Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Last minute heartbroken!

The Australian Socceroo played so well vs Italian in the match. And with one red card to the Italian, Socceroo has 11 players against Italian's 10. There were many good opportunities for Australian to score especially in the second half!

At the very last minute, Italian is awarded with a penalty, which didn't really seem very justifying with what happened in my biased and ignorant opinion, and it was a goal!!!!!

What a anticlimax way to lose the match for Australia! The world cup is over for Aussies. :- (

My housemate is very upset and her MSN becomes:
"suddenly the World Cup is meaningless - WTH!! penalty shot for Italy, bloody unfair!!!"

Haha! Well, I don't think I'll stay up late to watch the soccer anymore until probably the final. Hopefully I won't dream of that disheartening penalty tonight....

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Work at Home Scam

Email spams are getting rather out of control lately. I get several of those spams into my uni inbox everyday, slipped through the department spam filter.

I got another one today and since it's Saturday morning and I'm rather happy, I check it out and see what kind of crap these spammers actually offers besides viagra.

So I copy the link and paste it into my firefox browser.

Everything on that website sounds pretty sensible. Like they are offering real job for people living in Australia with a valid bank account to work for them as a payment processing manager, and get 10% commission for each transaction, not bad at all! Sounded too good to be true to me, so I googled it and found this website:

Work at Home Scam: The check or funds processing business and how to analyze a check/funds processing scam letter:

"Never, ever, EVER cash a check for a stranger.
Never, ever, EVER accept any funds on behalf of someone else. Period.
Never, ever, EVER accept funds from one party and send them off to another. That is money laundering.

By accepting funds on behalf of another party you are taking full, legal, and responsible possession of those funds. Are you sure this is the kind of business you want to engage in with a complete stranger thousands of miles away?"

A good read and have me staying alert on internet scams! By the way, I include the website from the email for your reading pleasure:

Thursday, June 22, 2006

What is your Perfect Major?

You scored as Psychology. You should be a Psychology major!





























What is your Perfect Major? (PLEASE RATE ME!!)
created with QuizFarm.com

David China holiday

My housemate David went back to China today. I sent him to airport in the morning after getting the apple struddel. In his absence for the next 30 days, these photos shall remind me of him.

Talking about these photos, they were taken using the PhotoBooth program on Apple iMac. The new Apple computers are such beautiful piece of work. It comes with a built-in camera on top of the LCD screen. Hmm... screen... it looks like a screen but it's actually the whole computer with DVD burner on the side of the 'screen' and the whole CPU in the 'screen'. The mouse and keyboard are just as elegent. Oh, it also has a remote control for music!!
And the interface on is also so cleanly beautiful.

Oh, back to the PhotoBooth program, it has real time effect built in (to the hardware I think), so all these shape change and pencil effects are rendered in real time!
If not because it costs ~$2000, I'll get one.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Morphing Out of Identity Politics: Black or White and Terminator 2

I'm going to give a demo talk to some gifted children with other CSSE people on Thursday. So I was searching for interesting demo to raise interests on the kids and I found this nice piece of article about image morphing and film making from a American literature researcher's point of view.

Bad Morphing Out of Identity Politics: Black or White and Terminator 2 by Ron Alcalay

Automatic Photo Pop-up by CMU group

Stumbled upon this press release through Engadget.

Carnegie Mellon Researchers Teach Computers To Perceive Three Dimensions in 2-D Images

They even have Matlab code available on their Automatic Photo Pop-up page. Sure to try it out sometimes.

The paper:
D. Hoiem, A.A. Efros, and M. Hebert, "Automatic Photo Pop-up", ACM SIGGRAPH 2005.

Monday, June 12, 2006

iCalendar Plugin for Outlook

I was searching for an alexking.org: Blog > iCalendar Plugin for Outlook? so I can "subscribe" to my google calender from Outlook instead of "import" it.
Somehow Mozilla Sunbird does not work on my machine. And I was thinking ahead on getting a new mobile phone which can synchronise with my calander on PC. And more would support Outlook I thought...

Found Remote Calendars which claims to do the job. The installation is a bit of a pain. Need to download the bulky .NET Framework 2.0 and its installation took a long time too (~10mins).

And eventually, I found out that it needs Office 2003 to run, and I have a Office XP which is 2002! Crap! Wasted my time.
There's another way that involves signing up to a third party website to read the iCal and it has a program to sync with Outlook but need to connect to their server... Too many sign up to do, I'm not that desperate yet.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006



Lots of 06 this morning

Did you missed it this morning to see this on your digital clock?

06:06:06 06/06/06

Bob in my lab said: "Orh! I missed it, but I don't miss it."

Monday, June 05, 2006

AMWA Agung's trophy GOlf Tournament

I was flat out over the weekends helping out in the AMWA golf event. It was tiring, but it was a great success, so we were all pleased.

The golfing ground is in Mandurah, at Meadow Spring Golf and Country Club. It's about 45mins drive from Perth.

Saturday morning, we went there to put the prizes and goody bags together. Terry, Nirmaljit and Peter got a lot of sponsors. Tourism Malaysia provided the bag, inside there are AMWA cap, Gatorade drink, spring water, chocolate, nougat, pen and even curry sauce! So every golfer gets a goody bag.
Besides that every golfer gets a prize ranging from golf bag plus some dinner vouchers worth $500 for first place to toaster, umbrella, heater, wine, t-shirt, etc. for the not so pro.
The lucky draw was impressive too with MAS KL return ticket and many free hotel stays and dinner vouchers.
For me, I didn't play golf, and I didn't get the raffle tickets. But I got a beautiful tourism Malaysia writing notebook and pen, and AMWA cap and T-shirt. Happy.

The packing was quite quick as we had a more than 10 people from AMWA helping up. When that was done, we came back to Perth and was just in time to go to the Agung birthday celebration organised by the Malaysia consulate. It was at the Technopark in Curtin. Good food with some cultural performance. I met an old tassie friend Alvin there and caught up with some chat, some bad news and some good news...

Then Sunday is the actual golf day. It was scheduled to tee-off at 9am. Registration at 8am. We need to get there by 7:30am. So, I met up with Jackson, our treasurer who will drive down at 6:30am. So I had to leave home at 6am to get to the meeting place!!! It was early for me, even though I've started a healthy lifestyle change recently to sleep at 11pm every day.
Anyway, we got there in time and the event started off quite smoothly, except that we forgot to take a group photo before the golfers rushed off to teir game. I was the photographer for the day, so I guess I could have taken a more active role to make sure the group photo would happen. Note taken.
I wasn't assigned any position except for taking photos. But my two sets of batteries still failed me!! One set go flat before we even started, so I put in the other fully charged set, and took the flat set to charge. Within 30 photos, the battery light started flashing again?!! It was fully charged, about a week ago and I didn't expect it to depleted that soon. But anyway, I had to ask Jackson to drive me out to the town to get a set of normal AA battery.
It was good because he need to buy some raffle tickets too, and we had to wait for 20mins for Coles to open. So we had some free time there to grab some brekky. I had a turkish bread from Baker's Delight. It was so so delicious!! :a

When we got back, there were some rice dumplings there made by Shirley, the wife of AMWA vice president. That dumplings fed my desire for it since dragonboat festival a week ago. Then it came the interesting part of the day, we set off to the greens on an electric-powered golf buggy. I was stationed at hole 11 (par 3) where we had a $10 bull's eye competition. I was there to check if anyone's ball landed within 1.5m around the hole. If that happens the person will win the pool of money. So I was there checking, taking photos, cheering and chatting with the golfers as well as playing with the cool buggy.

That was about the exciting part of the day. Later we had lunch there and the prize giving. Lunch wasn't too fantastic, it was only ok. The guitarist/singer/amcee Scott Quak was legendary! He sings pretty well, plays the guitar and have a great sense of humour. When we were waiting for the final scoring, he was cracking jokes non-stop for more than 15mins, one followed by another! Amazing. And the crowd responded with tearful laughters.

The whole event concluded at about 5pm due to the scoring delay. I can't belief they don't have computer program to calculate the score. Anyway, I was pretty exhausted by the end of it. Jackson drove me back to our meeting place. It was dark again when I reach home.
My housemate was considerate enough to spare me from cooking dinner. So we went out to a vietnamese restaurant on Roe street for dinner. I had a raw beef Pho, and it was very satisfying. Dead tired though.

The photos of the day are up at AMWA website.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Google has an office in Sydney

Official Google Blog: On the map Down Under

It'd be nice to work there, wouldn't it?

However, what prompted me to blog this was the fact that the photo on that page is a .gif file!! You would expect Googler to know ".png is better than .gif", and "use jpeg for photos" rules of thumb, wouldn't you?