December 26, 2011

Depressive Spiral

Whenever I return home, I always get struck by a incredible sense of laziness. For some reason, sitting in my room just suppresses any sort of productivity that I try to muster up. It's a bit frustrating. And I've also noticed that my mental health seems to diminish when I am not productive. I get stuck in a depressive spiral downwards when I am not doing anything useful, but I cannot do anything useful in my room.

Twilight zone of the internet.
Then I try to fill this empty feeling inside myself with useless things on the internet. Reddit, StumbleUpon, Facebook, etc. Combined with the mouse gestures program I have installed on my computer, procrastinating has never been faster or more easily done. I check the same webpages constantly throughout the day, devouring any new piece of information that I come across. This is why websites like Reddit or StumbleUpon are so addictive, they are a constant stream of distracting and counter-productive information.

I have devised a two-step plan to counter-act this problem of non-productivity and laziness. One is to create a daily checklist of things I need to accomplish. The list does not necessarily change from day-to-day, but is just there as a guideline to help me finish overarching tasks. Hopefully, I can train my mind to value the euphoric response triggered from checking off this list more than clicking on new Reddit links. (Not that I even click them, thanks to Hover Zoom)

Second, thanks to my laptop, I have the mobility and freedom to work from any part of my house. For example, just the other day, I was able to accomplish quite a lot just by working from my kitchen. And now that my house finally has WiFi, I will be able to utilize the internet as well.

Hopefully, this plan will not backfire.


On a side note, can anybody recommend me good webcomics?

December 23, 2011

Winter Break

Huzzah! It's winter break! Like many semesters before, this semester was also very hectic and eventful. Many things happened in my life and hopefully I've become a better person through it all.

Anyways, I'm back at home and trying really hard not to fall into the lazy trap that is my room. (And maybe Reddit). I made a daily checklist of things I have to do so hopefully it'll be easier to get things done. For example, writing a blog post is on that list, although the last time I tried to write a blog post a day was a complete and utter failure. But we'll see. I have a few ideas cooking in my mind that I'd love to try out over the next coming weeks.

But for now, I've completed my task of writing a post. I'll see you later!


On a side note, I really want to try doing more animations or sprucing my site up a bit design-wise. It's getting a bit boring.

November 26, 2011

Arc Mouse


 A few weeks ago, I participated in a Microsoft raffle at my school and won an Arc Mouse. Before this mouse, I always used a Logitech Cordless Optical Mouse I bought with my laptop over two years ago. Here’s my review of the Arc Mouse.
The Microsoft Arc Mouse.


What: A surprisingly comfortable wireless mouse which folds for ultimate portability.

Why: You need a mouse with your computer and you are on the go a lot.

Folded view.
The key selling point of this mouse is that it folds up, reducing the size of the mouse by effectively 50%. The portability is definitely a huge plus because you don't want to be carrying a giant mouse everywhere. But the Arc Mouse fits snugly in any pocket.

It runs off two AAA batteries and uses a small USB transceiver to wirelessly communicate with the computer. Conveniently, there’s a groove where the USB attachment fits in magnetically.

Magnetic groove, side button, and battery cover.
Two standard PC buttons, a standard scroll wheel, and one button on the front left are the only buttons on this device. The left and right mouse buttons are pretty responsive and so far have been more than enough for my daily use and even a little gaming.

The scroll wheel is the kind where it has notches/levels instead of a completely smooth scroll, which I personally prefer. However, due to this, it does get noticeably loud when you scroll in silence. Otherwise, the noise of the scroll wheel shouldn’t be a problem. Another small issue is that it's relatively difficult to middle click sometimes, which is pretty annoying if I want to open a new tab, but fail to click the button.

Left / Right mouse buttons, scroll wheel, and side button.
I don’t quite know how to feel about the “back” button however. It’s placed a bit too far front to be pressed easily with the thumb. (Unless you have really long thumbs) I find myself having to lift my hand off the mouse to be able to press the button, which is definitely a hassle especially for when I want to go back really quickly.

Overall, it’s a decent mouse. I have used it extensively for the past two months and have had no major issues with it. It's pretty sturdy despite the giant gap underneath it. It’s also surprisingly comfortable despite how it looks. Like any mouse, however, it’ll take a bit to get used to its quirks and characteristics.

Verdict: I recommend this mouse for casual users or to those looking for comfort and portability. 


On a side note, what more stuff should I review?

November 21, 2011

Hugs From Strangers

Last year, around this time (or earlier, I don't exactly recall) I was struggling with my life. New surroundings, tough academic pressures, extracurricular responsibilities, internship hunting, all added to create a rather stressful environment. I was also a part of the Brown University Debating Union. Every few weeks, I would go to a tournament for the weekend and debate with other teams from different universities.

Most of these tournaments were held in Boston since there are many universities there. My friend from high school, Carol, also went to Boston University and I figured that we'd meet up since it had been a while since I saw her last. We made plans to meet up after my last debate round.

What is stress?
When I saw her, she gave me a hug because, well, that's what friends do. It wasn't a special hug in any way. It lasted the same amount and probably had all the same intentions behind it. But I felt so empowered by that simple gesture. The instant she hugged me, I had realized how long it had been since I felt wanted or cared about. I had been so caught up in my new life at Brown, that I had forgotten what it felt like to be hugged.

It was like an epiphany. I hadn't even realized how stressed I was and how much I neglected my own mental health. Even today, I have difficulties in admitting my own stress levels. I seem to have a history of this. I guess you could call that a weakness of mine?

When I was a Freshman in high school. I had an ulcer. To this day, I have no idea what exactly caused it. The doctors said that it was stress. But I don't really agree. Me? Stress? Seems like an oxymoron. I've never for a second considered myself as stressed. I don't like "stressed." I like "easy-going."


On a side note, I don't really know what I'm doing with my life right now.

November 03, 2011

Efficiently Lying

I've had so many occasions where I had a big paper due or a midterm in a few days time. In my mind, among the billion other things I'm thinking of, I begin to gauge my understanding of the subject material. Am I prepared? How long would it take if I were to start it now? Is it going to be annoying to do?

Yet, without fail, I always seem to overestimate my ability to work, and severely underestimate the amount of work necessary. It goes something like this:
Brain: Hey, Wonmin. You have a paper due next Monday.
Wonmin: Ya, brain. I know. But I've written papers for this class before and it only took like three hours. Don't worry man.
Brain: But this one is different, it's based on research, not previous readings.
Wonmin: Ya, but it's still only 1000 words. Calm down brain, we got this.
Brain: If you're sure...
Lather, rinse, repeat.
Of course, the paper doesn't go as planned and I stay up way past my suggested bedtime. Hours dwindle, I procrastinate on Facebook, I chat with my suite-mates. It's almost like a test to see how well I can not do my essay.

Have you ever had this happen to you? How do you feel afterwards? After having pulled that all-nighter, after toiling for hours on end cramming, do you make a promise to yourself to never do it again? Then when you inevitably repeat your mistake, you feel a sense of depression and guilt for failing to keep your own promise.

It's the same exact cycle every time.

How can you make sure you break free from this cycle? I suggest you first stop beating yourself up. We all make mistakes and the faster you accept that, the better you will feel.

Second, know what your limits and capabilities are. Five page essay? Should be around eight hours of work. Now is that an actual super efficient eight hours? Of course not, I'm most definitely going to be on Facebook for half that time. Okay. Let's double the allotted time.

This way, you always give yourself enough time to finish your work, even while you procrastinate. Do not feel guilty that you procrastinate. It's just a part of being human. Accept it and anticipate it. Include it in your time calculations. It's going to happen.

Next, do not think in "ifs." They are just a fairy-tale designed to distract you from the real problem and make you feel like crap. For example: "If I work really efficiently, I can do this paper in two hours," or "If I study really hard the night before, I'll be fine for the exam."

The biggest issue with this is, statements like the ones above make it seem like you really have the capacity to do these things. But, in reality, you don't. You procrastinate like the best of us. You get distracted. You have other plans. You have a life beyond academics. Shit happens, and you can never rely on "ifs" in life. Do not set an unrealistic goal for yourself only to be dismayed when you obviously will fail.


On a side note, sorry I haven't blogged in a while. I've just been busy with life and stuff. You know how it is.

October 21, 2011

Jooble

Yesterday, I received an incredibly friendly email from an anonymous person who claimed to have read my blog and "loved it." Of course, because my blog is public and anybody can comment anonymously, I was a bit skeptical of this email. Yet, seeing as how this was the first ever "fan mail" I've ever received, I read the email.

It wasn't fan mail, but it was an email from a person who works for a website called "Jooble." Interested by his genuineness and heartfelt compliments of my blog, I took a quick glance at the website. Here's what he had to say about Jooble:
Jooble operates in 45+ countries, so if you would like to find a job in other locations you may try to search jobs in:
Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Belarus, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China Colombia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Spain, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Italy, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Japan, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia , South Korea, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey , Venezuela, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States
Jooble is highly recommended as a job search engine to find a job as it has hundreds of web-sites in its search results with all possible types of jobs. We continue expanding our job database and every day Jooble has more than 100,000 of new job adverts.
I was amazed that I had gotten such a request! I had never imagined that my blog would even ever get to the point where people would seek me out for publicity. I guess crazy things do happen when you stick at them long enough.

So, dear readers, if you have some spare time, or are looking for a job, head on over to Jooble. The site is pretty user-friendly and intuitive, which is much more than what I can say for Monster. I haven't used Jooble nor can I say much about its practical use, but judging from the personal and heartfelt email I've received, it cannot be all that bad.


UPDATE 11/26/2011 : I acknowledge the overwhelming evidence of the scam-like qualities in the comments, but I still wouldn't go as far as to call this "spam." While the person may not have actually read any of my posts, it's not as if he wanted my money or asked for a donation. Therefore, I am not going to delete this post, but rather leave it as a warning to those who receive an email from Jooble to be wary.


On a side note, Monster spams my inbox like no other.

August 26, 2011

Social Network

I just saw The Social Network. And before I say anything else, I want to say that it was a great movie and I thoroughly enjoyed watching every drama-filled moment of it.

With that said, the movie made me feel so insignificant. Which, I guess, I am in the grand scope of things. With what, billions of people living on this Earth now, how different can I be? Statistically speaking, how different is my genetic code and makeup that makes me so special from the average Joe sitting next to me?

I don't know the answer to that question and, quite frankly, I am very confused right now. So I decided to blog to collect my thoughts, as that usually helps.

July 27, 2011

LIC Panorama

Click me for full resolution!









On a side note, this picture was taken in Long Island City, right across from the east side of Manhattan.
On a side side note, I took this photo with my Droid Incredible, using this app.

July 25, 2011

Hover Zoom

I recently came across a new Google Chrome extension and though to myself, "Hey this is a perfect opportunity to start that new review section on my blog I've always wanted to do!" So here it is.

Name: Hover Zoom

What: Creates a zoomed version of thumbnails or links over your mouse on various websites.

Why: Because you don't want to waste time clicking image links.

So basically with this extension, you never have to click another thumbnail or link to see the full-sized image! It's perfect for Facebook, Google+, or Reddit. I've always opted to create a new tab for each picture that I wanted to see in detail, but with this extension, you can save the trouble of creating and closing a new tab by just hovering over it!

Cons: There are a few small things that irk me so far with this extension, however. Many times my mouse just happens to stop at a thumbnail that I don't want to view and the full sized image scares me as it jumps up. (Especially if it's a picture of someone's profile picture) Also sometimes the images are really high quality and take up a large portion of the screen. If you are trying to view questionable content, then it may not be so wise to cover up your entire screen with said questionable content. Another annoyance is that the extension works for almost all images. It doesn't matter if you don't want to zoom, if it's an image, the extension will zoom it for you. (For example, my blog's banner becomes zoomed even though it's unnecessary.) But then again, there's an option that lets you zoom only when a certain key is pressed.

Verdict: Awesome!


On a side note, that sandwich/burger in the picture looks delicious. I am hungry.

July 18, 2011

Connect With Me

This is a story about two best friends. They were the grow up like brothers kind of best friends. The chase girls together kind. The never rat the other out kind. The always true to each other thick and thin kind. You know what I mean. They were inseparable. One was named Adam, the other Bill.

Adam was an artist. He loved all forms of art--film, paint, photo, everything. If it was created or captured, chances are, he's seen it. He kept a journal of his thoughts and mostly kept to himself--and, of course, Bill. He was what you might call a shy guy. Following his passions, he went to art school and graduated with an excellent education and a renewed passion for his art.

Bill was a business man. He loved money, making deals, and shaking hands. If it was profitable or had even the slimmest chance of making money, chances are, he's done it. He rarely stays still and is constantly out and about. At the local bar, the club, restaurant, wherever the new hot spot was. He was what you might call a social guy. Following his passions, he went to business school and graduated with an excellent education and stellar recommendations.

July 13, 2011

QR

Hello.













On a side note, go to this site to make your own QR code.

July 11, 2011

Plus or Poke

I know there are tons of articles about how Google+ is the new Facebook and how Facebook is the new Myspace. I know that there are many things innovative (and lacking) about Google's newest foray into the social world. But I am not going to reiterate what many analysts have already said. I just want to add one comment or observation that I just thought of.

For as long as I can remember, I've always bragged about the number of Facebook friends I had. Whether it was the 500th milestone, or the 600th, or the 700th, I would be really proud of my expanding network. However, many of my friends did not share the same view.

Wonmin: "Hey! Check out how many Facebook friends I have!"
Friend: "So what? They're just Facebook friends..."
Wonmin: "So?"
Friend: "So, they're not really your friends!"

And that's the problem with Facebook. There seems to be a negative connotation attached to being just Facebook friends. Why or how this connotation came about, I can't really say. But this is a major weakness of the current social network Goliath. A weakness that the new social media David (Google+) can take advantage of.


On a side note, if you want a Google+ invite, post your email address in the comments below! (At your own risk! Remember, my blog is public!)

July 07, 2011

A Year in Review, Brown

First off, I'd like to apologize for the untimeliness of this post in comparison to my previous review of Oxford. I guess this just goes to show you the impression that Brown has made on me. Before I get started with this post, I would highly suggest you read my previous posts about Brown.

In chronological order, that would be "Brown or Shit?" "Prove Your Worth," "Cynicism and Drive," and "Thoughts." I know that it is a lot to read, but this post may make more sense if you read those posts. Or it may not, I don't really know. Don't say I didn't warn you though, this is a long post.

Coding












So I've done a bit of coding for my internship here at caseable. We use Google Docs over here to do all our stuff, so I was working on the Google spreadsheet when I decided that I wanted to try my hand at coding. I wanted to take the URL from one data column, the site name from another data column, and create a new column with the combined hyperlink.

I knew that I could always just refer to the two data cells and hide the columns, but being the perfectionist that I am, I didn't want to "hide" anything. But I didn't know how to get the data from one cell to another without referring! So I did some research and two hours of trial and error afterwards, I finally was able to write the above code.

The second function took some of the stuff I learned from the first and creates comments on the first column using the data from a different column. This way, I was able to delete the unnecessary column and free a lot of space from the whole spreadsheet.

I feel accomplished now.


On a side note, don't judge my code if it's not super efficient. I may not be a computer genius, but I am quite proud of my achievement.
On a side side note, can you see the design changes I made to my blog?
On a side side side note, with Microsoft Office's "record macro" feature, this would've been cakewalk. Due to Google's lack of "record script" feature, I had to force myself to learn some coding. So I guess thanks Google?

June 15, 2011

Facebook Like



On a side note, why do people hate it when people like their own things? I like my status, so I press the button! It's there for a reason.

June 12, 2011

Why Are East Asians...

With my recent post, I noticed that I don't cater to any of the countries I am personally interested in. So I am going to consciously try to post things that relate to China, Japan, and Korea. I figured a good way to start was to do a quick Google search.