I delivered the well-traveled pretzels

Earlier this month, I went on a trip to Los Angeles, California for the Heroes of the Storm North American regional, as part of the global championship circuit. On my flight back, I was messaging Ed Lam (better known online as Grainyrice) via the wifi on the plane.

He let me know that he wanted me to save the airline pretzels for him, because enjoys the taste of a well-traveled pretzel. I posted a screenshot of our conversation on Twitter:


 

Ed and I met up a few times since then, but I forgot to hand off the “product.”

Earlier today, Ed came to visit me again, and this time, I remembered to give him the pretzels.

Ed Lam (Grainyrice) holding a bag of well-traveled pretzels

That is Ed excitedly holding his well-traveled pretzels.

 


 


 


 

금강산

I went to a Korean restaurant today with my parents for lunch.

I ordered a spicy pork dish that was apparently so spicy that, according to my dad, my tongue would shrivel off.

Finished the meal, tongue is still intact.

Whew

 


 

Why does Sony Vegas Pro hate me

One of my content creators at Tempo Storm sent me a video to edit.

After cutting out the parts he didn’t want, I proceed to render it at 1080p60 (which is pretty hard for my lap­top, but it usually just struggles along and eventually gets the job done).

But not today.

Sony Vegas Pro 13.0 Crash #1

Literally an hour into the rendering process, when it was 94% done rendering … it crashed.

Assuming the video was too long for my laptop to try and render at once, I go back and edit it some more, taking out bits and pieces until it’s over a full minute shorter. Surely, that’s enough to make up for the 6% that it couldn’t render?

Nope, it proceeds to crash again, this time at 49 minutes into the rendering process.

Sony Vegas Pro 13.0 Crash #2

What I eventually had to do?

Render it in two parts at 720p30, then concatenate the pieces using FFMPEG.

gg

 


 

I attended the biannual K. H. Kim taekwondo tournament

Today was the third and final tournament of the season, the Ki Hong Kim Taekwondo tournament of Northbrook, IL. Notice how I said “of” instead of “at,” because they rescheduled the tournament to be at a different location – some random preparatory high school – instead of at the main academy, or even at the normal tournament area in Glen Ellyn.

The location was a disaster this time. Not only was the tournament not even at the main high school, but in some random athletic facility next door, but the facility looked like some wooden cabin.

Instead of just using the hardwood/laminate floors, they covered the whole place in brown tarp. The problem was that the coverage was absolutely terrible, so the areas where the pieces of tarp met kept on rising up, and students and competitors tripped over those areas on multiple occasions.

Nonetheless, I still attended because the martial arts academy next door to my family’s business has an association with K.H. Kim Taekwondo, and most of the students I like, who I feel are talented, were attending the tournament. I even brought one kid along with me, a student who otherwise wouldn’t have been able to make it to the tournament due to financial issues and lack of available transportation.

This is where the tournament took place. It wasn’t that glorious of a location, but it was more-or-less fitting for the number of students who signed up for this tournament. There used to be a massively larger number of competitors, even within the past few years, but it’s rapidly declining, presumably because of all the problems and conflicts there were in the previous few tournaments.

The unfortunate thing about this whole tournament was that there wasn’t even official K. H. Kim staff run­ning the assembly of contestants. A majority of the people you see in suits in the photo above and below are actually from Keumgang Martial Arts Academy, and not from K. H. Kim. I’m not sure if they were ac­tu­al­ly paid for their services, but if not, that’s incredibly unfortunate, because tournament participation costs were $60 for the first event, and $10 extra for each additional event.

(Those wide and generic shots are the only photos I’m going to put up on my website, primarily because I want to protect the privacy of the students I was coaching and assisting at the tournament.)

Overall, it was a little tragic how badly this tournament was run from an administrative and organizational viewpoint. With an extremely rough estimated calculation, if there were 200 students and each student par­tic­i­pated in an average of 2 events, they would’ve made $14,000 off this one-day tournament, and it re­peats every handful of months. Yet, they clearly didn’t invest that money back into their company in an effective manner, either by hiring talent or training their current staff.

Seeing something with so much potential fail so badly makes me appreciate the people who work with me or for me. Because I work in an industry where it’s all about the performance, things pretty much always go more smoothly. I appreciate that this high attention to detail and level of effort of my business partners is considered “normal” in this industry, when they could technically be getting by without much work, similar to how this tournament went.

 


 

Today, I uninstalled Microsoft OneDrive

Today, I uninstalled Microsoft OneDrive.

In an era where companies are giving away tons of free storage, and some websites in China are even handing out 1 TB storage accounts (which I unfortunately couldn’t capitalize on, but I saw a lot of people taking advantage of it when it was shared on reddit) – it seems a little strange that a company as big as Microsoft would be taking away storage from its members.

Back on April 7, Microsoft emailed me to let me know that my storage quota would be reduced from 30 GB to 5 GB, and if I don’t clear out files before July 13, I will be over my allotted limit, and I won’t be able to use my account until I delete files.

The only reason I actually even used Microsoft OneDrive was because it had the reputable Microsoft name attached to it. Sure, Microsoft is sharing a near-monopoly with Apple in operating systems when it comes to regular consumers (the average person doesn’t really use Linux), and they’ve done a lot of questionable and controversial things, most recently with the rollout of Windows 10 and its forced updates. But, I figured that, because it’s such a big name, it’s not going to fail anytime soon, and I can trust my files with them.

Clearly, I was wrong – they’re obviously not failing, but they’re failing to meet the needs of their consumers.

The worst part is yet to come. When I did some research, I found out that, apparently this space reduction was actually planned months ago, and there was harsh community backlash against Microsoft (as expected). In response to this, Microsoft offered an opportunity for current OneDrive users with a 30 GB quota to opt in to keep their larger quota, and the new 5 GB quota would only affect new users.

They never sent me an email for either one of these – neither the original notice for the quota reduction, or the opportunity to keep my current quota. All they did was email me to let me know I was going to lose my space. The latest email I received prior to this was an advertisement letting me know on September 1, 2015 that I can now add shared folders to my OneDrive (which I’m pretty sure I already knew, and was already possible before then).

It’s not like there’s a shortage of file storage services, so it seems like I will be switching to Mega for most of my file storage, and am going to be a bit more liberal with my Google Drive storage use (seeing as I still use less than half my Google storage anyway, because of how much I’m on top of keeping things clean and organized).

On top of that, apparently, Google Local Guides is running a promotion right now where, if you manage to reach Level 4 in their program, you get 1 TB of storage for free on Google Drive. It’s going to take quite a while to reach that, because I’m pretty sure you need to leave reviews or submit photos to 200 different places, but that’s something that I generally do anyway, and a two-year subscription to 1 TB of storage on Google Drive is almost $240 in value.

 


 

I went to the J.K. Lee Taekwondo Great Midwest Championships yesterday

… as a coach, not as a competitor, of course.

I went with my good buddy Ed Lam, who you might know as Grainyrice. We both took photos and videos throughout the tournament, and I posted some of the highlights on Keumgang Martial Arts Academy’s Face­book page.

The guy holding the biggest trophy is Elias.

He originally wouldn’t have been able to make it to the tourna­ment due to not having a ride, but he came along with me instead – seeing as I was going to go to the tournament anyway, and he might as well – and he ended up literally winning the whole thing. The huge trophy is the grand championship award.

 


 

It’s snowing sideways

Literally two days ago, I posted that it was finally warm enough to go outside and not feel chilly.

Today, it snowed sideways.

In what seemed like the strangest weather I’ve ever seen, possibly as a one-day-late April Fools’ joke by nature, it proceeded to snow sideways (not literally, of course … it was snowing normally, but the wind was so strong that it looked like it was falling sideways and upwards), then cleared up and became really sunny about an hour later.

After another hour, it poured rain, and about another hour or so later, it cleared up and went back to being sunny.

Then, with absolutely no clouds in the sky, it hailed.

And now we have a clear night sky.

idek