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Breaking Down

I guess two years is the lifespan of consumer electronics in my posession. Yesterday, during a tour of the UW‘s steam power plant (quite the contraption!), I pulled out my Canon Powershot S45, only to be dismayed by a cracked LCD screen. This means that the best part of digital photography — instant gratification — is now completely missing from the experience. Furthermore, without the LCD screen, the camera’s settings are unknowable and it becomes pretty much useless outside of the automatic setting. This means no more creative pictures like the one below, which has been one of my favorite uses of this camera. :-(
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Bernie Explains Google Juice

For those of us out there that like to come in first, Bernie has decided to let us in on his Googlescious secrets. Leading the fray, he suggests lots of machine-readable links and generous use of the title attribute. From his prominence on topics such as The difference between Grey and Gray, it seems to have worked for him. In his famous style (at least its famous around here), Bernie has subtitled his post “Part I” — which of course promises more juicy secrets yet to come.

Powerless Steering

Monday morning, while cruising down Newport Way on my way to school, I heard a soft but distinct click from my truck’s engine. “What was that?” I wondered to myself. At the next turn, it quickly became aparent that all was not well with the truck — the power steering was gone. Finding nothing else in particular t be wrong, I continued on to school, partook a full days worth of classes, and then returned to the Eastside, all while yanking my steering wheel around like a madman trying to make turns that used to be easy. Before returning up the mountain, I stopped at the Eastgate Chevron to take a gander under the hood. My dad had earlier suggested that belt ight be the issue, and a quick peak revealed that he was right. The belt driving the power steering mechanism had been nearly severed and several large chunks were missing. I decided to meander across the way to the Schucks Auto Supply, where the friendly staff helped me find the right belt. I then powered my way up the mountain, where my dad was kind enough to help me replace the broken belt. Parking the truck afterwards was nearly effortless — I think power steering is a modern marvel most of us take for granted.

Saved By The Bell (Curve)

I dodged a bullet today in my Advanced Multivariable Calculus class. We got a chance to look at our second midterms today, and I was disappointed, but not surprised, to see that I scored only 25 out of 40 possible points on the test. I made one very stupid mistake that cost me four points, probably, but the rest of the missing points were because I didn’t know material. Fortunately for me, I was able to beat the curve anyway — the class average was another point lower than mine. I guess I am lucky in that my poorest performances are generally well within the mix of the average smart person, because there ain’t no dimwits among this group. Except, perhaps, for whoever the poor soul is who got the class low at 2 points. Hopefully this will provide me with sufficient motivation to study for the final, so that I actually learn all of the concepts I am supposed to get out of this class.

Super Dreary Sonics

On Tuesday, Maria and Maura suddenly had four tickets to the Sonics game, so they invited me along. Jon was stuck at work, so I called around and got Courtney to tag along as well. Yup, I went to a game with three hot girls; I’m that much of a stud.

At any rate, the company was much better than the game. The first three-and-a-half quarters were disgusting to watch. The Sonics were flat on their feet, lacked hustle, and lacked direction. I’m really starting to dislike the new coach, Bob Weiss, who seems to lack any competetive fire and doesn’t seem to do a very good coaching job either. For example, his substitutions seem (to me at least) just motions. Its like he’s substituing because, thats what a coach supposed to do, not because it actaully makes sense. For example, when he brought in Potapenko to replace Petro (who was doing fine), Vitaly went on to brick two easy shots (one should have been a dunk!). Furthermore, I think he needs to use the bench as role players, and give them specific direction when they come in.

For example, when Weiss brought in Radmanovic, Vladimir didn’t really know what to do with himself. First, he needed to establish his inside game — to go hard to the basket the first three or four times he got the ball. He’s fast and he needs to get respect for his drive before he establishes his mid and long-range game. Instead, he wandered around the court, threw the ball away, and hesitated at every opporunity. And speaking of hesitation, Nick Collison missed a couple of shots early and then stopped taking them, effectively removing him as a threat.

As a coach, Weiss should have seen this and pulled him aside and told him, I want you to take the shot the next two tims you touch the ball. Collison is a good player with a strong mid-range game — there’s no reason for him to stop shooting after missing a couple. But instead of seeing him make any good decisions, I saw Weiss take a poorly-timed timeout, argue a call which the ref had clearly called properly (perhaps this was his atttempt to fire up the team?), and generally look unhappy and fat in the process. I want Nate back.

After the game, I ended up getting a ride bak to my truck with Courtney. Before, Maria and Maura had picked me up from the U-Disctrict in her very nice Impreza RS 2.5 — complete with leather! However, I left my backpack in Maria’s car. The girls dropped it off with Jon, and when I went to pick it up, we ended up talking for a long time about stuff that I mostly didn’t really care about. I finally just had to say, “talk later” and take off, since on Wednesday, I had a wonderful Math Midterm (#2!) to take. Well, long story short… I have no idea how I did, other than the fact that I’m pretty sure I missed at least a quarter of the points. ><

Inspired By Bernie

Well, Bernie’s at it again. He’s done gone and inspired me to upgrade my site. I can’t imagine it was even intentional. Anyway, I think the new category heatmap page is especially cool, as are the newfangled permalinks (although the old ones still work!). I had tried to get this sort of permalink with WP 1.2 several times before, but it always broke my feeds. That doedn’t seem to be a problem with WP 1.5. Additionally, I moved my burgeoning archives to their own page, freeing up room in the sidebar for a recent comments section. This recent comments section is actually where I started this whole update process, after making this comment at Bernzilla. FYI, I made my first WordPress plugin to get the recent comments the way I wanted them — its called “Bernzilla Comments.” I hope you don’t mind, Bernie. Inspiring!

Most Brutal 14-Credit schedule ever?

This is what you get when you take a UW senior with no major and four courses with labs and shake vigorously at 6:00am. At least I’m now in my first Bioengineering class.

   Monday       Tuesday    Wednesday   Thursday       Friday    
 8:30  BIOEN 201 A
PAA A114
 9:30    CHEM 241 AD
CHB 128
HCK 144
CHB 128
 12:30  BIOL 220 A
BAG 131
BIOL 220 A
BAG 131
BIOL 220 A
BAG 131
BIOL 220 A
BAG 131
 2:30  CHEM 238 A
KNE 120
  CHEM 238 A
KNE 120
SAV 245
CHEM 238 A
KNE 120
 3:30  CHEM 241 A
KNE 130
 4:30    BIOEN 201 AE
WIL 070
 6:00 p         
 6:30 p         
 7:00 p