Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Differences between Arial and Helvetica

I posted a comparison a while back but got them mixed up. Here's a comparison of a couple of characteristic letters: One more:
Updated 200810230005

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

So that's what we did!

It's a little embarrassing to only fully appreciate the distinction of investment banks when they're about to become obsolete. They borrowed money worth 20-30 times the value of their liquid assets in order to run their risky operations and if they didn't go out of business usually reaped huge profits at the end of the quarter. This was possible and sanctioned because what they were risking was their own necks as well as those of their faithful creditors with just the appetite for risk.

Now that those creditors are no longer willing to let investment banks play with their money, investment banks have to resort to borrowing from regular peoples' savings. The government is a little sensitive about that since it's the protection of regular people which originally led to the legislated segregation of investment from commercial banks. History certainly has a way of repeating itself, but it was fun while it lasted.

Friday, July 04, 2008

Annual Fourth of July Posting

Happy Independence Day. A couple weeks ago, I decided that I was going on vacation. I wasn't sure what I was going to do but I knew it was going to involve eating. I took a bunch of pictures, but perhaps what I enjoyed doing most was taking the subways in Shanghai. Anyhow, here are a couple of offline tweets that I couldn't post due to my roaming status:
  • Maybe we can judge distance roughly as follows: multiply speed of rotation of earth in terms of miles/hour and isolate the miles term by multiplying rate by number of timezones
  • My Air fits in the magazine compartment. Not much good that does if I need to use it though and the seat's fully reclined.
  • The "TSA" of Hong Kong caught my little swiss tech keychain knife immediately at the security checkpoint whereas EWR didn't seem to care :/
  • I got seated in "premium economy"/emergency row by pure luck.
  • My limited Chinese left me with only two meaty hotpot ingredients: beef spam and chicken wing tips. I recommend neither.
  • I've gotten quite confused. All of a suddent 8RMB is expensive for food. It's very ironic. I think since cheap food is so available, expensive food is super expensive.
  • Best green tea frappucino ever. Five bucks coffee is still five bucks.
  • Best KFC ever. Real thigh meat and chicken wings. Really spicy.
  • Really looking forward to IM on the iPhone. Too bad I won't be able to stand in line on 7/11!

I'll try a debrief with pictures? That means it will be relative to food. Oh, I almost forgot it was the Fourth of July. The most patriotic thing I've done so far on the vacation is to watch National Treasure 2.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

White is the new black

I went to the Apple store today to make an international call using Skype, but found that many of the iMacs had parental controls turned enforcing a white list of websites users could access. That list included Apple websites, but did not include skype.com or even att.com, which made it difficult for me to download the software necessary for me to make my international call. Luckily not all Macs were restricted and I was able to take care of business.

In other news, I think it's at least worth mentioning that white is an available option on the 16GB iPhone 3G but is not available for the 8GB. Does that make white the new black, a traditional mark of distinction? Back when the first 2G iPod nanos were released, black was only available on the higher capacity 8GB nano. Black MacBooks also cost more than white MacBooks.

Friday, April 04, 2008

Red Mango

I wonder how this compares with Pinkberry. Note the mochi topping.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

It's alive!!!

Watching my Solio Hybrid 1000 battery charger get juiced up upby the sun for the first time.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

SNL satir[iz]es MSNBC debate

I don't have the conviction to endorse Hillary Clinton over Barack Obama but I have no problem making campaign contributions to her campaign since I don't think Obama needs it [at this point]. I can however endorse her plan for universal healthcare. Let me know if you want to have a conversation about that or feel compelled to change my mind about it. I can also say that it's fair to give her fair treatment in a debate. Many times, I've see her get asked a question first and cover the groundwork such that when Obama gets to respond, he fills in the gaps and gets the last word. This SNL skit does a good job of illustrating that. [Perhaps there's a little of rooting for the home team going on but I think it's mostly because Hillary was on the show that day.]

Primary vs. Solitary

Let's say there was a product out there that didn't do everything. It made some compromises. It didn't have all the features to make it the only product of it's kind in your life. Does that mean it can't be the primary product that you used most of the time? Of course not. If it allowed you to do 80% of the stuff you do, you can go and spend 80% of your time on it. That would make it your primary ____ if not solitary ____.

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Familiar faces and unlimited ammo

I think Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles lives up to the Terminator franchise (although I haven't seen T3).

Episode One:


Episode Two:


Episode Three:

Monday, January 28, 2008

A dilemma but not a bad one to be in

I've been mostly undecided but have for a while believed that Hillary Clinton would be a more effective president than Barack Obama. After listening to each of his victory speeches (and even concession speeches), I can't help but feel that his message of bringing America together and giving Americans a sense of common destiny, regardless of race or economic status, is growing closer to fruition. I've even had the ridiculous idea that he would inspire not just us but the rest of the world.

I know that people can be fickle and that overhauling the political establishment isn't guaranteed to say the least, but it would be a self-fulfilling prophecy to elect a President Obama. It would mean that America truly came together in the recognition of his unrealistic vision, instantly making it a reality. The future he describes has universal appeal among Democrats and at least does not alienate [moderate] Republicans.

It's really unfortunate that Hillary cannot take the political high road since for most of her public life, she's been the target of partisan and personal attacks from Republicans and special interests. The "us versus them" mentality is real in American politics and personal to her. I don't mean to downplay struggles Obama has had to face (I'm not too familiar with them), but I recognize that his optimism is not something Hillary could honestly pull off despite her efforts at bi-partisanship.

Many of our decisions are made based on what other people think. We also defer to experts who know more about a topic than we do. This behavior probably helps us survive. We also make decisions based on emotions and gut feelings. Despite all of the momentum of Obama's campaign, I still feel more invested in Hillary's campaign and I'm not sure why. It could be because I feel she has a concrete grasp of exactly what needs to be done to accomplish the goals shared by most Democrats. To be honest, though, it's probably because I feel she is compassionate, thoughtful, and commands the respect of Eric Schmidt. To be fair, I have yet to watch the video of his interview with Obama at Google. Talk about anti-climactic. Anyhow, I'm happy to support either candidate should they win the Democratic nomination.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Twasn't just for Macworld Expo

I spent last week in San Francisco not just to attend Macworld Expo but to try some Californian food and wine. I didn't get to go to a Rubio's or In and Out, but here's a look at most of what we had:

A look from other angles at the MacBook Air

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