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