It's been an interesting 2013 for me. I started practicing Forex again since May this year which was a good move since many successful investors start early. I also took a class in eBay with my mother, but I felt as if it wasn't that good of an investment as neither my mom or I could hold our commitment to it. We tried to sell 2 paintings, but we never took any action (and the cardboard boxes to ship them in are already catching dust. 

Senior year in college was quite hard. I first struggled to find what I wanted to do as a final project. At first, I wanted to do an app about gliding. But as there are no gliders in Thailand, my teachers thought I should try something else (I've never flown a glider before). One of them suggested I bring samples of my personal work, my renderings & others. When I showed my work to my teachers, one of them suggested me to create a Sketchup & Flash-based app for the university to allow web visitors to tour the campus online rather than be physically present. This wasn't a project that I liked,  but I really had no where else to go, so I went ahead. And each week, each one of us were to present our progress. Mine was steady, but I didn't feel like I love what I was doing.

Besides schoolwork, I struggled with balancing work & home life, mainly with my mother busy with her cake business. Therefore, I did a lot of the chores which I didn't mind. My favorite was laundry. 

Finals came in December in which my project passed. even if it was incomplete- it was pre-final so finishing wasn't required, just a semi-functioning draft was all that was needed). 

Home issues & a college project that I can't seem to be passionate about, are making me quite unhappy. And sometimes, I just want to drop out of college by not confirming in January & get some job locally. I may be work-shy, but at least I would earn money to save & invest so I can perhaps move out & find my own place like other 23 year olds'. Or at least, to find myself & why I'm here.

I wish I could really tell you in detail of what is really going on with my life & family. But I'd rather not talk about it in more detail as I just don't feel like spilling the beans too much. 

I hope 2014 will be a fresh start for me. If not, at least I know it's not the end of the world...






 
After a lot of goofing around, doing my homework & research, and procrastinating, I finally got my wallpaper website up and going! 

Here's the link: http://ecewallpapers.weebly.com

For now, only 2 wallpapers are for sale because of Ecwid's product slot limit of 10. So, 8 more to go before I'd have to pay to sell stuff! Yes, because of the different sizes, I'd have to list each size individually (pain isn't it?). 

This also means more grave-digging in my hordes of folders & more rendering! 
 
This is how I am feeling right now: empty, blank, dull, monotone- you name it. 

To me, it is hard to find what I really want. I feel numb every time I try to figure it out. I keep thinking whenever or not I should continue down the path of life I'm going. I don't feel aligned with making interactive magazines or stuff as what I'm learning in college. Yet, I fear dropping out because I don't want to upset anybody. But something tells me there's more to life to the single road I'm taking- I too, deserve to take the road less travelled. 

Already, I want to experiment with lifestyles because I don't know what lifestyle I want. I don't want to go down the same road as other 20-something's are taking- get into a shitload of credit card debt; get a 9-5 job; please your boss, parents & peers; get promoted; get a car(which I do want to too); get a house; carry a humongous mortgage; find a boy/girlfriend; get married; have kids; get promoted more; retire; enjoy your last few years; kiss life goodbye. 

There is one thing I'm afraid of right now: living a life full of burden. Sadly, 99.9% of people on Earth live this way. It is as if those with the most burdens weighing down on them are what makes a great human being, of what society wants everyone to be. Truth is: I'm not good with burden. I don't desire to spend my life carrying a 400-pound backpack. All of us deserve to live burden free, to live a Thoreau-like lifestyle. 

I am not asking you what lifestyle you want me to take. I won't, because your answers can be wrong. I am certain I want to avoid any source of debt at all costs. Who knows I may choose to live out of a van? Or if I move to New Zealand or Switzerland? My  choice currently is to keep searching & experimenting. I may stumble on a lifestyle I like and I am hoping for the best. 

Maybe I'm just a little depressed...





 
Picture
image courtesy www.hello-thailand.net

If you're used to an airport that directly link's to the city's public transport system, you'll find Bangkok's airport-city connection system really really inconvenient. 

Most, if not all international airports have a direct connection to the city's main public transport system as these metros stop at the main locations of the city. Suppose you don't want to drive your car because overnight airport parking drains your money, or that traffic jams make taxi's useless. Maybe you're in a city or town that you're unfamiliar with & you need to get to your hotel in the city center.

And because of those reasons, it's obvious that the subway(or overhead train depending on where you are)is going to be your only option unless if you can endure the trip on foot or if you grabbed a taxi. In order to maximize convenience getting into & out of the city, we need to "connect" the metro system to the airport & important landmarks that is. 

But what about Suvarnabhumi International Airport's system? 

Sadly, a -5 out of 10 to me. Why? Why is it that I find the system flawed?

I've been to several international airports over the course of my life. I've been to LAX, Denver International,Kansai, Narita, Sydney, Portland Intl, and recently, London-Heathrow. And all of those airports have one thing in common: they have a direct link to the city's public transport Systems underground & above ground. It's obvious that both travelers departing & arriving rely heavily on public transport as an alternative to their own cars. 

But once you arrive in Bangkok, you'll notice that as of recent, Suvarnabhumi Intl  has added a public transport link: the Airport Link. Whilst it's okay at first glance, things will change once you head for the platform. There are two lines: the "normal" city line(blue) & the express line. Firstly, the express line is the cheaper option for those trying go cheap or go frugal- it's only 15-45 baht($0.52 - $1.04) for a token, and the train leaves every some 15 minutes. But there are it's downsides: the train will stop at 4 stations along the way( these stations are basically in the middle of nowhere, really). Then there's the express line costing a whopping 150 baht, which stops only at 2 stations: Suvarnabhumi Airport & Makkasan Station( Airport Link's main terminal station).  But in the contrary, only one train leaves the station every half-hour. 

Now comes the bad bit: the main terminal station is Makkasan Station, which is no more than a cosmic joke.  To make matters worse, the station is NOT in downtown Bangkok. 

And the real flaw of the station? No direct connection to the MRT subway or the BTS- you have to walk half the length of the station underneath, cross the street that runs parallel with the station, and then enter theMRT subway! Seriously? Crossing the street with your hands full of stuff? Though it's okay during the day, I can't at all picture of doing this in the middle of the night! Did the architects & engineers ever think of ways to keep tourists' safe?!

Those who take the cityline may have to put up with the extra stops. But luckily, you'll be able to make it to downtown Bangkok, thanks to the cityline going all the way to Phya Tai station, which directly connects to the BTS. Though not perfect, but at least you make it into the city center(or close).

In case you're wondering, I'm Thai, and have lived in Bangkok for the past 22 years. I've known the news about the airport link for years, seen the over-head tracks built when I went on vacation, and even saw the main terminal, Makkasaan when it was just bare structure. So whilst I was optimistic over the years, I ended up getting a mixed bag just like many tourists who used the airport link. 

In retrospect, Suvarnabhimi Airport's public transport system is not as perfect as one can expect it. It still has its own flaws that need to be addressed & fixed. I did however, witness a footbridge in construction, one that connects to the pavement on the other side of the street. If complete, the bridge will help a lot in convenience, especially in the rain or at night.

And my advice when coming to visit Bangkok? Travel light! Don't bother with those huge suitcases! It may not sound so good to travel light, but it'll be worth it if you happen to travel to a place where public transport has such limitations.


 
Picture
image courtesy Universal Pictures
I've always had the impression that a great & memorable sci-fi film would occur, if not, every year, frequent. There is something very particular about this film genre that sets it apart from the rest of Hollywood: when Stanley Kubrick released 2001: A Space Odyssey in 1968, it was like nothing else. Same goes for Starwars in 1977, the entire Stark Trek franchise, and even Avatar in 2009 using game-changing motion-capture technology. 

On April 14th, 2013, I went to see the latest Tom Cruise film, Oblivion. At first, I thought it was going to be a typical apocalyptic film in which the hero tries to start humanity from scratch. 

To put it though, yes, the film's storyline goes along like that, but it contains such twists that can change the viewers perspective throughout the entire movie. But these twists won't tie your thoughts into the knot though- there are less twists than Inception or even typical thriller films, but BIG twists.

The movie left me a good impression, so much I can't resist to tell you my journey on helping Tom Cruise reboot planet Earth. But I have to do the right thing, and that is to not spoil you too much about the whole plot. But for a hint, think of it as Wall-E + Duncan Jone's Moon with a little mix of Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey & I, Robot

We start with Cruise's narration(in character)of an alien invasion on earth, our moon split into bits & Earth void of life, with the exception of Jack Harper(Cruise) & Victoria Olsen(Andrea Riseborough) who are stationed on Earth in an über-beautiful glass-walled house. Life all seems to be pristine for this 'effective team', as called by their distanced commander-in-chief stationed in the 'TET' space station above our atmosphere. 

And their mission? To make sure the humongous hydro-fusion machines( used to collect Earth's water) & keep the armed drones ticking. Another job is to find & clean up the "Scavs",  the 'invaders' responsible for scorching our planet. Every morning, Jack flies his cool Bell 47-like VTOL aircraft to inspect the giant machines sucking up the oceans and to make sure the drones work properly, as well as repairing the broken ones.

Throughout the film, Harper has memories- binoculars atop the Empire State Building & a woman he was to meet on the streets of New York. We presume this is a hint of what's to come.

One day, a NASA spaceship crashes with several humans in hibernation capsules. From here, everything changes for Jack Harper, and the mission itself. What is really going on? Is this whole alien invasion nothing but a big cover-up? Is there really a human colony on Titan? Are Jack & Victoria the only humans on Earth? Those questions will arise towards the middle of the movie, especially when Jack is finally caught by the 'scavs' & everything is turned upside down. 

As for whenever or not Oblivion will be 2013's sci-fi film, only time will tell. There are many Sci-fi films rolling out of Hollywood this year: After Earth will hit the screens in June(for the US), Star Trek Into Darkness, Elysium, Ender's Game and much more. If I do get to see the other films, I'll try to write reviews about them, as much as I'm not a movie buff like other movie reviewers.

Overall, I thought this was a great movie. Can't say memorable (yet), but I still applaud the dedication from the entire team into making this movie. 

The rest is up to you to judge...

Trailer from movieclipsTRAILERS
 
Just a test...

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