Archive for December, 2005


December 23, 2005 Leave a comment

it’s often frustrating when discussing work with other people. i’ve grown to accept that people don’t really care (yet) about sustainability, the underlying principles and concepts, or the technology behind some of the innovations. but when people ask me about what it is that i do, and then glaze over and respond in a way that shows they obviously weren’t listening, it’s not only aggravating, but downright rude and hurtful. i know that i find much of it extremely fascinating and beautiful, and that’s all that should really matter – but i like to share the things that interest me, and i like to know that what i do matters. it sounds a bit like a desire for validation, and maybe i want that from some people – but at the same time its generally rude behavior to ask a question and not listen to the answer. i’ve explained this type of stuff to enough different types of people to know that i can get longwinded about it, but i do know that i’m not a boring speaker (even if i’m sometimes a boring writer).

Categories: misc.

shure headphones

December 23, 2005 Leave a comment

shure headphones
just picked up a pair of shure ‘sound isolating’ headphones at the apple store – essentially glorified earbuds. i’ve been reading a lot about them – all the reviews i’ve read recommend these as practically the best earbud style headphones around. they’re expensive – i got the cheapest model, but the most expensive model goes for about $500 (remember these are earbuds!). even though i probably shouldn’t rationalize such a purchase, i do listen to music a lot, practically all day while i work on the computer – unless i’m reading/studying. as i’m working a real job for the next 6 months, and not studying in school next semester, i figure i’ll be at the computer and building models a whole lot, so these headphones should be worth it.

so what’s so great about the headphones? they’re basically earplugs w/ headphones built in. there’s the noise canceling technology for you – it blocks all outside sound, allowing your ears to focus more clearly on the sound. the speakers are also supposed to be pretty high quality – and for top dollar, they should be. one of the really wonderful things about the earplug concept is that since it blocks out all outside sound, it allows you to keep the volume much lower, thereby saving your eardrums for a later date. w/ these new headphones, i have the volume set almost to 0 – way better than the typical 1/4 bar i normally keep it at for low-volume listening.

supposedly it takes about a week for your hearing to adjust to shure headphones, but i can say that after a few hours i’ve already noticed the superiority of these buds over the standard ipod buds – same w/ my over-the-ear headphones (granted they’re all cheap sets, never costing more than $20). i’m happy to finally have a good pair of headphones, and will eventually team this up w/ a high quality over-the-ear set of headphones for home listening. as i continue to listen to ever more music, and my taste continues to evolve, i’m starting to develop audiophilic tendencies. i’m certainly no snob yet, but i definitely can tell the difference a really good set of headphones makes.

Categories: music

forgotten NY

December 23, 2005 Leave a comment

an extremely wonderful site that catalogs w/ photos many abandoned and decrepit, yet fascinating locations in NY.

Categories: architecture, NY, travel

Lazy Sunday from SNL via iTunes

December 23, 2005 Leave a comment

not only is this hysterical, but it’s perhaps the only funny thing produced by SNL in years. free video download from iTunes:

Categories: haha

fiona apple – extraordinary machine

December 21, 2005 Leave a comment

i wasn’t a big fan of fiona apple when she debuted w/ tidal. i liked ‘shadowboxer’ alright, but her sound just didn’t really do it for me. fast forward to now, and i’ve managed to pick up a copy of her new album, extraordinary machine. wow. she is by far my favorite new artist – and i’ve had a lot of them recently. i’ve only managed through the title song, ‘extraordinary machine’, and ‘get him back’, but this is such a well crafted album. everything sounds precisely positioned, thought out, intense. its beautiful – if you have any appreciation of her work, then you’ll definitely like this new album. plus, the album art is incredible.
link to fiona apple on itunes
fiona apple

Categories: music

Mexico Magico!

December 21, 2005 1 comment

going to mexico w/ the fam this week, very much looking forward to it. i don’t get the chance to spend significant time w/ them now that i live in austin, so the family trips are always wonderful. even better is that cindy is coming – it’s her first trip w/ my family. next week – time to kick back, drink some coronas, and be a tourist for 6 days…ahhhhh!!!

HOWEVER, i get a little wound up if all i do is perform tourist duty – it goes against my need to be slightly eccentric and slightly non-mainstream. god forbid i get labeled an ignorant american. so every year i break from the crowd and go exploring off the beaten path. it really is quite amazing to see the squalor that a lot of the town lives in – these are the people who are employed by the tourism industry. we see beautiful and clean hotels and restaurants, but the truth is that the people who serve us barely get by. pretty incredible considering what the cost of living must be down there, and the amount of money we pay for everything. it’s beautiful, though – such a different lifestyle, very communal, and not concerned with materiality. i guess that’s how it has to be when you’re lacking funds, but its also just not an important aspect of their lives – as far as my untrained and naive eye could tell.

the weather outlook in puerto vallarta next week: mid-80’s, partly cloudy all week.

Categories: travel

Rosebowl in NYC

December 18, 2005 4 comments

Jan 4 is my first day of work at Grimshaw. Jan 4 is also the date of the Rosebowl. This means that I will immediately proceed to a bar (tbd) following work and watch the showdown between UT and USC. i guess i’ll have to crash in the city that night, b/c i’m not trudging back to LI at 1 in the morning, only to return to the city 7 hours later.

anyone who actually reads this and will be in NYC is welcome to join me root on my UT longhorns.

Categories: misc., school

ordering in the sidebar

December 18, 2005 Leave a comment

so i’ve created 3 pages outside of this blog – a biographical page, a password protected private page, and a page containing my NY to-do list. i have no clue how to order them so that ‘A NY Agenda’ is last, despite numbering them 1 through 3 when it asks for the page order.

Categories: blog

blogs and boundaries

December 18, 2005 Leave a comment

one of the benefits constantly touted by blogging missionaries is the blog’s ability to bring people together. people who don’t know each other, who are physically distant, who harbor similar interests. this is definitely true – it gives you the ability to see inside somebody else’s life, a certain insight, a voyeuristic high. you can leave comments for these people you don’t know, become invisible friends via electronic code. it can round out an existence, providing knowledge, interesting reading, and camaraderie.

it can also do the exact opposite if you actually know the blogger in question. i know many people who direct me to read their blogs in order to learn of a funny experience – it’s an act meant to bring people closer to the blogger. they want us to know about them, and to learn about them in this online communal experience – the blog. but cyber-broadcasting the story is actually less intimate, and can even unwittingly distance the blogger from the reader. is it too cumbersome to relate the story in a personal email or by direct call? perhaps the blog is meant for a small circle of friends, but the very nature of the blog undercuts that notion and instead becomes a forum for all the world to read. it is almost demeaning at times to be directed to read a blog – it signifies that time is too important and mass-updating is the only efficient way to keep up.

far be it from me to prescribe what the nature of a blog should be – it can of course be anything to anyone. i do feel, though, that there are necessities of the human psyche that are being impaired by this new method of communication. i know it is only a matter of time before the behavior rights itself – destructive behavior is only tolerated for so long before the preservation mechanism kicks in. i don’t think that blogs will go away, i just think they’ll become more refined – a platform for thoughts, not what you ate for breakfast.

Categories: blog, misc.

back to the apple stock post

December 18, 2005 Leave a comment

wintermute (god forbid i use his real name) commented on my post about apple stock getting set to take a fall. then a friend of his commented on wintermute’s comment about my comment, and wintermute commented on the comment to his comment about my comment. i then commented about both comments referring to wintermute’s comment about my comment. i just wanted to link back to both my original comment and the ensuing comments.
my comment: apple stock bubble
wintermute’s comments: round up

Categories: blog, tech