Sunday, November 17, 2013

Google Glass


Google Glass, a sometimes controversial wearable device, has potential to change the way people interact with technology. It's Google's second independently created hardware device that straps the equivalent of a Galaxy Nexus phone to your head in a very compact form factor. For the large time that Google's Nexus line of hardware has been around, all (except the short-lived Nexus Q) were assembled and co-branded by other companies such as HTC, Samsung, and LG. The only difference between Glass and a phone is that Glass has no cell phone radio and a smaller battery (~570 mAh). This means that you can't make calls directly from Glass or get 3G/4G data directly to Glass, but you can still use it as a bluetooth headset and tether Glass to your phone for data. Glass can also connect to wifi for those who want to conserve their data usage. Just to be clear, Google Glass is most often referred to simply as Glass, not glasses or a pair. There is only one set of the device's electronics, so it's not really a pair. Google is also working on Google Goggles, an app that lets you run a search based on a picture.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Tiki Ridge Hike - With a Twist

This past Saturday, Aaron and I decided to go on a hike. We wanted something challenging and wanted a trail where weather wouldn't be as much of a concern. The Tiki Ridge -> Unnamed Peak -> Kawiwi hike came to mind. Aaron wasn't able to come the last time with me and Nick, so it was a good opportunity for him to see the trail. This time, however, Nick wasn't able to go, so Aaron and I went out to Waiʻanae. There must be something about this side of the island because just as before, we deviated from the original plan, and this time turned out to be nothing like the previous time.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Tiki Ridge to Unnamed Peak to Puʻu Kawiwi

Except for one or two times where my parents took me as a baby (which I don't remember anyway), I've never been to Waiʻanae. After the many years I've lived on Oahu, I never had a reason or desire to head out to that side, until this past weekend when Nick and I decided to check out a trail marked as "extreme" on David Chatsuthiphan's site, Unreal Hawaii.

We saw the pictures from David's post, Pu’u Kawiwi, No Name, Tiki Ridge, and were eager to try the hike ourselves. You might notice the title of my post is in the reverse order from David's, and that's because we accidentally did the trail backwards from what was planned. We felt like this backwards route changed the difficulty of the trail significantly, and we found ourselves descending some steep and hair-raising sections that would have been easier the other way around. Either way, this hike should only be attempted by experienced hikers who aren't afraid of heights and climbing. There is a significant amount of climbing on this hike in addition to some steep parts on the way up to the ridge, so make sure you're in shape and bring lots of water.

True Manamana - The complete trail

This write up is long overdue. Aaron and I headed over to the Kualoa area to check out the True Manamana trail about a month ago, but I hadn't gotten around to writing about the adventure. Reaching the True Manamana trail involves first reaching the turnaround on the regular Manamana trail, which is a long and strenuous trek to begin with. Not wanting to go through the same experience as the last time we went on the trail, we made sure to pack extra water. As a warning, the True Manamana hike is said to be one of the hardest and most dangerous on the island. You'll need to be able to handle thin, crumbly sections with steep drops on both sides. Wind gusts may come and go abruptly, throwing you off balance, which can be dangerous on this trail. Despite those threats, the hike is very fun and provides some nice views on clear days.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Olomana - Down the third peak

I had been wanting to check the entirety of Olomana off my to-do list for quite some time, and not just the usual trail where you back track after reaching the third peak; I wanted to see how the trail looked going down the third peak and try to exit through the entrance of the Olomana trail.

I checked out a little of the hike down the third peak earlier but was on a time budget because our group didn't have time allotted for potentially getting lost in the dense forest that's sandwiched between the golf course and the mountains. This time, however, we made sure to start early in order to factor in any extra time required to find our way out of an otherwise un-trekked trail, as far as I know.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Moanalua Saddle to Haiku Stairs Hike

It's been quite some time since I've gone on a new trail and a trail worth writing about. Nick wanted to check out the Moanalua Saddle trail and hook up with the stairs so we could get down. I have to say, because of the terrain and likeliness of severely hurting or killing yourself on this hike, it's definitely one of the most crazy and extreme hikes on the island. Compared to True Manamana, I thought this hike was more difficult.

You're pretty much traveling on a narrow path that consists mainly of loose dirt and rocks along with far drops on either side. Depending on the weather, you might also need to deal with intense gusts of wind. If it rains, this hike may not even be possible. You shouldn't attempt this hike if you are afraid of heights or are not sure of your hiking abilities.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Electric Skateboard Calculator

Electric Skateboard Speed Calculator

Using what I've learned about brushless motors and skateboard power, I created an electric skateboard calculator. This calculator is intended to help you find the theoretical maximum speed for an electric skateboard.

Friday, June 28, 2013

More Progress on the Electric Skateboard

After quite a long hiatus, I've finally got some time to add a post updating the electric longboard build. This past semester was my last in undergrad. I graduated from UH and have a temporary job that will give me some money to add to my savings. The plan is to try to get into law school and see how that route goes. Looks like I'm actually gonna study law.

Anyways back to the longboard - Thanks to the recommendation of a reader, I picked up an Alien Drive Systems motor mount kit for the skateboard, and my work on the electric longboard has progressed immensely. I've already been through many versions of the longboard, each with improvements on the previous.