It’s raining

My friend browsed thru my photo book and his first question was “How come the weather was so good in every place you went to ?”. Hmmm … good question, isn’t it ? So I answered, “Visit the place again, until you see the blue skys.”

Anyway, it’s raining in Boston, and I suppose I need to visit this city again. But hey, there are still 4 days to go. Be positive. May be I can see good weather like couple of days ago in Toronto:

Statue in University Avenue
Statue in University Avenue
Casa Loma
Casa Loma
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WordPress for iPhone

With nothing to do in the conference, I browsed the iPhone application store with the phone (must be an expensive way) and found the new WordPress for iPhone was released …

The installation was easy and finished on the fly. The first problem … It created a dummy post in my blog with placeholders like !$titles$! in it. And I could not remove it thru the tool but had to go back to the online full version.

WTF … Did they test the software at all ?

I saw the angel …

Had a good chat with some friends the other day about types of boss in our work life. There was a theory that there are two types of boss – one is a control freak who keep yelling to their staff, and one is with mentor style that helps the staff to develop themselves.

I wonder what type of boss I am, but I am a firm believer of the quote from sculptor Michelangelo:

I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free.

Google Lively

Other than the Apple iPhone 3G, the launch of Google Lively is indeed one of the hottest news this week. So just three days after the launch of the beta version, how is it doing ? Here are some good and bad things I found so far.

  • I managed to download the Lively plug-in, installed it, set up my avatar, designed my first “room” and got hanging around the room within an hour. It’s better than my Secondlife experience on this.
  • The plug-in runs pretty fast in Firefox 3.0 and Internet Explorer 7, and feels faster than Secondlife.
  • I can set up “gadgets” easily to feed my own photos and a video feed from Youtube.
  • You can embed the room into your own website, blog or Facebook account (yet to be tested, but the application is here).
  • The chat messages and avatar expressions appear in rooms you visiting almost instantly.
  • I can easily embedded to my WordPress blog.

Here is a screen shot of the room I created – 80 Days Cafe.

google-lively-2.jpg

As you can see, I added …

  • An avatar with new hairstyle, t-shirt and jean …
  • Two red colored sofas, a coffee table, a standing lamp and one potted plant.
  • A wall mounted picture frame that gets a feed from my photo album and a click to the picture will link to a website selling my photo album (neat !!)
  • A LCD TV on top of a bench, with a feed from a selected video (Wicked Game guitar solo by Greg Reiter) from YouTube (neat neat !!). The sound is great as well …

And the problems I encountered are …

  • Whenever I click the objects (avatar or furniture), a dialogue box pop up to let me edit the properties. However, the dialogue box keep “flashing” and I have to drag the box outside the room estate to stop the flashing. Interestingly, it happens only on my XP computer, but works perfectly in a Vista computer.
  • One of my rooms disappeared after login, but reappeared later on. I suspected it is caused by the fact that I ran Lively sometimes in Firefox, and sometimes in IE.
  • I don’t think there is enough items to dress up the avatar and not enough styles of furnitures.  However, I believe the situation will improve later.
  • There was one time the avatar “locked in” with other objects in the room, I have to use another view (toggles in the upper left corner of the room) and move the avatar away from the object.
  • There is no way to stop, adjust the volume, and mute the video feed in the LCD TV gadget.
  • There is no way to resize the photo frame gadget, and in fact other furnitures as well.
  • [Update] Google disabled the gadget function …

All in all, not bad for a beta version. And just in case you wanna know more about the application, here is a video trailer …

Hold on

I think it will be called the greatest final ever in history of Wimbledon, in fact it may be one of the greatest final of any sports. Imagine you’re still in the Centre Court after 4 hours of fighting, I think in your mind there would be only a few voices … like “Focus, focus, focus” and “Hold on”.

Center court

You know what, the last thing any players will see before they enter the Centre Court is an inscription above the entryway:

If you can meet with triumph and disaster
And treat those two imposters just the same

These two lines are extracted from Rudyard Kipling’s poem “If”; but in fact, the other few verses of the same poem pretty much described the situation of the final:

If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on”