Archive for the 'Tech' Category

Computer fashion

September 5th, 2012

I’m back from AnimeFest! I’ll have another entry about it later because I’m a little backlogged on getting photos up XD;;

Lately, I’ve been thinking about building a new computer. My current one turns 4 years old next year, and I was planning on upgrading every 4-5 years. Plus, I’m jealous. Last year, a few friends built new computers with shiny new parts and SSDs. One of them is my husband, and I can’t help but be annoyed that he can start up the same game after me but have it up and running before me.

And so, I’ve been looking at computer cases. Choosing the case is one of my favorite parts of building a computer, because it’s like playing dress up with it ;) This is my current computer case.

I love the sleek silver look and the shiny blue LEDs. I’m kind of sad to let it go! The reason I’m not re-using it is because I’ve decided to keep it intact and give it to my brother. He’s been wanting to play Diablo 3, and my computer can still play it (and other current games) with no problems.

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More new things

May 23rd, 2011

Work has been so hectic lately that I was really looking forward to the weekend. It’s over now though! Where did it go? It went by too fast D=

Over the weekend, my fiance and I finally went to Bed, Bath, and Beyond to update our registry. We’ve been lazy on filling it out, so it only had 8 items XD;; At the store, they gave us a scanner gun, so that we could scan anything we liked, and it’d add it to our registry. We spent like 2 hours there and added 80 more items XD;; Apparently, we’re supposed to have even more than that so… I guess we’ll have to make another trip!

I also got a chance to play with a new toy I got recently: a wireless remote shutter for my camera. It lets me trigger the camera without being near it. Here’s an example of a shot I did with it:

Who wants cookies?

The remote is in my other hand, and… yes, the camera is actually in the oven XD;; My friend took a photo of me while I was setting it up:

Baking a Canon

That’s not the only toy I got recently. I finally caved. I got a smart phone. I’ve been resisting for a while now. I just didn’t feel like I needed the internet at my fingertips at all times, and seeing people completely addicted to their phones only discouraged me more. But! I’ve come around to seeing its convenience.

I considered a Galaxy-S phone at first. My fiance has one, and I like using it. But, I decided to get something different. I got the black iPhone 4, which I also like so far!

So… yeah, I was pretty behind on the whole smart phone thing for a while, but I’m catching up ^^;;

And now… bed time! It’s late, and I have work tomorrow morning, sigh.

Sorry, nerdy rambles

February 10th, 2011

I’m excited for February 14th! Why? If you guessed Valentine’s Day, that’s not quite right. We’re actually keeping it simple this year. We’re staying in, and I asked my fiance to cook me dinner XD

The 14th is the first day the Jeopardy episode with Watson, the supercomputer, will air. Being a programmer myself, I just find Watson fascinating. It makes you realize what kind of knowledge you take for granted.

While Watson does search for answers with all the data he has (he’s not connected to the internet), it’s not as simple as that. Jeopardy questions aren’t always straight forward. Watson has to figure out the important parts of the question, and then weigh all the answers he finds to see which is the most likely match.

It’s interesting because computer language doesn’t have the ambiguities human language has. Programming has a set list of syntax and is written in a set structure. Human language is vague with tons of exceptions. We deal with it through learning examples, common sense, and through context. These are things a computer doesn’t have unless we put it in through rules and machine learning.

I watched a show about Watson yesterday, and I liked seeing his early stages when he still had a lot of bugs. There was a question about a “first lady”, but Watson answered with “Richard Nixon” instead of his wife. To us, it’s obvious. Richard Nixon is male and cannot be an answer. This and other common knowledge like what “the ’40s” mean, how “Henry V” is “the fifth”, what a “flick” is… these are not obvious to a computer.

It also showed an example of Watson learning on the fly. The category was “Celebration Months”, so the answer is always a month. He didn’t realize that and would answer with “holiday”. After seeing the human players answer with months, he learned to look for months as an answer and was able to answer correctly.

Something like this might seem silly. What’s the point of making a computer learn Jeopardy? But why do so many movies have computers that can understand humans and then converse back? I think making computers learn human language and thought is a dream many have. Another thing is, Deep Blue was amazing back then. Now, that problem is fairly trivial. It’s not that difficult to write a chess playing program. I’m wondering when the day will be when Watson will be a simple problem to solve.