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Archive for May, 2005

Enabling Hyperthreading in Windows XP

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BEWARE: If you have a Hyperthreading processor and order a Dell with Windows XP Home installed on it, by default Hyperthreading will be turned off in the motherboard’s BIOS. This sort of makes sense because Windows XP Home supports HT, but not multi-processing. (continue reading if you’re a huge geek) (read more »)

Oakland, CA | link | trackb | 13 comments » | May 28, 2005 04:29:38

Damned Technology

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I just bought a cheapie Dell to drive a TV and projector (I cancelled cable, since I never watch it), and they announced newer, faster, cheapie-er machines a week later. Such is life.

Also, I’d like to point out that the machine I use for all of my photo processing is basically a $600 Dell with a crapload of RAM shoved into it. You know, something like this:

DellSB – Dimension 4700 with P4 2.8Ghz 800 FSB, 256MB DDR2 SDRAM, 40GB HD, 48X CD-Rom for $529 after Rebate with FREE Shipping plus FREE 19″ LCD and FREE Color Printer! [hwextreme.com, 2005-05-28]

… plus a couple gigs of RAM and a big hard disk. (It’s actually a Dimension 8300, which can often be found for around $700, shipped.)

How the hell is that price possible, by the way? ’tis really, really, really cheap. And the machines are fast enough. Buy a few.

Oakland, CA | link | trackb | no comments » | May 28, 2005 03:37:09

Travel Mailing List

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I’ve created a travel mailing list, where I will occasionally send out links to trip reports and information about the expeditions and trips I am planning. Sign up, if you are interested!

Oakland, CA | link | trackb | no comments » | May 27, 2005 11:55:10

Wendy’s visit, Durand House

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a strange wendy

Wendy came to visit over the weekend. And it was her birthday on the 25th, too. Happy Birthday, Wen. :) I wish I could see her more often. It sucks that we don’t live in the same city anymore.

On Sunday, we went to have brunch with our cousin, Charlotte, who seems to be enjoying the academic paradise that Stanford offers. Char lives in Durand, which is the same house I lived in, ten years ago. After brunch, I went to visit Durand for the first time since being at Stanford; I walked back to the kitchen to say hi to Gilly (our old cook), and we reminisced for awhile about the good ol’ days. The house still smells the same.

Man. 10 years. Old fart. (Also, a bunch of random photos)

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Oakland, CA | link | trackb | 4 comments » | May 26, 2005 02:42:16

Livia Sohn Portraits

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Took some photos of Livia the other day for her new press kit. I think they came out very nicely. :)

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Oakland, CA | link | trackb | 2 comments » | May 26, 2005 02:27:15

Comfort Food

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dinner @ home

After going to the SLSQ’s second concert at the Legion of Honor, Livia and Geoff came over to cook a huge feast of comfort food, including meatballs, mac ‘n cheese, and green beans. Phil Ying of the Ying Quartet made a surprise appearance at the show, so we invited him along for dinner. Sarah Kemble came over, too. ’twas a great time for all.

Um. ok. text filler for photos over now.

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Oakland, CA | link | trackb | no comments » | May 26, 2005 02:20:30

Dan Peters visits from Austin

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dan peters visits

Dan Peters was in town last week on a business trip, and Elliot, Mandy and I had the great fortune of hanging out with him for the evening.

After dinner at Chow, we had a few drinks up at The View on the 39th floor of the Marriott (its Death-Star-like fascade perfect for the opening evening of Star Wars: Episode III). It was great to see Dan again. We miss him — and his wonderfully crass humor. :)

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Oakland, CA | link | trackb | 1 comment » | May 26, 2005 01:54:53

Adam Tow and Rae Chang’s Wedding Shower

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adam and rae

On May 15th, Adam Tow and Rae Chang had a joint wedding shower at Rae’s parents’ residence. Adam and Rae are as compatible as I could imagine a couple being.

Rae’s sister planned all sorts of games for the twenty-something guests, including one that forbade us to say either of the couple’s names. The party was fun, and it was nice to finally get to meet so many of the people I’ve seen repeatedly on tow.com. But after the evening, I concluded that wedding showers would be perfect — without any men involved. ;)

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Oakland, CA | link | trackb | 6 comments » | May 26, 2005 01:28:23

Baby Nash

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baby nash

Baby Jacob Nash is really funny. He’s a happy, happy baby, and loves to be thrown up in the air by his daddy. Jacob can’t crawl yet, but given suitable bait (like a remote control), he is capable of doing a strange wormy worm thing that propels him forward.

Halfway through my visit, Nash came home with his two, gigantic, mutant beagles. One of them seems to have developed O.C.D. and refuses to come in or go out through the doggy door without first tapping it up to ten times with his nose. Funny animals, his beagles are. :) (read more »)

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Oakland, CA | link | trackb | no comments » | May 26, 2005 00:39:49

Glorious Korean food

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colorful livia

Geoff and Livia hosted an amazing Korean feast at their place on May 11th. As usual, the food was incredible and plentiful. Cindy drove up from Sunnyvale, and as usual she scheduled a “transaction” with a fellow reefer. What was funny was that the reef dude came in and started socializing well before Cindy arrived, and we were all confused because no one knew whom he had come with.

What was also funny was that the reef guy kept talking about “corals.” Geoff, being a musician, kept thinking he was talking about something “choral” related. It took some time before we straightened everything out. :)

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Oakland, CA | link | trackb | 1 comment » | May 26, 2005 00:24:14

Baditude’s 30th Birthday

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baditude’s bday

On May 9th, Eryn turned 30 years old. Eryn’s parents rented out Ruby’s Diner in Carlsbad and planned a scavenger hunt at the mall. Norm, Teri, Wendy, Baby Jaxon, and I comprised one of the teams, and instead of splitting up to maximize efficiency, we wandered around together and used Jax’s cuteness and Teri’s boldness to get most of our items; after all, our goal was to just have fun (we lost, but not by much). :)

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Oakland, CA | link | trackb | buy/see all | 2 comments » | May 26, 2005 00:07:00

ReadyNAS 600 RAID 5 Deal

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As a frequent contributor to COBA (Camera Owners of the Bay Area), I’d like to share the details of a special deal Adam Tow has coordinated: promotional pricing for the ReadyNAS 600 RAID box from Infrant Technologies. The ReadyNAS 600 is a gigabit NAS box that supports 4 Serial ATA disks, wireless networking (optional), and hardware RAID 0, 1 and 5. The deal is for COBA members only, but membership is informal and free.

Promotional configuration options are as follows:
$100 off – Barebones. You supply your own SATA drives.
Effective price: $695 retail (if available) – $100 = $595

$200 off – 4x250GB Western Digital RAID Edition drives
Effective price: $1395 retail – $200 = $1195

Normally, the ReadyNAS 600 in a driveless configuration is unavailable. More information about the deal can be found on the COBA website. Please let Adam know that I referred you.

Oakland, CA | link | trackb | no comments » | May 25, 2005 14:42:28

Charlie Cox Runs With Scissors

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drinks @ lone palm

I just went to the opening night of wonderful play called Charlie Cox Runs With Scissors, which was very funny, slightly dark, and quite enjoyable. It’s rare for me to go to the theater these days, but each time, I am reminded of how much I enjoy it. Tonight, it was all the more special because a (relatively new) friend, Liam Vincent, showcased his brilliance in his role as Wally Death.

After the play and opening-night reception, Livia, Liam, Isabelle (fiery red in her role as Kiki, love personified), Mark (the slightly-scary truck driver named Travis), Erik (Liam’s friend, a director), and Mark (#2) had a few drinks at the Lone Palm, a bar in the Mission. We socialized over a strange mix of Polynesian music, Joan Baez, and circus-y tango music (bizarre). Liam kept thanking me for coming to the opening evening of the show, but the pleasure was really all mine. I haven’t spent much time with theater folk; everyone was so full of life!

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San Francisco, CA | link | trackb | no comments » | May 25, 2005 02:58:36

The most annoying telemarketer ever

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I’ve been receiving daily automated calls from 702-260-5955 (from Caller ID). A recorded female voice says, “This call is regarding an important business matter. Please call Miss Fremont at 1-800-257-0896. This is not a sales call.” Daily calls mean that if I leave for three weeks, when I get back I have 15 messages on my machine.

702 is a Nevada area code, and calling back identifies the company or person as “RMA”. After a few weeks of calls, I finally broke down, called the 1-800 number, and asked them to remove me from the list. I also asked questions about the company, but the woman on the other end would not cooperate.

Anyway, I just filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission, which I’m sure will do nothing. What would be better is if the thousands of you who check this site all gave that 1-800 number a call (with caller ID blocked, of course :) and stayed on the phone as long as possible. If I can’t make them stop calling, we can at least have conversations with them on their dime. :)

Oakland, CA | link | trackb | 20 comments » | May 24, 2005 15:17:06

The Ex-Boyfriend

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Not so long ago, I was reduced to two words by an ex-girlfriend of mine. You know, like “The Engineer” or “The Photographer”, except that it was neither of those. I was sort of offended by it because it was nothing close to what I imagine I could be reduced to. To her defense, she was trying to make a point about something else, and my reduction was just for dramatic effect. Still, seeing these two words that supposedly encapsulate my entire being sort of took me by surprise.

Anyway, I hosted and hung out with one of the two other reduced ex-boyfriends just the other night (as it turns out, it was “The Professional Musician”). I didn’t bring our mutual ex- into the conversation, but secretly, I bonded with him by keeping our labels fresh in my mind during the evening.

Oakland, CA | link | trackb | 3 comments » | May 23, 2005 17:14:25

Time-Lapse of Concrete Pour

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I’ve posted a time-lapse movie of the concrete pour at 428 Alice. Pretty exciting. :)

Oakland, CA | link | trackb | 11 comments » | May 19, 2005 11:53:00

Jessica Alba punches sharks

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Read this: Alba’s shark shoot shocker!

Jessica Alba risked her life on the Bahamas shoot for upcoming movie Into The Blue – because she was surrounded by deadly sharks all day.

Sexy Alba was a quivering wreck every time she entered the tropical waters surrounding the sun-drenched islands, and was often required to undertake the daring task of punching sharks on the nose – in a desperate move to stave off potential attacks.

(read more »)

Oakland, CA | link | trackb | 32 comments » | May 19, 2005 01:31:42

SLSQ and Stephen Prutsman @ Legion of Honor

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I’m exhausted. There is construction on all sides of my building, and my body has decided that I need to be up by 8am even if I’m up working until the early hours of the morning the evening before. This has been happening nearly every night.

So… I’m playing in a concert in Stanford’s Memorial Church this Friday evening, and we’ve been rehearsing with the 100-piece chorus down at Stanford. Living in Oakland does not make rehearsals at Stanford convenient, but I’m glad for the opportunity. :) Cindy and Chris met me for a quick bite to eat in Cupertino after tonight’s rehearsal. (read more »)

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Oakland, CA | link | trackb | 1 comment » | May 18, 2005 01:45:44

Flickr news – IPTC

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From Flickr:

11th May, 2005

IPTC support (finally)! Friends, today there’s another good thing in Flickrland, and that’s support for IPTC data embedded into your photos. Keywords become tags! Captions become descriptions! Marvel as one framework’s terminology is swapped for another! Smile as the location fields in IPTC become Flickr tags! Discuss.

Flickr has suddenly become useful for me, again. :) Hmmm. Or, maybe not. It doesn’t seem to work with iView Media Pro tagged files. I filed a bug.

Oakland, CA | link | trackb | 5 comments » | May 12, 2005 11:37:47

Sharks videos are cool

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Sebastien Bertaut with Grey Reef Shark, Apataki, French Polynesia

For the first time, I have footage of me photographing sharks! Our kick-ass dive guide and shark guy Sebastien Bertaut (pictured, above) gave me this footage. We’re at Apataki Pass, one of the last remaining places with schooling reef sharks in large numbers. Apataki is unique because the grey reef sharks there actually school in formation during the day (as opposed to places like Fakarava’s south pass, where there were hundreds of sharks milling around in a more chaotic fashion). I had never seen anything like it.

The video is 1 minute long, and is in DivX .AVI format. Please don’t abuse my bandwidth.

DOWNLOAD: [divx smaller 3mb] [divx larger 9.5mb]* (to watch, use Media Player 10 or Divx Player)

5/26/05 UPDATE: [h.264 mpg 480x384]
I did this H.264 encode just for Victor A. But I’m still not sure why the same bitrate produces bigger files when I encode with H.264. (They look good, though).

Also, I’m working on getting my French Polynesia images online — and as well, journals from Kona, the bluefin tuna farm, Rajah Ampat, and the Farallons. I’m just a little bit behind.

* with apologies to Victor A., who keeps telling me that DivX is “non-standard.” Well, I’ll bet DivX is more popular than his entire platform, so I’m going to continue posting DivX files. ;)

Oakland, CA | link | trackb | 22 comments » | May 11, 2005 12:54:28
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