elb's hovel of thoughts

Monday, December 26, 2005

My Technological Involvement

So far throughout my life, I can recognize three technology phases that I have gone through. Actually, gone through is not the word because I still strive to maintain all three interests as best I can, but unfortunately the costs of subsequent'phases' gets higher and higher.

Once upon a time (okay well, I still am, but way less severe now), I used to be a computer geek. I would want to upgrade my computer constantly. I had my first computer around 10 years ago. It had an old 386 processor, a teeny screen, and a 1x CD ROM which had no in-built tray but a casing that had to be inserted; but it was sufficient for me to play Silent Hunter while waiting for the school bus to arrive. I still remember jealously watching my friends play MechWarrior II on their 486s.

Within the next couple of years, my parents got for me a Pentium Pro 200MHz system. It cost a princely amount of money back then. Within a couple of months, the mega price crash came tumbling out of the air. Unfortunately, MMX was also introduced after this; which meant that for another couple of years I was left behind again, unable to play virtually most of the new games (as a young teenager, computer games were a BIG deal) because they required MMX coding.

Then it was time to upgrade again. We got a 866MHz P3, which was a major boost. With a lousy video card (Voodoo if I remember), SoundBlaster AWE64 (I think, or was it SB Live! Value?). And a 2.1 Cambridge Soundworks system, complete with awesome plastic subwoofer (hey I was young; and I never knew that the JBL home system was actually way cooler).

Next was some 1.6MHz system; followed by a fully rigged laptop when I came abroad. But I was not satisfied: I spent some dough rigging together a system from scratch with help from a friend. Since then I have made several upgrades; it now consists of amongst other parts a 6800GT graphics card (which I admit is a white elephant; I have no time for games now :( ), Audigy 2 with 5.1 system (well okay I shipped the speakers home), and an ass kicking 19" 4ms ViewSonic LCD. I still miss the old setup of two monitors; you have no idea how CONVINIENT it is to do work with MS Word open on one screen and your research PDF documents on the other monitor!

The second phase was that of mobile phones, or handphone as it is more popularly known at SE Asia (you have no bloody idea how confused the audience gets (and how embarassed a Malaysian gets) during a presentation and the Malaysian presenter says 'handphone'). I started off with a 3310, like most good Malaysians did, which got quickly replaced with the 7110, then the popular 'butterfly' phone. Shit man, don't ask me which models are what. I'm surprised I can even remember the model number of my first two phones.

My last Nokia phone was a 7210, which I sold off. Since then I have used Sharp, Samsung and Motorola. Right now I use the Samsung d600 as my primary phone, with the Motorola v3 as backup for my second line. This interest has now waned. By the way, Nokia's L'Amore range sucks for the record.

My third phase lies in photography. I used to use the point and shoot film cameras, then migrated to a digital P&S in 2002. A 2MP Sony DSC-P2. I still remember how annoyed i got at the grain and how I could almost never take decent night shots. So I made plans to purchase a Fujifilm 8MP compact. I had discussions with various friends, some of who were prodding me towards a dSLR (albeit cautiously). C and Fazri did some of the final pushes, what's more towards Canon.

So I got an EOS 350D. Managed to get the kit written off as my graduation present (love you both!). What I did not anticipate next was the willingness to splash out on various add-ons. I have since added on (within a time span of less than 4 months) the 28-135mm IS USM, 50mm f/1.8 and Speedlight 430EX just to name a few. I even got the older 75-300mm IS USM lens but returned it due to unsatisfactory performance (well, at least on my part). My next plans are for either the 17-40mm L f/4 or 70-300mm IS USM. But at least I'm getting something back; you can earn money from photography.

What's next? I suppose cars (I suspect that that would have been the third phase had I not left Msia), but that depends where I would be for the next few years.


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