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Saturday, November 28, 2009

No Graphics Card = Miserable Life...

I miss my graphics card...
Ever since it died, my old computer has become a useless chassis.
I can't do ANYTHING on that computer!

My life has been miserable.
So miserable, in fact, that one day, I became "desperate"!

My brother discovered a "Game Boy Emulator" program on one of our DVD game folders.
Once on the computer, it allows you to play "Game Boy" games on the PC.
Magical, no?

So, since the emulator is on the PC, he also downloaded some Star Wars GBA games from the Internet.
These include ( in chronological order ):
1. Star Wars Jedi Power Battles - Episode I
2. Star Wars Episode II Attack Of The Clones - Episode II
3. Star Wars Episode III Revenge Of The Sith - Episode III
4. Star Wars Trilogy Apprentice Of The Force - Episode IV, V, VI

To be honest, they were kind of boring.
I went through the whole Star Wars saga ( Episode I, II, III, IV, V and VI ) nearly 7 times over already!
But I told you, I was "desperate"!

I took some screenshots of the game using something called "CamStudio" ( another one of my brother's downloads... ).
Again, I arranged them in chronological order:

Woot! I chopped the battle droid in half!

Look at the way Anakin is staring at the laser. That same laser actually managed to hit him a few milliseconds later!

Everybody loves Kung Fu fighting! Especially Anakin!

The duel between Luke and Vader on Cloud City. Not that big of a deal, actually...

I played the four games above over and over and over again.
I find them real sickening because of the horrible graphics quality, the repetitive, non-sensical and redundant gameplay, and the midi-audio ( It's terrible )!

But I've got nothing else better to do.
Not even "Chessmaster: Grandmaster Edition" works on that old computer anymore!
At least it can handle GBA games, but only in a small sized window - Anything larger will cause even the low-resolution GBA game to run slowly! Ugh!

Well, honestly, my life sucks right now.
I've lost contact with most of my friends...
I can't play my favourite computer games anymore because my graphics card is dead...
[ sigh ]

I hope I get a replacement for my old "NVIDIA GeForce FX 5500" soon.
I don't know how much longer I can last...
Honestly, I've been using YouTube and Wikipedia WAY too often!

Well, I guess that's it for now...

May the Force be with you...

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Back From Malacca...

Hey, guys!
I'm back from Malacca!
Yes, I'm tired, but I have just enough energy to update my blog, like I said I would in my last post...

Well, in one of my recent posts, I mentioned that while I was playing "Star Wars: Battlefront", my monitor just froze, and then blacked out.
I told my father the problem, and he told me to check the Internet for solutions.

I did. But what I found was discomforting.
There is no problem with the monitor at all. It's the graphics card that's on the fritz.
It was something I honestly did not want to believe. It was painful, actually...

I decided to carry out a test to determine if what I discovered was true.
I unplugged my old computer's monitor and hooked it up to my new computer's CPU.
It's a standard test - If the old PC's monitor manages to show the start-up process of the new PC's CPU, then there is something wrong with the graphics card in the old PC.

I carried out the test, and the old PC's monitor actually worked - I was able to use the new PC's functions, and it all showed up on the old monitor.
That proves the fact that there is absolutely nothing wrong with the monitor.
The monitor is directly connected to the graphics card. If there was something wrong with the graphics card, it would affect the monitor too.
Therefore, there HAD to be a problem with the graphics card.

I told my father about this, and he told me to open up the old PC's CPU chassis.
Well, I saw him open it up before, so it's no big deal actually...
The last time we opened it up, it was with the intention of getting rid of the dust in the chassis, because the dust could actually cause the internal systems to overheat.

This time, however, I had to open up the chassis, remove the graphics card from its slot, and inspect it for signs of damage. And give the innards a good dusting as well!
So, the next day, I opened it up and got rid of any dust inside the chassis using a fine brush.
After that, I gently removed the graphics card from its slot.

Here are some pictures.
I took them using an old camera I found in my cabinet.
Here they are:

The good ol' chassis of the "HP Pavilion t210d"...[ sigh ]

Here's a closer look...

The two most difficult parts to clean - The graphics card and the processor fan.

The hardware - My beloved "NVIDIA GeForce FX 5500 AGP 8X"...

Well, I inspected the graphics card, and I found something on it that could be the possible cause of the graphics card's malfunctioning.
It was a rupture on one of the pixel pipelines of the card.
It wasn't very big, but even a little bit of damage can cause the whole the card to cease functioning.

I showed the damaged graphics card to my father, and he asked me to find out more about the damage on the graphics card via the Internet.
All the websites I found all repeated the same thing: If the graphics card is damaged, then the only solution is to replace it.

So, finally, I helped my father find the information and specifications of my old PC.
We would have to replace the old graphics card. Apparently, there's no other option...
To be honest, I'm actually gonna miss that old graphics card...[ sigh ]

Well, I guess that's it for now.

Oh, and Jannah,
welcome back from wherever it is you were...
We thought you were dead! [ stares wide eyed ]

May the Force be with you...

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Off To Malacca...

Alright, I'm here again...
And this is my 140th post on Blogger!

Oh, and the picture I used in this post IS considered a Star Wars picture, for your information.
It's Ben Kenobi, once known as Obi Wan Kenobi before the formation of the First Galactic Empire.
So, for those of you who really don't know, it's not just some picture of an old man pointing, alright?

Anyway, I won't be around tomorrow.
I'm following my family to see my grandparents in Malacca.
I'm leaving at 8am and won't be back until Thursday.

I actually planned to blog about my old computer, which is having some problems regarding the monitor and graphics card.
Normally, I don't blog about this kind of hardware problem, but this time it's serious.
I'll blog about this on Thursday, when I come back from Malacca...

Well, I've gotta go pack...

May the Force be with you...

Monday, November 23, 2009

Malfunctioning Monitor! Ugh!

Right, I'm here again.
Well, I wasn't really planning on blogging today.
I didn't have much of a choice!

Here's what happened:
I was playing a video game on my other computer - "Star Wars: Battlefront".

It's an awesome game!
And yes, it's a Star Wars game.
I enjoyed playing it because I just recalibrated the graphics settings of the game to its optimum level.
So the performance was unparalleled! [ smiles ]

Anyway, I was about to shoot down a Separatist Super Battle Droid when suddenly, the screen froze.
Then the speakers started to emit some sort of weird noise - I recognised it as my Republic Clone Trooper's blaster rifle being shot successively, like some sort of malfunctioning machine gun.
It was weird...

Then the screen went blank.
I could still hear sounds coming from the speaker. The battle was still going on...
Then I heard a Super Battle Droid blaster shot, immediately followed by the dying shriek of the Clone Trooper I was controlling...

It was then that I realised that the CPU and the other systems were still working normally.
It's the monitor that's malfunctioning...
I restarted the system twice, but to no avail. The monitor just remained blank, even though I clearly heard the Windows start-up sound coming from my speakers!

My father wasn't around to take a look at the monitor.
I still haven't identified the source of the problem - Why on earth is the monitor not showing anything?!
Then I decided that I should just leave it be and return to it later.

So, I shifted to the computer I'm using right now and started blogging.
And so, here I am!
[ sigh ]

You know, what I've said above represents the ONLY interesting thing that's happened to me so far!

Well, I guess that outgrowing my shoes yesterday could be counted as "interesting"...
I mean, I could wear my shoes yesterday, but I can't wear them today!
Strange, no?
Oh well...

Alright, I guess that's it for now.

I won't even bother typing "comment me, kay?" anymore because no one seems to be commenting anymore!
What a bummer!
I'll just keep blogging for the fun of it - I have to keep my blog alive no matter what, right?

May the Force be with you...

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Life Is Dull...

Alright, I found this picture on Facebook. I took it from either Kamal or Hannim's profile.
It's a picture of 3 Omega!
But some people that are supposed to be in 3 Omega are missing...
Oh well...

There are a few students from other classes, too...
Matthew is a prime example ( he's between Amir and Hari ). He's from 3 Zeta.
And there other students whose names escape me - they come from other classes as well.

And I think you should be able to spot me in the picture, right? [ smiles ]

Anyway, I just posted this picture here for fun.
Because truth be told, I've got nothing else better to do.
I might as well update my good ol' blog, right?
[ sigh ]

Well, I'll blog again as soon as something interesting happens.
Which will be soon enough. Hopefully...
Life is getting duller and duller by the moment.

Even the weather right now is so dull and gloomy...[ stares out of the window ]
This could be my shortest post ever since my last shortest post.
Ugh, I don't care anymore!

Until the next time...

May the Force be with you...

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The "2012 Phenomenon"?

Well, the picture says it all - Where will you be in 2012?
Is it true?
Is the world really going to end on the 21st of December 2012?

I'm only 18 years old by then!
And my brother would only be 14, which means he won't have to suffer the hardships of preparing for his PMR Examination if the world really does come to an end!

So I did some research on the topic via the Internet.
And I found an article in Wikipedia named "2012 Phenomenon"...

Based on what I found, the "2012 phenomenon" comprises a range of "pseudoscientific" beliefs and proposals positing that cataclysmic or transformative events will occur in the year 2012.
These beliefs are based primarily on what is said to be the end-date of the "Mayan Long Count calendar", which is presented as lasting 5,125 years and terminating on December 21 or 23, 2012.
All predictions about how the world could end in 2012 have been rejected as "pseudoscience" by the scientific community since these claims would violate the laws of physics and are contradicted by simple observations...

Hmmm, I think I'm just going to sit back and wait for the year 2012 to come and go...
If it happens, it happens.
If it doesn't happen, then it doesn't happen. Simple!

There are several theories on how the world will end ( again, from Wikipedia! ). I'm just going to list them down for the fun of it...
1. Geomagnetic Reversal ( Polar shift ) - possibly triggered by a massive solar flare. This belief is supposedly supported by observations that the Earth's magnetic field is weakening, which indicates an impending "reversal" of the North and South magnetic poles.

2. Planet Nibiru - a planet, called Nibiru or Planet X, will collide with or pass by Earth in that year. This particular theory has been widely ridiculed, but is considered plausible.

3. Black Hole Alignment - An apocalyptic reading of "Jenkins's hypothesis" has that, when the galactic alignment occurs, it will somehow create a combined gravitational effect between the Sun and the "supermassive black hole" at the center of our galaxy ( known as "Sgr A*" ), creating havoc on Earth.

Of course, the first theory involving giant solar flares and the reversal of the North and South magnetic poles is the most believable and relevant theory. It even came out in the movie "2012"...
I'm still 50/50 on this one, but for you skeptics and believers out there, there's no need to convince each other to believe whatever you want them to believe - If you think the world is coming to an end on the 21st of December 2012, so be it. And if you think that everything is fine and dandy, that's okay too.
There's no need to start arguments and controversies over this topic.

That's right, I'm looking at you two, Justin and Amelia!
( There was a heated argument in Facebook, originating from a wall post by Ivan Joseph about the movie "2012". Of course, the two main characters are Justin, the believer, and Amelia, the skeptic. )

Oh well...
Let's forget everything that I've typed above, alright?
There's no need to worry about the Apocalypse just yet!

I guess that's it for now.

Comment me, kay?

May the Force be with you...

Monday, November 16, 2009

3 Omega Tribute!

Alright, I'm back from the last day of school!
My poor brother still has to go to school tomorrow. Poor fella!
In fact, he still has to go to school for this whole week!
Pity him and his friends...

He's going to school while I'm relaxing at home!
He has to wake up at 6 am and I don't!
[ sinister smile ]

Anyway, since it's the right thing to do, I've decided to give a little "tribute" to all my fellow friends / classmates in 3 Omega this year...
And this time, I have pictures, unlike last year...

I took these pictures when my beloved Sharp GX27 handphone was still functioning.
That handphone had such a good camera. It's much better than the camera on my current handphone...
[ sigh ]
Well, it's gone now...

Right, let's begin.
Remember, these are the photos of my friends that I took, with my own camera!
And notice that Lee King's first in line - I uploaded this picture first because it's so comical!





AMIRAH alias "Mora"!


KAMAL! ( The one on the left, holding the cup, duh! )



And last but not least, HAZIQ!

Erm, I still have many, many other friends in 3 Omega, but I didn't manage to take all their pictures.
My handphone died before I had the chance...
But they're still my friends all the same. And I respect them just as much!

Finally, to ALL my friends in 3 Omega, thanks for being so awesome!
2009 was a great year for me, and I owe it all to you guys!
And I hope we all get straight As for the PMR Examination! I'll keep my fingers crossed!

Farewell, 3 Omega!

May the Force be with you...

Sunday, November 15, 2009


Alright, my Internet speed has slightly improved, thank God.
Notice that I used the word slightly, which means that the Internet can still get quite slow and sluggish at times.

But it's improved since the past few days, at least.

Anyway, I've just watched the anticipated movie "2012" last night at the Golden Screen Cinemas, USJ Summit.
I've even posted a "2012" picture instead of the normal Star Wars picture...

And I think it's one of the longest movies I've ever watched:
It's 2 hours and 30 minutes long!
I watched it from 8.30 pm and it ended at 11.00 pm!

It's quite a good movie, I guess.
Although some of the actors in the movie weren't that good, in my opinion.

And I'm not sure what the climax of the movie is - The destruction and mayhem actually begins somewhere in the middle of the movie.
After that, it's pretty much a struggle to survive.

But from my perspective, I think that the part where the "beginning of the end" actually starts is more or less the climax of the story, and the part where the humans try to survive is the anti-climax or something like that.
I don't know. I guess it's like that. There's no cosmic disaster or epic explosion that annihilates the world...
It's just pretty much a couple of large-scale natural disasters happening, and a struggle to survive.

And this movie actually reminds me of "The Day After Tomorrow", what with the giant wall of water crashing inland - It's nostalgic...
But I have to admit, the graphics and special effects in this movie are superb!

Overall, I think it's a very good movie that's worth watching.
However, there is a little room for improvement, and the movie could have been so much better if the developers had just pushed a little harder...

Anyway, I plan on going to school tomorrow.
It IS the last day of school!
The Form 5 students have their SPM Examination on Tuesday onward, so the Form 1, 2 and 3 students don't have to go to school...
So technically, next Tuesday marks the beginning of the school holidays!

Well, that's pretty much it.
I've gotta go and finish reading Ashman's book. I have to return it to him tomorrow!

Comment me, kay?

May the Force be with you...

Saturday, November 14, 2009

I'm on Twitter!

Alright, I've just made an account in Twitter!

I don't know why I did it.
It could be because a lot of people are on Twitter, and that makes me feel kind of isolated.
So I made my own account last night.

So, if any of you are on Twitter, please...
Add me!

I'm having difficulty trying to find people on Twitter because of my slow and sluggish Internet connection.
Yep, it's still slow - nothing's changed since yesterday.
Oh well...

[ sigh ]
I guess that's it...

Comment me, kay?

May the Force be with you...

Friday, November 13, 2009

Slow Internet!!!

I feel so miserable today...
And kind of pissed off with my Internet.
It's so slow!

I was just listening to my Blogger music playlist ( I've added a new song called "I'd Come For You" by Nickelback, for your information ).
The music always just abruptly stops playing, then resumes, then stops again, then resumes again. And this goes on and on and on!

I've restarted my computer twice. Nothing!
I checked my computer's connectivity status, and it was quite strong!
Huh?! That doesn't make any sense!
If it's strong, why is my Internet so damn slow?!?!

Maybe it's only a temporary thing. Hopefully.
I can't live like this...
I mean, my Internet speed was blisteringly fast before my PMR Examination...
But a few days after PMR ended, it suddenly just started slowing down.

And now, it's at its worst condition.
I can't even watch a simple YouTube video anymore!
It's sickening!

Maybe I should just delete of my playlist, just to put me out of my misery.
I always feel so pissed off whenever I hear my playlist just STOP playing abruptly!
It makes me feel like just grabbing the monitor and shake it around until the damned playlist actually does what it's supposed to do - play music!!!

To anyone reading this...
Please, please, please!!! Tell me, what should I do?! I'm confused...

Anyway, on a lighter note, I went to Ashman's house yesterday.
Ummm, long story short: All the Form 3 students were required to go to school on Friday to collect the 2010 Form 4 SPBT textbooks. But my parents were going somewhere else on Thursday night. So, I was forced to go to one of my friends' house. Since, I've been to Hazwan's house before, I might as well go to Ashman's this time.

It was quite fun, I guess.
I played Chess, Scrabble, Monopoly and Twister.
I also got to use Ashman's PSP! ( It's not really his, actually... )

The next day, we woke up at 6am and got ready to go to school.
After that, we still had time to spare, so guess what we did?
We played Chess, of course!
And this was a first for me - playing Chess as early as 6 in the morning!
[ smiles ]

And as an added plus, he lent me his book "The Tao Of Chess" by Peter Kurzdorfer.
It's an awesome book! It's not like those learn-the-basics Chess books...
This book contains almost 200 principles about high-level Chessplay!
Honestly, I'm gonna enjoy reading this book!

Well, I guess that's it...

Comment me, kay?

May the Force be with you...

Monday, November 9, 2009

Rotoscoping My New Profile Picture!

Alright, I was bored, so I decided to make some new profile pictures using Adobe After Effects CS4.

So, my brother and I planned to build a lightsaber hilt / prop together.
Well, not really "together". He just helped to collect the required materials. I did most of the work.

It's not really that difficult to make a lightsaber prop.

The materials I used include:
1. A long, sturdy stick that will act as the main blade ( this part is very important if you're going to rotoscope the saber in After Effects ).
2. Two toilet paper rolls ( The cardboard cylinders, not the paper, duh! )
3. Some cardboard.
4. Aluminium foil.
5. Newspaper.
6. Lots of tape!

Well, it took me one whole morning to complete it.
But I was fairly satisfied with the finished prop.
After a few crash tests to make sure it was strong and stable, I added a few decorations...

It's not as nifty as the real, metal lightsaber hilts, but it will do!

I took a few pictures with me posing with the lightsaber prop.
I planned to rotoscope these in After Effects.
I plan to use one of them as my new profile picture...
Or I could just use one picture for each of my different accounts ( MySpace, Blogger, Facebook, Yahoo Messenger and Windows Live Messenger ).

Oh well, I'll leave it to you guys, alright?
Well, here they are...

"Shi-Cho" Stance I

"Shien" Guard Stance

"Shi-Cho" Stance II

"Darth Sidious' " Stance

Oh, and please don't ask me: "Why is the lightsaber red?"
If I use any colour other than red, the lightsaber might actually appear white when viewed from far away, and that's a big no-no, especially if the picture is gonna be a profile picture...

I also changed the lighting and brightness quality, just to make the pictures look a little bit better.

And I might appear sleepy or tired in some of the pictures.
But that's because it was in the middle of the afternoon, and the heat was unbearable!
That's another reason why I had to change the lighting in After Effects - the weather was unappropriate!

Alright, if none of you guys actually choose by tomorrow, I'll just go ahead and use the pictures as my profile pictures.
But really, I respect your opinions more than my own. Honestly!
So please, you'll be doing me a big favour! [ smiles ]

Oh, I also posted another video on YouTube.
It involves my brother, Alvyn, performing an awesome lightsaber flurry using the prop saber I made.
I handled the graphics in After Effects, of course. But the choreography was all him!

You can go and check it out here:

Oh, and be warned - I think YouTube really screwed up the audio quality of the video.
So, the lightsaber sounds might cause static to some speakers.
If this happens, I recommend that you just watch the video muted.
Don't say I didn't warn you!

Well, I guess that's it for now...

Comment me, kay?

May the Force be with you...

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Force Lightning!

Alright, I posted another video on YouTube.
Actually I posted two, but one of them is kind of irrelevant.

I've just learned how to create Force Lightning in Adobe After Effects CS4!
I've actually made Force Lightning in After Effects before, but then, it looked sort of fake ( Hey! I was just exploring AAE at the time! )

But this time, I watched a tutorial on YouTube, and now my Force Lightning looks very, very professional!
Kind of like the Force Lightning you see in the movies!
I even incorporated lighting and lens flares to great effect!

If you wanna see it for yourself, you can click here,
Force Lightning Test

Again, I used the video that I always use: the one from the Dr Jekyll And Mr Hyde project.
Hey, don't blame me!
I really hate using this video for my tests all the time! Honestly!

I wish I had a good camera...
That would be wonderful, because then I can really stage my own After Effects tests and I wouldn't have to use the same video file over and over again...
But unfortunately, I don't have one!

So, this is the only video on my computer that's even worth working on in Adobe After Effects!

Anyway, back to the video I made.
Well, Ashman is the one using the Force Lightning.

I used the lighting tools in After Effects to give the whole video a light bluish hue when Ashman is firing the lightning, just to make it more realistic.
I also used lens flares to augment the Force Lightning's appearance.
Don't be afraid to leave some comments about the video, alright?

The other video I posted is merely one of the lightsaber test videos I've posted on YouTube before.
Only this time, I've improved the quality and framerate of the video.
So, the video runs smoother and the performance isn't as crappy as before...

Well, I guess that's it for now.

Comment me, kay?

May the Force be with you...

Thursday, November 5, 2009

130th Post! [ wipes sweat off forehead ]

Alright, this is my 130th post on Blogger!
I've sure come a long way since my first post!
Come to think of it, that post was so short...
[ shrugs ]

And for those of you guys who ACTUALLY blog, good for you!
Don't let your blogs die!

Oh, and another thing...
I just realised that today is my cousin Essie's birthday.
Happy Birthday, Essie!

Already 20 years old!
I wish I were as tall as you! [ smiles ]

Anyway, I won't be going to school tomorrow.
Mr Durai actually organised a field trip for us Form 3 students.
It's a trip to a prison facility!
Could you believe that?

And the bus fee is RM10!
It's like paying RM10 to go to jail!
That would be a laugh!
But I have other reasons for not coming tomorrow, not just this...

Well, Hazwan and Ashman are not coming, that's for certain.
That's one of the reasons, I think...
There are countless others, and I'm too lazy to type them here!

Okay, I guess that's it for now.

Comment me, kay?

May the Force be with you...

"Chou Da Di"?

Alright, I went to school today.
Then again, I don't really have much of a choice, because my brother HAD to go to school today for some reason. So my parents asked me to tag along.

It was real boring. Almost none of my friends were there.
So I hung out with Matthew, Bridget, Nani, Yi Ling and Iman.

And I learned how to play a chinese poker card game called "Chou Da Di".
I think that's the name of the game, according to Bridget. But it's pronounced differently, of course.

Okay, I think this game is too difficult for me to explain here.
The rules are quite complex.
The easiest way of learning how to play this card game is by means of demonstration...

Anyway, Bridget introduced this game to us ( Me, Matthew, Nani and Iman. Yi Ling was somewhere else at the time... ).
I actually knew a few things about "Chou Da Di" already, having seen a game being played between Winnie, Sehran and one of my Chinese friends the previous week. But I was a bit confused then, because that was the FIRST time I tried learning the game.

After Bridget gave a quick demonstration on how to play "Chou Da Di" today, I caught on pretty quickly.
Anyway, it's quite an interesting game...

Oh, and I found a Chess book belonging to Sehran at school.
It's called "Counter-Gambits: Black To Play And Win" by T.D. Harding.

As you've guessed, it's mainly about Black counter-gambit openings.
There's also a lot about dynamic counterplay and preparing early, calculated aggression for Black.
It's an interesting book, so I couldn't just leave it at school, right?

So, I brought it home and I'll give it back to Sehran the next time I see him.
In the mean time, I might as well read the book, since it's with me, no?
Who disapproves of me doing this?
No one?

Alright, and finally, I'm thinking of adding 2 new songs to my music playlist.
1. "It Ends Tonight" by The All American Rejects.
2. "Down" by Jay Sean

I heard both of these songs while I was exercising at the gym.
I THINK it was Hitz FM, most likely...
Oh well...
Tell me what you guys think, alright?

Oh, and I also removed "21 Guns" by Green Day.
The reason? No idea.
I just felt like I wanted to remove it, that's all!

Okay, I guess that's it for now.

Comment me, kay?

May the Force be with you...

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

A Compendium Of Games At School!

Alright, I went to school today, and as usual, I played Chess with Hazwan, Hari and Sehran.
Ashman didn't come today.

But after recess, instead of playing Chess, I played a variety of other games, including "Tower Blocks", "Donkey" ( It's a game involving poker cards. Don't worry, it has nothing to do with gambling! ) and "Snap".

I'm sure you guys are familiar with the games "Tower Blocks", "Donkey" and "Snap" and how they're played, right?

I've just discovered today that I suck at "Tower Blocks", but I think that's because Iman, Bridget, Nani and Yi Ling are all so "professional" at it!

As for "Donkey", after playing a few friendly rounds, Matthew, one of my good friends, decided that we should take things up a notch and make the game more exciting.
So, anybody who becomes the "Donkey" must take of some form of their clothes ( Excluding watches, bags and other irrelevant accessories )!

I only had to take off my neck-tie, because I only became the "Donkey" once.
As for my other friends:
1. Hari had to take of his tie as well
2. Sehran undid 2 buttons on his shirt
3. Kar Wai had to remove his neck-tie and take off his socks and shoes
4. Amir was completely safe: He never lost once!
5. Matthew got hit the hardest! He became the "Donkey" the most amount of times! Luckily he was wearing an inner shirt!

In the end, we stopped the game when Matthew became the "Donkey" again. If we continued, he would have to pull down his trousers and remove his inner shirt!
We all laughed so hard at the thought of that!
But we all pitied Matthew...

Then, I went to go and see what Jabbar, Jas and Evo were doing.
They were solving a Sudoku puzzle. And after they got fed up of that, they brought out a deck of UNO cards and started playing "Snap".

I joined in, of course.
I wasn't intent on playing Chess during the hot hours of the afternoon, coupled with the fact that the class I was in was more like an oversized microwave oven!

The three of them ( Jas, Jabbar and Evo ) were screaming "SNAP" like crazy!
And they were slamming their hands on the cards real hard!
The reddish colour on my hand was clearly visible!

Well, anyway, I was new to "Snap", but I did pretty well, I guess.
Or it could be just beginner's luck...
Oh well, at least I know how to play "Snap" now!

Okay, I guess that's it for now...

Comment me, kay?

May the Force be with you...

Monday, November 2, 2009

The UIAM Chess Tournament Is Over!

Alright, yesterday, I went to that UIAM Chess Tournament that I've been talking about in my last few posts.
We all gathered at Hazwan's house as planned.

Then, all 5 of us had to squeeze at the back of Ashman's father's car!
You can imagine how cramped we were, coupled with the fact that the car isn't designed to accommodate that many people!

So, when we finally reached UIAM, we followed the registration procedure and waited anxiously for the first round of the tournament to begin.
It was supposed to start at 10 am, but was delayed for some reason.
We waited for nearly an hour, and by the time the first round started, it was already 11.30 am!

The tournament was supposed to have seven rounds. But due to time constraints, the number of rounds was reduced to 6 rounds, much to Ashman's and Hazwan's disbelief.

Another case of poor time management was the closing and prize giving ceremony.
It was scheduled to start at 6 pm, so after the 6th and final round we proceeded to the auditorium.
We waited and waited and waited.
The ceremony only started at around 8 pm! That's a two hour delay!

Here are the results of my friends and I.
Ashman - 4 wins, 1 loss, 1 draw ( 4.5/6 )
Andrew - 3 wins, 2 losses, 1 draw ( 3.5/6 )
Hazwan - 3 wins, 2 losses, 1 draw ( 3.5/6 )
Sehran - 3 wins, 3 losses ( 3/6 )
Hari - 2 wins, 4 losses ( 2/6 )

Well, as you can see, Ashman got the highest points, and Hari got the lowest.
Hazwan and I got the same score.
And Sehran, well, not bad a score for an amateur!

Oh, Hari keeps on saying that he wasn't himself that day. That's why he got such a low score.
Technically, he blundered a lot in the last few rounds of the tournament.
I don't really know.
He keeps on finishing his games faster than I do.

Anyway, I won the 1st and 2nd rounds, lost the 3rd and 4th rounds, won the 5th round and drew the 6th round.
I got the 19th position out of 65 competitors.
Oh well, that's good enough for me!

Let me see. I think I can remember what happened on each of my rounds:
Round 1 - I played with an amateur and won easily.

Round 2 - I made a slight miscalculation in the middle game, but I managed to organise and effective endgame defense, taking out two of my opponents minor pieces and winning on time with only around 10-15 seconds left on my clock!

Round 3 - I played the Italian Game instead of the Scotch Game, which I preferred more. I reorganised in the middle game, leading to a better middle game position than my opponent, but I had less pawns. My opponent was apparently a very strong endgame player, and so, during the endgame, her superior pawn structure led to my downfall.

Round 4 - I played with quite a famous player who participated in an MSSS competition once. I was successful in the opening. We brawled in the midgame, with me having a slight advantage. But he organised a clever trap that could lead to me being checkmated. I avoided it, however, and pulled out a stunning attack that cost my opponent a rook. He had 30 seconds left on his clock, and I had 3 minutes. Then, he pulled another complex trap on me, which cost me almost 2 minutes and 30 seconds to calculate. I avoided his trap yet again, but lost on time, even though I was dominating the game skill wise from start to finish!

Round 5 - To my surprise, I had to play against Sehran! We brawled in the opening and the middle game, but during the endgame, Sehran made a few, critical blunders that led to him losing the opposition and allowing my King to infiltrate his pawn structure. After a forced rook exchange, Sehran's defeat was all but inevitable.

Round 6 - I was matched against a player whose style of play matched my own! He even used my favourite Black opening, the Petrov Defense! I declined the free pawn, of course. Accepting it would be a mistake. The middle game was a ferocious fight for control of the open ranks and the right to castle. It was an open game and we were fairly matched, I lost my right to castle to the Kingside and he lost his very active light-squared Bishop. In the end, he offered a draw and I accepted, deciding that I shouldn't take my chances with a player that mirrored my playing style.

Overall, it was an exhilarating day.
But all of us didn't expect that we would each get a certificate of participation!
That really lightened up everyone's faces!
Ashman even got the 7th place in the top 10!

He won RM50. And he made us stay at the prize giving ceremony until his name was called, even though everyone else clearly wanted to leave because it was so late.
But he insisted on staying, and when he finally received his RM50, we were all so relieved that the ordeal of waiting for him to receive his prize was over!

Then, we went to a McDonald's outlet located at a place which name escapes me.
Then, we went back to Hazwan's house.
A few minutes later, my parents picked me up from Hazwan's house.
By the time I reached home, it was nearly 10 pm!

My parents then decided that I shouldn't go to school the next day, because of three main reasons:
1. My brother didn't want to go to school.
2. I had a horrible headache.
3. My parents wanted me to get sufficient rest.

But I will be coming on Tuesday...

Oh, and Jannah, if you're reading this...
I have very good reasons why I can't come to your dress-up party!
I am not making excuses! Honestly!
So you can't hate me because it's not my fault!

I am sorry, by the way.
But if I stayed in Bukit Jelutong, things would be a whole lot different.
Hopefully you'll be able to understand that...

And finally,
Happy Birthday, Jaslyn!

I'll give you a birthday present on Tuesday, alright?

Right, I guess that's it for now.

Comment me, kay?

May the Force be with you...