Friday, May 26, 2006

Greetings from Chicago!

I have been in Chicago these past few days and I have been surprised to find that it is a great city! I came to Chicago to give a talk at the university but when I told people I was coming here, the reaction wasn't good - ranging from "don't go walking by yourself" to "why would you go there?". I always noticed how many young people there were in Chicago airport compared to other airport hubs like Denver or LAX, and there are an awful lot of young people in Chicago everywhere. Chicago people tell me that the city and area around the university used to have a lot of crime, but that these areas have been cleaned up a lot in the last few years. The area around the university seems like a nice old suburb with lots of trees and old houses and churches. Plenty of people walking around by themselves. The city is great with lots of things to do and my friends here have been taking me around to all sorts of good restaurants, shops, to see a band, and to the theatre. The city is very pretty looking (especially at night) and it is on the edge of one of the great lakes. It is a really huge lake so it actually looks like a strangely calm ocean. They even import sand so it has a long beach and people sun-bake in the summer! There are lots of bike-paths and parks around the city for miles and miles. A lot of people here go sailing on the weekends. The people are very friendly, and strangers smile and make conversation - unusual for a big bustling city. I will definitely be coming back to Chicago soon!

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Long Time No Post

Greetings from Connecticutt! I am travelling at the moment - have just been in Boston and Ohio. Boston was having heavy rains and some towns were flooding. Fortunately the storm has passed and the weather is now beautiful and I am in Connecticutt visiting a friend of mine. She is getting married later in the year and lots of plans for the wedding are coming together! We went for a walk in one of the many parks near New Haven and it was very beautiful. The trees seem a lot more delicate than the ones in Hawaii, and they have a very different smell (I think it smells like fresh bread). On Monday I'll be flying to Chicago and thenback to Hawaii on Saturday :-)

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Great new products on-line today!

Thinkgeek.com which has *great* T-shirts like "Chicks dig Unix", has a range of new products including the desktop USB tanning system, "Grow Your Own 1up Mushroom Kit", the infamous "wireless extension cords", and a caffeine inhaler: just like an asthma inhaler, only caffeine.

April Fool's Day Fun

Lots of websites & Newspapers having fun on April Fool's Day!

Britain's "Sun" newspaper announces the sighting of a penguin walking along the Thames. It walked around the Tate Gallery before returning to the Thames. Penguin expert says the penguin is a type of penguin called a "Jackass".

The U's Daily Register announced that China Buys Google. This story is written by the well-known reporter Mu Shu Porked, and also reveals that China has bought NASA's Ames research center. The news article is great complete with a little photoshop tutorial on "How We Didn't Break the News".

My favorite one which unforunately isn't on-line is by the UK's daily express. The government has discovered that biscuits (cookies) make great Tarmac. The crushed biscuits are steamrollered into tarmac, and the best biscuits are gingernut.

Google has announced a new dating service called Google Romance. You post your dating information and they will send you on a "contextual" date along with a bunch of ads they think are relevant. The tour is hilarious. User A uploads her profile, while User B uploads several wildly divergent profiles because he is a sleaze. Google says: "those who generally favor the “throw enough stuff at the wall” approach to online dating might find it useful to employ our Batch Profile Uploading option."

Homestarrunner is upside down!

Uncyclopedia has been taken over by Apple. It now has a nice Apple layout.

Slashdot (news for nerds) has changed its format, and is now pretty in pink with "OMG!! ponies!!!" theme. Great titles for posts are "OMG!!! wireless extension cords!!! LOL!!!", there is an announcement that we are closer to genetically breeding dragons and unicorns, George Lucas is issuing adult versions of Star Wars, "Monkeys Use Robots To Fling Poo!!! Gross!!! :) :)", Cutest Website Ever Discovered!!!" which really is cute. Check out the cuteness:

Friday, March 31, 2006

More Flooding!

Its been raining almost constantly! so we haven't been doing very much outdoors things. Today Honolulu had a record-breaking amount of rain and the river up the street from my work had a flash flood. Within about 20 minutes the river flooded and water swept up the street. In another 20 minutes all the water drained away and everything looked back to normal, except for cars that no longer would start. Here are some pictures during the flood:

This is looking up the street from my work:



another one looking up the street:



This is the car park about 200 metres up the street:



Fortunately, I had parked on higher ground. We haven't been getting as much rain at our house and our back yard isn't so pond-like anymore.

Monday, March 20, 2006

Flooding over!

Thanks for your comments Peter & Jasmine!
Luckily, the rain eased up before anything serious happened. It kept raining all day but it eased enough to let the ground drain and although our backyard is still sloshy, it is much less like a pond and more like a marsh! Lots and lots of frogs and toads there at night. Jasmine: Emma is fine - she was a bit grumpy about not being able to go outside for so long but she's a happy little camper today. She has a strange new habit of appearing while we get dressed every morning. She looks wide-eyed at our shoulders while we're putting clothes on and as soon as the last item of clothing is on, she launches herself from the ground or bed onto our left shoulder (must be the left shoulder) where she then leans left and right so that we know which way she wants us to go. She then peers at everything and sometimes uses our shoulder as a launching pad to get somewhere higher. Its pretty wierd that she only does this as soon as we get dressed.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Flooding!

Not much has been happening recently except a LOT of rain. Today the storm that caused a dam to break in Kauai has hit Oahu and we have a flash flood warning for our area. Our backyard has turned into a lake and there is now a river running through it out onto the road. The water around our house still has a few inches to go before it reaches the wood so hopefully the rain will subside and the river will keep the water moving away from the house.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

David Hasselhof in the cheesiest music video ever!

If you love cheesiness you must see this David Hasselhoff music video "Hooked on a Feeling"!

Wow. Just Wow.