Saturday, July 9

Top Gear UK - My Reconstruction (Part 1?)

What changes I would make to Top Gear UK to make it an interesting, and worth while car show.

The Statement: Six presenters are better then three!

Episode Breakdown (Original):

  • Intro / Theme Song
    • 1 minute
  • Car Video 1
    • 10 minute
  • Car Video 2
    • 10 minute
  • Guest Stars
    • 15 minute
  • Car Video 3
    • 10 minute
  • Car Video 4
    • 10 minute
  • Wrap up / Ending Credits
    • 4 minute
  •   0:00
    • Intro Credits / Theme Song
    • Quick clips of what you can see on tonight's episode
  •   0:30   -   In studio intro, with presenters
  •   1:00   -   Hero Car
    •   1:00   -   Video
    •   8:00   -   in studio - dialog
    •   8:45   -   Stig Intro
    •   9:15   -   Stig Test
    • 10:30   -   Lap time show
  • 10:45   -   Car two
    • 10:45   -   in studio
    • 11:15   -   Video
    • 18:30   -   in studio - wrap up
  • 19:45   -   Stars segment
    • 19:45   -   in studio
    • 30:00   -   Track Lap #1
    • 31:30   -   in studio - Star reaction
    • 32:00   -   Track Lap #2
    • 33:30   -   in studio - Time reveal
  • 34:30   -   Car three
    • 34:30   -   in studio - Intro
    • 35:15   -   Video
    • 44:20   -   in studio - Wrap up
  • 44:45   -   Car four
    • 44:45   -   Video
    • 52:30   -   in studio - Wrap up
  • 53:45   -   Wrap up

Star in a reasonably priced car segment:
  • Bring back Star in a reasonably price car
  • Also have a scaled down go-kart version of the track inside the studio hanger.
  • Give the audience the opportunity (by voting) of which presenter(s) should race the star on the go-kart track version
    • And what possible "handicaps" the presenter(s) would have
    • ie:
      • Presenter hand tied to steering wheel
      • Presenter wears eye patch
      • Fish bowl of water in presenters lap
      • Other presenter have Nerf guns to distract driving presenter
      • the Gas & Break pedals are reversed in presenter's go-kart
Hero Car:
  • The "Hero Car" is the car which is given the spot of first video.
    • It was standard for only the main presenter to drive the "Hero Car" in the video
  • Change the format of the "Hero Car" video to:
    • Have the screen split in either two or three sections
    • Have multiple presenters doing the identical drive route
    • Each presenter giving their own opinion of the different performance characteristics of the car
    • Basically have a side by side comparison of the "Hero Car" by different presenters

Stig - Test Lap:
  • The original format was to have the Stig drive the cars around the test track
  • Now that we have Sabine Schmitz I think we should have both of them drive the cars around the track
  • Have the Stig and Sabine Schmitz compete for the best time around the track with each car.
  • I think this could be done as a split top and bottom view so we see how each of the drivers did taking each section of the test track.

... to be continued ...

    Friday, July 8

    AliExpress #62, #80 ( Passive Crystal & NE555's )

    8MHz 2x6 Passive Crystal Cylindrical
    Day 89

    This is the smallest order I have received so far. The wires were bent, but considering how small this is, that is not surprising. Will update after I have tested this.

    • Order #62
      • Day  54   - Ordered
      •      ** AliExpress did not list a ship date **
      • Day  89   - Arrived in Mailbox
      • 36 Days Shipping Time

    Packaging Video

    555 Timers DIP-8
    Day 90

    This order arrived in seventeen days. Which is considerably faster then most orders. Unfortunately at least three of these came with pins considerably bent. They way they were bunched together and packed was very poor. 

    I can not fully explain how badly these were shipped, but check the video.
    • Order #80
      • Day 72   - Ordered
      •      ** AliExpress did not list a ship date **
      • Day 90   - Arrived in Mailbox
      • 17 Days Shipping Time

    Packaging Video

    Thursday, July 7

    AliExpress #39, #60 ( Clock Display & Passive Crystals)

    4 Bits Clock Display T1637
    Day 87

    The observant of you may notice this is the second one of these displays that has arrived. I ordered two of these on separate days to see what kind of difference there might be in arrival times.

    • Order #33 (The First Order)
      • Day  25   - Ordered
      •      ** AliExpress did not list a ship date **
      • Day  74   - Arrived in Mailbox
      • 49 Days Shipping Time
    • Order #39 (This Order)
      • Day  31   - Ordered
      •      ** AliExpress did not list a ship date **
      • Day  87   - Arrived in Mailbox
      • 56 Days Shipping Time
    Average 52.5 Days Shipping Time

    Packaging Video

    16Mhz Passive Crystal (10pcs)
    Day 87

    If you have ever wondered what a timing crystal looked like. Here are ten passive crystals at 16Mhz. If 16Mhz sounds familiar it is because the 5 volt Arduino ATMega family clock speed.

    • Order #60
      • Day 52   - Ordered
      •      ** AliExpress did not list a ship date **
      • Day 87   - Arrived in Mailbox
      • 35 Days Shipping Time

    Packaging Video

    Wednesday, July 6

    AliExpress #72, #79 ( Farts & Jewelry )

    Novelty - Fart Bag
    Day 87

    I thought I was purchasing a small Whoopie Cushion. Too my surprise it is actually more what we Canadians call a stink bomb. Not at all what I was expecting. I have an interest in actually trying this out, my significant other has declared absolutely not.
    • Order #72
      • Day  71   - Ordered
      •      ** AliExpress did not list a ship date **
      • Day  87   - Arrived in Mailbox
      • 23 Days Shipping Time

    Packaging Video

    Earing - Silver Dragon - Cuff
    Day 83

    I bought this also as a small gift for somebody who loves dragons. It is a little heavier then expected.

    The biggest surprise was how quick this came in. Twelve days from the time I ordered. That is not twelve business days. That is twelve actual days. This currently holds the record for the fastest item I have ordered and received.

    • Order #79
      • Day 71   - Ordered
      •      ** AliExpress did not list a ship date **
      • Day 83   - Arrived in Mailbox
      • 12 Days Shipping Time

    Packaging Video

    Tuesday, July 5

    AliExpress #52, #55 ( Chips, Dips & Trimmer )

    SN 74HC595 N DIP16
    Day 83

    SN74HC595 8-Bit Shift Register with 3-state output registers. I know it sounds like a mouth full, but these are really very cool. When two more items ordered arrive I will have a neat project to start working on.

    Online Manual:
    • Order #52
      • Day  44   - Ordered
      •      ** AliExpress did not list a ship date **
      • Day  83   - Arrived in Mailbox
      • 39 Days Shipping Time

    Packaging Video

    Day 82

    I thought this would be a novel way to open some packages. Buying these will also save me from gumming up my good scissors. I have tested them, and they cut very well.

    These are very sharp.

    • Order #55
      • Day 47   - Ordered
      •      ** AliExpress did not list a ship date **
      • Day 82   - Arrived in Mailbox
      • 35 Days Shipping Time

    Packaging Video

    Monday, July 4

    Game Idea #1 - Global CSR

    I just thought of a game idea ...

    Anybody can have an idea for a game. Since I have thought of a game idea, I thought I would document it here. And my game's title would be ...

    Global CSR

    CSR: Is an industry acronym for "Customer Service Representative."

    Setting: You are newly hired to work for "Global CSR Inc." As a new employee you will be setup with a training system. This will help you learn the basics, and be used as the game's tutorial levels.

    You are presented with the game's main user screen, which is a "virtual computer." This computer desktop has all the tools you will need to perform your job.

    Tutorial Level Steps:

    1. When a "customer" calls in, you will get a pop up window in the top right corner with the caller's phone number, and if the caller has called before it will display the callers name. The window will have two buttons on it: a green "Answer" button, and a red "Hang up" button. When you click the answer button it changes to a blue "Hold" button.

    2. The customer tells you the problem they have with the product. Now you have the capability to click on the product manual icon on your desktop. This will bring up a detailed manual for the product you are supporting.

    It is possible that the customer is calling about a product that is not actually supported by the company you work for. If this is the case you can report the product to management, and they will possibly look into providing support for the product in the future.

    3. As you progress in hopefully solving the customers problems. There will be more products added and you will actually have to fill in their information properly.

    This sounds boring ... How can we make it fun?

    1. Some of the customers problems are "funny." Not actually a problem with the products themselves.

    2. Some of the callers will be wrong numbers. Secondary idea is that if you actually listen to some of those wrong callers in order they will actually be a little play inside a play idea. So multiple wrong calls fill in a details out a particularly funny incident that happens.

    3. As you gain experience you will be able to have additional capabilities that would not happen in the real world.
    • a "fart" button, when pressed makes a fart sound which if you quickly respond you can blame on the caller, and possibly embarrass the caller into hanging up.
    • You send a "Quality Control Officer" over to help the caller understand it's all his/her fault.
    • Order pizza to the callers address.
    All of these while you are on the phone, so you can hear what happens to the customer.

    Sunday, July 3

    Month in Review (June 2016)

    Wednesday June 1, 2016 - Thursday June 30, 2016

    • Sixth month of the Julian and Gregorian Calendars.
    • Contains the summer solstice in the Northern Hemisphere
    • Contains the winter solstice in the Southern Hemisphere.
    • Was named for the Greek goddess Hera
    • Birth flower is the rose and honeysuckle

    Here I am going to try to document all "projects" that I have started, continued, or ended in the previous week.

    1. Aliexpress: There have been a number of orders arrived  this week. Now I find myself having a completely unexpected problem. Enough Orders are coming in now, that I am slightly lagging behind in testing the products.

    2. Quick Questions - Linux Edition: Using the Linux shell, or command line, can some times be daunting. I will be highlighting a hopefully helpful command in each of these upcoming posts.
    3. Raspberry Pi: If you have been using NodeJS and Raspberry Pi for any length of time, you will continue to hear how you need to have nginx to maximize multi core capabilities.

    Experimenting with nginx & NodeJS - Part 1

    4. DigiStump's DigiSpark: I have programmed a little "Happy Fathers Day" sketch which runs on DigiStump's DigiSpark. Using the DigiKeyboard library. At the moment all the functionality of this sketch is designed for using the DigiSpark on a Microsoft Windows machine.

    Month in Review (June 2016)

    Week in Review (Week 26)

    Monday June 27, 2016 - Sunday July 3, 2016
    According to ISO-8601 standard, weeks start on Monday. The first week of each year is the week which contains that year's first Thursday. This oddly gives the capability for the year to have 53 weeks instead of the school taught 52.

    1. Aliexpress: I now have three orders that are in dispute with AliExpress. You should also notice that there were a lot of orders came in this week. Fourteen items that I had to check and make videos of. Something that started out as a curiosity has begun to devour more of my time then I was expecting.

    I am waiting for the results of all the current disputes before I publish the post I have been working on. It is only fair that all the information is available.

    2. Other??: There are other posts and projects that I am working on. They are just not at a point I consider ready to post about them.

    Week in Review (Week 26)