The World Through My Eyes

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Archive for October, 2011

Scanning Pictures From Old Albums

Posted by mikenopolis on October 24, 2011

I have been thinking about digital-izing (is that a word?) all of my family’s media for a while. I did a small box of videos and made them into DVDs and put them up on a private family YouTube account. This past weekend I spent some time scanning photo albums for my FiancĂ© and myself. It was fun seeing ourselves as a child. I miss those days when life seemed to be all fun and games. I have no idea how my father made it all work being the only working person in the family.

My view on life & religion changed dramatically after my father died. I was raised by a Catholic mother and Buddhist father. They respected each other’s beliefs and I did whatever they asked, I went to church and I also went to temples, but I never believed in the deity itself, just the lessons they teach. When my father died I wished there was a God so I can hate and blame someone or something for it.

As I look at the thousands of photographs of my father when he was around my age I start to think maybe I shouldn’t be camera shy. Not too many people have pictures of me since I’m usually the picture taker and I turn away the second I see a lens pointed at me. I teared up a lot when I was scanning these. I miss my father, my mentor, my friend and I hate the fact they he never lived long enough to play with all the technology we have today. When he died he was still using dial up with a 56K Modem, Pentium III, Zip disks, and a CRT. Now I have 15 or so computers (only three or four are performance machines, the rest were bought from my work as they started to replace their old machines…mostly P4s and Xeons or Core2Duos which I clean, replace/upgrade parts)

My father, William. Back row, 3rd one from the right. Yes he has a crutch, he's had one leg since he was a child (construction accident)

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Wedding, Planning & Who Pays For What

Posted by mikenopolis on October 10, 2011

So…I think we decided on the MONTH/YEAR of our wedding. It MIGHT be October 2012. Reception location has already been decided, not really much of a choice since her parents (mother specifically) were the ones who made the decision. Apparently the place we liked was too whitewashed which was what we were going for since the more authentic/traditional Chinese restaurants would not sit well with some of the non-Asian guests we plan to invite.

We are looking at a little over or under 200 guests, majority of them will be her family and friends. My family members are all over the place and it would cost most o them way too much to come (Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Germany, England) and since I really don’t ever talk to any of them it doesn’t really matter. Friends? Well, the people I call friends are really more like past acquaintances, we talk online, email and stuff. But when it comes down to it we really have lost touch since the last time we physically saw each other in high school, college and previous employment. These are people I call my friends, but asking them to come to my wedding or to be my groomsman would seem a bit out of the ordinary in my case. I really have no idea what we are going to do in terms of the traditional groomsmen thing. I know for a fact that I will NOT have a bachelor’s party. I don’t drink, I don’t party, I’ve been to strip joints with friends a few times in my younger days and that atmosphere was not fun for a germaphobe, last thing I want is a possible whore prancing around me.

A traditional Chinese reception/banquet is held at a Chinese restaurant, all the tables seats 10 people and food (a 10 course meal) is served family style. Restaurant that hold reception have various pre set menus that cost anywhere from $400 to over $1000 PER TABLE. We are looking to have the $600 per table option at this moment which equates to $60 a head, so with 200 guests, 20 tables, it would cost $12,000 plus tax and gratuity, there are other charges that comes with closing down the restaurant (or part of) for a night.

A friend of mine got married a little while ago and I asked her who paid for the wedding since she’s on a teacher’s salary and is still going to grad school, she said her father paid for most of it. We’re not planning to have kids, but if we do end up changing our minds (which may happen because my fiancĂ© wants her mother to have grandchildren (weird) and her sister having children is looking a bit doubtful) I do NOT want a girl any more. I’ve mentioned before that I don’t hate children. I’m just very opinionated on what a person needs to be capable of prior to being a parent, and for me to be a good father, I would have to give up a lot of things I love, such as my obsession with cleanness and neatness. Anyone who gets in my car comments on how clean it is…I don’t want to give that up, but I would for my child (many parents don’t understand that…talking to you parents that drops your kids off at grandmas so you can go clubbing on a Thursday night!)

I digress. I saw this on on who traditionally pays for what for a wedding. Last time I checked her family is not rich!

Wedding Gown, Headpiece & Accessories The Bride’s Family
Wedding Ring for Bride The Groom
Wedding Ring for Groom The Bride
Wedding Gift for Groom The Bride
Wedding Gift for Bride The Groom
Bridesmaid Gifts The Bride
Groomsmen/Usher Gifts The Groom
Bride’s Bouquet The Groom
Bridesmaid Bouquets The Bride’s Family
Mother’s Corsages The Groom
Grandmother Corsages The Bride’s Family
Groom’s Boutonniere The Groom
Groomsmen Boutonnieres The Groom
Usher’s Boutonnieres The Groom
Ceremony/Reception Flowers The Bride’s Family
Altar Baskets/Arches The Bride’s Family
Canopy/Carpet The Bride’s Family
Kneeling Bench/Candleabrahs The Bride’s Family
Rented Items for Wedding The Bride’s Family
Rented Items for Reception The Bride’s Family
Invitations/Announcements The Bride’s Family
Wedding Programs The Bride’s Family
Napkins/Matches/Printed Items The Bride’s Family
Marriage License The Groom
Medical Visit for Bride The Bride
Medical Visit for Groom The Groom
Church Fee The Bride’s Family
Clergyman/Officiant Fee The Groom
Musician/Soloist The Bride’s Family
Church Janitor The Bride’s Family
Reception Hall Fee The Bride’s Family
Catered Reception/Professional Services The Bride’s Family
Wedding Photography The Bride’s Family
Video Photography The Bride’s Family
Orchestra/Band/DJ The Bride’s Family
Wedding Cake The Bride’s Family
Wedding Favors The Bride’s Family
Groom’s Cake The Groom’s Family
Rice Bags The Bride’s Family
Rehearsal Dinner The Grooms Family
Bridesmaid Luncheon The Bride
Bachelor Party Best Man/Groom’s Attendants
Wedding Breakfast The Bride’s Family
Bridal Brunch The Bride’s Family
Bridesmaid’s Gowns Bridesmaid’s
Maid of Honor Gown Maid of Honor
Matron of Honor Gown Matron of Honor
Best Man Formal Wear Best Man
Usher’s Formal Wear Ushers
Groomsmen’s Formal Wear Groomsmen
Gloves/Ties/Ascots for Attendants The Groom
Father of Bride Formal Wear Bride’s Family
Father of Groom Formal Wear Groom’s Family
Children’s Formal Wear The Children’s Parents
Limousine Service The Groom
Honeymoon Arrangements The Groom
Travel Expenses to the Wedding The Out-of-town Attendant or Family Member
Accommodations for out-of town Guests The Bride
Gifts for the Couple Guest, Attendants and Family

Posted in Wedding | 1 Comment »

Powermat and Duracell Have Joined Forces

Posted by mikenopolis on October 7, 2011

I have been a fan of inductive charging even before my first Oral-B electric toothbrush in college. My father was a mechanical & electrical engineer and I have always tinkered with his tools and inventions. I was learning how to draw schematics of circuit boards by the time I was 6…really sad that he’s not around to “play” with me. Yes I had a pretty nerdy childhood which explains why I’m the way I am.

One of the things he showed me is that you can power a fluorescent light bulb without wires. I didn’t know the terminology of it since my father taught me in Chinese, but now I know the power source is a tesla coil, check out this YouTube video of the awesomeness!

As usual I went off on a tangent. Any way I think it was at the 2008 CES that a company called Powermat introduced their wireless charging “system” that was aimed to reduce cable clutter caused by chargers. Although I never had much clutter since I am anal about my cable management, being able to plop my phone down and it would start charging was intriguing. So when the system came out a year or so later I picked one up and have charged a lot of my gadgets with it. Yes it is a niche product and not for everyone. Recently I’ve seen their products being sold off as clearance items and picked up the iPhone 4 case which will fit the iPhone 4S that I will be purchasing. I had the iPhone 3GS case but never liked it much because of the soft touch finish (I hate that stuff since it rubs off over time). When I looked into the company I found an article about how they are joining up with Procter & Gamble (Duracell company). I hope this technology lives on and gets integrated into our products. I’m using a HP Veer at the moment and it does not need a separate case to be charged wirelessly with their “TouchStone” inductive charger.

Before the iPhone 4S was announced, I had hoped that this technology would have been built into the iPhone. I hope Steve Jobs vision was to have this in the future. Jonathan (Jony) Ive, have you been paying attention to this? Add this to iPhone 5 (6th version) if you can, it would be awesome and it would be “magical”!

Posted in Technology | Leave a Comment »

Steve Jobs, My Father & Cancer

Posted by mikenopolis on October 6, 2011

Title seems like I’m saying Steve Jobs IS my father. but no. My father will ALWAYS be more important to me.

I knew the day was coming, never thought it would be this soon. The death of Steve Jobs on October 5, 2011 made me tear up not only because I’m a fan of Apple Products (I’m not a fan boy! I have around 16 computers in two residence, only six are Macs two if which are too old to use, I would not be able to do my job without a PC) but because my father passed way years ago at the age of 55 of cancer also. Every time I saw Steve in the media I would tear up a little because he looked like he was deteriorating exactly as my father did. As shown in this picture below he looked like he was wasting away in front of the world. My father had lung cancer but had never smoked a day in his life. The doctor told him it might have been caused by the lead that is in solder (which he can’t get away from being an electrical & mechanical engineer). They removed the tumor, treated him with chemotherapy and radiation therapy, I was driving back and forth daily because my mother is too weak and physically handicapped to care for him those were really hard times and I was contemplating of quitting college, but instead I just took on a really light class load for about two years. The doctors gave him a clean bill of health and we were all happy. He got really thin as the years went by, but no cancer was detected until 4 years later. At this point tumors were showing up on film in his brain, liver, pancreas and lungs, he lost the battle about a year later.

Cancer is a horrible disease, I really hope there will one day be a cure for these death sentences. I’ll probably die from cancer and so will many of you. It is a slow, painful and annoying death. All the treatments they can offer with either help or prolong the agony. If I had a choice I rather be doing whatever and just be shot in the back of the head, it’s messy but it would be quick. I do not fear death, I fear pain.

For those who thinks Steve Jobs was a great innovator I have to agree with you, but he did not invent from the ground up, he took other’s failures, and improved upon them. A popular saying is that “Microsoft will get it right the third time, Apple gets it right the first time” the fact is, Apple sat and waited for Microsoft to screw up and learned from them before coming out with their own. I had plenty of Windows Mobile phones and HandSpring/Palm Treos before the iPhone. Those phones worked great, but the VISION of Steve Jobs put doubt in my mind as to how much better and easier it would’ve/should’ve been. The iPad is not the original tablet, years prior to their debut there were plenty of Windows based tablets, there were slates and convertibles and even some sliders. I’m STILL using my HP TC1100, in my opinion and limited budget, it is still the best device for 3D CAD use. The iPad has it’s limitations but it also can have a place in our everyday lives, this is what Steve Jobs was able to see.

I say “vision” because Steve Jobs didn’t actually make the products, he’s only the conductor. It is sad that we don’t know the team of people who actually had to work long hours to make all these products possible, those who took Steve’s ideas and vision into a physical form. To you Bill Gates and Microsoft lovers, do you remember DOS? If it wasn’t for Steve Job’s vision of a easy friendly user interface (GUI) there is a possibility that we would still be using a variation of DOS. Fonts? I can’t believe that was Jobs’ idea, we take it for granted because it’s been there this whole time. I’ve seen old news papers and ads and knew fonts existed prior to personal computers, I just didn’t think consumers were unable to change it on their computers at one point.

To all the people behind ALL the great products we use today, Thank You for making our lives easier and fancier. I hope we will one day have a leader like Steve Jobs. He will be missed.

Created by 19y/o design student Jonathan Mak of Hong Kong

I redid this awesome icon in the CLASSIC Color Apple rainbow icon with Steve Jobs’ silhouette a few different ways. Can’t believe Jonathank Mak made this prior (August 2011) to Jobs’ death! He made it after Jobs announced his resignation from his position as CEO. It would be cool if Apple used this icon as a memorial.

Same Icon - I made it into the classic icon color Black Border on Face

No Black Border

Black with White Glasses, Classic Color Logo

Posted in Apple, Computer, Family, iPhone, iPod, Mac, Technology | Leave a Comment »