, cool colored pieces and chains. Plus, his Cordak blaster connection is unique. Not the best, but good for Lego for trying something new.

Winner: Hewkii

Color

Carapar is Keetongu orange and gray, with some of his armor being a cool yellow/brown mixture. Hewkii is Keetongu orange and black, with a lot of silvery instruments. The red is a little off on him, but black goes better with Keetongu orange than gray.

Winner: Hewkii

Head / Mask

Carapar’s head is pretty nifty… gives him the look of a slow but mean lookin’ guy. The jaws and teeth make him look pretty scary, and I think this head design is one of the best of the Mahri. Hewkii’s mask of gravity, besides having a cool power, makes for a good manta-ray head design. I really like the mask, which looks all the cooler because it doesn’t connect to the mouth. Unfortunately, Hewkii has that connector in his mouth for the air tube, which destroys the whole image. On the bright side, we’re seeing Metru Toa heads again, with eyes too!

Winner: Carapar

Projectile

Come on, Carapar has squids, which suck. The Cordak blaster, while it may violate a non-violence thing with Lego, work well enough. Sure, they need some force to shoot the things, otherwise those bullets will just stay where they are, but they shoot accurately and far. Already lost one, which makes it good that Hewkii comes with ten. I think I still prefer Zamors with magazines, but the Cordak blasters aren’t bad. Now I can see why Kongu wanted two.

Winner: Hewkii

Mobility

Carapar’s bulky, which make some of his limb movements awkward. This is where his cool colored armor causes problems. He lacks compared to some of the other Barakki, but he can swing his arms and legs around well enough to give him some good poses. His claws are no good, though, just as I guessed. The pieces have to be at the right angle (but its not exactly a right angle) to look good. If the angle is wrong, the claws look rather stupid. If you were expecting cool snapping action, think again. The curved claw also makes it awkward to be held as an individual blade, so I can’t this place one piece in each hand (because I threw away the squid launcher, what a waste of plastic there). Meanwhile, we have Hewkii. The legs are too short for my liking, although their hold him up and give him a hunched appearance. His left arm (Yeah, most of the Mahri are now left handed.) Works okay, with his wickedly cool long blade at the end. But his right arm… no good. The position of the Cordak blaster means he has no hand movement, and the blades on the upper arm further restrict movement of the arm. The chains kind of get in the way (so I attached them to his back) and really have no use. Hewkii Inika’s chain had a use… this time I think Hewkii got chains just for the effect of having chains. His head movement, little as it could be, is restricted greatly by the fins of the mask and air tube. Plus, the mask fins and right-arm blades keep getting in the way of each other.

Winner: They both have problems, but Carapar has less of them.

Well, they’re both mediocre sets. They both include aspects that are apparent in 2007… new, unique designs using older pieces to good effects. While they’re worth some of their money, they’re not revolutionary sets like the Rahkshi, Metru, and Piraka were (in my books, anyway). Carapar is not my favorite Barakki design… I like him better than Ehlek, but Mantax, Takadax, and Kalmah have better designs (in that order). As far as Hewkii is concerned… he’s different. Hahli and Jaller have more basic Toa designs, of which I don’t know how well they work. Hewkii does not live up to his great Inika form, but he makes an interesting enough Mahri.

I hope to get either Hahli or Nuparu next, of if I can find them at a “Buy two get one free sale”, I might pick up Jaller too. Matoro and Kongu can just stay on their store shelves for all I care. I like Hahli and Nuparu’s designs and weaponry better, but Jaller has an interesting body design, and I believe his situation with his Cordak blaster (on the crab) might be more convenient than all those Toa who hold the blasters in their hands.

That, and I’ve also added another chapter to Slizers on Mata-Nui. Unfortunately, the story topic has been plagued by the “whole page not loading” thing on BZP, so some people may not be able to view the chapters. If you can view it (I can), please post. If you can’t… well, it’s still an okay chapter. tongue.gif

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Keep On Slizerin'

Posted by xccj , Aug 09 2007 · 55 views
News and Updates
I totally forgot about this. Sure, I progressed slowly on my Slizers epic while BZP was down. But I did progress, with two completed chapters and one that's nearly completed and will be done within posting time. So, I didn't think of posting them because I'm at a relative's house, using their computer. But, being the genius that I know I am (just like Calvin said to his tiger Hobbs) I put the Words file onto my thumb drive and easily transfered it to their computer for some "posting on BZPower"-ing.

So, thus, please check out the newest chapter in Slizers on Mata-Nui. The next few chapters will be posted within the next few weeks, depending on ym availibility and the number of replies I get. tongue.gif Thanks.

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A Weeks Worth Of Ideas

Posted by xccj , Aug 07 2007 · 44 views
News and Updates
BZP may be back on-line, but my summer's about gone. I start early university courses in a few weeks, thus ending my slacking time that I'd spend on BZP. I hope to stay on BZP to update my blog and everything, but I don't know how much else I'll do. So, here's a few things from last week that I never got a chance to post...

1- Thanks to tyhe BZP staff for getting the forums bakc on-line. I was surprised when the forums were down for more than two days, and alarmed when it reached four days. Then I knew it must really be somehting serious. I'm grateful that they got it back up, and as soon as they did too (you know, it could've been months.) I really like hanging on BZPower, and its so cool that so many people work hard to keep it up. So, again, thanks to them all, especially Bink (who I suppose was really working hardm as he is the server guy) (On another note, this might've just been the staff's summer vacation, so they took the boards offline and giving us a different reason. But, hey, whatever. tongue.gif )

2- How can they be called summer sets if they don't come out in the summer? I have two weeks of this summer season left, and I have yet to see any summer sets on the shelves and I've looked too. I don't remember the other sets coming out this late. And even if the Mahri aren't as revolutionary as some of the previous groups that've come up, they're still awesome enough. I plan to write a comparison between the Inika and Mahri, to give my opinions about which really are better. But I'm not at home, so I'll spend the time doing that later. Sufice to say, I think the Mahri would be alot more cooler if they'd come out before the Inika.

3- I got Carpar. He's a cool set. I want to write a good review on him, but the set isn't with me, so I'll leave it until later. Needless to say, I now have five Barakki and don't plan to get any more. (Pirdak, after all, isn't too my liking)

4- I posted a short story, viewable HERE! It hasn't gotten any reviews yet, but I assume it has to do with the whole server going downh and not people not reading it. So... if you have a time, read it. It's actually really short. And, although I wrote it over a year and a half ago, I didn't post it 'cause it was suppose to be apart of a story collection that never got posted. So... yeah. Read it, and you can become an honorary member of my "Story Reviewers". I think I have three or four of them total... tongue.gif

Now, off to stress about my classes. Unfortunatly, I have to wake up in the morning to attend a few. Oh well.

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Xccj






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Is that the light at the far end of the tunnel, or just the train.
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