Sep 072010
 

So as many of you have probably read (at least of those who read this blog), earlier this year I upgraded to Windows 7 and plugged in some extra ram. Well, this weekend I further enhanced my computer. I got a new keyboard/mouse combo. My existing mouse/keyboard was about 4 or 5 years old, and it was just time. So, I’m sure you are all dying to know what I got. Well today is your lucky day.

Logitech ® Cordless Desktop Wave ™

I must say, it’s been quite impressive so far. It’s ergonomic, but not in the way you think. Usually I feel ergonomic keyboards keep me from typing normally. However, this one does something different. Instead of separating the keyboard into two distinct halves, it “waves” the keys. Literally places them at different indented depths and angles. This gives the same benefit of ergonomic keyboards without the hassle. In any case, I’m quite a fan! I don’t know how I feel about all the extra buttons yet, but we’ll see!

Oct 312009
 

So, last night I finally installed Ubuntu Karmic Koala’s Netbook Remix on my netbook. I was pretty nervous. For one, I didn’t want to lose my windows installation, more because it has my only fully licensed copy of Office 2007 on it (thanks to one of my sweet friends), and two because I was not completely sure I’d be able to re-install windows on it without a lot of pain if something went wrong.

Needless to say, my fears were unfounded. It was a little difficult to convert the thumb drive I had into a bootable thumbdrive. But once I had done  that, the rest was easy. I made sure that my drive was as defragmented as it was going to get, so that I had the largest continuous drive space as possible for the re-partitioning.

The re-partitioning was actually the scariest part. I’ve never repartitioned a drive before without losing everything on it. But, Ubuntu handled the operation with the patience and skill of a well trained plastic surgeon. In the end, I didn’t lose a single thing!

Now a little bit about the remix: I freaking love it. Everything worked and connected right out of the box. Wireless, video camera, sound, etc. The only thing that was tricky was that it took running some updates and expanding the software sources before I could really install much, including adobe flash. But, got it all fixed up and working properly.

This is quite different from any previous distributions of ubuntu that I’ve experienced. For instance, the menu is right on the desktop. I assume this is because its a netbook. I like it though, very clean and well organised.

It  also brought in a new instant messaging client. I’m not really sure if I like it or not. It doesn’t seem to tell me if aim people are on mobile or not, which pidgin did. I don’t like IM’ing people on their phones since it could cost them money.

All in all, it’s a great operating system! I think I could recommend that people install this on their netbooks. It’s extremely easy to use, I’d say the easiest yet!

This is a screenshot of my desktop on the new ubuntu distribution. Click to go to Ubuntu's site and perhaps download it for yourself!

This is a screenshot of my desktop on the new ubuntu distribution. Go to Ubuntu's site (www.ubuntu.com) and perhaps download it for yourself!

Sep 242009
 

This is my own recipe, using chunks and pieces from others… Thanks Zea for the initial dough recipe!

Makes one loaf of stromboli, serving roughly 3-4 people.

Dough Ingredients:

3/4 Cup of Hot Water

4 teaspoons of sugar

1 teaspoon of yeast

2 cups of flour

1/8 teaspoon of salt

4 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil

Garlic Powder (optional)

Filling Ingredients:

1-2 packages of pepperoni OR 1 package of sausage

1/2 package of sliced mozerella cheese

1/2 package of sliced provolone cheese OR 1/2 package of sliced cheese of your choice

Extra Ingredients:

Marinara Sauce

Crushed Red Peppers

1. Prepare the dough

  1. Put 3/4 of a cup of hot water into a bowl.
  2. Mix in 3 teaspoons of sugar into the hot water.
  3. Mix in 1 teaspoon of yeast into the hot water.
  4. Allow to foam for about 10 minutes.
  5. Put 1.75-2 cups of flour into a large bowl.
  6. Mix in 4 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, 1/8 teaspoon of salt, and 1 teaspoon of sugar.
    1. Option: Mix in generous amount of garlic powder.
  7. After it is well mixed, slowly pour in the yeast/sugar-water mixture while mixing it in with the fork.
  8. As it begins to form into one massive bog, switch from using the fork to using your hands, make sure they are well covered with flour, because it gets messy.
  9. When it is formed into a ball, begin kneading it. Do so until most of the excess flour is kneaded in. You can also add flour as needed, especially if you started out with less flour to begin with.
  10. Pour (or “drizzle”) a bit of olive oil on the kneaded ball of dough, covering the outside…
  11. Let the dough sit out in its container for 1 hour.
    1. Alternate: Warm oven to 125 degrees.
  12. Cover the container with plastic wrap and stick in the fridge overnight.
    1. Alternate: Put dough in an oven safe container and place tin foil over it, sealing the edges with your fingers.
  13. Take the dough out a couple hours before you are ready to continue.
    1. Alternate: Leave in 30-45 minutes until dough is doubled in size.


2. Prepare the Stromboli

  1. Preheat Oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Take a large baking sheet (with sides) and sprinkle flour all over it.
  3. Take the large ball of dough and place it in the middle.
  4. Pound out the ball of dough until it roughly covers the sheet, or creates a rectangular shape.
  5. Place your layers of topping over the dough, alternating between meat and cheese.
    1. Suggested: Pepperoni / Mozerella / Pepperoni / Provolone
  6. Taking one of the long sides, roll the dough/toppings into a single long peice.
  7. Close the ends to hold the toppings in. You can do this by taking the dough at the ends and folding it under, or just pressing it together.
  8. Pour some olive oil in your hands, and spread over the dough until it is covered.
  9. Cut through the top layer of dough in diagonal slices at 3-4 inch intervals.
  10. Sprinkle with seasoning on top. [I like Garlic/Red Pepper]
  11. Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until crust is golden brown.
  12. Serve with marinara sauce.
Sep 202009
 

Ingredients:
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
½ t. baking soda
½ t. salt
¼ pound (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
½ cup sugar
¾ cup tightly packed light brown sugar
1 ½ t. vanilla extract
1 large egg, at room temperature, lightly beaten
7 oz bittersweet chocolate, cut into 1/2 inch chunks or regular old bittersweet chocolate chips.

1) Sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt into a medium bowl and set aside.

2) Using a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment or a hand mixer, cream the butter and sugars on low speed until it is smooth and lump free, about 3 minutes. Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl and the paddle.

3) Add the vanilla and egg and beat on low speed for 15 seconds, or until fully incorporated. Do not overbeat. Stop the machine and scrape down the sides of the bowl and the paddle.

4) On low speed, add the flour mixture. Beat until just incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the chocolate chunks and mix until they are just incorporated. If using a hand mixer, use a wooden spoon to stir them in. Refrigerate dough for at least an hour.

5) Preheat oven to 350. Adjust racks to lower and upper thirds of the oven. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or Silpats. Spoon the dough using a cookie scooper 2 inches apart onto the prepared baking sheets. (makes about 23 3-inch round cookies)

6) Bake for 11-13 minutes [it’s 10 in my oven] or until golden brown around the edges, turning the sheets front to back and switching racks halfway through.

Remove the sheet from the oven and carefully slide the parchment or Silpats directly onto a work surface. When cookies are set, remove them to a cooling rack.

Grabbed from http://wordstoeatby.blogspot.com/2004/12/best-homemade-chocolate-chip-cookies.html

Jul 132009
 

So I decided to do a post on my computer equipment… check it out!

Hardware
Motherboard: Asus M2A-VM
Processor: AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual Core Processor 6000+ 3.0Ghz
Ram: 2 GB of DDR2
Primary Hard-drive: 300gb Western Digital
Secondary Hard-drive: 1tb Western Digital
Video: ATI Radeon HD 4800 Series
Monitors: Dual 21-inch LCD Monitors (LG and Samsung)
DVD-Rom: 22x Internal Super-Multi DVD Rewriter (with lightscribe)

Software
Operating System: Windows XP Pro, SP3
Anti-virus: AVG 8.5 (free version)
Internet: Google Chrome
Office Suite: Microsoft Office 2007
Media: iTunes
Graphic Design: Gimp 2
Instant Messaging: Pidgin
Burning: Nero 9

The Future
Ram: Old – 2.0gb, New – 4.0gb
Operating System: Old – XP, New – Windows 7

Jun 072009
 

 

Read Darkness

Read Darkness

Darkness was a story which I wrote for English class in high school. It ended up containing the backstory for my primary character in the game AWRPG. King J was my character’s name. It was actually one of the more fun things I’ve done in life. This story was about King J’s ancestry.

May 252009
 

So, Dad and I have been brainstorming ideas for the last two months or so on a book that we are planning on writing together. Today we just laid down the basic plot. Its really exciting! 

The book is going to be a sci fi based book in a galaxy where humans have inhabited every corner of the milky way and are ruled by a galactic empire. I’ll try to give out more details as we progress… but I will remain vague until we have everything copyrighted. I’d rather not get our ideas stolen!

I think we have a pretty solid plot line… and are now establishing a draft control system so that we can collaborate without screwing up eachother’s drafts. This is going to rock!

May 172009
 

 

2008-09 MECA Yearbook Download

2008-09 MECA Yearbook Download

For the second year in a row, I designed and put together the MECA Yearbook.  It went much smoother this year after I had last year under my belt. I made quite a few improvements, including more a thinner and more versatile framework for each page. While the cover (by request) did not change much, I did make some improvements on the coloring and included a gradient rather than pure bars. 

 You can view the yearbook by downloading the pdf .

About MECA:

Ministerial Excellence Christian Academy has been in existence since 1994. It is an alternative education school which excells at teaching and helping students who have fallen through the cracks in public schooling through careful nurturing and Christian education. You can find out more about their school as well as how to contact them here.