Saturday, November 19, 2011


I've decided to start a series of posts about use (or, rather, misuse) of Russian language in English media, specifically in movies and tv shows. This one is the first of a kind and all of them will be tagged "russian-in-english".

Our first item comes from "Sanctuary" - a very fine piece of science fiction known for its low budget CGI, but otherwise nice. Apparently, there is a lost Russian vessel frozen in ice somewhere in Barents Sea and the crew went crazy and shot each other, but not before putting a strange label on the white "first aid kit" box you see on the left side of the screen. The weird part is that they decided to transliterate from English instead of translating! So yeah, the sign actually says "first aid kit", with all Latin letters replaced with Cyrillic ones of similar sounding.
Sanctuary US S04E07 "Icebreaker"

Nikita S02E09 "Fair Trade"
The second one comes from the latest revision of "Nikita", the show that is riddled with horrible "russky" voicing. Russian voice actors are so bad there, I usually have trouble understanding what poor background characters are trying to say. Anyway, this time filmmakers did pull their shit together and gave a good try to produce a single episode without a fuck-up. Well, they almost did it. Dreadful "russian" speaking is still there, but at least they got most of the signs right. Except for the one on the picture (it is off by a single letter!), of course. Better luck next time, people.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

I was pretty awesome today. Fixed my LCD.

This post was going to be about me trying drugs for the first time last Friday, but on Saturday something more important happened.

My BenQ 19" LCD monitor broke, it was switching off by itself after I turn it on and was making annoying high-pitched sounds while going between on and off states. I applied my "Educated Guess" ability and surmised that some faulty capacitors in powering circuit are to blame - a problem I am totally qualified to deal with. Disassembling the monitor (the plastic back panel) was troublesome since i never did it before and i had to take advise from YouTube for this, but the rest was pretty straightforward. As i expected, three capacitors were inflated and had to be replaced.

So, I bravely ventured out on a quest for required circuit elements and soldering gizmos. Long story short i ended with a simple 40W soldering iron (which is a bit too much for electronics btw), a bunch of soldering supplies (solder, flux, etc..), a solder sucker, a capacitance meter, a multimeter and new capacitors, of course.

Desoldering bad capacitors with the pump was a breeze, soldering in new ones took some efforts, but eventually the job was done and I am writing this post on a fixed monitor, happy as an elf on a tree.

P.S. all the equips together cost me around $40, the price of fixing LCD alone was below $1, if you are interested.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

I got a job!

My days of unemployment are over, it seems. As per usual, the initiative was not mine. My dad reached out and pushed me into job interview, which resulted in being hired.

Well, can't say I'm excited much: salary is shit, work is low-tech IT mostly and on top of it they forced me to continue my higher education (remotely), and I must pay for it myself, of course. So, basically i will work for food till summer, which beats sitting flat with no job at all, but only by little.

As of right now, I've worked for a full week. Was bored most of the time and feeling incompetent for the rest of it. I seriously lack in "handy" skills, like drilling and screwing and soldering, but I'll catch up no doubt.

On the "plus" side the repair shop i work at is located within 15 minutes of walk from my home and i can have lunch at my place. Also, people at work are very nice and my boss is kinda cool old dude. I'm not very social person myself and often get uncomfortable in a new environment, but not there. I "clicked" in perfectly.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Hand made!

So-so. Few days ago a rush of creativity came over me, my hands were itching for action. Here is the result, it took me 9 hours over two nights to make this crappy picture, but I'm still proud of it.

Man on a photo is John Wells who told me he is not red-haired "down there". Too bad, John, I'm sucker for ginger. :-)

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Grey (Flash game).

Ok. After some emotional downtime I'm back to blogging. Almost got over the idea someone someday would comment.

This little game is nothing special really (click an icon to go check it out) but it reflects my mood exactly - sadness and tragic inevitability.

It takes only few minutes to finish the quest, and almost all of that time you kind of know it is not gonna be happy end, but still something inside of you makes you go all the way.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Master of Algebra!

Check out this beauty! It took me 2.5 hours straight of mind-focusing, but I did it, I got the final badge of "Khan Academy" 's mathematic practice course.

I wish they had other subjects, I'd love to do some genetics/microbiology problems.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Khan Academy: "Kinematic equations" exercise is done!


Being sentimental about my school years and following a habit of picking challenges I am certain of being able to handle I vowed to beat Khan Academy's Math exercise course month ago and I'm nearly done with it.

While most of presented problems are supposed to be solved with pen-and-paper toolkit, some explicitly allow use of a calculator. Which I shamelessly abused while solving "Kinematic equations".

Anyone interested can play with the spreadsheet live on Google Docs or download Microsoft Excel file.

8 equations are necessary and sufficient to solve 80% of this exercise - a statement I have formally proven!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Google Reader's magic

I am trying out Google Reader to aggregate the variety of blogs and news feeds I am subscribed to. As for now some things remain unknown to me, for example - how to comment on the blog posts I read and how to read existing comments? I hope to get around it soon and have a powerful tool of news access on my hands.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

"World's Crazy Fools" show. Episode 1 review.

Surprisingly, I laughed.
So, what is it? Basically, its a collection of Youtube funny videos commented by Mr. T. 

Before I started watching I expected to be repulsed by low grade humor, I only gave it a try because was bored. But somehow Mr. T won me over. 

Yes, video clips don't provide much intellectual challenge and the host is not a stand up comedian himself, but his charisma is unmistakable and Youtube picks are not without a taste.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Unthinkable (Movie, 2010)

Watched Unthinkable.

The film reminded me why do I hate military and why military is important. When I dwell down that road I wish for some other globe to live on.

Why people can't be nice to each other? :(

Monday, May 23, 2011

Vadim Panov's "Manual Drive"

Today i finally have read "Manual Drive" by Vadim Panov.
He is a russian sci-fi writer mostly working in "city fantasy" genre. I generally dislike this flavor of fiction, but this particular book was highly praised in the fandom. So, i decided to give it a try. Overall impression - meh. If this one is considered the best of Panov, i'd stay away from his other works.

If you are interested, "city fantasy" is a genre mix of (noir) detective and common heroic fantasy. It usually involves strong magical reality placed in a replica of our actual world - end of 20th century, beginning of 21st. The magic and its creatures are not considered a "common knowledge" like in any heroic fantasy, but rather lurks in the dark alleys, hiding from general public.

The popular nowadays vampire/werewolf pandemonium can be considered a subgenre of a "city fantasy".

Night Watch (book --> movie) is another fine exemplar.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Kings (tv series)

Just finished watching the first (and only) season of "Kings" - a drama loosely based on biblical story, but set up in modern environment. Overall impression in one word - enchanting.

The show is not thrilling you with tightly packed action, astounding graphical extravaganza or plot full of mystery and spookiness, but it have something other modern shows usually lack - a soul touch. In its own moderate tempo the story tells you of kings and heroes, of bravery, patriotism and mens' fight for their destiny and against it.

Its not exactly a sci-fi, neither it is a fantasy. The genre is drama and the setting involves queen looking for her cell phone in a sock drawer, prince commencing a black-op behind country's border and gives you tingling sensation of what strong "god given" monarchy with court and all the intrigues and prophecies would look like in a world of computers and helicopters. To know the bible is not necessary to understand the plot, but it adds a spicy flavor as you see David defeats Goliath, for example.

Recommended to watch for anyone with a taste to high/classic culture.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Day One.

Ah, my new blog looks awesome <3

I don't know if i am going to be patient enough to maintain it, but surely i will try.