Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Where is the cable?

What do a maglev train and a San Francisco cable car have in common? More than you would initially think. Conventional motorized transport, be it a ship, motorcycle, automobile, train, or aeroplane, all have one thing in common. All those vehicles lug around their own engine. Why not leave the engine behind, and just move the coach and useful cargo? And that's exactly what a cable car does. The engine stays put on top of the hill. No energy is wasted in moving it about. The same goes for the maglev, where the engine is essentially the magnetized track. So when I was attending Sony's Game Tech Conference 2008 in San Francisco, I wanted to take a closer look at the Cable Car. I did not see the cables, and was puzzled. But I think the cables are below ground, and not above, where I expected them to be. Unfortunately, I did not get to ride the car.
While we are on the subject of city transport: those left wing radicals running the Amsterdam city council just banished my car from the city limits. They did this just because it is older than 1992, and supposedly I pollute the city with it. The bastards! My car uses the cleaner-burning propane fuel, but they do not seem to care about that. Foolishness like that makes me glad I am in Canada now, where common sense is not shunned.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

And the award goes to....

What an experience last night! My boss had a spare ticket for the Elans award ceremony. It is the Canadian counterpart for the Oscars, targeted to Games and Animation. Slant Six had two nominations. And the ceremony was hosted by Seth McFarlane. He is the creator of Family Guy. Since I moved to Canada, I have been watching a lot of Family Guy, and have become a fan of the show. I was excited to attend this. I dressed up as good as I managed, as it was formal dress. Luckily I brought my bow-tie from the Netherlands. I managed to get a cab, which is always tricky in Vancouver if it rains during rush hour. When I arrived at the venue, my cab pulled up behind a limo. So when the greeter opened my cab door, and welcomed me, I was right behind some celebrities, and got to walk the red carpet in style. There were a lot of photographers, and the flashes went off. I don't think they were aiming for shots of me though. Heh Heh. Cool stuff!

Seth did a great show, very funny stuff. The ceremony itself was plagued with technical screw ups though. Nothing worked or cued at the correct time. It got so bad that I suspected a prank. However, it was un-intentional, and just very embarrasing. It was a very enjoyable night none the less. And what do you know... we won both our nominations. Slant Six is best new game company, and Tactical Strike is best handheld game of 2007. For the first Elans, I joined the crew and went onto stage to get the statue. How cool is that? Pete and Dave did the acceptance speeches. After the ceremony we attended the after-party. I got an extra ticket for that, so I called Amy to join me. Amy and I were hoping to catch Seth on the after party. Amy is a big fan of Seth as well, but we did not see him at the party, unfortunately. Oh well, the drinks were free, and we had a great time.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Happy new year.

Last week the Chinese new year started. We are now living in the year of the rat. There was a big parade in China Town this weekend. A lot of dragons, drums, cimbals and firecrackers. Today I hit the slopes of Cypress Mountain, on the Alpine Skis, together with Goran. I still had it in me, and after all these years since I last skied, I could still do green and blue slopes. Even though we had snow and rain, I had a blast.

Sunday, February 3, 2008


Gisteravond hebben we de Vancouver Opera bezocht. Er was een uitvoering van L'italiana in Algeri. Het was mijn eerste opera bezoek. Met boventitels was het goed te volgen. Ik heb me goed vermaakt, alhoewel ik niet had verwacht dat de humor zo simpel zou zijn. Maar zoals Goran al zei: Sommige operas werden voor de keizer geschreven, maar andere operas voor het volk. Voor Goran en Slavica was het extra bijzonder, want ze zijn nu een jaar getrouwd.
Vandaag moet ik op zoek naar een manier om live naar SBS6 te kijken. De tragedie/thriller/klucht rond Natallee, geproduceerd door Peter R. de Vries is ook hier actueel. Het lijkt er op dat Peter het mysterie heeft opgelost. Dat zou een enorme prestatie zijn natuurlijk. Ik kan niet wachten tot maandag, dus ik hoop dat er Internet streaming is, of op zijn minst een bittorrent.