# Friday, 26 December 2008

So I bought a RC car for WZ to chase around.




Pictures cannot express how nifty this is. It's time for a quick show, please install the Microsoft Silverlight 2.0 plugin to view the video below. Just click on the button you see below if the video doesn't show up to install it.

Friday, 26 December 2008 09:07:59 (Malay Peninsula Standard Time, UTC+08:00)  #    Comments [2]  | 
# Wednesday, 24 December 2008

The other place I took WZ to was the KL Aquaria, once again I went in hoping to take some pics. But when I heard the people at the entrance constantly repeat "Dear visitors with Digital Cameras, please do NOT use your flash, flash photography is not allowed in the venue" Let's just forget the fact that digital cameras are NOT the ONLY source of a xenon flash, This was a problem then, as it would mean I needed to again use my 50mm macro lens as that was the fastest one I had with me. I didn't bring my 50mm F1.7 lens cause, I was going with my family so if I was taking any pictures of WZ and mommy it would mean that mommy would like to have the background in the picture too instead of... well.. a big blue blur. So while it failed for me as a photography outing, here's what I learnt from my trip to KL Aquaria.

While it is possible to take some shots without flash.


You have to realize that underwater creatures swim pretty fast. And they're not inclined to pose for you.


Although there are some things in the place that DO sit still.


But even if they do sit still you have another thing that literally stands in your way


These are living breathing creatures behind a glass case, so the clarity of the case, or the reflection of the glass will throw off your auto focus. But of course, there's a chance to get a nice pic if you're lucky.


Another thing to remember when you go to places like this is that. If you only bring a fixed range lens.


Take note that you might not have a lot of space to back up and frame your subject.

Hmm... so I've tried to go to the butterfly park to take pictures and failed, tried Aquaria and failed cause my equipment doesn't allow me to take nice pictures in dark places.

I guess that leaves me with the Bird Park, and the Zoo. Hmmm... I guess I'll put that on my todo list.

Wednesday, 24 December 2008 22:07:12 (Malay Peninsula Standard Time, UTC+08:00)  #    Comments [0]  | 

I took a few days off to take WZ around town and also to well... actually take some days off. So the first place we went was the KL Butterfly Park, so WZ can finally see some butterflies actually flying around for real.

First thing first.. WHY THE HECK DO YOU STILL WANT TO CHARGE PEOPLE FOR BRINGING CAMERAS? What an ancient and barbaric practice when nearly everyone has something that can take pictures. Next thing was that, it's actually kinda hard to snap pictures of butterflies flying around. But I guess it's because I had a kid and a wife tagging along so I didn't exactly have the luxury of time to try and setup anything.

But switching the A300 to full auto mode and passing the camera to mommy meant I get to have some pictures taken with WZ.


They had a fish pond in the place which the fish was all too eager to come close to you... once you toss them some feed.


One good thing about the butterfly park is that it has ample sunlight, so there's ample light to take pictures of things.


The person at the counter told us that the feed was for both fishes and turtles. But we couldn't find the turtles, and threw the bag of feed for the fish.. which was sad but let's face it between colorful gold fish in a crystal clear pond, and this...


Which would you rather feed? It's sad that the turtles get no love.. they didn't even put any signs up (or maybe they were destroyed) to indicate that Look turtles HERE!.

WZ tried to see the turtles from the perch.


But the angle just wasn't right.


Thus he walked away disappointed. I think the turtles were disappointed too! They must have been hoping to get something to eat!


I did manage to get a shot of a butterfly close up


It was just constantly sucking on the ground trying to eat something and didn't care too much that there was a big ass black tube pointed at it. (I only have a 50mm Macro lens, to get this picture the tip of the lens was right NEXT to the butterfly) And then there was this... thing.


This ant like praying mantis was in the shade so the end results were a bit blurry cause of the slower shutter speed and I couldn't hold the camera steady.


Hmm.. did whatever ate the leaf, ate the butterfly as well?


They also had some other animals in the place. They had some rabbits in a well... rabbit smelling cage.


They had a python? boa? in a glass case which looked like it had coiled up and died, I didn't even had the heart to take a photo it. The had a chameleon lizard thing, but the plastic screen the cage was made of was clouded and hard to see through.

Overall, while there WERE definitely butterflies in the place and if I had more time to actually find my shots I think I would have gotten some more shots of stuff. I think if you wanted to take pictures of nature you have other better choices than paying RM18 (entrance fee) + RM1 (camera fee) to enter the KL Butterfly Garden.

Wednesday, 24 December 2008 21:42:39 (Malay Peninsula Standard Time, UTC+08:00)  #    Comments [0]  | 
# Monday, 22 December 2008

What happens when you duct tape a Creative Vado to a paintball marker? You get a nausea inducing clip of what the marker sees during a paintball match. If any of you puked during Blair Witch Project or Cloverfield… better not to watch.

Here's the 1st round of the day.

Then the 2nd round in which I actually managed to get to the flag and score a win.

Still having problems uploading the 3rd round's videos. So here's the fourth and final round.

Monday, 22 December 2008 10:36:26 (Malay Peninsula Standard Time, UTC+08:00)  #    Comments [3]  | 
# Sunday, 21 December 2008

I joined a few of my fellow MS MVPs and a few people from the MS Malaysia DPE team for a friendly little game of paintball. This was the 2nd time I played paintball and I was pretty sure my experience playing FPS games would come in handy.

Getting to the paintball arena was an adventure by itself. While there was a sign in front of the steep stairs which took you down to the foot of the hill where the arena was.


It's a small banner situated quite a bit away from the road, which itself was already in the middle of a small residential area.

  Field location

Then you need to walk down a little path down the hill.


Passing what seems to be one of the playing arenas.


And up another path


To get to the registration area and also where the hillside arena is.


As we walked in to take a little tour on the hill which we'd be fighting on I saw this


Hmm.. maybe they need that to do some map editing when necessary? There were 2 flag bases one at the bottom of the hill.


And one at the top... and the guys at the bottom will have to run all the way up the hill to get their flag. There was a little platform in the middle of the hill.


But no it's not a sniper tower and players can't climb it. From the top of the hill everything looks simple enough, have a better view of the people coming up, advantage of gravity on your side sending paintballs downwards.


Should be interesting. After the tour of the grounds our little group was given the Things You Need To Know So You Don't Loose An Organ Or Worst... Kill Someone talk.


After the talk I also plans for my Creative Vado, and a roll of duct tap.


During my last paintball game I tried sticking the Vado to my chest to take combat footage, but that didn't turnout too well cause I usually run around crouched behind cover, I told myself it would be different this time!


This time it gets strapped on the gun! So at least it'll be pointing at the general direction of where the gun is pointing. Well.. it worked.. But I don't think the gun's POV is any more exciting than the chests view. I'll put up a clip or two and all those of you without motion sickness can check it out. If I ever play paintball again, I'm gonna put on a helmet and mount the vado on it!

Anyway.. it's paintball and there are always injuries in paintball.


It's funny how I got hit in the same place I got hit the last time I played, I guess my hand's the only target when I blind fire off cover. I also receive three hits and bruises along my left arm, and one in my back as I was switching cover.


Final score? Guess the MVPs win cause all games ended in a timeout except the one where I capped the flag!

In summary, while my FPS gaming experience thought me well like how to roadie run, use cover, blind fire, flanking/avoid being flanked. I'll stick with games for one simple reason. I don't get TIRED playing games, DAMN.. my thighs are burning cause I was pretty much crouch running all through the game!

Sunday, 21 December 2008 16:07:34 (Malay Peninsula Standard Time, UTC+08:00)  #    Comments [0]  |