Armen Chakmakjian

Posts Tagged ‘Star Trek’

A week at home – technical analysis

In Random on September 24, 2011 at 3:21 pm

So I had an operation earlier this week and under doctor’s orders I stayed home. In this case the doctor gave me worst case scenarios about what the recovery from a simple day surgery would be. It sounded like one of those drug commercials where they tell you everything that could go wrong. Well for the most part he was right, I felt like crap for a couple of days and still feel it when I try acting out my normal quick start and stop pace.

During that week, I did a bunch of sedentary things. For example, I continued to explore OSX lion user features on my Air, played angry birds on my iPhone, downloaded a couple of apps to both. I did homework for the classes that I had to skip assiduously taking notes with my new echo pen. I monitored our Friday release using our corp IM tool. I continued my love affair with reading on my Kindle DX. Most days it was my subscriptions to Reuters and Atlantic magazine. However, this week I also started to play with a thing called Instapaper, where I create my own set of reading gets loaded directly to the kindle from web pages that I tell it to copy down.

Oh yeah I also watch Zuckerberg try to be Jobs and I was underwhelmed by Timeline. Oooo you have every transaction I’ve done in a database and you’re going to allow me to go back based on time and see things rather than scrolling! Awesome, I might go give up my horse and drive a car too! The open graph stuff was somewhat interesting, but I yawn. And Serendipity is when you don’t expect something and it was lucky and pleasant, not stalk people looking for their music and play it. That’s just stalking.

I also read a book, yes a real book. A colleague gave me a book on my departure from Intuit called “The Art of Choosing”. The coincidence of taking my 2 marketing classes this semester (Strategic Marketing and Marketing Research) and a book about how humans make choices was interesting. By the way, thank you for the book, Depankar, it was excellent.

The one area that disappointed me this week was that I was supposed to get my new 27″ Thunderbolt display yesterday, but UPS informed me that there was “an exception”. My reaction was to want them to employ an exception handler and deliver my new display immediately, but they didn’t and now I have to wait for them to bring it at some time next week. Sigh. I was really looking forward to it. I bought a new desk and set up in a new place in the house that’s perfect for me to do work and hide the work in between study sessions. Of course the display would be showing, but I’d put up pictures on it so that it appeared to be a giant montage of my life (or something).

Anyway, in the process of sitting there, I wrote another episode in our ongoing story of the USS Washington. There’s time travel involved. And then this morning I suddenly figured out what had been eluding me for several weeks on book 2 of the Urtaru series. I had been taking the tack of a terrorist/freedom fighter route for the main character’s dilemma. But technology, the discovery this week of neutrinos that move faster than c (meaning possibly moving back and forth in time) and my own fascination with the possibilities of time travel all coalesced into “the secret” the that second of 3 would be telling the 3rd of three. It all suddenly made sense. How could the child know something about his father that he was bound to keep secret. I’m going to avoid the machine as enemy terminator stuff, and focus on the human psychology of getting a message from the past (or sending one to the future) that might change the course of events.

Anyway, that’s my week.

Star Trek: The Awesome Generation

In 60's Television, Science Fiction on May 11, 2009 at 12:57 am

OK late in the day today I saw the new Star Trek movie. It was a great movie. Excellent story, excellent special effects, hilarious dialogue

Being that it is an altered timeline from the original (by the very nature of the plot) it was actually fresh and not just an in between Jonathan Archer and ST:TOS…Ya know, the way that all the series and movies began to go I was worried that the Borg would make a reappearance. But they don’t…Phew!

There was a lot to enjoy in this movie. Both the new Spock and the new Kirk were well played…and the cool thing here was that the new Kirk doesn’t always get saved by Spock…well at least not by his contemporary Spock anyway.

The Kobayashi Maru reference was excellent. It was excellent seeing Kirk outsmart Spock.

Bones completely cracked me up. The characterization there was spot on…

There were a lot of little references that only trekkies would get…”how do we know he didn’t invent it” (Scotty to Bones: STIV) vs “you haven’t invented it yet” (Spock to Scotty)…Christopher Pike in the wheel chair again turning over control to Kirk; not exactly how it happened the first time. Now we have Chekov on the bridge, where he wasn’t in the original TV series until after Kahn (so Kahn should not have recognized him).

One of the things that this movie shows is that the command cadre of the Enterprise was the best of the best from a star fleet perspective…

I was quite impressed. The line that got me laughing the most though was at the about the normal farewell “being somewhat self-serving” I was howling.


AppleTV and HD movie rental…

In technology on September 20, 2008 at 9:45 pm

I finally rented a movie last night from my AppleTV.   I saw that they had the “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan” in HD.   It was great.  It may have been in HD, but of course it was without 21st century special effects.

Actually selecting and starting the movie was so fast I wasn’t sure if I had been charged correctly.   I suppose that one thing I’d change on the UI is that your payment method ought to be shown (aka tell me if I am using apple $$ credits or if it will be going to my credit card…why should I have to go to itunes on a PC to figure this out?)

I think I want to rent the Bourne movies and the Stargate movies since those are also in HD.  The kids enjoyed the movie too, but I had to keep telling them to listen to the dialogue (“hours would seem like days”  “His pattern indicates twodimensional thinking” et cetera).

Anyway, now that I’ve done it, anybody want to give me a gift, an itunes card would be nice 🙂