Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Midterm Exams

The students at Notre dame are currently undergoing midterm exams from Dec 12-18. Goodlucks! 4 down, 1 more to go for me!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Mouse Hits 40

The computer mouse is hitting it's 40th anniversary tomorrow after first being unveiled by Douglas Engelbart in 1968. The original mouse, featuring two wheels set at right angles to each other, allowed the computer to plot the distance when each wheel moved. Four years later, Xerox PARC came up with a ball mouse, which is still popular today. One of Engelbart's famous quotes was, "the better we get, the better we get at getting better." The first mouse ever made was made out of wood and had only a single button to highlight text on a written document. As of today, many companies have developed newer and more efficient mouses for computing or gaming.


We have been working with Python for several weeks now, and have started simple programming. For example, programming Python to add three numbers together, calculating average speed and a number counter using increments. Although recently there was a release of the 3.0 version of Python, our class will not be using it anytime soon. The reason being, there haven't been a lot of significant changes. We will be sticking with Python 2.6 for the time being.

Did you know? Major applications are created with Python, one being, Youtube.

Monday, December 8, 2008

$10.5M Upgrade for Science World

The B.C. government has decided to give Science World BC $10.5 million for upgrades and a new outdoor science park. Science World is a non-profit organization which promotes science and technology and is planning to build a 7,803-square-meter park with this money. The park will explore science and sustainbility, including ideas such as clean energy and earth science. Science World was orginally the site of Expo 86 and 3 years later, Science World opened on the same location. Now called Telus World of Science, it attracts more than 525,000 visitors annually, as well as 180,000 children, educators and parents a year through its outreach program.

Adult Gamers?

According to a study, 81 percent of Americans between the ages of 18 and 29, 60 percent of adults ages 30-49 and 23 percent of adults age 65 and over are gamers. A third of these adults reported playing daily, more than 20 percent of younger gamers. Computer-based games were the most popular among the adult age group, with 73 percent. Aside from the adult gamers study, they found out that 50 percent of women and an astonishing 97 percent of teenagers also reported being gamers.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

The Cars of the Future

Honda became the first manufacturer to complete production of the first commercial hydrogen-fuel-cell vehicle, the FCX Clarity. The car runs on a 100-kilowatt V Flow fuel-cell stack, which works by converting chemical energy into electrical energy to power the car. Unlike electric cars, this car does not need recharging. Of course, it all comes at a cost. Only 200 have been hand made, costing hundreds of thousands of dollars each and already two have been bought by well-known people. Actress Jamie Lee Curtis and Japan's Ministry of the Environment are both happy customers. The United Kingdom's Morgan Motor Company is also developing a similar car called the LIFE car, which is a lightweight fuel-efficient car based on the chassis of the company's Aero 8 model.

The Lightning GT is shown above which is also another electric car, which does 0-60 in less than four seconds.

Vaccine to Inhitbit HIV

Within 5 years, a vaccine will be developed to inhibit the spread of HIV, according to a Nobel Prize-winning scientist, Luc Montagnier, who helped discover the virus. He expects a vaccine will be availible within "a matter of four to five years" to change how the disease is managed and controlled. This vaccine would be given to those who are already infected to prevent the likelihood of transmission to other people. About 33 million people across the world have been infected with HIV.

Apple Hits 300 Million

According to Apple, they have reached the 300 million milestone on application downloads, almost five months after the Application Store went live. An insider notes that it took Apple 2 months to hit the first 100 million and then a month a half for each of the next hundreds. It is also estimated that there are about 25 million iPhones and iPod touches out on the market, which could potentially mean each person is downloading up to 15 applications per device, which s by far higher than any other mobile device.

It is rumoured that Apple has made connections with Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and they will start selling the two Apple iPhones models for $199 and $299. Apple may also offer the discontinued 4G iPhone for $99, as it is being discontinued.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Starbucks Product RED

Starting December 1st, every Starbucks Coffee Company worldwide will be teaming up with (RED)TM to help save lives in Africa. By participating in Product Red, anytime one of the Starbucks Christmas Trio Beverages (Espresso Truffle, Peppermint Mocha/White Mocha Twist, Gingersnap Latte) are purchased, 5 cents from each beverage sold will be donated to Product Red. It's Christmas, so why not get a hot, cozy, holiday drink AND save lives in Africa at the same time? It's wonderful! If we all do our part, many lives will be saved. 5 cents may not seem like a lot, but think about it. How many Starbucks do you see alone in Vancouver? Think about all the Starbucks WORLDWIDE. It all adds up. So hey! Why not swing by where I work? It's just right off Gilmore station. Let's all do our part to make the world a better place.

Starbucks Ad:

Monday, December 1, 2008

Left 4 Dead

On November 21, 2008, Valve (the creators of Counter-Strike, Half-Life and more) released Left 4 Dead, a new kind of action game for the PC and Xbox 360™ that features single player, co-op and multiplayer game modes. Set in the immediate aftermath of the zombie apocalypse, L4D offers four expansive "movie campaigns" that challenge you and your fellow survivors to battle thousands of swarming zombies as you travel across the rooftops of an abandoned metropolis, through rural ghost towns and pitch-black forests. In addition to the movie campaigns, Left 4 Dead features a Versus mode that allows you to play as the Boss Zombies. New technology dubbed "the AI Director" is used to generate a unique gameplay experience every time you play. The Director tailors the frequency and ferocity of the zombie attacks to your performance, adjusting pacing, special effects and audio on the fly.


Actual Gameplay:

LAX Aircraft Monitor

Thanks to the great minds of individuals and the amazing technology we have today, people have created an aircraft monitor that monitors aircrafts coming in and out of one of the most major airports in the world, Los Angeles Internation Airport (LAX). This program allows us to take a look at where aircrafts are heading to and where they are coming from. It even has a 80 mile radius. Take a look if you don't believe its true! Try it out here: LAX Monitor

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

This week, we will be starting to work with Python 2.6, which is a dynamic-oriented programming language that can be used for many kinds of software development. Python works on Windows, Linux/Unix, Mac OS X, OS/2, Amiga, Palm Handhelds, and Nokia mobile phones. It is distributed under an open source license meaning, it is free to use, even for commercial products. We will be receiving a "Hello World!" program to run at home and then a booklet of several problems.

Wow! Even NASA uses Python!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Twilight - The Movie

On November 21st, 2008, the widely anticipated best seller series Twilight, came out with their first movie. Twilight, the title of the first book of the 4 book series by Stephenie Meyers, is a popular read among teenagers. Although the romance novel captures more of a teenage girl's perspective and thus, being more popular among teenage girls, it does not exclude guys. I do not know of many guys who read this, but I do and I find it to be an exceptional book. I am currently on the 3rd book of the 4 books and cannot wait until I get to finish the series. I went to see Twilight on opening night with excitement but disappointingly, we ended up sitting in the 2nd row of the theatre. But even more disappointing was the movie. The movie was clearly based on the novel itself, but instead of directing the movie into a perspective where everyone would understand, it was developed in a sense that you would only understand the movie if you had read the book in advance. Though the movie did have its high points, movie critics, reviews and ratings have not been so generous. It had an average rating of 3/5.

Synopsis and Summary of Twilight (CONTAINS SPOILERS):

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

iPhone: Games Make Big Dollars

Have you ever wanted to make big bucks by just practically having fun? Well, former ATM software designer for a large bank, Demeter, did just that. He created a game called "Trism" as a applicaton for the popular Apple iPhone. Priced at under $5, he and his company made $250,000 in profits for the first two months. Wow, amazing isn't it!

Here's a link if you want to read more about it: Trism iPhone Article

Friday, November 14, 2008


The OLPC XO is a unique portable machine with features created specifically for children of the emerging world. They have developed this "laptop" to try and pursue their goal of one laptop per child. It is a very distinctive machine that is rugged, durable and child-friendly allowing the child to interact with the laptop he or she desires. Children who get this laptop programs the machine, not the other way around. The laptop also has a user interface that graphically embraces the spirit of the network. It is all about community and collaboration—working and playing together to learn, create and communicate. OLPC G1G1 (give one get one) is a promotion that is going to be expanding to Europe sometime next week.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Remembrance Day

It's that time of the year again. It is the time where we remember all the lives that have been taken in order for us to live with the freedom we have today. On Monday, November 10, at Notre Dame Regional Secondary Vancouver BC, we had an assembly to remember all these courageous and dignified people. We started off by having skits performed on how losing a life can affect families, friends and even the country as a whole. The assembly then proceeded with a number of slides and clips of movies, as well as more skits. All in all, the assembly turned out very well and it was a very nice way to remember everyone who lost lives in wars for our freedom.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Visual Basic

This week, we started to work with a new coding program called Visual Basic or "VB" for short. It is similar to Turbo Pascal in a sense that we have to write our own underlying codes, though it is different in responsive events. As a class, we were introduced how to operate basic events such as creating a form, adding labels and commands. We will continue to be working with this program for some time and this blog will continually update.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Microsoft Announces New Operating Systems

Yesterday(Oct 27, 2008). Microsoft unveiled details of two new operating systems. Currently the most commonly used Microsoft operating systems are Windows XP and Windows Vista. Although frequently criticized, often by those who never use it, Vista is actually a very stable, rich environment in which to work. Particularly when used with up to date machines.

Nevertheless, Microsoft has decided to press ahead with successors for Vista. In late 2009, Windows 7 will be released. It will be much like Vista. Around the same time Microsoft will release Windows azure, an operating system that lives on Microsoft servers. This is called cloud computing. "Cloud" being the internet. Basically this means that you will not need an operating system or programs: they will all live in the cloud.

Whether this works out or not remains to be seen. However, many companies are already trying this, both with Microsoft and with Google products.

"Cloud" computing is one of the most and used technology buzz words at present.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

ICT 12 Student Blogs

Ava Balingit
Ryan Battistel
Sofia Busse
Nicole Ceralde
Nathan Chiu
Jonathan De Maeseneer
Danila Di Giacinto
Lia Estrellado
Kimberly Francisco
Dilantha Geekiyanage
Nikko Henderson
Nikka Komisarski
Steffani Mastromonaco
Caitlin Nery
Conner Olenick
Andrea Strazzullo
Adam Troczynski
Nikko Tagle
Alannah Villella
Jason Wong

These are the blog URLs from my ICT 12 class colleagues. The class is using Blogger throughout the year to record information about various programs and techniques.
This list has be updated to include several other URLs for students currently not in the list.

Friday, October 17, 2008


Today I signed up for the iGoogle service and made a couple of minor custom changes. I added a custom widget to display my IP address.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Learning Binary

Computers today work with binary operations, based on off-on status of "switches" or "bits" that are arranged in groups called "bytes." Switches that are set to "on" are represented by a 1 and switches that are set to "off" are shown as 0.

There are only two values for a switch, so that means the values of the switches cannot be ones, tens, hundreds. However, the values are powers of two; ones, twos, fours, eights, etc., reading from right to left.

1011 = 8 + 0 + 2 + 1 = 11
1111 = 8 + 4 + 2 + 1 = 15
0111 = 0 + 4 + 2 + 1 = 7

My binary number for my workstation in ICT 12 is "00011" which means 3. This number will be incorporated into my name in assignment footers and program code comment header sections.

Friday, September 12, 2008