Tony's Days

Web Tday

This is my brief summary of my life, my feelings on different topics, and my random thoughts.

Monday, August 29, 2005

The Thief and the Liar

I think someone tried to rob my place yesterday.  I had gotten home from work and was using my pc when I heard the door open.  I leaned back and there was this guy that looked to be in his 30's...kinda dirty.  So he starts asking if Josh lived here and if I knew Josh.  I was said no and I told him he had the wrong apartment.  He then walks in back into the computer room and starts talking to me.  He kept going on how he was looking for this Josh guy.  Then he changes his story and started saying he was up here to visit his friend, but he wasn't home.  He then asked me if he could chill here and watch TV while he waited for Josh to get back.  So I started giving this guy a look, and he was all "I'm not a mugger or anything."  And I was thinking, you may not be a mugger but your a theif.  Anywhoo, he started saying how he didn't want to wait in Aggieville because he would spend money and didn't want to be around people.  So I asked him which apartment his friend was in, and he said he lived in the aparments over there (the ones behind mine).  Then I asked him "Shouldn't you be waiting over there somewhere so you would know when your friend gets back."  He then sounded really dissapointed and was like "OK, I guess I'll see ya later." So he leaves and I'm like WTF was that?

Thursday, August 25, 2005


I see myself as being in the HDTV market within the next 1-2 years.  Because of this and the fact the HDTV is hot, I have been trying my best to keep up on most of this stuff.  I am going to go ahead and post this now before I get too into school and fall out of the loop.  I will be in the market for a rear projection HDTV probably in the 50"-60" range.  While the flat TV market is nice, I just do not feel that it is what I am looking for.  I might get a small LCD or something for my bedroom someday but it wouldn't be any sort of major purchase.  So, I'm pretty much looking at LCD, DLP, or the "newly rediscovered" LCOS technologies.

I am going to begin by discussing LCD rear projection TV's (RPTV).  Like any of these technologies, it looks real nice and, for the money, provides a better picture than a comparable CRT.  Let's face it.  Analog is best, but keeping the picture pristine would co$t.  So here is basically why I decided not to go with LCD.  First, I am able to notice the screen door effect, or pixilation.  Now, not everyone is susceptible to this, but I for one am and it can be distracting if sitting too close.  The other thing is that the LCD uses organic compounds.  These will break down over time.  It will be a long time but it will still happen.  I doubt most people would notice it until they see and brand new TV some time down the road and are like "What happened to my TV???" Although, in its defense, it does boast some of the best brights in the TV business.  This does come at a cost, because with LCD you can't have your cake and eat it too, the blacks are not as black as with DLP and definitely CRT.

On to DLP now.  DLP offers a reflective technology that uses tiny mirrors to make the picture.  This has the benefit of not breaking down over time.  Someone tested it against a simulated 20 years and it still worked fine.  The only thing that needs replacing every few years is the bulb which would need to be replaced in and RPTV after a few years.  Also, DLP has recently started using a 1080p screen so its the highest resolution you can get.  LCD RPTV is still at 720P.  I'll talk about resolutions in a bit.  There are a few problems with DLP though.  That 1080p isn't completely what is seems.  It uses a "hack" called wobbulation to attain this.  I don't have a full grasp on the concept, but from what I have gathered it is like interlacing entire pictures and not true 1080p.  Also, with single chip DLP, the ones in the 1-5k range, they use a color wheel.  This can create headaches, nausea, and something called the "rainbow effect", a sense of color when there should not be one.  They have started spinning the wheel faster and adding more colors to alleviate these conditions.  Honestly, up until not too long ago, my choice for a TV if I had to get one would be DLP, one of the new Samsungs. 

LCoS, or liquid crystal on silicon, is my new favorite TV technology.  First, let me talk about the cons.  Its black levels are not as bad a LCD but not as good as DLP.  Also, it too uses a liquid crystal and could have organic compounds.  Now for why I like it.  It is actually a hybrid of sorts.  It is a LCD that uses a reflective technology.  Now, both JVC and Sony use an inorganic compound in the LCD so that it won't break down.  I know Sony's compound has also improved its black levels.  Also, both of these company's use a 3-panel display so there is no need for a color wheel.  Also, the fact that it is reflective and uses a smaller chip with more tightly packed pixels removes the "screen door effect."  LCoS was the first to offer 1080p and doesn't use any "hacks" to achieve this.  As far as I can tell, the only real drawback is the black levels.  Sony's incarnation of LCoS does address this though.  It uses a contracting iris to help even out the signal to get a better contrast.  I have heard of this causing an "iris effect".  It is when watching a picture with side bars, the bars will change in its shades of gray/black as the iris contracts.  For the meantime,  I am throwing my support with Sony's new LCoS(they call it something different) until something else comes along. 

Now a quick briefing on screen resolutions.  1080 offers a higher resolution than 720 but 720p offers a progressive scan while 1080i has been the standard.  Progressive scan offers better viewing of fast motion(read sports) and doesn't suffer from the flicker and lines that don't match up caused by interlacing.  So 720p or 1080i, which is better is more on preference.  But now with 1080p, it is the clear champion, sort of.  The problem is that nothing is outputting a 1080p signal and TV makers are not using 1080p inputs.  There is a slight problem with the up conversion to.  1080i is recorded at 540 lines at any given moment.  Up converting to 720p isn't a huge jump, but to 1080p it is line doubling.  It becomes worse when watching standard TV.  DVD can do 480p and standard broadcast is 480i or 240 lines at any given moment.  This up conversion can cause problems with picture quality.  It is fairly noticeable at 720p.  I am almost afraid of what it looks like at 1080p.  Anyway, that is my rundown.  Honestly, I probably won't buy a TV until they start equipping them with 1080p inputs.  It will save me an upgrade down the road.  I read that the reason for this is digital security issues, so hopefully they get resolved soon. 

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Ga$ Price$

OK, really this has gotten out of control.  I have heard from no less than 3 different people that gas would be $3 by labor day.  Also, some crazy guy who was talking to me at work said gas would be $4 by Christmas.  Thats nuts.  I wish I could use milk in my car because it would actually be cheaper.  But seriously, its going to become a burden to travel outside of town.  Here I only have to drive to work, the grocery store, and a short drive to the laundry mat.  I am really going to try to limit where and how often I drive places.  I live close enough to school and the bars that I should never have to drive so that will help out a bit.  This is going to create a bit of a dilemma eventually though.  I mean, I don't particularly like the way the hybrid cars look, but from a financial perspective I may have to get one within the next year or so.  Hopefully more people will feel this way and they will begin to make more, nay most cars hybrids to combat this situation.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Dead Kitty

All of Teacups kittens are now gone.  The last one on a sadder note.  One of the kittens ended up dying of heart failure.  So we had 1 last kitten that we gave to replace the one that died. 

Next week we start school.  My last year and my last real semester.  Second semester won't be a full 12 hrs, but that's ok.  This semester I will be pretty busy with some pretty tough classes.  It's all good though, I should have plenty of time to party next semester.