by simon baird

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Awesome Robot Fighting

I recently commented that robot fighting was going to be really cool in a couple of years. I was SO WRONG!!!! Robot fighting is cool NOW!!!!!!! The new champion of the world is called OmniZero.2. He's the little red guy who floats like a butterfly. Check out the moves he has: the body slam, the reverse body slam, the crouching jab, the double windmill. About half way in there's an AWESOME grapple and throw. Then he takes on a robot that's about twice his size. Here is the direct link to the video at Google Video.

This footage is from Robo-One 9, held in Tokyo on 18-19 March. This video was created by a Japanese site, see here. There is some pretty good coverage of Robo-One in English at, including video of the free-for-all rumble with all the top robots.

Digg it.

This article was picked up by The Raw Feed! Welcome fellow readers of The Raw Feed. :) Also it made it to Engadget who picked it up off The Raw Feed. Also mentioned on Techeblog, OhMyGizmo, a City of Heros forum...

Update 2
Despite being the crowd favourite and the winner of the tech demo category, OmniZero.2 actually didn't win the combat tournament.

Update 3
The clip (but not this post) made the front page of digg.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

A Clerihew

The town of Mount Tamborine
Has trees and views serene.
Spiders with webs
Will crawl up your legs.

Okay so the last bit doesn't rhyme very well. Post your best clerihew in the comments...

Amazing Cyclone Larry Video

No link because I can't find it! I saw this on Sky News yesterday. It was taken by a guy from a snack bar in the main street of Innisfail. He left his camera out on the bench pointing out the front of the shop while he and his family and/or coworkers hid under mattresses in the bathroom at the back of the store. The video shows pieces of debri being blown from left to right across the front of the shop at ridiculously high speeds. Like imagine a formula one car at top speed going past a window, only much faster and not touching the ground. At one point what looks like an entire roof zips past. The shop front glass which is heavily taped eventually bursts and glass showers into the shop. Anyway I want to find this video. I thought it would be all over youtube by now but the only cyclone Larry videos I can find are lame. In the news story there are interviews with the people from the shop as well as the cyclone footage. Does anyone have it?

Monday, March 27, 2006

End of The Stationwagon?

Drew and Zoe, the songwriting half of The Stationwagon are moving to Melbourne. I hope they find a new bass player and drummer and that The Stationwagon continues. I would guess that Melbourne would be a healthier environment for the band to grow. But I noticed they let the domain name expire so perhaps they feel it's time to draw a line and move on to new things. Like Drew's electronic project, AUX (web site, myspace page). At least we went out on a couple of high notes. And I think I will try to rescue

Also Chinchy (official site, fan site) have finished their second CD at last. You can download their entire album of alt pop grooves at

Steve Carell and The 40 Year Old Virgin

I was expecting this movie to be about as good as say Anchorman or Envy (ie, crappy but at least watchable) and better than say Kicking and Screaming (a major piece of crap). Instead it was totally excellent, in the league of School of Rock or Run Ronnie Run. (That's high praise indeed my friends). We didn't get to see much of Steve Carell's considerable talent as the dumb guy in Anchorman where we also saw co-stars Paul Rudd and Seth Rogan. Seth was also in Freaks and Geeks. The movie was co-written/directed by Judd Apatow who was the main writer on Freaks and Geeks. (School of Rock was written by another Freaks and Geeks writer, Mike White). The extra features on the DVD are awesome. You should watch the making of the waxing scene and Paul and Seth's ad-libbed "How I know you're gay" scene. Actually it's quite interesting to see how much of the movie's dialogue was ad-libbed by the talented cast. Also I discovered last night that the American version of The Office is being shown on Channel Ten at 11pm Sunday night and it stars Steve Carell. When I learned that I thought maybe that show could work after all. Though it seems weird that Americans couldn't just watch the original with American subtitles... Now I have two free-to-air shows worth recording on my media thing. (Three if you count Biggest Loser but I would never admit to watching that. Big Wal, no!!! ;) Ps, while researching this post I discovered they are making a movie of Reno 911, one of my favourite TV shows, plus there's a Tenacious D movie coming soon. Sweet!

Update 28-March
Well I watched one episode. It was the one where Jim (Tim) and Pam (Dawn) convince Dwight (Gareth) to hide in a box. It was kind of weird but I think if I try to forget the original show I can enjoy it. The cast is pretty good. The writing is basically the same.

Arctic Monkeys versus The Libertines, or Why I Need an iPod Nano

So I had put some new music onto my iPod shuffle, including the Arctic Monkeys and The Libertines, both of which I had not listened to before. I was listening to some tunes while doing housework, as I like to do, when I heard a song I really liked. It had a lazy kind of brit-punk sound and I thought, "Ahah, it's the Arctic Monkeys". I slipped the switch from shuffle to non-shuffle and listened to a whole album of amazing songs. By the time I had finished stacking the diswasher and washing the pots I was like, "believe the hype, the Arctic Monkeys really are the hottest, freshest thing in rock". Later, I discovered that I was listening to the Libertines the whole time. Imagine my embarassment! Since then I have listened to Arctic Monkeys a little but I still feel like the Libertines are my new favourite band, (even though they don't exist any more). So, if you're like me and are a little behind in discovering The Libertines I highly recommend you get hold of their self-titled album. They are a little like new-rock (Strokes, Franz Ferdinand) crossed with the Pogues and the Kinks. As for the Arctic Monkeys? Well they are pretty good also.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

We Love Katamari

This game makes me scream with joy like a little girl. This game makes the world a better place to live in. If you have a PS2 then you must buy this game. If you don't have a PS2 then you must buy one, then buy this game. If you don't have a television then... etc.

If you want to see some gameplay footage (from the first Katamari Damacy to reduce spoilage), then click the link above.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Walking and climbing robots

Walking and climbing robots are coming! Imagine that big one when it learns to perform lethal kick attacks on humans. Imagine that little one climbing your leg while you slap it in desperate agony as it digs it's little claws in harder. GAH!! ROBOTS!!!!

Motorcyle Maintenance

I would like to relate this true story in the form of a dialogue. The muffler is like a soup can and the bit that fell off is like a cap on the can with a hole in it. The cap keeps the cotton wool looking stuff from falling out and I think it also stops the can shaped bit from coming loose.
Motorcyle shop guy 1:You've lost the little end bit off your muffler.
Me:Okay. Can you get me a replacment?
Guy1:What you need to do is buy this muffler and clutch kit. It's $340 for the kit plus $160 installation.
Me:Well my clutch works fine. Can you just replace the muffler?
Guy1:(As though I was a bit slow) No. It's a kit. They come together. It's a performance kit.. It will make your scooter go faster. What's your top speed?
Me:75 kph.
Guy1:Ok... Well it might make your scooter go faster. A little.
Me:Is there any cheaper option?
Guy1:[Thinks for a bit]. I could sell you a used clutch and muffler kit that we took of another scooter when we installed the performance clutch and muffler kit. It might make you go slower though.
Me:How much would that be?
Guy1:$250 plus $160 for installation.
Me:[Thinks. I was actually considering paying for this!] Okay, I'm going to leave it for now. Thanks very much.
Guy1:You'll be back...
Me:The end bit of my muffler fell off. Can you help me?
Motorcyle Shop Guy 2:Here take this [can shaped thing] right off. You don't need it. Might make you a little louder than before.
Me:Okay thanks!
Guy2:Keep it and if you ever want me to fix it I will weld a little bit here and you'll be good as new.
Me:Okay, how much would you charge me for that?
Guy2:Let's say around $120 depending on how long it takes.
Me:Fantastic. Thank-you very much.
In you're wondering... Guy 1 is the long haired guy who works at the big Yamaha place on Ross River Road. Guy 2 is Steve at a place over on the road to Joyce Mayne.

Everybody Hates Chris (TV is good)

When I heard Chris Rock wasn't actually in the show I wasn't sure if it was going to be good. I tivoed the first episode on my super home media thing and it was excellent. Chris actually is the narrator. The show is about him when he was thirteen. The cast are all brilliant and the writing has a Chris Rock edge to it that elevates the show above the majority of TV drivel. And there's no laugh track so it feels more like a Freaks and Geeks style of show than a typical American sitcom. Recommended viewing. Sunday night on Channel Ten.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Videogames are good

In the space of a couple of days two new games have arrived at my house. Firstly Shadow of the Colossus. After plenty of hype and a long wait I have been looking forward to playing this. So far it has not dissappointed. The beasts are so beautiful though that it seems wrong to kill them. The sound of your sword plunging into their skulls and the black blood jetting out as they try to shake you off is quite a moving experience!

The other game that arrived is We Love Katamari, the sequel to Katamari Damacy which I have never played. This must-play game was clearly created by some insane genius. The game consists of rolling stuff up in an ever growing sticky ball and presenting it to the king of the cosmos. By stuff I mean everything, but you can only pick up stuff that's in your size class. Anyway, you should really try it some day.

Also still playing Half Life 2 on the Xbox. We are up to the part where you have to pick up your car with the crane while avoiding ant lions.

Ps, in a little over a week I'll be going here to attend this. Should be pretty good!

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Poetry is good?

Home is the place where, when you have to go there,
They have to take you in.

I actually read that the day before yesterday in a book. A real book made from paper. :) It's from a Robert Frost poem. I also read this one which had some good stuff in it also. Then my phone rang, the shelf stacking lady told me off and I departed the library. Why Robert Frost? The song of course...