Friday, October 31, 2008

Why I Want To Go Into Usability Design


Mister Apple clan master said it best:

"Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it
works." -- Steve Jobs, The New York Times, 2003
And seeing as there are so many things that just don't behave the way they're suppose, I'm sure I'll be in for a lifetime of work.

Beaver Kid Wants You To Party Safe


Be weary when accessorizing electronics on your costume during this year's especially rainy Halloween. I had originally planned to be an iPod Touch, but that plan has now moved onto Tibetan ninja.

Eames Fiberglass Chairs Are Comfy, Really


They might look just like it was taken from a grade school chair thrown onto a tripod (although that's what it is, really), it's actually a pretty comfortable chair to sit in. I'm not suggesting any book reading or extensive gaming, now, but if you're looking for a new occasional chair this Christmas, this one will fulfill both duties of being both an art piece and a guest chair.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Gus* Modern Makes A Timber Side Table


For $235, I can do much more than buy an acrylic box with white paint on it. Like buy 400 pairs of socks.

Uncharted: Drake's Fortune (PS3) Review


A bit of an oldie, but I just got through it just a few days ago. The critics are pretty on-point with this one; it's one of the best PS3 games out there. With a great mix of adventure, superior facial animation, splendid graphics, and a mashup of Gears of War gameplay and Tomb Raider cliffhangers, you have a combination that's set to rival even the highest production adventure movies. One small gripe is that one playthrough does it enough justice, so I'd suggest getting it used to save yourself some dough. It's truly worth it though, as this one comes with two thumbs up from me. 9.3/10.

Patty Hou Pei Chen Introduces The New Blogcast


As you may have noticed, I've done a bit of an overhaul from what used to be the most minimalistic blog on the planet (or dullest-looking, your pick). One thing you'll probably notice is that no links really work up top, there are tons of dead space I need to take care of, and the numbering lists don't work for shit. Still quite rusty on the XML, so this might take a while.

Otherwise, enjoy and let me know what you guys think!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Three Days Worth of Weather


Amazing art from one of my favorite sites for user-generated art: I Am Still Alive. It's ashame this print is sold out - it's so urban and contemporary, love it!

My Wall Framing Obsession


It's not as bad as this guy's, but pretty darn close.

Monday, October 27, 2008

UPDATED: Stream Any Type of Video To PS3


Watch any subbed anime, movie, or TV show on your PS3 now.

  1. Uninstall any codec packs you have on your computer.
  2. Download TVersity without their included codec pack.
  3. Install FFDShow Tryout rev1726 0071224 from here.
  4. Grab the MP4 Splitter: here. (For better MOV support, get Quicktime Alternative)
  5. Grab the FLV Splitter: here.
  6. Grab the "Gabest" splitter: here
    1. Install Gabest, MP4, and FLV Splitter by hand:
      Use "Release Unicode" if you're running XP.
    2. Extract and to C:\windows\system32.
    3. Start > Run > Type "cmd"
      cd C:\windows\system32
      (You can uninstall with: regsvr32 /u
  7. Go to ffdshow video decoder settings.
    1. Enable Subtitles.
    2. Make sure the following are checked:
      Accept embedded subtitles
      Accept SSA, ASS, and ASS2 subtitles (experimental)
      Decode closed captions
  8. TVersity Tweaks
    1. General > Media Sharing Device > Playstation 3.
    2. Transcoder > Always Transcode
    3. Use 1280x720 res, optimize Quality, Wired, and Minimum compression.
  9. Further Tweaks
    1. Edit profiles.xml in install directory with Notepad.
    2. Search "Playstation" and look a few lines below it.
    3. Change the following from mpeg16 to mpeg2.
    4. video="video/mpeg2" photo="image/jpeg"
      onlineAudio="audio/mpeg" onlineVideo="video/mpeg2" onlinePhoto="image/jpeg"
      adjustReadStartPos="false" audioFailFutureSeek="false" videoFailFutureSeek="true" />
  10. Even More Tweaks
    1. Start > Control Panel > Windows Firewall Settings/Security Settings > Exceptions Tab > Add Program > Search your TVersity directory for mediaserver.exe
  11. Enjoy media streaming to the max! You now have the ability to stream every single type of media file to your PS3 (except Real format, who uses that anyway?).
Note: These instructions work only if you're running Windows XP Professional SP3. If you're running Windows Vista, run the regsvr32 in the Start Search Bar instead of going into the command prompt. Also, if you're having trouble starting the service, consider creating a user password and then going into services.msc and enabling the Tversity service to log in as your specific user name on your computer, instead of Local system (this applies to ALL USERS, not just Vista users).

Adobe Creative Suite 4 Master Collection Review


After about 20 hours of testing out the software, I must say Adobe's latest update to their ever growing list of production and design software just isn't enough to throw a new number on it's collection. Especially in a recession, I doubt anyone's going to shell out $3000 to get a few minor tweaks in interface design and gimmicks (sounds a bit like Vista, don't it?). So word to the wise, don't upgrade unless you have to. 7.0/10.

Williams Sonoma Sure Can Design A Package


Makes me want to take off my clothes and start a pound cake baking session.

This Week Is Officially Game Week


With so many big name releases in one week, I'm going to have to try really hard to just keep my pants on! Some may believe video games play no role in an adult's development during these trying times, but you know what? The Rooster never let pinkys-up, opinionated tools of the trade tell him what to do - that's right - he knows life's only worth living when there's no hesitation between fun and future. Because, well, fun = the future (or at least that's what Japan's been telling me).

Sunday, October 26, 2008

The Incredible Hulk Review


Yes, the one with Edward Norton. While there will gripe that the special effects were more corny than the first one, anyone who actually experienced that horrendous effort by Ang Lee will agree this Cloverfield-like makeover of the classic Hulk was much needed one, though not without faults. For instance, it's hard to satisfy and justify audiences looking for sheer entertainment and others looking for a polished gem like Iron Man. The movie hits the right in-between, with littered bits of awkward humor, references to the future Marvel series, and a cheesy love story to give Hulk more reason to smash. Overall, it was a fairly entertaining bit - as incredibly loosely edited as it was - worth a watch if you're looking to fill in that Marvel collection with the right movie this time around. 7.9/10.

Friday, October 24, 2008

That's Paris For You


Finally, my first Tech Tour! And it's not too shabby either! Come leave me comments and check out the sweet slideshow of the apartment.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Look! More Free Expensive Crap


This round, it's an Audio Research AV100b - an all-in-one tabletop radio with iPod docking powers. And if you know AR, they're audiophile money eaters times ten. Enter the giveaway now and get yours for free.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Computer Front Panel Connector Leads


Those new to computer building can probably appreciate this one: When identifying leads for the front panel connectors, rainbow colors tend to be the + and white/black are usually the - ends. If you're stuck with black and white, black becomes the + end. That is all.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Devin Makes Love Makin' Easy As Pie


Peep this track because it's hot. Hot like Costco pizza on an overcast Monday.

Devin the Dude - I Can't Make It Home (MP3)

Hello, Maybe Does It Nasty


It's trendwhore revival taken to another level! And it's in portable notepad form. More nasty here.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Top 5 Things You Can Buy That Won't Depreciate Within 1 Year


Of course you'll end up losing a little bit, but not so far as 50% or more. Know of more? Do let me know, I'm getting that placebo fat wallet effect this month before Black Friday.

  1. Apple iPhone: Jailbreaking an iPhone (a somewhat legal action) can mean lots of extra cash if you know what you're doing. Sometimes, you'll end up getting more for it in return than what you paid for.
  2. Apple Macbook laptops: If you check the eBay resale value on these things, the numbers are incredibly encouraging. Especially if you're in school, you'll be able to check out with their sweet educational discounts and then break completely even by the end of the first year.
  3. IKEA furniture: Despite their reputation of being "flimsy" and "cheap," IKEA products are at the top tier in Craigslist furniture searches. If you buy it used and sell it used, in most cases you'll be able to break even or lose $10-$20 max.
  4. Video games: Do your research before buying a video game. There are tons of review sites out there right now where you can check out reviews before taking the plunge. The higher the rating, the more likely you'll get 80% back from your investment.
  5. Designer furniture: Ever see an ad for a sofa and people are forcefully trying to get rid of stuff so they can upgrade? Won't happen with a name every interior designer knows. A $2000 chair will sell for $1800 years down the line.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Urban Outfitters, A Girl With A Long Shirt


So what kept me from pulling the trigger on this absolutely stunning shot for $40? Well, let's just say, I'm looking for models with nice legs starting... now.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

DIY: Playstation 3 HDD Upgrading, Save Game Backups


A meticulous and frustrating task may drive one nuts when doing it without a guide. Let's avoid that step by reading some guides.

If you're looking to upgrade your PS3 internal hard drive, you'll need to prep. You need first backup your save data because after a clean wipe, you're never seeing them again. You can do this by plugging in a USB stick (2GB should be more than sufficient) and copying over the save files directly onto the drive. This process usually tosses it onto the main folder so you'll need to plug it back into your PC and move the files manually to the following folder (X:\PS3\SAVEDATA).

As for the actual hard drive removal process, you can read the guide at GamersReports.

After installing your new HDD, you may plug it back in, go into your save data folder on the PS3, press triangle, and copy back over the old save files.

Orb Mod1 Plus System Giveaway


Ain't nothing like a $999 sound system giveaway to jetstart your week. To enter, need to be a member of Apartment Therapy (free to sign-up) and you'll have to tell us your favorite movie soundtrack in the comments. We'll pick a winner at random Oct. 21, 2008.

JL Audio Fathom 113 Shatters Records, Windows, Kittens' Eardrum


Nothing like an oversized 376lb, 13.5" glossy black subwoofer burning a $3500 hole in your wallet. If you can swallow that, then know this, curious friend - this is the best in its class. At least as of October 2008, it is. High marks from all of the top audio magazines for being the most accurate subwoofer ever made. I'm going to check out one of these tomorrow morning in person. And don't worry, I brought my Girl Talk CD just in case all they have is 3 Doors Down.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

In My Dreams, I See Eames & Sapien


And it gets the girlfriend all jealous and stuff.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Design Tip, Use A Chair As A Bookshelf


You don't have to throw away money for a new bookself if you have some nice looking chairs laying around. A simple wooden one will work nicely. A finished one, even better. Just stack them up, the more eye-catching the better, from largest on the bottom to smallest on top. Instant AT treatment.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

From Visublog With Love


Nothing like some mecha-Japan body part explosions and gitty anime girls. One of the most incredible art blogs I've ever seen. More of that over here.

The Most Important Election In History


There's no doubt the Obama-terrorist references and racial slurs thrown at McCain-Palin rallies have become the center of attention these past few days. Surely, this is probably the most involved many Americans have ever been as well.

Obama is right. Our economy is in shambles ever since Bush handed over all economic power to some boys in his hood and fucked it all up. We're continuing a mighty fucked up war overseas - I have a few friends stationed over there - that sees no end in sight. I haven't seen this many people pissed off in a very long time.

Then again, I haven't seen so much polarized ignorance rear its head into public light either. Must be a hot topic. Nonetheless, it's pretty damn disgusting to see people screaming, "Obama is a terrorist!" all over at McCain-Palin rallies.

Moral of the story? Register to vote, and be sure to cross your fingers, hoping no Jesus matyrs try to pull off a MLK stunt before elections even take place.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Sete Dias = Seven Days


Really feelin' the designs from this blog over here. Jaw droppin' creativity for yo weekend blues.

Skull Lover, Stephan Balleux


Every rock star or fashion aficionado loves skulls. Stephan Balleux is no different. He just takes it up a few psychedelic notches.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Photographers Like It Raw


The uncompressed RAW image format allows unrivaled control over your finished product. With RAW, you can effectively go back to the scene of the shoot and re-adjust the exposure, change the white balance, alter the contrast and make dozens of other tweaks that JPEG files don't allow for. Lightroom 2 takes care of most of this and streamlines to process - which means less Photoshop and more lens time. A full tutorial can be found here.

Digital Lomography Made Easy


Simulate the effects of a lomo camera, you need to adjust digital photos with high contrast, twisted colors, and a noticeable vignette. This can be done via Photoshop and some patience; the results are downright spectacular. Get the guide here.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Ryu's Back For More


Looks good, no? Finally a true sequel - none of that Puzzle Fighter crap. Although, I must say, I'm getting pretty good at the downloaded demo off the PSN. Any challengers?

Another Day In Paradise


There are points in a man's life where breaking something in half becomes a viable option. Like when a lightswitch fails to work no matter how many times you replace the circuit and bulbs. Or when you purchased a brand new car just to realize someone keyed it a few hours later. Or maybe you have a Gigabyte P965-DS3 motherboard that just doesn't know when to stop cold booting, no matter how many times you try to reset the jumper settings and CMOS battery. Yeah, today is one of those days. At least I have this guide and HardOCP to help me set everything back to normal.

Feelings, In Two Words Or Less


Hats off to the uber-intelligent folks at who have, in just two words, so eloquently captured how we are all feeling about the current state of the financial markets.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

We All Stay The Same


Along with their blazing electro-indie sound from Kitsune comes some motion graphics for your face! It's time to grab some turkey and dance.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Like Nylon Skates, Anouck Bertin Causes The Friction


Anouck Bertin has one of the most stylized fashion photography styles I've ever seen. From models yawning, eating cereal, and wearing huge nylon bunny ears, he's got it all. Kinda makes me want to start my own site portfolio.

I Love Ice Cream People


And it's not because they're just sugary and sweet, either. I love them because anything with crispy cones on the outside and juicy filling on the inside will always make the money.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Vintage Is The New Black, Yo


Because, like, new stuff doesn't have that butt wear-and-tear that we all know and love.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Candied Pistachios Recipe


What tastes better on ice cream than sprinkles or mochi? Pistachios, of course! Here's a quick recipe do make some in case you're looking to create something special out of boring ol' vanilla.

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons hot water
  • 1/4 cup shelled (that means get rid of the shells) pistachios
  • 1 tablespoon turbinado sugar
Preheat the oven to 350. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. In a bowl, stir the granulated sugar with the hot water. Add the pistachios and turbinado sugar; stir to coat. Spread the pistachios on the cookie sheet and bake until crisp, about 8 min­utes. Let cool, then break into pieces.

Ping Pong Review


Before that terrible piece of trash, Balls of Fury, was Ping Pong, a stylistically stunning piece of work that doesn't rely on special effects to get its great story across. Though at times, the male macho-ness becomes a bit overbearing, but you'll eventually find it's much bigger than that - it's about male social hierarchies and the benefits of knowing your place (and showing your place). It's about friends, protagonists, and the pursuit of happiness. Overall, highly entertaining and well directed. 8.3/10.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Unplggd Hits The 1/2 Million Mark


It's a month of celebration, stress, and nods. Yes, Unplggd just hit uh... what's it called that's more than platinum, but less than errr... well, whatever it is, I'm psyched to see the site moving forward. Though now, the bad part is that I really gotta watch out for that Grammar Nazi more than ever; the internet can be so ruthless.

Dolls Review


If you're not familiar with Takeshi Kitano's films, one word of advice is approach them with the expectation of being faced with surreal themes, long artistic shots, and strange story techniques that turn the movie into a dream-like reality rather than entertainment. Dolls is definitely no different. Following themes of transgression and punishment, you follow the story of a couple who experience what it is like to lose someone. Through a close watch, you'll notice themes of sacrifice, sadness, and regret as well. Surely, not the most optomistic piece, but it's truth about love, the emotionally brutal reality that can even be witnessed in a play using dolls, is all too tragic to be ignored. 7.7/10.

Friday, October 03, 2008

How To Live Like A Broke Ass College Student


Here's a starter: find honeybomb cardboard, stack them, and use it as your bedframe. The rest at NYT.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Bomberman Ultra Comes To PSN


This Winter, supposedly. I can't wait to blast all my roommates and friends. Shit, I need more controllers! More info here.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Hello There, Beautiful


Probably not the best idea to drop so many bills with graduate school applications lingering in the distance, but you got to admit - the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX3 gives me more sex appeal... like immediately. Anyway, it should at least keep me occupied until that new Macbook remodel or DS Lite update comes along later this year.

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